Tonawanda News


June 30, 2013

Dallas is a fine fit for Ruff


Tonawanda News — The DOMA decision felt somewhat anti-climactic here in New York when the real fight for marriage equality was won in Albany two years ago. Avid court-watchers seemed rather confident DOMA was headed for history’s scrap heap. Justice Anthony Kennedy has a history of siding with individual liberty over government action and though lots of conservatives will say otherwise, that was precisely the dynamic in play here.

I found myself chuckling as the arch conservative Justice Antonin Scalia fumed from the bench the DOMA decision will pave the way toward challenges to state-level anti-gay marriage laws. For once, I thought, I hope Scalia is right.


Back to the Lonestar State.

They say everything is bigger in Texas but it was the Herculean efforts of a slight state senator from Fort Worth that grabbed headlines last week. 

Wendy Davis and her pink sneakers (tin-is shoes, as they call them down there) became a Twitter all star and rising star in Democratic politics for her 11-hour filibuster to help talk away a bill that would effectively close almost every abortion clinic in the state.

As a midnight deadline approached, Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, a Republican proponent of the bill, managed to silence Davis and try to call a vote in the minutes before the legislative session’s end. A raucous gallery shouted loud enough protesters said they felt the building shake.

By the time Republicans were able to figure out what had happened, the clock struck 12 and the bill turned into a pumpkin — or whatever bills turn into when their sponsors can’t figure out what the hell is going on.

That didn’t stop them from trying. A vote tally originally time-stamped 12:03 a.m. was changed to show it having been taken before midnight but after hours of confusion, the GOP majority admitted defeat — and called another special session starting Monday to try again.

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  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo