What Does the Fourth Amendment Protect: Property, Privacy, or Security

Wake Forest Law Review, Vol 33, p. 307, 1998

64 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2010

See all articles by Thomas K. Clancy

Thomas K. Clancy

University of Mississippi School of Law

Date Written: April 3, 2009

Abstract

In this article, Professor Clancy argues that the essential attribute of the Fourth Amendment’s right of persons “to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects” is the ability of the individual to exclude the government from unreasonably intruding into those specified objects. Although privacy, human dignity, dislike for the government, and other states of mind may motivate the exercise of the right to exclude, they are not synonymous with the right. Thus, the Fourth Amendment right to be “secure” is not predicated upon positive attributes such as notions of privacy. Rather, the Fourth Amendment right to be “secure” is equivalent to the right to exclude.

Suggested Citation

Clancy, Thomas K., What Does the Fourth Amendment Protect: Property, Privacy, or Security (April 3, 2009). Wake Forest Law Review, Vol 33, p. 307, 1998, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1565773

Thomas K. Clancy (Contact Author)

University of Mississippi School of Law ( email )

Lamar Law Center
P.O. Box 1848
University, MS 38677
United States
662-832-5244 (Phone)

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