Five stories that have North Texas talking: Texans wanting to secede are essentially harmless yet becoming harder to ignore; a Houston midwife glided across flood waters on an inflatable swan to deliver a baby; Snapchat is opening a regional hub in Deep Ellum; and more.
For Texas, is secession ever totally off the table? No more than a proportional handful of people have taken it seriously since the ‘90s, and the leader of that modern-day revival is currently serving a jail sentence of 99 years. But the flame of secession still burns, if dimly, among some grassroots Texans.
“To be sure, that seems to be a relatively small group,” The Texas Tribune reported. “The Texas secession movement says 22 out of the 270 county GOP conventions passed some kind of independence resolution this spring. A party official said he'd be ‘surprised’ if that were the case, and the Houston Chronicle was able to confirm only 10 counties. But 10 is a lot more than the one county that passed an independence resolution in 2012.”
Generally Republicans think it’s a silly idea, but not too long ago — 2009 — former Gov. Rick Perry made a joke about seceding at a rally, and after that a “2009 Rasmussen poll found 1 in 3 Texans think their state has the right to secede, but if it were put to a vote, 75 percent of voters would decide to say with the United States.” Activity among this niche of Texans has grown since then, despite efforts (like a 2012 petition with 125,000 signatures on WhiteHouse.gov) being shot down time and time again by the powers that be (The White House).
When Texas Republicans convene next month, secession might come up if there’s time along with the tens of thousands of other resolutions to be considered. Read more. [The Texas Tribune]
- A midwife traversed the high flood waters in Houston via an inflatable swan to deliver a baby. Cathy Allen Rude, a 63-year-old midwife, couldn’t get to her expecting patient on foot for the flooded Houston roads, and the kayak set to pick her up fell through, too. Rude told the McClatchy Wire Service when the mom-to-be saw a neighbor from across the street using an inflatable swan, she yelled, “‘How about giving my midwife a ride on your swan to come deliver my baby?’” Rude made it across the street, and then a truck took her and the woman in labor to the Katy Birth Center. The baby boy weighed 9 pounds and 12.2 ounces. Read more. [McClatchy Wire Service, The Dallas Morning News]
- Snapchat Inc. will set up shop in GeniusDen, a coworking space in Deep Ellum. The goal for the Southwestern expansion is to connect with corporations like Dr Pepper, J.C. Penney and others, Dallas Business Journal reported. “For Snapchat, it appears the social media platform is establishing a foothold in Dallas because of the region's low cost of real estate and labor, as well as the growing tech startup community, said Clay Vaughn, a first vice president in CBRE's Dallas office.” No official public announcement has been made. Read more. [Dallas Business Journal]
- Dallas-Fort Worth ranked as the 11th worst metro area in the country for ozone pollution. It’s better than last year, though. Actually, Houston, Austin and San Antonio all performed better on the American Lung Association 17th annual State of the Air report, contributing to a larger positive trend among the Southwest region of the U.S. KERA’s Christopher Connelly reported: “Still, all of the big Texas cities received poor marks for ozone pollution. They scored better on particle pollution refers to microscopic irritants in the air that can lodge deep in the lungs and take a huge toll on people’s health.” Read more. [KERA News]
- Fort Worth drivers are frustrated by the intersection at Highway 183 and Bryant Irvin Road. As drivers try to exit the highway and go north on Bryant Irvin they encounter two stop signs, forcing them to stop even if they have a green light. Drivers vented on social media, saying the configuration allows police to issue more traffic tickets, and the signs cause fender-benders on a daily basis. WFAA reported: “TxDOT spokesman Val Lopez said the stop signs were installed after a request to improve traffic flow, and a study by the state agency. It determined that at Highway 183 and Bryant Irvin Road, yield signs yield more trouble than stop signs.” Read more. [WFAA]