When Bugs Buggy dared Yosemite Sam to step over the line, I suspect he didn't think it would turn out to be a federal case. Nonetheless, two cases in the upcoming Supreme Court term quite literally involve lines in the sand, er, ground.
United States v. Apel: Dennis Apel is a frequent protester at the front gate of Vandenberg Air Force Base. He was as subject to a pre-existing order barring him from the base, and was convicted of trespassing under 18 U.S.C. § 1382. After his conviction, the Ninth Circuit ruled in another case that a stretch of highway running through the base was subject to an easement "granted to the State of California, which later relinquished it to the County of Santa Barbara," and as a result the federal government lacked the exclusive right of possession of the area on which the trespass allegedly occurred. Therefore, a trespassing conviction under § 1382 was not valid. In a per curiam decision, the Ninth Circuit reversed Apel's conviction. The Supreme Court will decide whether a federal law which prohibits a person from reentering a military installation after a commanding officer has ordered him not to reenter, may be enforced on a portion of a military installation that is subject to a public roadway easement. The protest area outside the front gate of the base is represented by the green line painted on the road in the image below.