Blogging History: Texan war on women; RIP Charles Brown; Backyard coaster

One year ago today

Texas passes draconian law limiting women's health care options: The bill would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and hold abortion clinics to the same standards as hospital-style surgical centers, among other requirements. Its supporters say that the strengthened regulations for the structures and doctors will protect women's health; opponents argue that the restrictions are actually intended to put financial pressure on the clinics that perform abortions and will force most of them to shut their doors.

Five years ago today

RIP, Charles Brown of Locus Magazine, one of science fiction's grand old men: I read Locus from the time I was old enough to see over the counter at Bakka, the science fiction bookstore where I later worked, and for some years now I have been a columnist with the magazine. Charles's obsessive, affectionate fascination with the field and all its readers, writers, fans and critics made him one of the most beloved figures in it, a sort of Forry Ackerman minus the id.

Ten years ago today

Backyard Coaster: The Blue Flash is a roller coaster that John Ivers constructed in his rural Indiana backyard.