Turn It Up; Lose Your Wheels

A new Rockford, Illinois law allows police to seize the automobiles of owners who play their stereos too loud.

But it gets worse.

There is no requirement that a police officer responding to a complaint objectively measure sound levels with electronic equipment or even personally witness an alleged offense. Instead, the ordinance states that "hearsay evidence shall be admissible" and that property will be seized upon the assertion of probable cause.

The only way to protest the seizure is to prove you weren't driving your car at the time virtually anyone could have lodged a complaint against you. But look at what you have to go through to get it back:

If a motorist believes his car has been unlawfully towed on a Friday after 5pm, he may challenge the taking by "depositing a written request for a hearing in the silver drop box located behind city hall," according to the ordinance. The city must then respond by the following Wednesday. If the registered owner was not driving at the time the car was taken, he will be mailed a letter within ten days. After this time he is given less than fifteen days to request a hearing. The city may then wait another 45 days to schedule a hearing while storage fees accumulate up to $1100.

A hearing officer designated by Rockford will decide under a preponderance of evidence standard whether it is likely the motorist is guilty, in which case the hearing officer's employers will collect the fine and fee revenue from the motorist. If the vehicle's owner does not receive the mailed notice or cannot pay the fees within 30 days, the city will confiscate the vehicle permanently.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • ||

    Is there an added penalty for playing NWA's "Fuck the Police" at the time of the offense?

  • Elemenope||

    Not for nothing, but this ordinance is going to get a cop or two (and perhaps a hearing officer) shot. They can't be in favor of that...

  • ||

    Standard Disclaimer: This is a silly law, blah, blah, blah.

    Actual emotional response: YAY!! Finally!! I HATE boomcars, and there is exactly zero effective way to deal with them. Loud stupid music does interfere with the peaceful enjoyment of my property, both my car and house. And since more than once said stupid boomcar woke up my sleeping infants, or me, or inspired the neighborhood pets to an impromptu 2 a.m. free concert, no, it's not just something that passes quickly and goes away.

    This is something interesting, though. What is a good way to deal with rudeness when the rude person is not subject to any social censure? "Deal with it, m'am," is not an option, as that rewards the dumbass with the scary speakers. Any ideas?

    (I'm leaving for work, where I can't comment, so I'm only going to be able to monitor the discussion.)

  • ||

    So when do we get to start filing complaints about the cars of the people who passed this law? What makes me think those complaints will be ignored?

  • ||

    Since the question is inevitable, I'll ask it.

    Is this ordinance specifically targeted at white people playing Kenny Chesney too loud in their pickups?

  • ||

    I thought there were already laws to deal with excessive noise. I forget what it's name is, but frat parties around here get busted for it all the time. Maybe just a simple violation of a noise ordinance?
    Still though I think it only results in a fine.

  • ||

    "Is this ordinance specifically targeted at white people playing Kenny Chesney too loud in their pickups?
    "

    Since you asked, yes.

    Karen raises a very good point. I too have been more than annoyed by some idiot playing his stereo at 140dB. There is no recourse (until now) for those assaulted by the noise.

  • pistofnick||

    I think a better route would be something like the TV Be Gone

    http://gizmodo.com/archives/tvbgone-023694.php

    I'm sure some clever tinkerer could program a similar device with the volume control signals for most popular car stereos.

    Damn the politicians and their stupid laws.

  • ||

    Stupid laws are required because people are too stupid for civilized society.

    The zapper wouldn't work through the dark, tinted windows.

    I take a small amount of consolation by the fact that the idiots with the ultra-loud "music" are making themselves deaf. Which means the music will even get louder in the future.

  • Jozef||

    Living and driving in Atlanta, I get way too often annoyed by drivers who play rap music so loud that it interferes with my enjoyment of classical music on our NPR station. Unfortunately, raising volume doesn't help too much - classical doesn't carry as good as rap. That said, I would never, not even in my wildest dreams, wish on anyone to have their car impounded for playing music too loud, especially when the burden of proof lies with the driver. I am very well aware that I may be a victim of such law, too - not for playing my music too loud, but because my neighbors already dislike my car for atheist stickers (they complained to the apartment complex management), and I'm sure they'd be more than happy to see my car gone, for any reason. I can already see people lying about loud music in order to get some more parking spaces in front of their houses, as a retaliation or simply because they can.

  • ||

    They complained about your Atheist stickers !!!
    Dude, move to Midtown.

  • Fluffy||

    This has absolutely nothing to do with noise, or whether loud stereos are rude, or the lack of social pressure to be polite, or any of that.

    Forgetting all of that other stuff, this is an absurd due process violation, since your property is being taken and fines are being assessed without due process as outlined in the Sixth and Seventh Amendments.

  • ||

    Forgetting all of that other stuff, this is an absurd due process violation, since your property is being taken and fines are being assessed without due process as outlined in the Sixth and Seventh Amendments.


