It’s Fourth of July week, and this week’s editorial pages have got you covered:
— First up, the editorial board considers the implications of moving the annual fireworks show out to the Circuit of the Americas rather than keeping it in town. We think the move, which is being made without any provision for transportation to the event site, will hurt students, many of whom don’t have cars and can’t afford the hefty cab fare.
Of the many mistakes of the Wendy Davis campaign for governor, the most recent is the campaign’s decision to invite people to an abortion party. In an effort to celebrate the 11-hour filibuster that propelled state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, to fame, the campaign is holding an anniversary party, which originally cost $20 to attend, Wednesday at the Palmer Events Center. However, bleak ticket sales have led the Davis campaign to give tickets away to interested parties for free. It doesn’t matter that the real meaning of the event is to laud the triumph of a woman who was determined to give a voice to women whose reproductive rights were being decided upon by a room full of men in the Texas Legislature. Everything points back to abortion. Despite the attempt to remind Texans why we should care about Davis, no one is pro-abortion, and no one — pro-life or pro-choice — wants to even seem to celebrate abortion because the subject is touchy among all individuals.
With recent polls showing Davis standing little chance of being the first Democrat elected to a statewide position in 20 years, it is understandable why her campaign would like to highlight the sole reason she will even be on the ballot in November. Not only is the Davis campaign seemingly asking people to celebrate abortion, but it also cheers her almost victory, which is really a failure. Remember, the bill that Davis filibustered eventually passed during a subsequent special session.
If the Davis campaign wants voters to get excited about the potential radical change that will come if Davis is elected, everyone needs to move on from the filibuster. People want to be on a winning team, and reminding them that the Davis campaign actually started with a loss is not very smart. It’s old news, and to voters, an anniversary party just shows that one year has passed, and nothing new is happening chez Wendy Davis.
Gov. Rick Perry recently compared homosexuality to alcoholism on a recent campaign stop in San Francisco. “Campaign stop,” you might say, scratching your head in puzzlement. For what?
One of the worst-kept political secrets in this state is that Perry wants to run for president again. As the astute will recall, his 2012 bout for the Republican nomination was an unmitigated disaster. From incoherent speeches to an epic breakdown on national television culminating in the now-infamous “oops,” it is safe to say that the governor was not ready for primetime.
But slowly backing away from a controversial statement a full week after uttering it proves that Perry is similarly not ready for the limelight now. While the general public has moved strongly against bumbling homophobes in recent years, they have always carried a great deal of animosity toward whimpering sycophants, who equivocate on the question at hand depending upon the audience. The governor has now put himself in the unique position of representing both poor qualities.
Perry’s statements, in which he said being gay was like being an alcoholic because even genetic hardwiring can be overcome by willpower, were offensive and wrong. That being said, they were not all that surprising from such a figure and even mirrored previous comments that Perry has made as early as 2008. Furthermore, if he had quickly qualified his remarks as out of line, one might be able to dismiss them as the silly bravado of a wannabe cowboy, a venial offense at most.
However, Perry waited an entire week, carefully observing the nation’s response, before pouring cool water on the matter. Such actions tell me that this is far less about the opinions and more about the opinion polls.