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Friday, January 6, 2012

Wow. Portland Technically Can Ban "Obscenity" and the "the Exhibition of Deformed or Crippled Persons"

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Next week, among the more serious items on their agenda, Portland city commissioners will officially decide which changes to the city's charter (essentially, Portland's constitution) voters will get to decide on come this May.

None of the proposed changes is world-shattering. In fact—aside from two amendments that would open to scrutiny a pair of secretive, if small, discretionary funds used by the mayor and council—they're impossibly small. But you know what else? The changes are educational. And unintentionally hilarious.

For instance! Did you know Portland's charter currently charges the council with clamping down on vagrants and paupers? Also obscenity. And, for good measure, "the exhibition of deformed or crippled persons." Now you do. And now, in May, you'll be able to say yes to all those things. Sort of.

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