We know from experience that two things make for strange and uncomfortable subway videos: food and rats. Now, in order to get rid of the latter, a New York State Senate bill aims at getting rid of the former. The New York Post reports that the proposed bill would institute a $250 fine for anyone caught snacking, and that money would go to a fund to help curb litter.
For the state senator that proposed the bill, Bill Perkins (D-Manhattan), it’s about making sure the subways don’t become rat restaurants when people throw their leftovers onto the tracks.
“The question becomes, ‘How can we minimize the feasts that rats are experiencing?’ By trying to control human behaviors,” Perkins told the Post.
Rats are one of Perkins’ “pet peeves,” he said in a video posted to his webpage. He even has a report called “Rat Attack!”
Even though the bill has support from other senators — “I’m generally supportive of people eating at tables or sitting down,” Democrat Suzi Oppenheimer told the Post — some riders were not as thrilled. (Coming clean, this blogger has been known to discreetly munch on granola bars while in transit if feeling peckish.)
But this is not the first time a food ban has been considered. The MTA itself proposed a food and beverage ban back in March. That idea, the Post reports, was shot down by Jay Walder, at that point MTA-Chairman, who didn’t think it was doable.
We admit that we wonder if a subway food ban might play out the same way the smoking ban did this past summer: a little over a month after smoking was outlawed in parks, beaches and pedestrian plazas only one person had been ticketed.