bureaucrats is no longer considered an appropriate form of shame and
humiliation, the question arises as to what to do with the Reno
apparatchik who recently issued a citation to a pair of kids operating
an “illegal” lemonade stand.
According to the Associated Press, the Washoe County Health District
has admitted that one of its health inspectors shut down the lemonade
stand being operated by 12-year-old Emma Ferrell and 14-year-old Alex
Farrell during the Reno-Tahoe Open golf tournament on August 3rd for
failing to have obtained the proper government-issued permits.
Oh, the humanity!
According to Robert Fernandes of a national organization called
Lemonade Freedom, the kids and their parents live in the Montreaux
Golf and Country Club community where the annual PGA golf tournament
“Alex and Emma sell ice cold lemonade, homemade cookies, and gently
use golf balls that they custom decorate for customers,” Fernandes
reported on his blog. “They have been operating this stand in front of
their house for the past five years with nothing but compliments and
support from the community.”
But this year an as yet unidentified Washoe County Health Inspector
(no relation to Larry the Cable Guy) issued the kids an “Operating
without a valid health permit” citation and shut the lemonade stand
down “because another vendor launched a complaint claiming that sales
were low because of the lemonade stand.”
Welcome to the real world, kids; where a competitor will “rat” you out
to “the man” and use the strong arm of government to squash a smaller,
start-up operation. Indeed, do not be surprised when some day the
Nevada Legislature creates a Lemonade Stand Licensing Board and
requires you to get a college degree in Lemonade Administration before
being allowed to sell cups of this summertime beverage favorite.
It’s bad enough that some low-life competitor would whine and snitch
to the Health Police that a pair of teenage kids were operating an
“illegal” lemonade stand. That’s just bad form. But for a government
agent to actually take the complaint seriously, shut the stand down
and issue a citation?
That’s just being stuck on stupid.
This War on Lemonade Stands is part of an even larger war on
capitalism and entrepreneurship; where self-employment and making a
profit are seen as inherently evil and should be punished rather than
encouraged; where the rich aren’t “paying their fair share” and the
poor are innocent victims of greed and avarice.
This is a war against all that has made America the greatest,
most-prosperous nation in the world — which was aided-and-abetted by
this clueless, heartless, soulless health inspector. Almost makes me
yearn for a return of the good ol’ days of tar-and-feathers.
Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a non-profit public
policy grassroots advocacy organization. He may be reached at