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Texas Ain’t Lookin’ So Good

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Hop on the Internet or pick up the paper over the last two months or so and bad stories about Texas jump out. Don’t blame Democrats. Republicans control the legislature. They’ve won elections in Texas “for the last 40 years,” according to this 2021 U.S. News and World Report , resulting in a political “Mess In Texas.” But it’s more than politics.

Violence

NBCDFW, 9-24 21, New York Times 10-1-21, Washington Post, 10-1-21: A Texas man killed 3 people, burned their bodies in a dumpster and admitted killing 2 others. Washington Post, 10-6-21: A Texas man in federal prison claims he paid a relative with COVID 19 to lick groceries. Associated Press, 10-6-21: An 18-yearold student shot 4 at an Arlington Texas high school. WOAI-TV, 10-16-21: Two San Antonio women were shot in a fight outside a bar. NBCDFW, 10-16-21: A Fort Worth shooter injured one in Walgreens. ABC News, 10-17-21: A Houston nightclub shooting killed a deputy and injured 2 other deputies. NBCDFW, 11-1-21: A teenage girl was shot and killed outside a Dallas gas station.

Child Abuse

San Antonio Express News, 9-14-21: Texas sent hundreds of foster care kids to other states because it didn’t have room for them. Texas Tribune, 9-14-21: Federal evidence: Some of Texas’ 28,000 foster care kids have been sexually abused, forced to sleep on office floors, have cut themselves, tried to hang themselves and downed cleaning fluids to hurt themselves. Texas Tribune, 10-13-21: The federal govt. is investigating physical and sexual abuse at Tex as’ juvenile lockups - a problem since 2007. Daily Kos, 10-16-21: 9 and 12-year-old pregnant Texas girls, who were raped, cannot get abortions.

Racism/Political Corruption/ Gerrymandering/Voting Rights

KXAN-TV, 10-14-21: Black bus driver was punched in the face after asking rider to get off the bus. Daily Kos, 10-19-21: A Moroccan got lost, a White Texan shot and killed him. This story was also covered by 2 English newspapers. Texas Observer, 9-21-21: An investigation by The Observer and KXAN found “prosecutions of statewide Texas public officials for corruption are nearly non-existent.” Dallas Morning News, 7-27-21: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton was indicted on securities fraud charges six years ago. He has yet to be tried. Texas Observer, 10-22-21: Republicans in the Texas legislature “just rammed into law” new voter redistricting maps “to amplify their white, conservative rural base – and deny millions of Texans of color their due political representation.”

No telling what’s next unless the new Republican gerrymandered voting maps are successfully challenged in federal court under the 15th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution: “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” It’s a right Texas Democrats wholeheartedly support.

Jodie Sinclair is an awardwinning writer who holds a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University and resides in Bandera, Texas.