American Humanist Association
Resolution in Support of Online Privacy
Adopted by the Board of Directors
February 18, 2014
Following the release of government documents by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden, the public has become aware of wide-ranging surveillance on U.S. citizens and our allies. The American Humanist Association joins many in grave concerns about the overreach of U.S. government surveillance activities.
WHEREAS the American Humanist Association Board of Directors issued resolutions supporting the United Nations General Assembly’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1951, 1967, 1973 and 1997, which promotes a right to privacy,
WHEREAS the United Nations unanimously voted on November 20, 2013 to adopt a resolution “to respect and protect the right to privacy, including in the context of digital communication” and “to review their procedures, practices and legislation regarding the surveillance of communications, their interception and collection of personal data, including mass surveillance, interception and collection, with a view to upholding the right to privacy by ensuring the full and effective implementation of all their obligations under international human rights law”,
WHEREAS the National Security Agency’s unlawful collection of phone records and monitoring of online activity violates privacy rights under the U.S. Constitution and 4th Amendment protections against unreasonable search,
WHEREAS the National Security Agency, its companion government agencies, supervisory officials have a grave responsibility to ensure security of citizens within the bounds of law and morality,
WHEREAS the documents released by Edward Snowden were released in a controlled, purposeful manner to expose government abuses and have been thus far found to be authentic and insightful,
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the American Humanist Association supports efforts to promote online privacy, advocates for meaningful government surveillance reform, and opposes actions taken by intelligence agencies that unlawfully monitor the online activities of individuals;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the American Humanist Association supports amnesty for Edward Snowden under federal whistleblower protection laws.