Why Did This Wisconsin Town Ban Snowballs?
The thought of throwing a snowball at a person in the middle of winter is exciting. Every person that has ever been in the snow has taken a ball of it and lobbed it at another person. It is just one of America’s favorite pastime things to do towards each other. The very thought of banning snowball throwing never crosses a person’s mind because it is simply innocent fun. But that is not the case in one small town nestled back from time in the state of Wisconsin. It is here that the town of Wausau would find itself standing alone with a law that made snowball throwing illegal.
The idea behind the law was to keep harmful objects from becoming airborne weapons. A simple throwing of a rock could potentially harm a person. So a list of objects like rocks and other items was approved to be illegal if thrown through the air. But a snowball? This one law has been at the end of jokes for decades in Wausau. It was a law that made no sense and dealt with an issue that was more a matter of the heart than that of the will.
It was in 1962 when snowballs were added to the list of items forbidden to throw. It makes one think of why they were added to the list. Nearly 50 years ago a group of people decided to take the fun away from a snow community that took pleasure in throwing snowballs at each other. Snowballs can be a dangerous object if another material has made its way into its formation. What could be an innocent snowball can become an ice ball if it is packed too hard. There is a level of commonsense that must be used when constructing snowballs.
The law has been made fun of throughout the years and put up in headlines everywhere which has prompted Lisa Rasmussen who is the city council president to say “Maybe it’s worth giving a look to see if that list could be amended, to mitigate that odd news story that keeps coming up like a bad penny.” The ordinance is something that has been made fun of for years. In one case the Deputy Chief Matt Barnes would talk about the need for the law and say that the ordinance is “put in place for a good reason… it’s for the safety of our community.” The funny part about his statement is that the police were engaging in a snowball fight behind him.
This kind of rule is not isolated. There are several communities in Wisconsin that have rules and laws against throwing snowballs. In the state of Colorado, there is the boy that is petitioning the lawmakers to let him be the first to throw a snowball in nearly 100 years.
The law is one of those funny parts of American history. What one generation sees as an issue is usually made fun of or changed by another generation. The police in Wausau have issued citations for throwing snowballs. But the number of citations issued has been less than 10 in the past 15 years. Of those 10 instances, only two were issued for throwing snowballs at cars. Shooting crossbows has seen more citations issued than snowballs.
Barnes stated also that “There’s ordinances like this throughout the United States. To individuals in our community: a fun snowball fight is a fun snowball fight, and that’s not something we enforce this ordinance with.” It was at that moment that he threw one at the Mayor of Wausau. The city council is going to take a look at the law and see if it can be done away with.
The police stated that in the case a snowball was tossed “We would address it appropriately, and in my head — I don’t know if a citation would be appropriate. You never know.” The current fine for throwing a snowball is $114. This is just one of the many stories that make America an interesting and great nation to be a part of. It also shows the need to protect the American identity from those like the Democrats that would seek to destroy it all.