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Brown Equals Terroist
July 9, 2004 11:18 AM   Subscribe

Brown Equals Terroist - the story of a photography student who refuses to provide his ID to a security officer, and is swiftly confronted by Homeland Security. His ongoing struggle with the event is chronicled in the related blog.
posted by falconred (112 comments total)

 
"Your papers, please, comrade."

"This is not a request. You will give me your papers. now."

"Your papers... are not in order. You will come with us."

Not there yet, but closer and closer...
posted by zoogleplex at 11:48 AM on July 9, 2004


So, if this guy showed his ID and explained that he had talked with the Park Ranger about permission to shoot photos right from the start, would it have been an incident? Invasion of privacy is one thing, but intentionally getting into a pissing match with cops is another.

“There’s a man, right there, with an easel and canvas, standing under the bridge, right now! Why aren’t you asking him for his ID?”

Because there's a difference between photography and painting? If it was another person with a camera, I'd agree with the guy's arguement.
posted by stifford at 11:52 AM on July 9, 2004


As a fellow resident of Ballard, I am saddened to hear of this. Clearly, this guy was singled out for a reason. Of course this wouldn't be the first time the Seattle PD treated someone differently because of their color. Sad.
posted by Windopaene at 11:53 AM on July 9, 2004


scary stuff, especially in light of the supreme court's decision on the Dudley Hiibel case.
posted by mrgrimm at 11:54 AM on July 9, 2004


Stifford,

But the author clearly states there are tons of other people walking around taking pictures, and they weren't being asked for ID. And according to the Special Agent, ALL of those people were breaking the law!

Plus, if you are not legally obligated to show ID, why should you?
posted by Windopaene at 11:56 AM on July 9, 2004


stifford, there were apparently SEVERAL other people in the area - a busy public park and tourist attraction - with cameras. Probably not a fancy camera with a big lens like his, but still. Cameras. Taking pictures. Clearly he was singled out.

If it happened to you, you'd be just as unhappy as he is.
posted by zoogleplex at 11:56 AM on July 9, 2004


Special Agent McNamara gave me his card, and then retrieved a bulky digital camera from his car and asked to take my photo… you know, just to help him out… just for his file.

wake up, stifford.
posted by mrgrimm at 11:56 AM on July 9, 2004


Oops, looks like now you ARE required to show the police your "papers".

I call B*llsh*t on that.
posted by Windopaene at 12:03 PM on July 9, 2004


stifford, there were apparently SEVERAL other people in the area - a busy public park and tourist attraction - with cameras. Probably not a fancy camera with a big lens like his, but still. Cameras. Taking pictures. Clearly he was singled out.

I agree, the fancy camera (and his skin tone), is most likely what singled him out. my point with the painting comment is that it was a silly point to make.

If it happened to you, you'd be just as unhappy as he is.

If it happened to me, I'd just show my ID.

Plus, if you are not legally obligated to show ID, why should you?

To clarify the situation and be done with it.

It's not like this some guy driving his car and he got pulled over because there's a "black suspect on the loose" and the cops are pulling over all black people.

This guy decided he wanted to bust balls (and I don't have a problem with that). But he shouldn't bitch about "anger and humiliation" if he knows that's what he's doing.
posted by stifford at 12:04 PM on July 9, 2004


Clearly, he was preparing to disrupt the democratic process this November.
posted by scody at 12:07 PM on July 9, 2004


What he was doing is excercising his constitutional rights, stifford.
How quickly we forget.
posted by black8 at 12:07 PM on July 9, 2004


AnnThrax Coulter, the favorite of the FOX News circuit, would characterize his as "swarthy."
posted by nofundy at 12:14 PM on July 9, 2004


Plus, if you are not legally obligated to show ID, why should you?

To clarify the situation and be done with it.

Your willingness to forfeit your rights, when put in action, along with all the similar non-obligatory compliance to unconstitutional governmental requests, essentially weaken my rights.
posted by yesster at 12:14 PM on July 9, 2004


Cooperate, Or Else!
posted by homunculus at 12:18 PM on July 9, 2004 [1 favorite]


My issue wasn't with what he was doing (like I said before, if he want's to get into a pissing match with the cops, that's fine). It's that he's acting like "wow, I can't believe I'm causing a fuss", when he knows why all this is happening.

It's not like he was lying on a blanket in the park, and some cops came up and said "empty your pockets, brownie". He's talking pictures of a bridge, with "above average" photo equipment, and he's refusing to show ID. That's a little more suspicious than the average person hanging in the park. And he didn't even mention he discussed whether he could take photos with the Park Ranger until later on.
posted by stifford at 12:19 PM on July 9, 2004


Your willingness to forfeit your rights, when put in action, along with all the similar non-obligatory compliance to unconstitutional governmental requests, essentially weaken my rights.

I don't have a right to identify myself if I choose to?
posted by stifford at 12:21 PM on July 9, 2004


Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought the Hiibel case just established that you have to identify yourself. It didn't say you have to offer proof of your identity. I take that to mean you just have to tell the nice officer your name. I don't think we have reached the point where you can be thrown in jail for forgetting to bring your drivers license with you on a walk through the park.
Yet.
posted by MetalDog at 12:23 PM on July 9, 2004


What does that change? Agent McNamara is still clearly in the wrong regardless of his conversation with the Park Ranger. And it hardly needs to be mentioned again, but using a refusal to provide ID as inductive evidence strengthing the cops claims is silly.
posted by cohappy at 12:27 PM on July 9, 2004


"Terrorist" not "Terroist", someone shoot me!

What makes the incident even more bizzare is the fact that it took place at the freakin' Ballard Locks. Chances of Osama Bin Laden launching an assault on Ballard are equal or less than him keying my car.
posted by falconred at 12:29 PM on July 9, 2004


He didn't cause the fuss stifford.
The suits did. Get it right!
He has every right to tell them to piss off and if they don't like they can take a hike (or piss off.) That's how it is supposed to work.
Ever heard of presumption of innocence?
What's so hard to understand about this guy having his basic civil rights violated because of his skin color?
Oh, maybe I see now.
Do you by chance have one of those rebel flags hanging up somewhere?
Don't like our rights?
Then the Patriot Act should make you happy enough to piss yourself.
posted by nofundy at 12:30 PM on July 9, 2004


What does that change?

