The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

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Alexander Falco
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The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Alexander Falco » Tue May 17, 2011 10:01 pm UTC

The fourth amendment to our constitution states that:

"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."

Pretty clear, right? Well, not to those that count.

In to the recent court case Richard L. Barnes v. Indiana, the court had this to say "We hold that there is no right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers." - http://www.in.gov/judiciary/opinions/pdf/05121101shd.pdf

In a separate case on Monday, it was ruled that police are aloud to kick down your door, enter your property, and conduct searches and seizures without a warrant as long as they (claim that) they smell pot or hear the destruction of evidence. - http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/10pdf/09-1272.pdf

Is there even a debate left to have or is America officially an authoritarian police state?

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby lutzj » Tue May 17, 2011 10:10 pm UTC

Alexander Falco wrote:In a separate case on Monday, it was ruled that police are aloud to kick down your door, enter your property, and conduct searches and seizures without a warrant as long as they (claim that) they smell pot or hear the destruction of evidence. - http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/10pdf/09-1272.pdf


Both of those typically constitute probable cause, yes. If the police act unfairly on an individual basis we have courts to sort things out.

Is there even a debate left to have or is America officially an authoritarian police state?


There would still be a debate to have even if America were "officially an authoritarian police state," and it certainly isn't. The key word in the 4th amendment is "unreasonable." Obvious signs of lawbreaking (i.e., the scent of marijuana) are reasonable grounds for search or seizure.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Alexander Falco » Tue May 17, 2011 10:50 pm UTC

Both of those typically constitute probable cause, yes. If the police act unfairly on an individual basis we have courts to sort things out.


Probable cause is not sufficient to gain entry to a house, only to get a warrant. The step of getting a warrant has been effectively removed by this court case. As you pointed out we DO have courts to sort out unfair police action but what do they have to say about it?

"We hold that there is no right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers."

Call me crazy but I don't feel hopeful that these people will hold police officers' feet to the fire.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby TheStrongest » Tue May 17, 2011 11:45 pm UTC

I don't think this spells the death knell for the 4th Amendment in America, but it's certainly a decision I do not agree with at all. State supreme courts make these controversial rulings all the time, and unless the SCOTUS is presented with some landmark case and rules in favor of the police, I don't foresee the end of the 4th Amendment. Refreshingly, at least one justice did dissent.

I'd like to see a definition of reasonable resistance; in my opinion, refusing the officers entry and demanding a warrant is reasonable. Shoving an officer against a wall is not.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Steroid » Wed May 18, 2011 12:46 am UTC

My problem with the police is, and I think the Indiana decision is in the spirit of this problem, that while they show deference and respect to private citizens in "controlled situations"--courtrooms, press conferences, etc., when they encounter people in the street and in their homes and offices, they assume a mantle of authority. In particular, if an officer gives an order and the subject doesn't obey, questioning whether or not it's an order that must legally be obeyed, the officer will repeat the order as though speaking to a child who isn't paying attention instead of addressing the question of whether or not it indeed must be obeyed.

Or, if an officer does exceed his authority, I don't want the situation addressed by courts or through police discipline, because they will discipline the officer as they see fit, not as I do. If the officer has drawn his gun when I wasn't actually a threat, I don't want th officer suspended without pay, I want to point a loaded weapon at him, subjecting him to the fear and risk of death. If he beats me or TASERs me when I'm already in custody, I don't want money, I want to beat or TASER the officer. If I get locked up on a Saturday night for something of which I'm innocent and can't get out until Monday morning, I don't want an apology, I want to yank the officer away from his family for two days.

The problem begins with the notion that we have an obligation to society to help the police or to be nice. I have every right to be an asshole to the cops if I want, to make their jobs as hard as possible, and to care more about myself and my property than about them.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby lutzj » Wed May 18, 2011 3:23 am UTC

From the document the OP linked:

Although“ ‘searches and seizures inside a home without a warrant are presumptively unreasonable,’ ” Brigham City v. Stuart, 547 U. S. 398, 403, this presumption may be overcome when “ ‘the exigencies of the situation’ make the needs of law enforcement so compelling that [a] warrantless search is objectively reasonable under the Fourth Amendment,” Mincey v. Arizona, 437 U. S. 385, 394. One such exigency is the need “to prevent the imminent destruction of evidence.” Brigham City, supra, at 403. Pp. 5–6.


The Fourth Amendment only requires that a search be reasonable; warrants are simply one way of demonstrating a reasonable search. There are other (specific) circumstances under which a search is reasonable.

