From The New York Times, we have a story informing us that Judge Shira A. Scheindlin found the fascistic tactics of Michael “Little Napoleon” Bloomberg and the New York Police Department in stopping and frisking people simply going about their daily routine is a violation of the Fourth Amendment.
Well, specifically that it violated the rights of minority New Yorkers — and the judge found violations of the 14th Amendment, as well. The majority of stop & frisk detentions were targeted at young black males. The practice of stop and frisk results in 88% of the people detained being released without charge.
In other words, they’re simply harassing people. Police — of course — defend the legality of stop and frisk, which the Supreme Court erred in finding constitutional. But legal isn’t necessarily right, an increasingly common phenomenon when dealing with law enforcement and the intelligence community. It was legal to prevent people (specifically, the Scots) from emigrating from Great Britain with the Navigation Acts of 1803. It was legal for the East German police to violently stop their people from fleeing to the West. It was legal to harass, arrest without charge, or deny basic legal protection to Jews and other “non-German” citizens of the Third Reich after the 1935 Nuremberg Laws. It was legal to detain Japanese, German, Italian, and Hungarian-Americans in camps during WWII (the Supreme Court said so!)
Legal isn’t always right. And when it’s wrong, the public should fight back against them.