The 10 most read stories on KERA News for 2023
As we close the book on 2023, it’s time to take a look back at the stories that caught the most attention from you, our audience, this year. And based on the wide range of topics, it’s safe to say it was quite a year.
In Sam Baker’s Vital Signs series, he interviews cardiologist Dr. Brandie Williams from Texas Health Stephenville about a study linking erythritol to increased platelets in the blood. Williams said this new study showed that more research was needed before erythritol could be officially deemed as safe.
It’s hard to believe, but 2023 started with a series of chaotic events at the Dallas Zoo. The craziness began when a leopard was released from its enclosure, continued with a vulture found dead and went on when two emperor tamarin monkeys went missing and were subsequently found safe.
2023 was a rough year for people on Medicaid. The program was widely used as a lifeline for people during the pandemic, but Texas started a new re-enrollment process that kicked 1.7 million Texans off the rolls. More than 70% of the people who were un-enrolled were children.
Again, the Dallas Zoo captured the attention of thousands of people across the state and country when Pin, the endangered lappet-faced vulture, was found dead under mysterious circumstances. It was the second in a string of weird incidents at the zoo that eventually led to the arrest of 24-year-old Davion Irvin.
As malls across the country decline in cultural relevance, the owners of the Parks Mall in Arlington had their own plan for revitalization: turning the empty space left behind by Sears and bringing in Dick’s House of Sport. Arlington City Council approved the plan for mall owner Brookfield Properties to spend $25 million for the project, which would be completed by 2026.
The drama of the Dallas Zoo started (maybe rather conspicuously) on Friday, Jan. 13 when Nova the snow leopard when missing from her enclosure. Zoo officials closed the facilities and, with the help of the Dallas Police, found her on the zoo grounds and returned her to her enclosure. Shortly after, the police found that the mesh wiring around her enclosure had been slashed, indicating foul play.
This year’s regular legislative session ended with a bombshell, when the Texas House voted to impeach Attorney General Ken Paxton. Fast forward to August: The impeachment trial lasted two weeks, and the impeachment managers closed their case early though many watchers expected the trial to last much longer than it did.
Also as part of the regular legislative session this year, HB 2127 passed which, if fully enforced would make it almost impossible for local governments to regulate within their own jurisdictions. The law was so potentially catastrophic that local lawmakers termed it the Death Star Bill and the state’s largest cities sued to block it.
The attorney general’s impeachment trial centered around Paxton’s involvement with Austin-based developer Nate Paul. Paxton was accused of misusing his official office to help Paul out of trouble with federal investigators. This story covered all of the craziest moments of a history-making impeachment trial.
This is the only story on this list that didn’t come out this year – it actually came out in 2018. But this is a story that perennially finds an audience, as Sam Baker talks to registered dietician Sharon Cox about the health and weight benefits of souping, or eating soup three to five times a day and adding vegetables regularly to your diet.