Friday, July 25, 2008

Equal Justice Under the Law

Yesterday while going to Bo Tangles, I drove through Tom's parking lot to avoid the traffic light at 14th and Division because of the heavy traffic. When I pulled into the parking place at the beauty salon, there was a motorcycle policeman in my rear view mirror.

It seems that it's a State law that you can't cut through a parking lot to avoid a traffic signal. He asked me if I knew that. I told him that I knew it was illegal to cut through a gas station, but Tom's parking lot is huge, and has four different businesses in it, and it just seemed like the wide open spaces to me. I told him that I do it all the time in the summer!

He took my license, registration and proof of insurance. It was then I realized that I hadn't put our new proof in the car - it expired July 3. So now I'm definitely getting a ticket for not having the proof of insurance. The officer told me that if I promised never to cut through Tom's parking lot again, he would just give me a warning. Whew.

When I entered the shop, the girls were all wide-eyed and wanting to know what had happened with the policeman. I said I got caught cutting through the parking lot, and they all said Oh No! It seems that other clients have had the same experience, and got tickets for $150 and 3 points on their license!!! Whew, whew, whew. They could not believe that I just got a warning!

This morning I went to the courthouse to show my proof of insurance to the traffic clerk. Entering the courthouse is like going through security at the airport - actually it's worse because at the airport they x-ray your purse, but at the courthouse the man goes through it with his hands and gets his fingerprints all over everything in there. I hated that.

I went through the metal detector, and I set it off, probably due to the metal orthotics in my shoes. So I had to be wanded, and pull up my pant legs before I could go see the traffic clerk. I hated that too.

I saw the clerk, presented the proof, paid the $25 fee and blew out of there. Personally, I think that the traffic clerk should be in a different section separate from the courtroom area, and the criminal records area. I was traumatized by the experience, and now I keep thinking about tourists who may get a parking ticket or a traffic ticket and may choose to see the clerk rather than mailing it in. I think it would be horrible for them.