Evidence is no longer necessary to punish.
WHERE'S THE EVIDENCE?
Buster W. Newton
Over two hundred years ago, those individuals interested in establishing the United States devoted much of their time to discussing and writing papers about the rights of the new country's citizens. Having fled their ancestors' countries because of unfair laws that persecuted innocent people, these early founders spent many, many hours trying to carefully plan for a system of justice that would be fair to all citizens.
Such concepts as "innocent until proven guilty," "knowing one's accusers," "knowing the accusations," "a trial by a jury of peers," "unreasonable doubt," and, very crucial to their system of justice, the basing of guilt upon "evidence" were discussed and written throughout their papers. Many of these ideas were stated in the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the American Constitution.
On paper and in theory these are wonderful ideas. It doesn't take an expert or a scholar to recognize this. The reality that all people are derived from nature and have a right to existence as much as anyone else is not difficult to understand. Every human would like to believe that what is hers/his is safe and secure from being forcibly confiscated by others. In addition, every human would like to believe that s/he is safe from unfair accusations or allegations that may give others the right to punish without proof of wrongdoing.
These planners of a new nation were extremely interested in trying to establish a country that would be ruled by law, not force. Their ideas, based on their writings, were to establish a country that would allow its citizens to live in an environment in which they would feel secure in owning their possessions and feel protected from being unfairly persecuted.
As long as fair laws, as written in the American State Papers, ruled the nation, then the American citizen could feel secure that s/he had rights. As long as evidence and proof of wrongdoing were prerequisites for an individual to be punished or for a person to lose her/his property, then the citizen was free.
Freedom, as we all know, means having rights. American politicians have proclaimed to its citizens and to the world for that matter that America is a land of freedom. There is not an election held in the United States in which this declaration of freedom is not announced. Why, there is even a Statue of Liberty symbolizing freedom greeting newcomers to the United States.
This means America's citizens have rights. Citizens of the United States cannot have their personal possessions or their rights denied without first being convicted of a crime based on evidence.
This, I'm ashamed to admit, is baloney. At one time I believed it to be true. I was convinced, as I'm assuming many Americans still may be convinced, that by virtue of being born in America, I had the rights of an American citizen. My government protects my property from being forced from me, and I am safe from being punished without first being found guilty of a crime based on evidence in a court of law. How foolish I was to believe this.
This is one of the biggest lies promoted in America. If the government chooses to deny rights, its citizens, in reality, have no freedoms or rights. The very same politicians that were elected because of their proclamation to safeguard the citizens' rights have passed laws denying the citizens' rights.
Evidence is no longer required to confiscate a person's private property or to punish a person. No, all that is needed is for the government to have 'reasonable cause' or 'allegations' for the government to seize an individual's property or to harshly and cruelly disrupt a person's pursuit of happiness.
The simple truism that supports the right of an individual to be her/himself without fear of persecution is still just a dream. The idea that if a person is not harming another or is not stealing another person's property, then that person has the right to live her/his life as s/he so chooses is just a thought. In reality, a person can be totally innocent of any wrongdoing or criminal activity and can still be punished without any charges or convictions.
What's even more devastating about this reality is that it is the government that has this power over the individual's rights. It is the government that more often than not denies citizens of their rights. Even more unsettling is that the government is comprised of people who are using the laws to carry out this horrible act of injustice, and these very people are the first to say that they believe in America's freedom. Well, it is America's freedom for some -- for the chosen few.
To proclaim to the citizens and to the world that America is a land of freedom while at the same time circumventing these freedoms for many Americans is a mockery. The decades that have passed since the founders attempted to establish a country in which each and every citizen had the right to pursue her/his happiness just so long as the citizen did no harm to others and/or respected other people's property have witnessed the total destruction of the original founders' dreams.
It is not true in America that a citizen can be minding her/his own business and will be free from persecution of some sort. An American can be doing no harm to another and/or can be leaving other people's property alone but still stands the chance of being in a situation that may find her/him losing her/his private property. Not only that, but a person may also be forcibly restrained from using a phone or even knowing why s/he is losing her/his personal possessions. This is not freedom. This is not rights.
All kinds of examples of this horrible injustice are happening every day. Sadly, government officials who are convinced they are upholding the law and doing what is just are doing much of it. Having the resources of the government, these public employees are able to reign terror upon innocent people who are doing no harm whatsoever to others.
