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A federal judge has ordered Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to testify in an abortion rights lawsuit. U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman had previously quashed the subpoena, which Paxton fled his home to avoid being served.
In a hearing last week, lawyers representing abortion rights nonprofits asked Pitman to reconsider and require Paxton to testify. Pitman granted their motion on Tuesday.
These nonprofits, called abortion funds, brought the lawsuit in August, seeking assurance that they will not be criminally or civilly penalized for helping Texans pay for abortions out of state. They have argued that Paxton’s statements on social media and in the press make it clear that the state’s top lawyer believes the abortion funds can and should be prosecuted for their work over state lines.
Accordingly, lawyers for the abortion funds tried to serve Paxton with a subpoena to get him to testify in last week’s hearing. Emails show that Paxton’s office was aware that they intended to serve him with a subpoena before the process server showed up at his home on Sept. 26.
When the process server tried to serve the subpoena, however, Paxton fled his home in a truck driven by his wife, state Sen. Angela Paxton, according to an affidavit. Paxton said in a statement that the “strange man” lingering around his house caused him to fear for his safety.
The next morning, Pitman quashed the subpoena. But in Tuesday’s order, he said he did so “on the assumption that counsel for Paxton had made candid representations to the Court … only to learn later that Paxton failed to disclose Plaintiffs’ repeated emails attempting to inquire as to whether Paxton could testify.”
Pitman also sided with the abortion funds’ argument that Paxton has unique, first-hand knowledge that requires him to testify.
“The Court will not sanction a scheme where Paxton repeatedly labels his threats of prosecution as real for the purposes of deterrence and as hypothetical for the purposes of judicial review,” Pitman wrote.
He also rejected the argument that requiring Paxton to testify would be too much to ask of the state’s top lawyer.
“It is challenging to square the idea that Paxton has time to give interviews threatening prosecutions but would be unduly burdened by explaining what he means to the very parties affected by his statements,” Pitman wrote. “The burden faced by Plaintiffs—the effective cessation of many core operations—outweighs the burden of testimony faced by Paxton.”
Pitman gave lawyers on both sides a week to determine how and when Paxton will testify.
The Texas attorney general’s office did not immediately return a request for comment.
Florida man stormed into police station demanding a white cop hear his complaint -- then everything went downhill
According to WPLG News 10, a man who came into the South Miami Police Department to accuse a fast food worker spitting on him for using a racial slur was himself arrested after also using racial slurs against Black police officers after demanding a white officer take his complaint, and then later attacking them.
"Body camera video captured 61-year-old Mark Geltzer after South Miami police said he verbally assaulted a 17-year-old cashier at a McDonalds back in July," reported Roy Ramos. "He admitted to calling the cashier a 'useless n-word.' After the incident, police said Geltzer arrived to the department’s lobby to report that the girl working at the fast food restaurant spit on him, accusations police said were unfounded."
Asst. Chief Charles Nanney summed up the situation thusly: "He wasn’t happy about that, he comes to our station here demanding to get a white officer."
"Nanney said not only did Geltzer demand a white officer help him, but the assistant chief said the man went on to spew racial slurs toward his senior dispatch manager," WPLG's report continued. "'He gets into an argument with her over getting a new officer and calls her the n-word,' Nanney said. "Nanney said Geltzer was trespassed and told to leave that night."
"Fast forward to this past Friday, when Geltzer returned to the department," said the report. "Surveillance video showed him stumbling into the lobby where he continues on his racist rants, demanding the narrative on his report be changed, Nanney said. 'He calls our senior Black detective the n-word,' Nanney said."
According to the report, Geltzer was armed with gun when he confronted the police the second time, and then when turned away again, tried to run down an officer with his car in the parking lot. At this point his luck ran out; police followed him home to Coral Gables, arrested him, and he was charged with DUI, resisting arrest, and battery on a law enforcement officer.
A number of racial incidents in the Sunshine State have generated national attention in recent months. In September, a man was arrested after trying to run down a prominent Black historian from Florida International University. That same month, a commercial landlord in Miami shouted the N-word at one of his tenants, a former NFL star, who was asking him to test the facilities for mold.
Watch the original report below.
Suspect facing serious charges, accused of attacking officer and using racial slur youtu.be
New York (AFP) - Loretta Lynn, America's groundbreaking country titan whose frank lyricism delving into women's experiences with sex, infidelity and pregnancy touched the nerve of a nation, has died. She was 90 years old.
She "passed peacefully in her sleep" at her ranch in Tennessee Tuesday morning, her family said in a statement sent to AFP.
