.

Porn Blamed in Coffeehouse Conflict

Updated with poll: What would YOU do? Napa police say a confrontation resulted when one Starbucks patron accused another of making pornography visible on his laptop. (Arrest information does not indicate a conviction.)

A 45-year-old man was arrested at the Soscol Avenue Friday morning after what police described as a confrontation over pornography another patron said was visible on a laptop.

According to a shift activity log released by the , which logged the incident at 8:20 a.m.:

NPD Officers responded to a report of a fight occurring at Starbucks (247 Soscol Ave).

Upon arrival it was alleged that Eric Martin Anderson (7/3/66) of Napa was looking at pornography on a laptop that was visible to other patrons.

One of the patrons confronted Anderson and a verbal argument ensued.

Anderson allegedly made threats to harm the other patron and challenged him to fight.

Evidence was located at the scene that supported the allegations.

Anderson was booked at the on suspicion of disturbing the peace, criminal threats, violation of probation and violation of paragraph (a) of chapter 647 in the California Penal Code, which prohibits as disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor, "lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view," according to the police report.

Derry January 03, 2012 at 03:24 PM
"Indulging in sensual pleasures?" Definitely a crime. Put the cuffs on me, Officer. Oh, and a couple of those "moral restraints" also. Napa is truly a small town.
ED January 03, 2012 at 03:54 PM
To quote Ayn Rand, "There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws."
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 04:11 PM
Reposting to Jim (not Ed, sorry, I was confused!): The (alleged) "porn watcher" IS the man who was arrested for violating his probation. Being on probation means you have to obey all laws, and it's against the law to threaten people, as he is said to have done when challenging the other man to a fight. Which leads me to wonder: 1. Why do the commenters on this thread seem hung up on the porn, and nobody has a thing to say about the threats of violence? 2. Who is "Mr. Martin"? 3. What publication did the Ayn Rand quote come from, and what does it have to do with a story about a convicted criminal accused of challenging another man to a fight over watching porn in a public coffeeshop at 8 in the morning?
ED January 03, 2012 at 04:29 PM
"2. Who is "Mr. Martin"? "...According to your story there is no Mr. Martin. The person viewing the porn, making the threats and who was arrested is named Eric Martin Anderson. The person who confronted him was not named. "3. What publication did the Ayn Rand quote come from, and what does it have to do with a story about a convicted criminal accused of challenging another man to a fight over watching porn in a public coffeeshop at 8 in the morning?"...Atlas Shrugged. I was commenting on your observation that California has 700 new laws going into effect this year. I'm not sure what that has to do with this story either, but you mentioned it.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 04:31 PM
Thanks, Ed, I appreciate the response. ("Mr. Martin" had popped up in another comment.)
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 04:32 PM
Against charges of making criminal threats and violating probation? I doubt it.
Derry January 03, 2012 at 04:37 PM
Louisa, I think we can all agree that threats of violence, no matter what the provocation, are unacceptable and the fact that Mr. Martin is on parole speaks to his past problems with impulse control. That being said, my original point was that apparently a casual onlooker was able to determine that Mr. Martin was watching "porn" when our own SCOTUS can't define it. One man/woman's "porn" is another's art. What if Mr. Martin had been watching an American Nazi Party anti-immigrant video? Is that offensive? I can assure you that it is to me. Should I be able to tell Mr. Martin to turn it off because he has "offended me? Do we know how the onlooker approached Mr. Martin? Self-righteous indignation is almost as annoying as the behavior. Methinks the lady protesteth too much. Have we become so delicate as a society that any behavior that we disapprove of must become a matter for law enforcement? Oh please. Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy. H. L. Mencken
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Comment deleted for profanity.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 04:40 PM
Um ... What lady?
Jeanine Calvert January 03, 2012 at 04:42 PM
Hey, I'm ALL for people doing what they want as long as it does not harm others. However, "porn" encompasses a very wide range of acts and I wouldn't want to be in the position of having to explain some of the more disturbing extremes of the porn industry to a child of cognizant age. This is Starbucks, a place where people wouldn't hesitate to bring their whole family. I don't think he deserves jail time but certainly a slap on the wrist - although he might like that.
ED January 03, 2012 at 05:22 PM
I'd guess that something similar has happened many times at many Starbuck's. I imagine that Mr. Anderson's probation status had a bearing on how law enforcement handled this.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 05:44 PM
Derry, I don't know what Supreme Court decision you are referring to, but I believe you are conflating pornography with obscenity. They are different things, and the Supreme Court has treated them so: http://www.answers.com/topic/obscenity-and-pornography
ED January 03, 2012 at 05:54 PM
This could potentially be very reckless behavior, as I believe there are federal laws against exposing minors to this type of material. If an assistant U.S. Attorney has to much time on their hands you might find yourself looking at a long stretch at the grey-bar motel.
Derry January 03, 2012 at 06:06 PM
