The recent revelation that the United States Government has been eavesdropping on telephone calls and Internet traffic did not come as a complete shock to me. But, I’m sure we would be quite shocked to find out everything that the government does in the name of national security. As much as I don’t like the U.S. Government recording the telephone numbers I call and having access to my email communications, there is little I can do about it. Some people say that, if you don’t have anything to hide, you should not object. As a citizen of the United States, a country where freedom is waved right along with our flag, I don’t think it’s right for the government to be able to spy on everyone absent a specific reason.
Unfortunately, it appears the extent of U.S. Government spying is proving to be very embarrassing for the government and for the citizens of the United States. An article in The Guardian on Sunday afternoon described some additional documents that were released by Edward Snowden, which show the U.S. Government spied on several nations of the European Union. Germany was apparently singled out as one of the top targets for electronic eavesdropping, something that did not make the German government very happy. In fact, the governments of Germany, Belgium and France are all calling for the U.S. Government to respond to this issue as soon as possible.
As one who travels around the world, I hope that people in other countries remember that I am a citizen of the United States and that I am not the government of the United States. I have seen instances where the U.S. Government has been involved in actions that were not popular with the world community and some people have voiced their displeasure toward citizens who had no involvement in those actions. It is my hope that other citizens of the world will not judge me by what my government does. Hopefully, they will speak to me and learn how I feel about what is going on before passing judgement about me. We should do no less for the citizens of other countries, who find themselves in the same situation.