July 15 2013
In a successful effort to alienate its base, California regulators are making it much more difficult for ‘hippies’ and ‘rainbows’ to gather drum circles.
Californian regulators previously targeted leaf blowers and weed eaters, claiming their emissions were too high, but were brushed off by legislators. In a classic “don’t look at us, look at them!” move, regulators were advised by Hispanic lawmakers to turn to another group of carbon emitters: Southern California’s beach bonfire enthusiasts. As you may imagine, like you or me, drum circles do not have a strong lobby, so presented little resistance against unelected bureaucrats.
Yet Southern Californian bonfires are a tradition, and the proposal caught many voters’ attention. William La Jeunesse described the reaction in Fox News:
"We're just out here, having fun, hanging out, not doing anything bad," said Cristi Valencia, as she put another hot dog on the fire at Dockweiler Beach in Playa del Rey, Calif. "There's so many other ways we can protect the environment, this just doesn't seem like a very good one.”
Could it be that the far Left has recognized, albeit on a shallow level, the consequences of government overreach and environmental alarmism?
In fact, the critics are right: This will do little to advance the cause of a clean environment. No solid evidence has been offered to suggest that the state’s campfires have had negative effects on public health, and California’s beach fires are not one of the greater causes of pollution in the state.
Regulators have one job: to constrict people’s actions, and they typically do so with little accountability to voters. Their actions not only impede our ability to gather around a campfire, but also our abilities to provide for our families, innovate, and create a better, brighter future. Lawmaking – whether in California or Washington – should be left to those elected by the public, rather than regulators who are often looking to expand their power in ways voters never intended.
This time, beach fire enthusiasts protested big government and advocated for freedom. Hopefully, they will not forget that silly regulations have unintended consequences.