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NSA's illegal snooping

Published June 26, 2013 1:01 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Granting a warrant to spy on an individual is one thing. Granting a warrant to spy on the entire U.S. populace for seven years, without even a pretense of probable cause, is another matter entirely.

It is difficult to imagine how this could not violate the Fourth Amendment's guarantee that "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause."

Two presidents and a parade of intelligence officials have lied to us about what the National Security Agency is doing. Why would any rational individual believe anything the government says about the NSA?

It is vital to democratic governance that citizens know what their government is doing. Thus the framers of the Constitution enshrined freedom of the press.

When the government lies, democracy is threatened. Then citizens must rely on people like Edward Snowden to tell them what their government is really doing. The framers knew that the future of democracy depends on it.

American military personnel swear an oath to defend the Constitution. How many have died defending it?

I am willing to accept a slightly greater risk of being killed by terrorists to preserve the Constitution. Aren't you?

Brooke Jennings

Salt Lake City