My Turn, Brian Pfaff: Privacy has new focus

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 7, 2022

By Brian Pfaff

Privacy — a word I’m focusing on again and again lately because it’s become ironically clear that creeping Christian nationalism is real. Democracy for all, private citizenship and personal freedom’s days are now numbered.

I’m one that believes we, as a would-be, inclusive society are perfectly capable of achieving a more perfect union of diversity and equality while maintaining a well dignified privacy for all. With some bipartisan legislating help and attention right now, it can be done and should be done to help prop up our battered democracy from the ever worsening Christian nationalist threatening our country. Like Trump, Putin and other historical failed dictatorships, Christian fascism will move quickly on disloyalty and security and will be in everyone’s business immediately. Remember you’re either “with them or against them” — there will be no middle or unaffiliated. What a nightmare I imagine our judicial system will become when our courts begin to assign punishments fees and fines (more taxes) in God’s name. Further thought will reveal the demise of the Second Amendment based purely on “Party Security.”

Don’t think it could happen?

So it’s already began. It has started with the recent conservative SCOTUS moves nodding to the far right agenda. Many, and myself included, feel the personal privacy of noninterference and bodily autonomy has been bulls-eyed. This is at the deeper heart of what’s been struck down by our court’s Roe decision and other precedents scheduled for “review.” It’s not just about the right to have an abortion. With these new preplanned moves against Americans’ privacy rights, these reversals leave the possibility of future incursions into personal liberty open to the bad actors like Christian nationalism looking for enemies within to single out for let’s say unfair taxation and prosecution based on your voting history like the new education decree in Florida just signed by Desantis recently requiring political affiliation disclosure of employees and students.

This situation and others that follow will negatively impact all Americans’ liberty, including the far right eventually and privacy will further steadily decline quickly like dominos no matter who is at the wheel.

Let’s try a different door to bring all of our personal liberty rights back to the table permanently at the same time instead of fighting backwards for everyone individually over and over again every generation or two.

A new strategy to protect freedom should include protecting privacy for all going forward right now. Drop everything else and focus on this.

My fear for what’s at stake for my family is the loss of the right that we could with private self autonomy make our own decisions about our own life in our own personal private space of noninterference by but not limited the federal or state government because it is paramount to personal liberty, which is or was a tenet of the constitution. This is essential to freedom. As a standalone 29th amendment to the constitution, privacy, self autonomy and noninterference could also inadvertently bring a middle neutrality back to our current angry politics of vitriol thereby keeping the radical minority fringe on the fringe.

I feel most if not all current “social arguments” should find safe harbor of neutrality with respect to a law for privacy specific.

It’s the permanent fix we need.

With grace renewed, we should ask ourselves, what business of ours is another citizen’s sex, politics, religion, or other? The answer under the new 29th amendment is, it’s not, so judge not. It’s just plain rude to think we have a “right to know and judge” other Americans, with exception for public political figures who assume the risk of “right to know” from constituents when they file to run for office.

We can, you and I, begin right now, by being respectful and using our etiquette again concerning others’ privacy status and also call or write your senators to make it the law. It would still self serve Republicans, if that party survives itself, when their ride is over. Share with someone if you agree. If you don’t that’s your business … you can still change your mind anytime, for the moment.

Brian Pfaff lives in Salisbury.