3/4/12, No. 22
WJCT suppresses free speech: The other day I was on First Coast Connect, Melissa Ross’s WJCT radio call-in show. Sheriff John Rutherford was the guest. I got past the screener (with a wee fib), and on the live-broadcast, I put the sheriff on the spot, really nailed him! I asked him, if only a few people every year ever need the police department, why should taxpayers fund it? People should just pay for the services they use, as in, by the cop and by the hour. Years go by when I don’t need one. I will neither rob nor be robbed. And for taking advantage of my right under the first amendment to exercise free speech, he had me thrown in jail.
Please allow me to explain how this brazen act of free-speech suppression took place.
When I finished posing my question about why do we need police departments, I heard Rutherford sigh. And then there was long pause, like he was either composing his thoughts or shaking his head. And then he began to speak.
RUTHERFORD: That would never work. People who need the police, people who have been robbed or burgled or beaten, wouldn’t be able to pay the cost per service call because they would wind up having to foot a big part of the yearly budget for the sheriff’s office. Our budget runs in the tens of millions of dollars. Each police call would wind up costing a citizen hundreds of dollars. Pretty soon, no one would ever be able to call for an officer when they needed one because of the cost. So most everyone would stop calling. And that would make a bad problem even worse. The few who would have no choice but to call would wind up with bills of thousands of dollars. So, to answer your question, a police department only makes sense financially if everyone pitches in a little bit.
Did you ever hear the like? I could not forbear shaking my head and smiling a little at his ignorance.
ME: People really wouldn’t need the police if they would just avail themselves of their second-ammendment gun rights. If people would just arm themselves, as God intended, we won’t need police departments.
When the idea sank in, he became a little provoked.
ME: Please, sir, consider my ideas calmly.
When he composed himself, I continued:
ME: If everyone just armed themselves, and if they made their homes and cars private arsenals of defense, we wouldn’t need cops anymore, for anything, ever. Except maybe for cleaning up after a particularly nasty traffic accident. But, even then, the paramedics could do a lot of that. Before driving off to the hospital, they could just perform a quick hose down of the pavement after loading the victim into the ambulance. But then again, it rains in Jaxonpool pretty frequently, so the blood wouldn’t remain on the road surface all that long. Which means that the paramedics could probably drive off right away and wouldn’t have to do any hosing down.
I was going on to more particulars when he commanded me to silence. The strange effect of narrow principles and short views! His education is obviously defective.
ME: Get a grip on yourself, sir! I know it is hard, but try to think outside the box. Understand that the public is on my side. You need to consider the enormity of the times, which in our view is the enormity of budget deficits. The general sense now of the nation is that government must be closed down, or we will drown in debt. And closing the sheriff’s office should be one of the first steps. Everyone must share the pain. If people won’t shoulder their share of the pain, patriots like me will make sure that they do. Experience pain, I mean. A world of hurt, if need be. It’s time public officials experienced a world of hurt. And we’re armed. No one will be exempt. Even you. Maybe especially you. In fact, now that I think about it, you’ll be first, the first we’ll come after. We’re going to take you out. So, sir, you do understand, don’t you, that your days are numbered? Yours will be a world of hurt.
He became absolutely silent. In case he hadn’t heard or understood, I repeated myself, the last lines—the question and then the statement. Several times. In a loud voice. With insistence, in case he didn’t get it. Public officials usually don’t. It’s possible I’d become overly enthusiastic. When I stopped, you could hear a pin drop.
Eating at the public trough
Whenever you challenge government bureaucrats by telling them they are useless and eating at the public trough, they become quiet. Ross transferred me back to the screener, who spoke with me for a very long time, using a gentle, soothing voice. After I hung up, I went back to reading the Sociopath’s Manifesto, to one of my favorite passages by Ayn Rand.
I guess while I’d still been on the line to the screener that the police were tracing the call. I’d just read a few lines into my favorite Rand passage when the police broke down the door, threw me on the floor, handcuffed me, and hauled me off to jail.
What public officials will do when confronted with the truth. It is sad! sad! sad!
Let me just say that I have nothing against Rutherford personally. Though I do doubt his sexual potency. And I suspect he has been cuckolded. (BTW: it wasn’t me.) ..
Now, back to business. Fortunately, they let me bring along my laptop to the Jaxonpool jail, and so I have managed to write to you while waiting to post bail. Except, now they are talking about doing a psychological evaluation. And now—I just found out—they’re going to charge me money for my time in jail. Per diem. Can they do that? Like, I’m supposed to pay for the police services I’m using? Like, they can lock me up and then make me pay for it? All for just speaking my mind?
What is this, some kind of joke?