From USA Today:
City that went viral for banning teens from trick-or-treating clarified its law. Good!
Last Halloween, one Virginia city went viral for banning anyone 13 years and older from trick-or-treating.
No, it wasn’t a story on The Onion. It was real.
The city of Chesapeake drew national scrutiny – and social media uproar – for its decades-old ordinance that could fine or jail teens caught in costume with a sack full of candy.
It got so much attention, in fact, the city quickly conducted a review of the ordinance and made changes, the city’s director of public communications Health Covey told USA TODAY.
The ordinance now enacts a maximum trick-or-treating age of 14 years old and does not allow for possible jail time.
Teens in the city could still face a Class 4 misdemeanor and a fine under the law. But Covey assures the public that police have never actually fined or jailed a teen for trick-or-treating and the law is in place only to prevent issues like teens stealing and smashing pumpkins.
“The ordinance was, and is, intended to provide police with the authority to take action to keep order and protect public safety,” Covey said, noting that the law was originally made in 1970 in response to “incidents of mischief” on Halloween night.
“Chesapeake Police officers do not spend Halloween night checking the ages of those out enjoying trick-or-treating in a safe manner,” Covey added.
Let me make this point perfectly clear:
Fuck the city government of Chesapeake, Virginia. They can say that police have never jailed a teenager for trick-or-treating, but the law is the law and that gives the police the ability to do so. The power has been established, it is only because of the beneficence of the police that they are not tackling teenagers and putting them in handcuffs in squad cars over a bag full of willfully-given candy.
Yes, you read that right, previously the law allowed for jail time for a 13-year-old to go door to door and ask for candy on Halloween.
Who in the actual fuck thought that was even remotely reasonable for a city government to do.
There’s a wide gap in parent’s opinions on what that right age is to stop trick-or-treating, according to a 2016 non-scientific poll of 2,000 people by Today. When asked, “How old is too old to trick-or-treat?” 73 percent of people said between 12 and 17. But those five years between early and late teens mark a huge difference in adolescent development.
Unless you are like me, the eldest sibling, who was tasked with taking younger siblings trick-or-treating. Then you earn the right to ask for some God damned candy.
Families should have the freedom to decide when the fun-loving era of trick-or-treating is over, not city laws.
The only ordinance a city should pass regarding Halloween is a ban on giving out raisins and other shitty candy.
Miguel is very much opposed to mob violence. For the most part, I’ll agree with him.
However, if I found myself in the situation where my 13-year-old Thanksgiving in jail because he got some fun-size Snickers from the neighbors then I think it is perfectly acceptable to get a bunch of parents together to march on City Hall and dip my City Counsel in boiling roofing tar.
The spirit of our Revolutionary ancestors demands it.
5 thoughts on “Too much f**king government in Virginia”
Some of my favorite Halloweens were the years we ran the “College Cleanup Crew”, a group of late teens/early 20 somethings that would hit the streets at 11:00 or so to bum all the leftover candy from the houses that still had a porch light on. We would dress up in the best costumes we could muster and just have the most fun we possibly could.
We would often get parents positively eager to dump the rest of the contents of the candy bowl into our bags, or we might engage in a bit of “trading” with any kids still up. If we ran into a party we would sweep through as “candy fairies” sharing the spoils of the night with anyone who wanted some. And candy was not the only spoils we collected, we often got beer and cider too. It was an absolute blast, and we ran into all kinds of people, from the elderly couple who was surprised there were still people up (“Porch light is still on Ma’am, people think you are still up!”) To the young people parties that would go to 2 AM (“We have candy! Is that enough to get in?”). We were a staple in that neighborhood for at least a half dozen years running.
Nice to see that there are cities that think that kind of thing should be illegal. If they had issues with juvenile delinquents they should have outlawed *that*, not the whole idea of fun for older “kids”. And this whole “we don’t actually enforce it” just means the city council is on board with the undermining of our entire legal system by passing laws *intended* to be selectively and capriciously enforced. I think in addition to the bath of hot tar those morons need to take a remedial civics class to learn what laws are actually supposed to do.
Covey assures the public that police have never actually fined or jailed a teen for trick-or-treating and the law is in place only to prevent issues like teens stealing and smashing pumpkins.
If “stealing and smashing pumpkins” is what the law is in place to prevent, then that is what the law should specifically prohibit (and I’d be shocked if the city didn’t already have laws against theft and vandalism). Laws must be written as narrowly as possible, for the express purpose of preventing misuse by authorities.
This is not rocket surgery.
And that headline: City that went viral for banning teens from trick-or-treating clarified its law. Good!
Not f#$king good enough. Not by a long shot.
IANAL, nor do I play one on Tee-Wee, nor did I stay in a Holiday Inn Express, BUT….
That sounds to me like a black letter freedom of speech breach (“Please, suh, most candy!”), as well as. Freedom of association breach. Then there is the tension between the statute as related, and the likely city stool hemorrhage should Ma and Pa send 5 year old Junior out unescorted. As cited above, how about 17 year old sibling supervising things?
Or, for that matter, what assurance that 35 year old (dad)(mom), out of favor with whomever, won’t get nicked due to trick or treating over age (whatever)?
Sounds like abctionable bullshit, to me
IANAL either, but if I understand correctly it’s not actionable unless and until someone has “standing” to challenge it.
“Standing” doesn’t happen until someone is “harmed”…
… which for this would mean someone is arrested and jailed for behavior that is perfectly innocent and harmless given any other circumstance.
The city has no intention of enforcing this statute (they can go after unruly teens with theft and vandalism charges if necessary, without touching this one), so nobody will ever be harmed, so nobody will ever have standing to challenge it.
This is outrageous. How dare the Government, any Government, trample the rights of the people.
How Horrible! Scream this from the highest peaks.
Now repeal all firearms ordinances and laws. That are just as horrible or even more so, as the right to keep and bear arms is supposedly an un-infringeable right given to us by our Creator, as the 2nd Amendment to the Bill of Rights states.
Or are some rights more righteous than other rights?
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