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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Street Magic versus Public Interest (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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As "street magic" tries to become an honorable pastime in American cities, there is always the conflict with “street swindling”. At what point is the local government justified in selling licenses to “street magicians” just as they would any other vendor? Why would a legitimate entertainer object to complying with the license? Why wouldn’t a street magician/entertainer strive to be distinguished from a street swindler?

Bob
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Bob Sanders

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Kozmo
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Well, first, I personally have no problem with permits. I'm not sure when the government should be able to restrict. However I understand why they want to. If you allow for one you must allow for all... simple. So the permit system if priced high enough would eliminate the beggars. I strive to be not cosidered a thief or con artist. A bum, hey, can I buy a cig for a 1/4...please?

koz
Big Jeff
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Why do people object to registering a gun?
The people who will comply with the license aren't the ones swindling people or using guns in a crime. The swindlers won't get a license and AS USUAL the law abiding person gets punished.

Instead of passing ANOTHER law, why don't cities go after the real criminals?
geemack
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Greg McNeil Peoria,Illinois
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You're so right Big Jeff.
MOTO42
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Whitehouse Texas
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Two reasons:

The Politicians have to do SOMETHING, otherwise the other Politicians will say they are slacking off. Passing a law doesn't cost much. This means the politicians can later point to it and claim they're cutting costs.
"One man's miracle is another man's warm-up"
suspectacts
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As a street performer in a big city (Boston), I am fine with the idea of licenses, which are used by the city of Cambridge, right across the river, to distinguish street performers from illegal vendors and pan-handlers.

But many performers have issues with the implied and often enforced 'control' of licenses. Licenses often include a long list of rules about where and when you can work, how loud you can be, and a host of other regulations.

Many people see street performance as artistic expression, along with a way of making a couple of bucks. Combining that with the 'free speech' issues that seem related to just standing on a street corner and talking, and you have a political debate on your hands.

Big Jeff - I couldn't disagree more about the analogy to gun registration. There is a huge difference about a gun and a street show.

If my street show were lethal I would expect the government to be a little concerned where I was doing it.

If it's true that " The people who will comply with the license aren't using guns in a crime, " then gun registration seems like a perfect tool for separating the honest people from the dishonest. And what do you mean by "punishment" - Jail time? Or are you just talking about the inconvience of following the laws?

If you want to own a tool for killing people, I want government to make you work for it.

Just one man's opinion.

Peter Gross
http://www.funnymagic.com
Danny Hustle
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Boston, MA USA
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PETER!

Good to see you here!

Hows tricks over on the West End?

Best,

Dan-
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"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
suspectacts
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Danny et al:

Faneuil Hall continues it's long and slow deterioration into a depository for chain stores and corporate logos. This year it was announced that a eight 700 lb, 8 ft. Mickey Mouse statues were to grace the Historic Quincy Market and that the street performers were not to climb on them or hang things off of them: in other words, "Respect these symbols of corporate domination".

I can only image how many of our precious Saturday afternoons will be taken over by the Devil's right hand, Radio Disney (sound of thunder).

But we roaches will survive, as we always do, by remaining under the radar (excuse the mixed metaphor), Like the small furry mammals that crawl between the toes of the giant, but ultimately doomed Dinosaurs (there that's better).

Hope everyone has a great summer.

Peter
http://www.funnymagic.com
Danny Hustle
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Peter,

yeesh...

It has been really sad to watch that great place turn into just another mall over the past 15 or so years.

It's still better than standing in front of the GAP in Harvard Square though Smile I will probably be doing just that this Sunday.

Best,

Dan-
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"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
JamesinLA
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That's what has happened to my main pitch in Santa Monica. It's turned into a mall. All the cool ma and pop places have been forced out because of astronomical rents because the place has become so popular. But--on the bright side--Disney had a store there. It was so inappropriate to the place. I'm happy to report that it lasted 2 years and folded. Keep hope alive.

Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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I think the responses would really surprise most non-magicians. Generally magicians are responsible citizens and business people. We do not want something for nothing. We don't take things that aren't ours. The concept of a responsible artist is hard for the public to buy. They don't understand that the money is not the only reason we work. Sometimes that is what's wrong with looking in a mirror instead of out the window. I hope we look out the window as well.

