Texas Matters

Fridays at 3:30 p.m., Saturdays at 6:30 a.m., and Sundays at 9:30 p.m.

Texas is a big state with a growing, diverse population and as the population grows, the issues and challenges facing its residents multiply.  Texas Matters is a statewide news program that spends half an hour each week looking at the issues and culture of Texas.

Texas Matters is hosted by David Martin Davies, who talks directly with policymakers and newsmakers in a lively discussion designed to shed light on issues often overlooked by other media.

David Martin Davies:

Davies is the host of "The Source" and a veteran journalist with over 20 years’ experience covering Texas, the border and Mexico. He is a regular contributor to NPR and American Public Media's "Marketplace." Davies also has written for "The San Antonio Light", "The San Antonio Express-News," "The Texas Observer" and others, and hosted KLRN public television’s interview program "Conversations."

Texas Matters is made possible by the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures.

From Texas Standard:

Jeff Wood was supposed to die this week.

He was sentenced to death for the 1996 murder of a convenience store clerk, even though it's been well established that he never killed anyone. A friend of his killed a Kerrville gas station clerk in a botched robbery and Wood was waiting in a truck outside the store.

He was still held accountable for the crime under the Texas' law of parties. Similar to laws of accomplice liability in other states, Texas law says that anyone who "solicits, encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid the other person to commit the offense" is criminally liable as well.

But on Friday, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals stayed Wood's execution. The court ordered that his case should be re-tried – not because of any issue with the law of parties, but because of potentially flawed testimony from a psychiatrist nicknamed Dr. Death.

 


Guns are a major issue in the current political season. We’ve recently seen Democratic members of Congress stage a sit down strike on the floor of Congress and a Fillibuster by a Senate Democrat calling for votes on keeping guns from suspected terrorists on the no fly list.

“Making a Killing” is a documentary by Robert Greenwald takes a look at the untold stories of guns in America and the political power of the National Rifle Association.   

"The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" opened on Broadway in 1978 and was a hit musical comedy, winning two Tony Awards. In 1982 it was turned into a film with Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton. The play and the film told the story about the Chicken Ranch – a brothel – which was a Texas institution.

For those who lawfully want to enter the United States the first question is about obtaining a visa – but for many getting one is virtually impossible. That is the heart of the problem for the U.S. immigration system according to a report released this week by the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The paper titled “The Inefficient U.S. Immigration System: A Texas Perspective” examines the breakdowns with the U.S. immigration system and recommends state based solutions.

Katherine Fidler is the author of the report.

OPERATION STREAMLINE:

Texas coal mining, the spread of fire ants, the growth of light pollution, the shrinking migration of monarch butterflies, the reduction of Hill Country springs, sprawl of cities and colonias in Texas. They all add up to a raft of massive environmental challenge for the Lone Star State and included in the book “The Texas Landscape Project: Nature and People.”

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