    Due process is long gone, get over it.

  • ||

    Fluffy, you forgot the takings clause of the Fifth Amendment.

  • Christ on a Cracker||

    What happened to just writing out a $50 ticket?

    CoaC

  • ||

    Find out where the cops live, and have their cars impounded. It seems way too easy to abuse the law, so why not give it a whirl? And who says it's wrong to let the summer intern write the laws?

  • ||

    This is nothing to get over. This is ridiculous. It is exactly the kind of law that enables the most corrupt tendencies of law enforcement. The more judgment and less proof required for the violation, the worse it is. Then add on that a theft of property with no trial beforehand...

    Anyway, I would suggest that the kinds of people that actually like this kind of law move to Rockford, it'd be great to get all the morons in one place.

  • Alice Bowie||

    Wait until Happy Hour becomes Mandatory

  • ||

    I confess I kind of wish my jurisdiction would adopt a similar law.

  • ||

    I fricking hate boomcars. If I can hear your car in my car or worse yet, in my house, it's too damn loud. But this is not the way to deal with it. Nothing but a recipe for corruption.

  • InigoCarmine||

    Looks like another police fundraiser.

    @Lamar:

    I thought the same thing, except the legal system tends to take care of cops/judges unless something gets large media attention. As much as I would hate to target an innocent victim, the best way to get rid of this might be to have it happen to someone with influence, but not part of law enforcement. Maybe the owner of the local newspaper...

  • Tom||

    Grave due process injustice is no problem as long as I don't like the behavior the rule supposedly targets! Wheeee!!! The people in this thread are applying the same illogic that results in the conclusion that habeas corpus isn't required if the suspect is accused of terrorism.

  • ||

    I suppose that since it's now kosher to take homes for the public benefit (Kelo vs. Conn.), it's kosher to take cars for the public benefit as well.

    Actually, it would be a great basis for a 5-year-plan to strengthen our culture, eh comrade?

  • ||

    Apparently some folks think there is an "Annoyance Clause" in the Fifth Amendment.

  • Rhywun||

    What is a good way to deal with rudeness when the rude person is not subject to any social censure?

    ASBOs? *ducks*

  • ed||

    The best thing is being stuck next to one at a long, long traffic light. Urge to kill rising...rising...

  • ||

    I recently moved from a hood in the city that had more than its share of boom boomers. Asking nicely does nothing, calling the cops does nothing, these people just don't care that they are infiltrating everyone elses home with THUMP THUMP THUMP..

    Solution- Buy a nice pellet rifle (since your in the city) and crack your window ever so slighty. When their car windows start breaking they have no idea anyone shot anything at their cars since their stereo is so loud. They are so stupid they probably think they keep breaking the windows with their awesome car stereos, dumbasses.

    In my new hood if I can hear BOOM BOOM you are wayyyyyyy to close to my property and will promptly hear a reply BOOM, however no longer coming from a pellet gun.

    I tried everything under the sun to get these jackasses to turn down their music with no success, they simply do not care. As such I felt it only fair that if they could not keep their music from the inside on my brick house I could not gaurantee all the pellets I shot would remain on my property either. My old neighbor already wants to borrow the pellet gun.

  • ||

    I tried everything under the sun to get these jackasses to turn down their music with no success, they simply do not care.

    Since when, in the U.S., do we, by legislation, force people to care about other people?

  • ||

    "Apparently some folks think there is an "Annoyance Clause" in the Fifth Amendment."

    It's a safety issue. If I can't hear my own car stereo because of your ultra-loud stereo, I also won't hear a police/ambulance/fire truck siren.

    I'm sorry, your right to listen to extremely loud music ends when my rear-view mirror is bouncing up and down from the bass.

  • ||

    They see me rollin
    They hatin
    Patrolling they tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    My music so loud
    I'm swangin
    They hopin that they gon catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty
    Tryin to catch me ridin dirty…

    Law's on patrol; you know they hate me.
    Music turned all the way up and to the maximum;
    I can speak for some niggas tryin' to jack for some.
    But we packin' somethin' that we have
    And, um, will have a nigga locked up in the maximum
    Security cell. I'm grippin' oak.
    Music loud and I'm tippin' slow.
    Twins steady twistin' like hit this dough;
    Pull up from behind and im sittin low.
    Windows down, gotta stop pollution.
    CDs change; niggas like "Who is that producin'?"
    This the Play-N-Skillz when we out and cruisin'
    Got warrants in every city except Houston
    But I still ain't losin'.

  • ||

    Since everyone agrees on the definition of too loud, there's clearly no room for error here.

  • ||

    And let's face it, the problem is not caused by people who simply like loud music in their cars, the problem is caused by people who intentionally annoy others (often times in such cars the woofers will be point out, away from the vehicle).

