Greensboro / Winston-Salem / High Point July 13 – 20, 2017 triad-city-beat.com
City council contenders PAGE 8
Tina Firesheets returns PAGE 23
Super Mario cakes PAGE 19
There are solutions to our state’s hog-waste problem, but they aren’t being used. A final look at Big Pork in North Carolina. Part III of III in our series on Big Pork in North Carolina, in collaboration with Indy Week by KEN FINE and ERICA HELLERSTEIN
July 13 – 19, 2017
experience...emf 56 Seasons of Music Excellence
THURSDAY, JULY 13 8 P.M. Young Artists Orchestra Dana Auditorium, Guilford College
Playing July 15
Violinist Fabián López joins the Young Artists Orchestra under the baton of Conductor José-Luis Novo.
FRIDAY, JULY 14 8 P.M. Young Artists Orchestra Dana Auditorium, Guilford College Randall Ellis (oboe), George Sakakeeny (bassoon), Nigel Anderson (violin) and Neal Cary (cello) under the baton of conductor Grant Cooper.
SATURDAY, JULY 15 8 P.M The American Scene Dana Auditorium, Guilford College Clarinetist Jon Manasse with Eastern Festival Orchestra
SUNDAY, JULY 16 FREE! 6:30 P.M. EMF Young Artists Wind Ensemble @ Music for a Sunday Evening in the Park (MUSEP) LeBauer Park, Downtown Greensboro EMF Conducting Fellows and EMF Young Artists in one of Greensboro’s newest and best venues.
MONDAY, JULY 17 8 P.M. Chamber Music @ UNCG Recital Hall, UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts
The Mile-End Trio Playing July 19
TUESDAY, JULY 18 8 P.M. EMF Fellows Chamber Recital Pyrle Theatre, Triad Stage EMF brings its beautiful and beloved chamber music to Triad Stage.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 19 8 P.M. The Mile-End Trio Dana Auditorium, Guilford College Jeffrey Multer, violin; Julian Schwarz, cello; and Marika Bournaki, piano, in their new artistic venture.
Thanks to our sponsors:
JUNE 24 – JULY 29
Ticket information & Sales: 336-272-0160
EASTERNMUSICFESTIVAL.ORG All programs, dates, artists, venues, and prices are subject to change.
My job these days defies easy description. I’m the publisher, so that means I order the print run every week, pay the bills, maintain by Brian Clarey the website and monitor data coming in from more than a dozen different sources, as well as a thousand other little things that nobody else can do. I’m also the head paperboy, which means that I personally distribute more than a quarter of our newspapers and keep tabs on our street boxes and racks. I work in the sales department to help our clients with their marketing. I’m also still a journalist and editor, writing a couple stories every week and getting my hands into everything else we print. Sometimes, when I veer from writing a story to a sales call, I can feel the gears shifting in my brain — which, I’m learning, is not quite as elastic as it once was. And sometimes, a simple phone call to my office line can stop me in my tracks. I often make the joke that there’s no such thing as a conflict of interest in North Carolina. It’s a hallmark of our provinciality that professional favors so often seem to flow between people who are already connected to each other. But we don’t
play that game here. We can’t. The Society of Professional Journalists has only a couple things to say about this sort of thing in its ethical guidelines, but they are quite clear: “Deny favored treatment to advertisers, donors or any other special interests, and resist internal and external pressure to influence coverage.” And: “Distinguish news from advertising and shun hybrids that blur the lines between the two.” So I can’t personally write stories about marketing clients, or sell space in our newspaper for anything besides advertising. But during local election season it gets complicated. Because I sell marketing directly to candidates, I am conflicted out of endorsing or casting opinions on our clients’ individual actions during election season. Which starts right about now. Our election coverage will be handled ably by Jordan Green and Eric Ginsburg, and I’m hoping that our ethics committee, staffed by those same two guys, will clear me before the first Tuesday in November, so I can work on Election Night. In the meantime, I will still be looking up campaign-finance reports, only for different reasons.
On conflicts of interest
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
I would ask him, ‘How does it make you feel to get up and lie? Are you a Christian? What do you think waking up in the morning?’ I would just look him straight in the eyes. ‘Trade places with me. You step in my shoes and let me step in your shoes. You do it for one week and see how you feel. Come live in my house and I’ll live in yours.’ — Rene Miller, in the Cover, page 11
BUSINESS PUBLISHER/EXECUTIVE EDITOR Brian Clarey email@example.com
PUBLISHER EMERITUS Allen Broach firstname.lastname@example.org
EDITORIAL MANAGING EDITOR Eric Ginsburg email@example.com
SENIOR EDITOR Jordan Green
1451 S. Elm-Eugene St. Box 24, Greensboro, NC 27406 Office: 336-256-9320 ART ART DIRECTOR Jorge Maturino firstname.lastname@example.org
SALES SALES/DIGITAL MARKETING SPECIALIST Regina Curry email@example.com
SALES EXECUTIVE Cheryl Green firstname.lastname@example.org
CONTRIBUTORS Carolyn de Berry Kat Bodrie Spencer KM Brown
EDITORIAL INTERNS Lauren Barber & Eric Hairston
Tina Firesheets Matt Jones Joel Sronce
Cover photography by Alex Boerner
S U M M E R O N L IB E R T Y SATURDAYS FROM 7-10 PM AT 6TH & LIBERTY JULY 15 THE MAGGIE VALLEY BAND (Bluegrass)
TCB IN A FLASH DAILY @ triad-city-beat.com First copy is free, all additional copies are $1.00. ©2017 Beat Media Inc.
July 13 – 19, 2017
CITY LIFE July 13 – 19 by Eric Hairston
THURSDAY Boulevards @ Bailey Park (W-S), 6 p.m. Raleigh-based artist Boulevards performs music influenced by Ohio and Philadelphia funk from the ’70s and ’80s. Food trucks will accompany beer and wine from Single Brothers. For more information, visit flowhondasunsetthursdays.com.
FRIDAY Ultimate Brewing Championship @ Downtown Greensboro (GSO), 7 p.m. Six Triad breweries will compete for the Best Craft Brew using this year’s chosen ingredient: cucumber. Guests vote for their favorite with the winner announced during the event. For more information, visit downtowngreensboro.org.
SPREADING JOY ONE PINT AT A TIME
Southern Eyes @ Bull’s Tavern (W-S), 9 p.m. Local band Southern Eyes blends rock, soul, country and blues at the stage on Fourth Street. For more information, visit the Facebook event page. Barnum @ Weaver Academy (GSO), 8 p.m. The city’s Drama Center presents the musical Barnum, which tells the story of the world’s most inventive showman. Pre-show entertainment includes magicians, jugglers, mimes, contortionists and more. For additional information, visit thedramacenter.com.
Sister Act @ Winston-Salem Theatre Alliance (W-S), 8 p.m. The Winston-Salem Theatre Alliance performs an adaption of the 1992 comedy that follows Deloris Van Cartier (played by Whoopi Goldberg in the film) after she witnesses a murder and is put into protective custody in a convent. For more information, visit wstheatrealliance.org.
SATURDAY Monday Geeks Who Drink Pub Quiz 7:30 Tuesday Live music with Piedmont Old Time Society Old Time music and Bluegrass 7:30 Wednesday Live music with J Timber and Joel Henry with special guests 8:30
Thursday Joymongers Band aka Levon
Zevon aka Average Height Band 8:30pm
Friday, Saturday, Sunday BEER
joymongers.com | 336-763-5255 576 N. Eugene St. | Greensboro
Blueberry Pancake & Celebration Day @ Greensboro Farmers Curb Market (GSO), 8 a.m. Chef Alex Amoroso of Cheesecakes by Alex prepares fresh and fluffy pancakes made with locally grown blueberries. The event also includes live music by Julien McCarthy and Larry Davis. For more information, visit gsofarmersmarket.org. Obsession @ Hanesbrands Theatre (W-S), 2 p.m. Obsession broadcasts live from Barbican Theatre in London. The stage production stars Jude Law and is directed by Ivo Van Hove. The play is adapted from Luchino Visconti’s 1943 film of the same name. For more information, visit rhodesartscenter.org. Mike Epps @ Comedy Zone (GSO), 9 p.m. Comedian Mike Epps — who has starred in Next Friday, Friday After Next and The Hangover, among other movies — comes to the Comedy Zone. For more information, visit thecomedyzone.com. Repti-Day @ Winston-Salem Fairgrounds (W-S), 10 a.m. Repticon brings dozens of reptiles for show and purchase. Repticon provides demonstrations and seminars about reptiles from all over the world at the event. For more information, visit wsfairgrounds.com.
by Lauren Barber
Learn more at MuslimGirl.com.
by Jordan Green
Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
with no north-south passage that connects with Gate City Boulevard. That’s not actually the case though. Preyer Brewing and Crafted: The Art of Street food have created a northerly anchor for Eugene Street and Marty Kotis’ planned Tracks development could potentially do the same for the south end, where the road meets Gate City Boulevard before continuing on to the Triad City Beat office. Meanwhile, most local motorists already know to avoid South Elm Street after 5 p.m. The Downtown Mall in Charlottesville is eight blocks long; what if three blocks of South Elm Street from Market Street down to McGee were transformed into a pedestrian mall? Add one block in either direction of Washington Street and February The Downtown Mall in Charlottesville, Va. is eight blocks long; JORDAN GREEN what if three blocks of South Elm were transformed into a pedestrian mall? One Place, and you would have a six-square-block urban playground. open,” he said, “it is proven that it has been a deterrent to I heard arguments about population density, wealth and business.” Charlottesville’s status as the home of University of VirWell, no it hasn’t. It’s hard to find a vacant storefront in ginia. We have college students in Greensboro, too, and Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall, while a handful of buildwe have six times as many people in Greensboro. Median ings on the 300 block of South Elm Street are chronically household income is only about 20 percent higher in vacant. Charlottesville. Bah! The argument comes across as, “You can’t have nice Downtown Greensboro Inc. President Zack Matheny toys! Why? Because I said so.” gamely responded to my proposal before leaving for We’ve visited the other kids’ houses and seen their nice vacation. “While this definitely looks very pretty and toys, and now we want them, too.
