Encryption Amendment
  Posted February 14, 2003    PermaLink    Comments (0)  

While I was driving back from dinner with my wife something struck me... if the export of encryption is considered munitions (i.e. guns and bullets) why isn't it protected likewise? I was watching a random news channel with some pundit who said that he had info on the sequel to the patriot act, and one of the provisions was that the the use of encryption would become illegal. So owning an AK-47 is a constitutional right but https for your online purchases isn't?

Amendment XVIII
Section 1. The Congress and the several States shall make no law infringing on the right of a citizen to use encryption.
Section 2. Effective one year after the ratification of this amendment the portion of any law infringing on the right of a citizen to use encryption shall be held unenforceable.

I can see the arguements coming now against it. But for all of the scenarios about how horrible it is, replace the word encryption with gun. Realize that almost all of those argumets applie to guns to. Guns are used in crimes, wars, terrorism, etc, and yet are still very valuable when used properly, and the pros outweigh the cons. The same goes with encryption. Wouldn't there be an armed uprising id the second amendment were repealed? Shouldn't there be the same constitutional protections seeing as the rights for privacy and encryption are slowly being chipped away?

Apologies to the non US readers out there. It is true that this is a US centric solution to a problem as viewed from a US centric position. And I know precicely who that pundit was, I just don't want to give him free advertising.

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