Miller Center

National Discussion and Debate Series
Privacy vs. National Security

On Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2007, four participants argued the resolution: "In the war against terrorism and with advances in technology, Americans need to lower their expectations of privacy" in a debate moderated by Ray Suarez, senior correspondent for PBS's The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.

Supporting the resolution: Douglas W. Kmiec, Professor of constitutional law at Pepperdine; and K.A. Taipale, Executive Director of the Center for Advanced Studies in Science and Technology Policy. Opposing: John, Lord Alderdice, terrorism specialist and former Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly; and Marc Rotenberg, Executive Director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center and Georgetown law professor. The debate took place at the American Red Cross National Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

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Participants

Resolved: In the war against terrorism, and with advances in technology, Americans need to lower their expectations of privacy.

Ray Suarez
Ray Suarez joined The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer in October 1999 as a Washington-based Senior Correspondent. He came to The NewsHour from National Public Radio where he had been host of the nationwide call-in news program Talk of the Nation. Suarez has worked for CNN, ABC Radio Network, and CBS Radio, and has narrated, anchored, or reported documentaries for public radio and television, including a weekly series, Follow the Money. His most recent book is The Holy Vote, an examination of the tightening relationship between religion and politics in America. He has been published in the New York Times, Washington Post, and Chicago Tribune. He currently hosts the monthly public radio foreign affairs series America Abroad for PRI, and is the narrator for RadioWorks, the documentary unit of American Public Media.

Douglas Kmiec
Douglas W. Kmiec holds the endowed chair in constitutional law at Pepperdine Law School. A former member of the law faculties at Catholic University and the University of Notre Dame, he served as constitutional legal counsel to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. Kmiec writes a syndicated column for Catholic News Service and has contributed to the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, and Wall Street Journal. He is the author of Cease-Fire on the Family and The Attorney General's Lawyer, and co-author of three books on the Constitution. Kmiec is a frequent guest on Nightline, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and NPR's Talk of the Nation. A former White House Fellow, he has received the Distinguished Service Award from the Department of Justice and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Marc Rotenberg
Marc Rotenberg is Executive Director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Washington, D.C. He teaches information privacy law at Georgetown University Law Center and has testified before Congress on many issues, including access to information, encryption policy, consumer protection, computer security, and communications privacy. Rotenberg testified before the 9/11 Commission on "Security and Liberty: Protecting Privacy, Preventing Terrorism" and has served on several national and international advisory panels. He currently chairs the ABA Committee on Privacy and Information Protection and is the former chair of the Public Interest Registry, which manages the .org domain. Rotenberg is editor of The Privacy Law Sourcebook and co-editor of Information Privacy Law.

Kim Taipale
K.A. Taipale is the founder and executive director of the Center for Advanced Studies in Science and Technology Policy. He is also a senior fellow at the World Policy Institute, where he serves as Director of the Global Information Society Project and the Program on Law Enforcement and National Security in the Information Age. An adjunct professor of law at New York Law School, Taipale is a partner of Stilwell Holding LLC, a private investment firm specializing in media, communications, and engineered products industries. The former director of new media development for Columbia Innovation Enterprise at Columbia University, he has appeared before congressional and other national committees, and is the author of numerous academic papers, journal articles, and book chapters on information, technology, and national security issues.

John, Lord Alderdice
John, Lord Alderdice was appointed Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly in 1998. By profession a medical doctor and psychiatrist, he has been active in politics since the 1970s. Lord Alderdice has served as the political leader of Northern Ireland's cross-community Alliance and as a key negotiator of the Good Friday Agreement. He travels widely as a lecturer and consultant concerning political conflict and international terrorism. Upon his retirement as Speaker in 2004, Lord Alderdice was appointed by the British government to be an international commissioner to monitor terrorist activity and security normalization in Ireland. In addition to being the current Deputy President and President-Elect of Liberal International, he is also a member of the House of Lords.

Research and Scholarship

White Paper

Information Privacy in the War on Terrorism

Fred H. Cate, October 18, 2007

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, sparked a wide-ranging debate over the extent to which individual privacy must give way in the quest for greater security. This debate is not new. Benjamin Franklin cautioned more than two centuries ago: "they that can give up essential... Read More

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