While it's easy to overlook border issues as a U.S citizen who doesn't travel, it's alarming for me to hear just how needlessly bad our border security can be if you draw any suspicion. This is apparently not an isolated incident, either- regular travelers report harassment like this is fairly common.

This also raises a problem with a personal gripe of mine- how it is illegal to lie to law enforcement. It leads to incidents like the one in the article, where police pressure someone to "tell the truth" for hours. If the weary suspect changes his story to please the people holding him, he is suddenly arrested for lying to an officer. The pressure to tell the "real" story was a trap - the actual aim was to get the suspect to contradict himself.
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