Is Filming the Police a Crime?

The French government seems to think so.

Amelie H. has been talking about her many times over the last few weeks and this is again the case. The 21-year-old woman from the Cher, stuck S (state security) and close to far-left circles, is suspected of following the police to take a picture, taking their address and the license plate of their vehicle in particular.

So does Breitbart.

Police have arrested a 21-year-old far-left extremist at the first anniversary of the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) movement on Saturday. The extremist has been accused of spying on police officers.

Police sources claim the young woman had gathered with other protesters at the Place d’Italie in Paris where violence erupted Saturday, La Point reports. She is said to be behind a Facebook account called “Marie ACAB-Land”, a reference to the far-left Antifa slogan “All Cops Are Bastards” (ACAB).

The arrest is not the first this year for the extremist activist, who was previously detained in Toulouse on November the 2nd and is well-known for filming and documenting individual police offers at protests.

(I wonder what the far-right extremists at Breitbart would say if someone were arrested for filming the police in Hong Kong or Iran.)

If you disagree with Breitbart and the neoliberal French government, you can sign an online petition to have Marie Acab-land release. Yeah, I know these positions are useless and you’re only putting your name on a watch list of people who support the far left, but hey I did it. If Emmanuel Macron wants to extradite me to France, he has that option.

The larger issue here is the right to do surveillance on the police, even as they do surveillance on you, and of course they do, both in France and the United States. The main reason the police film protests is to intimidate, to discourage people from getting out in the streets. So the French police are revealing their hand. They have badges, guns, clubs and the power to lock people up in cages. If they feel threatened by the surveillance, how should ordinary citizens feel? Clearly, by locking up Marie Acab-land they’re admitting that what they do on a daily basis is intimidation, the suppression of political speech.

Bonus Question: Does anybody remember why the original Black Panthers were founded?

1 thought on “Is Filming the Police a Crime?

  1. John Thurloe

    Excellent! The police declare how powerless they are. That their heretofore and usual methods of beating the population down are not working. Frustrated and looking weak they have to ratchet their tools up to ‘filming the cops’. Which is a useless, feeble and unenforceable measure. Just what is needed right now. Cop over-reach + unenforceable. Because no one is going to stop filming them. Quite the contrary. Infuriate regular folks.

    Burn them out! Exhaust them! Mock them! Hack their phones, knock out their cameras, capture their databases, paralyze their command and communications. You know, it’s easy to install your own surveillance cameras just about anywhere you want and there’s nothing the cops can do to stop that.


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