Presidential hopeful Rick Perry has surfaced as the current favorite for Republicans according to the latest Gallup poll, and on Thursday the new Texas state fiscal year will pass more than 700 laws which Governor Rick Perry has signed off on.
Even though Perry’s anti-abortion legislation was stopped by a US district judge, which would have required women wanting an abortion to view a sonogram of their child and listen to the fetus’ heartbeat first, there are other amusing yet preposterous laws that are being passed under Perry’s watch.
As of the first of September, hunters are now able to (legally) hunt feral hogs from helicopters for the rate of around $500 an hour. The act was previously banned under state law, but the new legislation will try to take aim at helping the Lone Star State control the more than 4 million feral hogs wandering through Texas. These pigs have caused over $400 million in destruction to houses, crops and land. The “pork chopper” law doesn’t put a limit on how many pigs could be exterminated, as long as Texans fork over the fees to shoot the squealers from above. Hope you like bacon.
But if hunting hogs from a helicopter isn’t enough excitement for you, try “noodling.” That’s the name they are giving to a technique used for catching catfish with your bare hands. It usually involves the fisherman sticking his paws in random spots in lakes or rivers and hoping a catfish will bite their fingers. If you were caught noodling in the past, the great state of Texas considered it a class-C misdemeanor and you’d be slapped with a $500 fine. Noodlers would often risk the fee in favor of getting their hands wet, but to think that in this day and age $500 could get you an hour in a helicopter scoping out hogs, it is a good thing they are dropping the fine. Even without a reel, noodlers take this hobby real serious and will now be able to do it without punishment from the state.
Speaking of poles, in 2007 Governor Perry signed the “pole tax” into law. The “pole tax” would charge each customer $5, only at alcohol-serving strip clubs, in order to finance sexual assault prevention programs. As of now the tax has collected approximately $15 million, but the Texas Entertainment Association has filed a lawsuit over it. The TEA claims the tax has infringed on the clubs’ free-speech rights, but the Texas Supreme Court didn’t agree and ruled that the law did not violate the First Amendment as far as strippers are concerned.
The continuation of the pole tax won’t have many Texans speeding over to strip clubs anytime soon, but for those that do want to rush over to lay their eyes on naked ladies,they’ll be able to do so lickity split. The Texas Legislature has now increased the speed limit to 85 miles per hour, which gives Texas the title of having the fastest speed limit in the US. As they say, things are bigger in Texas, and with cars able to approach the 90mph mark, we might see some bigger numbers on the tally of auto fatalities next year in Texas.
Although it hasn’t been determined which Texas highways will get the speed increase, the roads that are being considered will have to pass safety tests to insure they will be able to withstand the higher speeds.
If those notoriously not on time aren’t persuaded to vote for Perry by his decision to raise the speed limit, you might want to reconsider when you realize that the governor is known to pack heat. The presidential hopeful carries a .380 Ruger pistol which he used to kill a coyote back in February 2010 after Perry alleged the coyote was terrorizing his dog.
Watch out terrorists! Let’s see Obama try that one out on the bad guys.
And just in case a terrorist shows up in Texas, workers can now apply for a permit to bring their guns to their job, so long as the weapon is concealed and left in the owner’s vehicle.
Should Perry win in 2012, will we see more of these rules going national? Maybe, but first Americans should be ready for a prayer rally on the White House lawn. Just leave your gun in the pickup.