More Columns

Texas’ economy depends on "educational climate change” 

Trends show that over the past two decades, rural Texans have fallen behind in income, assets and health care. Rural students are less likely to have postsecondary degrees or industry-recognized certificates. However, that can be improved with better access to broadband Internet, online certifications and distributed college degree programs.

Y’all, we need a divorce.

Our marriage to Texas has gotten old. New Mexico is younger and more attractive. We would not be ignored, especially because we would be their largest city. Grant us a divorce and we won’t even request the back support. If there are any El Pasoans who think we need a wall to protect us, take ‘em. You can have custody and everyone will be better off.

No small thing: Rethinking overdue library fines 

Policy changes to overdue fines might be a small gesture, but changes like these will have an incredible impact on how libraries are able to reach out to underserved pockets in their local communities and connect residents with quality information and resources. And of course, to connect residents with the latest best-sellers too.

A crisis of silence in healthcare

Transparency and prevention must replace shame and blame to effectively keep patients safe. The physicians’ Hippocratic credo — “to keep them from harm and injustice"— must be reaffirmed. Patients and physicians deserve a culture of justice.

One year after Harvey, Houston’s poorest families still struggling to recover

Our organization, West Street Recovery, is a twelve-person grassroots organization that formed in the days after Harvey to provide direct assistance to our neighbors in Northeast Houston. Though we never expected to be doing this work a year later, we continue to meet families who have fallen through the cracks of an aid system that deepens inequalities that existed before the storm.

Alienation, legal process and our southern border

The federal government has just announced its latest salvo in its ongoing war on asylum seekers, proposing rules that would allow children to be held in immigration detention for prolonged periods of time. The rules would undermine our legal obligations to refugees and strike a particularly vulnerable population: asylum-seeking children.  

The goal is zero suicides

When parents, teens, and schools are equipped with the resources, information and support they need to address the mental health needs of our youth, we will move closer to achieving the goal of zero suicides.

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

If Democrats are serious about making Texas competitive, relying on the national political environment or enthusiasm for one particular candidate is insufficient. Republican Pete Flores’ victory in SD-19 demonstrates clearly that the Texas Democratic Party must undergo significant reform and begin rebuilding its county-by-county infrastructure to effectively compete with Republicans.

Hurricane recovery starts well before storms hit

Hurricanes are one of the risks of living near the coast. Most of the time, it’s a wonderful place to call home. We must find a sustainable and resilient way to continue this lifestyle by managing the risk. Wisdom in honestly confronting the threat by developing and building to meet the challenges is a necessary first step.

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