Favorite

Swine stampede 

Though needed, it came tragically too late. Legislation to curb feral hogs was approved by the House of Representatives last week, but not before Senate Republicans had already overridden Governor Beebe's veto of a bill prohibiting voting without photo identification. Had the House roll call come first, the Republican senators might have been herded away from their party-line override, the very sort of pointless destruction that the House bill was intended to prevent. (Late word: Apparently confused, or fearing retribution, the House has now joined the override. Is there a word for "government by feral hogs"?)

SB 2 by Sen. Bryan King, R-Green Forest, is meant to reduce the number of voters who are likely to vote Democratic — the elderly, the poor, minorities. Today's Republicans believe that voting, and indeed all important matters, should be left to rich white men. Gov. Beebe has a different reading of democracy, and explained it in his veto message:

"Given the importance of the right to vote, laws that would impair or make it more difficult to exercise that right should be justified by the most compelling of reasons. This is particularly so when the citizens, whose right to vote is most likely to be impaired, are those citizens who experience the most difficulty in voting in the first place: the elderly and the poor. A compelling justification should likewise be shown when the citizens most likely to be affected include minorities who have in the past been target of officially sanctioned efforts to bar or discourage them from participating in the electoral process.

"Senate Bill 2 is not supported by any demonstrated need. While proponents of laws similar to Senate Bill 2 argue that they are necessary to combat 'election fraud,' the bill addresses only voter impersonation, and no credible study of 'election fraud' supports the notion that such voter impersonation is or has been common in Arkansas. ... There has been no demonstration that our current law is insufficient to deter and prevent voter impersonation. Senate Bill 2 is, then, an expensive solution in search of a problem. I cannot approve such an unnecessary measure that would negatively impact one of our most precious rights as citizens."

Protecting the precious rights of citizens is not on the minds of the backers of SB 2. They'll trample those rights with no more concern than four-legged hogs show for farmers' crops, but with considerably more hypocrisy. The four-legged invaders don't pretend to be acting in the public interest.

For what it's worth, Arkansas is not the only state beset by feral legislators. Nine Republican lawmakers in Iowa introduced a bill that would classify all abortions as murder, including "use of abortion-inducing drugs." Another Republican, Missouri state Rep. Mike Leara, introduced a bill to make it a felony for any lawmaker to introduce a gun-control bill. In New Mexico, Rep. Cathrynn Brown, also Republican, introduced a bill that appeared to make it a felony for victims of rape or incest to get an abortion. She amended the bill after a public outcry.

Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Speaking of Bryan King, Mike Beebe

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared

  • 'Cemetery angel' Ruth Coker Burks featured in new short film

    Ruth Coker Burks, the AIDS caregiver and activist memorably profiled by David Koon as the cemetery angel in Arkansas Times in 2015, is now the subject of a short film made by actress Rose McGowan.
  • Buyer remorse

    Out here in flyover country, you can't hardly go by the feed store without running into a reporter doing one of those Wisdom of the Heartland stories.
  • Not Whitewater

    Just think: If Democrats had turned out 78,000 more votes in three states in November, people could be reveling today in the prospect of impeaching and convicting President Hillary Clinton, not Donald Trump, as some Republican lawmakers had promised to try to do if she won.
  • Head-shaking

    Another edition of so-much-bad-news-so-little space.

Latest in Editorials

  • The end of an era

    We're sad to report that Doug Smith has decided to retire. Though he's been listed as an associate editor on our masthead for the last 22 years, he has in fact been the conscience of the Arkansas Times. He has written all but a handful of our unsigned editorials since we introduced an opinion page in 1992.
    • May 8, 2014
  • A stand for equality

    Last week, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel became the first elected statewide official to express support for same-sex marriage. His announcement came days before Circuit Judge Chris Piazza is expected to rule on a challenge to the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Soon after, a federal challenge of the law is expected to move forward. McDaniel has pledged to "zealously" defend the Arkansas Constitution but said he wanted the public to know where he stood.
    • May 8, 2014
  • Same old, same old

    Remarking as we were on the dreariness of this year's election campaigns, we failed to pay sufficient tribute to the NRA, one of the most unsavory and, in its predictability, dullest of the biennial participants in the passing political parade.
    • May 1, 2014
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

July

S M T W T F S
  1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  

Most Viewed

  • Narrow opening for Arkansas Democrats

    "Somebody in this room — it's time to go big or go home." At the Democratic Party of Arkansas's Clinton Dinner last weekend, Gov. John Bel Edwards of Louisiana used his platform as keynote speaker to embolden a candidate to step up to run for governor against incumbent Republican Governor Hutchinson.
  • Head-shaking

    Another edition of so-much-bad-news-so-little space.
  • Not Whitewater

    Just think: If Democrats had turned out 78,000 more votes in three states in November, people could be reveling today in the prospect of impeaching and convicting President Hillary Clinton, not Donald Trump, as some Republican lawmakers had promised to try to do if she won.
  • Buyer remorse

    Out here in flyover country, you can't hardly go by the feed store without running into a reporter doing one of those Wisdom of the Heartland stories.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Another Jesus

    • I always enjoy reading your articles Autumn. You keep being the caring person you are…

    • on July 26, 2017
  • Re: Another Jesus

    • Sorry, I have never written about Hillary Clinton's "blunders" in Benghazi. Since you call them…

    • on July 25, 2017
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation