Friday, September 27, 2013
A couple of months ago, the major media from all around the world focused on a specific person called Edward Snowden. He leaked a considerable amount of secret intelligence of the project called PRISM, which showed that the U.S. government had been spying on all its citizens and its allies ever since 9.11. Moreover, Snowden claimed that he was still holding even more intelligence. This incident is the most serious intelligence leak and it terrified the US government. Even more notably, the US government hid the fact that they have been violating the human rights of its citizens all the time.
Admittedly, under special circumstances such as 9.11, the government should be granted the power to dictate certain aspect of people’s lives. For instance, the government has the right to draft in war. After 9.11, the congress passed USA Patriot Act (Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001). This act provide US government the right to search business records and conduct surveillance of individuals suspected of terrorist, which points to the majority of US citizens. It is really creepy when I think about all my activities online and on phone are under surveillance, and all the secretes I keep online can be accessed by the government. After this PRISM incident, I seriously doubt the credibility of US government, and I believe many other people have this concern, too. This is probably the most serious human rights crisis in America, in which people expect liberty, and freedom.
However, thinking this incident more calmly and thoroughly, I realize that only after project PRISM was leaked by Snowden have people began to consider the violation of human rights by the government. That is to say, without the leak, our lives would have continued normally. So here is my concern, is knowing the fact that our rights are violated important enough to outweigh the peaceful lives we had?