The Masked Menace

Folks, can’t make this up:

New York City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. introduced legislation Tuesday that would either ban or introduce tight regulations on costumed characters in New York City.

The proposal comes in the wake of several incidents involving the costumed characters in Times Square. Most recently, a man dressed as Cookie Monster from “Sesame Street” was arrested this past Sunday after allegedly shoving a 2 1/2-year-old boy.

Oh my God, he shoved a boy! And the failed Obama Administration has yet to call in a drone strike!

One bill would require registration, as well as a permission slip proving that the character involved has been licensed, for anyone appearing as a costumed character. The other bill would go farther to ban costumed characters outright.

“Clearly, the situation can’t continue to exist the way it does, and the laws we already have don’t deal with the situation,” said Vallone, a Democrat from the 22nd District.

I wonder what he is going to do about Mr. Met. The primary job of mascots, from my observations, is giving hugs to hot women.

We are slowly approaching the nadir of the Nanny State. They don’t want people to wear costumes without a license. I’d say that’s about as dumb as it could get except the Nanny State can always find new ways to get dumber.

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  1. salinger

    Fixed link to the story.

    A couple quotes from the story:

    The most recent alleged shoving incident with the man in the Cookie Monster costume – Osvaldo Quiroz-Lopez, 33, of Queens – was just the tip of the iceberg, Vallone said.

    “We’ve had an anti-Semitic Elmo. We’ve had a groping Mario. And now we have a shoving monster,”

    A disorderly conduct charge would require blocking pedestrian traffic, which the costumed characters are not always doing, Vallone explained. Licensing laws only come into play when someone is selling something, and laws prohibiting wearing masks require two people working together, he said.

    “Nothing that exists right now really gives the police the tools to deal with this the way they want to,” Vallone said.

    The characters are not regulated, but are instead considered street performers protected by the First Amendment. Tompkins said that is the main issue.

    Tompkins likewise told Diamond, “What we’re being told is that there aren’t a lot of tools in the NYPD’s toolbox.”

    But other jurisdictions have successfully instituted similar bans, Vallone said.

    Las Vegas, for example, has instituted ban on peddling by people in costumes, he said.

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  2. Seattle Outcast

    Going to be fun when the ACLU decides to dive into this mess and make the cities spend million$ in tax dollars in court costs.

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  3. Mississippi Yankee

    Wanna bet they don’t mess with the Naked Cowboy?

    /If you don’t know who he is he’s been a fixture in NYC for maybe 9-10 years/

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