Do you still shop at Wal-Mart? If you do, you might want to read this story about two gay dads getting kicked out.
Thomas Hitchcock and Joe Paolucci were there buying groceries, and Hitchcock used the self-scan lane. As he was leaving, a security officer approached him and accused him of stealing about $15 worth of lighters. People started shouting, the kids started freaking out, and the police were called. They promptly put the gays in squad cars and the kids were taken to a detention room.
The police reviewed the security tape and found that they hadn't stolen anything. The Wal-Mart manager then presented the two dads with a letter saying they were banned for life for "being uncooperative." Wal-Mart is also asking them for $150-some dollars, not for stealing, of course, but for creating a scene.
The local police said there's no case against the Wal-Mart employees, and the couple probably won't be suing since Wal-Mart is an unfeeling behemoth that is generally above the law and knows it. The kids are wetting their beds and having nightmares now.
Anyway, if that story doesn't make you mad enough to stop shopping at Wal-Mart (as if there weren't enough of those horror stories), then just think about the fact that it could happen to you. These people did nothing wrong, and they were traumatized, fined, detained by police, and banned for life.
It's a disgusting story on several levels, but the worst has to be the "uncooperative" part at the end. The couple says that they did everything they were told (except go to the detention room with the security, and who can blame them for not wanting to go in private with those folks), but, of course, that's not what "uncooperative" means anymore. Now we're expected by authoritarians of all stripes to submit without saying anything, to never question authority, or else then there'll be consequences.
Learn to be subservient or pay the price, folks. This gay couple happens to be two power attorneys from Chicago, which is probably why we're hearing about this at all. Who knows how many people this has happened to who've just decided to pay the fine and hope it all goes away.