Legislature in Tennessee, Birthplace of the Klan, Expels Two Black Lawmakers

From left: Reps. Justine Jones, Justin Pearson and Gloria Johnson
From left: Reps. Justine Jones, Justin Pearson and Gloria Johnson

CNN: “In an extraordinary, emotionally charged session marked by tense exchanges and punctuated by boos and chants from onlookers, Tennessee’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to expel two Black lawmakers – but failed to oust a third [white] representative – a week after the three Democrats led a gun reform protest in the chamber.

“The crowd in the gallery erupted in boos and chants following both expulsions and loud cheers when the vote count turned up just short in the bid to oust Rep. Gloria Johnson. The session lasted seven hours.

“The vote over rules violations for Jones split along party lines 72-25, while the vote in Pearson’s case was 69-26. Johnson’s vote was 65-30. Expulsion from the House requires a two-thirds majority of the total membership.”

Tennessee’s Anti-Drag Hysteria Started in a Rural Town 90 Miles West of Memphis

2022 Pride Parade in Jackson, Tenn.
2022 Pride Parade in Jackson, Tenn.

Tennessee Lookout: “In fall of 2022, nearly a dozen political and religious leaders met with Pride festival organizers in a back room of Jackson City Hall in West Tennessee. The shared goal? Hash out a deal over a drag show.

“Jackson’s third annual LGBTQ Pride festival was scheduled for the following month, and unlike the previous years, the event had grown beyond the usual music and games. Organizers had put together enough money for a 10-person drag performance.

“Jackson is a town of 70,000 in Madison County, Tennessee, located about halfway between Nashville and Memphis on Interstate 40. The county reliably leans Republican, while the city is more split, going 50/50 in the 2020 Presidential election.

“The city hall meeting was a dramatic affair, with Pride organizers storming out after a conservative pastor likened men dressing up in women’s clothing to blackface, but negotiations continued. Afterward, state lawmaker Chris Todd sued the city to stop the event. When that was only partially successful, he spearheaded the effort to create one of the nation’s first restrictions on drag performances.”

Move over George Santos. Meet Rep. Andy Ogle (R-TN), Another Freshman Liar in the GOP House

Lying GOP Reps. Andy Ogle (R-TN) and George Santos (R-NY)
Lying GOP Reps. Andy Ogle (R-TN) and George Santos (R-NY)

News Channel 5 Nashville: “If you believe Middle Tennessee’s newest congressman, he’s not only a businessman, he’s also an economist, a nationally recognized expert in tax policy and health care, a trained police officer, even an expert in international sex crimes.

“But an exclusive NewsChannel 5 investigation discovered that Andy Ogles’ personal life story is filled with exaggerations, a story that’s often too good to be true.”

Read the full report.

Fascists Hold an Old Fashioned Book Burning in Tennessee

Book burning in Tennessee
Book burning in Tennessee

Nashville Scene: “Last week, McMinn County made news when the school board voted to ban beloved graphic novel Maus — a Holocaust story told with anthropomorphic mice and cats — due to instances of swear words and nudity. While the vote happened in early January, it went viral following a report from TN Holler.

“Last night, Mt. Juliet pastor and pro-Trump conspiracy theorist Greg Locke decided to turn it up a notch by organizing an old-fashioned book burning. The books included millennial staples like Harry Potter and Twilight — hits of the early Aughts that were targeted by Christian book burnings back in the day.

“In a sermon preceding the bonfire, Locke described beefing with ‘Free Mason devils’ and said ‘I ain’t gonna be ‘suiciding myself’ no time soon.’ Locke also said people aren’t mad that they were burning books, but mad because of the books they were burning — implying that his critics, even other pastors, were devil and witchcraft supporters.

“You can see the footage in Locke’s Facebook video of the event — the burning starts about an hour in.”