21 January 2008


Most likely you have received an email sometime with a list of strange laws in the U.S. I was quite skeptical about many of them, so I checked snopes.com at that time and found their page about "loony laws." Snopes says there are thousands of websites churning out the nonsense and has checked many of the purported laws and found all they checked to be untrue. It has a page devoted to Arizona and lists some supposed law about camels there (Arizona did sport camels at one time). These mythical laws fall under another category of Urban Myth.

What I find more interesting to speculate about is the American pastime of castigating government. I have not been immune to this, by any means. But, I clearly remember my father continually disparaging government and
especially politicians in his newspaper.

We, as Americans, must have some need that is satisfied by criticism of government and politicians. What's that about? Why are we so ready to believe the ridiculousnesses of governments? I imagine that it is not a recent phenomenon and might have begun just after the setting up of our government. If you answer that our several layers of government ARE ridiculous, I'd say you have not answered the question. My question is re WHY we are so gleeful and willing to believe the worst about government. What does this say about us as a people?

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