They don’t call it Floriduh for nothing.
A legislator in the Sunshine State has introduced a law that would make it a felony to photograph a farm from a public road.
Yes, a farm.
The bill was introduced Monday by Republican Senator Jim Norman of Tampa who stresses that cows have an expectation of privacy.
Norman already has a questionable history.
According to the Florida Tribune:
Media law experts say the ban would violate freedoms protected in the U. S. Constitution. But Wilton Simpson, a farmer who lives in Norman’s district, said the bill is needed to protect the property rights of farmers and the “intellectual property” involving farm operations.
Simpson, president of Simpson Farms near Dade City, said the law would prevent people from posing as farmworkers so that they can secretly film agricultural operations.
He said he could not name an instance in which that happened. But animal rights groups such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and Animal Freedom display undercover videos on their web sites to make their case that livestock farming and meat consumption are cruel.
I’ve never been tempted to videotape a farm before, but now I have the crazy urge to drive up to Simpson’s farm and film his cows from the side of the road.