Wednesday, January 4, 2017
Firefly Brings Light to State Insect
Some bills are controversial. Others are addressing long-necessary needs. Others raise eyebrows for a different reason.
Senate Bill 165 (and HB1034) has made some folks chuckle and shake their heads in these early days of the legislature, but a little research on the subject changed my mind on the bill.
Senate Bill 165 would make the "Say's Firefly" the state's insect.
I was shocked. In a state like Indiana, where things like religious freedom are always near the top of any legislative discussion, I would think that the praying mantis would already be the state's insect, but I guess it's the firefly that has captivated Hoosier hearts an minds.
So where does a bill like this come from?
Let's be clear about his bill. It didn't start on Ron Alting, the bill's sponsor's desk, it's definitely a bill that's coming from the grass roots. Apparently, the insect got its name from a man named Thomas Say who was born in Posey County, Indiana. There's your Hoosier connection. Thousands of letters urging lawmakers to make the Say's Firefly the state's insect were received by lawmakers from elementary students across Indiana.
The bill was introduced last year, and a similar bill, with bipartisan support, was filed in the House as well. It failed. This year, it's back again.
So there's the story on the firefly bill.
Fireflies don't vote, and we can debate whether a state insect is something we need to really designate. I suppose I say why not? It means something to elementary students in the state.