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Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016

Answering Mother Nature is legal issue

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

If all goes according to plan, St. Louis city officials will soon make it less painful to pee in public. Well, actually they're trying to make it less costly by changing the definition of public urination away from lewd and lascivious conduct.

When St. Louis plays host to the annual Mardi Gras Parade in late February, alcohol and swollen bladders combine to make public urination a real problem. But as the law now reads, peeing in public is in the same category as sex offenses and that troubles St. Louis officials. So a bill is in the works that would redefine public urination. Oddly, the bill is being sponsored by a tavern owner - makes sense to me.

But the bill goes even a step beyond. It draws a distinction between discreet urination - like behind a dumpster in the alley - and "going in the middle of the street, in front of God and country," says the bill's sponsor.

It will still cost you between $100-500 to pee in the streets of St. Louis but at least you won't have to register as a sex offender or have your mug shot posted on a sex offender Website.

The problem is so bad that some residents along the Mardi Gras parade route leave their lawn sprinklers on to discourage people from relieving themselves in their yards.

Add this item to the list of reasons why St. Louis is so tourist-friendly. Now if you have the cash, you can pee to your heart's desire in St. Louis. But alas, there is a catch. The bill, as written, applies only to special events such as the Mardi Gras or concerts or sporting events. Ordinary, Friday night public peeing is still prohibited.

When Mother Nature calls, St. Louis is the place to be!

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Michael Jensen
Michael Jensen