University of Texas law professor Sandy Levinson (he's also a visiting professor at Harvard) is one of the most respected constitutional law scholars in the country, and, increasingly, one of the most iconoclastic. Levinson's scholarly crusade been calling attention to the Constitution's "hard-wired ... More >>
Mitt Romney caught a lot of flak for saying "corporations are people, my friend" when responding to a heckler on the campaign trail last year. Many people -- mostly liberals -- were incensed, noting that this showed Romney's solicitude for big business over the "little guy." Set aside the fact that ... More >>
Abortion. Just to read the word provokes strong mental images, emotions and opinions. Since the tea party mid-term elections in 2010 swept in some very conservative legislators in states across the country, abortion, after taking a back seat to economic issues, has become a hot button issue again. ... More >>
Four months after a federal judge dismissed charges against a Houston couple who created animal torture videos because the statute was unconstitutional, federal prosecutors have filed an appeal arguing that the judge ruled in error. Crush videos "are unprotected under the First Amendment for the sa ... More >>
Well, that didn't take long. In a move that had previously been struck down by the federal government as unconstitutional and discriminatory, Galveston County moved this week to eliminate four of the eight county constable districts according to a report from the Houston Chronicle (requires subscrip ... More >>
The Butler finds urgency in the conventional.
America was founded on the protest, and we've been fighting like hell ever since. From civil rights, voting rights and equal rights, America knows a thing or two about protesting. And lately, with unrest in Egypt, the protests in Austin over Texas' new abortion regulation, and people on both sides o ... More >>
The mother of 19-year-old Justin Carter is still collecting signatures -- 134,927 at last count -- trying to enlist supporters to keep her son from being labeled a terrorist and sentenced to prison. She began working on this as a plea for her son's release from a New Braunfels prison when an anon ... More >>
A coalition of anti-private-prison groups is claiming victory for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice's plans to close two privately run detention centers in the wake of a $97 million budget cut. Grassroots Leadership, along with the ACLU of Texas, the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition, and oth ... More >>
Voters in Harris and Fort Bend counties will get an extra treat on Election Day: Federal poll watchers. As a result of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (now 47 years old!), the federal government attempts to make sure every registered voter regardless of race, color "or membership in a minority langua ... More >>
The Texas GOP's lengthy effort to create redistricting maps that federal judges say don't discriminate against minorities hit another snag today when a three-judge panel in D.C. threw out the latest plan. The judges said the proposed maps failed to meet fairness standards using various tests and an ... More >>
Today is officially Lyndon Baines Johnson Day here in the state of Texas. The late 36th president's birthday was hallowed in his home state after he died in 1973 of a massive heart attack at the age of 64. He would have been 104 today. Johnson ascended to the presidency from the vice-presidency aft ... More >>
We'll be hearing a lot of great speeches this election season, but lets take a second to remember the true giants of political rhetoric. 10. Martin Luther King: I've Been to the Mountaintop King delivered this speech in Memphis, Tennessee the day before he was assassinated. After talking for a whi ... More >>
Houston's history is dotted with albums that, fairly or un, have been swept aside. We'll examine them here. Have an album that you think nobody knows about but should? Email firstname.lastname@example.org. Herney the Great Diary of a Young Black Male (Self-released, 2011) Herney the Great is an occa ... More >>
Eddie Robinson was one of the greatest head coaches in the history of college football. He overcame the misfortune of being born a black man in the Deep South during the worst years of Jim Crow to produce at Grambling one of the great programs in all of football history. He won over 400 gam ... More >>
Photos by Bradley BaskerSee pics from yesterday's "Big Gay Wedding," the largest and longest-running commitment ceremony in Houston, also organized by the Foundation for Family and Marriage Equality. Members of the Foundation for Family and Marriage Equality, along with a crowd of protesters ... More >>
The feds bury border patrol abuses of immigrants, but whats been unearthed reveals a culture of cruelty.
From Michael Lacey, executive editor of Village Voice Media Holdings: Updated: Here is the link to the full story of the media's betrayal of WikiLeaks. Where are the First Amendment's establishment warriors as government-spooked businesses try to shut down Wikileaks? Hackers with computers, not h ... More >>
Lawsuit: Your baby's blood is secretly being sold to science. A lawsuit's been filed by lawyers at the Texas Civil Rights Project because, allegedly, for the last seven years, the state's Department of State Health Services has "deceptively and unlawfully sold, traded, bartered, and distributed b ... More >>
As soon as HISD knows what it's doing wrong, it'll be sure to fix the problem. The Houston Independent School District held a press conference this afternoon to attempt to respond to allegations that the district doesn't give girl athletes the same opportunities as boy athletes. Trouble is, the d ... More >>
Saturday marks the 47th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, the huge civil rights rally in Washington D.C. where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. This rally is largely credited for helping to put enough pressure on Washington to pass the ... More >>
Hulk mad if budget smallMore than a dozen local civil rights and justice advocacy groups banded together Wednesday in an attempt to ensure that the proposed Harris County public defender office gets done right.At a news conference, the organizations, which come together to form the Greater Housto ... More >>
Metro ain't happy with usLast week's cover story didn't go over too well at Metro; maybe that's not too surprising since it was entitled "Train Wreck: How Metro and it's president Frank Wilson got so far off track."George Smalley, the agency's head of communications and marketing, responded ... More >>
"Illegal aliens come from all over the world, not just from the hole in the fence in San Diego." - George Lopez, "Corazon," on BRWN BFLO's self-titled album. Rocks Off gets lots of thank-you notes from readers showing their appreciation for giving Latino hip-hop a voice, though we find it odd. W ... More >>
There's been a whole lot of hooting and scorn from a nation who has watched as far-right-wingers have forced their odd, minority political views into Texas textbooks. There are some carping liberal complainers who think -- difficult as it may be to believe -- that Thomas Jefferson should be menti ... More >>
With more than 50 years as an artist and activist, this writer continues to bring readers new work
Keeping the Dreamkeepers
The case of the two women firefighters who claimed that over the summer they discovered sexist and racist slurs written on the walls of their fire station is heating up again. And this time it involves accusations about a judge, an assistant district attorney, and a potentially improper secretive ... More >>
In the court of law, it never really mattered whether Roland Carnaby was a spy, as he claimed just before police gunned him down along the highway following a high-speed chase. After all, his widow, Susan, was suing the City of Houston and a pair of its police officers in federal court for excess ... More >>
We reported yesterday on things looking up for Metro, but today Hair Balls learned that our transit authority is violating the federal government's definition of civil rights. According to a letter dated April 27, the Federal Transit Administration conducted a Title VI Compliance Review of Metro ... More >>
Gregory Michael Carter tackles racism on his own timeline
Court art attracts heat but no media light
Plus: Rebuttal Witness, Doctoring the Ratings, Breeding Greed?
Once burdened by debt and internal politics, a rejuvenated Texas ACLU is back mixing it up with those who dare to trample on the U. S. Constitution.
Web designer George Kalas wanted to re-fight the Civil War. Instead, he started one in his own movement.
Log Cabin Republicans want to be part of the GOP, which wants no part of them
A jury tags Harris County for hiring the killer behind the badge
The ACLU returns from the dead in Houston