The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution states that the “right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause. Recent Internet developments raise the question of whether this right extends to social networking. Even Justice Alito recognized the issue in his United States v. Jones concurrence, noting that social tools will shape the average person’s expectations about the privacy of his or her daily movements. With millions of social networking website users, there is a need to protect the information placed on those websites. What happens to users who do not properly manage their use of these websites? Is there any protection against the police using that information, in the form of photos, check-ins, or tags, to justify a search or even an arrest? Do users face police action based on their online postings?
The Supreme Court has yet to weigh in on the Fourth Amendment’s relationship with social networking, but as technology continues to advance and as Justice Alito noted in United States v. Jones, the Court will need to examine these issues. The research paper will focus on the privacy implications of social networking activity in the context of location tracking. Facebook, Google and many other internet sites are all capable of tracking users’ locations while they are logged into the website, and the Fourth Amendment may not apply to this type of location tracking. This research paper will also discuss the Fourth Amendment case law detailing the reasonable expectation of privacy standard and concludes that any media placed on social networking websites, including location check-ins, may be without Fourth Amendment protection, because, in the words of the Katz opinion, the social networking users knowingly exposed that information to the public. The paper will identify and explain the main effects of the issue on the criminal justice system, explain how decisions handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court have helped criminal justice professionals know what is and what is not permissible regarding the issue, and, explain any gaps in knowledge about the issue that has yet to be clarified by the U.S. Supreme Court, and the resulting issues presented. The paper will also address some important issues about online users’ protection from Law enforcement actions. The research paper will detail the users’ need to remain aware of publicly viewable information on social networking websites, from photographs and status updates to location check-ins.
Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy (Vol. 22:515)
Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347, 360 (1967) (Harlan, J., concurring).
M. Bedi (2013). Boston College Law Review, Vol. 54.1
U.S. CONST. amend. IV.
Dante Alighieri played a critical role in the literature world through his poem Divine Comedy that was written in the 14th century. The poem contains Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. The Inferno is a description of the nine circles of torment that are found on the earth. It depicts the realms of the people that have gone against the spiritual values and who, instead, have chosen bestial appetite, violence, or fraud and malice. The nine circles of hell are limbo, lust, gluttony, greed and wrath. Others are heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery. The purpose of this paper is to examine the Dante’s Inferno in the perspective of its portrayal of God’s image and the justification of hell.
In this epic poem, God is portrayed as a super being guilty of multiple weaknesses including being egotistic, unjust, and hypocritical. Dante, in this poem, depicts God as being more human than divine by challenging God’s omnipotence. Additionally, the manner in which Dante describes Hell is in full contradiction to the morals of God as written in the Bible. When god arranges Hell to flatter Himself, He commits egotism, a sin that is common among human beings (Cheney, 2016). The weakness is depicted in Limbo and on the Gate of Hell where, for instance, God sends those who do not worship Him to Hell. This implies that failure to worship Him is a sin.
God is also depicted as lacking justice in His actions thus removing the godly image. The injustice is portrayed by the manner in which the sodomites and opportunists are treated. The opportunists are subjected to banner chasing in their lives after death followed by being stung by insects and maggots. They are known to having done neither good nor bad during their lifetimes and, therefore, justice could have demanded that they be granted a neutral punishment having lived a neutral life. The sodomites are also punished unfairly by God when Brunetto Lattini is condemned to hell despite being a good leader (Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). While he commited sodomy, God chooses to ignore all the other good deeds that Brunetto did.
Finally, God is also portrayed as being hypocritical in His actions, a sin that further diminishes His godliness and makes Him more human. A case in point is when God condemns the sin of egotism and goes ahead to commit it repeatedly. Proverbs 29:23 states that “arrogance will bring your downfall, but if you are humble, you will be respected.” When Slattery condemns Dante’s human state as being weak, doubtful, and limited, he is proving God’s hypocrisy because He is also human (Verdicchio, 2015). The actions of God in Hell as portrayed by Dante are inconsistent with the Biblical literature. Both Dante and God are prone to making mistakes, something common among human beings thus making God more human.
To wrap it up, Dante portrays God is more human since He commits the same sins that humans commit: egotism, hypocrisy, and injustice. Hell is justified as being a destination for victims of the mistakes committed by God. The Hell is presented as being a totally different place as compared to what is written about it in the Bible. As a result, reading through the text gives an image of God who is prone to the very mistakes common to humans thus ripping Him off His lofty status of divine and, instead, making Him a mere human. Whether or not Dante did it intentionally is subject to debate but one thing is clear in the poem: the misconstrued notion of God is revealed to future generations.
Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). Dante’s inferno: Seven deadly sins in scientific publishing and how to avoid them. Addiction Science: A Guide for the Perplexed, 267.
Cheney, L. D. G. (2016). Illustrations for Dante’s Inferno: A Comparative Study of Sandro Botticelli, Giovanni Stradano, and Federico Zuccaro. Cultural and Religious Studies, 4(8), 487.
Verdicchio, M. (2015). Irony and Desire in Dante’s” Inferno” 27. Italica, 285-297.