Archive for May 20th, 2016

The Big Nine-O

It is good to see our H-Town At-Large City Council Member Mike Knox not put up with intolerance. Check this from a Mike Morris and Rebecca Elliott article in today’s Chron:

A local Republican precinct chair, who is also a Houston City Council staff member, is under fire this week for trying to block the appointment of a fellow precinct chair because he is Muslim.

Trebor Gordon, who makes $55,000 a year as community outreach director to first-term Councilman Mike Knox, said Syed Ali should not be named to fill a vacant precinct chair post in the Alief area because “Islam and Christianity do not mix.”

Gordon, who serves as a part-time pastor at a Near North Side church and as chaplain for the Harris County Republican Party, contended Ali did not bow his head Monday night during his prayer at the party’s quarterly meeting.

“If you believe that a person can practice Islam and agree to the foundational principles of the Republican Party, it’s not right, it’s not true, it can’t happen,” Gordon said.


Knox said he was upset when he learned of Gordon’s comments, which he called “unfortunate” and “incendiary,” but said he does not plan to fire him.

“As a conservative person, I believe in the First Amendment and I think people can say whatever they want on their own time, have their own beliefs and so forth. We shouldn’t be throwing people away when they make mistakes in judgment the first time,” Knox said. “I’ve had a discussion with him about it. He understands that’s not the policy of this office and we’re not going to tolerate that kind of behavior up here.”

Gordon’s social media pages are dominated by political commentary, including repeated references to Islam.

He recently has shared links from sites such as “Bare Naked Islam,” whose tagline is “It isn’t Islamophobia when they really ARE trying to kill you,” and “Islam Exposed.”

Alongside one link about a man being charged with a hate crime for tearing off a Muslim woman’s headscarf on an airplane, Gordon wrote, “Here, we find Islam defining morality,” along with the hashtag “#IslamicSupremacist.”

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Knox said he doesn’t monitor Gordon’s social media posts. Late Thursday, following a reporter’s inquiry, Gordon’s Facebook page no longer appeared in search results and links to it from his Twitter account stopped working.

“As long as he’s been working here, I’ve not noticed any of that attitude here in the office during our business hours,” Knox said. “The people of Houston need to know I don’t think that way. All the citizens of Houston can expect fair representation from me.”

Muslims comprise an estimated 1.2 percent of Houston’s population, meaning Knox can count about 27,000 Muslims among his constituents, as he holds an at-large seat and serves citywide rather than in a specific district.

Here is entire article: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Republican-tries-to-block-Muslim-from-office-7765553.php.

CM Knox gave his staffer a second chance. I guess I don’t have a problem with that.   He got the staffer to shut up for now. Let’s see if the staffer continues his intolerant ways.

I am sure some folks want the fella fired. I am sure some folks think the guy should be allowed to have free speech. I’ll go with the way CM Knox handled it and I am sure some will disagree with Commentary.

This is an easy one. Rookie Colin Moran was given the numero 8 to wear. Name the two Hall of Fame greats who also wore the numero 8 with the ‘Stros?

My Mom will be the Big Nine-O tomorrow. Wow!

She doesn’t get out much these days. She now votes by mail ballot. She voted in the runoff. She’s had it with Bernie.  We still have spirited debates on politics.

She is also a big ‘Stro fan and thinks we made a mistake in not keeping Chris Carter. I don’t argue with her on this. Heck he has 12 dingers and 29 RBIs this season with the Brewers.

We talk every day. I go over to visit her two or three times a week.

I will be looking forward to saying “Happy Birthday, Mom” tomorrow.

As most folks know, a part of the Heights is dry. Like you can’t pick up a Saint Arnold six-pack at the Kroger on 20th and Yale. You can get a beer, glass of wine, or a shot of tequila at those eateries with a private club license.

Well look what is on Swamplot.com here:

The semi-shrouded Houston Heights Beverage Coalition released a statement today filling in some details on the group’s plan to legalize take-home beer and wine sales in the Heights’ dry zone. 

The initiative was floated quietly on Cinco de Mayo by way of 109-word newspaper legal notice; the group’s longer press release clarifies that it will try to collect around 1,500 signatures in 60 days to call a special election for residents of the no-longer-a-city of Houston Heights. That election wouldn’t change the zone’s ban on liquor sales (or the need for a private-club-workaround for folks intent on selling it anyway), but would allow grocery stores to get in on the alcoholic action. 

Coalition chair Steve Reilley tells the Houston Press‘s Phaedra Cook that H-E-B supports the measure — adding that the chain is probably going to move into the area if the change passes. Reilley also says that other grocery chains are involved with the coalition, but doesn’t tell Cook which ones.

As to where would-be wet grocery stores might land in the dry zone, should the law be overturned: The Leader‘s Betsy Denson pointed out earlier this year that the party’s-over former site of the Fiesta Market on N. Shepherd at 24th St. falls well short of the 6 acres that H-E-B has previously said it requires when scouting potential new locations. But the double-decker H-E-B now officially planned for the site of the chain’s existing Bellaire store at 5130 Cedar St. (shown above) will squeeze onto a space just a smidgen larger than 3 acres. 

The coalition has hired Austin-based election PR company Texas Petition Strategies to help collect signatures from dry zone residents and, if that goes as planned, to enthuse voters. If enough signatures are collected and then verified by the city secretary, an election would be called for this November.  

Commentary lives in the wet part of the Heights so I won’t get to vote. Good luck!

I have to agree with Savannah Guthrie this morning. That was one of the most epic openings of a summer concert on the “Today” Plaza. I am talking about Puff Daddy and Family.

Joe Morgan wore the numero 8 back in 1980 and Yogi Berra of course wore it as a coach in the ‘80s.

I am certainly looking forward to heading out to The Yard tonight. It is always fun to see a bunch of Rangers fans. Good crowds are expected throughout the weekend. Hopefully, we can gain some ground.

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