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Policing Porn Is Not Part of Job Description (Homeland Security cops policing porn at library)
Washington Post ^ | 2-17-2006 | Cameron W. Barr

Posted on 02/17/2006 10:25:14 AM PST by Cagey

Two uniformed men strolled into the main room of the Little Falls library in Bethesda one day last week and demanded the attention of all patrons using the computers. Then they made their announcement: The viewing of Internet pornography was forbidden.

The men looked stern and wore baseball caps emblazoned with the words "Homeland Security." The bizarre scene unfolded Feb. 9, leaving some residents confused and forcing county officials to explain how employees assigned to protect county buildings against terrorists came to see it as their job to police the viewing of pornography.

After the two men made their announcement, one of them challenged an Internet user's choice of viewing material and asked him to step outside, according to a witness. A librarian intervened, and the two men went into the library's work area to discuss the matter. A police officer arrived. In the end, no one had to step outside except the uniformed men.

They were officers of the security division of Montgomery County's Homeland Security Department, an unarmed force that patrols about 300 county buildings -- but is not responsible for enforcing obscenity laws.

In the post-9/11 era, even suburban counties have homeland security departments. Montgomery County will not specify how many officers are in the department's security division, citing security reasons. Its annual budget, including salaries, is $3.6 million.

Later that afternoon, Montgomery County's chief administrative officer, Bruce Romer, issued a statement calling the incident "unfortunate" and "regrettable" -- two words that bureaucrats often deploy when things have gone awry. He said the officers had been reassigned to other duties.

Romer said the officers believed they were enforcing the county's sexual harassment policy but "overstepped their authority" and had to be reminded that Montgomery "supports the rights of patrons to view the materials of their choice."

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Government; US: Maryland
KEYWORDS: abuseofpower; billofrights; censorship; donutwatch; homelandsecurity; jurisdiction; library; policestate; policstate; porn; pronography; publiclibrary; taxdollarsatwork; washingtondc; youpayforthis
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1 posted on 02/17/2006 10:25:16 AM PST by Cagey
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To: Cagey

'Policing'...that's a new word for it.


2 posted on 02/17/2006 10:26:15 AM PST by Spok (Est omnis de civilitate.)
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To: Cagey
The men looked stern and wore baseball caps emblazoned with the words "Homeland Security." The bizarre scene unfolded Feb. 9, leaving some residents confused and forcing county officials to explain how employees assigned to protect county buildings against terrorists came to see it as their job to police the viewing of pornography.

After the two men made their announcement, one of them challenged an Internet user's choice of viewing material and asked him to step outside, according to a witness. A librarian intervened, and the two men went into the library's work area to discuss the matter. A police officer arrived. In the end, no one had to step outside except the uniformed men.

Lord help us if we are ever get attacked again if this is the caliber of government employee on watch.

3 posted on 02/17/2006 10:27:10 AM PST by dirtboy (I'm fat, I sleep most of the winter and I saw my shadow yesterday. Does that make me a groundhog?)
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To: Cagey
Also a band from Chapel Hill, NC
4 posted on 02/17/2006 10:29:07 AM PST by Constitution Day (Anger is an energy)
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To: dirtboy

At least they weren't Feds. Although it wouldn't have surprised me if they were.


5 posted on 02/17/2006 10:30:04 AM PST by Wolfie
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To: dirtboy
Lord help us if we are ever get attacked again if this is the caliber of government employee on watch.

Some would say that when terrorism strikes these guys will be the first to know about it and the first to get out of harms way.

I'm sure these guys have their terrorism escape plan dialed in.

6 posted on 02/17/2006 10:30:27 AM PST by Idisarthur
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To: Cagey
The reality is that almost all of the "Homeland Security" spending has been squandered...it all represents a gigantic jobs/welfare program and pork for politically connected businesses.
7 posted on 02/17/2006 10:30:31 AM PST by MRMEAN (Corruptisima republica plurimae leges. -- Tacitus)
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To: Cagey

Homeland Security does have more important things to do (if infact the two were actual employees.) But I don't think porn should be allowed to be viewed at taxpayer expense either!


