Saturday, March 24, 2007

The Bully Hook

There was plenty of theater this past week at the General Assembly's Environment Committee. Representative Diana Urban (D-North Stonington) continued to push her elephant protection bill, outlawing the use of an item known as a "bull hook" on the animals by circus or zoo personnel.

Urban, and her concubine, Rep. Steve Fontana (D-North Haven) have made themselves conspicuous over the past several years visiting circuses and protesting the treatment of animals. The two of them are spearheading this legislation.

While Urban was at one time a member of the Republican party, she switched to the Democratic Party following the 2006 elections claiming the GOP had abandoned the principles of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.

It is at least mildly ironic that Urban consistently names Theodore Roosevelt as a model for her politics, especially considering her crusade to save the elephant from any discomfort. While Roosevelt was a naturalist and an environmentalist in the early 20th century sense, his concern for the elephant extended to making certain he used the right caliber rifle in taking one down. Roosevelt would likely wince at her weepy sensitivity over animal rights considering that the collections of the New York Museum of Natural History were jump-started by his donation of the large number of animals he shot. But I digress...

Urban began discussion on her bill by giving a damp-eyed speech asserting that she had been the victim of "ad hominem attacks." It was unclear, at least to me, to what she was referring. It could be that Hartford Courant columnist Kevin Rennie recently referred to her as a "faded coquette" and her lover Fontana as a "sad satyr" when he wrote about the folly of this bill. She could also be referring to the fact that she was widely accused of being a hypocrite because, as an accomplished equestrian, she presumably spurs horses.

There is also the possibility that someone made unflattering reference to her shockingly pungent perfume which may be a blend of rare rotted hibiscus plants. At any rate, those would be terrible ad hominem attacks. You'll find none of that here in this blog.

While Urban was embarrassing herself by demonstrating that she has a political glass jaw, other interesting things unfolded. Apparently a Republican member on the Environment Committee, Craig Miner (R-Litchfield), was threatened by Fontana behind the scenes. Miner, an opponent to this bill, intended to offer amendments while the clock ticked down the final hours of the committee's ability to act for the year. Fontana, who chairs the legislature's Energy Committee, warned that should the elephant bill die in Environment, Republican bills before Energy would be in jeopardy. As if Democrats would allow them any shot of going anywhere in the first place.

Connecticut residents have the highest energy bills in the country and Democrats haven't done a single thing about it, despite promising it would be fixed by now. But that's okay. Connecticut residents clearly don't care about that! They're hard at work making sure we're not poking Babaar with a bull hook. Who could question such priorities?

Sadly, the Environment Committee passed the Dumbo bill by a vote of 16-15 and will move forward. We will continue to be treated to a circus act far more offensive than those involving the participation of elephants.

1 comment:

Avid said...

Speak softly and carry a big shtick.