It’s unclear if these checkpoints are located at the border or not. If they are located at the border, then you must show identification proving your citizenship. After this is established, you are free to go. If these checkpoints are set up randomly on the roads of America, you are under no obligation to answer any of these questions.
The DHS checkpoints in this video are staffed by border patrol agents, who have no authority to stop and detain anyone except at actual border crossings. Due to the recent Supreme Court ruling, they do not even have the authority to do this if you are within the 100 mileConstitution-free zone.
The DHS’ civil rights watchdog has just concluded that it’s okay to confiscate any electronic device without suspicion anywhere along the US border. The DHS office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties said that they would conduct an investigation in 2009 and have just concluded their findings in a two page report.
“We also conclude that imposing a requirement that officers have reasonable suspicion in order to conduct a border search of an electronic device would be operationally harmful without concomitant civil rights/civil liberties benefits,” the executive summary said.
According to legal precedent, the Fourth Amendment — the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures — does not apply along the border. By the way, the government contends the Fourth-Amendment-Free Zone stretches 100 miles inland from the nation’s actual border.
The DHS watchdog’s conclusion isn’t surprising, as the DHS is taking that position in litigation in which the ACLU is challenging the suspicionless, electronic-device searches and seizures along the nation’s borders. But that conclusion nevertheless is alarming considering it came from the DHS civil rights watchdog, which maintains its mission is “promoting respect for civil rights and civil liberties.”
One suggestion is to use TrueCrypt to encrypt your data. Make obtaining the information as difficult as possible, even if all you have is photos from your vacation. Everyone has something to hide and they should be allowed to keep their private things private without the prying eyes of random law enforcement officers wants to peer into them.
The ACLU has filed a FOIA request to view the full report as it is, currently, labeled as secret.
Random security checks are voluntary, but a way to keep criminal activity from taking place on-board.
About thirty minutes before the train departed, all passengers were asked to leave their bags on the boarding platform while two different detection dogs, one for narcotics and the other for explosives, sniff the luggage.
Even though most people know that the searches are voluntary, many are pressured into cooperating. If the searches are voluntary, then why is everyone being told that they must leave their bags to be checked? What happens if someone enforces their rights, states that the searches are voluntary, and then refuses the checks?
If drug sniffing dogs were brought in, then the DHS and TSA is clearly violating everyone’s fourth amendment rights by conducting unlawful, warrantless searches and moving beyond the scope of what their job entails. They are allowed to check only for WEI: weapons, explosives, and incendiaries. Anything else, especially drugs, is not part of their mandate.
“The security at airports has increased so the bad guys are now traveling on the trains and buses,” said Robinson.
The DHS also has no evidence that, suddenly, more bad guys travel on trains and buses. That is, unless the bad guys are those who have begun to exercise their right of freedom of movement and stopped flying because the majority of what the TSA does is unconstitutional. The next step, of course, is to track people who drive cars, ride bikes, and simply go out for a walk because bad guys do these things too.
These searches do nothing to provide security. They provide security theater, intimidation, and coercion. These same TSA workers perform checks in Philadelphia in the train station while the tracks below are actually open to the entire world. If you travel on ClubAcela enough, you get to bypass the security checks altogether. At New York’s Penn Station, you can avoid the checks by boarding at the mezzanine level.
Uncontrolled search and seizure is one of the first and most effective weapons in the arsenal of every arbitrary government. Among deprivations of rights, none is so effective in cowing a population, crushing the spirit of the individual and putting terror in every heart. Justice Robert Jackson, chief U.S. prosecutor at the Nuremberg Trials
The TSA is not a law enforcement agency. If you acquiesce to their request, you are complicit in the removal of basichumanrights.
The TSA’s VIPR teams have already been spotted working at professional sports arenas and other train stations with mixed results from the public. Their latest appearance was in Emmeryville, California.
Unfortunately, many people are okay with the TSA violating their mandate and branching out into areas where they are not trained for or needed. They also don’t see a problem with their civil liberties being violated in order to “feel” safer.
Amtrak passenger Vera Molina said she noticed all the black-clad TSA inspectors right away and it’s a presence she appreciates. Asked if she would like to see them more often she said, “I would, can’t hurt, just in case you never know.”
Since its inception, the TSA has not been able to detect a single threat to national security, yet the government’s response it to continually spread the agency farther and farther into areas where it is not authorized to do so. Due to the general public’s lack of education on the matter, they agree with the TSA when the TSA tells them it’s for their own good.
What the TSA at the airports and the VIPR teams are doing is slowly conditioning the American public to seeing the TSA everywhere. If they were to complete this task in a very short time, instead of over several years, there would be a backlash and the government would be forced to relent and remove their teams. By allowing the TSA to creep into existence in every aspect of normal life, most people will not realize what is happening until it’s too late.
The problem is that the vast majority of Americans never have any interaction with the TSA. They believe what their government, ministers/priests, and police departments tell them. They don’t question authority to discover the truth, making it easier for the government to control them. It makes normal citizens sound like crazy conspiracy nuts, when, in fact, they are just concerned citizens worried about the direction their country is taking.
It doesn’t matter to many Americans that this has been happening for several years. Their apathy is exactly why the TSA is allowed to further its mission creep. They either don’t care because it’s happened in severalplacesin the past or they don’t have any experience with it so it isn’t important to them.
These everyday Americans do not know that former DHS chiefs Michael Chertoff and John Ashcroft actually work for, own, or own stock in the companies who manufacture TSA equipment. Michael Chertoff owns stock in the companies that make the backscatter machines at the airports, while John Ashcroft works for the company that sells the machines to the government.
Logically, it is impossible to secure every single open space in the United States. It’s simply too big a task to be accomplished. However, by convincing the American public otherwise, they believe the lie that the United States is secure while a police state creeps in to “protect” them. By allowing this to happen, the terrorist have, indeed, won. All it took was one attack for the United States to buckle on it’s pride of freedom and openness, allowing fear to reign instead of common sense.