Although privacy rights are not established in the Constitution, Americans perceive it as essential as other rights. Amitai views privacy as a crucial right that is above others. According to communitarians, all rights are subject to limitations for the purpose of the interest of a common good. Just as the book recommends, privacy rights should be accompanied by limitations. The author has provided four methods of considering the best equilibrium between a common good and the demands of personal privacy. In fact, the methods are utilized in five cases studied in the current privacy matters. The first instance that the writer describes is the one of the HIV-infected mothers in which he is convinced that all newborn babies should be tested for the virus.
In the state of the health record, she finds a paradox, whereby medical data are abused by the private merchant (Etzioni 150). Concerning secure national identification cards, he concludes that there is no privacy because the prevalence of threats to the universal good. Etzioni states that the US government has failed to protect its citizens because of its belief in privacy rights. It is not easy to detect and control criminal fugitives and other evils because of the utilization of the system of identification. He further discusses the constitutional reasoning, which undermined the modern concept of the privacy rights. He holds that the fourth amendment should form the basis of the privacy law. In fact, the bill offers a balanced communitarian perception of privacy, which does not privilege it. The writer characterizes privacy right as privileged. Finally, there is an appeal for an updated, communitarian idea of privacy, the one that varies with particular contexts.
I concur with the author’s argument that people should be concerned with the common interest and perceive it from the context of communitarian. I think it is vital to give due attention to what a good society is, the one that is typified by interests from the public. For example, According to Doherty, Sanders, Goga, and Jackson (65), HIV testing of the infant, evidence show that many children born to mothers with the virus can be free from it if they are not breastfed. The prevention can only be achieved if parents are aware. Surprisingly, some libertarians and gay activists are against such disclosure and view it as a violation of privacy rights.
Although the American value privacy, there are several horror stories in the media concerning the ways privacy is not promoted. In fact, bosses do not enhance it, but allow toll booth operators to track people’s movements. Some typical headlines that have become prevalent in the society today decries the “End of Privacy” by Richard, Spinello, An Issue of America by a Catholic weekly and The Death of Privacy by Joshua, Quitter, in Time. The headlines demonstrate that despite the fact that the American government may talk of safeguarding the right to privacy, private individuals interfere with it (Spinello 76).
It is essential to uphold privacy in our cultural settings, legal principle and stop treating it as an unmitigated good or a sacred right. In fact, it should be based on the fourth amendment, which balances it. The bill recognizes searches that violate privacy and the ones that promote a common good, implying that they are justified irrespective of the fact that they may infringe on privacy. Additionally, it offers a platform on which public searches are filtered, and those that intrude on individual privacy without adequate justification. Therefore, I support the writer and state that as far as people would like to have privacy, it is essential to disclose some information as far as it is for the promotion of the wellbeing of the society.
- Etzioni, Amitai. Privacy: What Are Its Limits?. New York, NY: Basic Books, 2000. Print.
- Doherty, Tanya, David Sanders, Ameena Goga, and Debra Jackson. “Implications of the new WHO guidelines on HIV and infant feeding for child survival in South Africa.” Bulletin of the World Health Organization 89.1 (2011): 62-67. Print.
- Spinello, Richard. The end of privacy. London, United Kingdom: St. Martin’s Griffin, 2000. Print.