Bless His Heart

Cecil Bell Jr. is a redneck good ole boy, who happens to be a Texas State Representative
by Susan Bankston

I want you kiddos to meet Cecil Bell Jr., a redneck good ol’ boy if ever there was one. The only problem is that he’s a redneck good ol’ boy who’s been elected to the state legislature.

Cecil dwells in Magnolia, Texas, which is about 50 miles north of Houston. Magnolia: where men are men and sheep are afraid.

Ol’ Cecil does not cotton to certain other people’s lifestyles. In fact, Cecil doesn’t like lifestyles at all. He doesn’t have one to speak of, so yours is overly interesting to him.

Plus, Cecil’s got that whole uglier-than-a-mud-fence thing going on. Seriously, Cecil couldn’t even get laid at the Chicken Ranch with a 50-dollar bill stapled to his forehead and a hen under each arm. And in just a minute you’re gonna understand why that becomes important. Cecil is real worried about how, where, when, and why you get laid, and I suspect that’s mainly because he can’t. Bless his heart.

What Cecil lacks in beauty, he more than makes up for in ignorance. Cecil is a graduate of Oakwood High School. He didn’t feel the need for any college, because all they teach you is stuff like lifestyle. And arithmetic. Who needs arithmetic? Not Cecil.

Cecil is one of those fellows who attended the school of hard knocks. You know, where he knocked hard, but nobody would open the good-sense door. Seriously, y’all, dumb follows him around looking for a place to happen.

So Cecil has filed a bill known as House Bill 623, which is dangerously close to 666 and almost as evil. This bill says that state or local government employees who give out same-sex marriage licenses will stop receiving their salaries.

So, since it’s inevitable that the courts will say that same-gender marriage is legal in Texas, Cecil has decided that the way around that is to punish lowly government workers. If they issue a marriage license to any couple that’s not one man and one woman, they will no longer receive a salary, benefits, or pension. Cecil’s bill does not state for how long the offending employees won’t get paid, but I suspect it goes along the lines of “when ducks stop going barefoot.”

Talk is cheap, but whiskey costs money, so I am uncertain how you can punish a public servant for following the law. Maybe that’s something Cecil learned at the above aforementioned school of hard knocks.

Cecil believes that Texas has sovereignty, so we can pick and choose which federal laws we want to follow. If his solution is deemed unconstitutional, I suspect that Cecil will start hollering for secession. I am highly inclined to give him a one-man show, an all-day pass, a thumbs-up, and a written permission slip to secede. Hell, I’ll help corral the horse he needs to ride out on, because somebody screwed the one he came in on.

But Cecil’s bill is only the start of where things are getting weird in the state legislature. What with all this talk about local control, you’d think that Governor Greg Abbott would give birth to a cow sideways before he’d suggest that the Government of Texas can overrule what local cities and school boards want to do. That’s what you’d think, right? Well, Honey, you’d think wrong.

Governor Abbott says the State of Texas can overrule city laws that ban plastic bags. Plastic damn bags.

Governor Abbott doesn’t have a solution for Texas ranking 47th in education, or poor children not getting healthcare, or explosive chemicals being stored without regulation, but, by gawd, if you have a plastic bag, Greg Abbott will be there to protect it.

My friend Thelma says of Governor Abbott, “That boy started slow, and he’s tapering off.”

When boys like Greg Abbott and Cecil say they want local control, they mean Greg and Cecil Control. They have that patented. They want to control everything from foreign policy to garbage pickup to your hoochy-koochy life and what your mayor does on Saturdays.

Every time you hear a Republican say “local control,” remember that “local” means “them.”

And really bless Cecil’s heart. Just walking by him will make your clothes wrinkle.

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at


Susan Bankston

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at

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