Monday, March 30, 2009

Smoking In Cars (February 19th, 2009) Shakopee Valley News

Finally, I see we have come to our senses. Nora Slawik, a Minnesota State Representative, has introduced a bill (HF -0379) which would make it illegal to smoke in a vehicle while transporting a child under the age of 18 years of age. Where was she forty years ago? My own father would occasionally light up with five kids in the car. Why is it there is never a cop around when you really need one?

I would have loved to see my family’s summer vacation interrupted by Dad getting arrested in the middle of South Dakota for smoking in the car. Why they could have thrown the book at him. I am quite sure not one of us had our seat belt fastened; there may even have been a car seat violation as well as my younger sister was wandering freely violating many of today’s current laws.

Thankfully we now have guardians like Representative Slawik. I don’t smoke but I look forward to the day when it is illegal to smoke in one’s own home. I would love to see the neighborhood watch program expanded to include a whistle-blowing division. If you see your neighbors smoking – you can rat on them and have them arrested and dragged out into the street – hopefully in the middle of night. Oh yeah, I can’t wait.

Let’s not stop there though. I understand that many of our foods are laced with fat-inducing contents. During my own wicked childhood I used to eat sugar cubes (right out of the box), and eat spoonfuls of brown sugar. I loved the texture, the taste and the nice little lift it gave me on a summer afternoon. Mom used to sprinkle sugar on cottage cheese to make it more palatable, and until recently I could not eat spahgettios with out a generous helping of sugar. My mother should have been in jail, and I along with my brothers and sisters could have become wards of the state. What terrible parents I must have had. I only hope that change will come soon for the old ways must pass away quickly.

I am thinking that maybe we could create a new security force. They would of course be an arm of the government, but they could also be a clearinghouse of sorts for citizen’s complaints. The name of the new force must be something easily remembered; an acronym would be best: Safe Society?

I have additional ideas to create a more perfect world. The parents of overweight children should be investigated. Strict bedtimes must be enforced to assure the correct amount of nightly sleep. We can also monitor what television and radio shows are broadcast into homes. The mind reels to what good we can accomplish if we put our hearts ino it.

Make the television show Family Guy illegal in homes where children under 16 reside; require reading of certain publications so that we are all on the same page; prohibit reading of bad things (to be determined later), outlaw stripes worn with checks, make helmets mandatory for many recreational activities - bikes, skateboarding, skiing (both snow and water). I would also like to see other protective clothing put in place – such as safety glasses and hearing protection.

Now I know that some of these ideas may seem radical to most of you. Let’s just give it some time. In a few short years you will hardly notice the changes. The government knows best and it is time to publicly acknowledge this and yield to its higher authority. I think Representative Slawik could be our next President.

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