The Lineup
B.I.R. Column Of Fame
Man of Steel... Wood... and Mud: Bear Grylls
Rock Legend: Tom Morello

League Gods: The Emperor and Alfie

Str-8 Shoota: Malcolm X

Str-8 Shoota: Zack de la Rocha

Super Bad mofo's

Comrade Hillary

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Chuck another civil liberty on the barbie mate 

I must admit my heart skipped a beat when I saw the new Criminal Investigations (Bodily Samples) Amendment Bill National is passing through Parliament at the moment - whereby any New Zealander who police intend to charge with a crime can have their DNA taken by force.

My initial fear was that the new tool in the State's arsenal might be detrimental to civil liberties in New Zealand and the system open to abuse by the Police i.e. police see kid with attitude, police say kid has broken the law by...insert bogus reason....police take kid to police station and forcibly take DNA and run it through the system...police decide not to press charges afterall....police have a good laugh about harrassing kid with attitude after shift.

I immediately recalled Norightturn's recent commentry on the country's "toxic police culture" following the decision they made not to prosecute a police recruit who was going around assaulting people:
Unfortunately the police's response shows that they have learned nothing from the Clint Rickards saga. Rickards wasn't just a bad person: he was a product of the toxic police culture that had recruited, trained, socialised and promoted him - a culture in which police protected their own and actively conspired to cover up each other's crimes. That culture is clearly still alive and well, and as long as it is, we will see people like Rickards and his accomplices again and again, and the confidence the public have in the police will continue to decline.
But then, to my great relief, I read further into National's press release and discovered the potential for abuse is virtually non-existant - as Justice Minister Simon Power has seen to it that:

the police will develop guidelines to avoid any arbitrary or unreasonable application of this power...."It must be remembered that this tool can do just as much for those who are innocent as those who are found guilty of a crime.”
Oh well, as long as the Police will be overseeing the Police, then I guess everything is just swell.

Labels: , , ,

Norightturn has blogged on the same issue this morning.

Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

The New
Blogging it Real supports the following sporting organisations