Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Breaking the law, breaking the law

The Daily Bulletin broke the news about a series of three signs.

The first sign, on Interstate 10 Eastbound at the Euclid overpass, read:


The next sign, on a subsequent overpass, read:

Will You

And perhaps you can guess the third:

Marry Me?

The Daily Bulletin noted that the signs were removed a short time later, but I bet that they weren't removed by Katie, or by Katie's lover. Presumably Cal Trans stepped in, since the signs probably presented a hazard. Previous attempts to use freeway overpasses for messaging have failed:

Nathan Benjamin, a Bay Area attorney, filed a lawsuit [in 2002] against the state Department of Transportation for taking down an anti-war highway sign. Benjamin says he sees nothing in state law banning people from doing this.

In that court case, however, an appeals court ruled that overpasses are not a "public forum." Subsequently a judge ruled that Caltrans could take down signs if the agency felt they might cause a safety hazard, but Caltrans must then take down all signs, or none. It can't pick and choose based on political messages.

Caltrans' stance, reiterated last week, is that signs on overpasses and freeway soundwalls are potential safety hazards.

"We don't allow anything up there," spokesman David Anderson said.

Don't know whether Katie ever saw the marriage proposal. If you know more about this, please contact mark.petix@dailybulletin.com (who is presumably the Daily Bulletin's advisor for freeway-loving lovers).