Most mornings, as I begin my drive to the office, I turn to wave goodbye to my wife and two smiling cherubs, a wave punctuated by a few honks of the horn. A harmless way to start my day — or so I thought.
I just found out that it is illegal to use a car horn for such frivolity, in Ohio anyway. According to The Columbus Dispatch, “Ohio law says that horns are to be used only to avoid danger, although police normally don’t cite friendly beeps or the occasional frustrated fist to the wheel.” Who knew this law existed? Or that it extends to private property, nonetheless?
While it is magnanimous that police rarely enforce this law, the law still exists, punishable by a $120 fine — as one local woman recently discovered.
Having a full deck of little-known laws gives government an upper hand — providing government with an arbitrary and capricious means to punish those whose actions annoy and offend its petty officials.
In addition, the reality that the state can trump reasonable, harmless actions with little-known laws adds uncertainty to our plans. So instead of investing and facing the whims of government, consuming current capital may become the rational course of action.
An arbitrary and capricious state is a hallmark of the developing (nondeveloping?) world. Is it our fate also?
When you meet me, know you are meeting a criminal — a criminal who plans to continue his unlawful ways. It’s the only right thing to do. The state and its petty officials be damned.
Note: In Ohio, it’s also illegal to blow a whistle while riding a bicycle. I plan to do just that as soon as the weather warms. Meaningless disobedience to stoke the internal fires for liberty.