For example, a little old black lady in one of the Southern states is in jeopardy of losing her home that has been in the family for over a hundred years. Why is she in this perilous situation? What crime has she committed? Who has she physically harmed, or what has she stolen? She has only loved her grandchildren, and, because of this love, she is fighting to keep the government from taking her home.
How can this be? Well, as I understand it, she allowed her grandchildren to stay with her. While they were living with her, these family members 'allegedly' were selling some drugs. The grandmother did not know this. Supposedly, they were involved with these drug deals while living in her home. With the laws as they are today, the local police were able to pursue gaining control of her home because the home was involved with drugs. It does not matter that the homeowner knew nothing about this activity. The grandmother was only providing her grandchildren a place to stay.
I guess I'm out of balance or totally confused, but this seems like a hideous law that is as cruel as anything ever done against people throughout history. This poor woman has done no harm to anyone. Yet, she stands to lose the only thing she has -- her family home. She did no crime, but she is going to suffer. She is going to be punished, or should I write, she is being punished. Just imagine the emotional trauma she has been experiencing, wondering when her home will be seized by the government. This is despicable.
If the government wants to punish someone, then they should be punishing the ones who committed a crime. People cannot be held responsible for other people's actions. If this were the case, then most people would be in danger of being punished for something they did not do. Who knows what those around us are doing in their private lives. Frankly, I don't want to know, but at the same time I do not want to be held responsible for their choices.
Unfortunately, this is happening too often in the land of freedom. Thousands of people have had their homes or their cars or their money or anything else of value they may have seized because their property has been allegedly involved in a crime. What kind of law is this? This is no law at all. This is out-and-out tyranny! What it boils down to is that it is a moneymaking proposition. It has nothing to do with law.
The poor grandmother I mentioned previously means nothing to those individuals who are using the law to confiscate her land and home. Their interest is not in law, but it is in turning a profit. This old lady's possessions can be sold in a public auction for profit. The person or persons committing a crime are only being used to allow the law enforcement officials the 'legal' means of taking an innocent person's property. Why would they want to do this? For money! What other reason would there be?
Especially this 'war on drugs' mentality has gotten out of hand. Initially, the law enforcement officials were seeking a fair means of battling the big drug dealers, the ones who were making most of the money off of drugs and were able to avoid punishment because of their money. Laws were passed to seize their property and possessions, thus reducing their ability to escape punishment. Such items as cars, boats, planes, cash, jewelry, and a variety of additional personal possessions could be seized and sold to help the law enforcers combat these 'big' drug dealers.
It didn't stop with the main dealers, though. No, it has spread to include the small dealers, the users, and, unfortunately, anyone who might even know someone using or dealing drugs. It has become America's Inquisition. If you don't have an anti-drug mentality, then you could be in danger of losing your possessions just by being associated with someone who might use or sell drugs, just as the grandmother who I mentioned previously.
It, however, doesn't stop here. There are even people who are being terrorized because they 'might' be involved with legal drugs. For instance, there's a lady in Florida who gave a friend some prescription medication because the friend had run out of her medication. It was just enough medication to get this friend by until this person could get her prescription filled.
The police, somehow learning about this, raided this lady's home, ransacked it, and scared her handicapped daughter unmercifully. The mother was taken away. All the neighbors witnessed this raid, standing in their yards and watching this horrible show of abusive force. Now this poor woman is in fear of losing her home and everything she owns. Worse, though, is the terror she has experienced. How can she ever go to bed without fearing someone will be busting in her front door and taking her away? All of this disgusting treatment of human beings was done because of prescription drugs. Where is the crime? Who did this woman harm, or what property did she steal?
The only person that was being physically abused and in jeopardy of losing property by force is this poor lady who loaned a friend some prescription drugs. She, like the grandmother, has learned that her rights as an American citizen are not what she had been taught in grade school.
Years ago black people knew they had no rights because of the color of their skin. It is unimaginable to me that human beings, based on such an insane reason, were slaves and were literally owned by other humans. Worse yet, the government promoting all people's equality accepted this craziness. Not until a horrible war between the states was fought did some of this degrading persecution against people because of color begin to be lessened. This points out the need for fair laws protecting each and every citizen, not just a chosen few.
