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December 13th, 2017

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Undignified Death | Over-regulated weirdness

News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

By News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

Published Jan. 28, 2016

Undignified Death |  Over-regulated weirdness

On Dec. 2, a 48-year-old woman in Alicante, Spain, who according to neighbors had suffered from depression and was likely trying to commit suicide, leaped from her seventh-floor balcony -- but failed. She was hospitalized in stable condition after landing on an elderly gentleman sitting on a bench (who did not survive the collision). [The Local (Madrid), 12-3-2015]

Achan Agit presents a worst-case scenario for the weirdness in how some state governments over-regulate professions, and she is currently suing the Iowa Board of Cosmetology Arts & Sciences for burdening her right to make a living.

As Forbes.com reported in October, Achan was a war refugee from what is currently South Sudan and is now a permanent resident of the United States -- and skilled in braiding hair, which she learned from elders when she was 5. However, a licensed braider in Iowa (maximum penalty if caught unlicensed: prison, plus a $10,000 fine) needs a high school diploma or equivalent and 2,100 hours of cosmetology coursework -- more than the combined training for dental assistants, bus drivers, EMTs, child care workers and security guards -- and for which Iowa's 27 cosmetology "schools" might charge up to $22,000. [Forbes.com, 10-28-2015]

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