Two weeks ago, J. Clifford noted the existence of a new petition declaring the surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden to be a hero and calling for his pardon. This petition is not your usual slacktivist information-gathering scam; the administration of President Barack Obama has committed to reviewing and responding to each petition posted on the whitehouse.gov website that surpasses 100,000 signatures.
Yesterday, the petition to pardon Edward Snowden topped the 100,000 mark, with 106,626 supporters as I write this article (and 50 new signatures added since I started the last paragraph). Now the Obama administration must acknowledge and respond to the popularity of the movement supporting Snowden’s status as a principled whistleblower. The White House has net responded to the petition, but we’ll pay attention and provide updates in this regard.
This is a small victory in the anti-surveillance movement, one that must be part of a broader activist plan — but it is a victory nonetheless.