Archive for July, 2008

Barack has a New Website

July 31, 2008

This is hot off the press from Barack’s director of political operations.

The Obama campaign has a new website called “Low Road Express.” It addresses so of the attacks that have no place in a presidential campaign when our country has so many important issues to be address.

The website is Read it and link to it.

I suggested they do a widget for this and fightthesmears. I’ll keep you posted.

City of Dallas – Mayor’s Back to School Fair

July 30, 2008

It’s that time to be a part of the City of Dallas Mayor’s Back-to-School Fair. Here’s the info.

Thursday, August 7, 2008 – Fair Park

The Automobile and Centennial Hall buildings
1010 First Avenue at Grand Avenue
Dallas, Texas

This event is FREE and open to all Dallas public school children who qualify.

Recipients must be Dallas public school children ages 5-18 whose families meet the 2008 Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.

In order to pre-register for the City of Dallas Mayor’s Back-to-School Fair, families must fill out the registration form, as well as provide:

• Proof of identification (i.e. driver’s license or other photo i.d.)
• Proof of residency (i.e. a utility bill, rent lease agreement, etc)
• Proof of income (i.e. a recent pay check stub)

Pre-registration events at Fair Park in the Women’s Museum Auditorium:

• July 31 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
• August 1 2:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
• August 2 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Pre-register ahead of time to avoid long lines at the fair!!!

For more information on the City of Dallas Mayor’s Back-to-School Fair, call the Mayor’s office at (214) 671-8520.

Houston Doesn’t Recycle?

July 29, 2008

While Dallas rolls out trash to natural gas plants and works on multifamily recycling programs, here comes a piece from the New York Times that Houston is at the bottom among major cities when it comes to recycling.

While it’s true that Dallas is way below the national average of 32% at only at 11% , it would seem that a sprawling city the size of Houston would embrace recycling. Unfortunately, H-Town recycles only 2.6% of it’s trash. This rate is the lowest among the 30 largest cities in the U.S. While you must be a subscriber to get detailed info, here is a list of cities surveyed by Waste News Magazine (the basis of the NYT article).

The article also cites some interesting numbers:

25,000 Houston residents have been waiting as long as 10 years to get recycling bins from the city.

The city picks up garbage at some 340,000 households, and fewer than half have recycling bins. ..the city says it cannot afford more bins.

Those without the special bins must cart their recyclable garbage to one of just nine full-service drop-off depots in the city.

But when Monica Pope, a locally renowned chef, approached a city-run recycling depot in her silver pick-up truck full of containers, she was turned away. “They said my truck was too full,” Ms. Pope recalled, laughing. “There are cultures that just don’t get it, and, unfortunately, Houston is one of them.” Now, Ms. Pope recycles at what she says is a safer, cleaner and more convenient drop-off center operated by an autonomous city within Houston, saving $6,000 a year in trash fees.

Check out the graphic from the NYT, which is a snapshot of recycling rates from around the U.S. It seems like we have a ways to go in Dallas, but we’re certainly on the right path.

Farewell to a Legend

July 28, 2008

Over the weekend, Rev. Dr. C.A.W. Clark passed away at his home in the Glen Oaks neighborhood in Oak Cliff.

As everyone knows, Dr. Clark was the pastor at Good Street Baptist Church on Bonnie View near Kiest. He was nationally recognized figure, and a pillar of this community. Dr. Clark did too much great work to mention, and he’s one of those people whose shoes cannot be filled.

Our hearts and prayers go out to his personal family and his church family at Good Street Baptist Church.

Mayor Leppert and the Homeless – Under the Radar

July 23, 2008

I came across this post on The Intermittent Volunteer’s Weblog, which talks about our Mayor and his involvement with issues involving the homeless.

Note that the poster said there were no cameras or press; just an engaged Mayor giving some of his time to pitch in. Says Karen Shafer, the blog’s owner:

He could easily show up for a photo-op (no press were present at this event), he could stay behind the glass counter, he could come and go quickly and say he’d made ‘a stop.’ He doesn’t. For the third time since I’ve known him, he’s come out among the homeless, touched them, talked to them at length one to one, spent time with them as though he did not have pressing time concerns.

For those of us that know the Mayor, this is nothing new. We appreciate the Mayor’s efforts in making Dallas a better city, and it’s good that people notice the efforts.

10 Least Walkable Cities

July 22, 2008

This just came across courtesy of Walkscore and (h/t Huffington Post). Our fair neighbor to the west is on the list.

Top 10 Least Walkable U.S. Cities
1. Jacksonville
2. Nashville
3. Charlotte
4. Indianapolis
5. Oklahoma City
6. Memphis
7. Kansas City
8. Fort Worth
9. El Paso
10. Mesa

On the entire list of the 40 largest cities, Dallas is ranked highest at #24 (highest of all Texas cities). Fort Worth is ranked #33.

