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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 85,659

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Texas Republican asks state to rename several of the state's prisons honoring slave owners

by Jolie McCullough, Texas Tribune

A Republican who has led the Texas Legislature’s House Committee on Corrections for years is asking the state to rename prisons that honor slave owners and those tied to convict leasing, a system where Black people were funneled into the prison system and then leased out to private industries for unpaid labor.

State Rep. James White said Friday he is asking the Texas Board of Criminal Justice to rename several prisons and, in an interview with The Texas Tribune, specifically named the Darrington, Goree and Eastham prisons.

There are 99 state prisons and jails in the state, at least several of which are named after people with racist and sometimes violent histories, according to The Marshall Project.

“We’ve got correctional officers who have lost their lives, we’ve got crime victims that have contributed immensely to good victim’s rights advocacy, board members that have served and promoted good policies,” White said. “I just think there are other Texans that we can probably associate a name with a unit.”

Read more: https://www.texastribune.org/2021/01/29/texas-prisons-renamed-slave-owners/

East Texas men held on charges related to Capitol riot to be moved to D.C.

Two East Texans charged in connection with the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol will be transported to Washington, D.C., and held without bond.

Ryan Nichols, 30, of Longview, and Alex Harkrider, 33, of Carthage, will remain in custody until trial after a federal court ruling this past week in Tyler.

The Jan. 22 hearing included evidence against both men that federal Judge K. Nicole Mitchell ruled as “clear and convincing evidence that there are no conditions that would reasonably assure the safety of the community and has shown by a preponderance of the evidence that there is a serious risk that the defendant will flee or not appear in court when required.”

In the detention order for Nichols, Mitchell noted that she is concerned about the evidence presented that painted a picture “not of a peaceful protest that got out of hand, but of a planned, predetermined attempt to attack the Capitol building.”

Read more: https://tylerpaper.com/news/crime/east-texas-men-held-on-charges-related-to-capitol-riot-to-be-moved-to-d/article_4f74b4c4-f7da-5084-951a-40b71c4527de.html

Ryan Nichols, left, and Alex Harkrider

Julian Castro: Rio Grande Valley has been short-changed for decades

SAN JUAN, Texas – The Rio Grande Valley has never received its fair share of state dollars and it is time for the Texas Legislature to put that right, says Julian Castro.

The former San Antonio mayor and U.S. Housing and Urban Development secretary was asked by a reporter for his views on a lack of investment in the Valley at a recent rally hosted by La Unión del Pueblo.

“Throughout the history of Texas the Valley of Texas has been a wonderful culturally rich special place in so many ways. It has also been shortchanged for generations. The Valley has not been invested in, whether you are talking about public hospitals, public universities, the schools, the roads. It has been shortchanged as other parts of the state of Texas has been invested in,” Castro said.

“The answer is not to not invest in other parts of the state, it is actually to do what should have been done a long time ago. Because the Valley has been shortchanged, including with hospitals and public health, there was a much greater outbreak (of COVID-19) here in the Valley than in other parts of the state.”

Read more: https://riograndeguardian.com/castro-rio-grande-valley-has-been-short-changed-for-decades/

Army: Sick soldiers drank compound found in antifreeze

An investigation into what sickened 11 soldiers who ingested an unauthorized substance shows they drank an industrial compound found in antifreeze believing it was alcohol following a 10-day field training exercise at Fort Bliss in Texas, U.S. Army officials said Friday.

Lt. Col. Allie Payne, public affairs officer for the 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss, said during a press conference that initial laboratory reports indicate the soldiers consumed ethylene glycol, commonly found in automotive products including engine coolant and brake fluid.

The 11 soldiers —including two who were in serious condition— were being treated at William Beaumont Army Medical Center in the border city of El Paso, Texas, where they have been since Thursday afternoon, Fort Bliss said. Two soldiers had needed critical care, but their conditions were upgraded.

One of the soldiers had to be intubated but no longer needs breathing assistance, Payne said. Up to four soldiers were expected to be released from the hospital soon.

Read more: https://www.oaoa.com/news/us_news/army-sick-soldiers-drank-compound-found-in-antifreeze/article_a0aa92e3-3b63-5eae-93ec-df882761bced.html
(Odessa American)

Appeals court allows US to expel children alone at border

HOUSTON (AP) — A federal appeals court on Friday ruled that the U.S. government could resume expelling immigrant children who cross the southern border unaccompanied by a parent.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit's stay of a lower court ruling allows President Joe Biden's administration to resume expulsions begun by former President Donald Trump under a public health policy citing the COVID-19 pandemic. The appeals court issued a stay that had been requested by the Trump administration shortly after a federal judge in November barred the practice.

All three judges on the panel that issued Friday’s order were nominated by Trump, who enacted newly restrictive measures on immigration throughout his presidency. The judges are Gregory Katsas, Neomi Rao and Justin Walker.

Trump's Republican administration instituted expulsions early in the pandemic, saying it had to restrict border crossings to prevent the spread of the virus, though public health officials later said they were told to issue an order allowing the expulsions by former Vice President Mike Pence. Border agents conducted more than 180,000 expulsions in just the last three months of 2020.

