The government has gotten so big that kids can no longer sell lemonade for charity without being shut down by bureaucracy.
According to CBS Denver, “Denver police shut down a lemonade stand put on by a group of brothers over a permitting issue.”
Jennifer Knowles, the mother who helped her sons erect the lemonade stand, said she wanted them to learn a little bit about entrepreneurship and charity. Little did she know they would learn a tough lesson about the heartlessness of Uncle Sam.
“The boys went online and they decided they wanted to help a child in another country less fortunate, and we found a place in Colorado Springs called Charity International, and they picked a five-year-old boy in Indonesia,” she said.
Despite the inherent innocence and good nature of this lemonade stand, a miserly Scrooge yelled “bah humbug” to the police, resulting in the boys’ charitable operation being shut down.
“Someone complained about our lemonade stand,” said Knowles.
When the police showed up, they told the two tykes that they need a permit to sell lemonade, comparing their stand to hot dog, peanut and sunflower seed vendors outside Coors Field.
“The city says it’s about health and safety, but in the Knowles’ case, competition may also be in play,” reports CBS Denver. “The Knowles set up right next to the Denver Arts Festival, where there was a lemonade vendor.”
It turns out the professional lemonade vendor, who probably lost only one or two customers to the little lemonade stand, felt threatened.
“We had never thought that the other lemonade vendor could feel threatened by our little kid lemonade stand,” said Knowles. “I can understand why someone would get upset.”
In response, Knowles will now ask the city, in advance, to waive permits for her children’s lemonade stand. “In hindsight we would have never set up where we did, when we did, and we would have just done it another time. Lesson learned,” said Knowles.
The charity made only $200 before police shut them down. A permit would have cost $125 for a day.