Skip to comments.Judge: Searches of bags in subway is constitutional (ACLU Loses)
Posted on 12/02/2005 9:54:26 PM PST by Jay777
Random police searches of riders' bags to deter terrorism in the nation's largest subway system do not violate the Constitution and are a minimal intrusion of privacy, a federal judge ruled Friday. "The risk of a terrorist bombing of New York City's subway system is real and substantial," U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman said in a 41-page ruling tossing out a lawsuit brought by the New York Civil Liberties Union.
Citing testimony that up to 50 percent of terrorist acts were directed at transportation systems, he said the need to implement counterterrorism measures was "indisputable, pressing, on-going and evolving." He called the searches effective.
The Manhattan ruling came hours after Berman heard closing arguments in the lawsuit filed in federal court in Manhattan on behalf of several subway riders.
The judge said he had no doubt that the random searches were a reasonable method of deterring and detecting a terrorist attack. He credited testimony by police officials who said the policy might lead terrorists to choose a different target.
"Because the threat of terrorism is great and the consequences of unpreparedness may be catastrophic, it would seem foolish not to rely upon those qualified persons in the best position to know," Berman said.
In its lawsuit, the NYCLU said sporadic police searches which began in July following deadly mass transit bombings in London subjected innocent riders in New York to pointless and unprecedented invasions of privacy.
NYCLU Legal Director Christopher Dunn said: "We remain confident that this program is unconstitutional and we intend to appeal immediately."
"Common sense prevails," police Commissioner Ray Kelly said after the ruling.
(Excerpt) Read more at nydailynews.com ...
Searching bags doesn't do a thing to stop a jihadi with a bomb belt.
It does if they find the bomb belt, now doesn't it?
Regardless, the ACLU lost this one.
Another loss for the common man and woman...and baby. heh
Police State well under control.
Deborah Davis in Denver is a dead duck.
Judge Berman is a 1998 Clinton appointee
All he's got to do is put it on.
They'd have a far better success ratio by simply searching anyone who looks like they could be a Muslim, and decent folks wouldn't need to be suborned into this charade.
If there were a practical benefit to the bag searches then it would be another story. But if you think that such searches will do a thing to keep a bomb off the subway, then you don't understand the NYC subway system. There are way too many entry points and way too many station and way too many passengers.
If there is any doubt that the ACLU is helping terrorism, it can`t get anymore obvious than this. I live in NYC and nobody gives a damn about having their bags searched, matter of fact I was watching the local news here in NYC one night and they interviewed a bunch of people on the subway who welcomed it. Just curious, are the names of the "several subways riders" the ACLU supposedly are representing named "Mohammed, Mohammed, and Mohammed"?
So to understand, an organization that (for once) is defending the 4th Amendment to the Constitution is 'helping terrorism'. Right...
'Conservatism' sure has come far hasn't it? Tell me, what exactly wouldn't you sell down the river in your personal quest to feel warm, fuzzy, and safe?
matter of fact I was watching the local news here in NYC one night and they interviewed a bunch of people on the subway who welcomed it.
Considering the idiots in this nation of states that believe everything the government tells them, that sentiment wouldn't suprise me in the least
Government is watching.
The ACLU loves terrorists, they've proven it again and again. They also love to defend any criminal acts that make most cringe.
3. Concerned about personal Liberties
4. Nor preserving the American Union
In my opinion they are amongst the list of Enemies of the State right up there with John Kerry and his ilk who has relentlessly tried with various success to destroy the culture, the intel services, the military and traditional conservative family values.
If these were different times, I might agree about police searches being intrusive; secure in my person, and all that Bill O'Right stuff.
But, have you noticed that there is this international network of ideologs bent on our total obliteration? That part kind of worries me more than random searches, as I move about public places (the subway).
The above opinion was given with all due respect to you.
(PS: I do like the fact that the NYACLU lost)
What are you talking about "What this government tells them"? Try watching people fall out of the WTC on fire like I did and ask me if I give a damn about having my bag searched on the subway. This isn`t about the 4th amendment, it`s about common sense. I find it curious that this same ACLU that is all upset about this bag search seemed to have no problem when Elian Gonzales was kidnapped at gunpoint.
On that last point - Game, set, match to WillamShakespeare
I couldn't agree with you more.
It's the cop on the beat mentality,
"What you got in the bag son? Mind if I take a look?"
Honest folk appreciate being protected from the scum who'd wreak mayhem on our way of life.
But does the ACLU still get paid? I know that most people think they does this pro bono but they dont. They get paid huge from the state. I bet these schysters get paid just for filing. The worst state paid but not run progam ever.
In other words, "I believe in freedom, but I'm always ready to trade some of it for a bit of security." On this forum, we all know what Franklin had to say about that...
The ACLU does not care one bit about the 4th Amendment.
The goal is to break down our society. They will take any case that furthers that goal.
To you it appears they are defending the 4th Amendment, to me, they are attempting to take away a tool to fight terrorism.
Think of all the freedoms we have now because of the ACLU. A murderer must be released if the police did not dot every "i" or cross every "t" during the investigation. We are rapidly becoming free of any religion, and it has gotten to the point where a government employee is subject to suit for saying Merry Christmas, or crosses put up to honor fallen police officers must be removed.
