Saturday, September 13, 2008

New Courthouse Security

Gee, I feel so much safer now knowing that we'll have to go through the same security measures going to the courthouse as we do boarding airplanes. NOT!!!

This is BS. I wonder just whose idea this was? I know I've heard murmurs of this happening off and on for some time. Now it's real.

The Eureka Reporter article makes it sound like County Administrative Officer Loretta Nicholas thinks this is a great development. I can't help but wonder how many of you out there agree?


At 10:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately this is normal. Most county courthouses in California have this kind of set-up already. And since many county courthouses are in buildings with other county offices, everybody who has business with the county is affected. As I understand it this isn't really up to the county, this is something originating with the Superior Courts at the State level and paid for with State funds (i.e. taxpayers). Either it is necessary, which is sad, or people think it's necessary, which might be sadder. Either way, expect looong lines and give yourself extra time. Welcome to the future.

At 2:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous 10:12am is right. Since trial courts are now funded by the state, it is a statewide mandate to have standardized security.

While I agree with Fred that another loss in our collective freedom is something to regret, there is the sad reality that people going to court aren't there to buy a pair of shoes. It isn't just the criminal caseload that poses a risk, but the family courts are often hotbeds of raw emotion that can erupt in violence at any time.

If weapons are removed from the equation, everyone is safer. On the plus side, if you are there to pay a traffic fine or just file a civil case, the I Street side entrance does not impose weapon screening.

I was in the courthouse last year at the beginning of the traffic calendar in the Supervisor's hearing room and someone entered the 5th Street side with a can of gasoline and went into the public restroom. I called the Sheriff's Office to ask a deputy to check it out.

At 3:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should we, the people, wanting to make public comment at a Supervisors meeting, have to undergo an invasive search in order to do so?

Protecting the Sheriff's Dept, the DA, the courts, all that is understandable. But there shouldn't be barriers to access our local legislative body.

At 7:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thoughts that just went through my mind:

1. I like the casual, come-and-go-as-you-wish feeling in our Courthouse. I'd hate to see that go.

2. God, I wonder if anybody remembers what happened at the Marin County Courthouse about 30 years ago? A criminal strapped a shotgun to the neck of a judge, and I believe he pulled the trigger. But it came out all right in the end because Bob Dylan wrote a song about it, making the criminal into an American hero like Jesse James.

3. I'm glad no public or private buildings were destroyed by bombs or airplanes since September 11, 2001. I'm glad whoever has been looking out for our enemies (who really DO hate us) have done their job so well.

4. Oops! Thought #3 is definitely un-cool. I'll probably lose some friends over that faux pas!

5. I hope Fred will post this. Am I losing it? Well, even if I am, lots of people who have lost it keep posting long after the loss!

6. :>)


At 7:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since I was feeling so thoughtful, I thought I would go back and actually read the ER article.

Now I've got a problem.

To go do business at the Courthouse, it is now going to be necessary to leave my pepper spray at home? Why? My pepper spray is perfectly legal. And how am I going to protect myself on the mean streets of Eureka without it?

But set aside my pepper spray and my witty comments about same.

Seriously now -- Are the security guards going to confiscate every pocket knife found in the pockets of hundreds of Humboldters?

If the Board of Supervisors thinks it had a problem with the Code Enforcement issue, just wait until they confiscate hundreds of the favorite pocket knives of hardy Humboldters. The next item they may want to add to their list of prohibited weapons will be pitchforks!

At 7:30 PM, Blogger ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ said...

2:26 PM: "...another loss in our collective freedom..."

WTF is a "collective" freedom? Isn't freedom an individual issue? Yes, the seizure of nail clippers, bottle openers and penknives seems to be nationwide in courthouses and airports even here in the buckle of the "bible belt". When is enough going to be enough?
Memo to self: Buy an extra thousand rounds of ammo!

At 2:23 PM, Blogger Steve Lewis said...

All this is what we are paying for to support Israel. None of this would be happening in America if Israel wasn't our client state oppressing Palestinian Arabs, most of whom are Muslim.

Look at Israel and see America's future--a Fortress state where long distance travel becomes a nightmare of semi-arrest.

At 6:46 PM, Blogger Pogo said...

stephen: "...long distance travel becomes a nightmare of semi-arrest."

Future? Where have you been since late 2001?

And we all know that hurricanes Gustav and Ike were caused by the Joooos.

At 9:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, the discussion here would be a lot more lively if there wasn't this stupid moderation feature. Don't you think it's time to turn it off, Fred?

At 10:20 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...


At 11:14 AM, Blogger Steve Lewis said...

I'm serious. Airport security, every type of security has increased since America's support for Israel started going against European and world opinion, let alone Muslim ones. Travel used to be fun, no longer. Now we have a police state in the courthouse where we used to have none. Why? Have we changed all that much? Or has "security" been added to each public office worker that being free of worry of the heavily-armed maniac in the courthouse who in Humboldt County has yet to exist is worth putting everyone through a unpleasant experience each time they visit their public official.

At 12:18 PM, Blogger Joel Mielke said...

"Memo to self: Buy an extra thousand rounds of ammo!"

Zorba is preparing to defend himself from all of the horrible repression.

At 1:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If sheriff deptees know the citizens at the courthous are not armed, and say a deptee gets into a fight with the old lady before he comes to work, and say he goes nuts on the job, right there at the courthouse, the citizens, being all disarmed, won't be able to fight back if the deptee decides to shoot at them! This is security?

At 8:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonyous - What a great idea! Let's all be totally paranoid! Then blame it on Bob Dylan! It's a win-win against those dirty hippies who've taken over this god-fearin' tobacco-smokin' County since 1973.

At 2:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My, My, aren't we touchy?

May Ah suggest you schedule an appointment with your psychopharmacologist and see if a little adjustment of your psych meds might not be in order?

Peace and Love, Baby!

At 7:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Supervisors? Let them show some consistency.

“Anything that MAY be used as a weapon” includes eyeglasses that MAY be smashed and the glass used as a cutting edge.

It also includes every article of clothing that MAY be twirled into a rope-like shape and used to strangle someone.

Hey, folks. ANYTHING MAY be used as a weapon.

So the only reasonable and consistent thing to do is: Require all people who wish to enter the Humboldt County Courthouse to divest themselves of their knitting needles, their pocket knives, their eyeglasses, AND THEIR CLOTHES.

At 6:14 AM, Blogger Capdiamont said...

Knew about this security for a long time. Sad to see the current guards go.

Though I still have to wonder about bringing in my tools. Standard equipment is screwdrivers, wire, needle nose pliers, diagonal cutters.

Sometimes, I do have to bring a drywall saw.

Maybe I should just go in the I street side?


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