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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 78,425

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Gender-neutral homecoming bill encounters resistance at Sam Houston State University

Two years ago, the Student Senate at Sam Houston State University voted unanimously to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the school’s nondiscrimination policies.

Since then, other pro-equality measures also have sailed through the Student Senate, including resolutions calling on Congress to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and lift a ban on gay blood donors, as well as a bill to allow transgender students to have their preferred names and pronouns used in university records.

Given this recent track record of LGBT support, openly gay Student Senator Alex Rangel anticipated similar success for his latest proposal, which would remove gender requirements from elections for homecoming king and queen at the Huntsville school.

However, when Rangel introduced the bill during last week’s Senate meeting, he encountered fierce resistance, with other senators calling it “extreme” — and one declaring that last year’s election of an African-American homecoming queen was “crazy” in itself.

More at http://www.lonestarq.com/gender-neutral-homecoming-bill-encounters-resistance-sam-houston-state-university/ .

Anti-gay leader says A&M’s Lavender Graduation “celebrates dangerous and risky sexual activity”

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Texas A&M’s GLBT Resource Center will host the school’s first-ever Lavender Graduation on Wednesday night.

The special commencement ceremony, which is separate from regular graduation in May, is designed to allow students to celebrate their accomplishments, such as scholarships and involvement in LGBT organizations, in a welcoming environment.

But Jonathan Saenz, leader of the anti-gay group Texas Values, believes the Lavender Graduation will also be celebrating something far more sinister.

“This special Texas A&M ceremony essentially promotes and celebrates dangerous and risky sexual activity that can fiercely jeopardize a person’s well-being,” Saenz told the American Family Association’s OneNewsNow. “I’m not sure this is the most responsible way for a university to prepare students for the real world.”

More at http://www.lonestarq.com/anti-gay-leader-says-ams-lavender-graduation-celebrates-dangerous-risky-sexual-activity/ .

Greg Abbott holds double-digit lead over Wendy Davis, who is viewed unfavorably by almost half

Attorney General Greg Abbott is holding a steady double-digit lead over state Sen. Wendy Davis in the governor’s race, according to a poll conducted Thursday through Sunday by Public Policy Polling, a Democratic-leaning polling firm based in North Carolina.

The survey found that Abbott was leading Davis 51 to 37 percent, just about the same as Abbott’s 50-35 lead when they last polled in November.

Most troubling for the Davis campaign is that nearly half the electorate has an unfavorable view of the Fort Worth Democrat, who is 12 points better known than Abbott. In the first flush of national celebrity right after her Senate filibuster of abortion legislation in June, a Public Policy Polling survey found Davis had a 39 percent favorable rating, compared to 29 percent who viewed her unfavorably. That has now flipped and only 33 percent view her in a positive light, while 47 percent hold a negative view of her.

Davis is as unpopular with women as men. Just 32 percent of women viewed her favorably, compared with 46 percent of women who viewed her unfavorably. Among men, 33 percent had a positive view, while 48 percent held a negative view. However, she is still running a far stronger race with women than men. Abbott leads Davis among women, 49 to 41 percent, and among men, 53 to 32 percent.

More at http://www.statesman.com/news/news/state-regional-govt-politics/greg-abbott-holds-double-digit-lead-over-wendy-dav/nfZ4w/ .

4 Houston schools get new mascots after ban on racial/ethnic groups for symbols

HOUSTON — Four schools in the Houston school district have new mascots following the school board's vote to ban the use of any race or ethnic group for such symbols.

The Houston Independent School District unveiled the new mascots Tuesday.

The Houston Chronicle (http://bit.ly/Rm7ePj ) reports that the Lamar High School Redskins will become the Texans. The Welch Middle School Warriors will become the Wolf Pack. The Huskies will replace the Westbury High Rebels and the Hamilton Middle School Indians.

The ban takes effect next school year.

The newspaper reports that a school district document says nearly $50,000 will be spent on new uniforms for fall sports, and additional costs were expected for spring sports uniforms and to replace mascot names and images on gym doors and other facilities.

More at http://www.statesman.com/ap/ap/texas/4-houston-schools-get-new-mascots-after-ban/nfZzx/ .

Lubbock Real Estate Developers Purchase Influence in District 5 Race

By Carol Morgan

Citizens United, McCutcheon, and research studies from universities across the nation point to a tragic reality in our Democracy: Money ramps up the volume on speech. Money buys influence. Money buys admittance to the inner circle of government.

I always believed that Lubbock was sheltered from the political trends of our nation and the state of Texas.