    And well, if you intentionally irritate people then don't be surprised when they eventually start to fight back. I'm sure this law will inspire other communities to pass similar regulations.

    I will agree that for a first offense, a ticket would probably be more appropriate.

  • Episiarch||

    It's a safety issue. If I can't hear my own car stereo because of your ultra-loud stereo, I also won't hear a police/ambulance/fire truck siren.

    Even so, how does this justify seizure?

    I am consistently amazed by people who normally have a principled stance on these issues, but then certain topics that really bust their balls come up, and BAM--they completely throw their principles out the window--over an annoyance.

    I see it all the time with smoking, too. They're all for violating people's rights because of a loud noise or a smell they dislike. Incredible.

  • ||

    If "I plead 'Not Guilty', your honor. I had to kill the victim because his radio was so loud it drove me insane." was a viable defense, people wouldn't have the temptation of passing such silly laws.

  • Episiarch||

    They see me mowin' my front lawn
    I know they're all thinkin' I'm so
    White and nerdy

    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Can't you see I'm white and nerdy
    Look at me I'm white and nerdy

    I wanna roll with the gangstas
    But so far they all think I'm too
    White and nerdy

    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    I'm just too white and nerdy
    Really, really white and nerdy

    First in my class here at MIT
    Got skills, I'm a champion at D&D
    M.C. Escher, that's my favorite M.C.
    Keep you're 40, I'll just have an Earl Grey tea
    My rims never spin, to the contrary
    You'll find that they're quite stationary
    All of my action figures are cherry
    Stephen Hawking's in my library

    My MySpace page is all totally pimped out
    Got people beggin' for my top eight spaces
    Yo, I know pi to a thousand places
    Ain't got no grills but I still wear braces
    I order all of my sandwiches with mayonnaise
    I'm a wiz at Minesweeper, I could play for days
    Once you've see my sweet moves, you're gonna stay amazed
    My fingers movin' so fast I'll set the place ablaze

    There's no killer app I haven't run (run)
    At Pascal, well I'm number one (one)
    Do vector calculus just for fun
    I ain't got a gat, but I got a soldering gun (what?)
    Happy Days is my favorite theme song
    I could sure kick your butt in a game of ping pong
    I'll ace any trivia quiz you bring on
    I'm fluent in JavaScript as well as Klingon(in part)


    They see me roll on my Segway
    I know in my heart they think I'm
    White and nerdy

    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Can't you see I'm white and nerdy
    Look at me I'm white and nerdy
    [White & Nerdy lyrics on http://www.metrolyrics.com]


    I'd like to roll with the gangstas
    Although it's apparent I'm too
    White and nerdy

    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    I'm just too white and nerdy
    How'd I get so white and nerdy

    I been browsin', inspectin' X-Men comics
    You know I collect 'em
    The pens in my pocket, I must protect them
    My ergonomic keyboard never leaves me bored
    Shoppin' online for deals on some writable media
    I edit Wikipedia
    I memorized Holy Grail really well
    I can recite it right now and have you R-O-T-F-L-O-L

    I got a business doing websites (websites)
    When my friends need a code, who do they call?
    I do HTML for 'em all
    Even made a homepage for my dog (yo)
    I got myself a fanny pack
    They were havin' a sale down at The Gap
    Spend my nights with a role of bubble wrap
    Pop, pop - hope no one sees me get freaky

    I'm nerdy in the extreme
    Im Whiter than sour cream
    I was in A/V club and glee club
    And even the chess team
    Only question I ever thought was hard was
    "Do I like Kirk or do I like Picard?"
    Spend every weekend at the Renaissance Fair
    Got my name on my underwear

    They see me strollin', they laughin'
    And rollin' their eyes cause I'm so
    White and nerdy

    Just because I'm white and nerdy
    Just because I'm white and nerdy
    All because I'm white and nerdy
    Holy cow, I'm white and nerdy

    I wanna bowl with the gangstas
    But oh well, it's obvious I'm
    White and nerdy

    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    Think I'm just too white and nerdy
    I'm just too white and nerdy
    Look at me I'm white and nerdy

  • ||

    "They're all for violating people's rights"

    Driving is not a right.

  • ed||

    I like the way Dee thinks. The ultra-low frequencies cited can penetrate anything, and they really do make we want to kill something. There's a right-to-carry law here in Florida, and in order to protect society's sociopaths from me I'm declining that right. Too risky, too tempting.

  • ||

    "It's a safety issue. If I can't hear my own car stereo because of your ultra-loud stereo, I also won't hear a police/ambulance/fire truck siren."

    By this perverse logic, the cops could also seize the car of anybody caught driving listening to an iPod through earbuds.

  • ||

    I confess I kind of wish my jurisdiction would adopt a similar law.

    But Dan T., how will you feel when some rightwing asshole complains about your autos volume? You possibility have that old Kerry/Edwards bumper sticker on it, and assholes, left, right, and even libertarian, would love to use the states power, to make somebody's life miserable. It's about due process. Maybe, when your car gets impounded, you'll just bend over and say, thank you, but I doubt it.

