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The Edge

Second time around

Bob Mace

Sinatra did a great job singing that “love is always better the second time around.” This could or should be the Springfield Municipal Anthem. Springfield has an ordinance that all but prohibits pit bulls. As has become norm for any Springfield ordinance of late, there’s a group stirring the issue up again (and again and again) for reconsideration. They make perfect sense with their statistics and their logic.

The only stumbling block The Edge can find to tossing the ordinance aside is the uncomfortable existence of reality. Owners aver these dogs (various official breeds), when raised correctly, are docile and make good pets. In the past couple of months there have been at least two incidents of pit-bull attacks in Springfield. Both involved children as victims, one of whom was a two-year-old. As for this dog ordinance, is there anybody residing in our city who can take “No” for an answer?

City Council is doing its best to find something it can look busy doing other than addressing the half-billion dollar storm water payment we face. Since The Edge first pointed to that looming, top-priority problem in 2011, council — most often at the behest of citizens — has hashed and re-hashed WalMart locations, legalization of chicken coops, banning cigarettes, legalizing joints, banning sneeze pills and declaring it illegal to violate federal gender bias laws inside the city.

Council agendas now achieve the same déjà-vu boredom of the never-ending “what God thinks” letters that decorate the News-Leader’s opinion page. Man’s interpretation of God’s opinion makes up the books of the Bible. Frankly, God weighed in on what God thought to be important issues about 3,500 years ago with a couple of stone tablets provided to Moses. The Decalogue doesn’t specifically mention mass retailers, cigarettes, marijuana, Sudafed, hen houses or sexual preference excursions departing the genome norm. The 10 Commandments apparently set a minimal structure for human behavior leaving us hope that common sense would fill in the blanks. Oops!


SOGI, having been passed into ordinance, makes an encore appearance on the April 7th ballot. On April 8th, either those who support the SOGI ordinance already passed or those who are urging that it be overturned will be disappointed with the election.

Reconsideration demands can, as always they do, begin anew. Wanting a do over has replaced baseball as the national pastime. This is what happens when there are too many law schools and not enough fatal lightning strikes.

Exercising one’s voting rights in April won’t be as easy as it seems. The ballot question is whether or not to overturn the existing ordinance that passed last autumn after an hour of original debate and two-and-a-half years of restating the same arguments. The Edge finds just a bit of ironic humor in the fact that a bill dealing with transgender male becomes female, etc. issues would come down to a ballot on which voting yes means no and voting no means yes! To keep the current SOGI protections in place requires a no vote while removing the ordinance from the books requires a yes vote.

In the end, The Edge doesn’t get the need to advertise what one takes to bed. Furthermore, The Edge doesn’t see the need to care what anybody else takes to bed as long as it isn’t his bed. The most we can hope for is that at some future point, we can quit worrying about all this silliness and get on to what truly are municipal issues worthy of legislative solutions. Vote or keep silent … April 7th is the day.

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