in response to someone who was insisting that violating one's oath - or what in my case would be an affirmation - is pretty much unacceptable under any circumstance.
I am not going to promote this post.
But I want to offer what I wrote in return, below the fold.
As I have engage in dialog over Snowden and related matters, my own thinking is becoming ever more clear.
It is not yet finished.
Perhaps what I offer below the squiggle is of some value to someone, and since the diary on which it was originally posted has long-since scrolled from view, I post it now in case it may be of interest to anyone.
people have a visceral reaction to the government lying to them and it causing deaths
someone who has given an affirmation and finds out the government is lying to the American people and that is causing death and destruction and by your rationale that person cannot say anything.
Sorry, I do not buy it.
I stand with Jefferson, who wrote
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and HappinessIf the only way for the American people to know that the the Government is becoming "destructive of these ends" is to walk away from an affirmation of support, then more power to the person who does so.
THE government is supposed to be answerable to the people.
Those temporarily occupying positions of power granted them directly or indirectly by We the People do not have the right to deny us the information we need to hold them to account.
To grant any government that kind of unchecked authority is to acquiesce to tyranny.
Jefferson also cautions
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.He then makes clear that the founding fathers of which he is an important member found themselves at that point with the Crown in 1776.
The American people by and large have wanted to believe in the government. Those that vote for a certain administration want to believe they did the right thing.
Those who abuse power count on that.
They do not want the press to challenge them.
They do not want sources of power or authority they cannot control.
In such a situation one may well find oneself where Jefferson did:
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.We have now had an ever increasing series of those with access raise alarms of various sorts.
I think that is worthy of attention.
Sometimes the moral thing to do is to break the law, deliberately.
Sometimes the only moral course is to walk away from a prior commitment given without information or knowledge that radically changes the circumstances.
We allow people to divorce one another for a variety of reasons. That commitment is to my mind of far greater significance than what Snowden walked away from.
And I know far too much detailed history of the abuses of the national security apparatus to immediately accept its framing of anything.