It started out as an idle question rather than a serious proposal. I was relaxing near a fountain on the Downtown Mall in Charlottesville, Va. waiting for my friends after an intense hour or so of KKK protest-reporting duty. It was a breathtaking scene: a café with seating for maybe 50 people that reminded me of Café du Monde in New Orleans, more café tables shaded by parasols set into the heart of the thoroughfare, a historic theater, restaurants, bookstores and pie shops, two ice cream stores, elderly couples strolling and cyclists making a leisurely pass. I took a photo on my phone and posted it to Facebook, asking, “Is this what South Elm Street in downtown Greensboro should look like?” I got more than I bargained for, with 93 reactions, mostly “likes.” Milton Kern, the South Elm Street mayor domo responded with a blunt “No,” however. The journalist Deonna Kelli Sayed proposed launching a petition to make it happen. Jeff Beck, who owns Urban Grinders on North Elm Street, responded, “I love this!” A number of people pointed to pedestrian malls as a failed experiment of the 1970s, with publicist/musician/ man-about-town Dave McLean citing Front Street in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, which was memorably eulogized in the Pretenders’ “My City Was Gone.” Rep. Jon Hardister (R-Guilford) weighed in: “Yes, it should. I think it would greatly benefit Greensboro. I’ve been to other downtowns that have a similar setup. It’s amazing how designating a few blocks to foot traffic can attract patrons and make an area more vibrant.” One objection raised is that it would leave downtown
Transform South Elm into a pedestrian mall
headscarves bear the brunt of these abuses, and offers readers a revealing account of how she decided to wear the hijab all while compelling readers to laugh and cry, and elucidating the true meaning of “jihad.” At less than 150 pages, Muslim Girl is a rewarding read for adults but is accessible to teens coming into political consciousness and questioning society’s messages about identity. We need stories like Al-Khatahtbeh’s because statistics can only tell us so much, and because we need the leadership of young outspoken Muslim-American women if we’re serious about cultivating a viable democracy. We need Muslim Girl because girls like Nabra Hassanen are slain in our streets.
nian immigrants in the post-9/11 suburbs of New Jersey. She invites readers into her family’s living room as they witness terrorists destroying the World Trade Center’s twin towers and into her elementary school where she is humiliated and harassed as the United States launches its invasion of Iraq. According to Pew Research Center analysis of FBI hate crimes statistics, the number of physical assaults against Muslims in the United States reached 9/11-era levels in 2015. A new report from the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights organization, suggests these numbers show no sign of decreasing any time soon. Al-Khatahtbeh knows that women who wear
A few weeks ago, a man abducted 17-year-old Nabra Hassanen of Reston, Va. as she walked from her mosque during the holy month of Ramadan. Then he beat her to death with a metal baseball bat. Amani Al-Khatahtbeh was the same age when she founded MuslimGirl — a blog that forged a space for Muslim women and girls to find community and give voice to their own stories — in 2009. MuslimGirl is now a leading online magazine for Muslim women who are combatting Western media’s monolithic misrepresentations through storytelling. The site’s tagline, “Muslim Girls Talk Back,” says everything, but the editor-in-chief reveals the story behind its founding in her 2016 book Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age. In it, Al-Khatahtbeh tells an unvarnished story about navigating adolescence as a Muslim daughter of Jorda-
Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age by Amani Al-Khatahtbeh
July 13 – 19, 2017 Up Front News Opinion Cover Story Culture Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
Man responsible for ending early voting at WSSU placed on board by Jordan Green
Some black leaders see Ken Raymond’s appointment to the Winston-Salem State University Board of Trustees as a slap in the face to the school. As chairman of the Forsyth County Board of Elections, Ken Raymond took the lead on a controversial decision to close an early-voting site on the campus of Winston-Salem State University. Now, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger (R-Guilford, Rockingham) has appointed him to a seat on the university’s board of trustees. The appointment has drawn ire from black political leaders in Winston-Salem. “To me, it’s the most short-sighted appointment they could make,” said Fleming El-Amin, a Democratic county commissioner who has served with Raymond on the Forsyth County Board of Elections. “It suggests an insincere commitment to the community. He has publicly expressed his disdain for the university by removing [the campus] voting site.” Berger’s office did not respond to a request for comment on the appointment. Following the election of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper in November 2016, the Republican-controlled General Assembly transferred the authority to make appointments to university boards of trustees in the University of North Carolina System from the governor to itself. Sen. Joyce Krawiec, a white Republican lawmaker from Kernersville, said she recommended Raymond’s appointment. “I’m a huge fan of Ken Raymond,” Krawiec said. “I think he’s an awesome selection. I’ve known him for years. Any task he’s asked to do he’s tireless. I think they’re very fortunate to have him on that board.” Raymond is one of two appointments to the board of trustees to replace Charles Wright, a senior vice president of continuous improvement at PNC Bank in Broadview Heights, Ohio, and Osyris Oqoezwa, president of B&C International in High Point, whose terms recently expired. Republican House Speaker Tim Moore appointed Dr. Ricky Sides to fill the other vacancy. Rep. Debra Conrad said she and Rep. Donny Lambeth — the two Republican House members from Forsyth County
Ken Raymond (second from right) voted to close an early-voting site on the campus of Winston-Salem State University in 2013.
— suggested Sides to Speaker Moore. Conrad said the General Assembly is studying the possibility of establishing a chiropractic school at Winston-Salem State and thought the board could benefit from Sides’ experience as “a highly respected chiropractor in Winston-Salem.” The General Assembly also filled two vacancies on the UNC School of the Arts Board of Trustees, with Senate President Pro Tem Berger appointing Pete Brunstetter, a former Republican state senator, and Speaker Moore appointing Elizabeth Madden. Raymond is a 1987 alum of Winston-Salem State who played football for the Rams. He recently retired as a 911 operator with the Winston-Salem Police Department. His alum status doesn’t lessen the blow for some. “Anyone in the community would tell you that it’s a slap in the face to [historically black colleges and universities,” said Beaufort Bailey, a former Forsyth County commissioner and 1957 alum of Winston-Salem State. “Why would you take a vice president of a bank and not reappoint them, and put a person like Ken Raymond in instead?” Raymond’s involvement in monitoring and ultimately restricting voting at Winston-Salem State goes back to his employment as a precinct judge at the Anderson Center, an early-voting location on campus, in 2010. Raymond said in a written statement that he observed students talking about receiving academic credit from their instructors “if they voted in the 2010 election.”
He took the position that the students’ actions constituted a Class I felony under North Carolina election law, which states that it is unlawful “for any person to give or promise or request or accept at any time, before or after any such primary or election, any money, property or other thing of value whatsoever in return for the vote of any elector.” El-Amin, who would later serve on the board of elections with Raymond, said the board under the leadership of Democrat Linda Sutton investigated Raymond’s allegation and found no evidence to substantiate it. Several other concerns were also raised about Winston-Salem State, including that administrators failed to return vote-list maintenance cards used to confirm that registered voters have not moved, that faculty members selectively allowed candidates to speak to their classes, and that university employees used university email accounts to send out emails promoting candidates. Following Republican Pat McCrory’s election as governor in 2012, Republicans took control of county boards of elections across the state, and Raymond received appointment to the Forsyth County board. Under Raymond’s leadership, the Republican board quickly voted to eliminate the Anderson Center as an early voting site. The decision resulted in students having to travel to the downtown Forsyth County Government Center for early voting or to their precinct at Sims Recreation Center on Election Day. Both locations are located across Highway 52 from campus.
Raymond said in a set of email responses to Triad City Beat that he publicly discussed his reasons for closing the early voting site at length two years ago, and has nothing else to add other than to say that under the election plan adopted by the board treated all college students in Forsyth County equally. In 2015, students collected signatures for a petition to reinstate early voting at the Anderson Center and pleaded with the Republican-controlled board of elections to reverse the 2013 decision, to no avail. After the board voted down a motion by El-Amin to re-open the Anderson Center as an early-voting site, students jeered at Raymond, who is black, chanting, “Uncle Tom! Uncle Tom!” “His response was, ‘Let’s get the sheriff in here,’” El-Amin recalled. “I said, ‘Nobody’s going to get arrested. Let’s hear what they’re going to say.’ I said, ‘We should appreciate what the students are saying. They see no benefit to our action. There’s a reason for their frustration. Our job is to make sure their frustration is not based on our actions and to encourage them to participate fully as citizens.’ They were highly upset about that, and I understood why.” Raymond said of the students at the meeting: “I’m sure that they did not represent the maturity and character of all WSSU students.” As an alum, Raymond said he naturally wants the best for the students. “All alumni have the best interests of their school, and its students, at heart,” he said. “We might disagree on how to achieve them, but we all want the best for our school.” Krawiec, the Republican state Senator who suggested him for the post, defended Raymond’s action to eliminate the Anderson Center early-voting site. “He was acting as a member of the board of elections fulfilling his responsibility,” she said. “There were several voting sites very convenient to that area, while some of the outlying folks had to go five miles to vote. I think that was an example of him doing what he needs to do for the board he serves. When he is assigned a task, he does it regardless of who is not in favor. I think he’ll do the same as a member of the board of trustees.”
triad-city-beat.com Up Front News Opinion Sportsball Crossword
located at 8310 W. Market Street! Now with extended hours until 9:30pm.
Coble Transportation Center
Experience the new
Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
July 13 – 19, 2017 Up Front News Opinion Cover Story Culture Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
Greensboro, High Point city council candidates line up to run by Jordan Green
High-profile candidates for mayor emerge in High Point, while challengers push against incumbents from the left in Greensboro. It’s still early — the filing period for Greensboro and High Point city council elections remains open through July 21 — but the general outlines of the two nonpartisan elections are starting to take shape. Voters in both cities will go to the polls for the Oct. 10 primary, which will winnow the candidates down to two per seat, and then voters will make their final choices in the Nov. 7 general election. High Point residents can count on the certainty of having a new mayor, although the contenders are seasoned politicians. Mayor Bill Bencini, who has served only one term, announced that he won’t seek reelection. A former city council member and Guilford County commissioner, Bencini was elected mayor in 2014 after a period of instability in which former Mayor Bernita Sims resigned before pleading guilty to a felony worthless check charge, and citizens expressed discontent about the council’s ambivalence towards urban revitalization. Council members voted to appoint Councilman Jim Davis to finish out Sims’ term. Jay Wagner, a two-term councilman, and Bruce Davis, a former county commissioner, have filed for mayor. Jim Davis, a conservative voice on council, said he planned to file for mayor on Wednesday. Wagner said he wants to continue the progress made under Bencini’s leadership, which includes plans to build a multi-use stadium as a catalyst project, outdoor enhancements at the High Point Library and a blight-reduction initiative. “I think we’ve reached the point where the city, the general public, the business community and High Point University are all on the same page,” Wagner said. “We’re not arguing about whether to do it anymore. We’re arguing — to the extent that there’s any argument at all — about how best to do it. We have buy-in from all these parties. I’m the person who has the confidence of all those groups.” Bruce Davis was the Democratic nominee in the 13th Congressional District in 2016, but lost to Republican Ted Budd in the GOP-leaning district.
