We live in a world where if you’re famous, people anywhere can go online and find out about you. Once you decide you want to be well known and put yourself out there, you’re giving up privacy. Many celebrities have stepped into the limelight, yet they don’t really enjoy having limited privacy like what ordinary civilians do. But should the same be the case for world leaders? Some celebrities go so far as to make entire careers out of making their personal lives public. Most presidents, prime ministers and other figure heads tend not to do this and prefer to remain private. Even though world leaders are some of the most recognisable people on the planet, lots of them want as much privacy as they can get, especially since in some countries, there’s a limit on how long you’re in the top job for. Do world leaders have the right to a private life, even if they’re leading entire countries?
Ultimately, a person’s right to a private life should be respected no matter who they are and what they do. Even someone who’s famous around the world should be entitled to at least some privacy. World leaders are mostly known for the job they do. Just like anyone else, they want to keep their working lives and their regular lives separate. While they’re comfortable being in the public eye thanks to their job, they don’t want to be in the public eye when they’re not working, i.e. on holidays or when spending time with family. Fame comes with the job, but being known to so many people doesn’t give people the right to demand a leader share details of their private life. With politicians of any level, personal details can be politicised and used against them by opponents; they can also be used by the media to encourage people to vote for that particular person or encourage people to vote for someone else. Leaders generally don’t want their own personal lives and those closest to them getting involved in the chaos that is national politics, especially in today’s world where violence and politics too often go hand-in-hand.
Sure, some leaders have close ones who step into the limelight and willingly come as part of the package. Take the Trump family, for example. While most of the family have been in the public eye since before Donald Trump became president, they’ve pretty much all continued to be public figures and haven’t retreated from the public eye in any way. Contrast that with Boris Johnson, who has insisted on keeping his private life private – despite him being the UK’s current leader, it’s not even certain exactly how many children he’s fathered. It is possible for people in high positions of power to keep certain details of their personal lives private. Ideally, people and the media in general would respect this and stop harassing figures to try to make them reveal persona details. Really, when it comes to world leaders, do their personal lives matter so much anyway? Does it matter how many children Boris Johnson has? Shouldn’t the focus be on the job they’re doing and who they are as a leader, as opposed to on their personal lives? In this day and age where privacy’s becoming a thing of the past, surely people who wish to keep things private should have their wishes respected?