Last hurrah for them
I am a white male and I am ashamed of what is happening in my country. I am disgusted by what Republicans are doing to voting rights in this country, especially for African Americans. Georgia just approved a law that makes voting very restrictive. The apparent intent of this law is to make voting as difficult as possible for citizens to vote, especially African Americans. One bizarre provision of the law is to make it illegal to hand out food and water to voters in line. The law is 98 pages long and is full of voter-suppression tactics.
In 2021, Georgia elected two Democrats to Senate seats that had been held by Republicans. One of the men elected to the Senate was African American, a first in Georgia history. This was a free and fair election. Do not believe the lies claimed by Trump and other Republicans about voter fraud. There is a photo of Georgia's governor signing this voter-suppression bill surrounded by only white males. Ironically, a painting of a slave plantation can be seen in the background.
Jim Crow is back and very healthy. The Republican defense of this law is that they want only legal votes to be counted. Their apparent definition of a legal voter is a white male.
Republican white males in this country are frightened about what happened in the last election and the change it represented. Is this the last hurrah of old white men of privilege? I hope so.
Must be this smart ...
Is there any sort of educational requirement for serving in the Arkansas Legislature?
Cows in the pasture
Our legislators have been busy enhancing Arkansas' laws to ensure that everyone's individual rights are protected. For example, Senate Bill 289 gives medical providers the right to refuse treatment to patients whose lifestyle or personal peccadilloes they find disagreeable on moral or religious grounds.
But what if a patient feels his life is endangered by the withholding of proper care? It would seem such a patient now has a right to stand his ground (SB24) and shoot his overly principled provider. True, neither party may survive the encounter, but everyone's rights will have been exercised according to the law.
If these bills seem a bit weird to you, you haven't lived in Arkansas long enough. Get used to it, because more ridiculous laws are coming your way from our Legislature this session. They are proliferating like so many flies hatching out of cow flop.
Ruining good nation
The sending out of covid relief checks is a boondoggle if ever there was one. "Let's just send a bunch of people a bunch of money because a bunch of people have been unemployed because of a bunch of government shot-in-the-dark efforts to fight the covid virus."
Take this young couple I know: were never unemployed, just added on to the home they own on a couple of acres and put in a nice paved driveway, three vehicles on that new drive, earned upwards of $140,000 last year--not bad in Arkansas. Believe me when I say they did not need the money. They got a check for $8,400 because they have four children. Then another person I know, 94 years old and living on minimal Social Security, got zip. Now what is up with that?
The gubmint really can't afford to be sending anybody a check for any amount, much less billions of dollars to millions of people, many of whom, to be honest, probably don't need it either--all the while sending people who could use a few bucks nothing. Just another example of how said gubmint is hard at work ruining a perfectly good nation. They should go ruin China or North Korea instead.
It's bad for Arkansas
As an Air Force family, we were stationed in Arkansas in 1981 and chose to raise our children as well as retire here in 1996. Since this is naturally a beautiful state, it was an easy choice. Over time, I reluctantly learned how to call the Hogs and eat brisket that does not quite rise to the level of Texas brisket. My husband and I both had a second career in this state and my two boys chose to live and work here as well.
With all of the good Arkansas can offer, current legislative actions have caught my attention. As a retired teacher, I always tried to teach my students to understand every perspective and not pass judgment too quickly. Relative to dropping the mask mandate, Sen. Trent Garner recently stated that we shouldn't go back to the mask mandate because it was controversial. Since his statement is a false equivalence and he lacks a medical degree, I view it as being completely flawed.
In addition, new bills that strike at a woman's right to make a choice for her own body, along with spewing fear of a transgender population and denying medical services to patients that don't align with the practitioners' "beliefs" brings me to question the Legislature's perspective as representing the rights of all Arkansans. Finally, with many of the new bills argued under the guise of "protecting" the rights of a supposedly oppressed group, it seems the passage of a hate-crime bill is unlikely.
I definitely struggle with the premise of these actions, and it does not reflect well on Arkansas. Without a doubt, the community, the nation, the world and, more importantly, our students are watching, and all, collectively, will pass judgment.
The real questions remain: Is Texas brisket truly the best? Is calling the Hogs the definitive action that represents Arkansas? And finally, the utmost question to our legislators: How much damage will be inflicted on the real lives victimized by the current legislative acts?
Could have helped us
In light of all this pandemic and vaccine ruckus, I'm having trouble remembering a now absent political persuasion that considered itself as cautious, pragmatic, well-meaning and prudent. It would have been an ideal party to usher us through this mess.
Oh yeah, it just came to me. They called themselves conservatives.