Slate and the New America Foundation have put together an interactive map of all House of Representatives members, color-coded to represent the amount of money each rep took from the gun lobby in the last election. As for Dallas-area reps:
- Sam Johnson (3rd District), $4,000
- Ralph Hall (4th District), $1,000
- Jeb Hensarling (5th District), $6,500
- Joe Barton (6th District) $0
- Kay Granger (12th District), $9,700
- Mac Thornberry (13th District) $5,400
- Kenny Marchant (24th District), $2,500
- Eddie Johnson (30th District), $0
- Pete Sessions (32nd District), $7,950
- Marc Veasey (33rd District), $0
If you take a look at the Slate map, none of the Dallas-Fort Worth area reps come close to the highest amount of gun-lobby cash. In Texas, that would go to Steve Stockman (36th District), who hauled in $19,449. And that amount looks like peanuts compared to the top two: John Boehner ($48,575) and Michelle Bachmann ($28,822).
It’s…not very convincing. But maybe this is the kind of thing that Howard’s looking for. It also includes the line “Dirk can be your sidekick, you can be our Superman,” which, come on. Dirk’s no one’s sidekick.
My car broke down this morning, so you’ll excuse me if this edition of Friday Fun is more anÂ opportunityÂ for me to vent through music. Today’s game is Redline Rumble Revolution, and it lets you drive vehicles that actually work and don’t require bi-annual “Just tell me to get a new car finally” trips to the mechanic.
You should probably just listen to the Springsteen track above on loop, but if that isn’t of interest: Tom Waits “Ol’ 55“; The Cramps “Route 66“; David Bowie “Always Crashing in the Same Car“; or Merle Haggard “Long BlackÂ Limousine.”
Mark Banta, who has served as president of Klyde Warren Park for less than a year, is stepping down, effective March 1. A reason has not been given for his departure.
Until his replacement is named, Jody Grant, chairman of the board’s foundation, will help run things, also relying on the park’s vice president of business affairs, Celia Barshop.
Grant released this statement:
“Many have contributed to the launch of Klyde Warren Park, but Mark’s expertise and leadership during the last year have been invaluable. Mark’s official mantra of ‘clean, safe and active’ will always be a part of how we run the park.”
Here is a Q&A with Banta from D Magazine’s recent special issue on the park.
In two paywalled Morning News stories about the ouster of John Attanasio as dean of SMU’s Dedman College of Law, you’ll search in vain for an explanation about why SMU has moved to boot Attanasio after 15 years in the post. He ain’t talking, and the school won’t comment. A lot of high-profile people are quoted in the DMN as rushing to Attanasio’s defense, but why was his head put on the chopping block in the first place? Obviously there’s more to this messy shakeup.
According to people familiar with the school, the long-serving dean had his pluses: he was a good fundraiser, student scores and grades were going up, etc. But in a time of sharply heightened competition among law schools nationally, Attanasio simply didn’t “move the needle” to take Dedman to the next level, the sources say. And, he’d had plenty of time to do it. U.S. News & World Report ranks SMU at No. 51 among the top law colleges, tied with Baylor–and well behind No. 16 UT.
The situation with Attanasio, one source says, can be likened to a football coach who makes the playoffs every year but can never win the “big one.” So, it’s time to bring in a new coach. The good news is that there’s plenty of churn among law school deans these days, so the talent pool may be deep.
Must. Not. Cry. Zach Guillot, a Dallas resident and Parish Episcopal student who is battling acute myeloid leukemia, got a call from Batman, aka Christian Bale, last week. Best quote: “Anybody can be Batman. Anybody. Anybody can be as strong as Batman, and help people.” Jesus. It’s nine minutes long, but try not to watch the whole thing.
(h/t Preston Hollow People)
I’m attending all three hours of King Lear tonight, so I’ll be swift about this.
If I wasn’t settling in for Shakespeare at the Wyly, I’d bounce back and forth between two Deep Ellum venues with musical acts I’ve actually been dying to see. The timing would out perfectly, provided you were also interested in seeing Home by Hovercraft (supporting Air Review for their album release party) at Trees, since the band goes on at 8 p.m., and then heading over to Club Dada for Geographer. The opening act there is Daniel Hart. You can’t really go too far wrong picking one or the other, but why do that when you can have both? If you buy your tickets online, the grand total is $20–still less than you’d pay for a single concert at Palladium Ballroom or Verizon. I caught on to Home by Hovercraft thanks to their charming gem of a musical, On the Eve, and I’ve been into Geographer’s brand of synth pop since I got my hands on a seven-inch single of “Kites” quite a few years ago. I recommend all of it highly.
Today’s your last chance to vote in the second round of our Survival of the Cutest tournament. The winners will advance to the Adorable 8 and be one step closer to being declared the cutest dog in Dallas (and making an appearance in D Magazine.)
Most of this week’s contests remain close. The contestants in one match-up are separated by only 18 votes. Another set is right now being decided by only seven votes. So your ballot could very well make the difference.
