Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Wharton County Making America Great Again?

Donald says we have spent 2 trillion dollars in Iraq and got nothing.  The last Republican President told us mission accomplished.  Facts are dizzying. Incidentally that kind of money could have fed the world for years.

Trump says elect him and we will build roads, bridges, etc at home.  Can anyone explain why Congress hasn't done this the last 7 years.  Aren't we tired of being held hostage that if we don't elect their guy, they will let the U.S. crumble?  It was crumbling when Bush left office.

Republican candidates think Obama should return from Cuba because of Belgium.  I would be more impressed with any of the three candidates if they suited up and went fight on the ground instead of just bitching.  Why must they be President if they are so passionate about their love for America.  Go there now.  Get a gun.  Show us something.  Put  yourself in harms way, instead of our children.  Be really brave.  THEN America will reward you.



Claire Lind


Study: Presidential Candidates Speak From Seventh To Tenth Grade Level

by jonathanturley
495px-Donald_Trump_by_Gage_SkidmoreBernieSandersFor those who believe that candidates engage in little better than baby talk or talk down to voters, a new study may support you. Carnegie Mellon University has studies the speeches of all of the presidential candidates and found that they speak at a low of a seventh grade level for Donald Trump to a high of a tenth grade level for Bernie Sanders. For my part, Sanders scores big time whenever he uses the word "oligarchy" and sends millions online in desperate searches.


“From Noah’s Flood To My Front Yard, How Much Better Can It Get?”: Texas Man Claims To Have Found Fossil From The Ark

by jonathanturley
Noahs_ArkWe have previously discussed the increasingly difficulty faced by creationists who believe that the earth is just a few thousand years old or that dinosaurs walked at the same time as humans. However, Wayne Propst insists that he has proof and he had to walk no further than his front year. The creationist in Tyler, Texas insists that he has found fossils from Noah's Ark buried in his yard. “From Noah’s flood to my front yard, how much better can it get?” Not much, Propst, not much.


Before KING, JOLLY, and PRADO, Circuit Judges.
REVERSED. (March 9, 2016).
David Allen participated in several demonstrations throughout the City of Houston that led to his detention and arrest by police officers.  Since 2010, Allen has regularly engaged in street preaching throughout Houston, Texas, sounding a shofar as part of his preaching.  Allen brought claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against two officers, among others, alleging that they violated his constitutional rights.  The District Court denied the officers' motion for summary judgment on qualified immunity grounds, and both officers appealed.  Reversing the District Court, the Fifth Circuit holds that both officers are entitled to qualified immunity.  The Court explains that the factual disputes identified by the District Court are not material to the determination of qualified immunity because the shofar Allen possessed violated  a city ordinance that prohibited "carry[ing] or possess[ing] while participating in any demonstration" objects that "exceed three-quarters inch in their thickest dimension." Houston, Tex., Code of Ordinances ch. 28, art. 1, § 33.  Thus, Allen's possession of the shofar independently provided reasonable suspicion for his detention and arrest. 
On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas (Gray H. Miller).
Attorney for Appellant - Robert William Higgason, Houston, TX
Attorney for Appellee - Kate Margaret O'Reilly Oliveri, Ann Arbor, MI


Claire Lind


Wharton Co. prosecutor says he was told to keep blacks off juries

A prosecutor in Wharton County has accused the elected district attorney of working repeatedly  to keep blacks off juries in that rural county southwest of Houston.

In a hearing earlier this month, Assistant District Attorney Nathan Wood told a judge that his boss, District Attorney Ross Kurtz, told him to keep black residents off  juries in criminal trials in order to improve the prosecution's chances of winning the case.

"I was not 'instructed' to strike black jurors so much as I was advised or encouraged to do so as a matter of trial strategy," Wood recently told a judge. "Whatever the true intentions behind the statements made in our office, they made me feel uncomfortable."

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that it is illegal for attorneys to consider race when deciding who gets on a jury.


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The issue emerged during a black woman's trial that began in February with Wood and another prosecutor striking the only three blacks on a jury panel. Defense attorney Mark Racer objected, forcing the prosecutors to give race-neutral explanations for their actions.

"This is just a win-at-all costs mentality that shouldn't be there," Racer said this week. "And clearly one of the prosecutors was uncomfortable with it."

Kurtz on Tuesday denied the allegations in an email to the Houston Chronicle.

"My instructions and guidance has always been and will always be that prosecutors should not take race into account in exercising the choices allowed by law on which potential jurors to strike," he said.

The allegations raise questions about other convictions in Wharton County where blacks my have been excluded from juries, according to defense attorneys.

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