Things are fixin’ to get dirty

By TIM BEELAND,

Turn off your television sets and go outside and find something to do. That, or pick up a big, thick book and start reading it real slow, r-e-a-l s-l-o-w, because from now until November 5th all we are going to be hearing is Tate Reeves commercials calling Jim Hood a liberal, Hilliary Clinton loving skank, that hates President Trump, and Jim Hood commercials telling us that Tate Reeves is a lying, conniving snob that is in love with himself and his rich cronies, and that he tried to spend taxpayer money to build his own private driveway from the gates of his gated community to the traffic light at Dogwood Festival Market on Lakeland Drive in Flowood.

That was a long sentence, but trust me now, it’s going to be longer from the first week of September to November 5th than it has ever been in our lives if we don’t find something to take our minds off the race for the Governor’s Mansion in Mississippi.

Granted, some of what each of the candidates is saying about the other is true, but the vast majority of it is made-to-sound-worse sound bites put together by some big fancy consulting firm that’s getting paid a heck of a lot of money to do so. I sure hope they see it in their best interest to spend some of those big bucks with community newspapers. We could use a shot in the arm about now.

It was good news to hear that Reeves agreed with his primary opponent Bill Waller, on the subject of teacher pay raises and the fact that teacher salaries in Mississippi should be moving closer to the Southeastern average rather than constantly chasing after the Southeastern average. Fortunately I no longer have a dog in that race since my public-school-teacher-wife, Danny, has been a retired-public-school-teacher-wife for three years now. That said, I do hope that whomever is elected works hard to shore up the Public Employee Retirement System. I’d sure hate for that to go belly up  at this point in our lives.

As far as those campaign commercials go, it is hard for me to believe that anyone can claim to be “a nice guy or gal” when they stoop to the negative campaigning we saw in the primaries. I’ll be one of the first to admit that Hilliary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi are not the two most attractive people I’ve ever seen, but some of the pictures of the two used in the Tate Reeves commercials made it pretty hard for me to swallow my butterbeans if the television was on at dinner time.

I kind of think that kind of campaigning might have hurt Andy Taggart in his race against State Treasurer Lynn Fitch for Attorney General. To paraphrase former First Lady Michelle Obama, he went low and Lynn went high in the final days of the runoff and the outcome favored the Treasurer, and the high road! I do have a dog in that race, a puppy I suppose you could say, in that my daughter, Rachel-Johanna, has worked for Fitch in the College Savings and Loan Division of the Treasurer’s office for over two years now.

Obviously we were Fitch supporters but still thought highly of Taggart until he began his mud slinging campaign which sounded a whole lot like Reeves’ mud slinging campaign against Waller and Hood. Perhaps they compared notes somewhere along the line, but although it worked for one, it certainly didn’t work for the other.

I don’t predict that the race for Mississippi’s next Attorney General will be nearly as dirty as the one for governor, but we shall see. I do, however, hope they, too, want to spend some money with community newspapers.

One thing is for certain when it comes to that race. Lynn Fitch’s victory confirmed the fact that history will be made in November when either she, or Democrat Jennifer Riley Collins, will be elected the first female Attorney General in the state of Mississippi. Rachel-Johanna said Tuesday night that she was especially proud of the Treasurer in that respect. I think I would have to agree, and I’m proud of that pup of mine for being an important part of Lynn’s team.

Well that’s about it for now. Buckle up y’all, things are fixin’ to get dirty. Real dirty, I expect!