Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Salem Funky Chicken

Only funky because the City Council is making this "chicken dance" all much harder than necessary.

Since hens were legal in Salem until the 70s, logic suggests that someone in the City ought to be able to explain what problems caused them to be banned -- except that logic had nothing to do with it. The hens got caught up in an ordinance change intended to ban real livestock -- like cows and horses -- from Salem residential areas, where they were present in the first place because Salem went on an annexation craze and brought some pretty rural areas into the city limits.

Ah well, seems like we'll eventually get there. After all, the City Manager touted the City's habit of "benchmarking" against other cities policies and procedures when responding to a citizen question at the budget "town hall meetings" recently. And any serious benchmarking effort would show that urban hens are both very successful and very popular in countless cities, from small, pretty rural towns to large, urban hypercities like New York and Chicago, and in many mid-sized cities very much like Salem. Eventually the City Council will have to stop giving a veto over this benign practice to the handful of fearmongers who imagine a parade of horrible consequences from hens while ignoring all the evidence of successful urban hens in all those other cities.

1 comment:

Amy said...

so the city council passed this along to Marion County? Any idea when we will be hearing about their decision? We just had a city code compliance officer come and tell us we have to get rid of our two little red hens. They have been our pets for 2 years and provide about a dozen eggs every week. We are sad to have to get rid of them...