Tuesday, March 31, 2009


In a galaxy far, far away… no, wait… it is actually in the state of Tennessee’s 18th district and the the hero of today’s story is Rep. Stacey Campfield (right), who was once described as “uber-Republican” by journalist and blogger Katie Allison Granju.

Not so long ago, Campfield was likely sitting around, perhaps reading a copy of the Demagogue’s Handbook, asking himself the question, “What segment of society can I demonize today in my quest for “family values” as I see them?”

In the past, Campfield has unsuccesfully attempted to join the caucus of black legislators (presumably to prove the racial bias of that group); wanted a law to issue death certificates for aborted fetuses; make it illegal to mention homosexuality before 9th grade; and to deny birth certificates to the babies of illegal immigrants.

On this particular day, the Opie Taylor look-a-like, must have had an epiphany. Why not attack people on government assistance? The government insists on refusing to let deadbeats starve as they would in nature, Campfield must have thought, so how can I pile on one more insult on top of injury?

And he tried his best. Under HB981, anyone winning a lottery prize worth more than $600 would have had to authorize a check of records to determine if he or she were receiving any "public assistance." If they were found to be getting government assistance, they would have been denied their winnings.

Campfield’s reasoning seems to have gone something like this: People drawing government assistance should not be allowed to play the lottery anymore than they should be allowed have sex outside of marriage -- and if they won’t behave on their own, we’ll make the deadbeats suffer.

The provision did not pass -- as most of Campfield’s suggestion do not pass -- but what the hey! Prejudice plays well with the judgmental back home. Keep it up, Campfield -- even if it didn’t occur to you that big lottery winners don’t need public assistance.

1 comment:

bretonbound said...

Campfield is a total moron..according to his "reasoning" on his, thankfully. now dead handgun carry bill for campuses (schools could opt out by guaranteeing the welfare of those on the property), I should be allowed to sue Knoxville for not "protecting" me should any misfortune befall me within the city limits...if I'm walking in the parking lot of a grocery and an out of control car strikes me, I could hold that store responsible for not "protecting" me..On the other hand, the lottery issue with those on public assistance can be a conflicting issue..I have known of and now know too many folks scamming the system (us!) for welfare, disability, etc. If I have to put a roof over their head, food in their stomach, pay for their medical care, etc., I certainly do not want what $$$ they may have going towards lottery tickets or other non-necessities..For example, neighbors I have now (2 adults, 2 kids, all healthy) are on "public assistance" & you don't see them without a cigarette in their mouth and a beer in their hand...bought a large, new grill a couple weeks ago...why am we paying for these leeches? "public assistance" is ONE BIG MESS and cleaning it up needs to be addressed.