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Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
Home country: United States
Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 76,961

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

Jindal says he will sign marijuana bills

Gov. Bobby Jindal says he will sign bills that allow legalization of the dispensary of medical marijuana in Louisiana and reduce penalties for simple marijuana possession.

Senate Bill 143 by Sen. Fred Mills, R-Parks, sets up a system that allows for medical marijuana for people who need it, unlike the current state law on the books.

The bill cleared the House Committee on Health and Welfare with amendments Wednesday.

Meanwhile, SB 241 and HB 149 seek to soften Louisiana's stiff penalties for simple marijuana possession.

Read more: http://www.shreveporttimes.com/story/news/2015/05/29/bobby-jindal-marijuana-bills/28143055/

South Texas teacher, coach who gave student 2 STDs seeks end to probation

A former South Texas coach and teacher who gave two sexually transmitted diseases to a student wants a judge to terminate his probation three years early.

Jesse Julian Hastey, a 39-year-old former track coach and science teacher at Robstown High School, was sentenced to ten years deferred adjudication in July 2008 after he pleading guilty to one count of improper relationship between an educator and student as a part of a plea deal, according to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

Hastey's lawyer filed a motion May 15 in Nueces County court to dismiss the 39-year-old's probation period, according to court records.

According to Nueces County court records, Hastey had been indicted on seven counts of improper relationship in addition to five counts of sexual assault of a child stemming from allegations that he'd had sex with two former students, 15 and 17 at the time.

The 17-year-old told police at the time of Hastey's Nov. 21, 2006, arrest that the two had unprotected sex on at least one occasion and that she allowed him to take nude photos of her, according to the Caller-Times. She and Hastey had sexual relations at the teacher's home and in his classroom.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/South-Texas-teacher-coach-who-gave-student-2-6294752.php

Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment Dies, Capping ‘Huge Victory’ For LGBT Rights

Back in March, Rep. Cecil Bell Jr. (R-Magnolia) stood in a hallway behind the Texas House chamber and declared he was “very confident” one or more of his four anti-gay marriage bills would become law.

On Wednesday, Bell occupied the same spot—this time without his trademark cowboy hat—and acknowledged that the last of the four still clinging to life was all but dead.

“It’s a system designed to kill bills,” Bell told the Observer. “That’s the whole nature of Texas government, the bicameral nature of it.”

Bell touted broad support for the measures in both chambers, pointing to an anti-gay marriage letter signed by 93 of the House’s 98 Republicans this month. Later Wednesday, the Senate would vote 21-10 to approve a nonbinding anti-gay marriage resolution, in lieu of taking up one of Bell’s bills that had been resurrected as an amendment.

Read more: http://www.texasobserver.org/death-of-anti-gay-marriage-bills-spark-lgbt-victory/#.VWdLYRp6wh8.twitter

Atlanta Falcons linebacker faces animal cruelty charge

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Police on Friday charged Atlanta Falcons linebacker Prince Shembo with aggravated animal cruelty after his girlfriend's dog died from blunt force trauma.

Denicia Williams called police on April 19 to report that her ex-boyfriend had killed her dog, Gwinnett County police said in a news release Friday. Williams told police she had taken her Yorkie, Dior, to Shembo's apartment on April 15. At some point, she left Shembo alone with the dog, and when she found the dog later he was unresponsive.

Williams took the dog to an animal hospital where he died a short time later. Shembo told her over the phone the next day that he had kicked the dog, and she ended their relationship, Williams told police.

A number could not be found for Shembo and it wasn't immediately clear whether he had a lawyer who could comment on the charges. The Falcons did not immediately have a comment Friday afternoon.

Read more: http://www.chron.com/news/crime/article/Atlanta-Falcons-linebacker-faces-animal-cruelty-6294980.php?cmpid=rrhoustontx

Texas House sends $209B budget that doubles border security spending to Abbott

The Texas House completed work on the state budget Friday, after spirited criticism by some Democrats of its doubling of state spending on border security.

House members voted 115-33 to send the two-year, $209.4 billion budget to Gov. Greg Abbott, about an hour after the Senate did likewise.

Rep. John Otto, a Dayton Republican who is the House’s chief budget writer, said this year’s version has many virtues.

“Does it do everything I want it to do? No,” he said.

Read more: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/state/headlines/20150529-texas-house-sends-209b-budget-that-doubles-border-security-spending-to-abbott.ece

TxDOT officials to close Loop 12 at IH-30 ‘for several days’; body found in NW Dallas

Update at 3:45 p.m.: At a just-concluded press conference, Tony Harzel, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Transportation, says Loop 12 at Interstate 30 will be closed “for several days,” or at least “until it’s safe” for drivers.

Dallas Police Deputy Chief Scott Walton also said the body of an adult male was discovered at California Crossing and Northwest Highway. Though the cause of death has yet to be determined, “this is an area prone to flooding,” said Walton. An investigation is ongoing.

Hartzel said pumps are being brought into try to get the water off the roadway, but with more flooding rains expected overnight — “and based on past experience” — officials have decided to close the road. TxDOT officials are working with local authorities to determine the best detours, which will likely be just south of 30 and Irving Boulevard on the north side.

“Our main message: If you don’t have to go through this area, try to find an alternate route,” said Hartzel. Please plan ahead.”

Read more: http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2015/05/crawling-storms-dump-torrential-rain-across-n-texas-numerous-rescues.html/

Congress sets hearing on Garland attack and “terrorism gone viral”

Source: Dallas Morning News

WASHINGTON — The May 3 jihadist attack in Garland has caught congressional attention. On Friday, the House Homeland Security Committee announced a hearing entitled “Terrorism Gone Viral: The Attack in Garland, Texas and Beyond.”

Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Austin, will preside at the hearing next Wednesday. A witness list hasn’t been released.

“The ISIS-inspired terror attack in Garland, Texas, demonstrated that terrorism is going viral. This hearing will examine the increasing threat from violent Islamist extremists groups, like ISIS, who use the Internet and social media to recruit fighters, share propaganda, and inspire and potentially direct attacks,” the committee announcement says.

Police shot and killed two heavily armed attackers outside a contest to draw cartoons featuring the Prophet Mohammad. Depictions of the prophet are offensive and blasphemous to Muslims. Contest sponsor Pamela Geller, an anti-Muslim activist from Long Island, N.Y., has insisted that she wanted not to provoke an attack but to celebrate free speech and push back against the creeping influence of sharia law.

Read more: http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2015/05/congress-sets-hearing-on-garland-attack-and-terrorism-gone-viral.html/

Gun activist calls on Texans to arrest and hang state lawmakers after open carry bill is delayed

Kory Watkins (Facebook)

A Texas gun activist is once again calling for the execution of lawmakers over a bill that would allow the open carry of handguns.

Kory Watkins expressed his frustration Thursday morning in a Facebook post after open carry legislation stalled the day before over law enforcement concerns.

“I’m calling for the arrest of every elected official in Texas that voted against open carry,” Watkins said. “They should be arrested, charged with treason and should face a punishment that could result in being hung from the tree of liberty.”

The Texas House appeared close to passing the legislation, but law enforcement groups persuaded lawmakers Wednesday to remove a provision that would prevent police from asking those carrying weapons for their licenses if there was no other reason to stop them.

Read more: http://www.rawstory.com/2015/05/gun-activist-calls-on-texans-to-arrest-and-hang-state-lawmakers-after-open-carry-bill-is-delayed/#.VWdt3aYNDwQ.facebook

Cross-posted in the Texas Group.

China destroys more than 660 kilograms of smuggled ivory

Source: AP

BEIJING -- Chinese authorities Friday destroyed 662 kilograms of ivory that was seized after being smuggled into the country, as part of a crackdown on the illegal trade.

In front of reporters in a suburban section of Beijing, wildlife officials placed raw tusks and ornate carvings onto a conveyor belt that fed the ivory into a machine that crushed the pieces into tiny pebbles.

China bans smuggling of ivory, but in 2008 secured an exemption to a global ivory trade moratorium to import legal stockpiles for traditional carvings that can be sold domestically. Conservationists argue that this legal trade has prompted a resurgent demand for ivory while providing a convenient cover for a thriving black market. They have demanded China impose a complete ban on imports and domestic trade.

China announced a temporary, one-year ban on all imports in February, saying that would allow authorities to gauge the effect on poaching.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/nation-world/world/article22584483.html

I could’ve been a Duggar wife: I grew up in the same church, and the abuse scandal doesn’t shock me

[font color=330099]Note: The author of this essay is a fellow Southwestern University alum, Brooke Arnold.[/font]

Unlike most of the writers covering the Duggar sex scandal, I was raised in Advanced Training Institute (ATI), the fundamentalist Christian organization with which the family is affiliated. Joshua Duggar’s confession of sexually molesting young girls in his family’s home when he was a teenager didn’t surprise me, nor should it surprise anyone with any intimate knowledge about this organization, because ATI’s theological beliefs and practices cultivate an environment where women and children are more vulnerable to rape and sexual abuse. Ironically, the same theological beliefs and practices at the heart of this scandal are the same beliefs that created the Duggars as a media phenomenon, and drew viewers and fans to their TLC show “19 Kids and Counting.”

Non-mainstream religious sects have certainly been enjoying a cultural moment on television: “The Following,” “Sister Wives,” “Breaking Amish.” Netflix’s dark comedy “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” explores the media hype around religious cult survivors in satirical detail. For me, though, that show should have come with a trigger warning, because in many ways, I am a real Kimmy Schmidt — a woman who spent her adolescence trapped inside a metaphorical bunker, and then was thrust into a world that she had never been prepared to be a part of.

The Duggars didn’t emerge from a subterranean bunker, though. They’ve been on TV promoting the fundamentalist Christian theology of ATI since their first special in 2004 (“14 Children and Pregnant Again!”). ATI is a Christian homeschool organization that hosts seminars worldwide, provides homeschooling curriculum, and even runs its own paramilitary training center. At one point, it was strongly affiliated with a Christian correspondence course law school. Its members are not concentrated in one area, and yet they maintain insular groups and often form churches in which all members are affiliated with ATI and/or follow its basic principles. Referred to as “Gothardism” within fundamentalist Christian circles, the teachings of ATI form an ideological system of practices based on the extremely strict, fundamentalist, and idiosyncratic Biblical interpretations of the organization’s founder, Bill Gothard – a man who, in 2014, stepped down as head of ATI following allegations of sexual misconduct with young girls.

The allegations against “Mr. Gothard” (as he is respectfully and worshipfully referred to by his acolytes) were an open secret among group members for many years. As a friend who worked at ATI headquarters once said to me with a wink: “The prettiest girls are always chosen to work the closest with Mr Gothard.”

Read more: http://www.salon.com/2015/05/28/i_couldve_been_a_duggar_wife_i_grew_up_in_the_same_church_and_the_abuse_scandal_doesnt_shock_me/
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