Five stories that have North Texas talking: Less Texans are seeking out guns, it’s the first day of fall, Willie Nelson gives some advice to a ‘New York Times’ columnist, and more.
The number of Texans seeking federal permission to purchase firearms has dropped 18 percent this year, the Associated Press reports. Experts attribute the slowdown to declining fears of tougher gun laws. “Some of the concern has relaxed since nothing from Congress has happened,” Alice Tripp of the Texas State Rifle Association said. “Nobody has knocked on your door and taken anything.”
Special Agent Nicole Strong with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said it was too early to determine the cause of the decline, and it was possible that people may be getting their guns elsewhere.
- It’s the first day of fall, and it felt like it this morning across North Texas. Temperatures were in the low-to-mid sixties this morning, and a high in the mid-eighties is expected for today. The National Weather Service says that this could be the driest September on record if North Texas doesn’t see rainfall in the next ten days.
- SpaceX broke ground in Brownsville. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, Gov. Rick Perry, and other Texas officials were present to break ground on the site of a future private commercial orbital launch facility. The hope is to begin launching rockets there by 2016. Musk told The Texas Tribune he hopes the new facility will one day send a human to Mars. KERA’s vice president of news Rick Holter spoke with astronaut Ed Lu last week about the rise in the private space industry.
- Willie Nelson gave New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd a tutorial on marijuana. In Dowd’s column, she wrote, “I’m the poster girl for bad pot trips,” referring to her bad reaction to a marijuana-infused candy bar she had while covering marijuana legalization in Colorado. After hearing about the incident, America’s favorite outlaw invited Dowd to his tour bus for some tips. His advice? He “doesn’t do edibles.”
- Volunteers who organized Dallas’ gay community were also influential across the country. Today on Think, a group of pioneers of the early LGBT movement in North Texas will share their stories. In 2000, KERA TV produced a one-hour show called Finding Our Voice: The Dallas Gay & Lesbian Community. You can watch here.
- PBS Newshour’s Arts Beat blog is spotlighting a KERA profile on Dallas artist Gabriel Dawes. He creates floor-to-ceiling sculptures out of colorful thread. Dawes is one of three local artists that were part of the State of the Art exhibition at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Arkansas. He showed KERA’s Art & Seek how he sculpts with thread: