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WHAT OTHERS SAY: High five as official greeting or legislative silliness?

Monday, February 3, 2014 | 11:30 a.m. CST

A tip of the hat to Post-Dispatch reporter Mark Schlinkmann, who annually seeks out the silliest bills introduced in the Missouri legislature.

This year the honor goes to House Bill 1624, introduced by Rep. Courtney Allen Curtis, D-Berkeley. The text reads:

“The ‘high five’ is selected for and shall be known as the official state greeting in the state of Missouri.”

As far as we can tell, no other state has an official greeting. Official flower, trees, reptiles, rocks, snacks, desserts, etc., yes. But Missouri might be the first with a state greeting.

Or not. Mr. Curtis is a freshman Democrat in Republican-dominated House, so it’s unlikely that his bill will get a hearing, much less a floor debate.

Which is probably to the good. The opposition from the handshake and hug lobbies would be fierce. Rural lawmakers might favor the simple raising of two fingers from the steering wheels of pickups passing on lonely roads. We’d want to avoid the hostile raising of a certain single finger.

And then there’s the fist-bump. Or the complicated rigamarole practiced by Cardinals baseball players. Or the Vulcan “live long and prosper” salute.

In all, we’d have to give HB 1624 a thumbs-down.

Copyright St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Reprinted with permission.


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