Greyhound Finally Bans CBP, Border Patrol From Suspicionless Searches Of Its Buses And Passengers

from the bus-operator-boards-the-ban-bus dept

Greyhound has finally, definitively decided to stop serving up its customers to US border agencies.

A week ago, a CBP memo obtained by the Associated Press made something clear to CBP agents that should have been clear all along: they could not perform sweeps of buses without the permission of the bus driver or the bus company itself. Unfortunately, this means a bus driver can consent to a search on behalf of passengers, but it still was better than Greyhound's stance. The company had stated that it believed it could not legally refuse to allow CBP officers to board buses.

This was a problem. CBP officers were wandering far inland to perform searches, often targeting buses that never crossed a border. Anything within 100 miles of a border was considered fair game and reports of bus sweeps by CBP agents were trickling down from depots near the nation's northern borders -- far away from the supposedly deeply-troubled southern border where the current president believes more walls are needed to stop drugs, terrorism, and the possibility of being unable to secure an existence for whites and their progeny.

Greyhound was wrong and the CBP memo confirmed it. But Greyhound still refused to issue a blanket refusal on behalf of its drivers, many of who would probably feel (individually) it was perhaps unwise -- if not illegal -- to tell CBP agents to perform their fishing expeditions elsewhere.

The company has finally taken a stand, making it much easier for drivers to refuse access to their buses.

In an emailed statement, the company said it would notify the Department of Homeland Security that it does not consent to unwarranted searches on its buses or in areas of terminals that are not open to the public — such as company offices or any areas a person needs a ticket to access.

Greyhound said it would provide its drivers and bus station employees updated training regarding the new policy, and that it would place stickers on all its buses clearly stating that it does not consent to the searches.

This is the right step to take, although it would have been better to do it as soon as it became obvious the company had the right to refuse warrantless, suspicionless searches of its buses and passengers. With this in place, the company's statements that it cares about the safety and security of its drivers and customers are a whole lot less empty.

The sad fact is this never should have come to this point. It's highly presumptuous of these agencies (CBP, Border Patrol) to believe they can just board buses and search passengers when the targeted buses aren't at checkpoints or crossing borders. This is the sort of thing we should be above -- something only heard about from other countries without enshrined rights and protections. Emulating Cold War Russia and its eastern bloc subsidiaries is a piss poor look for US government agencies operating dozens of miles away from any border in need of securing.

Filed Under: 4th amendment, buses, cbp, ice, searches
Companies: greyhound


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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 3:31am

    That 100 mile rule.

    I find that especially unconstitional regarding Michigan, cause utterly NO part of it is not covered by this.
    At the very least it is a violation of State rights, in the same way declaring someones neighborhood a "drug crime area" so they you can shake down the residents over and over is.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Damien, 25 Feb 2020 @ 3:37am

    It's even worse when you remember that, as far as the CBP is concerned, "100 miles from a border" included not just physical borders but also international airports. They've effectively claimed jurisdiction over the vast majority of populated areas in the country. Greyhound doesn't just need this policy for what goes on at the southern border, but nationally.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    tz, 25 Feb 2020 @ 4:37am

    I applaud Grayhound, but have seen a lot of stupid pushback.

    We have the 4th Amendment for a reason. Police can't just go fishing, they have to have reasonable suspicion or probable cause (see Terry Stops).

    Now if only Airports would throw out the TSA P---- grabbers.

    The error both the right and left make is that somehow the laws will only act against "those other bad people".

    How does anyone KNOW any particular bus has someone here illegally (even a visa overstay)? I don't want ICE, CBP, DHS, etc. stopping 10 busses and searching 100 people on each to find one that maybe doesn't have their ID with them and might be deportable. We aren't looking for murderers or rapists on the busses.

    You also see it with gun laws on the left. How does anyone KNOW someone has a gun, and might use it to commit a crime? Well, why not stop and frisk everyone looking for guns?

    But you also see this on the left with the tech companies trying to ban "hate" or "error" and just have created something worse than the Papal Index and millions of Galileos trying to block a few actual heretics.

