Just Talkin’ Lagniappe for Aug. 20, 2022

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JT sees where SWEPCO is waiving late fees on electric bills. That’s all well and good, but it still doesn’t help with the skyrocketing bills showing up month after month.
JT’s neighbor had a $600 bill while a friend had one in excess of $800 – that’s for one month in a private residence.
What most are upset about is not the cost for the electricity, but all the extras on the bill such as fuel charges.
JT realizes the electric companies are a business, but the exorbitant bills consumers are seeing this summer are enough to cause serious sticker shock.
Still, you have the option to pay the bill or go back to the days of coal oil lamps and candles and a hand held fan.
JT thinks he’ll just turn his thermostat up a couple degrees and hope autumn arrives early.
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JT was reading where the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) will be asked to accept a draft copy of suggested changes to standards for Early Childhood Education at a meeting Aug. 23.
He heard there were lots of concerns about the new standards related to how very young children would be taught to view themselves, their culture and their community.
Some advocacy groups are asking BESE to postpone voting on these changes until the public is fully made aware of them.
Information can be found at bese.louisiana.gov.
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Have you heard of the “red flag laws”?
The laws are supposed to be a way to address shootings, especially mass shootings.
JT read one article in the Washington Post that stated “Red Flag laws allow police, family members or even doctors to petition the court to take away someone’s firearms for up to a year, if they feel that person is a threat to themselves or others.”
JT wonders how that will work, won’t they just get more?
More reading and JT sees that several elected officials and political voices have serious concerns about the due process part of the laws.
Some even say it is downright unconstitutional.
Royal Alexander, a Shreveport attorney and Natchitoches Times contributor, said, “How about we focus on other things in our society that really are the problem, like mental health issues?”
Congressman Mike Johnson was quoted as saying, “The solution is not more gun control; that’s often the knee-jerk reaction. But that is not going to solve the problem.”
JT, personally, has to agree with them. Those fellows who wrote the 2nd Amendment were pretty sharp. It’s not the weapon that does the crime, it’s the human being wielding it and ofttimes those people need help.
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On to some lighter fare, football season is here! Get your favorite jersey or team T-shirt on and support the local athletes.
The Times is excited to have a few new stringers this year to help cover all the sports at the local high schools. JT is expecting some better than average coverage from these folks. In case you haven’t heard, Trent Friedel will continue covering St. Mary’s, but we’ll also have senior Mason McCart on the field, floor and turf all year. He’ll have the inside scoop on the players, cheerleaders, coaches and even waterboys/girls, parents and peers.
Natchitoches Central will have one of its own as well. Senior Bethanne Methvin is ready to begin her interviews and is prepared to cover sports from volleyball, where she is also a team member, to football, basketball, powerlifting and spring sports. She has the enthusiasm to really put forth some good stories and inciteful articles on the players and others.
You might remember his name; he was an intern for the Times a while back. Colin Vedros returns to cover all things Gator Nation.
He’ll be giving details on Lakeview, which has that new football field to play on, as well as all the other sporting events offered.
Look for them on the sidelines – notebooks, recorders and cameras in hand.
They’ll each need the support of the public, coaches, players and school staff for stats, interviews, photos and input.
We’re all looking forward to a great season from all parish athletes.