Tuesday, November 29, 2005

PAPERS, PLEASE

If you've done nothing wrong, the smug man said, you've got nothing to hide.

Do you agree?

If you're riding on a public bus, minding your own business, can a government agent demand to see your ID? If you've done nothing wrong, after all ...

Deborah Davis, a 50-year-old woman in Colorado, thinks the U.S. is dangerously close to becoming a "papers, please" society. She has taken a stand that all of us should study and discuss.

The Rocky Mountain News has this lede:
Federal prosecutors are reviewing whether to pursue charges against an Arvada woman who refused to show identification to federal police while riding an RTD bus through the Federal Center in Lakewood.

Deborah Davis was ticketed for two petty offenses Sept. 26 by officers who commonly board the RTD bus as it passes through the Federal Center and ask passengers for identification. ...

Davis said she commuted daily from her home in Arvada to her job at a small business in Lakewood ... She said the bus always passed through the Federal Center and some people got off there.

Guards at the Federal Center gate always boarded the bus and asked to see all passengers' identification, she said.

She said the guards just looked at the IDs and did not record them or compare them with any lists.

When she refused to show her ID, she said, officers with the Federal Protective Service removed her from the bus, handcuffed her, put her in the back of a patrol car and took her to a federal police station within the Federal Center, where she waited while officers conferred. She was subsequently given two tickets and released.
Davis wasn't getting off the bus at the Federal Center. She had a right to mind her own business. Is she a rabble-rouser? Probably. Does she have a legitimate complaint? Most likely. Review it for yourself here.

Watch this case. The outcome will help determine what kind of country we live in.

1 comment:

The Holy Grail Press said...

Papers would be a good thing. Having id chips implanted would be good, too. Government check points, guard dogs, retinal scans, all good things. It's the only way we can be truly safe. It's the only way we can truly protect our freedom. After all, only those who have something to hide complain. In fact, those who disagree probably should be shipped off on the next bus to Gitmo. Thank You. Your Fellow American, The Most Honorable Senator Leonard K. Bullfinch