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Rep. Ken Pendergraft - Hi. My name is Wyoming, and I’m an addict.

Recently, while reviewing a grant application for federal funding here in Sheridan County, I noticed some changes to the process, specifically a list of “assurances” based upon executive orders from the Biden administration. These include but are not limited to: EO 12898 – Environmental Justice, EO 13985 – Advancing Racial Equity etc., EO 13988 – Discrimination on Gender Identity and EO 14008 – Tackling the Climate Crisis. These have joined the litany of federal regulations already in place.

I read the Executive Orders and wondered how many others have read them as well. How many have actually read the list of requirements by statute, or the expanded list of regulations (strings) attached to federal dollars? While pondering all of this, I wrote the following:

Hi. My name is Wyoming, and I’m an addict.

I entered into an abusive relationship with my partner many years ago. This partner now provides me with a substance I can’t seem to walk away from, federal dollars.

In the beginning, it was little things like money for education, travel expenses or extra food. In more recent years my narcissistic partner has taken advantage of my weakness by making requirements of me. Seemingly harmless enough at first, the requests became more and more oppressive, and began to run counter to my traditional values. I needed my fix so badly, however, that I agreed to my partner’s ever-growing demands. It soon became second nature (whenever I needed a fix), to go and ask for more money, and then to agree to whatever was asked of me… it was “just how we’ve always done it.”

Recently, however, my partner’s demands have become so oppressive that I’m not allowed even to be myself anymore. I’m having to suspend and walk away from the values I’ve always held, swearing allegiance to oppressive and manipulative ideas that I never would have accepted were I not so addicted.

I always made a good living in the extractive industries, but now must agree to walk away from a career I’ve always loved and am quite good at. I am now required to abandon long-held beliefs and accept and celebrate those whose lifestyles I find repulsive to me. I’m asked to ignore lawless acts that I believe are destructive to both my partner and to me. I’m required to abandon what I believe are timeless truths, in favor of dangerous and deluded ideas that run contrary to the rule of law and my way of life. I’m asked to overlook a two-tiered system of justice that rewards evil and suppresses what I believe is right.

Please tell me how to begin to put my life back in order before both my partner and I are totally destroyed.

Rep. Ken Pendergraft, HD29

HD29 Sheridan, Wyoming

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