Read more: https://www.oaoa.com/news/us_news/appeals-court-allows-us-to-expel-children-alone-at-border/article_a799a246-9d39-556c-afe8-b3b5d916f86f.html
(Odessa American)

The Largest Tennis Tournament in the World Is Coming to Dallas

Dallas is no stranger to Guinness World Records. We’ve had the most successful primetime TV soap, the most valuable NFL team, the tallest house of cards, the largest Frito pie, the biggest parade of toy red wagons, and the most people simultaneously launching confetti cannons.

Next in line for the record book is Tennis Competitors of Dallas (TCD), which is hoping to host a record-breaking event on February 18. On that Thursday, 1,238 of the organization’s women players will divide up into 619 teams, spread across 15 flights, to compete at 27 different tennis facilities, on 254 courts, utilizing 304 cans of balls. According to tournament director Beth Mahler, weather permitting, they will easily best the previous record of 256 doubles teams.

(While they are at it, they should consider unseating the Princeton class of 1998, which previously set the Guinness World Record for the Largest Gathering of People Wearing Tennis Outfits in 2013, with a measly 252 reunion attendees who, btw, had to borrow 200 rackets from Prince because they didn’t even have their own on hand. Please.)

TCD was co-founded in 1977 by Nancy Jeffett and Dixie Meyer. The first 18 teams were made up of self-avowed “housewives” looking for organized league play. Now, the nonprofit has grown to more than 7,000 players across five doubles leagues, including mixed, ladies, the age-based Love-50 and Love-60, and a brand new Friday pickleball league.

Read more: https://www.dmagazine.com/frontburner/2021/01/the-largest-tennis-tournament-in-the-world-is-coming-to-dallas/

Utahn charged in U.S. Capitol riot could go back to jail for allegedly violating release conditions

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah man released from jail after being charged with participating in a pro-Trump rally that turned into a violent attack at the U.S. Capitol could end up behind bars again.

A federal probation officer filed a petition in U.S. District Court on Wednesday alleging John Earle Sullivan violated conditions of his release from jail pending trial. U.S. Magistrate Judge Daphne Oberg has issued a summons for Sullivan to appear at a revocation hearing on Feb. 23.

Oberg released Sullivan from jail after a hearing last week with a long list of conditions, warning him that any violation would “not be taken lightly.”

The petition lists four dates on which Sullivan allegedly failed to comply with the terms of his release, specifically regarding internet use.

Read more: https://www.deseret.com/utah/2021/1/28/22255380/man-charged-capitol-riot-accused-probation-violation-jail-donald-trump

What to do when your small town is overrun by the rich

In Jackson Hole, Wyoming, there’s a look old-timers exchange when a newcomer, decked out in brand new cowboy boots and blinged out jeans, walks in.

“You know, the look women sometimes give each other when a man is talking,” Claire Fuller, a lifelong Jackson resident, says.

The newcomers, “the Californians buying brand new everything,” have descended on Jackson, and the pandemic has only accelerated the urban flight from those too-darn-expensive coastal cities to the vista rich, once quiet, interior West.

Jackson Hole is one of the hottest spots for those with wealth and a penchant for wild lands, ski slopes and tax havens (Wyoming has no state income tax). From January through September, over $1.5 billion in real estate sales were recorded in 2020, a record-shattering number, the Jackson Hole News reported.

Read more: https://www.deseret.com/indepth/2021/1/29/22242573/reseachers-surveyed-western-towns-that-went-luxury-heres-the-biggest-problem-jackson-hole-springdale

While Mike Lee opposes impeaching Trump, he suggests censuring liberal congresswoman

While Utah Sen. Mike Lee is opposing the second impeachment of former President Donald Trump, he is calling for the censure of liberal Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for tweeting that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz tried “to kill me” by helping to rile up protesters who stormed the Capitol.

The Federalist reported Friday that it obtained a letter that Lee sent to other Republican senators seeking action against Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.

“It has come to my attention that Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez sent out a tweet a few hours ago in which she accused one of our colleagues — twice — of attempted murder,” wrote Lee, who has been a close ally of Cruz for years.

“I believe that, as a conference, we should immediately and publicly call on her to retract her statement and apologize. If she refuses to do so — and perhaps even if she doesn’t — I think she should be admonished or censured by the House.”

Read more: https://www.sltrib.com/news/politics/2021/01/29/while-mike-lee-opposes/
(Salt Lake Tribune)

LDS leaders may be seeing the erosion of their traditional power

In the past week, I’ve watched with interest as some Latter-day Saints, especially conservative ones, have resisted the church’s advice to embrace COVID-19 vaccinations. These are rumblings, not open rebellions, but they come on the heels of other recent pushback from conservatives.

Like when top leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints publicly congratulated Joe Biden for winning the presidential election: It should have been a pro forma news release, but the anger from disappointed Donald Trump supporters was swift and severe. Despite having no evidence of fraud or wrongdoing, they believed the election results should be overturned and were also angry when the church reminded members earlier this month of President Dallin Oaks’ General Conference statement about accepting the results of peaceful elections.

Open discussion of, and even resistance to, church guidance is hardly new. Liberals have been doing it for decades (and some of us have the hate mail to prove it). What’s new is that I see this coming from some of the church’s most ardent follow-the-prophet supporters in the U.S.

What’s at stake when orthodox Latter-day Saints begin to see following the prophet as a matter of individual conscience on an issue-by-issue basis?

Read more: https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2021/01/30/jana-riess-lds-leaders/
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