Got something to hide? says the border patrol agentSubmitted by Absolute Rights on Tue, 01/14/2014 - 05:33
"Where you coming from?"
"Where are you going?"
"Is this your car?"
"Can you pop your trunk for me?"
"What do you have to hide?"
These are all questions I have been asked at INTERNAL border checkpoints. One was installed a few miles from my home in pine valley California and I despise these men stopping and grilling me.
Not being happy with the status-quo I researched two SCOTUS decisions and learned that border patrol is allowed to stop and briefly question people in order to determine their citizenship.
(They are allowed to question you, but you are not required to answer ...as that would be a 5th amendment violation)
So I developed this script:
Whatever initial question the officer asks me,
I reply in a respectful tone:
"Officer, I am a citizen of the united states and I'd like to go on my way now-am I free to go?"
Breaking down why it works:
"I am a citizen of the united states." This fulfills the citizenship objective of the stop & establishes my ability to invoke the law to my benefit...aka constitutionally protected rights.
"and I'd like to go on my way now." This establishes that the stop is not consensual and they are impeding my progress against my will.
"Am I free to go?" This puts pressure on them to let me go or find some lawful reason to detain/arrest me. And since I have fulfilled the pretense of the stop by establishing my citizenship, (lack reasonable suspicion) there is nothing left to discuss.
If they press to search me I simply say,
"No, I don't consent to searches, I am a citizen of the united states and I'd like to go on my way now- am i free to go."
I am NOT a lawyer and this is not legal advice. This is what I do to keep the thugs out of my private life.
If you "go along to get along" then you make it harder on your neighbor. That is why I feel I have a duty to invoke privacy protecting law whenever I run into the government.
And if anyone ever asks you "Do you have something to hide?" respond with "YES-My privacy...I have my privacy to protect."
When you properly invoke the law, you help protect all of us who wish to be protected by those laws.
Just out today was this related article, very interesting.