  • Ryo||

    Wrong solution to a genuine problem. Here's my solution, stereo equipment capable of going beyond a certain db limit is illegal if installed in a car AND someone has filed a noise complaint against said car.

    I'm sorry, your right to listen to extremely loud music ends when my rear-view mirror is bouncing up and down from the bass.



    I'd say if I can't ignore your activity inside my house with my windows and doors closed, you're interfering with my property rights. I think this is consistent with libertarian reasoning. (Disclaimer: I don't consider myself libertarian).

  • ||

    "By this perverse logic, the cops could also seize the car of anybody caught driving listening to an iPod through earbuds."

    Except your iPod doesn't interfere with my listening.

  • ||

    I am consistently amazed by people who normally have a principled stance on these issues, but then certain topics that really bust their balls come up, and BAM--they completely throw their principles out the window--over an annoyance.

    That's just human nature - it's always easier to take a pricipled stand when you're not personally affected.

    It would be interesting to have somebody park a "boom car" on the street outside your residence continuously playing at full blast, just to see how long your maintain your principle that loud noises are just something we all have to tolerate, as to not violate the rights of the noise-maker.

  • Michael||

    Rockford police have sweeping jurisdiction like you wouldn't believe. They can come to you in your bed. They can even live inside of your head!

  • Episiarch||

    It would be interesting to have somebody park a "boom car" on the street outside your residence continuously playing at full blast, just to see how long your maintain your principle that loud noises are just something we all have to tolerate, as to not violate the rights of the noise-maker.

    Had it done plenty of times to me in NYC, Dan. I didn't call the cops or anything. I was annoyed, but that doesn't cause me to go overboard.

    We are talking about seizure here, Dan. Did I say I objected to ticketing people whose stereos are too loud?

    This is a money grab by the cops and the city, and they are purposely going after very unpopular people so that fools like you will support it.

    I still await the day that something you like to do is outlawed because it is unpopular. I have a feeling your attitudes will change lickety-split.

  • ||

    It's a safety issue. If I can't hear my own car stereo because of your ultra-loud stereo, I also won't hear a police/ambulance/fire truck siren.

    No deaf people drive? Or is that safety issue more morally challenging for you to suggest enforcing?

  • ||

    Taking their car in no way helps anyone. Why not a system of ratchetting fines? The first offense $60, the second $300, the third $1000, and the fourth you yank their drivers license.

    If they fail to pay then sieze their stuff. But it is inefficient to put government into the business of selling boom cars. The city will not get the true value of the vehicles, since the "friends of the police" will get them for a steal. It would be more efficient if you just set the value of the ticket to the estimated value of the vehicle. Only then would every cent of value lost to the motorist be gained by the city.

  • ||

    Yes, there is absolutely no racial undertones in most of the posts advocating for this law...none at all.

    People claim the WoD or the Iraq War or some other controversial matter is the "libertarian litmus test"...fuck that. If you're advocating some sort of lawful overreacting because the scary black guy playing rap music annoys you, you're not a libertarian. You're a sad sack of shit, a whiner, and you need to put your big boy boots on and learn to be an adult.

  • ||

    Seiously, if I lived in Rockford, I'd inundate the police with complaints. Not just the BOOM, BOOM blasters but anyone whos audio, muffler, squeeky fan belt or breaks annoy me. After the impound lot gets filled up with "good citizens" cars, they might rethink this STUPID FUCKIN' LAW Plus I get too go after those highly offensive crotch rockets. Fun times would surely ensue.

  • ||

    This is easy to solve: give one responsible resident on every block a bazooka and permission to use it. Problem solved.

    Yes, the law is disgusting, but the boom car idiots are one group I can't find much sympathy for. Pull them from their homes in the middle of the night and execute them on their front lawns- intellectually, I know that's wrong. My lower brain, however, would be more than happy to join the firing squad.

    Incidentally, this is not about urban black kids. Most of the people I see with boom cars are suburban white teenagers.

  • ||

    This just makes me want to put a couple of massive woofers on battery power in a wheelbarrow and roll it around town. I should play really f'ing annoying music too. What will they confiscate?

  • thoreau||

    First:
    If you're advocating some sort of lawful overreacting because the scary black guy playing rap music annoys you, you're not a libertarian. You're a sad sack of shit, a whiner, and you need to put your big boy boots on and learn to be an adult.

    The other problem with this law is that it puts me in the position of having to defend people who play their music too fricking loud.

    It's worth noting that when the laws are just you won't find too many strange bedfellows. It's only when the laws are unjust that I'm forced to take up the cause of people whom I dislike. One more reason to hate unjust laws.

  • ||

    I think we should confiscate the stupid ice cream trucks endlessly playing "pop goes the weasel".

