7 November 2002
Last gasp for fighting fowl
Oklahoma State Rep. Frank Shurden (D-Henryetta), one of the more reliably loose cannons in the legislature, has announced that he's planning a bill for next session to reduce the penalties for cockfighting imposed by the newly-enacted ban. No one, says Shurden, should have to serve jail time for participating.
And Shurden may have an ally in Governor-elect Brad Henry, who in the past has characterized the penalties as too severe and yesterday said that the cure might be worse than the disease.
What is most likely to happen, with or without Shurden's bill, is that cockfighting will eventually become one of those laws which is enforced selectively: the state is likely to look the other way unless they're trying to stick it to someone for some other reason. In rural Oklahoma, things will go on pretty much the way they always have.