Thoughts by Richard Bleil
Some years ago, I noticed an indentation around my waist that I assume is from the elastic band of my underwear. This just can’t be healthy. I’ve tried “freelancing” in the past but going without underwear is really kind of uncomfortable when you wear pants, and there are…complications. So, going without underwear on a daily basis is simply out. But, about that time I decided that I can still sleep in the nude.
At first it felt naughty, but the reality is that it’s really about health. Yes, there are sleeper pants that have looser waistbands, but even though they are looser, it’s still a band pressing unnaturally on your body. Women can wear nightgowns and long t-shirts, but let’s face it, that just won’t fly for men. So, naked it is.
Recently, I wrote about a fire in my house. And, yes, I was asleep and naked. I didn’t evacuate the house, but I did grab a fire extinguisher and ran around the house searching for the problem. But even though it’s my own house, I did put on a robe. Even with smoke filling the house (honestly at that point it was already beginning to dissipate) I had time to grab something to throw on.
At this point, if I haven’t lost you already, you must be wondering if there’s a point to all of this. Recently, a friend of mine told me that it is illegal to sleep in the nude. I don’t know if she was talking about a local, city, state or national ordinance, but it obviously made enough of a comment on me to write this post about it. And, no, she wasn’t in bed with me. I’m not sure how the topic came up, if you want to know the truth, and I’ve not verified if her statement is true. The reason for the law, she told me, is in case of fire. Apparently, assuming it is a law, the lawmakers don’t want a naked person out in public.
Are you serious? Somebody’s house is burning down, they’re losing a lifetime investment and a place to live, and the biggest concern is the sensibilities of somebody who doesn’t want them to be naked in public? Wouldn’t it just be easier if the offended person simply offers the victim a blanket? It just feels like our priorities are backwards, and that the government is too far into our business.
In South Dakota, voters in the last election overwhelmingly voted to legalize both medical and recreational marijuana. The writers of the bill even had the foresight to include taxation and the use for the taxes in part of the bill, basically turning it into a regulated and controlled substance similar to alcohol. I don’t use marijuana myself, but I do agree with the bill because I find it difficult to justify making it illegal when alcohol is legal, but whether or not you agree with legalization, this was the will of the people. The governor, along with one of the sheriffs, sued to overturn the vote, and in a very conservative and Republican state, they were successful in doing so. Recently there is a story that their attempt to overturn the medicinal marijuana portion failed, but I strongly suspect this “failure” is little more than an attempt to help Republicans during re-election efforts so they can claim they backed the voters. But the point is, I believe we, the people, have forgotten who is working for whom. Why do we keep electing politicians who work to line their own pockets over the will of the people?
Some ridiculous laws are at least understandable. I believe in most states, suicide is illegal punishable by death. Okay, that last part is a little tongue-in-cheek humor, but even though this truly gets into our private business, I at least understand. This this law on the books, it gives the police the authority to intervene to save lives. But the fear of public nudity?
One of my favorite things is hearing about laws still on the books that have simply never been removed. For example, I’m told (again, unverified) that, by law, every time a car comes upon an intersection, the driver must stop, blow the horn, set off firecrackers, blow their horn again and only then cross the intersection if it is safe. This, assuming it’s real, is clearly an overreaction to an accident at some point. These laws are often the result of the mechanisms necessary to remove laws from the books. These procedures cost money, and so many laws that are ridiculous are often simply ignored, rather than removed.
It’s time to start voting out the idiots who do not work for us. And it’s time to get government out of our personal business. They won’t do it; it’s up to us.