The big news in protecting citizens rights came out earlier this month in Sacramento. After months of wrangling over details, a bill reaffirming Californians’ right to record the police was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown. This follows similar efforts sweeping the country, including a similar law recently passed in Colorado.
A Law Had to Be Passed to Get Police to Uphold Well Settled Law
As reported by Fox 40, an important part of personal liberty was upheld. The controversy has arisen after many police organizations refuse to allow citizens or bystanders to record their actions. Some police agencies have responded nobly, asking their officers to wear cameras whenever they are on official business. Unfortunately, most have not acted in such a manner.
Some have been downright secretive, not permitting such actions that ultimately should protect both the police and the public. How far these actions will catch on in other states is yet to be seen. Citizens groups have brought the issue to the forefront and candidates such as Rand Paul have extended citizens’ rights into the public consciousness.
Filming Public Servants Helps Keeps them Honest
For residents of California, it is important to remember the precept of innocent until proven guilty. In far too many cases, police have used powers of coercion in order to manipulate suspects. Some police will even strike you, and then charge you with resisting arrest to cover for their unlawful acts. Their public taxpayer funded union will make it all but impossible to have the lawless officer fired or disciplined.
Such tampered or fabricated evidence has been hard to disprove without video or audio evidence. Furthermore, there are many cases where proper recording can defuse tensions, as can be seen in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man in South Carolina earlier this year. The officers’ actions were clearly in the wrong and he was ultimately charged with murder.
Obama’s efforts to make police wear bodycams is misplaced. We don’t need Orwellian cameramen filming us. Citizens should be filming the police, not the other way around. The legislature and Governor Brown appear have made an important step in the right direction by protecting all citizens’ rights.
The problem is that California is so lawless when it comes to sanctuary cities, dead people voting democrat, illegals using aliases collecting welfare and working simultaneously as “tax exempt” with a stolen SSN, that police selectively enforce laws in the Golden State. With leaders like this guiding public policy, who needs enemies? This action should also help police departments become more efficient and transparent. Hopefully other states will soon follow suit.