They know who the guy is (so if later on somehow the bridge does magically explode) there is someone to talk to (whether as a suspect, or to see if maybe he photographed a possible suspect while her was there). And then they can confirm with the Park Ranger what he said and then that's it. It would save him "the thirty longest minutes of his life".
posted by stifford at 12:32 PM on July 9, 2004


You know, I read this. Then I went back and read the thread about the high school student who was crying abuse because his principal didn't let him tape 500 xeroxes all over his high school.

It's amazing what people's perceptions of repression really are, isn't it?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:32 PM on July 9, 2004


The problem here is people keep thinking they have these "rights" to stuff. I'd like to live in your fantasy world where people have these magical rights that let them do things. Unfortunately, I live in the real world where the men with the guns make the rules.
posted by Jart at 12:35 PM on July 9, 2004


He was in an area where lots of tourists go through, taking photos, though, was he not? And what about the agent telling him he couldn't photograph the bridge? What was that all about, if everything was above board and reasonable and proportionate?

And this guy started a pissing match with the agents, stifford?
You must be reading a different website.

When I read this guy's story the other day, I found it genuinely upsetting (surprisingly so). He was intimidated and harassed and it was because he was 'a brown'.
posted by Blue Stone at 12:36 PM on July 9, 2004


I don't think that showing ID is forfeiting your rights... it's not like he was asked to let them search his car or house.

Even saying I have the constitutional right to not let you search my trunk or my house or what have you is probably going to set of alarm bells - why won't I let you unless I have something to hide? However, I can understand it.

Not showing ID, however -- what's the point? What are you trying to prove? What harm will be done to you by showing a little card with a picture of yourself on it?


I agree that if other people weren't asked for ID, he was treated unfairly, but I think in this day and age you're bringing trouble upon yourself if you refuse to show ID, I don't care what your skin color is. It's not that you shouldn't have the right to say no, but really, what do you think is going to happen? Use some common sense - it's going to cause concern if you refuse to show ID.


I suppose maybe I just choose to draw the line a bit further down (i.e. I see no reason to let them search my house without damn good reason, but I don't care if I'm asked for ID)...
posted by twiggy at 12:36 PM on July 9, 2004


Man those fucking brown people are out of control. Can't we make them ride on the back of the bus or something? (sarcasm)

Ahh the wonderful world of the Napolean syndrome. Give an imbecile a badge (and a gun, can you believe it?) and all of a sudden you are dealing with the most unbelievable asshole on the planet.

This guy is a lot more gracious than I would have been. But, I am not brown, damn tan right now though.

Did I mention that I took the NYC PD test in June? Kind of a goof. But I was unemployed at the moment. I can't wait to do the psych test.
posted by a3matrix at 12:37 PM on July 9, 2004


Makes me want to get out my old film camera with a low-f zoom, and walk up to ballard to take some pictures m'self.
posted by nomisxid at 12:37 PM on July 9, 2004


Do you by chance have one of those rebel flags hanging up somewhere?

I think that this guy would have had a lot less hassle if he shows his ID in the first place, so I'm a redneck racist? How do you know I'm not as brown as that photographer? Or would I just be an "Uncle Tom" because I would have chose to cooperate with the police?
posted by stifford at 12:38 PM on July 9, 2004


He's talking pictures of a bridge, with "above average" photo equipment, and he's refusing to show ID. That's a little more suspicious than the average person hanging in the park.

That was probably the line of thinking on the part of the cops and homeland security folks, and I'm sure his race figured into him "fitting a profile." There's a tiny chance that anyone with a camera shooting stuff is up to no good as I've found out myself when taking photos.

I guess it's up to us to decide if small, outside risks like this are worth sacrificing our rights for. I would guess that a majority of Americans put in the agents' shoes would do the same as the agents.

I know I'm a bit of an idealist, but I'd rather take the risk than treat everyone as if they were a criminal.
posted by mathowie at 12:41 PM on July 9, 2004


Invasion of privacy is one thing, but intentionally getting into a pissing match with cops is another.

I can't think of anything more healthy. If anyone walks up to me out of the blue, disrupts what I'm doing, demands to know who I am and what I've been doing, and asks for documentation of same, there is going to be some technical difficulties that may actually exceed a "pissing match". There ain't anything special about "cops", unless you've spent (and expect to continue to spend) your life bowing and saying pretty-please to "authority".

He's talking pictures of a bridge, with "above average" photo equipment, and he's refusing to show ID.That's a little more suspicious than the average person hanging in the park.

Oh christ. I fear for my countrymen. Here's looking forward to complete behavioral homogeneity and cheerful, quick obedience to "authority." Yeah. I mean, who wants the hassle of "the thirty longest minutes" of one's life (speaking truth to power and standing up for a principle), when one could be out "consuming" or watching TeeVee.

Unfortunately, I live in the real world where the men with the guns make the rules.

You'll excuse the rest of us if we aren't quite so cowed and intimidated. We'll keep fighting for your rights, even if you've given up doing so.

You're welcome.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 12:43 PM on July 9, 2004


Except of course, for the little problem that he was told on two occasions that he was not obligated to show ID. There seems to be this interesting standard of "you are not obligated to show ID, but if you don't, I can still give you shit for not showing it."
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:43 PM on July 9, 2004


jeez, everyone lay off stifford, he's presenting a level-headed approach to this and trying to figure out where and why the agents went wrong, just like the rest of us. It's clear we don't agree where the line for "going too far" should be placed. Can we discuss than instead of assuming someone is a racist because of it?
posted by mathowie at 12:43 PM on July 9, 2004


Not showing ID, however -- what's the point? What are you trying to prove? What harm will be done to you by showing a little card with a picture of yourself on it?

The point is that the US is (supposedly) a free country-- a country in which people should be able to go about their lawful business without any interference from the gendarmes. When I refuse to produce papers or identify myslef, I'm trying to prove that I am a free man in a free place.

Not letting the police search your house-- what's the point? What are you trying to prove? What harm will be done to you by letting the police see where you sleep?

Not letting the police inspect the contents of your hard drive-- what's the point? What are you trying to prove? What harm will be done to you by letting the police see ahet software and documents you hold?

Not letting the police watch you fuck-- what's the point? What are you trying to prove? What harm will be done to you by letting the poiice know of and witness your sexual practice?

&c.
posted by trharlan at 12:44 PM on July 9, 2004


And this guy started a pissing match with the agents, stifford?
You must be reading a different website.


