I know this sounds stupid, but


In the Brooder
11 Years
Dec 10, 2008
Search and Seizure. Ratified 12/15/1791. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

There is a person I heard of that doesn't drive with a license, registration or insurance, because he beleives it to be unconstitutional. This guy has been to court several times for the above reasons, every time he won. I don't know what info he uses, but it works. So this got me thinking.
Couldn't the above listed Amendment, be used to keep chickens? Could someone clarify what it means by effects? Would that be silly to need a warrent for arrests? I just think it's right for someone tell you what you can and can't do with your property.
Maybe it's stupid, but if someone were able to use that to keep chickens, then nobody would have to fight the city again. Maybe this is the wrong one. Isn't there something about right to privacy? It could maybe go under that?
The constitution grants no right to privacy.

That is an argument between those who believe in the law as written and as interpreted--I'm not talking about lay people, I am talking about those who are extremely well educated in the law, such as our supreme court justices and noted law school professors.

I do believe the amendment you quoted relates directly to, for example, the poster on another thread whose chickens were seized. I asked there if there was a warrant. If there was none, then his constitutional rights have been violated.

The right of cities and states to regulate matters directly pertaining to them have been upheld time and again in the supreme court. This includes the right of a city to seize property through condemnation for a perceived public good. There was a ruling two or three years ago that had anyone interested in property rights absolutely aghast, and caused a number of states to immediately begin working on laws defining the conditions that were necessary in their states (limiting seizure), as the justices made clear was an option.

Anyways, zoning codes are supposed to be for the good of the whole. And in many cases they are. They prevent sex clubs from operating in residential neighborhoods; they prevent all heavy industry from being next door to homes. The provide a means of setting standards that will to a large extent prevent urban blight and slums from developing. Sometimes they go too far and anticipate problems where there aren't any. Or they do not reflect changing times.

If you believe that your zoning codes are overreaching, then by all means, get involved. Participate in lobbying for change. Run for office. Lead a grass-roots movement. Start petitions.
Check out this ordinance

7.04.160 Right of entry.
The animal control officer, and any police officer of the city, for just cause, shall have the right to enter upon any private property or public property in the city in order to examine or capture any animal thereon or therein; provided, however, that no such officer, or employee, agent, or servant thereof, shall have the right to enter a house or structure without having first secured a search warrant therefor.
(Ord. 1054 (part), 1987)

That should be deemed unconstitutional, the yard should be considered your house. I don't see why they can just barge into your yard whenever. maybe if they chased an animal into the yard.

Anyways, after talking the Animal shelter administrator, I found out nobody has asked to change the law. And that they don't have the resources and time to go chasing after illegal chickens anyways. Not sure how I feel about that. It's good news but I would feel better with the law on my side.

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