Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Right Dishonors Itself By Lionizing Edward Snowden

     Have you ever had the occasion to hear someone on the radio or watch someone on television, who claims to be a Conservative, say something so antithetical to the core beliefs of conservatism you just want to reach through the television or radio and slap some sense into them? Well, I had one of those moments this morning while driving to work and listening to Bill Bennett's Morning In America. Mr. Bennett's guest host, Ken Wahl, and some of his callers were defending NSA leaker, Edward Snowden, and in some instances calling him a hero.
     I have written on this subject before, but this hero-worship on the Right for a man who conducts himself in such a dishonorable fashion is breath-taking. Do not mistake what I am saying, I do not necessarily have a problem with the exposure of the National Security Administration's massive data collection of millions of Americans' phone records and Internet traffic. I am sympathetic to the cause of individual liberty which finds this behavior by our government abhorrent. I do, however, have a huge problem with the manner in which Mr. Snowden conducted himself in this affair, as should anyone who cares about the principles of conservatism and honor.
     The actions of Edward Snowden were in no way heroic, not because the information he exposed did not warrant heroism for its exposure, but because he engaged in the broadcast of classified information of his nation from a foreign land and then sought asylum from other foreign lands. This behavior would be analogous to the Founding Fathers signing the Declaration Of Independence in France and then high-tailing it to Jamaica to wait out the Revolutionary War. Honor demands doing what you feel in your heart, and that which is supported by your principles, and suffering any consequences for having done so. Mr. Snowden conducted himself in a dishonorable manner and should not be supported or made the object of hero worship by anyone, especially those on the Right who profess to subscribe to the principles of liberty, which is built upon the cornerstone of honor. 
     The signers of the Declaration Of Independence pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honors to the cause of Liberty. Some actually lost their lives, and many lost their fortunes, but not one lost their sacred honor. Mr. Snowden will not lose his life over his actions nor will he lose a fortune, although some say he sacrificed a pretty cushy life in Hawaii to expose the NSA program. He did, however, throw away his sacred honor, that is if he had it to begin with. And those who have stood Mr. Snowden up as a hero have exposed their ignorance of honor and their willingness to elevate disgrace and dishonor to its lofty perch.


  1. I have to admit, I wasn't sure what to think of Snowden. While it's kind of understandable the labeling of him as a traitor for revealing so much about our national security, on the other hand, he did a service to we the people in showing just how over reaching we all felt the government has been, but now have proof of.
    I wouldn't exactly have called him a hero either, but I do appreciate what he did.
    That said, the way you compared him with the case of someone signing the Declaration then hiding out somewhere until the war was fought is absolutely spot on.

    That put it in proper perspective for me. Thank you.

    1. Carolyn, Thanks for reading nd for the comment. I think Snowden could have been a more sympathetic character had he not run away and did what he did.

  2. I especially like this commentary. Snowden is neither a traitor nor a hero based on what I know. (AFAIK he never revealed anything that endangered individuals serving or trusting in the USA, and IMO to be a traitor you must do that.) You do articulate my reasons for having withdrawn the idea I had early on that he was a hero.