Sen. Ben Cardin [D, MD], the former Chairman of the Terrorism and Homeland Security Subcommittee, has reintroduced a bill from late last session that would make it a felony for government employees and contractors to disclose any information in violation of their nondisclosure agreements, regardless of whether or not the information was leaked for the greater good of the American public.
If it wasn't for whistle-blowers we would certainly not be where we are now. With real journalism on the decline, and people like Army Pfc. Bradley Manning being held in solitary confinement for allegedly leaking the truth about our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, protecting the rights of whistle-blowers have become more important than ever before. But Cardin's bill doesn't just target whistle-blowers, it targets America's access to the truth.
Tell Cardin to withdraw this bill ASAP, before he puts the chill on free speech and government accountablility.
Ben Cardin (D-MD)
The bill that you have reintroduced to congress, S.355, is a step in the wrong direction. It goes way beyond reasonable restrictions on classified information and targets not only those who are brave enough to tell the truth, but government accountability itself, and our right to information.
Please don't put a chill on our democracy. It's already getting cold in here.
Pfc. Bradley Manning is being held in solitary confinement after nearly 8 months. His conditions are akin to torture and have sparked a probe by the UN. Meanwhile, the Department of Justice is trying to build a case to prosecute Julian Assange, serving secret subpeonas to social media companies, while public figures and polititions have called for his assaination.
Last week another veteran, ex CIA analyst Ray McGovern was brutally arrested during Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's lecture on the importantance of free speech at George Washington University. Peace groups in the Midwest are being indited by the FBI.
Whistle Blowing has finally brought us the truth about our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and it has helped bring democracy to Egypt and Tunisia. It gave us the Pentagon Papers, and it is a staple of american democracy. You cannot have an informed public without good information, and an illinformed public is poison for democracy. With real journalism on the decline, publications like Wikileaks and the those that bravely pass them information are the new heroes of our age.
Felonizing those who are brave enough to stand up and tell the truth isn't just unconstitutional, it's a bad idea. Please withdraw your dangerous Senate bill, before you freeze our democracy.
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