I have never needed much persuading when it came to believing in the privacy argument, as it actually makes a lot of sense. However, I can see how someone could be tempted to be in favor of surveillance if they did not understand the meaning of privacy. As Snowden has noted several times throughout his journey, privacy is not necessarily about hiding information, but about the ability to protect it if necessary. For this reason, the right to privacy encompasses many of our rights that we have today. For instance the freedom of speech. Most people would not argue against the First Amendment even though it has similar properties. As snowden remarks, “Arguing that you don’t care about privacy because you have nothing to hide is like arguing that you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say” (Snowden.) Freedom of speech is wanted twenty-four seven, even when we do not appear to need it. The argument that “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear” is additionally problematic for a different reason. Today both regular citizens and politicians use this phrase alike, unaware of its background. Snowden reminds us that this phrase was common in Nazi propaganda, and is being missuesd today.
The uses of surveillance in the past have been mediocre at best. Many times, surveillance has been abused, and used to take down minority groups. An example of this could be the wiretapping of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. beginning in 1963, and finally ending after his death. The FBI at this time closely surveilled Dr. King, hopping to reveal a communist background. When evidence of this did not arise, they turned petty, and revelaed sensitive information on his sex life. Clearly, surveillance at this time did not halt terrorism, if anything it hindered the civil rights moevemnt.