As pointed out by my frequent reader and commenter Bint Alshamsa, this story seems a bit incomplete. There is very little factual evidence to back it up at the moment. Considering the source of this info is WND, the notoriously nutty neo-con daily news rag, I feel I have to err on the side of caution and say that right now this is hearsay and could very well possibly be an embellishment or straight up unfounded. If I get any more evidence in the meantime that this is for real, I will keep you updated. But for right now, we will just say this article is an interesting read and may not be entirely factual.
A Louisiana driver was stopped and detained for having a "Don't Tread on Me" bumper sticker on his vehicle and warned by a police officer about the "subversive" message it sent, according to the driver's relative.
The situation developed in the small town of Ball, La., where a receptionist at the police department told WND she knew nothing about the traffic stop, during which the "suspect" was investigated for "extremist" activities, the relative said.
According to the relative, it happened this way: Her brother-in-law was driving home from work through the town, which has a local reputation for enhancing its budget by ticketing speeders. He was pulled over by police officers who told him "he had a subversive survivalist bumper sticker on his car."
"They proceeded to keep him there on the side of the road while they ran whatever they do to see if you have a record, keeping him standing by the side of the road for 30 minutes," she told WND.
Finding no record and no reason to keep him, they warned him and eventually let him go, she said.
The company that sells the bumper sticker is The Patriot Depot, where Chief Operating Officer Jay Taylor told WND the woman had told his staff about the situation while ordering more bumper stickers.
"It's rather shocking," he said. "We supposedly have freedom of speech in our country.
Jay Taylor wrote, "The bumper sticker is based on the famous flag designed by American Revolution era general and statesman Christopher Gadsden. The yellow flag featured a coiled diamondback rattlesnake ready to strike, with the slogan 'Don't Tread on Me!' underneath it. Benjamin Franklin helped make the rattlesnake a symbol of Americans' reluctance to quarrel but vigilance and resolve in defense of their rights. By 1775 when Gadsden presented his flag to the commander-in-chief of the Navy, the rattlesnake was a symbol of the colonies and of their need to unite in defense of threats to their God-given and inherited rights. The flag and the bumper sticker symbolize American patriotism, the need to defend Americans' rights, and resistance to tyranny's threats to American liberty. Those threats included-and include-illegal taxation, profanation of Americans' rights, and violation of the fundamental principles of American law."