His legislation won't cure cancer, or send explorers to Mars, or solve the state's transportation problems.
But if it passes, Chip Rogers' bill will make Georgia a better state.
The state senator from Woodstock, Ga., is taking another shot at a bill that failed last year. It would be ironically appropriate to say he is as tenacious as a pit bull.
Rogers' Senate Bill 16 would make it illegal to own, breed, purchase, transport or train a dog for fighting or "baiting" - the unfortunate dogs used as sparring partners for the more vicious fighters. It would also make it illegal to bet, referee, promote, advertise or sponsor dog fights or dog-fighting activities.
Last year, Rogers' bill passed the state Senate but died in the House. Why? Because it also banned hog fighting. That's right: There are actually people in this state, with allies in the Georgia House of Representatives, who would allow brutal, barbaric dog fighting to continue rather than also outlaw hog fighting.
What planet are these people from?
This session, Rogers has removed the hog-fighting language and is more hopeful that the more-needed dog-fighting prohibition will pass on its own. The Humane Society of the USA is backing the effort, though it is a sad indictment of just what they are up against when the society's state program manager, Richard Rice, can only say "we're really hoping for bipartisan support."
Folks, just "bipartisan support" isn't enough. This bill should pass by unanimous acclimation in the Senate and House, and immediately be signed by the governor.
If this bill doesn't pass, every member of the Legislature should hang their heads in disgrace.
If you agree, call your local state representatives in Atlanta to tell them. Here's how to contact them:
- State Sen. Jim Whitehead: firstname.lastname@example.org; (404) 656-5114
- State Rep. Barry Fleming: email@example.com; (404) 656-5024
- State Rep. Ben Harbin: firstname.lastname@example.org; (404) 463-2247
- State Rep. Barbara Sims: email@example.com; (404) 656-5024
If you disagree, please volunteer for that trip to Mars.
Gov. Sonny Perdue held his big inauguration party a little more than a week ago. Just imagine what it would be like if he had then died.
God rest his soul, but that's what Georgia would be facing if William "Mac" McCarley had been elected.
Most people - in heavily Republican Columbia County, especially - have no idea who McCarley is, and his death this past week likely went unnoticed.
McCarley was a Democratic candidate in the 2006 gubernatorial primary. With Mark Taylor and Cathy Cox also on the ticket, the former Alabama lawmaker was an obvious long-shot, and came in fourth in the four-way race. (Quick trivia question: Who came in third? Bill Bolton.) McCarley got 49 votes in Columbia County, by the way.
McCarley, 79, was diagnosed with cancer shortly after the primary, and died Jan. 10. Had he been elected, he barely would have been able to serve a week.
Speaking of death, with the demise of the Peppermill restaurant, Columbia County's Republicans were forced to find a new place to hold their monthly breakfasts. For their meeting this Saturday, they'll be at Fatz Cafe, on North Belair Road, in Evans.
The breakfast starts at 9 a.m. The guest speaker will be University Health Care System President and CEO Larry Read.
Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail comments to barry.paschal at newstimesonline.com.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.