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Rick Perry’s Presidential Run, and Houstonian Attitudes Towards Bikers: Friday’s Show (June 5, 2015)

Former Texas Governor Rick Perry officially announced he’s running for President Thursday (6/4/15). He has to overcome his famous 2012 GOP Presidential debate flame out, and an indictment still hanging over his head. But in an already crowded field, he also finds himself one of two hard line conservatives from Texas. Is there room in […]

Former Texas Governor Rick Perry officially announced he’s running for President Thursday (6/4/15). He has to overcome his famous 2012 GOP Presidential debate flame out, and an indictment still hanging over his head. But in an already crowded field, he also finds himself one of two hard line conservatives from Texas. Is there room in the GOP mix for both Perry and Senator Ted Cruz? On this edition of Houston Matters, we ask Rice University political science professor Mark Jones.

Also this hour: last month, more than 170 people were arrested at a Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco, following the deaths of nine people in what was termed one of the worst biker brawls in recent years. The incident may reinforce Houstonians’ perceptions about motorcyclists, and may help to explain why some have little regard for them on the road. It may also explain, in part, the motivations behind an event last week in which the Houston Police Department and Texas Patriot Guard Riders came together to promote motorcycle safety awareness and encourage Houston drivers to share the road with bikers.

We talk with Keith Rovell, Vice Chairman of the Texas Motorcycle Safety Coalition, and HPD Senior Police Officer Jeff Allard about Houstonian attitudes towards bikers, and what can be done to overcome stereotypes, and more importantly, get more drivers here to notice and respect bikers on the road, just like any other motorist. (According to TxDOT, Houston is the deadliest city in Texas for motorcycle riders, 26 of whom died in Houston traffic accidents in 2014).

Plus: A lot can happen in a week — some good, some bad, some ugly. As we do each Friday, we turn to our rotating panel of “non-experts” to discuss The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of the week’s news. On today’s panel: Texas Leftist blogger Wayne Ashley, Russ Capper, founder and host of The Business Makers Radio Show and The Energy Makers Show, and Houston-based community education advocate Monica Richart.

And: Free Press Summer Fest is this weekend. The music festival has been a staple of the Houston music scene since 2009, growing from a one-day 30,000-fan event, to a two-day festival with nearly 100,000 attendees in 2014. This weekend, due to recent flooding, the event has been moved from its usual venue at Eleanor Tinsley Park to a parking lot adjacent to the Astrodome at NRG Park. It features performances from electronic dance artist Skillrex, R&B star R. Kelly, 80s new-wavers Tears for Fears, and metal acts Pallbearer and Mastodon. Houston Press Music Editor Chris Gray will preview it for us.

(Above: Former Texas Governor Rick Perry announces his second presidential run in Dallas on June 4, 2015. Image Courtesy: Getty Images)

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