Louisa, My quote was a bit skewed, but I make an allusion to people who are vehemently opposed to something... perhaps too vehemently. Thanks to Wikipedia for the clarification: The quotation "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." comes from Shakespeare's Hamlet, Act III, scene II. The phrase has come to mean that one can "insist so passionately about something not being true that people suspect the opposite of what one is saying."[1]
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Hi Derry; I know the play well, but what is the relevance of the quotation in this context?
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 06:13 PM
Hello everyone, thanks to you all for your comments. I've just added a poll to the story, so please feel free to weigh in on what YOU would do in this situation.
Derry January 03, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Louisa, The relevance of the quote is this: Think back to some recent examples of people being rabidly anti-gay, but who turned out to be gay. A "wide-stance" springs to mind. Or the New York Attorney General crusading against prostitution and is revealed as a regular client of a brothel. I have a deep suspicion of bluenoses in general and I'd love to see their DVD collection.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 06:35 PM
I see, you're expressing your opinions of a bunch of people who are not involved in this particular story. Got it.
Derry January 03, 2012 at 06:50 PM
Louisa, I am merely expressing my deep suspicion of the motives of people who become so exercised when they see someone doing something they disapprove of. Perhaps justified, perhaps not. If I were more cynical, I might be surprised at the interest in this "naughty" subject. It's been enlightening.
ED January 03, 2012 at 07:13 PM
"I might be surprised at the interest in this "naughty" subject."...Actually there is probably so much interest because this is on the front page of AOL. I'm 3000 miles away from Napa.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 07:16 PM
Derry, I think I do get it. Skepticism is healthy! Here's an interesting thing about the Hamlet quotation: In the play, it's Queen Gertrude who speaks the line, in an effort to deflect attention away from the actress hired by her son to expose his mother's part in the murder of his father by acting out the story in a play called "The Mouse-Trap." When she says "the lady doth protest too much, methinks," it's in response to a truly nauseating passage of kissy-facey between the Player King and the Player Queen, all about how she would never ever ever marry anyone again if he died; when of course she was in bed with his murderer in no time flat, according to son Hamlet. Talk about naughty!
ED January 03, 2012 at 07:19 PM
I imagine people who are in the public eye often feel that they must have a different public persona than their private one in order to survive. I personally was taught that what one does in private is their business, but the sensibllities of others should be respected when one is out in public.
Derry January 03, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Louisa, Perhaps I might pose a question to the readers of this thread: To set the scene.... I am comfortably ensconced in Starbucks, drinking my Low-Fat Latte with 2.7 spoons of sugar and 1 small ice-cube.. and I pull out my Kindle and continue reading "The Illustrated Works of the Marquis De Sade." You sit down behind me and catch a glimpse of the screen and quelle horreur. Are you entitled to tell me to turn it off? To leave? To call the police if I tell you to shove your opinion where the sun don't shine? Just asking.
Danimal January 03, 2012 at 08:11 PM
When in Rome
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 03, 2012 at 11:40 PM
Ed and all our far-away correspondents, welcome to Napa Patch; thank you for visiting with us! Alas, this apparently is not an isolated example of public-place porn-viewing in our fair city. A Facebook friend posted recently that more than once this has been observed at our downtown public library (and reported to the guard). I'll bet the reason it made the police report, and thus our headlines, is not so much due to the original activity as it is to the "confrontation" that ensued and escalated until the PD had to get involved.
steve January 03, 2012 at 11:45 PM
I chose other........I would ask to let me watch too! What's better than a little sex with coffee?
Jeanine Calvert January 04, 2012 at 04:10 PM
Yep, I would ask you to go outside where children couldn't glimpse it. I would be much more concerned with my child getting a glimpse of anything illustrated from Marquise De Sade's works than with a glimpse of bronzed, plasticized adults going at it in modern porn. Seeing as how he lustily describes the torture and rape of children - I'm not sure why that shouldn't be considered child porn actually. It's not about getting the law involved for me...it's just about common decency - if Starbucks were an adult only place (in 'Idiocracy' Starbucks is THE place to go for handjobs lol) then it wouldn't even cross my mind to ask you to refrain.
Derry January 04, 2012 at 05:02 PM
A lot of sex? Jeanine makes a well-reasoned argument, but it prompts the question: If my reading material offends YOU, why should I leave? You are a biped I assume. Use your legs and remove your kind self from the establishment. Funny how you assume I must accommodate your mores. Just a thought.
Jeanine Calvert January 04, 2012 at 05:07 PM
That's where you're wrong. It doesn't offend ME...I agree that adults don't have the "right" to never be offended. My point is that when my child is 7 years old, I don't want to explain to him what fisting is because of some selfish a-hole at Starbucks. Appropriate time and place for everything ya know? Parents can't shield their child from everything - I don't expect to raise mine in a bubble - but mature content should be viewed in private or at mature places. I don't see the problem with this.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) January 14, 2012 at 08:43 PM
And this? http://dixon.patch.com/articles/masturbating-motorist-nabbed-at-dixon-gas-station

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