On the day before a Commonwealth Court Judge disappointed the state General Assembly's Republican majority and their chief executive on voter ID, a federal district judge chided the legislature for pandering.
U.S. District Judge Christopher Conner threw out a lawsuit filed by an organization that includes atheists and agnostics over a Pennsylvania House resolution declaring 2012 the "Year of the Bible." The suit was dismissed on the grounds of legislative immunity. That is, the legislature can't be sued for passing a law you don't agree with.
However, in his decision, Conner recognized the inherent wastefulness of passing ordinances and resolutions that do nothing to better the human condition.
He suggested that the resolution approved in January was at worst "pandering designed to provide a re-election sound bite" and resources would be better used in "meaningful legislative efforts" to benefit all.
House GOP leaders, according to inquiries by the Philadelphia Inquirer, expressed satisfaction with the ruling, since it ensures that the balance of 2012 will, indeed, be the Year of the Bible in Pennsylvania and their legislative immunity has held strong.
All of which brings up the question: If 2012 is the Year of the Bible in Pennslvania, does that mean that the Bible only holds significance in a single year? Does it mean that the Bible is only worthy of a special legislative honor in election years?
And, finally, what will 2014 (when they will all be up for election again) be the year of? What demographic will the Pennsylvania House of Representatives single out for recognition that year? We assume that pollsters and demographers are already hard at work divining options for the next "Year of..."