Police State
Monday, June 09, 2008
A major city and tourist attraction, plagued by crime. The people are rebelling, demanding something be done. The government steps in. Streets are closed down, guarded by police. You must produce your papers in order to pass. Only residents or people who can prove legitimate business will get through the barricades.

Where is this? Beijing? Cuba? No. It's in our nation's capital, Washington, D.C.

"We're going to go into an area and completely shut it down," D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty says. Here's how it's going to work, according to the Washington Post:
The checkpoint will stop vehicles approaching the 1400 block of Montello Avenue NE, a section of the Trinidad neighborhood that has been plagued with homicides and other violence. Police will search cars if they suspect the presence of guns or drugs, and will arrest people who do not cooperate, under a charge of failure to obey a police officer, officials said.
So, the police will stop you and demand to see identification. They may or may not decide to search your car. If you protest, citing, say, civil rights, you'll be arrested.

I wonder what the Congressmen would say if police did that on the Beltway? But, since it just affects the peasantry right now, will they bother to get involved? I doubt it.

The police claim checkpoints are effective at recovering stolen cars and weapons. But these checkpoints are supposed to catch murderers, and they are turning people away. It's one thing to run people's plates to check for stolen cars. It's another to turn people away from public property because the police don't think they have a good enough reason for driving down the street.

This is America. We paid for the streets and we don't have to have a reason to drive down them! Also, they're not searching pedestrians. I guess cold hearted murderers only drive, never walk or bike. And there's just no way they could actually be residents, right? The killers must come from "outside"?

A super-quick primer:
According to the Fourth Amendent,
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.
A major exception is if the owner of the property says it's okay to search.
Except, apparently, police are arresting people who aren't Yes Men.
They came first for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me,
and by that time no one was left to speak up.
-New England Holocaust Memorial Inscription, from a poem by Niemoller.
Meanwhile, I heard about Jessica Alba's baby on every single news outlet and had to search for this story after a I saw a brief teaser late last night on the news.


posted by Milehimama @ Mama Says at 6/09/2008 10:12:00 AM | Permalink | |