Since the formation of the United States to the present date, the crime rate and the rights of the accused have greatly increased, while the rights of the law-abiding citizen have decreased. To more fully protect society, and to attempt to reduce the crime rate, we must therefor increase the power the law enforcement agencies have. The most logical place to start would be the search and seizure laws, for they inhibit the power to stop trouble at its source.

The Fourth Amendment is quoted thus: * "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."

The 4th Amendment, in my opinion, has probably been one of the most challenged and revised Amendments since its inception. The constant changes that have occurred over time within our society demand that the 4th Amendment keep up with our changing world in order to adequately protect the law abiding portion of our civilization.


Since the inception of the Constitution, society, as a whole, has undergone many drastic changes. Our mode of communication has gone from simple word of mouth, the pony express, and small local newspapers to that of computers, telephones, express mail, television, world wide newspapers, CB radios, and the like. Our mode of transportation has similarly undergone phenomenal changes. In the 1700's, people either walked, rode horseback, sailed on slow moving tall ships, or were carried in horse drawn vehicles. Today we travel around the world in a matter of hours by automobile, trains, airplanes, jets, submarines, motorcycles, etc. As a result of our expansive technology, crime is no longer limited to small local areas. It is international and omnipresent. No longer is a singular rare homicide horrifying to the community, but instead mass murders have become so commonplace that even they fail to shock our society.

Similarly, the crime rate has increased as extensively as our technology. What has gone wrong within our society, in which advanced technology (with it's ability to prolong the average life-span, perform heart transplants, and make every day life less physically stressful) should bring mankind a little closer to his "utopia"?

Violent drug related crimes are at an all-time high (no pun intended). Drugs are a highly lucrative, international business which filters down from the highest-ranked Mafia Official, to the lowly school child/drug dealer/drug user. Demand for drugs is very high (again, no pun intended), because it is so addictive that people just "gotta have more", and to fulfill this craving for bodily poisons, they will go to almost any length, even to the extent to where it wrecks their morals, ethics, and religious
values. Oftentimes these people, in order to avoid prosecution, recruit young schoolchildren to sell the drugs for them.

Drugs have become, in the minds of the addicts, so important that the addicts will kill for money to buy more dope. These occurrences have brought up a new type of crime: Drug-related crimes. These types of crimes are committed, not out of detest for the victim, but as a means of acquiring money to buy more drugs. These crimes are robbery, breaking and entering, mugging, murder, prostitution, drug-dealing, drug wars, etc. Because of the experience of violence entering into their establishments, stores, restaurants, schools, etc. have had to place metal detectors and/or security guards at their entryways.




A prime example of law enforcement agencies being held back because of the Search and Seizure rule would be the case of Guns in School. In 1992, a student walked into school carrying a gun. This was noticed by a security guard, and, after chasing the student through the hallways of the school, he caught him. The student
was carrying a semi-automatic .45. When he was taken to court, the Judge dismissed the case on the grounds that the security guard violated the students' 4th amendment rights by searching him unreasonably. The accused claimed that the guard could not have possibly see the outline of his gun under the particular clothing that he (the accused) was wearing