Fort Bend County Sheriff Troy E. Nehls doesn’t know much about the law if he thinks that he can lawfully arrest someone for posting a “FUCK TRUMP” sign on their truck. Nehls stated that he was looking for the owner of the truck after he received several complaints about the display from unhappy people.
The Republican Sheriff who is reported to fancy a run for higher office posted a picture of the truck with the message – “If you know who owns this truck or it is yours, I would like to discuss it with you. Our Prosecutor has informed us she would accept Disorderly Conduct charges regarding it, but I feel we could come to an agreement regarding a modification.”
The truck’s owner is having none of it and appears to be hiding in plain sight. Karen Fonseca, wife of the truck’s owner, told the Houston Chronicle that they would not be removing the sign and that “It’s just our freedom of speech and we’re exercising it.”
The U.S. Supreme Court would appear to have the Fonsecas back. In the case of Cohen v. California, the Supreme Court overturned a the conviction for disturbing-the-peace of Cohen after he’d gone to a courthouse in Los Angeles wearing a jacket that said “Fuck the Draft.”
Red was a young man when his hometown was shattered by the crime of Charles Whitman – an ex-Marine and Eagle Scout who took his rifles to the observation deck of the UT Tower killing 16 people including his wife and mother. At the time and for many years after, it remained a bizarre and seemingly random event that was not likely to be repeated. Then came the mass shooting at the McDonalds in San Ysidro and the Edmond, OK post office and the Luby’s in Killeen and Columbine and Sandy Hook and Fort Hood and Virginia Tech and the Pulse Nightclub and Las Vegas and now small out-of-the-way Sutherland Springs. And you know what – at work no one is really talking about it even though it happened within easy driving distance. It’s just so damn common now that people are becoming desensitized to unbelievable horror being visited on innocent people on a regular basis. There is rarely a rhyme or reason to this senseless violence and nothing is ever done. Six year old children are slaughtered and there is no political will to do anything to keep more weapons out of the hands of the mentally unstable. More than 50 die from modified weapons in Las Vegas and nothing can be done to make sure that such firepower is not available nearly upon demand.
Red doesn’t pretend to have the solution, but he sure can see the problem. If Whitman had access to the firepower that is routinely available then who knows what the death toll would have been in August of 1966. Oh, but now is not the time to talk about this. Because it never is. We send out our useless thoughts and hopeful prayers and go back to our lives leaving others to pick up the shattered remains of a life. And we fret about the Second Amendment and trot out tired old platitudes about how guns don’t kill people. Well, guns may not kill people but the wrong gun in the wrong hands is a deadly recipe that reaps a poisoned meal for far too many innocent families on what seems to be an almost weekly basis. This is the only developed country on Earth where such absurd mayhem is tolerated and met with stupid talking points like “An armed society is a polite society.” Tell that to the dozens who were politely gunned down on Sunday.
Red will draw the line here. Semi-automatic weapons must go. There is absolutely no need for anyone outside of the military to have access to that kind of firepower. They are inappropriate for legitimate hunting, too dangerous for realistic self-defense and too easily available. They may be “fun” to shoot, but can that momentary thrill justify allowing the carnage that happened in Las Vegas and Sutherland Springs to continue. Is your right to have a bit of fast-shooting fun so important that you can ignore the consequences of allowing these weapons to proliferate? If in your mind you can, then something is very wrong with you.
Red challenges you to drive over Sutherland Springs look a grieving mother, father, brother, son or daughter in the face and say – “Hey sorry about your loss, but shooting AR 15 is just really a lot of fun and my fun is more important than your family and anyway I’ve got the Second Amendment and the NRA on my side. So tough luck that your loved one was in the wrong place at the wrong time. And remember guns don’t kill people.”
If you can’t do that, then you are a spineless coward.
Texas House Speaker Joe Strauss of San Antonio has announced that he will not seek reelection in 2018. JS has been thought to be the last bastion of sanity in the Texas Republican Party that has prevented the lunatics from running the asylum. There has been speculation on Strauss’ motives, but as usual Red has the real skinny.
No. 1 – Not having to deal with Our Poor Idiot Governor Abbott and Light Gov. Patrick will be very much like stopping hitting himself in the head with a hammer.
No. 2 – Tea Parties are just not very much fun anymore.
No. 3 – More time in Vegas Baby Vegas!
No. 4 – Bipartisanship is so 20th Century.
No. 5 – Finally realized that Republicans really want a “Christian Conservative” not a Texas Jewboy (with apologies to Kinky Freedman).
