Good for the Gander, Too

The bad news comes from the Seattle
Post-Intelligencer
:

Houston’s police chief on Wednesday proposed placing surveillance cameras in apartment complexes, downtown streets, shopping malls and even private homes to fight crime during a shortage of police officers.

“I know a lot of people are concerned about Big Brother, but my response to that is, if you are not doing anything wrong, why should you worry about it?” Chief Harold Hurtt told reporters Wednesday at a regular briefing.

The good news comes from Matt Asher:

Harold Hurtt has suggested that surveillance cameras be placed “in apartment complexes, downtown streets, shopping malls and even private homes”, according to this story in the Seattle Post Intelligencer. In response, I hereby found….

The Hurtt Prize

The Hurtt Prize is a $1185 (and growing) reward for the first person who can provide definitive videotaped evidence of Houston police chief Harold Hurtt committing a crime, any crime. This evidence will posted here and forward to the Houston Police Department along with a demand that action be taken.

If I lived in Houston, I’d be out there with my camera already. Even if he’s not breaking the law, I’d hope to capture everything from Hurtt spilling soup on his tie to the sexual peccadilloes in which he might engage.

Props.

10 Comments
  1. I’ve heard of groups who police the police, following them on their patrols with video cameras in places where abuse of power is frequent. Anyone know if there is a site detailing such groups?
    Of course, if you want film of police abusing their power, you need only watch “Cops” for two minutes. I still can’t figure out why some enterprising young attorney doesn’t use that show as the basis of countless lawsuits.

  2. “I know a lot of people are concerned about Big Brother, but my response to that is, if you are not doing anything wrong, why should you worry about it?”

    I bet anything that this guy hasn’t actually read 1984.

  3. I don’t know about a listing of such sites, but there is always http://www.policeabuse.org to start such a list off with, if you like.

    I also agree with Robert Mayer, Lew Rockwell and David Brin when it comes to where we really need to make sure those cameras are. I want them not just in those top offices, I want them in central booking and one watching the folks who are watching all those public cameras as well.

  4. I missed the Rockwell comment. Good catch.

    It is my belief that most of my local politicians need a camera 24/7, as most of the deals are cut behind the scenes, despite our Open Meetings law.

  5. The politicians need cameras to catch all those other guys dealing with lobbyists…

    I’d really like to see cameras inside police cars – not just outside to gather evidence at drunk stops, but inside too, just like cockpit voice recorders in airplanes.

    Then we can get some insight on how they are really doing their jobs. Are they really racially profiling – what did they say just before they turned on the lights?

    Are they calm and professional during those high speed chases? Or screaming, swearing and pounding their fists while mowing down innocents in their crazed rush to catch someone who dares to “disrespect” them?

    Tell the unions that if its OK for airline pilots, who are private employees, then its certainly OK for police who are public employees, supposedly doing their sworn duties at their ‘workstations’. Plenty of court cases say there is no expectation of privacy for suspects being recorded in the back of a police car, why should there be any in front of the partition?

  6. Seriously, since these politicians claim to be public servants, what is unreasonable about expecting them to prove it by allowing the public to see exactly how their confiscated earnings, er, tax dollars are being used?

  7. I’m reminded of the Robert Scheckley story of a c society where government officials wore a chain about their necks that had a mini-bomb that could be detonated by any citizen unhappy with their performance.

    Because that’s what they’ll be advocating for average citizens next…

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