The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads “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.”
Anyone who’s ever been a fan of crime dramas is well acquainted with the term “search warrant,” but why do they need one? Because of the Fourth Amendment. The Fourth Amendment is a promise of privacy from the government. It means what is ours is ours and they have no right to it. And if police or other government entities believe that we are hiding something that would indict us of a criminal act, they must go through the courts with probable cause to obtain a warrant.
This amendment is important to protect our privacy. None of us like the feeling of having no privacy. That’s what this whole Zuckerberg trial is about. The ironic part about the trial is that Facebook optional, but the spying the government does on it’s on citizens is secretly enforced without our knowledge or consent. I’m not coming to the defense of Facebook, only pointing out the hypocrisy that oozes from the congressional walls.
Perhaps the amendment that has been the most battered and abused, you can see violations of this right everywhere you turn. Department of Homeland Security and The Patriot Act, TSA and airport pat-downs, data-mining done in both the private and public sectors, and the list goes on. Some people will say that we need those things to protect us, but the fact remains that they are illegal and I believe that they are much to our detriment.