The Instigator
blobthemasterdebater
Pro (for)
Losing
1 Points
The Contender
Mikal
Con (against)
Winning
16 Points

Privacy should be valued over security

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Mikal
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/8/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 9,277 times Debate No: 37485
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (5)

 

blobthemasterdebater

Pro

First round is for acceptance. For the purpose of this debate, the context is America. The topic is fairly straightforward, a person's privacy should be prioritised before another person's security. Looking forward to a good debate.
Debate Round No. 1
blobthemasterdebater

Pro

Privacy is far more important for society than security. When we examine what privacy stands for, we realise that it essentially translates to freedom. If you take away a man's privacy, you are taking away his freedom and this is something that we simply do not do and that modern governments do not stand for.

1. Privacy is a basic human right
Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states "No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks." It is important to recognise that we cannot violate these basic Human Rights Laws put forward by the United Nations. If we undermine and take away something as simple as privacy, then we are undermining all our basic human rights.

2. Our privacy is our freedom
Everybody deserves the right to do whatever they want, as long as it is legal, without the scrutiny or surveillance of anyone else, including governments. They should be allowed to go on the internet knowing that they are not being secretly monitored by some agency. They should be allowed to pass through airport security without their naked bodies being scrutinised by others.

We all know that everyone has a right to a fair trial and in fact, this is a foundation of our democracy. But a fair trial is where someone is innocent until they proven otherwise with evidence that they have done something wrong. When a person's internet browsing is monitored for possible wrongdoing or suspicious activity, we are punishing them without even knowing if they are guilty or not, and this completely violates their constitutional and human rights.

Conclusion
Privacy is an absolute necessity in a developed society like ours today. It is a sign of development, an indicator that a government respects its citizens and is willing to grant them their fundamental human rights. Why would we throw this out for security? If we put security first, we are saying that we'd be willing to give up our human rights for a hypothetical threat that may or may not yield an outcome.

This is why privacy must come first, otherwise, its illogical, unconstitutional and completely pointless. Let me conclude today by reminding you of something that Benjamin Franklin once famously said: "those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
Mikal

Con

Contention 1

Limitations around privacy.

While privacy is a great freedom that we all share, it has limitations. As long as their is no need to breach someones privacy, they should under all circumstance be able to maintain that privacy.

The issue at hand is you are claiming it should be valued over security. The issue with this is that security falls into the category of the well being of others.

So if it were upheld that privacy should always be valued and prioritized over security, it would serve as a catalyst for things that should not need to take place. Think about the context of this resolution.

Example A : it could lead to drug trafficking. If it were upheld that someones home privacy is valued over national security, it would and could reduce the chance of being able to catch illegal acts that would occur. Someone could state this rule, and run any type of illegal operation from their home.

Example B : Acts of murder : Someone could take the life of another and evidence could be cut short, if that persons privacy was upheld before the security of other.

Example C : Sex Trafficking : Just imagine if this was upheld in someones business. That it is their right to hold privacy over security. Take a strip joint. It would almost surely increase prostitution, and even lead to the chance of prostitution of minors because there would be no way to confirm or check it.

The essential claim you are making, is that under no circumstances should someones privacy should be breached even if it means the security of others. I will or can not agree with that resolution. I have just listed a few, but there are countless other ways, this could and would be exploited.


Contention 2

There has to be a balance

Should he have said, that there needs to be a balance between the both that I would agree too. I would never say either that security should be valued over privacy.

That would lead to the government having to much authority.

Example A : They could tap our phones and few messages or emails that are entitled to us

Example B : Just imagine someone reading conversations or looking at image exchanges between your wife/girlfriend

There are also tons of reasons this could be exploited if we said security should be valued over privacy. That is why we need a balance between them both. One should not override the other, and in terms of keeping people safe there has to be limitations to each.


Contention 3

Issues where security should have came before privacy.

