Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution - #4536 - John Whitehead, The Rutherford Institute - College Girls, Bottled Water and the Emerging Police State














John Whitehead, The Rutherford Institute - College Girls, Bottled Water and the Emerging Police State - What do college girls and bottled water have to do with the emerging American police state? Quite a bit, it seems. Public outcry has gone viral over an incident in which a college student was targeted and terrorized by Alcohol Beverage Control agents (ABC) after she purchased sparkling water at a grocery store. The girl and her friends were eventually jailed for daring to evade their accosters, who failed to identify themselves or approach the young women in a non-threatening manner. What makes this particular incident significant (other than the fact that it took place in my hometown of Charlottesville, Va.) is the degree to which it embodies all that is wrong with law enforcement today, both as it relates to the citizenry and the ongoing undermining of our rule of law. To put it bluntly, due in large part to the militarization of the police and the equipping of a wide range of government agencies with weaponry, we are moving into a culture in which law enforcement officials have developed a sense of entitlement that is at odds with the spirit of our Constitution—in particular, the Fourth Amendment.......

These are not isolated overreactions on the part of rogue officers. As I document in my new book, A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, they are emblematic of a growing tension over the use of militarized police to perform relatively routine tasks, resulting in situations fraught with danger to both civilians and police alike. From full tactical SWAT teams executing no-knock search warrants on the homes of law-abiding citizens over nothing more than a suspicion that the occupant owns a gun to the unlawful arrest and forced institutionalization of decorated military veterans over Facebook posts critical of the government, the events described above are becoming all too familiar in cities and towns across the country. Moreover, in light of shooting incidents across the country involving unarmed citizens and heavily armed police, increasing numbers of Americans are understandably concerned about whatever factors, whether it’s an arsenal of militarized weapons and an increasing reliance on lethal weapons or insufficient training in nonviolent conflict resolution, are contributing to a seemingly “trigger happy” tendency on the part of some law enforcement officials.  Read more.......

No comments:

Post a Comment