Saturday, May 16, 2009

Does D.C. Backyard Chicken Ban Apply to The White House?

AAEA wants to know. According to the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), the District does not permit backyard chickens. We disagree with this ban on the possession of backyard chickens and believe that President and First Lady Obama should push the District to lift this ban. The Obamas are early risers anyway and a rooster call would not disturb any nearby residents. Is the early morning rooster call the main motivation for the ban? If so, that is a flimsy reason to practice backyard bias against the possession of these magnificient birds.

Moreover, the first family could demonstrate their commitment to backyard chickens by putting a small chicken coop in their 1,100-square-foot vegetable garden at The White House. We do not believe the DCRA regulations apply to The White House. And even if they do, how would DCRA enforce a ban on backyard chickens at The White House? Would DCRA send in a team to seize the chickens?

The Park Service already removed the raccoons from The White House lawn. We are now concerned that any possible incursion by groundhogs or moles could be met with similar resistance. The Obamas could have an upscale chicken coop constructed in their garden [see photo at left, courtesy: Tatertots and Jello]. We are sure the first family would enjoy those fresh eggs. (WashPost, 5/14/09)

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