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Chris Saxman: Cold Fusion-Political Rally Safety Act Edition

Lost amidst all the consternation brought to us by President Obama’s now famous line that business owners “did not build” their businesses and that “Someone else did that” is the fact that political rallies are a clear and present danger to public safety.

At the Obama rally at Firehouse #1 in Roanoke, 20 people passed out and one person was even taken to the hospital!

It is high time that the Congress of these Here States United develop and pass legislation that appropriately regulates inherently dangerous political rallies.

Evidently it is just super duper fine with our ruling political class that almost two dozen people have to be treated by trained medical personnel. We can only assume that advanced levels of psychotherapy are not part of the insurance liability contracts for said rallies.

This is not the American way of doing business. Well, actually it is – if you are engaged in providing products and services to the American public.

If twenty people had passed out at our company and one person was taken to the hospital, you can bet your last plug nickel that OSHA would have been there before sun down.

Surely, you can’t be serious. (I am serious and don’t call me Shirley) h/t Leslie Nielsen.

Politics is BIG business, right? Why is it exempt from the myriad of regulations that everyday American businesses must endure often under the guise of protecting health and public safety.

I understand our freedom of association rights, but does that give carte blanche to political parties and candidates to cram supporters into a small area and fill it for the best photo opportunity? I think not.

Appropriate levels of regulation can help foster a productive and efficient free market capitalist society. I think the best minds that inhabit our Nation’s capitol can craft necessary regulations without trampling our God given rights to freely associate.

How hard could it be to have water stations, port-a-potties and enough space designated for the crowds of people expected to attend?

Of course that would mean dictating the amount of potable water on hand so that healthy levels of hydration are maintained throughout the event. This would include the pre-gathering and post-gathering entertainment. Naturally, one would assume a set rate per person. But that would lead to all kinds of problems since there are people who have differing rate of Body Mass Index who require very different levels of hydration to maintain personal safety. A 400 pound man will need several more servings than say an 11 year old, right?

In order to help that calculation, every campaign would simply need to have every person register their BMI at the entrance to the event and then extrapolate out whatever FDA guidelines are for hydration. Those are easily promulgated regulations. Easy. Easy Peasy.

OSHA. They would have to have enough people on hand to make sure that any and all physical safety hazards are removed and enough space was available so that the over crowding that often takes place at these rallies is not sought after by over zealous communications staffers looking for staging the best camera angles. Regulations for this are also quite easy. Simply have the campaigns submit documentation on how many people have registered for the event 72 hours before the event so that OSHA can come out and clear enough space including areas for physically challenged attendees.

EPA guidelines would also have to be issued as, let’s be honest here, rally attendee’s gaseous emissions are not put on hold at political rallies. Methane gas is a real threat to humans and we need to make certain that ventilation can handle the mass’s gases. I have no conclusive data as to whether or not this would intensify local contributions in non-attainment areas, but a thorough study by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration should be undertaken. This valuable data will help save lives, now and in the future.

Once the EPA, FDA, OSHA and NOAA all submit their proposed regulations, the regulatory process would be engaged.

I think we can all be assured that this will have absolutely no effect whatsoever on the cost of political campaigns just as regulations have no cost in the everyday experiences of American businesses.

Even if there was, the most important thing to remember here is that public health and safety overrides any and all associated costs. Besides, if there is an associated cost to full compliance, the campaigns can simply charge admission to their rallies since turnout will not be impacted.

Really. If it saves just one life, this resulting regulatory process would have been worth the effort.

I would hope that some public interest group would file an injunction and stop these dangerous political rallies.

Now is the time. Save the people.

Pass the Political Rally Safety Act!

Then the local governments can pass their ordinances to cover their concerns which would likely take care of having the EMT, Police, and Fire Rescue personnel on hand.

Communications staffers will become angry and might yell at someone. Legislation can then be drawn up to address unsafe work environments created by political personnel who will be required to attend sensitivity training. And forklift training, just in case.  No time or money spent on that.

This would lead to the next lawyer commercial – “Have you been injured at a political rally? Been treated badly by a political campaign staffer even if you were a volunteer?”

Call 1-800 – B-U-L-L-S-H-T. Call it. Now.


Augusta Health Augusta Free Press Kris McMackin CPA
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