Tickets for Everything / by kevin murray

What does fighting in public, a dog trespassing on a neighbor's property or off of its leash outside its own property, a man standing in a particular place for too long, and the picking of flowers on public property have in common?  They are all potential crimes, misdemeanor offenses, to which the police officer will, at his discretion, ticket you for the offense.  Our city, country, and states have so many ordinances and offenses listed on their books it isn't even possible for you as a citizen to even be aware of all of them.  Additionally, many so-called misdemeanor offenses are already covered well enough under general laws, so it isn't necessary or appropriate to add additional trivial nuisance laws.

 

For instance, most fighting in public shouldn't be a ticket for a lot of reasons, mainly because the public isn't being hurt by it and might instead be entertained or interested in it because Americans pay good money to watch fighting on TV.  However, if the fight becomes some sort of riot, that would be a crime, or if the fight ends up causing true bodily harm, that also could be a crime, depending upon the circumstances, the fairness, and the extent of the harm.   The fact of the matter is that fights are going to happen in order to protect your reputation, over a girl or a boy, over a perceived insult, over a bad day in general, to test your courage, or your stupidity, and so forth.  While fights can be a very bad thing, they can also be a testing ground and a lesson to be learned, so ticketing the participants in a fight basically resolves nothing while annoying virtually everyone else.

 

The ticketing of a dog for trespassing on a neighbor's property by virtue of the fact he escaped his own backyard is ridiculous unless the damage is of some significance, or the ticketing of a female dog that is "in heat" but off of her leash outside her property is absurd ye these tickets are issued.  Receiving a ticket for walking off of a designated trail in a city park doesn't seem fair or even to make a whole lot of sense, because you shouldn't just be limited to walking within the trail to begin with, because either the park in its entirety is public property or it isn't and you are a representative of the public.  Additionally, there shouldn't be any tickets for loitering on public property, because unless you are actually committing a crime, you should be able to contemplate life at your own leisure.

 

Frankly, the real impetus for tickets on misdemeanor offenses is to harass and to also control the public, additionally to increase revenue by the income these tickets produce, which you are not going to be successful in overturning.   All of this breeds an us v. them mentality, to which we know for a certainty that these tickets and misdemeanors are really initiated to catch and fine certain undesirables while on the other hand ignoring discriminatory or wrongful behavior by the elite and privileged classes who are served their evening drinks and meals by undocumented aliens in the quietude of their neighborhood.