Realizing a relatively unknown Twitter feed might destroy his reputation as an important civic leader, Jim Ardis made sure the Peoria Police took care of the Internet miscreants.
What isn’t funny is the heavy-handed use of a police department to squelch free speech. Thankfully, most rational people, including the Supreme Court, know this. According to the Marshfield News Herald, in striking down the 2012 Stolen Valor Act, which punished people who claimed military honors they never actually earned, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote:
“Permitting the government to decree this speech to be a criminal offense, whether shouted from the rooftops or made in a barely audible whisper, would endorse government authority to compile a list of subjects about which false statements are punishable.”
I would say we can hope someone a little more sensible with a better sense of humor takes office in Peoria after the next election, but I’d hate to have a half-dozen officers make the hours-long drive up to Chicago to question me about my own Twitter account.