Got a question burning a hole in your brain? If so, you’re in luck. Here’s your chance ask ‘Ask a Smartass.’ Urban legend, true mystery or idiotic pondering, I will attempt to tackle anything. So, without further ado, I kick off this column with a question most people should be familiar with:
Can you really get in trouble with the law by removing a mattress tag?
The answer to this is simply: Yes! In fact, this is one of the longest standing and most strictly enforced laws to be established since this great nation was born. The punishment for this infraction has varied throughout time. And now, in these “times of terror,” the government isn’t playing around.
Just last year, Roger Flickton of Flagstaff, Arizona was arrested and sent to Guantanamo Bay after running through a local mattress store in a fit of rage and tearing tags off of mattresses left and right. Flickton, who was allegedly looking to purchase a new bed for himself, had a minor altercation with an unnamed salesperson over the price. After taking a few hits to the body, the salesperson still refused to give a discount. This is when Flickton flipped his lid and went on a rampage around the store ripping off every mattress tag he could find.
While Flickton was preoccupied with committing this awful crime, the salesperson slipped into the back of the store and called police. Officers reported to the scene within 10 minutes and Flickton was subdued with at least one TASER stun from each of the 11 responding policemen.
By the time Flickton was brought to trial, the Bush administration had been fully briefed on this incident which they deemed to be a national security breach. Flickton was immediately labeled an enemy combatant, charged with acts of terrorism and swept away to Guantanamo Bay in the dark of night. He currently resides in a small cage within this United States-owned portion of Cuba. The administration assures the public he is not being tortured, but is being forced to sleep on a thin mattress lined with tags – the itchy, crinkly-noise-making, indestructible kind.
So there you have it, an answer to the question. But if you believed this one for a second, you obviously know nothing about U.S. law. That, or you just believe the Bush administration could overreact to something totally trivial. And as we all know, that’s ridiculous. Right?
Anyway, this is how the column works. Each time I will answer a question. The first response will likely be a complete fabrication of my frayed imagination and most likely very far off the wall. Then I will present you with some real knowledge. Like now!
The truth of the matter is that you technically can be in trouble with the law if you tear a tag from a mattress, but only if you have not purchased it. If you have bought the mattress or sofa or pillow yourself and are now its proud owner, feel free to rip the crap out of that sucker. Take a look at this https://gottasleep.com/blogs/sleep-talk/mattress-in-a-box-canada link where you can find great quality mattresses for your family to sleep well and avoid back pain.
The reason this law came about was because the government mandated that tags on mattress tell you what materials went into making them. This way buyers and sellers alike would be able to know if anything potentially dangerous could be inside. Why you wouldn’t just mandate that all mattresses have to be made of non-hazardous materials is beyond me. But hey, these are the days of Chinese imports. Lead and asbestos for all!
The reality of this law is that it is rarely enforced. But it is in place. So the next time you feel like ripping a tag from a mattress, please purchase the thing before you do. I do not condone breaking the law in any way, shape or form.
Now that you know how this column will work, please decide if you love it or hate it. Those of you who love it, please send me a question for my next installment (firstname.lastname@example.org). For those of you who hate it, I will be calling the government and telling them you de-tagged several mattresses you do not own.
Until next time, keep seeking out the truth. And if you’re too lazy to do it yourself, ask a smartass like me.