Civil Disobedience

Brickbats

|

China's culture ministry says it will ban professional performers from miming, lip syncing, or pretending to play musical instruments. Those caught breaking the law twice in any two-year period will lose their business licenses.

Jasbir Singh said he just wanted to show his support for the police when he placed a police union bumper sticker on his car. One Lockland, Ohio, police officer apparently didn't want Singh's support: He cited him for displaying a law enforcement emblem.

After 6-year-old Natalie Shea drew some pictures with chalk on the sidewalk in front of her Brooklyn home, the Department of Sanitation sent her parents a letter threatening them with a $300 fine if they didn't remove the graffiti.

Walter Andre Sharpe Jr. has been jailed four times since 2001, lost his job, and had more than $12,000 taken from him to support the child of a different Andre Sharpe with a different date of birth, address, and Social Security number. After six years, a judge declared he wasn't the father—but also ruled that Sharpe wasn't entitled to get his money back, much less any compensation for his time and suffering.

Florida's Tri-Rail commuter train service faces a budget deficit. How to pay the bills? Soak the people who don't use the system: Tri-Rail officials have asked the state to fund them with a $2 tax on rental cars.

Pennsylvania has banned smoking in private homes and vehicles used for child care services. That includes foster homes. Foster parent and smoker Lee Bauman told a local newspaper he has pretty much lived on his back porch since the law took effect. Advocates for foster children say the law may deter families from taking them in or could even lead the state to remove children from homes where they are thriving.

To fight terrorism, the British government has proposed a national database of all cell phone owners. The proposal would require people to present a passport or other government ID when they buy a phone.

Martin Ryan starved to death over 26 days in a National Health Service hospital in England. Ryan was admitted after suffering a stroke. The stroke left him unable to swallow, and doctors ordered a feeding tube for him, but for some reason staff never put one in.

Raegan Booth, 16, and Aby Western, 15, were sent home from Rednock School in England and told not to come back until they dyed their hair brown. Headmaster David Alexander says the girls violated school rules banning "unnatural" hair colors. Both girls have blonde hair.

Lone Star College threatened to place the Young Conservatives of Texas on probation after the group distributed a flier listing a tongue-in-cheek "Top Ten Gun Safety Tips." A student activities coordinator confiscated the fliers as the group tried to hand them out. The college's general counsel, Brian S. Nelson, contends that "any mention of firearms" interferes with the operation of the school.

Advertisement