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Internet Privacy: Government Should Not Regulate Encryption or Cryptography

Internet Privacy: Government Should Not Regulate Encryption or Cryptography

Privacy rights have been an important issue through out time, and it has been increasing in importance as we have moved into the electronic/information age. Keeping that privacy had become a growing concern for many businesses and consumers. With all the information being sent across the web, people are very concerned about their personal information falling into the wrong hands. One way to help protect your privacy on the net is by using an encryption program. Even though they are not completely unbreakable, an encryption program is one of the best ways to protect against outside intrusions. Despite this fact, the government wants too place legislation on encryption services that can be a potential danger to both the development of encryption systems and to your rights.

According to the ACLU, the Clinton Administration adopted the “Clipper Chip” plan in 1993. This proposal would require every user of encryption to give the government their decryption keys. This, essentially, would give the government free access to all private and non-private communications, both stored and real-time. “This is the equivalent of the government requiring all homebuilders to embed microphones in the walls of homes and apartments.” ( ACLU White Paper: Big Brother in the Wires; Wiretapping in the Digital Age ). There was also a proposal for the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA). This FBI-based law would “require the telecommunications industry to build enhanced digital wiretapping capabilities into the Nation’s telephone system. (EFF Press Release

The Importance of Birth Control

We have all heard sad stories of unwanted teenage pregnancies. There are the girls who drop out of school to care for babies they did not really want, having to work to support their unexpected new “families.” There are the guys who marry before they are ready and perhaps to wives they would not otherwise have married-so often these marriages end in divorce. Most tragic of all, though, are the children who grow up knowing that they were not wanted in the first place, knowing that they were more a burden to their parents than a joy even before they were born. Clearly, we as a society need to get a grip on this problem of teenage pregnancy, and the obvious solution is to encourage teens to be responsible and practice birth control. But we face so many choices in deciding which type of birth control to use. Condoms? IUDs? Diaphragms? DepoProvera injections? “The Pill”? Abortion? Abstinence? Which method of birth control is the most practical and the most likely to provide a legitimate solution to the problem of teenage pregnancy?

Far and away the most common method of birth control today is the birth control pill. The pill is relatively easy to obtain through Planned Parenthood clinics, the price is not unreasonable, and the pill has an excellent record of success in pregnancy prevention. However, the pill places all the burden of birth control on women, and although it is usually the women who have the most to lose in unwanted pregnancy, shouldn’t [GR#1] men take some of the responsibility for birth control, too? Plus, the pill is something that users must remember to take every day, even if they do not engage in sex for months or years. The pill may have the added advantages of making menstrual cycles more regular, and decreasing the sometimes painful intensity of a woman’s periods, but as far as being purely a method of birth control, the pill has drawbacks, too. Besides being something that the user must remember to take each and every day regardless of the frequency of sexual activity, being on the pill involves visits to the doctor’s office or to Planned Parenthood with annual or even more frequent exams and tests that may be unpleasant and cost more money.

Diaphragms? IUDs? DepoProvera Injections? These methods, too, place all the burden of birth control on the woman.

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