L. Neil Smith's
Number 287, September 5, 2004

"Who the hell are these people?"

Survey of the Bill of Rights: Article 4
by Ron Beatty

Exclusive to TLE

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Warrantless searches? No-knock searches? Seizure of property without a warrant or finding of guilty in a criminal trial? Random identity checks? Sobriety check-points? Mandatory waiver of rights due to where you live? Random drug tests?

Do you see anything about any of these in the Fourth Amendment? I don't.

For over 60 years, the United States has been under a state of emergency of one form or another. The combination of this, the 'war on drugs,' the 'war on crime,' and the recently popular 'war on terror' has served as a justification for the denial and/or limitation of our Fourth Amendment rights. Now, with the so-called 'Patriot Act' to serve as a flimsy justification, more and more of our rights under the Fourth Amendment are non-existent or, at best, limited so badly as to be meaningless.

This is another right that the Constitution does not grant, it only recognizes that it exists. Included in this right is the right to privacy, since it specifically states that the person is included in the domain safe from unreasonable search and seizure.

The only problem with this amendment is one of omission. Nowhere is 'unreasonable' defined, leaving it up to the government or authorities of whatever nature to do so. This has led to the swearing out of warrants on the word of convicted felons against law-abiding citizens, with no other evidence considered necessary. Actually, this is what led to the murder of Don Scott, this and the asset forfeiture laws which would have allowed the local law enforcement agency to confiscate half the value of his property for its own use.

Basically, fear and greed are the motivating factors in the dimishing effectiveness of this amendment. Fear of crime, fear of terror, fear of revolution, fear of the very citizens they are supposed to be serving and protecting. Greed for power, greed for authority are the other motivations involved.

Looking at the above list of violations in the first paragraph of this article, I can't help but notice that every single one of those things is a major indicator of a police or totalitarian state. If you look carefully at the history, every single one was used by Adolf Hitler in his bid to control Nazi Germany, which led to the deaths of millions of people, in warfare, in death camps, from the unintended consequences of war, including disease and breakdown of social services. Every single one was used by almost every tyrant throughout history.

Do you want to see it happen again? I don't.

As always, look at the facts, check out the history. Prove to yourselves that I am telling you the truth. Then decide if YOU want to live in the next incarnation of Nazi Germany.


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