"if you have nothing to hide"

This is a discussion on "if you have nothing to hide" within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; I often hear the argument that if a person has nothing to hide they should comply with any requests from government officials to be questioned ...

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Thread: "if you have nothing to hide"

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    VIP Member Array mlr1m's Avatar
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    "if you have nothing to hide"

    I often hear the argument that if a person has nothing to hide they should comply with any requests from government officials to be questioned or searched. Many of these same people complain that only bad guys have rights when they see someone exercising their rights in an attempt to avoid being convicted of a crime.

    Would I be wrong to conclude that those expressing these views are against individual citizens having rights? In effect aren't they saying that since a honest citizen has nothing to hide that they have no need of any rights to protect them from a search or questioning?
    Then on the other side only criminals have a real need to hide anything and these rights assist them in getting away with their criminal activities?

    This logic seems to say that we would be better off without these rights. After all a honest law abiding citizen has no need for these rights. Leaving criminals as the only ones to benefit from them.

    Then we go to the question often asked of why, if you have done nothing wrong, are you making it hard on the Government by refusing their requests to search or question you. They never ask why the Government is interfering with my life when asking to do these things. Am I here to make life easier for the government or did we establish a government to make our lives better?

    Michael

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    Such arguments assume the authorities to always be infallible, magnanimous and benevolent. Since that assumption is demonstrably false, I'll just stand here quietly while we wait for the warrant to arrive.
    "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk."
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    VIP Member Array mlr1m's Avatar
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    Don't get me wrong. The intent of my post was not to question the Governments desire to search or question anyone they want to. That desire is completely reasonable from their view. It would make their job easier. It is a common sense approach from their view.

    My question is with those private citizens who express the views I mentioned in my original post.

    Michael

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    There was a time when Innocent Until Proven Guilty, the Bill Of Rights (first 10 amendments) limitations on government actions, and Live Free Or Die had real, practical meaning.

    If I have nothing to hide, then I should have no problems with your intrusion upon my life, Mister G man? Okay, then you should have no problems with my requiring you to prove what possible reasons justify your daring to sidestep the legal restrictions placed upon your actions by the People.

    It all comes down to "proxies," I think. A person in a government position has become an 'authority' instead of merely the hired help. Liberties such as the 4A limitation on unreasonable search/seizure all too often masquerade as something quite different. And merely demanding that our governing hirelings live up to the standards we've set for ourselves often brings it right down around our ears, as a proxy for 'governance.' Is it real or Memorex, in a sense. Give me real.

    To me, those things have meaning. Always did; always will. And they'll always be worth fighting for.

    EDIT: Freudian slip, there, with that "Guilty Until Innocent" brainfade. Oops. To all the ships at sea ... go easy on an old fart, eh?
    Last edited by ccw9mm; July 5th, 2012 at 05:14 PM.
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    VIP Member Array paaiyan's Avatar
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    I have plenty to hide. None of it is illegal, it's just none of your, the government's or anyone else's business.
    My blog

    WARNING: This post may contain material offensive to those who lack wit, humor, common sense and/or supporting factual or anecdotal evidence. All statements and assertions contained herein may be subject to literary devices not limited to: irony, metaphor, allusion and dripping sarcasm.

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    I've been watching a few shows on TV several dealing with 'Game Wardens" and how they try to trap people into making statements that they then try to prove they lied about,and then warn them that lieing to an LEO/Game Warden is a crime and that during questioning if they knowingly lie they can be arrested,they also seem to use/abuse their powers of search to look for either more game than allowed for possession by law/or unlawfully taken game and any firearms/weapons which allows them to search pretty much everywhere.
    So even tho I try to obey all laws there may be an oversight I wasn't aware of and during the LEO's "Fishing Expedition" I may admit to breaking some unobscure law,so in that regard I will answer any pertinent questions as far as drivers license insurance,but anything else as far as( where you coming from,where you headed,do you have anything in the vehicle I need to know about,any bombs ,grenades,nukes,drugs,alcohol,dead bodies) I will remain mute and ask if we are done so I can go/if not am I being detained etc.
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    VIP Member Array JoJoGunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paaiyan View Post
    I have plenty to hide. None of it is illegal, it's just none of your, the government's or anyone else's business.
    What? All those huge sugary drinks they are going after in New York City??? I'd keep a low profile if I were you!

    And NO, they can't take all of my chocolate without a warrant AND a fight.
    msgt/ret, mr.stuart and darbo like this.
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    Member Array lordofwyr's Avatar
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    Here is the heart of the issue to me:

    The entire idea of the Bill of Rights is not that any of those rights are granted by anyone or anything. They are rights that exist because I am a free man, no matter WHAT the government wants. The Bill of Rights grants nothing to you and me. It tells the government YOU SHALL NOT GO THERE!