EDIT: Read that particular case a bit more, and the residents of the apartment never told the police officers not to come in; they simply tried to destroy evidence. If the inhabitants had simply refused entry to the police, the evidence from the search would probably be impermissible and the case would be thrown out (and the officers probably disciplined).

Or, if an officer does exceed his authority, I don't want the situation addressed by courts or through police discipline, because they will discipline the officer as they see fit, not as I do. If the officer has drawn his gun when I wasn't actually a threat, I don't want th officer suspended without pay, I want to point a loaded weapon at him, subjecting him to the fear and risk of death. If he beats me or TASERs me when I'm already in custody, I don't want money, I want to beat or TASER the officer. If I get locked up on a Saturday night for something of which I'm innocent and can't get out until Monday morning, I don't want an apology, I want to yank the officer away from his family for two days.


There's a good reason official eye-for-an-eye retaliation for misconduct is now employed almost exclusively in nations like Iran. The sort of "discipline" you are asking for is prohibited elsewhere in the Bill of Rights (8th Amendment).
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby bmeacham » Fri Jun 17, 2011 10:33 pm UTC

I think the PATRIOT act is germane here. The government has the authority to intercept electronic transmissions, track citizens by GPS and in general spy on them. In some cases the citizen may not even disclose that he or she is being investigated. Sounds draconian to me. Yes, I think the 4th amendment is being whittled away. Interestingly, the Obama administration -- which I find much more to my liking than the previous Bush administration -- is whole-heartedly doing the whittling that its predecessor did.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Kag » Sat Jun 18, 2011 11:10 am UTC

lutzj wrote:EDIT: Read that particular case a bit more, and the residents of the apartment never told the police officers not to come in; they simply tried to destroy evidence. If the inhabitants had simply refused entry to the police, the evidence from the search would probably be impermissible and the case would be thrown out (and the officers probably disciplined).


Is the implication here that it's only incumbent upon the police to show that their search is reasonable if the resident actively questions it?
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sat Jun 18, 2011 5:33 pm UTC

the important thing being, "I think I smell some weed" will let officers search anywhere at anytime.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Silknor » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:44 pm UTC

Alexander Falco wrote:In to the recent court case Richard L. Barnes v. Indiana, the court had this to say "We hold that there is no right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers." - http://www.in.gov/judiciary/opinions/pd ... 101shd.pdf


And if the police unlawfully enter your dwelling, why should the 4th amendment be read to allow you to attack the police officer? For a right to resist unlawful entry by police to be effective, it requires the occupant to know that the entry is illegal, which as the court points out cannot be easily done because there are numerous exceptions to the requirement for a warrant. In this case, the police were responding to a report of domestic violence (the reporter said she was not struck, but this doesn't seem to have been conveyed by the dispatcher). The defendant shoved the responding officer into the door to prevent him from entering.

This does not mean that the police can arbitrarily make illegal entries without consequence. Rather the court found that since resistance is likely to escalate the physical danger to the occupant and/or officer, and since there are numerous other remedies available (eg. the exclusionary rule would forbid evidence found during an illegal search from being used against you in court, and you can also file a lawsuit for damages, among other means), that the right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers is outdated and not applicable.

That right does not come from the 4th amendment (it comes from English common law). And if you look at the dissents, both are really criticizing the majority for issuing a broad instead of narrowly-tailored ruling, with one saying and the other suggesting in a footnote that a right to reasonably resist unlawful entry should not apply in cases where the police are responding to a report of domestic violence. Calling this evidence of an authoritarian police state or the destruction of the 4th amendment seems overblown and sensationalist.

The other case doesn't seem unreasonable either:
Police officers in Lexington, Kentucky, followed a suspected drug dealer to an apartment complex. They smelled marijuana outside an apartment door, knocked loudly, and announced their presence. As soon as the officers began knocking, they heard noises coming from the apartment; the officers believed that these noises were consistent with the destruction of evidence. The officers announced their intent to enter the apartment, kicked in the door, and found respondent and others. They saw drugs in plain view during a protective sweep of the apartment and found additional evidence during a subsequent search. The Circuit Court denied respondent’s motion to suppress the evidence, holding that exigent circumstances—the need to pre- vent destruction of evidence—justified the warrantless entry.


The Kentucky Supreme Court said that the police should have known that knocking and announcing their presence would lead to the destruction of evidence, and thus the police weren't justified in using the exigent circumstances exception. The Supreme Court reversed this 8-1.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Vaniver » Sat Jun 18, 2011 10:45 pm UTC

END THE DRUG WAR

One of my friends is a lawyer, who if he could change the Constitution in one way, would add "even if drugs are involved." to all of the amendments. Madness like this is just indefensible.

Silknor wrote:And if the police unlawfully enter your dwelling, why should the 4th amendment be read to allow you to attack the police officer?
What does it mean, in practice, to be secure somewhere?
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Silknor » Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:02 am UTC

Vaniver wrote:
Silknor wrote:And if the police unlawfully enter your dwelling, why should the 4th amendment be read to allow you to attack the police officer?
What does it mean, in practice, to be secure somewhere?


This is a good question. If the police can legally enter at will, or if they can get away with routine illegal entries, then that security does not exist. So you need some combination of both:
1. Restrictions on when entry is legal.
2. Effective means to discourage illegal entry and remedy any harm done by illegal entry.

One means for #2 is to allow resistance to illegal entry. This may be effective, but it also increases the chances of violence inflicted upon either the occupant or the police officer. And it will not always be clear when an entry is illegal: occupants aren't always going to know the relevant case law and the external circumstances that led the officer to enter. And even officers may be acting in good faith when doing something they do not know is illegal.

But as there are other means for #2, we can reject the right to resist unlawful entry without destroying any deterrent or remedy to illegal entry. The most notable of these are the exclusionary rule, civil remedies through the legal system, and internal police disciplinary actions. Note that while resistance may function as a deterrent, it cannot truly serve as a remedy, and it is unavailable to many citizens who would not be able to effectively resist.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Qaanol » Sun Jun 19, 2011 5:09 am UTC

The punishment for illegal entry by an on-duty police officer should be greater than the punishment for breaking-and-entering while armed with a deadly weapon. That is, not only did the police officer commit the crime of illegal forcible entry, but also the officer should be held to a higher standard in keeping with his or her being employed as an agent of the law.

In general, for any crime committed by an on-duty police officer, the punishment should be greater than the punishment for the same crime by a civilian.

Pointing a loaded weapon at an unidentified intruder into one’s domicile should never be a crime. Firing a weapon at a person when you yourself are an unidentified intruder into someone else’s residence should almost always be a crime, especially if you are an on-duty police officer.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:55 am UTC

Qaanol wrote:The punishment for illegal entry by an on-duty police officer should be greater than the punishment for breaking-and-entering while armed with a deadly weapon. That is, not only did the police officer commit the crime of illegal forcible entry, but also the officer should be held to a higher standard in keeping with his or her being employed as an agent of the law.

In general, for any crime committed by an on-duty police officer, the punishment should be greater than the punishment for the same crime by a civilian.

Pointing a loaded weapon at an unidentified intruder into one’s domicile should never be a crime. Firing a weapon at a person when you yourself are an unidentified intruder into someone else’s residence should almost always be a crime, especially if you are an on-duty police officer.


That sounds great at first sight, but there is a serious flaw in executing it. Let's accept the premise that an illegal search should face a greater punishment then an armed burglary. Do we really want a cop to go to jail for a few years, because they just barely overstepped what counted as just cause? Catching crooked cops is one thing, but what your suggesting could very easily destroy the life of good cops when they make what is a minor* infraction.

*in this case, I mean that it is probably possible for a search to be illegal even though it was very close to being legal. For instance, if a hypothetical law required officers to hear a threat of severe bodily harm for warrentless entry; but an officer entered a house after hearing screams of "I'll hit you" which due to a recent court case is just below the threshold.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Death2 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 6:36 pm UTC

Vaniver wrote:END THE DRUG WAR


^^^^ This! A million times over!

There is nothing so criminal about marijuana that our police should be kicking down our own neighbors' doors and breaking into their homes.

The 4th Amendment has been kicked in the nuts a few times but it's not completely dead. The problem is all the laws that we have on the books that the popo are charged to enforce. If you want the popo to go focus on "some real crime" then we sure ought to de-criminalize a lot of minor infractions. It's not a cops job to selectively enforce laws. (S)he can't wake up in the morning and decide that they're only going to enforce the ones they really don't like and screw the rest of 'em. The decision of what is and isn't criminal needs to be made by me and you and everyone else in this country so that we set our own standards of right and wrong.

Also, totally agree with Qaanol. What ever happened to having pride and respect for your work and not settling for less than the best? If you don't demand the best, you aren't going to get it. And I can't think of many other jobs that the hiring of a less than stellar employee can have such far reaching ramifications.

And it's not like the courts don't give the benefit of the doubt to the popo in the first place. Rodney King got the hell kicked out of him but it was deemed completely legit. If you're a cop and the courts figure that you broke the law, god only knows what you did to get to that point.

