Man Cited For Anti-Gun Control Sticker Says Deputy Violated His Rights

Nicholas Ennis said that his anti-gun control sticker doesn't depict a vulgar message.

Westmoreland, TN – A Tennessee man who refused to remove an vulgar anti-gun control decal from his vehicle said that the officer who charged him violated his right to free speech.

Nicholas Ennis has the large, green sticker affixed to the rear driver’s side window of his pickup, WKRN reported.

The decal features the letters “U” and “C,” flanked by an M-16 on the left and an AK-47 on the right. The words “gun control” appear beneath it.

Ennis denied that the decal depicts profanity, WKRN reported.

“I mean…not to me…looking at it, no. You wouldn’t be able to tell,” he told the news outlet. “It was made that way so it wouldn’t be vulgar, so I wouldn’t get in trouble for it, but they’re saying it is.”

Ennis said that the sticker has been on his vehicle for a year, and that he knows another resident who has two of the same stickers on his own vehicle.

But according to the Sumner County Sheriff’s Office, the decal does depict a vulgar word, and was grounds for a citation, WKRN reported.

Ennis was recently ticketed for obscene or patently offensive bumper stickers or window signs – a charge that carries a potential $50 fine.

“He said the reason I pulled you over was because of my sticker on my truck being potentially obscene,” Ennis recounted to KTUL.

“Why is it, I’ve had it on there, [and] no other officer has said anything but him?” he asked WKRN. “I feel like I was singled out and it’s going against my First Amendment right for freedom of speech.”

“We should have the right to express our opinions… and they’re trying to take it away, the constitutional right, they’re trying to take all that away from us, like America ain’t free no more,” he railed to KTUL.

Ennis argued that the sticker is meant to represent his beliefs.

“I don’t believe in gun control,” he told WKRN. “Everybody should have the right to bear arms.”

His friend, Sam Monaghan, said he has the same decal displayed on his vehicle.

“Everybody has their right to express their opinion on whatever they want to,” Monaghan told KTUL. “People express their opinion about not having guns. Well, I want guns, and I want more of them, and I will get more of them, and I’ll get them legally.”

Ennis said he will be meeting with a lawyer and that he plans to fight the citation.

Comments (45)
No. 1-19
Dutchuncle
Dutchuncle

Come on man, you can get a better sign then that,,,Kids see this,,it's NOT RIGHT.

Jim H. - Virginia US
Jim H. - Virginia US

Not guilty, even though I don't support the message. It is very important to protect offensive speech...

2010 Tennessee Code Title 55 - Motor and Other Vehicles Chapter 8 - Operation of Vehicles Rules of the Road 55-8-187 - Obscene or patently offensive bumper stickers, window signs, etc., prohibited.

55-8-187. Obscene or patently offensive bumper stickers, window signs, etc., prohibited.

To avoid distracting other drivers and thereby reduce the likelihood of accidents arising from lack of attention or concentration, the display of obscene and patently offensive movies, bumper stickers, window signs or other markings on or in a motor vehicle that are visible to other drivers is prohibited and display of such materials shall subject the owner of the vehicle on which they are displayed, upon conviction, to a fine of not less than two dollars ($2.00) nor more than fifty dollars ($50.00). "Obscene" or "patently offensive "has the meaning specified in § 39-17-901.

2010 Tennessee Code Title 39 - Criminal Offenses Chapter 17 - Offenses Against Public Health, Safety and Welfare Part 9 - Obscenity 39-17-901 - Part definitions.

(10) "Obscene" means:

      (A)  The average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest;

      (B)  The average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct; and

      (C)  The work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value;

 (11)  "Patently offensive" means that which goes substantially beyond customary limits of candor in describing or representing such matters; 
flybynight
flybynight

Common decency is long gone.

JBo
JBo

The blocked out area of the sticker contains the letters "U" and "C". Just FYI.

walkintall
walkintall

The word "fuck", while versatile, is now overused to the point of no longer being shocking!!, but merely vulgar. Not that this dude doesn't have the right to be crude, but as a grown-up, he ought to have better manners. I'm sure his mother would be ashamed of him.

Musical1
Musical1

I support his sentiment of opposing gun control but think screw gun control might be more suitable. However for the record, I am more offended by these assholes who wear their pants waistlines below their underwear than I am by his decal. Decency is history.

Bigyoda20
Bigyoda20

The word “fuck” is so prevalent in today’s society- TV, Movies, music, on the street, in schools- was/is this really worthy of a LEO’s time, especially since the “f” and “k” are replaced with an AR and AK that sort of look like an f and k? Would I have it on my vehicle? No. Do I care if someone else does? Fuck no. 🤣

Grampsdeal
Grampsdeal

"Potentially obscene." I am retired. Unless the actual words are spelled out, and it was specifically against the law, no action would have been taken. Now that does not excuse the maturity of the individual placing said sticker on his vehicle...it does display a bit of immaturity and crassness...even though it is free speech. You can get your message across without using vulgar, real or simulated, language. 😁

Ironman1958
Ironman1958

First off, everyone does have the right to bear arms, second, everyone also has the right to peacefully express free speech, thirdly, where can I get that sticker, I want one?

Bad Bob
Bad Bob

The SCOTUS ruled that a "Fuck Communism" sign was not obscene because it did not advocate sexual congress with Communism.

Patriot1midwestern
Patriot1midwestern

an vulgar anti-gun control

You can tell the author went back in after writing this piece and added personal commentary. Perhaps meaningless, but MSM does this every day throughout what they sell to us as "news"......

bob95648
bob95648

I personally wouldn't put that on my vehicle, but he did not spell anything profane and has the right to decorate his property however he likes. Getting tired of these Jim Crow gun laws too. Glad he's speaking out.

scotthockeycop
scotthockeycop

I'm reminded of the great baseball manager Casey Stengel, who once said, "The secret to managing is keeping the five guys who hate your guts away from the ten who haven't made their minds up yet."

In this case, there are literally millions of people who are on the fence about the right to bear (and carry) arms. One side (the left) is going "scorched earth" against anyone other than the police and military having firearms. The best plan to win the hearts and minds of those in the middle is to constructively show them that the "scorched earth" people are the crazy ones.

Window stickers like this one just don't help bring people to your side.

larvi
larvi

What am I missing here? What is vulgar about U and C? I admit that I can be naive about certain things but I truly don't get what is vulgar about this.

Billy duncan
Billy duncan

BatCrapCrazy
BatCrapCrazy

Well, we all know what it says. The word has become as common in our language as water is to life. It's great that many refrain. It is impossible to keep people from using it.

I agree with his sentiment but I'm not going to plaster the word in five inch letters on the side of my truck. It's not as though I haven't used the word but why advertise!

If the citation isn't tossed at the summary level then it will be on appeal. And, it should be. The First Amendment is to protect speech we don't like. There's no reason to protect speech we do like.

onlyLogical
onlyLogical

if you think this is vulgar to your children, think about how the government has mandated the teaching of lgbtqf to your kids... this man is teaching your kids to stand up to bullies that are trying to take away your rights!

61mouse
61mouse

Lmao ya like he got it because there was a UC in the middle

EskaAmin
EskaAmin

Wonder what his nickname is.... You know, like Elvis the Pelvis...