Man Arrested for Wearing Give Peace A Chance T-Shirt

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by peter2002, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Aug 1, 2002
    Dallas, TX
    ALBANY, N.Y. - A man was charged with trespassing in a mall after he refused to take off a T-shirt that said "Peace on Earth" and "Give peace a chance."

    Mall security approached Stephen Downs, 61, and his 31-year-old son, Roger, on Monday night after they were spotted wearing the T-shirts at Crossgates Mall in a suburb of Albany, the men said.

    The two said they were asked to remove the shirts made at a store there, or leave the mall. They refused.

    The guards returned with a police officer who repeated the ultimatum. The son took his T-shirt off, but the father refused.

    "'I said, `All right then, arrest me if you have to,'" Downs said. "So that's what they did. They put the handcuffs on and took me away."


    If they can arrest you for this, I guess they could arrest you if you are walking with a shirt of the US Flag or Jesus on it. Such messages are political too. What really ticks me off about malls is they charge $3 for a corn dog or $18 for a CD at Camelots. Personally, I don't shop at malls. They are a total rip off and just for teeny boppers with nothing to do but hang out.

    Pete :rolleyes:
  2. macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2003
    Check the law. There's nothing illegal here, although it does seem a little foolish on the part of the mall.
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Dec 15, 2001
    No matter what your opinion on the Iraq war is, this is just wrong. I guess the first amendment only applies if you agree with what the other person is saying... :rolleyes:
  4. macrumors 68000


    Jan 5, 2003
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Jun 4, 2002
    Anywhere but here
    I agree completely. These people had a complete right to wear those t-shirts in that mall. They were just eating their lunch in the food court not staging any kind of protest. The fact that the father was arrested is an outrage.
  6. macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2001
    1 Block away from NYC.
    'I was just wearing this shirt officer'
    'Sir, if you don't take the shirt off were gonna have to take to downtown'
    'What, really, for wearing a shirt?'
    :eek: :confused:

    What law says things about peace shirt illegal?
  7. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2001
    Minot, North Dakota
  8. macrumors 68000


    Jun 4, 2002
    Ottawa, ON
    Damn, I wish I had such an easy income source... :D
  9. macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2003
    The Mall is within its rights on this matter. The Supreme Court has already ruled on this very issue, and the mall is not a free speech zone.

    Here's one of the cases.
  10. macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2001
    1 Block away from NYC.
    B) 1968
    C) They were picketing not just wearing a shirt.

    This is gonna be one sad sad case.
  11. macrumors 68000


    Dec 2, 2002
    The case you cite may not apply in this particular case.

    I am not an expert in law, or in even reading law briefs. i just think it's that cut and dried.
  12. macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    I guess the mall wants patrons to wear the...

    "Give bullets and bombs a chance"

    "War on Earth"

    ...t-shirts, when shopping at their guns & ammo mall.
  13. macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2002
    well the case that you linked to has been abrogated, was deemed overruled, and less importantly superceeded by state laws in PA. Not sure of NYs specific state laws, but i would say that, while protest inside of a mall might not be allowed, there is a difference between organized protest and personal freedoms of speech and expression.

    beyond that, they were obviously NOT trespassing, they were there making purchases. Being in the mall doesnt subject you to the whim of the people running the mall. it would be a tricky case, but i have friends who work with the NY ACLU and i think this mall is going to get torn to pieces.
  14. macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2001
    1 Block away from NYC.
    Yeah please.
    That mall should be the first to start the 'IF YOU HAVE IRAQI BLOOD, THEN TRADE IT FOR OIL DRIVE'


    But really.

    'Give war a chance, if it doesn't work, whoops!'
    'Jihad on Earth'
  15. macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Re: Arresting a Lawyer

    Stupid security, they had a lawyer arrested. :rolleyes:

    even worse they had the director of the Albany Office of the state Commission on Judicial Conduct arrested :D

    --- Add

    Sort of fun, they arrest one man and then end up with a large protest on Wednesday -- Group Protest NY Peace T-Shirt Arrest

    Sort of makes me wonder why they didn't have this group of protesters arrested.
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 2, 2002
    more to this story...

