The Right to Privacy

The Right to Privacy

The US constitution does not contain any express or direct right to privacy. The right to privacy as covered by constitutions aim at restraining governments as well as any other private actions from threatening the privacy of any citizens. The right to privacy is one of the topics that have continually been discussed in different debates with the aims of ensuring that the citizens enjoy and exercise some level of privacy upon their lives. The main reason why the constitution was not only to govern the people but also to control and limit the power of the government for the benefits of its citizens. The judges have always played an essential role in making sure that they restrain the public officials from overstepping their duties and limits. However, the Bill of Rights only reflects James Madison’s concerns as well as those of other farmers which involved offering protection to some defined elements of privacy including the privacy of beliefs as covered in the 1St Amendment. Other aspects of privacy discussed in different Amendments include the privacy of homes against any demands that it could be employed to house soldiers as covered in the 3rd Amendment, privacy of an individual against any unreasonable searches as listed in the 4th Amendment as well as the 5th amendment which includes the privilege against self-incrimination which further offers the citizens the protection for privacy of any individual’s information. Moreover, the 9TH Amendment emphasizes that the enumeration of some defined rights in the Bill of Rights shall not be used to deny the citizens any of the other rights that are retained.

It is controversial to question whether the constitution protects and addresses the issue of privacy in ways that are less expressed in the bill of rights. Many prominent originalists have confirmed that the constitution does not address any issue related to privacy and there is no such thing as a general right for privacy that exists in the constitution. Based on such considerations, the supreme court has, since 1923 and throughout the rest of the recent years, overstepped its bounds in reference to the privacy rights. The court has continually guaranteed a fairly broad right to privacy, which has, in turn, covered such decisions as those of child rearing, termination of medical treatments among others. Most of the American citizens have been confirmed to be impressed about such a broader constitution reading. The Supreme court had further in two main decisions that were made in the 1920s, read the liberty of the 14th amendment clause which stated the government from interfering with any decisions that have been performed at a personal level by the educators as well as the parents, where such decisions are made with the primary goal of shaping the character of children.

Judicial activism refers to the making of legal rulings based on a person’s opinion as compared to the existing law. Judicial activism has been a controversial issue whereby at some points it has helped to protect the rights of the citizens through the human and caring nature of the judges, but it has also to some extents led to the making of the wrong decisions that have come to affect the lives of the citizens who approved the same constitution. Judicial activism portrays and confirms about the malleability of the vacuous judicial systems as well as the constitution. Judicial activism, however, outs the self-government at stake and the American citizens should be responsible in making sure that the judges do not take over any powers in different parts of the constitution into their own hands. The voters are the only ones who are responsible for ensuring that Congress stops the supremacists judges. Such changes can only be effected when the citizens come together to air their voice and resist the bad actions by the judges that may be having negative impacts on the lives of the citizens.


Levin, Mark R. Men in black: How the Supreme Court is destroying America. Regnery Publishing, 2006.

O’brien, David M., and דיויד מ או’בריין. Storm center: the Supreme Court in American politics. Vol. 86. New York: Norton, 1986.

Savage, David G., and Savage. Turning Right: The Making of the Rehnquist Supreme Court. New York: Wiley, 1992.

Schlafly, Phyllis. The supremacists: The tyranny of judges and how to stop it. Spence Pub, 2004.

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