…two Brits are developing a project that bypasses both the conspiracy furor and the Dealey Plaza crowd control. It goes directly to individual Dallasites to shape and express a tribute to the slain president and the ideals he represented to many people. They want Dallas residents to deliver the speech, word by word, that Kennedy never did on November 22, 1963. He was scheduled to speak at the Dallas Trade Mart at 1 p.m. He was shot to death in Dealey Plaza half-an-hour before he got there.
Dallasites would deliver the speech, not by speaking it, but through photos of themselves holding up (or outlining or spelling out) the individual words of the speech, all 2,549 of them. The Brits will then pull the images and videos together into a single video, which they estimate will be around 40 minutes long.
Seems like a cool idea, and certainly not a boring one targeting an aging population.Â The group, Unspoken Speech, is accepting donations for the project, if you feel so inclined. See their whole presentation after the jump:
Yesterday, news hit that state Rep. Bill Zedler (R-Arlington) is proposing a bill that would require dancers at strip clubs to be licensed to perform.Â As Texas Monthly‘s Ross Dubois explains: “The bill, if passed, would require a performer at a ‘sexually-oriented business’ to be certified in much the same way as a bartender is with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, or in the same way that a restaurant employee must have a state-issued food handlers’ permit.” Since she has written smartly in the past about the “pole tax” and would be directly affected by the proposed bill, I contacted my internet acquaintance Bubbles Burbujas, aka @StripperTweets. Here are her thoughts:
Zedler’s idea is half-baked; he’s already backpedaled on workers (and he would include all employees of sexually oriented businesses, like clerks at adult bookstores, in this bill) having to display their legal names while on the job. As a small business owner in Texas–like almost all dancers in the state, I am classified as an independent contractor–I see this as simply another way that the socially conservative right chooses to selectively obstruct the operation of legal businesses they find objectionable. I don’t see how it would achieve its supposed objective of ensuring dancers aren’t victims of trafficking any better than the practice already in place when clubs hire dancers and require ID and Social Security cards. Does Zedler think that pimps can’t get their girls to get licenses? It’s also supremely insulting that he thinks he can require me to take an STD test for my job.
Zedler has come out and said his primary goal is to discourage women from entering the business. To do that, his time would be better spent providing them with more options, via better access to education, job training and placement, healthcare and childcare. Instead he’s trying to limit one of the options available to them based on his conservative worldview, making it plain that his interest is in controlling the actions of women and what they do with their bodies rather than protecting them from harm.
Dallas Police Sgt. Matt Williamson, Officer Sean Mock and Officer Ryan Mabry will be honored at 11 a.m. for their quick-thinking and heroics this morning, after an SUV crashed into Bachman Lake.Â Shortly after 6 a.m., the driver of a gray SUV lost control of the car, veered off Northwest Highway, and hit the water. Witnesses followed the vehicle into the lake and tried to rescue the driver, and police arrived soon after.
“The witnesses actually tried to get into the water and get him out of the car, but they couldn’t because the windows were still secured,” Williamson told WFAA.
CBS-DFW has a few photos of the vehicle.Â The victim was conscious and breathing while being transported to the hospital.
UPDATE: Dan Cruz with the Competitor Group sent me a note on Friday letting me know that the San Antonio Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon has been moved to mid-November. Also, he let me know that the Competitor Group has contributed more than $200,000 to Scottish Rite Hospital in the past four years. So all is well.
In 2010, Dallas Marathon (or, at that time, the Dallas White Rock Marathon) officials signed a contract with Competitor Group, which produces the Rock ‘n’ Roll race series, forbidding it to produce a race in Texas between December 1 and May 31. This clause would protect Dallas Marathon and let it grow into a big event that attracts runners, vendors, and business to the area. It would also allow the nonprofit organization to continue to raise money for Scottish Rite Hospital.
It appears that the Competitor Group forgot/misread/overlooked/didn’t care about the contract and just announced that the San Antonio Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon will take place on December 8 this year, which just so happens to be the exact same date as the Dallas Marathon.
Runners and businesses are upset about the news. But, according to this article, it sounds like many will be loyal to Dallas. Competitor Group said that sharing the date of the Dallas Marathon will only negatively affect 776 runners.
Dallas Marathon’s official response is after the jump.
Bike Group Wants to Host Ride on North Central: That’s right, a bicycle ride up 75. Not the service road. The canyoned, Mad MaxÂ graveyard of a highway that runs from downtown Dallas to Oklahoma. So far, none of the five municipalities within the 30-mile ride have signed off, surprisingly, though one organizer “is certain he’ll acquire all permits within 30-45 days.”
Dallas Park Board Names New Head: His name is Willis Winters. Fun game: during lunch today have a few drinks and try to say Willis Winters five times in a row. You can’t!
Parker County Teen Claims Halloween Made Him Kill His Family:Â ”I was amazed at how at ease the boy was during the murders and how little remorse he had afterward. I was thinking to myself it would be the same for me,” Jacob Evans wrote in a statement. You know what? I’m done. Gah.