Lawmakers Demand Permanent Data Files on Children
Published : November 14, 2017
The threat comes in the form of three particular pieces of legislation: The College Transparency Act (CTA), or H.R. 2434, the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policy-making Act (FEPA), or H.R. 4174, and the Student Privacy Protection Act, or H.R. 3157. Among other policies, this trio of bills would remove prohibitions on collecting and sharing personally identifiable data on students.
Taken together, the legislation — some of which could be voted on in the coming days — will lay the groundwork for the federal government to know virtually everything on everyone. Student data, for example, will give way to workforce data, which can be combined with tax data, law enforcement information, and much more. The data would then be shared across the federal government, creating a seamless data regime that advocates hope will facilitate and enable expanded central planning schemes.
In a letter to lawmakers signed by a broad coalition of individuals and organizations that opposes the plan to allow Big Brother to have access to everyone's data, signatories noted that the massive amounts of information would obviously become a treasure trove for hackers and criminals. But more importantly, even if the data could be kept safe from private-sector criminals, “there are certain lines a free society should not cross.” And this is one of those, the letter argues.
“Increasing the government repository of highly personal data further entrenches the Administrative State — the Swamp, if you will — which will inevitably use that data to increase its own power,” wrote the authors of the letter. “The mere presence of such data with the government has an intimidating effect on the citizen, whose freedom of action is necessarily limited by his awareness of government surveillance. This is a feature of totalitarian governments; it should be anathema in free societies.”
Veteran educator Mary Black, the curriculum director for the FreedomProject Academy, emphasized the danger. “These bills - H.R. 2434, H.R. 4174, and H.R. 3157 - strip Americans of any privacy without their knowledge or consent,” she said, pointing to the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) as the place in which the mechanisms for expanded data collection are codified. “Calling our representatives and senators now is the only opportunity we will have to stop this loss of privacy and freedom.”
While protecting one's own children from government schools and data mining should be a top priority for parents, Americans must also not lose sight of the importance of reining in the broader out-of-control federal government too. The nightmarish agenda envisioned in these bills — the complete elimination of privacy from cradle to grave — must be resisted.