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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    CatTracks: April 6, 2012

    Trending Up

    Twit for tat: When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Or at least tweeting. Embattled Arizona Rep. Daniel Patterson faces a variety of allegations stemming from a House ethics complaint investigation and could possibly be expelled from the House of Representatives. But Patterson decided to take the high road and publicly call one of his fellow legislators “hysterical” and “unethical” and lambast the process as politically motivated and unfair.

    If Twitter is the Internet equivalent of a supermarket, then Patterson is the kid throwing a temper tantrum in the candy aisle. A word of advice to Mr. Patterson: If you’re facing allegations that you were uncivil toward your fellow representatives and regularly violated house decorum, Twitter might not be the best outlet for your frustrations.

    Doesn’t pass. Word: Arizona Rep. Jeff Flake, a six-term congressman, joined with other Arizona Republicans — Paul Gosar, Trent Franks, Ben Quayle and David Schweikert — in voting down a measure that would have barred employers from asking for passwords to their employees’ private social networking accounts.

    Richard Carmona, Flake’s probable Democratic opponent in the race for the Senate seat currently held by Jon Kyl, has since started a petition to get Flake to reveal his Facebook password, to even the playing field. Like.

    What if (redacted) was one of us?: A Massachusetts elementary school had to scrap plans for a singing presentation after it was revealed that heartless commies (aka teachers) had told the children to sing “We Love the USA” instead of “God Bless the USA.”

    The parents, true patriots all, rightfully objected. After all, what is more patriotic than acting like a persecuted majority because someone decided not to say God in a song? Religious freedom is so 1776.

    Trending Down

    Trollin’ along: After facing harsh criticism over its disturbingly general wording, Arizona Rep. Ted Vogt decided to table House Bill 2549, better known as the “anti-trolling” bill. The legislation would have made it illegal to use an electronic or digital device to post “obscene, lewd or profane language,” to talk about anything lewd, or to post anything that is done with the intent to “terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend.” So, you know, about 80 percent of all Internet conversations. The remaining 20 percent is used to share pictures or videos of cute animals that are cute.

    Of course, the problem with the bill was in the fact that its wording left too much leeway to interpretation. Huh. If only we had some sort of carefully tabulated set of rights, and one of those rights was to speak freely. That would be cool. Someone should get on that.

    In-tuition: The Arizona Board of Regents decided that it would not raise tuition for the UA’s resident undergraduate students next year, the first time in 20 years that tuition has not gone up.
    Of course, this neglects to mention the fact that, because of an expiring tuition credit, those students could face as much as $750 in new tuition charges next year. It’s like getting a $10,000 raise, then having to pay $12,000 more in taxes. It can sound really good if you ignore some of the context.

    That being said, the UA should be applauded for working to try and keep costs low for once. After three straight years of 20-plus percent tuition hikes, it is more than welcome.

    Contra-exception: Speaking of generally worded bills, it looks like one may be making a comeback. House Bill 2625, which would have allowed employers to cite religious objections to opt out of providing insurance coverage for contraceptives, was narrowly defeated by the Senate last month. But a reworded version of the bill, restricting it to apply only to religious-based employers, is likely to be reviewed next week. Questions still remain over what constitutes a religious-based organization. After all, even Chik-fil-A is closed on Sundays.

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