    One key to determining if something is liberty or tyranny is whether it is proactive or reactive. Proactive goes in search of witches, monsters, or criminals and presumes guilt even if it pretends otherwise since it has to check everyone. Reactive waits until some act has been committed and only then determines what, if anything, should be done.

    Someone merely here without going through customs isn't creating an immediate nuisance, much less harm, and trying to enforce the law at that level is tyrannical. If they commit fraud, or identity theft, etc. it is a different story, but such acts should easily provide a warrant.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Jeff, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:10am

      Re:

      Illegals dont have 4th amendment rights.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:22am

        Re: Re:

        Are you happy for the CBP to trample your fourth amendment rights because somebody in the same vehicle might be an illegal immigrant?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 8:02am

        Re: Re:

        I thought one was innocent until proven guilty.
        At least that is what we were all told, for many years - they were lying.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Baron von Robber, 25 Feb 2020 @ 10:23am

        Re: Re:

        They do in our country. What country are you from?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 10:32am

        Re: Re:

        The Bill of Rights applies to the people, not just citizens, regardless of status. So "illegals" do have 4th amendment protections.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 12:16pm

        Re: Re:

        This falsehood really needs to die...

        Yes, they do, the constitution restricts what the government may or may not do, regardless of the citizenship status of the person they are interacting with.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:37pm

        Re: Re:

        "Illegals dont have 4th amendment rights"

        1. Yes they do.

        2. Even if that were true, are you claiming that 100% of all people on these buses are illegal immigrants? Because if not then your bullshit argument doesn't matter, since there's people those rights do apply to having their rights violated in your scenario as well.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        bhull242 (profile), 27 Feb 2020 @ 9:12am

        Re: Re:

        The Bill of Rights apply equally to all citizens and residents, so illegal immigrants do have 4th Amendment rights. Same goes for “due process”.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        bhull242 (profile), 27 Feb 2020 @ 9:16am

        Re: Re:

        Also, last I checked, the people driving these buses are generally US citizens, or at least legal residents, as are the people who own the buses and most of the passengers most of the time. Even by your logic, those people still have 4th Amendment rights that would be violated in the bus stops-and-searches.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:14am

      Re:

      How do you know that they aren't creating a nuisance? What if they are acting loud or just being stupid in front of others.. like that's never happened.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:38pm

        Re: Re:

        "How do you know that they aren't creating a nuisance?"

        How do you know they were?

        In fact, it's more likely they weren't - people at risk of deportation if the CBP finds them, travelling on a mode of transport known for random CBP searches, will probably not be acting in ways that would attract attention.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 8:03am

      Re:

      Why do many people see the world thru right/left glasses?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jeremy Lyman (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 4:53am

    Blanket Rule

    Can we get that sticker printed 1000x bigger and put it on the country's passenger window? This goes along with the "don't send death squads to my home" opt out. No person in our country should feel pressured to "consent" to search by goon squad of face unknown and terrifying consequence. If you have to ask, the answer is "no".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 5:50am

    The fourteen words? Seriously? I've seen some bizarre stuff in Tim's articles, but this completely takes the cake. Do you like own stock in a tinfoil company or something?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 7:20am

      Re:

      They're the ones who deliberately echoed it on their own website and people didn't get fired and a public rebuke of the ideas like if someone at a real estate out of the blue started talking about the importance of getting your money out of the bank and into securing living space for your future and family because blood and soil are what matter.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 7:32pm

      Let’s look at some facts:

      • White nationalist Stephen Miller works in the Trump administration and is considered the architect of the administration’s immigration policies

      • Donald Trump is a racist bastard and ran a campaign based in part on stoking a racial divide between Whites and people of color (especially Latinos).

