PLANNED PARENTHOOD GETS A WIN

The Supreme Court refused Monday to consider efforts by Republican-led states to defund Planned Parenthood. Despite its new, more conservative tilt, the court let stand federal appeals court rulings that allowed the reproductive health organization’s patients to contest laws in Louisiana and Kansas that stripped its Medicaid funds. The court’s refusal to hear the case represents a setback for conservative interest groups in many states that have sought aggressive action against Planned Parenthood and abortion providers in general. Three of the court’s conservatives, Associate Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch, dissented and said the court should have taken up the issue. Chief Justice Brett Kavanaugh did not join the dissent.*****Also on Monday, President Donald Trump dismissed payments to alleged mistresses just before the 2016 presidential election as “a simple private transaction,” disputing claims by prosecutors that they amounted to a conspiracy to evade campaign finance laws. Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, is scheduled to be sentenced this week after pleading guilty to felony campaign finance violations, financial crimes and lying to Congress about Trump’s business dealings in Russia. In legal filings released Friday, prosecutors said Cohen told them that when he made the payments to the women, “he acted in coordination with and at the direction of Trump.”*****I have to move on. Come along. I promise it won’t do you no harm.

REMEMBERING GOOD MEN WHO PASSED

Funeral services were held today, Dec. 11, at Claybar Funeral Home in Bridge City, for Calvin W. Stakes, age 84. We first met Calvin around 1962 when he worked for Jack Lovett Electric Co. Calvin later started his own company, Stakes Electric, that is now owned by his son, Calvin, Jr., better known to friends and family as “Little Cal.” About eight couples in the same age group raised our families together and all have remained lifelong friends. Many of the couples are gone now but most of their offspring remain around in our Orange County area. Calvin, Sr. was just a great, fun-loving guy, a good man to be friends with, and a loyal friend to have, traits he’s passed on. To Cal Jr., Kellie and their families, our sincere condolences. Please see obituary. *****We were sorry to learn of the death of Morris Baker, 74, of Bridge City, who passed away Dec. 7. Catholic services were held Dec. 10. Less than a month ago, Morris had his wife Elaine bring us some of Gordon Baxter’s books that had been autographed for his mother, Lois, who was a classmate of Baxter. Anyone will tell you what a good man Morris was. To Elaine and her family our sincere sympathy. May he rest in peace. Please see obituary.

