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Did The Government Kill Aaron Swartz?

January 15, 2013

Aaron Swartz, the young man who sadly committed suicide last week as he faced an intimidating prosecution by the federal government, was both exceptional and typical.

He was exceptional in his technical intelligence, a fact that’s immediately obvious to anyone who looks at his list of accomplishments. He was also typical for a person his age at the dawn of the 21st century because he was facing prosecution for stealing private property he believed should be free for everyone.

With that in mind, I’d like to pose this question to people age 18 to 25 who voted for Obama. Is big government a good thing or a bad thing?

You can’t have it both ways. Big government cannot be evil and benevolent at the same time. You can’t say ObamaCare is great and in the same breath, say that unchecked government power killed Aaron Swartz. So which is it?

Aaron’s father says he was killed by the government. Is that correct?

Aaron Swartz was ‘killed by the government,’ father tells mourners

Aaron Swartz, the 26-year-old Internet genius, was eulogized on Tuesday as a person who wanted to make the world better but was hounded into killing himself by harsh government policies.

Swartz was “killed by the government,” his father, Robert Swartz, said at the service at Central Avenue Synagogue in Highland Park, Ill., according to the Chicago Sun-Times. “He was killed by the government, and MIT betrayed all of its basic principles,” he said.

Facing the possibility of a long prison sentence if convicted of charges that he illegally downloaded millions of academic journal articles, Swartz hanged himself in his New York apartment Friday. The death of one of the founders of news and entertainment website Reddit and a longtime activist for an open Internet has ignited outrage among many in the electronic community who view him as a martyr to government prosecution.

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