It takes 2 sides to have a pissing match. I'm not saying the cops weren't being overzealous. But not showing his ID just fed right into that. He could have been more cooperative in the process, but he chose not to. Fine. But then he's acting like the sky is falling, and they didn't even take him in or arrest him.
posted by stifford at 12:45 PM on July 9, 2004


Invasion of privacy is one thing, but intentionally getting into a pissing match with cops is another.

I can't think of anything more healthy.


Neither can I (and at times it's fun too...). But if you are going to bust the chops of some Cops, don't complain that they kept talking to you for a half hour or so.
posted by stifford at 12:48 PM on July 9, 2004


Your Rights and Remedies When Stopped or Confronted for Photography (pdf)
posted by barkingpumpkin at 12:51 PM on July 9, 2004


Stifford, do you honestly believe that if this guy had shown his ID, the charming DHS agent wouldn't have been eyeing this guy as a suspected terrorist because of his skin color?
posted by solistrato at 12:53 PM on July 9, 2004


"Makes me want to get out my old film camera with a low-f zoom, and walk up to ballard to take some pictures m'self."

If I lived anywhere remotely near Ballard, I would be way into borrowing an "above average" camera and heading down for some photography en masse. I think that would be a great idea for a protest. (Why the fuck would the camera being "above average" have a damn thing to do with it?)
posted by fillsthepews at 12:53 PM on July 9, 2004


Stifford, do you honestly believe that if this guy had shown his ID, the charming DHS agent wouldn't have been eyeing this guy as a suspected terrorist because of his skin color?

The charming DHS agent was already eyeing this guy as a suspected terrorist. But if the guy has shown the initial officer his ID, it might not have gotten to the point of the DHS agent even being involved.
posted by stifford at 12:59 PM on July 9, 2004


(Why the fuck would the camera being "above average" have a damn thing to do with it?)

It's the guy that mentions what equipment he has with him (to show he was a photography student). My point in mentioning it was that his equipment was a little more advanced than the average tourist clicking away with a disposable camera.
posted by stifford at 1:03 PM on July 9, 2004


The worst problem I've had while shooting photos is rent-a-cops, but I'm just a cracker. I hope I never have a run-in with real law enforcement like this guy did, because I will not be able to handle it well. At. All.

In fact, I'd probably be off to Cuba.

Fuckin' fascists.
posted by keswick at 1:04 PM on July 9, 2004


yeah, that was my second thought, "how many people can I get to go with me..."
posted by nomisxid at 1:07 PM on July 9, 2004


What f&m and trharlan said.

If it happened to me, I'd just show my ID.

...why won't I let you unless I have something to hide?


This is scary stuff. But I agree with mathowie:

jeez, everyone lay off stifford

...though not for his reasons. I don't think the problem is that "he's presenting a level-headed approach to this" (your "level-headed" is my "lie back and enjoy it"); the problem is that by yelling at stifford you're missing the chance to educate yourself. This is how a large number of your fellow citizens think. Yelling at them doesn't help; what's important is to come up with a way to change enough minds that we have some chance to avoid sliding into total passive acceptance of What the Man With the Badge Wants is What's Good for Us.
posted by languagehat at 1:12 PM on July 9, 2004


We could form a militia.

I'll say this, Cuba is a lot more pleasant of an exile than Siberia, I reckon.
posted by keswick at 1:15 PM on July 9, 2004


"And then they can confirm with the Park Ranger what he said and then that's it."

You, sir, are very niave. What we have here is a bunch of racist cops trying to make sure someone with brown skin knew his place.

I take pictures of aircraft carriers, fighter jets, Navy SEALS, government buildings, bridges, etc here in San Diego with my big camera and tripod. I've never been stopped. Want to bet that if I went up to Ballard and took pictures of the locks I wouldn't be hassled by the cops? If I lived in the area I'd head down there right now.

And conversely, want to bet that this guy would have gotten the exact same treatment if he'd cooperated completely? What this man is experiencing is an attempt to intimidate minorities for no good reason. And why did the rent-a-cop want to see his ID? Seriously. How could that have been of any use to him?

Beyond that, the cops are fucking up their own job. Why would a terrorist use a huge camera and a tripod when a small point and shoot would work just as well? The idea that big camera=terrorist makes no sense. This is my tax money at work? This is making me safer?

No wonder we didn't catch the 9/11 assholes - We're too busy feeding our own power-happy egos. I'm glad Special Agent McNamara gets his rocks off scaring people who fit his "Arab terrorist" stereotype, but maybe he could cut the bullshit and try making an effort.
posted by y6y6y6 at 1:15 PM on July 9, 2004


what's important is to come up with a way to change enough minds that we have some chance to avoid sliding into total passive acceptance of What the Man With the Badge Wants is What's Good for Us.

or, maybe realizing that a cop asking for your ID is not the equivalent of 1984.
posted by stifford at 1:15 PM on July 9, 2004


Yeah, the decision in the Hiibel case is that just reporting your name isn't unreasonable search and seizure. Itdidn't authorize the requirement for production of actual ID, however.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 1:20 PM on July 9, 2004


You, sir, are very niave. What we have here is a bunch of racist cops trying to make sure someone with brown skin knew his place.

How do you know how many "brown skins" were at the park at that time? Are you assuming they were all white? Maybe it was like a Benneton ad in that park. Did he say they were harassing all the "brown folks" in the park?

For all I know, all the cops could be total rascists. I'm just not assuming that they are.
posted by stifford at 1:20 PM on July 9, 2004


If these guys were above board, why all the crap:
He told me that I’d broken the law by not providing my ID to the original investigator. I told him that I’d asked if I was legally obligated to produce my ID, and that he’d clearly told me “no,” but it was obvious that that didn't matter to Special Agent McNamara in the slightest. I was just wrong, and he was just right.

He went on to tell me that the minute I’d photographed federal property, citing the Ballard Locks, the train bridge and the Patriot Act, that I’d, again, broken the law.
Is that the behaviour of a professional lawman, just doing his job? He's clearly making shit up, and the question has to be, why would a man, simply performing his law enforcement duties lie to some guy like that if it was all on the up-and-up?

Clue: he's not simply performing his law enforcement duties. How could he be, while making up things like that?
posted by Blue Stone at 1:24 PM on July 9, 2004


What good does a cop asking for your ID do in a situation like this? The only valid reason would be running a search for warrants or whatever. Nine times out of ten, they look at it and give it back. It's just a way to remind you who's In Charge Here.

