As the reigning champions of banning all the things and letting an agenda dominate legislation before, you know, thinking of long-term consequences and implications, New York can’t complain too much when its idiotic laws make headlines. As a born-and-bred upstate New Yorker myself, it’s a depressing time to be a conservative in the Empire State.
Even at the local level, New York’s lawmakers are so in love with hyper-regulation as their weapon of choice in creating the socialist, environmentalist utopia of their dreams, and few of them have it down to a science quite like New York City.
When NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo (or, as I like to call him, King Andy) passed an impending ban on single-use plastic shopping bags as a part of the state’s most brazenly leftist budget to date, New York City council members said, “hold my beer.”
Okay, they didn’t really say that, but you get the idea.
As a part of King Andy’s agenda-soaked budget, the plastic bag ban comes with an “optional” 5-cent tax on paper bags, and you can bet your buffalo wings NYC is gonna take him up on it.
The fee—fee, tax, call it what you want, it’s still the state demanding money—is intended to force consumers to use those reusable shopping totes we love to forget in the car every single time we go to Wegmans.
Now, to be as amiable as I can, I can understand some of the reasons folks oppose the use of plastic shopping bags. Heck, we’re seeing dead whales wash up on shore with more than 80 pounds of plastic trash lodged in their bodies, y’all. I get it, hippies, I’m tracking with you on that one.
But, as usual, New York’s single-party rulers are seeing a problem and going after it with a liberty-crushing, response that doesn’t actually solve the problem, but you can bet they’re gonna generate revenue from it.
For one, there’s a decent case to be made that single-use plastic shopping bags actually are better for the environment in the long run than their paper and reusable counterparts. But let’s be fair, it took me a whole 27 seconds on Google to find a dozen studies that demonstrate that fact. Lawmakers don’t have that kind of time on their hands when they’ve got an agenda to push!
Second, as an already anti-family state, New York’s plastic bag bans are only going to hurt baby-farmers like me. Don’t believe me? You try going on a grocery run with half the children of the neighborhood (or so onlookers assume when they see us roll up), wait for ten years at the checkout while the cashier fumbles around trying to cram all the food for said children into paper bags, and on top of it, I get to part with a nickel for every bag used.
Yeah, I’m really not looking forward to that.
Nevermind the fact that most of us reuse our shopping bags around the house, cleaning up after our pets, or even donating the clean ones to local food banks and thrift stores (who will also suffer under this newest nanny state policy).
King Andy’s logic also completely ignores the fact that different types of reusable bags need to be reused up to thousands of times before they can even come close to the environmental friendliness of plastic bags, and that ain’t happenin’ when they sit in the back of the car every time we go shopping.
New York’s surprisingly huge contingency of conservatives and other politically-unaffiliated people who simply have functioning brains have long since moved past the point of being surprised by the asinine laws passed in our beloved home state. Maybe it’s time to pack our bags (paper or plastic) and move on.