Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Naked shoppers and the clerk didn't care.

I have give the night clerk at a Scottsdale, Arizona, convenience store some credit. She was working the late shift when two young men opened the door and asked her if they could come in and shop. She said they could and went about her work before noticing that neither one of them had any clothes on.

CNN aired the surveillance tape (sort of ). But being America, where people don't have genitals apparently, they covered up with strategic blurs. No one wants to get the Federal Censorship Commission upset. Odd that the FCC gets so upset by some nudity but turn a blind eye when con men like Peter Popoff rip off poor people in the name of religion.

The clerk said the two men were very polite and weren't causing any trouble or hurting anyone. So she never even thought of calling the police. That's where I give her credit. Of course the store ought to have the right to set a dress code if it wants. And it ought to be free to refuse service to anyone for any reason it deems proper. But considering it was 3 am, that the clerk was unfazed, and that there were no complaints from anyone else I suspect she did the right thing by grinning and bearing it (so to speak)

I'm sure the store didn't make much from these guys -- after all how much money could they have on them? But if the store owner is smart she'd be marketing copies of the tape. I suspect she'd sell quite a few copies to people who would be amused to watch it without the blurs.

But here is a warning for these guys. The country prosecutor, Andrew Thomas, in Maricopa County is a lunatic Theopublican of the most extreme type. I personally think he is deranged. He is a politican with power and he uses it to smash people even non-violent people who have not harmed anyone. Let us be clear. This man tried to make a teenage boy register as a sex offender for showing Playboy to others. He will have no hesitation of filing charges against these men.

Now let us be clear what that means legally. The men will be found guilty of a sex crime because the American obsession on these matters can't separate nudity from sexuality. And these men, if caught and convicted, could be forced to register as sex offenders. That means they will be harassed perpetually because their status as "sex offenders" will be publicly posted. And that means the vigilante types will be able to target them. So while it is clear they did this as a prank the law and bad politicians will turn that joke into a serious problem that can haunt them for the rest of their lives. And with lunatics stalking people on these lists it could mean that they are physically attacked or killed.