Liberty of Conscience: InDefense ofAmerica’s Tradition of ReligiousEquality

My university had long used students’ Social Security numbers as a means of identification on class attendance sheets, financial aid forms and campus ID cards. It was a convenient practice. Each number was guaranteed to be unique, and the number both pre- and postdated the student’s time on campus—a useful feature for the alumni office in keeping track of students after graduation. Several years ago, in admittedly more innocent times, professors would actually post grades on their office doors using Social Security numbers rather than names, thus “protecting” the students’ identity.


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