All Tie Rod wanted was to get him one of those "Friends of Coal" license plates.
He didn't mean to get anybody in trouble. He just wanted to show solidarity with a piece of carbon.
But when he went to his county clerk to get his tags renewed, he found out his clerk was a Catholic Democrat. They are different from Catholic Republicans in that Catholic Democrats still believe the pope is infallible. Republican Catholics don't know what to believe. They are between the rock of Jesus' teachings and the hard place of conservative politics.
It turns out that Tie Rod's clerk had took seriously the Papal Encyclical about climate change and had decided that being a friend of coal was against the Bible, and flat out refused to issue the license plate.
Never miss a local story.
That struck Tie Rod as odd because he had seen specialty plates in his county which says such things as "Bl Sht" or "Hl Razor."
The only thing Tie Rod could figure to do was to get Slemp to go in with him, so in they went holding hands and demanded same-sex "Friends of Coal" license plates. This confused the clerk, who still refused, but by then the whole county was gossiping about Tie Rod and Slemp.
The ACLU stepped in and in due time a federal judge ordered that Tie Rod get his plate, and still the clerk refused, and ended up in jail for several days until he finally relented and said he would allow a deputy clerk to issue tags with "Friends of Coal" on them, and got released from jail in a big rally in front of the jail.
It being Kentucky, there were no politicians willing to come to that rally and take up for the environment, but to everyone's surprise, an imposing figure with a big white hat, white robes and red shoes showed up standing in the back of a funny-looking SUV.
The guy sort of looked like James Still, but spoke Spanish, which put him in danger of being run out of the country by Donald Trump. He went about kissing the afflicted, embracing gays, tending to the poor and speaking up against climate change — things no Kentucky politician wanted to be around or be caught doing.
When a deputy finally issued the license tag, in front of a room full of reporters, it was printed not on steel, but cardboard with a magic marker, and did not have the clerk's name on it, and looked nothing like a state prison license tag, leaving Tie Rod to wonder if he would be pulled over by a state policeman and be on one of those body cameras.
The clerk became a national hero among liberals and tree huggers and had his name mentioned in the next Democratic presidential debate.