Judge Tonya Parker conducts a wedding ceremony for a Dallas couple who were the second same-sex couple legally married in Dallas County. Thirteen other judges sat watching in the jury box, waiting their chance to waive the 72-hour waiting period and perform marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples.
Dallas/Fort Worth • Dallas Day of Decision events include a rally at 6 p.m. at Cathedral of Hope, 5910 Cedar Springs Road followed by a march to Legacy of Love monument at 7:30 p.m. concluding with a rally at 8 p.m. at Legacy of Love. Shuttle service provided. For more information visit Action.marriagetx.org/page/s/join-us-for-decision-day.
• Fort Worth Day of Decisionevents include a celebration at Celebration Community Church, 908 Pennsylvania Ave. hosts a rally with drinks, hors d’oeuvres, kissing and photo booths at 6 p.m. For more information visit Action.marriagetx.org/page/s/join-us-for-decision-day.
• Houston Day of Decision events include a celebration beginning at 5 p.m. in Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney St., Houston. A post rally event takes place at 7:30 p.m. at Hughes Hangar, 2811 Washington Ave. Another event will be held at 6 p.m. at Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church, 2025 West 11th St. For more information visit Action.marriagetx.org/page/s/join-us-for-decision-day.
• San Antonio Day of Decision events include a celebration 6 p.m. at the Bexar County Courthouse, E. Main Plaza, followed by a gathering at Luther’s, 1422 North Main Ave. For more information visit Sanantonio.hrc.org. Another event takes places 6 p.m. at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepard, 1630 Goliad Road. For more information visit Action.marriagetx.org/page/s/join-us-for-decision-day.
• Waco Day of Decision events include a celebration 6-9 p.m. in Heritage Square, at the corner of 3rd and Austin Ave. Speakers and entertainment include Susan Duty-Dennard and Heather Grace Ranelle. Another event takes place 6 p.m. at Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Waco, 4209 North 27th Street. For more information visit Action.marriagetx.org/page/s/join-us-for-decision-day.
Elsewhere: • Tulsa Day of Decision events include a celebration 6:30-8 p.m. at Oklahomans for Equality’s Dennis R. Neill Equality Center, 621 E 4th St, Tulsa.
• Oklahoma City Day of Decision events include a celebration 5:30-7 p.m. at Pedestrian Mall, Jackson Square, New Orleans. After party at Oz New Orleans, 800 Bourbon St., New Orleans. For more information visit Facebook.com/events/886686488059687.
• New Orleans Day of Decision events include a celebration 6 p.m. at Freedom Oklahoma’s Equality Center, 5613 N. May Ave., Oklahoma City.
• Metropolitan Community Churches holds an online event and teleconference with church leaders providing coverage of events in the local areas at 5 p.m. Call in via Adobe Connect link and log in under “Guest” at Mccchurch.adobeconnect.com/communications_bemcc.
To all my fellow Fort Worthians, a message from Joel Burns:
“Yesterday I asked Fort Worth Public Art to program the 6 towers of the Fort Worth Lancaster Avenue of Lights to the 6 colors of the pride rainbow if today’s #SCOTUS ruling came out in favor of #MarriageEquality. I’m pleased to report that the art installation will be re-programmed at 7 pm tonight (Friday, June 26) and run all weekend. J.D. Angle and I plan to get rainbow snow cones and be there at sunset (just before 9) to soak in this momentous day and snap some pics in awesome Fort Worth. Come join us? #LoveWins.”
Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price in the 2012 Tarrant County Pride Parade.
In a statement provided to Dallas Voice, Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, a LGBT ally, chimed in on the Supreme Court’s decision on marriage equality this morning:
“My focus as Mayor has always been on ensuring that our community leads the nation as a model of compassion and unity for all people. While city government officials have no authority to implement or authorize laws pertaining to marriage, the City of Fort Worth has been a trailblazer in equal employment opportunities, benefits for domestic partners, and citywide protections and equality for all,” she said. “We are proud to be a diverse community in our views and beliefs. As Texas takes action to implement this historic Supreme Court decision, I know our citizens will respect one another, and continue moving forward as a community of one, standing together united.”
