CHARLESTON — As states shut down businesses and activities in response to the virus outbreak, lawmakers in West Virginia moved to protect a historical pastime: Banjo pickin’.
“There ain’t nothin’ better on a cool spring night than listenin’ to the sweet, sweet sounds of the finest musical instrument ever made,” said state Sen. Clem Rogers. “You just can’t get no better.”
Other lawmakers agreed.
“I defy anyone in this chamber, nay, this state, to tell me we can get by in this time of crisis without some danged ol’ banjo pickin’,” Assemblyman Lonnie Ross said on the floor of the capitol building. “I’d sacrifice my spam, my bottled water, my pork-n-beans for my banjo. It’s that important.”
Lawmakers also moved to ensure that West Virginians could still make moonshine, shop for squirrel, and purchase all tobacco products during the nationwide shutdown as well.
“We git that thangs is rough in other parts of the country,” Rogers admitted. “Done. Honest injun. But there’s just some thangs that can’t be interrupted for the sake of a li’l ol’ bug. And we aim here in West Virginny to ensure they isn’t.
“So pickers, ya’ll can rest easy,” he added. “We done protected ye from havin’ to give up yer entire life. We here to serve!”