Topic: The Law
Ignorance of the law is no excuse... an odd little item that caught my eye...
Note this press release from the American Library Association -
Now wait a second here. This is mighty odd.
A hypothetical - as I live in Hollywood just off the Sunset Strip say that in a massive drug sweep I am arrested on suspicion of, say, laundering money for the low-life types down there, or given the history of the British movie star Hugh Grant, arrested for soliciting and actually employing one of them there ladies of the night in the relative privacy of my parked car on a quiet side street. (Yes, a number of years ago Grant got busted for just that three blocks east of here.) Whichever case, sex or drugs, I was in my car, which I rather like, actually. It was confiscated. They can do that - and have been doing that with "johns" who used to cruise the area looking for companionship with these ladies of the night. And that has been, by the way, very effective. That stuff stopped over the last several years. They scared away the customers. You could lose you car forever - sometimes even if you were cleared of all charges. There's been some controversy about that, but it has happened - and still happens. Anyway, whatever the charge in my hypothetical case, I'm cleared. They discover that I'm really a harmless nobody - which everyone knew anyway - and the authorities after a time drop all charges and send me on my way. And then I think, maybe, I can get my car back. It's worth a shot.
So how do I get my cute little black convertible back - if they haven't sold it at auction and used the profits to buy more gizmos for their police cruisers? I need a lawyer - because the laws - and the applicable procedures and forms - have been withdrawn from public access. I'm not supposed to see them. They are not appropriate for external use. This is not a do-it-yourself thing anymore at all.
What the heck - it only adds a bit of expense. And lawyers have to eat too. And maybe these things are too complicated and dangerous for us civilians.
I just hate not knowing things, and being told I'm not supposed to know things.
I should be more trusting. The Department of Justice must have its reasons for hiding selected statutes and procedures from the public, to which they apply - calling for all copies to be destroyed - and must be right in not explaining those reasons to anyone.
But it bothers me.
On the other hand, no one wants to be a pain in the ass, always asking questions and seeming to know so much more than he or she should. That really puts people off - and we are, after all, at war and pesky impertinent questions aid the terrorists who want to kill us all... or something.
This is a minor issue - one of the most minor. Add it to all else that has happened in the last almost three years with the Patriot Act and whatnot and you could get all paranoid about some sort of creeping police state.
Not here. Not here. You just have to trust those in power and not rock the boat.