Reply Discussion Board: security vs privacy

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two responses  of at least 200 words each to classmates


Q1

The debate on security versus privacy has been ongoing in America since the September ninth terrorist attack. A section of Americans believes that government should monitor calls as one way of protecting the country against a terror attack, while others suggest that tapping into the private calls is a direct infringement on the Fourth Amendment right to privacy. The conflicting arguments bring to test the comparison between safety and security. I believe that the government should violate privacy if it means protection.

America is today safe because of the right balance. It is almost impossible for the government to provide security without compromising the right to privacy. Accordingly, security is the chief reason for the existence of governments. According to Braun (pg, 499), humans donated some of their rights to the government in exchange for security during the social contract. As such, Americans should be willing to let the government monitor private calls to enhance and guarantee security. Besides, the government does not release to third parties the information they obtain from such tapings, and in most instances, does not know at a personal level the persons whose calls they monitor (Losavio et al. pg, 23). If anything, people should not worry about the government collecting information about what they do on the internet or calls unless they are suspicious. Much as it violates the constitutional right to privacy, it is worth noting that privacy right is not absolute but limitable when necessity demands.

In conclusion, the government should monitor private calls and internet activity to protect the country from terror attacks. As being said, this acknowledges the right to privacy, but the right is not absolute. The government can compromise such right when necessity demands so. Also, humanity has always donated some rights to the government in exchange for security, which is the main reason governments exist. Finally, Americans should be willing to forego the privacy right or accept to live in a country that lacks security.


Q2/

“If I’m not doing anything wrong, why should I care if the government gathers information on my phone calls and internet activity? The reason they are gathering information is to help stop terrorist attacks. Stopping terrorists is the most important thing! They don’t care about me, and the programs the government uses to gather information are an important way, maybe even the best way, to keep Americans safe.” So in my opinion even though I am not doing anything wrong I don't want people gathering information on my phone calls and invading my privacy like that. I do completely understand gathering information to help stop terrorist attacks but if I don't give them a reason to believe that I am a terrorist then why invade my privacy. I am definitely all for stopping terrorists and keeping Americans safe. Security refers to protection against unauthorized access to data. We put security controls in place to limit who can access the information. Privacy is harder to define, in part because user-specific details can also be secure data. In the coming month, we will have a blog with more information on Personally Identifiable Information. The fourth amendment states that the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. If there is no evidence of us doing anything wrong then they shouldn't be gathering my information. I am all for gathering the information of the people that we believe or know are doing something wrong. We do nothing wrong when we make love or go to the bathroom. We are not deliberately hiding anything when we seek out private places for reflection or conversation. We keep private journals, sing in the privacy of the shower, and write letters to secret lovers and then burn them. Privacy is a basic human need. The fact that privacy is a human need could not be said better. We all need privacy. We all need some time to do something that we enjoy without being watched that also doesn't harm anyone. 

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