Today on my drive into work I was listening to Stephanie Miller on the radio as usual – and heard her and Jim Ward tear into the Tennessee Legislature for introducing two separate bills (House and Senate) that criminalized the sale, wholesale, distribution, advertisement, exhibition, or publishing of any, “…three-dimensional device designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of human genital organs…“
Three dimensional device? Wow. Would a vibrating massage from Wal-Mart qualify? Only if I got you to buy it by telling you how it could be used sexually, I guess. So perhaps yes!
These two bills make it a crime to even offer to sell a sex toy for another person! (Can you see the police sting for that – “Hey buddy, would you like to sell this dildo for me?”) Both bills were supposed to be implemented on July 1st of this year!
So, being a curious individual, I looked up the Tennessee General Assembly Legislation, and found the proposed bills under question, HB3798 (pdf) and SB3794 (pdf). And I was surprised – not that these two bills were true (Stephanie doesn’t need to lie about right wing idiocy.) What surprised me is that by the time I had visited the Legislation web at about 10:15, 9 March 2006 Nashville local time, both bills had been withdrawn!
That’s right, these bills were active at close of business last night, and were killed this morning – very early this morning!
Why were these bills withdrawn in such a hurry? Was it because Senator Charlotte Burkes and Representative Eric Swafford realized that the legislation was flawed in some way that needed to be fixed and resubmitted? No! The bills were yanked in a panic after Stephanie Miller skewered Tennessee for being so stupid. The legislator reacted like a cockroach in the kitchen when the lights come on – they fled from sight and no doubt are now cowering somewhere hoping they won’t be noticed.
These bills were yanked because it was wrong for them to be introduced in the first place. They were introduced by two people who were trying to enforce their own narrow view of morality on everyone else in the state of Tennessee. This was morally wrong – and perhaps even evil to try.
I hope that Burkes and Swafford have learned something from their fiasco. I hope that they get their hands slapped for this. And if they haven’t learned anything, then perhaps they will be lucky enough to have to look for new jobs in the near future.