Joined: 17 Oct 2007
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|Posted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:40 am Post subject: Arrested by the thought police
|Jail threat for promoting 'crippled' comic
|A comedy promoter has been charged with disorderly conduct after describing a comedian as ‘crippled’ – even though the act uses the same word herself.
Forest Thomer was arrested after approaching potential punters at a Cincinnati park festival and asking them if they wanted to ‘laugh at the crippled girl’.
After getting a reaction Ally Bruener, who has muscular dystrophy, would appear, tell them a gag and plug the next show.
However, police charged Thomer with using ‘grossly abusive language’ – and he now faces up to 30 days in jail if convicted when he appears in court today.
Bruener was not arrested.
Writing on her blog, she said: ‘So this begs the question: Who was the language abusive towards? The crippled girl using the word in reference to herself? The people that laughing at the crippled girl’s jokes?
‘I will not let this issue rest. I will not sit back and allow anyone trample over my right to show and tell the world that I am proud to be crippled!
Many of the people they approached were happy to be filmed, but apparently one woman ‘didn’t agree with the way we used the word crippled’ and took offence.
Thomer was asked to stop his behaviour but, according to police ‘persisted in yelling and shouting, causing annoyance and alarm to others’. Thomer said police threatened to use a Taser on him.
Bruener added that the case was about freedom of expression. ‘People are trying to be too politically correct and force us to be as well,’ she said. ‘Words don’t come with a stigma until they are reacted to negatively’
‘Is society really that frightened of my self respect that they must dictate how I express it? Would it be better if I paraded around spouting the warm and fuzzy euphemistic terms that make it easier for everyone else to feel like they’re being accepting? For anyone that answered “yes” to the second question, all I can say that I appreciate your ignorance.’
Neither police nor prosecutors would comment to local media in Cincinnati.
The local business association which sponsors the weekly, free Party In The Park events where Thomer was arrested said: ‘We don’t allow anyone to conduct marketing at our events without prior authorisation.’
Here is the video they shot at the event:
Chortle News Bot