What would you do if you were drinking a can of iced tea in a parking lot, and a police officer randomly approached you and demanded that you hand over the can?
No discussion, no explanation, just an outright demand.
Would you comply?
Moreover, what would you do if that police officer tackled you to the ground and put you in handcuffs for not obeying his order?
These are somewhat bizarre questions because, let’s face it, who could even imagine such a thing ever happening?
But sure enough, this very scenario unfolded a few days ago in a Fayettville parking lot. And in the end, a North Carolina police officer arrested an iced tea drinker. Yes, you read that correctly. He arrested a man for drinking iced tea in a parking lot.
The whole thing was caught on tape, and it’s now making its rounds on the Internet. There are a lot of folks fired up about this. As they should be. But here’s the interesting part. . .
The man being harassed by the plain-clothes police officer is a semi-famous musician named Christopher Beatty. And it’s clear that fans of his music and fans of his brand of music are behind most of the online chatter.
Truth is, this arrest will probably do wonders for Beatty’s career. You can’t buy this kind of publicity.
Still, unless this was some kind of brilliant marketing plan, Beatty’s rights were violated, just as basic Constitutional and civil rights are violated every single day by overzealous law enforcement officers and back-door bureaucrats.
But the question is, if Beatty was just some random guy in North Carolina, would any of us even know about this? Probably not. And that really fires me up. That, and the fact that many of the conservative and libertarian websites I visit every day are not on top of this.
It’s crazy, but anytime we see an American citizen refusing a TSA pat down or a request for ID near a border check point, most of these sites are the first to report. But in this case, there’s been little coverage by the folks I’ve come to trust the most. And this bothers me.
I don’t care if you’re a white, Christian Tea Partier from Texas or a black, Jewish liberal Democrat from New York, if an American’s rights are being violated, the situation must be exposed. As patriotic citizens, this is our collective responsibility.