Governor-elect Greg Abbott addressed the California-style ordinances impeding on the Texas model of limited government, personal freedoms and liberties at the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF). The conservative think-tank held a political orientation in preparation for the 84th Legislative Session.
“The truth is Texas is being California-ized and you may not even be noticing it,” said Abbott. He added, “It’s being done at the city level with bag bans, fracking bans, tree cutting bans. We’re forming a patchwork quilt of bans and rules and regulations that is eroding the Texas model,” KXAN-TV reported.
Breitbart Texas recently looked at some of the California dreamin’ the state of Texas has been making into realities — the new Dallas Carryout Bags Ordinance, the full-blown Austin bag and cell phone bans, and San Antonio’s prohibition of all handheld talk-or-text mobile devices while driving. Then there’s the North Texas City of Denton fracking ban. Local activists have since banned together with Big “Green” lobbyists to spread the anti-fracking movement throughout the state.
Abbott stated at the TPPF event, “Now think about it — few things are more important in Texas than private property rights. Yet some cities are telling citizens that you don’t own some of the things on your own property that you have bought and purchased and owned for a long time. Things like trees. This is a form of collectivism,” the Houston Chronicle reported.
“Some cities claim that the trees on private property belong to the community, not to the private property owner. Large cities that represent about 75 percent of the population in this state are doing this to us,” Abbott said, and referring to the organizations’ name, added, “Unchecked over-regulation by cities will turn the Texas miracle into the California nightmare faster than you can spell TPPF.”
That is not far-fetched. In Houston, an ordinance prohibited tree-cutting on private property. Meanwhile, in mandate-mad California, there are tree trimming laws, shared tree trimming laws for trees that fall on property lines; and even laws for tree trimming when the roots are on a different side of the fence than where the tree canopy resides. There are property laws regarding shared fences and privacy walls, too.
In California, oak tree-worship is right up there with protections for the spotted-owl, wolves, black bears, deer, and coyotes, the animal. In fact, public safety wildlife may have more rights than Fido when he bites. Small fish like the smelt turned off water spigots in California’s bread basket, the San Joaquin Valley. Even squirrels have been known to have civil rights.
There’s a litany of things to save and heal from the Santa Monica Bay to drought-weary turtles and, of course, Los Angeles is frack-free with the state catching up with more anti-hydraulic fracturing bans.
Over a year ago, transgender rights were legislated in California’s Bathroom Bill, an equal opportunity-for-all K-12 school bath and locker room use law that included cross-sexual choice of competitive sports teams.
In December, the city council in the Dallas suburb of Plano voted in a comparable California-style commode ordinance for bathroom equality under the LGBT banner, which residents are now contesting.
Several months ago, the Houston City Council attempted to subpoena the local clergy’s sermons and private communications with their members to monitor content they deemed out-of-step with gay, lesbian and gender-identity issues.
In 2012, former San Antonio mayor now HUD czar Julian Castro pushed for the city sales tax-funded Pre-K for SA, an expansion of Big Education’s Head Start, a program that has proven itself a dismal failure. The same City of San Antonio run early education program just happened to shut down Halloween in one of their four centers in the name of religious diversity.
California kicked off 2015 with 900-ish new laws, among them the statewide plastic bag ban, drought driven water regulations, and the greatest gift, California Cap & Trade, which expanded to include oil and gas regulations.
A potential federal tax penalty on taxpayers who cannot prove that they carried health insurance under the Affordable Care Act’s “individual mandate” looms for Californians too. The state will dole out driver’s licenses for undocumented aliens in the new year. Mandatory employer-paid sick leave pay is coming, chicken’s rights, the “yes means yes” consensual sex college campus law and the photographic selfies “revenge porn” law will now include the distribution of naked selfies as a crime in the coming year in the Golden State.
Last year, California only kicked off its 2014 calendar with a paltry 800-ish new laws. Every year, California can be counted on for having the most restrictive gun laws in the nation.
As Attorney General, Greg Abbott was a fearless opponent of government regulation most notably reflected in the filing of more than 30 lawsuits against the Obama administration, a tradition that newly installed Texas AG Ken Paxton said “set the standard” for attorney generals across the country. Paxton vowed to continue in Abbott’s tradition of limited government and in defending liberty.
According to the Washington Times, the Houston Chronicle followed up Abbott’s statements at the TPPF event with a poll in which they asked their readers “Is Texas becoming too much like California?” The results as of January 8 — 44 percent of respondents said yes, 50 percent said no, and 6 percent were undecided.
“[Unchecked over-regulation by cities] is contrary to my vision for Texas,” said Abbott, according to KXAN-TV.
“My vision is one where individual liberties are not bound by city limit signs. I will insist on protecting unlimited liberty to ensure that Texas will continue to grow and prosper,” Abbott added.
A very good vision indeed.
Follow Merrill Hope on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.