107th General SexAssembly

If my mother was still alive, good open-minded woman that she was, I think she would rightfully be appalled by what is happening in the Tennessee General Assembly. She was not a prude by any standard but legislation has been a bit salacious this year.

Please go read Jeff Woods column that appeared yesterday at Pith in the Wind. I’m going to quote a snippet but you need to read the whole thing.

“They’re preoccupied with sex up here,” the House’s No. 2 Democrat told reporters at his party’s weekly availability. “They’re got a real thing with sex. We’re about ready to put the turbans on, I think, and put the women in burkas here if we keep going at this rate.”

It’s the end of a bizarre week at the Capitol—even for this legislature—with sex education, abortion, the Ten Commandments, guns and creationism all on the agenda. And when Republicans weren’t pandering to their nutty base, they were passing laws to lift the ceiling on special-interest political contributions and giving hugs and fist-bumps to a party member who had just been released from jail on charges of beating up his wife. “There are some things coming through that just make you think, good Lord! We’re making national news on all these crazy things. It’s just not good for the state of Tennessee. It’s not good for economics here. It’s embarrassing, it really is,” Turner said.

And the retort from the republicans? Rep. Debra Maggart goes back with a very lame double entendre.

“As usual, Chairman Turner and the Democrats are overcompensating for something. Perhaps it’s their limited legislative agenda?

Let us never speak of Maggart making a double entendre again.

Why in the hell aren’t we talking more about jobs? The Democrats are and even had a jobs tour last summer. They meet with small business owners when the TN GOP was meeting with chambers, which are basically the 1%.

Why are we making bills and turning them into laws that help people and don’t send us back into the Dark Ages. Even MSNBC is calling this Reproductive McCarthyism, and that’s just one of many backwards bills we are looking at right now.

Turner’s frustration shows a distinct truth in what is going on. Republicans are talking about creating laws about sex, creating barriers to voting, women’s issues, stifling education and a variety of other issues that most likely will go into litigation right off the bat.

As Pam Strickland writes at the Knoxville News Sentinel, we are wasting a lot of time.

Turner is right: we’ve become the 107th General SexAssembly.