Meet Mandie Landry, Louisiana’s New Face-Mask Barbie

Louisiana doesn’t have quite as many female state legislators as it could, but among those the state does have are some very impressive public servants. Nobody makes fun of Sharon Hewitt or Beth Mizell, and for good reason Julie Emerson, Polly Thomas, Paula Davis, Beryl Amedee and even Katrina Jackson, for example, are taken very seriously. They’ve all written, and passed, significant legislation and they’re respected within their legislative bodies. And among the freshman class there are some quite impressive female legislators as well – two which immediately come to mind are Heather Cloud and Rhonda Butler.

Nobody is making fun of those women. But everybody is making fun of Mandie Landry, which tells you the ridicule she’s catching this week isn’t based on sexism.

She’s being ridiculed because she’s ridiculous. And also because she’s allowing herself to be used as a pawn by Gov. John Bel Edwards in a stupid and fruitless, and especially obnoxious, political game.

What is Landry doing which is earning her raspberries all over social media and at places like TigerDroppings, where there is a thread absolutely roasting her? Let’s go to her Twitter from yesterday, where Landry decided to unload on her colleagues in the Legislature…

We could go on and on with these, because there are dozens. It looked like Landry did nothing else at the Capitol but blast out one tweet after another complaining about what she said were “half the Republicans” in the Legislature not wearing masks.

Interestingly, Landry never explained how someone not wearing a mask would infect someone who was. Seems like the elderly legislators and staff members she said were endangered by asymptotic carriers of the disease who had attended those protests on Saturday could simply protect themselves by wearing masks. Guess that didn’t really cross her mind.

It also didn’t cross Landry’s mind that she doesn’t really get to act like she’s the defender of human life and safety when she openly brags about being a lawyer who represents the state’s three abortion mills.

Wonder if Mandie Landry has ever used the “My body, My choice” argument with respect to the abortion debate.

Once this got going at full speed yesterday, someone started a TigerDroppings thread about Landry’s machine-gun-style scolding of her colleagues, and the ridicule descended to levels one would expect from an internet message board. One thing about TigerDroppings everyone should remember is that it’s fairly representative of the general public, and in Louisiana the general public gives not a fig about the problems and preferences of politicians, as the public rightly recognizes for most public officials in the state the sentiment is generally mutual.

That thread is continuing to percolate, largely because Landry showed herself to be as thin-skinned as she is judgmental…

She caught lots of hell on social media as well, particularly when the internet found this picture she’d posted on her Instagram…

That was dated April 15, when the outbreak of the virus was in considerably higher gear than right now.

Then she did this…

As a lawyer, Landry should know there is significant case law which bars politicians from blocking people on their official social media pages.

We’ll stop now, because we could go on forever with the circus Landry created by kicking the anthill. It’s pretty clear she’s going to be in a long war with the internet, and just as clear she’s going to lose. We’ll come back to this, we imagine, repeatedly.

But what should be understood is that while Landry might be feeding her self-righteous ego by doing battle with the public over the question of whether Republican leges ought to be wearing masks, this is not some one-off thing. This is the execution of a strategy by Gov. John Bel Edwards and his team aimed at trying to pressure the legislature into adjourning its 2020 regular session without passing any legislation or doing anything with the state budget.

Landry isn’t the only one screaming about how dangerous it is for legislators to be doing their jobs at present.

There’s a lot more where that came from.

Politics is driving this, not public health. What Team Edwards is trying to do is create such a hue and cry over the legislature being in session that they go home before they can pass things like tort reform, major budget cuts, deregulation, education reform and other things Edwards would have to veto. And with Rep. Blake Miguez pushing that resolution that would strip Edwards’ power to keep Louisiana’s economy under arrest, the urgency to execute that strategy is even greater.

And that, more than her own proclivity for obnoxious scolding, is what’s driving Mandie Landry to be Louisiana’s Face-Mask Barbie.



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