8 posted on 02/17/2006 10:32:33 AM PST by jimmyo57
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To: dirtboy
Lord help us if we are ever get attacked again if this is the caliber of government employee on watch.

Never forget New Orleans.

9 posted on 02/17/2006 10:32:56 AM PST by rhombus
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To: Cagey

"After the two men made their announcement" six guys dressed in raincoats ran out of the library.

Really though. I don't care what you view in your home, but I don't like my tax dollars paying for someone to get thier rocks off in a public library.


10 posted on 02/17/2006 10:33:03 AM PST by Dave278
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To: Cagey
...an unarmed force...

Praise the Lord

11 posted on 02/17/2006 10:35:41 AM PST by Horatio Gates (If your belt buckle reads Allahu Akbar, You might be a red neck muslim!)
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To: Horatio Gates

LOL!


12 posted on 02/17/2006 10:36:03 AM PST by Cagey ("Soldiers, keep by your officers. For God's sake, keep by your officers!")
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To: Cagey

Aww it's not like former Stasi General Markus Wolf is running Homieland Security or anything y'all...or even John Magaw (Waco-Ruby Ridge)


13 posted on 02/17/2006 10:36:12 AM PST by joesnuffy (A camel once bit our sister..but we knew just what to do...we gathered rocks and squashed her!)
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To: Cagey
2 bored HLS guys looking to exercise some author-a-tay. I don't know about you guys, but my family and I feel a lot safer at night knowing this guy in the library was chastised and embarrassed in front of the other patrons by men in uniform. Yep, that's a good value for our tax dollars, no matter how you spin it.
14 posted on 02/17/2006 10:36:29 AM PST by Sax
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To: rhombus

Employers were late to release their employees on 9-11 as well.

When crisis strikes, you will probably be on your own. This does not authorize you to do whatever you want to do. It just means that the "support structures" that we expect out of life are undependable.


15 posted on 02/17/2006 10:38:27 AM PST by weegee ("...the left can only take power through deception" -W. Chambers, former mem of Communist Party USA)
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To: Cagey

Rent-a-cop flunkies formally employed at your local shopping mall.


16 posted on 02/17/2006 10:38:35 AM PST by Labyrinthos
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To: Cagey

its getting so a guy cant enjoy porn in public anymore.


17 posted on 02/17/2006 10:39:41 AM PST by isom35
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To: jimmyo57

"But I don't think porn should be allowed to be viewed at taxpayer expense either!"

Neither do I, but the problem is in identifying what is porn and what is not. I'm not sure I want some random "County Homeland Security Officers" doing the deciding. Do you?

These guys are not cops...they're wannabes.


18 posted on 02/17/2006 10:39:48 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Cagey
Romer said the officers believed they were enforcing the county's sexual harassment policy

Perhaps they should have a quick review of the "no drinking on the job" policy.

19 posted on 02/17/2006 10:40:35 AM PST by siunevada (If we learn nothing from history, what's the point of having one? - Peggy Hill)
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To: Cagey; Stellar Dendrite
Policing Porn Is Not Part of Job Description (Homeland Security cops policing porn at library)

OK...I'm not usually defending this Administrations' screw-ups...but wait a moment on this one.

We KNOW that Al Qaueda used coded messages in Porn Pics to transmit instructions/messages to operatives.

We KNOW the ACLU and Librarians have DEFENDED the looking at of Porn in Public Libraries.

This makes the Library the BEST place to access these images, which may be under surveillance, when the viewers privacy will be fought for by the ACLU and Librarians!

Before I think the HS operatives were off the reservation, perhaps there was another reason for this.

I know...I've always argued "Occam's Razor", and my defense CLEARLY is not the simplest answer...and if I'm wrong, I'll take my lumps.

My gut feeling tells me there was more to this than meets the JPEG!

