The fine, blurred line between patriotism and treason

The top-secret files Edward Snowden released were not much of a surprise. By leaking classified files to reporters at the Guardian and Washington Post he was confirming what I have suspected for a long time now.
As it turns out, the National Security Agency has been spying on Americans and Europeans with their PRISM program since 2007. Yahoo, Google and Microsoft produced 98 percent of the information collected, which the NSA uses to protect American citizens, or so they say.
When this news got out, the NSA officials must have wanted to kick themselves for being so careless as to who had access to these files. The director of NSA, Gen. Keith B. Alexander, says he will begin using a two-man rule now to prevent future leaks. The two-man rule would make sure two men both approve the action taken on sensitive documents. The NSA’s lack of security efforts on classified documents allowed Snowden access to the PRISM data, and really this whole situation has brought to light how much of a foreign term security is to these security officials. The security agency known for keeping secrets can’t even keep their own. This situation has not been harmful to the livelihoods of American citizens; it has only put a dent in the defender image the NSA projects.
After Snowden escaped the U.S. to run from his punishment, he holed into a hotel room in Hong Kong and gave an exclusive video interview to The Guardian saying, “I can’t in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, Internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.”
According to documents obtained by The Guardian released from the United States Embassy, Snowden has been charged with Unauthorized Disclosure of National Defense Information, Unauthorized Disclosure of Classified Communication Intelligence and Theft of Government Property. Each charge carries a maximum of 10 years in prison and a fine of no more than $250,000. So these are the consequences he is facing if he comes back to America. Snowden has applied for asylum in almost 20 countries, with many rejections, but three offers from Latin American countries. All three of his options have socialist leaders who are offering Snowden a new place to live, if only he could actually get there. It will be hard for him to get anywhere considering his U. S. passport has been revoked.
Snowden has been living inside a Moscow airport for three weeks trying to avoid the U.S. government’s extradition request on him. Technically, he cannot be granted asylum until he is on the country’s soil but Venezuela doesn’t seem to care. Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro wants to offer his refuge from the American “Empire,” and he has already rejected the U.S.’s extradition request.
Snowden’s recent mischievous actions include releasing a blue-print of the NSA’s software. Now anybody can hack into it.
What lies ahead in Snowden’s future will continue to be a mystery but what he has done should make all of us more conscious of what we post and search for online. If you don’t want your privacy invaded then don’t place your daily happenings on the Internet for everyone to see. If you do, and you’re doing something wrong, the government will find you. If you are not a danger to American society then you have nothing to worry about; but still, be smart about your online activity, and be thankful for Snowden and his bravery. He knew what would happen to him after releasing those documents, and he did it anyway. I think it’s quite patriotic, actually.