Open thread June 15,2013 Dan Crawford | June 15, 2013 9:06 am Tags: open thread Comments (2) | Digg Facebook Twitter |
Daniel Ellsberg exposed classified documents to reveal past lying by government agencies — tricky to defend.
Edward Snowden is exposing supposed massive ongoing Fourth Amendment violations — our Constitutionally protected free way of life going down a giant sinkhole if he is right. That should be the right of anyone to expose.
Infringing Fourth Amendment rights while acting under color of law is not a federal crime — yet; more on that — like infringing First Amendment rights has been since passing the 1964 Federal Civil Rights Act.
Examples of massive Fourth Amendment infringements that could be criminalized are the Boston suburb’s warrantless invasion of 20 square blocks of private homes, warrantless government snooping private communications and, yes, the New York City Police Department’s constitutionally unjustified stop-and-frisk policy.
In 2011 New York police made 700,000 stops — up 7 times since Mayor Bloomberg took office — but AFTER crime had already gone down 4x = 28X as many stops per reported crime (half of which lead to frisks — 1 in 500 frisks producing a gun).
Read “Senarro’s Hidden Camera”, a New York Magazine story of an officer who says he was stopped 25 to 50 times growing up — lost track — and recorded illegal orders to do it to others.
If federal criminal penalties attached to such massive unconstitutional intrusions, bosses would shrink back from even thinking about doing such deeds. And the next Snowden would have an easy defense.
Right now there is nothing in the way of dissolving the Fourth Amendment completely except one slow, hard to work lawsuit in front one lone federal judge in New York — good luck against determined executive evading.
[Elizabeth Warren for president]
I forgot to include: New York State Senate Republicans just passed a law making it a felony (4 years in jail) to annoy a police officer physically (e.g., poking your finger in his chest after he says not to). Wont make it through the Assembly, presumably.
How about making it a federal civil rights violation to throw a teenager up against the wall 25 times in his school years? Perfect opening.