Mayor Wants Ban On Public Surveillance Lifted, Claims It Limits Ability To Fight Crime

by | Nov 15, 2019 | Headline News | 5 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This article was originally published by Mass Private I at Activist Post. 

    What should be headline news across the country is relegated to a single local newspaper fighting back against illegal government surveillance.

    Over the past two years, Memphis, Tennessee Mayor Jim Strickland, and the Memphis Police Department have claimed that a 1978 consent decree barring them from conducting political surveillance limits their ability to fight crime.

    The Commercial Appeal warns that Strickland wants to destroy the 41-year-old ban on public surveillance without a warrant.

    Before the Memphis municipal election, Strickland’s administration filed documents under seal in federal court asking to modify the 1978 Kendrick consent decree — the court order in question. That order keeps the Memphis Police Department from keeping people under surveillance unless they’re believed to be committing a crime.

    How much shadier can things get?

    Memphis Police Director Michael W. Rallings said: “that monitoring these public social media posts is simply good police work.”  And Mayor Strickland claimed two years ago that several dozen names he signed a trespassing arrest authorization for were done without his knowledge.”

    Memphis Daily News reporter Bill Nies asked if the City Hall list of active protesters was a result of police surveillance; Strickland said, “I don’t know. I didn’t create the list. I didn’t even know it existed as of 10 days ago.”

    Strickland claims he didn’t create a government blacklist but signed off on it anyway? Nothing shady about that right?

    The ACLU notes that the police department and Homeland Security decided to ignore the consent decree three years ago and secretly monitor activists and protesters.

    In 2016 and 2017, Memphis Police Department’s Office of Homeland Security decided it was legally appropriate and a good use of resources to create a fraudulent Facebook profile whose purpose was to deceive activists and gather information from them, including information from private posts.

    They even went so far as to create a PowerPoint presentation about BLM activists who protested police shootings. (To view the timeline of police surveillance click here.)

    Why does the mayor want the feds to allow them to surveil the public again?

    Because, public safety of course,

    It also may restrict MPD’s ability to coordinate with other agencies in providing public safety, like the Multiagency Gang Unit, Strickland said. To put it in more (everyday) terms – it may restrict the use of Sky Cops, traffic cameras, interstate cameras and publicly available social media post, which may provide a warning of a public safety threat.

    Interestingly, the mayor makes no mention of the University of Memphis Public Safety Institute’s 2018 report which shows that violent crime has dropped 4.2 percent compared to the previous year, and domestic crimes have dropped by 10.4 percent.

    So if violent crime in Memphis and the rest of the country is at record lows, why do police keep insisting they need to surveil the public and monitor their social media activity?

    Farrah Bara’s recent whitepaper called, From Memphis, With Love: A Model To Protect Protestors In The Age Of Surveillance” said it best.

    First, the sheer growth of technology allows officers to track vast quantities of information about protesters, making surveillance seamless. Social media, in particular, plays a direct role in this surveillance because social media accounts can access an individual’s location, which new technologies might be able to gather and analyze. For example, in 2017 and 2018, the federal government was granted two patents that endow it with the ability to use social media enabled technology to predict when the next protest will occur. (To view the patents click here & here.)

    That is the real reason DHS, politicians, and law enforcement want to have access to CCTV cameras and social media: to identify activists and squelch dissent.

    WMC Action News also described how DHS and the Memphis police used surveillance to target activists and protesters and place them on secret government blacklists.

    “This is why people do not trust government. This is why people do not trust law enforcement; it’s because of this,” Paul Garner with Mid-South Peace and Justice said.

    Our country has a history of surveilling and targeting activists, protesters, and union workers. So please do not take the government’s word that they need to secretly monitor the public to keep everyone safe.


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      1. This is when you know that govt has no interest in protecting your freedoms. If they did, they would be working on ways to combat crime that don’t infringe on the rights of the citizens. Instead, it is all about control of the masses and taking whatever means necessary to achieve your objectives.

      2. Mayor Jim Strickland, you have failed to understand the BILL of RIGHTS. You need to study the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution & Bill of Rights, the Federalist Papers, etc. You are the PROBLEM, not the solution. We do not live within a DICTATORSHIP, yet.

      3. My response to this Mayor is: File a Public Records Requests to that City for all the Emails To and From this Mayor’s Email address in the last 6 months. That should shut the loudmouth up for a while. More public corruption goes on daily in Local governments, than in the private sector. Start getting a hold of their communications between each other, and bust them for their own fraud.

      4. The PTB have installed high tech cameras and sensors at every intersection in my state.

        The sensors include radiological, explosive and bacterial sensors.

        We are all being watched. What’s going on in my area I understand is a pilot program that will go nationwide.

        Counter measures,never discard a used smoke detector. Take them apart and crazy glue the radiation source to the roof of random cars, not yours. You get the idea. Create enough false positives and the PTB can’t trust their surveillance system. Leave no fingerprints or DNA.

      5. As a former memphian…I assure you this do nothing asswipe doesn’t give a damn about fighting crime, just silencing critics, that’s all he cares about.

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