Damon calls Snowden’s revelations “pretty shocking” but supports his decision to leak the agency’s PRISM surveillance program in a recent interview with BBC Arabic‘s Sam Asi.
“I haven’t read everything that he’s leaked, but he [Snowden] certainly seemed like a very conscientious guy and these revelations are pretty incredible and and pretty shocking and kinda fly in the face of public statements that all these officials have made,” Damon told Asi. “So, on balance I think it’s a great thing he did. I think if we’re gonna trade our civil liberties for our security, then that should be a decision that we collectively make – it shouldn’t be made for us.”
“The question is how to keep ourselves safe and hang on to our civil liberties and to what degree do we have to sacrifice – are we willing to sacrifice those liberties for our security, and that’s something everyone is talking about,” he added.
Although Damon has a history of supporting progressive causes, including the crusade against fracking, the eradication of nuclear weapons worldwide and providing clean water to impoverished nations, he has become disenchanted with President Obama in recent months. Earlier this month Damon told the British newspaper The Guardian that he’s more “disturbed” by Obama’s presidency now than anything else, despite being an avid supporter of the president in 2008. He also questioned the president’s manhood in a 2011 interview with Elle magazine.
Watch Damon’s interview below.