The ACLU has brought us the freedom to stand on the corners of public streets, and aggressively "beg" for money. And the freedom to urinate anywhere anytime (if you are the right type of person). And we are free to defecate in business doorways.
Thanks to the ACLU we are free from hearing any traditional Christmas songs at a school performance, we are even free from Christmas, the very mention of the word being forbidden. Yes indeed, the ACLU has certainly expanded the freedoms of the average American.
These are just some of the great freedoms the ACLU has brought us. And now you complain that we have lost the freedom of transporting a bomb on a subway without the possibility of the police having the right to question you or look into your bag.
I can imagine all those killed in London would have preferred a little less of that type of "freedom".
Another name for complete freedom is anarchy. A society for it to work must have certain agreed upon rules. Some rules are laws, and some are just custom, and some are just something we all agree would be nice if we did not do some things in public.
The ACLU attacks these social agreements which breaks down our socity. I don't think I want to live in a "free" society where every person can act out every impulse they have. That would not be a free society, it would be were the strongest rule.
It is not laws that rule in a society, it is the social contract we all agree to. Organizations such as the ACLU want to break those contracts and they will do whatever they can to do it, and sometimes, they will take on a case conservatives may approve of, but remember their goal is not your goal.
"They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty or security."
Police State well under control.
Better this than jihadis with explosives. Did you forget we are at war?
Regardless of the issue, since the ACLU lost, the city needs to request attorney fees.
Then bend over, grab your ankles and grit your teeth, because as technology improves, bombs will become smaller and easier to hide.
Surely law enforcement officials can count on you. I mean, if you did protest having your cavities searched, then you're no better than "traitors" like billbears who is doing everything he can to undermine the security of this nation and aid the terrorists by defending the Constitution.
You know, governments just love citizens like you!
I'll trust the government more than the ACLU thank you! You've both been reading too much Orwell...get a grip.
I agree. It's not simple at all.
Are you opposed to screenings at the airport too? If not, then what's the difference?
The islamofascists may have chosen the wrong time and the wrong people to attack.
They have. We have not yet been totally undermined and infected by post modern secularism. They chose the wrong era and I pray that they always will until the Lord chooses otherwise.
"nobody gives a damn about having their bags searched"
Why don't also we extend the searches to private homes?
In Bay Ridge, more and more people moving in are Muslim. So, using your logic, we should just set up block-by-block, door to door searches, because if a terrorist can hide explosives in their backpacks, they can certainly hide them in their houses!
Also, guns are a great danger in NYC. After we're done searching every Arab's house, they should start searching door-to-door for illegal guns, especially concentrating on Republicans and white people, since historically they are the ones known to support gun ownership.
That'll keep us safe, and it's for the children!
We`re talking about common sense here, not blatant rights violations. This is isn`t Renoland where people are being burned to death for practicing their 2nd amendment rights or children being kidnapped right from their home.
The cops are searching bags not as a rights violation but as an act, they are acting like Gary from Team America. They don`t expect to find anything, but to use psychology and mess with Mohammeds head.
They want their presence be known so if some psycho is thinking of strapping 20 lbs of C4 to his belly and board a train, he`s going to think twice.
They also if you remember suddenly called off the bag searches so now Mohammed starts thinking "did they really call them off, are the cops now under cover now?"...It`s all about messing with their heads, upsetting their pattern.
This is why they also had bomb sniffing dogs in front of Port Authority, they know there is probably no way in hell they are going to catch any terrorist coming off a bus, but it`s better than letting Mohammed case the joint for months on end until he is 100% confident that it is wide open for attack. It`s the whole idea of letting Allah know we are still on the defensive so Allah will think twice before he tells Mohammed to meet his 72 virgins.
What we have to watch out for is other opportunities they might take advantage of, like Ali-G says, "Highjacking a train and crashing it into the White House"
After the first WTC bombing, you couldn`t get any type of vehicle into the WTC basement without it being searched from top to bottom, so Mohammed thought of other avenues and decided to bypass not only the buildings but the entire city altogether by taking advantage of the Algore led airline security business.
Watch this video and tell me what you just wrote again only this time imagine it is a car driving down your block.
The fact is if it comes down to searches, you`re damn right it should be done. Matter of fact I`ll do it myself. If I suspected my neighbor I`d break his freggin` door down, this isn`t peace time brother, we are currently literally fighting WW3 to quote that idiot Bill O`Reilly and it must be fought not only by the military but by civilians as well on every level.
People, Muslims, the ACLU don`t like it? Then tough. When those who don`t like it wake up and join the fight against these animals, when the whole world wakes up and joins INCLUDING Muslims, this war will be over.
This isn`t a war by radical Islam against the US, this is a war by radical Islam against humanity. We are fighting a war against cockroaches, absolute cowards who hide, who have attacked just about every country on this earth, and the only way to defeat these scumbags, the only way to purge them from this earth is to have EVERYBODY turn against them! And if the constitution needs to be bent a little, damn right it should be done. Joe Schmoe don`t like that he is wasting 2 seconds having his bag searched? F- HIM. Someone who doesn`t like having their bag searched is a creep who is sitting on the sidelines while others are putting themsleves on the line.
