Is It Legal To Flip Off The Police In Louisiana?
If you're an adult in America, you're probably familiar with the art of giving the middle finger. You probably know how to do it, and that its a way to share frustration, disdain, anger, or honestly...to greet friends.
But why do we use our middle fingers as an "obscene gesture"? Well, according to a massive deep dive from Complex:
"...It’s undeniable that there’s an art to giving the finger; the timing, angle, and duration of your gesture can make or break how effectively you land an insult. When executed just right, throwing a middle finger (or two) in the air can be one of the most satisfying feelings in the world—and it’s actually a sign of protest and defiance that’s been around for centuries.
In 1892, anthropologist Frank Hamilton Cushing published “Manual Concepts: A Study of The Influence of Hand-Usage on Culture Growth” in The American Anthropologist. Cushing contends that hand gestures are what make humans distinct as a race. Centuries earlier, Aristotle argued that language was humanity’s defining characteristic, but Cushing said the way we use our hands is even more significant than what comes out of our mouths.
Flipping people off is an act as old as the Pantheon..."
Now there are times to flip people off in jest, times to do it in anger, and times you shouldn't do it at all. Well, unless you're willing to deal with the consequences.
Like flipping your boss off when you disagree. That might get you fired. Or flipping off a child at a carnival, that will probably get you in a fight with their dad. Or when you see a police officer, that will probably get you arrested.
Or wait...will it?
If you flip off a police officer, could they actually arrest you? Maybe if they can't do that, they'd be able to issue you a ticket right? Well...that might be too strikes. At least in Louisiana.
According to the ACLU and legal experts, flipping off police is a legally protected right. Protected by the mightiest of all American laws, the First Amendment. Your use of the middle finger as a gesture is filed under Free Speech, especially when used towards an officer of the law. But don't just take the word of lawyers and the ACLU, a federal court has also ruled on this.
During a 2017 traffic stop, a woman gave an officer the middle finger after he gave her a ticket. The police officer then cited her again, raising the ticket. The woman responded by suing, and the court ruled in her favor.
That means not only is it legal to flip off police in Louisiana, but in Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, and everywhere in the US.
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