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Frustrated drivers are acting out against photo enforcement cameras in some rather non-traditional ways.

A Vladivostok man turned into a You Tube sensation (405,000 hits and counting) after he made lewd gestures towards a mobile speeding camera in Russia. A Victoria man took things a bit further, when he danced nude in front of an automated ticketing machine in Rowville. Vigilantes in England set a camera on fire, and some Belgian no-good nicks used a grinder on a camera. But the prize may go to a group of unknown avengers in Gallarate, Italy who taped a tampon to a camera lens.

If you get the urge to take a similar action, keep in mind that my practice is limited to traffic ticket defense but I can give you a referral to another attorney or a good therapist.

The debate that once raged, at least in certain circles, has largely died down. Very few people cling to the notion that red-light cameras increase safety and that the revenue angle had nothing whatsoever to do with their installation, because the statistics simply are not there. Instead, there is a question of whether or not cameras are a fair way to raise money.

Red-light cameras are essentially a tax increase. When a Bakersfield driver gets a $400 red-light ticket, most of the money goes to state and county general funds, and tax increases should be passed by the legislature and approved by the governor.

Secondly, the system is broken. The Legislature may have rewritten the law to make camera evidence admissible on a technicality, but that does not make it right.

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