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COLUMN

Happytown

A hitch in redistricting draws the attention of the ACLU, Gov.-elect Rick Scott makes Florida's miseducation even worse and there's a hairball in your homeless food!

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Double crossed: Rick Scott’s plans to turn education into free-market fraud surface


Markeson told the officer that the car needed to remain on to avoid a parking violation, though he was evidently unaware that even idling, manned (or in this case, wo-manned) cars were recently forbidden on this particularly prudish cul-de-sac. New signage, believed to have been put up Nov. 30, not only outlaws parking within the circle, but also stopping in it or standing around it. (The city could use a good editor: The sign features a “no parking” symbol, followed simply by the phrase “STOPPING OR STANDING.”) A kerfuffle of the he said-he said variety ensued – the arresting officer contends that Markeson’s inimitable howl was raised to unseemly levels of resistance; our anarchist denies making a peep – and old Ben ended up in the pokey.

Markeson has retained lawyer Jacqueline Dowd as his counsel, who, as we reported last month, will also be representing Food Not Bombs in a February re-hearing of the group’s federal lawsuit against Orlando’s group feeding ordinance. Dowd finds it ridiculous that standing or stopping would be outlawed at a sidewalk-lined circle that seems to encourage, well, stopping and standing. “I wonder what the circle is for, then,” she says. “Maybe to drive around for the fun of it, to make the kids in the backseat dizzy?” Hilarious!

Naturally, Markeson believes the police presence near the park was calculated intimidation, not routine parking duty. “I’d seriously doubt you’d find police leaning against their cars any other day of the week, doing parking enforcement [next to the park],” he says.

Orlando police spokeswoman Barbara Jones, on the other hand, says in an e-mail that officers are doing parking enforcement “all the time” in the area. Also, pigpen progressive Markeson is kind of hard to miss. Oh, no! Here he comes now!

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