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Thread: Lake Charles - Positive Open Carry / LEO encounter

  1. #1
    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    Lake Charles - Positive Open Carry / LEO encounter

    This was submitted in our Facebook group this evening. I wish I could have been there and seen it with my own eyes, but I will have to settle for her version of what happened. She's a very nice young mother. I have no reason not to believe her story. As always, please feel free to investigate. Here is exactly, unedited, what she had to say:

    "I had the oddest situation with a LEO ever the other day.

    I babywear. That is, I use wraps and cloth and such to tie my 7 month old to my body so I'm completely hands free. When we're out and about, I also OC.

    Well, the other day at the park, I was just walking the track and a LEO came up to me. He'd been watching me for a few minutes and I was readying myself for the typical questions but he completely surprised me.

    LEO: I have a question for you.
    Me: Yes?
    LEO: Are you sure you could draw that weapon if needed wearing that baby where it is?
    Me: Well, sir, I have practiced, just in case I ever need to.
    LEO: That's good to know. Not enough women take care to even try to protect themselves with lethal force. It's good someone your age with a small child is prepared to.

    I was completely floored."


    -- End quote

    Now, I hadn't really ever heard of baby-wearing in that manner, but we're marking this one down as a positive experience. Location: Prien Lake Park in Lake Charles

  2. #2
    Regular Member HeroHog's Avatar
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    There ARE supportive cops out there. Those that don't know or like the law are actually in the minority I have found. That and LOCAL sent our Tri-Fold info packet to pretty much ALL the police departments and Sheriff's stations in the state here a while back so they all should know by now.
    Speedy: LOCAL League Sec/Treasurer, Information Officer
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    I don't have NEAR enough ammo on hand. `nuff said.

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    Regular Member Fallschirmjäger's Avatar
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    I am completely floored. And ecstatic. Not only was this non-confrontational, but supportive because it certainly sounded like he not only approved but concerned that you could draw a weapon effectively.

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    I admit, when I read the OP encounter the first time, I thought, "Well, that was nice."


    Then, critical thinking kicked in.


    "I have a question for you?" ????

    "Are you sure you could draw...?" ????

    None of that was necessary to the compliment given.

    I suspect this was an investigative encounter. Maybe a cop checking out the possibility of an unfit mom? Maybe a lecture about tactical readiness if mom hadn't answered up about practicing?

    The true test of a cop isn't whether he's polite when you answer his questions or act in accordance with his requests. The true test is how he behaves when you politely stand on your rights.
    Last edited by Citizen; 06-10-2013 at 11:48 AM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I admit, when I read the OP encounter the first time, I thought, "Well, that was nice."

    Then, critical thinking kicked in.

    "I have a question for you?" ????

    "Are you sure you could draw...?" ????

    None of that was necessary to the compliment given.
    Going by the 'don't talk to cops' rule, you have to wonder what this cops was up to, given that the alleged person was not breaking any laws. Here's a female with a baby being approached by a man (in a cop's outfit) and asked pointless and probing questions about their firearm.

    The better response would have been to counter the questions with a question.

    "Why do you ask?"

    "What's your reason for approaching me?"

    Then "I don't consent to answering questions, am I being detained, if not, please go about your business elsewhere".

    You don't know the cops state of mind, if it's really a cop, if he had a fight with his pregnant wife who won't get an abortion (to carry it to extremes). He's an armed stranger doing odd things, IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    Going by the 'don't talk to cops' rule, you have to wonder what this cops was up to, given that the alleged person was not breaking any laws. Here's a female with a baby being approached by a man (in a cop's outfit) and asked pointless and probing questions about their firearm.

    The better response would have been to counter the questions with a question.

    "Why do you ask?"

    "What's your reason for approaching me?"

    Then "I don't consent to answering questions, am I being detained, if not, please go about your business elsewhere".

    You don't know the cops state of mind, if it's really a cop, if he had a fight with his pregnant wife who won't get an abortion (to carry it to extremes). He's an armed stranger doing odd things, IMO.
    Who knows? The cop might really have been doing a little bit of public-relations, albeit awkward and a little arrogant.

    But, I agree. You may not find out he's a bad cop until its too late. Best to politely refuse consent to the encounter. Cops are not your friend.

    And, if he really is a good cop, he'll understand the refusal.

