Posted on: Dec 06, 2013 at 08:37
Posted In: Latest News
erosion of civil liberties in this country is scary, and it's a
travesty that the MSM and even the conservative media (Rush, etc.) won't
talk about it.
latest development in 4th Amendment violations is the scariest I've
heard yet. The Department of the Fatherland has approved a policy which
states in no uncertain terms that electronic devices can be seized without a warrant within 100 miles of the border. The kicker? The "border", according to this policy, is any national barrier, political or physical. THIS INCLUDES BODIES OF WATER. So,
that means that the United States has, in effect, "Constitution-free
zones" stretching 100 miles inland from every coast and 100 miles from
our northern and southern borders. Unbelievable! Wired has the story: The Department of Homeland
Security’s civil rights watchdog has concluded that travelers along the
nation’s borders may have their electronics seized and the contents of
those devices examined for any reason whatsoever — all in the name of
The DHS, which secures the nation’s border, in
2009 announced that it would conduct a "Civil Liberties Impact
Assessment” of its suspicionless search-and-seizure policy pertaining to
electronic devices "within 120 days.”
More than three years later, the DHS office of Civil Rights and Civil
Liberties published a two-page executive summary of its findings.
also conclude that imposing a requirement that officers have reasonable
suspicion in order to conduct a border search of an electronic device
would be operationally harmful without concomitant civil rights/civil
liberties benefits,” the executive summary said.
memo highlights the friction between today’s reality that electronic
devices have become virtual extensions of ourselves housing everything
from e-mail to instant-message chats to photos and our papers and
effects — juxtaposed against the government’s stated quest for national
The President George W. Bush administration first
announced the suspicionless, electronics search rules in 2008. The
President Barack Obama administration followed up with virtually the
same rules a year later. Between 2008 and 2010, 6,500 persons had their electronic devices searched along the U.S. border, according to DHS data.
to legal precedent, the Fourth Amendment — the right to be free from
unreasonable searches and seizures — does not apply along the border. By
the way, the government contends the Fourth-Amendment-Free Zone stretches 100 miles inland from the nation’s actual border.
rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union suggest that
"reasonable suspicion” should be the rule, at a minimum, despite that
being a lower standard than required by the Fourth Amendment.