Horns Up, Horns Down for Nov. 18: Football loses and female farmers

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Horns Up: More Texas women in agriculture

According to an article published by the Texas Tribune on Nov. 15, the changing face of the farming industry in Texas is trending toward a more feminine one. Though the most recent figures available on the percentage of women in farming are from 2007, the percentage of farmers who are women has increased by 30 percent since 2002. The Tribune’s article highlighted several women who had recently taken over farms from their male relatives, as well as the increasing educational resources available to women who are interested in doing the same. In a state where the rural ethos has long-dominated the political and cultural conversation, the greater inclusion of women in the field can be nothing but good for gender equality. 

Horns Down: We lost. Badly. 

Of the Longhorn football team’s three losses, two have happened at home, compared to only three of their seven wins. It’s nice to have a team that plays well on the road, but a UT loss stings all the more when we’re standing on the bleachers of DKR and can’t change the channel when things get rough. That was especially true Saturday, when the Longhorns were beaten about as decisively as a team can be beaten at the hands of Oklahoma State. The Horns fell behind from the start, and it became clear early in the second half that they would never regain the lead. Fans who remained rained a chorus of mocking calls on Coach Mack Brown. We share their dismay at another okay-but-not-good-enough season and hope the team’s fortunes change before we all graduate.

Horns Up: Highschoolers working on college early 

The Austin American-Statesman reported this weekend that the Austin Independent School District is ramping up its early college credit program. The program allows AISD high schoolers to earn college credit before they graduate. With concerns about four-year graduation rates only getting stronger, this is yet another tool schools can use to encourage students to aspire to a four-year degree and a tool students can use to decrease their tuition costs and increase their time spent in the workforce.

Horns Down: More pay for less work

On Sunday, the Austin American-Statesman reported that the city has paid Texas Disposal Systems more than $800,000 over the past year to process around 24,000 tons of recyclables, while it has paid Balcones Resources around $439,000 to process roughly 30,000 tons over the same time period. Texas Disposal Systems CEO Bob Gregory says he offered lower rates to Austin Resource Recovery, the city’s recycling department, but ARR disputes that. Both companies’ current contracts were worked out in 2011. Why TDS made out so well isn’t entirely clear; the answer you gets depends on whom you ask. Either way, when it comes down to dollars and cents, it just doesn’t make sense for the city to be paying one company more for less work.