While pundits, lawmakers, and talking heads quibble about whether Edward Snowden should be cast as a “hero” or a “traitor,” the NSA leak story raises a more fundamental issue for debate: The relationship between governments and citizens.
If media accounts can be taken at face value, the PRISM program – while perhaps well intentioned – represents a significant threat to individual liberty and privacy, not only of U.S. citizens, but of law-abiding and peaceful people in countries around the world.
According to a follow-up article by Glenn Greenwald, it would appear that members of Congress were not fully aware of the extent or invasiveness of the NSA’s data collection, which raises the question of how any meaningful oversight could have been occurring, as some officials have claimed.
Regardless of where you come down on government surveillance in a philosophical sense, ask yourself this question: If the watchers are not able to watch those who are watching us, how can the public have any hope of engaging in reasoned debate on this issue?
What do we base our decisions about NSA intrusions upon? How do we evaluate what liberties we’re giving up and whether that’s acceptable to us or not?
This week’s videos feature a roundup of reporting from a variety of angles. Take a look and make up your own mind.
Edward Snowden’s interview with the Guardian
Marco Rubio’s response to the NSA leaks
Rand Paul responds to NSA’s testimony
Harry Reid: Lawmakers have had “every opportunity to be aware” of the NSA’s programs
Have a safe weekend and, for all the dads out there, have a Happy Father’s Day!
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