When Men Wear Bells – Alisha Lovings

“Before I deliver your sentence, I want to share a little story with you. I purchased my children a small cat a few years back and believing that all creatures on this planet deserve the right to freedom, we allowed this animal to spend much of its time outdoors. But once it grew enough to exhibit its inherit predatory nature, my children began waking to all sorts of woodland creatures’ corpses in their beds. Now, I couldn’t punish the cat for doing what’s simply in its nature and I couldn’t justify locking it up inside after having grown accustomed to its life out in nature. Instead, I got a small bell fixed to its collar and ever since my children don’t have to fear waking to up to find a mutilated Thumper in bed with them.

Your defense has repeatedly argued that the degree of punishment for this crime will have devastating effects on the life of a young man like yourself—a first-time offender in his first years of University, receiving adequate grades and a talented athlete. However, your actions have already left devastating effects that will haunt one young woman’s life forever, and your inability to show remorse leads me to believe you do not fully understand the seriousness of your crimes and your chances of rehabilitation seem slim. That being said, I do want to let you know that you will be leaving this court a free man today, but you will leave bearing a striking similarity to my family’s pet.”

Chad Warren, 18, star polo player, was the first to be sentenced to wear the “cat bell” as punishment for his sexual assault crimes. Soon after, most judges around the country were following suit. By the year 2104, when the rate of violent crimes were at their peak and statistical analysis illustrated a harrowing trend with no decrease in sight, a law passed requiring all males to obtain and display the collar at the age of 18. When studies began coming out a couple of decades later, suggesting a link between stress-induced psychosis caused by the constant ringing, it was determined that males needed to be introduced to the sounds in infancy in order to grow accustomed to endless chimes. Various “It’s a boy!” bell collars dominated the list of baby shower gifts.

“I know it seems a little extreme,” started a young advocate for the bells. “But you gotta admit the sounds of the chimes are a lot better than all those women’s cries.”

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