Congressman Andy Harris of Maryland recently voted to delete laws that decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana in the District of Columbia. According to Harris, the decriminalizing of marijuana was a bad idea because marijuana could be harmful to the children.

Interestingly, at the same time, Harris voted to delete gun control laws in the District because, evidently, he believes that allowing everyone to carry weapons without restrictions is perfectly safe for the children.


Perhaps some facts are in order here. The number of children killed from guns in America in 2012 was about 2,700. The number of children killed from marijuana in 2012 was zero. For children, then, guns are more dangerous than marijuana. For Harris's career, however, advocating for the NRA, which contributes to his campaign, is more profitable than advocating for the safety of our children in our nation's capital.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas is trying to force the federal government to sell America's national lands, including our parks and national forests. Cruz's bill would allow our national parks to be sold off for mining, drilling and logging companies if the states where the parks are located cannot afford to run them. I wonder if Cruz, born in Canada, ever visited one of our national parks.

Speaking of protecting our environment, Kentucky state Sen. Brandon Smith stated that his proof that man-made climate change is a hoax is that Mars and Earth share "exactly" the same temperature, even though there is no coal on Mars. Smith's logic, I think, is that since there is no coal on Mars, we can burn all of Earth's coal and its absence could not possibly impact Earth's climate.

I honestly don't know where to begin with this one. How about this: According to NASA, the average temperature on Earth is 57 degrees above zero and the average temperature on Mars is 81 degrees below zero. Other than the fact that Earth's average temperature is 138 degrees above Mar's average temperature, they are, according to Smith, "exactly" the same. It seems that Smith is not only anti-science, but really poor at math.

Democrat Brian Schweitzer, former governor of Montana, has decided that House Leader Eric Cantor lost his Virginia primary race because, "Men in the South, they are a little effeminate. They just have effeminate mannerisms. If you were just a regular person, you turned on the TV, and saw Eric Cantor talking, I would say — and I'm fine with gay people, that's all right — but my gaydar is 60-70 percent. But he's not, I think, so I don't know. Again, I could care less. I'm accepting."

Yes and my anti-gaydar tells me that Schweitzer is about as accepting of gays as Texas Gov. Rick Perry is of children from Central America.

Some people think that Congressman Darrell Issa of California is going too far in trying to investigate the Obama administration. To prove it, they point to a recent subpoena issued by Issa to review all emails from IRS official Lois Lerner between Jan. 1, 1986 and June 3, 2014. That may be a problem, however, since the technology for widespread email didn't exist until the early 1990s. I'm guessing that Issa will accuse Lerner of hiding evidence from those pre-1990 emails.

In Tennessee, Republican state Sen. Stacey Campfield sponsored a bill making it illegal for teachers to discuss homosexuality with their students. He is also noted for comparing the number of people signing up for Obamacare to the number of Jews in concentration camps, and for stating that AIDS came from people having sex with monkeys. But just to demonstrate that Americans do have their standards — as low as they are — Campfield was soundly defeated in his re-election primary last week.

There is hope after all.

Tom Zirpoli writes from Westminster. His column appears Wednesdays. Email him at tzirpoli@mcdaniel.edu.