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Legislature is walking the line of foolishness

I was going to let this one go because I thought it was so ridiculous that no one would take it seriously.

I was wrong.

I woefully underestimated our legislators' ability to pursue foolishness. I forgot, apparently, debates about grits or the attempt to make it a misdemeanor to fail to serve sweet tea in a restaurant.

The latest bit of nonsense has to do with our borders. You've probably heard by now that the General Assembly would like to redraw our boundary with Tennessee. The people under the gold dome would like to move the state line about a mile northward, thus allowing us to take a big ol' drink from the Tennessee River.

The justification for this attempt to solve our water crisis is that the guy who drew the border back in 1818 got it wrong the first time. The reasons why are varied, but they apparently involve either drunkenness or fear of Indians.

I immediately picture two scenarios in my head.

In one, the surveyor, after having one too many sips from his little brown jug, does what many of us have done: He forgets where he is. He then decides that further navigation in his current state will probably involve either a lot of falling down or legal trouble - or both - and thus he stops, lays down on the ground and goes to sleep.

The next morning, hungover and lost, the surveyor looks at his unfinished map, decides "right about here is good," draws the border line and wanders off to look for some greasy food and a bottle of aspirin.

In the other scenario, our hero is on his way to survey the actual border, hears war drums in the distance, decides "right about here is good," draws his line and hightails it out of there.

Either way, what we ended up with was a mishaped Georgia.

The crazy thing is no one really disputes that the border is off. It was designated by Congress to run along the 35th parallel. We now know it doesn't. At one point, that piece of land and the river should have been in Georgia. But it was almost 200 years ago. Hasn't the statute of limitations run out?

Most folks see this political embarrassment for what it is - a stunt. Some legislators even taunted the bill's sponsor, Duluth Sen. David Shafer.

But then here's the crazier thing. Despite the knowledge that this will go nowhere, our legislators voted for it anyway.

Why? What on God's green Earth do they hope to accomplish? Do they really think they can get the border redrawn? If Tennessee refuses to cooperate, will we invade them? And how exactly is this attempted thievery of the river different from Florida's insistence that we water their d--- mussels?

Remember that? We (and when I say we, I'm including myself) were outraged that we had to release all that water to keep some mussels in Florida alive. And I still think it's wrong.

But trying to reclaim something we weren't interested in until we started running out of water, that's apparently OK for the folks in the General Assembly.

That it's being done under the guise of helping our water crisis doesn't make it any less ridiculous. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Government will always try to do the right thing the wrong way.

I'm not even that big of a fan of the state of Tennessee. But foolishness is foolishness, no matter where it originates.

In a statement to the Associated Press, Tennessee state Rep. Gerald McCormick summed it up perfectly.

"They're idiots."

It's no small irony to me what the first three letters of the term "Assembly" are. And that's what they're making us look like.

E-mail Nate McCullough at nate.mccullough@gwinnettdailypost.com. His column appears on Fridays.