Texans tried to do better in 1991; they really did. But it turned out to be a year of good intentions gone awry. Texas legislators worked tirelessly on a package that was touted as a way to save the state $5 billion. The only trouble was, they ended up increasing state spending by $10 billion. Governor Anne Richards wooed Hollywood to come to Texas and threw her support behind a festival celebrating Texas filmmaking. Good idea, but…the festival had to be canceled at the last minute for lack of funds. Lieutenant Governor Bob Bullock thought Texas needed an income tax. No one else thought so.
Even much-reviled Houston Astros owner John McMullen tried to do the right thing. He put the team up for sale—but alas, he wanted so much money for so little talent that nobody would pay his price. David Duke said he like Texas so much he might run for president here. Thanks, but no thanks. And a printer working on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s annual fishing guide thoughtfully cleaned up a blemish on the picture of a fish. Oops! There went the distinctive tail spot that identifies the red drum.
When it came to good intentions gone bad, our two finalists to succeed Clayton Williams as Bum Steer of the Year epitomized a mixed-up year. The runner-up: C.J. of Dallas, who wrote Ebony that she had AIDS and intended to infect as many men as possible before she died. C.J. turned out to be fifteen-year-old Natasha Johnigan, who didn’t have AIDS after all and said she was trying to spread awareness of the disease. And the winner? It’s Wanda Holloway, who faces a second trial (a previous conviction was reversed) on charges of soliciting a hit man to kill the mother of her daughter’s cheerleading rival. Said Holloway in a recorded conversation played at the first trial: “The things you do for your kids.”