As I blogged about a few days ago, police in Pennsylvania have a habit of arresting people for using language in public that the state disapproves of.
The ACLU of PA filed a lawsuit against the state for what is apparently a very common activity on the part of cops who have issued 750 citations for profanity over a one year period.
“Police should be focused on protecting public safety, not enforcing manners,” said Marieke Tuthill, a legal fellow with the ACLU of Pennsylvania. “It may not be polite to swear at someone, but it’s certainly not a crime.”
Hereis what I find most disturbing:
The ACLU said that it has successfully defended about a dozen profanity-users, including one woman who was issued a citation after she was caught swearing — at her clogged toilet.
Government continues to violate people’s free speech rights ‘because they can‘. From the state’s perspective, there really is no down side. So, the case gets thrown out. So what?
What the court needs to do is impose a penalty against the actual people involved in this harassment. If a cop had to put up with the same inconvenience and hassle that he is imposing on those he’s citing for a non-crime, it would stop in a hurry. Unfortunately, cops are mostly immune from any penalty for harassment of citizens.