Monday, June 03, 2013

Scalia's surprising dissent

This is bad news for civil rights advocates. In a dismal 5-4 decision Breyer jumped in with the cons and Scalia joined the liberals in opposing this breach against our bedrock right to be protected against unreasonable search and seizure.
Scalia said it "taxes the credulity of the credulous" to argue that DNA testing is simply a means of identification. It's a way to gather evidence — and thus Maryland's law doesn't pass constitutional muster, he wrote.

"The Fourth Amendment forbids searching a person for evidence of a crime when there is no basis for believing the person is guilty of the crime or is in possession of incriminating evidence," Scalia said. "That prohibition is categorical and without exception; it lies at the very heart of the Fourth Amendment."
This is a horrifying decision. It may look harmless to some because in this case it's confined to violent crime but you give the authoritarians an inch and they'll keep chipping away. Before you know it they could be taking random swabs at traffic stops.

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