Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Fifth Amendment is Miranda

Some of the talk on TV and in the papers has brought the Miranda rights back into discourse. It seemed to start with the controversial reading of Miranda rights to the Christmas Day Underwear Bomber. In this case, someone who was not a citizen and could be easily classified as an enemy combatant was given rights that US citizens may presume. So the controversy is understood. However, some of the discourse has gone into areas of taking away someones citizenship, not reading Miranda rights so that intel may be extracted before a suspect can 'lawyer up'. All this is fine and well if you are not an American citizen. If you are not an American citizen you mat be classified as an enemy combatant, and so you cannot presume to have fifth amendment rights.

The message here is to remember this; if you are a US citizen you have fifth amendment rights. You do not have to wait for someone to read you the Miranda warning. You already have those rights.

You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you. Do you understand these rights as they have been read to you?

So if you are some white dude who clings to guns and god, and the men in black kevlar with helmets and guns swoop in to take your guns away, feel free to 'lawyer up'.
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