Mackie and Kamrath: Three Ecclesiastical Venues

The Kamrath architectural practice (a local example of the Prairie School) erected many churches and synagogues during its existence and a few of the more successful and well-maintained structures in Houston are here described. Builders often are said to avoid returning to see their creations for fear of what later administration/ownership has changed or […]

Makie, Kamrath and consultants: Temple Emanu El (1957)

As I’ve been noting here over several articles, the local connection with the Prairie School of architecture is strong, thanks in large part to Karl Kamrath’s “conversion” to the movement shortly after World War II ended. Although he was already a practicing architect, his meetings with Frank Lloyd Wright changed his direction, and with it […]

Citizen’s Police Academy, Part 6

In recent years, a gap has developed between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve. In some communities, police officers are perceived as brutal villains who are above the law. Last week’s class focused on some of the causes for this gap.

While there are numerous causes for this gap, the two most essential […]

A Break from Reality

An Atlanta woman, Lamora Williams, has been charged with murder for placing two of her children in an oven and turning it on. The 24-year-old single mother of four claimed that she left the children with a caretaker while at work. When she returned home, she allegedly found her children.

I first learned of this […]

Taking a Knee

In 2016, a relatively untalented professional football player named Colin Kaepernick refused to stand during the playing of the national anthem prior to games. He “took a knee” to protest what he called oppression of people of color in the United States. This year, taking a knee during the national anthem has become widespread in […]

The Shawshank Redemption

Imagine being convicted for a double murder that you did not commit and then spending twenty years in prison. You would be forced to endure unimaginable horrors, not because you killed two people, but because, as the hero of the The Shawshank Redemption puts it, you were a bad husband and drove your wife into […]

A Clash of Cultures

Much is being made of the Texas legislature’s attempts to reign in local governments. From “bathroom ordinances” to ride-sharing regulations, from plastic bag bans to tree regulations, local governments are increasingly infringing on property rights. The state government is properly putting an end to many of these regulations.

But the state’s local governments aren’t happy […]

Civil Asset Forfeiture, Part 2

Asset forfeiture is wrong on numerous fronts:

The property of an individual is necessary to sustain his life and if acquired lawfully is his by right to use to support his life and his happiness. To take someone’s lawfully acquired property is in fact taking away his life and his happiness. It is a violation […]

Civil Asset Forfeiture, Part 1

Attorney General Sessions recently announced reinstatement of provisions of civil asset forfeiture rolled back by the Obama administration. He praised forfeiture as a powerful tool to help police and cited support from law enforcement throughout the country. This is part of the Trump administration’s increased focus on fighting crime.

A criminal has no right to […]

Cronyism to the Left, Cronyism to the Right

In recent years, individuals from across the political spectrum have condemned cronyism. Former Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, once remarked that she felt sad “for the American people, who have had their lives affected by the culture of cronyism and corruption that exists in Washington.” Current Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, similarly denounced […]