TURNING BACK THE HANDS OF TIME

10 Years Ago-2008

We were sad to learn that A.J. Lemoine’s mom, Gloria, died peacefully in her sleep Monday night. The death of this good lady was unexpected. She was preceded in death by our good friend A.J. Sr. *****Chester Marjolet, 53, died Dec. 15. Visitation will be Thursday from 9 to 10 a.m. at Claybar Funeral Home with graveside services to follow.***** Let me start with birthdays, first a couple of special ladies. Betty Lou Womack will celebrate on Dec. 18. Betty Lou, over the past three months has been caring for our friend Cal Broussard, seldom leaving his side through nine surgeries and one set back after another. Cal was transferred from St. Luke’s to St. Elizabeth for rehabilitation but another blow has hit him. A fungus in his blood stream has again put him in critical condition. The fighter may be nearing the end of the fight. It won’t be a happy birthday for Betty Lou. God bless her. (Editor’s note: Betty Lou died a couple of years later.) *****Inez Hearn is a wonderful lady we have known many years. A nicer more giving person would be hard to find. She has donated much of her latter years toward service of the elderly. We always thought that was funny. She was 80 when she was delivering food and goods to those younger than her. This Wednesday, Dec. 17, Nez reaches the age of 90. She’s slowing down but her mind is still in overdrive. (Editor’s note: Nez left us a few years ago.)*****Our longtime friend Doug Harrington celebrates this week. (Editor’s note: What a great friend Doug was.)*****Mayor Brown Claybar marks another year on Dec. 18. We have known him since he was a puppy.*****Happy birthday to Stacey Bates and Bill Cardner on Dec. 20 and Bill Bailey Dec. 22.*****Celebrating anniversaries are Betty and Corky Harmon on Dec. 14. It’s number 52. Corky stole her from the Nuns when she was just a teenager. She gave up the idea of becoming a Nun to spend a lifetime with Corky. A wonderful couple and great friends. (Editor’s note: Corky left us in 2017.)*****Happy 53rd anniversary to Rene and Lucy Hanks who celebrate on Christmas Eve. Keep on trucking. *****Best wishes to Charles and Dorothy Slusher on Dec. 21.*****Rodney Harrison will be the new chief deputy under sheriff Keith Merritt.*****Kirbyville goes down 48-26 to Muleshoe in the class 2-A state championship. It was a great season for the Wildcats and the community.*****I believe pro football, in the next five years, will do away with the huddle. Today Payton Manning and the Colts use mostly a no huddle offense.*****If Republicans don’t get on board and throw the auto industry a lifeline, the domino effect will be felt as far down south as Orange, Texas. I believe now that Bush will have to make a 60-day loan to GM and Chrysler from the $700 billion bank bail out money, if not Obama will inherit a depression. *****The Feds could drop rates this week to an all time low, one percent or less. *****It was a record presidential vote, 131 million, 62 percent nationwide. Six million people will attend Obama’s inauguration. There have been over 12 million requests for invitations, even in many republican districts. It’s truly an historical event. *****This week in 1939, the motion picture “Gone With the Wind” came out. I’ve watched it many times over the years and owned a copy until Ike came and took it. The famous quote from the film, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”*****T. Boone Pickens is getting help from Owen Corning to reduce oil imports with his wind farms to replace natural gas fired power plants, freeing the gas to be used in vehicles.*****For the first time in history six named tropical systems made U.S. landfall. The most damaging were Fay in Florida, Gustav in Louisiana and Ike in Texas. Gustav forced the biggest evacuation on record, nearly two million people. Ike, on Sept. 13, killed at least 61 people, the second deadliest since 1972. Ike caused $17 billion in damage, the costliest hurricane in Texas history and one of the top five costliest in U.S. history. *****Our old buddy, D.J. “Ace” Amodeo has had a pacemaker put in. He is now living at the Pinehurst Nursing Home on Cardinal Street. He would welcome anyone to come visit him or give him a call at 409-670-2708. It’s nice to hear from folks, especially right here at Christmas time. *****It would amaze you how many people are alone and that’s always a downer this time of year. *****Sam Bradford deserves the Heisman Trophy. Cody McCoy came in second, Tim Tebow third. What I don’t understand is why Graham Herrell, from Texas Tech, was excluded.*****You might be a Redneck if in your church’s Christmas play, two of the wise men smoked during the performance.*****Congrats to West Orange Stark defensive lineman Kevin Robinson on being named to AP’s first team all state 3-A team. Kevin had 104 tackles for the Mustange.*****Former West Orange-Stark quarterback Andre Bevil is the first player to sign with Lamar’s new football program to start in 2010. He will sign at 10 a.m. Wednesday, the first day for junior college transfers to sign, high school players sign Feb. 4. Bevil played for Lamar coach Ray Woodard while he was coaching at Navarro Junior College.*****DeMarcus Ware, Dallas Cowboy, has 19 sacks, just three away from the record of 22. Since Wade Phillips personally took over the Cowboy defense the team hasn’t allowed a rusher to gain 100 yards and have allowed only one touchdown in the three games.*****A farewell reception for Commissioner James Stringer will be held at the court house annex building Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Old “Stick” is hanging up his spurs. He’s been a Justice of the Peace, County Judge and Commissioner. 

