Five stories that have North Texas talking: Dallas mayor wants to give IDs to immigrants; Paul Quinn earns “work college” designation; Texas A&M changes event policy after Richard Spencer; and more.
Mayor Mike Rawlings hopes Dallas will be able to offer identifications cards to all residents, including people living in the country illegally. Rawlings announced the city's plan to research identification cards on Tuesday, coinciding with a “Cities’ Day of Immigration Action” event, The Dallas Morning News reports.
The municipal IDs would include a resident's photo, name and address, and would help immigrants with cashing checks, seeking employment, getting a library card and similar services. Rawlings hopes the city's new Office of Welcoming Communities and Immigrant Affairs can help with his goal of involving immigrants in the economy and thinks the IDs would be a good starting point.
— Mayor Mike Rawlings (@Mike_Rawlings) March 21, 2017
Rawlings plans to work with federal and state agencies to ensure that any Dallas resident ID complies with all laws. Major cities including New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco all have identification programs for unauthorized immigrants. [The Dallas Morning News, The Associated Press]
- Dallas’ Paul Quinn College has become the first historically black college to earn work college designation. Two years ago, the college adopted the “work college” model, where everyone who lives on campus works for the school in some form — such as tending the farm — to reduce debt for graduates. President Michael Sorrell took over Paul Quinn in 2007, when it nearly lost its accreditation. He axed the football program and turned the field into a farm. It was his answer to the food desert in the poor neighborhood where the school is located. Paul Quinn got word Monday from the U.S. Department of Education that it had been approved for federal work college designation. [KERA News]
- Texas A&M University has changed its event policy after white nationalist Richard Spencer’s controversial speech in December. The university said it had no role in inviting the Dallas native. Rather, the man who brought Spencer to speak at Texas A&M — also a white nationalist — has been inviting incendiary guests to College Station for years. Texas A&M’s newspaper The Battalion reports: “Under the new policy, external clients must secure a sponsorship from a recognized Texas A&M student organization, academic or administrative unit or from a member of the A&M System before they are permitted to submit a request for use of an on-campus space.” [The Texas Tribune, The Battalion]
- South by Southwest wrapped up this weekend in Austin, but music from the annual festival is still coming. Members of KERA’s Art&Seek team and sister station KXT produced live music videos from South by Southwest for their ongoing “On The Road” series. The latest: Memphis blues-folk artist Valerie June plays “Shakedown” by the shore of Lady Bird Lake in Austin. In January, KXT program director Amy Miller contributed “Shakedown” to a playlist of 10 songs that public radio can’t stop playing. Visit Art&Seek for more highlights from the music, film and interactive portions of the festival. [Art&Seek, KXT]
- ‘Tis the season for Texas bluebonnets. For just a few lovely weeks across North Texas, bluebonnets are in bloom. The flowers typically peak in Dallas-Fort Worth in mid-April, but they should last through the end of April – and perhaps into early May. During bluebonnet season, vast fields or even a patch of grass along the highway create the annual springtime in Texas backdrop for family photos. In case you aren’t familiar with the state flower, here are 15 things you should know about bluebonnets before you take that quintessential snapshot. [KERA News]