Joe was honored at the ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner last night and Snowden made a surprise appearance to support him. Here is a write-up from Deadline:

Gordon-Levitt, the star of Oliver Stone’s Snowden — and who donated his salary from the film to the ACLU — said that the dangers already inherent in NSA spying on millions of American citizens will only be intensified “under our new president-elect. Just think about how that mass surveillance system will be in the hands of a man who has said he doesn’t care what the Constitution says unless it works for him.”

In a surprise video appearance, Edward Snowden himself told the star that “What you have done has had such an impact on what people understand about what’s going on. You captured something, not just about a character, not just about me, but about our democracy.”

Speaking from exile in Russia, Snowden said that “this is a moment that I think we’re all fearing, but we should not despair. Out of this experience — where things get very dark and the road very dangerous — don’t be afraid of what comes next. Be ready. Let’s make a difference.”

“This is a surprise,” Gordon-Levitt said of the live link-up with Snowden. “I didn’t know this was coming.”

“Turns out I can keep a secret,” Snowden replied from Moscow, to howls of laughter from the audience.

“America is drifting into dangerous and uncharted waters,” he said solemnly. “But I remind myself this is not the first time America has been carried by the currents of fear and hate. And I know that America is not directionless. It’s the Bill of Rights that promises justice. It’s the Bill of Rights that says individuals have rights no one can take away. It’s the Bill of Rights that points the way forward.” The ACLU, he said, “will fight for everyone…in these dark days.”