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Honk if you think sounding the horn in support of a protest is protected under the First Amendment




Morning traffic fills the SR2 freeway on April 25, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.
Morning traffic fills the SR2 freeway on April 25, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.
David McNew/Getty Images

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If you’ve ever honked in support of a political protest, you’re technically breaking California law – a law the ACLU is fighting to get struck down as unconstitutional.

Technically, under the California Vehicle Code, horns can only be honked for reasons of safety or as part of a car’s alarm system. But the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties says that honking in support of a protest is a form of speech, protected under the First Amendment and the California Constitution.

The suit was filed in San Diego federal court earlier this week on behalf of Susan Porter, who got a ticket for beeping in support of a protest outside of one of the offices of U.S. Representative Darrell Issa.

Does honking a horn in support of a fundraiser or protest qualify under freedom of speech? What are legitimate versus illegitimate uses of car honking?

We know you Angelenos have some car-honking stories to tell. Call us at 866-893-5722.

Guest:

David Loy, legal director of the ACLU Foundation of San Diego and Imperial Counties, which filed the lawsuit on behalf of Susan Porter