As part of the 99% Power movement, thousands of shareholders have been demonstrating against corporate greed at shareholder meetings across the country. In response to the highly successful shareholder actions, the City of Charlotte is taking a stand. A stand against dangerous Sharpie markers. Charlotte Police will be given special "emergency" powers for the upcoming Duke Energy and Bank of America Shareholder Meetings. These special emergency powers will grant law enforcement "unlimited discretion" and permission to search all bags for prohibited items and arrest those who have them. The ACLU has raised concerns over non-protestors getting arrested for refusing a search while walking through the city.
Law enforcement will be given broader powers during these events to search backpacks, coolers, satchels and messenger bags. That includes briefcases and carry-on luggage — the kind with wheels often used by lawyers to transport reams of documents. The new ordinances also detail a list of items that are grounds for arrest. Among them: spray paint, permanent markers, hammers, crowbars, box cutters, utility knives, chains, padlocks, lumber, plastic pipe, pepper spray, mace and police scanners. ACLU of North Carolina Legal Director Katy Parker says the Charlotte’s security rules place “unlimited discretion” in the hands of Walton. “We have a concern about that much power in the hands of the city manager — it could really chill free speech,” Parker says.
Protests or no protests, you might want to keep your kid cousin's Sharpie collection away from Charlotte for awhile. You can also visit The City of Charlotte's Facebook page to air your opinion on the new policy.