When I was in high school, the big current events event
was Watergate. We (the nerdy ones) watched the hearings
every day during lunch. Our North Carolina senator, Sam Ervin,
of whom we were proud, led Freedom’s charge against corruption.
I remember writing a paper about how the slaves had no privacy
and how that lack of basic privacy was their greatest freedom loss
in the land of the free (a seventeen year old cares a lot about privacy).
I described in detail the lack of privacy the slaves endured
and tried to make a case that denying them any notion of privacy,
enshrined in law, insured that one day, the government might try
to deny privacy to free citizens of the republic as well.
(as you have done it to the least of these, you do it unto me)
I thought it was a clever argument, but one that was closed
with Nixon’s resignation the next year. Little did I know
just how prescient I may have been at seventeen.