  • ||

    Quick refresher of the applicapable portion of the Fifth Amendment:

    nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.



    Boom boom cars are a problem and a public nuisance. Seizure of property based on hearsay evidence is an unjust solution, and in a saner America, also unconstitutional.

  • ||

    It would be interesting to have somebody park a "boom car" on the street outside your residence continuously playing at full blast, just to see how long your maintain your principle that loud noises are just something we all have to tolerate, as to not violate the rights of the noise-maker.

    Holy crap, Batman, don't we noise ordinances here in Gotham City? The cops don't enforce the law, even when it's thrown in their faces. So we need more draconian laws. Makes sense to me. Lets just go the Singapore route and cane 'em in the public square.

    Yeah,they're complete assholes and loud noises, even Joni Mitchell at volume, has a proven detrimental effect on people's hearing. The science on this is far superior to second hand smoke "evidence", and yet I still don't think we should willy, nilly violate peoples rights to probably?, possisibly?, not a chance in hell?, solve the problem.

  • hapbt||

    how much do you want to bet the number of car thefts and car jackings increases as people need to replace their cars?

  • ||

    It would be interesting to have somebody park a "boom car" on the street outside your residence continuously playing at full blast, just to see how long your maintain your principle that loud noises are just something we all have to tolerate, as to not violate the rights of the noise-maker

    The issue hear is not that people should be allowed to listen to music as loudly as they want. The issue is that the law has arbitrary standards and relies on HEARSAY evidence. If someone calls the cops and says you were playing music too loudly in your car at a particular time, you have to prove you were not driving that car at that time. Even if you do prove that, you still have to jump through hoops to get your car back. Even after getting the car back, you still have to pay storage fees.

    In other words, even if you are innocent, you can lose your car for 2-3 months and have to pay storage fees.

    If the vehicle's owner does not receive the mailed notice or cannot pay the fees within 30 days, the city will confiscate the vehicle permanently.

    So if they forget the postage on your notice, you are fucked.

    My response . . . just start reporting every car you see. When enough people get their cars towed, you will get a really nasty backlash toward the law, leading to a repeal.

  • ||

    Hey, does anybody have a link (or can paste) the actual language of the ordinance? (I can't get to Radley's link through my work filter). Thanks.

  • ||

    "No person shall operate... any device used to... reproduce any recorded sound if the device is located... in any motor vehicle on the public way and the sound can be heard from 75 feet or more from the device," Ordinance 2007-158-0 states in defining the new crime.

  • ||

    J sub D- Caning...hmm. I think you may be on to something.

    Disclaimer: I'm really not sure if I'm kidding.

  • ||

    Number 6, you're starting to scare me...no fan of Rush should talk that way.

  • Doctor Duck||

    Didn't read the actual language of the ordinance, but if it's even close to what's described here, NFW does it survive the first challenge beyond traffic court. Too many obvious problems.

  • ||

    AR- Yes, the law is pure evil. But that doesn't change my deep, visceral, murderous hatred of boom-car morons. There's a conflict between cerebrum and cerebellum going on here.

    I must admit, btw, that Rush sounds much better with a good subwoofer accenting Peart's godawsome bass drum work. This is especially true of the last song on the latest album. But that's an at home thing, not a driving down the road irritating people thing.

    Remember, AR, that boom car drivers are clearly second-handers. They do what they do for one reason-to be noticed by other people.

  • dhex||

    maaan oh man this is a tough one. i hate me some bass car action - living in a place where the shit's so loud you can hear it three or four blocks away sometimes - but without any standards of proof it's basically another excuse to steal shit and do some illegal searches.

    This is easy to solve: give one responsible resident on every block a bazooka and permission to use it. Problem solved.

    unless i'm the responsible citizen in which case everyone's fucked.

    i did hear a dude who was blasting scorpions from an suv a while back, that was fairly hilarious. most of the time it's reggaeton or, god help us, r&b. i think that's plain embarrassing. or maybe it's like massive attack is for white dudes - i.e. a prelude to teh sexayz?

    when i lived up in greenpoint it was euro trance which i mean is hilarious even from three blocks away. it is fun to get drunk and scream "give us the snare rush!" at passing motorists. less fun when you're sober and realize they're serious, of course, but such is life.

    occasionally when stuck in traffic on the gwb like last night i will put on something obnoxious (i.e. discordance axis or east west blast test) and blast it but my wife's puny car is no match for the jacked-up nissans.

  • dhex||


    I must admit, btw, that Rush sounds much better with a good subwoofer accenting Peart's godawsome bass drum work.


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pb7tf3iyFA0

  • dhex||

    . They do what they do for one reason-to be noticed by other people.

    no i also think people think overdriven subs sound good.

  • ||

    Fuckin' Tom Sawyer...I hate that song.
    But Peart is indeed the best rock drummer ever.

