Supreme hits from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries! Here’s a greatest hits album that’s a must in the CD carousel of every Fourth of July barbecue. Sure, this one isn’t likely to get its own CD release party, and each track is only 30 seconds long. Brought to you by the American Civil Liberties Union of Montana and Hearing Voices, Your Constitutional Rights\ is the greatest hits volume II from the landmark Supreme Court cases that helped solidify civil liberties into the very fabric of our democracy.
Tired of those ridiculous and forgettable Supreme Court rulings? Well, this baby is nothing but the classics, delivering the best of the Supremes in their finest hours. Throw away all those lame-ass rulings like “separate but equal,” declaring corporations as “legal persons” and that lamentable decision in the 2000 presidential race. No, this collection features such timeless treasures as Miranda v. Arizona (“You have the right to remain silent”), Gideon v. Wainwright (“If you cannot afford a judge, one will be appointed to you”) and, of course, Roe v. Wade.
But that’s not all! Your Constitutional Rights also includes 50 hidden gems including 1969’s Tinker v. Des Moines School District (“Schools may not be enclaves of totalitarianism. Students and teachers do not shed their constitutional rights to freedom of expression at the schoolhouse gates”), 1948’s Shelley v. Kraemer, (property ownership cannot be denied based on race) and the 1985 surprise hit, Tennessee v. Garner (police cannot shoot an unarmed suspect in the back of the head to apprehend him), all digitally re-mastered from the original transcripts and explained in common-sense English.
For more info, visit ACLUMontana.org or HearingVoices.com. Remember, Your Constitutional Rights—both the CD and the rights—are not available in any stores, so don’t delay. Act now!
Road rage—It isn’t just for highways anymore: Here’s a trend that probably comes as no surprise to anyone who has pissed away an afternoon waiting in line for a new driver’s license. Administrators in the State of Montana Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) announced recently that driver license bureau employees are increasingly becoming the targets of inappropriate and hostile behavior from irate customers.
With “national security” this year’s hot bureaucratic buzzword, Montana (like many states) has imposed stricter standards for getting new or duplicate driver’s license and state ID card. With the stricter guidelines has come an increase in the incidence of verbal abuse and threats.
Anita Drews-Oppedahl, MVD’s chief of Field Operations Bureau, estimates that as many as 19 field employees have thrown in the proverbial towel since October 2000, when the state imposed new regulations to reduce the likelihood of fraudulent license applications. While she acknowledges that there are other reasons for the resignations, several workers specifically cited as their reason for leaving a growing hostility from the public, which included threats, name-calling, unsavory references to people’s mothers and miscellaneous examples of uncalled-for potty-mouthing.
MVD Administrator Dean Roberts says the new protocols exist to help safeguard homeland security and prevent identity theft, noting that many of the Sept. 11 terrorists used fraudulent licenses—though none from Montana.
“From a security standpoint, we don’t want Montana to become the ‘weakest link’ in the nation,” says Roberts. “If precautions are not taken, Montana could quickly become a one-stop shop for fraudulent state-issued identification. It’s the last thing we want to happen.”
Roberts adds that the duties of motor vehicle employees are considerably different than they were just a few years ago.
“It used to be all we were concerned about was a person’s ability to drive,” he says. “Now we have to be equally concerned about whether people really are who they say they are.”