Here's some things you might want to read up on if you're interested in where the 4th Amendment's been shot down... Anything about the Patriot Act allowing warrantless wiretapping among other things, and the SCOTUS decision in the case of U.S. vs Martinez-Fuerte which laid the foundation for the popo to conduct checkpoints for DUI and such.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby stevey_frac » Mon Jun 20, 2011 4:07 am UTC

The problem with the current laws, is that I could be sitting on my living room chair, polishing / caressing my soviet assault rifle, which I own legally, and have all the appropriate permits for and the following events unfold:

1) A cop thinks he smells weed
2) He forcibly enters my house, without knocking or announcing himself, and without a warrant
3) He sees me holding a firearm
4) He shoots me
5) I die


Technically, neither of us have done anything illegal, and yet, I'm dead. You can understand why I dislike this, me being dead and all.

Clearly, this needs to be fixed.

We need to be able to be reasonably secure in our own homes, and that includes from the government. Especially the government. No knock warrants should still require that police announce themselves clearly as they are / before they are breaking down the door. And police should be held to a higher standard.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Qaanol » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:49 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:
Qaanol wrote:The punishment for illegal entry by an on-duty police officer should be greater than the punishment for breaking-and-entering while armed with a deadly weapon. That is, not only did the police officer commit the crime of illegal forcible entry, but also the officer should be held to a higher standard in keeping with his or her being employed as an agent of the law.

In general, for any crime committed by an on-duty police officer, the punishment should be greater than the punishment for the same crime by a civilian.

Pointing a loaded weapon at an unidentified intruder into one’s domicile should never be a crime. Firing a weapon at a person when you yourself are an unidentified intruder into someone else’s residence should almost always be a crime, especially if you are an on-duty police officer.


That sounds great at first sight, but there is a serious flaw in executing it. Let's accept the premise that an illegal search should face a greater punishment then an armed burglary. Do we really want a cop to go to jail for a few years, because they just barely overstepped what counted as just cause? Catching crooked cops is one thing, but what your suggesting could very easily destroy the life of good cops when they make what is a minor* infraction.

*in this case, I mean that it is probably possible for a search to be illegal even though it was very close to being legal. For instance, if a hypothetical law required officers to hear a threat of severe bodily harm for warrentless entry; but an officer entered a house after hearing screams of "I'll hit you" which due to a recent court case is just below the threshold.

There are innumerable hypothetical situations that could be presented. I am saying that I think what I propose is better, on balance, than the alternatives. In particular, consider the option of “punish police less than civilians for the same crime”.

From a strict ‘fairness’ perspective, equal punishments should be meted for equal offenses, regardless of who the perpetrator may be. It might then be best to frame my suggestion in the language of, “A police officer who commits a crime while on duty should be punished for that crime, equally as much as any other person would be. Additionally, that officer should be punished for further crimes that may be described as ‘Breach of duty and public trust.’” This would be similar to “conduct unbecoming an officer”, but judged by the justice system not the police department.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Kag » Sun Jun 26, 2011 10:17 pm UTC

stevey_frac wrote:2) He forcibly enters my house, without knocking or announcing himself, and without a warrant


This is an illegal entry, because "I smelled weed" doesn't fulfill the exigent circumstances necessary to enter a home without warrant. That isn't the implication of the supreme court's decision at all.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:07 am UTC

Steroid wrote:My problem with the police is, and I think the Indiana decision is in the spirit of this problem, that while they show deference and respect to private citizens in "controlled situations"--courtrooms, press conferences, etc., when they encounter people in the street and in their homes and offices, they assume a mantle of authority. In particular, if an officer gives an order and the subject doesn't obey, questioning whether or not it's an order that must legally be obeyed, the officer will repeat the order as though speaking to a child who isn't paying attention instead of addressing the question of whether or not it indeed must be obeyed.


What, you're saying you've never just repeated a request or demand instead of stopping and trying to have a a reasonable debate? You've never done this? Not even while angry, afraid, or otherwise upset? Do you even have a small idea of the kinds of stresses a cop generally goes through in a normal day, before oversight kicks in? To a certain extent, the behavior outlined above is justified.

The problem begins with the notion that we have an obligation to society to help the police or to be nice. I have every right to be an asshole to the cops if I want, to make their jobs as hard as possible, and to care more about myself and my property than about them.


Then, logically, the police should have every right to hear a distress call from your direction and reply "Oh, sounds like that one guy. Yeah, fuck him, he's such a fuckin' douche. I think I'll go get another donut." Why should it be a one-way street when everything you've said implies that you're a huge proponent of eye for an eye? You make life difficult for the cops, so why can't they make life difficult for you in return? Why should a cop decide to risk his life for yours, when you're saying you aren't even willing to give him or her some common courtesy and respect for the difficult and frequently stressful job they do?

