Because, you know, 7 year old girls regularly poison people, and adults don’t have the good sense to think that a 7 year old’s stand might not be the most clean thing ever. Even if it was to “protect the public health” how does a $120 fee accomplish it?
It’s hardly unusual to hear small-business owners gripe about licensing requirements or complain that heavy-handed regulations are driving them into the red.
So when Multnomah County shut down an enterprise last week for operating without a license, you might just sigh and say, there they go again.
Except this entrepreneur was a 7-year-old named Julie Murphy. Her business was a lemonade stand at the Last Thursday monthly art fair in Northeast Portland. The government regulation she violated? Failing to get a $120 temporary restaurant license.
Turns out that kids’ lemonade stands — those constants of summertime — are supposed to get a permit in Oregon, particularly at big events that happen to be patrolled regularly by county health inspectors.
“I understand the reason behind what they’re doing and it’s a neighborhood event, and they’re trying to generate revenue,” said Jon Kawaguchi, environmental health supervisor for the Multnomah County Health Department. “But we still need to put the public’s health first.”
The more I think of it, the worse I feel about this whole thing. Let me ask what I think is a rhetorical question. If the girl had first come up with $120 to get “registered” would that have been any guarantee that her lemonade was safer? After all, does the health department test the lemonade at the time the license is given? And if it does, is that a guarantee that the containers and cups will be clean and safe at the place of service? And rather than shutting the poor girl down at the fair, if they were so hell bent on getting her licensed, could not they have offered to provide the license there? Or “test” or inspect the lemonade on the spot? The fact of the matter is that the health department exists for the sake of the health department and its power hungry, anti-human bureaucrats. These people spent too much time getting stuffed in lockers in high school (government run high school at that) and now are taking it out on the rest of us.
Sickening. Thugs and looters, all of them.