Again, in this land of freedom innocent people are being persecuted for something other than doing harm to others or stealing other people's private property. I cannot guess the number of people who have been jailed, mistreated, or fined because they may have chosen to use a drug, like marijuana, for instance. Many of these persecuted people may have just been growing some of the herb in their homes for personal use but were raided and arrested for doing this activity.
What made this activity a crime? Nothing but some people with the power and influence to rule that it is a crime. Many of those people who were raided and arrested were responsible human beings. They worked and paid their bills. They did no physical harm to other human beings. They did not steal from others and damage other people's property. They only wanted to do something that helped them to relax and enjoy themselves, just like many of those people who choose to use alcohol to relax and enjoy themselves. Yet, because those in power did not approve of this form of relaxation and enjoyment, these innocent users of marijuana are treated criminally.
Our prisons are filled with these people who chose to use an 'illegal' drug for relaxation. The last I heard, America has over two million people in prisons with a vast majority of them being there because of drug-related reasons. In fact, more prisons are being built than there are new schools. What a pitiful indictment on freedom!
Not only are many people being treated criminally because of personal opinion, not criminal activity, but also innocent people having nothing to do with drugs are suffering. A man was sleeping peacefully in his home when suddenly someone broke through his front door and came into his home. Grabbing his shotgun to protect himself, he ran out into his living room only to be shot and killed by a public official. The shooter was a narcotic agent who was in the process of raiding the man's home.
Having mistakenly been given the wrong address, the agent didn't realize he was shooting an innocent person. Unfortunately, no innocent person wants her/his home to be raided because of an accident. We would all like our right to privacy to be respected. The public official who shot the innocent man as well as the person responsible for giving a wrong address just made a mistake. They will not lose any of their rights. Their goal was to raid a home allegedly involved with drug dealing and/or use. It was unfortunate that they had the wrong address, especially for the dead man and his family.
Another killing of an innocent man due to drug-related reasons occurred in California. A wealthy businessman who owned some choice land that public officials wanted for public reasons, whatever that means, was also sleeping peacefully in his own home. As with the previous example, he woke up to someone breaking into his home. He, too, grabbed his rifle to protect himself and was shot while trying to defend his home. Again, it was a public official doing the shooting that killed.
Only in this case it wasn't due to a mistaken address. It was due to false accusations or allegations that allowed an eager public official the opportunity to try and obtain some private property for public use.
Someone had accused the wealthy man of dealing drugs. Armed with these allegations, the law enforcement officials raided his home. No drugs were discovered, but the innocent man was shot in the process of the police's pursuit of these false allegations. Evidence was not needed. It only took someone making unfair statements that allowed the government the opportunity to raid this man's home.
How can we claim to be a nation of freedom when all it takes is something as flimsy as allegations to permit the government to raid your home or place of business and seize whatever it so desires? Evidence or proof of something criminal is not necessary. All it takes is statements by someone. This places our rights as a citizen in a very fragile condition.
For example, another incident that occurred in California illustrates this fragility very poignantly. This example had nothing to do with drugs. A wife and husband had their home raided and had their two children taken from them. These children were four and five years old. Why were they forced from their parents? Again, like in so many of the drug-related cases, all it took was someone making false allegations.
In this example, it was the wife's sister's therapist. The therapist, hearing from the wife's sister who accused the parents of satanic worship, called the law enforcement officials and reported these accusations. The officials, based on the untrue statements, took it upon themselves to raid the home and seize the children. There was no attempt to gather evidence. There was no attempt to pursue facts that could provide them specific reasons for their going into these private citizens' home and forcibly taking their children. All it took was 'reasonable cause' based solely on hearsay. Where's the evidence? In this day and age, none is needed.
Well, after several months of investigation following the raid, the police decided there was no real evidence that the children's lives were in danger due to their parents' being Satan worshippers. The children were finally returned to their parents. Just imagine, though, the terror these two young children experienced. Just imagine the pain and agony the parents went through worrying about their two children. When the children were returned by the social agency that had been keeping them, there was no apology or regrets by these 'professional' people. Similarly, the police had no apologies or even cared to explain why they used their power to do what they did without first making sure there was proof other than hearsay.
How can it be in America that the law enforcement agencies can arbitrarily raid anyone's home or business based on allegations? Shouldn't there be corroborating evidence? Shouldn't a citizen have the protection of knowing her/his rights are secure unless there is specific evidence that can be used in a court of law? Didn't the writers of the American State Papers take great pains in spelling out the need and requirement of citizens to be free from persecution without first being convicted of a crime?