40 Years Ago-1978

Mavis Powell served as hostess for “Santa’s Christmas Heritage” Monday night at Heritage House. Some of the youngsters attending were Lisa and Lori, daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Jacobs, Ava Williams, daughter of Mrs. Jacqueline Williams, Jason and Kristi Marshall, children of Mr. and Mrs. Phillip D. Marshall. Barbara David was Santa’s helper. (Editor’s note: Want to take a guess at who Santa was?)*****A few of Orange County’s best people around this Christmas season, Judge Sid Caillavet, Judge James Neff, Judge Martin Ardoin, former Sheriff Chester Holts, publisher James Quigley, Mead Graves, former sheriff and longtime Constable Buck Patillo, former lawman Alvie Griffith, Father Joe Berberich, Henry Stansfield, Joe Blanda, the barber, Elmer Newman, the banker, Ovie Harmon, descendant of first settlement founder John Harmon, Jim “The Fisherman” McKay, Tony “My Happiness” Giarratono, who wrote the hit song later stolen from him. Rev. W.W. Kennedy of Cove Baptist, Jimmy Kirby Conn, a comic everyday of the year, former county clerk and mayor of Orange Joe Runnels Jr., “Crip” Trahan, king of grass roots politicking. “Mr. Democratic” Bob Montagne, “Mr. Orange” KOGT’s Ed Lovelace, Jimmy Segura, married to pretty Annie, the queen of Cow Bayou, Western Auto’s Raymond Seltzer, Bill Stringer, Alvin Keown, former Orange police chief, bank chairman etc.*****Sonny Gunstream, what a character, farmer’s best friend Gus Harris, Cecil Beeson, “Mr. Levingston” who gave many youngsters jobs, Buddy Rhodes, the Bengal Café owner. (Editor’s note: As far as I know, none are still living.)*****Wilda Martin celebrates a birthday on Christmas Eve. *****Gordon Baxter and Flo Edgerly both celebrate birthdays on Christmas Day. *****‘Old Stud’ Doug Harrington turns 40 and he can’t bare to talk about it. *****Beautiful Ann Segura will celebrate her special day on Dec. 26. (Editor’s note: Ms. Ann, owner of Bridge City Cleaners, like most citizens, suffered a terrible blow from Ike. We’ve loved Miss Ann for 50 years as did most who know her. Since then Miss Ann has flown off to Heaven.*****

A FEW HAPPENINGS

This coming Monday, Dec. 17, will mark 52 years since the Bridge City Cardinal football team won the 3-A State Championship in 1966.  Those youngsters today will range from 68 to 71 years old. Hard to believe all are past the age to qualify for Medicare. Why has that one championship had so much lasting power? People still talk about it like it was recent, yet folks under 60 probably don’t remember the great 1965 and 1966 seasons. Every week we loaded the kids up and followed the team. We would pack some sandwiches and head out to wherever a playoff game was happening. We saw both championship games, the ‘65 game was lost, then the ‘66 championship win. What made that championship game different was that only one team in the district was allowed to advance. The best played the best out of every district. Some of the boys have passed away, most moved away but I still see some around. I’m sure the team “Mother Hen,” Alice Cole, can tell the location of most. They were a tight knit bunch.*****Our buddy Judge Derry Dunn will have a procedure at M.D. Anderson, in Houston, Thursday morning that will break up kidney stones from both kidneys. Derry has an explanation of what causes stones that I had never heard. It explains why some people have them and others don’t. Judge Dunn will be hanging up his J.P. robe come Dec. 31, but will stay on as Pinehurst municipal Judge. Chad Jenkins will become the new Justice of the Peace, Pct. 2 on Jan. 1.***Margie Stephens recently was also in hospital with a large stone that had to be extracted.*****I picked up a couple of Angus Rib-Eyes at Danny’s last week. They were great on the grill. This week they are featuring Boneless Sirloin Steaks, different than most cooks, I make steak and gravy on a bed of rice. Don’t tell me I’m wasting a good steak, I know what I’m doing.*****Judge Pat stopped by and we had a nice visit. He bought a truck from Granger a year ago and had a free wash job coming. Despite the five inches of rain predicted Clark wasn’t going to pass up the free was before time ran out. Clark don’t pass nothing up that’s free.*****I had not realized that Oklahoma quarterback and Heisman trophy winner, Kyler Murry, is the son of former Texas A&M quarterback Kevin Murry. I believe Dallas drafted him, I’m not sure.*****Last week, Sheriff Keith and Marlene were both under the weather and missed the Lunch Bunch gathering. This week the Lunch Bunch will dine at JB’s Barbeque and next week, Dec. 19, the Bunch will have a Christmas gathering at Robert’s. It will be the last gathering for this year.*****I hear Pat Camfield is the new fleet manager at J.K. Chevrolet.*****While the train carrying the body of President Bush, traveled between Navasota and College Station, I thought about my friend Joe Chanella. He and wife, Nancy, live on that stretch of tracks that run behind their subdivision. Coach Les Johnson called last week and said he had spoken with Joe about three months ago. We haven’t heard from him in over a year. Les says they’re doing fine and like the area. Maybe we will hear from him over the Holidays.*****Since I’ve lost contact with Donna Riley, I’ve lost contact with a lot of folks at BCISD. She was my connection.*****Congratulations to West Orange-Stark star, Alabama safety, Deionte Thompson, who was named to the Associated Press First Team All Americans. Thompson is a junior and will likely be a high draft choice when he decides to go pro. He could very well follow in Earl Thomas’ footsteps.

