California Aims to Ban Everything You Might Do, Including Passing New Bans

Before he was appointed chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, where he went on to bore an already indifferent country with a taxpayer financed, 50-state "American Civility Tour," former Iowa Republican congressman Jim Leach publicly washed his hands of the GOP in part for the (understandable) reason that, "The party that once emphasized individual rights has gravitated in recent years toward regulating values."

One wonders how Leach and other people who thought they were voting against buttinsky government in 2008 felt while reading this New York Times article from last week with the headline "At Least Fun in the Sun Isn't Banned. For Now..." Excerpt:

Bonfires on the beach? Sorry, Gidget: Newport Beach is waiting for permission from the California Coastal Commission to remove its long-cherished fire pits, which it banned this summer as health hazards. Newport's fleet of diesel-burning yachts are still O.K., but napping in the city's libraries? Forbidden, as of July, along with any "use of perfume or fragrance" that interferes with librarians' "ability to perform duties."

The Los Angeles Unified School District, bowing to pressure from ecologically-minded sixth graders, two weeks ago banned plastic foam trays in cafeterias. On Tuesday, California's Legislature passed a ban on psychotherapy aimed at making gay teenagers straight; the ban was proposed by a state senator from Redondo Beach and is believed to be the first of its kind. On Wednesday, the Legislature forbade the carrying of rifles in public. [...]

West Hollywood, which in 2003 became the first city in the country to prohibit the declawing of cats (soon followed by a ban on the purchase of puppy-mill puppies), has a first-in-the-nation ordinance barring the sale of fur beginning next September. [...]

Santa Monica made headlines in 1999 when it joined San Francisco in banning A.T.M. fees. The courts blocked that one, but Santa Monica came back with a ban on tall hedges, briefly levying fines of $25,000 a day on violators.

A ban on circumcision ("male genital mutilation") was registered for the Santa Monica ballot last year, then dropped in an ensuing uproar — but not before state legislators got to work on a law banning circumcision bans. It was passed and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown in October. In June, Santa Monica nixed Christmastime nativity scenes in its parks, after tolerating them for 60 years. (Atheists wanted park space, too.)

But that beach town really earned its bones in the ban business with smoking, which is outlawed almost everywhere, including the beach and at A.T.M.'s. Private apartments are one exception, and the city spent much of the summer embroiled in a battle over closing that loophole. Eventually, the push to forbid smoking in apartments was dropped, partly because it would complicate the smoking of medical marijuana.

Reason on Golden State nannyism here.

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  • sarcasmic||

    Firstieth?

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    Yeswican

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Newport Beach want to remove the fire pits (and by the way, why does that require coastal commission approval - that would make a better HyR post)because they get sued everytime some dumbshit jumps in one and gets burned.

    A sane society would laugh those people idiots out of court but we left sanity in the rear view mirror long ago.

    Likewise, Libraries aren't homeless shelters. But we can't allow anyone to exercise discretion and tell the bums that they can't camp in the library, so instead they have to ban 'sleeping' in them.

  • aelhues||

    I have a hard time condenming cities, coporations, people in general, from disallowing things that get them sued. If, like VG Z mentioned, people with stupid, frivolous lawsuits, were laughed out of court, or even better, forced to cough up the defendants court costs, 95% of this shit would go away. To me, if 99% of the population doesn't trip on the small crack in the sidewalk outside your business that you haven't gotten around to fixing, the 1% who do should simply be embarrased at their own incompetance, not entitled to some of your money.

  • Killazontherun||

    The Los Angeles Unified School District, bowing to pressure from ecologically-minded sixth graders, two weeks ago banned plastic foam trays in cafeterias.

    If this is what our material abundant, democratically represented society is leading us to, to these ridiculous piss ant first world problem trolls gaining power over the rest of us, I can only imagine what crapholes The Human Race: Post Scarcity Edition are going to turn out to be.

  • Dr. Frankenstein||

    See Star Trek: Next Generation

    Love the show wonder what the political system for the average Federation citizen would really be like.

  • Brandybuck||

    We only ever got to see the one-percenters in ST:TnG. We saw the captains, the counselors, the wunderkind, etc. It was Roddenberry's Potemkin Village. You only ever got to see the hoi polloi after he kicked the bucket, and then only in measured doses.

  • ubercynic||

    I can only imagine what crapholes The Human Race: Post Scarcity Edition are going to turn out to be.

    We ain't gonna make it to Post Scarcity unless we avert 1984 world, and that is going to require (among many other things) eradicating the piss ant problem trolls (great phrase, BTW).

  • Brandybuck||

    Eventually, the push to forbid smoking in apartments was dropped, partly because it would complicate the smoking of medical marijuana.


    There are still places in California where you are not allowed to smoke in a multi-unit residential building. Belmont for example. If you want to smoke in your own home it must be a house, not an apartment, condominium, townhome or duplex.

    Yet pot smoking is still politically correct, hip, and cool. Add in medical marijuana and you can even get some sympathy action going. So someone needs to market marijuana fragrance air freshener. When you see the cops come up the steps, just spray some around your living room, then tell them you have glaucoma...

  • ubercynic||

    Nah, they'll just mandate the use of state approved (and nose-bleed expensive) vaporizers for state approved pot smoking.

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