20 posted on 02/17/2006 10:41:47 AM PST by Itzlzha ("The avalanche has already started...it is too late for the pebbles to vote")
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To: MineralMan
the problem is in identifying what is porn and what is not. I'm not sure I want some random "County Homeland Security Officers" doing the deciding. Do you?

Not a chance. More wasted tax money.

21 posted on 02/17/2006 10:41:52 AM PST by rhombus
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To: Cagey
These guys would have been in hog-heaven if the could have been with the BATFE in Waco on April 20th, 1993.
22 posted on 02/17/2006 10:42:06 AM PST by E. Pluribus Unum (Islam Factoid:After forcing young girls to watch his men execute their fathers, Muhammad raped them.)
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To: Wolfie
At least they weren't Feds. Although it wouldn't have surprised me if they were.

If their uniforms read "Homeland Security" they were Feds, or could exist only under the umbrella of the federal agency.

Makes me almost want to go to a library to confront these clown "firemen" (Fahrenheit 451)

23 posted on 02/17/2006 10:42:43 AM PST by Publius6961
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To: Dave278
"Really though. I don't care what you view in your home, but I don't like my tax dollars paying for someone to get thier rocks off in a public library."

I think i heard Chris Core (sp?) saying that all the dc metro area libraries have this policy. While it's easy to drum up an image of a special "porn" viewing back room with computers in the library that's not the case. The VA libraries I've been to have their Internet accessible computers in plain view next to the check out lines. I would doubt anyone checking out whitehouse.com with 50 little kids running around. Of course, I only go after 5 so i have no clue what goes on in the day time. The library just doesn't filter their traffic. So yes, technically you could view porn, but i guess it's an exception.

The articles I've seen on this topic have been very vague. I originally heard these guys were there to police "inappropriate material" which doesn't necessarily mean porn. Also, the 2 sources I've heard don't go into detail with what the man they asked to step out side was viewing. Was he looking at the 06 sports illustrated swimsuit calendar or somedirtyrandomcrazyfetishpornsite.com?
24 posted on 02/17/2006 10:42:50 AM PST by tfecw (It's for the children)
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To: rhombus
We KNOW that Al Qaueda used coded messages in Porn Pics to transmit instructions/messages to operatives.

Which is why Homeland Secutity should be looking at porn. ;-)

25 posted on 02/17/2006 10:43:30 AM PST by rhombus
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To: weegee
When crisis strikes, you will probably be on your own.

Bingo!

26 posted on 02/17/2006 10:44:53 AM PST by rhombus
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To: weegee
When crisis strikes, you will probably be on your own.

Bingo!

27 posted on 02/17/2006 10:44:54 AM PST by rhombus
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To: Dave278
but I don't like my tax dollars paying for someone to get thier rocks off in a public library.

If you're serious and your conviction is strong enough, have your local authorities do it (good luck). Having federal minimum wage goons doing it is a recipe for disaster.

28 posted on 02/17/2006 10:45:24 AM PST by Publius6961
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To: MRMEAN

When you have some county sheriff dimwits...getting funding from the Homeland security pot...to buy a boat or two...to police the local lakes and rivers...and hand out tickets for drunk boaters...you have reached the peak of the whole mess. I know of at least one county in Alabama that did get some homeland security funding and did exactly that. The idea that Alaska is getting the same size chunk of money as Florida...also brings out questions. This is all a budget game...get your chunk and get more empire.


29 posted on 02/17/2006 10:45:27 AM PST by pepsionice
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To: Itzlzha
"My gut feeling tells me there was more to this than meets the JPEG!"

As i mentioned earlier, no one seems to want to report what this guy was actually look at. My guess it was a website, not a personal email account. They could have run whatever tests they needed to remotely and if this guy was doing something shady, they wouldn't have left without him.
30 posted on 02/17/2006 10:47:06 AM PST by tfecw (It's for the children)
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To: Cagey

Citizens Auxiliary Police?


