‘Sign the petition!’ Footage reveals how Paris scammers target tourists with bogus causes and demands for donations

Video at the link:

It’s one of the most common schemes tourists encounter when they visit Paris, with plenty of guides and websites warning holidaymakers to turn and walk away.

Filmed in the tourist-heavy area along the river Seine in Paris, this footage shows a woman trying to pressure a holidaymaker into signing a petition, without explaining why or what it is for.

The woman in the video approaches the videographer, asking if he speaks English before holding out a pen and encouraging him to sign the paper she’s holding.

What is it?’ the man asks, while recording the interaction.

She continues to push the paper toward him, getting visibly upset when the man continues to question what exactly it is that she’s asking him to sign.

She pushes the pen toward him several more times, despite the man’s protests, before giving up and stalking off angrily.

Ah, yes, the petition shake down. Most of the time they’re just trying to get a quick buck off of clueless tourists but every so often a confederate will pick your pocket while you’re signing the petition.

YouTube has some clips of other scams used in Paris (also throughout tourist attractions in Europe) such as the gold ring scam where somebody points out to you that someone dropped a gold ring and then tries to sell it to you for a good price (It’s not really gold)

Then there’s the friendship bracelet scam where the scammer will rope your finger and start braiding a bracelet on your arm so you can’t get away. They won’t untie it unless you pay for it.

And there’s this scam where some businessman gives you a great deal on “designer” jackets because he’s in a rush to leave or some bullshit.

Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (HBO Documentary Films)

Just watched this last night. Most of it I knew before from bits and pieces from the web but having it all out in front of you is pretty compelling. South Park’s episode on Xenu is still embedded in my brain though because when Going Clear was going into the Xenu part, I was expecting subtitles to appear saying “SCIENTOLOGISTS REALLY BELIEVE THIS!”

Indianapolis Star’s Front Page Today

WTF Indiana?

We are at a critical moment in Indiana’s history.

And much is at stake.

Our image. Our reputation as a state that embraces people of diverse backgrounds and makes them feel welcome. And our efforts over many years to retool our economy, to attract talented workers and thriving businesses, and to improve the quality of life for millions of Hoosiers.

All of this is at risk because of a new law, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, that no matter its original intent already has done enormous harm to our state and potentially our economic future.

The consequences will only get worse if our state leaders delay in fixing the deep mess created.

Half steps will not be enough. Half steps will not undo the damage.

Only bold action — action that sends an unmistakable message to the world that our state will not tolerate discrimination against any of its citizens — will be enough to reverse the damage.