Snowden: The man who guided America down the right path September 23, 2013 — by Nelson Wang In recent news, Edward Snowden, a former member of the NSA and CIA who revealed some of the agency’s secret surveillance plans, has been a hot topic of controversy. Some have hailed him as a patriotic hero. Others have called him a traitor. In recent news, Edward Snowden, a former member of the NSA and CIA who revealed some of the agency’s secret surveillance plans, has been a hot topic of controversy. Some have hailed him as a patriotic hero. Others have called him a traitor. In my view, Snowden is essentially a patriot because of his attempts to remind America of its roots in freedom. Snowden’s rise to notoriety started when he released information about the NSA to the public, revealing plans to monitor citizens of the United States without their consent. Naturally, this caused much uproar in the country, with many people arguing this would hurt national security. But many people failed to realize that Snowden is one of the only people among the masses to remember the heart of America. America’s roots lie in the rights of the people and Snowden revealed clear violation of rights such as the right of privacy and a violation of the Fourth Amendment, which states that the government cannot search through people’s possessions without a warrant. Some people may argue that Snowden is a terrorist for leaking information about the United States, but consider this: It’s not the United States if the rights of citizens are violated. It’s not the same country that our Founding Fathers worked hard to create. Most importantly, it’s not the same country that millions have died to protect. Others point out the fact that he took an oath to uphold the secrets of the U.S. and blatantly broke this oath. But at the end of the day, the rights of American citizens are far more important than one simple oath. In fact, our government’s social contract should act as a huge binding oath in which we give some of our freedoms, but have our rights protected, an oath the government seems to have forgotten. Ultimately, rather than seeing Snowden’s acts as the acts of a traitor, people should see it as guiding America back onto the right path. When something unconstitutional is planned to be implemented into our system, it is a clear indicator that the government has forgotten its roots and needs to remember that it should prioritize the people. While the surveillance policy may not even save anyone from a hypothetical, low chance terrorist attack, it clearly threatens the rights and privacy of citizens. Like many patriots, he is scorned by people now, but one day American citizens will look back and thank him for his efforts.