31 posted on 02/17/2006 10:47:39 AM PST by colorado tanker (We need more "chicken-bleep Democrats" in the Senate!)
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To: Publius6961

I'm sure they're funded by some goofy post 9/11 Federal giveaway, but the article said they're locals.


32 posted on 02/17/2006 10:51:33 AM PST by Wolfie
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To: Cagey

Homeland Security dic*heads. How pathetic. Although in hindsight, it has been proven that viewing pornography is a "gateway" to aiding and abetting Islamic terrorists.(sarc off)


33 posted on 02/17/2006 10:54:33 AM PST by willyboyishere (You'd better begin living the way you think, or you'll soon be thinking the way you live> Brecht)
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To: Itzlzha

Your kind of thinking leads to taking the polar route to get to Washington from New York.


34 posted on 02/17/2006 10:59:47 AM PST by Jeff Gordon (Is tractus pro pensio.)
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To: Cagey
Maybe another source for this story? I wouldn't believe the Washington Post if they said good morning.

Muleteam1

35 posted on 02/17/2006 11:02:01 AM PST by Muleteam1
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Comment #36 Removed by Moderator

To: Cagey

waiting for the 'cops do no wrong' crowd to defend this...


37 posted on 02/17/2006 11:44:40 AM PST by WoofDog123
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To: joesnuffy
Ok, I hope that's sarcasm....it sure is funny!

http://www.dhs.gov/dhspublic/display?content=5336
38 posted on 02/17/2006 11:45:40 AM PST by Jhohanna (Born Free)
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To: Cagey

Let's guess: Liberal nutcases or conservative nutcases?

Nutcases, for sure.

Who is anti-porn to the point of appointing themselves as the porn police?


39 posted on 02/17/2006 2:07:10 PM PST by MonroeDNA (Look for the union label--on the bat crashing through your windshield!)
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To: MonroeDNA

sounds like a lie planted by leftists to make people put the pressure on their congressperson to not renew the Patriot Act. Baghdad Bob stuff.


40 posted on 02/17/2006 2:09:11 PM PST by kinghorse
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To: dirtboy
Lord help us if we are ever get attacked again if this is the caliber of government employee on watch.

I've seen people working in the federal DHS that appear to be incapable of working the cash register at a McDonald's.

Seeing it at this level is no surprise at all.

The scary thing is, plenty of local officials will try to use their "Homeland Security" personnel to do things that clearly have nothing to do with homeland security. Mission Creep is a wonderful way to justify their budgets.
41 posted on 02/17/2006 6:30:04 PM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: MonroeDNA
Who is anti-porn to the point of appointing themselves as the porn police?

Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, etc?
42 posted on 02/17/2006 6:32:18 PM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: Cagey; Spok; dirtboy; Constitution Day; Wolfie; Idisarthur; MRMEAN; rhombus; Dave278; jimmyo57; ...
Surprisingly to me, you all got it wrong. These officers are HEROES! Sure it appears they may have gone about it the wrong way but they are on the right track. Let me know what you think (as in comments, suggestions, criticism) of the following comments:

Homeland Security Heroes Silenced By Self-Deluded Library Propaganda!  An Example of the Effectiveness of the ALA's Propaganda Machine:  Getting Government Officials to Silence Themselves.

Here is one example of the effectiveness of the ALA's propaganda campaign.  In Policing Porn Is Not Part of Job Description; Montgomery Homeland Security Officers Reassigned After Library Incident, 17 Feb 2006, two Montgomery County Homeland Security Department heroes do the right thing, perhaps in the wrong way, by telling library users to stop viewing porn on public library computers!  Reaction?  The librarians squawk their propaganda lines.  Result?  The Homeland Security heroes are assigned to different jobs and their boss apologizes for their actions then apparently unknowingly spouts ALA propaganda that a library is a public forum where anything goes and that people may view pornography unfettered.  (Not true, read US v. ALA.)

