Infringements of rights should be reported
Editor, the Advocate:
When can the readers of the Advocate expect to see stories about the "detention pods" being placed in airports by Homeland Security to control people leaving their flights and trying to go to baggage claim?
These pods are at destinations - not originating airports. The passengers have already been cleared at the origin, and now they will have to go through these pods that lock them inside until TSA decides they can proceed - after having their fingerprints taken electronically and (doubtlessly) stored in a government database.
I would also like to see stories about the DHS "Constitution-free zone" - a 100-mile-deep corridor from any border point, including coastlines.
There is video on the Internet of such a checkpoint on Galveston Island at the Bolivar Ferry landing. Agents record license numbers and require people to exit their vehicles and open the hood and trunk for inspection prior to being cleared to proceed to the ferry. These searches are being conducted without regard to the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches. There is no probable cause or exigent circumstances involved here. The government agents line up the cars and search them all.
If DHS can decide that the Fourth Amendment is no longer valid, what is to keep it from attacking any other section of the Constitution?
Newspapers should be concerned that the First Amendment could be next.
Gun owners should worry about the Second Amendment. If the government can void the Fourth Amendment, will they go after Article III, where the judicial powers are described, or Article I and decide that Congress isn't needed any more?
Citizens depend on newspapers to keep an eye on government and to report abuses. Please do so while it's still possible.
Carl Bankston, Victoria