Davis left the possibility of another congressional bid open in announcing his candidacy for mayor on July 9. “One day in the near future I will run again for Congress; however, there is a pressing call for me to seek the High Point mayor’s seat,” he wrote on Facebook. “I hope that all of my supporters understand that this was a tough decision but necessary and the most logical choice at this time.” JORDAN GREEN Jay Wagner is one of three Davis chairs the High Point candidates for mayor in High Point. Convention & Visitors Bureau, nette — are running to the left of the where he has helped shape the incumbents, pledging to increase police downtown stadium plan. He has also oversight while emphasizing social jusspoken out on the rise in homicides in tice and human rights. Marc Ridgill, a the city, and criticized police Chief Kenretired police officer who placed fourth neth Shultz and City Manager Greg in the at-large balloting two years ago, Demko for not attending a High Point said he decided against running this NAACP meeting called in late April to time because he plans to move out of address the matter. the city in the middle of the next term. The top of the ticket in Greensboro Meanwhile, the at-large race in High looks more stable. Point — with two seats up for grabs In two terms as mayor, Nancy — remains unsettled. Latimer AlexanVaughan has presided over continued der IV, who currently serves at large, downtown revitalization, although the said that having given 13 of the last 15 signature Tanger Performing Arts Cenyears to elected public service, he wants ter is running far behind schedule. She to give others “a chance to serve.” He and her colleagues on city council have said he’s not supporting any particular faced greater challenges on the issue of candidate at this time, but might weigh police accountability. Advocates for rein later in the campaign. form have faulted council members for Don Scarborough, a retired admina perceived lack of transparency, while istrator at High Point University and others have grumbled that Vaughan political newcomer, is the first candidate hasn’t exercised adequate control over for file for an at-large seat. city council meetings disrupted by Scarborough said reducing violence is protesters. one of his priorities. To date, Vaughan has attracted one “I think my role in that would be to challenger: a general contractor named re-enter some of those [low-income] John Brown who has assailed the curareas and find out what they need,” he rent council and city staff in a bombastic said. “It’s easy for me to say, ‘We need series of videos that generally feature a to do this, that and the other,’ but it may conservative slant. Two other would-be not be what these communities want to rivals have opted to stand down. Robbie do. Our role is to be the ear and help Perkins, a one-term mayor who was them implement the things that can unseated by Vaughan in 2013, has said help them to live a better life.” he doesn’t plan to run. And Mike BarCynthia Davis, who was elected to her ber, a longtime councilman and former first term as an at-large council member Guilford County commissioner who has in 2014, said she’s been preoccupied generally staked out more conservative with her mother’s health and hasn’t stances than Vaughan, filed to run for decided whether to run for reelection. re-election at large. “I probably will,” she said, “but I’m not Barber is joined by incumbents sure when I’m going to find the time to Yvonne Johnson and Marikay Abuzuaitgo down and file my paperwork.” er in seeking reelection to the three atA fiscal conservative and advocate large seats. Four newcomers who have for economically challenged areas of either filed or announced plans to run the city, Davis has expressed skepticism — Dave Wils, Jodi Bennett-Bradshaw, about economic development initiatives Michelle Kennedy and Lindy Gar-
like the multi-use stadium, butting heads with Mayor Bencini over the past three years. Most of the district races in Greensboro have attracted candidates. Most notably, four candidates — CJ Brinson, Tim Vincent, Felicia Angus and Jim Kee — have stepped forward in a bid to replace Councilman Jamal Fox, who announced he wouldn’t run for reelection and would resign before the completion of his term. (City council will vote on an appointment to replace Fox on July 18.) In District 1, Paula Ritter-Lipscomb is challenging incumbent Sharon Hightower. Two candidates — Gary Kenton and Joe Schuler — have announced they’ll run against incumbent Nancy Hoffmann in District 4. Councilman Tony Wilkins, a conservative who currently represents District 5, has said “most likely” he will run for the same seat, while leaving the door open for a potential mayoral bid. Three other candidates, Tammi Thurm, Sal Leone and Tanner Lucas, have already filed for the seat. Justin Outling, who currently represents District 3, was the only contender who’d filed for the seat at press time. In High Point, the candidate list is somewhat sparser: Ward 1 Councilman Jeff Golden, Ward 2 Councilman Chris Williams and Ward 6 Councilman Jason Ewing — all incumbents — were the only candidates to file for their respective seats at press time. Alyce Hill, who was elected to the Ward 3 seat in 2014, has opted to not run for reelection. Monica Peters, a revitalization proponent who launched the We “Heart” High Point” and founded the EbFest Music Festival and Maker Fair, has filed to run for the seat with Hill’s blessing. Jay Wagner currently holds the Ward 4 seat, and his bid for mayor opens the position up for competition. Jim Bronnert — who served previously on the parks and recreation commission and ran unsuccessfully against Wagner in 2014 — and Wesley Hudson are seeking the seat. Two candidates — Vic Jones and Deric D. Stubbs — have filed for the Ward 5 seat that is being vacated by Councilman Jim Davis, who is running for mayor. Lauren Barber contributed reporting for this story.
Another thing that doesn’t matter
The spectacle of the KKK and the danger of Trump
Opinion Cover Story
shorts and executioner hoods, several bearing side arms — they required a protective corridor of riot police as the jeers of protesters rose like a Biblical plague of locusts on either side of them. The chorus of outrage and indignation focused on the Klan like a laser ray of hate, and the Klan refracted it right back with defiant swagger. Once ensconced in a makeshift pen assembled from a double row of metal barricades patrolled by police and roaming journalists, the imperial kommander plugged in a humble amp and two robed officiants gamely made speeches that were barely heard above the constant roar of the protesters. It made for a laughable spectacle, from the crude, anti-Semitic and spelling-challenged sign held by one of the Klanners reading “Jews are Satan’s children/ Talmud is a child molester’s Biblel” to the pistol-packing white dude with dreadlocks piled under a cap inscribed with the words “white power.” The danger of focusing too much on the spectacle is that it enables us to pretend that white supremacy is an antiquated relic limited to a few eccentric hicks clinging
First it was a handful of people, then about five minutes later there were two more worming through a police line, lying down on the ground and forcing the police to drag them away in flexi-cuffs as hundreds of fellow by Jordan Green protesters crushed up against the line chanted, “What do we do when black lives are under attack? Stand up, fight back!” By the end of the day, 23 people had been arrested — all in service of impeding an appearance by the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, one of the most extreme and violent white supremacist groups in the United States. These acts of people literally throwing their bodies in the path of white supremacy delayed the entrance of the roughly 40 Klan members to Justice Park in Charlottesville, Va. by 45 minutes on July 8. When they finally appeared — a garish assortment of damaged humanity in red and white robes, black paramilitary uniforms, jean
Up Front Culture Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
Donald Trump Jr.’s emails dropped like a bomb late Tuesday morning. And not a smart bomb. The correspondence released by Don Jr. — via Twitter, naturally — in advance of a New York Times piece on their contents say a lot more than the sum of their words. They display, quite clearly, that during the 2016 campaign, the son of the man who would be president eagerly arranged a meeting with a Russian lawyer in order to obtain state secrets — Russian state secrets — that would give his father an edge in the US election. The Trumps are unapologetic, causing heads to explode in what’s left of the reality-based community, which in turn elicits cheers from Trump’s fandom, because those cranial paroxysms are what they put him in office to do. Among his dwindled hardcore, the Russian meeting might even be construed as patriotic, seeing as it was orchestrated to help defeat Hillary Clinton, whose name keeps coming up even though she holds no elected office. But it’s a problem. An American representative of an American candidate for American office sought outside influence to apparently manipulate the political will of the American people. Does anything else matter? More challenging to the argumentative prowess of those Trump supporters who dare to click on the New York Times link is that this meeting — or any of its kind — was unequivocally denied by the president, his son in law and everyone in his inner circle, mostly via Twitter but also on official disclosure forms designed to track meetings with foreign entities. Willfully concealing the meeting suggests perjury, criminal intent and possibly treason. Surely the majority of his people will pass on reading the stories or applying any sort of historical context to them, instead executing the sort of knee-jerk defense with which Trump critics have become all too familiar, both online and, sometimes regrettably, in person. And though Trump’s support has reached an all-time low, just about every Republican member of the House and Senate are among his supporters, at least when it counts. We’re seeing it now: mealy-mouthed scoldings of the president and his son from the standard-bearers of the GOP in Washington and shaky assurances that the entire matter is already under investigation. Meanwhile, an alternative narrative is already being constructed, one that paints Trump Jr. as a victim and not simply a moron. It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not. All that matters here is that there are still so many people willing to believe it.
Dreadlocked and armed, a young white supremacist demonstrates in Charlottesville, Va.
July 13 – 19, 2017 Up Front News Opinion Cover Story Culture Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad Triaditude Adjustment
TRUTH IS POWER
Hard news at no cost to you, and no matter the cost to us.
to a fading past. The photo album I posted on Facebook with images of the rally is studded with comments from credulous liberals expressing astonishment that the Klan is still around in 2017. Why wouldn’t they be? We live in a country that elected a president whose campaign brazenly exploited fear of black urban crime, defamation of Mexicans as “rapists” and drug dealers, and promises to ban Muslims. These are stock tropes of the Ku Klux Klan. What is remarkable is that the Loyal White Knights didn’t attract thousands of supporters. In one sense, the rally provides a heartening narrative: By showing up in overwhelming numbers and willingly going to jail for their beliefs, the anti-racists made themselves the protagonists. In another sense, we really haven’t gotten it yet: The Klan is treated as an embarrassment by people who have no problem making excuses for Donald Trump. Historically, the Klan’s masks helped them instill fear by raising the specter that the man underneath the hood might be a police officer or powerful businessman, but one of the points of pride for the Loyal White Knights is that they’re not afraid to show their faces. In a metaphorical sense, the
Klan is un-masking Trump. Two days before the Klan rallied in Charlottesville, Trump spoke in Poland, warning of threats from the south — an unmistakably reference to immigrants from Latin America to the United States, and from Africa to Europe — and the east — which could mean either Russia or the Muslim world, in the context of his earlier comments — “that threaten over time to undermine these values and erase the bonds of culture, faith and tradition that make us who we are.” Speaking of blood and soil, and extolling “symphonies” and “ancient heroes,” Trump posited, “The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive. Do we have enough respect for our citizens to protect our borders? Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilization in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it?” Chris Barker, the imperial wizard of the Loyal White Knights — who was not in Charlottesville because he is not allowed to leave the state of North Carolina as a condition of release on bond for a pending attempted murder charge — no doubt approved.
Take charge of your mind, body and spirit Test pH balance, allergies, hormones Balance diet, lifestyle and emotions Create a personalized health and nutrition plan
3723 West Market Street, Unit–B, Greensboro, NC 27403 email@example.com www.thenaturalpathwithjillclarey.com
“We’re in the end of times, and it’s going to be a racial war, not just in America, but it’s going on in Europe right now,” he said in a recent interview posted on the group’s website. “In Europe, right now the white race is getting upset with what their politicians is doing to them, too. We’re getting the Mexican immigrants; they’re getting the Muslim immigrants. They’re getting a lot of Africans dropped straight off the boats with spears and the bones still in their noses [sic]; that’s how bad it is in Europe. But the whites in Europe are different from America; they’re not docile like we are. They’re actually getting out and fighting in the streets. There are real fistfights, fire-bombings; they’re pushing the mud races back to their own homelands.”
