Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Misleading

There's nothing like throwing a quick threat in the lead of a news story to peak the readers' interest. The problem is when that lead is, well, misleading.

As listed on this semi-daily prattle, The Saratogian is no stranger to mislabeling and misconstruing the news; for them it's more of a hallmark than anything else.

But in today's paper, a scoffers-beware article about this "new" device that "hunts" license plates, there's brazen assertion that those with outstanding parking tickets could be identified and pulled over by city police, which is a bit beyond misleading.

It's just flat-out wrong.

Truth be known, there's not a court in the state that would ever uphold a police officer who stopped and arrested someone for not paying a parking ticket. What that officer or rather parking enforcement can do is send a nasty little note down to the state Department of Motor Vehicles requesting that a scoff's registration renewal be withheld, which is something the aforementioned reporter should have know were he to look back in the clips several months for Public Safety Commisioner Ron Kim's idea to rope in outstanding parking fines.

An expired registration is a stoppable offense, as is a suspended registration, which is what motorists get for allowing their insurance payments to lapse.

So before sending in your fines, think twice about your constitutional rights and know that a parking ticket is akin to getting a summons from the city for not curbing Rover during his morning walk.

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