Glenn Beck Flashes Humanity, Right-Wing Twitter Gets Very Upset

Categories: Local Hero

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YouTube
Taking style tips from Mr. Rogers. Nice.

The vast majority of the time, Glenn Beck should not be taken seriously. You shouldn't put all of your savings in gold no matter what the North Texas radio and TV host tells you, and you probably shouldn't take any of what he says as anything but performance art.

In the last couple of weeks though, it seems that Beck has come down with a case of sincerity. First, Beck admitted that liberals were right about the second Iraq War. This week, on Tuesday, he announced plans to provide tractor-trailers full of humanitarian aid to help the undocumented kids housed near the border.

Beck noted that it wasn't the kids fault that they were caught in a political crossfire. Political action is necessary, he said, but it shouldn't come at the children's expense.

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When it Comes to Stolen Papers, the Dallas Morning News is Not Messing Around

Categories: Local Hero

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via Facebook
The above photo comes courtesy of Leslie Minora, a freelance journalist and former Observer-er. I'll let Leslie explain:

My newspaper has been stolen every day for over two weeks. I finally asked customer service to put my name on it, then I half-jokingly asked if I could include a threatening message. I was surprised when the woman laughed and seemed excited to help.

I got my paper this morning. Also, the DMN has no idea if my building has cameras, but I appreciate that extra touch.

Newspaper delivery drivers: Not dead yet.

Jason Roberts' Friends Are Organizing a Kessler Theater Benefit to Pay Off His Cancer Bills

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The Fundrazr campaign Jason Roberts' ex-wife launched last month to help pay the mountain of medical bills that accumulated during his battle with cancer has raised $8,530, which is respectable but falls far short of the $40,000 goal.

So, Roberts' supporters are hoping to make up some of the difference with a benefit dinner/concert/art auction/bike ride that would make the Oak Cliff urban advocate proud.

The Build a Better Jason benefit is scheduled for 7 p.m. on May 25. It starts at Eno's before migrating by bike to the Kessler Theater, where there will be a concert featuring John Singer Sergeant of the Deathray Davies, Austin's White Ghost Shivers, R&B legend Bobby Patterson, and "a few more surprises."

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Dallas LGBT Activist C.d. Kirven Arrested This Morning in Austin After Sit-In at the Capitol

Categories: Local Hero

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C.d. Kirven and Daniel Cates
The Dallas Voice is reporting that local LGBT activist C.d. Kirven was arrested in Austin today after a sit-in at the offices of Senators Bob Deuell and Brian Birdwell, Republicans from Greenville and Granbury respectively. Kirven is a core member of LGBT rights group GetEQUAL TX; we profiled her and fellow GetEQUAL organizer Daniel Cates as part of our People Issue last year.

According to Austin CBS affiliate KEYE-TV, three GetEQUAL members were arrested at the Deuell/Birdwell offices. But Michael Diviesti, a state organizer with GetEQUAL, tells the Voice that it was actually five people, there to demonstrate in support of SB 237, authored by Senator Leticia Van de Putte, a Democrat from San Antonio. The bill would add "sexual orientation and gender identity/expression" as its own protected class to all state nondiscrimination laws.

GetEQUAL members had previously attended a reading of the bill at the April meeting of the Senate's Economic Development Committee. They warned that if they didn't see the bill move to the Senate floor by May 1, they'd be back to protest.

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Jason Roberts Needs Help Paying His Cancer Bills

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Dylan Hollingsworth
Last time we checked in, Oak Cliff urban pioneer Jason Roberts had an abdominal cavity filled with post-surgical fluid and was down to a single testicle, but he was otherwise upbeat after a successful battle with cancer.

The cancer is still gone. The pile of medical bills, it seems, are not.

Yesterday, Roberts' ex-wife Andrea (they had an amicable split) launched a FundRazr campaign to help cover expenses and "Build a Better (healthier!) Jason." The goal? A cool $40,000.