Fuck tha police.
posted by keswick at 1:26 PM on July 9, 2004


re XQUZYPHYR's comment: it seems this guy started out just trying to get his photography assignment done, which upon arrival of Homeland Security turned into huge mess. Whereas the high school poster deliberately set out to annoy his teachers with contrarian views.
posted by casarkos at 1:26 PM on July 9, 2004


I guess my immediate thought was that I really doubt any terrorists would be out shopping at the local best buy for the "nicest" camera out there. It was just a bizarre connection to me.
posted by fillsthepews at 1:26 PM on July 9, 2004


stifford: What is the more reasonable hypothesis?

1: an amateur photographer who is more than happy to talk about why he is there, leave notice with the park service as to his intent to photograph in the area, is willing to open up his camera bag and notes (an act that goes well beyond the minimal requirements for a friendly interview with the police in the park), who provides a reasonable rationale for being there, is exactly what he claims to be.

2: that said person is a terrorist just friendly enough to ask permission to photograph a site popular with tourists, and voluntarily willing to submit to a search.

It seems to me that Mr. Spiers was being more than helpful and civil. Opening up notebooks and camera bags is voluntarily giving up most of his 5th amendment protections. He voluntarily notified the park service to get permission for the shoot. His only bit of reticince is giving up his ID so that he can be subjected to a background search.

At the risk of repeating "the terrorists have won" meme. I think it fits in this case. Terrorism works not only by causing large ammounts of damage, but also by making everyday acts that are the bread and butter of commerce and discourse, into acts that are loaded with fear and terror.

As with the photography ban proposed for New York subways, I find the reasoning for harassing photographers and preventing photography to be not very compelling. Control of images of sites works well when you are dealing with an enemy that wants to attack a few key points of industrial and military infrastructure. Given claims that terrorists have considered such ubiquitous structures as apartment buildings and have had a fair ammount of success targeting hotels, the claim that we should try to control the massive flood of amateur and tourist photography (a passtime that is key to attracting tourist dollars that are the lifeblood of many communities) is ludicrous.

In addition, one would think that we need more people like Mr. Spiers keeping their eyes open for the unusual, for the event worthy of preserving, out where people gather. Rather than treating photographers as potential threats, why not treat them as potential allies?
posted by KirkJobSluder at 1:31 PM on July 9, 2004


My point in mentioning it was that his equipment was a little more advanced than the average tourist clicking away with a disposable camera.

The pages displayed people using regular digital camera, with good chances of being more capable than what he was using, in all possible ways: from zooming capabilities to the ability to transmit pictures thousands of miles away minutes after they've been taken...

I feel safer knowing (brown) terrorists are using film and snail mailing pictures of locks to remote countries.

And I will show my ID whenever asked to. I'll also hapilly drop my pants and bend over too, if that makes America safer.
posted by NewBornHippy at 1:33 PM on July 9, 2004


I heard that Osama bin Laden personally directed him to take photos of the locks. And he could have been one of those Al Qaeda hitmen posing as news cameramen that assassinated Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah Massoud. They had IDs, too.

The September 11 hijackers had IDs.

especially in light of the supreme court's decision on the Dudley Hiibel case.

The incident at Ballard Locks was May 26, 2004. The Supreme Court's Hiibel decision was June 21, 2004.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:41 PM on July 9, 2004


The first part of the story, the first time Spiers had to deal with the police, was at his house. He showed ID then, but felt uncomfortable about the situation.

The second time, at the bridge again, Spiers asked if he had to show ID, and was told 'no'. But officer #2 said he had to, saying the photographer had broken the law by taking the photos.

IF the issue was taking photos, then why did everyone else on site get to continue taking photos? And I agree with Spiers comment about the painter not getting harrased. What better way to really take time and scope out a potential target than to sit, for possibly hours at a time, "painting". He could be scoping the area out, recording movement of boats and other targets.
posted by jazon at 1:42 PM on July 9, 2004


Seattle law enforcement have somewhat of a reputation for not being... not multi-culturally sensitive.

In a well-publicized incident a few years ago, city councilman Richard McIver was pulled bodily from his car and searched during the WTO protests.
posted by falconred at 1:42 PM on July 9, 2004


From falconred's article

""I don't want to aid the hooligans who are raising hell and I don't want to take on specific officers. . . . But there are huge flaws with the officers when it comes to people of color. I'm 58 years old. I had on a $400 suit, but last night, I was just another nigger.""

Damn. Did anything ever come of this? Not that its any more important when you are wearing a pricy suit, but I hate to see good opportunities for press go to waste.
posted by fillsthepews at 1:49 PM on July 9, 2004


In a Ballard Tribune article a Homeland Security spokesman implies they thought Spiers was a Canadian pot smuggler.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:54 PM on July 9, 2004


Jart said, quite a ways above:

"The problem here is people keep thinking they have these "rights" to stuff. I'd like to live in your fantasy world where people have these magical rights that let them do things. Unfortunately, I live in the real world where the men with the guns make the rules."

Oh really? Well, I happen to be a legal firearm owner. Does that mean I get to make some rules, too, since I'm a man with a gun?

WTF, man. Go read the Constitution again, please. If you need help understanding it go see your local middle-school Civics teacher.

The whole purpose of this country and the Constitution is to make that "real world" you speak of a thing of the past. If it is failing... well then, I'm glad I have my guns.
posted by zoogleplex at 2:00 PM on July 9, 2004


Unfortunately, the country seems to be increasingly filled with easily cowed "people" who have not even a basic grasp of the Constitution & Bill of Rights, and they're ruining it for the rest of us. I'm not going doing without a (fire)fight, though.
posted by keswick at 2:06 PM on July 9, 2004


er, doing = down
posted by keswick at 2:11 PM on July 9, 2004


Does that mean I get to make some rules, too, since I'm a man with a gun?

Sure you can. It's called "armed robbery."

The whole purpose of this country and the Constitution is to make that "real world" you speak of a thing of the past.

I just find any discussion of "rights" annoying, because I disagree with the premise. You don't have any innate rights just by virtue of being a human being - you have those rights because a bunch of people with guns decided that they wanted the freedom to do those things, and they took that freedom from the other men with guns that were trying to stop them.