The due process of law demands that a person be given the rights of knowing her/his accusers, knowing the accusations, and being tried by a jury of peers. Until this lawful procedure is followed, then a person is innocent until proven guilty. A person has the right of her/his pursuit of happiness. This is freedom. This is liberty.
Sadly, this is not true in America. Citizens can have their property seized and sold by government agencies. All these agencies need, as a reason for doing this, is 'probable cause.'
A lady in New Jersey, for instance, who was a law enforcement official, had loaned her car to her son. Unknown to her, her son was doing some small drug dealing while using his mother's car and was caught by the local drug agency, the one for which his mother worked. Since the car was accused of participating in a crime, the car was seized by the police agency. The mother had no rights in getting her car back. Of course, she could have gone to court and spent her resources to prove that she was innocent and may have gotten her vehicle returned. There was no guarantee of this, though.
Why should she even have to do this anyway? It was her son that committed the crime, not her car. The car didn't know what it was doing. Neither did the home of the grandmother I wrote about previously. Yet, the law, as it is written, can hold the car and home responsible and seize them. For punishment, the police can sell the car and home and keep the money for police expenditures. The owners of the car and home have no rights. They are guilty for what someone else has done, and there is no evidence of their doing any criminal activity other than being associated with these people who may have broken the law.
Is this justice? I think not. It is just another form of government abuse that is hidden behind the laws. More often than we can probably imagine, these laws are being used to persecute innocent people.
Down in Manatee County, Florida, not too long ago, police officials working for an elite narcotics agency confessed to lying about an arrest they made. One of the elite officers admitted that he wanted this citizen's car because it looked 'cool.' He wanted it both for his police work and personal use.
So, to get what he wanted, he, along with his partner, stopped the car, planted cocaine in the vehicle, and arrested the innocent victim. With this 'evidence' they were able to seize the car and use it for their personal reasons. There was no trial or evidence used other than this planted evidence. Yet, the officers were able to get what they wanted by using the law, which doesn't require a conviction to seize property.
In fact, eighty percent of the seized properties have no convictions. Once the property is seized, then it is up to the owner to prove the innocence of the confiscated property. With the price of justice these days, it would probably cost the owner more money than the property is worth to pursue fairness in the court system.
Worse, though, with the way the law is these days, the owner will be fighting a no-win situation. Armed with 'probable cause' and the law being what it is, the owner stands no chance. It is the property that is being charged, and how do you prove the innocence of the property?
As so many unfortunate people have learned, they can't. Therefore, the property belongs to the law agencies. This is great for the law agencies. The property is sold, and most of the money is used for police expenses, such as new equipment, salaries, and so forth. Millions of dollars have been used this way. In other words, it isn't as much of a case of upholding the law as it is making money. This could very much be a conflict of interests for those who are charged with serving and protecting the people. Money, unfortunately, has a way of taking charge of human endeavors, and the police are no different than anyone else.
Money, too, may not be the only motivator for raiding an innocent person's private office or home and confiscating a person's personal possessions without any specific evidence, without a trial, and without a conviction. Such reasons as suspicion, envy, jealousy, governmental cover-up, and association can result in an innocent person's being put under investigation, losing her/his business career, experiencing public humiliation through the media, and having her/his private possessions seized. Sadly, this can all be done without the person having any idea as to why this is occurring.
In Dayton, Ohio, for instance, a businessman had his office raided by the FBI. His private business records and equipment were seized. Since he was put under investigation, he was told that the allegations made against him for allegedly misusing federal funds were under sealed affidavits, and he was not able to know who said what or what was said. The raid was publicized in the local newspapers and on the local television networks. His character and integrity were questioned openly. The governmental agency doing business with him decided to withdraw all of its business since the businessman was under investigation. As a result, his business was ruined. His twenty-one year career was destroyed.
All he knew at the time was that a federal employee who made referrals to his business had confessed of doing a crime with another private businessman. This crime, however, was these two people's crime. It was not his crime. Yes, he knew them, but he had no idea what they were doing privately. If the government had suspected him of being involved with something criminal, then public officials could have come to his place of business, politely requested to review his records for evidence of wrongdoing, and eventually pursued punishing this man based on facts, not hearsay or suspicions. No, this would have been too rational and humane.