(A) A business example of this would have been the Enron scandal. Due to them having to much privacy and no internal operations and limited external regulations, it led to one of the biggest scandals in US history. I am all to familiar with this having studied accounting and went to work as an accountant. Essentially Enron poured billions into trading ventures and a majority of them failed.

Here is one way they cheated the system. As posted by a Fox reporter

" Enron invested a bunch of money in a joint venture with Blockbuster to rent out movies online. The deal flopped eight months later. But in the meantime Enron had secretly set up a partnership with a Canadian bank. The bank essentially lent Enron $115 million in exchange for Enron's profits from the movie venture over its first 10 years. The Blockbuster deal never made a penny, but Enron counted the Canadian loan as a nice, fat profit."

The issue was at that time it was not against the law. Through multiple failures and them eventually facing bankruptcy, it was a detriment to the economy and even share holders at the time.

Since them the Sarbanes-Oxley act has been put in place to help catch situations like this. The business can maintain its privacy but within proper regulation. This should be the case in most scenarios.



Rebuttal 1

The right of privacy


I will address this briefly. Privacy should be a basic human right, and should not be breach unless needed as I have stated above.

This is probably the best passage I have read regarding the issue.

"This results in the battle of personal privacy versus national security and everybody agrees that both aspects are incredibly essential. At the same time, the complete existence of one rules out the existence of the other"

That is pretty much on point. Both are essential but there has to be a line drawn where they both can coincide to assure us that we can maintain the right to privacy as long as we are doing nothing to hinder the well being of others.




In Closing

I agree that privacy is an essential right, but so is the maintaining and upholding the well being of others. If there is anyway to protect others, and prevent bad circumstances for happening it should be pursed and chased.

I think there is a line where both need to meet equally and work together. If one were to override the other, it would be a detriment to us as a nation. Therefore we need both privacy and security to guarantee the safety of our nation and the people within it.


http://law2.umkc.edu...
http://www.soxlaw.com...
http://www.journalofaccountancy.com...
Debate Round No. 2
blobthemasterdebater

Pro

Opening Remarks

Basically all that’s happened in this debate so far is that the Contender has completely misconstrued the facts and arguments presented, and it’s no coincidence that this misconstruction is in his favour. I am not saying that privacy should be upheld under all circumstances, I am saying that the privacy of the general public, innocent citizens, should be valued, whenever possible and practical, over security, which are unconfirmed threats. Furthermore, I see no way in which this could be exploited like Contention has ludicrously suggested.Let me remind Contention that the topic of this debate is

Then, he’s gone on to say that he believes in a “balance of the both”, between privacy and security, which is absolutely ridiculous because the topic of this debate is that Privacy should be valued OVER security, not balanced, but valued OVER. At the same time, this does not mean that under no circumstances can somebody’s privacy be breached and it would be counter-intuitive of the contender to think so, and with this comes my rebuttal, and there are three very misleading arguments have been put forward so far, but only two I will have time to rectify.

Flaw 1

So I’ve been told that there are “limitations to privacy”. What the contender has said is that more illegal acts would occur, but this just doesn’t seem plausible at all.

A breakdown of Contention Example A:

I just can’t seem to understand how if someone’s home privacy would be of threat to national security. If there was evidence that they were a terrorist, then of course the police would be able to intervene. But the EVIDENCE has to exist, and if probable cause was there, then it’s no longer a matter of privacy vs. security, it becomes a matter of justice being served.

The thing is that there would be no circumstances where protecting privacy would result in murder, just because somebody’s privacy was upheld or we would have more prostitutes simply because there is no way to confirm identity. Police will still be empowered with those powers, it’s the personal privacy of people who are innocent that we need to protect; innocent people who are having their phone calls monitored, their search history checked, their personal lives invaded for no reason at all, but to ‘prevent a terrorist attack’. Why would you spy on a stay-at-home mom or some grandfather who in a million years not do anything to harm greater society?

