DISD Board trustee Mike Morath was featured in a Dallas Morning News Q&A over the weekend. You should read it. Morath also apparently feels the Q&A needs some clarification, which he has just issued via the miracle of e-mail. Read with your eyes:Full Story
Because a few local residents can’t or don’t want to dispose of their single-use plastic bags like everyone else, Dallas City Council member Dwaine Caraway wants to ban the bags outright. That’s a silly, knee-jerk “solution” to an exaggerated problem. And it deserves to be treated as such when the full council votes as expected on the issue this month.Full Story
Have you read the recent news about scans that suggest previously unappreciated similarities between dog and human brains? It’s more evidence for why these domesticated creatures are our species’ best friends.
It’s as good an excuse as any to launch a new monthly series on FrontBurner from Dallas Pets Alive!, an animal rescue group run entirely by volunteers, with all of the pets housed by foster families throughout North Texas. You’ve maybe seen the organization’s #muttbombing campaign on Instagram, featured recently on HuffPo, USA Today or CNN?Full Story
It’s the first day of spring break, or as I like to call it, just another Monday.Full Story
Unsurprisingly, it was the Dallas Stars’ long-time TV play-by-play man, the ever-eloquent Ralph Strangis, who summed up the finest night of Mike Modano’s long and celebrated hockey career.
“For all these people in the building today, we love you,” he said, sweeping his arms to encompass the sellout crowd of 19,000-plus gathered Saturday at the American Airlines Center. “Everybody here loves you.”
Roughly an hour later, Modano, the finest player in franchise history and almost assuredly a permanent installment on our city’s mythical Mount Rushmore of sports, watched his famed No. 9 jersey hoisted to the arena rafters, now retired in thanks for more than two decades of on- and off-ice excellence. It’s the highest honor the franchise can bestow, and he joins Bill Masterson (19), Bill Goldsworthy (8), and Neal Broten (7) as the only players in team history to receive it.
The gravity of the moment wasn’t lost on him; if anything, it overwhelmed him. When Modano, the most prolific American-born player in NHL history, finally stepped to the podium to speak after two hours of festivities, the resulting roar immediately swallowed him. It took a full minute and a half before the crowd stopped cheering, and even then, he could only manage a “Thank you” before the cascade started again.Full Story
Wylie Teens Found “Burying a Body.” Two 16-year-old Wylie East High School students were charged with first-degree murder Sunday in the killing of Ivan Mejia, a fellow Wylie classmate. Mejia was 17. Police claim the two juveniles killed Mejia Saturday and were found near the woods in Garland around 9:30 p.m. When asked what they were doing, they allegedly responded, “burying a body.” Police say the murder was planned, though no motive has been released.
Keller Man on Missing Malaysian Airlines Flight. Philip Wood, an IBM exec who was moving to Kuala Lumpur from Beijing, was one of 239 aboard the flight. He had recently visited family in North Texas. There is still little understanding of what happened to the plane, and according to the New York Times, the mysteries are multiplying.
Grand Prairie Park-and-Ride Lot Under Construction, No Public Transportation Nearby. Soon, Grand Prairie will unveil a $14.7 million facility for … carpoolers. Because, yes, in a city that loves its cars what everyone will want to do is commute together. There’s even talk of developing an app to connect complete strangers who would like to share their ride. That’s often called a bus. Or Lyft. But hey, best of luck!Full Story
There’s a scary, scary story in the paper today by Matthew Haag about the home-rule effort to reform DISD. Here’s what you need to know about it.Full Story
The paper is coming around. On Wednesday, James Ragland wrote a column that clearly took aim at the home-rule movement, saying its backers wanted to “blow up the district.” An accompanying news story about the signature-gathering efforts painted a picture of confusion. Now this.
The DMN just put up an editorial endorsing the home-rule movement, saying, “It’s clear to this newspaper, as it has been for some time, that this is the conversation we must have to reform and improve public education. If it takes signing this petition, you should. It beats running to the suburbs.” Tod Robberson, too, posted an item a few minutes ago that supports the movement. You know who made that happen? Rawlings. As Robberson writes, “It’s wonderful when a politician throws caution to the wind, abandons political niceties and tells it like it is.”
