Washington, D.C. - Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today announced the expansion of the Department's national "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign to hundreds of Walmart stores across the country - launching a new partnership between DHS and Walmart to help the American public play an active role in ensuring the safety and security of our nation.
Yup, just like the KGB in Russia, or the SS in Germany... our government it resorting to having friends, family, neighbors, and community members turn in "suspicious" behaviour.
On the surface, people might feel that if you are doing nothing wrong, what do you have to be worried about? Doesn't this help fight terrorism?
What about the racist white guy who sees a couple of African-American youths walking through the electronics department?
What about the anti-gun advocate who sees a guy in camo, back at the sporting goods department buying ammunition or other hunting supplies?
What about a redneck'ish looking individual buying a couple of propane tanks for his weekend family barbecue?
Or a bearded gardener buying fertilizer for his garden?
The list of "suspicious" individuals goes on and on... and it's fine as long as you are not the one being stopped and questioned, right? After all, it's other people's rights being violated, not yours... and as long as it's them, it makes you feel safer because the government and their stooges are protecting you right?
4th Amendment:According to United States V. Mendenhall, (446 U.S. 544, 100 S.Ct. 1870 (1980)) a person is seized when their freedom to come and go, is not allowed by a detaining officer... yes, YOU can be seized!
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.
So when someone turns you in for being suspicous, and the officers show up and ask you questions, based on someone elses anonymous "tip" and you cannot leave without talking, you are not secure in your person, houses, papers, effects... and I guarantee you the officer will ask detain you for not cooperating, and then seaerch you "incident to an arrest".
And so much for confronting your accuser... most couts hold that you only have the right to confront your accuser if you are brought to criminal trial. That means ANYONE who has a grudge against you, is mad about the way you didn't cut your grass this week, or disputes your property line, etc... can make your life a living hell...
Just wait until you are in China-Mart and call away your suspicious looking clothes, hat, etc... But we all know this is not limited just to Wal-Mart, they are just the latest ally of the govenment in their non-stop expansion of powers in the name of liberty and safety.
To paraphrase a quote, often attributed to both Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin (and probably said by neither):
"If you would give up a little liberty in exchange for a little safety, you will lose both and deserve neither..."