But for the sake of argument, let’s put forth a counterexample anyway.

Counterexample A: Everybody is required to pass through TSA screening if they want to board a flight. This involves either a full body scanner or a cavity search, no choice about either. So, we’re told that this is in the name of security and it’s bad enough that this is a violation of our constitutional rights, but you would at least hope that it worked. But according to Economist.Com, even with the TSA’s invasive and degrading procedures, IT DOESN’T EVEN WORK. Their failure rate still stands at 70% when it comes to detecting hazards whilst boarding for a plane. So, every time you’re at the airport, you’ll be set back half an hour in the name of fighting terrorism, but your only inches safer, had no one been screened.

Another excellent example that demonstrates how security measures are getting out of hand nowadays is a recent New York Times Article. An excerpt from the article reads: “A federal judge ruled on Monday that the stop-and-frisk tactics of the New York Police Department violated the constitutional rights”, of course, I can’t put it all here as I don’t have enough characters to finish refuting all the ridiculous arguments put forward today.

Flaw 2

Strangely, Contention has said that without a balance, the government would have too much authority, and I absolutely agree with this. Privacy needs to be valued over security and ONLY if this is done, will discrimination at discretion and abuse of power end. If we do not put privacy first, then we put too much power in the hands of law enforcers. Even a balance of the two wouldn’t work. It is only when our country, and our government respects the privacy, the basic human rights of its citizens, will this so mentioned ‘authority’ be properly distributed.

3. Abuse of power and discrimination

Seeing as space allows, I am going to put forward one final and brief argument. As an extension of my previous rebuttal, I would like to note that in a post-911 world, where we’ve passively given away our rights, abuse of power has grown and racial stereotypes have risen.

I mean, do you really want some fat, middle aged, perverted TSA agent looking at you naked, scrutinising your body every time you simply want to board a plane and go somewhere? But thanks to the prioritisation of security, these TSA agents now have the pleasure of looking at you naked whenever they please so.

Think about how many negative racial stereotypes have also come up. Naturally, when we think of terrorism, we think of the Islamic Middle Eastern counties. When we see people of Middle Eastern descent, we immediately relate them to being terrorists. Yes, maybe a very small number of them are, but almost all of them and bar a tiny amount of ‘bad apples’, are very nice, generous and honest people, especially if you get to know them well.

I fail to comprehend how we can live in a developed country, respected by all others, the source of inspiration of many. Yet, we allow this kind of extreme negativity, abuse and racism to go on, and on our own soil.

Let’s take a look at what would happen if our privacy was upheld like it should be…

Unless there is probable cause that you’ve done something wrong, then you remain the innocent citizen that you are and are constitutionally entitled to be. There will be no hacking, no tapping, no ‘in the name of security’ fiasco because in the modern day, we put all that stupidity behind us and behave like the distinguished citizens of the lucky country we’re in. That, ladies and gentlemen, is why it is absolutely essential for us to value our privacy over security.

We’re not given these rights just so that lazy and ignorant governments can then steal it away from us. We’re given these rights to keep, because we, as humans, deserve them, depend on them and live in a society that recognises them. And, with that said, let me conclude.

Concluding Remarks

Now, unfortunately, I am going to run out of characters before I can adequately label all the gaping holes in Contention’s case. It’s a case that has no backbone, largely based on loose hypotheticals that don’t make sense and hypotheticals that would not even stand a chance at holding up in the real world. The topic has been completely misinterpreted, and this has become a debate about balancing privacy and security, which clearly, Contention sees as the easy, but very incorrect way to go.

What I’ve told you today is that we must put privacy before security because when we talk about our privacy, we talk about our freedom. Our civil liberties, our human rights, even the foundation of our democracy.

On the other hand, when we talk about security, essentially, we are talking about mistakes made upon mistakes, great abuse of power and no real outcome in the end. Although Contention has tried to scare you with hypotheticals and erratic scandals, once all this shaky ground is eroded away, what we see remaining are the strong pillars that our great democracy is built upon. Privacy, freedom, equality; they are things that we cannot take foregranted and that we must fight for, but we can only fight for this, if we put privacy before security.