Not hot I’m not sure that this is a red hot issue with the average citizens [“Trudy Wade delivers a body-slam to local newspapers”; July 6, 2017] Gunnar5, via triad-city-beat.com Editor-in-Chief Brian Clarey responds: That’s a shame — newspapers are baked right into our democracy, and anything that’s bad for newspapers is bad for our country. Vote for Lincoln Your current registration status, party affiliation and even the elections in which you voted are all available on your county board of elections [“Trump’s America: The White House’s insidious voter suppression campaign”; by Lauren Barber; July 6, 2017]. Check your status in the coming year and if you are a Democrat be prepared to re-register. Vote at the earliest opportunity. It’s a sad day, but you should fully expect efforts to suppress your ability to vote, particularly in the 2018 election when the control of the House is at stake. LincolnX, via triad-city-beat.com
There are solutions to our state’s hog-waste problem, but they aren’t being used. A final look at Big Pork in North Carolina. Part III of III in our series on Big Pork in North Carolina, in collaboration with Indy Week by KEN FINE and ERICA HELLERSTEIN photos by ALEX BOERNER
Butler Family Farms in Lillington
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the third of a three-part investigation into North Carolina’s hog-farming industry. The first story examined claims by lower-income African-American residents of eastern North Carolina that neighboring hog farms have polluted their properties and efforts by lawmakers to shield pork producers from litigation. The second looked at the environmental impacts hog farming has had over the last two decades, particularly on waterways such as the Neuse River. This final piece discusses ways to make the multibillion-dollar hog industry more sustainable, both for the environment and the state’s rural population, and the political and financial reasons those steps haven’t been taken.
Part III: The fix I. ‘Beware. You’re entering Butler hog country’
Tom Butler steps down from his trailer and into the glaring sun. It’s early afternoon in Lillington — a town of nearly 3,500, about 90 minutes southeast of Greensboro — and sticky hot. Butler, in neatly ironed khakis and a button-down, crosses the dusty road in front of his trailer and stops at a row of white hog houses, all built on land his father purchased in 1922. At capacity, the hog houses hold close to 8,000 pigs. And if Butler was standing on just about any other hog farm this size in North Carolina, the heat would exacerbate the already noxious odor of pig waste to an unbearable degree. But Butler Farms is different. There is no stench.
Since 2007, Butler’s farm has employed what he describes as an environmentally sustainable system that has the added benefit of reducing the odor. Walking around, there’s the occasional whiff of pig feces — pungent, to be sure — but nothing close to the nauseating smell neighbors of farms in places like Duplin County say they’re forced to endure daily. The 76-year-old, snowy-haired farmer wears that distinction proudly when talking about his farm, which has drawn praise from the likes of Gov. Roy Cooper, former “American Idol” standout and congressional candidate Clay Aiken and other high-profile individuals whose pictures are tacked onto the wooden door of his trailer. As Butler points to the photos, the dark lesions on his hands and the arthritis-induced hunch in his shoulders speak to decades of hard work. The story of Butler’s unexpected foray into sustainable hog waste management goes back to 1994, the year he and his late brother decided to try their luck at contract farming. “Before then, we were traditional farmers,” he says, “transitioning from
the tobacco buyout.” They had a construction business, but “we saw an opportunity to bring in income from the farm but in a different way. We’d contract livestock and wouldn’t be competing with the local economy.” In other words, they’d manage the hog houses and the waste produced by the animals living in them, but they wouldn’t have to worry about supply, processing, or sales. Things changed quickly, however. About a week after they brought their first several thousand hogs to the farm, they realized that managing waste meant coping with a pervasive stench that put them at odds with neighbors they’d known since childhood. “Immediately, we had two or three people that were really angry,” Butler recalls. “They’d call me at night and tell me, ‘My house smells like hog you-knowwhat,’ or ‘It’s coming in through my air conditioner. I can smell it.’ And then we had one other neighbor and he had a sign made but never put it up: ‘Beware. You’re entering Butler hog country.’ And we smelled it. And it wasn’t good.”
July 13 – 19, 2017
potential environmental problems examined in the first two parts of this series. And the hog industry is aware of them. In 2000, the state attorney general entered into the so-called Smithfield Agreement, in which the industry agreed to fund a $17.1 million experiment to find more sustainable methods of disposing of hog waste. But experts at NC State University say that — even a decade after the results of that research came to light — not much has happened. The five solutions the study developed were deemed too expensive for existing farms. And because the legislature passed a temporary moratorium on the construction of new hog farms in 1997 — followed by a permanent moratorium on lagoon construction in 2007 — the solutions haven’t been widely adopted on North Carolina’s hog farms. In addition, NC State professor Mark Rice — who’s part of the school’s animal waste management team — says that funding has also dried up for research into new technology. “We have a lot of things we’d like to do and research to pursue, but you’ve got to find somebody willing to fund that research,” Rice says. “The [Smithfield Agreement], that was an infusion of money specifically to look at alternative treatment technologies. Since that time, there’s been virtually no money, grant money, available for waste-management research.” Will Butler, son of Butler Farms owner Tom Butler, pumps freshwater that has collected atop the digestion field.
At the time, there was no ready-made solution. But today, Butler’s farm is one of just 10 in the state using technology that converts methane into energy. He’s proud of the system he’s put in place, although it wasn’t easy. He’s come under fire for his position that the industry, not the farmer, should foot the bill for technologies that make hog farms more environmentally friendly. He loves what he does, but he also believes the widely used lagoon-to-spray-field system of waste management is a “black eye for the industry.” Butler chooses his words carefully. He doesn’t call himself an activist but rather an “advocate for change to a better waste-management system.” As a contract farmer who cares for hogs owned by Prestage Farms, he knows he must rely on the industry to keep his farm afloat. “I wish we could get growers to speak,” he says. “If I wasn’t 76, I probably wouldn’t. [But] you get to a point that you’d rather do the right thing and lose than the wrong thing and win.”
II. ‘Get a Learjet’
Walking from Butler’s trailer to the hog houses across the street, you’d never know you were approaching thousands of hogs, or that beneath their feet lurked thousands of gallons of their waste. It took 13 years and hundreds of thousands of dollars to even try to solve the problem. In 2007, Butler and his brother received a $320,000 grant from the Environmental Credit Corporation to cover their two lagoons; Environmental Fabrics Inc. installed the lagoon covers. Butler and his brother then
spent about $50,000 on each lagoon to pay for the piping, the concrete and longer-term maintenance. Since then, Butler has paid about $3,000 per year for the lagoons’ maintenance. “I know that the industry could have all the lagoons covered, but it would be very expensive,” Butler says. “So you could either get a Learjet for your company, or you could cover lagoons.” He also introduced an anaerobic digester system, which converts the methane sequestered by covering swine lagoons into electricity. According to the EPA, just 39 of the thousands of hog farms in the United States do that. Of them, only 10 are located in North Carolina, the country’s second-largest pork producer. Of those, two belong to the state’s largest pork producer, Murphy-Brown LLC, which, according to court records, owns hogs at up to two-thirds of the state’s farms. In an email, Murphy-Brown’s parent company, Smithfield Foods, told us that its hog division is “an industry leader in aggressively studying and implementing manure-to-energy technologies, as well as other potential manure treatment technologies.” In a statement, NC Pork Council CEO Andy Curliss wrote that the industry strongly supports “the development of innovative approaches to managing hog manure, including the development of renewable energy projects.… North Carolina currently leads the nation in producing renewable energy from swine manure, and two large-scale projects are slated to begin operations later this year.” Curliss did not respond to a follow-up inquiry asking for more details about those operations. Solutions do exist, both for the odor issues and the
III. ‘They’re in dire straits’
The Smithfield Agreement could’ve been a gamechanger. According to NC State records, the agreement called for a “designee” to oversee the evaluation of 18 potential technologies. Mike Williams, then-director of the university’s Animal and Poultry Waste Management Center, was chosen to fill the role. The project defined “environmentally superior” technologies as those that met five standards: They eliminated the discharge of animal waste to surface water and groundwater through “direct seepage or runoff”; substantially reduced emissions of ammonia; substantially eliminated “the emission of odor that is detectable beyond the boundaries of the parcel or tract of land on which the swine farm is located”; eliminated the release of “disease-transmitting vectors and airborne pathogens”; and eliminated nutrient and heavy-metal contamination of soil and groundwater. While the five-year endeavor produced no silver bullet, Rice says, it did identify several technologies that lessened the hog farms’ ecological footprint. One was the anaerobic digester system that Butler uses. Others included a system that flushed waste from the hog houses and used chemicals to remove the solids. The remaining liquid then flowed through tanks, where bacteria removed most of the nitrogen before chemicals removed the phosphorus. (Environmental groups have blamed nitrogen and phosphorus from hog lagoons and spray fields for fish kills in the Neuse River basin.) The problem, according to the December 2005 majority report of the Smithfield Agreement advisory panel, was that these technologies were not economically feasible for existing farms, only for new
IV. ‘Ham and sausage and eggs and fried chicken’
Jimmy Dixon doesn’t feel the same sense of urgency. Nor does he think the industry has much of a problem to address. On a Thursday afternoon in June, the Republican state representative swoops into his office in a neatly pressed suit, with perfectly coiffed white hair and pink cheeks. More than two months have passed since Dixon, a former poultry farmer who represents Duplin County, introduced House Bill 467 at the behest of the industry. HB 467 capped the amount of damages people living near agriculture and forestry operations,
farms. “New farms,” the majority report noted, “do not face the financial dilemma that existing farmers face in having invested already in a waste handling system.” In other words, existing farms had already spent money digging lagoons and constructing irrigation systems. They couldn’t afford to reinvent the wheel — even though, as the report pointed out, the new technology “could spawn a new set of industry leaders in waste-handling technology, centered in North Carolina. This scenario for future competitiveness of the North Carolina industry is more than just plausible, it is likely to occur.” After all, the report said, hog production has external costs, such as pollution, “and as long as those costs are being imposed involuntarily on people, communities and businesses outside the farm operation, there will be contingent liabilities (risks) facing the industry.” These new technologies would mitigate some of those risks — if only someone invested in them. It’s safe to say that hasn’t happened. Or at least, no such industry-wide reform has been realized. Since the initial moratorium on new hog farms passed in 1997, no new farms have been constructed in the state. Ten farms have implemented anaerobic digester technology. But only two farms in North Carolina are using technologies that meet all of the criteria set forth in the Smithfield Agreement, according to Christine Lawson, manager of the state Department of Environmental Quality’s concentrated animal-feeding operations program. Because the onus for implementing these systems falls on the farmer, Butler says, many simply can’t afford it. The big pork companies could. (The $50 million the industry agreed to pay over 25 years as part of the Smithfield Agreement could help, were the money not tied up in a lawsuit filed by Civitas Institute President Francis De Luca, who argues it should go to public schools, like any other fine the state collects. The state says the industry gave the money voluntarily.) “If somebody [from the industry] comes here and offers to put in a system at no cost to me, I’m at least interested,” Butler says. “Smithfield, they’re in dire straits with their waste. They’ve got the court cases. They need to be doing something. They need to solve their waste problem.”
