Just Talkin’ for July 29, 2021

Gun Rights

JT has been known to give the state highway department a little grief over some of their roadwork. But he has to give them a pat on the back this time. Don’t know if it was great planning or luck….but repaving LA 6 from I-49 down University Parkway was great timing. The section from the bypass to in front of Northwestern is happening now while the campus is a little quieter and less congested. Kudos go to the contractor for doing it now and not when school was in session. You wouldn’t have known school was out though Wednesday morning around 8 a.m. when JT tried to get to work and traffic was backed up in both lanes…all the way to around Posey Park. Hopefully, this upgrade will go as quickly as the section from the Interstate to around Hickory Ridge. The only thing JT is wondering about now is all the road bores he saw in the new overlay. He’s pretty sure they were to test the quality of the asphalt mix in various segments of the road. He just wonders if they will come in pretty quickly and fill all those holes… or were they just creating future potholes for another contract down the road.

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Sen. Louie Bernard is one of a handful of senators getting beat up on social media and from political commentators for switching their vote from a yes to a no on the conceal carry gun bill. That switch thwarted the efforts to override Gov. John Bel Edwards’ veto and put egg on the face of all legislators in the veto session. A lot of people can change their mind and all is forgiven….JT’s not too sure the same applies for politicians, regardless of the rationale. (We’ll have to wait and see if the switch yields us any special handouts from the Governor.) JT visited recently with someone whose last name happened to be “Bernard.” They told JT the NRA people and gun lovers were some kind of hot. So mad in fact, he was gonna have to call Louie and tell him because he went against gun owners, he’s thinking about changing his own last name.

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JT keeps reading commentary where one of the fallouts of the useless veto session….is the growing divide between them (Democrats) and us (Republicans). There seems to be a retaliation movement just under the surface. That’s something we could really do without. The governor made no bones that he waved his big stick of favors to keep the overrides from happening. He came through on one of those quickly after the session ended by naming Rep. Senator Ronnie Johns of Sulphur to a six figure state job. Johns, who missed the special session, which ended up being a vote for Edwards’ side, was named head of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board. Jones said he was under doctor’s orders not to travel after a knee replacement and had to miss the veto session that he voted against having. Many accused Johns of not showing up for the veto session in exchange for the appointment. How does that old saying go???….if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck…then it’s a duck.

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JT, like everyone else, was glad to hear Natchitoches Parish is finally on the forefront of something positive. It seems the parish, especially the school board, took the lead in bringing broadband (high speed) internet to parish residents by fronting the money to buy the fiber optic cable with their federal ESSER-3 funds. This put the parish ahead of many others. They also talked with EpicTouch, who is putting up 20% of the project from their own coffers, to get the bid let and awarded (to EpicTouch). The $1.2 million startup investment, along with the partnership with EpicTouch and the support of abovementioned Sen. Bernard, former Sen. Gerald Long, the Parish and City, is setting the precedent that other parishes are looking to follow. Good job Natchitoches! Finally some real leadership and something positive for our parish. If all goes as expected, the project could move forward as soon as October.

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