Another Home Garden Against the Law

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This is an obligatory Dylanosophy post, given the lines in Bob Dylan’s 1983 song, “Union Sundown.

They used to grow food in Kansas
Now they want to grow it on the moon and eat it raw
I can see the day coming when even your home garden
Is gonna be against the law

Yep, well, that day’s long come and gone, Bob. In truth, it is not especially news that virtually everyone in the United States is burdened by regulations and restrictions that keep them from using their property in ways in which they would choose, while doing harm to no one. People often opt to live in communities where everything is homogenized and sanitized, but sometimes the choice gets made for you. The latest story is really only news at all because the couple in question—in Orlando, Florida—are fighting back against the city which is telling them that they’re not allowed to grow vegetables in their front yard. They (Jason and Jennifer Helvenston) are now launching a protest campaign called “Plant a Seed, Change the Law,” seeking to win back the right to grow carrots and radishes on one’s own land in Orlando.

The city of Orlando is on track to begin fining them $500 a day, beginning Thursday.

From the website of the suburban insurrectionists:

Why did we plant our Patriot Garden? Because we have a constitutional right to grow our own food peacefully on our own private property. And because it just makes sense.

The U.S. and Florida constitutions protect our property rights from arbitrary invasions. Insisting that we grow grass instead of a vegetable plant is irrational and beyond the scope of government power. The city should not only withdraw its demands that we tear up our garden, but amend its zoning code to allow more people to take our lead.

You really have admire optimists in this day and age. All we need is about 200 million more of them.


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