Friday, October 28, 2005

Right To Privacy - Part 1

At his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing in October, 1991.....

SEN. PAUL SIMON
[former Democratic of Illinois, now deceased]: …do you consider the right of privacy a fundamental right?

JUDGE CLARENCE THOMAS.
Senator, to my knowledge, the Supreme Court, no majority has used the ninth amendment to establish as the basis for a right. Of course, it was used by Justice Goldberg and by Justice Douglas in Griswold. With respect to the approach that I indicated that I thought was the better approach, it was Justice Harlan's approach. But with that said, my bottom line was that I felt that there was a right to privacy in the Constitution, and that the marital right to privacy, of course, is at the core of that, and that the marital right to privacy in my view and certainly the view of the Court is that it is a fundamental right.

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At the Federal level, the U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled that a citizen's Right to Privacy is a fundamental constitutional right, especially in the privacy-protected zone of "personal decisions relating to marriage", and can only be infringed if government officials can clearly demonstrate a "compelling state interest" applied in the least intrusive manner.

For instance, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Loving v. Virginia (388 U.S. 1, 12, 87 S. Ct. 1817) in 1967, Zablocki v. Redhail (434 US 374) in 1978, and again in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (505 U.S. 833) in 1992, "Our law affords constitutional protection to personal decisions relating to marriage."

The decision of a Floridian to dissolve their marriage (Dissolution of Marriage) is a personal decision relating to marriage.

The State of Florida is not permitted to intrude upon these fundamental Federal and State Constitutional Rights without proving a compelling state interest is applied in the least intrusive manner and that the interest is substantially furthered by the legislation, i.e. strict scrutiny analysis.

The State of Florida does not mandate that all Floridians who exercise their fundamental Right to Privacy of a “personal decision relating to marriage’, i.e. to dissolve their marriage, be mandated forever to support their former spouses nor does it require married spouses to support their spouses to the “lifestyle of the marriage” as it mandates spouses dissolving their marriage.

A “personal decision relating to marriage”, i.e. to get married, stay married or to dissolve a marriage, is a recognized Federal and State Liberty Interest--a fundamental Right to Privacy.

INTERESTING READING:
* The Right to Privacy Warren and Brandeis, Harvard Law Review, Vol. IV December 15, 1890
* Does the Constitution Contain a Right to Privacy? A libertarian’s point of view.
* Privacy.org - Privacy.Org is the site for daily news, information, and initiatives on privacy.

LEGAL INFORMATION AND RESEARCH CORNER:
* The Virtual Chase – a good resource for various types of information gathering.

CASE LAW USED IN SUPPORT OF ABOLISHING ALIMONY:
* N. Fla. Women's Health & Counseling Servs., Inc. v. State, 866 So. 2d 612, 635 (Fla. 2003). There is no compelling state interest to validate the alimony statute.

EXAMPLES SHOWING THAT JUDGES CAN MAKE MISTAKES TOO:
* Judge banned from court
* A System of Injustice

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