• March 9, 2018

Grace, 1918, Photo by Eric Enstrom

A faithful reader directed Minnesota Litigator to a puzzling Minnesota statute passed in 1992 and adopting state-wide zero tolerance for violence. [H/T: AG]

This is one of many odd statutes where one has to wonder what prompted it.

Minnesota’s “zero-tolerance-for-violence” statute is located in Chapter 1 of Minnesota Statutes. Chapter 1 seems to include some important state laws but also some pretty silly ones.

For example, Chapter 1 includes statutes proclaiming our state: bird, fish, gemstone, fruit, grain, soil, mushroom, drink, muffin, butterfly, sport, and photograph (see “Grace,” the image to the left, made our state photograph in a colorized version (copyright protected, apparently) in 2002).

Naturally, our state soil is lester and, yes, there is, of course, a Ballad of Lester Soil. Because what state does not have an official soil honored in a ballad?

In 1985, the Minnesota Association of Professional Soil Scientists (MAPSS), formed a committee to designate a state soil. The members voted to designate Lester as their state soil in 1987. In 2012, a significant legislative effort was undertaken to establish Lester as the ‘Official Minnesota State Soil.’ The culmination of this effort was the signing of the legislation establishing Lester as the “Official Minnesota State Soil” by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton on April 28th, 2012.

“A significant legislative effort was undertaken to establish Lester as the ‘Official Minnesota State Soil.'”

The effort appears to have taken at least 27 years (1985-2012).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.