Richard Daybell – Novels, stories and short humor
I don’t like to speak ill of a neighbor. But if your neighbor has a crazy aunt locked up in the attic, you’ve got to say something. And our New England neighbor New Hampshire has a bunch of crazy aunts locked up in the state legislature.
I previously discussed New Hampshire’s legislation allowing legislators to carry concealed weapons on the floor – but for self-defense only. They’re not allowed to brandish these weapons, thank God. I guess if they’re threatened, they shout: “Don’t mess with me, I’m carrying a concealed weapon.” “I don’t believe you,” says the threatener. “Show me.” “I can’t, but I really do have a concealed weapon, honest I do.” It turns out this bit of legislation is only the tip of the New Hampshire iceberg.
Who are these legislators? Let’s do a little demographic digging. There are 400 members of New Hampshire’s House of Representatives. According to Wikipedia, that’s one representative for every 3,300 residents. If the United States had the same level of representation, the U.S. House of Representatives would have 99,000 members. About 300 are Republican. We might as well forget about the Democrats (New Hampshire has) and concentrate on the majority. They’re mostly male. In ethnicity, they range in color from eggshell white to antique white. Their average age is somewhere around 103.
Obviously, the first order of business for this predominantly male group must be to regulate women’s lives. And as heterosexuals all, they must of course seek to overturn recent rights gained by gays.
Wisconsin legislators stole the conservative spotlight when they passed a law to reduce state employees’ bargaining rights. In a dramatic show of one-upmanship, New Hampshire’s crazy aunts reduced state employees to wearing barrels and asking for an allowance.
The crazy aunts naturally voted to withdraw the United States from the United Nations. It’s got to have been twenty years since anyone’s pushed that button. It’s almost nostalgic. And moot, I imagine, since New Hampshire regularly makes noises to secede from the United States.
Here’s a headscratcher: they voted to change the cap on interest rates for loans – from a maximum annual percentage rate of 36% to 186%.
And here’s my favorite: they want to create a New Hampshire Army. With concealed weapons, naturally. (Where do you conceal a howitzer?) I hate to be an alarmist, but this army isn’t going to attack South Dakota.
If you’ve got crazy aunts in your Statehouse, I’d love to hear about them. I’m sure my Utahans have some great tidbits. Now that Utah has a state gun, are you going to designate an official state blunt object?
Late-breaking: Crazy aunt in Maine. Surreptitiously, over the weekend, Maine’s governor had a huge mural depicting labor history removed from the Labor Department. He’s hidden it and won’t tell anyone where it is.