Working on photos of Edith. Only a few items this morning, most of them relevant to the war on photography, with the first seeming especially atrocious:
- A woman may win a default judgment of $70 million in a suburban New York City county. The possibility of the judgment aside, the story of her actions, her initial arrest and charges made at that time, the later radical reduction in charges, how she was treated, and the fact that police appear to have lied at several points, all suggest she certainly had grounds for a civil rights lawsuit. Too bad the citizens of Suffolk County will have to foot the bill for unconscionable actions by their police. (But, hey folks, that’s the cost of protecting us against those possible terrorist photographers.)
- Interplay between police and a photographer outside the White House, in which the dialog comes very close to violating the photographer’s civil liberties. (Taking photographs of police constitutes “suspicious activity”?) He gave up his ID, apparently to avoid escalating the incident into something else. Because he handed it over, they apparently identified him via a database, and then he was further detained so additional police could come and “re-interview” him, although the police eventually relented, telling him that they would come visit him at home for the re-interview. One wonders if this happens with any frequency outside the White House.
- An amateur photographer (who happened to be Pakistani and therefore automatically profiled) searched in East London (GB) on suspicion of being a terrorist. So, I guess, now that Section 44 has gone away, the British police will increasingly use Section 43 (which has a much higher requirement of suspicion). I love this: “They told me it was because there was a school across the road and I might be considered to be a terrorist because I was taking pictures near the school and that if I was a bird watcher I should try going to the countryside.”
- An article from (Britain’s?) Amateur Photographer magazine with the provocative title, “All photographers are potential terrorists, say police.” Worth reading for a chuckle — well, maybe a grimace and a chuckle.
- Conflict between the Police Chief and citizens in Houston (TX) regarding citizens recording encounters with police.
- A trial judge in Florida issued a warrant authorizing police to search everyone found within a restricted geographic location — “everyone who parked or set foot in the apartment complex parking lot” — regardless of individualized suspicion. This seems a flagrant civil rights violation — essentially throwing the Fourth Amendment out the window — and will surely be the subject of an appeal.
That should be enough to depress your normal weekend pleasure.
Gorgeous gal from the Caribbean.