Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Ignorance of the law is not a defense...

Yesterday we joined our friends from TNS summer camp for a trip to Rehoboth Beach. This is an activity we've taken part in each August for the last several years. And let me say here, I enjoy the company but the actual sand, heat, bath house grunge and boardwalk thing don't, for me, equal a Good Time.

*I bitch a lot about the opportunities I'm given to go to interesting places, don't I?... I'm sorry, but that's just how it is... I'm a snob when it comes to cleanliness and creature comforts.

I make this trip every year because, like I said before, I enjoy the time spent with nice people... and because extra drivers are a necessity... also, because my kids really enjoy it. Having said that, there was an element to our trip yesterday which wasn't all that enjoyable... Especially for my son... He had another run in with the police. (what is it with that boy?) Oh, I just realized I didn't blog the story of his run in with the law back in March... Long story but the gist is he was picked up an taken to the police station, in the back of a squad car, for sitting blindfolded 10 ft. off the side of a road.... Which ISN'T illegal but when a cop gets a little freaked and you don't answer his questions fast enough, and said cop thinks teenagers are ALL degenerates... Well, that's reason enough to take you down to the station.

Anywho, last night, not 4 minutes after we made our way onto the boardwalk, I look over to see my son standing there with an officer breathing down his neck and an outstretched hand saying, "Give me the laser pointer." Seems my brilliant and light obsessed son was showing off his laser pointer to a few of his friends. He wasn't doing anything as nefarious as aiming the beam into the eyes of oncoming tourists, he was merely shining the light on the nearby dune reeds in order to display the unique patterns that resulted. However, when a cop sees a teen with a laser pointer it MUST be confiscated. It's the LAW! I've been searching the web but I'm hard pressed to find the actual ordinance... However, if a uniformed police officer tells you to hand over an object that is illegal, I guess you don't have much choice but, to do just that, hand it over.

I couldn't help but get involved as I watched my son give the officer his $80 pointer. EIGHTY DOLLARS??? Yes, E-I-G-H-T-Y $$$!!! He bought it with his own money a few months back and yes, I thought it was a stupid purchase but it's his money. So anyhow, I piped up and said, "Bud, isn't that a really expensive item?" And he replied with, "Yes, yes it is, it cost me $80." The officer then turned to me and said, "Are you the parent, I didn't realize he had a parent right here." Like I guess that makes a big difference because it somehow makes the illegal act MY fault... The boy is 19, but yeah, he looks like he's 16, so I guess that makes me responsible. After a brief conversation with the officer about my son knowing to never point his laser pointer at anyone or in anyone's eyes, the officer graciously gave me the laser pointer to 'hold' but kept the batteries. Seems fair right? I mean, my son did break the law... A law which he had NO idea existed but like the title of this post, 'Ignorance of the law is not a defense'... One can still be held accountable for a law broken even though one didn't know it existed.

So here's the rub... And you just knew there was one, right? Turns out, the Rehoboth boardwalk is rife with laser pointers. Seriously, you know that commercial where all the diabetic test strips rain down from the sky, fill the gutters and slip down the sewers? Well, Rehoboth boardwalk is like that with laser pointers. Rehoboth boardwalk is the freakin' Katrina of laser pointers. For a town with an ordinance to BAN laser pointers, they're sure liberal with handing them out. I watched to 30 something year old guys play an arcade game which awarded them BOTH a laser pointer in a matter of 3 minutes... And what did they do when the machine spat out their prizes? Well of course they opened them up, popped in the batteries and trained their beams on one another and the arcade walls around them. While walking down the boardwalk I got hit with so many red and green beams of light, I might as well have been playing laser tag... But where are the cops then?

So let this be a lesson to you folks... Life, it's just not fair and sometimes it's just plain inappropriate, like the parents we watched, who stopped and paid the henna vendor to create a design on the lower back of their 8'ish year old daughter... That's right, a 'Tramp Stamp' on a girl who isn't even out of grade school! When she's 10 maybe her mommy will buy her a stripper pole. Perhaps that's who the officer should've been reprimanding.

F#@&ing laser pointer!

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Blogger lime said...

sheesh. you could sort of tolerate it if you didn't see anyone else with the laser pointers but that the place was covered in them is kind of ridiculous.

9:03 AM, August 13, 2009  
Blogger Chris said...

I know! Sheesh I was there and a cop got all pissed off about my laser.

[Although it was attached to my AR-15 at the time....;)]

7:58 PM, August 14, 2009  
Blogger EmBee said...

Lime... I KNOW!!!

Chris, Well there you go... Stupid city ordinances... 'Cause deer hunting on the boardwalk used to be so fashionable.

8:43 AM, August 15, 2009  

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