What a state we’re in. Louisiana is our morbidly obese mother, ambling around the mobile home in her wrinkled house coat, chain smoking, nursing a 40, chewing through a greasy sack of cracklins. Her casual disregard for her own health and well being drives us nuts. You’re dropping ashes on the sofa, Mama! We tolerate her self-destruction, not because we don’t recognize it — we just always have. And when we do speak up, it’s in one big cauliflower ear and out the other. And that damned house coat! The neighbors laugh, but she doesn’t seem to care.
Enter uncle Ernest Wooton, a Belle Chasse state rep with a Republican haircut. For the second straight year uncle Ernie has dropped by with a bill to allow guns on college campuses. That’ll put the fight in a tiger and the rage in a Cajun. The measure cleared a House committee last week. The National Rifle Association is very happy. Most university police chiefs are not. Administrators and top cops from colleges across the state, including McNeese State Police Chief Cinnamon Salvador (stop the snickering!), gathered at the Capitol en masse to oppose the measure. “We don’t see it as a constitutional issue because none of us are gun control advocates, at least I’m not,” Salvador says. “When officers arrive at a scene, we’re taught — especially in active shooter situations — to look at people’s hands. If the officers encounter other people with guns in their hands, they have to stop and address that person with that gun and while they’re doing that, the real shooter’s still in the building shooting people.” Makes sense. But by a 9-6 vote, the committee moved the measure on.
You know who likes big guns and lots of them? Men with — let me be figurative here — little dangling modifiers.
Not to be outdone, cousin Kevin Pearson, a Slidell rep — same barber (I’m seeing a pattern here) — drags in a bill to ban mobile dental clinics at schools. He ran over it out on the highway and wants to keep it in the freezer. The mobile clinics overwhelmingly serve poor, rural students who otherwise would rarely if ever visit a dentist. Cousin Kev’s bill also cleared committee despite opposition by the Louisiana State Board of Dentistry, the Louisiana Primary Care Association and the state chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. There ain’t no reasoning with Mama today; she’s making some space in the ice box. The ban is backed by the Louisiana Dental Association, which argues it’s unsanitary to perform dental work in gymnasiums and libraries. No coincidence that the state just increased Medicaid reimbursements for dental work, meaning rural dentists now get more money for providing services to the poor, services the mobile dental clinics have long provided?
So there goes Mama, burning holes in the couch. Dishes are piling up in the sink, and a scrawny dog is panting at the screen door. She’s a real piece of work, that Mama, but man can she cook!
FDA to regulate e-cigarettes, Jodie Foster gets married, Vermont to require labels on genetically-modified food, and more news for today, April 24, 2014.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
A push to expand Louisiana's Medicaid program as allowed under the federal health care has been overwhelmingly rejected by the Senate health committee.
See which events are taking place during INNOV8 Lafayette this Thursday.
It’s on, y’all. Fest fIND, our annual Festival International de Louisiana reader contest, is now accepting photo submissions.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana welfare recipients would be prohibited in state law from spending the federal assistance at lingerie shops, tattoo parlors, nail salons and jewelry stores, under a bill that received the support Wednesday of a House committee.
Senators will consider whether to prohibit private businesses in Louisiana from paying unequal wages to employees of different genders for the same job.
Rep. Joel Robideaux has delayed bill hearings and said unless a compromise can be reached, he won't bring up the legislation this session.
Once again, Lafayette Parish School Board President Hunter Beasley is focused on an issue that has nothing to do with the educational well-being of our public school children.
Fashion and music make great bedfellows
Producers, manufacturers, restaurants and chefs host roundtable and tasting
After exhausting his appeals all the way to the state Supreme Court, the owner of the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete has no legal remedy left save one: do an end run around the high court via a bill that would grandfather his “right” to keep a 550-pound tiger enclosed in a pin at his roadside business.
Louisiana poet Darrell Bourque has won the 2014 Louisiana Writer Award, given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to Louisiana's literary and intellectual life.
Drivers would have to secure dogs riding in truck beds while on interstate highways, if the Senate agrees to a bill backed by the House.
The easy one-piece way to style
Comfy feet for long days
Newsy bits for the whole fam
Don't forget: our annual Festival International contest begins Thursday! Win. Cool. Stuff.
An effort to prohibit employers from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity was shelved Tuesday for the legislative session.
Louisiana won't lessen its penalties for marijuana possession, keeping laws on the books that allow people to be jailed up to 20 years for repeat offenses of having the drug in hand.
State bar foundation bestows honor on founder and managing partner of NeunerPate
This Wednesday, April 23, marks the first full day of INNOV8 Lafayette.
National awards recognize outstanding achievement in leadership development and leadership programs
A federal court magistrate has issued a seven-page schedule of hearings, conferences and deadlines leading up to January’s trial aimed at determining how much money BP will owe in Clean Water Act fines as a result of its 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
“This is one of the oldest divides that exists, and that divide is about the haves and the have-nots.”
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The state’s “greedy trial lawyers” haven’t scared this oil giant away.
Local boutique celebrates all things green
It took a few weeks for the pitfalls to emerge in the governor’s $25 billion budget, but the time of judgment has finally arrived.