In May, Dolly Parton returned from promoting her new album, Blue Smoke, to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, for the celebration she hosts every year: the Dollywood Homecoming Parade. Thousands gathered along the stretch of U.S. Route 441 known as Dolly Parton Parkway, from stoplight number six to stoplight number three. The devoted sat in strategically placed lawn chairs; the less eager watched from roadside hotel balconies. My boyfriend and I stood in the median of the parkway, opposite a spiraling bumper-car attraction, and watched as the first few floats passed: veterans, students, and an official contingent from the City of Pigeon Forge. A marching band played “9 to 5” and then [...]
"Troopers have forcibly carried out seven union supporters from the Tennessee Capitol after their protest disrupted a Senate committee hearing." —Yes, Tennessee too. The Senate Speaker would like to make it clear that Tennessee is not Wisconsin. Yes, in Tennessee, they're actually going to outlaw teachers' collective bargaining entirely.
"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." —William Goldman, The Princess Bride
Last week, Tennessee State Sen. Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro) and state Rep. Judd Matheny (R-Tullahoma) followed Oklahoma's lead in attempting to outlaw sharia. Their idea is to make "knowingly providing material support or resources to a designated sharia organization, or attempting or conspiring to do so" a felony punishable by fifteen years' imprisonment. The Washington Post published the text of the proposed legislation. Therein it emerges that these hapless legislators do not have the faintest clue what it is they're outlawing.
Here's a bit of the proposed [...]