Ben and Russ Bartholomew are activists and like any good activist they carry cameras. Just the other day the duo hung a sign above a local overpass – while wearing V masks – as a form of activist outreach. What did the sign say? Taxation = Theft. The brothers, taking a page from the Ron Paul 2008 campaign movement, choose “highway blogging” as a their form of activism to reach motorist passing by. It didn’t take long for the police to show up and spoil the fun.
The first officer on scene didn’t seem to have a problem with the sign stating, “As long as you aren’t hurting anything, I don’t care.” Shortly after that remark the officer then asks the brothers for ID and they decline to provide it. The officer then seems unclear about how to handle the ‘situation’ and calls for backup. At the peak of the incident their are atleast 5 police officers and a flurry of ‘public’ resources being used over a sign on a highway. Like a sign on or off of a highway is an unusual thing?
Ben and Russ did an amazing job of CopBlocking in this video. Though never talking to the police is your best option, the brothers are seasoned activists, they articulated their position in a calm, cool and collected manner (All while live streaming the encounter via Qik.com). They repeatedly stumped the officers when answering questions with questions of their own, another great tactic, and it’s clear by the video that the officers were clearing looking for something to arrest them for. Though several times the police state that they’re unsure of what laws the brothers were actually breaking. Go figure, the cops don’t know the law.
Read what the local paper had to say about the encounter here.