The Youth Crime Reduction Summit

July 22, 2008

On Monday, Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson held her 2nd annual Youth Crime Reduction Summit. It took place at the Park South Y in South Dallas.

There were a series of panels and question and answer sessions. The first panel featured Captain Sheila Carter-Bass of the Dallas County Sheriff’s office, Omar Jahwar, founder of Vision Regeneration, an organization that provides counseling and mentoring services to four Dallas public schools; founding CEO of Mothers Against Teen Violence Joy Strickland; and Detective Monty Moncibais of the Dallas Police.

I’m glad I got to meet Ms. Strickland. While I didn’t know him, I attended Morehouse at the same time that her son, fellow Morehouse student Charles “Chris” Lewis was killed. We lost several Morehouse Men during the time that I attended college to gun violence. I can think of at least four including Darnell “Smitty” Smith, a friend of mine from Atlantic City who was robbed, shot, and killed during the summer of 1995. Smitty had two or three more classes to go before he could graduate.

After the first panel
, a stirring play was performed by teens advocating the ending of the cycle of teen violence.

You have to appreciate the value of a congresswoman that comes back to her district and skips vacation and immediately gets to work. As you know, last weekend she held a summit on DNA wrongful convictions that commanded national attention.

While I had to leave to prepare for a multi-neighborhood meeting, I appreciate my congresswoman for realizing that she is needed in her district as much as she is needed in Washington DC.

Community Cleanup: Before and After

July 21, 2008

Over the last couple of weeks, things have been moving forward in District Four.

This is the most recent drug house that has been taken down. It is located at near Alabama & McVey (map), in an area that was recently written about in the Dallas Morning News (see point #11 in article) and other places. Here is the before and after.

Before (notice the random drug dealers sitting next to the house) – from Google Maps


There is a little trash left over, but it’s been picked up.

It’s one house, and there is a lot more work to do. But you can only do one house at a time; anyone who lives in District Four knows that this happens on a fairly regular basis.

You’ve also heard about the new sign ordinance which was championed by Dwaine Caraway and was part of the 20-point plan.

It was written about in the Dallas Morning News as well as many other places including in this news story with Ken Kalthoff at NBC5.

While stores have been given a year to comply, our Deputy Mayor has talked to many of the store owners in District Four and many have agreed to take down the signs ahead of time.

The store in these pictures is located in the 700 block of East Ann Arbor (map), and is also featured in the NBC5 story. Look at the before and after.

Before (I got this one from Google Maps also)


This was taken one week after Dwaine’s visit. It’s good to see that some of the business owners care about not having a trashy, blighted community.

Last Chance for Free Flicks at Nasher

July 18, 2008

Tonight, you have one last chance to take advantage of something really cool in downtown Dallas.

Last Friday night, we went to the Nasher Scultpure Center. The Nasher is one of my favorite places to go in Dallas, and it’s free admission on movie night! The movie starts at 9PM…and no trailers!

They showed Grease, which I had never seen before. But it was fun to see countless people sing along to every word.

It’s pretty straightforward; you can pick any spot in the sculpture garden to sit. A bit of advice: bring a blanket, and no lawn chairs are allowed. We had a decent seat, although you can’t tell by the horrible camera phone pic to your right (man I can’t wait until I get my new phone next week). They have food and drinks available, and a jazz band plays beforehand.

Going to film night at the Nasher takes you back to the days when home projectors came out and people used to show movies on the side of their house (I know, that was a loooong time ago). We had a blast, and the only thing we paid for was parking.

Fellas, even if you don’t want to check out the movie what’s cooler than going downtown and taking your girl out for drinks and a museum visit?

Starbucks Closing in Dallas

July 18, 2008

I’m not a regular Starbucks customer, but since everyone has been trying to find out which stores are closing I figured I would publish it.

I’m only publishing the Dallas locations, but there are locations all over DFW that will be getting the ax.

For those of us in the Cliff, the Starbucks inside the new Target is not on the list.

(the number included is the Starbucks’ Store Number)

6262 Greenville & Matalee – 3715 Greenville Ave
6280 Preston & Beltline – 14891 Preston Rd
6370 Lovers Lane & Greenville Ave – 5500 Greenville Ave
6372 Camp Wisdom Rd & Hwy 67 – 3431 Camp Wisdom Rd
6387 Skillman And Audelia – 9090 Skillman St
10758 Northpark Mall II – 8687 N Central Exp
10759 LBJ & Montfort – 5631 LBJ Fwy
10877 Illinois & Westmoreland – 3403 W Illinois Ave
14144 Coit & 635 – 7995 LBJ

Here is the full list of Starbucks closings in the U.S. (link)