I had heard of people being hassled while using view cameras elsewhere in the country, but I never expected it to happen in Evanston. I had gone to the top roof level of a public parking garage to take a picture of the street and city below. (There is frenetic activity tearing down buildings and putting up new buildings, and one of the things I want to do with my view camera is to document the city as it changes.) I had framed and focused my image and was ready to take my picture when I was approached by a private security guard. He asked me what I was doing, which always strikes me as a rather strange question since it was pretty obvious I was taking a picture. He wanted me to go down to the garage office and get permission from the manager there, which I refused to do since I would have had to disassemble my camera, pack up, go down six floors and then come back up and set up again. I ranted a bit about having paid taxes in Evanston for some 40 years and kept going along those lines and promised that I would go seek permission when I was done. It became clear to him that he was going to have to physically restrain me to get me to go down, so he gave up and left me to finish. When I got down to the office and explained who I was, they told me it was fine, I should just go ahead, and I didn't need permission. So it ended up okay in the end. Clearly, this rather mild mannered security guard had acted on his own initiative, and he wasn't going to beat up a 71 year old man taking a picture of downtown Evanston. So I lucked out. but it is still somewhat frightening to realize that this sort of thing is going on in our country, even in the least dangerous locations.
A bit of irony. Like many garages, the levels are assigned labels based on a theme in addition to their numbers. The theme for this garage is the arts, and the top roof level is called "Photography".