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I’m a Journalist but I Didn’t Fully Realize the Terrible Power of U.S. Border Officials Until They Violated My Rights and Privacy

By The Intercept

I complacently assumed that CBP’s horrendous treatment of migrants wouldn’t affect me directly, least of all in Austin, the city where I was bornRead full story

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  • As the author states, imagine if he was black or brown? Sadly - knowing this firsthand - people that are black or brown endure some version of this horrible incident on a very frequent basis. Law enforcement officials often view themselves as all powerful. And this power means childish (and often unlawful) acts to bend the will of the victim of the day. It comes from a place of privilege and not reason. In many incidents, nothing happens to those who act is a callous way. While upsetting, these child-like

    As the author states, imagine if he was black or brown? Sadly - knowing this firsthand - people that are black or brown endure some version of this horrible incident on a very frequent basis. Law enforcement officials often view themselves as all powerful. And this power means childish (and often unlawful) acts to bend the will of the victim of the day. It comes from a place of privilege and not reason. In many incidents, nothing happens to those who act is a callous way. While upsetting, these child-like people have to live with such anger in their hearts.

  • Exceptionally detailed exposé of the downright unconstitutional policies of US Customs. This should disturb and anger every American— our fundamental rights are under genuine threat.

    It’s inarguably true that the author repeatedly made things worse for himself with sarcastic or flippant comments to the officers. But that doesn’t excuse warrantless searches, or being held— technically not under arrest, so you can’t get a lawyer— for over three hours without cause.

    US citizens have a fundamental

    Exceptionally detailed exposé of the downright unconstitutional policies of US Customs. This should disturb and anger every American— our fundamental rights are under genuine threat.

    It’s inarguably true that the author repeatedly made things worse for himself with sarcastic or flippant comments to the officers. But that doesn’t excuse warrantless searches, or being held— technically not under arrest, so you can’t get a lawyer— for over three hours without cause.

    US citizens have a fundamental, constitutional right to privacy, and to not be subject to unjustified searches and seizures. It’s not a police state; at least, it’s not supposed to be. If Congress and the courts continue with their complacent inaction, these abuses of power will only get worse and worse.

  • That is one scary story.

  • I've been told (so those of you with legal expertise please weigh in) that someone going through customs/immigration is technically on US soil but not in the USA, so some legal protections might not apply... So technically speaking, until you have crossed the immigration and customs controlled areas, you are officially not in the USA... Same logic is applied to transit passengers (they are jot required a visa if just connecting) and to duty free shopping...

  • Before rushing to judgment travelers to at risk countries are given extra attention. While journalists are often considered a soft target the title of journalist is often abused by people who are not exactly angelic. Most journalists I know are usually quite happy to talk about their work and usually won't stop. By essentially refusing the agent's question suspicion is raised and even the nicest agent will get on the case.

    Most of agents I have met are professionals and don't bully . Being cooperative

    Before rushing to judgment travelers to at risk countries are given extra attention. While journalists are often considered a soft target the title of journalist is often abused by people who are not exactly angelic. Most journalists I know are usually quite happy to talk about their work and usually won't stop. By essentially refusing the agent's question suspicion is raised and even the nicest agent will get on the case.

    Most of agents I have met are professionals and don't bully . Being cooperative and friendly go a long way

    Unfortunately there are bad agents just the same as there are bad cops but the description of his initial reaction leaves that an open question.

    When there is an issue a journalist knows that getting back with wit satire and humor in a series of letters and articles is more effective. Those in charge of enforcement agencies don't like it when the actions of its agents are exposed to ridicule.

  • I thought this guy said he traveled a lot? I find that airport security personnel have about as much sense of humor as a Russian govt official. In fact the only truly customer service oriented ones I have EVER run into were at Love Field. Talk about feeling in an alternate universe.

    Journalists probably have to grow up & face the fact that they have thrown away their trust factor as much as child abusing priests. That said, surely the ACLU is willing to support your rights in court?

  • This is the work of a "Journalist"? This was actually published? One wonders if Seth has ever gotten pushy with the immigration in places like, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan or Ethiopia? Give us a break.

  • This is insane. These regulations are self directed. We need established law to curb these abuses. We won’t get that until we have a new administration and new senate.

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