Jonathan Turley’s Blog February 10 2013
We are all aware of and concerned about the steady erosion of our civil rights at the hands of ever overreaching Federal government. It is a topic that brought many of us to this blog and a topic that draws more audience every day. The latest victim of tyranny is the 4th Amendment. The 4th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution reads:
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.”
Seems pretty straight forward. However, the DHS has apparently decided to void the Constitution if you live within 100 miles of the U.S. border. Your electronics may be seized and your data searched if you live or are travelling within 100 miles of the border. This is not a new story. This policy has been known since 2008. From the beginning there were calls for Congress to reign in the overreach of the the Department for Reich, er, Homeland Security that went unheeded. Most of the calls were for residential traveller exemptions. However, there are new developments. This draconian policy, neglected by Congress, has been unilaterally declared just fine and dandy by the DHS itself in yet another example of the Executive unilaterally claiming unconstitutional powers over citizens with their only check being their own rubber stamp. This policy not only vitiates the 4th Amendment, but has implications for the 1st and 14th as well.
To get an idea of the scope of this “Constitution-free Zone”, consider this map:
Consider too that fully two-thirds (2/3) of the United States’ population lives within this Constitution-free Zone. That’s 197.4 million people, including everyone in Hawaii. And Florida, Rhode Island, Maryland, Connecticut, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire and Michigan. Aloha!