Recently I witnessed an intense (but civil!) debate in the ANP comment section on an article titled "Martial Law Mentality Has Become The New 'Norm' In The U.S.," which was representative of discussions and debates occurring nationally regarding the erosion of Constitutional rights of Americans, with many still believing government officials are bound by the U.S. Constitution and the bill of rights, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
After going through the 700-plus comments on that article, I ran across an AFP article of interest that show how easily everything can fall apart and how the majority of a country's populace can and do end up being willing accomplices in their own demise.
The title of the article is "Disquiet grows over French state of emergency," which speaks to the state of emergency declared by the French government after the coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris on November 13, 2015, which resulted in the death of 130 people with 368 people injured, between 80 and 99 of them injured seriously. (Source)
When a state of emergency was imposed in France after the November attacks, numb and terror-weary citizens welcomed the show of force.
But a sense of creeping unease over civil liberties has turned to outright opposition in many quarters as French President Francois Hollande indicated this week he would seek to renew the measure for another three months.
When asked about the government's intentions regarding the state of emergency, the source said simply that France was at "war", hence "we shall see if we are going to extend it (for) as long as necessary."
The state of emergency boosts police powers, allowing house arrests, raids both day and night and the banning of public gatherings, without permission from a judge.
SNAP! That quickly, after terror attacks, the French constitution is basically null and void - and directly after the attacks in November the "citizens welcomed the show of force," becoming accomplices in what could be the demise of their own freedoms.
Inevitably we will see people, good people, patriotic people who mostly agree with each other, fall on to slightly different sides of the fence here, saying "it can't happen here," without realizing it already has.
That claim along with the threat from the NYPD generated the most intense portion of the debate in the above referenced and linked ANP article on Sunday.
While states of emergency declarations afford state authorities more money and resources, what is generally overlooked is, as stated in the Legal Dictionary "Such a declaration allows suspension or change in functions of any branch of government, and gives the government the power to suspend certain rights or freedoms normally guaranteed by the Constitution."
Whether one was arrested for applying their Constitutional rights or not is irrelevant, the fact is that during a state of emergency they are giving themselves the right to suspend your constitutional liberties, is the revelant point.
'THEN THEY CAME FOR ME'
We have seen these arguments, debates and disagreements time and time again and every time I witness that particular discussion, I think of the following:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
- Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps.
THE EROSION OF THE BILL OF RIGHTS
Certain constitutional rights have already been stripped from many and while it may not have affected myself personally or a family member or a specific reader, if we do not speak out, share, warn people and fight back in any way we have available to us and our specific situations........ when it does happen to us, no one may be left to speak out.
Please note the examples listed below are just the tip of the iceberg, but many, many more can be found with simple searchs.
FIRST AMENDMENT: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Next up, Freedom of Press was exposed as a sham publicly by the new York Times in 2012, when they admitted that the Obama adminsitration has been allowed the right to censor news stories. In September 2013, they also admitted they had held back on "sensitives stories or information" at the behest of the U.S. government.
On a more insidious level censorship is being applied by making people fear telling the truth or speaking out, by labeling religious followers, patriots, constitutionalists, as enemies, dangerous or "extremists," or potential domestic terrorists.
SECOND AMENDMENT: A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
In April 2015 it was reported that Veterans were being labeled as "mentally defective" in order to strip their Second Amendment rights, with some told they could give up their veteran's benefits in order to "buy back" their constitutionally guaranteed right to bear arms, a right many of these veterans fought wars to protect for Americans.
Then we have even more of Obama's "sweeping executive action regarding guns," which reportedly has a "little detail regarding the “mental competence” of a potential gun purchaser," and also includes banning guns from some social security beneficiaries.
Seems to me like they are "infringing" left and right.
FOUTH AMENDMENT: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
FIFTH AMENDMENT: No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
July 2013 "Obama wins back the right to indefinitely detain under NDAA"
The Obama administration has won the latest battle in their fight to indefinitely detain US citizens and foreigners suspected of being affiliated with terrorists under the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012.
Congress granted the president the authority to arrest and hold individuals accused of terrorism without due process under the NDAA, but Mr. Obama said in an accompanying signing statement that he will not abuse these privileges to keep American citizens imprisoned indefinitely. These assurances, however, were not enough to keep a group of journalists and human rights activists from filing a federal lawsuit last year, which contested the constitutionality of Section 1021, the particular provision that provides for such broad power.
A federal judge sided with the plaintiffs originally by granting an injunction against Section 1021, prompting the Obama administration to request an appeal last year. On Wednesday this week, an appeals court in New York ruled in favor of the government and once again allowed the White House to legally indefinitely detain persons that fit in the category of enemy combatants or merely provide them with support.
Well, that also blows the SIXTH AMENDMENT out of the water as well, which states "In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense."
TENTH AMENDMENT: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
It can be logically argued that one of the most recent violations of states rights is in regards to refugees to which dozens of states have publicly refused to house them but the Obama adminsitration is continuing to resettle them within those states, threatening the local state officials and refusing to provide any information on just who he is putting where or their "vetting" details.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls told the BBC on Friday that France would "use all means" at its disposal to combat terrorism "until we can get rid of Daesh," an acronym for Islamic State, yet France continues to bring in more refugees with an untold amount of terrorists having infiltrated the resettlement programs throughout the world, meaning their state of emergency that they are planning to extend yet again, is indefinite.
The U.S. is also taking in tens of thousands of "refugees," despite the fact they cannot be fully vetted and with plans to increase the number.
How soon before a "coordinated" multi-pronged attack, like the one in Paris in November, occurs on U.S. soil and the U.S. government declares an official nationwide indefinite state of emergency, which will strip whatever illusion that we still have any constitutional rights, away.?
Do not tell us that you still have your constitutional rights just because you haven't felt the governments boot come down on your neck yet.
You don't, you just think you do.... until they come for you.