  • ||

    i did hear a dude who was blasting scorpions from an suv a while back, that was fairly hilarious. most of the time it's reggaeton or, god help us, r&b. i think that's plain embarrassing. or maybe it's like massive attack is for white dudes - i.e. a prelude to teh sexayz?


    I have a younger neighbor (a phrase that cringes to make me say it) who often gets in his car late on weekend nights and drives off, windows down, blasting at full "boomer" volume slow, mournful country-western ballads.

    I got nothin', but it's amusing.

  • ||

    Dhex-No, I really don't think anyone believes that overdriven subs sound good. It's all part of an image for those folks, just like those moronic neon lights.

  • ||

    I kinda like "Tom Sawyer". Zeromancer has a neat cover of it and "Send Me An Angel".

  • Rhywun||

    They do what they do for one reason-to be noticed by other people.

    This is pretty much why I ignore them. People who are this rude tend to thrive on any attention, both positive (seriously, who is impressed by this shit?) and negative. Ignore them and maybe some day they will go away. Yes, sometimes it's hard to ignore, say if you're driving behind one, but still, it's not that big a freaking deal.

  • ||

    Oops, brain-fart. That wasn't Zeromancer, that was Deadsy that has the "Tom Sawyer" cover.

  • Rhywun||

    There are probably many Rush songs better than "Tom Sawyer" but somehow that one became their "signature song".

  • ||

    Eric- Tom Sawyer isn't really a bad song, it's just that most people seem to think of it as the only song Rush ever did, and either like or dismiss them based on it. The irony is that TS doesn't sound like any of their other songs.

  • Dave B.||

    So when you report someone's car, is it anonymous, or can the person find out your name? If its anonymous, then I'd expect the sort of massive false reporting that many people here have been suggesting. If the person can find out your name, I'd bet on vengeful reporting.

    Even if you literally never drive your car, you could be forced to pay $1100 and jump through tons of hoops, only to have the process started over on the day your car is returned. Or would it be possible to sue the reporter if you win the case?

    Also, its unclear from the article and comments here whether proving that your car could not play music loud enough to bother anyone, or even that you were not doing so at the time would be a defense against the taking. Is simply driving in Illinois a sufficient offense to warrant taking your car?

  • ||

    When Number 6 was outed as a Rush fan, my first thought was Rush Limbaugh. Try that pompous ass at 140 dB! Alas, I'm sure he thinks this law is a good idea.

  • Fluffy||

    "Seizure of property based on hearsay evidence is an unjust solution, and in a saner America, also unconstitutional."

    Actually, calling what's going on here "seizure of property based on hearsay evidence" is too charitable a reading of it.

    "Hearsay evidence" is something you introduce in a court of law. There is no court here. Your car is taken before you ever go to a court. You have no opportunity to cross examine the complainant prior to imposition of the sentence. The burden is placed on you to get it back. MAYBE if there were no towing and storage fees if you were found not guilty [in a JURY TRIAL] I would see this procedure as being even slightly reasonable. But the towing and storage fees will be imposed regardless of the outcome of the complaint against you, making this a clear and blatant Sixth Amendment violation.

    This isn't like towing a car on a public way. Once you're on the public way, the police have a lot of power to remove your property from the public way and secure it pending adjudication of your violation. This allows the seizure of your car based on a complaint if your car is in your own fucking driveway.

    The "preponderance of the evidence" standard is also a laughable crock. If the state declares a prohibited action and takes your property if it thinks you have engaged in that prohibited action, that makes it a criminal matter plain and simple, and trying to pretend it's a civil matter so you face a lighter evidentiary standard is tyrannical.

  • ||

    How the heck is someone supposed to prove that their music couldn't be heard 75 feet away?

  • dhex||

    Dhex-No, I really don't think anyone believes that overdriven subs sound good. It's all part of an image for those folks, just like those moronic neon lights.

    i used to feel this way until i watched people try out subs for their cars at best buy. they would seriously put in a cd of THA HOT SHITTT and get really excited at the output and that they could "really feel the bass."

  • dhex||

    I have a younger neighbor (a phrase that cringes to make me say it) who often gets in his car late on weekend nights and drives off, windows down, blasting at full "boomer" volume slow, mournful country-western ballads.

    i might be forgetting a larger category: people with hearing loss.

    which judging from earbud volumes on the subway, is a whole friggin' lot of people. i wear in-ear canal phones - not at very high volumes - and often listen to obnoxious crap and i can still hear peoples earbuds on an express train.

  • ||

    AR- Yes, the law is pure evil. But that doesn't change my deep, visceral, murderous hatred of boom-car morons. There's a conflict between cerebrum and cerebellum going on here.

    It's great that you recognize that. Most people are completely unaware of how their opinions on issues get formed.

  • ||

    Or would it be possible to sue the reporter if you win the case?

    It's always possible to sue, just ask God. But he said, she said, doesn't often lead to judgements.

