Being a New Jersey resident, I am regularly reminded that my elected representatives have too much time and power on their hands. Like today, when reading about the legislative war on teens who tan.
The Senate and Assembly health committees overwhelmingly approved a measure that would prohibit anyone under 18 from using indoor tanning beds -- even if they have permission from their parents.
This is one of those rare cases in Trenton when Republicans and Democrats in both chambers seem to agree unanimously: The bipartisan legislation (S2119) passed the Senate panel by a 9-0 vote and was approved by a 6-1 margin the Assembly.
To recap, New Jersey officials are practically paralyzed when it comes to runaway taxes, a criminally underfunded pension sytsem, toxic public corruption, a school funding crisis and urban devastation in Newark and Camden. But they come together swiftly, bringing everything they've got, to stop cheerleaders from bronzing before prom.
Lest you think the Garden State is pro-skin cancer, the current law seems plenty tough enough: It requires teens 14 to 17 to have parental permission to blow their allowance at Hollywood Tans.
Apparently, politicians in this state don't believe that father knows best.
-- Monica Yant Kinney
(for more, read philly.com/blinq)