Utopian Legislature and Other Unicorns

Last Friday Representative John Pezold (HD-133) had an interesting op-ed in the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer essentially comparing  the operations of the Georgia Legislature to schoolyard bullies. And while anyone who has witnessed the 40 days sessions would probably admit there is some correlation between school children and legislators, his basic premise seems a bit naïve.

Which brings us back to the question that we should really be asking: Don’t the people of Georgia deserve better than the politics of retribution? Aren’t we better than bullying? We are in a day and age when people don’t trust politicians for one simple reason: Once elected, many of us vote much differently from the way we campaigned. We’re not trusted because we allow garbage like this to occur and say, “It’s just the way things are done around here.” Yet there are countless examples of people actually doing the right thing and voting their conscience, and being punished for it.

He is absolutely correct. My own retiring State Representative has been on the receiving end of that punishment which I believe, in spite of his protestations, added to his considerations to retire from something he loved.

Unfortunately bullying, on the schoolyard or under the Gold Dome, has been around since the beginning of time. Men and women of principle should realize that there are consequences. positive and negative, when they stand on those principles. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction is Newton’s  Third Law of Physics.

In a utopian Legislature there would be no punishment but that isn’t the world with which I am familiar. Every effective leader knows going in that some folks will love them and others not so much. If one needs universal love, leadership is not your calling.

Could the legislature be better? Should it be better? Absolutely on both counts. Is that likely? If not, then play the cards dealt and remember Tom Hanks line in A League of Their Own, “there’s no crying in baseball”.

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John Pezold
John Pezold

Pat, thanks for the write up. I’ll be the first in line to admit that I’m an idealist when it comes to these things.

Stephen Allison has been my roommate and mentor for the last few years. I’m going to miss him, as will many others. Y’all have been blessed!