  • ||

    There are probably many Rush songs better than "Tom Sawyer" but somehow that one became their "signature song".

    Freewill, Spirit of the Radio, Closer to the Heart...signature song(s) one and all...the Freewill bass line kicks ass...overdriven or otherwise

  • ||

    J sub D- I guess I should be more clear in my dislike of this law. It is a grotesque violation of the basic principles of decent government and the rule of law. It may even be flagrant enough that a court will strike it down.

    But, if I could get away with it, I'd still totally bazooka a boom car and its driver. Really, would it be any great loss to the world?

  • ||

    How the heck is someone supposed to prove that their music couldn't be heard 75 feet away?

    Just consider the Daredevil factor.

  • dhex||

    i call them "teenage dads" and sometimes sing along to the beat with songs i've written like "oh yeah i live with my mom" and "it's not my fault suzie got preggers she's a fucking slut" and my favorite "i was raised in a dumpster by weasels, someone please kill me (yeah yeah yeah)."

  • ||

    Geddy F'n Lee: Yeah, all of those are great tunes. But Some of their best stuff (Presto, Counterparts, Snakes and Arrows) gets ignored. The boys are still around, and their music really is the best it's ever been. But everyone thinks their music began and ended with Moving Pictures.

  • ||

    #6, I didn't doubt your disapproval of this moronic law for a second.

  • ||

    Quick refresher of the applicapable portion of the Fifth Amendment...

    Quick legal nitpick: We're talking about the 14th Amendment due process clause, not the 5th Amendment DP clause. 5th Amendment DP only applies against the federal government.

    As for anyone here who says that DP wouldn't apply, that's nonsense. The hearsay provision and the pre-evidentiary hearing seizure provision (plus the onerous post-seizure requirements) make this law an easy target for a DP attack. The only question is whether the first individuals to be charged will have enough money to afford decent representation.

  • ||

    I do not want more laws and certainly not laws that entitle the police to confiscate property based on allegations and claims.

    But unless you all have forgotten they already do this daily in the WoD. They can and will take your money just for having "to much," cash on your person. They will take your car for picking up a hooker as well. The government has been in the business of confiscating property without any reason for some time now.

    While I think taking the car a bit much I think something needs to be done. While it might not be a law that people care about others they sure do have a lot of laws to protect those that would be beaten from being beaten for their actions of not caring what they do to others, go figure.

    These sounds penetrate brick homes and if you can not be inside your home in peace and quiet because the jackass across the street insists on playing his music in his driveway far to loud what are you to do exactly? Sit there in the house your paying for and be annoyed hour after hour by someone who in all likelyhood I also am financing their existance as well? I think fucking not! Yeah they are black for the most part but white idiots do it also. Even the blacks in my old hood hated it but yet they refused to go across the street and ask them to turn it down. When us white folks did it nothing happened. You see these people are so fucking stupid they don't even realize their stereo was on 3 and they were asked to turn it down that the next time it is on 3 it is probably annoying the same people the exact same way.

    How about a ticket 1st offense followed by a stereo confiscation for the 2nd if you continue to annoy the general public. After all if they can confiscate my money and property on the "hunch," that its drug money and I have to prove its not to get it back why should these worthless fucks society has to deal with get anything less themselves.

    Not to long ago there was a guy that kept getting awoke @ 3am by a BOOM BOOM going down his country road. He got fed up and blasted the guys radiator with a 12 gauge one morning. He has not heard his stereo since.

    While it may be your right to do what you want and I agree with that right. It is also my right not to be annoyed in my home by anyone. The police need a seach warrant to enter my home but I am supposed to allow low frequency sounds inside my home at all hours and not have any recourse? Fuck that. More laws will not be the answer unless the truly get to the heart of the issue and are not in place just to generate revenue.

  • oncogenesis||

    @Tim: Driving is not a right.

    Good thing this thread is not about driving.

    Actually, let's take your insightful analysis a step further. What exactly are my rights? Do I have the right to sit on the couch and drink lite beer while watching the NFL on TV? How do I know? I can't find it anywhere in the Constitution. Please, Tim, help me enumerate my rights.

  • ||

    The only question is whether the first individuals to be charged will have enough money to afford decent representation.

    This sounds like a job for the ACLU.

  • Alice Bowie||

    Ride right by with the booming system

  • ed||

    Ice-picking the speakers would be faster and a helluva lot more gratifying (for me) than confiscating the vehicle. And it would directly address the issue. A night stick applied repeatedly to the amp would be fun as well.

  • ||

    "Tim, help me enumerate my rights."

    What part of "driving is not a right" do you not understand? You have to have a license, you have to have insurance. Your car has to be in good condition. You must obey traffic laws. You can be stopped at a road block and compelled to show a license, insurance and demonstrate that you're not drunk.

    You're rights include free speech, the right to assemble, due process, the right to face a witness against you, trial by jury, voting, etc.

