Tom Riggins: Stupid is as stupid does

The title of this column is an old adage my parents and grandparents often used to explain unexplainable actions by people. I don’t know the origins of the adage but I will leave you to figure out the message. If you can’t, well ... I will just say that some liberal actions fit this adage perfectly.

San Francisco is now banning plastic straws. If restaurant staff provide you with a plastic straw, they are subject to a possible six month sentence in jail and a $1,000 fine. Oh, and that is for each offense. If a table of four gets plastic straws, the sentence can be quadrupled. As a side note, it is no longer a felony in the Golden State to knowingly infect someone with AIDS. A wait staff serving a large table with straws could get a more severe sentence than someone spreading AIDS.

Meanwhile, the city provides maps to visitors showing where to go so as to avoid human feces-laden streets also rife with discarded hypodermic needles. The needles are provided free, of course. I guess plastic straws are a greater health hazard than feces and used needles.

Not to be outdone, Starbucks announced a program to eliminate plastic straws. The missing part of all the fanfare surrounding this decision is that the replacement for Starbucks’ straw and lid combination actually uses more plastic than currently used. Yet they are lauded as environmentally sensitive.

Not surprisingly, these bans are getting some pushback. This time it is from disabled people and the elderly who for various reasons lack the strength or mobility to raise a cup to their mouth. ADA violations and lawsuits are on their way. I wonder what happens if an illegal immigrant in a sanctuary city provides a plastic straw.

Plastic pollution in the ocean is cited as the environmentally sound reason for banning plastic. Conveniently overlooked is that China contributes about 90 percent of said pollution, according to the Scientific American. Could there be China collusion? The source cited for pollution from straws was done by a fourth grader in 2013 by calling straw manufacturers, assumed their annual production is both used and discarded, and came up with a figure. How about that for a scientific source?

Is your necktie killing you? The Lancaster, California mayor wants to ban neckties for health reasons. He cites an obscure study that supposedly showed reduced blood flow to the brain when wearing ties. A properly fitting collar with a tie shouldn’t cause any problem. Attorney jokes aside, liberals seem bent on regulating our every activity for the flimsiest of reasons.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo wants to limit enrollment of white people. This is not new. Several universities have taken similar actions. These same universities are now concerned about their declining enrollments. I wonder why.

Occupy ICE protesters in Portland, protesting ICE’s stepped up immigration enforcement, were finally ordered by the mayor to leave. When they did, a three block area was declared a biohazard due to trash, furniture, and piles of feces being left behind. No one was charged with a crime. Maybe the same liberal protest crowd was needed at an environmental protest somewhere. The city of Portland, i.e. taxpayers, will bear the cost of cleanup. If that had been a protest against gun control, for example, there probably would not have been any need for cleanup but if there were, you can bet legal charges would be imminent.

You are probably aware of the newest liberal move to undermine our moral compass. This is the move for “gender fluidity” that makes it all right to change your gender almost on a whim. An Alberta, Canada man was incensed at the difference in car insurance rates between men and women. Instead of complaining, he took steps to have himself declared a woman, at least on paper. He now saves $1,100 per year on his insurance. You have got to admire the guy, sorry, girl, sorry, guy. What restroom does he or she use?

In Montclair, California an ordinance was passed levying substantial fines for looking at your phone while crossing streets. Once again, here is the government trying to protect us from doing dumb things to ourselves. And I though the left believed in evolution.

I could go on. I hate to keep picking on California but they make it so easy. I am not attacking the residents, just their leaders. Well, residents do choose to live there.

Tom Riggins’ column appears every other Wednesday. He may be reached at


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment