No Law Too Petty

I give the United States legal system a lot of shit because I live under it. However, the United States doesn’t have a monopoly on the creation and enforcement of petty laws:

OTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada agreed Thursday to hear the case of a woman who was ticketed and arrested after she refused instructions to hold onto an escalator handrail.

Bela Kosoian was in a subway station in the Montreal suburb of Laval in 2009 when a police officer told her to respect a pictogram with the instruction, “hold the handrail.”

She replied that she did not consider the image, which also featured the word “Careful,” to be an obligation. She refused to hold the handrail, and tensions mounted after she also refused to identity herself.

She was “taken by force” by the officer and another who had arrived as backup, according to court documents.

This case of a woman refusing to hold the rail on an escalator not only resulted in her arrest but has made it all the way to the country’s supreme court. Laws don’t get much more petty than that.

4 thoughts on “No Law Too Petty”

  1. Interestingly, the link you used was the one I emailed you the other day. I googled this story and found it, though. I guess you have to respect their authoritah north of the border, too.

  2. Actually, the case is going before the Supreme Court of Canada because the police officer in question had detained, arrested and fined Bela Kosoian on the basis of a legal fiction — that is to say he made up a law that doesn’t exist on the books.

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