    If he's a "gray" cop, he might be annoyed by the refusal, but that's too bad. If he wants trust from the public, he should be working to eliminate the Blue Wall of Silence, arguing for citizen's 1A right to video cops on the job/arguing against twisting wiretapping laws to prosecute citizens for videoing cops on the job, writing letters exposing highway asset forfeiture roadblocks as revenue generators, etc., etc.
    Last edited by Citizen; 06-10-2013 at 01:23 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    Myself, I don't have a don't talk to cops rule. Talking to officers that are interested, be it positively or negatively, is just part of the deal. Sadly, any encounter that is not outright negative is considered a win in my book for OC. He may have been investigating. That's fine. But all's well that ends well.

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    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    Expounding on that, I talked to a West Monroe police officer awhile back. He is not a fan of OC, but is well aware of it. Especially since we now practice it daily in the Monroe/West Monroe area. He told me he ran into an open carrier at the local Brookshire's who basically kept circling him in the grocery store trying to get a response. The officer told me he finally acknowledged the guy, told him he saw it and was aware, so they could both go on with their business.

    Here's what I do while open carrying: Whatever I was gonna be doing anyway.

  9. #9
    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcwmla80 View Post
    Myself, I don't have a don't talk to cops rule. Talking to officers that are interested, be it positively or negatively, is just part of the deal. Sadly, any encounter that is not outright negative is considered a win in my book for OC. He may have been investigating. That's fine. But all's well that ends well.
    Imagine it was your wife and daughter. Would you sit by, say at a nearby picnic table and not go over and say 'can I help you officer? That's my daughter.'?

    To me, any time a cop approaches someone he should have RAS. They have no business being nosy, curious, provocative. They need to work on their public image if anything. The time he's spending going up to women with babies asking odd questions is time he should be patrolling his areas for bad guys, iMO.

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    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    She wasn't doing anything wrong, and in my opinion, he wasn't doing anything wrong by asking. I know this is a second hand sorry. It's easy to read into things. I would take it at face value and think he might have really been interested. He can still ask a question. Anyone in the park could ask her that question. Doesn't mean she had to answer. But she did, and it sounded like a not-negative / possibly positive experience. Why create a problem there? To each his own, though. His or her own, rather.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcwmla80 View Post
    She wasn't doing anything wrong, and in my opinion, he wasn't doing anything wrong by asking. I know this is a second hand sorry. It's easy to read into things. I would take it at face value and think he might have really been interested. He can still ask a question. Anyone in the park could ask her that question. Doesn't mean she had to answer. But she did, and it sounded like a not-negative / possibly positive experience. Why create a problem there? To each his own, though. His or her own, rather.
    In order to maintain that position, you have to exclude that the cop is a government agent.

    Separately, we didn't say she couldn't answer the question. We said its not a good idea. I mean, really. Your position here has the underlying premise that nobody should ever suggest better handlings/safer handlings to others. "Yes, hold the bagel in your hand and saw with the bread knife toward your palm. To each his own."
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    I forcefully agree with you. If you would like to respond back and more forcefully agree with me, I understand. Otherwise, we're just wasting time. I thank you for your interest in the story. Be safe out there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcwmla80 View Post
    I forcefully agree with you. If you would like to respond back and more forcefully agree with me, I understand. Otherwise, we're just wasting time. I thank you for your interest in the story. Be safe out there.
    If we were in such agreement, why did you feel it necessary to comment? You wrote:

    She wasn't doing anything wrong, and in my opinion, he wasn't doing anything wrong by asking. I know this is a second hand sorry. It's easy to read into things. I would take it at face value and think he might have really been interested. He can still ask a question. Anyone in the park could ask her that question. Doesn't mean she had to answer. But she did, and it sounded like a not-negative / possibly positive experience. Why create a problem there? To each his own, though. His or her own, rather.


    If we were in such agreement, why did you comment toward taking the report at face value? Why did you ask, "why create a problem there"? And, why did you comment, "to each his own"?

    I think you wasted your own time trying to object and using feeble arguments to do it. Thank you for your interest in my posts.
    Last edited by Citizen; 06-10-2013 at 03:56 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  14. #14
    Regular Member jcwmla80's Avatar
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    Lake Charles - Positive Open Carry / LEO encounter

    I <3 internetz

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    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    In order to maintain that position, you have to exclude that the cop is a government agent.