Tom Butler has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into a system that converts hog waste to methane.
including hog farms, could collect in nuisance lawsuits at the reduction of their property’s fair market value. Dixon’s bill — which originally would have nullified 26 pending federal nuisance lawsuits against Murphy-Brown LLC, though that provision was later voted down — attracted strong opposition from environmentalists, industry critics and neighbors of hog farms. But the pushback ultimately proved unsuccessful; the legislature overrode Gov. Cooper’s veto on May 11. In public comments, Dixon — who has collected more than Butler’s anaerobic digester system. $115,000 from the industry throughout his political career, according to an Indy Week analysis of “For people to say they can’t go outside, ‘I can’t campaign finance records — was unsympathetic to HB barbecue, I can’t invite my neighbors over,’ those are 467’s critics. exaggerations,” he says. “Is there some odor? Yes,” he remarked at a hearing But, when asked about plaintiff Rene Miller — who on the bill. “But I would like you to close your eyes lives down the street from a Warsaw hog farm whose and imagine how ham and sausage and eggs and fried odor she says prevents her from going outside — he says chicken smell.” He also dismissed claims that pig feces he would be “glad for an invitation to her place.” landed on the houses of farms’ neighbors as “outright “Every single one of us inside and outside the lies” and said that the plaintiffs involved in nuisance industry should be concerned about Mrs. Miller,” he litigation were being “prostituted for money” by their says. “People who care about Mrs. Miller should come attorneys. In a letter to the Goldsboro News-Argus, to her defense. But [they] want to take Mrs. Miller he argued that the bill’s opposition was fomented by or any of these other folks out there and exaggerate “radical groups who have become vicious enemies of our or amplify or misrepresent. And that’s not right. Our hardworking farmers.” industry has room and in some instances a need to In person, Dixon is less bombastic. But he’s still improve. [But] when you compare where we are today unfazed by studies documenting the health and with where we are when this industry started, it’s night environmental impacts of hog operations. He also and day. Does that justify if there are still abuses, if believes the state’s regulations are sufficient, and he’s there are? No. It doesn’t.” skeptical of the lawsuits filed against Murphy-Brown. Miller says she would welcome a visit from Dixon. He brushes off claims that the farms’ odor prevents “I would ask him, ‘How does it make you feel to get plaintiffs from enjoying everyday activities. up and lie? Are you a Christian? What do you think
July 13 – 19, 2017 Cover Story
waking up in the morning?’” Miller says. “I would just look him straight in the eyes. ‘Trade places with me. You step in my shoes and let me step in your shoes. You do it for one week and see how you feel. Come live in my house and I’ll live in yours.’”
wo decades ago, Cindy Watson learned how hard it is to reform the hog industry from the outside. In 1994, Watson — a political neophyte from Duplin County — ran as a Republican for the state legislature. She found herself thrust into the swine debate during her campaign, fielding frenzied questions from constituents about her position on the “hog issue.” She had no idea what they were talking about; before running for office, she’d spent nearly two decades as a marketing agent in Wilmington, commuting to and from her home. Hog farming wasn’t on her radar. But she told her constituents she’d learn more about it. And learn about it she did. The race for the 10th District seat was tight. Watson ultimately triumphed over her opponent, Democratic incumbent Vance Alphin, but just barely. Part of her unlikely success may well be attributed to the moment in which she ran. “That’s when Newt Gingrich had the Contract with America,” she explains. “Conservative thinking was on the rise.” After taking office, Watson began hearing about the hog issue yet again. She stopped by a meeting with a group called the Alliance for a Responsible Swine Industry, which recounted industry horror stories: crippling stenches, hogs loaded in dead boxes, swarms of flies so thick you couldn’t see through them. She was stunned. “I was thinking, What is going on here?” recalls Watson, who is now retired and lives in Rose Hill, not far from Warsaw. “I said, ‘I cannot believe that this is the way that we are doing things in this state.’” Her line was flooded with calls from constituents describing deplorable conditions, she says. One came from Elsie Herring, a Duplin County resident who lived adjacent to a hog farm. Herring told Watson that waste was being sprayed all over her mother’s house. Watson says she visited the home and, upon arrival, came face-to-face with Herring’s neighbor, a hog farmer named Major Murray. The conversation was fraught, Watson recalls, with the farmer defending the spraying and accusing Herring of stirring up trouble. Before the farmer stormed off, Watson says, he told her: “Just remember, I am a damn Democrat, and you must be just a n***** lover.” (Herring recalls this quote as well. A call to Murray, who is in his eighties and has since sold the farm, was answered by a woman who told a reporter he would not talk to her “today, tomorrow, or the day after” and then hung up. In a subsequent call, the woman said Murray didn’t remember Watson and didn’t want to talk about interactions with Herring. She ended the call by saying, “You better not call here no more. We got something, we can take care of all this now — them, you, whatever. Now don’t call here no more.”) “I really wished the ground had opened up and I had gone in it,” she says. “I looked at Elsie and she looked at me and said, ‘This is what we live with.’ I said, ‘I am so
V. ‘They don’t have to give me a dime’
sorry, Elsie. We have got to change this.’” Soon after, Watson says, “Crap hit the fan. They began to watch me in the halls of the General Assembly, all the lobbyists.” Things got tenser after Watson successfully introduced a series of bills to regulate hog farming, including legislation requiring a 1,500-foot buffer between hog operations and houses and, in 1997, a temporary moratorium on the construction of new hog operations. Through her legislative pursuits, Watson knew she was taking on a powerful industry. But she wasn’t prepared for the death threat she says she received on her phone’s answering machine. “It said, ‘If you don’t back off this hog situation and if you run any more legislation, you don’t know what you’re talking about,’” Watson says. “‘You might find yourself in that Cape Fear River floating face down.’” Nothing ever came of the threat; to this day, she says she has no idea who left that message. She didn’t last long in politics. In the 1998 Republican primary, Watson was hit by a barrage of industry-funded attack ads. A coalition of the state’s largest hog producers called Farmers for Fairness spent $2.9 million targeting legislators deemed unfriendly to the industry, including an estimated $10,000 a week against Watson, according to a report by the left-leaning Democracy North Carolina. Watson narrowly lost to an industry-backed hog farmer named Johnnie Manning. Watson made her way back to Duplin, enrolled in a gardening class, got a handful of much-needed joint replacements and focused on spending time with her family. But she says she was never able to shake what happened during her stint in the legislature. And she’s incredulous that, all these years later, the same systems that disturbed her then remain in place — and that people like Elsie Herring have been living with it ever since. – Ken Fine and Erica Hellerstein
What would it take for the industry to step into Miller’s shoes — or simply to believe her? Those involved in the Murphy-Brown case present two starkly different versions of reality. The plaintiffs say hog farms are making their lives miserable, and they contend that it’s no coincidence that nearly all of the plaintiffs are poor and black. As evidence, they point to the research of Steve Wing, a now-deceased professor of epidemiology at UNC-Chapel Hill who linked proximity to hog farms to numerous health concerns and found that the state’s industrial hog operations disproportionately affect African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans. That argument has found some powerful allies, including US Sen. Cory Booker, a New Jersey Democrat who in a recent podcast interview denounced the North Carolina hog industry, which he called “evil,” for exploiting its African-American neighbors. “They fill massive lagoons with [waste] and they take that lagoon stuff and spray it over fields,” he told Pod Save America, recalling a trip to North Carolina late last year. “I watched it mist off of the property of these massive pig farms into black communities. And these African-American communities are like, ‘We’re prisoners in our own home.’ The biggest company down there [Smithfield] is a Chinese-owned company, and so they’ve poisoned black communities, land value is down, abhorrent. … This corporation is outsourcing its pain, its costs, on to poor black people in North Carolina.” Booker, whose father grew up in Hendersonville and graduated from NC Central University, wrote in a statement: “I saw firsthand in North Carolina how corporate interests are disproportionately placing environmental and public health burdens on low-income communities of color that they would never accept in their own neighborhoods. In North Carolina, large corporate pork producers are mistreating small contract farmers and externalizing their costs onto vulnerable communities, polluting the air, water and soil, and making kids and families sick while reaping large financial rewards. “And unfortunately, we know this is not just a problem in North Carolina,” he continued. “Similar environmental injustices
funding for these buyouts was included in this year’s recently passed state budget. But Gov. Cooper, through spokesman Ford Porter, says the budget — which Cooper vetoed, only to have his veto overridden — didn’t include this funding, and that’s part of the reason he vetoed it. “The agriculture and forestry industries are vital to our economy, and we should encourage them to thrive,” Porter told us. “But that shouldn’t come at the expense of clean land and water or the basic property rights of North Carolinians. That’s why Gov. Cooper vetoed both a budget that shortchanged the Clean Water Management Trust Fund [which allocated funds for the first voluntary buyout] and recent legislation [HB 467] that would limit environmental accountability of hog farmers and weaken the property rights of their neighbors.” If the legislature wanted to act, it could take a few decisive steps. There’s the option of phasing out lagoons altogether, a proposal floated by then-Gov. Jim Hunt in 1999. It could create incentives for environmentally superior waste-management technologies. It could also ratchet up oversight, perhaps restoring the number of annual inspections on hog farms from one to two. But none of those things seems likely to happen. Hunt’s idea was dead on arrival when he suggested it, and its prospects haven’t improved in the intervening 18 years. Dixon told us he has no appetite for any new incentive program, and Republican leaders in the General Assembly aren’t known for endorsing multimillion-dollar environmental initiatives. As for bolstering regulations — well, they’re not known for
that, either. This might not mean much for “Mr. and Mrs. Urbanite,” Dixon’s moniker for the city dwellers living worlds away from the farmers who grow the food they eat. But what of Rene Miller? You met her at the beginning of this series, thousands of words ago, when she was getting ready to embark on the short but grueling journey to her family’s cemetery. Next to her family plot sits a hog farm that holds more than 5,200 hogs, and the air was thick with the stench of pig feces. That smell, Miller said, has sucked the joy out of living on her family’s inherited land. And here we’re presented with one last contradiction. The industry says the lawsuits Miller and the other 500 plaintiffs filed against Murphy-Brown are about greed — “a money grab,” as Smithfield put it. Smithfield and the Pork Council both point out that the lawsuits don’t ask farmers to change specific behaviors. But Miller says, at least in her case, that couldn’t be further from the truth. “I want to be able to go outside,” she says, sitting inside her home with the windows closed. “It ain’t about money with me. I ain’t never been a money person. I ain’t never had a lot of money, so it’s not the money. I would like to go outside, chop my flowers, have a cookout, just sit out there under the tree and don’t have the smell of nothing. They don’t have to give me a dime. Just move this out of here.”