    There is more to this story than initially noted in this thread...

    first off, this isn't the first time that peaceful protest actions have targeted this mall...
    previous protest action

    Seems that an organized group entered the mall in groups of three with peace t-shirts on and the mall escorted them off the property. According to the link above, the mall reacted quickly to the seemingly innocent action of the protestors leading me to belive that the same group had tried the same action before and the mall recognized the action as soon as it started.

    Don't get me wrong, I think the mall acted in a VERY draconian manner. This was uncalled for. Someone with a peace t-shirt on who is spending money in the mall should be allowed to stay as long as they like.

    I also believe that a peace group was targeting this mall because of its ability to attract large numbers of people. This is probably the best way to get people to see your message in this town. I think (JMHO) that the mall got sick of being the target of these actions and the increased their response until it became totally unreasonable.

    Is the Mall in the wrong.. absolutely, in my opinion.

    Was the Mall provoked on multiple occassions?.. very possibly.

    Was this guy innocent? .. it appears that this may be part of a larger action.

    Did the mall break the law? Probably not. Private businesses do not have the same responsibilty to support your constitutional rights as the government. If this guy got arrested in city hall for wearing an anti-war shirt, then his civil liberties would most certainly have been violated.

    just my 2cents.

    Interesting side note.......
    Apple has a store in this mall. Jobs is a peace-nik... perhaps he can give them a smack down. :)
  17. macrumors 604


    Feb 7, 2002
    this is interesting. Hey law guy, if you read this tell us if the mac or mall is right. you can post it on your brand new dual 1.42.

  18. macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Check out for even funnier news on the arrest...

  19. macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2003
  20. macrumors member

    Feb 20, 2003
    Definately sounds like we don't have the full story yet. It is quite likely that either this man in particular or others clothed in the same shirt previously did something that cause the security gaurds to be overly suspicious. They went over the line no doubt. They should have maybe just questioned him or something. You know just a simple exlination that they've had issues with protests being organized in the mall and that the shirt was part of the whole deal, might have gotten better communication and cooperation that way. Like in most cases there are probably many people at fault here not just one .
  21. macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2003
    Sorry guys, I linked the wrong case.

    This was the one I was thinking of.

    I think it will come down the the particular laws in New York, whether they grant greater rights than the Federal Constitution. The state of the law seems to be that, while you don't have a first amendment right to speech in the mall, you may have a state right depending on the state.
  22. macrumors 604


    Jul 16, 2002
    back in NYC!
    that is truly terrible.... How can we allow our law enforcement
    to do immature things like that? That is just...... ugh, it makes
    me want to throw up. :rolleyes:
  23. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 2, 2002
    I also checked that police department's benovelence fund and they have a blurb on their index page. Apparently they are getting hassled already over this.

    They support the officer and point out that the police did not file any charges. The took the man into custody when one of the security guards insisted on filing charges.

    Basically, the city isn't going after this guy... the Mall is going after him and the police have to follow through.

    I think the cops should have told the security to get a life, but they do have a job to do when someone insists on prosecuting.
  24. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2002
    Notre Dame
    heh, i saw this on the daily show last night. apparently they thought it was ridiculous too.
  25. macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2001
    So, am I gonna move from ****t* dictatorship to go to another ****t* dictatorship only a bit more sofisticated?

    Let me tell you something here guys.

    The US goverment is allways talking about fredom and democracy, what you fuc** president is doing is tha most totalitarian actitud you can find in the world today. The US is taking of its mask.

    In any case I'm not taling about the people, just the president of the united states and all of them that support his actitud.

    Even in my country I can wear a t-shirt that says "Chavez go and get fuc**ed by Castro", and I'm ijn a dictatorship.

    Just be carefull with your goverment, to go to a war just because the president wants to is a very bad sign. An let me tell you, the politicians never pay for they mistakes, the poeple does.

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