Regardless of the tattered state Contention’s case remains in, I must nevertheless thank him for accepting the challenge that is this debate, but in the end, I believe it is my side that puts forward the more compelling case, for all the hardworking citizens of this country who deserve to have their rights heard.

For your further reading:

http://nyti.ms...
http://econ.st...
http://bit.ly...;

Mikal

Con

I have no idea what pro wanted to debate but lets look at the topic at hand, and perhaps he should have worded it better.

Privacy -the state or condition of being free from being observed or disturbed by other people.

Valued - prioritized or put above, as my adversary defines it

Security - the state of being free from danger or threat.

Combine those sentences , and we can see what we are discussing

The state of being free from or disrupted by other people should be prioritized or put above the state of being free from danger.


Right off the start, that should already bring up red flags.


Rebuttal 1

" I just cant t seem to understand how if someones home privacy would be of threat to national security. If there was evidence that they were a terrorist, then of course the police would be able to intervene. But the EVIDENCE has to exist, and if probable cause was there, then it is no longer a matter of privacy vs. security, it becomes a matter of justice being served."

It doesn't have to be terrorism in itself. The ability the government has to tap our phones, or even through satellite surveillance can help them stop crimes from happening. That is essentially an invasion of privacy, but thanks to modern technology it helps prevent some major crimes from happening.

Just take surveillance cameras and all the crimes they prevent. This is considered an invasion of privacy, but it is also a severe deterrent for crime in itself.

A recent study says this

"Surveillance cameras have a great potential to reduce and act as a deterrent for crime. In locations where they have been installed, attempts at robbery have dropped nearly 65 percent in some cases"

That is just with cameras not to mention how randomly doing checks of cars, can help prevent and catch criminals as well.



http://www.washingtontimes.com...
http://www.usatoday.com...
http://www.homelandsecuritynewswire.com...

Rebuttal 2

"Police will still be empowered with those powers, its the personal privacy of people who are innocent that we need to protect; innocent people who are having their phone calls monitored, their search history checked, their personal lives invaded for no reason at all"


That is all in perception, if they had suspicion that something was wrong and wanted to get a warrant that would be invading their privacy. It is a slippery slope when you say privacy should be valued over security because then it begs, when is it plausible to breach the privacy. You say when there are facts, or you possibly meant to say when it is a neccessity. If the government is to define what is a neccessity, then the argument is counter productive. If you were to value this over security, it could and would be abused in multiple situatons.


Rebuttal 3

"Another excellent example that demonstrates how security measures are getting out of hand "

"Strangely, Contention has said that without a balance, the government would have too much authority, and I absolutely agree with this. Privacy needs to be valued over security and ONLY if this is done, will discrimination at discretion and abuse of power end. If we do not put privacy first, then we put too much power in the hands of law enforcers"


This is where I state that it should work together, and one should not be valued over the other. It works both ways, and both could be exploited. My adversary clearly wants to say that privacy should always come first, and I submit there are cases that have, can, and will happen that will prevent it from being prioritized. That does not mean they both can not be equally valued.

I gave an example also what happens when a company has to much privacy, this is proven and shown with Enron. While it may be less likely in home scenarios it is still plausible, but the main situation where it would be exploited would be giving a company to much privacy.

It is almost a requirement to breach their privacy. If you look at it by the definitions we are discussing, external auditing is a breach of that companies privacy. It is allowing an outside person access to files and records, with no plausible reason or desire from that company. This is necessary however to prevent scandals like Enron from occurring.

In this situation it is a breach of that companies privacy and right to privacy, but also a necessity. Therefore you have both privacy and security working together in a reasonable and acceptable way.