Qaanol wrote:The punishment for illegal entry by an on-duty police officer should be greater than the punishment for breaking-and-entering while armed with a deadly weapon. That is, not only did the police officer commit the crime of illegal forcible entry, but also the officer should be held to a higher standard in keeping with his or her being employed as an agent of the law.


Cool. So a cop's doing a patrol in a somewhat beat-down neighborhood or apartment complex, and he hears a woman screaming. This could be a problem, so he stops his cruiser, and investigates while reporting it in. He gets closer to the apartment and hears what sounds like a rape in progress. At this point he's probably concerned, so he reports it again, probably requests backup, and then presumably continues investigating - at this point, he should bang on the door and announce his presence, along with the standard "Is everything alright?" question. If there's no response, I'd say the man (or woman) is damn well justified in kicking the door open to find out exactly what the hell is going on, and I don't think he or she would be unjustified to do so with weapon (whether gun or taser or something else) drawn.

In your world, the cop would be terrified to do anything but report it and then cruise on by on the off-chance it's just a couple having rough, loud sex or maybe just a couple having a loud but strictly verbal argument. So the cop in this situation might not do anything but simply report it because forcing an entry to stop what could be a rape (remember, no one answers the door and no one responds to his or her announcement), or suddenly he or she's on the stand trying like hell not to get sent to prison for just doing their fucking job: protecting you.

Pointing a loaded weapon at an unidentified intruder into one’s domicile should never be a crime. Firing a weapon at a person when you yourself are an unidentified intruder into someone else’s residence should almost always be a crime, especially if you are an on-duty police officer.


I mostly agree with this. I don't think there's any situation in which a police officer should not announce their presence before attempting to enter the residence, at least unless they possess a warrant which gives them permission to do so (for example, if you were planning on raiding an assumed drug house with a warrant, announcing your intentions would probably be a good way to get shot.)

Ultimately, I think it largely depends on the circumstances, but I do agree that a situation like the one described should be handled in a criminal court, not in-house by police internal investigations.

Death2 wrote:
Vaniver wrote:END THE DRUG WAR


^^^^ This! A million times over!

There is nothing so criminal about marijuana that our police should be kicking down our own neighbors' doors and breaking into their homes.


Shouldn't you be on a street corner, waving a sign around and chanting? :roll:

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby mbrigdan » Tue Jun 28, 2011 6:01 am UTC

I'd like to point out that one of the reasons why we don't punish police officers as harshly for "crimes" (entering without a proper warrant, etc) is because we (the public) ask them to break into houses/shoot people on a (semi-)regular basis.

Imagine you break into my house and threaten me with a weapon. In court, saying you did it "by accident" would make you look like a crazy person. For a cop on the other hand, this could be an entirely valid excuse; maybe someone told them the wrong address (maybe a dispatcher, or maybe even someone who phoned 911).

Note that I'm not saying there shouldn't be ANY punishment, just that the possibility that what would normally be a serious crime could be an honest mistake needs to be taken into account.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Steroid » Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:58 am UTC

Beardhammer wrote:What, you're saying you've never just repeated a request or demand instead of stopping and trying to have a a reasonable debate? You've never done this? Not even while angry, afraid, or otherwise upset? Do you even have a small idea of the kinds of stresses a cop generally goes through in a normal day, before oversight kicks in? To a certain extent, the behavior outlined above is justified.

I've done that when upbraiding a child, and I have done it when stressed, in which case it comes through in my tone and body language. My experience with officers is that they do it as a first resort when on duty, and turn it off once they have control of the situation. That they're supposed to protect people without controlling them isn't seen as a viable option apparently.

Then, logically, the police should have every right to hear a distress call from your direction and reply "Oh, sounds like that one guy. Yeah, fuck him, he's such a fuckin' douche. I think I'll go get another donut." Why should it be a one-way street when everything you've said implies that you're a huge proponent of eye for an eye? You make life difficult for the cops, so why can't they make life difficult for you in return? Why should a cop decide to risk his life for yours, when you're saying you aren't even willing to give him or her some common courtesy and respect for the difficult and frequently stressful job they do?

Because I'm paying him to do that. If cops were volunteering to protect peace and security, I'd show them a lot more respect, though not as much as if they weren't aggressive in pursuit of that protection. As is, they're doing a job. I have to put up with unreasonable assholes in my job; officers shouldn't be immune to that.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:20 am UTC

Steroid wrote:I've done that when upbraiding a child, and I have done it when stressed, in which case it comes through in my tone and body language. My experience with officers is that they do it as a first resort when on duty, and turn it off once they have control of the situation. That they're supposed to protect people without controlling them isn't seen as a viable option apparently.


