So, you have a job. It’s an ordinary, near-thankless one, where you’re only noticed when you screw up. But damn it, you want to do it right. You go well above and beyond what your employer was expecting, and what happens?
That’s right, the good ol’ American Government comes down on your ass like a bale of income tax forms dropped on a kitten:
CARLISLE, Pa. — A plucky newspaper carrier and her father used a rubber raft to reach flooded subscribers — and both wound up in trouble with the law.
Betsey Patrick, a carrier for The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, delighted six stranded subscribers along the rain-swollen Conodoguinet Creek on Sunday when she and her father floated down in the raft.
“The people were so excited,” Patrick said Monday. “They couldn’t leave their houses. It made their day.”
But police and a state Fish and Boat Commission officer weren’t amused, and cited her father, Rick Patrick, for negligent operation of a water craft.
A Patriot-News carrier since 2001, Patrick said she took to the raft because she didn’t want the remnants of Hurricane Ivan to mar her perfect delivery record.
Remember that phrase, “negligent operation of a water craft”. We’ll get back to that later. Worse for Betsey, she had the fuck-all nerve to backtalk those uniformed cretins:
Betsey Patrick said she was arrested for disorderly conduct after arguing about the $220 citation and handcuffed in front of her 2-year-old daughter.
Smart-mouthing pinhead members of “the authorities” is never a good idea, and Betsey is frankly lucky that she didn’t end up tasting taxpayer-funded Mace or suffering “heart failure” (a disease strangely endemic to police detention facilites). Now about that “negligence”…
Police involved in the case could not be reached for comment, but Roger Kohr, spokesman for the Cumberland County Office of Emergency Preparedness, said officials barred access to many flooded areas.
“We need people to use common sense,” Kohr said. “They’re putting themselves in peril, and they’re putting the people who would have to go in and rescue them in peril.”
And here you probably thought Betsey was weaving her car-topper through folks’ flooded driveways, tossing empties through their front windows: “No tip last year? I’ll give you a tip, mother-fucker!”. No, it turns out that Betsey’s negligence stems from the fact that she was endangering herself. Here in the land of the free, it’s negligent to endanger yourself, and that’s because the US Government owns your ass. It owns you, your paper route, and it even owns your little watercraft.
“…Officials barred access to many flooded areas.” You got that? “Officials” have told you where you can and can’t go, and your little piddly-assed job, boat, and life had better damn’ well give way. “Using your common sense” now means doing exactly what you’re told, telling off some possum sheriff is now “disorderly conduct”, and there’s a mass of low-IQ jackboots just itching for a chance to deliver you a severe beat-down, if you think otherwise.
But who cares? Heck, just look at all the places the Pennsylvania State Fish and Boat Commission didn’t make off-limits – acres and acres where you can move about without being fined and/or arrested! Can everyone wave their IDs and say “Free Country”? Okay? Okay!
Now move along, Citizen, before you bump into a squad car and get your feelings hurt.