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The Texas Legislature is the ‘Absolute Worst.’ Here are dishonorable mentions.

These are a few names who just barely missed the cut for Joy Reid’s latest pick.

By now, you’re aware Joy’s “Absolute Worst” was awarded Tuesday to the Texas Legislature and supporters of its restrictive abortion law

Here are some “dishonorable mentions” — deplorable people who just missed the cut. 

Owner of Hang Time Sports Bar & Grill

A couple of new parents looking to enjoy a night out said they were turned away from a restaurant in Rowlett, Texas, earlier this month because they wanted to wear protective masks while inside.

Natalie Wester wrote in a Facebook post on Sept. 11 that she and her husband, Jose Lopez-Guerrero, were told by a server at Hang Time Sports Bar & Grill that they needed to leave the restaurant because they were wearing masks in violation of the owner’s dress code.

The couple, whose 4-month-old son is immunocompromised, were asked to leave after wearing masks at the table, Wester wrote in her post.

The restaurant’s owner, Tom Blackmer, told local Fox affiliate KDFW that he has no regrets about kicking the couple out of his restaurant and stood by his policy.

“F--- the pandemic,” Blackmer said, adding: "You can go anywhere in the world with a mask on, and please do. But in here, you can’t wear a mask.”

Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District

You may remember hearing about this story on “The ReidOut” last week: James Whitfield, a Black principal in Texas, was placed on administrative leave after some people in his Dallas-Fort Worth community accused him of teaching students critical race theory. 

On Monday, the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District school board voted unanimously to notify Whitfield that they intend to fire him, effectively meaning he will be terminated barring some miraculous change of heart on behalf of district officials. 

Whitfield is the first Black principal of Colleyville Heritage High School. Many students and parents at the school have advocated for his reinstatement for weeks. His termination was first proposed at a school board meeting in July, during which a former school board candidate accused Whitfield of having “extreme views on race.” 

Whitfield told Joy last week that the blowback he is getting is actually in response to a letter he sent to community members denouncing racism following the murder of George Floyd. And he noted that he has encountered race-related issues with the school board previously. In 2019, school district officials ordered Whitfield to remove photos he had shared on Facebook of him and his wife, calling the images “questionable.” (Whitfield’s wife is white.)

Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced a new surgeon general and...  he’s a lot like the Republican governor when it comes to health protocol. Dr. Joseph Ladapo was appointed to the state's top health position on Tuesday.

Many of his views are directly aligned with DeSantis’ anti-science approach to curbing the pandemic, including his dismissal of mitigation techniques. 

“Florida will completely reject fear as a way of making policies,” Ladapo said Tuesday. “That’s been something that’s been, unfortunately, a centerpiece of health policies.” 

Ladapo has questioned the efficacy of masks and called them a “distraction,” and on Tuesday he refused to say what — if any — measures he will support that allow schools to curb the spread of Covid-19. 

“Well, you know, I’m discussing that with my team in terms of recommendations," Ladapo said. "It’s complicated. … We are discussing."

Just last week, a judge ruled DeSantis’ ban on mask mandates in schools can stand. Despite a surge in youth hospitalizations in Florida due to Covid-19 over recent months, the state’s new surgeon general has no objections.

Head over to The ReidOut Blog for more.


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