Next Item on the Docket: Outlawing Fun

I heard about this on the radio this morning and it made my stomach turn:

GREEN TREE, Pa. — A state lawmaker is pushing for doggy seat belts on the advice of an 11-year-old constituent. Marc McCann of Green Tree came up with the idea as part of state Rep. Tom Stevenson’s annual “There Ought to be a Law” contest.

Stevenson, R-Pa., submitted a bill to the House Transportation Committee in June that would require drivers to keep their dogs’ heads inside the vehicle at all times. Stevenson also wants to require drivers to restrain the animals, either with some kind of modified seat belt or in a crate or carrier box.

“I never did like dogs sticking their heads out the window,” said McCann, one of more than 500 students from his legislative district who proposed laws. “Maybe a sign might have been too close to the road and they’d get hit. Maybe they’d jump out the window on a highway.”

Stevenson said the bill will protect “not only human lives, but pet lives. I think it’s going to be a great idea because it’s going to cut down on driver distractions.”

Rep. Tom Stevenson has an annual “There Ought to be a Law” contest? Wait, creating more laws is a good thing? Don’t we have enough already? Why do we automatically look to the government to legislate our behavior? Can’t we depend on ourselves to keep our own goddamned pooches out of harm’s way?

Published by Newley

Hi. I'm Newley Purnell. I cover technology and business for The Wall Street Journal. I use this site to share my stories and often blog about the books I'm reading, tech trends, sports, travel, and our dog Ginger. For updates, get my weekly email newsletter.

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