    Separately, we didn't say she couldn't answer the question.
    Another way to look at it - if you're in the park, walking along with your baby and a complete stranger comes up and before saying anything else he asks you if you can draw your gun effectively, what's your response?

    Mine might be something snarky, like 'back off or you're about to find out'.

    But to be serious, I would not want strange men coming up to my wife or daughter and questioning them like that. Even more so a stranger with a police uniform and a gun. It should at least be 'Hi, I'm officer Jones and I noticed you supported the 2A. Can I ask you a question, just out of curiosity? You don't have to answer...' THEN ask about the gun.
    Last edited by Maverick9; 06-10-2013 at 05:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    Another way to look at it - if you're in the park, walking along with your baby and a complete stranger comes up and before saying anything else he asks you if you can draw your gun effectively, what's your response?

    Mine might be something snarky, like 'back off or you're about to find out'.

    But to be serious, I would not want strange men coming up to my wife or daughter and questioning them like that. Even more so a stranger with a police uniform and a gun. It should at least be 'Hi, I'm officer Jones and I noticed you supported the 2A. Can I ask you a question, just out of curiosity? You don't have to answer...' THEN ask about the gun.
    Oh, no. We're supposed to have an agenda to make cops look good, and better not let nobody else have a contrary opinion or we must make snarky comments about forceful agreement and "<3 internetz".

    So, shut up, Maverick. You're ruining JCW's thread.

    /sarcasm
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcwmla80 View Post
    SNIP He may have been investigating. That's fine. But all's well that ends well.
    I'm not fine with such. It immediately shows the government agent involved thinks an enumerated right deserves suspicion.

    No, no, no, no. Whether such an encounter ends well has nothing to do with it; such an encounter starts intolerably wrong.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  18. #18
    Regular Member conandan's Avatar
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    Just my 2 cents worth. If a cop approachs you and asks a simple question or two and his tone seems honest I have no problem answering. I talk to a lot of officers, most of them are pro 2a. But they have this preconceived idea that open carriers are looking to trap them or cause a problem. Some of the officers I have talked with all have a similar story about approaching an oc and they get a bad attitude from them or they get defensive. Cops are trained to pick out on body language, that automatically puts the officer on alert that something could be going on. That's why when they aproch me I'm always polite and talk with them and every time there has never been any problems. You may not know why they are approaching you, they could be responding to a mwag call or just want to see what type of person you are.

    In my personal experience it seems better to talk to the officer. And it lets them know we are not out to cause trouble. But always be mindful of the officers tone when he approaches you. And the way the officer is asking the questions. Then decide cor yourself how much you want to answer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by conandan View Post
    SNIP But they have this preconceived idea that open carriers are looking to trap them or cause a problem. Some of the officers I have talked with all have a similar story about approaching an oc and they get a bad attitude from them or they get defensive. Cops are trained to pick out on body language, that automatically puts the officer on alert that something could be going on. That's why when they aproch me I'm always polite and talk with them and every time there has never been any problems. You may not know why they are approaching you, they could be responding to a mwag call or just want to see what type of person you are.

    In my personal experience it seems better to talk to the officer. And it lets them know we are not out to cause trouble. But always be mindful of the officers tone when he approaches you. And the way the officer is asking the questions. Then decide cor yourself how much you want to answer.
    Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you for this very revealing post.

    Cops...preconceived idea...OCers looking to trap them? Golly, how did they come by this idea? Is it maybe because they themselves have made a career out of trying to trap people with questions? Is it because they read about a very few OCers (like maybe three) who wanted to sue and make money, but irrationally extend that all OCers? Is it because they think carrying a voice-recorder is offensive rather than defensive? What's good for the goose is good for the gander: If they're doing nothing wrong, they have nothing to worry about. I'm gonna go with them trying to trap people themselves.

    Cops are trained to pick up on body language? Who cares? Nowhere in the Bill of Rights is there any requirement that rights be exercised with a certain "innocent" body language. If a cop's training failed to include indignation as a possible--and correct--response from an innocent and free man to being questioned about an enumerated right, that's their problem. They can get with the program. They're the one's that are at odds with the ideals upon which these united states were founded.

