I beg to differ

There is this interesting article on the national DNA database. It’s an interesting article but includes this puzzling statement:

There’s concern that acquiring the DNA of a non-suspect constitutes treating him like a suspect, and that this is bad. I’m not so sure: It strikes me that a house-to-house search or a traffic checkpoint (as for drunk drivers) treats everyone like a suspect, too, and yet we accept them without a murmur.

I beg to differ Mr. Gottsman. Any police asking to search my house without a warrant will be told, politely, “no”. If they tell me what they are looking for I will be more than happy to tell them if I have it, but they are not comming in without a warrent. As for traffic check-points, I do indeed consider them a gross abuse of power that we have sadly allowed to become common place in our country. No, I do not accept them without a murmur. Point in fact I fight against these invasions of privacy and these losses of the presumption of innocence with all the legal means at my disposal.

The article also states:

In fact, I have yet to hear a good, solid civil liberties case against DNA identification (as opposed to analysis). I’d welcome one: I, like many others, have an instinctive touch-a-hot-stove reaction to it. But I haven’t heard one yet.

OK, here is my civil liberties case. If I participate in a legal activity, such as act of protest, I have the right for the government not to know who I am. Many have accepted that we give up our right to anonymity when we leave our house. I haven’t.


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