In the latest example of government gone amok, Jill Bass of Oak Park, Michigan faces up to 93 days in jail for planting a beautifully maintained vegetable garden in her front yard. Ms. Bass has already been issued a ticket and now faces misdemeanor charges for her industriousness.
The cash strapped Oak Park, which should arguably spend its dwindling financial resources and efforts on more serious municipal matters, contends that Ms. Bass’ garden violates city code which requires front yards to consist of “suitable live plant material”.
Last time I checked, vegetables growing in a garden are indeed alive! With regards to “suitable”, a plant that can be consumed by the people tending it does seem to qualify, don’t you think?
It seems the City of Oak Park considers pesticide and chemically fertilized grass to be more “suitable” front yard greenery than a humble vegetable garden.
Such foolishness reminds me of the stories I used to hear back in my Cold War school days when our Civics teacher would tell a roomful of wide-eyed and incredulous children about Russian peasants being hauled off to jail for growing their own food! In Communist societies, no one “owns” anything .. any vegetables that were grown had to be commissioned and approved by the State.
Nothing like that could ever happen in the good ‘ole US of A, right?
One can only hope that Ms. Bass’ neighbors and the community of Oak Park will flood the city phone lines with complaints about such over the top harassment. Imagine that tax dollars are actually being used to pay for this outrage.
Take a look at a picture of Ms. Bass’ vegetable garden and how beautifully it is maintained by clicking here.
She can come and plant a garden in my front yard anytime! Fortunately, my community allows it!
Sarah Pope has been a Health and Nutrition Educator since 2002. Her work is dedicated to helping families effectively incorporate the principles of ancestral diets within the modern household. She is a sought after lecturer around the world for conferences, summits, and podcasts.
Her work has been covered by major media including USA Today, ABC, NBC, and many others.