We think building the toll road is a great idea and construction should begin now — as in today, before the flooding in the floodway where the road will go gets any worse.
Here are some pictures taken over the weekend along the proposed toll road route. We agree with Councilman Adam Medrano that the trees that are slowing down the flow of river should be kept in place to slow down the water as it cascades down the toll road.
This might be a good location to begin fracking so we can bring earthquakes closer to downtown Dallas and stop Irving from dominating the trembler news
This year’s marijuana crop sprouted nicely during the spring flooding
Tolls will be graduated. The higher the water, the higher the toll
Garbage rapidly floating down the mighty Trin originated in Fort Worth
This is a new branch of the Trinity River that the toll road will traverse
Flooding under the Continental Street Bridge
Maybe a roadside McDonalds could be placed here
Flooding under the Continental Street Bridge
Trees left in the middle of the toll road will slow the flood waters and protect cars driving here
This looks like a good place for an exit ramp
A mallard enjoying the flood. The toll road should help us get rid of these varmints
Flooding here extended across the entire floodway
Flooding under the railroad tressle
Flooding under the Commerce Street Bridge
The new Margaret McDermott Bridge going up as part of I-30 construction west of downtown. Maybe the bridge wouldn’t be necessary if we just drained “the big ditch”
Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price was uncontested for re-election.
A majority of incumbents cruised to re-election in Arlington, Fort Worth and elsewhere across Tarrant County with only a few upsets:
Five members of the Fort Worth City Council were challenged in their re-election bids. Facing nominal opposition, Districts 5, 7 and 8 Council members Gyna Bivens, Kelly Gray and Dennis Shingleton won their re-election by double digits. Meanwhile District 4 Councilman Danny Scarth lost to challenger Cary Moon 2,266 to 1,520. District 2 Councilman Sal Espino squeaked by challenger Steve Thornton 1,171 to 1,144, a difference of 27 votes. Mayor Betsy Price and council members Ann Zadeh, Jungus Jordan and W.B. “Zim” Zimmerman faced no opposition.
Fort Worth ISD trustees Tobi Jackson, Judy Needham and Ann Sutherland all cruised to re-election over their opponents. District 5 Trustee Needham defeated perennial candidate Linda LaBeau in her re-election bid 3,528 to 765. District 2 Trustee Jackson bested two candidates by wide margins, 1,264 to first time candidates Rev. Sultan Cole’s 446 and Joel Aguilar’s 195. Cole, as reported Friday, was recorded making statement against the LGBT community. District 6 Trustee Sutherland defeated former district administrator Celia Speer 2,655 to 1,605. District 3 Trustee Christene Moss faced no opponent.
Jeff Williams upset longtime mayor Dr. Robert Cluck 15,499 to 10,461. Two other opponents divided the remaining 730 votes. Residents also resoundingly vote to ban red light cameras 15,885 to 10,808. Two incumbents, AISD Place 1 and 2 Trustees Gloria Pena and Peter Barron were narrowly defeated while Place 3 Trustee Aaron Reich narrowly eked out a win. All incumbent council members breezed to re-election.
Tarrant Regional Water District incumbents Jim Lane and Marty Leonard bested challengers Keith Annis, Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner by wide margins. TRWD races are at-large with voters picking two candidates.
Additionally, candidates backed by numerous conservative leaders and groups were resoundingly defeated in their bids for nonpartisan office across northeast Tarrant County, according to an analysis of various endorsements.
God’s candidate, the Rev. Sultan Cole, is one of three candidates for the District 2 race for the Fort Worth school board. And he has a few opinions to share with you.
