School Spying Scandal Gets Even More Bizarre: Student In Question Was Disciplined For Eating Candy

from the mike-&-ikes dept

The story of the school district that supposedly spied on some students keeps getting odder and odder. While the school district claims that it used the secret remote webcam activation technology 42 times -- and only to track down stolen or lost laptops -- it still hasn't explained why this particular student was punished. He claims his laptop was not stolen and there was no reason to turn it on. The school claims that the assistant principal who supposedly confronted the student with an image from the webcam is being unfairly tarnished.

But here's where it gets even odder. Apparently, the "improper act" that the student was disciplined for was an accusation of either drug use or drug selling. For what? Well, the image showed the student with Mike & Ikes candies, which do have a passing resemblance to pills, but (last we checked) do not appear to be controlled substances.

Now, there certainly could be more to this story, but the school has not done a particularly good job explaining its side of things.

Filed Under: candy, drugs, privacy, schools, spying, webcams

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  1. identicon
    An Attorney, 22 Feb 2010 @ 11:35am

    The Right to Privacy

    You are correct in that the "Right to Privacy" is never explicitly stated in the Constitution. However, the Constitution does not GRANT rights; it merely enumerates rights that we already have. Keeping that construction in mind, note that we are a common-law nation, which means that wherever our laws are ambiguous, unclear, or left open to interpretation -- as they must be, since one could never write a law for every specific situation -- the courts have the power to interpret and "fill in the gaps."

    On numerous occasions, the Supreme Court has determined that we do indeed have a right to privacy. They have inferred such a right from any number of parts of the constitution, but especially the 9th and 14th amendments. (See Griswold v. Connecticut for one of the most important decisions.) The Supreme Court are the final arbiters in interpreting what the constitution says, and, until Congress or the people (through constitutional referendum) say otherwise, their decision has the full force of constitutional law behind it. You can disagree with it -- indeed, Justice Hugo Black, who I greatly admire and who was a strict "black-letter" Constitutionalist, dissented in Griswold -- but it does not make it untrue.

    The issue is not whether we have a constitutionally protected right to privacy -- we do -- but rather how far those protections go.

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