The idea of uncertainty has left people in a frenzy for ages. However, with the improvements seen in technology we have begun to uncover what had previously been unknown to us. Morris, in his essay “Mining Student Data Could Save Lives”, highlights the ability to limit undetected campus violence through the use of data mining. As Universities already provide significant online resources, it would not be difficult for them to use software to single out erratic behavior among students. While Morris does acknowledge issues regarding the right to privacy, he firmly believes that data mining in college campuses is not significantly different than social media recognizing one’s likes and dislikes. As a result, he supports the usage of data mining which he believes will aid in limiting the violence that occurs on college campuses and create a safer environment among students and faculty.
As Morris’s concerns for the safety of college campuses prove to be a valid argument, this is an invasion of our privacy. Safety is and always will be a priority for our country but the fear of not knowing the future has led to significant infringements on our right to privacy. Now one might argue, have we ever even had the right to privacy? Even though it is assured in the Constitution, security always trumps privacy rights. America is known for its freedom- it’s even recited in our Pledge of Allegiance on a daily basis. However, with the implementations of these safety precautions as recommended by Morris, this pledge loses its value.
Measures similar to data mining have already been enacted limiting the amount of privacy we have. Another software system would lower the little privacy or even eliminate the privacy which we believe we have left. Even though it will provide safer environments, it is already known that it cannot be expected to be completely accurate. This just further proves that it just isn’t worth it. We will never be able to predict what will certainly happen tomorrow, it just statistically is not possible. We need to learn how to live with this uncertainty if we want to salvage the little privacy we have left.