Analysis: A rising commotion in Texas’ scattershot response to the pandemic

Photo does not have a caption

Texas bar owners and workers protested Tuesday at the state Capitol in Austin. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

Editor's note: If you'd like an email notice whenever we publish Ross Ramsey's column, click here.

If you would like to listen to the column, just click on the play button below.

(Audio unavailable. Click here to listen on

DIY pandemic responses seem to be flourishing in Texas.

Gov. Greg Abbott is trying to reinstate some of the coronavirus safety measures he put in place in late March and then mostly erased in May. He’s meeting a lot of resistance — a fair amount of it from the people in his GOP base.

Abilene initially said it wouldn’t enforce the governor’s close-the-bars order, and then apologized, sort of: “The City of Abilene never intended to imply an intention to disregard the Governor’s Executive Order, or support any kind of action by citizens or business owners in contradiction to the Executive Order. The City apologizes for any lack of clarity in earlier messaging on the matter.”

The city still won’t enforce Abbott’s order, leaving that to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and others, but said it will encourage its businesses and citizens to “use common sense” and to do what the governor says “to the best of their ability.”