Sunday's open line; and a plug for diversity in Mountain Home. Calling Shawn Womack. | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sunday's open line; and a plug for diversity in Mountain Home. Calling Shawn Womack.

Posted By on Sun, Jun 7, 2015 at 3:15 PM

DIVERSITY DIVA: Faim Lee Jewls performs at ball. - TWITTER/KEVIN PIEPER/BAXTER BULLETIN
  • Twitter/Kevin Pieper/Baxter Bulletin
  • DIVERSITY DIVA: Faim Lee Jewls performs at ball.

Here's the open line for Sunday. Also:

* DIVERSITY CHAMPIONED AT MOUNTAIN HOME: Here's another item to make Sen. Jason Rapert unhappy, courtesy of the Baxter Bulletin.

Ever seen a drag king put on his own rendition of "Uptown Funk" in Mountain Home? Or a drag queen perform Liza Minnelli? Maybe a "dude in a wig" sing about her missing arm?

Well, of course not. But those performances were among the many that led to Saturday night's success at the first Diversity Ball ever held in the Twin Lakes Area.

Nearly 100 local residents came out to the Vada Sheid Community Development Center to show their support for the inaugural diversity event, celebrating the LGBTQ community and campaigning for anti-bullying efforts.

The Diversity Ball was a major platform for the Gay-Straight Alliance, a student-organized group at Arkansas State University Mountain Home, and far exceeded GSA's expectations. The group's goal is to spread messages of anti-bullying and encourage acceptance of diversity. At least 15 ASUMH students serve as active members.

I'm guessing attendees did NOT include a famous politician from the Mountain Home area — Circuit Judge Shawn Womack. Womack, who is a candidate for Arkansas Supreme Court, infamously ran successfully for state Senate on a platform that included recriminalizing homosexual acts. He also attempted to pass legislation to prevent gay people from adopting. Similar legislation adopted by voter initiative was struck down by the Arkansas Supreme Court.

Womack is also the person who went before the independent citizens commission suggesting there was a chance of an equal protection lawsuit if judges didn't get a humongous pay raise. There were two things wrong with that. 1) A constitutional argument on the amount a state pays its judges? Non-starter. 2) Factually challenged. Then — and particularly now — Arkansas judges are paid more than judges in many states and are paid particularly well considering our state's low ranking in personal income. But, hey. I guess mediocre legal talents need to be represented on the Supreme Court, too.

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