We are told by cops and the courts that the rapidly
metastasizing police state is for our safety (always
for our safety) and that we shouldnt worry if weve got
nothing to hide yet when police are on the receiving end
of the same tactics they so urgently and even turgidly use against
us, they tend not to like it so much.
Video and audio recording of their doings, for example.
Cops get annoyed when we video them but they video us routinely
even when we havent done anything illegal. For example,
random safety checks. Youre on Candid Camera,
like it or not. Cop Kiosks with those insect eye-looking bulbous
cameras that you see on the ceiling at Wal Mart (and everywhere
else) are sprouting up all over the country, especially in urban
areas. Thats ok. After all, if youve got nothing
to hide, what are you worried about? Isnt that what were
We the Commons are not entitled to privacy when in
public. But they the New American equivalent of yesterdays
Sicherheitsdeinst or NKVD are entitled to privacy
secrecy, even as they perform their public
If we are suspected of some offense, we can expect to be filmed
and otherwise recorded and any such evidence will most certainly
be used against us when we appear before the Volksgerichtshof.
But if we film them even if the film is proof of
criminal activity its entirely possible the
law will be more interested in persecuting the person who
made the video instead of prosecuting the criminal cop.
For example, in Chicago, a woman who was being interviewed by a
cop following a domestic violence altercation ended up (the woman
alleges) being propositioned and even groped by the
cop doing the interview. Tiawanda Moore later filed
a complaint against the cop, but it was not pursued. What was pursued
was Moores surreptitious recording of the incident on her
Blackberry, the proof in support of her claims. She faces
hold onto your hat 15 years in prison for this offense.
That just happens to be the same potential sentence the cop would
get if convicted for for sexual assault an actual
crime. Except he wont be convicted because he wont be
But Moore will be aggressively.
In Illinois, wiretapping laws intended to protect the public from
being illicitly recorded by cops without a warrant are being
used to persecute the public over something very different indeed.
For doing something (i.e., recording evidence of police misconduct)
that could only be characterized as criminal by a regime that is
itself criminal and wants no competition.
Maryland is another state that gets its panties in a bunch when
one of us films (or records) one of them. In the now-notorious
case of Maryland motorcyclist Anthony Graber, state police executed
a felony SWAT-style raid on his house and carted off computers and
other equipment . because Graber dared to film his own traffic
stop and posted it on YouTube. The video caused a ruckus because
it showed poor judgment on the part of the cop who stopped
Graber for speeding on his bike.
Earlier this year, two Prince Georges County Thugs-in-Blue
beat the crap out of a clearly not-violent, not-resisting University
of Maryland student. We know the student was clearly not violent
and not resisting and that the cops were thugs because
we have a video recording of the incident. Heres the video:
This time, the Thugs-in-Blue (black, actually) were suspended.
But probably only because the video evidence was so damning
and so public. If the Maryland Sicherheitsdienst had
its way, that video would never have been made. Or it would be made
Officer Safety and all, you see.
Similar videos of over-the-top cops (and much worse) are literally
all over YouTube and other online servers. They are the one and
only way that average people stand any chance of rectifying a wrong
committed by a cop. The system is completely stacked against us
and in favor of them. Anyone who has been to traffic court is well
aware of this fact. The cops testimony is taken as Holy Writ
because it is a cop testifying and cops are regarded as incapable
of deceit by the system. A cops word against yours? Forget
Unless you have a video or audio recording.
Grabers video of his traffic stop shows us, in living color,
how over-the-top things got (i.e., an off-duty cop, not in in uniform
and not in a marked cop car, threateningly brandishing his gun).
The PG video showed an appalled public a public beat-down theyd
otherwise probably never have even heard about or believed,
if they had. Or which would have been a case of Officer Safety
had that video not existed.
Which is precisely why the cops want no such videos to exist.
Do you suppose Andy Griffith would have objected to Goober or any
other resident of Mayberry filming him while at work? Andy probably
would have expressed concern about the person doing the filming
being bored to tears and wasting his time. But other than concern
over boredom, he wouldnt have cared because after all, what
was there to see?
But the time of Andy Griffith and Mayberry and cops and
laws that served the public is long gone. Todays cops understand
that much of what they do doesnt bear watching not
by the public, that is. They do have something to hide. They
know that the more we see of them in action, the more appalled we
will be and the more aware well be of the ugly times
in which we live.