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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: 77,765

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 Supreme Court: Repeal Houston Equal Rights Ordinance or put to public vote

The Texas Supreme Court ordered the Houston City Council on Friday to repeal the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance or place it on the November ballot.

The state's highest court also ordered the city to immediately halt enforcement of HERO, which prohibits discrimination against LGBT people in employment, housing, public accommodations, and city contracting. (Read the ruling below)

The court handed down its ruling Friday in a case brought by former Harris County Republican Party Chair Jared Woodfill and other anti-LGBT activists. The court's ruling effectively overrides a district judge's April decision saying the petition to repeal the ordinance lacked enough signatures due to problems including widespread forgery. The opinion says that because City Secretary Anna Russell initially certified the petition, concluding it had enough valid signatures, the City Council had a ministerial duty to repeal HERO or put it up for a public vote.

"But what of the City Council’s complaints of forgery, false oaths, and the like?" the all-Republican court wrote in its 12-page per curiam opinion. "Although these issues were addressed at trial and are now pending before the court of appeals, we note that the City Secretary never claimed the referendum petition was plagued by forgery or perjury. Yet the City Council decided, of its own accord, not to act, disregarding the City Secretary’s certification that the petition had enough signatures."

Read more: http://www.projectq.us/houston/texas_supreme_court_repeal_hero_or_put_to_public_vote?gid=17069

Ted Cruz: ‘Star Trek’s Captain Kirk was probably a Republican

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz offered some surprisingly strong opinions on the politics of “Star Trek” in an interview published Thursday in The New York Times Magazine, arguing “it is quite likely that Kirk is a Republican and Picard is a Democrat.”

“Let me do a little psychoanalysis,” Cruz says when asked about the fictional space captains from the landmark 1960s television series and its ”Next Generation” follow-up, which aired some 30 years later. “If you look at ‘’Star Trek: The Next Generation,’ it basically split James T. Kirk into two people. Picard was Kirk’s rational side, and William Riker was his passionate side. I prefer a complete captain. To be effective, you need both heart and mind.”

The Republican presidential candidate also waded into the politics of the “Star Trek” franchise, which has been praised for its progressive outlook on racial and gender relations, beginning with the original series, which broke ground with a diverse cast, humanitarian plot lines and television’s first interracial kiss.

“The original ‘Star Trek’ was grittier,” Cruz suggests. “Kirk is working class; Picard is an aristocrat. Kirk is a passionate fighter for justice; Picard is a cerebral philosopher. The original ‘Star Trek’ pressed for racial equality, which was one of its best characteristics, but it did so without sermonizing.”

Read more: http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/ted-cruz-star-treks-captain-kirk-was-probably-republican?cid=sm_fb_msnbc

Donald Trump Loses It In Laredo After Telemundo Asks About Controversial Comments

So Donald Trump went to the border today.

While in Laredo, he said he'd bring back jobs from China and Japan and that Hispanics, who already love him, will get those jobs.

And then a brave Telemundo reporter tried to ask him about that time he accused Mexico of sending undocumented immigrants who are drug addicts, criminals and rapists to the United States.

That was pretty much the end of the press conference.


Is Major League Baseball About To Get Its First Openly Gay Player?

Pitcher Sean Conroy, whom we first told you about last month, is racking up some impressive numbers in his rookie year with the minor league Sonoma (California) Stompers.

Conroy.Sean_Conroy, the first openly gay professional baseball player, made his first start on the team’s LGBT Pride Night — pitching a complete game shutout with 11 strikeouts as his teammates donned rainbow-colored socks in support. Conroy leads the team with an amazing 0.62 earned-run average, throwing 27 strikeouts and giving up just three walks in 28 innings, according to the team’s stat page.

Because he’s in the minor leagues, Conroy hasn’t gotten as much attention as Jason Collins, Michael Sam or Robbie Rogers. But Conroy tells USA Today Sports he dreams of playing Major League Baseball, although he knows it would be a challenge:

“Wherever I go next, whether that’s in the MLB or with another team, I’m going to be nervous,” Conroy told USA TODAY Sports. “Every time I’ve come out to a team, I’ve been able to feel out the situation first and kind of make sure there were no outliers who would react poorly. Anywhere I go, I’m going to have a reputation as a gay player because I’ve made national news. I’ll have to be more prepared on my first day.”

Conroy says he came out to his teammates shortly after joining the Stompers this summer, as a matter of respect. He was also out to his teammates in high school and college after coming out to his family at 16. He’s surprised at how much media attention he’s gotten, and he didn’t realize he was the first openly gay professional player. He also says he’s heard plenty of homophobic locker room talk, but feels his presence changes the way other players think:

“People think twice about it when they know there’s a gay guy on the team,” Conroy said. “They’ll apologize or say, ‘sorry, not in that way.’ It’s a teaching point in some regards. I would say that my teammates have grown up with the equality side of things, but it’s different when none of them have had that gay teammate interaction. The face to face meeting is so much different than what you see on the news.”

Read more: http://www.towleroad.com/2015/07/major-league-baseball-get-1st-openly-gay-player/

Mayoral candidates woo gay Houston for support

The Houston GLBT Political Caucus is “the belle of the ball” in this year’s mayor’s race as several gay-friendly candidates try to land the group's coveted endorsement.

