Creation of a Police State Through Zero Tolerance

Pop quiz time everybody. What do you do when a 12 year-old girl draws some doodles on a desk?

a. Make her clean the graffiti off of the desk.
b. Give her detention after school.
c. Call the police and have her arrested.

If you answer ‘c’ to the above question you are qualified to be the principal at the Junior High School in Forest Hills, New York. That’s right a 12 year-old girl wrote, “I love my friends Abby and Faith. Lex was here 2/1/10 :)” on her desk with a marker. Shortly after the police were called and the girl was handcuffed and arrested.

This is another grand example of how zero tolerance policies work. You establish that there will be no tolerance for graffiti and if somebody doodles on a desk you call the police. Time and time again we are reminded that laws enforced without consideration of context does nothing more than create a police state where people expect to be arrested the second they do something that isn’t approved.

For an example outside of schools let’s say there is a zero tolerance policy put into place that states killing another human being is illegal. Of course this sounds OK on paper under you realize since no consideration is made for the event somebody who was legally defending themselves would be charged for murder. The linked story has a list of other abuses of zero tolerance as well as police involvement in things that should be handled by school administrators.

Today National Park Carry Becomes Law

Today is February 22nd which means you can now legally carry in national parks so long as you obey the carry laws of the park’s host state.

According to the gun control advocates this is the day that violence in national parks will sky rocket, blood will rain from the sky to fill the streets, everybody who enters a national park will be shot, and bears will become extinct as gun toting maniacs poach to their hearts’ content.

For those of us in the real world this is the day where nothing changes except those of us who carry don’t become criminals the second we talk into a national park. My prediction is nothing will change except for the fact some people who would have been mauled to death by a random wild animal will not survive.

More On Big Brother

A few days ago I posted a story about a school district that got caught remotely activating built in web cams on laptops provided to students. Well some more information has come out. Apparently the school did activate the web cameras remotely 42 times. Of course they claim it was only to track stolen or lost laptops but I’m pretty sure those weren’t the only reasons considering how this case cam about. Now the fun part:

Either way, it looks like this is going beyond a civil case of the families suing the school district. The FBI is now investigating the case as well, to see if the district violated either wiretapping or computer-intrusion laws.

Now the FBI is involved. Yeah I hope this school district gets nailed to the wall over this. I’d love to see some people getting arrested or at least fired due to this whole fiasco.

What’s Mine is Mine and What’s Your’s is Mine To

File this article under further proof digital “rights” management means you don’t own your content. Apparently Sony, Ubisoft, and EA have decided to do everything they can to thwart you from buying used games without them getting a cut.

There is a list of games in the article that will not allow you to access certain parts of the games unless you register it online. If you purchased a used game that has been previously registered then you have to pay the publishers $20.00 to get a new registration code.

This kind of practice is really sickening. What the three mentioned publishers are really saying is that you don’t actually own your content and have no rights to use it as you see fit. But what’s really fucked up is this quote:

Piracy continues to be an issue of concern for the PSP platform, but the launch of the PSPgo and the ability to access the PlayStation Store directly from PSP-3000 were significant steps towards fighting piracy and getting consumers to download digital games legally.

Buying a used game isn’t piracy anymore than buying a used CD. The fact that somebody actually implied it here is simply retarded. Digital “rights” management is a scan through and through. I’m hoping gamers out there are smart enough to simply refuse to buy these titles. These kinds of practices need to be discouraged.

It’s funny to me how we treat digital media different than physical media. Let’s use the stereotypical car example for this. Let’s say you purchased a new Government Motors (Not that I’m picking on anybody) car. Government Motors decides you need to register your car in order to unlock the radio and heater. This registration is uniquely tied to your person so when you see it another person can’t use the radio or heater until they reregister it with Government Motors. In order for the a new owner to register it Government Motors will require a $5,000 fee.

That sounds pretty stupid doesn’t it?

Big Brother is Watching

A tip of the old hat goes to Dvorak Uncensored for this story. A federal class action lawsuit is bring brought forth against the Lower Merion School District. The school district issued laptops to each child with an integrated web camera which the school was able to remotely turn on and spy with. From the article:

Michael Robbins thereafter verified, through Ms. Matsko, that the school district in fact has the ability to remotely activate the webcam contained in a student’s personal laptop computer issued by the school district at any time it chose and to view and capture whatever images were in front of the webcam, all without the knowledge, permission or authorization of any persons then and there using the laptop computer.

Additionally, by virtue of the fact that the webcam can be remotely activated at any time by the school district, the webcam will capture anything happening in the room in which the laptop computer is located, regardless of whether the student is sitting at the computer and using it.

Scary stuff. Several question arise from this. First what was the purpose of being able to remotely enable the web cameras? Was it to spy on the children to ensure they weren’t doing anything wrong? Was is because there are perverts in the school district who get their jollys off of underage kids on camera? The implications of this could be rather astounding.

This also further proves a motto in the security industry, trust no one.

Bad Ass

Another article I found via The Firearm Blog. This story is about a man’s man who is obviously a bad ass and a good father:

“I shot him in the nuts with bird-shot because he was beating my daughter,” Kelly said.

That line alone allows me to overlook the fact the man was using a Taurus Judge. Seriously that one sentence extrudes bad ass. Anyways the daughter isn’t happy but you know what? I’m giving the father the benefit of the doubt since I wouldn’t react well to somebody beating my daughter (If I had one).