Crawl Across the Ocean

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

We Hate Ourselves for our Freedoms

Via Flash Point Canada, a look into our police state future.


  • I'm sure I'd be outraged if it happened to me. It didn't happen to me though -- and probably never will given my demographic -- so with just a little bit of distance I wonder where the line was crossed.

    In the sequence of events when did it cross over from 'normal' prudence after a crisis to infringing badly on civil liberties.

    - when a profile was created
    - when he was questioned because he seemed to meet the profile
    - when he was searched
    - when his background was checked ( in the absence of anything wrong with his possessions
    - when he was arrested on faux charges
    - when his property was confiscated with dubious to no justification
    - when he couldn't have his record expunged

    Where did it cross the line for you? For me, everything after he was initially searched was too much.

    By Blogger KevinG, at 3:33 PM  

  • That's a good question.

    I would say it was either at the point when he was searched, or defnitely everything that came after searching him and finding nothing.

    In the bigger picture, the mere fact that we are videotaping subway platforms and questioning random people speaks to the problems in our society.

    By Blogger Declan, at 6:02 PM  

  • I agree that the line was crossed (to the extent that there is a 'bright line' test in this sort of case) when he was not simply released after finding -in essence- nothing incriminating or dangerous in the search.

    > I accept that police are going to create profiles of likely bombers - the alternative is to simply stop people at random. That is both too invasive and too inefficient. I sympathise with those who are included in the profile, and I do so with the knowledge that I am unlikely to be so included. At the same time, what alternative do we have?

    > Once we have a profile (although looking at the steps while decending a staircase, and keeping one's backpack with one seem to be pretty innocuous) then we are going to have to do something with it. Questioning is preferable to -say- shooting, and is the only way to resolve any apprehensions the observers may have.

    > Ditto for searching; this is the first step in gathering hard evidence. A beligerent attitude may be misinterpreted, as might the response from a quiet, shy, or intimidated subject - but the detonator in the backpack (or traces of explosive, etc) doesn't lie. The absence of a detonator (etc) should have been the tip off to the police, but apparently they managed to miss it. Once they did not find incriminating materials, they were off on a wild goose chase, and the whole thing should have stopped.



    By Blogger deaner, at 2:40 PM  

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