Who is going to hold our politicians accountable?


1927 leaves us apoplectic and angered by the callous and low regard for the lives of weak and vulnerable neighborhoods and families.

By voting for House Bill 1927, Second Amendment ultra right radicals and ‘so-called progressives set themselves on fire and fanned the flames in communities already on fire from the contagion of escalating gun violence in our city, state and nation. And who does HB 1927 serve? By canceling concealed carry licensing and permits, this bill works against the best practices for gun violence prevention. Opposed by many, if not most law enforcement agencies, it defies common sense and opens the floodgates for heightened violence and loss of life for all citizens and especially vulnerable populations. Low income communities and communities of color are awash in unlicensed guns and owners with no required training will predictably experience greater severity and negative impact.

The Houston Violence Prevention Coalitions and Texans for Gun Safety have ben pursuing policies that lead to gun safety and injury prevention. Succinctly, saving lives and lifetimes… A local trauma surgeon made this observation in 2018, “with bullets there is a blast effect. One bullet can affect multiple organs and vessels. We don’t hear about the ones that don’t die – paralyzed, lifelong pain, ostomy and disability.

Mayor Sylvester Turner has pleaded for cessation to violence in families and our neighborhoods that has skyrocketed in frequency and severity during the pandemic.  In 2018, Turner was angered by the gun deaths of 11 children over the past 16 months. He vowed to aggressively work with law enforcement to pursue gun violators. The resulting spike in gun crimes, including gratuitous and random violence has led to emergency rooms filled with trauma victims and continues to cause immense grief in our city. It is important to note that the Sunnyside community was cited in a Houston Chronicle article as one of the three highest “gang inspired” and one of the five most dangerous crime neighborhoods in the U.S., primarily because of gun violence. If my memory is accurate, 50 murders of young adults took place over eight years during the 2000’s.

Recently, I presided at a funeral of a male relative who was a victim of senseless gun violence in Sunnyside.  Concurrently, two other funerals were underway for two victims of the same gun violence event at nearby churches. Four pillars of the community transitioned due to senseless gun violence.

This is also occurring at a time when mass shootings are becoming commonplace nationally, with 147 occurring since January 2019. Gun manufacturers who initially saw a sharp decline in sales and profits, began in the early 1990’s  to manufacture “urban” weapons, including .25 and .32 caliber handguns with seductive and sexy names like Viper which are sold on the streets and out of automobile trunks. And it is sadly ironic that while this debate passed the Texas House of Representatives, we suffered yet another national gun violence mass killing in Indianapolis with eight people dead from an the rampage of an 18-year-old, effectively turning a workplace into a shooting gallery. Science has definitely shown that the teenage brain is too immature to negotiate the decision-making needed for responsible conflict resolution.

It is also important to note that our communities are undergoing mental health crisis that continues to grow. Perpetrators often have guns but no access to mental health care, even when it is sought. Without the licensing that HB 1927 eliminates, there will be no mental health or other screenings for those seeking access to guns. In the current atmosphere of the increase in armed militia groups in the U.S. and in Texas, an attempt to prevent access to unlicensed guns to domestic terrorists and White Supremacists as defined by Homeland Security was voted down.

The Prevention Institute says that the poor outcomes among people with lower incomes and communities of color” is not coincidental, and it is not about poor choices. “These poor health outcomes have been produced by historical and current-day policies, laws, and practices.”

Our politicians, especially the Democratic politicians who supported this reckless legislation, should walk 1927 back and apologize to their communities for this flagrant lapse in judgement and accountability for the welfare of the citizens they represent.

If this piece has led to a higher understanding or more empathy for the victims of random and senseless gun violence, we should demand that the architects of this lunacy walk it back. Call your SENATOR and ask them to KILL HR 1927.

We hold kids accountable, who is going to hold our politicians accountable?

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October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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