Flipping the bird is legal - so why the continuing citations?

Discussion in 'Civil Rights & Privacy' started by Lisa Simeone, Dec 23, 2011.

  1. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Need a lawyer here:

    Since
    Then why are cops still still charging citizens, still getting sued in court, still causing their cities/locales (meaning us) to pay fines, and still not learning their lesson? And this suit, at least, is still going on up to a higher court?

    Also:
    The TSA, however, obviously can.
     
  2. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    The article you linked was 2.5 years old.

    I'm sure our fine men in blue are now behaving appropriately.
     
  3. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Yeah, I know it's that old, but it indicated that the law (or ruling) had already been on the books even before the article was written, yet there were still citations and lawsuits happening.
     
  4. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    These cases pop up from time to time. Usually they crop up in cases like the one you cited - either the cop was angry or he/she has decided to harass the person. If people sue the cops, they win. I don't know why the cops do it knowing they'll lose. Maybe enough people don't sue that it's a moneymaker for them? Maybe they just aren't thinking clearly because they're angry?

    I don't know what would happen if you did this at a TSA checkpoint. The circumstances are just different enough. If you're standing in the line and haven't gotten to the checkpoint yet, I don't see much difference. Once you get to the checkpoint and are actively engaged in being screened, that could be a distinction that the court might entertain. I haven't seen it litigated so I don't know. Of course I'd be on the other side arguing that so long as they aren't interfering with screening, people are free to engage in political speech. :)

    Does anyone remember what happened to the books and newspaper confiscations at the airport shortly after 9/11? I remember some kid had his copy of one of the Harry Potter books taken away from him, and newspapers that had articles about the war, bin Laden, pretty much anything related to 9/11, were confiscated as well. That's a huge First Amendment issue.
     
  5. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Oh, god. I don't remember this but it sickens me to hear about it. I'm sure those people just went along with it, "because it's for our safety." And because what were they gonna do? Get dragged off into a detention cell for being "disorderly" and "uncooperative"?

    Hubby and I flew to Europe 10 days after 9/11. Only thing different was that no one was allowed to bring any carry-ons (except purses), and our ID was checked twice, once at the checkpoint, once by Federal Marshalls at the ramp as we were getting on the plane. That was from BWI, on what was supposed to be a non-stop flight. But then, about an hour in, minor problem with cracked windshield blah blah blah, had to fly around dumping fuel before landing at Boston Logan. They stuffed us into another plane, it was packed, we grabbed seats wherever we could, and all those Boston Logan people had carry-ons out the wazoo, and told us they didn't have any extra security at the airport.

    Yeah. One of the airports from which the 9/11 attackers flew. We couldn't take carry-ons from BWI, but they could.

    The whole "security" thing is one big clusterf**k.
     
  6. Frank

    Frank Original Member

    The big reason is that cops (just like TSA) aren't forced to take personal responsibility for their actions. Qualified Immunity, union contract and such shield bad cops from paying for their actions (aside from a few week's vacation, usually with pay). There is an incestuous relationship between cops and prosecutors, so criminal charges generally don't fly unless the cops do something so heinous that the public outcry forces action. (expletive deleted), the cop who ran down and killed two pedestrians in California last week (no lights, no siren, no HEADLIGHTS, 80mph in a 45) still has a cop job and is outside of a jail cell, you and I would be facing manslaughter charges at the very least.

    When 1983 awards have to be paid out of cop salaries, or cop pension funds, when cops actually are prosecuted under 241 and 242 for crap like this, there will be a sea change. Not before. Today, a law enforcement badge is a tin-plated patent of nobility, de facto, and way too many cops act like it.

    That reminds me, whatever happened to the lawsuit from that college student who was arrested at the request of TSA for possession of Arabic-to-English flashcards? No update from the ACLU page.
     
  7. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Nick George. Nope, can't find any updated info either.
     

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