In today's Friday files, we have bits about everyone from Bill Sublette and Dean Cannon to Mickey Mouse and Bozo the Clown.
But first, let's talk about Jim Morrison.
Charlie Crist wants to pardon The Doors' front man for his conviction on charges of indecent exposure and profanity.
Why not? Such a crusade seems just about right for Gov. Lightweight.
I mean, sure, we have real, live people sitting in jail for crimes they may not have committed — people whose innocence has been championed by expert legal minds. And Charlie won't lift a finger to look at those cases.
But start talking about a dead celebrity and suddenly Gov. Spotlight is interested.
At this point, I could remind Charlie about Florida's shameful record of imprisoning the innocent and all the living people whose cases he has refused to even review.
I could remind him that groups like the Innocence Project have begged him, for instance, to simply look into Brevard County cases where dozens of people were convicted with testimony for a supposed dog-handling "expert" who was later exposed in court as a fraud.
But I've already done that. So have many others. And Charlie — along with Attorney General Bill McCollum — turned a deaf ear towards those issues of justice.
I no longer suffer delusions that Charlie might actually do the right thing for the right reason for regular Floridians.
No, he'll pursue the case involving a dead celebrity … the one that might get him on Entertainment Tonight or on page A3 of The New York Times, which is where this story ran Thursday.
Fortunately, our next Attorney General, Pam Bondi, has vowed to look into the cases involving boring old non-celebrities who may be wrongly rotting away in prison.
So, Charlie, if it's only the dead glitterati who light your fire, knock yourself out.
It's a fitting end to your career.
• OK, there are a couple of things I'll miss about Crist. One is his personality. I loved watching him in action. That man could sweet-talk a baby seal into the mouth of a killer whale. And nobody did vacuous in a more earnest and eloquent fashion. But more importantly, Crist and his veto pen served as the last vestige of moderation in Tallahassee. Our new legislative leaders have made it clear that they view bipartisanship, compromise and governing from the middle as quaint concepts that they'd rather squash than laud.
•Credit for efficiency. One good thing about the new lopsided legislature: They're efficient. In past years, legislatures have dallied for weeks. But on Tuesday, new Speaker Dean Cannon and Senate president Mike Haridopolos convened a session, made history by overriding eight of Crist's vetoes, and got out. You may not like their actions. But at least they were quick about it.
•Good luck, Bill. Without much hubbub, Bill Sublette made history this week when he was sworn in as Orange County's first countywide elected school board chair. I like Sublette. I think he's passionate about schools and kids from different backgrounds. He's well-versed. And, unlike many politicians, he's more of a thinking man than ideologue. I also like that Sublette has set a goal of improving the system's graduation rate. That may sound obvious. But for too long some school officials have focused as much on excuses as results. I hope Sublette and the other board members, who are saying the right things about working together, are successful — and strong enough to stand united and tall against the Tallahassee forces that constantly try to short-change our schools, teachers and children.
•Name your own candidates. In perusing the write-in votes on this year's ballots, "None of the above" and "Anyone else" fared well. (They usually do.) But the most popular write-in name in both Orange and Seminole was McCollum, whom Rick Scott bounced off the ballot in the gubernatorial primary. McCollum was followed by Jeb Bush and Mickey Mouse … followed by perennial also-rans, like Jesus, I.P. Freely and Yo Mama. None of these votes counted. (Only votes for registered write-ins do.) That may make other write-in choices like Neal Boortz and Hillary Clinton feel somewhat better — since both were bested in Seminole County by Captain Crunch and Bozo the Clown.
Scott Maxwell can be reached at email@example.com or 407-420-6141.
Looking to fix injustices? Start with living people, Charlie
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