are occurring right now all over the United States. This is unacceptable to me, and I’m in the process of finding ways for the federal government to start to meaningfully address this problem.” The industry casts doubt on the plaintiffs and their motives. Hog farmers are conscientious neighbors, the industry argues, and the plaintiffs just want money. As the Pork Council’s Curliss told us: “Most farmers live on or adjacent to their farms and work hard to take good care of the land. They are an integral part of the communities in which they live. They do things the right way and strive to be good neighbors.” Dixon, meanwhile, discounts Wing’s research because it came out of UNC: “Lots of these studies begin with the end product in mind. And then they construct it for the outcome.” Then there are the environmental questions. Environmentalists blame the farms for pollution in the Neuse River and Pamlico Sound and say lagoons have the potential to leak into groundwater. They, too, have research, some of it dating back two decades, that supports their claims. Once again, the industry denies this is even an issue. Smithfield claims that hog farming “is the most highly regulated sector in all of agriculture.” So we’re left to evaluate a reality consisting of diametrically opposed viewpoints. The industry says it’s doing its best to mitigate whatever damage exists. The Pork Council, for example, makes note of its support of voluntary buyouts of lagoons located inside the Neuse’s floodplain, similar to the buyouts that happened after Hurricane Floyd struck in 1999. Curliss says
July 13 – 19, 2017 Up Front News Opinion Cover Story Culture Sportsball
’m hanging out with the wrong crowd. Despite asking my friends — and acquaintances — incessantly about restaurants I should try, nobody told me about a taco place I found on my own, a restaurant that brimmed with people during a recent dinner service and that’s home to my new favorite tacos in the area. Plenty of locals know about it apparently, just not you. Y’all let me down. Not surprisingly, this taqueria stands in the Waughtown neighborhood, a commercial and residential district in southern Winston-Salem flooded with Latin food, and Mexican in particular. It’s akin to the stretch of Gate City Boulevard in Greensboro that houses so many of the Triad’s great Mexican spots, including Mi Casita, Villa del Mar, Mercadito No. 2, San Luis and El Mariachi, though it isn’t as treacherous for pedestrians and doesn’t include as wide an array of international options. It’s no accident that I wrote one of my first Triad City Beat food articles about El Rancho Taqueria just off Waughtown Street, not far from an assortment of businesses with Spanish names, Iglesia Bautista Cristo Vive (a church) and several Latin mini-marts. But while plenty of Camel City residents primarily know this area as the home of Kermit’s Hot Dog House, it is — more importantly — home to my new favorite tacos at La Perlita. The combination restaurant/meat market is bigger than others like it, with about 25 tables, including some that could seat larger parties. La Perlita trades in everything from hand-held burritos — which aren’t easy to find around here, for some reason — to pollo
Shot in the Triad
CULTURE Enjoy the barbacoa taco of your dreams at La Perlita
by Eric Ginsburg
Clockwise from top left: The barbacoa, carnitas, carne asada and al pastor tacos at La Perlita in WinstonSalem.
food truck and Taco Riendo III. rostizado to camarones a la diabla to fried tilapia. The sopes But that’s why I’d saved the pastor and barbacoa for last. are cheap — three for $6 — and a flight of four tacos comes in The stringy-yet-hearty beef in the barbacoa reminded me of at just under $7. a variation on my Jewish grandmother’s brisket — just about That’s what I came for. the highest praise I can offer. The meat looked similar to the After some initial confusion about how to order (La Perlita Cuban dish ropa vieja in a way, or maybe a cousin of North offers table service, though this isn’t immediately apparent), I Carolina’s pulled pork, but I wouldn’t trade it for either. When snagged a table in the long, sun-kissed entryway beneath wide windows looking out onto the neighborhood. I’d picked carne I bit into this taco, I wished I’d doubled down on my instincts, and ordered three or four of these alone. asada, al pastor, carnitas and barbacoa, forgoing the more adventurous tripa (intestine), tongue and cabeza (head) choices. And then there’s the al pastor. My bar for pastor tacos is unreasonably high, but when The smell of cooking meats and the bustle of the restaurant started to raise my expectations, and I didn’t have to wait you’ve had the pork fresh from a spit roast and with a piece of pineapple that’s just been pulled off the grill, it’s hard to go long. Soon after I sat down, a server placed a tray of simple back. I felt the same way after returning from Italy, refusing tacos in front of me — just the meat, some chopped onion and a fistful of cilantro on each, with uneven radto eat the trashy pasta, bland tomatoes or over-processed cheeses I encountered back ish slices, a juicy lime wedge and some grilled spring onions between them. home for months. Visit La Perlita Tacos These are not those tacos. But the pastor I intentionally went for the carnitas and asada tacos first — they certainly looked from La Perlita still made me close my eyes Y Restaurante at 1001 briefly in satisfaction. It’s not an exaggerappealing, but knowing my own preferences, Waughtown St. (W-S). ation to say I loved it, or that I desperately I intended to save what I hoped would be the best for last. Neither disappointed, though want more. Plus, the grilled spring onions were incredible. neither left a strong impression. These are good, dependable tacos, I thought, improved slightly by the thicker green salsa My friends, acquaintances and readers may have let me down by not cluing me in to La Perlita sooner, and I considered on the table that tasted like a combination of cilantro, creamy avocado and heat. But nothing all that remarkable, especially repaying the favor by keeping this to myself. But that wouldn’t be fair to the talented folks at La Perlita, who deserve a whole in a community market with a sizeable Latino population and lot more recognition for their food. plenty of remarkable options around town, including Luciano’s
White + Wood brings the hip West Coast to the Triad
315 South Elm Street Greensboro, NC 27401
worked in hotels for 25 years, learning from “an all-star roster of chefs” before bringing his knowledge to the Triad, where he and Planeaux have found “easier living.” “We wouldn’t have been able to do this in California,” Planeaux said, noting the high cost of living and starting a business on the West Coast. The White + Wood name finds a second meaning in wine: Ngo likes white burgundy wine, and reds are aged in wooden barrels. Wine comprises most of the drink menu, which is divided into red, white, sweet, rosé and bubbly. I was pleased to see sauternes and icewine, two I haven’t found in restaurants or bars. Glasses are available for certain wines and range from $8 to $38, so you may want to bring friends and split a bottle. The cocktails are equally enticing. I tried the N(G)otorious G&T — Conniption Navy strength gin from Durham Distillery, lemon and lime slices and juniper berries in a wine glass over ice, served with a bottle of Mediterranean tonic so I could dilute the gin to taste. White + Wood also carries Sutler’s gin, a nod to the Winston-Salem distillery. My friend Shaquana ordered the Viva La Frisson, made with
Sportsball Crossword Shot in the Triad
Pick of the Week
Owner Jake Ngo worked with “an all-star roster of chefs” in the Bay Area, which shows in the small bites and entrees at White + Wood.
Live body-painting & street artists @ the Corner Bar (GSO), Friday 5 p.m. In celebration of Triad Craft Beer Week, the area’s breweries are sponsoring local artists and their work. Enjoy craft beers as street and graffiti artists create live artwork throughout the event. Face-painters will also be on hand. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.
Hangar One mandarin blossom vodka, lime, iven my predilection for staying simple syrup, cranberry and grapefruit bitters, home on the weekends, I don’t served with a slice of ginger. Both of us raved normally feel like one of the cool over its robust fruitiness and sweet/sour interkids. But last Friday night, as the play. sidewalk crowd peeked into White + The beer selection is small but exotic, includWood’s sleek storefront on South Elm ing white ale from Japan, gose from Germany, between Blue Denim and Churchill’s, I porter from Poland and Unity Vibration Kombuwas on the cutting edge of hip. by Kat Bodrie cha Bourbon Peach American Open to the public wild ale from Michigan, which since July 5, White + Wood is an upscale wine I can testify is absolutely and cocktail drinker’s dream. Foregoing the Visit White + Wood at amazing. current trend of unfinished exposed brick, all Most of the menu — food of the walls are white, both tile and painted 215 S. Elm St. (GSO) or and drink alike — is priced with brick. Tables, seats and the bar are made find it on Facebook at the working professional rathof medium-colored wood, completing the thewhiteandwood. er than the college student scheme in the name. in mind. Even then, splitting A deli case by the entrance contains meat plates and bottles is comand cheeses for small bites. Like its predecesmonplace, so don’t be afraid to bring a friend or sors, Mid-City Sandwich Shop and Fincastles, food is made in group to experience this small piece of the West the open, giving the space a democratic feel. But the beauty is Coast that Ngo and Planeaux have introduced the bar: a 12-seater, facing a healthy collection of liquor and the to our more humble region. grill/prep area, with a mirror lining the opposing wall. Owner Jake Ngo said he and partner/co-owner Patrick Kat loves red wine, Milan Kundera, and the Planeaux wanted the space to be modern, welcoming and Shins. She wears scarves at katbodrie.com. “forward.” Having recently moved from the Bay Area, Ngo
July 13 – 19, 2017 Up Front News Opinion
lack drapes hung from the ceiling, surrounding the floor-level stage. The house lights shining over the small seating area of Sternberger Auditorium dimmed and, of the darkness, the two grand pianos materialized beneath the stage lights. Sitting side by side in the middle of the stage, the instruments were held in a solemn aureole, artifacts in a temple. Illuminated and holy, the wood seemed alive in the glow. The first student came to the stage, bowed, sat at the bench, and a silence filled the room like a calmed tide before a swelling storm. A silence, a breath, a sound. And as fingers aligned on the bone-white keys, the silence became music. The master class on July 6 was one of several held throughout the monthlong Eastern Music Festival. The festival comprises dozens of acclaimed faculty members from around the country, bringing them together for such master classes, recitals and orchestral performances, all of which are available to the public.
