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CleverNickName's Journal: Brazil to fingerprint Americans 41

Journal by CleverNickName

From bOINGbOING:


Brazil to fingerprint Americans in retaliation for Homeland Security indignities
The Brazilian government has retaliated against a US plan to fingerprint Brazilian visitors to the US by fingerprinting US visitors to Brazil. The judge who enacted the regulation has exempted citizens of countries whom the US intends to fingerprint from the Brazilian requirement, and has had a little Godwin's Law moment in his publicity regarding the decision:

"I consider the act absolutely brutal, threatening human rights, violating human dignity, xenophobic and worthy of the worst horrors committed by the Nazis," said Sebastiao da Silva in the court order released on Tuesday.

How dare they! How dare those ungrateful Brazilians! Don't they remember when the USA saved their asses in that one war? They OWE us! They're acting like the Bush administration ignores silly things like treaties, international law, and diplomacy! Those are just relics of the Old Europe.

I tell you what: if those Brazilians hate America so much, they should just move to France.

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Brazil to fingerprint Americans

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  • Right (Score:1, Flamebait)

    by Iamthefallen (523816)
    "I consider the act absolutely brutal, threatening human rights, violating human dignity, xenophobic and worthy of the worst horrors committed by the Nazis," said Sebastiao da Silva in the court order released on Tuesday.

    Finger printing is right up there with gassing people or performing medical experiemnts on them. In fact, it's even worse! These people, who chose volountarily to spend their luxury vacation in the U.S will go through life mentally scarred and mutilated from the horrible acts of American i

    • Not every people who travel to USA is on vacation, much less on a luxury one. However, I heard some pretty horrible stories from some tourists who ran into some serious problems with immigration. I think the judge's comparison was stupid, but American travelers in Brazil always enjoyed much better treatment than Brazilian travelers in the USA. Personally, I believe both treatments could improve. :]
      • As an immigrant to the US myself I can only say yes, the immigration authorities are morons. But, getting fingerprinted and having your picture taken etc is not a big deal. No one has a right to enter a foreign land, especially so without proof of identity. It is a privilege granted to certain nations (27 only in fact per article) that their citizens do not need a visa or other documents to enter.

        If the actions of US immigration are so horrible, there's a simple solution: Go home again. That was not an opt

        • Re:Right (Score:2, Interesting)

          by ParnBR (601156)
          I'd like to be free to go wherever I wanted to. But it's clear I have some more restrictions if I go to the USA instead of some other country. Granted, some countries are even more restrictive, but I wouldn't want to go there anyway. =)

          Brazilian citizens always needed a visa in their passport (which is an internationally recognised identity document) to visit the USA, no matter the reason (business/family/tourism/immigration). This is not about getting a visa, it's about being filed like a criminal in a po
          • by Darth (29071)
            I'd like to be free to go wherever I wanted to.

            so would i, but reality is that people suck and make it difficult for the rest of us. I'd like to not need a passport, but i understand why it's required.

            But it's clear I have some more restrictions if I go to the USA instead of some other country. Granted, some countries are even more restrictive, but I wouldn't want to go there anyway. =)

            well, that's a value judgement that everyone has to make on their own. If you feel that the United States requires t
    • Racism is racism.
  • by bmabray (84486) on Friday January 02, 2004 @02:21PM (#7862024) Homepage Journal
    Just for that, I'm going to start eating "Freedom Nuts".
  • Dear Wil, first let me say I love your work and your writing. And I also like your personality; based on what's in WWDN, you're a great person and I have a lot of respect for your opinion, even when it doesn't match mine (although it usually does ^^). That said, I believe I'm entitled to a small comment. =)

    I found this comment about WWII a bit offensive (like the judge's comparison). Brazil also fought in WWII, but of course we had much less resources than the USA. Anyway, hundreds of Brazilian soldiers we
    • ParnBR, he was being sarcastic, adopting the "patriot speak" that a lot of Americans would about this situation.

