For those of you just tuning in, we have a little bit of a back and forth going on between Fordham Law School and One First Street. Last week, we wrote about What Fordham Knows About Justice Scalia. Professor Joel Reidenberg, an information privacy law professor at Fordham, had his class compile a 15-page dossier on Justice Antonin Scalia after the Justice was quoted in January saying, “Every single datum about my life is private? That’s silly.”
Dan Solove expounds on Scalia’s privacy views at Concurring Opinions:
[Scalia] believes that certain kinds of information are not private — Internet tracking, most items of consumption (unless embarrassing), addresses, and so on. He partly seems to endorse the view that there’s no privacy violation if there’s “nothing to hide.”
We checked in with Justice Scalia to see how he felt about Professor Reidenberg acting on his professed privacy beliefs. He was not pleased:
I stand by my remark at the Institute of American and Talmudic Law conference that it is silly to think that every single datum about my life is private. I was referring, of course, to whether every single datum about my life deserves privacy protection in law.
It is not a rare phenomenon that what is legal may also be quite irresponsible. That appears in the First Amendment context all the time. What can be said often should not be said. Prof. Reidenberg’s exercise is an example of perfectly legal, abominably poor judgment. Since he was not teaching a course in judgment, I presume he felt no responsibility to display any.
Professor Reidenberg responds to Justice Scalia’s response, after the jump.