Remember Adolph Hitler and his crew that murdered tens of millions and wanted to destroy freedom? Seems our grandfather beat him without giving up the very freedoms they fought for.
And if you kick in your neighbors' door you deserve to be met with deadly force like the jackbooted thug you aspire to be.
Ah, yes! Only the essential liberty! Amazing. No wonder liberty never survives--humans are born to be slaves. We're so eager to live in servitude, that when saddled with freedom we look around frantically for someone to tell us what to do.
A much better answer is to require everyone on the subway to go armed. The best answer is to privatize the subway system.
Count me in as a creep. Maybe it's just the rebelliousness/anti-authoritarianism that the Jesuits instilled into me as a lad, but I don't particuarly care to have Uncle Sam nosing around in my bag. Mind your own damn business.
Matter of fact I`ll do it myself.
By the way, just a word to the wise, one of the little goodies I carry around with me is a gun. I'd suggest not trying to grab something of mine and search it.
It's amazing how many misconceptions hide behind the single word "we". If you're kicking in your neighbor's "fregging door", is he included in "we" or not? I certainly agree with the other poster that your neighbor can and should respond with deadly force in that case.
But are you even part of the "we"? If you're in the armed forces, then perhaps you are--but probably not. Most of "us" are fighting vicariously. The founders must be rolling over in their graves; they worked hard to prevent the creation of a standing army, believing instead that it's your job to take up arms in self-defense, not the job of a separate warrior class. The majority of "us" are doing nothing but talking big.
Is the administration part of "us"? You wouldn't know it from their policy toward Israel; they are apparently into appeasing terrorists. If this is WWIII, then the US is currently doing the equivalent of fighting Japan while allying with Italy.
Bottom line: the rational policy is not to bravely submit to slavery in the interest of security. It's to arm, and act personally in defense of self and others. The subway ticket-takers should be asking if you have a gun, or would like to rent one from the transit authority. The state government, if it were doing its constitutional duty, would be offering courses in gun handling, marksmanship, etc., to ensure that the militia (== everyone) is well regulated (== trained).
You are brainwashed brother, you are believing in an idealized utopia that the constitution never was and was never intended to be. It is an ideal that terrorism uses against us.
I deal with 1000`s of people every year in NYC as a part of my job, and I can honestly say that 99.999999999% of them are good law abiding citizens. I am talking about pure 100% unadulterated common sense here.
The only way the war against terror is to be won is for EVERY single person to pitch in and do his part, to make sacrifices and use their head.
If I saw my neighbor having middle eastern looking people over at all hours of the night like that psycho from Brooklyn 7 years ago who wanted to blow up the subway, I would not hesitate for a second to confront that SOB. I would not do it aggressively, but by simply questioning him.
Let me ask you a question, imagine some guy named Mohammed moves next door to you, you see all this weird stuff being moved into his place, electronics, bags of chemicals, you see middle eastern men you never see before visiting him all hours of the night, what would you do? Call the cops?
What the hell are cops going to do? They can`t do anything without a search warrant. You on the other hand can by simply knocking on your neighbors door and asking him what is up. If he acts like a wise ass, smash his face in, no really.
Screw the bastard. I`ve been arrested twice for assault and I don`t regret it one bit because I was right to do so. People were dealing drugs in my building and the cops had no evidence, so I took mater into my own hands, but guess what? No more drug dealing and no more a-holes hanging around my kids.
Just think, you probably do that already if your neighbors blast music at 2am, what the hell is the difference? You are comparing Nazis to common sense and reason, and you are taking out of context my point, which is these scumbags use our own constitution against us. All I am saying is the constitution can be bent without it being destroyed and it is best bent by US citizens.
You think that the US government is made up of these sadistic automatons who seek absolute power but you forget this is the UNITED STATES. One of my best friends is a secret service agent, my two brothers are cops and my cousin works for the FBI. When you say "the government" you are talking about common everyday US citizens, your relatives, your friends your neighbors.
It`s not "THEM" it is "WE". You are placing responsibilty on the military, on the cops, etc etc "because it is their job" yet you are so very eager to fight those who you deem might damage the constitution. What about those who would not hesitate to blow you up? I would think that would be a hell of a lot more important for you to focus on.
You really need to get yourself under control. One day, you're going to start something with the wrong guy and you're going to wind up laid out on the floor or maybe a heck of a lot worse.
A. Lincoln used the kind of arguments you use albeit in a better cause. We have examples of the "WE" in gov't abusing power and authority at all levels.Members of my family have at times done things I do not approve of and even seriously violated the laws;I really wish they hadn't.Neither can you be sure that your family and friends will always follow the law.
Common sense is an overused term that is hard to define,and common sense is often wrong.Common sense once held that man would never fly.
You would prefer a misquotation?
I think you should change the tag to read "We all lose".
Nope--only for you to learn English. Benjie wasn't distinguishing two kinds of liberty, namely essential and non-essential. He was characterizing liberty as essential, and then scorning those who (like you) are willing to give away some of it.