Sadly, I haven’t been very productive this year, but I have every intention of turning that around.
While being unproductive, I found it necessary to review comments I found on a web site I follow called Slashdot.org. It’s an interesting site that touches on a ton of subjects, many of which interest me. Many of which do not interest me, also. I get daily emails from the site with links to the day’s selected topics.
Like this …
Every once in a while I find one that interest me enough that causes me to read the inevitable comments from people all over the world with wildly varying points of view. The one that caught my eye today was Suspicionless Border Searches of Laptops Ruled Constitutional
. Some of you may find that boring in the extreme, and probably rightfully so because I think the minority of people in the world travel without laptops. Tablets and smart phones yes. Lots of them. The ensuing comments regarding this issue, which you can read, if you are moved in that direction, was interesting because they cot into quoting Consitutional Rights, and how risky it is to enter the US with a laptop. Personally I don’t see any problem with that because getting searched when going from one country to another is pretty much routine and expected.
I just don’t see the problem. Your suitcase is going to get searched, too, and everything, including your laptop, is going to get x-rayed. And, if a customs official, from any country, deems that you look a bit “iffy” then you will get more in-depth scrutiny. Some may call that profiling, but I’m OK with the term “gut instinct”. Someone makes a judgement decision and you get to visit with the security team, for whatever country you’re trying to enter, a little longer than most.
Big deal. I’m guessing that most of those spouting about abuse of our rights with regard to this topic would freak out if they found out you can’t take an apple into California from Oregon, Nevada, or Arizona. I’m here to tell you that I’m less worried about my laptop on entering the USA than I am about attempting to get past the Fruit Guards at the California borders with an unauthorized apple, banana, or orange.
If the guard has a suspicion about you, they’re going to search everything in your vehicle. I think they even have dogs and cats trained in the art of ferreting out hidden fruit. I either read that somewhere or just made it up. Hard to tell. Now, the issue with laptops is that there doesn’t have to be a suspicion to search it. If the guard wants to do it, it’s going to get done.
So, does it concern any of you? The laptop thing, I mean. If you leave the country, are you worried that you might be subject to a frisking, of yourself and your electronic toys?
Personally, I’m all in favor of frisking, electronically or otherwise. Wave your magic wand over me, or touch me if you must …