Tensions between police practices and democratic principles are inevitable. Forces inherent in the operation of a police force-its authoritarian structure and outlook, its zeal to do a difficult and sometimes dangerous job, its loss of contact with the people who make up the community-press insistently toward arbitrary, abusive, sometimes inhuman, conduct in law enforcement. One of the chief purposes of the Bill of Rights, of course, is to interpose legal safeguards against improper police action. The extent to which police practices are kept under control through enforcement of these constitutional principles is an important measure of the success achieved by a society in realizing its democratic goals. Hence the application of the Bill of Rights to the operations of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a national police force, is of vital concern to the citizens of this country.
Thomas I. Emerson
"The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bill of Rights,"
Yale Review of Law and Social Action: Vol. 2
, Article 7.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.law.yale.edu/yrlsa/vol2/iss2/7