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With thousands of bills flooding in before the deadline, how many will actually become law?

US & OK Flag at OK Capital

Banning furries and labeling immigrants as terrorists are just a few of the bills filed ahead of Thursday’s deadline in Oklahoma’s legislature.

With thousands of bills flooding in before the deadline, how many will actually become law?

In 2023, more than 3,000 bills were filed, but only around 350 became law.

“Each year, there are a lot of bills that are filed that won’t see the light of day, and a lot of those are ridiculous ones like this,” Mickey Dollens, state representative of District 39, said.

Not every bill filed ahead of Thursday’s deadline in the state Capitol will ever get a hearing to move to the next step. In 2023, around 11% of the bills initially filed became law, but that doesn’t keep legislators from filing.

Rep. JJ Humphrey called one bill he filed “crazy” but “important.”

“I’ve got one crazy bill, I think that bill’s 3804, and it’s about furries. We’re not going to allow kids to pretend to be animals, we’re not going to have animals — if they’re animals, the parents can come pick them up. I’ve laughed and said, well, we ought to neuter them and vaccinate them and send them to the pound,” Humphrey said.

The bill would ban children engaging in “anthropomorphic behavior” from class and have parents or “animal control” called to remove them. Humphrey said although it may not become law, he wants to bring attention to what he called a problem.

Some representatives said bills like this one take attention away from other important legislation, and they never know what will get a hearing.

“I’m at the point now, after serving eight years in the legislature, I wouldn’t put anything past the people who are in charge of hearing the most ridiculous ideas we’ve heard, this one being the latest. Every day that we’re spending time on this, that’s taxpayer dollars, and while it may not be signed by the governor, or it could be, there’s going to be hours worth of questions in there that could come along with legislation like this,” Dollens said.

Humphrey had another bill that would label Hispanic people with gang convictions as terrorists.

“It’s sad we live in the type of world where we have to have these kind of issues with furries and things going on in schools, but that’s where we’re at, and our country is in bad shape because people sit back and are trying not to offend,” Humphrey said.

Humphrey said he doesn’t plan to pursue that bill himself, but he hopes other representatives pick it up. Humphrey said he didn’t mean anything racial by the bill and said he’d be rewording it to include anyone in a range who commits certain crimes.