Are you confused? Hearing or reading all kinds of things that a regular everyday American may find hard to follow? Join the club. I’m not a lawyer, but this is what I have so far.
My concern remains to seek out the facts and the constitutional lens from which the event concerning the former President of the United States must be viewed. I’ve read and listened to legal minds. However, one of you, a participant on this page, mentioned a possible Fourth Amendment violation. (Thanks for that!) In two days, I have not heard one prominent scholar call the Fourth Amendment by name in this whole situation. Here’s what the Fourth Amendment says:
“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.”
Here’s what I learn from this amendment:
If all Americans are entitled to equal justice under the law, we have a right to privacy- that is, all of us.
The Fourth Amendment does NOT say the government cannot search our homes and personal items. It prevents us from unreasonable searches and seizures. What does “unreasonable” mean?
-There must be a warrant with probable cause. (What is the probable cause in this case? Wouldn’t we want to know if this were you or I?)
-The probable cause must be written in an affidavit and be signed by a neutral and detached magistrate. (If this were you or I, wouldn’t we want to know who signed the affidavit and their background? Are they a detached magistrate? What does “detached” mean?)
Now, there might be an extenuating circumstance where a warrant does not apply, such as:
-a fleeing felon
-a lawful arrest to be made immediately
-a true emergency, like a house fire that might destroy evidence or harm the person(s) inside
If the former President had classified documents in his possession, remember that Presidents have the power to declassify documents.
Also, the Executive Branch is the authority that oversees the Justice Dept.
I will continue to watch with an eye on the US Constitution as this story unfolds. I hope you will, too.
This is Common Sense Civics and Citizenship. 🇺🇸