Friday, March 6, 2015
RACE TO THE BOTTOM
RACE TO THE BOTTOM
There are two weeks left in the 2015 session of the Georgia General Assembly. You need to sleep with one eye open as long as those rascals are in town. The earlier tomfoolery of the legislators has given way to unadulterated skullduggery.
The Bills that I have been following for you are changing and moving so quickly that I can barely keep up. In the time it takes to run to the bathroom, something major happens to a Bill. That’s exactly what happened to Senator Vincent Fort, D-Atlanta. He was a victim of the “ole bathroom trick.” He checked in with the Committee Chair and then sprinted for the bathroom. When he returned, the Religious Freedom Bill, aka Religious Discrimination Bill, had been placed on the table and passed out of Committee.
My optimism last week regarding the Medical Marijuana Bill, HB1, was premature. Forget everything I said! The Senate has lowered the strength of the oil from 0.5 to 0.3 and only wants it to be available to young children. There is also a consideration to make this into a five-year FDA medical study. There’s no telling what the final law will look like. This week, Senator Renee Unterman, R-Buford, entered the fray. She is Chair of the Health and Human Services Committee. She is now advocating for the oil to be administered by academia. That one makes me scratch my head. I don’t know about you, but I prefer to get my medicine from a doctor. She was the one responsible for killing the Bill last year. Unterman is holding HB1 hostage for a favorable vote by the House body on her sponsored Bill regarding Autism. Like I said, “skullduggery.”
And then there was the vote on the Senate Resolution allowing for amending the Georgia Constitution to allow Governor Deal, junk dealer by trade, to take over failing schools. To pass, two-thirds of the Senate body had to vote for it. It did; with exactly 38 votes and not one to spare. This ill-conceived idea to destroy our public education system, as we know it could have been stopped dead in its tracks if one more Senator had voted “Nay.” That one person was Senator Donzella James, D-Atlanta. James sold out the Democratic Party and the children of her own race to Governor Deal, in exchange for his support of her Bill to make South Fulton a City. When it came time to take the vote, she just stood there and did not vote. The worst kind of “skullduggery.” Now you see if a Democrat does something self-serving, I call them out, too. (Note: Democratic Senator Nan Orrock did not vote either but I have been unable to verify if she was present.)
Some may take exception to my statement that Senator James sold out the children of her own race. You may say, “But Governor Deal is trying to help poor Black children.” No he’s not! And Senator James knows that. If segregation was in the best interest of Black children, then why did we ever have integration?
I used to be proud of our State of Georgia, the Empire State of the South. Georgia was seldom included in jokes made about Southern states, Georgia was different from let’s say, Alabama, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Louisiana. Our Capitol City’s slogan was “Too Busy to Hate!” We were progressive. We took care of our people. Now I see Georgia spiraling down. Georgia is consistently the butt of jokes on late night television. We are the first in nothing and near the bottom in everything. Oh. I forgot. Georgia is tied for number one with Texas for executions in 2014. Also, this week, Gallup released their Poll commissioned for Healthways Well Being Index. Georgia was second only to Texas for uninsured citizens. That logically equates to more people dying due to lack of healthcare. Mississippi even has more people insured than Georgia. Shameful!