Rebuttal 4

We’re not given these rights just so that lazy and ignorant governments can then steal it away from us

I would also contest that there is no where in the constitution that even mentioned or says the word privacy. We are afforded this right because of the context within the Constitution itself. It is a way for us to be free without repression. Privacy is considered to fall under those rights that are promised to us. No where in the constitution does it state that we have the right to privacy but we can use inference to assume privacy should be allotted to us.

I have also agreed that giving the government to much control is a bad thing as well, which is why I still hold to the fact that they can work together. Examples such as cameras and random audit checks demonstrates that they can.


In closing

While con has chose not to address or could not address many statements that I have made, we can conclude that there are situations in which security should be valued over privacy. Also that there are cases where privacy should be valued over security.

to shift the burden in one direction, is to lead to drastic abuse of the system in either way.

I have shown and demonstrated how these two factors can plausibly work together, and offer benefit and progression in a positive way.



I believe we are afforded the right to privacy and that should be upheld, but we are also promised the right to be free. Without cherishing security as well as privacy, we risk that freedom.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by katharine.t17 1 month ago
katharine.t17
Personally, I feel that privacy is an integral piece of human life and should be exercised at more lengths compared to security. I say "more lengths" rather than "all lengths" because while i do value our privacy as citizens, I still feel that certain threats should be investigated, and at least spied on or lose a certain amount of privacy for the sake of this country"s safety. One specific reason I feel that it is important for us citizens to value our privacy over our security is for our economy. Many times in America has a large company or important business been hacked for information, and even so has the FBI been hacked for pieces of information. If the FBI were to have any or all aspects of our personal life and communications on hand, families, stores, and eventually vital economic standings could be ruined, and in turn, our entire country could fall apart. If we, as citizens, were to just "hand over our privacy" at all costs,we would not just be forfeiting our precious calls back home or texts to sons and daughters, but we could be condemning our country to failure at the hand of another country were the FBI to be hacked.
Posted by donald.keller 3 years ago
donald.keller
Conduct; Neither side broke any rules or had bad conduct.

Spelling and Grammar: While both had good grammar, Con had some notable spelling mistakes, such as allows using their instead of there.

Convincing Arguments: I'm not saying Pro's arguments weren't good... It's hard to defend an absolute. Con supported the claim that the privacy of one does not overtake the security of many, and showed real life examples to back it up. Pro didn't attack Con's examples, and depended a lot on his slippery sloop.

Sources: Both backed themselves up well.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by TheHitchslap 3 years ago
TheHitchslap
blobthemasterdebaterMikalTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Honestly, pro messed up the resolution, and Con ultimately showed that a balance between privacy and security is needed in a democratic society. Especially with his "middleman" fallacy to which pro never pointed out. Arguments without question to con.
Vote Placed by bsh1 3 years ago
bsh1
blobthemasterdebaterMikalTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con more convincing.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 3 years ago
RoyLatham
blobthemasterdebaterMikalTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro wrote the resolution incorrectly. I think he wanted something like, "privacy should be given more weight over security than it is at present." It's difficult to write the resolution, but whatever was desired, Pro blew it. Con interpreted the resolution reasonably, and I think Pro ultimately conceded that the wording could not be defended. Con showed that always giving priority to privacy leads to absurd situations in which blatant wrongdoing cannot be prosecuted under the premise that evidence of wrongdoing is private. Pro's "Contender has completely misconstrued ..." is a personal attack; it claims Con had evil motives. That's a conduct violation.
Vote Placed by donald.keller 3 years ago
donald.keller
blobthemasterdebaterMikalTied
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in Comments.
Vote Placed by Shadowguynick 3 years ago
Shadowguynick
blobthemasterdebaterMikalTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Arguments to con for better reasoning, and seemingly better understanding of the resolution than pro. I would recommend to pro to change the resolution next time to keep this confusion from happening. Anyway, con had better arguments pertaining to how and when security can be valued over privacy, and that they both are somewhat equal.