CAUGHT IN MY UNAWARES
There’s quite a fight going on in Pennsylvania. It seems the local officials have complained the Carin Froelich has been hanging her laundry outside to dry. She has strung a line between two trees outside her 18th century farmhouse. Apparently this is a fight across the country. The right to hang! "If we can own guns, we can hang our laundry!" (?) This is true. Despite the fact that is energy conserving and certainly lends itself to being green, neighbors and city officials have asked these people to stop.
I was totally unaware that this could be offensive. There are times that I have hung some articles of clothing that simply say "hang dry." Apparently the complaint is "it makes our neighborhood look like a trailer park." Hm. My question, is – are you hanging your clothes in the backyard or the front?
Carin has received notes – anonymous of course, that say "we don’t want to see your underwear flapping about." I wonder how much flapping is really going on. Carin is not an old lady. Okay, I have to admit – if I did hang my unmentionables it was usually over the shower rod in the bathroom.
There aren’t any laws on the books about it being illegal to hang your laundry outside (thank heavens). But townsfolk are saying it’s an aesthetics thing. Now we know, we shouldn’t "air our dirty laundry" for the world to see – but clean laundry for approximately 2 hours in the sun. Is this really something we should be spending much time and taxpayers money on? Energy experts have said, "line drying can save energy and greenhouse gases."
People for the "Right to hang" are represented by Project Laundry List; a group that argues people can save money and reduce carbon emissions by not using their electric or gas dryers, according to the group's executive director, Alexander Lee.
Widespread adoption of clotheslines could significantly reduce U.S. energy consumption, Lee argued.
Florida, Utah, Maine, Vermont, Colorado, and Hawaii have passed laws restricting the rights of local authorities to stop residents from hanging clothes outside. Another five states are considering similar measures, said Lee, 35, a former lawyer who quit to run the non-profit group.
It’s become such an issue Carin is writing a book on the subject. My guess is it’s going to be a very small book; perhaps entitled "Two Thongs don’t make a right."
Carin says the "right to hang is the embodiment of the American freedom." All I have to say is "if we don’t all hang together we shall surely hang separately."
Carin Forelich has drawn a line in the sand – uh, or in the air.
This may give new meaning to the phrase "line item veto."