After six years under term-limited Mayor Annise Parker — a one-time caucus president and the first openly LGBT person elected to lead a major U.S. city — it's not surprising for the group's endorsement to be highly coveted.

One candidate, state Rep. Sylvester Turner, D-Houston, spent $3,040 to purchase 76 Caucus memberships to try and sway the upcoming vote. But Caucus President Maverick Welsh told the Houston Chronicle the group's backing isn't for sale:

"We know campaigns actively try to push as many people into the room as possible, and that's why we've strategically tried to grow our membership over the last year and a half," Welsh said. "I don't think any candidate has enough members to be able to buy an endorsement." ...

"It's kind of nice to be in the position of being the belle of the ball for once," he said.

Turner’s wooing of the caucus is interesting given that his record on LGBT issues isn’t exemplary. As the Texas Observer reported recently, Turner voted in favor of bans on both same-sex marriage and gay foster parents as a state lawmaker. Turner claims he’s since evolved on LGBT issues, but critics say his shift is politically motivated. Turner was dogged by gay rumors in the 1991 mayor’s race, but his spokeswoman, Sue Davis, said she doesn’t expect them to come up again:

Read more: http://www.projectq.us/houston/Mayoral_candidates_woo_gay_Houston_for_support?gid=17062#.VbEVJrL_7sU.twitter

Social media reacts to Donald Trump's Texas border visit

Business mogul and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump traveled to Laredo Thursday just weeks after making controversial remarks on Mexican immigrants and U.S.-Mexico relations.

He was greeted at the Laredo International Airport by supporters, protesters and a swarm of media as his Trump-emblazoned private jet landed.

Trump doesn’t seem to think the firestorm he created will hurt his chances of winning the Hispanic vote.

"I'll take jobs back from China, I'll take jobs back from Japan and all these other countries that are killing us, and the Hispanics are going to get those jobs and they're going to love me," he said.


Woman arrested for 165 felony warrants in San Antonio smiles in mugshot

SAN ANTONIO — A woman with 165 felony warrants issued out of Pennsylvania was arrested in San Antonio Wednesday.

Shantel Johnson, 27, was taken into custody around 6 p.m. by members of the San Antonio Police Department and U.S. Marshals Service Lone Star Fugitive Task Force.

According to SAPD, Johnson’s rap sheet includes charges on 53 counts of access device fraud, 51 counts of fraud and 61 counts ID theft issued in Pittsburgh

Details on the circumstances of her arrest were not immediately available Thursday.


Tarrant water district gets $440 million to build pipeline

The Tarrant Regional Water District was awarded $440 million in low-interest loans Thursday by the Texas Water Development Board for a 150-mile pipeline that will stretch from East Texas to Tarrant County.

The $2.3 billion Integrated Pipeline Project, which is being built with Dallas Water Utilities as a partner, is designed to help meet the region’s water needs for the next several decades. Construction began in 2014, and the first phase is expected to be completed by spring 2018.

“By receiving this funding from the state, TRWD and its customers will save approximately $50 million over 30 years,” said Jim Oliver, the district’s general manager. “The funds will be used exclusively for completion of the first phase of the critically important IPL Project.”

When the project is finished, the 108-inch pipeline will bring an additional 200 million gallons of water a day to Tarrant County from the Richland-Chambers and Cedar Creek reservoirs in East Texas. Dallas will eventually tap up to 150 million gallons of water a day from Lake Palestine.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/fort-worth/article28452094.html

White House rally against Iran deal featuring Cruz crashed by protesters

Source: Dallas Morning News

WASHINGTON–Sen. Ted Cruz, one of the Senate’s most adamant opponents of the Iran nuclear deal, sparred with protesters Thursday afternoon at a rally in front of the White House.

Cruz, a presidential candidate, spoke at a rally organized by the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee in Lafayette Park, just a few steps outside the north side of the White House.

The senator rehashed his previous criticisms of the deal–namely the danger of a nuclear Iran, the billions of dollars in lifted sanctions Iran could use to fund terrorists and the four American hostages left languishing in prison.

“Without exaggeration, the Obama administration will become the world’s leading sponsor and financier of radical Islamic terrorism,” said Cruz, according to an NBC video. “You cannot have peace with a lunatic zealot who wants to murder you.”

Read more: http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2015/07/white-house-rally-against-iran-deal-featuring-cruz-crashed-by-protesters.html/

Sen. Ted Cruz debates members of the protest group Code Pink while speaking during a rally in Lafayette Square July 23, 2015 in Washington, DC. The rally, organized by the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee, was held to protest the recent nuclear deal reached between the United States and Iran but was interrupted by protesters from Code Pink who support the deal. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Donald Trump arrives in Laredo, blasts Border Patrol, Rick Perry

LAREDO — Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump arrived in Laredo on Thursday, slamming Border Patrol leaders in Washington and saying he would brave the consequences of condemning illegal immigration.

“The Border Patrol is petrified of saying what’s happening because they have a real problem here,” Trump said after a local union of the agency’s workers cancelled a meeting with the real-estate mogul.

He cited the risk of crime from those in the country illegally. “People are saying, ‘It’s so dangerous what you’re doing, Mr. Trump, it’s so dangerous what you’re doing.’ I have to do it,” he said.

The crime rate in Laredo is actually lower than Trump’s hometown of New York.

Read more: http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2015/07/donald-trump-arrives-in-laredo-blasts-border-patrol-rick-perry.html/
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