Pelican Institute’s Erspamer expresses concern over possible “knee-jerk reactions” during Special Session on Crime; stresses need to “follow data” on 2017 criminal justice reforms and cites Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity on fears of reforms being undone.

Daniel Erspamer, CEO of the Pelican Institute, addresses the Baton Rouge Press Club on Monday, February 12, 2024.

Daniel Erspamer, CEO of The Pelican Institute, a free-market think tank based in New Orleans, Louisiana, was the guest speaker at the Baton Rouge Press Club meeting of Monday, February 12, 2024.  Erspamer covered a number of topics, and we are going to cover those topics in individual features.

Given that today is the opening day of Gov. Landry’s Special Session on Crime, we’ll start our coverage with commentary that Erspamer provided regarding the potential for “knee-jerk reactions” to perceptions that criminal justice reform initiatives of 2017 wherein nonviolent criminals obtained releases from prison, which were championed by the Edwards administration but strongly supported by the Pelican Institute, may not be working.

In fact, a gentleman speaking on behalf of Catholic charities posed a question of Erspamer echoing Erspamer’s  concerns and stating that, given what some of the bills may entail, “we have our work cut out for us.”  Let’s take a look at Erspamer’s commentary as well as his fielding of the question regarding the crime initiatives set to kick off with today’s Special Session of the Legislature:

2/12/24:  Erspamer expresses some concern over potential content of bills introduced for the 2024 Special Session on Crime and fields a question on same.

Earlier today (Monday, February 19, 2024), the Legislature provided this index of bills filed by category which folk may find as a useful tool to get a general feel of the nature of the bills which have been filed.  Thereafter, anyone can use the Bill Search webpage for the Special Session to ascertain where a given bill stands in the process of being enacted into law and, if so inclined, show up and testify at Committee hearings on individual bills.

As we mentioned, we’ll be covering other aspects of Erspamer’s presentation in coming days and weeks; however, for those who like to “skip ahead” a little, we’ll be placing a heavy focus on Erspamer’s commentary on occupational licensing in Louisiana, which still ranks as the single issue about which Sound Off Louisiana founder Robert Burns is most passionate.  In fact, it was Burns’ own frustrations with the Louisiana Auctioneer Licensing Board (LALB) and the inherent corruption which he asserts has been present for decades on that Board which led to the very formation of this blog.

As part of that “jump ahead” for those curious, however, we would draw everyone’s attention to this Federal lawsuit filed by would-be florist Angele Mixson, who is represented by the Pelican Institute.  The suit was filed on Wednesday, April 14, 2024.  Mixson asserts that she became passionate about floristry after the heartbreaking death of her 26-year-old daughter from fentanyl poisoning.  Mixson would arrange flowers at her daughter’s gravesite.  We would encourage anyone to click on the lawsuit and scroll to page 45 to begin seeing some of the beautiful arrangements created by Mixson.

Nevertheless, on November 2, 2023, Tina Peltier, Director of Louisiana’s Horticulture and Quarantine Commission, sent Mixson a letter informing her that she had failed the retail licensing exam for florists with a score of 25 (see page 80 of the lawsuit linked above).  The minimum passing score is 70.  The letter concludes by stating, “if you need further information…….,” but Mixson obviously decided she had all the “information” she needed for filing the above-linked lawsuit in Federal Court.  We’ll monitor it as well as other initiatives of the Pelican Institute and keep site visitors abreast of developments as they unfold.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.