Instead, using the forces of the government, not giving this man any benefit of the doubt, finding him guilty before being tried by a jury of peers, they raided his business, confiscated his property, provided the media the public means to question this man's honesty, and, due to this action, caused his career to be destroyed.
Over five years later, he has not heard one word concerning the investigation. Since he wasn't given any charges, he can't go to court to defend himself. Knowing he did nothing criminal, he can only wonder why this was done to him. Was he guilty by association? Where was the due process of law? Where were his rights as a citizen? He has learned brutally that there is no due process of law.
The government can do what it wants without being concerned about the due process of law. People can lose and are losing property without convictions. People are being punished without any charges. The government is seizing property without telling people specifically why they are doing what they are doing. American citizens do not have the right of knowing who their accusers are or even what the accusations are. Citizens are at the mercy of the government in these situations and have no rights at all. There is no trial and no convictions based on evidence. Yet, there is punishment and agonizing pain by those unfortunate citizens who are cruelly caught in this web of governmental abuse.
The businessman from Dayton, Ohio, for instance, realizes that there is no sane way he can receive justice from his experience. Whenever the investigation is over, all the government officials have to do is say it is over, and that's it. His career has been ruined; he's been publicly humiliated; and he's had no due process of law throughout the ordeal. He was guilty before proven innocent, just the opposite of what the early designers of the American justice system had dreamed of developing. People without any conviction, any trial, any evidence, and participating in no crime can and are being punished because the public officials have this authority.
No evidence is required for them to practice this unjust system of law. Allegations, suspicions, and associations are all that is needed for an American citizen to lose her/his rights. All of the careful discussion and carefully written papers by the early developers of the American justice system have been relegated to show and theory.
These founders of the United States were concerned that the private citizens not become a victim of an uncaring government. They wanted the government to be for the people; they wanted each citizen to be protected from unfair accusations or allegations; they wanted each citizen to have the rights of knowing her/his accuser(s); they wanted the private citizen to know what the accusations or allegations were that were made against her/him; they wanted evidence to be shown to a jury of peers and guilt based on fact before a citizen was punished; they wanted the American citizen to believe and know s/he had rights and truly lived in a land of freedom. They wanted the people of the United States to feel secure that they were equal to all others, and the government was here to serve the people.
The dream of those who established the United States has been raped, pillaged, and brutally destroyed. Wanting a nation that promoted and guaranteed individual rights, the initial founders of the country carefully wrote recommendations, suggestions, and laws that were to guide the nation in achieving their objective of liberty for all.
These writings are even taught in all of the nation's schools. People all come from the same source -- nature -- and all are considered equal under the laws of nature -- having the self-evident truth of the right to existence. With this in mind, all human beings have the right to be her/himself just so long as s/he is not harming others or stealing other people's property. The individual has the right to think the way s/he wants and can say or write what s/he wants without fear of persecution.
There are laws, constitutional laws, in America that supports the belief of innocent until proven guilty. These same laws promote every individual's right to her/his chosen pursuit of happiness. Until a person is proven guilty in a court of law by a jury of peers who listen to the evidence presented, a person is considered to be secure from any punishment. Until there is a conviction, the individual is innocent.
Not true. Thousands of human beings in America have had their property seized without convictions. Many others are placed under investigation without any evidence of wrongdoing being presented to them. These investigated citizens are at the mercy of the law. While they are under investigation, their rights are denied. Their personal possessions can be seized. They can be wiretapped. Their being under investigation can be made public. In other words, they are being punished while the law enforcement officials perform their investigation. This is before any evidence is produced. This is before any specific charges are provided. This is before a trial is held. This is all backwards to what the early lawmakers in this country had intended.
Based on their writings, the early framers of the American Constitution were careful to make it very clear that a person was innocent until proven guilty. Proof meant having specific evidence that would be presented to a jury of peers. These peers would hear the evidence and come to a conclusion based on the facts. Until this due process of the law was followed, then the citizen was considered innocent and free from punishment.
What a fair system of justice this would be if put in practice, as it is written to be put in practice. Unfortunately, those in power have chosen to forget these early rules of justice and have passed laws that allow the justice system to ignore the constitutional dream of justice for all.
