RealClearPolitics: How to Balance Civil Liberties With Safety by Lisa Rosenberg & Jesse Blumenthal
The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects American citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures. When drafted, the Framers likely had in mind the recent memory of British redcoats trampling through homes and ransacking desk drawers.
Today’s electronic surveillance does not leave muddy boot prints in our foyers, but the principle that there should be reasonable limits on the government’s power to intrude upon the private lives of citizens remains. Moreover, even more limited power should be coupled with transparency and accountability mechanisms so that Congress and the public know when and how such surveillance tactics are used.