“All of you are white. Go to hell!”

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Tuesday’s Dallas County Commissioner’s Court meeting erupted into an argument between Commissioner John Wiley Price and a citizen, ending with Price repeatedly telling several citizens to “go to hell.”

The exchange started during the public speaking portion of the meeting, which happens after the commissioners have gone through their weekly agenda.


“…pursuing invariably the same Object…”

Still on deadline(s). Submitted without comment.

DARE To Ruin Families

On deadline and busy, so here’s a quicky courtesy Radley Balko at Reason Hit & Run about how “pot ruins lives. Not because of the drug itself, but because of what the government will do to you if they catch you with it.”

When it comes to its stated mission—keeping school-age children from trying illicit drugs—the D.A.R.E. program has been a failure. But D.A.R.E. does have a fun history of teaching kids to turn their pot-smoking parents in to the police.

It happened again last week:

The 11-year-old student is in 5th grade at a an elementary school in Matthews. Police say he brought his parents’ marijuana cigarettes to school when he reported them.

Matthews Police say he reported his parents after a lesson about marijuana was delivered by a police officer who is part of the D.A.R.E. program, which teaches kids about the dangers of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco.

“Even if it’s happening in their own home with their own parents, they understand that’s a dangerous situation because of what we’re teaching them,” said Matthews Officer Stason Tyrrell. That’s what they’re told to do, to make us aware.”..

Police arrested the child’s 40-year-old father and 38-year-old mother on Thursday.

Read the link for more details.

Flashback: No You Can’t, Barack

Today Obama will be addressing a captive audience of school children.

Last year I wrote a column for the Dallas Morning News on why I won’t let my daughter be one of the captives.

Here it is.

No, You Can’t Mr. President

There’s no doubt the presidential address directed to the captive audience of the nation’s schoolchildren Tuesday will be nonpartisan and positive. Chock full of “study hard and stay in school.”

The problem? It’s not his place to deliver it.

That’s why my first-grader won’t have any part in this.

I know some people will say that we live in a democracy, he’s the national leader and the people voted for him.

Those people are wrong on all three counts. We’re a republic. He’s the president of a federation of states. And a majority of the members of the electoral college voted for him.

What could further cement this fundamental, dangerous misperception of the proper, limited role and power of the president’s office than to have him beamed into every classroom speaking virtually ex cathedra? I got nothing.

By the way, see how I haven’t mentioned the president’s name? That’s intentional. It wouldn’t matter to me who the president is. This could be Bush, Clinton, Reagan or zombie Milton Friedman – it wouldn’t matter. I don’t want a president of any stripe presenting himself as the All Powerful Oz until my kid has the wherewithal to look behind the curtain.

The study materials dictated by the White House to accompany the address make the hairs on my neck stand up:

Why is it important that we listen to the president and other elected officials, like the mayor, senators, members of congress and the governor? Why is what they say important?

What specific job is he asking me to do? Is he asking anything of anyone else? Teachers? Principals? Parents? The American people?

They’re not even trying to hide it: What elected officials say is important, and they are different – more important – than you. We should do what they ask. It’s our role. Listen. Serve. Obey.

This is anathema to everything good in the American spirit. Government is supposed to serve us, not the other way around.

(And why should kids be taught to value the words and wants of officeholders who’ve tanked the economy and taken out a mortgage on their grandkids’ future for nondefensive wars and failed bailouts? But I digress with these criticisms in a way I bet few teachers will.)

Look, watching a president’s speech in a middle or high school civics class? No problem. In a few years, I want my kid to be confronted by challenging ideas, informed debate and opposing values. That’s how a kid learns, evolves and strengthens her own ideas and beliefs.

That’s not what this is.

These are grade school kids. You know, the ones who giggle over the word booger and do their financial planning based on the tooth fairy’s visits. Critical thinking and nuance? Not their strong suits yet.

What this is, though, is imprinting on them the idea that one person is their leader.

And if he’s the leader, what does that make them?

This didn’t start with Obama and – shocker – it’s not about him.

In his book The Cult of the Presidency, Gene Healy examines the decades’ long drift away from the vision the Founding Fathers had for the limited role of the president, and at the disturbing trend of both liberals and conservatives to think of the office as a limitless “combination of guardian angel, shaman and supreme warlord.”

This Tuesday’s address will only make it worse.

Execute the federal laws, Mr. President.

