Wearing a hoodie in Oklahoma could get you a $500 fine according to a proposed bill by Sen. Don Barrington.
KFOR TV reports that although the wearing of hoods or similar head coverings during the commission of a crime has been against state law since the 1920s, the new proposal would ban a person from intentionally hiding “his or her identity in a public place by means of a robe, mask, or other disguise” even if the person was not involved in a crime.
Exemptions, according to the language in the bill, include religious garments, weather protection, safety or medical purposes, parades, Halloween celebrations, masquerade parties, “minstrel troupes,” circuses, sporting groups, mascots or “other amusements or dramatic shows.”
Oklahoma City attorney James Siderias told KFOR, “I think this is a violation of an individual’s right to chose what they want to wear as long as it doesn’t violate the realm of public decency and moral values, and I think this could be very problematic.”
State Sen. Don Barrington (R), told KFOR, “The intent of Senate Bill 13 is to make businesses and public places safer by ensuring that people cannot conceal their identities for the purpose of crime or harassment. … Similar language has been in Oklahoma statutes for decades and numerous other states have similar laws in place. Oklahoma businesses want state leaders to be responsive to their safety concerns, and this is one way we can provide protection.”