Just because everyone agrees to act as if a thing is so, doesn't make it so. But this is probably off topic. On topic, being stopped by the police for no good reason is incredibly frustrating, and I don't blame anyone for passively (or passive-aggressively) resisting it. But if you do that. you should realize that it will probably make the situation worse.
posted by Jart at 2:17 PM on July 9, 2004


We'll keep fighting for your rights, even if you've given up doing so.

Another keyboard warrior I see. Kicking ass and typing names!
posted by a3matrix at 2:25 PM on July 9, 2004


I just find any discussion of "rights" annoying, because I disagree with the premise.

So you think that there are no innate rights of [hu]man? Reading a bit of Rousseau latley? I am also sure that Thomas Paine would disagree with you, if he was alive.
posted by plemeljr at 2:26 PM on July 9, 2004


Beyond that, the cops are fucking up their own job. Why would a terrorist use a huge camera and a tripod when a small point and shoot would work just as well?

Precisely! The idea that someone attempting to do reconnaissance for a terrorist activity would draw that level of attention to themselves is beyond bizarre.

or, maybe realizing that a cop asking for your ID is not the equivalent of 1984.

Is it necessary for you to take everything to extremes? It's not 1984, but it is an unnecessary and unwelcome encroachment on your rights. If you're doing something entirely lawful, you should not be subject to being bothered for any reason by any law enforcement official, be they local or federal, on the basis that your camera equipment is "too nice" or that your skin is the wrong color or your presence in the area scared some racist moron who doesn't know a biracial American from an Arab from a Filipino from a Samoan and has decided that because you aren't white, you must pose a threat.

Is it that big a deal to present your ID? Yes, it is, when you're part of the group of Americans who are continually singled out because of the color of your skin, it becomes quite a big deal indeed. We are not all criminals, and to be continually treated as though we are, or just might be, is not something that we should be expected to just live with and suck up and deal with. It cannot be permitted to continue.
posted by Dreama at 2:26 PM on July 9, 2004


Anyone who thinks that this was a reasonable chain of evens has obviously not been pulled over for no reason and asked, over and over again, if they would allow their car to be searched. Brushing up against authority figures that think that they can dictate the law out of their assholes is a scary thing for any good citizen.

It is really too bad that the Patriot Act is more or less a law that allows authority figures to dictate things to us out of their assholes. And that is why it must be resisted. The last thing anyone in the White House wants to have happen is for a case involving a situation like this to go to the Supreme Court because it would likely end this Patriot Act BS once and for all. So if a 'test case' like this happens to you it is your duty to resist and allow the courts to decide what is right. It is your only recorse as a citizen. Well, that and acting on your belief as a member of a jury if you happen to be called to serve on such a case.

My grandfather and millions others have served and died in wars to PROTECT our rights and our way of life. I'm personally not going to lie down and let them evaporate.
posted by n9 at 2:30 PM on July 9, 2004


zoogleplex: WTF, man. Go read the Constitution again, please. If you need help understanding it go see your local middle-school Civics teacher.

Heck even simpler than that, read the Declaration of Independence in which the basic justification for American government is laid out. In summary:

1: Human rights are inalienable.

2: The legitimacy of governments is defined by how those governments protect those rights.

3: A government that fails to protect those rights, forfits its authority over the people.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 2:32 PM on July 9, 2004


I just find any discussion of "rights" annoying, because I disagree with the premise.

You know what's really annoying? Tedious pseudo-philosophizing that tries to sweep away genuine discussion by bickering over tangential issues.

How about "The officers violated this man's rights the generally agreed-upon (at least in the limit cases) social contracts that provide the framework for the functioning of this particular society. In addition, there are other generally-agreed upon social contracts relevant to the discussion, such as retaliatory measures which may be exacted by individuals (who have been "granted" this authority by the public) in response to the aforementioned violation of contracts."

You happy, jerk-off?
posted by sonofsamiam at 2:34 PM on July 9, 2004


KJS, yep! Thanks. But still, those rights are codified in the Constitution, which is the actual document of law on which all other laws here are based. The Declaration is actually more my favorite document because of precisely those parts you quoted, but unfortunately those parts are not clearly codified in the Constitution.

And yes Jart, I know that should I decide to make some of my own rules by using my gun to enforce them, I will make things worse. They used to call it "frontier justice," I believe? And of course there are a lot of cops - men with guns - out there, and I'm just one guy. So no, I'm not going to do that.

While I don't really like sonofsamiam's final ad-hominem, I agree with the part about the cops in this case violating the rights we have agreed upon as the basis of American citizenship and freedom. And that is what we should all be very unhappy about.

Allowing ourselves to say, "well, the rules we've based our society on really don't matter, because men with guns are going to tell us what to do" -- especially to the point where we let something like the PATRIOT Act actually ALLOW THEM TO BY LAW, a law that's contradictory to our basic legal rights framework (see Amendment 1-4) -- is allowing ourselves to be dominated and our agreed-upon rights taken away.

And to make even stronger KJS point 2. above, the Declaration actually says that when a government is no longer serving the people it governs, it is the RIGHT and OBLIGATION of the people to dissolve that government and replace it with a new one that does.

Hopefully we can fix this crappy situation, or else do that replacing, before it gets to the point where we need a group of men with guns to displace the ones in power, hm?
posted by zoogleplex at 3:14 PM on July 9, 2004


Previous post on Hiibel. I think the Reason article (which I linked above) is the best analysis of its implications.
posted by homunculus at 3:29 PM on July 9, 2004


advice from an opld timer: put up Paypal on yhour site so you can pay for lawyers. Sell movie right. Contact an agent etc etc this is how the system works...Bless America and be glad to know you are classfied for early call up when draft passes.
posted by Postroad at 3:30 PM on July 9, 2004


Lots of reputable folks believed and believe in the idea of metaphysical rights. It's not a loony idea, though that doesn't mean that it's right. You can also have a rational non-metaphysical framework for the establishment of recognized "rights", and there are some libertarians who take this position on them. In any event, Jart's characterization of "rights" as being only a fiction of power is simplistic and, frankly, wrong. On the other hand, the appeal to the Declaration of Independence, for example, as an authority on the existence of real, inalienable, inherent "rights" is also pretty simplilstic. On the first hand, though, for better or worse the legal system in the US has accepted the idea of "natural rights" to some degree, so that's the correct context within which to discuss this, whether or not Jart (or I) agree with its premise. As it happens, I don't agree with the idea of natural rights, either. But that's beside the point, mostly.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:44 PM on July 9, 2004


Mr. Spiers can kiss any hopes of flying goodbye. And I'll bet if he ever gets a speeding ticket, his name will come up in the identity check and he'll then be subject to a search. God forbid his house be burgled: the police will take that opportunity to search it high and low looking for "evidence." He is now a marked man.

