FaceBook is a funny place.
In a surprisingly spirited thread, one person posted a politically-oriented comment about how some states had "food disparagement" laws, and one such state -- Colorado -- had criminal penalties attached to their law.
More than a few commenters responded with incredulous "WT-fried Twinkies-F?".
Perhaps I should take careful note of this alleged fact. After all, I do live in Colorado. And am a self-professed "culinary barbarian".
So I looked up the law. And yes, there is one: Colorado Revised Statutes, Section 35-31-101, Destruction Of Food Prohibited.
Therein, it says in fully syntaxed legalese: It is unlawful for any person, firm, partnership, association, or corporation or any servant, agent, employee, or officer thereof to destroy or cause to be destroyed, or to permit to decay or to become unfit for use or consumption, or to take, send or cause to be transported out of this state so to be destroyed or permitted to decay, or knowingly to make any materially false statement, for the purpose of maintaining prices or establishing higher prices for the same, or for the purpose of limiting or diminishing the quantity thereof available for market, or for the purpose of procuring, or aiding in procuring, or establishing, or maintaining a monopoly in such articles or products, or for the purpose of in any manner restraining trade, any fruits, vegetables, grain, meats, or other articles or products ordinarily grown, raised, produced, or used in any manner or to any extent as food for human beings or for domestic animals.
In my first read of the statute, I found this to be one of the longest run-on sentences I've not written myself. In my second read, it was hard for me to fathom that they'd ever get to what was the subject of note that has all the prohibitions for/agin it.
But eventually the multiplicity of re-readings persevered, and I was able to get the gist of the law.
Next came the effort to narrow down any and all parts of the law that might just apply to me, and the regular bouts of "food disparagement" that takes place in my kitchen. Granted, one would have to work hard to parse down the verbiage, to get to what might just make me liable for criminal charges specifically. But I think I was finally able to do so:
It is unlawful for any person (and legally, I is 'any person') to destroy or cause to be destroyed, or to permit to decay or to become unfit for use or consumption (between what I ignite and what is allowed to further decay as my leftovers), any fruits, vegetables, grain, meats or other articles or products ordinarily grown, raised, produced, or used in any manner or to any extent as food for human beings or for domestic animals.
Now, I knowwwww what you're thinking, punk: I omitted the part about "knowingly to make any materially false statement". Not at all; all the fun I've made of fruitcakes is borne out by history, and by how many of you keep regifting the things, year after year. So neener neener phfffft on that part. Y'wanna try and make an issue of that? Go ahead...make my day...
And I am indemnified and held harmless on the part referring to "domestic animals"; my pet rock, Seymour, doesn't qualify. And even he runs from whatever my few leftovers morph into.
Now, do I expect the State of Colorado to show up on my doorstep and try to apply criminal penalties to me, based on what I've written in my blog about my culinary barbarity?
Nawp. The state will be dealing with the tons upon tons of toxic coleslaw a former employer's restaurant used to throw out, for years. Even now, the toxic slaw is ravaging through state landfills, attacking scavengers, small pets and tofu zombies that frequent the landfills as meal time buffets.
Compared to that and carnivorous fruitcakes, I am a less-than-bit-player in CRS Section 35-31-101.
You see, as a culinary barbarian, I am a man who knows his limitations. And Clint Eastwood character quotes.
Labels: Colorado, criminal penalties, culinary barbarian, Facebook, food disparagement laws