Quote of the Day
“Has there been any factual information provided that Islam is a religion?”
—Mike Robertson, a precinct chair in the Harris County GOP, during a meeting earlier this week as reported by the Washington Post on Thursday. Robertson’s comments were the Islamophobic cherry on top in a meeting that saw a conservative pastor move to have a Muslim man kicked out of the party because of his faith. Thankfully, the motion was voted down and Robertson’s dumb question was booed pretty mercilessly.
Open and Shut—So, Governor Greg Abbott is now a published author. But what does it all mean? According to the Texas Tribune, Abbott “appears to be following a path traveled by his two predecessors — write a book, raise your profile and then?” Well, if the trend holds true, run for higher office. Abbott’s book, Broken But Unbowed, is both a memoir and, according to a blurb from esteemed literary critic Chuck Norris listed on Abbott’s website, “a blueprint for how we can begin to fix our nation and return our country to the vision our Founding Fathers intended.” Abbott told reporters earlier this week that there’s no deeper political meaning to be found his text, claiming the timing of its release is all the proof he needs that he’s not making a play for something bigger. Analysts seem divided on whether Abbott’s book is just meant to boost him up the ladder. One told the Tribune that he expects Abbott to run for president in four years, while another said the book was not a political maneuver but “was just something he believed in.” Meanwhile, Abbott is enjoying his book tour, traveling around Texas in a big, shiny bus with his face on it, which doesn’t at all look like it could easily be repurposed as a mobile campaign headquarters.
House Hunters—The Texas Rangers will finally have a roof over their heads. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the ball club is expected to announce its plans to build a new stadium early this afternoon. It will cost $900 million, split evenly between the team and taxpayers, though that publicly funded chip-in will ultimately come down to a vote. The Rangers’ current stadium, Globe Life Park, was built in 1994, and by most accounts it’s still in great shape. But the park is somehow the eleventh-oldest in the league. Of course, Dallas is still in debt for shelling out nearly $300 million toward the Cowboys’ four-year-old cathedral, AT&T Stadium. According to the Star-Telegram, the city’s debt for the football stadium is actually on pace to be paid off fourteen years early, in 2021, which could open things up for the new Rangers stadium sooner than expected. The new stadium is expected to include one key feature missing from the current park: a retractable roof. So, to the delight of fans who are sick of literally sticking to their seats (and perhaps to the chagrin of baseball purists), during those scorching hot dog days of summer, Rangers fans will finally be able to enjoy baseball in conditioned air.
Tire Swing Trouble—A Waco sixth-grade class’s overnight field trip to a campground turned controversial after a twelve-year-old girl, one of two black students on the trip, ended up with serious rope-related injuries around her neck. According to the Dallas Morning News, the child’s mother says her daughter was the victim of a racially motivated attack. The mostly white private school, Live Oak Classical School, told the newspaper that the girl’s neck abrasions were the result of a tire-swing “accident,” and accused the family’s lawyer of attempting to “exploit” the recent 100th anniversary of the Waco Horror, the infamous 1916 lynching of a seventeen-year-old black boy. The twelve-year-old’s rope burns were so severe that when she got off the bus the next day, her mother initially thought she was wearing a necklace. The girl told the Morning News that she was playing on the swing when she suddenly felt the rope around her neck, dragging her to the ground. She said no one helped her, and she turned around to see three white boys who she said had been bullying her. “I don’t know how you can look at her neck, at the pictures and think this was anything but intentional,” the family’s attorney told the newspaper.