    I may not know why they're approaching me? You're darned tootin' I don't know why they're approaching me. But, I do know that almost always I will be under investigation. And, the cop is not the sole arbiter of my innocence. I know whether I was doing something illegal and am under no obligation to chat with him so he can personally be sure of the same. There's nothing in the social contract or the law requiring me to satisfy a cop of my innocence. And, that assumes he's not actively seeking reasonable suspicion or probable cause, rather than being neutral. If they are responding to a MWAG call or just wanting to see what type of person I am, then I am under investigation. The existence of the Blue Wall of Silence proves there are cops out there who are anywhere from just a tiny bit dangerous to my immediate freedom and financial health to hugely dangerous to those and my life.

    I have no way to know whether he's a good cop or a bad cop until its maybe too late. Some of us can still recall the FOIA audio from an OCer's encounter with police. The cops were oh-so friendly while talking to the OCer, but back at the cruiser, one remarked, "There has got to be something we can get him for." I really wish that recording wasn't lost during the changes between forum platforms. It was very instructive.

    Then there is the little fact, often overlooked, that cops already know they can observe from a distance without even contacting the "suspect." The fact they are contacting the OCer speaks volumes about their motive: they are actively seeking RAS. If they were really neutral or actively respected and believed in rights, they'd just observe from a distance. By investigatively contacting an OCer they are demonstrating conclusively that they believe exercising an enumerated right is worthy of suspicion. No, no, no!

    You're darned right I'll decide for myself how much I want to answer. I've already decided--nothing. First words out of my mouth will be a polite refusal to the encounter itself. If he's there for my sake, for example, to tell me a family member had an accident, he can cough it up real quick, whereupon I can always change my refused consent.
    Last edited by Citizen; 06-10-2013 at 08:12 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  20. #20
    Regular Member conandan's Avatar
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    Arrow

    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you for this very revealing post.

    Cops...preconceived idea...OCers looking to trap them? Golly, how did they come by this idea? Is it maybe because they themselves have made a career out of trying to trap people with questions? Is it because they read about a very few OCers (like maybe three) who wanted to sue and make money, but irrationally extend that all OCers? Is it because they think carrying a voice-recorder is offensive rather than defensive? What's good for the goose is good for the gander: If they're doing nothing wrong, they have nothing to worry about. I'm gonna go with them trying to trap people themselves.

    Cops are trained to pick up on body language? Who cares? Nowhere in the Bill of Rights is there any requirement that rights be exercised with a certain "innocent" body language. If a cop's training failed to include indignation as a possible--and correct--response from an innocent and free man to being questioned about an enumerated right, that's their problem. They can get with the program. They're the one's that are at odds with the ideals upon which these united states were founded.

    I may not know why they're approaching me? You're darned tootin' I don't know why they're approaching me. But, I do know that almost always I will be under investigation. And, the cop is not the sole arbiter of my innocence. I know whether I was doing something illegal and am under no obligation to chat with him so he can personally be sure of the same. There's nothing in the social contract or the law requiring me to satisfy a cop of my innocence. And, that assumes he's not actively seeking reasonable suspicion or probable cause, rather than being neutral. If they are responding to a MWAG call or just wanting to see what type of person I am, then I am under investigation. The existence of the Blue Wall of Silence proves there are cops out there who are anywhere from just a tiny bit dangerous to my immediate freedom and financial health to hugely dangerous to those and my life.

    I have no way to know whether he's a good cop or a bad cop until its maybe too late. Some of us can still recall the FOIA audio from an OCer's encounter with police. The cops were oh-so friendly while talking to the OCer, but back at the cruiser, one remarked, "There has got to be something we can get him for." I really wish that recording wasn't lost during the changes between forum platforms. It was very instructive.

    Then there is the little fact, often overlooked, that cops already know they can observe from a distance without even contacting the "suspect." The fact they are contacting the OCer speaks volumes about their motive: they are actively seeking RAS. If they were really neutral or actively respected and believed in rights, they'd just observe from a distance. By investigatively contacting an OCer they are demonstrating conclusively that they believe exercising an enumerated right is worthy of suspicion. No, no, no!

    You're darned right I'll decide for myself how much I want to answer. I've already decided--nothing. First words out of my mouth will be a polite refusal to the encounter itself. If he's there for my sake, for example, to tell me a family member had an accident, he can cough it up real quick, whereupon I can always change my refused consent.

