Constable Barnes offers free ‘can shooter’ training: ‘Mexicans and Africans’

(Or, why commissioners must not fund deputies for constables) The Sandstorm Scholar has already noted Jody Barnes’ proclivity for language most find abhorrent. That incident took place before Barnes was elected Constable Precinct 2. However Constable Barnes is no better an actor than citizen Barnes. His penchant for bigoted speech hasn’t changed. The complete story is … Continued

Worthless kids … or, how do you like my pickup now?

Several months ago some kids moved-in up the block and they’ve been zooming up and down the boulevard in pickups with loud mufflers ever since. It’s a genuine hazard. I’m not sure what to do about it. Worthless kids. You know the type. You can’t call the police over these things; it’s too much to … Continued

No county transparency demands a NO vote on Prop A

It was December of 2016 when State Senator Charles Perry addressed Lubbock County Commissioners about the need to improve Woodrow Road. Perry came armed with suggestions on how to fund the improvements necessary to make Woodrow Road safer. The commissioners politely ignored the senator and instead voted to spend $6 million, more than enough to … Continued

Is Lubbock County going broke?

The short answer is, yes; if Lubbock County continues spending at the same rate as the last four years we will be broke, bankrupt, in a year. The numbers don’t lie. According to the latest figures from outside auditors, in the last four years Lubbock County’s unrestricted reserves have shrunk by 75 percent. In 2014 … Continued

Our duty to criticize law enforcement … because it is not above the law

“Why did you say that about ____________?” Fill in the blank. Everyone is someone’s favorite, even the Sandstorm Scholar. And sometimes they’re our favorites too; holding public officials accountable isn’t always a barrel of laughs.  But even among those who appreciate accountability journalism and its companion op-ed pieces, many will become uncomfortable when it is … Continued

Lubbock County Medical Examiner: Is this the invasion of the baby body snatchers?

The newly seated Lubbock County Commissioners Court faces many challenges but nothing looms larger than the questions coming out of the Lubbock County Medical Examiner Office. One might think, since the clients never complain, a medical examiner office would be the last place for controversy, but a quick Google search reveals news stories about medical … Continued

Constable Barnes’ antics reach new heights … and depths

It is easy to make fun of constables who parade around the county costumed like Third World dictators. There’s no doubt, their antics on the highways are exciting, albeit expensive to the county. But Constable Jody “Barney” Barnes has taken the entertainment to new heights. Helicopter heights. Barnes became the first Lubbock County law enforcement … Continued

How did we get here? Robert Duncan takes path of greatest dignity in differences with Texas Tech’s Board of Regents

How did we get here? How did Texas Tech University regents transition from talking about whether to renew a contract to Chancellor Bob Duncan resigning? Bob Duncan is one of our own. As our home-grown favorite son he represents the best aspirations of a university charged with preparing young women and men for success. And … Continued

Commissioner message to voters: Let them eat crow!

Sheriff Kelly Rowe’s revelation last week that county commissioners have demanded he cut $2.53 million from last year’s $15.285 million budget may not have been the biggest shock of the week, but it in terms of ill-motives, it may rank as the outrage of the year. Six weeks into the budget process the sheriff was … Continued