Yeah, and what happens when you don't control that unruly child? He makes a bunch of noise, maybe breaks shit (that you have to pay for!), and maybe hurts himself or someone else, or both.

Adults in a non-normal mood aren't very much different aside from the fact that they tend to be more dangerous to themselves and others.

Because I'm paying him to do that. If cops were volunteering to protect peace and security, I'd show them a lot more respect, though not as much as if they weren't aggressive in pursuit of that protection. As is, they're doing a job. I have to put up with unreasonable assholes in my job; officers shouldn't be immune to that.


You're right. Cops should be completely, totally polite about things, rather than using necessary force to end a situation before it escalates further. They should wait to be hostile and irritable towards a man with a gun until after he's fired it and possibly killed someone. They should totally be absolutely understanding of the fifth asshole that same day that was driving 60 in a 30 zone, and definitely should accept the same excuse they've already heard twice that day. And that driving without your seatbelt while talking on a cellphone? Nah, we're just joking about that ticketing crap, we just like yankin your chain.

I don't know if you work in the service sector or not, or if you ever have. But take all of the annoying, bullshit parts of those jobs, combine them, and then throw in a healthy dose of danger to your personal wellbeing, spice it with some overbearing oversight, and you should have a general idea of the kinds of crap city cops put up with on a daily basis.

I think they're excused for being a little rude from time to time. I'm on your side when it comes to misuse of power, but simple rudeness? I think I can handle that.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Steroid » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:51 am UTC

Beardhammer wrote:Yeah, and what happens when you don't control that unruly child? He makes a bunch of noise, maybe breaks shit (that you have to pay for!), and maybe hurts himself or someone else, or both.

Adults in a non-normal mood aren't very much different aside from the fact that they tend to be more dangerous to themselves and others.

That depends on what's normal. Maybe my abnormality is that I'm filming an arrest of some third party out of lack of faith in police procedure. Or maybe my abnormality is that I'm joining in a protest rally to try to advance some cause. Or perhaps it's just that I'm hanging out in a public place with friends who happen to not wear conservative clothing and laugh a bit louder than is considered typical. Those abnormalities you call dangerous I call rights, and it's the policeman's job to enforce those, not to use them as a cue or an excuse to remonstrate.

I think they're excused for being a little rude from time to time. I'm on your side when it comes to misuse of power, but simple rudeness? I think I can handle that.

Maybe we're closer than you think. I too can handle simple rudeness if I'm free to respond in kind. I just don't believe in being charged with contempt of cop.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Eseell » Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:37 pm UTC

Beardhammer wrote:Then, logically, the police should have every right to hear a distress call from your direction and reply "Oh, sounds like that one guy. Yeah, fuck him, he's such a fuckin' douche. I think I'll go get another donut." Why should it be a one-way street when everything you've said implies that you're a huge proponent of eye for an eye? You make life difficult for the cops, so why can't they make life difficult for you in return? Why should a cop decide to risk his life for yours, when you're saying you aren't even willing to give him or her some common courtesy and respect for the difficult and frequently stressful job they do?

The police do have that right. They have no duty to respond or to protect you even if they are aware of a potential crime in progress.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:15 am UTC

Steroid wrote:
Beardhammer wrote:Yeah, and what happens when you don't control that unruly child? He makes a bunch of noise, maybe breaks shit (that you have to pay for!), and maybe hurts himself or someone else, or both.

Adults in a non-normal mood aren't very much different aside from the fact that they tend to be more dangerous to themselves and others.

That depends on what's normal. Maybe my abnormality is that I'm filming an arrest of some third party out of lack of faith in police procedure. Or maybe my abnormality is that I'm joining in a protest rally to try to advance some cause. Or perhaps it's just that I'm hanging out in a public place with friends who happen to not wear conservative clothing and laugh a bit louder than is considered typical. Those abnormalities you call dangerous I call rights, and it's the policeman's job to enforce those, not to use them as a cue or an excuse to remonstrate.


