The American surveillance state just turned the Orwell dial to '11'...
In the latest escalation in the war on Liberty and Freedom in the land of the free, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is beginning a pilot program this week to collect DNA at border entries.
By way of background, in August, a top government watchdog alerted President Trump and Congress that CBP, through a "disturbing" pattern of misconduct, has endangered the public for nearly a decade by failing to comply with a federal law requiring that the agency collect DNA samples from detained migrants.
The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) said CBP's "noncompliance with the law has allowed subjects subsequently accused of violent crimes, including homicide and sexual assault, to elude detection even when detained multiple times by CBP or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)."
At the time, a DHS official told Fox News that the agency was now going to work closely with the DOJ on a "path forward" on DNA collection.
And now it is about to begin.
According to a privacy document posted Monday on the DHS site, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in partnership with the FBI, will collect DNA samples, obtained via buccal cheek swab, from some migrants and U.S. citizens, which will then be stored in FBI files for use in criminal investigations around the country.
The program, effective January 6, 2020, CBP will begin collecting DNA from any person who is subject to fingerprinting - including U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, and migrants (who are arrested at the border, already convicted of a crime, or facing criminal charges).
The statement adds that obtaining the DNA samples was “previously not feasible because of operational exigencies and resource limitations.”
The three-year pilot program will take place in the Detroit Sector and those who present at the Eagle Pass Port of Entry in southwest Texas.
Don't want your privacy invaded? Too bad, failure to comply will be a misdemeanor.
As Bloomberg notes, privacy and oversight groups have expressed concern that the government has other, faster ways of verifying migrant identities that won’t create a massive database that could be used to target innocent individuals for surveillance.
Remember, it's for your own security; and besides, if you have done nothing wrong, what have you got to fear from providing the government with your DNA?
As a reminder, DHS already expects to have face, fingerprint, and iris scans of at least 259 million people in its biometrics database by 2022.
The Orwellian police state is upon us, but don’t expect it to improve at all. In fact, as George Orwell said: “If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.”