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“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause,
supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

–Amendment IV of the U.S. Constitution

“Give me the kid! Give me the f—–g kid!”

That’s what it came down to on the Elian Gonzalez standoff Easter weekend. Brute force by the federal stormtroopers.

Remember what Janet Reno had said about this case earlier.

“… Not whether, but how best to reunite Elian with his father in the least disruptive manner possible.”

While that quote is fresh in your mind, take another look at the image of the military-clad, helmeted, rifle-wielding fedcop scaring the 6-year-old kid.

Then I want you recall the words of the Immigration and Naturalization Service about its priorities in reuniting father and son:
“… most importantly, measures to ensure that the transfer occur in a manner that is sensitive to the needs of Elian.”

“Least disruptive manner possible?”

“A manner that is sensitive to the needs of Elian?”

I think most Americans, no matter how they feel about where Elian belongs, recognize that the middle-of-the-night, armed raid to snatch him was dangerous, unnecessary, and probably, illegal.

Has anyone seen the warrant yet? Why hasn’t it been made public? There is even some question as to whether a warrant was obtained by the Justice Department.

The authority for the raid may have boiled down to locked and loaded machine guns and overwhelming force.

There may not be much familiarity with the 4th Amendment at the Justice Department. Or there may simply be no concern about it. After all, when was the last time someone from the Clinton administration actually paid any attention to the Constitution?

There’s another thing that bothers me about this raid. The proponents of removing Elian from his home in Miami contended that they supported parental rights. Yet, the demonstration of force by the federal government last weekend set a frightening new precedent for government authority over children.

Let’s face it. If you’re not the right person to raise a child, the government will come take that child away – at gunpoint if necessary.

Now you know why Bill and Hillary Clinton, the “children’s rights” advocates, found themselves on the side of the Cuban father this time. Because Elian Gonzalez does not belong to Juan Gonzalez in the minds of the Clintons – anymore than he does in the mind of Fidel Castro. Elian is a ward of the federal government. He’s a pawn to be used in a political objective involving Cuba – probably a relaxation of the embargo. But, remember, Bill and Hillary and their Children’s Defense Fund friends do not believe parents actually have authority over their kids.

For those, like my wife, who mistakenly see Elian’s plight only through the lens of the rights of biological parents, how does it feel to have friends in your camp like Janet Reno, Bill Clinton and Hillary? How does it feel to have Fidel Castro on your side? With friends like that, you better rethink your position.

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