Really now? I was under the impression the police were designated to keep order. If you aren't doing something wrong, you likely won't run into problems with the police. I don't break the law or intentionally twerk my nose at them, so I never have anything but good interactions with them.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Vaniver » Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:04 am UTC

Beardhammer wrote:Really now? I was under the impression the police were designated to keep order. If you aren't doing something wrong, you likely won't run into problems with the police. I don't break the law or intentionally twerk my nose at them, so I never have anything but good interactions with them.
Issues arise when other people do things wrong, and you're a bystander. A common tactic used by drug traffickers is to ship drugs to houses they predict will be empty during the day, then take the package left on the doorstep. Sometimes things go horribly wrong.
I mostly post over at LessWrong now.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Sat Jul 02, 2011 4:45 am UTC

Vaniver wrote:
Beardhammer wrote:Really now? I was under the impression the police were designated to keep order. If you aren't doing something wrong, you likely won't run into problems with the police. I don't break the law or intentionally twerk my nose at them, so I never have anything but good interactions with them.
Issues arise when other people do things wrong, and you're a bystander. A common tactic used by drug traffickers is to ship drugs to houses they predict will be empty during the day, then take the package left on the doorstep. Sometimes things go horribly wrong.


"We're not in the habit of going to homes and shooting peoples' dogs," Ellis said. "If we were, there would be a lot more dead dogs around the county."


Damn, that guy is smooth.

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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Buddha » Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:02 pm UTC

Beardhammer wrote:
Really now? I was under the impression the police were designated to keep order. If you aren't doing something wrong, you likely won't run into problems with the police. I don't break the law or intentionally twerk my nose at them, so I never have anything but good interactions with them.


^This is not true. Well, the part about police being designated to keep order is, but the part about all of them doing it is not. Let's assume, for the sake of a thought experiment, that ninety percent of cops are good, upstanding people who have never committed criminal misconduct in the course of their duties. (By all non-police accounts, a gross overestimation, but we'll go with it.)

That ten percent is still facing the bare minimum of punishment. Police are almost never fired for criminal actions, even when they have clearly committed criminal acts. The four officers who brutally assaulted Rodney King, well above any provocation they may have received, were not even fired. They were acquitted, largely due to fear of reprisals on the part of the jury.

The two officers who aided Jeffrey Dahmer in murdering 14-year-old Konerak Sinthasomphone, whose older brother Dahmer had previously been convicted of molesting, were never even suspended. Their actions were at best gross negligence, and at worst second degree homicide. In any private sector job, they would have been fired and blacklisted.

If I am in my living room, cleaning my guns and a cop with a no-knock warrant for the house next door screws up, busts down my front door, and I point my gun at him, it goes one of two ways

I shoot him, he dies, I go to prison forever.

He shoots me, I die, he faces no consequences.

He is the party in the wrong, but in either circumstance, I am the party facing punishment.

I have absolutely every right to prevent any unlawful intruder from entering my home, with any force that I deem necessary. Giving police officers the right to determine what is, and isn't probable cause is an egregiously bad decision, because police officers are notoriously bad at that.

Furthermore, the idea that someone's safety is at risk if a police officer is not permitted to break into someone's home because he thinks someone is in danger but doesn't have a warrant is flawed to begin with. Police officers hearing an assault in progress, breaking in, and saving someone's life happens, but rarely. Police officers inventing probable cause, breaking in, causing hundreds of dollars worth of damages, arresting the wrong person, keeping them in prison for as long as they legally can, and then letting them go because they are completely innocent and the cop was just an asshole bully who wanted to prove a point, happens, all the time. Police officers are wrong all the time, and even when a lawsuit is made, and won, the city usually ends up paying, not the crooked cop who commited the criminal misconduct.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Kag » Sat Jul 02, 2011 8:20 pm UTC

Buddha wrote:Giving police officers the right to determine what is, and isn't probable cause is an egregiously bad decision, because police officers are notoriously bad at that.


I don't think, strictly speaking, they do have that right.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Buddha » Sat Jul 02, 2011 8:33 pm UTC

Kag wrote:
Buddha wrote:Giving police officers the right to determine what is, and isn't probable cause is an egregiously bad decision, because police officers are notoriously bad at that.


I don't think, strictly speaking, they do have that right.


You're right. To clarify: giving police officers the power to act and what they consider to be probable cause, and not subjecting them to rigorous review afterwards is a bad decision. By the letter of the law, they don't have that power, but they act as though they do.
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Metaphysician » Sat Jul 02, 2011 10:38 pm UTC

Beardhammer wrote:Then, logically, the police should have every right to hear a distress call from your direction and reply "Oh, sounds like that one guy. Yeah, fuck him, he's such a fuckin' douche. I think I'll go get another donut." Why should it be a one-way street when everything you've said implies that you're a huge proponent of eye for an eye? You make life difficult for the cops, so why can't they make life difficult for you in return? Why should a cop decide to risk his life for yours, when you're saying you aren't even willing to give him or her some common courtesy and respect for the difficult and frequently stressful job they do?