I find the complacency displayed by a few in this thread terribly unnerving. It may very well be that showing some id is "no big deal"... but not showing id is also no big deal. In fact, it used to be that being asked to show id would have been unusual.

I'm a little flabbergasted that everyone doesn't see this as yet another small step toward a police state. I guess it's like putting a toad in a pot of water and turning up the heat: the daft bugger will happily boil to death, wholly ignoring the small changes until they accumulate to the point where survival isn't an option.

I'm shocked at the stupidity of the alarmistly-named "Homeland Security" cops. The Ballard Locks as a site of terrorist interest? Ferchrissake, this is the same city that has the Space Needle, a very populated Fishermans' Wharf, and an elevated train! Anyone wanting to do something terrorist is surely not going to piddle about with some bloody useless Locks that will, if they fail, merely drain a bunch of water out to the ocean!

But the stupidity of DHS and racism of Seattle cops is beside the issue: at issue is that complacency and a desire to "not cause trouble" is leading America toward a very dangerous endpoint.

It might be too soon to write the epitaph, but I'm thinking it'll be something like this:


AMERICA
It was great while it lasted.

posted by five fresh fish at 3:46 PM on July 9, 2004


I was curious as to just how suspicious someone taking photos and/or notes at the Ballard Locks might be. From what I can gather it might be a bit surprising to go through the day there *without* seeing someone using a tripod or taking notes.

Of course an *Arab* person taking notes and photos...... Now that's reasonable cause to call the feds.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

"Whatever the season, you will find the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks a place to remember, and a place you will want to see again."

It seems pretty clear to me that the mindset of the people entrusted with protecting us has become focused on useless stereotypes. All the terrorists have to do is avoid looking like a ridiculous caricature from a James Bond movie.
posted by y6y6y6 at 3:53 PM on July 9, 2004


you have those rights because a bunch of people with guns decided that they wanted the freedom to do those things, and they took that freedom from the other men with guns that were trying to stop them

Now I know my nieces won't have to attend history classes. It's all there isn't it...

I don't deny that violence has largely been a factor in every war (imagine that) but the desire for independence and the gaining thereof continues because of said violence?

I wonder what the bunches of people with guns want these days?

How did India gain it's independence from British Empire again?
posted by juiceCake at 3:53 PM on July 9, 2004


What's really funny is imagining the furor, the veritable shitstorm of criticism that the local PD and DHS officers would be subjected to right here on this very site, had the officers NOT gotten this fellow's ID and the Ballard Locks exploded the very next day.

"Well, there was a young man of apparently Middle Eastern descent here yesterday, taking photos of the Locks with some pretty high-end camera equipment, but we, ummmm... can't find him. We asked him what he was doing and he said he was working on a project for a photography class. We didn't think we had the right to ask him for ID."
posted by JParker at 4:00 PM on July 9, 2004


He's talking pictures of a bridge, with "above average" photo equipment, and he's refusing to show ID. That's a little more suspicious than the average person hanging in the park.

How is this suspicious whatsoever? I really don't understand how taking pictures in public is suspicious. How can the police determine what your photography objectives are based on using your camera by some locks that are publicly accessable? Vigilance without restraint or reason is harrassment.
posted by juiceCake at 4:02 PM on July 9, 2004


stifford: What is the more reasonable hypothesis?

1: an amateur photographer who is more than happy to talk about why he is there, leave notice with the park service as to his intent to photograph in the area, is willing to open up his camera bag and notes (an act that goes well beyond the minimal requirements for a friendly interview with the police in the park), who provides a reasonable rationale for being there, is exactly what he claims to be.

2: that said person is a terrorist just friendly enough to ask permission to photograph a site popular with tourists, and voluntarily willing to submit to a search.


I think I could understand how someone could find it suspicious that someone that is so "open" to show their notebooks and camera equipment but doesn't want to show their ID. I'm not saying this is enough to strip search them, or bring them into the police station. But I would think it was odd enough to mention it to other officers.

or, maybe realizing that a cop asking for your ID is not the equivalent of 1984.

Is it necessary for you to take everything to extremes?


The only reason I brought up 1984 was after languagehat alluded that my opinion was part of America "sliding into total passive acceptance of What the Man With the Badge Wants is What's Good for Us."
posted by stifford at 4:27 PM on July 9, 2004


EB: On the other hand, the appeal to the Declaration of Independence, for example, as an authority on the existence of real, inalienable, inherent "rights" is also pretty simplilstic.

The attempt there was not to establish an authority on the existence of real, inalienable, inherent "rights", but to show that the concept of rights is inherently tied to the claimed legitimacy of our government. That is, what is profoundly revolutionary about the Declaration of Independence is that nationhood is defined not in terms of a divine right of nobility to impose law on the populace, but on a divine right of the populace to choose the structures that rule them.

It is perhaps something of a "useful fiction" but I've not seen a better one out there.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 4:33 PM on July 9, 2004


for better or worse the legal system in the US has accepted the idea of "natural rights" to some degree, so that's the correct context within which to discuss this

Amendment IX: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

Justice Goldberg, concurring in Griswold v. Connecticut:
The language and history of the Ninth Amendment reveal that the Framers of the Constitution believed that there are additional fundamental rights, protected from governmental infringement, which exist alongside those fundamental rights specifically mentioned in the first eight constitutional amendments...the Ninth Amendment shows a belief of the Constitution's authors that fundamental rights exist that are not expressly enumerated in the first eight amendments and an intent that the list of rights included there not be deemed exhaustive.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:34 PM on July 9, 2004


What's really funny is imagining the furor...had the officers NOT gotten this fellow's ID and the Ballard Locks exploded the very next day

LOL, can't you do any better than that? Pathetic.
posted by aramaic at 4:49 PM on July 9, 2004


Maybe one of the most alarming things about this story is that those who are assigned to supposedly protect us are this amazingly clueless? Anyone feeling any safer?
posted by normy at 5:10 PM on July 9, 2004


"can't you do any better than that? Pathetic."

Could. Don't need to.