CULTURE Famed pianist Awadagin Pratt shares his wisdom at EMF
by Spencer KM Brown
All Showtimes @ 9:00pm Crossword
7/14 Drat The Luck, Taylor Bays and
the Laser Rays, Van Huskies, Tight Fright 7/15 Peter May & the Maybirds, Shalini
Shot in the Triad
Chatergee 7/16 President Sam, Paperback, Lyra,
Look A Ghost, Fortezza
7/18 False Accusations, Born Hollow
701 N Trade Street Winston-Salem, NC 27101
As the first student of famed pianist and composer Awadagin Pratt’s master class played Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major, Pratt sat off to the side in the darkness, watching, listening, as if merely another face in the small crowd. Pratt glanced every so often at the concerto’s score which lay open in his lap, and then closed his eyes, listening intensely to the performance. As the student, Madison Blake, finished and took a bow, Pratt walked onto stage and the lesson began. Seemingly oblivious to the audience, Pratt jumped right into the piece with Blake. Beginning with a notoriously difficult section, he sat down at the second piano, and began a call and response type of lesson. Directing his voice and attention solely to the student, Pratt gave the history of the piece, expounded on the subtle notes and led Blake through each troubling spot — which went unheard by the audience, but Pratt’s expert ear picked up from one performance. Getting an early start on his career, Pratt entered the University of Illinois when he was 16, studying piano, violin and conducting. He later Awadagin Pratt instructs a student at the Eastern Music SPENCER KM BROWN enrolled at the Peabody Conservatory of Music Festival at Guilford College. and became the first student in the school’s history to receive diplomas in three performance to the first measures of the piece, which opens with fast and areas — piano, violin and conducting. Pratt has performed meticulous fingering, difficult for even the greatest of pianists with countless orchestras and won numerous awards for his to perform without flaw. But while the piece is famous for its achievements; among them the Naumburg International difficult nature, Pratt calmly dove into the lesson measure by Piano Competition; two years later he was awarded an Avery measure, taking special time to speak about the accents and Fisher Career Grant. Recently, Pratt was named one of the 50 dynamics which make the piece what it is. Leaders of Tomorrow in Ebony magazine’s 50th anniversary “Without all of Balakirev’s notes and directions, the piece issue. For the Eastern Music Festival, hosting faculty of such fails,” Pratt said to the student. “You have to take the time prominence remains a standard for each passing year since to study each accent, each pause between notes, in order to its inception in 1961. And though Pratt’s career achievements bring it to life.” alone are enough to astound any music fan, seeing such Pratt demonstrated extensive knowledge of each piece; a master at work was something else from merely hearing the student’s perforentirely. mance once, his recall of precisely the way The second student of the recital perin which the student played was perfect The Eastern Music Festival formed Balakirev’s Islamey, op.18. Arguand seemed effortless, as if he had studied runs until July 29. For more ably one of the single most difficult comtheir performances for years. positions to play on piano, the student, information on tickets The master class ended with performTabea Klees, earned a respectful applause er Kevin Takeda playing Rachmaninov’s and concert schedules visit for her performance. And, similar to all of Piano Concerto No.3 in D minor. Pratt easternmusicfestival.org. the students, Pratt took the remarkable took special interest on this piece from work by the student and strove to make a composer’s point of view. He walked it even better with the half-hour lesson through the concerto’s dynamics with the he had to work with. Wasting no time, Pratt moved directly students, reminding them of the importance of context within the entire orchestra. Pick of the Week Pratt’s teaching was full of seemingly simple notes for the students but are merely the tip of a vast iceberg in which lies Vaughan Penn @ O. Henry Hotel (GSO), Saturday, 6:30 an entire history of classical music. Patience and nearly spirp.m. itual reverence for every note, every measure marked Pratt’s Singer-songwriter Vaughan Penn has opened for various vast knowledge and expertise when it comes to the piano pernational acts and has had her music placed in more than formance. A silence, a breath, a sound. And suddenly a piece 150 films and television shows. Craft cocktails and tapas of music comes to life. will be available. For more information, visit ohenryhotel. com.
Shot in the Triad
Large 1-topping pizza
WE ! DELIVER
landestine Koopalings, question blocks, mushrooms and a goomba — all icons of Super Mario — adorned the top of a Dewey’s Bakery cake in the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Arts, or SECCA, on July 6. Arts for Life — a nonprofit that provides arts programming for children with serious illnesses and disabilities — held its third annual showcase at SECCA featuring cake-form renderings of patient’s sweets-inspired paintings. As always, patient Allen Choyce took the staff’s prompt to another level, complementing his artwork with a mischievous tale. “[My cake] is based off a Super Mario game,” Choyce said. “The premise is that Bowser, the main antagonist in that game, hid himself and his children (the Koopalings) in the cake and then they give it to Mario and they jump out at him.” Arts for Life recruited bakers in the Triad region to bring their patients’ paintings into actuality. “As soon as one of my decorators knew it was a Super Mario design, I was like, ‘This is the best one we could have picked,’” Danielle DiLizio, cake decorating manager at Dewey’s, said. “We ran with his idea to put the Dewey’s touch on it because we always like to go a little above and beyond.” LAUREN BARBER The team’s interpretation delighted Choyce. Allen Choyce, 14, stands beside his Super Mario-inspired cake painting and Dewey’s Bakery’s reproduction at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art. “Not only did they re-create it in a way that makes it better but they also added in more things from Super Mario,” he said. with kids in the hospital who need a little bit of sweetness in Choyce’s mother found herself re“It’s amazing.” their life.” flecting on the bigger picture, though. Choyce, 14, lives with sickle cell disease and has participated Betsey McLawhorn, Brenner’s Arts for Life “This is a wonderful in all three Arts for Life events at SECCA. program director, said shows like “Cake Boss” night,” Caren Choyce, “When SECCA holds these shows, it’s a great opportunity and “Cupcake Wars” inspired her to develop this said. “It’s very inspiring to release the creativity stockpiled in a lot of kids’ minds,” Learn more about year’s project. and encouraging. I know Choyce said. “When you’re in the hospital, there aren’t a lot of Arts for Life at “Every year, I try to find a new group to colthis whole thing is going things you can do, and Arts for Life is an outlet.” laborate with and we hadn’t done culinary arts artsforlifenc.org. to be part of showing Kelsey Brown, the program assistant at the Brenner’s chapyet,” McLawhorn said. “The bakers we engaged him he can go above and ter of the organization and a friendly face to Choyce, teaches were fabulous [and] for the kids to be able to beyond to accomplish art in the hospital’s oncology and hematology unit. see their artwork in a museum is a big deal. It’s wonderful for anything that he wants as long as he “Most of the patients have long-term illnesses so I get to them to be able to get out of the hospital and enjoy this.” puts his mind to it. This is an example of know them and their families,” Brown said. “It’s awesome to The pop-up exhibit showcased 11 framed paintings. The 100 what he can achieve.” be able to go in their hospital room and give them a choice of attendees could enter raffles for the cakes, but proceeds from “We’ve taught him not to let his something fun they can do. They’re allowed to say no when so the paintings directly benefitted the artist’s family. Several illness make him… that he can be who often in the hospital they can’t.” children also participated in a cake walk, a raffle-based game he wants to be,” she added. “We tell Choyce consistently impresses Brown. similar to musical chairs, for small prizes. him, ‘Just because you have your illness “Allen’s an incredible artist already and is always doing cool “It’s a great feeling to find out that other people who appreit doesn’t mean that great things can’t stuff,” she said. “He changes the themes [of our projects] to ciate art as much — if not more — than you do, like your art,” happen,’ because look what’s happenvideo games and shows he likes. He’s the most incredible kid, Choyce said. ing tonight.” [and] super talented and so smart. He wants to be a doctor.” Choyce expressed gratitude for Arts for Life. “When I was admitted into Brenner’s Hospital Pick of the Week I sometimes needed a way to pass the time,” Choyce continued. “I’d go over to the Arts for Life Kaleideum After Dark @ room and draw. Drawing has always been one of Downtown Kaleideum my more prominent passions.” (W-S), Friday 6 p.m. Arts for Life’s collaboration with SECCA and Celebrate Bastille Day at Triad bakeries cultivated a dynamic and poignant a special Kaleideum event one-night exhibit. designed for the 21+ crowd. “SECCA’s been an incredible partner,” Rachel In addition to performances every Zink, co-founder and executive director of Arts by local bands and various Good through 7/19/17 Tuesday, for Life, said. “The bakeries went above and games, the Taqueria Luciaall day Monday – Thursday beyond, too. It was a different project than just no food truck slings tacos asking a bakery to donate for an event; this is a Order online at pizzerialitaliano.net and burritos. For informaunique, creative, fun way for them to connect tion, visit kaleideum.org. 219 S Elm Street, Greensboro •
CULTURE Kooplings, cakes and healing at SECCA
by Lauren Barber
Red, white and basketball fill the Immigrant Youth Festival
ike so many others on Independence Day, Bobby Sarteh’s shirt sported a flag with recognizable red and white stripes, and a starry blue corner to boot. But despite the July 4 holiday, Sarteh donned the Liberian flag — which is very similar to the American stars & stripes — on his shirt, and a hat reading “Liberia” to match it. by Joel Sronce Sarteh posed for a picture in front of a tall red, white and blue banner that hung from a chain-link fence. While his shirt might’ve read “God bless Liberia,” he smiled as he held a small plastic wand that trumpeting three letters from its tip: “USA.” Therein lies the duality that many of the day’s participants embodied, and embraced. At Jalloh’s Upright Services’ Immigrant Youth Festival, intersections of the United States and other nationalities abounded. In fact, the event took place in order to bring together and celebrate those crossroads of cultural traditions that dominate the lives of many in Greensboro. All around the outdoor-court area near Walker Avenue on UNCG’s campus, common July 4 traditions coupled with international ones: Nigerian music boomed from the DJ’s speakers, though many of the songs were in English, and dozens of hot dogs crisped on the grill, while traditional African dishes of plantains and jollof rice steamed nearby. Sport bridged the traditions, too. Months before, Anthony Fannoh III, who works with the African Youth Initiation and NC A&T University’s African Aggies Coalition, came to Franca Jalloh — founder and director of Jalloh’s Upright Services of NC — with an idea. The nonprofit aiming to support and empower low-income immigrant families offers assistance in English, reading and writing, citizenship, adult education, affordable housing and other means by which to navigate a foreign and challenging US system. As Jalloh’s event provided an opportunity to learn more about the United States while raising funds to help sponsor some immigrant families in need, Fannoh wanted to use sport for a similar purpose. “[I thought]: Let’s do something out of the norm,” Fannoh recalled in an interview at the event, referring to the popular game of soccer. “Let’s do basketball.” With Fannoh and a couple others at the helm, the Immigrant Youth Festival’s main event was a 3-on-3 basketball tournament. A few dozen young men from around North Carolina, most of them immigrants or refugees, contributed $50 per team to participate. Though soccer might eclipse basketball for many, strong drives to the hoop, accurate shots from well behind the arc and merciless rejections at the rim proved that basketball wasn’t too far out of the norm for some of the players. The games combined contentious outbursts (“You slapped my face!” “You slapped your own face!”) with the ease and humor of the event’s convivial spirit. The first “referee” — clearly a hapless companion assigned to mediate the early games — stood under the goal, wholly occupied by matters on his phone. A score of players waiting for their round to begin chided him at every ignored collision of players. “For the third time,” the young ref pronounced, addressing a burst of disapproval yet still not looking up from his phone. “You call your own fouls!” Many displaced people look to sports as a way to turn their heads homeward — a means of revisiting a previous life and of maintaining a tradition. Yet sometimes sports for refugees and immigrants can play the role of connecting with a new place and forming new traditions. “[African refugees and immigrants] have an idea of what basketball is, but not the concept of it,” Eddie Boye — one of the tournament’s organizers — said between games. “It exposes them to new experiences. They can say, ‘I’m a little bit American now.’” Given the political climate currently encroaching on the lives of many immigrants and refugees, patriotism and a celebration of the United States
A player barely gets off a shot at the Immigrant Youth Festival’s 3-on-3 tournament.
can be complex. According to Jalloh, it’s a tradition in which many have never engaged. “[Some community members] have not celebrated independence in this country ever, and they’ve been here 20 or 30 years,” Jalloh explained. “They’ve looked out their window and seen fireworks and that’s it.” But Jalloh, an immigrant herself, hoped the event could embolden those around her. “[The event was] a strong, loud message that immigrants are here to stay,” she said. “Accept us with our accents, accept us with our different cultural backgrounds, and we’re going to celebrate this country that we’re a part of.”
