As I wrote a few days earlier in this blog (please read in conjunction to this post: A Hidden Talent), I was harassed, threatened and maligned by a mall cop, ahem, a local boat constable. It’s kinda funny, really, as over the past year I’ve been the victim of identity theft whereby I became a 40 year-old 135lb 5’8” black male.
Perhaps the two situations are intertwined.
It may explain why the local boat constable treated me with such disdain and disrespect for... DOING NOTHING! Perhaps he thought, as well, that I’m a 40 year-old 135lb 5’8” black male and fair game.
That disrespect has continued as the Mayor told me that he’d personally see me that week with a resolution to the matter. Since he stood me up, I went to him the following week. He got very ticked off and said he’ll see me this week. Instead of being stood up once more, I wrote a nice letter outlining what occurred and requested a resolution. Then, I attended the packed (all 8 attendees) Town Hall meeting last night to read the letter.
Right before I finished reading it, he went batshit crazy.
“I won’t have you insulting my constables,” he said.
“I didn’t,” I responded.
“But, you referred to the constable by his last name.”
He shook his head and did admit, “I know you meant no disrespect.”
I didn’t. Although I was disrespected by the constable, who put me in this position, I didn’t show my disrespect. In fact, I went one step further:
I got the US Coast Guard involved.
You see, the boat policeman threatened me that he was going to get the US Coast Guard involved to get me fined on the Federal level as my boat is undocumented. That means, in order for me not to paste a registration card on my wooden hull after the painted registration numbers, I have to get US Coast Guard approval and get the boat documented.
Mind you, this is for the oldest boat on my lake, still in use since it was purchased for my father in 1947. It’s not as if the lake is a major waterway as it’s enclosed. In comparison to several lakes, it’s an oversized pond. Not to mention, my boat's part and privy of my lake’s history. Or so I thought.
It turns out the constable didn’t know the basic requirement to get a boat documented by the US Coast Guard: it has to be 25’ and over. My boat is no where near that size - hell, the lake doesn’t allow any boats over 20’. But, since he threatened me, I had to do primary research involving the Coast Guard and had a very fascinating conversation with one of the top people there. Even that person was stymied about the insistence on placing the self-adhering tags onto a wooden hull.
“All you need to do is make sure those tags are visible,” he informed me. The same sentence uttered by the Antique Boat Society.
Now the US Coast Guard is curious as to whether the Town Boat Patrol meets their criteria.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave when we threaten and menace a 40 year-old black man for doing nothing wrong!
But that’s not my point.
The way the Mayor went off on me was another insult. Because we have a local resident who committed TWO burglaries (with witnesses), destroyed county property (on video), set a building on fire, a building out of code with the FD and local building parameters, threatened to kill a Town employee (in front of witnesses), and accused in PRINT:
- The Mayor of being a crook;
- A town constable of being a NAZI; and
- Numerous other accusations of illegal and illicit activities.
Yet, nothing ever happened - no fines, no prosecution and to top it off, that individual was NEVER treated with disrespect. In fact, the local constables wouldn’t arrest that individual, telling the victims that “it’s political.”
I had to inform my Town Board that I’m not a criminal, never broke the law, never been arrested, never had a ticket and no substance abuse problems which makes me a rarity in this town, let alone county. Come to think of it: both the boat and I are rarities here.
My last sentence in the letter was:
Instead of vilifying me, the constables should be proud that a boat of local historical value is still in existence and driven on the Lake.
Last week, I testified in our local court that I’m not a 40 year-old 135lb 5’8” black male. Guess word hasn’t gotten out yet.
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