I feel so…out of character.
The Supremes, or rather, the conservatives among the Supremes have finally ruled on the Hiibel case.
(My original post here.)
Now you can be jailed for refusing to identify yourself to the authorities. I have to admit that Hiibel’s legal reasoning is probably flawed since the request by the Nevada deputy neither violated his constitutional right against self-incrimination nor did his arrest amount to an unreasonable seizure in their original meanings.
However, it seems to me that one of the basic freedoms an individual can have is the freedom to be anonymous. If the deputy had probably cause to arrest Hiibel when he had pulled up, say he saw Hiibel slap his daughter, then he would have done so. But since he had no probable cause, he had to go fishing for some, and Hiibel’s refusal to identify himself gave it to him.
This kind of thing is what makes me wonder if we have truly began the slide into Third-Worldism. Next stop: refusing an officer’s request to search your vehicle during a traffic stop will grant them probable cause to search your vehicle, since the refusal indicates you’re “suspicious”.