Court Rules It’s Chill To Flip Off Cops

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As the Associated Press reports, a court ruled in favor of Jon Swartz, a man in St. Johnsville, NY, who, in 2006, was pulled over after flipping off a police car running a speed trap. The police officer called for backup, and Swartz was arrested for disorderly conduct. The charges were dropped, but Swartz pursued a malicious prosecution lawsuit against the police. The court ruled that the middle finger in and of itself is not just cause for pulling over a vehicle that hasn’t committed any infractions. It further declared the near-universal recognition of the gesture as an insult, citing Strepsiades flipping off Aristotle in ancient Greece and a 1886 photograph of a Boston Beaneaters pitcher giving the finger to the New York Giants team. Swartz’s lawyer called it “an important victory for human rights.” TC mark

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