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Loon Star State: ‘Demolition Man’

Fri, 19 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

To see more political cartoons from Ben Sargent, visit our Loon Star State section, or find Observer political reporting here.

The post Loon Star State: ‘Demolition Man’ appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/loon-star-state-demolition-man/

The Wages of Inequality—Behind Bars

Thu, 18 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Editor’s Note: Harris, the author of this essay, is incarcerated at the Lane Murray Unit in Gatesville. The following piece is drawn from her memory of events in approximately 2010 at another unit. Before being released into the general prison population this May, she spent over eight years in solitary confinement. One hundred and five […]

The post The Wages of Inequality—Behind Bars appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/the-wages-of-inequality-behind-bars/

Hunger Was Already Bad Enough. Then Beryl Hit.

Wed, 17 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Editor’s Note: This story was originally published by Grist. Sign up for Grist’s weekly newsletter here. Amid the widespread destruction, brutal heat, heavy rains, and ongoing outages along the Gulf coast, relief organizations are scrambling to ensure people stay fed in the wake of Hurricane Beryl. Ever since the storm made landfall near Matagorda, causing millions to […]

The post Hunger Was Already Bad Enough. Then Beryl Hit. appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/hunger-hurricane-houston-beryl/

Mike Miles Moved Texas School Funds to Colorado Through a Possible Shell Corporation Without a Paper Trail

Tue, 16 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Houston Independent School District (HISD) Superintendent Mike Miles claims to be a financial wizard. But controversy has followed the former military man-turned-school administrator to nearly every Texas school district he’s served. In 2012, he was hired by the Dallas Independent School District (DISD), only to be ousted by a majority of the school board three […]

The post Mike Miles Moved Texas School Funds to Colorado Through a Possible Shell Corporation Without a Paper Trail appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/hisd-houston-mike-miles-tea-public-schools-texas/

Texas Plans to Execute Man After Courts Refuse DNA Tests

Mon, 15 Jul 2024 14:16:19 +0000

Update: On July 16, the U.S. Supreme Court granted Ruben Gutierrez a stay of execution just 20 minutes before he was scheduled to die by lethal injection. The stay gives the high court time to decide whether to take up Gutierrez’s case to allow post-conviction DNA testing. Less than a week after an NPR investigation […]

The post Texas Plans to Execute Man After Courts Refuse DNA Tests appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/ruben-gutierrez-execution-texas/

Texas’ Plantation Prisons: Inside a 200-Year History of Forced Labor Shrouded in Secrecy

Mon, 15 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Frank Pinkard stood before six legislators from the Texas Penitentiary Investigating Committee at the Clemens State Prison Farm in Brazoria County, revealing scars left from 39 lashes. Even after a year and a half, the braided rivulets ran over his thighs and buttocks, rising a centimeter above his skin.  It wasn’t the first time Pinkard […]

The post Texas’ Plantation Prisons: Inside a 200-Year History of Forced Labor Shrouded in Secrecy appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/texas-prison-plantations/

Hurricane Beryl Was a Warning Shot for Houston

Fri, 12 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

When Hurricane Beryl entered the Gulf of Mexico, the city of Houston had little reason to believe it was about to take its first direct hit from a tropical cyclone in decades.  Initial forecasts predicted the storm would make landfall in northern Mexico, hundreds of miles away. Instead it veered sharply north and hit an […]

The post Hurricane Beryl Was a Warning Shot for Houston appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/hurricane-beryl-warning-shot-houston/

‘Tech Doesn’t Just Stay at the Border’: Petra Molnar on Surveillance’s Long Reach

Thu, 11 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Petra Molnar is an anthropologist and attorney focused on human rights and migration. Molnar, who is based in Toronto, serves as the associate director of York University’s Refugee Law Lab and as a faculty associate at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. She has worked on migrant justice causes since 2008, first […]

The post ‘Tech Doesn’t Just Stay at the Border’: Petra Molnar on Surveillance’s Long Reach appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/border-surveillance-artificial-intelligence-tech/

New Texas Appellate Court Alarms Environmentalists

Wed, 10 Jul 2024 13:00:00 +0000

Editor’s Note: This story, co-published here with permission, was produced by Public Health Watch, a nonprofit investigative news organization. The announcement last month from Texas Governor Greg Abbott was easy to overlook. The governor, always eager to promote what he calls his “conservative, business-friendly agenda,” had appointed three fellow Republicans to the new 15th Court […]

The post New Texas Appellate Court Alarms Environmentalists appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/new-texas-appellate-court-environmentalists-abbott/

Kinney County Sheriff to Buy Pepper Ball Guns for Deterring Migrants Who ‘Try To Storm The Point of Entry’

Tue, 09 Jul 2024 16:54:37 +0000

Following the lead of the Texas National Guard, the Kinney County Sheriff’s Office is buying pepper ball and tear gas launcher rifles to potentially use against migrants to prevent them from crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. At a county commissioner’s meeting on Monday, Kinney commissioners approved the sheriff’s request to buy four “less lethal” rifles using […]

The post Kinney County Sheriff to Buy Pepper Ball Guns for Deterring Migrants Who ‘Try To Storm The Point of Entry’ appeared first on The Texas Observer.

https://www.texasobserver.org/kinney-county-sheriff-pepper-ball-guns-border/