The Friday night line | Arkansas Blog

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Friday night line

Posted By on Fri, Dec 14, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Well. Back at it. And I'll conclude with an open line for the night owls. Final words:

* VOTE SUPPRESSION AND INTIMIDATION: As expected and promised, Republican Rep. Bryan King is ready to capitalize on the GOP legislative majority with cookie cutter vote suppression legislation. A required photo ID guarantees thousands of people denied the franchise, particularly among groups known to lean Democratic, which is the idea behind legislation that grew out of Koch-financed Republican front groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council. King also has another wrinkle, a "vote integrity unit." This would likely be a partisan-controlled operation that would focus on depressing votes in Democratic-leaning territories. To borrow a line from the gun nuts, we have laws on the books for this already and a recent successful prosecution of Democrats to show for them. This is partisan claptrap. The ID law wouldn't address the absentee voter schemes that have proved a problem from time to time, by the way.

* PARKING DECK ROBBERY: LRPD reports that a gunman robbed Debbie Mason, 50, of her purse after she got out of her car at the parking deck of the doctors office building at 500 South University.

* POLITICS IN TRAGEDY: The right-wing noise machine has already mounted the expected cry that it is unseemly to talk about gun control in the immediate aftermath of the latest school gun slaughter in Connecticut. The right-wing noise machine, in fact, doesn't want to talk about gun control ever. It is also the height of politics to rule certain subjects out of bounds for discussion. When better to start thinking about guns and gun regulation - even if to conclude legal action would have been ineffective - than when guns are used to kill children? It might not be the time to talk about guns, but it IS the time, Mike Huckabee has decided, to talk about what really ails schools today. The Huckster in a Fox interview:

We ask why there is violence in our schools, but we’ve systematically removed God from our schools. Should we be so surprised that schools would become a place of carnage because we’ve made it a place where we don’t want to talk about eternity, life, what responsibility means, accountability?

Meanwhile, back in Arkansas, Gov. Mike Beebe ordered the flag at the Capitol to half-staff. A spokesman for the governor noted the difference in this tragedy, the deaths of 20 young children, more than in the 9/11 attacks and Hurricane Sandy combined.

There is hope in this Godless world. Mark your calendars. Jerry Cox of the Family Council fundamentalist lobby, is organizing a pray-in for state legislators at the Capitol Jan. 15. A gathering of like-minded pastors is going to "minister" to lawmakers on depriving women and gay people of full rights of citizenship, depriving children in need of early education and health care and other legislative agenda items such prohibiting comfort for the sick through an organic substance (pot) and the occasional enjoyment of legal beverage alcohol. Jesus would be proud.

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