Bad idea to shove members of the Judiciary – retired or otherwise. Judge Karen Smit (ret.) describing her National Lawers Guild Legal Observer hat before describing the NYPD response to her presence:
JUDGE KAREN SMITH (ret.): It’s fluorescent green. And then I was wearing it, and I had a pad and a pen, and I was there to take down the names of people who were arrested so we could follow them through the system and just observe what was going on. And as I’m standing there, some African-American woman goes up to a police officer and says, “I need to get in. My daughter’s there. I want to know if she’s OK.” And he said, “Move on, lady.” And he kept pushing—they kept pushing with their sticks, pushing back. And she said—and she was crying. And all of a sudden, out of nowhere, he throws her to the ground and starts hitting her in the head. And I walk over, and I say, “Look, cuff her if she’s done something, but you don’t need to do that.” And he said, “Lady, do you want to get arrested?” And I said, “Do you see my hat? I’m here as a legal observer.” He said, “You want to get arrested?” And he pushed me up against the wall.