Behavior Controls are Ineffective

To the editor of the Bloomington/Richfield Sun Current

Attempts to micromanage human behavior usually fail because the governing entity does not have total control over the behavior they want to stop. This is why ordinances designed to break behavior deemed by officials as being unhealthy or bad are ineffective.

Blm_City_Council_July_27.JPGTwo ordinances passed by the Bloomington City Council, the conversion therapy ban and the flavored cigarette ban, fall in this category. There are ample opportunities elsewhere to seek similar sexual orientation therapies or buy flavored cigarettes. Furthermore, the internet offers several ways to circumvent these local ordinances. At its heart, bad or unhealthy behavior can only be broken when the individual has the willpower and determination to change that behavior.

The fact that the government does not have total control over ingrained bad behavior is clearly illustrated in its attempt to prohibit liquor sales in the 1920s and 1930s. For all practical purposes, the conversion therapy and flavored cigarette bans are window-dressing meant to mollify special interest groups.

Finally, Bloomington voters should wake up to the fact that decisions made at city hall will impact their daily lives more than those made in St. Paul or Washington, D.C.

Today’s council members may want to tell you where and when you should recycle, wash your car and what kind of paint, light bulbs or insulation you can use in your homes. It is likely that they will be telling you that your home must be green-certified very soon.

With city council elections coming up in November, and with dismally low turnout in midterm elections, it is more important than ever for candidates to begin early doing voter outreach and education. It is also very important for Bloomington voters who prefer making their own personal lifestyle decisions to vote out the council members who arrogantly judge others and seek to eliminate their deplorable lifestyles.

This Opinion letter was published in the May 23 Sun Current.