Friday, July 17, 2009

magnetic stickers and pins:United States allowing political bumper stickers

Or so some police seem to think, anyway. There is an emerging trend of cops pulling people over based solely on the types of bumper stickers or political signs they have on their vehicle. Now you, too, can be deemed a filthy, no-good common criminal for expressing your particular political alignment on your own car. Here are some prime examples of what I'm getting at:

There was Chip Harrison in Oklahoma City who was was pulled over by police for displaying an anti-Obama sign on his car. As if that was not enough insult to the man's civil rights by itself, Chip's home was later visited by the secret service - they asked questions for half an hour trying to figure out if the guy was a terrorist. The "men in black" then snooped around Chip's house for a while, invading the homeowner's right to privacy... all for an anti-Obama sign.

And then there were Rick & Ingrid, the two friends who were pulled over by Las Vegas police for what had seemed to them no reason. The officers had asked the couple for ID, and asked if they'd ever been arrested. After their information was recorded, the cops proceeded to search the car - something they are not legally allowed to do unless they have reasonable suspicion that a crime is actively taking place. But what was the reason cited by the police for searching the car? You guessed it, it was because they had Ron Paul and Infowars bumper stickers on the back of their car.

And then there was Sgt. Michael Karasek, Denver police officer who threatened to arrest Shasta Bates because she had a bumper sticker that said "F*** Bush" on her truck. The fact is, it's her Constitutional right to say whatever she wants. When a cop tells you that you have to remove your bumper sticker, or they're going to arrest you.. that's just crossing the line.

And then there was Denise Grie a couple of years back, who was fined $100 for having a bumper sticker that said "BUSHIT". Only kinda clever, in my humble opinion.. but whether you think it's funny or off-putting, it's still certainly not a ticketable offense. When asked about the possibility of the issue being fueled by the officer's political party preference, Grie said, "It's not just a Democrat/Republican issue," she says. "Y'all need to get beyond that. It's my right to speak, and yours." Well-said.

So you can start to see how these kind of things tend to pile up.. something to think about if you happen to be one of the lucky few thus far to have a "" bumper sticker (here's fair warning: you just might be pulled over one day.) They might even call you a bumper sticker terrorist! And now with The Patriot Act, and the writ of habeas corpus having been rescinded (thanks Bush regime), the U.S. government can now legally hold you prisoner if they decide to label you a terrorist - that means no chance of parole, no phone call, no other rights, and all with no official charges made, other than the "we're protecting the public from the terrorists, so we can do whatever we want" nonsense. The laws that give the government this power are on the books as I write this, for those that aren't yet aware. To most, it'd be quite a stretch for the police to actually try to lock someone up indefinitely for just a sticker,just the knowledge that they can legally do that really doesn't sit well with me. It's something to be aware of, for what it's worth.

The Midnight Owl News Blog is a new progressive media outlet that offers far more than just the news.. it offers the truth. A collection of news articles with my own commentary, from a Libertarian point of view.

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(Bryan Gosselin)

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