Most of us go through life contemplating what is best for us at any given time. We weigh the good and the bad based upon the best information we have at hand, and make our own decisions. But if you find this process difficult or intimidating, you need not worry any further. The State of Connecticut thinks it knows exactly what you should do. It will tell you how to do it and punish you if you choose not to. The state legislature wants to make your decisions for you.
If you find that alarming, you’re not alone. Once again, the legislature is contemplating bills that will dictate what you can and cannot do in your ordinary lives. Here are some examples:
Plastic shopping bags. Personally, I don’t like them. They blow around and end up lying in gutters and caught up in trees. Some people like them, though. They can be recycled at home and have a number of practical uses. Fortunately, though, the legislature knows what’s best. A legislative proposal to charge a tax on every shopping bag used is meant to discourage folks from using plastic bags and, instead, utilize reusable fabric bags. You would have to pay this tax at grocery stores, clothing stores, or any other establishment where plastic bags are utilized. In my eyes, this is a prime example of government punishing certain people into submission.
Smoking in private clubs. Personally, I don’t smoke cigarettes and I have never really had a desire to. However, smoking is legal and individuals certainly have a right to do it. Your legislature is entertaining a proposal to prohibit smoking in private clubs. When last I checked, private clubs were, indeed, private. Most have an internal governing body to make decisions as to how the club operates. But there will be no need for them to go through the exercise of deciding on their own – the State of Connecticut plans to do it for them.
Fishing and how you do it. I don’t fish and I really don’t know the first thing about it. Apparently, the legislature does and it cares deeply about how you choose to fish and, more specifically, what hardware you use to catch fish. There is currently a proposal before the legislature to ban the use of lures, jigs, and weights that are made from lead. Apparently, your fishing equipment is a danger to the environment. Who knew?
My last two examples aren’t necessarily infringements on people’s right to choose, but I just couldn’t pass them up.
Driving tests. Not everyone speaks English and your legislature wants to be sure that even if you don’t speak English you can still get your driver’s license. Specifically, a bill before the legislature wants to make driver’s license written tests available in the Tibetan language. Unfortunately, a quick search on the internet indicates that there are over ten regional languages and dialects spoken in Tibet. I guess we’d need to write an exam in each dialect, assuming we can find someone who understands them.
Lastly, the legislature is reviewing a proposal to establish Connecticut as an “Earth trustee state pursuant to the Earth Charter”. If you’re asking what the heck this is supposed to do, the bill tells us that the legislation is designed “to raise positive environmental awareness by Connecticut citizens and foster respect for our world and each other”. Apparently we need to pass a law to ensure that we respect each other.
The above are just a few examples of what your legislature is laboring to accomplish. God help us.