      • Trump continued that campaign in the aftermath of Heather Heyer’s murder, saying “very fine people” were on “both sides” of the White nationalist rally and the counterprotest thereof

      • The Department of Homeland Security released a memo in February 2018 titled “We Must Secure The Border And Build The Wall To Make America Safe Again”, which echoes the Fourteen Words in both word usage and sentiment

      DHS dismissed the idea that the headline in that memo was meant to echo the Fourteen Words, which of course it would. But the Trump administration has signalled at least implied support for White supremacy and its believers before (e.g., “very fine people on both sides”). All things considered, DHS getting inspiration from a White supremacist terrorist who coined the Fourteen Words while serving time in prison for murdering a Jewish talk radio host…well, that doesn’t seem too far-fetched.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:40pm

      Re:

      So, how much more blindingly obvious do they have to make it in order for you to see what's clear to so many others?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:11am

    Mass Searches r routine now

    ...the problem is much bigger than just illegal 'government' searches -- it's routine now for 'private' businesses to search their customers at sports, music, and theatrical events.

    Most people are sheep and calmly subnit to outrageous stops & searches of their person and property when entering some private entertainment venues.

    Soon we will all be searched when entering restaurants and movie theaters.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 8:08am

      Re: Mass Searches r routine now

      Home cooking is killing the restaurant business

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 12:59pm

      Re: Mass Searches r routine now

      Soon we will all be searched when entering ... movie theaters.

      This actually happened to me once. It was very soon after 9/11, though, and it hasn't happened since, so I'll give our society a pass on that one.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:45pm

        Re: Re: Mass Searches r routine now

        "Soon we will all be searched when entering restaurants and movie theaters."

        I'd wager that if it does happen again, it's because a few more cinemas have been shot up by psychos, and it's been made politically impossible to address the other issues that are leading to them happening.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:43pm

      Re: Mass Searches r routine now

      "it's routine now for 'private' businesses to search their customers at sports, music, and theatrical events."

      Key being "their customers". You have the option not to go to those places if you object to the practices of the company whose business you are choosing to pay for.

      "Soon we will all be searched when entering restaurants and movie theaters."

      As with so many things that people fear in the US, I have to ask - since this is not happening in other countries you claim to be better than - why is it that so many in the "land of the free" feel so much less free than the rest of the world?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:14am

    It's about time!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sir Spamalot, 25 Feb 2020 @ 8:05am

    Re: Europe Tour Packages | Best Europe Holidays Travel Packages

    Hahahaha - having trouble with your spam this morning?

    spam spam spam spam ....
    . Vikings descend from ceiling
    spam spam spam spam

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    ECA (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 11:52am

    Time

    To whip out that STAR CARD, thats to Show you are a REAL USA BORN Cit.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 4:10pm

    When Jose slits the drivers throat and bus goes off the road Guess who's gonna sue Greyhound.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:44pm

      Re:

      Stupid and/or racist(but I repeat myself) people?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 25 Feb 2020 @ 6:48pm

      Re:

      As if it matters what the person's name is.

      Beyond that, there are plenty of people named Jose in this country whose families have been here far longer than your ilk.

      Also most people who do shit like that here are euro-white.

      Other than that, good job.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 25 Feb 2020 @ 7:35pm

      You can’t guarantee that such a crime will happen in the wake of this move. You can’t even guarantee that if such a crime happens, it was because of this move — or that the perpetrator will be, as you imply, a Latino male. Your fearmongering will get you nowhere here, dear MAGAt.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 Feb 2020 @ 1:45pm

      Re:

      When Jose slits the drivers throat and bus goes off the road Guess who's gonna sue Greyhound.

      Show us on the doll where the Mexican touched you.

      Or did one take your bean picking job and you're bitter?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 26 Feb 2020 @ 11:16pm

        Re: Re:

        "Or did one take your bean picking job and you're bitter?"

        That kind of person is basically admitting that a person with no training and no English skills can just arrive and be employed to do his job, by an employer who doesn't care about the law so long as they profit. Maybe the problem isn't the menial worker?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 27 Feb 2020 @ 5:52am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Maybe the problem isn't the menial worker?

          It isn't the menial worker that's the problem. It's the shit-flinging morons who think that marginally educated people who can't speak English are coming for their "high-paying" jobs.

          They're mistaking them for better-educated people from India. Because brown is brown.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 26 Feb 2020 @ 11:00pm

      Re:

      "When Jose slits the drivers throat"

      What if it's not "Jose" doing the slitting, but rather a Trumper who's wrongly decided that the Hispanic driver is an illegal?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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