About Me

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Armchair theorist, poet, and occasional IT manager, Sascha B. is equipped with a Master's Degree in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Texas, and is not afraid to use it. His work has been published by the University Press of America, Edwin Mellen Press, University of Texas Press, and a variety of small journals nationwide. He is also the proprietor and baker for 3141 Pie, of which you should eat many.

The Deal

I stopped blogging in 2013, when life overtook me. My father became ill and died shortly thereafter, and my mother was left with increasing dementia. I became the primary caregiver, and now orchestrate my mother's care and our family estate.

Now, I am coming up for air again.

Looking for the next book to read. All suggestions welcome.

My reading list is over here.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

4th Amendment? We don't need no stinkin' 4th Amendment.....

So we've gotten to this. The allowance of strip searches for any crime, regardless of reasonable suspicion, regardless of context. Any jailer or police officer or corrections official with a grudge or a kink or a cruel streak can use the power of their position to literally strip the accused of their clothes ---- and dignity, and honor, and respect, and humanity.

I'm sorry -- I've been willing to jump through some awkward intellectual hoops to give a pass to the current Supreme Court of late, but I think this straw just collapsed my poor legal camel.

Justice Breyer wrote that people have been subjected to “the humiliation of a visual strip-search” after being arrested for driving with a noisy muffler, failing to use a turn signal and riding a bicycle without an audible bell.
A nun was strip-searched, he wrote, after an arrest for trespassing during an antiwar demonstration.
Justice Kennedy responded that “people detained for minor offenses can turn out to be the most devious and dangerous criminals.” He noted that Timothy McVeigh, later put to death for his role in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, was first arrested for driving without a license plate. “One of the terrorists involved in the Sept. 11 attacks was stopped and ticketed for speeding just two days before hijacking Flight 93,” Justice Kennedy added.

Considering the total uselessness of a strip search in either of the situations posited by Justice Kennedy, I have a hard time with the convolutions required to accept this. Would a strip search of the 9/11 hijackers done anything other than possibly increase their vehemence to succeed? Or do the Justices think they were driving down the freeway with box cutters secreted in their bums?

Health coverage is evil, but the public humiliation of a nun is not?

Sorry, SCOTUS, you've lost me.