She explains the situation in her plea for help:

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How Jason Roberts Beat Cancer, Survived Divorce and Lived to Fight for Better Blocks

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Dylan Hollingsworth
It was June, a few weeks after his long-shot run for Congress and his marriage both came to an end, and Jason Roberts couldn't shake the nagging weariness that had dogged him through the campaign. He felt constantly as if he'd just racked himself on his bike frame.

It was an odd feeling for Roberts, who's become the tweed-clad leader of the growing movement to make Dallas less Dallas-y by encouraging walking, biking, and dense, close-knit communities. The IT consultant-turned-evangelical urbanist has had a hand in establishing any number of neighborhood groups in Oak Cliff, secured funds for a downtown streetcar line, and founded Better Block, which aims to create more livable neighborhoods by fostering grass-roots change. In other words, he's never been one to sit still.

His doctor told him that it was probably nothing, just some scar tissue common to youngish, physically active men. Still, he ordered some tests and sent Roberts on his way. His nurse called a few days later with the results and to schedule an appointment. She also mentioned, almost in passing, that he had a tumor.

"It was just like a state of shock," he says. "All the blood left my face at that point."

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After 49 Years, A Monument for Slain Dallas Police Officer J.D. Tippit

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Image via Brad Watson
Tippitt's family at his new memorial
Officer J.D. Tippit came home for lunch on November 22, 1963. He rarely ever had time to leave his patrol long enough to do that, and his wife, Marie, scrambled to fix him a turkey sandwich and set the table.

"I got to see him one last time," she said today. Marie is petite, white-haired and a little frail now, so soft-spoken the crowd of reporters around her had to bend to hear every word.

Her husband didn't come home from his beat in south Oak Cliff later that afternoon, or ever again. Forty-nine year later, Marie is still thankful they had the chance for a last meal together.

Someone asked her what was the last thing she said to him before he left.

"I told him to be careful," Marie replied, holding back tears. "I told him to take care of himself."

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Mavericks Suspend Delonte West, Prompting Sportswriters to Dust Off Their PsyDs

Categories: Local Hero, Sports

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Mavs guard Delonte West, the "pooty-tang of basketball."
Delonte West, the Mavericks guard and most interesting man in basketball, has been suspended for "conduct detrimental to the team," ESPN reports. Coach Rick Carlisle isn't specifying why, nor has he laid out a timetable for West's return.

The suspension came after the Mavs' preseason win over Houston Monday, in which West had two points, two assists and one rebound over 16 minutes. Some unspecified incident followed in the locker room.

ESPN says West tweeted later that day, "Sorry moma..." and "I showed off on ur birthday again..." Those tweets have apparently since been removed from his feed, which is arguably the best feed in the history of Twitter.

The episode has prompted sports journos to speculate about whether West's bipolar disorder is involved. Matt Moore, senior blogger over at CBSsports.com, chimed in with this gem: "The temptation is to connect or assign this to his previously revealed bipolar disorder, but there's nothing about the condition which makes it impossible for him to control his behavior or act professionally."

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In Pleasant Grove, Building A Playground and Bringing an Abandoned Church Back to Life

Categories: Local Hero

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At dawn yesterday, the lot behind the former New Revelation Missionary Baptist Church was mostly empty, save for dust, rocks and scrubby grass. Although the Pleasant Grove church still looks normal from the street, it too has been empty since going into foreclosure earlier this year. By April, the sanctuary, the classrooms, and the former day-care were all covered in black mold and graffiti.

But later that morning, not long after the sun rose, some 150 volunteers began to descend on the lot. The goal: to turn a pile of lumber, mulch, and some mysterious-looking pieces of bright plastic into a playground.

In this neighborhood, most kids play in the street; the closest playground is about a mile and a half away across six lanes of traffic. Over the next 10 hours or so, the playground took shape, as a revolving cast of DJs spun records and somebody dressed as the Kool-Aid Man crab-walked gingerly around the site, high-fiving children.


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On America's Birthday, Here's a Dallas Woman Who Wants to Throw Every Homeless Kid in Texas a Birthday Party

Categories: Local Hero

Paige Chenault runs The Birthday Project, which partners with the Family Gateway shelter to throw birthday parties for homeless children. Which is way more patriotic than anything I did today.

via Tiny Dallas.

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