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I am feeling the freedom today.
So, you're riding in a car being driven by your wife. Your 4 year old son is in the back seat. The wife is driving over the speed limit and the police pull you over for speeding. When the traffic cop runs your plate number, a two year old outstanding warrant on you comes up. The warrant was over a different traffic offense you committed 2 years prior. You reach in your glove box, find the receipt from paying the two year old traffic ticket, and hand it to the police. The receipt should settle the issue. It doesn't. The trooper arrests you.
You spend the next 8 days in jail for a fine you've already paid. You spend those eight days in two separate county lockups.....and you are strip searched twice....all on the basis of a charge of "civil contempt."
“Turn around,” someone tells you while you stand naked before several guards and prisoners. “Squat and cough. Spread your cheeks.”
That story is not a hypothetical. It happened in New Jersey in 2005....and whether the police had the right to strip search Albert Florence was decided yesterday in a 5-4 ruling by the Supreme Court. Guess whose side the 5 activist conservative Supremes took? The police, of course.
Now, as the NY Times puts it today....any citizen of the United States can be arrested and strip searched.......no matter the nature of the offense.
Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, joined by the court’s conservative wing, wrote that courts are in no position to second-guess the judgments of correctional officials who must consider not only the possibility of smuggled weapons and drugs, but also public health and information about gang affiliations.
The five activist judges didn't REQUIRE every arrest to be accompanied by a strip search.....so that was mighty human of them....
The Supreme Court did not say that strip-searches of every new arrestee were required; it ruled, rather, that the Fourth Amendment’s prohibition of unreasonable searches did not forbid them.
The 4th refers to "unreasonable search and seizures" of American citizens and their belongings by government agents. Of course, the 4th amendment went up in warrantless wiretapping smoke during the 00's and hasn't been heard from since.....so what I don't understand about this case is why the 5 activist judges didn't just go ahead, you know, while they were at it, and legalize full cavity searches for all arrests, no matter how minor. And what about light-to-moderate torture? If strip searching traffic violators will keep our protectors safe.....then how much more safe could our protectors keep themselves if they, you know, lightly tortured every person arrested.....just in case the arrestee knows something that might keep our protectors, more protected?
If the 4th amendment is not to be interpreted as a guarantee to average citizens against unjust searches and seizures by government agents, but instead, a guarantee of protection for those very government agents.....then shouldn't everything that can be done to protect those agents....be done?
If you follow Justice Kennedy's thinking.......arrests made over non-violent traffic violations, or police paperwork clusterf*cks, create an oh-so-very-dangerous environment for those running the jails or correctional facilities. And really, what's more important, the rights of citizens...or the safety of our protectors?
Justice Kennedy wrote, the “undoubted security imperatives involved in jail supervision override the assertion that some detainees must be exempt from the more invasive search procedures at issue absent reasonable suspicion of a concealed weapon or other contraband.”
Then, Justice Kennedy waxed all Dickish.....
Justice Kennedy said one person arrested for disorderly conduct in Washington State “managed to hide a lighter, tobacco, tattoo needles and other prohibited items in his rectal cavity.” Officials in San Francisco, he added, “have discovered contraband hidden in body cavities of people arrested for trespassing, public nuisance and shoplifting.”
There you have it. It's the one percent doctrine, Supreme Court version. One person shoved some dangerous stuff up his rectum......and that means that the entire country's population must be strip searched when arrested to keep our protector's safe. Hey, if we can be forced to take off our shoes in the airport and be felt up by protector-strangers because one guy put explosives in his shoes......I can't, for the life of me, comprehend why the Cheek Spreading Five didn't legalize full cavity searches of any and all people detained or arrested. Haven't we learned by now that we can never, ever be too safe?
One dissenting and America-hating liberal Justice put it this way....
Justice Breyer wrote that there was very little empirical support for the idea that strip-searches detect contraband that would not have been found had jail officials used less intrusive means, particularly if strip-searches were allowed when officials had a reasonable suspicion that they would find something.
Obviously, Breyer is a criminal-lover....and a Justice who would endanger our protectors. Justice Breyer is talking pre-9-11 talk. "very little empirical support" for contraband being detected through strip searching? Who needs "empirical support" when any and all risks could be the Big One? The Final One? The smoking anally-implanted gun that could be the Big Mushroom Cloud.
Justice Alito, one of the five Justices voting to strip search all arrested Americans, no matter the individual circumstance or nature of the alleged violation, is a fan of government agents strip searching Americans. Not just Americans, mind you, but American children. Sammy Alito earned his title Strip Search Sammy when he sided with protectors who defended the strip search of a 10 year old girl.
So, you know.....there's precedent.