Why would a clip about a minor land-use dispute rack up 230,000+ hits on YouTube? Because it’s a window onto the political zeitgeist: Not only have you got government meddling here for seemingly unfathomable reasons, but they’re caught red-handed lying about it on camera. Watch as the woman officer tells the homeowner that he can keep his basketball hoop after they remove it — before denying that she said any such thing. (Internal affairs is now investigating the incident.) And of course, you’ve got the bold, sympathetic, yet ultimately futile act of defiance by the homeowner, literally climbing up onto the pole and refusing to come down (at first) to stop them from taking it down. Said mom afterwards, “All I was seeing was my 10-year-old’s face.” And there, my friends, is your keynote speaker at the next tea party rally in Dover.
If you’re wondering which law could conceivably have been violated by a basketball hoop, see section 525 here. (Thanks to commenter WoosterOh for that.) You can’t have hoops, trees, shrubs or anything else within seven feet of the pavement in a subdivision; if you do, the cops can seize the item, fine you $25, and then force you to pay another $15 to get the item back. The fine and fee will probably be waived in this case now that the family’s state rep is involved and this is getting attention online, but where, oh where, will pick-up games be played now? Exit quotation: “What a waste of taxpayer money. They had six trucks and five police cars. Don’t they have something better to do?”