Ignore that stop sign — go ahead

A rainbow decorates the horizon for travelers on Lee highway in Chattanooga. The rainbow is a reminder of God’s promise never to judge absolutely the whole Earth, as he did at the time of the flood in Noah’s day. (Photo David Tulis)

You think you’re a good driver and safe on the road, yet you regularly ignore stop signs. I’ll prove it to you. 

Yes, you are a good and careful traveler by car, yet you ignore stopsigns left and right.

By David Tulis / NoogaRadio 92.7 FM

Let me tell you how. 

You are traveling down Lee Highway in Chattanooga. It’s a major thoroughfare connecting the eastern part of the city with downtown — four lane, named after a local noted family.

You politely use your indicator light, turn your steering wheel to the left, crossing two oncoming (empty) lanes and proceeding toward the houses in that neighborhood.

As you leave the main road, you notice a stopsign as you look over your shoulder. Red octagon, white outward frame, white letters with the word STOP.

Question: Why don’t you, on seeing that sign over your left shoulder, jam on the brake and stop?

You don’t obey the sign because it does not apply to you.

You are outside the scope of the sign, outside its authority, even though you can see it and even though it applies to other people who may be very near to you. 

The rules of the road tell you the stop sign has no power over you, but over people in the lane coming up to Lee Highway and opening the side street to the main boulevard.

Scope of title 55 

Just as that sign doesn’t apply to you, so too is the entire Tennessee “motor and other vehicles” statute at Tenn. Code Ann. Title 55 applicable to people who are in the correct lane to receive it.

The Tennessee shipping, freight and transportation law applies to people involved in freight, shipping and transportation.

Title 55 is administrative law that applies to people who have an equitable and real connection with the State of Tennessee as parties subject to its regulation. These parties are liable for performance and obedience under its provisions because they are involved in activities that affect the public interest.

In other words, these parties are coming up to the red stop sign alongside Lee Highway here in Chattanooga.

But there are parties that are not liable for that stop sign because they are not in the right spot, the right place, the right circumstance to be made subject to its claims to obedience.

Who are these people? Ones using the roads privately, for private purposes, for the exercise of their civil rights, for the exercise of their constitutionally guaranteed rights, for their private use and pleasure, or the exercise of private duties and obligations — of their private necessaries. And all outside the flow of commerce.


The “stop sign” applies to the 20 percent of the users of the road who are involved in commerce. Title 55 applies to ambulances, wrecker services, taxi cab operators, courier services, movers, concrete mixers, dump trucks, logging rigs, long-distance freightliners such as Schneider or Covenant Transport, and others.

These are the major categories of licensees and parties who make their living principally on the road. These are the parties subject to the stop sign. The people making a left turn off McCallie onto the side road are not subject to the stop sign. Similarly, people who are exercising their rights are not subject to the state shipping law. 

The major problem

The major problem is that police by long custom have imposed a shipping law on people who are not involved in shipping. They do this as part of a Jim-Crow mentality which gives them power to act even though the power is not based in statute. It is based in custom, outside lawful police power, with approval of the lawyers and the courts. 

And so an insoluble conflict exists between the people and their liberties on one side and the state on the other.

My effort to end this conflict and restore the rights of the people is unprecedented and quixotic. My  administrative notice project works quietly and on a case by case basis upon people who wear uniforms and imposed the transportation law on people outside of their authority. In my Christian optimism, my hope is to bring a settlement of the matter without litigation. 

However, it looks as though litigation will be necessary to defend the rights of the people and once more assert their dignity after decades of humiliation. “Traffic enforcement” affects all users of the road, but touches minorities and the poor the most, and also is directed against activists and dissenters such as Keedran Franklin of Memphis, John Ballinger of Strawberry Plains, Gregory Parker of Chickamauga, Ga., Jon Luman of Red Bank and Arthur J. Hirsch of Lawerencburg.

My goal is to provide a means of action against police civilly and criminally. Ultimately there will have to be criminal complaints filed against police departments and cities for abusing the statute with the court action under the federal oppression statute at U.S.C. Title 42, civil tort action in chancery and other means of redress.

The primary goal is to put local jurisdictions on notice about the black-letter law, whose claims (and the limits thereto) cannot be avoided, even though court policy upholds the abuse and effectively denies there is any right of communication by physical movement of person and property on the road in an automobile. 

City of Chattanooga got notice Feb. 20, 2018. Other parties under notice are the sheriff of Hamilton County, March 1, and the cities of East Ridge and Red Bank, Dayton, and the state via the governor. I have also put the state prosecutor under administrative notice, and every traffic charge he files against a person not involved in freight, shipping and transportation as grounds to file an ethics complaint against Neal Pinkston, and resist his importunities as a sort of state fraud on the court.

My goal is to encourage the people to reassert their liberties. It is to allow defendants to defend themselves in criminal matters and also to sue later for false arrest and oppression once they get their bearings afterwards. The fulcrum or pivot of their possible action is transportation administrative notice, a notoriously published public document that as yet has not been rebutted, denied or refuted. 

The police are saying that if you look over your shoulder in making that left turn off Lee Highway and you see that sign — you’d better jam on the brake and stop.

That’s what they’re saying. You have to stop. The stop sign applies to you. 

You have to stop. 

Help me bring an end to this ridiculous situation.

The David Tulis show is 1 p.m. weekdays, live and lococentric.

Get your TAN now: Transportation Administrative Notice creates cause of action vs. cops, traffic court defense

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