Monday, November 22, 2010

Two Things That Are Really Bothering Me

I can honestly say I am a lot more pro law enforcement and government in general then most bloggers. However a couple things have really been hacking me off recently. First are supposed laws which make it illegal to film cops/ sheriffs/ meter maids/ whomever. These really anger me. Second the TSA is recently getting their way onto the same list.

I think the filming thing is one of the biggest examples of jack boot Stalinist tactics out there. They are also probably the biggest example of "lets try to call everything we don't like illegal" that I can think of. Of course some guy with a video camera following youaround would get annoying to anybody. However a cop who follows the rules and generally doesn't act like an Only One/ brown shirt doesn't have anything to fear. It is the cops who do shady illegal stuff all day long knowing that dirt bags (sorry but you know what I mean) who get treated like dirt or strait up harrassed won't say anything. Heck even if a normal non dirt bag complains about a cop of course the cop must be right. Often a recording of some sort by a third party is the only piece of evidence a DA or jury will actually believe that can refute a cops testimony. When bad cops (I don't think they are all bad) lie a video tape is just about the only way to disprove them.

What hacks me off even more about this is that cops try to record everything. I recall the case of some drunk college kid awhile back. He got arrested for disturbing the peace, drunken disorderly and attacking a cop. The kid was in serious trouble. However a few days later a video from across the street came out. The kid staggered around a corner and the cop body checked him with a horse then whooped the hell out of him with a stick. Aside from having too many drinks while watching college sports he didn't do a single thing wrong. The only thing that saved that kid from serious trouble was that video tape.

Some cops need to be held accountable for their actions and also the 'blue wall of silence' needs to be broken down. The only way I see that happening is by citizens holding them accountable in a manner people will act upon which means video (or I guess audio) tapes. This seems like a great cause for the ACLU.

The TSA probably have the biggest chip on their shoulder of any government agency. I think it is because deep down they know they are slightly above minimum wage wanna be security guard lackies. A chip on ones shoulder coupled with a bit of very narrowly defined power breeds a serious attitude problem.They are all over the media these days. They will pornoscan you or feel you up.

The whole thing is just so rediculous I don't even know what to say about it. What does this say about the sad state of our country; that we are more willing to force little kids and grandma's to get felt up by some slightly above minimum wage former mall security guard loser then openly admit what everyone knows anyway that the entire terrorist threat comes from males between about 17 and 40 of Arab nationality. More specifically Arab males who have just recently come to the US. Despite homeland security, the TSA, FBI, CIA and a few other agencies bungling we can at least accurately identify the group in question. There is no need to pornoscan grandma's from Minnessota or grope 10 year old soccer players from Iowa.

Hopefully the backlash against the TSA is finally reaching critical mass to the point where it cannot be ignored. Maybe there will be enough news pieces and people writing and calling their various representatives that they do something about it. I don't think the topic of security or anything that gets pushed under that umbrella should be beyond reproach.

All of this stuff is so stupid and the only real explanation for it that I can see is conditioning. Conditioning people to subject themselves to whatever kind of indignities some random employee of an obscure government agency tells them to. Conditioning them to not ask questions. One more paranoid than I could say the slippery slope to travel passes and inspection checkpoints a la Stalinist Russia isn't that long.

I personally don't worry about it much. Not because I like it at all but because I don't have another option. As a military family and particularly a military family overseas if we want to see our family we have to fly. It would take a lot to stop us from doing that. It is however interesting to theorize about this stuff.


Jennie said...

I totally agree about both points. Cops can film the public at stop lights, in banks, on highways, etc but we're supposed to believe that street is one way? I don't think so. John Q Public is just as handy with the portable recording devices and I think that finding a jury to convict a person for taping a cop is going to be really hard.

I remember a few years ago, people would make jokes that, "Soon we'll have to get naked to go through airport security. hahaha." Oh look, nudie pics. Why is this not MORE disturbing to people?