      It doesn't always come across well when in print, but I'm fairly sure, given Wil's political views, that he was not being serious.

      cf. the "Freedom nuts" comment made earlier in the thread for the same method used ...
    • I lived in Brazil for a while but don't understand the legal system at all. It strikes me as odd that a judge could order fingerprints to be taken of all visitors. Seems like an executive function rather than a judical responsibility.

      In any case, Brazil has long had a policy of reciprocity on immigration issues. Brazil requires a visa for visitors from the USA simply because the USA requires one for visiting Brazilians. By doing this they are asserting their status as an "equal". This involves a bit

      • Brasil e' o pais do futuro, right?

        Yes, Brazil is the country of future. We like to say that. =) Some of us really would like Brazil to became a superpower, but I believe most of us just want Brazil to be the happiest of countries. Just my opinion, though. ^^

        You're right when you say the reasons one visits another country are various. There are many people who would love to make a (illegal) life in the USA. Earn some money, buy some appliances, etc. But I don't believe any of them are terrorists. :]

        I don
        • I agree that it is doubtful that a Brazilian would be a terrorist. In fact, I would guess that it is much more likely that a citizen of England would fit the current "profile" of a terrorist. Wasn't the shoe-bomber from England?

          Of course maybe terrorists would journey to Brazil first and then travel to the USA in order to be sneaky, but they still wouldn't be Brazillians.

          I would go even further and say that Brazilians tend to love the US and its people. They just hate its government, and a few of the

      • Another aspect of the inequality of this sort of knee-jerk reciprocity is that the USA is putting a high-powered AFIS system behind this and probably facial recognition technology as well. It has a real security function if not benefit. I highly doubt that Brazil is suddenly going to deploy an AFIS to check the identities of visitors from the US. This is probably going to be a 3x4 cm Polaroid quality photo and ink fingerprints on a piece of paper that will get filed away somewhere.

        Being a legal "alien"

        • Why no mention of the AFIS in your post? Also this system is not what Schneier is talking about. First of all, it is using two biometrics, not one, so it that will help eliminate false positives from either system. Also, there are a variety of ways to implement facial recognition. I used to think as Schneier does, that it is a waste of time and money. Then I saw a demonstration from the Pinellas County Sherrif's Office. They are very pleased with their facial recognition system and guess what, they us
  • I'm US, but last year I flew over 300k miles in 2003. My last international gig was a couple weeks in Brazil.

    This is karmic payback, plain and simple. Just about every partner I talked to had someone refused entry into the US because a 'work' visa was not good enough to some knob working immigration to attend conferences after 9/11. Not only did they hit the techies, but put the wood to medical and financial people as well - all of them seasoned travelers. Not the type you want to piss off either.

    A bi
    • I had my 5 year work visa rejected because I filled it out with blue ink rather than black.

      I can't tell from your comment who rejected your visa application, but I can tell you stuff like this is par for the course when it comes to US immigration.

      A few years back (before 9/11), I was in a northern african country (name intentionally omitted, suffice it to say that the official languages there are French and Arabic.) I went to the US embasy to get something notorized. There was a line that stretched aro
  • I dunno man (Score:3, Interesting)

    by sulli (195030) * on Friday January 02, 2004 @04:00PM (#7862937) Journal
    I had my fingerprints taken while in Japan for my alien registration card, and it didn't seem to be a problem.
    • Hey, why'd you have to go and drag the logical ("Well, it's really not that bad of a requirement") reality into this argument? Out, heathen!

      Seriously, I can take five minutes on getting to Brazil in order to let them fingerprint me. What do I care, I'm not up to anything bad anyway? So, who's going to buy me plane tickets?
  • What's the big deal? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by PeteyG (203921) on Friday January 02, 2004 @04:03PM (#7862964) Homepage Journal
    If you are offended by the United States keeping records on foreign citizens who enter the country, I would ask: How would YOU secure our borders against bad guys?

