Otus the Head Cat
Goat patrol is answer to guarding monument.
I, as all right-thinking Arkansans, was horrified at the recent destruction of the newly erected Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the state Capitol.
Whether you view the monument as, according to evangelist and Republican Sen. Jason Rapert of Conway, “a daily reminder of the historical moral foundation of law” or, as opponents claim, “a divisive and unconstitutional violation of the First Amendment separation of church and state,” the fate of the monument should be in the courts and not at the front end of a Dodge Dart.
I’m mailing you my solution to protect the monument’s replacement, which should be installed by the end of the month. Any support you and your thousands of readers can give will be appreciated. — Gary Cabra,
Quitman Dear Gary,
It was wholly a pleasure to hear from you and to thank you for your calm, level-headed, non-frenetic approach to a situation that has divided the state into discordant factions of hide-bound, intransigent, Bible thumpers vs. reactionary, pompous, litigious, effete elitists.
This is, after all, the United States of America, where there is room for everyone (except those on a travel ban) and where the rule of law is the very glue that cohesively binds the disparate — and often incongruous — aspects of this great experiment in representative democracy.
It is incumbent upon us as true Americans to hold sacrosanct the rule of law and reject with vigorous condemnation the attempts by those who would, through violence or aggression, countermand the peaceful order.
That said, I need to proclaim my new-found respect for the lowly Dodge Dart. I mean, the alleged monument killer was driving a humble 2016 Dodge Dart when he allegedly smashed it into the 6-foot-tall monolith, shattering the granite into four large pieces and 87 shards.
Capitol Police quickly arrested the alleged perpetrator at the scene, but they can’t be everywhere at once on the 40acre grounds.
That was June 28. The monument had been in place less than a day and was bracing itself for a deluge of lawsuits from the American Civil Liberties Union and the Satanic Temple.
If a Dodge Dart owner with a history of monument destruction in Oklahoma can allegedly ram his 3,186-pound vehicle (MSRP $16,995) into a 3-ton granite slab while allegedly broadcasting live on Facebook and allegedly shouting, “Freedom!,” then the monument needs more protection than a few yards of zoysia.
Rapert, who called on elected officials to take a stand against violence and against people “using weapons to destroy things” based on differences in viewpoints, said a replacement monument could possibly be protected by steel posts.
Sure, steel posts might be one solution. They are certainly better than the orange plastic construction safety fencing that surrounded the crime scene in the days following the incident.
But posts are hardly adequate when what is truly needed are eyeballs on the scene. And the Capitol Police are strapped for manpower. That’s where Cabra’s solution is the logical answer.
Gary’s Guard Goats is a young business in Quitman that won over the audience during the recent debut of Steve Harvey’s Funderdome on ABC. Think of the seed-funding competition show as Fund- erdome, not Funderdome.
Cabra and his trained goats beat out Marissa, a 15-year-old entrepreneur who invented the Puff-n-Fluff, a bag you put your just-washed dog in and attach a blow dryer to, to avoid that “wet dog” smell.
Cabra used the prize money to expand his business and by purchasing six additional guard goats, creating a website and opening a storefront on Heber Springs Road West in Quitman next to the old post office.
Unlike guard dogs, goats need no special diet, are friendly, but fiercely protective of their assigned charges. Staking them out at the new Ten Commandments monument will free up the solitary overnight Capitol Police cruiser to patrol the rest of the sprawling Capitol grounds.
“Ain’t nobody getting near that monument when the goats are on duty,” Cabra said.
The decision to use the goats is in the hands of Secretary of State Mark Martin, who is responsible for the Capitol and grounds.
Until next time, Kalaka reminds you to congratulate Owner next time you see him. Next Friday marks his 40th anniversary at the newspaper. Not bad for a guy who has never been in a journalism classroom.
Garry’s Guard Goats
protect the secret entrance to the tunnels beneath North Little Rock’s Burns Park. The goats would be a cheap solution to protecting the restored Ten Commandments monument.