Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Customs Agents Feeling Lonely

San Francisco – Customs agents are copying American’s private documents because custom agents feel lonely.

According to a Freedom of Information Act suit filed by the Asian Law Caucus and the Electronic Frontier Foundation http://www.eff.org/press/archives/2008/09/23 US Customs agents are examining and in some cases copying “books, handwritten notes, personal photos, laptop computer files, and cell phone directories” of Americans returning to America.

The customs agents are acting in the absence of any indication of criminal conduct by these citizens and there need not even be suspicion of an individual’s actions to trigger scrutiny.

Marcia Funebre, of the Department of Homeland Security Press Office said, “Customs agents never get invited to parties. Nobody sends them those funny e-mails on Friday afternoons. They never get shown pictures of the new baby. Nobody calls, nobody writes. It’s really sad. Custom’s agents are very lonely people."

"I mean," said Ms. Funebre, "unless they look through your stuff how else are they going to find out the phone number of the person who's walking the dog while you're away or that you like reading John Grisham on the plane? They have to pillage through your personal information and make copies and then share with requesting law enforcement agencies because, basically, they have no lives. That's why they need to copy yours.”

Ms. Funebre refused to consider that these actions by Customs and Border Protection agents might be violating citizens’ rights.

“When our agents ‘review and analyze’ your personal financial data, they might just be looking for a donation for orphans. It’s harmless!” said Ms Funebre, “When they look at your handwritten notes, they’re probably just checking for spelling errors – for your own good! And, what’s wrong with asking you your political views, anyway? It’s not like we have secret ballots or anything.”


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