16 May 2011

Hey, how's that War On Drugs working out for ya?

Because the USSC apparently thinks it gives the authorities carte blanche to wipe their asses with the 4th Amendment.  Just so you know.

In essence, the Fourth Amendment now has an on/off switch. Police can create their own exigencies. That means that the cops can use the same knock-knock-open-your-door technique that your parents used when you were a kid. Stranger still, the Supreme Court didn't even rule on whether or not Hollis King's rights were violated in the first place when the police broke into his apartment by mistake and caught him smoking marijuana.

What's strange is how none of the opinions save Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the lone dissenter, even acknowledges the potential for abuse.

Ginsburg gets right to the point in her dissent: "The Court today arms the police with a way routinely to dishonor the Fourth Amendment’s warrant requirement in drug cases."

Note that this is part of an ongoing trend of law enforcement inserting itself into everyday Americans' lives. The Patriot Act allows warrantless wiretaps (i.e. snooping on your phone calls), and police are attacking photographers who dare to film them breaking the law. It's worrisome that the courts are considering this the new norm.
HT Blue, whose take can be found here.  I'm beginning to wonder whether even a Palin/West ticket can bring us back from the brink.

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