Since Orlando and the renewed debate on keeping people on the no-fly list from buying guns, we have heard new cries of “no due process” and “we can’t trust the government with the power to deny our rights.” And if you are one of those focused on those key issues, you have missed the bigger assault on our rights that has been happening right now.
It started on Monday with the conservatives on the Supreme Court, joined with Stephen Breyer handing down this decision:
The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that evidence found by police officers after illegal stops may be used in court if the officers conducted their searches after learning that the defendants had outstanding arrest warrants.
No due process? A warrant isn’t a conviction of a crime. People are still, or at least were, presumed innocent. But just having the government think you are guilty is apparently enough now to ignore the 4th amendment.
But it doesn’t stop there. Something much more scary is happening right now in the Senate, and was short one vote from passing this week. Welcome to 1984 meets Minority Report:
Privacy-minded senators on Wednesday blocked an amendment that would give the FBI power to take internet records, including browser histories and email metadata, without a court order. But the victory may be fleeting.
Just one vote kept the measure from clearing a 60-vote procedural hurdle, and political arm-twisting may soon result in a second vote. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., switched his vote to “no” to allow reconsideration in the near future. That made the final tally 58-38, with four senators not voting.
Think about that for a minute. The Senate Republicans are pushing through legislation (joined with 11 Democrats) that gives the government the power to search your computer without a court issued warrant or any due process at all. Couple that with the Supreme Court decision earlier this week, and we are one step away from the thought police.
While the Republicans are trying to scream about our rights while pointing to the Democrats trying to put safety measures in to stop another Orlando or Sandy Hook, Republicans are actually shredding our rights. Even worse, they are doing it in the name of “security”. I can’t tell you how many times since Orlando I have heard “we can’t let the terrorists take away our rights by limiting the sale of guns.” Well that’s rather ironic when the same people making that argument sure as hell don’t mind the terrorists taking away our right to unreasonable search and seizure without a court order.
Yes, the Republicans in our government are helping the terrorists win by actually shredding our Bill of Rights.