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A photo of the side of a public bus. An advertisement on the side of the bus reads “We the People oppose the Surveillance State and say Thank you, Edward Snowden! Take action at ThankYouEdSnowden.org”.
Those concerned about government surveillance have found a champion in Edward Snowden, a former contractor for the U.S. government who leaked thousands of classified documents to journalists in June 2013. These documents revealed the existence of multiple global surveillance programs run by the National Security Agency. (credit: modification of work by Bruno Sanchez-Andrade Nuño)

Americans have recently confronted situations in which government officials appeared not to provide citizens their basic freedoms and rights. Protests have erupted nationwide in response to the deaths of African Americans during interactions with police. Many people were deeply troubled by the revelations of Edward Snowden ( [link] ) that U.S. government agencies are conducting widespread surveillance, capturing not only the conversations of foreign leaders and suspected terrorists but also the private communications of U.S. citizens, even those not suspected of criminal activity.

These situations are hardly unique in U.S. history. The framers of the Constitution wanted a government that would not repeat the abuses of individual liberties and rights that caused them to declare independence from Britain. However, laws and other “parchment barriers” (or written documents) alone have not protected freedoms over the years; instead, citizens have learned the truth of the old saying (often attributed to Thomas Jefferson but actually said by Irish politician John Philpot Curran), “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” The actions of ordinary citizens, lawyers, and politicians have been at the core of a vigilant effort to protect constitutional liberties.

But what are those freedoms? And how should we balance them against the interests of society and other individuals? These are the key questions we will tackle in this chapter.

Questions & Answers

What is pressure group
Felcia Reply
what is election
Faith Reply
A election is a formal and organized choice by voters of a person or people for a political office or other position.
Tina
Ok. Thanks not sure why you sent that to me. But ok?
Chatbot
What if the people of country did not want
Sadam Reply
Can you explain the Stockdale Paradox
Patricia Reply
How the capital market can create a better future for all import and benefit
Egbo Reply
in the dred scott case what did the supreme court decide the Congress had no power to do
Kazi Reply
who was james madison
Ceceilia Reply
Founding Father who fought to add the Bill of Rights to the Constitution he helped write (called the "Father of the Constitution"). He and Jefferson didn't want the federal govt to overpower the states (Democratic-Republican party). Cowrote The Federalist Papers. 4th President of the US (1809-1817).
Aaron
hi
Serah
how are you doing
Bubacarr
hi
Nicole
hello
faithsia
who has the power to declare war
Fernandy Reply
president who is commander in chief
Abu
Adam the president
Talima
are spelled out in Constitution
leticia Reply
What is constituencies
Patrick Reply
is the body of voters who elect their representatives for their area
Ernest
Can you say is the process by which voters who elect their representatives for their area
Lydia
people respresenting Congress
Nicole
but are you sure?
Anna
so does anyone UNDERSTAND the laws of the CITY and the City Council...
Anna
the first Republic political parties
Baby Reply
how call government system in Zambia
esenam Reply
was it Britain that colonialised usa
Temiloluwa Reply
Yes because is in the document of Britain which it cannot be change.
Abu
what is government?
Busari
what is Electoral malpractice
Bailey Reply
it is a practice which is against the rules of electoral activities(electoral commission ).
Abu
Electoral malpractice, is illegal interference with process of an election.
Tina
Clifford constitution of 1922
ABAH Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, American government. OpenStax CNX. Dec 05, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11995/1.15
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