I started this blog about 4.5 years ago with a simple, 5-page complaint stating that imaging my body as a condition of flying violates my rights. The case was filed in a U.S. District Court, then went to a U.S. Court of Appeals, then denied a U.S. Supreme Court review, then back to the Court of Appeals, and now, back to the Supreme Court. If they refuse to hear my case, litigation around the body scanners is over: my case can’t proceed and a challenge from anyone else would be time-barred. If they accept it, it will be a few more years before anything is final, as we work through the Supreme Court arguments process and then (hopefully) end up back in the Court of Appeals. In the meantime, of course, the government is free to continue to abuse our rights.
The petition is fairly simple and really brings up only two issues:
- The government had successfully argued that since things bounced around between courts as described above, by the time my case finally got to the right place, it was too late to hear the claim. One should not lose their right to challenge the constitutionality of government policies simply because there was a dispute as to the court to hear the claim, especially since in this case, the policy was issued in secret and therefore there was no way to determine the proper court in advance.
- The courts below never allowed me any opportunity for discovery, or any other fact-gathering process, and so they basically decided the case based on the government’s cherry-picked reasons as to why the body scanners are necessary and effective. This one-sided process doesn’t meet due process requirements.
Let’s see if the high court wants to accomplish something!