Checkpoints push buttons, boundaries
– UT San Diego, By Peter Rowe
What’s interesting to note in all the main stream media coverage of this issue is how unwilling Customs and Border Protection has been to publicly comment on the issue. If the agency provides any feedback at all, it’s usually in the form of some unsubstantiated claim regarding how important it is in the agency’s ongoing war of terror to seize people absent suspicion inside the country along public highways and investigate them for unknown crimes.
This trend was no different in the U~T San Diego article referenced above. In the article, Mr. Rowe writes:
“Despite several requests, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency did not answer questions about its checkpoints, not even revealing how many exist.”
Rather, Mr. Rowe had to rely upon generically written and disseminated agency platitudes in order to try & show CBP’s justification for such tactics against the American people. Take for instance the following fact-parched assertion from CBP:
“Checkpoints provide an additional layer in our Defense in Depth strategy. Our enforcement presence along these strategic routes reduces the ability of criminals and potential terrorists to easily travel away from the border.”
No where does CBP justify this assertion with independently-verifiable hard numbers and nowhere does CBP attempt to explain how removing agents from the actual border or its functional equivalent to harass domestic traffic inside the country absent suspicion, “reduces the ability of criminals and potential terrorists to easily travel away from the border”
The reason why CBP doesn’t attempt to justify these platitudes is obvious however – it can’t. This is why the agency not only refuses to speak directly to the media about the topic but also why the agency, in violation of federal law, resists responding to FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) requests regarding internal checkpoints in general and interdiction data in particular.
In other words, the same agency that demands complete transparency of individuals travelling along public highways inside the country, covets complete opacity for itself.