Caught My Eye…

Thanks for stopping by to read “Caught My Eye” as you speed toward your weekend – and maybe a government shutdown!

If this is your first time visiting The Western Word the “Caught My Eye” column is posted every Friday morning! This is when I take a quick look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. By the way, I often throw in a touch of sarcasm just to make you smile – or maybe to irritate you just a little.

Today I write about Barry Beach, Little Shell Tribe, Montana Highway Patrol Chief, Wyoming Senate, George H.W. Bush, Major League Baseball, birthdays, and there are two winners who are Making Montana Proud.

Great Falls Tribune Editorial:

On Wednesday, the Great Falls Tribune editorial board wrote, “It’s time to parole Barry Beach.”

I could not agree more.

I believe that Beach deserved a new trial, but that does not seem likely. The next best thing would be parole, so the Montana Board of Pardons and Parole should recommend to Governor Steve Bullock that Barry Beach be released on parole – and Bullock should grant it.

If the 18 months he was free was any indication, Barry Beach will be a model citizen.

Little Shell Tribe:

I was happy to read, “Interior Secretary Sally Jewell is asking the Bureau of Indian Affairs to reconsider a decision that denied federal recognition for the Little Shell Tribe in Montana.”

It is long past time for the Little Shell to receive the Federal recognition they so rightly deserve. Montana elected officials should do all they can to ensure it finally happens.

New Montana Highway Patrol Chief:

According to a press release from the Montana Attorney General’s office, Attorney General Tim Fox appointed Lieutenant Colonel Tom Butler as chief of the Montana Highway Patrol.

Congrats to Colonel Butler.

I’ll bet the amateurs seasoned professionals at the Montana Department of Justice thoroughly checked Butler’s past, including physically checking his personnel file, instead of just asking him if there were things in his file that might be “problematic or inappropriate.”

That would have saved Fox and his team a lot of embarrassment if they would have done that little deed when they first appointed a new Chief.

Wyoming Senate:

It’s getting a little heated in the Wyoming Senate race. Former Senator Allan Simpson said that Lynne Cheney, mother of senate candidate Liz Cheney, told him to “shut up” at a reception the other day in Cody, Wyoming. Simpson is backing Senator Mike Enzi.

The Republican Party is pretty good at eating their own these days. Most of the problem stems from the Tea Party extremists.

George H.W. Bush:

Reuters and several other sources are reporting, “Former President George H.W. Bush and his wife, Barbara, were the official witnesses of a same-sex marriage between two women in Maine over the weekend.”

Good for them! The world did not end, either.

Of course, one can only imagine the hatred spewing from some on the right toward the former President and Mrs. Bush.

Trust in the Government:

A new poll from Gallup found, “At a time when the U.S. is dealing with the federal debt limit, the budget, the rollout of the healthcare law, and the situation in Syria, trust in all three branches of the federal government remains on the lower end of what Gallup has measured historically.”

The poll also found “Americans are more trusting in local government than in all three branches of the federal government, and trust in state government exceeds trust in the executive and legislative branches of the federal government.”

Is this a great country or what?

Making Montana Proud:

This section is where I mention people whose actions embarrass Montana in some way.

-From CNN Breaking News Alerts: “Stacey Rambold, the Montana rapist whose teenage victim later committed suicide, has been freed from prison after 31 days. Rambold’s short sentence and the judge’s [G. Todd Baugh] comments about the young victim sparked national outrage and protests. The victim, Cherice Moralez, was 14 years old when the rape occurred in 2008. She took her own life shortly before her 17th birthday. Rambold, who was Moralez’s teacher when he raped her, will be on probation for the next 14 years and 11 months.”

Judge G. Todd Baugh’s weak sentence and silly remarks continue to embarrass Montana…

-From the Billings Gazette: Judge G. Todd Baugh (yes, the same judge), sentenced Kelly Jean Woodruff, 44, “to serve a concurrent six-month jail term, with all but 10 days suspended, for misdemeanor aggravated DUI.” Woodruff “endangered her severely autistic daughter while driving a motor home with a blood-alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit.”

Baugh seems to have given a pretty lenient sentence here, but it’s probably in line with many judges in Montana who are soft on drunk driving…

Commissioner of MLB:

Bud Selig, Commissioner of Major League Baseball, is reportedly stepping down after the 2014 season.

This is great news.

Selig was “acting” commissioner for several years while the owners looked for someone else. Since they couldn’t agree on anyone, they finally removed the “acting” tag from Selig.

Maybe a new commissioner can bring MLB into this century. The new commissioner should also allow Pete Rose to be reinstated and considered for induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Selig’s legacy will also include a few paragraphs about steroids.

Happy Birthdays:

It’s a big day in the music world for birthdays! Avril Lavigne turns 29, Lil’ Wayne turns 31, Shaun Cassidy is 55, Meat Loaf is 66, and Randy Bachman of Bachman Turner Overdrive turns 70.

One More Thing:

Don’t forget to stretch…