Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Do police have a "right to privacy" while working?

Radley Balko is doing a great job of keeping track of the ongoing legal and policy battles over civilians making audio or video recordings of police as they do their jobs.

I have to say that I think the idea that police have a "right to privacy" while doing their jobs is one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard. The development and spread of cheap and reliable recording technologies offers the chance for great improvements in civil liberties via the monitoring, and consequent improved behavior, of those entrusted to enforce the laws (which is to say, of those given a partial monopoly on the use of force). Police organizations should be stepping up in support of citizen recording as a way to improve their level of professionalism and their reputations.

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