Texas Law Prevents Same-Sex Couples From Listing Both Parents’ Names on Children’s Birth Certificates: In 1997, Dallas representative Will Hartnett sponsored a bill in the Texas legislature that added gender specific language to the Texas Health and Safety Code. As a result, Texas birth certificates only have space for one male and one female name. State Representative Rafael Anchia wants to change that, saying the law only adversely affects the children of same-sex couples and makes it difficult when pursuing medical care, school enrollment, international travel, etc.
Accident on I-30 Leaves 12-Year-Old Dead: The car of a family headed westbound on I-30 stalled in the left lane Sunday afternoon. As they waited for roadside assistance, an F-150 truck slammed into the back of the car, killing a 12-year-old, and critically injuring the other siblings.
Arlington State Rep Still Worried President Obama Is a Foreigner: Speaking of birth certificates,Â Rep. Bill Zedler’s has introduced a bill in the state legislature that would require the Texas Secretary of State to certify birth certificates of candidates running for federal office before their names could be listed on a Texas ballot.
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.
A Richardson man is being sued for his role in the website Texxxan.com, a “revenge porn” site that allows users to upload photos and videos of their ex-lovers in an attempt toÂ embarrassÂ and, in some cases, extort. The man, Kris Kronowski, is listed in a class-action lawsuit filed last week in Orange County; he is listed along with GoDaddy.com, the host for the site. The case is filed on behalf of two dozen women whose photos were included on the website, the Beaumont Enterprise reports.
Users can submit photos and videos, and subscribe for content. The women are broken down by region: North Texas, Southeast Texas, West and Central Texas, and South Central Texas. Most photos are accompanied by a first name, a last initial, and the woman’s hometown, making nearly every photo instantly identifiable by community members. It wouldn’t be hard to, say, recognize Serena Q. from Garland, if you knew Serena G. from Garland. (That name is made up.)
John Morgan, the attorney representing the class, is seeking unspecified damages from not just from the site’s owners and host, but the individuals who posted content. (Read the whole suit below.) He is also seeking an injunction to shut down the website; on Tuesday evening the site varied between being a live, active site and one featuring only an error message. When it was live, it featured a strange poll, seen below:
Rich People in Dallas Today Are Boring: This piece by Alan Peppard points out that today’s Dallas wealthy are much wealthier than the money-flinging showboats that built Dallas’ reputation as a strut-and-spit capital for the callously nouveau riche. But they are also less interesting. Gone are the days of the pumpkin-colored “Fat Albert” 747 waiting at Lovefield ready to whisk people better than you off to Acapulco.
Kennedy Is a Conspiracy Theorist: Speaking at the Winspear Opera House Friday, RFK Jr. told Charlie Rose that the Warren Commission was a “shoddy piece of craftsmanship,” and he doesn’t buy the lone gunman theory.
Bush Not Beating Around the Bush About Political Ambition: “‘We for sure are running, the question is the office,’ [George P.] Bush told The Associated Press during the first interview about his political future since filing paperwork in November to seek elected office in Texas.”
TCU Quarterback Kicks Rehab Habit, Back on Team: Casey Pachall disenrolled from TCU after being arrested for a DUI in October (which was after 15 TCU students, including Pachall’s roommate, were arrested in last summer’s drug sting). But now he’s back, because top-recruited college quarterbacks get more chances in life than you do.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality filed a complaint Tuesday with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking it to order New Mexico to release water the commission believes belongs to Texas, the American-Statesman reports.Â Texas says that New Mexico has dodged a 74-year-old agreement to deliver Texas’ share of Rio Grande water by illegally allowing diversions of both surface and underground water.
“It is unfortunate that we have had to resort to legal action, but negotiations with New Mexico have been unsuccessful, and Texas is not getting the water that it is allocated and legally entitled to,” TCEQ Commissioner Carlos Rubinstein told the paper in a statement.
Much of the agricultural land in Texas receives its water from the Rio Grande, and constitutes half the water supply for El Paso. Jump for the full filing:
Southlake Carroll Students Dead After Night of Drugs, Alcohol: Two Southlake Carroll students may have survived Friday night had Cullen Marino, a 22-year-old who found them unconscious after drinking and taking drugs, sought immediate assistance. Instead he moved the boy’s bodies from the living room of his house to the bedroom, where they were found dead the following morning by Marino’s father.
Families Settle Suit Over Violent, Explicit Highland Park Fiction: Remember that seventh grade kid who wrote the book about all his classmates involved in all sorts of nefarious activities (drugs, rape, and the rest)? It’s all been put to rest with a quiet settlement. In short, you’re never going to see that book.
Cleburne Pastor Admits Prior Life as Porn Star: That was the startling revelation New Heart Family Worship Center’s Senior Pastor Claude Gilliland III told his congregation Sunday.
