posted at 6:05 pm on March 16, 2009 by Ed Morrissey
An old political joke instructed people that the difference between liberals and conservatives was that the former wanted government in the boardroom while the latter wanted government in the bedroom. Maybe we need a new category of people who want government in your underwear. New Jersey now wants to outlaw the Brazilian wax job:
Things could get hairy in New Jersey this summer for women who sport revealing bikinis or a little bit less.
The painful Brazilian wax and its intimate derivatives are in danger of being stripped from salon and spa menus if a recent proposal to ban genital waxing is passed by the state’s Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling.
Cherry Hill salon owner Linda Orsuto said that women would “go ballistic” if the proposal passed. She said that some women would resort to waxing themselves, visiting unlicensed salons or traveling to other states, including Pennsylvania, in a quest to remain bare down there.
“The clients are going to freak,” said Orsuto, who owns 800 West Salon & Spa, on Route 70. “It’s a hot issue, and we’re going to have to do something.”
New Jersey statutes allow waxing of the face, neck, arms, legs and abdomen, but officials say that genital waxing has always been illegal, although not spelled out.
Without commenting on the value or the need for such services as a Brazilian wax, why is New Jersey involved in the issue at all? Politicians say they have received complaints about injuries and infections, but point to a grand total of two such hospitalizations in a year. I’d bet bicycling generates more than that in a month in New Jersey, and is less regulated. Those two cases can be addressed through licensing boards and legal action against the service provider, not an outright ban.
People pay for a lot of services and goods I’d choose not to buy, including this, but that doesn’t mean it should be banned. What possible state interest could be found in banning hair removal and the voluntary agreement for compensation for it?
On the other hand, maybe Garden State residents have it good. Obviously, their state government has solved all of their other problems if they have time to worry about Brazilian wax jobs. Maybe New Jersey voters should call their state legislators and, er, congratulate them on having so much free time that they feel compelled to worry about bikini lines.
Update: As commenter Csdeven warns, get ready for a flood of back-alley wax jobs. “Keep your hands off of my … er …”