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What In The Name Of Nelson Mandela

Wayne Hoffman of Idaho Freedom Foundation reacts to a comment from the audience at the North Idaho Pachyderm Club breakfast in Coeur d'Alene today. Hoffman also spoke at the Panhandle Pachyderm Club luncheon in Post Falls today. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

At least a few times each year, I get to write about some proposal to limit the ability of Idahoans to earn a living in our state. This is one such occasion. And it is especially fun this time, because there is a standard two-word retort for my complaint that this idea goes too far: Nelson Mandela. Yes, that Nelson Mandela. You see, apparently, a task force advocating for the deaf wants the state Legislature to require sign language interpreters to be licensed. Supporters of this proposal say it will protect consumers. And when I pry deeper and question how in the world consumers would benefit, out come the words: Nelson Mandela. You may recall the Mandela funeral, wherein a sign language interpreter did very little interpreting and a whole lot for nonsensical arm flailing instead. That sort of sign language mishap could be avoided, say supporters, if only practitioners were licensed/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Do you support/oppose laws that would require that sign language interpreters be licensed?


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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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