You wonder if they're practicing for a re-enactment of the storming of the Bastille, as they push,shove, and elbow each other to capture on disposable-camera film a picture inferior to the ones on the gift shop coffee mugs. The Most Famous Face In Art History: Click. OK. Been there, shot that. What's the next famous painting?

At least the Louvre prohibits the use of flash, which is something. Otherwise, you'd be seeing blue dots in front of your eyes for days.

Somebody has to do something about this plague of picture-taking. And so I present to you my modest proposal for Photography-Free Zones.

You go to the Grand Canyon or Mount Rushmore or the aforementioned Louvre, and certain areas would be off-limits to shutterbugs. These little spots would be protected like wilderness areas, set aside for that endangered species of traveler who simply wants to enjoy the view or take in the moment or, OK, even pretend to.

My idea is that anyone taking a picture in a Photography-Free Zone would be punished by a minimum penalty of a smashed camera and a maximum of enforced travel with a charter bus of tourists from a different country on vacation to a place they've never been.

You can see I'm pretty serious about this Photography-Free Zone idea.

Cameras, to me, are like rocks. If they just stay where they are, untouched, admired from afar, they're fine. It's okay, even, to pick them up. Hold them in your hand, consider using them as a wall for a campfire. No problem.

But when someone gets the bright idea to do something with them, there's a good chance something bad is going to happen.

In the case of rocks, that something could be that they get thrown, in which case someone could get bonked on the head and fall down, bleeding. That's bad. No doubt about it. But infinitely worse is what can happen with cameras. With cameras, a person can be captured on film with tongue sticking out or adjusting a bathing suit or picking something from between toes. And the photographic captivity lasts forever. The image will be passed down from generation to generation, to be laughed at by family members throughout eternity.