It’s hard to disagree with the notion that some lawmakers just don’t operate on the same planet as the rest of us. Consider House Bill 1867, filed by State Rep. Rafael Anchia (D-Dallas). This remarkable example of government micromanagement would regulate the bagging choices of customers, by requiring check-out clerks to “ask the customer if the customer would like to purchase a reusable bag… at reasonable price.” Is he kidding?

Sadly, no. You just cannot make this stuff up. The affable Mr. Anchia would make it a crime — yes, a crime! — if the clerk fails to offer the reasonably priced, reusable bags. He or she will get hit with a $200 to $600 fine.

And the business that allows such a miscreant and scofflaw to continue to breathe? Well, they will face fines of $200 to $500 per violation.

In case you are wondering, Mr. Anchia’s official biography helping notes that he has a “genuine passion for helping people and true empathy for their struggles and aspirations.” He’s also a trial lawyer. How the two are reconciled is an issue left unexplored…

If Mr. Anchia truly wanted to help people, he wouldn’t offer mind-numbing regulations such as this. This legislation will only serve to stifle commerce in the poorest of neighborhoods, and force check-out clerks and small business owners to fret over insane rules of conduct.

On the other hand, it will mean more employment for lawyers struggling with their aspirations to sue.

Daniel Greer

Daniel Greer is the Director of Innovation for Texas Scorecard.


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