    This biometrics business sounds like a good way to make things nice and easy for normal (or rather, not bad) people to go about their business, while screening out a host of potential terrorists, people entering under false names, criminals, etc.

    If you want to cross international borders, you should expect to have your privacy invaded just a tad. I myself am one who values privacy from government scrutiny, but I would grudgingly submit to Brazil's security measures if I wanted to enter their country.
    • If you are offended by the United States keeping records on foreign citizens who enter the country, I would ask: How would YOU secure our borders against bad guys?

      I think the issue is that not all foreign citizens are being fingerprinted in the US...only those of select countries. Given that Brazil doesn't really have a history of terrorism, I believe they were offended because they were on that list of select countries. I've lived in Brazil for 14 years, and one of the things you do is get fingerprint

  • "I consider the act absolutely brutal, threatening human rights, violating human dignity, xenophobic and worthy of the worst horrors committed by the Nazis," said Sebastiao da Silva in the court order released on Tuesday.
    So he goes ahead and does the same thing. I understand reciprocity, but if it's really that bad (and I don't think it is), then he's not morally superior in this case.
    • I wouldn't say it's reciprocity; i.e. vengence, so much as 'maybe they don't understand how stupid it is, until it's done to them.'

      After all, sauce for the goose and sauce for the gander, and all that.

      • I think that the original action is probably not the right thing to do, and that Brazil is completely within their rights to reciprocate (and your meaning of "vengeance" is exactly what I intended in the use of "reciprocity"). However, once the judge lines it up with Nazi war crimes, he makes it clear that he is just being hysterical (and a hypocrite).
        • However, once the judge lines it up with Nazi war crimes, he makes it clear that he is just being hysterical (and a hypocrite).

          No, not really. Well, not totally, at least.

          It does seem kind of 'police state' to brand all people coming in to visit, especially only ones from certain countries. And the fact is that between the various Patriot acts and similar gov't inititives, America is sliding that way.

          This isn't unusual; every war America's been in the last few times, they've done this sort of thing

          • It does seem kind of 'police state' to brand all people coming in to visit, especially only ones from certain countries.

            But reality is the exact opposite of that! Everyone needs a visa or other documents, except those from a few select countries that have close ties to the U.S. And they're not branded, their fingerprints and photo are stored. Along with their names, birthdates, addresses, nationalities, passport numbers, airlines, flight #, reasons for the visit, address they will be staying, contact infor

            • As I said, it's their country, they can do what they want.

              I do, honestly, believe, however, that before ANY new policy is implemented to 'combat terrorism,' the Homeland Security people should be required to satisfactorily answer this question:

              How would this policy of helped directly stop 9/11?

              Lets test. Cockpits not accessable from the cabin? Well, it would have made it very difficult to force the pilots to do anything.

              Pulling records of library books? Nope, wouldn't have helped at all.

              Fingerprin

  • Lets get rid of Finger printing. Why? Let's just give them all driver's licenses. True, you will have to get fingerprinted, and your photo taken, but hey, you can drive. We're doing it here in California........oh.......wait.........nevermind. We recalled the Governor, and installed a buffed immigrant from Austria who repealed that idea.

    Nevermind. Move along, nothing to see here....

  • The USA has required Brazilians to obtain a visa to enter the USA for some time. For this reason, Brazil requires Americans to obtain a visa to visit Brazil. This policy means that Brazil gets less tourism than neighboring countries that do not require Americans to get a visa. However that is their decision, and it seems fair to me.

    Recently, the USA started requiring vistors from many countries, including Brazil, to be fingerprinted upon entering the USA (even if they are just getting a connecting flight t
    • That and the fact that kidnappings are all the rage down south. I wouldn't feel all that safe down their any way.

      Besides, Canada is much neater this time of year.

      jason
  • The quote was hilarious. The sarcastic comments were hilarious. Funny around.

You see but you do not observe. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, in "The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes"

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