A tough day, lots of struggles, and a “selective enforcement” tap on the window. In the perspective light of the many tragedies going on all around the world and the fact that I have too many friends and loved ones, if I only have one, suffering and dying…it wasn’t the end of the world. But I have to say, we have some bad traffic laws on the books in Florida and other places, and some of them need to be repealed…yesterday!
Here’s what lit my fuse. Just over a month ago, I was taking a ride while plying my trade and minding my own business…not driving erratic, never speeding, not tailgating...nothing. I slowed down and came to a proper stop at a red light, and was mindful of the traffic leaving lots of room in front of me. Suddenly there was a tap on my passenger window which, since I was looking at traffic to my left, I thought might have been a homeless person looking for some help.
Instead, I noticed right away that it was a deputy motioning me to roll down my window. While I didn’t know why he wanted me to do so, I pointed to the rear window and rolled it down, (the front passenger window is and has been stuck up like a JAP for a couple of years). He asked me for my license and told me to meet him by his “patrol vehicle.” I asked why and he smugly stated that I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt.
So, troubled by this as I was, I obliged and pulled around. Y’know, I have a lot of respect for LEO’s, and I know they are just doing their jobs, but this was and is a total invasion of mine and your privacy. Not that I necessarily choose to, (because how come they ain’t required on school busses?) but I do wear my seatbelt 99% of the time…and like everyone else, I’m human; I have other things going on, and sometimes, SOMETIMES, I forget. However, such a momentary lapse should not give the state or a county the right to have a deputy standing on the corner of any intersection just waiting for someone to pull up to a red light so that the county can generate revenues. That, in and of itself, is criminal.
If I was speeding, ran a red light, or was engaged in anything dangerous, I’d probably be okay with this. But to simply ‘selectively’ stop people who are otherwise just going about their business; people who are struggling through tough economic conditions just trying to squeak by; people who are watching every freaking dime just for basic needs?! Excuse me, but this is a law, $116.00 worth, that hurts people. This is a law that takes food from the table, makes the rent late, and makes the day old bread and store brand peanut butter look like a deal. It’s a law that maybe makes decent people respect certain LEO’s just a little less, or maybe a lot less.
Speaking just for me, smug “Deputy Dick” might just as well have pulled out his pistol and robbed me at gunpoint, or maybe done me a favor and shot me, because it hurt that much and had the same effect. And I know there are countless others right now that would feel such a pinch the same way. A verbal reminder would earn a lot more respect and community cooperation sometimes.
In any case, on behalf of a lot of Florida and other states citizens/voters, I make a plea to the legislatures of any state that allows such an invasive policy…in the name of fairness and justice, repeal these harsh laws. To the Sheriffs I ask you in the name of empathy and decency to stop the practice of such “selective enforcement.” This is government over-reach at its very worst.
If however the PBSO is so freaking bored and wants/needs to bring in a few bucks where I live, might I suggest to Sheriff Ric Bradshaw that you have your deputies spend some time up in the Acreage addressing the speed demons that constantly threaten the safety of the people everywhere up here?! Heck, the PBSO might wind up with a surplus of cash.
For all the PBSO and State Trooper cars I see in driveways where they live around here, you’d think it wouldn’t be an issue. But it surely is.Add a comment