Not Even the State Knows Who Enforces Mask Mandates. Here’s a weird one: Disability Rights Texas sued Attorney General Ken Paxton, the Texas Education Agency, and Education Commissioner Mike Morath so that individual school districts could enforce their own mask mandates. In a filing, Paxton argues all those defendants are incorrect; Paxton says his office has no “enforcement connection to Governor Abbott’s emergency orders” and that the TEA doesn’t enforce it, either. Instead, it falls to local district attorneys, despite Paxton’s penchant for suing local governments that dare cross Abbott’s order. A federal judge asked who is actually enforcing these measures, calling the state’s argument an “elaborate house” that is meant to obfuscate who can be sued over such matters.
Alleged Shooter’s Family Says He Is the Victim. The family of Timothy Simpkins, the 18-year-old who opened fire at Timberview High School in Mansfield following a fight earlier this week, says he was bullied and robbed, and brought a gun to school to defend himself. The family of the victim, 15-year-old Zacchaeus Selby, are aghast at this, saying the teenager was shot in the stomach, chest, arm, and leg and is in the ICU in a medically-induced coma.
Some North Texas Clinics Begin Abortions. A judge blocked the state’s restrictive abortion law—which banned abortions at six weeks and deputized citizens to report anyone who aided in the act—by calling it an “offensive deprivation” of a constitutional right. One of the plaintiffs, Whole Women’s Health, has has two clinics in North Texas that have begun providing abortions again. The state has appealed to a more conservative court that may walk back the decision.
Warm Weekend Ahead. We have highs of 94 and 92 throughout the weekend, with the lowest temperatures coming early in the morning. Damn you, fake fall!