Columns/Opinions

Thu
19
Jul

Governor welcomes establishment of Futures Command in Austin

By Ed Sterling

AUSTIN — The U.S. Army on July 12 announced its new Futures Command would be headquartered in Austin “to better partner with academia, industry and innovators in the private sector, while providing a good and affordable quality of life for Futures Command personnel.”

After the announcement, Gov. Greg Abbott said the state of Texas “is proud to partner with the U.S. Army in establishing the Futures Command to harness the cutting-edge technologies needed to build an innovative, research-based foundation for our national defense."

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Thu
19
Jul

Brave district attorney stood up to vigilantes

By Bartee Haile

Three cowardly assassins gunned down a harmless old man plowing his fields on Jul. 19, 1889, and left their grisly calling card -- nine bullet holes in the body.

The seven original members of the San Saba Mob, respectable ranchers all, began with the best of intentions. Following the example of other vigilantes in adjacent counties, they merely wanted to rid San Saba of the criminal riffraff.

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Thu
12
Jul

Home run hitter with a sense of humor

By 0Bartee Haile

 

Nolan Ryan was one out away from pitching his second no-hitter in as many months on Jul. 15, 1973 when the Detroit Tigers’ Norm Cash strolled to the plate carrying a table leg instead of a baseball bat. The umpire was not amused. “You can’t use that up here,” he gruffly informed the prankster.

 

“Why not?” the wisecracking Texan drawled. “I won’t hit him anyway.” Retrieving a piece of regulation timber from the dugout, Cash popped up to the shortstop to end the game. Trotting past the plate umpire, he quipped, “See, I told you.” That was Norman Dalton Cash, a born comedian who kept teammates, sportswriters and fans in stitches but who also could hit home runs and the occasional high average

 

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Thu
05
Jul

U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of Texas redistricting maps

By Ed Sterling

AUSTIN — The United States Supreme Court voted 5-4 on June 25 to approve 10 of 11 disputed Texas House and congressional redistricting maps used in the state’s 2014 and 2016 elections.

The court ruled that only Texas House District 90 in Fort Worth was gerrymandered along racial lines and therefore must be redrawn.

 

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Thu
05
Jul

Reality wrecked abolionist’s impossible dream

 By Bartee Haile

With the publication of this column, “This Week in Texas History” is officially 35 years old making it the longest running feature of its kind ever. And for that I am indebted to the many newspapers that have carried it all these years and to you, my loyal readers.

As the sun slowly set in the piney woods on Jul. 5, 1832, a stranger on a mysterious mission crossed the Sabine River into the Mexican province of Texas.

In recent years, Benjamin Lundy had faced the fact that agitation alone would never liberate the slaves. The Quaker editor understood that most white Americans, who in principle supported the abolition cause, cringed at the thought of blacks, freed from southern bondage, living next door.

 

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Thu
21
Jun

Sam Houston’s son takes brief Senate bow

By Bartee Haile

Exhausted by three exciting weeks in the United States Senate, 86 year old Andrew Jackson Houston checked into a Washington, D.C. hospital on Jun. 21, 1941.

During the months prior to the April death of Morris Sheppard, Gov. W. Lee O’Daniel had his eye on the Senator’s job. Most Texans believed flamboyant Pappy would resign from office so that his successor, Lt. Gov. Coke Stevenson, could hand him the vacant seat on a silver platter.

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Thu
21
Jun

Senate panel conducts hearings on school violence and safety

By  Ed Sterling

AUSTIN — A panel of Texas Senate members on June 11 and 12 received input about ways to improve security on public school campuses.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who presides over the Senate, formed the legislative body’s Select Committee on Violence in Schools and School Safety following the May shooting at Santa Fe High School in which a student shot and killed 10 people and injured 10 others.

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Thu
14
Jun

Keep track of what’s most important in an emergency: Your family

AUSTIN — When disaster strikes, your first thoughts will likely be of your family: “Are they OK? How Can I reach them? How can I let them know I’m alright?”

Electricity is often disrupted by extreme weather, and even when service returns, cell phone systems may be overwhelmed by call volume. Creating a communication plan today will put your mind at ease and help you reunite with your loved ones if you become separated during a natural disaster.

 

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Thu
14
Jun

Top officials join in briefing about hurricane preparedness

By  Ed Sterling

AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on June 6 joined President Donald Trump, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, FEMA Administrator Brock Long, White House cabinet members and governors from across the country for a video teleconference briefing on hurricane preparedness.

Along with Abbott in Austin were officials from various state agencies that oversee emergency response. The briefing was held to review lessons learned after the 2017 hurricane season. FEMA provided an overview of evacuation zones, clearance times, decision timelines, forecast uncertainty, responsible decision makers and public messaging.

 

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Thu
07
Jun

Water Resources Development Act advances with Babin amendments

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee advanced key priorities offered by U.S. Rep. Brian Babin (TX-36) during today’s consideration and passage of H.R. 8, the Water Resources Development Act of 2018 (WRDA). WRDA 2018 provides improvements to the Nation’s ports, inland waterways, locks, dams, flood protection, ecosystem restoration, and other water resources infrastructure.

 

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