Chosen Understanding

​The Fourth Amendment 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.”

The key to the interpretation of the Fourth Amendment lies in the chosen understanding of the word, ”unreasonable.” Reason dictates that it is not unreasonable that more searches and seizures will occur during times of war than at times of peace. And, as, through the use of traitors and infiltrators, ISIS has declared war on our country and on our sworn allies, the question arises, “How do we discover our enemies without establishing an inescapable privacy breaching precedent?” The enemy will hide their plans, their weapons, and themselves. What can we do? What must we not do? What has been done?

What has been done is that on October 26, 2001, the so called, “Patriot Act” was enacted to allow for the creation of national security letters. A national security letter, or, NSL, is a subpoena to gather information for “national security” purposes. An NSL does not require prior approval from a judge. The Patriot Act augmented the Stored Communications Act, The Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Right to Financial Privacy Act to authorize the FBI to investigate without a warrant. The FBI can request only “non-content information.” The FBI cannot demand the “content information” of telephone calls and e-mails, but they can demand phone numbers dialed and transactional records.

What we must do is ask ourselves what we think about the fact that these things can be done without a warrant. The Fourth Amendment requires that a warrant be issued for a search and seizure. Warrants come from judges. We vote for judges. We vote for the people who appoint judges. The FBI operates under the auspices of the Attorney General who operates under the auspices of the President. Do you trust Presidents? Which Presidents do you trust?

I understand the FBI's need to learn about the actions of terrorists. But, I have a much, much deeper understanding of the need to require of the FBI a search warrant for the violation of anyone's privacy.

The Patriot Act has established the following precedent: now, or in the near or distant future, your privacy can be completely abolished because, now, this Fourth Amendment violating stepping stone to captivity and objectification has been laid.

The clincher to this is the fact that, although the Patriot Act has been revised by the USA Freedom Act, there is no provision for the eventual destruction of any information obtained. Also, please note that all alleged pertinent elements of the USA Freedom Act are sidestepped by the continuing secrecy allowed by the 2008 FISA Amendments Act. Information about anyone, can, and probably will be secretly obtained and retained and stored at the super computer storage facility at the Intelligence Community Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative Data Center, in Bluffdale, Utah.

The sign at the entrance to the Bluffdale, Utah Data Center reads, “If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.” I encourage the reader to think very deeply about the ramifications of such a statement.

As your Congressman, I will continue to pursue the elimination of searches without warrants.


​INDEX

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“Let her and Falsehood grapple; who ever knew Truth put to the worse in a free and open encounter?”--Milton, Areopagitica

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