    Now, let's have a for instance - The government says, "We just want to look inside your home to make sure your guns are secure." Once in your door, ANY violation seen, heard, smelled or felt, no matter how small, no matter how ridiculous the law, no matter it was not in the original intent of the look around, no matter whether intentional, unintentional on your part, or due to negligence, no matter that whatever it was involved others and not you, etc., it now allows that government official to make you leave your home immediately (no, you may not remove clothes and other items which may become evidence against you) for an indeterminate time, seize, search, get warrants, etc. at their leisure, etc.

    Tell you what, as soon as the government lets me walk into Area 51, read the actual Project Blue Book files, see the JFK original reports, look at President Obama's Birth Certificate personally, at the hospital where it is stored, see the secrete military bases where senior government officials will go in case of nuclear war or maybe sit in on the Supreme Court's actual verbal deliberations, I will agree to their access in that manner......What? Are they afraid of what I might find out? Why are they afraid of what the Founding Fathers wanted my government to be....ME! A government of the people, by the people, for the people. Or maybe they have forgotten where their powers come from, which is us.

    Ok, rant completed, and my name will now pop up in several government computers as a possible terrorist I am sure, because I cling to my God, guns and my Rights as much as to my family.

    Fortune Favors the Bold!

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    Senior Member Array kerberos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofwyr View Post
    Ok, rant completed, and my name will now pop up in several government computers as a possible terrorist I am sure, because I cling to my God, guns and my Rights as much as to my family.

    As long as you don't think it's the first time...

    And a big +1 btw
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    There was a time when Guilty Until Proven Innocent, the Bill Of Rights (first 10 amendments) limitations on government actions, and Live Free Or Die had real, practical meaning.

    If I have nothing to hide, then I should have no problems with your intrusion upon my life, Mister G man? Okay, then you should have no problems with my requiring you to prove what possible reasons justify your daring to sidestep the legal restrictions placed upon your actions by the People.

    It all comes down to "proxies," I think. A person in a government position has become an 'authority' instead of merely the hired help. Liberties such as the 4A limitation on unreasonable search/seizure all too often masquerade as something quite different. And merely demanding that our governing hirelings live up to the standards we've set for ourselves often brings it right down around our ears, as a proxy for 'governance.' Is it real or Memorex, in a sense. Give me real.

    To me, those things have meaning. Always did; always will. And they'll always be worth fighting for.
    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    So even tho I try to obey all laws there may be an oversight I wasn't aware of and during the LEO's "Fishing Expedition" I may admit to breaking some unobscure law,so in that regard I will answer any pertinent questions as far as drivers license insurance,but anything else as far as( where you coming from,where you headed,do you have anything in the vehicle I need to know about,any bombs ,grenades,nukes,drugs,alcohol,dead bodies) I will remain mute and ask if we are done so I can go/if not am I being detained etc.





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    Senior Member Array Chad Rogers's Avatar
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    My view? This is just another thinly veiled us versus them thread.
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    Ex Member Array Harryball's Avatar
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    If they do not have a warrant, they are not coming in. End of story, I have nothing to hide.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1956 View Post
    Such arguments assume the authorities to always be infallible, magnanimous and benevolent. Since that assumption is demonstrably false, I'll just stand here quietly while we wait for the warrant to arrive.
    'Concur. There was a time when I was so naive as to believe that I could simply be transparent, knowing that I could trust authorities to plainly see that I was a law abiding citizen.

    Government agencies such as DHEC and the EPA have since taught me the hard way that they are not to be trusted. I keep my cards close to my vest now with any gov't entity or representative.
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    Senior Member Array dV8r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlr1m View Post
    I often hear the argument that if a person has nothing to hide they should comply with any requests from government officials to be questioned or searched. Many of these same people complain that only bad guys have rights when they see someone exercising their rights in an attempt to avoid being convicted of a crime.

    Would I be wrong to conclude that those expressing these views are against individual citizens having rights? In effect aren't they saying that since a honest citizen has nothing to hide that they have no need of any rights to protect them from a search or questioning?
    Then on the other side only criminals have a real need to hide anything and these rights assist them in getting away with their criminal activities?

    This logic seems to say that we would be better off without these rights. After all a honest law abiding citizen has no need for these rights. Leaving criminals as the only ones to benefit from them.

    Then we go to the question often asked of why, if you have done nothing wrong, are you making it hard on the Government by refusing their requests to search or question you. They never ask why the Government is interfering with my life when asking to do these things. Am I here to make life easier for the government or did we establish a government to make our lives better?

    Michael
    If authorities targeted criminals they would need to "profile", we all know this is a no-no.
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    VIP Member Array mlr1m's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chad Rogers View Post
    My view? This is just another thinly veiled us versus them thread.
    Actually no. I tried to make it clear that I did not question the Governments desires as they are perfectly rational.
    Don't get me wrong. The intent of my post was not to question the Governments desire to search or question anyone they want to. That desire is completely reasonable from their view. It would make their job easier. It is a common sense approach from their view.

    My question is with those private citizens who express the views I mentioned in my original post.

    Michael
    What I do not understand is the views of ordinary citizens that rights only benefit criminals and therefore are unnecessary. I admit that my attempt to keep it on topic have failed so far.

    Michael

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