Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Stupid, Stupid, Stupid

Up until now, I've tried to avoid talking about the Commercial Appeal's "Faith & Values" writer, David Waters. He's a sermonising, hectoring, Far Left dolt with a serious case of moral superiority. Why he's a "religion" writer for the CA when he loathes the very churches and denominations he's supposedly covering is beyond me. But in today's column he uses a poor dead girl to advance a truly moronic idea. He calls it "A case for curtailing rights" but his column is nothing but rampant emotionalism, short on facts and long on luridness.

Let his own words speak for him:
Police searched Tyra's Frayser neighborhood for nearly two days. They used a police helicopter. They used all-terrain vehicles. They used bloodhounds. About 100 neighborhood volunteers joined the search.

Just about everyone was looking for Tyra. But no one searched the house right across the street....

Officers knocked on the door, got no answer and left.

"These police cannot walk up to a house and search a house just because they think it's a good idea," state prosecutor Jerry Harris explained.

How about if a child disappears right in front of it?

But when a child disappears on her own street police ought to be able to search each and every house, shed, garage, car and trash can on that street as soon as possible, with or without permission.

If the law doesn't allow it the law should be changed....

When a child disappears we need to give police the authority to search every reasonable location nearby.
Yep, that's right. We should suspend the Fourth Amendment and all its guarantees. After all, it's for the chillllllldren!

What if the girl isn't missing, but just wandered off, to be found safe later? Well, hey, no harm no foul, right? Sorry about that. These things happen.

And why stop there? What if the police suspect someone isn't being honest? Time is important, as Waters says, and so why not just let the police rough the suspect up a bit, instead of going through the long and tedious interview process? After all, it's for the chillllllldren!

Waters seem to think, if you read the rest of the article, that the police have a comprehensive database, easily searchable, of every person and every crime committed, searachable by addresses and by places that former criminals have lived. He seems to think that all police have to do is punch up an address and they'll learn every person who's lived there, then they only need search all the names for crimes committed. I'm pretty sure they don't. And I'm pretty sure they couldn't.

I'm no huge fan of the MPD, and I didn't follow this tragedy closely, but it seems that the police did pretty much everything they could, in the right fashion. They did find a suspect who led them to the body in only two days, but he admitted that Tyra died within minutes of his abducting her. Visions of MPD busting into houses, crying "Everyone on the floor! Everyone on the floor!", waving guns and abusing completely baffled residents sounds far too much like the many false invasions the police already conduct in the name of the War on Drugs. You'll excuse me if I find no appetite to widen their scope.

This also brings up something that Alpha Patriot has blogged on a bit, the Amber's Army rabble-rousing that the CA is engaged in. Amber's Army is their first, big move into crossing the line between covering the news and effecting public policy. It's a dubious proposition at best, because we cannot expect the CA to cover itself when they become the story.

So, what if poor Tyra Banks' ghost comes to David Waters asking for him to use the CA's Amber's Army to help her and future children who will die from child predators? Does Waters and the CA do the right thing by her, using the "Army" to get a public discussion going that leads to civic and political and legal reform that saves children's lives? Or do they turn her away, telling her that Amber's Army is only for children who die in day care? What is their reasoning and what distinction do they make?

I'd bet he can find one, too. But your Constitutional rights? Nah, that's a different matter. After all, it's for the chillllllldren!

No comments: