Constutionality and public policy

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Skull Pilot, Aug 25, 2009.

  1. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    In my state, there seems to be a new fascination with the sobriety checkpoint.

    Now IMO these unwarranted stops are simply unconstitutional and amount to an illegal search.

    A police officer should have no right to stop a driver if that driver is not breaking any traffic laws or operating his vehicle in an unsafe manner.

    Now I've heard the argument that it's for the greater good and the safety of all but I just cannot agree with this policy. What's next, cops posted at the exits of all businesses that serve alcohol with a breathalyzer forcing everyone to blow into the tube or random stops to check if you're wearing a seat belt?

    On a similar note, is it constitutional for a state, a la Massachusetts, to force its residents to buy health insurance and fine them if they do not?

    This particular tromping of rights committed by the once great state of MA is important to us because a provision in some of the health care/insurance bills floating around have provisions that will do the same thing; force people to purchase government approved health insurance or fine them with an additional tax if they don't comply.

    If we can be stopped and searched for no reason other than we might have had a beer and if we can be forced to purchase insurance or any other product by the government, does it make you wonder what the government will force us to do next?
     
  2. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    They have those "forced stops" in Nevada too, and although the vast majority of state residents are against them, they continue to do it. If they put those stops to a referendum vote as to whether or not to do them, they'd disappear in a land slide vote against them. Are they constitutional? I don't think so. Furthermore, I think they do it more to pad the state budget than to pick up drunk drivers. Their coffers get a little low, hey, let's set up another road block and force people to pull over again so we can write out another few hundred, $2,000 drunk driving tickets. It's a cash cow... easy money.

    I've never seen them here in Wisconsin.... yet.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2009
  3. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    An unwarranted invsion of privacy.

    All done under the guise of the war on drugs.
     
  4. pinqy
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    pinqy Gold Member

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  5. Care4all
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    Care4all Warrior Princess Supporting Member

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    I don't think they should be able to stop you, unless you have broken a law...speeding, driving recklessly etc...otherwise, I think it is unconstitutional, same with unwarranted eves dropping by our phone companies, and unconstitutional for arresting someone for yelling at a cop on his own porch.....

    Our entire constitution is being attacked, by those on the right and those on the left!
     
  6. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    That's fucked up... leave it to the liberal ass bags in Michigan... [​IMG]
     
  7. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    Sitz was a USSC case, PR. It originated in Michigan where Sitz challenged the stop on which his conviction was based. It went through the highest court of Michigan and then through the Federal system.

    Lots of people had their hands on it.

    It isn't a "liberal" issue... it's a law enforcement issue.

    I thought the right-wingers were all about law enforcement.

    If they were doing stops looking for illegal immigrants, would you like it better? Or is it only looking for drunks and drugs that bugs you?
     
  8. Big Black Dog
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    Big Black Dog Gold Member Supporting Member

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    I don't especially like the so called "Safety Stops" conducted by the County and State Police here in Illinois. They set up their stops and check to make sure the driver has insurance, a valid driver's license, do a check of the car to make sure horn, windshield wipers, turn signals, etc. all work properly. Also check to make sure you are wearing your seat belt. Yes, they also determine if you have been drinking also and if so, can and do sometimes perform a soberity check or breathilizer if needed. There have been many people cited for DUI as a result. I have mixed feelings about it all. I don't like to be stopped and checked but here in Illinois there are a great many people driving without insurance and no license. It has nabbed many drivers driving drunk. On one hand I think it's a very good thing because if you aren't doing anything against the law there should be no big deal. I did have one of my best friends killed by a drunk driver so like I said, on that side of the coin I am in favor of it. On the other side of that coin, I agree that to me it seems to be boarderline Constitutional and I don't favor it. Tough choice for me to make. I like getting the drunk drivers and folks driving without a license off the road but I don't like the stops. Just can't have your cake and eat it too. Sort of damned if you do and damned if you don't.
     
  9. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    the fourth amendment clearly states

    T


    Now tell me what probable cause does a state have to randomly stop drivers to see if perhaps they might have been drinking?

    And random stops without probable cause for any reason are a violation of the Constitution. But if one is stopped for cause and then asked if they are legal immigrants is a horse of another color.

    I was under the impression that one had to actually break a law before the cops could "enforce" it.

    So you would be OK with search parties randomly entering your home to "enforce" a variety of laws from drug possession to child porn right?
     
  10. lawbuff
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    lawbuff Member

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    You are not alone in your reasoning. I personally have a mixed feeling about such. I do know, and the name of the state escapes me, that sobriety checkpoints violate thier state constitution.

    My state even permits controlled Driver's License checkpoints under the progeny of Prouse.

    Now, that I do not agree with as a majority thought.
     

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