JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Jacksonville woman shared pictures with News4Jax of a car that was seen driving around the city with two questionable political signs.
One sign says “Synonyms” with the words “****head, Democrats and Dumb*** underneath. A second sign says “Impale Pelosi.”
Nancy Hogshead-Makar, who sent the photos, said the words are disturbing, but when she called the police they told her they could not charge the owner of the car with a crime.
News4Jax spoke with Crime and Safety Expert Ken Jefferson, a retired police officer, to find out why the signs aren’t criminal.
“It’s not a crime, because it’s freedom of speech. Everyone has it in the United States, freedom of speech. And they’re expressing themselves be it, disagreeable, be it insulting, be it something that you don’t want to see. They haven’t broken any laws,” Jefferson said.
The sign says the name Pelosi, but Jefferson said without it including Nancy Pelosi’s full name and title, it could be anyone. He says there is not any proof that the person is planning to impale her. (Impale is to “pierce with or as if with something pointed especially : to torture or kill by fixing on a sharp stake” according to Merriam-webster.com.)
“You can make the implication that it is, and more than likely it is, but trying to prove it in the court of law would prove difficult,” Jefferson said.
Since no legal action can be taken, Jefferson said not engaging is the best way to handle questionable political signs.
“Right now, tensions are very high. We’ve seen what happened in our nation’s capital. Tensions are very high, and you don’t want to put yourself in a contentious situation, just ignore it,” Jefferson said.
News4Jax reached out to JSO about the signs.
They also say the signs are considered freedom of speech and there is no viable threat.