Texas Standard For March 8, 2021

Let’s set the table: we’ve got a lot of food on the show today. From restaurants to citrus to food for thought. In the food for thought category we start with some little known side-effects of the COVID-19 vaccine. We also imagine what if would be like to be homeless from the book “You Are My Brother.” And we imagine the political cost of the pandemic and freeze. Then we visit restaurants still open and remember those that have closed during the pandemic. Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardMarch 8, 2021 9:30 am

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Monday, March 8, 2021.

GOP Fallout from Storm

The 2020 election isn’t that far behind us, but conversations around 2022 are ramping up. That’s the next time Texans will vote for governor. Will COVID-19 and the recent power outages impact 2022? Brandon Rottinghaus, a political science professor at the University of Houston talks to the Standard.

Texas Restaurants and Abbott Rollbacks

The restaurant industry is reeling. The Texas Restaurant Association estimates 11,000 Texas restaurants have had to close their doors since last March when the first coronavirus stay-at-home orders were put in place. That’s why state restaurant leaders welcome Gov. Greg Abbott’s announcement that businesses will be able to open at 100% capacity on Wednesday. Emily Williams Knight, president and CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association, talks about the governor’s efforts and the industry reaction to making mask-wearing optional.

Vaccine Side Effects

In Harris County, over 500,000 people have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine. Some also got headaches and low grade fevers but were back to normal in a day or so. But, as Houston Public Media’s Sara Willa Ernst explains, a lesser-known side effect is causing anxiety among doctors and patients.

Oil Price Doubled

If you’ve filled your car’s gas tank recently, it’s not your imagination – it costs more to top off your tank than in the past months. Gasoline prices seemed to jump overnight during last month’s winter storm and they’ve remained high. Matt Smith, director of commodity research for ClipperData talks to the Standard about the factors at play.

STX Museum Bearing Witness to COVID

As we approach a year of COVID-19’s widespread prevalence in the U.S. and more than 500,000 deaths, it’s important to remember these deaths are more than just numbers. The dead were someone’s father, mother, grandparent, sister, brother or friend. A new project in the Rio Grande Valley endeavors to drive this home. It’s called “Bearing Witness,” from the Museum of South Texas Histroy in partnership with the McAllen Monitor. We’re speaking with Melissa Peña, museum exhibits coordinator and Fransisco Guajardo, chief executive officer of the museum.

Judy Knotts on “You Are My Brother” Book

Austin Snuggling Otters

A few weeks ago, many across Texas were living without power. They did what they could to stay warm. They lit fires in fireplaces (if they had them), covered themselves in blankets or went to city-operated warming centers. As KUT’s Audrey McGlinchy reports, one set of Austin residents snuggled each other to beat the cold.

Winter Storm Hits Tesax Citrus Industry Hard 

The damages from Winter Storm Uri last month will be felt for a long time. In South Texas, farmers in the Rio Grande Valley are dealing with significant citrus crop losses. Texas is the third largest citrus grower in the United States, behind California and Florida. Mamoudou Sétamou is a professor at the Texas A&M University-Kingsville Citrus Center.

All this and Texas News Roundup, plus Social Media Editor Wells Dunbar with the talk of Texas.

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