Texas Justice Terry Jennings officiated at his first same-sex marriage,and then quit the Republican Party

Texas Justice Terry Jennings officiated at his first same-sex marriage,and then quit the Republican Party. Today’s GOP has “chosen a dark path,” he says, and quotes Ronald Reagan’s son, Michael Reagan: “If this is what the Republican party wants, leave us Reagans out. Nancy would vote for HRC.”

Jeff Taylor at LGBTQ Nation reports.

Sandra Bland died one year ago and since then at least 810 people lost their lives in jail

Dana Liebelson and Ryan J. Reilly investigate jailhouse suicides and other deaths for the Huffington Post:

Suicide has been the leading cause of death in jails in every year since 2000, according to the latest Justice Department data. This is not the case in prisons, where inmates are more likely to die of cancer, heart and liver disease. There’s a reason for this difference. People land in jail right after they’ve been arrested. They’re often angry, desperate or afraid. They may be intoxicated or have psychiatric conditions that officers have no way of knowing about.

The experts we spoke with emphasized that entering jail is an instantly dehumanizing process. “You get clothes that don’t fit you, you get strip-searched, you lose any semblance of privacy, you don’t get to make many decisions that we all take for granted,” said Jeffrey Metzner, a psychiatrist at the University of Colorado in Denver who specializes in inmate mental health. “I don’t think most of us realize just how frightening that experience is,” added Steve J. Martin, a corrections expert who is monitoring reforms at Rikers Island Correctional Facility in New York City. “You have a total and absolute loss—immediate loss—of control over your being, over your physical being.”

Under these circumstances, people can deteriorate at an alarming speed. About two weeks after Bland’s death, 20-year-old Brissa Lopez was arrested for allegedly fighting with her boyfriend, and arrived at a Texas jail around 4:47 a.m. She was “very cooperative” and “chuckled as she removed her tongue and lip ring,” according to a sergeant who admitted her. Staff checked on her at 6:15 a.m. Some 40 minutes later, she was found hanging from a fire alarm cage by a bedsheet.

Critics are predictably labeling Uber and Lyft pulling out of Austin as a defeat of progress at the hands of meddlesome government.

But if fingerprinting is a good idea for cabbies, it should be mandatory for rideshare drivers too. They’re just another variety of cabbies.

I don’t use Uber often, but I love it when I do. However, lately I’ve become concerned about what kind of legal liability and physical danger I might be exposing myself to when I use ridesharing.

Similarly for Airbnb – I’ve only used that service once, and it was fantastic, but I’m concerned how the safety and legal liability compares with a regular hotel.

I’m on my way to Austin now, so this is on my mind.

How Austin Beat Uber – Richard Parker, The New York Times