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Profiles in Courage: A Look at the Lives of the Dallas Ambush Victims

On Friday morning, the kids woke up to the news that their father was dead.

Medical staff couldn’t save Ahrens from the bullets that tore into his liver, said Karen Buckingham, his mother-in-law.

“It’s just beyond belief,” Buckingham said.

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Ahrens had been with the Dallas Police Department since January 2002, according to department records.

“He was always one of the happy ones, with a smile on his face,” said one of his fellow officers who saw him around the department’s Central station often.

[Read the full story here, at dallasnews.com]

Steve Stribley, a state Fraternal Order of Police vice president and Dallas patrol officer, said Ahrens was “an incredible loving and devoted husband and father. Greatly respected veteran of the department.”

The 48-year-old officer was married to Detective Katrina Ahrens from the Crimes Against Persons division. The couple lived in Burleson with their two children together: 10-year-old Sorcha and 8-year-old Magnus. Read the rest of this entry »

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Front Page of Dallas Morning News for Friday, July 8, 2016

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Teacher Saralyn Gayle Portwood Accused Of Forcibly Performing Oral Sex On Student

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Andres Jauregui reports: A special education teacher faces felony charges for allegedly forcibly performing oral sex on a teenaged boy inside of her Texas high school office.

SARALYN-PORTWOODSaralyn Gayle Portwood was arrested on April 17 for suspicion of having an inappropriate relationship with a student. She’s been suspended from Princeton High School pending the outcome of the investigation

[CBS Dallas Fort Worth has a news video]

In an interview with authorities, her 17-year-old alleged victim, who is not enrolled in special education classes, said that the 30-year-old teacher began harassing him at school earlier this year. She would compliment his appearance and inappropriately brush against him and touch him, he said. Read the rest of this entry »


Is Wendy Davis Texas Toast?

Texas-Toast-Wendy-blend

Chuck Ross  writes:  Intriguing new details reported by The Dallas Morning News show that Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate and liberal hero Wendy Davis has consistently twisted the truth about her own life story.

Davis, a state senator, became famous nationwide after she blocked a bill seeking to place limitations on abortion with an 11-hour filibuster featuring her tale of perseverance and against-all-odds grit.

According to the Davis legend – as exemplified by Davis in her campaign video A Texas Story – the state senator was married, had a child, and divorced all by the time she was 19.

She lived in a trailer and worked to raise her daughter and make her way through college, eventually landing in the hallowed halls of Harvard. From there, Davis – born Wendy Russell – became an attorney, a Fort Worth city councilwoman, and a state senator known for confronting the “old-boys network” of Texas state politics.

Read the rest of this entry »


WAR ON THE POOR: The Welfare State Has Eroded the Culture of Individual Initiative

 

Ladies of the night: Prostitutes also populated the Bowery, plying their trade with johns who wandered in. Here, a man negotiates the price for a prostitute while two others walk past

What’s old is new again: New York in the 1970s, the city’s decay and the welfare state’s failures became film legend

John C. Goodman, Ph.D. writes:  One of the biggest differences in how the left and the right view the world concerns the welfare state. Currently, the federal government spends about $1 trillion a year on 126 means tested welfare programs. That amounts to almost $22,000 for every poor person in America, or $88,000 for a family of four.

What difference does all this spending make?

Among people on the right, there is little doubt. These programs are destroying the culture of the recipient communities. They are replacing a culture of self-reliance and self-help with a culture of dependency. Amazingly, a record 91.5 million people of working age—almost one third of the entire population—are not working and not even looking for a job.

Among conservatives I have met who were once poor (and I have met a surprising number of them), the view that welfare subsidizes and encourages dependency is almost a self-evident truth. I’m not sure I have ever met a liberal who was once poor. But then again, the liberals I encounter are all in the academic and public policy world―far away from the poverty population they so often talk about. I think this is a fascinating sociological phenomenon. If my experience is different from yours, weigh in in the comments section.

[BTW, I am ignoring the shakedown artists―Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and the like. We have no idea what these folks really think, since (as Juan Williams has documented) they routinely use liberal causes to line their own pockets.]