Pick of the Week Pure Pro Wrestling @ Winston-Salem Fairgrounds (W-S), Friday, 6 p.m. Current tag-team champions the Boys take on Garrison & Kross in the main event. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.
‘Arrangement in Black and White’ another freestyle puzzle. by Matt Jones
Playing July 14 – 16
Midnight Radio KARAOKE!
It’s Bar Karaoke with a HUGE SCREEN, A BIG HEART, and COMMUNITY Featuring your host CLINTON! 11 p.m. Saturday, July 14th. Free admission!
Playing July 13 – 15
The Escape From New York Comedy Tour!
Four New York Comedians Escape One Over Populated Town Featuring Ryan Brown, Eric Neumann, Ron Nobles, and Johnny Figaro 8:30 p.m. Fri., July 14. Tickets $10
--OTHER EVENTS & SCREENINGS--
Board Game Night FEATURING ALL NEW GAMES! 7 p.m. Friday, July 14th. More than 100 BOARD GAMES -- FREE TO PLAY! Saturday Morning Cartoons BRAND NEW LINEUP 10 a.m. & 12 p.m. Saturday, July 15th. FREE ADMISSION
TV CLUB: Twin Peaks: The Return 10 p.m. Sunday, July 16th. Free Admission with Drink Purchase!
2134 Lawndale Drive, Greensboro idiotboxers.com • 336-274-2699
204 S. Westgate Dr., Greensboro
Sunday Service @ 10:30am
Shot in the Triad
Totally Rad Trivia $3 buy-in! Cash prize! 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 18th Beer! Wine! Amazing Coffee! 2134 Lawndale Drive, Greensboro geeksboro.com •
OTHER SHOWS Open Mic 8:30 p.m. Thurs., July 13. 5 tickets! Friday Night Standup Presents Steve Lesser and the 101 Comedy Grads. 10 p.m. Fri., July 14 Family Improv 4 p.m. Sat., July 15. $6 Tickets! Saturday Night Improv 8:30 p.m. & 10 pm. Sat., June 15. $10 tickets! Discount tickets available @ Ibcomedy.yapsody.com
TV CLUB: It’s Winter Baby! 9 p.m. Sunday, July 16th. Free Admission with Drink Purchase!
sons” episode It’s between Laredo and Nuevo Laredo Unimaginably long time Jordan Spieth’s org. Get in the way of Auto ad stat Frivolous type Latent Receive, as a penalty “Join me for a ride!” Ecclesiastical vestment Airport bathroom lineup Mediterranean fruit trees ... ... whose leaves covered him up “Rendezvous With ___” (Arthur C. Clarke novel) Word after ring or coin
30 31 32 35 37 38 40 42 44 45 46 48 49 50 51
Down 1 Boston ___ Orchestra 2 ___ to go (stoked) 3 Cervenka of early punk rock 4 Borat, really 5 Abandoned property dweller 6 Pilfer 7 ___-majestÈ (insulting the king) 8 Years, in Chile 9 Olden days 10 Zany 11 Indian, for one 12 Have no leads to follow up on 13 What a person who can eat constantly without gaining weight is said to have 14 Situate between 22 Op. ___ (bibliography abbr.) 24 Compound present in beer 25 Spanish actress and frequent “Love Boat” guest star
Across 1 Get the DVD going 10 When doubled, a Japanese telephone greeting 15 Mole ___ (sauce named for a Mexican state) 16 ___ impulse 17 Ancestor 18 Passed out 19 One of Sri Lanka’s official languages (besides Tamil and English) 20 “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” author Eric 21 “Cool!” 22 Synagogue singer 23 Father’s Day gift that accessorizes another Father’s Day gift 27 U.S.-based Maoist group of the 1970s-80s (or an abbreviation ©2017 Jonesin’ Crosswords (firstname.lastname@example.org) for the thing you’re solving) 28 It may be captured from your laptop 32 Sport with mallets 33 Earlier offense 34 Kid’s game 35 Gives the eye 36 Bird on Canadian coins 37 Scout’s honor? 39 “That’s so weird!” online 40 Chaotic states 41 “The Imitation Game” subject 43 “___ come to my attention ...” 47 Scottish families 48 “Not even close!” 52 Therefore 53 “High Sierra” actress Answers from previous publication. 54 Invest (with) 55 University of South Carolina team [giggle] 26 Latin suffix after “bio” or “techno” 56 Daniel of “Home Alone” 28 Figures in Pollock paintings? 57 Savvy 29 Neologism paired with “embiggen” on a “Simp-
July 13 – 19, 2017
Eastchester Drive, High Point
Shot in the Triad
SHOT IN THE TRIAD
Jim Ferree, a 20-year US Army veteran, protests outside Sen. Thom Tillis’ High Point office every Tuesday with members of Indivisible High Point. PHOTO BY CAROLYN DE BERRY
The Nussbaum Center for Entrepreneurship... connect your business to success. 336-379-5001
Keeping the family land and reconciling with historyI
Opinion Cover Story Culture Sportsball
my parents managed when I was a child. It wasn’t there. It had been cleared some time ago when the casinos became popular. I’m not sure if it was replaced by a new road, or a hotel or gift shops. But I was deeply disturbed by its disappearance. It felt as if the physical evidence of our hard work and our very existence had just vanished. Perhaps, even when there are painful memories attached to a space, it’s important for that space to still exist because it allows you to validate your struggle. If you can return to that space having overcome it, the victory feels even sweeter. Maybe this is the time to start a new chapter in the family history. When I took my husband to see the property for the first time, he was surprised by how beautiful it was. Like me, he could see potential. We could build our own small vacation cabin there. It could be our retreat whenever we need a break. Later, over beers at a brewery in downtown Bryson City, we marveled at the Tuckaseegee River below, framed by a backdrop of greenery so lush that it almost seemed tropical. I told my husband how different the town is today, compared to when I grew up there. I couldn’t think about anything beyond getting to the other side of the Smoky Mountains. I wanted to be somewhere more urban and sophisticated. I wanted to go to art museums, shopping malls and fine restaurants. I actually wanted to live somewhere that had traffic. Downtown Bryson City is about five miles from my property. It has coffee shops, breweries, a boutique hotel and, for now, free parking. Our place is up a mountain on a private road. It’s quiet there. There are other homes nearby, but it feels secluded and safe. “I could be happy here,” my husband said. I think I could be, too.
lung cancer. I thought about how isolated she must have felt, so far from her own family in Japan. I wonder if she fantasized about being with them again or if she daydreamed about her girlhood before the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor — before her own childhood became so difficult. Perhaps my parents connected because both struggled with their own demons. My father’s family was so poor, he wore his older sister’s clothing. His classmates teased him for it. He lied about his age so that he could join the military before he graduated from high school. I loved my grandparents, but I know my grandfather could be very cruel. Who knows what my father witnessed in Vietnam. I know he had nightmares. I probably never want to know what he had to do there. My mother’s family was wealthy. But during “the war” (World War II), their money couldn’t buy anything. They moved from the city and learned to be resourceful to survive. My mother also had nightmares. I walked around the last home they shared, and felt sorrow for their losses. I felt sad for what they endured and how their pain shaped their attitudes and actions throughout the rest of their lives. But something else emerged within me. I looked at the apple trees, the blueberry and fig bushes and the leafy Japanese vegetables that my mother had planted so many years ago, and I saw beauty. Peace. And hope. A forest of bamboo has grown in some areas, threatening to overtake whatever is in its path. I remember hunting for bamboo shoots with my mother when I was a child. I’m sure she’d find an abundant crop there now. I’d struggled with some remorse at the thought of selling my family’s property. My grandparents, with whom I had spent so much of my childhood, had lived down the hill. All that’s left of their house today is the brick chimney. The weeds are so overgrown that you can barely see it from the road below. A few years ago, I drove through Cherokee to look for the campground that
fell in love with the blackberry bushes. It was early June, and most of the berries were red and smallish. But I knew in just another month they would ripen and look like shiny, black jewels sparkling in the sunlight. by Tina Firesheets They beckoned me from the banks of my family’s property in the mountains, reminding me of so many summer mornings when I used to pick blackberries with my grandmother. A couple months ago I’d written that I intended to sell some land that I inherited when my father passed away. I had spent most of my youth daydreaming about what my life could be outside of the Appalachian Mountains in western North Carolina. I had little interest in returning there, and my family here could benefit from the money. As it turned out, the realtor said she could only list it for about half of its tax value. I was surprised. And disappointed. But after she left, I walked around the property and really took a look around. I saw potential. My parents had moved there when I left home for college. In the years between my father’s passing and now, I had rented the property to cousins. I may have stayed overnight a couple of times before my mother passed away, but most of my visits were brief and taskoriented. Clearing my mother’s closets and packing her belongings into my car after she died. Trying to pack the things my father might need in the nursing home. Or meeting my cousins on occasion for one reason or another. I found it very hard to return. There were a lot of painful memories attached to being there, and the trick to leaving them behind was to make those visits as short as possible. It angered me that my father began seeing someone before my mother even passed away. It infuriated me even more when they married on the anniversary of my mother’s death. It made me sad to think of my mother all alone in their trailer, near death and struggling to breathe from
OPEN 365 DAYS, NOON TO 2 A.M. Ages 18 and up
kravekava.com • Krave Greensboro 202 Exchange Place, Greensboro • 919-408-9596
Kava, Kratom, Cacao, Yerba Mate, CBDs
Shot in the Triad