It’s too early to say for certain, but we might be watching the defining moment of Rawlings’ tenure.Full Story
I read the front-page DMN story today about the home-rule movement for DISD, and I thought, “Oh, man, they still don’t have their messaging together.” Here’s how the story in the paper wraps up:
Rawlings and the group said they did not have a grand vision for a DISD charter. When asked why the community would support a plan that hasn’t been outlined, some group members said the effort would give the public a blank page and lets them write the future of Dallas ISD.
“The power is the blank page,” Rawlings said. “The citizens for the first time get to decide what they want to do.”
What? They have no vision? The power is the blank page? No, no, NO. People are going to hate that. But then I watched this video.Full Story
The team unveiled its new jersey last night and, from a distance, it looks as though the red-and-white stripes that gave the team its nickname — Hoops — are gone. They’re still there, just now in a very subtle red-on-red pattern. Why all the red? Apparently, the team is hoping fans adopt its new, suggested rally cry: “Red for 90.” (As in, 90 minutes. Of course, soccer matches almost always include stoppage time, so playing hard for only 90 minutes could be slightly problematic as an actual game plan. But “Red for 90-ish” doesn’t roll off the tongue quite the same way. Anyway.) I like ‘em — especially the “Dallas ‘Til I Die” running on the inside of the neck, which I wouldn’t mind as a larger element. FC Dallas kicks off its season tomorrow night at Toyota Stadium against the Montreal Impact.Full Story
We already know that Texas has outpaced the rest of the nation when it comes to adding jobs since 2000 and especially since the Great Recession of 2007-09. The knock on our state, however, has been that supposedly the bulk of that job growth has come on the low-pay end of the spectrum.
The fact that Texas is second only to Idaho in the percentage of hourly workers getting minimum wage (7.5 percent, compared to 4.9 percent nationally), that it rates near the top among states for income inequality, and has the highest share of residents without health insurance would suggest that this perspective of most Texans slaving away for little money is right.
However, a study this week out of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas says that Texas’ job growth across all wage levels has been much more proportionally distributed than in the rest of the nation.Full Story
The best events of the weekend.Full Story
Dallas to Launch Bike Sharing Experiment. The city’s Park and Recreation Board approved the idea of contributing $125,000 to start a program with 15-20 rental bicycles at two locations in Fair Park this summer. The measure still needs the approval of the Landmark Commission and the City Council. Proponents hope that, if successful, it’ll serve as a model to gain support for a citywide effort. The program will be shut down during the State Fair — you know, the one time of year most people actually visit Fair Park.
Police Lieutenant Caught Sleeping, Impaired on Duty. A fellow officer snapped a picture of Lt. Mike Magiera asleep while at work, and WFAA has video of him failing a sobriety test. Magiera says he was just napping during an unpaid break, and that he was on pain pills due to severe pain following an accident. Investigators are determining what discipline Magiera should face.
Dallas Stars to Retire Mike Modano’s Number Saturday. The highest-scoring American player in NHL history will be honored at the American Airlines Center before tomorrow night’s game against the Minnesota Wild. I’m sure I speak for all extremely casual bandwagon hockey fans when I say thanks, Mike, for icing all those memorable power plays. No one hat-tricked across the blue line better, or did a more professional job of keeping his nose out of the crease.Full Story
But also: #STAYWOKEFull Story
Today is D Academy’s education day. We’re holed up in a classroom at Barack Obama Male Leadership Academy. Students were telling me how they’re learning Chinese and might go to Japan. I would like to do both of those things, but no such luck. In any event, as part of the day, Eric Celeste was set to moderate a panel with Mike Morath, District 2 Dallas ISD board member; Rena Honea, Alliance AFT president; and Tarick Ward, who is literally a rocket scientist but now works at Commit! I’m sure this panel would have been perfectly interesting if it had occurred a few weeks ago. But holy hell, it got interesting in light of the current home-rule discussion. Video to come, but for now, here are some highlights.Full Story