Neighborhoods

Information and stories about Dallas neighborhoods

Five myths about the federal shield law for journalists

Kurt Wimmer / Huffington Post

Free speech is the oxygen of the blogosphere. Blogs, tweets and Facebook posts couldn't have the profound influence they have rightfully earned in our new and diverse marketplace of ideas without a robust freedom to debate, to challenge, and even to be outrageous. So it's hardly surprising that when a congressional debate about protecting confidential sources mentions blogs, it touches a nerve.

That debate concerned the Free Flow of Information Act, which was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee last month on a bipartisan, 13-5 vote. If passed by Congress, the Act would be the first statute to protect journalists from being forced to identify their confidential sources in federal court. It would build on the protections of the First Amendment (because no act of Congress, of course, can minimize those rights) and fix a serious bug in our constitutional system -- multiple federal courts now have said that the only way for reporters to protect a confidential source is to go to prison indefinitely. Many of our federal courts have held that the First Amendment simply does not allow a reporter to protect a confidential source. That's hardly a solution that reflects our country's global leadership in free expression. Although 48 states and the District of Columbia already provide such protection in state courts, Congress has never passed a federal shield law. So the Judiciary Committee's vote should give journalists reason for optimism, as Emily Bazelon of Slate has so persuasively described.

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By Avi S. Adelman under Neighborhoods , Legal issues
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Darren Dattalo is really happy BD moved out of Lower Greenville

It's no secret that BD's move off Lowest Greenville to Junius Heights was the highlight of Melissa Kingston's day (nay, year) a few weeks ago. But that feeling of elation was publicly shared by other members of the coven of neighbors on the Belmont Addition Conservation District Enforcement Committee.

Darren Dattalo is a real estate agent at Keller-Williams Urban Center over on Turtle Creek (it used to be called the Center City office until it moved off of Lowest Greenville). He's LGNA's crimewatch chairman. He's at every meeting, hearing or event having to do with Lowest Greenville. He has made his displeasure with BD and the Bailey home very clear in Board of Adjustment meetings and on the Dallas Observer blogs.

BD is not surprised Dattalo is crowing about BD's move, but did he not think BD would see said crowing? The graphic below was pulled from Darren's Facebook page just last week. In it, you see BD's house, as photographed from outside the fence, BD's borrowed moving truck and the moving team taking a break from the heat.

By Avi S. Adelman under Neighborhoods , Lower Greenville
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Melissa is damn excited BD's leaving Lowest Greenville

Update, Friday August 9 - Melissa deleted the email / post from the Belmont Addition page at NextDoor.com early this morning.

BD has heard about Welcome Wagons for people who move into a neighborhood (if you move into Belmont Addition, prepare for a complete background check and financial review). But this is the first time he's seen someone get so excited about people moving out of a neighborhood.

Melissa Kingston, the Belmont Addition's Conservation District uber-Nazi who sued BD over domain names and Walmart last year, leader of a sub-cult called the Belmont Addition CD Enforcement Committee, and wife of newly-elected Councilman Weasel, could not wait to tell all her neighbors that BD was leaving Lowest Greenville.

However, she made one tiny mistake: BD got the email. Oops!

She did not know BD was a member of the NEXTDOOR.com Belmont Addition page. Melissa has refused to put BD back on the Belmont Addition's mailing list since (which she controls with an iron finger) last May, so she assumed BD was completely cut off from the neighborhood grid.

(Read Melissa's email after the jump)

By Avi S. Adelman under Neighborhoods , Legal issues
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Blind Butcher combats old views of Greenville Avenue

By Blair Lovern / Culture Map Dallas

An update from the front in the War of Lowest Greenville: The forthcoming Blind Butcher restaurant can stay open until 2 am. Sort of.

On July 25, the Dallas City Plan Commission agreed with Blind Butcher's owners about the hours of operation for the inside and front patio. But it also accommodated some nearby residents regarding the hours on the back patio by decreeing that it shall close at midnight.

Therefore, on August 28, Blind Butcher owners Matt Tobin and Josh Yingling, who also own Goodfriend Beer Garden and Burger House, will ask the Dallas City Council to overrule the commission's recommendations about the back patio. That's also about when the Blind Butcher is scheduled to open.

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By Avi S. Adelman under Neighborhoods , Legal issues
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Zubar on Greenville Avenue sent packing after lease disagreement

By Teresa Gubbins / Culture Map

After 18 years, Zubar, one of the longer running and by-now-beloved bars on Greenville Ave., will shut down on July 31, after a failure to come to terms on their lease.

Owner Stephen Tenney informed customers that landlord Andres Properties ordered them to vacate the premises by July 31.

[BD's translation - Andres already has a new tenant who has been drinking the Kool-Aid about Lowest Greenville's rebound and will pay double the rent we were paying.]

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By Avi S. Adelman under Neighborhoods , Lower Greenville
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