4 Hits and a Miss as We Look Back on News About Body Cams and Birthday Spankings

Good call by Dallas police chief on body camerasWe've long recommended that North Texas police officers be outfitted with body cameras. It's not cheap, but in this era of high tensions between cops and some of those they serve, it's a smart investment in public trust. Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall gets that, and we're delighted to see that she's committed to putting body cameras on the half of her force that doesn't yet have them — and to do so by February. Smart move, Chief Hall.Driverless cars in Frisco? We’re intriguedSure, the track record of driverless cars shows they are far from perfect. Then again, have you experienced the drivers on North Texas roads lately? The idea of driverless vehicles sounds pretty darn good — just so long as they get the technology right. In July, a new driverless car service will begin operating in the booming suburb of Frisco for workers at the private Hall Park development. The cars will transport Hall Park employees to nearby retail and dining at The Star — and at no charge for the first six months. Passengers can use a smartphone app to request a vehicle. It sounds exciting; just don't forget to buckle your seatbelt.Welcome settlement in endless lawsuit over AC in prisonsNot everyone is happy, and that’s the first sign that U.S. District Judge Keith Ellison probably hit the right note in approving a settlement this week in a long-running lawsuit brought by Texas inmates over the hot conditions in their cells. The settlement means many inmates will get air conditioning and creates a process by which others can apply for the same, based on their health needs. An estimated 75 percent of the state’s cells aren’t air-conditioned, so this is movement in the right direction. A prison term is sentence enough; in too many cases, requiring it to be served in the sweltering heat of Texas summers is piling on.Cornyn calls out Paxton’s ill-advised DACA lawsuitSen. John Cornyn wants to solve the immigration problem and knows the best place to do that is in Congress, working with President Donald Trump. As a result of former President Barack Obama’s executive actions on DACA, the case is making its way up the chain to the Supreme Court. So why is Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filing a lawsuit against the Trump administration? Cornyn says, “I honestly don’t understand what the state is asking for. I’m not sure what else this does. It is not a solution.” Paxton says the suit is about the rule of law. Cornyn says compassion and pragmatism should be part of that conversation. Cornyn, a former Texas attorney general and Texas Supreme Court justice, is right on this one.Birthday spankings are no way to celebrate at schoolWe love the idea of small-town traditions, but one North Texas school district went too far with its practice of giving birthday spankings to its elementary kids. For the last eight years, Alvord Elementary School, on the northwest side of Fort Worth, called each of its kids to the office to receive a number of licks that corresponded to their age. Giving good-natured swats, including "one to grow on," seems to be a Southern thing. Fine if families want to do this at home. But we're glad the school ended the practice after several recent complaints.  Continue reading...

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