For months, District Attorney Abel Reyna and his staff made clear they were champing at the bit to try strapping, 35-year-old Dallas Bandidos chieftain and locomotive engineer Jake Carrizal before any of the other bikers rounded up after the deadly 2015 shootout at Waco’s Twin Peaks restaurant and watering hole. Consequently, many of us in the peanut gallery leaned closer to better understand, perchance appreciate, Reyna’s strategy of legally pursuing 154 bikers on identical organized crime charges, as opposed to the more discriminating capital murder charges Waco police originally contemplated.

There is a lot we don’t know about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian attempts to influence the 2016 election. Most importantly, we don’t know who will be implicated and charged beyond the three men already indicted (Paul Manafort, Rick Gates and George Papadopolous). We don’t know how broad the investigation has become. And we certainly don’t know if President Trump will be implicated at all.

If Saudi Arabia didn’t already have enough worries in a fast-changing Middle East, yet another crisis has hit home for the once-stable desert kingdom: the sweeping arrests of 11 princes and former ministers. The move ordered by King Salman and carried out by his impulsive son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known increasingly as “MBS,” could well mark the beginning of the end for this increasingly uncertain U.S. ally.

Second Amendment advocates who regularly stress the need to enforce existing gun laws rather than forging new laws should welcome Republican Sen. John Cornyn’s Fix NICS Act, which proposes to do just that. Crafted in the wake of the Nov. 5 Sutherland Springs massacre that claimed the lives of 26 people, coldly struck down as they worshipped in church, this bill would bolster efforts to see federal and state authorities comply with existing laws and accurately report criminal history records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

Our current tax code is more than 30 years old; it is complicated and full of loopholes for special interests. It is estimated that in 2016 Americans spent 8.9 billion hours preparing and filing their taxes. We can do better. Hardworking American families deserve a tax code that is fair and simple while allowing them to keep more of their money to save for the future, educate their children and feel economically secure.

Operating on the theory that there’s no time like the present to address a challenge, Baylor University is commendably stepping up to address a problem gaining more and more attention in society as state demographics and political winds shift. As Trib staff writer Shelly Conlon reports, Baylor’s School of Education is exploring a new undergraduate and graduate program for training bilingual educators — the very sort long cherished in public schools across Texas, including here in McLennan County.

Flashback

What were we talking about one year ago? Take a look back.