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Papers Please: 2/3rds of US population lives in “Constitution-free” zone

Posted in Newsworthy, Politics, Road Trips, Roads, Safety, Scandal, Traffic, Travel, Videos by Vito Rispo | November 2nd, 2008 | 3 Responses |

“Who will govern the governors? There is only one force in the nation that can be depended upon to keep the government pure and the governors honest, and that is the people themselves. They alone, if well informed, are capable of preventing the corruption of power, and of restoring the nation to its rightful course if it should go astray. They alone are the safest depository of the ultimate powers of government”
– Thomas Jefferson

As you may or may not be aware, the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution contains an exception to the unreasonable search and seizure laws. It allows invasive searches at border checkpoints that wouldn’t be allowed anywhere else. It’s always been that way…but here comes the scary part: federal statute 8 CFR 287.1 (a)(1-3) defines the border zone as actually encompassing an area within 100 miles inland of the actual border, with the possibility of extending it further under certain circumstances. This zone has become known as the “Constitution-Free Zone”

Ok, you’re thinking, “100 miles, that’s not that bad… the US is a big country, we have plenty of space, right?” Wrong. That 100 mile extension puts nine of the top 10 largest metropolitan areas completely inside the Constitution-Free Zone. More than that, 12 states are completely within the zone: Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont. In California, 99.73% of all residents are living in the Constitution-Free Zone; more than that, 2/3rds of all US citizens are living in the zone, and at any time they can be deprived of their Constitutional rights.

What this means for you

The border patrol or Homeland Security can set up random checkpoints anywhere within this Constitution-Free Zone and ask drivers for their passports and paperwork, and search their cars without consent. And there is no law stopping them. How this slipped past the mainstream media, I will never know. But this is, quite possibly, the worst affront to the liberties of US citizens that anyone alive today has yet seen.

The ACLU has been collecting reports of these random “border” checkpoints, and it’s pretty scary. I’ve posted a video at the bottom of this page with information from some actual victims of assault from these checkpoints.

The law is already in place, so this isn’t a matter of calling your representative and asking that they not vote for it. It’s already there. And if we have learned anything from the history of government, it’s that they will constantly push for greater power. This 100 miles inland is only the start, they’ll push for 100% inland, and the Constitution will be meaningless, and no one will care. After reading most of the comments left on our recent article about your rights during a traffic stop, I fear that most people will willingly give up their rights at these checkpoints. It’s a sad state of affairs when the once land of the free and home of the brave has become a nation of fear, with citizens who enthusiastically give up their liberty for a false sense of security.

This country needs to grow a set of balls again. There are too many people who berate the few who question authority. There is too much apathy in the face of aggressive authority. There has to come a time where you say “This is not acceptable”. If not now, then when? At what point do you stop blindly allowing your own government to invade your life? Suspicionless searches of your car at random checkpoints? Constitution-Free zones? That is NOT what America is about. There must be some point that you will say “Stop, I will no longer comply”. If you don’t decide now, you’ll keep adapting and keep saying it’s alright, and keep playing along as things get worse. Draw your personal line now, because we’re heading in a very bad direction, and before you know it, that line may pass you by.

(via ACLU Constitution Free Zone Info)

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3 Responses

  1. “A president once said, ‘The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. ‘

    “Now it seems like we’re supposed to be afraid. It’s patriotic and color-coded. And what are we supposed to be afraid of? Why of being afraid.

    “That’s what terror means, doesn’t it? That’s what it used to mean.”

    – from “A Few Words in Defense of My Country” by Randy Newman.

    Keep up the good work, Vito.

  2. Lawrence says:

    “Those who would sacrifice liberty for security, deserve neither.”
    -Ben Franklin

  3. […] is getting to be a very dangerous activity in these United States. Remember this post? The one where I told you about how 2/3rds of US population now lives in a […]