You do your job (don’t you have a deficit to grow or something?), and we parents and teachers will worry about the kids.


Maybe Saying No Is Exactly The Governing Policy We Need


“Dismissed With Prejudice”

I love clouds

I love clouds

So says the judge about the lawsuit brought against me and D Magazine for the story I wrote in 2007 outing some dirty cops who were betraying their oaths to protect and serve. (Thank you Haynes & Boone and especially Jason Bloom FTW.)

A less gracious gentleman might suggest the whole thing was a time-wasting scam put on by the plaintiff’s attorney — David Schiller of Plano. And someone without proper breeding might be tempted to point out that Mr. Schiller has some questionable history himself what with Schiller having been accused by a U.S. Bankruptcy judge of snookering some $600,000 from his own clients, none of which — only a cad would observe — ended up in the hands of any local health clubs, tailors, additional law training seminars, or weight loss centers.

And really, only an immature ass would remind Mr. Schiller that, when he was told by a certain bloggy journalist — and I paraphrase — monkeys would fly from my nethers before I gave up the name of a single source who was assured their identity would be protected, Mr. Schiller responded with a smarmy “We’ll see.”

I, of course, am just not the kind of low-class person to engage in such endzone showboating, much less say something really glib and gloating like — I don’t know, I’m just trying to give an example — but something like “Suck it, Schiller.” No, that would be disreputable. Uncivilized, even.

Mercy and grace are the mark of a great man, even when he had eight goddamn hours of his life stolen for a ham-fisted deposition in a frivolous lawsuit.

So I won’t do those things. Because Mr. Schiller and his clients are honorable men.

I shall simply say, “Hail, and fare thee well, sir.”

The Wusses Are At The Gates

Smoking in bars is illegal today in Dallas. The virulent march of the pernicious petit neo-puritans continues.

So I’m reposting in full my February feature story from D Magazine, which looks at the sorry, gelded, Nerf-world we’re headed towards.


The Wussification of Dallas

by Trey Garrison
We used to have fun here. We used to smoke and gamble and ride our bicycles without using our hands. Then, for some reason, we decided to make everything illegal.

Don’t smoke. Not even in bars. Because you might ruin the health of those bar-hoppers who are there to get a cardio workout. Take those stickers off your window. No dogs allowed. Put on your bike helmet. Put down that toy gun. You are under surveillance. Hang up that cell phone. Don’t touch. Don’t walk. Don’t run. No horseplay. Tear down that dangerous playground equipment. Fireworks? High-dive boards? Are you kidding? It’s the crazy minutiae of it all that gets you. You end up breaking the law without even knowing it. [Read more...]

The Donger is Not Amused

long-duk-dongState Rep. Betty Brown, R-Terrell, during testimony in Austin on voter identification legislation said Asian-descent voters should adopt names that are — in her sage words — “easier for Americans to deal with.”

It gets better. Brown defended her remarks. No, really.

Can’t you see that this is something that would make it a lot easier for you and the people who are poll workers if you could adopt a name just for identification purposes that’s easier for Americans to deal with?

Because apparently, even though to vote you have to be an American citizen, Asian people aren’t.

Things We Don’t Want to See in 2009

I’ll start, you finish.

  • The shaved head, goatee look. Real original, guys.
  • Myspace. Myspace is the new Bluetooth. And that’s not a good thing.
  • Disgraceful coverage of the new president’s daughters. Probably less likely than what we saw with Dubya’s kids, but they didn’t ask for the spotlight, nor have Obama’s daughters.
  • Priuses. Seriously.
  • The Patriot Act. Just kill it, already.
  • Twitter.
  • “Rock star” as a description for anyone in politics.
  • “Bro” prefixes, and all derivations. “Bromance.” “Mantastic.” Ad nauseum.
  • Bill Clinton.
  • Warren Buffet.
  • Green as a marketing tool.
  • “Global climate change” as anything but a punchline.
  • Sarah Jessica Parker. Come on. She looks like a foot.
  • Fertility treatments for people who, clearly, God does not want to have children.
  • New reality cooking shows.
  • Lost

What have you got?

It’s Not a Tumor

Just playing catchup today after a busy marathon weekend, some pending deadlines, and some meetings today.

So stay tuned, sign up for my RSS feed, and I’ll try to be back this afternoon.

Or talk amongst yourselves. I’ve turned comments on.