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Snowden’s Revelations Caused Major Shift in Opinions about Surveillance State

Edward Snowden’s revelations about NSA spying programs have successfully caused a significant shift in opinion among the American people. As Americans learn more about just how extensive the government’s “anti-terrorism” efforts, a plurality have concluded that the government goes too far by infringing on our rights.

According a new Quinnipiac poll 45 percent of American voters think the government’s anti-terrorism policies go too far in restricting people’s civil liberties while 40 percent think they haven’t gone far enough. This is a huge swing since 2010. Back in 2010 before Americans knew about these programs only 25 percent thought the government had gone too far while 63 thought they hadn’t gone far enough to protect the country.

The poll also found Americans are more likely to see Snowden as a whistle-blower than a traitor. When presented with only those two options 55 percent see Snowden more as a whistle-blower while only 34 percent see him more as a traitor.

Snowden wanted to start a real conversation about what is an acceptable use of government power and it appears he has succeeded.

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at