Saturday, June 13, 2009
It seems the Department of Homeland Security has created what has become known as "Constitution Free Zones." It seems as if DHS has taken it upon itself to not only harass certain individuals entering and exiting the US-Mexico border, it has gone as far as to beat and tase mercilessly a Baptist Pastor. In fact this Pastor, Pastor Steve Anderson of Phoenix, Arizona has had run-ins with other officers at other checkpoints. In watching these videos one must ask, who is in the wrong? In the case of Pastor Anderson, anyone who watches the video of his deplorable tasing can only conclude that Pastor Anderson was in the right. How? Many have, and some still consider authority figures like Police officers to be individuals to look up to. In days gone by children were taught that of the strangers you could approach police officers and their various equivalents could be approached freely in times of need or duress. But it seems that today more police officers desire or are unknowingly shedding the shield and armor of the public servant, for the helmet and club of the mercenary. In Pastor Anderson's case he dared to question the word of such individuals. In one case he was blatantly accused of being a terrorist for citing his fourth amendment rights. The straw that broke the camels back was his highly unfortunate tasing and brutal treatment at the hands of DHS border patrol agents and Arizona Depart of Public Safety officers. To give you a short background Pastor Anderson was stopped on the night in question. He was then told that a drug-sniffing dog had alerted to the presence of a human body or drugs somewhere on or in his vehicle. Pastor Anderson calmly challenged this and requested that the dog be brought out again and the inspection performed again. This request was denied. When he calmly refused to exit his vehicle, he was told he was being placed under arrest. Under arrest for what? For simply not complying with orders given from one of the officers. He was tased, brutalized and left to sit in a jail cell over night, and now must endure a long set of legal proceedings to vindicate himself.
In case anyone is wondering Pastor Anderson was not coming from Mexico. In fact the "Border Checkpoint" was fifty miles from Mexico and parallel to the route he was taking.
According to a "Raw Story" article the "Constitution Free Zones," "exists within 100 miles of the US border, where DHS claims the authority to stop, search and detain anyone for any reason. Nearly two-thirds of the US population lives within 100 miles of the border, according to the ACLU, and the border zone encompasses scores of major metropolitan areas and even entire states," citing information compiled by the American Civil Liberties Union. (Link)
The image of police officers as upholders of the law, and as trustworthy men and women is slowly being eroded away, if it is not gone already, and is being replaced with the image that police officers are simply bullies with badges. The notion that one must comply, cannot invoke their Constitutional rights, lest they be thoroughly thrashed and utterly embarassed does not only a great disservice to the American people, but furthers the odds of unfortunate events taking place, lives being lost, and families being made to weep, as a result of the distrust of authorities.
You can see video of Pastor Anderson being called a terrorist for invoking his 4th Amendment rights his merciless tasing here at the Anderson families youtube channel.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
To be ready, the Democrats hired -- apparently, only temporarily -- a speed-reader onto the committee's clerk staff.
As it turned out, he wasn't needed: after days of seeing their amendments defeated, Republicans agreed Wednesday that they would not ask for the reading.
But Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.), the ranking Republican, said he was curious. So, when he introduced a new amendment this afternoon, he requested that Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) have it read as a demonstration.
"The speed-reader clerk will read the bill," Waxman said, giving in.
"Now, I want him to read in a Texas accent," added Barton.
The speed-reader, who gave his name as "Douglas Wilder" (committee staff would not make him available for an interview), gamely started in a kind of speed-drawl. The room broke up.
"Let's have order!" Waxman said.
With the way Washington ignores us and the Constitution it is not surprising that many people have and will find this recent Washington Post article upsetting if not infuriating. Maybe it is just me, but does it seem that a nine-hundred page bill might just be indicative of the problems in Washington? What I mean is that the bureaucracy has grown so much and modern day legislation encompasses so much as a result, that Washington has gotten out of the habit of reading the bills because what they right is so extensive that they don't have the time to read their own bills or find it rather boring to do so. If its not being upset at the lack of Constitutional scrutiny of a nine-hundred page bill, I also completely understand those who think a government hired speed reader is a slap in the face. Ultimately we can expect our elected officials to foist on us some atrocious bill, of which, not one jot or tittle will be Constitutional. And Washington throws another shovel full of dirt on the American dream.
Monday, June 8, 2009
This may be a little "johnny-come-lately," but I wanted to give Governor Mark Sanford his dues for an excellent off the cuff "Q@A" defense of Libertarianism in response to Lindsey "Republican by day, Democrat by night" Graham's snide swipe at libertarianism..
Sunday, June 7, 2009
The most dangerous diminutions of freedom come from people convinced of their own moral rectitude.-Daniel Hanan, Conservative British MEP
British MEP Daniel Hanan made this statement on "Freedom Watch" while speaking with host Judge Andrew Napolitano. I think it is a profound and salient point, if not a clear cut indictment of the American system. Post-9/11 America has seen increased diminutions of American liberty. Government in its own moral rectitude, save those like Ron Paul, passed the Patriot Act wherein the use of self-written search warrants, which gagged their recipients and threatened prison, sneak and peek searches, dual systems of justice predicated on executive whim for prosecuting alleged terrorist, among a whole host of other things have been approved on the simple justification that it is the right thing to do. The Constitution doesn't matter, due process and fair trials doesn't matter, unquestionable justice doesn't matter. The perceived moral rectitude of Washington continues to blind them to their clear and concise mandate, defend the Constitution. We should be thankful for the few voices, like that of Ron Paul, who are crying in the wilderness. Government rectitude is a danger to our freedom and liberty, the only way we can survive as a nation is if we return to that which was begun two-hundred years ago, a grand experiment of free people, in free and sovereign states, uniting under a the greatest human document to be written (Constitution,) which is daily undone in the halls of Washington by men blinded by their own sense of moral rectitude.