The ALA has got the government officials to silence themselves using a propaganda technique called "conversion":  "We mean conversion of the average American's emotions, mind, and will, through a planned psychological attack, in the form of propaganda fed to the nation via the media."

Even worse, the boss then says his whole department will undergo ALA mind control:  "Montgomery plans to train its homeland security officers 'so they fully understand library policy and its consistency with residents' First Amendment rights under the U.S. Constitution,' Romer said in his statement."  Here is a sneak peek at the ALA's mind control sessions the Montgomery County Homeland Security Department will use due to its self delusion that library policy is pure and ALA librarians know best and would never violate the law or endanger children:

Repeat 100 times, 10 times a day while facing ALA headquarters in Chicago, IL:
  • US v. ALA does not exist.
  • It is age discrimination to keep kids from seeing porn.
  • A public library is an open forum where anything goes including pornography.
  • Taxpayers have no control over public libraries and public school libraries because they are unsophisticated and librarians know best.
  • All people are equal but some people at the ALA are more equal than others.
  • The ALA knows more than the United States Supreme Court about what is constitutional.
  • It is the absolute right of the ALA to supervise the formation of public opinion.

SafeLibraries.org - Are Children Safe in Public Libraries?

SafeLibraries. org - Are Children Safe in Public Libraries?

43 posted on 02/18/2006 10:02:02 PM PST by plan2succeed.org (www.plan2succeed.org)
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To: plan2succeed.org


44 posted on 02/19/2006 5:02:57 AM PST by Cagey ("Soldiers, keep by your officers. For God's sake, keep by your officers!")
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To: plan2succeed.org

Thanks for posting that. Now, please define "pornography" as it would be used in limiting access in a public library.

Remember, this must be a very good definition, since it would be used to restrict access to publically available information on the internet.

Once you define "pornography" for this application, then we can begin to discuss the issue.


45 posted on 02/19/2006 6:19:50 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: plan2succeed.org
Sorry but my comment was simply to say I did not trust anything written in the Washington Post. I did not read this article once I saw it was published by the WP. Anything packaged in fishwrap still stinks like fish.

Muleteam1

46 posted on 02/19/2006 8:14:34 AM PST by Muleteam1
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To: Itzlzha
"We KNOW that Al Qaueda used coded messages in Porn Pics to transmit instructions/messages to operatives. "

We don't all know this. Maybe your tinfoil hat is too tight

47 posted on 02/19/2006 8:30:51 AM PST by muir_redwoods (Free Sirhan Sirhan, after all, the bastard who killed Mary Jo Kopechne is walking around free)
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To: MineralMan
Illeagal pornography Or Obscenity is defined in the Miller case. For example, a depiction of a young girl being gang raped by five men and within the depiction or video streamed over the Internet connection in a public library, intercourse and exhibition or the lewd exhibition of the genitals or excretory functions would qualify as "pornography." Unfortunately, men view this filth and hurt kids in public libraries because they feel the need to act out socially. Case histories are available at www.SafeLibraries.org Please, learn about this problem of children at risk because of porn access in public libraries, one more child hurt is one to many. Thanks
48 posted on 02/19/2006 9:28:03 AM PST by Pornslayer (Protect Kids, That is all that matters.)
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To: Pornslayer

OK. I went to that site. I did find a couple of instances where something bad had happened.

Now, let me ask you a question: How much time have you spent in your local library recently? In all those hours, did you see any pornography displayed on the public access computers there?

I ask, because I did to to my local library and spent three entire afternoons there, just to see if any such was going on there. I saw no porn on any public access computer screen during that time.

What I did see was lots of kids, aged from about 10 through high school age, accessing web sites and doing research. I saw a few adults using the computers. Most appeared to be looking at help wanted ads and searching real estate pages.

So, what have you, personally, seen in the time you've spent personally researching this at your local library?


49 posted on 02/19/2006 9:43:45 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Pornslayer

Oh, and by the way, welcome to Free Republic on your first day as a registered user!


50 posted on 02/19/2006 9:44:51 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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