You’re driving down the highway, looking for a gun show. This Saturday. Thousands of guns. Buy, BUY, BUY! The only problem: you don’t know where it is. Time was, you might look up at one of those flashing signs usually reserved for accidents or amber alerts and you’d see a message that read something like “Guns N Ammo Show, exit 12″ or “For parking lot full of responsible gun owners, USE STEMMONS FREEWAY.” Now, that’s a thing of the past. According to theÂ Chronicle:
Texas Department of Transportation officials in Houston are suspending the use of freeway message signs for firearms-related events, citing concerns about their use days after the Newtown. Conn., school shooting.
“We had several people say ‘Hey, this is bad timing,’” said Stuart Corder, director of transportation operations for TxDOT’s Houston district. “We understand there is a wide a range of opinions and we’ve got to be sensitive to people’s concerns.”
It’s unclear whether the signs – which will still be used for other event-related traffic – will ever host directions for firearms-related events again.
Dallas Morning News: ‘Affirm The Right of Gay Couples to Marry:’ As the Dallas Voice points out, as recently as last year, the Dallas Morning NewsÂ refused to publish paid same-sex wedding announcements in their Weddings section. On Sunday, the newspaper came out in support of same-sex marriage in this editorial.
Is It Time For Sobriety Checkpoints? Every legislative session since 1994 has dealt with the controversial proposal to introduce police checkpoints as a way to address drunk driving. Looks like it will do so again.
Can We At Least Agree That Guns Are Scary? Of course we can’t. This is Texas. But listen. They’re scary when someone threatens to shoot-up a local high school. They are scary when a burglary turns into a Wild West shoot out and no one knows what the hell happened. They are scary because when a mentally disturbed man can only get his hand on a knife, no one dies, but when he can grab a gun, local TV news channels scramble to find the local connection. There’s always a local connection.
Should Josh Brent be on Cowboys’ Sideline? I know, I know. Phil Simms says the ‘boys are “special.” Tony Romo has now thrown for 25,000 career yards. The team is somehow tied for first place. And Jerry Jones is even trying to look good by donating $5 million to the Perot Museum of Nature and Fracking. But here’s the real Monday morning question coming out of the Cowboy’s weekend: should Josh Brent have been on the sideline during the Cowboys’ win over the Steelers Sunday? Former quarterback and CBS analyst Boomer EsiasonÂ doesn’tÂ think so. He tweeted:
“Am I the only one that is wondering what in the world the Cowboys are thinking with Josh Brent on the sideline?”
My guess as to the Cowboys’ thinking: suicide, and ways to avoid it.
A Dallas criminal defense lawyer has agreed in federal court documents to plead guilty to a money laundering charge for helping a drug dealer hide large amounts of ill-gotten cash.
Patrick Robert Simon’s plea has to be approved by a federal judge before it becomes official. If that happens, he could face up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000, according to court documents.
Simons was paid $6,000 by the dealer and an undercover agent to create a bogus company that would be used to launder the money. Simon then offered a few options for how the drug dealer could get $100,000 in cash to Simon, with the dealer eventually settling on an attorney trust account which would cut checks to the dealer’s family while he was in prison.
Breaking Bad returns for the second half of its final season this summer.
The NFL has many, many problems (concussions, players getting paid for knocking other players out of games, and gun-ownership rates all come to mind), but the easiest to fix is its drinking and driving issue. On the heels of Jerry Brown’s death and Josh Brent’s arrest, the senselessness of the act we’ve almost all been guilty of has come front and center.
The drinking problem is beyond comprehension especially because pro athletes have more than enough means to avoid getting behind the wheel with an illegal blood-alcohol content. They can pay for cabs or private drivers, and the league offers free rides in major cities for players who have had one too many. For Brent to allegedly be operating a car with any booze in his system after pleading guilty to drunken driving in June 2009 defies all logic. At the very least, repeat offenders should face long-term suspensions.
So here’s to hoping the NFL office — and the NFL Players Association, for that matter — is in full-scale crisis mode today. Don’t give us moments of silence, somber press releases or predictable words about how sad a week this has been. Give us something that is tangible, something that can help these players avoid future disasters.
Give us the one thing that has been missing in the first place: a serious plan of action.
Golf Courses Are the Ultimate Cure-All For Urban Poverty: Here’s another article (paywall) that talks about how Mayor Mike Rawlings is really jazzed about how great that golf course is going to be for South Dallas. But you don’t need to click through. You already know how huge this deal is going to be. Just think about what a major boom Dallas National has been for Cockrell Hill. I mean, can you think of a more affluent and booming neighborhood in North Texas than the island city of Cockrell Hill? It’s like a second Highland Park, which also has a golf course in it. Coincidence? I think not.
Man Tries to Steal $269 Worth of Meat: In order to really appreciate this story about Rodney Johnson’s attempt to make off from a Kroger with $269 worth of meat shoved up under his coat, you have to try and picture just what $269 worth of meat looks like. Then read how he was first tackled by police and then struck in the back of the head before officers finally managed to arrest the hungry thief.
Michael Young Is No Longer a Texas Ranger: Drop your head to your chest, raise your right arm, extend your fingers, and drop a final claw on Michael Young as he heads out the door to Philadelphia. “If there was crying in baseball, I guess I’d cry,” Wash said. But we all know Wash cried.
