School Cyber Spying, Another Red Herring?
It’s happened. George Orwell’s 1984 has come true rang out many headlines this week. Big Brother is really watching you. Our privacy here in America has truly been attacked by the government in the personage of the Lower Merion School District’s Harriton High School in Ardmore, Pennsylvania. The school provided laptop computers with built-in web-cameras for use at home for their studies. It was funny to see the administrators and their lawyers finely re-read their legal forms signed by the parents to see if they were legally entitled to break the 4th amendment because of some fine print. This is what truly should worry the American people – The Fine Print. whether it is in the 10,000 page health care overhaul, or a 2 page form comeing home with our 12 year olds. Over the years we have become so accustomed to give away our privacy freedoms to private companies such as Google and Facebook who after all are only looking out after our interests in the name of a better web experience that most americans just dont bother any more. sure 15-20 % of people make sure they have clicked all the right buttons to turn off these intrusions, but what about you? Personally I do not give a hoot about Google viewing and archiving my every move! but should this not be my choice? Does not our contitution trump all 4th ammendment violations? should giving away our freedom of privacy be a fine print that we actually choose and not one we need to turn off…… The school administration had no fine print allowing the web-cams to be remotely activated which enabled school personnel to watch the students in their bedrooms, living rooms & bathrooms. but what if like all the other small intrusions we have slowly allowed primarily through the Internet. Are we as Americans simply become complacent like our European cousins.
The cyber-home-invasion was first brought out in the open when the vice principal confronted a fifteen year old Harriton student with an accusation of “improper” behavior at home, and produced a photo taken within the student’s home via the laptop’s web-camera. The boy’s parents inturn filed a class-action lawsuit against the school district, the superintendent and the School Board of Directors. This is one of the largest and most massive cyber-home invasions by our progressive government. It shows the arrogance of our progressive and overpaid school administers and government overlords. Also their Stupidity.
You can find the entire lawsuit filing is here.
David Horowitz’ web site electronic surveillance of enemies.
Philadelphia Inquirer’s Philly.com story is here:
“A Lower Merion family has set off a furor among students, parents, and civil liberties groups by alleging that Harriton High School officials used a webcam on a school-issued laptop to spy on their 15-year-old son at home.
In a lawsuit filed Tuesday in federal court, the family said the school’s assistant principal had confronted their son, told him he had “engaged in improper behavior in [his] home, and cited as evidence a photograph from the webcam embedded in [his] personal laptop issued by the school district.”
The suit contends the Lower Merion School District, one of the most prosperous and highest-achieving in the state, had the ability to turn on students’ webcams and illegally invade their privacy…”
This case should be a simple win for the students lawyers as they prove the government warrant-less search is in violation of the Fourth Amendment. And whether or not you believes that the Constitution explicitly guarantees a right to privacy, in this case the government’s intrusion of an American citizens’ home has been brought to light in time for Americans to do something about it, or is it not just a story we will look back at when it will be too late…..