Geoffrey Long
Tip of the Quill: Archives
This makes me angry.

So you say you watched Bush's heartwarming speech last night? So you say you've been moved to new heights of patriotism?

Just read this.


Welcome to the United States of America, a democracy from 1789-2001, and now a Theocratic, Unregulated Capitalist Police State.

There's a huge, beautiful bridge about 1/2 a mile from my film building, but we've been specifically restricted from ever filming it, because the FBI will descend upon SCAD and cost them money. Seriously. No, seriously.

Then there was the time my friend Bob was filming in the local park, with all the permits & etc. that he needed, and a cop came and detained him for having a rifle. It was actually a boompole, a long, extendable arm used for dangling mics over people's heads. I think Bob got an apology afterwards, but I'm not sure.

I was talking about this a few months ago with my Dad, a professional photographer. We were both frustrated with his treatment, however, both of us felt that his reaction was overreaction. The Locks in question are a military base, part of the naval base complex at Bremerton. He showed up, bearing a lot of equipment, where most tourists just have your basic mom-and-pop camera equipment. I can understand his frustration, but I find it likely he was not harrassed because of his race, but rather because of his attitude.

Anyhow. The guy got his photos, and he got famous for being rant-y.

I'll dig up the exact logs with Dad in the not too distant future and send them your way. He was much more eloquent than I.

I'll have to check the Patriot Act (just typing it makes me feel dirty) to make sure, but I am pretty sure that all Federal Property that we are not allowed to take pictures of is required to have signs telling us so. In fact, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Hoover Dam, they are all Landmarks and tourists are usually encouraged to take their picture. Mr. Spiers may have had more equipment than the usual tourist, and taking pictures of military bases is usually not recommended, but there are a lot of newly "minted" "Federal Officers" out there that feel like they are the only ones protecting us from the evil "terrorists".

Part of the trouble is that not all of these "Federal Officers" understand the law they are supposed to enforce... since the law is pretty vague to begin with.

Eh, I think it is time to start going around and taking pictures of public places. The line between Homeland Security and protecting the Fatherland is pretty gray.

-Nick F

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