It just so happens I’m paid to hear idiots froth at the mouth, especially really crazy anti-LGBT stuff. As a pastor of his church, he has the privilege of reminding his congregants of the sins of the Undesirables, which you can see in the video below. In case you’d rather drink than watch his snake charming, here’s the gist of the screeds spilling out of the mouth of the Rev. Cole:
• Adam and Steve aren’t cool because God made “male and female,” and “males and females function well together,” especially at child birthing age.
• At 1:24 he evokes the biblical characters of Eve and Janice, who wish to make a child despite it not being God’s will. (I look forward to spending my weekend hunting for the lost book of Janice the Sodomite.)
Again, I’m not sharing this because it’s 3:15 p.m. on Friday, and I’m really tired, and I just want to go home. No, I’m telling you: God’s candidate is running in district 2 against incumbent Tobi Jackson and educator Joel Aguilar. God’s candidate is on the ballot tomorrow, Election Day.
Find your polling place here then head to the polls tomorrow between 7 a.m.–7 a.m. and vote. If you don’t, someone like Rev. Cole just might win.
The North Texas GLBT Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 10th anniversary on Friday night, April 24, with its Celebration of Excellence Dinner, held at the Renaissance Dallas Hotel.
Chamber officials presented a number of awards during the dinner, including presenting Mark Arthur Shekter with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Shekter owns Surrealty Corporation, a real estate agency, and Graphic+Design+Group+International. He is known for his work as an architectural and interior designer, but he is also known for his years of volunteer work in Dallas’ LGBT community. Shekter founded Meals on the Move, or MOM, which for several years delivered meals to people with HIV.
Other individuals recognized for their contributions to the community were Capt. Kathi Durst, chief pilot for American Airlines; Andy Smith, executive director of the Texas Instruments Foundation; Roger Thomson, executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Brinker International; and Zack Hicks, chief information officer for Toyota Motors North America.
The 2014 Business Excellence Awards were also presented at the event. Business of the Year honors went to Liberty Burger, founded by Mariel Street and sponsored by Prudential Financial. The Extra Mile Award went to Pride Pharmacy, led by President John Shero and sponsored by American Airlines. The Community Impact Award went to ilume Management Services, led by President Luke Crosland and sponsored by Raytheon.
The Corporate Ally Award went to Haynes & Boonem LLC, with Theo Foster as LGBT diversity chair. Det. Christopher Gorrie of the Fort Worth Police Department, sponsored by Allied Stone, won the Emerging Leader Award. Robin Pulford with American Airlines accepted the Supplier Diversity Award, sponsored by Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau. And the Member Service Award with TravelOUT owner Michael Henshaw, sponsored by Pride Pharmacy.
In the final award presentation of the evening, chamber Chairman Larry Paschall named the chamber’s president and CEO, Tony Vedda, as winner of the Chairman’s Award.
Fort Worth Police Officer Tamara Pena got back with me this afternoon about the fatal multi-car accident in Fort Worth that left many dead and injured, including a lesbian couple, on Sunday morning.
According to Pena:
Officers were dispatched early Sunday, April 12, to investigate a multi-vehicle accident involving an 18-wheeler truck. Several vehicles had stopped to help a driver who had been involved in a single vehicle accident. Many of the individuals who had stopped were out of their vehicles. An 18-wheeler struck the vehicle that had been involved in the initial accident and also struck several vehicles and individuals who had stopped to help. The 18-wheeler caught on fire. Four individuals were confirmed deceased on the scene, another female was transported to an area hospital where she later died. Two other individuals were transported to area hospitals, one by ambulance, another by Careflight. Additionally, the truck driver was transported to an area hospital but he did not appear to have serious injuries. Traffic Investigators are investigating the factors of the accident.
According to the Dallas Morning News, a Fort Worth lesbian couple were among those involved in a fatal car accident on early Sunday morning in Fort Worth.
Veronica Gonzalez, who was raised in Oak Cliff, and her fiancee’s sister were among those killed.
Gonzalez’s fiancee was injured in the crash and remains unconscious, according to the News.
I’ve put in a call to the Fort Worth Police Department and will update this story as I hear more.