July 11, 2006 5:58PM

Nanny State Roundup

While Congress debates what American citizens may and may not do in their private lives (I like the quote likening Internet poker to “crack cocaine”), elsewhere, the Nanny State marches on:

  • A proposed law in Massachusetts would require children to wear helmets while playing soccer.
  • New Mexico wants to hold bar owners criminally liable for any drinking their customers may do two hours after leaving the bar. At the moment, this is only a law under consideration. But the state already has a similar law on the books that puts the window at one hour. Should be interesting to see if this holds up in court.
  • In the U.K., swearing is now effectively a misdemeanor.
  • A little town in Wisconsin is forcing a man to get rid of his prized stock of homing pigeons. Not because they’re unsafe. Nor because they present any threat or nuisance. No, it’s simply because some people don’t like them. Kicker arrogance‐​of‐​power passage:

    Clintonville city administrator Lisa Kotter said they can create ordinances as they see fit.

    “We don’t have to have a reason. Cities do have the right to regulate licensing and zoning,” Kotter said. “Sometimes we change the rules.”

  • The state of Washington’s crackdown on speech related to Internet gambling continues. Meanwhile, you may patronize any number of the state’s bricks‐​and‐​mortar casinos (thanks to Andy Roth for the link).