Don’t Punish Journalists For Exposing Governmental Phone Privacy Violations


Target: Eric Holder, United States Attorney General

Goal: Protect journalists from backlash for exposing the National Security Agency’s gathering of private information

Recently, the National Security Agency (NSA)’s seizure of private information and phone records was exposed by journalists from two news publications, the Washington Post and the Guardian. The program is called PRISM – The director of the NSA, James Clapper, has stated that “The unauthorized disclosure of a top secret U.S. court document threatens potentially long-lasting and irreversible harm to our ability to identify and respond to the many threats facing our nation.” While defending the program, James Clapper has already outlined his targets for investigation: the journalists who exposed the program. One journalist has already received threats of investigation from Washington.

The Obama Administration’s campaign against whistleblowers has been relentless, Bradley Manning serving as a prime example. Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks, fears that the NSA whistleblowers will share the same fate: “Let’s ask ourselves whether the whistleblower who has revealed those, and there’s more to come, is going to be in exactly the same position as Bradley Manning is in today.” This consistent prosecution by the Obama Administration is becoming quite frightening: the media is no longer allowed to function as a news source, and private information is now freely handed over to organizations such as the National Security Agency and The Federal Bureau of Intelligence.

Sign this petition to urge U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to refrain from prosecuting the whistleblowers involved in this case. The public must show its discontent for attempted cover ups by the government regarding their privacy, and this is no different. While charges have not been made, the whistleblowers from The Guardian and The Washington Post should be protected before they even reach trial.


Dear Eric Holder,

Journalists from The Washington Post and The Guardian are facing penalties for exposing the National Security Agency’s PRISM program. The Obama Administration’s prosecution of whistleblowers has been non stop, with more whistleblowers arrested and charged than any presidential administration to date. The journalists involved will undoubtedly share the same fate.

The consistent attempts by the Obama Administration to deter future whistleblowers through public example is unacceptable. The message sent to the public is clear: media organizations are no longer allowed to expose truth, as any government action is referred to as a national safety issue. The NSA’s seizure of personal phone records is an enormous violation of many citizen’s 4th Amendment rights, yet the program is allowed to continue.

I demand that your administration stop prosecuting whistleblowers with such fervor, particularly those involved in this case. The journalists who have exposed massive civil rights violations by federal organizations are not the criminals in this case, but are made out to be while the original issue continues to function.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Whiteafrican Via Flickr

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