BIRTHDAYS THIS WEEK

Dec. 12: George Sehon, Shelby Hebert, Lucy Hanks and Scott Derouen celebrate this week. They are joined by TV game show host Bob Barker, who will be 94 and Gospel singer Dionne Warwick, who will be 77.*****Dec. 13: Celebrating today are Melinda Swares, Dennis Lee and Jenny Duncan also singer Taylor Swift, who will be 28, actor Jamie Foxx, 50 and actor Dick Van Dyke, 92.*****Dec. 14: Keri Michutka, Danny Blacksher, Danny Prosperie, Hannah Carpenter and Keri Curd all celebrate today. Celebrities celebrating are singers Vanessa Hudgens, 29 and Tori Kelly, 25.*****Dec. 15: Celebrating on this day are Amanda Webb, Maac Hughes, Belinda Broom, Katie Hunt and Tammy Breaux. Also celebrating are actors Don Johnson, 68, Michelle Dockary, 36 and Adam Brody, 38.*****Dec. 16: Celebrating on this day are Liz Brown, Michelle Gephart, Bobby Adaway and Elizabeth Uzzle. They are joined by actors Benjamin Bratt, 54, Theo James, 33 and Anna Popplewell, 29.*****Dec. 17: It has been 52 years since the Bridge City Cardinals won the State Championship in 1966. Celebrating birthdays on this day are Jeremie Delano, Daniel McLemore and Chris Chambless. Also celebrating are boxer Manny Pacquiao, 39, MMA fighter Chuck Liddell, 48, and actress Laura Holdan, 48.*****Dec. 18: Celebrating birthdays today are Brown Claybar, Mike Matlock, Tracey Lynn Broussard, Julie Alleman. Celebrities celebrating are actors Brad Pitt, 54, Ray Liotta, 63 and singer Christina Aguilera, 37. 

CAJUN STORY OF THE WEEK

Opie LeBlanc and his Mary Lou were sitting at a table at Opie’s Abbeville High School 35th reunion. Opie, him, kept staring at a drunken lady swigging her drink as she sat alone at a nearby table. Mary Lou axe, “Opie, do you know dat lady, hanh?”

Opie answer, “Mais sho, dats Agnes Premeaux, my old girlfriend. I understand me, she took to drinking right after we split up us, all dose years ago. I hear me, dat she hasn’t been sober since.”

“My God,” said Mary Lou, “Who would tink a person could go on celebrating dat long?”

Den da fight started.

C’EST TOUT

Military Used in Political Gimmick Goes Home

President Donald Trump, along with his friends at FOX News, had warned the American people that a caravan of Central Americans, traveling through Mexico, were in route to invade the United States. Just before the Midterm Election Trump ordered active duty troops sent to the border. The domestic deployment of troops was viewed by critics as a political stunt and a waste of military resources. This column had warned that using the military so carelessly wasn’t only a political ploy but was also being used by Trump to gain support for the ‘Great Border Wall.’ Trump’s main goal is to build an everlasting monument to himself, including his name and picture. He has until the Dec. 21 deadline to shut down the government if he doesn’t get his wall. The Democrats will control the House and the wall money in the new Congress in January. Nancy Pelosi has offered far less than Trump is asking for in his vision of his wall. About 2,200 of the active duty troops are now being pulled out and about 2,300 National Guard troops will remain. About 5,200 active duty troops have been sent to the border during the political gimmick to influence the mid-term elections and to apply pressure for the great border wall on the congress. To cover the 2,000 miles with a wall would cost $30 to $40 billion and accomplish very little. We wrote once the election was over we would no longer hear about the invasion. They never were for real.*****My time is up, thanks for yours. Read us cover to cover and please shop the people who advertise inside and tell those who don’t that they’re missing the boat and should. Take care and God bless.