Saturday, January 22, 2011

Government Has the Right to Make Intrusive Background Checks

On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the government's right to conduct broad and sometimes intrusive background checks on employees working for government contractors.

In an odd move,  Justice Samuel Alito said the court was assuming, without deciding, that the U.S. Constitution does in fact guarantee a right to informational privacy. (That was the odd part -assuming the Constitution guarantees a right to informational privacy.) He went on to say that the federal law requiring background checks of private contract employees does not violate that privacy right. (The one that isn't in the Constitution)

In a move to bring the court back to sanity, Justice Scalia called into question the approach by the majority. Assuming there is an informational right to privacy without deciding the question,  "harms our image, if not our self-respect, because it makes no sense."

Remember this next time you do not like the background questions.  Also, Stay Safe!

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