The line between governmental authority to ensure public safety on one hand, and the rights of individuals in a free society from authoritarian harassment on the other is a fine one, and one that has been moving steadily to the right since 9/11. Whining about your cake disappearing while you chow down on it doesn't solve anything. What's your solution?

You have show your ID when you buy a domestic plane ticket. Why? You don't have to when you buy a train ticket - in many stations you can get tickets from a vending machine. How is that fair? What's your solution?

The sentiment seems to be that these storm troppers are eating doughnuts down at the coffee shop when a call comes in: "We've got a potential terrorist shooting pictures down at the Lock, won't show his ID! Go get 'em!" You think these police officers and DHS officers want to go around harassing innocent civilians? Roust 'em, just to show them who's boss? That's pathetic, and displays a total lack of understanding of the judgement calls that law enforcement personnel are required to make every day.
posted by JParker at 5:36 PM on July 9, 2004


Well, doesn't seem like they're using very good judgement up there in Seattle, now does it.

Please try again. Next?
posted by zoogleplex at 5:44 PM on July 9, 2004


You think these police officers and DHS officers want to go around harassing innocent civilians?

s/civilians/brown people/

...and, yes, some of them, sometimes.
posted by inpHilltr8r at 5:46 PM on July 9, 2004


Yeah, I'm sure all security and law enforcement officers signed up out of sheer altruism, rather than a way, to say, legally bully people on a daily basis. Ever watched an episode of COPS and seen the smirking that goes on in every minute of that show?

…I’ll tell you who the threat to the status quo is-- its us. That’s why they show you shows like fuckin’ COPS, so you know that state power will win and we’ll bust your house down, we’ll fuckin' bust you anytime we want, that’s the message. Why don’t they just have a show called STORMTROOPERS?"
posted by keswick at 5:50 PM on July 9, 2004


Kicking ass and typing names

I utterly disagree with you, a3m, but that's pretty good.
posted by mwhybark at 6:04 PM on July 9, 2004


My college roommate is a cop (at least he was last time I heard, I am not very good at keeping in touch with people). He says it's hard to remember how nice most people are, since most of the people he deals with every day are not very nice.

I absolutely agree that the police in this story are at fault, and that the student in question was treated wrongly, but think about who the cops usually deal with....aggressive drunks, thieves, wife beaters, rapists, murderers, etc. After 10 years of 8 hour shifts chasing and arresting rotten, horrible people, they get jaded and bitter, and start seeing everyone who isn't in a police uniform as "them" -- and treat them accordingly.

..and before everyone hops all over me for defending the police's actions, I am trying to understand it, I am not defending it.
posted by stupidcomputernickname at 6:11 PM on July 9, 2004


You don't have to when you buy a train ticket - in many stations you can get tickets from a vending machine

In many stations, but not in New York, and not in Boston -- from personal experience. In Lincoln, Nebraska, however, you don't need to show your ID when buying a plane ticket. At least, I didn't. Some places are just more on edge than others, and rightly so.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:17 PM on July 9, 2004


You happy, jerk-off?

No I am not happy, and yes I do jerk-off. On occasion.

Okay, to sum up things as I see them: the guy was in the right to refuse showing his ID. Things might have gone easier on him if he had shown it. He was most likely singled out because of his appearance. Some people in law enforcement lack what we like to call "people skills." And I'm probably wrong about that whole "rights don't really exist" thing, but I'm too lazy to think up a new opinion.
posted by Jart at 6:23 PM on July 9, 2004


Guess it's time to tattoo barcodes on everyone. No need to show ID: laser scanners can keep track of everyone at all times.

Keep Your Freedoms By Losing Your Freedoms!
posted by five fresh fish at 7:16 PM on July 9, 2004


Civil:

I don't think you can buy an Amtrak ticket without ID, but certainly you can cruise on down to New York Penn Station and hop on an NJ Transit train whenever you like -- five dollar surcharge if you purchase on the train, but hey, if you're blow it up before the conductor sells you a ticket, that isn't a big deal.

Amtrak, of course, is impervious to terrorist attack -- service is already so shitty, wiping it from the face of the Earth would only do the Earth a favor.
posted by Ptrin at 7:51 PM on July 9, 2004


Ptrin -- Right, but NJ Transit is like the subway for the suburbs. Much like Boston's Commuter Rail. They don't ID you for the LIRR, either; I was referring to Amtrak, as you already mention. And yes, Amtrak is already a disaster without the help of terrorists.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:57 PM on July 9, 2004


will you accept a passport as id ?

- no.

will you accept an international student card ?

- no.

will you accept a fife college card from 1998 ?

- yes !
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:13 PM on July 9, 2004


Jart, I don't think anyone can say with certainty whether you're right or wrong in your assertion of the non-existence of natural rights. I share your opinion; my point was a) that lots of respectable folks don't; and, b) that artificial rights are not necessarily, um, Darwinian.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:48 PM on July 9, 2004


The thing that pisses me off about both the case and the comments here is that this guy showed them ID already - when the cops first came to his HOUSE. In case anyone missed it - they followed him home from the locks.
“Well, you don’t have to cooperate,” the cop responded, exaggerating his tone. Yeah, I got his message. Have you ever tried not cooperating with a cop? I gave him my ID, and then sat through another ten minutes of awkward and demeaning questions.
All the other crap happened the next day - it seems like he had already been targeted as a terrorist suspect/troublemaker/whatever even though the only thing he had done up to that point is ask if he was required to show ID - which he then produced anyway.

So JParker's scenario is TOTAL BULLSHIT - they already had the middle-eastern guys name, but probably none of the names of the other photographers present.

If a couple of cops (or anyone, for that matter) showed up on my doorstep asking for ID, I would ask:
1. Why do want it?
2. Am I legally required to give it to you?

If I found myself being harassed the next day, well, I would be mighty aggravated too.

(And I say this as someone who is legally required to carry my ID at all times, and display it to any police officer upon request - because I am not a Japanese citizen)
posted by bashos_frog at 9:11 PM on July 9, 2004


Why don’t they just have a show called STORMTROOPERS?"

Troops

Old, but good.
posted by mr.marx at 9:24 PM on July 9, 2004


What's really funny is imagining the furor, the veritable shitstorm of criticism that the local PD and DHS officers would be subjected to right here on this very site, had the officers NOT gotten this fellow's ID and the Ballard Locks exploded the very next day.

