It’s for the Children
Cls describes the logic of governance here, starting with the police force’s damage control. It involves
a pizza party and a tour of the police station. The police chief says he doesn’t want the girls to be afraid of the police.
Why not? They terrify the hell out of me. I am fairly well informed and read dozens of news stories per day, multiple publications and watch numerous news reports. And the violent nature of American police scares the crap out of me. Girl Scouts should be terrified of the police. It’s not like police violence and corruption rarely happens.
But, listen to the logic used to justify regulations to ban the sale of cookies and such without a permit. The police chief says there have been incidents of kids who ran into the street to get a dollar for something. To be quite honest, police always claims there are “incidents” even when there is no evidence of any. The chief was short on details, very short. He didn’t say when it happened, to whom it happened, or what were the results. He gave nothing to indicate an actual incident took place. I’d bet a package doughnuts that he made that up to try to justify the regulation.
But, let us assume he is a truthful police officer—yes, I know it’s a stretch, but work with me here. A child is alleged to have run into the street though, from what the chief said, there were no dire consequences as a result. I expect if a kid had actually been killed or crippled because of it, that fact would have been mentioned. It wasn’t mentioned so I suspect nothing bad resulted from the alleged incident that justifies three pages of regulations to protect the kids.
Fine. But explain to me how does a permit in the kid’s pocket protect the kid?
How does a bureaucratic piece of paper make the kid any safer? Do these people think their regulations are magic and change the reality of the situation?
If kids were really, really in enough danger to justify three extra pages of regulations, then how does a permit reduce the danger? It isn’t like the permit is a seat belt, which could save a life. It offers no physical barrier to harm. It is a permission slip from Big Brother to engage in an activity, it is not a safety mechanism. Given that these are usually handed out for a fee, perhaps the real reason for the regulation is a money raiser for the police and politicians and “saving kids” is just the self-serving excuse being used here.
This is what happens when “we have to do something” meets “there’s nothing we can reasonably do.” We signal like hell — to no one in particular — and the state picks up the proceeds, both in money and in excess opportunities for coercion.