It’s been almost two months since North Carolina judge Beth Dixon was forced to remove her Facebook campaign page after an onslaught of criticism from people who did not appreciate the way she trampled on the First Amendment.
Now with just over a week to go before the Rowan County District Court election, the two-term incumbent is hoping that local voters will not allow such petty memories to vote her out of office.
After all, since that controversial ruling in late August, the local media has virtually ignored this election.
However, I’ve just relaunched a Facebook ad campaign targeting voters in her area in the hopes that they will vote against her on November 2.
We don’t really know much about her opponent, Douglas A. Clark. He never responded to questions on his Facebook page about his opponent’s decision to convict a woman for refusing to step inside her house as she videotaped a traffic stop from her front porch.
And neither he nor his staffers responded to inquiries from Photography is Not a Crime seeking comment.
I understand that he may not be allowed to comment on specific cases, but it would have been nice to hear where he stood on public photography in general.
But he appears more concerned with getting people to put signs in their front yards.
And in that regard, he is no different than Dixon before she was forced to delete her Facebook page.
But as far as we know, he has never convicted a woman for resisting arrest as she stood on her front porch videotaping a traffic stop.
In November 2009, Felicia Gibson was one of numerous citizens in her neighborhood who had stepped out of their homes to observe a traffic stop in front of her house.
But she was the only one videotaping, which is why police ordered her to step back inside her home.
She continued videotaping, which prompted one of the officers to come after her.
She was arrested inside her home.
And she was convicted by Dixon last August in a questionable ruling that sparked an editorial in the local newspaper, the Salisbury Post.
The resisting-arrest conviction last week of Felicia Gibson has left a lot of people wondering. Can a person be charged with resisting arrest while observing a traffic stop from his or her own front porch?
Salisbury Police Officer Mark Hunter thought so, and last week District Court Judge Beth Dixon agreed. Because Gibson did not at first comply when the officer told her and others to go inside, the judge found Gibson guilty of resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer.
Gibson was not the only bystander watching the action on the street. She was the only one holding up a cell-phone video camera.
I initially launched the Facebook ad campaign against her in September and it ran for a few weeks before the money in my Paypal account ran out.
I just added another $100 to relaunch the campaign. If I get more donations, I can create more ads with different slogans. All you need to do is log on to Paypal and send money to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ads, posted below, lead to this Facebook page I created in her honor.
I figure most people don’t pay attention to politics anyway until a week before the election, so maybe this will have an impact.