If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, it seems that some of the things that innocent people might use to protect themselves from bad people, are being threatened by some faulty logic.
First, it was social networks and online communication, where all sorts of mean behavior was being blamed on anonymity:
After people-rating app Peeple was called “the decline of internet anonymity”, anonymous app Secret shut down after just 18 months because “anonymity online turns people into total assholes”, and a threat from bulletin board 4chan to the University of New South Wales, it seems anonymous social media is in trouble – again.
Now, the latest push is to ban cell phone and mobile devices that are encrypted by default. You know, the easiest, most effective encryption that would be available to consumers:
“Human traffickers are using encrypted cell phones to run and conceal their criminal activities,” said Assemblymember Cooper. “Full-disk encrypted operating systems provide criminals an invaluable tool to prey on women, children, and threaten our freedoms while making the legal process of judicial court orders, useless,” Cooper added.
Not to mention the people who have come out against encryption because terrorists might use encryption to hide their communication.
So, let’s go ahead and go down the rabbit hole shall we? If anonymity and encryption are bad things, because bad people might use them to hide, then what else should we go ahead and put on the banned list?
Well, where do people commit crimes? Lots of places really. On the street, in business offices, hotels, stores, even their own homes. Gee, all those places where people can hide what they are doing, and we can’t have that. So I’m going to propose some more bans.
Let’s start with curtains. Curtains prevent law enforcement from seeing what you are doing in a house/hotel/apartment/office. We know criminals use curtains to hide their crime. Heck, child abusers use curtains to hide their abusive acts, and you wouldn’t want to be in favor of abusers, would you?
For that matter, terrorists build bombs in homes behind curtains. Are you suggesting we allow that to happen?
Oh, but don’t worry, law enforcement will only look in the windows when they have a warrant.
Everyone else will look in your window, though? Well, who are you that you need privacy like that? Are you a terrorist?
You see how easily the logic can be used on anything that anyone would use to maintain their own privacy and security. Soon, we’ll all be living our entire lives in full view of everyone else around us, because bad people hide, good people don’t need to.
Your privacy be damned.