Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Slip Streaming Into Fat Tuesday

AH! Fat Tuesday! The favored day of Mardi Gras (French for Fat Tuesday) which actually is a Christian holiday cum pop culture phenomenon that dates back thousands of years to pagan spring and fertility rites.
 Also known as Carnival, it is celebrated in several nations across the globe -- predominantly those with large Roman Catholic populations -- on the day before the religious season of lent.

As I've come to know it, one is suppose to get all of your excesses out of your system as you prepare to repent for it all. Now with that said, and we know now that we are in that yearly "sin and redemption" cycle, let's let the good times roll!

Candidate Pritt: Back in the Game 2014

Drew Pritt, a local activist and business owner, filed for Pulaski County Quorum Court, District # 6 as a Democrat. The seat is currently held by Donna Massey, who has served in office since 1998 and is seeking reelection. "My plan had been to originally seek the District # 9 seat, which has been vacated by Wilma Walker," said Pritt. Now that would seem as normal as any candidate remarking on their candidacy but for Pritt this is not his first political rodeo and I'm not first one to notice either.

In a recent Facebook interview with COP 24/7, Pritt talked about his political viewpoints, community observations and the nuances about running for elected to office. All of this sounded good and fine. However after speaking with Pritt, I had to go to work and do my due diligence about this candidate both present and past. This means I had to troll around to get a 360 look at this returning candidate only to discover that he has generated a mighty digital footprint that has raised eyebrows with some low brow scrutiny and even some ugly rumors that just won't die even though he has refuted all accounts.

In our investigation this forum also gleaned that obviously Pritt has a either a knack or hankering to run for office. At one point he's even been tagged as political "gadfly." That's other folks words, not mine. Also its apparent that he's been connected to running for everything from an aborted bid for Lt. Governor of Arkansas in 2006, then decided to provide a “progressive” 2009 primary challenge to Arkansas incumbent U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln and even a Congressional jump in and out against Tim Griffin in 2011.

From all accounts it doesn't seem that Pritt has ever garnered much traction in his efforts and in some quarters he's not taken very seriously which I deem may hurt his credibility as a viable candidate. So far I have not come across any endorsements, any statement from the Stonewall Democrats or as yet the Democratic Party of Arkansas. I find this troubling in lieu of the fact that we don't have many openly gay individuals seeking office in a time when we need just that. More unfortunate is with all this hitting and missing, he's certainly got some interesting press in both old and new media. Using my resources, I uncovered all manner of musings about Pritt, including lots of chatter about that Alaskan shenanigan concerning his connection to a fundraising scheme that resulted in meandering allegations and accusations. 

As a media person, I can fully understand reporters not backing away from a story about a disabled American solider of a political candidate, a drag queen promoter, missing cash and a police investigation in the land of the midnight sun. This goes into that "you can't make this stuff up category" that us media folks love to go on about. Nevertheless, I didn't bother to call Anchorage to follow up but whatever happen in the tundra seems to keep finding its way back to taunt and haunt the candidate even to this day. Pritt is sticking to his side of the story and for me it will be up to the voters in his district to either buy it or bust him out for it.

In the meantime, Pritt also talked about how he ended up in the 6th district which was due to redistricting. He stated that, "I noticed from the new map that I was in District 6. I spoke to voters who will make the decision in May as well as donors to my campaign and made the decision to go forward with my campaign." Pritt says he wants to focus on transportation concerns for the county. "Our infrastructure in the county currently is not meeting the demands of 2014 much less prepared for the needs of 2024, 2034, or 2044.

He states, he will be an advocate, using the Metroplan, to implement a light rail system for the county. Light rail systems have greatly enhanced and help grow the counties and municipalities around Dallas, St. Louis, and Memphis." It's a good system and means of transportation for working families," said Pritt. Pritt says there's one more distinction he is making. "I support marriage equality, not because I am gay, but because it's the right thing to do," said Pritt.

"The Justice of the Peace has the authority to marry individuals and as J.P. I will practice marriage equality and work with my colleagues to implement marriage equality for Pulaski County. The time has come for us to stop denying the most basic liberties to individuals based on a bigoted view. There's no justification for denying liberty and granting equality for all." Pritt looks forward to a vigorous primary election and says he hopes for a special gift for his birthday. May 20th, the day of the Democratic Primary, is Pritt's 39th Birthday.

Well you got to give it to him, at least he's taking his civic responsibility at full force. Stepping up to be apart of the electorate instead of abdicating to those who most likely have agendas that has not much to do with equality. My closing advice to  Mr. & Mrs. Voter follow the teachings of the Buddha, "check for yourself!" and then get out to the polls and vote!

Don't forget that there's direct enrollment and education assistance for the LGBTQI community around the Affordable Care Act. If you need assistance or information call 349-7777 to get the latest before March 31, 2014. Make the connection and Get In some insurance today!

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