I say, can all the security nonsense, replace it with a 10 minute video outlining "How to take out a Terrorist on your Plane." Because really, that's how most of these plots get foiled isn't it? Fellow passengers notice some yahoo trying to set his underwear on fire and the nearest line backer tackles him. If flyers want a safe trip, let them pony up the awareness and preparedness to get that job done. No nudie pics required.

Just my .02$ and of course it'll never happen. :-P

suek said...

Agreed. I'm in contact with an individual who does professional refereeing for various soccer teams in the area. Apparently, either some of those teams are police teams, or some of the parents are police. He says he's seen police using or discussing using drugs.

I have no way to evaluate his statement, but given the particular discussion, there wasn't any reason to lie, either.

When enforcers of laws have the right to choose which laws to enforce, and upon whom they will be enforced, you have clear cut corruption. Corrupt government means devolving into third world status.

Equal justice under the law is supposed to mean just that: _EQUAL_ justice. For everybody - including police and other governmental officials.

Heh. WV is "lyinges"

Anonymous said...

I agree too - if the LEO isn't doing anything wrong, he / she shouldn't have anything to fear. Especially if footage is taken on public property, where (presumably), our rights extend to as well. Making it ILLEGAL to tape an encounter - something just doesn't set right. As public servants, their salary, equipment and training are paid by US, the taxpayer, and making some 'more equal than others' is just not right.

Brad K. said...

I think the laws about not filming the cops come from a few incidents some years ago. Pictures of individual police were used by protesters. The protests might have included bad cops, but were also against various social issues.

The pictures resulted in individual cops (may not involved with anything untoward) - and got their families harassed and threatened.

When the unscrupulous, from organized labor and other organized criminals, and protesters of various degrees of honor, can intimidate honest police from doing their job, as well as identify and agitate against bad cops, then usually the community suffers.

Rather than ban intimidations and harassment (already on the books), they chose to ban the cameras.

Something about police unions, I imagine.

Telling a cop that if she/he is doing nothing wrong, there is no harm in taking pictures is just as manipulative and deceptive as the morons claiming there is no harm in registering guns and gun owners.

I can see some merit in protecting decent police from intimidation and threats. I can see an even bigger case for banning gun registration (and destroying all records) but we all know that isn't about to happen until a few Federal and state agencies and programs get de-funded.

But it might help understand the cop's resistance to being photographed, if you consider she/he might think they are protecting their families.

Graham said...

Totally agree with the post and the commenters thus far. I just want to point out - and I imagine most people who come to this site already know it, but it's worth saying - "If you're doing nothing wrong you have nothing to worry about" is ONLY true for public servants acting in their official capacity. Any time you hear that said about a private citizen it's an excuse for someone in power to violate their privacy.

Suburban Survivalist said...

Almost whatever you do, you can be busted;

As far as TSA, in pretty much equals this; the terrorists have won, we've lost freedoms. I can see why they're doing it, but agree they need to target the most likely demographic; Arabs. That's not racist, it's reality.

Chief Instructor said...

Yep, a big part of it is conditioning. We had MADD get the DUI checkpoints put in place, and the government gladly took another step in warrantless searches.

It's for the children!

No probable cause. Just comply, or else.

This is more of the same. Perceived safety in lieu of freedom.

Sheeple fairly beg for it.

Crap like this TSA groping is the result of the proverbial slippery slope. We're sliding, big time.

No thanks.

suek said...

If you haven't seen this, it might be a worthwhile read:

Related to the TSA searches, not the police photography issue.

Slikweasel said...

It's amazing how blindly laws are made repressing constitutional freedoms. If I want to video tape an officer doing his job that's my right, and if he's a crooked cop and gets busted all the better.

As for the TSA body scans, it simply amazes me that the mass media has not once pointed out that by using some type of profiling this could be totally avoided. 17 - 40 year old Arabs would be an obvious trigger. It's sad that we are so politically correct as a country we can't even use the science of demographics to alleviate a potential problem. Instead we pretend that any Tom, Dick, or Harry is just as likely to be a terrorist and ignore the obvious truth. What a brilliant government we have, next election I am going to do the right thing with my ballot and put it right next to the Charmin, it's a no win situation.

suek said...

Another TSA article.

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