    I don't disagree with you at all. Just my opinion, I haven't had a bad experience with a officer yet...maybe when I do ill have a different opinion. The few times I have been approached while oc it went very well. They asked a couple simple question I answered and was polite then we departed with a hand shake. I know there are officers who will try to trap you or get you to do or say something to charge you. I am pretty good at gauging their motives when they approach me, so far so good.

    I'm not trying to tell anyone what to do or say. Just going on my own experience and how I have handled it. Like you said if I have done nothing wrong they have no reason to question. I agree, but at the same time if I have done nothing wrong I have nothing to hide. I've carried long enough now that I am confident and don't let Leos intimate me with intrusive questions. But I only answer with what I'm comfortable with. We all know they can charge you with anything they want and let you fight it in court. So I cooperate and try not to give them any reasons to go to that point. All in all I try to be a positive encounter with officers to help change their opinion of oc'ers. Some will say I'm giving up my rights, I don't see it that way, but that's just my opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by conandan View Post
    SNIP I agree, but at the same time if I have done nothing wrong I have nothing to hide. I've carried long enough now that I am confident and don't let Leos intimate me with intrusive questions. But I only answer with what I'm comfortable with. We all know they can charge you with anything they want and let you fight it in court. So I cooperate and try not to give them any reasons to go to that point. All in all I try to be a positive encounter with officers to help change their opinion of oc'ers. Some will say I'm giving up my rights, I don't see it that way, but that's just my opinion.
    That's where you and I differ. I'm not willing to give up my rights relative to the Fourth Amendment's reasonableness provision, which you surrender before the contact even occurs. That is to say, when a cop contacts me investigatively, he's already proven he actively thinks or goes along with the idea that OC--an enumerated right--is worthy of suspicion. There is absolutely, positively nothing reasonable about that.

    Further, its not my responsibility to change their opinion of OCers, meaning the responsibility is misplaced. How did they get a bad opinion in the first place? Certainly, they weren't on-board with rights. They're the odd man out; its their responsibility to get with the program. Further, when you change their opinion of OCers and the 4A and 5A, you let them continue their anti-rights attitude toward others. "Oh, they're OCers; they're good guys generally, so we'll leave them alone." Yeah? What about everybody else?

    If a cop is a good cop, he'll understand the refusals. Hell, a really good cop would say so, "Wow! An everyday citizen who knows his rights cold and uses them! Cool!" If a cop comes away from a polite refusal encounter with a bad idea about OCers, or anybody for that matter, he ain't a good cop. He's on a powertrip, or thinks he's somehow elite and people owe him their cooperation or something.

    And, why wait around until contacted to show cops that OCers are good guys? Why not just start a good-citizen initiative to build bridges to them?

    And, I don't believe for one second that any cops today don't know the vast majority, if not all, OCers are good guys just exercising their rights. We've made too much noise about it over the last six or seven years. They know we're just citizens exercising their rights. They know its darn unlikely a criminal will be OCing.

    So, yes. You're waiving your rights. Its not a matter of some seeing it that way--as though its subjective or a matter of opinion. Its plain facts; you either exercised your rights or you waived them.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  22. #22
    Regular Member conandan's Avatar
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    You sir have made undeniable points, I can't and won't try to argue your reasoning. You are right on all counts. I'm not being sarcastic or condescending. I guess I have been looking at the situation from the wrong perspective. I never looked at it as giving up my rights by talking to law enforcement. But your statements have given me something to think about. I can't tell you I'm never going to talk to Leos. But I will be more cautious. I thank you for an educational debate.

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    Sep 2009
    Location
    Slidell, Louisiana
    Posts
    2,464
    As usual Citizen has made excellent points. I have had other OCers tell me that they see an LEO contact as a chance to educate. My response is always "Do you know what kind of chance you're taking?"

    LEO contact is all about evidence gathering. Since we can't tell when an officer is being investigatory or not we must always assume he/she is. It's not worth it to me to take the chance that I'm being investigate for one of thousands of obscure "so called" crimes and be coerced into helping an LEO build a case against myself or a loved one.

    LOCAL has sent information to LE agencies all across Louisiana. Assume they're educated about OC and politely refuse contact. If they detain you then your attorney can educate them.

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