Sure, Caraway Gets Carried Away. And You Wanna Get Angry. But Then Comes the Pity.

Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway was on The Ticket's Dunham & Miller show about an hour ago talking about why he gave the key to the city to convicted dog torturer Michael Vick. It was so typical. The Ticket guys started out all big and pissed off, talking about how they were going to whip Caraway's ass when he came on. And by the time Caraway finished up with them, they were practically singing him a lullaby.

After Caraway hung up the phone, they were saying stuff like, "He does sound like he has regret about the way he handled it" and "I don't think he would do it again if he had the choice" and "I think the reaction took him by surprise."

Oh, man. This is the whole problem! This is exactly the same problem I have with Caraway. Every time I think about Dwaine Caraway, I shake with rage. Rage! I can't stand this! Damn! I hate this! I am so utterly appalled and disgusted ...

... with myself.

Why am I mad at myself? This gets complicated. It's not what you think. It's not because, like Dwaine, I was hanging out at a gambling house in South Dallas and I asked the police not to raid it, and then I got in a fight with Arthur and Archie at my own house but the police chief sent out a special squad of cops to cover for me but then Arthur and Archie turned out to be cartoon characters that I made up but I really did have a bad fight with my wife and then I gave the keys to the city to an arrogant dog-torturing fiend.

I never did any of that stuff. Dwaine did it. Not me. So why am I mad at myself?

Because I keep feeling sorry for Dwaine. Just like those Ticket guys. It's awful how it creeps up on you.

I try, man. I try to do my duty as a journalist. I ball up my fists, and I make my face all red, and I sit down at the computer to make it happen. But then I start feeling sorry for him again.

I know. It's shameful. Especially being a journalist, I need to be in high, high dudgeon over everything Caraway. I didn't go to journalism school, but I'm sure if I had gone, they would have offered me a course in dudgeon. Dudgeon 101. It's an important part of how we sell newspapers and earn our salaries. I feel like I'm letting everyone down.

But ... you know. He just doesn't come across as a sneaky son of a bitch. In fact, Caraway needs to go back to politics school and take a course in Sneaky 101. He needs a lot of courses. Think what he would have to study in order to catch up with somebody like Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price. I could draw up a course list for that: Principles of Self-Seeking 200, Arrogance 301, Political Gangsters - A Simple How To.

I rode around in the car with Caraway when he was doing his pull-up-your-trousers campaign, and, even though people made fun of him for that, the guy was totally sincere, and, by the way, he had a good point. Do pull up your damn trousers!

He does care about his district, which is a hell of a lot more than I can say for Price.

I dread this whole thing about the real story behind Arthur and Archie. The rumors are terrible. He should tell the city to release the tape recording they made of him that night, because the truth couldn't possibly be as bad as the rumors.

But ... oh, now, there it goes again. The feeling sorry for him thing. Well, at least now that the Ticket guys gave him such a nice warm cuddle, I don't feel quite so bad.

Tell you what. Promise. Next time I see Dwaine, I am going to give him one hell of a frown. Straight-on. Big frown -- frowning to show my disapproval and my dudgeon. He'll just have to deal with it, like I guess I just have to deal with him.

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Jim Schutze has been the city columnist for the Dallas Observer since 1998. He has been a recipient of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies’ national award for best commentary and Lincoln University’s national Unity Award for writing on civil rights and racial issues. In 2011 he was admitted to the Texas Institute of Letters.
Contact: Jim Schutze