"Fifth Amendment Rick," Governor Scott, stated in inept defense of his Fourth Amendment violation, "Many Floridians are required to take drug tests in their workplace and it is only right for state workers paid with taxpayer funds to be required to do the same." "Fifth Amendment Rick" Scott reckons that because some nosy-parker private sector employers (like Morris Communications and the St. Augustine Record) insist on drug tests for all employees, that he should too. That's specious illogic, pandering to anti-libertarians.
If a state government employee's function is safety-related or in law enforcement, the government can already legally ask him or her to take a drug test. So what's the fuss about? Demagoguery and control.
Why waste money on such invasive, intrusive, overbearing, foolishness? Perhaps because drug tests can be abused to indicate false positives for ethical employee whistleblowers -- in one federal case, a drug testing company was convicted of arranging for such false positives, on demand, for employees of Superfund hazardous waste disposal sites.
Governor Scott told the U.S. Court of Appeals that "state employees have a diminished privacy interest," so Scott somehow supposes he has suzerainty to make them pee in a cup. How demeaning and demoralizing. What errant nonsense.
If Scott appeals to the Supreme Court, let it be on his own dime, not ours – he spent $78 million of his own money to get elected, buying the office with crazy bigoted TV ads, including one about a mosque in Manhattan.
Our State of Florida has been the source of a good many Supreme Court decisions, including Chambers v. Florida (1940), where four African-Americans were wrongfully convicted of murder, Justice Hugo Lafayette Black (former Alabama Senator and onetime Ku Klux Klan member) wrote for the Supreme Court: “We are not impressed by the argument that law enforcement methods such as those under review are necessary to uphold our laws....The Constitution proscribes such lawless means irrespective of the end. And this argument flouts the basic principle that all people must stand on an equality before the bar of justice in every American court. Today, as in ages past, we are not without tragic proof that the exalted power of some governments to punish manufactured crime dictatorially is the handmaid of tyranny. Under our constitutional system, courts stand against any winds that blow as havens of refuge for those who might otherwise suffer because they are helpless, weak, outnumbered, or because they are nonconforming victims of prejudice and public excitement."
Under our Fourth Amendment, requiring drug tests for all state employees is unconstitutional. Don't take my word for it, read the 61-page May 30, 2013 Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals decision in AFSCME v. Scott.
South Carolina Democratic Senator Ernest "Fritz" Hollings was once pestered by a Republican challenger who demanded Hollings take a drug test. "I'll take a drug test when he takes an IQ test," Senator Hollings said. The challenger never took an IQ test. I was reminded of that bon mot upon reading the Eleventh Circuit decision. Shall we ask Governor Scott to take an IQ test? He definitely flunks the laugh test.
What do you reckon?