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ACLU Says DNA Collection Violates Constitution

September 18, 2012 by  

ACLU Says DNA Collection Violates Constitution
PHOTOS.COM
In California, 11,000 DNA samples are collected monthly.

The American Civil Liberties Union will try tomorrow to convince a Federal appellate court in San Francisco that DNA collection of innocent citizens is unConstitutional and an attack on personal liberty. The ACLU wants to get rid of California’s Proposition 69, a proposition which allows police to obtain DNA from every person arrested on felony charges.

All those arrested on felony charges have their cheek swabbed with a cotton swab. This gives the State information on those who are found not guilty and released. About 11,000 samples are collected monthly.

Maryland enacted a similar law, but the U.S. Supreme Court ruled it unConstitutional in April.

Those in favor of such laws say that DNA is just part of the justice process, allowing people to be found even decades after a crime. But the ACLU believes that if DNA is taken from a person who is found innocent, the innocent person’s privacy has been violated.

Lily Haskell was arrested, charged with a felony and swabbed for DNA after attending an anti-war rally in San Francisco. Charges were quickly dropped.

“Now my genetic information is stored indefinitely in a government database, simply because I was exercising my right to speak out,” Haskell said.

Bryan Nash

Staff writer Bryan Nash has devoted much of his life to searching for the truth behind the lies that the masses never question. He is currently pursuing a Master's of Divinity and is the author of The Messiah's Misfits, Things Unseen and The Backpack Guide to Surviving the University. He has also been a regular contributor to the magazine Biblical Insights.

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  • Harold Olsen

    I do not see anything wrong with cops taking a DNA sample from suspects who are booked for a crime. It is not different than fingerprinting them. DNA, however, is apparently not as reliable as fingerprints. It’s my understanding that twins have identical DNA. Their DNA my differ if one is taking some sort of midication, though.

    • RivahMitch

      Sorry, but, I actually have to agree with the American Criminal Lobbying Union on this one. It would be easy to construct a scenario where police arrest people just to build up a DNA library against possible future wrongdoings… I’d be OK with DNA of CONVICTED felons but, given the way the country is going, it may become a felony to smoke a cigarette or use electricity or spend your paycheck or call an Islamic terrorist an Islamic terrorist or the Kenyan Marxist a Kenyan Marxist. (Of course, at that point, we’ll all be armed felons and many of us will be dead.)

      • Dee

        I agree!!

      • Nadzieja Batki

        Why is ACLU on the side of the people who object to DNA collection and profiling? They will have the words of the law couched in such a way that it will be as if the people themselves ended up wanting the law.

      • http://yahoo gator

        well said Mitch, remember however that there are more of us than them, and our military would never turn their gun’s on us. “a rifle behind every blade of grass” the japanese general’s words were true back then as they are now.

      • http://yahoo gator

        AMERICAN criminal lobbyist union! LOL, i like that!

    • http://NA Bill Kettering

      Today DNA tommorow we wear brown shirts with a swastika on the sleeve. When will we stop allowing our Rights and Liberties to be lost in the interest in,”Safety”. If you are not familar with what Ben Franklin said about people willing to give up their freedoms for safety,perhaps now would be a good time for you to do so sir. Bill

  • CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON

    THE PERSON WHO INVENTED THE ABILITY TO DETECT “DNA” SHOULD HAVE BEEN PAINFULLY MURDERED! PERIOD!

    THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOT HAVE A RIGHT TO OWN A PART OF AN INDIVIDUAL’S BIOLOGY AND USE IT AGAINST THE INDIVIDUAL.

    • Karolyn

      Chris – You’re kidding right? DNA has not only been instrumental in convicting perpetrators of horrific crimes but also in exonerating the not guilty as well. Why throw out the baby with the bathwater? Criminals give up their rights.

      • Hedgehog

        Karolyn: for centuries and even today, information gained by torture has been used as evidence to convict alleged perpetrators. Are you in favor of torture? Where does it end? Should the TSA be allowed to take DNA swabs, or urine samples, or stool samples, or blood samples, never mind the police? Violation of someone’s body, because they are ACCUSED of a crime is not right or just!

    • CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON

      “Karolyn,”

      MA’AM, THIS MAY SOUND HYPOCRITICAL TO YOU SINCE LIBERAL FEMALES BELIEVE THEY HAVE A RIGHT TO CONTROL THEIR BODIES IN REFERENCE TO ABORTION.

      BUT, MY BODY IS MINE! FOR THE GOVERNMENT TO FORCEFULLY TAKE A PART OF IT, WOULD BE LIKE GIVING ME THE “SHAFT” AGAINST MY WILL.

  • pete0097

    They should not be able to collect DNA. Even though no one has identical DNA, they don’t compare every strand of DNA or nucleaotide. There are similarities that make us too close for comfort. In reality, a monkey’s DNA is only 3% different from ours and even that is too close for comfort.

  • hambone

    I guess they have forgotten that when you go to jail, you give up your rights.
    this isn’t against the Constitution at all. That goes for voting as well they have no right to vote either.

    • Congress Works For Us

      Maybe you need to learn how to read. DNA is collected from those ARRESTED, not those criminals CONVICTED.

      • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

        If the goal is to seek truth< then I for one have no problem with it. But today? You better have a good lawyer.

    • http://Yahoo.com Bill

      Lots of people go to jail. After the individual is “CONVICTED” I don’t have a problem with them taking the DNA. If you’re accused of rape or any crime where DNA is left at the scene, then that individual should be able to request their DNA be sampled and if it’s not them, it should be destroyed.

  • GRusling

    Although I rarely agree with the ACLU, this time the organization is right. What many people fail to recognize is that “Police” rarely arrest an innocent person, and when that does occur it’s usually someone with prior “convictions” and not some random individual off the street. Our Police “INVESTIGATE” innocent people with regard to crime, but most are soon exonerated and no arrest is ever made. However, that’s not always true, so taking the “DNA” of anyone and everyone arrested would, over time, build a HUGE database of totally innocent Americans, and that’s definitely unconstitutional in my State, if not every State.

    All of us often make the mistake of looking only to the FEDERAL Constitution for protection against authoritarian infringement of our rights, but we should look first to our State Constitution, since we have many more “STATE” Police Officers than federal officers, and those making an arrest on criminal charges are FAR more likely to be City, County or State officials than federal. Remember, authority not specifically granted to government by the constitution is WITHHELD from the government and remains with “The People.” That information would include “Medical” information, and our DNA profile…

    • bill kettering

      Very good point.BK

    • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

      Constitutions are the property of it’s people. They are there so the people can have reigns on their governments. When governments have control of the people’s constitution, you’ve got what we’ve got.

  • LC

    If your looking to curb recindisism(sp) institute tougher felony laws with strictly enforced maximum punishment. Federal capital punishment for violent, aggressive, subversive, repeating behaviors. Stop making prison’s so comfortable. They take away civil rights but allow tv’s,computers,radios that doesn’t make any sense at all. Daily executions of DNA proven rapists,child molesters,human traffikers,and the like. There is plenty they can do but don’t. Just like there is plenty they can do about immigration, entitlement fraud, identity theft,etc. But I guess all these are actually wanted problems in our society.

    • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

      Your talking about a dream world where government governs itself under the transcendental law, God’s law. Reality says “the” government is amoral, an institution where it’s will is our command. Truth is whatever it says.

  • FreedomFighter

    As long as the DNA is ONLY used in law inforcement investigations, ok.

    They the government do not own my DNA, are not to copy it, or use any part without my express permission.

    Laus Deo
    Semper Fi

    • Nadzieja Batki

      Remember what happens when the proverbial camel gets his nose in the tent, first the nose, then the head, then the neck,…., then his smelly behind and tail and then there is no place for you.

      • bill kettering

        Very well said! After viewing a few of these postings its becoming increasingly clear why it has been so easy for our goverment to relieve us of the rights we have lost thus far.BK

      • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

        That’s what has happened to America. Contrary to our Constiution we’ve let “smelly” central government into our homes. Things we could have done ourselves, we’ve past onto government. Now the camel is well fed and we’re starting to starve,

    • bill kettering

      None the less if they have it in their hands they can use it for whatever purpose they desire…..good, bad whatever. BK

      • FreedomFighter

        That sir is the real problem

        Laus Deo
        Semper Fi

  • Gypsy

    I think the problem is that they are gathering DNA from suspects, people arrested for ALLEGED crimes. They should be limited to the criminals that are CONVICTED of a crime.

    • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

      DNA has probably freed as many people as it has convicted. California and Illinois quit capital punishment because of the innocent people who were on death row.

    • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

      Gypsy, DNA, if it’s done honestly, is probably the best means of proving innocence or guilt. I don’t trust district attorney’s or ass’t. district att’y’s. They are climbing up the ladder of their profession and convictions is what the need. Scrap honesty or morality. That might be a blanket statement but I call them the way I see them. Antything that can get truth out is welcome in my book.

  • Kim

    Those that have something to hide are the ones objecting to their DNA being on file. With all that is happening, it would almost seem prudent to have whatever identification things are available right there for reference.
    You don’t have to be a criminal to have DNA being on file a good thing. Let that soak in.

  • http://wildeyguns.com The Christian American

    Ridiculous. What about finger prints and eye scans? It’s got to be all or nothing. Where do these, supposed, smart people come from? America had a law book that everybody was subject to, government and civilians. We’ve scraped that and replaced it with whoever’s in power’s laws. Want to change the laws? Change the government but remember, that’s flexible. The trancendental law, God’s law, was the common denominator we held our Constitution up to. Now? It’s God’s law or no law and we are finding that out.

  • CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON

    THE “BOTTOM-LINE” TO THIS DISCUSSION IS LIBERALS’ OBSESSION WITH THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY.

    SCIENCE SHOULD HAVE STAYED AS A TOPIC DEALING WITH THE DISECTION OF FROGS, THE ORGANIZATION OF SOLAR SYSTEMS, THE IDENTIFICATION OF ROCKS AND THE Periodic Table of Elements.

    TECHNOLOGY IS THE DOWNFALL OF HUMANS. IT NEVER SHOULD HAVE BEEN CREATED. I DO NOT LIKE COMPUTERS. I DO NOT LIKE CELL PHONES. I DO NOT LIKE PLASMA TELEVISIONS. YES – I OWN THEM; BUT ONLY BECAUSE I WAS FORCED TO.

    • bill kettering

      Liberals = Technology Seekers? Technology is benign until it is subverted to a particular nefarious purpose not that its evil in general, people cause the end use to be good or bad. BK

      • CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON

        “bill kettering,”

        MY POINT IS, WHY DO WE NEED TO GO TO THE MOON? WHY DO WE NEED TO KNOW WHETHER OR NOT PLUTO IS A PLANET? WHY DO WE NEED THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE? WHY DO WE NEED DNA-ANALYSIS?

        HUMANS THRIVED ON THIS PLANET BEFORE WE KNEW ABOUT ANY OF THESE THINGS. THE ACQUISITION OF KNOWLEDGE DOES NOT MEAN KNOWING EVERYTHING ABOUT EVERYTHING.

  • CBUETT

    Wow that guy in the picture accompanying the article has some serious cavities in that mouth.

  • Charles

    CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON, it seems that every time I come to one of these articles, you are on here screaming. Why don’t you learn to turn off the all-caps setting?

  • http://gravatar.com/bychoosing Jay

    RED ALERT!!! NEEDS VIRAL NOW!!!! OBAMA SIGNED NEW ORDER FOR COMPLETE CONTROL!!!! YouTube

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lpChoYgRaKs&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  • Nadzieja Batki

    So goodbye already.

  • RWS

    Last year I lived in Fullerton CA and
    my house was broken into while I was at work and a few things were stolen. Called the police, they filed a report and had their CSI van come over and finge print the place and look for evidence and asked us for our swab of our cheeks! We were the ones that got our house broken into and they were asking us for this “in case they found evidence of someone else’s DNA they would know it wasn’t ours”. I asked them kindly to leave.

    • bill kettering

      “To serve and protect” how that is applied probably varies in accordance to who you are.

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