Cowboys Win Game, Josh Brent Just Loses: What do you say about Josh Brent? Over the weekend he lost his best friend, he lost his career, and he quite possibly lost his freedom for up to the next 20 years (the maximum sentence for intoxication manslaughter). He was released from jail after posting bail that was $10,000 more than his $490,000 2012 salary. “It’s not a good moment for anyone right now,” Brent’s attorney said. I guess that’s all you really can say.
Spend any time listening to conservative talk radio, and you’re likely to encounter Goldline, the metal company backed by Westlake resident/conservative kingpin Glenn Beck, Ol’ Blabbergums Sean Hannity, and other right-tumbling radio jocks.
It’s a company that thrives on convincing YOU, American consumer and intelligent being, that the government and FDIC-protected banks have no business with your money, and you should instead buy gold coins and bury them in your backyard along with your grains and guns. In February the company agreed to repay $4.5 million to customers due to “unfair sales practices,” after the Santa Monica, Calif. city attorney’s office hung 19 charges on the company, accusing them of bait and switch tactics.Â Customers believed they were buying goldÂ bullion when in fact they were buying overpriced gold coins, maybe with chocolate inside. Criminal charges against executives were dropped when Goldline agreed to disclose the price mark-ups.
The latest piece of the Midas puzzle came this week, when former employees CarolÂ Taylor Gabrelow and her husband,Â Joel Gabrelow, sued the company for unlawful termination. See, Mrs. Gabrelow informed company higher-ups that their telemarketing techniques violated state and federal law. The execs then fired her and her husband.
“Goldline specifically targets vulnerable consumers with sales tactics designed to pressure those consumers into buying products that would often result in the consumer losing over one-third of his or her investment the instant the purchase is made meaning that, even when the price of the precious metals increases, because these consumers were deceived into purchasing coins with mark-ups exceeding 50 percent, it could be years, if ever, before the consumer recoups, much less makes any profit on, the investment,” the complaint states.
Keep on being great, Glenn Beck.
Ann Margolin Will Not Seek Reelection: The last time the district 13 city council seat was vacant, Ann Margolin beat-out Brint Ryan in what was the most expensive campaign for a single council seat in city history. Now Margolin, a respected voice on the council, has suddenly and surprisingly decided to not seek an additional term in 2013, citing “personal obligations.”
Arlington Gym Teacher Sued By Student: The student in question, Alyssa White, has a medical condition. She is also a star soccer goalie. When she was late for gym class one day at Ferguson Junior High, her gym teacher punished the student by making her run strenuous exercises. A lawsuit now claims that those exercises landed White in theÂ hospitalÂ andÂ jeopardizedÂ the student’sÂ potential soccer career.
Another Piece of Dallas History Destroyed: The 88-year-old Thomas building was imploded Sunday. As we learned awhile back, the building, described as a “relic of when cotton was king,” was razed, its Charlotte-based owners said, because of the high cost of asbestos and disrepair.
An amused, law school-attending, non-local FrontBurnervian passed this along, noting that a copy of this desperate plea is affixed to the copier at her school, but that it’s been around since at least 2010 when this particular ad ran in the ABA Journal.
The Florida-based law blog PrawfsBlawg has a few things to say about these sort of “educational” advertisements, but here’s my favorite:
Honestly, speaking, it’s unbelievable. What a bunch of weasels. I’m going to go downstairs and xerox something on the Canon photocopier right now just to do it.
Updated: Xerox is still in fact still based in Connecticut (thanks, Matt), but has Dallas offices thanks to the company’s acquisition of ACS. This still works as a funny. Sort of.
New Children’s Medical Center Dallas Report: Health Care Picture Bleak for Suburban Children: Eight percent of children in the United States don’t have health insurance. In Texas, that number increases to 14 percent uninsured. But according to a report released today by Children’s Medical Center DallasÂ (sub. req.), in five suburban North Texas counties, including Collin, Denton, Cooke, Fannin, and Grayson, that number doubles to 23.9 percent of children who have no medical insurance. Compounding the problem for children seeking healthcare is the fact that now only 31 percent of Texas physicians accept Medicaid patients.
Squatter Could Get Life Imprisonment: David Cooper isn’t just the latest squatter trying to take control of a home by citing an obscure Texas law that protects people who move into abandoned properties but perform upkeep and pay taxes. No, Cooper moved into the home of a man who had vacated temporarily because he was receiving cancer treatment. That makes Cooper, who is being charged with theft of over $200 thousand, very uncool.
Four Years After Throwing Kids Off Overpass, Mother Walks Free: In 2008, Khandi Busby threw her 6- and 9-year-old boys off an overpass and then jumped herself (in her mind, she was being chased by Satan and the military). Remarkably everyone survived. Perhaps even more remarkably, Busby, who was diagnosed with a schizoaffective disorder, will walk free today, moving from a mental institution to a boarding house. She is forbidden to have contact with her children.
Cowboys Season “Saved:” Yes, now that the ‘Boys defense beat a pitiful Eagles offense, we actually have to keep paying attention to the Cowboys’ season.