Using the police as a weapon
Patterico’s story about police pulling him out of his home in the middle of the night is chilling. Again, our current legal system (and I’m including law enforcement in that) assumes good faith. It assumes a local community. It assumes this even from people who are provably untrustworthy.
It does not assume that when the police get a telephone call from someone claiming that they themselves have just committed murder, that the telephone call actually came from somewhere else.
At 12:35 a.m. on July 1, 2011, sheriff’s deputies pounded on my front door and rang my doorbell. They shouted for me to open the door and come out with my hands up.
When I opened the door, deputies pointed guns at me and ordered me to put my hands in the air. I had a cell phone in my hand. Fortunately, they did not mistake it for a gun.
The call that sent deputies to my home was a hoax. Someone had pretended to be me. They called the police to say I had shot my wife. The sheriff’s deputies who arrived at my front door believed they were about to confront an armed man who had just shot his wife. I don’t blame the police for any of their actions. But I blame the person who made the call.
Because I could have been killed.
In lighter times, today is Towel Day. Unfortunately, we can’t really hide from monsters by blinding ourselves to the truth. Our society as a whole falls apart in a world where there is no trust. In a sense, that’s what society is, a web of trust. We assume that the telephone number we see is the right one; we assume that the other drivers on the road don’t want to cause a massive accident; we assume that the people we meet on the sidewalk are not part of some conspiracy against us. We must assume these things. The world where we cannot assume these things is a deadly world. We cannot assume them in a world where people like Brett Kimberlin are sentenced to fifty years and get out after thirteen. We cannot assume them in a world where these kinds of deadly threats and debilitating harassment are met with indifference by those who fund and give voice to people like Kimberlin.
Today, on my home page, the following random quote came up:
As a blogging community, even as just a conservative blogging community, although it shouldn’t be so limited, we have numbers, but they won’t matter without unity.
In response to Brett Kimberlin abuses a very abuse-friendly court system: Convicted serial bomber Brett Kimberlin is taking advantage of a court system that assumes good faith to harass bloggers doing nothing more than telling the truth about his convictions.