No. 6 – He’s made it damn near impossible to get an abortion in much of the state, defunded Planned Parenthood, pushed through a discriminatory Voter ID bill – and yet it’s still all about who gets to pee where.
No. 7 – Some of his best friends are Democrats like Donald Trump used to be.
No. 8 – Joe Strauss, Texas Moderate pilot will be coming out next summer. An exciting action/adventure show featuring JS drinking iced tea and attempting to have polite conversations with people.
No. 9 – Will be writing treatise on Narcissistic Personality Disorder and has completed his research.
No. 10 – Embarrassed to be called a Republican in the Age of Trump.
Donald Trump has claimed credit for just about anything good that has happened with the economy over the last 9 months despite the lack of evidence that any of his policies have had any effect. You might note that after years of denigrating the excellent unemployment numbers during Obama’s later years, Trump now claims them as his own. Red believes that any administration gets too much credit or blame for the state of the economy and that the business cycle runs largely independent of executive policy (but not Federal Reserve action). But there is one area of the Texas economy that Trump can take credit for – Bomb Shelter Sales are Booming (pun intended)!
As reported by NY Mag, sales at Texas-based Rising S Bunkers are up 700% since Trump was elected. Rising S (which is short for Rising Son – or Jesus) was largely in the more mundane storm shelter business but has transitioned into up-scale bunkers for well-to-do survivalists because – you know – Jesus likes him some wealthy paranoiacs. RSB manufacturers its bunkers in the Dallas area, but sales are worldwide. With the rising tension in N. Korea, Japan is a hot market right now.
Owner Clyde Scott makes his sales pitch which sounds very much like predicting an impending Trumpocalypse.
“We are the longest living government in the history of the world without a complete collapse, the United States. It’s our time.”
Rising S’s basic bunker costs $125,000 – a bit out of Red’s price range right now. And Red isn’t going to buy just any bunker – he is going to insist on having Pepper Spray Portals and Custom Cabinets. Until Red can afford that, he’ll just have to head to the hills and hope for the best.
The Woodlands – an exclusive enclave north of Houston – could become the repository for displaced memorials to American traitors. At a Tea Party meeting on Tuesday, Gordy Bunch, the Woodlands Township Board Chairman, said Tuesday that his town might welcome in the statues that are coming down across the South. Bunch, taking a stiff draught of the Tea Party Kool-Aid, seems to think that having a bunch of monuments that were erected not to honor the confederacy but to encourage white supremacy deposited in his community will give his town a sense of history. Bunch repeated the same tired old myths equating getting rid of memorials to traitors with trying to change history. As Red has repeatedly pointed out, you can’t change the facts of history. You can, however, decide whom you choose to honor in bronze. His poor brain addled by the Tea Party Kool-Aid, Brunch argued,
“What’s happening across the state and across the country is ridiculous regarding eliminating history.We don’t have a lot of history here in the Woodlands because we’re only 42, 43 years old. For all these folks in Dallas, in Austin and San Antonio and other places looking to relocate their history, might I suggest they can take those assets over here.”
So The Woodlands can become the repository for American Racist History. That’s pretty fitting for one of the largest master-planned white flight communities in the country. Red suggests placing a statue of the traitors on every hole of every golf course in The Woodlands and designating them all as “immovable obstructions.”
And no Red, isn’t talking about the Trump Administration. He is looking at photos of a mysterious sea creature that washed up on the Texas coast near Texas City in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. Preeti Desai of the National Audubon Society spotted the creature while assessing damage from the storm with other conservationists. She posted pictures on Twitter asking biologists to clear up the mystery.
The most likely identification appears to be that the animal was a fangtooth snake-eel, also known as the tusky eel, which is native to the Gulf of Mexico. The Daily Mail has the full story.
State Rep. Pat Fallon (R-Frisco) filed House Bill 250 last month that would protect motorists who hit demonstrators “blocking traffic in a public right-of-way” if the river exercises “due care.” Red isn’t sure how you would determine if a driver used due care in hitting a protestor or why you would want to provide such protection to a motorist. What’s so gall-danged important that you need to drive through a throng blocking a street anyway? If it’s a life and death situation, it is also pretty unlikely to involve your average driver in their Toyota. The bill would not change any criminal laws, but would make it more difficult to hold someone civilly liable in such cases.
Predictably, Fallon caught a lot of flack for his tone deafness in this matter and was outraged that anyone would take umbrage with making it potentially less – shall we say, troublesome – to run over a demonstrator. The Dallas Morning News has more here.