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The fourth amendment to the United States constitution is part of the bill of rights that does not allow unreasonable searches and seizures by the government agents. A court order i.e. warrant must be presented by these agents in order to do a reasonable search or seizure. It is the individual’s right that no executive or Legislative branches that can make unreasonable search reasonable, or a reasonable search unreasonable (Amsterdam 349). A person who feels that his or her fourth amendment right has been violated by an unreasonable search or seizure should file a civil suit and seek a court order because of such unlawful acts by the government agents. Such violations of civil rights are punishable by federal law or state (Lasson, 30).
Savanna Redding was thirteen years old in the year 2003 when educators in the rural eastern Arizona did a search. They were actually searching for pills because they had been banned in the district together with the drugs that were sold over the counter without advance permission. They searched Redding’s backpack and her outer clothes but to make it worse they went ahead to search her underwear. A supreme court in 1985 warned against a search that was “extremely intrusive”. According to the court it was very illegal and Redding was pleased with the court’s decision (Ducat and Harold 798). She was happy to say that “I’m pretty excited about it, because that’s what I wanted. I wanted to keep it from happening to anybody else”. Redding’s lawyer, Adam Wolf, said that “the court’s decision sends a clear signal to school officials that they can strip search students only in the most extra ordinary situations”.
Justice Thomas said that the search was legal because the court had already given school officials freedom under the fourth amendment in the school settings. He said that “it was eminently reasonable to conclude the backpack was empty because Redding was hiding the pills in a place she thought no one would look”. In fact this would be true because most of the schools do not tolerate drugs and students can go ahead to hide them in their under wears. The students are not likely to hide drugs in their back pack because they can easily be found but would rather put them in their inner clothes. Thomas continues to argue that “Redding would not have been the first person to conceal pills in her under garments, nor will she be the last after today’s decision, which announces the safest place to secrete contraband in school”. This means that for schools to have zero tolerance to drugs, the students should be searched even in their inner garments.
According to law, the school was not justified in strip searching the student but in my opinion it is right to do so in order to discourage the students from having drugs in school. The federal magistrate had dismissed a suit by Redding and her mother because he felt that the search did not violate her rights. The Supreme Court judgment said that the search was “an invasion of constitutional rights” and the principal was found to be personally liable (Ducat and Harold 800). This made Redding to secure a victory for school children in the whole nation. This can cause a negative impact to the schools as it gives students a leeway to take illicit drugs in school. They can safely hide drugs in their inner garments because they are assured that strip searching cannot be imposed. Therefore it becomes very hard for the school administrators to prevent illicit drug use and even enforce discipline in the schools.