Bob
Bob Sanders

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Mark Rough
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Ivy, Virginia
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Interesting situation down here in Charlottesville. Being the home of Thomas Jefferson, the city council is very sensitive to free speech issues. However there have been some complaints from local merchants about the buskers (mostly musicians) on our downtown walking mall. So instead of imposing permits for buskers, they now have a rule that says your table has to be licensed. Tables, by their definitions, include tables, stools, chairs, microphone stands, etc. Anything with legs. The license is $400 freaking dollars a year.

My solution? Work on my straightjacket escape.

Mark
What would Wavy do?
glenn collins
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I was thinking of trying my hand at some street entertaining this summer, Does anyone Know what the situation is here in the UK, if a lisence is required ect.. or can one just go out find a good spot and performe?

Thansk for your advice.
Glenn
the road we travel is lined with beauty but as with all roads, mind the pot holes...
Automark
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How close are you to here? http://www.covent-garden.co.uk/
Big Jeff
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Peter,

My only point was the government wants to get the thieves and scam artists off the streets. Instead of arresting them when they are caught, they pass a law that says you have to have a license to perform on the street. The thieves and scammers won't obey this law any more than they obey the laws againest stealing or scamming people. The law abiding citizen is the one who will get a license and work legally on the street.
Same with guns, the ones who use guns illegally will never register them. The law abiding citizen gets screwed again.

If you have to have a license or permit to work the streets, how do they know if you have one or not?
Do you have to wear it? Maybe they can tatoo your forhead with a "Government Approved Entertainment"
Tatoo.

It's just another way for government to get money from you, and your crowd, for having fun.

Thanks,
Big Jeff
bigchuck
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How are you 'screwed' because you have to register your gun or your show?

If the authorities simply ASK you for your permit that would recify any doubt of having one if you can produce it... which could be done from a pocket, a bag, or other receptacle suited for carrying a document of that sort. I haven't seen the new forehead tattoos but they sound kind of cool Smile

Maybe its time for someone to switch to decaf.
"The computer can't tell you the emotional story. It can give you the exact
mathematical design, but what's missing is the eyebrows. - Frank Zappa"
Big Jeff
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So, your saying the authorities should be able to harass you any time they want?
The police SHOULD have more important things to do than harass some street performer who isn't doing anything wrong.

What if they passed a law that you had to have a permit to walk on the streets of your city and the police could ask to see the permit any time they wanted? Would that be ok with you?

I don't drink coffee, but thanks for the advice.
ed rhodes
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Jeff - I think the idea is that the police [know] the thieves and scam artists aren't going to get permits. By requiring them, they can weed out the thieves and scam artists without having to wait until someone loses a significant amount of money.

It sucks, but I understand their motivation.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
Bill Palmer
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Quote:
On 2004-05-16 12:58, Big Jeff wrote:
So, your saying the authorities should be able to harass you any time they want?
The police SHOULD have more important things to do than harass some street performer who isn't doing anything wrong.

What if they passed a law that you had to have a permit to walk on the streets of your city and the police could ask to see the permit any time they wanted? Would that be ok with you?

I don't drink coffee, but thanks for the advice.


If the police think you are behaving suspiciously, they can already harass you any time they want, if you consider asking someone what he is doing in a particular place at a particular time harassment. What happens after they ask depends entirely upon the response they receive.

When I was performing witn my cowboy group, we made it a point before every show to let all of the police officers who were in the area know that we were going to do a gunfight with theatrical blanks, and approximately what time it would take place. We never had any problem, because we knew how to deal with the law enforcement people.
"The Swatter"

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My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

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Bob Sanders
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Grammar Supervisor
Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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Bill I agree. Letting the right people know what is going on and what to expect is simply a matter of professional respect. There is another term we could use here too: Enlightened Self-interest. Don’t make problems for yourself. It takes you away from your real purposes.

Bob
The Amazed Wiz
Bob Sanders

Magic By Sander / The Amazed Wiz

AmazedWiz@Yahoo.com
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