Tuesday, August 01, 2006
visit from the police
I take photos....of everything.
Yesterday, a police detective came to my home, at dinnertime. He wanted to know if we owned a Parker boat. Yes, we do. He wanted to know if we had been taking photos of the Fire Island Ferries. Of course we do; we take photos of everything. Someone "reported us".
He came into our home. He wanted to see the photos. He also wanted to know if we sold those photos to anyone. (I wish!) He wanted to see the boat too.
I was very uncomfortable with the whole situation. My husband became assertive and insisted that we had rights, rights to photography anything in public. The detective said there were "new laws" against taking photos of public transportation, but he could not quote those "new laws". My husband informed him that there were no new laws. I just listened, wanting him to leave. I thought that the more we encouraged discussion, the longer he would stay.
We showed him the photos on the computer. After all, we had nothing to hide, but I felt violated. My computer, my photos and this strange man without a search warrant, coming into my home, my world, my space. We could have refused to show him the photos, I guess, but as I said, we had nothing to hide. We are law abiding citizens.
After he left, I felt sad. My husband was angry. What is happening here? Can an officer of the state just come into your home with the possible suspicion that there are terrorists present or activities? What would he have done if we were of Middle Eastern background or just dark-skinned?
I'm still processing what happened, but I thought I would share this with you.