    Driving is not a right, it's considered a privilege.

  • ||

    Tom Sawyer isn't really a bad song, it's just that most people seem to think of it as the only song Rush ever did, and either like or dismiss them based on it. The irony is that TS doesn't sound like any of their other songs.


    Reasonable enough.

    But, if I could get away with it, I'd still totally bazooka a boom car and its driver. Really, would it be any great loss to the world?


    I dunno, ask the driver.

  • ||

    What part of "driving is not a right" do you not understand?


    What part of "driving isn't the issue" don't you get?

  • ||

    Oh, these are home stereos we're talkin' about. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

    My comment about driving isn't a right was in response to the view that people have a right to play music as loud as they want in their cars. I was pointing out that there are many restrictions on how, when, and where you can drive.

  • Wondering||

    I'm surprised more towings in general aren't challenged purely on constitutional grounds. My own neighborhood is notorious for immediate towing in case of violating alternate-side parking signs. Is anyone aware of any case history challenging this type of policy this way?

  • ||


    You're rights include free speech, the right to assemble, due process, the right to face a witness against you, trial by jury, voting, etc.


    Tim, you fail it ("it" being knowing that the Constitution is not a rights-enumerating document but in actuality, a government-restraining one). All of those things you mention are the things the government can't violate or is obligated to provide. And said enumeration does not mean you have no other "rights". Hence the point (that sailed over your pea-sized head) that "sitting at home drinking a beer and watching the game" isn't in the Constitution either, but you can still do that.

  • ||

    C'mon, this is from "The Onion", right? Right??

    Jesus F. Christ...

  • ||

    Your misunderstanding is, well, the giant non sequitor here:

    My comment about driving isn't a right was in response to the view that people have a right to play music as loud as they want in their cars. I was pointing out that there are many restrictions on how, when, and where you can drive.

  • ||

    You know what I don't like? When my neighbor decides to mow his lawn when I'm trying to sleep in. I can hear it when my windows are closed. I wish I had a bazooka to blow him up with, or maybe a handy law where I could have his house confiscated.

    That would teach him.

  • ||

    For the record:

    We like the cars
    The cars that go boom.

  • ||

    Oh, these are home stereos we're talkin' about. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

    Wow Tim, you are sloooooooooooooooow....

    the issue isn't driving or driving rights. It's an issue of property rights and right to due process.

    You're "driving is a privelage" MIGHT be relevant if the offender was getting their license suspended, but since they are seizing the vehicle, it has absolutely nothing to do with driving.

    You see, I could be sitting in my car, while parked, and blaring the music and someones complaint could trigger a confiscation of my vehicle -- and driving or the right to drive wouldn't figure at all into the equation.

  • ||

    Joseph-The guy with the lawnmower is trying to accomplish something other than annoying you, and the noise is a necessary part of the lawnmowing process. See the difference?

  • danb||

    About time, too! I think they should confiscate the shoes of those damn kids who are always on my lawn!! And don't get me started on the skateboard...

  • Michael Wright||

    I hate boom cars and am in favor of harsh measures to rid our streets of them. The boomheads in my town are not poor oppressed black kids from "the hood." They are mostly well-to-do white college punks. Boomheads have wrecked my sleeping habits and also made it impossible to work in my home office. My only concern about this law is that I hope the boomheads' lawyers don't figure out a way to get it overturned. Click on my link to see my website about this menace. Boomhead jerks who want to send me hate mail: don't waste your time.

  • ||

    See the difference?

    I do see the difference. However, I find the argument uncompelling.

  • the Rising Jurist||

    For the record, the ordinance is not accurately represented in the linked article. Nowhere does it say that "hearsay evidence shall be admissible." Nor does it mention a "silver drop box located behind city hall."

    There are valid complaints to be made about the ordinance, to be certain. I simply find it odd that the article's author felt the need to present the ordinance as worse than it is.

  • ||

    Sorry if somebody already said this but.

    None of this would be needed if just two people stepped up and did their job. MOM & DAD! I know that not both are there in every family. Seriously though, what happened to the parents doing their job and showing kids as they grow up what is polite and what is rude. If I hear a kid say thank you or please anymore I almost fall over with shock. They don't have to be little suck ups just polite and understanding that there are other people around them and that karma is a real bitch. That all. Hell were lucky anymore if all they do is play loud music
    which is sad enough. I wasn't perfect but you better believe that I was told imediately how what I doing affected others. I of course didn't always see right away but eventually it clicked and I got it. I say impound the parents car if the offender is a minor then will see some results.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Progressive Puritans: From e-cigs to sex classifieds, the once transgressive left wants to criminalize fun.
  • Port Authoritarians: Chris Christie’s Bridgegate scandal
  • The Menace of Secret Government: Obama’s proposed intelligence reforms don’t safeguard civil liberties

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement