Someone that leaks secret government information to the public should not be hailed a hero, but rather a traitor. Files that were to be seen only by our government are now in the hands of our enemies. A person that divulges security secrets to the world is not someone that has given society "a say in how they are governed", they have rather jeopardized our security by exposing the safety measures that have been put in place to stop possible threats to our safety before they become an issue.
Though many may believe that Edward Snowden is a traitor to the US there is a general misconception on the information he released. He did not leak "safety measures" as you claim, but rather that our Government had been acting without a court warrant to eavesdrop on, gathering information on, and track the communications of nearly all American's phone, email, and social media use. In short, Snowden has been a warrior for the transparency of our Government and an advocate for our privacy rights.
When those same "unwarranted actions" are taken and are used to find terrorists and possible enemies they are seen as necessary and essential to our safety. The public has known for a very long time that the government has been eavesdropping and gathering information on them; what we (and the world) did not know (or need to know) was that other countries, mainly enemies of the state were being spied on as well. Privacy is essential for those looking to hide or cover something up.
If Snowden believes that what he did was necessary and appropriate he should not have sought asylum in another country; instead, he should have stood by his actions and faced the consequences. When someone signs up to protect their countries' classified information they should take into account that while some of the procedures for safety that they will be dealing with may be controversial, it still is necessary to remain confidential.