March 11th, 2013
Hell, I could have told them that, and I only would have charged them half.
The poll found that 73% of Americans presently do not trust the federal government (yeah, I know, that seems kind of low). When he first took office, the Obama Administration had an 80% distrust rating, so I guess things are trending better. George Bush Jr, when he took over, had a 40% distrust rating -- by the time he left, it was 75%. A rough demographic breakdown shows that 44% of Hispanics trust the government, 38% of blacks, and 20% of whites. Younger Americans seem more likely to trust the government that older people (read that: people who've actually had to DEAL with the government).
Liberals are more likely to trust the Obama Administration than independents or Republicans.
In other news, the sun rises in the east, the pope is Catholic, and bears, as far as we can determine, still shit in the woods.
Park Elementary is one of those schools that has a "zero tolerance" policy. Schools have been in the news for this for the past decade or so. Zero tolerance is supposed to make things safer and the kids feel more secure. Instead, it gives the kids an up close and personal view of bureaucracy gone mad. Kids have been suspended for giving lemon drops because of zero tolerance for drugs. A kindergartener was suspended for kissing one of his classmates because of zero tolerance for sexual harassment. Kids have been suspended for bringing a plastic butter knife from home to cut their lunch because of zero tolerance for weapons on school grounds.
The weapons one is the most insane. Kids have been suspended for making a gun out of LEGO blocks. One kid was suspended when he brought the toy gun for a GI Joe figure. Another was suspended when he found a plastic knife in his lunch bag and took it to the teacher -- instead of being commended for his honesty, he got bounced. One kid simply positioned his hand like a gun, index finger out and thumb cocked, made a couple of bang bang noise, and he got suspended, too. All this shit goes on a student's permanent record, helping to keep them out of the really good schools.
So you probably know where this is going -- Welch was chewing a pastry last month and his teacher claimed he chewed it into the shape of a gun (I'm really curious what kind of school this is where the bullies beating up kids aren't violating anything but teachers are inspecting what the kids are eating).
J.B. Jennings is a Republican State Senator who was shocked by this. He didn't think the story was real. I guess he doesn't read the same newspapers I do. Anyway, Jennings has introduced a bill that would override zero tolerance policies for seemingly harmless childish acts, such as fingers pointed like guns or, yes, chewing your food into the shape of a gun. "These kids can't comprehend what they are doing or the ramifications of their actions." Not only would schools be prohibited from doing it, but school administrators who violate the guidelines would be subject to counseling and disciplinary action.
As the pendulum begins to swing the other way....
Here in Illinois, we're screwed.
State pension reform is needed ($96.7 bil, to be exact). The state is up to its ass in debt and has the worst bond rating of all fifty states. A measure governing the right to concealed carry of firearms is being argued fiercely.
So what is being introduced in a bill in the Illinois congress?
How about a ban on the sale of lion meat?
Luis Arroyo is a D in the Illinois House, repping Chicago. And he claims there are two restaurants that are cutting up lion meat and serving it to customers. He states that slaughtering the animal for food is inhumane (not to be a bitch, but technically, slaughtering ANY animal is inhumane. And remember, this is a meat eater pointing this out) and needs to be outlawed (I'm sure the predators on the African savannah are shaking in their boots at the thought of lions being protected from being preyed on). Although he is not identifying the two restaurants he claims to know of (which pretty much kills THAT Friday night run), he is proposing one year in jail and $2,500 in fines for offenders. "Those are zoo animals. THere's other meats we can eat besides the lions."
(By the way, this whole thing could be a waste of time. The US Fish And Wildlife Service is considering declaring African lions an endangered species, although they are more interested in stopping the trade of hunting trophies and lion skins. But yes, a lion burger would also be illegal if that happens.)
Nice to see our politicians have their priorities straight. I sometimes think Illinois residents are simply getting what they deserve from their government.