Pamela Powers, a progressive voice for Arizona
Twitter and Facebook have been ablaze with stories and photos about the shooting of Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, Missouri. (Check out the AZBlueMeanie’s poignant analysis here, photos from the New York Times here, and running updates here from Huffington Post.)
As you are well aware, Michael Brown’s shooting is just one in a very long and disturbing list of unarmed young blacks (primarily men) being shot by police or armed citizens. What the hell is going on?! Do ya think there are way too many guns out there?
In this world of smart phones and social media, everything from cute kittens playing with boxes to police violence is photographed and shared. Problem is: the police don’t like being photographed or videotaped. Journalists are citizens are often arrested or roughed up and cameras confiscated or broken when they try to record police behaving badly. That is illegal!
Following the arrest of two journalists in Ferguson today, I found this very helpful post from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) about photographer rights. Here is an excerpt. Check out the link below for more.
Photographers Know Your Rights
Taking photographs of things that are plainly visible from public spaces is a constitutional right – and that includes federal buildings, transportation facilities, and police and other government officials carrying out their duties. Unfortunately, there is a widespread, continuing pattern of law enforcement officers ordering people to stop taking photographs from public places, and harassing, detaining and arresting those who fail to comply. Learn more »
Your rights as a photographer: