Today, I went over to do something tax related at the Marvin Braude Center. After my license business was done, I walked around and snapped some photos of the beautiful Valley Municipal Building, which is spread at the top banner of this blog.
I went on the front sidewalk and snapped some images of the building. Then I saw an old, fat woman pointing at me and a Latino guard come out of the building. (Oh, no I thought. Here it goes again. The 9/11 paranoia).
“What are you doing,” the old lady asked. She didn’t even work there. The guard started to say, “Sir.” and then he was interrupted by other people. I walked away and went west down Sylvan as the old lady yelled, “He’s walking away! He is escaping!”
Two blocks away, I noticed a white Toyota sedan, driven by the same old lady, tailing me. I walked right up to her. She rolled down her window. “What are you doing?” she asked me.
“I’m a photographer. What business is it of yours?” I asked.
“There are people OUT THERE who want to harm our country!” she said.
“If you don’t stop harrassing me lady”, I said, “I will take down your license and call the police.” I stepped in back of her car and took down her plate numbers. She drove off.
Later on, just to satisfy my curiousity, I called up the LAPD Van Nuys Division and asked them if I was violating any law. “No, you are not doing anything wrong. People take photos of the White House and the outside of the Capital.”
If there is any law which prohibits photography of the exterior of government buildings when standing on the public sidewalk, let me hear about it.