Just when I thought I had written all there was to write about what a joke California is, it just goes all California again and here we are.
I’ve seen a lot of craziness in this place, from the day I arrived as a small child through my growth into the very large child I am now. It stretches from border to border, like the skin on aging celebrities during their annual stop at the local Plastic Surgery Depot.
This is where the San Diego Padres’ ownership thought the players would look just splendid in brown, yellow, and white uniforms back in the day. You can bet that for every local baseball fan who saw them and said, “hey, just like the friars who founded this town!” there was a young parent who said, “hey, just like my kid’s diaper last night!” I fondly remember changing my daughter a few days after she switched to solid food, and suddenly being reminded of Steve Garvey in the playoffs. Good times, good times.
This is where Nancy Pelosi calls home, and the politically-aware community calls the place she flies to from Washington when it’s time to run for reelection.
This is where you’ll find Hollywood, whether you intended to or not.
Speaking of Hollywood, this is where the late professional weirdo Tiny Tim got married on The Tonight Show. It bears mentioning that by “late” I mean he’s dead now, not at the wedding—remember, California. I’ll also add my likely-unoriginal theory that Mr. Tim did it merely to convince the public he wasn’t some asexual biological anomaly, like some Komodo dragons. (Epic fail.)
This is where politicians blow kisses out the window to illegal immigrants selling cheap flowers without a license along the highway, after appearing on TV to push a law making florists give a 90% raise to their teenage cashiers.
After four-plus decades in this beachfront rubber room, I can safely say people here basically fall into one of two groups: those with at least some degree of good sense & reasoned thought, and those so utterly devoid of both they’d be a danger to themselves & others if someone handed them a photo of a sharp object. This brings us to January 1, 2018, the day a whole slew of legislation crafted by members of the latter took effect.
In case you don’t already know California is overwhelmingly controlled by leftists who wouldn’t know a good law if it donned a pair of boxing gloves and speed-bagged their heads, here’s a sampling of some noteworthy stuff that New Year’s Day set into motion in the Golden State:
-The state minimum wage has been increased to $10.50 per hour for employers of fewer than 26 people, $11 per hour for the rest. (State politicians have generously promised to triple the current salaries of all unpaid interns.)
-Most prospective employers are barred from asking applicants what they were paid in previous jobs (which supposedly addresses the need to close the gender wage-gap), and from checking into/asking about applicants’ criminal records before a conditional job offer is on the table (which addresses the need to add yet another unneeded rule to the needlessness file.)
-Employees of long-term care facilities now face punishment if they fail to say pronouns specified by patients. Not only does this apply even if the pronouns are biologically incorrect, it applies even if they’re NOT ACTUAL WORDS.
California is not alone on this front; nine other states already have similar laws on the books. If you think about it, it’s actually pretty comforting on a couple of levels: it answers both the LGBT community’s demand for protection from something that hurts their feelings, and the question of how old the Bill of Rights will be when Americans are forced by law into speech.
As stated in the law, the punishment will range from a fine “not to exceed one thousand dollars,” to imprisonment in the county jail “not to exceed one year,” possibly both. It was sponsored by State Senator Scott Wiener, whose hobbies include shredding constitutional amendments before saturating them with jet fuel & blasting them with a flame thrower followed by stomping on the ashes with work boots.
-It is now illegal for schools to publicly deny lunch to students with unpaid meal tabs, or even provide them a free snack instead. This will help prevent that intolerable blight on humanity known as “lunch shaming.” (Those aren’t my words, and for the love of all things holy please make that clear to your friends.)
-Schools also just lost the right to choose to allow employees with concealed carry licenses on campus with their firearms. They really didn’t think this one through: who’s going to shoot the lunch-shamers now?
-Intentionally infecting a sexual partner with HIV without their knowledge has been reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor. In a related story, sales of chastity belts on the west coast have increased by 1000%.
According to a recent story on reason.com, this is also where a waiter might find himself in a whole heap o’ trouble for handing a customer a drinking straw. California State Assemblyman Ian Calderon has introduced a bill outlawing single-use plastic straws being provided with beverages unless customers specifically ask for them. (In a sane world, the sentence you just read would be evidence in a defamation lawsuit.) Because environment, of course.
Calderon initially proposed that violators of the law spend six months in jail and pay a fine of up to $1,000, but later decided to axe the fine. How do you like that, restaurant servers? Aren’t you relieved that you won’t be on the hook for as much as a grand if you give someone an unsolicited straw? If you have so much as a speck of gratitude to your name, you’ll remind yourself what a wonderful dude the assemblyman was to save you all that money whenever you have a quiet moment in your cell.
Bussing tables when I was sixteen got me my first car. In case you’re unfamiliar, one of the duties busindividuals may be assigned from time to time is bringing drinks. (I haven’t checked lately, but back in my day teens were only allowed to carry non-alcoholic beverages. Probably too many complaints about beer glasses showing up at tables mysteriously “underfilled.”) When my son hits sophomore year, I’ll probably suggest he look for a job as a busboy–there’s pretty good dough in schlepping used dishes & refilling sodas–as long as he’s willing to commute to Arizona or has a good attorney on retainer. I can only imagine the beatings he’d get in juvie when the hard cases learn he landed there for straw-dealing.
Leftists’ lust for control over the consumer’s right to choose is something to behold. First they picked on supermarket shoppers, because they weren’t convinced that enough of us were finding other uses for our grocery bags. Now they’re picking on diner-outers, because the simple pleasure of sucking your Sprite through an eight-inch tube is getting in the way of their protecting the planet. Mark my words, it’s only a matter of time before they decide to pick on fast food picker-uppers, and their eco-amoral use of plastic cutlery (which has already happened in Seattle).
My message to all you state nanny-fascists, from Governor Jerry Brown on down: you can have my spork when you pry it from my cold, dead hands.