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman claims that Republicans who want to trim back welfare spending are waging a “war on the poor.” Most people on the right think it’s the other way around: It’s the welfare state and its apologists who are really harming the poor.

Who is right?

How Culture Matters

Let’s be clear about what we are talking about. The Dallas Independent School District recently announced that every student in the school district will now get a free breakfast and a free lunch. The reason? So few students qualified for “full price” or “reduced price” meals that trying to identify them cost more than it was worth. And as I pointed out in a previous post, kids who receive free lunches and breakfasts are increasingly getting a free supper as well. Think about that. We have decided that the parents of every single child attending public school in Dallas are too poor to feed their own kids.

Read the rest of this entry »


50th Anniversary of JFK Assassination Spawns Attacks on Dallas “Right-wingers”

President Kennedy's casket in the Rotunda on Capitol Hill: AP Images

President Kennedy’s casket in the Rotunda on Capitol Hill: AP Images

[The 2nd in a 3-part series on JFK this morning]

 writes: As the nation pauses to reflect on the tragic assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, the respectful and civil recollection of this horrific act is already being marred by those who seek to politicize Kennedy’s killing to serve their own agenda.

With the passage of 50 years’ time, it becomes more and more doubtful that we will ever learn the entire truth behind the assassination. However, since some members of the media have already started to rearrange the events of 50 years ago to divert blame from a self-described Marxist — Lee Harvey Oswald — onto those they like to label as (variously) “ultra-conservative,” “archconservative,” or simply “right-wing,” a sane and sober look at these claims is definitely called for.

Crowing Claimant

Leading the charge against the “ultra-conservatives” is Scott K. Parks, who penned an article for the Dallas News for October 12 headlined: “Extremists in Dallas created volatile atmosphere before JFK’s 1963 visit.” Parks lamented that following November 22, 1963, “Dallas became known to the world as the city of hate, the city that killed Kennedy.”

Parks proceeded to assign blame for exactly who was responsible for manufacturing this “hateful” atmosphere in Dallas, and — lest anyone miss his point — his explanation falls under a subheading, “John Birch Society HQ.”

Read the rest of this entry »


How Liberalism Lost its Way, part 3: The ‘Dallas 1963’ Debunking Continues

Dallas, Texas:  It was no City of Hate—no matter what the Left says.

JFKlimo

The “Dallas-did-it” community of storytellers, historians, biographers, and myth-makers, having gone relatively unchallenged for half a century, are finally encountering a long-overdue confrontation. First George Will,  Then here, of course, then Mark Hemingway, now  William Murchison.

 “Dallas was a City of Hate only in the overactive imaginations of people with axes to grind…”

Read the whole thing. It’s the most in-depth essay of our series so far. More as they develop.

For the American Spectator, Dallas native William Murchison writes:  After a time, ruts appear in the intellectual landscape, engraved through repetition of the same words, the same notions and incantations. “City of Hate” would be one of those; another, “right-wing hysteria”; also “paranoia,” “kooks,” “extremists,” “deranged,” “out of control.” The image of Dallas, Texas, the city where President Kennedy was slain in 1963, has the familiarity of a television commercial played so many times that reflex takes the place of reasoned assessment. Why analyze or appraise? Dallas, if it didn’t gun down the president, certainly furnished the stage and props for a creep like Lee Harvey Oswald. What else is there, my friends, that’s worth knowing?

From the historical standpoint, that is. I’m not convinced, actually, that vast numbers of Americans spend their days plotting to make the city of Dallas pay for the assassination—in Dallas, by a Dallas resident—of a president not understood as one of “The Immortals” until he became so at the Triple Underpass in Dallas. It was a long time ago, 50 years this November 22. The caravan moves on. The burgeoning, self-assured city of Dallas, to which the Kennedy party came in 1963, bears only happenstantial resemblance to the great North Texas “metroplex” of which modern Dallas is just one constituent element, albeit a large and highly important one.

For all that, we may anticipate that the Kennedy observances this fall—centered, naturally, in Dallas, and with the city’s robust participation—will require in the minds of some a retelling of the legends: the patient reconstruction, block by block, street by street, of the City of Hate. Some just can’t get past it. I’m sorry for them. Their mental batteries need a recharge.

Read the rest of this entry »