Everyone remembers the innocent joy evoked by the melodious jingle of their local ice cream van on a balmy summer’s day with a fondness equalled only by our nostalgic impulsion to keep a fervent belief in Father Christmas alive and kicking in each successive generation.
Simply put, it’s one of the simple pleasures in life that we wouldn’t begrudge any child. Except, it seems, in Horn Lake, Mississippi, where police have slapped an ice cream truck driver with a hefty $300 fine for playing his jingle too loud.
The ice cream truck reportedly violated a city noise ordinance which states that noise from vehicles must not travel to be heard further than 30 feet away.
Absolutely adamant to stick to the letter of the law, Horn Lake Police Chief Darryl Whaley stated, “Unless there is an exception carved out, we apply the ordinance as it’s written.”
And if that doesn’t sound bad enough, the Police Chief went on to explain that the initial reason for stopping the vehicle was for the infraction of selling in the park, which is not allowed in the city.
Now we have to admit, Horn Lake does sound like a safe and peaceful community – after all, if their police officers have time to go around measuring the sound wave radii of ice cream vans, then presumably there aren’t too many proper criminals running amok for them to chase.
But banning ice cream vans from parks, silencing their jingles and robbing children of the euphoric scramble to the front of the queue is just not something we can get on board with!