Oklahoma has been working for many months on a new branding and marketing campaign. Lt. Governor, Matt Pinnell, has unquestionably done an excellent job of championing tourism and promoting Oklahoma. He built up a lot of anticipation for the release of what was dubbed, “OklaX.” With fanfare and pomp, the new brand was recently released.

The response has been somewhat mixed. What do you think?

In other news: it is an election year. Legislators are promoting political statements they can brag about while standing on a constituent’s front porch. That means we will see an extraordinary amount of stupid this legislative session.

Just as an example, last week we in the House voted on HB1111.

This bill promotes the idea that mixing guns with alcohol is a good public policy for the State of Oklahoma to pursue. By a vote of 76-21 the Oklahoma House says that bringing guns into bars will make all Oklahomans better off.

Now, to be fair, this bill is intended to focus on bars that are associated with restaurants and the bill gives the purveyor the right to refuse guns. It also provides that the gunslinger isn’t supposed to be drinking, but there is no mechanism to enforce that as to the bar.

So, open-carry or concealed, anything from a pistol to an AR-15 or shotgun could belly up to the bar next to you. If the bartender serves him, there is no consequence.

If the bartender refuses, his buddy can order a couple of extra drinks and pass them on over to Doc Holliday, and again there is no consequence.

How much sense does that make? So, once again, I voted against a bill that will at some point likely result in a disaster that will hurt responsible gun ownership, but the OK2A group will once again spin that (for all their followers who refuse to think for themselves) into me trying to take everyone’s guns away.

Prov. 25:21 If your enemies are hungry, give them food to eat, if thirsty, give something to drink;

Rep. Ben Loring (D-Miami) represents District 7 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. Contact him at ben.loring@okhouse.gov or 405-557-7399.