In a post directed toward libertarians who support federal government immigration controls, Jacob Hornberger describes how the government harasses innocent Americans returning from across the border or overseas. He points out the case of two Americans returning from Canada, in which “U.S. border officials took possession of their cell phones and demanded that they disclose their passwords so that the officials could peruse, study, search through, or copy the contents of the phones. They complied.”
And the same two people returned from Canada a second time, and the border goons wanted to search their phones again but when one of the illegal search-victims said he didn’t want to go through that a second time, the non-complying citizen was grabbed by the legs and then put into a chokehold by a second government goon thug.
The article that Hornberger linked to on NBC News, also stated:
In 25 cases examined by NBC News, American citizens said that CBP officers at airports and border crossings demanded that they hand over their phones and their passwords, or unlock them.
The travelers came from across the nation, and were both naturalized citizens and people born and raised on American soil. They traveled by plane and by car at different times through different states. Businessmen, couples, senior citizens, and families with young kids, questioned, searched, and detained for hours when they tried to enter or leave the U.S. None were on terror watchlists. One had a speeding ticket. Some were asked about their religion and their ethnic origins, and had the validity of their U.S. citizenship questioned.
The article mentions that cellphone searches by U.S. federal gestapo agents grew “from fewer than 5,000 in 2015 to nearly 25,000 in 2016.” (Hmm, did NBC News do any stories on this at that time, which was during the Obama administration? Just askin’.)
Very important to this story is that probably most of those searches were of people who were Muslim, not of people who were actually suspected of wrongdoing. The article quotes a former DHS chief “privacy officer” (sic!) as stating that “The Fourth Amendment, even for U.S. citizens, doesn’t apply at the border.”
Huh? Like many people in government, this bureaucrat probably didn’t even read the very document she cites.
Unless Ms. Bureaucrat was referring to a different “Fourth Amendment,” the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states:
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.
Now, I don’t see any exceptions there, such as “except at the border,” or “except in terrorism cases,” or “except when gestapo goons want to invade and molest innocent people.” But government people (and their stenographers in the media) tend to make stuff up, as we already know.
Given the information in the NBC News article it appears that it’s mainly Muslims who are being targeted. So because of a few isolated incidents in the past 2 or 3 years, the post-9/11 anti-Muslim hysteria that began over 15 years ago is escalating now. (And Dennis Prager constantly claims that “the left” are hysterical!)
And with Donald Trump being just as authoritarian and ignorant as many of those on the left, expect border searches, TSA molesting, and other DHS and police threats and criminality to increase, and not just targeting Muslims. And the gestapo and stasi goons won’t be just at the U.S. borders and airports but at state borders (as Hornberger mentions the goons are already doing that), and in the neighborhoods, and at our door and in our homes, without warrants, and without any reason to suspect someone of criminal behavior.
And with the drooling love that Trump and his fascist attorney general Jeff Sessions have for police asset forfeiture, expect the searches (phone and physical searches, of persons, cars, homes, etc.) to result in police and fed-goons grabbing a lot of loot (besides what the local, state and federal governments are stealing from the people already by way of “taxation,” of course).
I hope I’m wrong, though.