What the officers really should have done was just shot the bastard. Then we'd know for sure that he wasn't going to cause any trouble.
posted by LittleMissCranky at 1:13 AM on July 10, 2004


The thing that no-one seems to have mentioned, really, at least not in the ongoing back and forth arguement is: The guy he initially refused to show ID to was not a cop, not a federal agent. He was a security guard.

I don't know about the USA, but where I live, I would NEVER show my ID to a security guard. 'specially in a public place.

As I see it, from my not-insanely-paranoid country, he provided all the information that the security guard needed to ascertain his intent. I can't think any good reason why seeing an ID makes a difference?

Also, from my perspective the whole anti-terrorism bent in the US is way off target. Do anyone think that really determined terrorists are going to try the same things again? Or make themselves clear red-flags?
posted by sycophant at 1:14 AM on July 10, 2004


sycophant: It's not really about catching terrorists. It's about covering your ass ("No, really, I was going all out! I even rousted this suspicious guy down at the locks! It's not my fault Seattle blew up!"/"I deserve a raise because I was going all out! I even &c &c") and, for some of the lower-echelon goons, having fun (and if you don't think a lot of sadists and power-trippers sign up as police/troopers/security guards so they can get their rocks off, you're living in a dream world, and no, I'm not maligning all cops, just the bad ones).

I'm glad to see so many people sounding the alarm on this; special props to five fresh fish for a rousing comment.
posted by languagehat at 5:49 AM on July 10, 2004


I had a similar experience, as a swarthy dago-type guy in Washington DC. See: "Security Issues"

Now, I never got to the point where I was asked to produce ID, but when I do I tend to whip out my federal ID card with a contemptuous flip.

The question is, what if I didn't have ID on me? Are we now required to carry our "papers" with us at all time and, if so, how is this different from living in one of those countries we used to look down on because the poor non-free commie bastards always had to produce their papers?

That some posters think this is no "big deal" and fail to see how this leads to a future where they will be typing about how cops dropping by for a little search and seizure is no big deal, or giving them the bullet-nose flashlight is no big deal is not just scary, it's positively bovine.

Funny, isn't it, that it's the "no big government", rugged individualist right wingers who tend to see this as "no big deal"? Maybe because seizing their guns wasn't mentioned yet.
posted by Reverend Mykeru at 6:22 AM on July 10, 2004


agent macnamara can suck my big irish wong.
posted by quonsar at 8:49 AM on July 10, 2004


"There is substantial evidence that people decide to join a terrorist group when they have been involved in a demonstration where police use excessive violence."
posted by Blue Stone at 9:13 AM on July 10, 2004


The question is, what if I didn't have ID on me? Are we now required to carry our "papers" with us at all time ...

This is my question every time I hear about one of these occurrences. What happens if they ask for ID and I don't have one on me? Unless I am driving or going somewhere I might need it (buying booze, writing checks, etc), I don't carry my drivers license with me. I often ride the buses around town to parks and whatnot and only take my camera and a few bucks for sodas and bus fare. How much trouble would I get into for not having it if someone asked for it? What if I didn't have a drivers license? I know a few people who don't have any sort of government ID card.
posted by Orb at 10:25 AM on July 10, 2004


Authorities can't really push people too hard or those people tend to respond by killing them. Back in the day we used to call those ‘revolutions’ if they were popular enough or ‘terrorism’ if a smaller number of people joined in.

It tends to be very hard and very expensive to stop people from doing a relatively large amount of damage if they're smart and committed. Whether that damage actually has an impact on the policies that caused their annoyance in the first place doesn't really seem to be an issue any more. It seems like it might be more about rage.

Just an observation, but pleasant, peaceful societies generally seem to have governments that provide various utilities and remove waste products while otherwise leaving the population to their own devices.
posted by snarfodox at 11:07 AM on July 10, 2004


The line between governmental authority to ensure public safety on one hand, and the rights of individuals in a free society from authoritarian harassment on the other is a fine one, and one that has been moving steadily to the right since 9/11. [...] What's your solution?

I think the odds of my getting killed by a terrorist compared to the odds of me getting shot by a traffic guard because he thinks I'm a terrorist are about 1:1000. That is to say, I don't think I'm any safer at all.

The article linked above seems to imply that they've got DHS looking for Canadian pot. That is not what I expected this department to be doing when Bush instituted it.

Jart: I apologize for being unecessarily rude above. What I'm really angry about is what seems to be happening to my country.
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:17 AM on July 10, 2004


That is not what I expected this department to be doing when Bush instituted it.

"Beware of bureaucratic opportunism, masquerading as antiterrorism"
posted by homunculus at 11:35 AM on July 10, 2004


What better way to really take time and scope out a potential target than to sit, for possibly hours at a time, "painting". He could be scoping the area out, recording movement of boats and other targets.

That's exactly what Baden-Powell did.
posted by filmgoerjuan at 12:53 PM on July 10, 2004


Funny, isn't it, that it's the "no big government", rugged individualist right wingers who tend to see this as "no big deal"? Maybe because seizing their guns wasn't mentioned yet.

Yup. The powers that be aren't stupid, you know. They know not to screw with thier base yet. Hell, I'm thinking about getting a gun while I still can.

I like the analogy of the frog being boiled to death. Best description yet for post-9/11 America.
posted by EricBrooksDotCom at 9:52 PM on July 10, 2004


"One day after she was fired, former U.S. Park Police Chief Teresa Chambers accused the Bush administration Saturday of silencing dissenting views in the rank and file."



one would imagine ms. chambers just joint the ranks of those with tapped phones, and email addresses. fuck bush.
posted by specialk420 at 11:36 PM on July 10, 2004


"Sunday 7/18

Dress like a Terrorist @ the Locks

David writes:
PV,

I saw this (see link below) in the paper & thought we could try to create a subtle protest event. We could call it "Dress like a Terrorist & go take pictures at the Locks Day".
If you put this link on PV & the idea of everybody,especially our friends & PV subscribers who have a "browner" look. The rest of us could just try to look conspicuous. Maybe it's Sunday from noon to 5:pm? I think that it would be good if people showed up sporadically & took pictures throughout the day.

Who's in?

Cheers,
David K"


This was posted to this weeks Party Volcano (a local newsgroup for parties, art openings & the like) I might grab a camera and see what I can see...
posted by black8 at 11:23 AM on July 16, 2004


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