Of boards and books

Fortunately, some voters in our little corner of the world found the time to flip a voting booth switch this Saturday past, and the results will place one person on a board and keep the lights on in certain public buildings.  

Jerri Lee will now be attending Webster Parish School Board meetings in a capacity other than guest or visitor. Following a landslide special election win, Ms. Lee, a veteran of the parish police jury in times past, will be representing District 9 on the board. 

You remember District 9. That’s the area Frankie Mitchell had served since Moby Dick was a calf, but she decided not to tackle another four years. Ms. Mitchell had to sit a while longer, though, when no one filed for the seat in time for last year’s election. Had one person bothered, it would have continued a popular trend on the board of running unopposed. 

Lee’s will be another new face on a school board that in previous years, shall we say, began to look very familiar. But now there’s a somewhat different appearance, with School Board 2023 featuring five first-termers on the 12-person panel. And, just in case y’all haven’t noticed, eight of those 12 are women. 

Before any peecee Wokies get their pouty panties in a pucker, that previous comment isn’t the wail of a Boomer sexist, it’s the observation of a curiositist. It hints that Webster Parish’s 67 percent is a trend-breaker since women make up just slightly over 31 percent of school board members nationwide. 

Also this weekend, parish voters agreed to keep all library branches open after some of the registereds overwhelmingly thumbed up a millage renewal. It would be ok to call the vote overwhelming even though the turnout was underwhelming to say the least.  

According to the numbers, only 7.8 percent of registered voters rolled to the polls. So, the 92-plus who didn’t bother can say thank you to the few who made it possible to keep reading material, and a place to read, available. 

Whenever whatever percentage of no-shows show up at libraries, they might want to check out a couple of history books and learn the value of the right we take so lightly.

– Pat Culverhouse