Saturday, March 03, 2012

LAWS!



Commission Regulation (EC) No 2257/94 of the European Union, aka the “bendy banana law,” lays down minimum quality standards for bananas. It went into effect on Jan 1, 1995.

Green bananas should be green and unripened, fit for human consumption, not rotten, clean, free of pests and pest-caused damage, free from bruising or any “foreign” smell or taste. It should be at least 14 cm long () and 2.7 cm thick (). And—get this—the regulation mandates that bananas not have an “abnormal curvature.” Hence the “bendy banana law.” I am surprised they didn’t mandate a particular color for the banana, though, truth be told, bananas do come in a variety of colors.

Popular commentary on this law has derided it as an example of needless European bureaucracy.

The “bendy banana law,” indeed! (Apparently there is also an injunction in force against overly curved cucumbers!)

But how about this most recent pontification from law-makers on the other side of the Atlantic?

Last November, EU officials concluded, after a 3-year investigation, that water does not hydrate! They failed to find evidence of this fact that has been undisputed for millennia. Water does not hydrate. So producers of bottled water are now forbidden by law from making that “dubious” claim, and can face two years in jail if they defy this edict.

One MEP (Member of the European Parliament) spoke for many when he declared, “This is stupidity writ large. The euro is burning, the EU is falling apart and yet here they are: highly-paid, highly-pensioned officials worrying about the obvious qualities of water and trying to deny us the right to say what is patently true. If ever there were an episode which demonstrates the folly of the great European project then this is it.”

The EU is not alone in this asinine endeavor of over-intrusive law-making.

Did you know that in the US, you could be in violation of the law if you impersonated a member of the clergy?

Whoever, being in a public place, fraudulently pretends by garb or outward array to be a minister of any religion, or nun, priest, rabbi or other member of the clergy, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $500.00 or confinement in the county jail for not more than one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment. (Acts 1965, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 273, p. 381; Code 1975, §13-4-99.)

One of my favorite laws in ye olde State of Texas:

Resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring, That it adopt the Bluebonnet song as the State Flower Song. (Acts 1933, 43rd Leg., p. 930, H.C.R. No. 24.)

I’m still trying to figure out what a “State Flower Song” means.

If you had any doubts about God’s laws, though, you can rest easy.

So then, the Law is holy,
and the commandment is
holy and righteous and good.
For we know that the Law is spiritual.
I joyfully concur with the law of God
in the inner man.
Romans 7:12, 14

God’s laws are for our good, for our well-being, for our alignment to the demands of God, for our conformity to the image of Christ.

The law of the LORD is perfect,
restoring the soul. …
The precepts of the LORD are right,
rejoicing the heart.
The commandment of the LORD is pure,
enlightening the eyes.
They are more desirable than gold,
yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey ….
In keeping them there is great reward.
Psalm 19:7–8, 10–11

God’s laws? Worth keeping!

2 comments:

Disciple of Thecla said...

With humanity, all manner of eccentricity is possible.

Abe Kuruvilla said...

Indeed!