I was wrong.

A quick perusal of the campaign contributions in the District 5 race between City Councilwoman Karen Gibson and her opponent Brian Carr raises many questions. If money purchases influence, if money buys privileged access to your elected officials, will Karen Gibson defer to the wishes of Lubbock’s real estate developers in her actions on the Lubbock City Council?

76 percent of Ms. Gibson’s political contributions come from real estate developers, home builders, construction suppliers and PACs associated with real estate

More at http://lubbockonline.com/interact/blog-post/carol-morgan/2014-04-14/lubbock-real-estate-developers-purchase-influence .

Wendy Davis schedules neck surgery

AUSTIN (AP) — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is scheduled to undergo neck surgery to relieve pain in her shoulder and right arm.

Spokesman Zac Petkanas said Tuesday that doctors will remove bone spurs and degenerative discs that are creating compression on the nerves in her neck. The procedure is scheduled for Wednesday in Fort Worth.

Petkanas described the procedure as routine. He said Davis will routine to a normal campaign schedule following the Easter holiday.

Davis campaigned Tuesday in Dallas, where she criticized Republican opponent Greg Abbott and his prekindergarten plan at a meeting of retired Texas teachers.

Source: http://lubbockonline.com/filed-online/2014-04-15/wendy-davis-schedules-neck-surgery

Democrat Davis calls for universal pre-K in Texas

kindergarten for all Texas youngsters — fresh off a much-publicized chat with President Barack Obama.

The state senator from Fort Worth appeared with Leticia Van de Putte, a fellow state senator and Democratic lieutenant governor hopeful, at the Texas State Teachers Association convention in San Marcos on Saturday.

Davis met briefly with Obama on Thursday, while he was in nearby Austin for a civil rights summit honoring the accomplishments of President Lyndon B. Johnson.

She is considered a gubernatorial underdog against Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott.

More at http://www.statesman.com/news/news/state-regional-govt-politics/democrat-davis-calls-for-universal-pre-k-in-texas/nfYfZ/ .

Texas A&M University-Galveston researchers see positive signs after oil spill

Scientists at Texas A&M University-Galveston were able to get out on the water last week to analyze the effect of the recent oil spill on local sea life.

The group of Texas A&M scientists was asked by the Coast Guard to see if the March 22 oil spill was having a negative impact on plant and animal life in the affected waters.

Capt. Allan Post, executive director of waterfront operations for Texas A&M University-Galveston, said the first excursion put everyone at ease.

"All the dolphins we found were in good health," he said. "There was a little bit of oil, but the skimmers were right there. They're doing a pretty amazing job getting it out of the water."

More at http://www.theeagle.com/news/local/texas-a-m-university-galveston-researchers-see-positive-signs-after/article_f9540b6b-1039-5a00-b7cc-24e28ec6910f.html .

AHF told to move its Condom Nation 18-wheeler from hotel

AIDS Healthcare Foundation moved merchandise into its new Out of the Closet store today using its Condom Nation 18-wheeler. Then they checked into their hotel, the Holiday Inn on Harry Hines Boulevard and parked the truck at the hotel near other 18-wheelers.

AHF Regional Director Adam Ouderkirk said Calvin Hamann, the hotel manager, told them to move the truck by 4 p.m. or he’d call the police. After all, you wouldn’t want a truck promoting condom use seen anywhere on Harry Hines Boulevard, a street best known for prostitution, parked at a hotel a block from Parkland Hospital’s AIDS clinic.

I called Hamann, who seemed to know nothing about the incident, but he said he’d get back in touch with me. We’re waiting.

Source: http://www.dallasvoice.com/ahf-told-move-10171049.html

WATCH: Hundreds lose assistance for HIV/AIDS treatment in Fort Worth

Hundreds of people with HIV/AIDS in Tarrant County will no longer receive financial assistance with their co-pays, lab bills and deductibles.

Fort Worth’s AIDS Outreach Center has temporarily eliminated the funding for approximately 374 patients so that it can assist people who signed up under the Affordable Care Act with their insurance premiums.

About 24 new people have asked for help with insurance premiums, and the AIDS Outreach Center hasn’t received any additional funds for the program, which was also used for copays, lab bills and deductibles.

Christopher Darwin, one of the AOC clients who lost his copay assistance, told WFAA: “People are going to have to make a decision on whether you’re gonna buy food or you’re gonna buy medication. And you don’t want people getting sicker.”

More at http://www.lonestarq.com/watch-hundreds-lose-assistance-hivaids-treatment-fort-worth/ .
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