STATEWIDE - Gun owners are furious that Gov. Phil Murphy is proposing$9 million more in gun fees and taxes, noting it now costs less to get a handgun permit than a dog license in New Jersey. The more the opposition complains about the bill, the more it seems like an absolutely terrific idea. Case in point: opponents say the increases would make gun ownership too expensive for a large part of the state's population. (Sounds good.) Opponents claim these additional taxes would ultimately create more gun control in New Jersey. (We can live with that.) And, they are quick to point out, the governor can't compare the cost of a dog license to the cost of gun ownership, protected by the U.S. Constitution. (Guns are a lot better at killing than Fido.)
JERSEY CITY - Our 1,200-acre Liberty State Park is the pride of New Jersey, offering stunning views of Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty. With more than 5 million visitors a year, it's the most popular and well-known park we have. (Suck on that, New York!) And that's why the Assembly is so intent on saving the park from salivating developers. NJSpotlight reports on the proposed Liberty State Park Protection Act, as the state Treasury keeps making noise about selling off state assets, including parks. The state DEP last year tried to push through a 25-year lease for a new marina on the south side of the park, following bad proposals in the past. Like a private golf course, or a waterpark, or a 100,000-seat stadium for car races. Let's protect Liberty State Park before we ultimately ruin it with luxury condos.
STATEWIDE - Not only do dumb people injured by fireworks have to go to the hospital to reattach their fingers and faces, their dumb acts may soon be recorded in state history for the rest of time. The Assembly is considering a law that would require hospitals to report all firework-related injuries to the State Fire Marshal, who would then issue an annual report showing where all the dumb people live and all the dumb things they did. All the data would then be reviewed and analyzed for a "solution." Perhaps that "solution" would be to scrap the dumb law in 2017 that allowed non-aerial, non-exploding fireworks to be sold in the state. Why create a problem and then create a law to analyze how to rectify it? Dumb.
TRENTON - So, this is what happens when you don't show your monthly pass on NJ Transit. Or not. Whatever the case, NJ Transit is back in crisis communications mode this morning, as NJ.com is showing a video of a transit cop dragging and punching a guy outside the Trenton Transit Center on Saturday night. The minute-long video, spread throughout Facebook with plenty of comments, shows the cop trying to pick the guy up and then throwing him back on the ground, ordering him to "get up and get out now." Profanity was sprinkled in nicely, as the cop appeared flummoxed over this guy and his absolute refusal to comply. Then, there was more dragging and more punching. And, now, more investigating.
DENVILLE - Picking New Jersey's best Chinese restaurant seems near-impossible. Heck, we've got one on every corner and plenty of strong opinions about who really, truly can perfect the Egg foo young. Yet, somehow The Daily Meal managed to whittle them all down, giving our state's top honor to Hunan Taste, a Bloomfield Avenue restaurant in business since 1986. Hunan Taste was among the food website's picks for the best Chinese eateries nationally - again, no small task because there are about 41,000 of these joints nationwide. (Generating 30.6 trillion packets of duck sauce annually.)
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
WELLINGTON - Jeans aren't just for wearing anymore; they are a true lifesaver. Just ask the German yachtsman knocked overboard in the rough seas of New Zealand, who used his pants as a make-shift life jacket, magically keeping him afloat for more than three hours. Nothing apparently comes between this guy and his Calvins, as he made knots at the end of the legs and pulled them over water to get air inside. He then forced the jeans underwater to trap the air and MacGyvered himself an improvised life vest, Reuters reports. It all happened on March 6, when the yacht's boom swung unexpectedly, whacking him into the water. "Without the jeans I wouldn't be here today," he told rescuers.
PARIS - There may likely now be a beer for everything, as a Paris pub is selling "Brexit" beer. As Britain prepares to depart the European Union, the beer is described for its hoppy notes that give "a deliberate bitterness." The barman at this pub, while pulling his pints, explains it is a terrific beer for people who want to show their opposition to Brexit. Remember: Nothing is more powerful in creating political change than drinking specific beer brands.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 2015 that Wilkes-Barre cops arrested a drunk man who dropped to the ground and rolled around in dog poop to avoid arrest. The Leader reports the local man jumped into traffic, apparently high and drunk. In a slurred voice, he told cops he was wobbling around to avoid stepping in the dung. When cops tried to arrest him, he dropped and rolled in the stuff, telling cops they can't arrest a guy covered in feces. Cops disagreed, cuffing the guy, but kept the windows wide open for the ride to the police station.
WORD OF THE DAY
Borborygm - [BOHR-bə-rig-əm] - noun
Definition: A stomach rumble (plural borborygmi)
Example: Lips smacking, utensils clanking and anxious borborygmi are the typical sounds of a weeknight rush hour at Hunan Taste in Denville.
WIT OF THE DAY
"The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don't want, drink what you don't like, and do what you'd rather not."
- Mark Twain
WEATHER IN A WORD
THE NEW 60
A Jaffe Briefing Exclusive
by Andy Landorf & John Colquhoun