Air Dates: February 10-11, 2018
When Patrick Henry stood up in the Virginia House of Burgesses and said, “Give me liberty, or give me death,” he crystallized for all time the critical tension between security of the state and the desire of all people to breathe free. Guest, Timothy Edgar, has worked to help resolve those tensions at the National Security Agency and in the White House of President Barack Obama.
Edgar is a former national security and intelligence official, cybersecurity expert, privacy lawyer and civil liberties activist. Edgar joined the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), shortly before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and spent five years fighting in Congress against abuses in the “war on terror.” He left the ACLU to try to make a difference by going inside America’s growing surveillance state – a story he tells in Beyond Snowden: Privacy, Mass Surveillance and the Struggle to Reform the NSA.
He worked for a number of years advising the director of national intelligence during the George W. Bush administration. As well as advising former President Barack Obama on privacy issues in cybersecurity policy. In 2013, Edgar left government for Brown University to help launch its professional cybersecurity degree program, and is now a senior fellow at Brown’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs. Edgar also works to help companies navigate cybersecurity problems, and is on the advisory board of Virtru, which offers simple encryption software for businesses and individuals.
Edgar has been profiled by CNN’s Christiane Amanpour and his work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Guardian, Foreign Affairs, and Wired, and he is a contributing editor to “Lawfare: Hard National Security Choices.” Edgar was a law clerk to Judge Sandra Lynch, United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, and is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Dartmouth College.
“Story in the Public Square” airs on Rhode Island PBS in Rhode Island and southern Massachusetts on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs Saturdays at 8:30 a.m. & 8:30 p.m. ET and Sundays at & 12:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124.
Story in the Public Square is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate, and tell stories that matter.