It is not justice when allegations, associations, suspicions, appearances, and other sources of information that is void of evidence can be used to deny the citizen her/his rights. A law that allows people's private possessions to be seized without a conviction is a law based on tyranny. Putting a citizen under investigation without specific charges is just another form of government abuse that the early founders disdained. They wanted evidence and proof, not hearsay or suspicion.
What about those poor citizens who are innocent but are put under investigation due to allegations without evidence? Their lives are ruined. They have their personal possessions seized. They are publicly humiliated. In other words, they are punished without any evidence. Yet, they are lawfully being investigated and can do nothing about it except sit and wait. Years may pass before these innocent people even hear anything concerning the investigation. Then, if they are not manipulated into some form of guilt but are told the investigation is over with no charges, what is the justice in this?
There is none. These innocent people have been put through a personal hell only because some government officials felt there were enough reasons without evidence to put the citizens under investigation. Being under investigation means that these citizens have lost their rights to their personal property or privacy. They are now under investigation by the government. The government can do this because the government has the law supporting them in this action.
It does not matter that these laws are diametrically opposed to the fair laws establishing this nation. It doesn't matter that the law is unable to provide specific charges based on evidence. It only matters that they suspect the citizen of doing something criminal and decide this suspicion is all they need to put this human being through a horrifying experience. When the citizen is innocent, what kind of justice is this? As I've said before, there is none.
While the citizen is under investigation, as I've also said previously, whatever reasons for being placed under investigation does not have to be revealed. Whoever said what about the private citizen who is being investigated does not have to be revealed. No specific charges need to be made. Yet, the government has the right to take the investigated citizen's property, the right to allow this person's investigation to be publicly announced, and the right to invade this citizen's private life through wiretapping and any other surveillance means the officials deem necessary.
The government has this right of secrecy whenever it suspects a citizen of some wrongdoing based on whatever it has been told. The government, unfortunately, does not have to provide the citizen with any evidence for its taking the forceful action it is taking. Surely, this is not the due process of law as outlined in the American Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or the Declaration of Independence.
Instead, this is the kind of action that the writers of these papers abhorred and were hoping to deter in this new land of freedom. These writers wanted a government for the people, not a government against the people. Especially, they did not want a government that could invade a citizen's pursuit of happiness, destroy that pursuit, and not have any evidence of wrongdoing. This is exactly the kind of unfair justice system they and their families had fled and wanted left in the old country.
Evidence no longer is required for a citizen to be persecuted. Somehow the laws of America have been altered to allow the court system, the law enforcement agencies, and the justice system to persecute and punish without proof. What a horrible system of existence! This is especially true if you are one of the unfortunate souls who have been caught in this terrible dilemma.
Before concluding this paper, I did want to mention an incident that I had heard on the radio while going to work the other morning. This story illustrates vividly the importance of evidence or, should I write, the importance of the lack of evidence.
As reported on the radio, there was a case in which a citizen had been charged and convicted of rape. He spent fourteen years in prison before dying in this place of punishment. One year after his death, at the insistence of a family member, a DNA test, which was not available at the time of his trial and conviction, was performed. The results of this conclusive test showed that this was not the rapist. He was cleared of the charges.
What an appalling story! For those who are fortunate enough not to ever experience such a dreadful incident, it is not easy to imagine the utter helplessness and frustration of being charged and convicted of something in which you were totally innocent. I'm sure that this man had been convicted primarily on the basis of witnesses and/or allegations. Obviously, there was no corroborating evidence, such as physical material that without a doubt proved his guilt. If so, he would not have been charged. When this evidence did appear, it was too late.
As the founders of the United States understood too well, the quality of human existence is uncivilized without just laws that protect all citizens from unjust persecutions. Much of their efforts and concerns were focused on these matters. As a result, they very carefully spelled out the rules for following the due process of law. Evidence, as much as anything, was crucial to this due process.
Just over two hundred years after their efforts, the lawmakers and law enforcers of America have produced a system of justice in the United States that circumvents this crucial means of justice. Laws that allow the government to seize property without convictions, laws that allow citizens to be put under investigation without knowing why, and laws that allow law enforcement agencies to seize children from parents based on mere allegations are not laws that promote and assure freedom.
No, these are laws that infuriated the early founders so much so that they carefully wrote into the American State Papers fair rules to follow to protect the citizen from unfair persecutions. Regrettably, these laws have been disregarded. Too many citizens now are asking themselves, "Where's the evidence?"