Columns/Opinions

Thu
06
Aug

Panel hears testimony in wake of jail death

AUSTIN — The Texas House Committee on County Affairs met on July 30 to hear testimony on Sandra Bland and jail standards. Bland, 28, was pulled over by a state trooper in Hempstead on July 10. Soon after, she was placed in the Waller County Jail and was found dead in her cell on July 13. Investigators ruled the death a suicide. The story, covered by local, state, national and world news agencies, has emerged in the context of ther tragic outcomes involving black citizens and law enforcement.
Thu
06
Aug

Rainmakers wind up shooting blanks

By Bartee Haile
The strangers that arrived at a West Texas ranch on Aug. 5, 1891 came with enough firepower to start a war, but instead of soldiers in some foreign army they were scientists on a mission to make it rain. During the Civil War, Edward Powers observed that downpours often followed battles punctuated by artillery barrages. He argued in his book War and the Weather that an armed assault on the heavens might bring relief to drought-stricken regions.
Thu
30
Jul

Record number die in Highway 81 horror

By Bartee Haile

Two Greyhound buses collided on a Central Texas hilltop before dawn on Aug. 4, 1952 killing both drivers on impact and burning an estimated 26 passengers to death. The horrendous headon crash happened on U.S. Highway 81 seven miles south of Waco. The night was clear, the moon was shining and the two-lane road was dry.

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Thu
30
Jul

Governor says family of woman who died in custody deserves answers

By Ed Sterling

AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on July 22 issued a statement regarding the arrest and death of Sandra Bland, a 28-year-old Illinois resident who had driven to Hempstead in response to a job offer from Prairie View A&M University. On July 10, Bland was pulled over by a state trooper, arrested and placed in the Waller County jail in Hempstead. Three days later Bland was found dead in her jail cell. Local authorities conducted an autopsy and reported suicide as the cause of death. Bland’s family ordered an independent autopsy.

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Thu
23
Jul

Texas Panhandle wiped clean of buffalo

By Bartee Haile
With no more buffalo left to slaughter, the last of the High Plains hunters, as shaggy as the beasts they once stalked, departed the Panhandle on Jul. 23, 1879.  The wild rush of goldseekers to California in 1849 split in half the multitude of North  American bison. The coming of the transcontinental railroad a couple  of decades later made permanent the divisionof the mighty millions into the northern and southern herds.

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Thu
23
Jul

Governor’s order enhances readiness on military bases

AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on July 18 authorized Adjutant General John Nichols of the Texas National Guard to arm personnel at military facilities  across Texas. Abbott’s action comes following the July 16 shooting on two military facilities in Chattanooga,  Tenn., that resulted in the deaths of four U.S. Marines and one U.S. Navy sailor. A suspect  was killed at the scene. An investigation is in progress.

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Thu
16
Jul

Comptroller says state will not borrow to meet budget

Thu
16
Jul

Red ink as far as the eye can see

"The long-term outlook for the federal budget has worsened dramatically over the past several years, in the wake of the 2007-2009 recession and slow recovery." So begins the ominous warning from the Congressional Budget Office in its latest Long-Term Budget Outlook analysis for 2015.
 
Thu
09
Jul

High court puts Texas abortion law on hold

Thu
09
Jul

Don’t deny the dying a last hope

Federal and state laws governing prescription drugs are aimed at keeping people from taking medications that could harm them.

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