Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Jack-Booted Thug(s) of the Week...

... are the Wildwood, New Jersey police officers who not only ticketed a man on the boardwalk there for wearing a T-shirt with the word "fuck" on it (crude and offensive to be sure, but which is in fact protected speech; see Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 [1971]) but also assaulted his companion and threatened him with arrest (along with willful destruction of his camera) for filming this farce from a respectful and non-interfering distance:



Too bad the photographer didn't stand his ground more aggressively and refuse to quit filming no matter what kind of illegal badgering he was subjected to from those wrongheaded "authorities", but we've been in that same situation and understand how nerve-racking it really is to stand up to this kind of official bullying.  He actually made it a lot longer than most people would have lasted.

It certainly appears that these cops need some serious refresher training in just what is Constitutionally-protected speech and activities (and thus perfectly legal to do) in this country.

1 comment:

Mareah said...

Sheesh! On the one hand, I feel like the photographer was just trying to push some serious buttons -- and it looks like he did! And on the other hand, the police used their authority as a threat to the guy to make him stop doing something that wasn't illegal. Just a messy situation altogether. Hmm...