Lynn saw a number of her edgy tracks banned by country music stations, but over the course of more than six decades in the business, she became a standard-bearer of the genre and its most decorated female artist ever.
Born Loretta Webb on April 14, 1932 in small-town Kentucky, Lynn was the eldest daughter in an impoverished family of eight kids, a childhood she immortalized in her iconic track "Coal Miner's Daughter" -- a staple on lists of all-time best songs.
"We were poor but we had love / That's the one thing that daddy made sure of," Lynn sang in the hit recorded in 1970 -- later the theme song for a 1980 movie about her life starring Sissy Spacek, who won an Oscar for the role.
At just 15 the artist married Oliver Vanetta Lynn, who she remained married to for nearly 50 years until his death in 1996.
They moved to a logging community in Washington state, and Lynn gave birth to four children before the age of 20, adding twins to the family not long after.
An admirer of his wife's voice, her husband bought Lynn a guitar in the early 1950s.
The self-taught musician went on to pen lyrics inspired by her own early experiences as a married woman and her oft-tumultuous relationship, the nascent days of a prolific career that would see the artist release dozens of albums.
She started her own band, Loretta and the Trailblazers, and began playing bar sets before cutting her first record -- "I'm a Honky Tonk Girl" in 1960.
Her twang was warm and languid but Lynn's lyrics were anything but: she sang with searing precision of marriage's growing pains and gave voice to issues facing women that had long been kept quiet.
"Most songwriters tended to write about falling in love, breaking up and being alone, things like that," Lynn told The Wall Street Journal in 2016. "The female view I wrote about was new."
"I just wrote about what I knew, and what I knew usually involved something that somebody did to me."
The Lynns began touring nationwide to promote the singer's work to radio stations, and she made her debut at the storied Grand Ole Opry in 1960, going on to become one of the Nashville institution's most acclaimed acts.
"Our Opry family turns to music when words fail. Thank you for all you've given to the Opry, @LorettaLynn," the show tweeted.
During her early years in the industry, she found a friend and mentor in Patsy Cline, one of the 20th century's most influential singers who died in a plane crash in 1963 at age 30.
She also forged a longstanding creative partnership with Conway Twitty, with whom she formed one of country's classic duet acts.
Lynn released a steady stream of hit singles, including 1966's "Dear Uncle Sam" -- one of the era's first tracks to document the tragedy of the Vietnam War.
That same year she put out "You Ain't Woman Enough (To Take My Man)," which made her the first woman in country to pen a number one hit.
In 1969, she released one of her most controversial songs, "Wings Upon Your Horns," which describes through religious metaphor a teenager losing her virginity.
But her runaway success continued and she dominated the 1970s with hits such as "Fist City" -- a stern warning to her cheating husband's lover -- and 1972's "Rated X," which triggered an outcry in discussing the stigmas faced by divorced women.
In 1975, she released "The Pill," which praised the freedoms of birth control.
"When I'd put out a record, they'd say, 'Uh oh, another dirty song.' 'Rated X'? They thought that was going to be bad. But hey, it sold. 'One's on the Way'? They thought that song would really be dirty," she told Billboard in 2015.
"But everything I sang about was everyday living."
In 1988, Lynn was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame as one of its most storied legends.
She won virtually every arts honor available, including the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Despite the progressive airs of her music, Lynn would insist her clearly political art had "no politics."
She leaned Republican most of her life, frequently performing for and supporting right-wing candidates -- including Donald Trump in 2016 -- even as she also voiced support for Democrats like Jimmy Carter.
But she was universally beloved in the industry she deeply influenced, collaborating with scores of artists including Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Elvis Costello. In 2004 she released the album "Van Lear Rose," produced by Jack White.
In 2021, a month before turning 89, she released the album "Still Woman Enough," which featured re-recordings and new material.
Music world accolades quickly flooded social media, praising Lynn's pivotal life.
"We've been like sisters all the years we've been in Nashville and she was a wonderful human being, wonderful talent, had millions of fans and I'm one of them," wrote the superstar Dolly Parton.
White, in a tribute on Instagram, hailed Lynn as "the greatest female singer-songwriter of the 20th century."
Crystal Gayle, Lynn's actual sister and a singer in her own right, wrote that "the world lost a legend. We lost a sister. Love you Loretta."
Lynn once told Billboard she'd never retire from music, vowing that "when they lay me down six feet under, they can say, 'Loretta's quit singing.' I'll have on one of my gowns," she continued.
"That's morbid, but it's the truth."