America Trending Totalitarian? College Student Jumped, Jailed, Charged with Three Felonies for Buying Bottled Water

July 3, 2013

Here’s a pretty interesting news item.

When a half-dozen men and a woman in street clothes closed in on University of Virginia student Elizabeth Daly, 20, she and two roommates panicked.

That led to Daly spending a night and an afternoon in the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail. Her initial offense? Walking to her car with bottled water, cookie dough and ice cream just purchased from the Harris Teeter in the Barracks Road Shopping Center for a sorority benefit fundraiser.

A group of state Alcoholic Beverage Control agents clad in plainclothes approached her, suspecting the blue carton of LaCroix sparkling water to be a 12-pack of beer. Police say one of the agents jumped on the hood of her car. She says one drew a gun. Unsure of who they were, Daly tried to flee the darkened parking lot.

Mark Steyn comments on “the psychologically unhealthy need of every tinpot makework bureaucracy to run around pretending to be Seal Team Six.”

Read all about it.

I’ve been thinking lately about how conservatives can persuade more people.  Liberals lately don’t seem to take kindly to rational arguments about homosexuality or the legal definition of marriage.  Maybe civil-liberties-focused, libertarianesque criticisms of government overreaches like this are one place where we can find some common ground and build toward a small-government consensus.  I’m also told that most people (perhaps especially liberals) find stories about people’s personal experiences compelling, while many people are not much interested in or persuaded by abstract rational arguments.  So here’s one item that meets both criteria.

Related entry: “More Government, Less Liberty”

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One Response to “America Trending Totalitarian? College Student Jumped, Jailed, Charged with Three Felonies for Buying Bottled Water”


  1. […] another story we can all agree on, maybe.  Courthouse News Service reports on the following police abuses […]


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