The Subversion of the Fourth Amendment
Frank Randall and Christine Tucker
There once was a day the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guaranteed "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
The first major blow to the Fourth Amendment was President Nixon's “War on Drugs”, which established wartime police powers. This “war” eliminated Fourth Amendment protection for those who use drugs. Setting this precedent for removing Fourth Amendment protection for this sizable amount of citizens paved the way for the further elimination of these rights for all citizens. In this age of tight budgets and law enforcement dependency on selling seized assets, the temptation for abuse has to often proven too great. State legislatures across the country are now finally starting to enact laws that prevent law enforcement agencies and personnel from keeping and profiting from seized assets.
The War on Drugs was followed by the MADD mother's lobbying of state legislatures to enact roadside searches and seizures. Being ignorant of the principles of good government and individual rights, MADD used emotional appeals supported by media coverage, rather than logic and reason. Legislators not supporting roadside searches were accused of not taking action on drivers under the influence and lack of compassion for victims. Once put into practice, these new searches and seizures were declared constitutional on the basis that they were conducted randomly. Would our founding fathers have agreed to the British conducting search and seizure without a crime being committed, without probable cause, without warrant, simply because the search and seizure were conducted randomly? Sadly, the vast majority of citations and confiscation resulting from these random searches have no connection to driving and alcohol. As a result of these expanded police powers, police officers are now being trained as phlebotomists to draw blood from DWI suspects. Most importantly this new major precedence for search and seizure occurs when no specific crime was committed and no probable cause established under the premise that any, and all, drivers are subject to searches because there is a possibility any one driver of the tens of thousands of drivers in the surrounding area might be one that was inebriated. A similar premise used today to justify preventive wars and to invade other nations in case some day they might attack us is frightening.
"Stop throwing the Constitution in my face." President Bush stated, "It's just a god-damned piece of paper!" With this view of the constitution, are we surprised he would declare the "War on Terror"? Unfortunately, terrorism is a tactic, and tactics are not subject to defeat. Therefore, the United States is now committed to a state of perpetual, endless war. The office of president is rapidly becoming the commander in chief of not only the military, but of all citizens, through the use of expanded law enforcement to search, seize, confine or spy on us at any time without due process. The choice of the term "homeland" in The Department of Homeland Security is an eerie reminder of Stalin's Communist "Motherland" and Hitler's Nazi "Fatherland."
Our next achievement in the subversion of the Fourth Amendment was the establishment of the TSA. With their full body scanners revealing the most personal intimate details, the groping and molestation of our grandmothers and daughters, the removal of breast prostheses of women, and the bursting in public of a bladder replacement urine bag, the TSA has proven to be completely out of control. TSA's chief John Pistle refused on Wednesday November 17 to back off deploying advanced imaging scanners that perform an electronic strip-search on passengers and allowing screeners hidden in control rooms to search these images for the most minute details. "I'm not going to change those policies," he declared to lawmakers. One can only conclude the agency's position taken that these techniques are needed to counter evolving threats, basically it makes it clear this is only the beginning.....you haven't seen anything yet. Re-election being their primary concern, what else could our cowardly congress expect after they surrendered their constitutional power and duty to declare war to one person, the president. After all, Homeland Security and the TSA chief report to our war time president. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ckTi3FqfOo http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2010/11/20/dnt.cancersurvivor.t...
So far 21 states have enacted Katie's Law, requiring SUSPECTED felons to give DNA samples upon arrest, on the pretense that it will prevent future crimes and keep people safe. This action was taken in response to the brutal rape and murder of a 22 year old woman. The New Mexico DNA database eventually matched the DNA found under her fingernails. Opponents argue it is contrary to the Fourth Amendment to gather and store genetic material of those who aren't eventually convicted. Is there any doubt this new precedence will, once again, do permanent damage to constitutional protection against unreasonable search and seizure? Is there any doubt this new precedence will be expanded, step by step, to eventually include data banks that cover us all? http://www.katieslaw.org/states.html
Currently, MADD is in Washington D.C. lobbying for yet another bill, DADDS. This bill will further infringe on our rights by making what is presently illegal search/seizure/destroy/monitoring of our daily activities, legal. The "Motor Vehicle Safety Act" will be an easy pass in D.C., the government now owns a portion of our automotive industry. Our tax dollars will now be used to mandate even more new rules and monitoring equipment on our vehicles to assure the "safety" of citizens.
At this point in time, the majority of Americans have been more than willing to give up their individual rights, freedom, and liberty, for the promise that those in government will make them safer. The government has determined that the lifeblood flowing in our veins, the urine in our bladder, the air in our lungs, the skin of our bodies and anything contained within it, is not considered our individual property. If our bodies are not sacred under the Fourth Amendment, what else within the realm of reason and logic could be? The United States is not progressing into an advanced society, but regressing into a primitive one. Our nation is gradually becoming a giant prison where advances in science and technology will be used to monitor and control virtually everything we do instead of enriching our lives and expanding liberty and freedom. If this precedent is established that the life's blood in our veins is not our individual property protected by the Fourth Amendment, neither is our tongue, or our hands. If you think our return to a primitive society is highly unlikely, stop and think, thirty years ago had any citizen entered an airport and been subjected to the actions of today's TSA, the vast majority would have been outraged and resisted instead of being obedient and submissive. We have regressed further back than our forefathers and the U.S. Constitution, past John Locke and the Magna Carta. We are fast approaching not only a primitive society, but one with advanced technology and weaponry. These degradations are happening step, by step, with each step being slightly more intrusive than the previous.
The proverbial frog will jump out if you throw him in boiling water, but will stay comfortable and as you gradually turn the heat up until he is cooked. The end of the fourth amendment is eminent, do you feel much safer now.