Actually, the police have no duty to protect an individual. This is one of the main arguments used to advocate private firearm ownership.

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/28/polit ... cotus.html

The decision, with an opinion by Justice Antonin Scalia and dissents from Justices John Paul Stevens and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, overturned a ruling by a federal appeals court in Colorado. The appeals court had permitted a lawsuit to proceed against a Colorado town, Castle Rock, for the failure of the police to respond to a woman's pleas for help after her estranged husband violated a protective order by kidnapping their three young daughters, whom he eventually killed.


Just sayin'
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Princess Marzipan » Mon Jul 04, 2011 4:19 pm UTC

Beardhammer wrote:I think they're excused for being a little rude from time to time. I'm on your side when it comes to misuse of power, but simple rudeness? I think I can handle that.
Steroid already commented about contempt of cop, but let me elaborate.

A cop's rudeness generally pushes a civilian to become less polite than they would otherwise be. Things like frustration, fear, and any previously existing emotions tend to produce less than ideal results. Cops don't do anything to remove that frustration or fear. And then they act surprised or inconvenienced when someone is impolite them or doesn't obey orders - orders which citizens frequently believe, correctly, are in violation of their constitutionally protected rights.

The rudeness is NOT inexcusable. It is in, in fact, a VERY large part of the problem. People don't appreciate when others are rude to them - but like Steroid pointed out, he has to deal with assholes all day at his job. Anyone working a cash register has to deal with assholes all day, and working a cash register in a bad neighborhood during the graveyard shift? There's your life-threatening. But, be rude back to any of those assholes and you find yourself fired pretty quickly. Unless you're a cop. Then that asshole totally goes to jail. I mean fuck that guy, right? He was rude to a cop!
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Wed Jul 06, 2011 4:30 am UTC

Princess Marzipan wrote:
Beardhammer wrote:I think they're excused for being a little rude from time to time. I'm on your side when it comes to misuse of power, but simple rudeness? I think I can handle that.
Steroid already commented about contempt of cop, but let me elaborate.

A cop's rudeness generally pushes a civilian to become less polite than they would otherwise be. Things like frustration, fear, and any previously existing emotions tend to produce less than ideal results. Cops don't do anything to remove that frustration or fear. And then they act surprised or inconvenienced when someone is impolite them or doesn't obey orders - orders which citizens frequently believe, correctly, are in violation of their constitutionally protected rights.

The rudeness is NOT inexcusable. It is in, in fact, a VERY large part of the problem. People don't appreciate when others are rude to them - but like Steroid pointed out, he has to deal with assholes all day at his job. Anyone working a cash register has to deal with assholes all day, and working a cash register in a bad neighborhood during the graveyard shift? There's your life-threatening. But, be rude back to any of those assholes and you find yourself fired pretty quickly. Unless you're a cop. Then that asshole totally goes to jail. I mean fuck that guy, right? He was rude to a cop!


Yeah, I mean, working the stickup shift in a bad section of town is absolutely, totally like being a cop running a beat in that same section of town!

No, it's not. I work the stickup shift. I work in a section of town that is rapidly falling under sway of a Hispanic gang (MS-13.) You see their signs everywhere. I'm white. I'm the only person that's here, the doors we lock are made of glass (and can be forced open by hand, due to fire codes), and we only have one really crappy video camera that I'm not even sure actually works.

Yeah, there's some risk involved with this job. But I wouldn't even begin to try and say that working the stickup shift here is anywhere near the level of danger the cops that work this area expose themselves to. Again, I think people can put up with a little bit of rudeness in light of the shit they have to put up with day in and day out.

Also:

but like Steroid pointed out, he has to deal with assholes all day at his job.


So do the cops that work in the same area he lives in. So, again, why should the cops be any nicer to him (and the other assholes they have to deal with daily) than he is to the shitbags he has to endure every day at his work?

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folkhero
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby folkhero » Thu Jul 07, 2011 12:39 am UTC

A police officer is more likely to be killed in an auto accident than an assault, and police officers have about the same on the job death rate as taxi drivers (who are more likely to die in assaults than auto accidents). source
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Re: The 4th ammendment has been destroyed.

Postby Beardhammer » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:54 am UTC

folkhero wrote:A police officer is more likely to be killed in an auto accident than an assault, and police officers have about the same on the job death rate as taxi drivers (who are more likely to die in assaults than auto accidents). source


Who said I was referring to them getting shot to death? You seen the way people drive around here? It's a stretch to even refer to it as "operating a motor vehicle," let alone driving. Can honestly say the taxi driver thing doesn't surprise me a bit, though.


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