The whole point of free speech is not to make ideas exempt from criticism but to expose them to it.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

More Highway Patrol just funnin'

I got a call from a young woman I know after she saw the “This takes my breath” post below. She said she had been travelling north on Highway 79 between Hermosa and Rapid City on Tuesday and had been harassed in exactly the same manner as the two unfortunate Californians.

The HP was on a crossing between the two double lanes of the famous Heartland Expressway (known drug corridor). My friend drives a red car that still has Colorado plates after a recent move back to the Black Hills. “Hmmm,” the quick mind of the HP hummed, “Colorado plates. Heading north. Red car. Be drugs in there.”

He pulled out and trailed her for a few miles, then pulled alongside, checking her out. She’s used to getting hit on, and thought that’s what was up. She slowed down. He slowed down. She resumed the speed limit. So did he. Then he pulled ahead and in front of her and slowed down. Then he pulled left again, let her pass and pulled in behind. This went on most of the way from Hermosa to Rapid. Finally he popped the lights.

‘You were swerving,” he said by way of explaining the stop. She was livid by this time. “I was trying to avoid getting rammed by a cop,” she said. The cop then got chatty, explaining the importance of his role inderdicting drugs, and asking her a series of questions about why she had the temerity to use the public roadway in a red car with Colorado plates. He mentioned that he had a dog to help him. He asked how she liked working in the Black Hills (she was on her way to work).

She says she told him, “I don’t want to talk to you. I don’t want to be your friend. I’m glad you have a dog. Now give me a ticket if you’re going to or let me go.” He gave her a warning for “lane driving.” She went on her way thanking the state of South Dakota for its diligence in protecting people from people like her.

11 comments:

Bill Fleming said...

Did she get the officer's name?

Bill Fleming said...

Sounds like the officer was perhaps driving recklessly and putting your friend in danger. High school jocks who drive like that get pinched for it.

Bill Fleming said...

Cops have to have probable cause to act like that. It won't stop unless people get organized and complain about it. The officer should be specifically and individually called on his behavior.

And if he won't take an interview, that should be published too.

It won't do any good to blame it on Gordon Howie. He wasn't there.

Put posters up of the cop all along the highway in rest stops and public places everywhere. If people take them down, put more up.

Man, do us old hippies have to teach you guys everything? (wink)

Bill Fleming said...

There's all kinds of fun people could have with this if they were of a mind. Passive resistance can be a real adventure.

Bob Newland said...

The cops are just doing what they're told to do. That doesn't excuse their behavior, but it's the policy that's at fault. The people who can stop this--the politicians--won't.

Anonymous said...

OT: Here's how to start cutting a state budget.

The Iowa judicial branch takes a 9.3% haircut.
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-ap-ia-judicialbranchcut,0,6098561.story

This is NOT a "devastating" cut. Many, many of us had larger salary and benefit cuts this year.

Bill Fleming said...

Hey, Anon, are you on the right blog? Planet?

Neal said...

I posted the following comment (below) over at SDWC, but it was, as with most posts on this topic, deleted. For no good reason, of course.

This is in response to PP's tattle-tale post over there. I will post it here for posterity.

---
Medically, it is simply irrefutable that marijuana has palliative, therapeutic qualities. Even the American Medical Association agrees, as reflected in a recent policy shift:

http://tinyurl.com/yas594r

If you deny the medical value of marijuana, you are simply not living in the fact-based world.

Politically, we seem to be nearing a tipping point. Sure, marijuana isn't a compltely benign substance -- but neither is alcohol, tobacco, red meat, sugar, or caffeine. And if we take an honest look at the relative social or individual harm of these substances, marijuana is close to the bottom -- and absolutely lower than alcohol.

People are finally starting to learn this, thanks in large part to the successful implementation of medical marijuana programs in the 14 states that have approved it. States and municipalities are bringing in millions of dollars in tax revenue from sales at clinics and dispensaries; city blocks are being revitalized by legitimate medical marijuana businesses; all hell is not breaking loose with rampaging druggies. People are starting to get it.

Where is the harm?

Just consider a few of the people who have been identified as marijuana users in the past year: 1) Santonio Holmes, Super Bowl MVP, 2) Michael Phelps, 14-time Olympic gold medalist, and 3) Tim Lincecum, Cy Young award winner and probably the best pitcher in MLB.

Obviously recretional marijuana use is not holding these guys back. Nor is it holding back millions of other people, of all colors, creeds, and professional backgrounds. There's no good reason that these people should be treated as criminals. They are not harming anyone. They are only barely harming themselves.

Anonymous said...

I bet I can guess the name of the cop
ggimaui

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