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February 1 - 7, 2012


February 1 - 7, 2012

jacksonian

VOL.

1 0 N O . 21

contents M.V. JANTZEN

CAMILLE MOENKHAUS

6 Arena Dreams City Council gives the OK to a D.C. firm to study the economic impact of a sports areana. MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

Cover design by Kristin Brenemen

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THIS ISSUE:

An odd tale of a pardoned trusty with an Aryan Brotherhood tattoo who traveled to Wyoming. COURTESY NEW STAGE THEATRE

andrea lynn phillips had complications that could be taken care of if they had early medical care,” she says. Phillips credits her success and the success of her three siblings to her parents, who instilled the love of reading and service in their children. Her late father, Clarence, was a high school principal before becoming a guidance counselor, and her mother, Bernice, is a retired home-economics teacher of 35 years. In 2001, her parents received their golden diplomas, which are given at 50-year class reunions, from Jackson State. “That meant a lot. They were great examples,” Phillips says. Her siblings are business owners and a teacher. Phillips tries to instill the love of reading in her two children, Alicia, who is in her mid-30s, and Justin, 20. She is a member of Central Medical Society but recently removed her membership from the Mississippi State Medical Association because it took a stand against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. “There are things in it I don’t agree with … but it’s for the greater good. These people aren’t lying around. They are working people,” Phillips says of her patients. Along with her practice, Phillips’ focus is clinical research. She has worked in more than 60 trials as an investigator to ensure minorities are represented well. “Women, black people, elderly … are underrepresented in drug development,” she says. —LaShanda Phillips

26 Scrimmage New Stage Theatre presents “Lombardi,” a play about a coach who did the right thing.

36 Popeye These spinach-pie appetizers will give you strength when you need it. And they taste great.

jacksonfreepress.com

Dr. Andrea Lynn Phillips does a lot with a little at her practice, Phillips Medical Services. She and her staff of seven provide medical care to mostly uninsured patients at a discounted price at the Westland Plaza Clinic (909 Ellis Ave., 601-948-8501). Several people have asked her why she chooses to work in west Jackson, an area that’s declining. Phillips stuck with her location after she spent one unfulfilling year, in 1995, at a well-known practice in Flowood. “Serving the underserved … I have a particular calling to serve those. They deserve as good of care as anyone. My mission is to provide quality care with dignity,” Phillips says. The Mendenhall native has lived in Jackson for 30 years. She received her bachelor’s in chemistry in 1979 from Jackson State University and her medical degree in 1987 from the University of Mississippi Medical Center. After spending half her career working for other people, she opened Phillips Medical Services 11 years ago. “I decided it was time to do it the way I always envisioned it,” she says. Phillips decided to become a doctor after volunteering at a Mendenhall clinic while she was in high school in 1974. Some of the tasks she helped with were changing the dressings on diabetics with ulcers on their legs and feet and taking vital signs. The less-than-quality treatment that some of the poor patients received sparked a flame in her to help. “They

ALPHA

4 ..............Editor’s Note 4 ................... Slowpoke 6 .......................... Talks 10 ................... Business 12 ................... Editorial 12 ................. Mike Day 12 ..................... Stiggers 13 .................. Opinion 26 ............... Diversions 28 ......................... Film 29 ..................... 8 Days 30 .............. JFP Events 31 .......... Music Listing 34 ...................... Sports 39 ................. Astrology 39 ..................... Puzzles 41 ................. Body/Soul

Return for Oz

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editor’snote

Dafna Linzer Dafna Linzer is a reporter at ProPublica. Her coverage of Guantanamo and federal detention won the 2010 Overseas Press Club award for General Excellence and was honored by the American Bar Association. She co-wrote the cover story.

Jennifer LaFleur Jennifer LaFleur was the computer-assisted reporting editor for The Dallas Morning News, and on the investigative team. She has won awards for disability, legal and opengovernment issues coverage. She co-wrote the cover story.

R.L. Nave Reporter R.L. Nave grew up in St. Louis, graduated from Mizzou (the University of Missouri), and lived a bunch of other places before coming to Jackson. Contact him at 601-362-6121 ext. 12 with story tips. He contributed to the cover package.

Clay A. McCollum Clay A. McCollum recently graduated from the University of Mississippi with degrees in voice and French. He plans to begin a master’s program in music history and criticism. He wrote a play review.

Greg Pigott Greg Pigott is truly an avid fan of every kind of music. He’s also the guy who takes karaoke seriously. He wrote a music piece for this issue.

Alonzo Lewis II Alonzo Lewis II is a native of Coila, Miss. He started cooking at age 5. He is a writer for The Examiner and owns Coila’s Crossroads Bistro. His motto is “Food so good that it will make your tongue slap your brains out.” He wrote a food piece.

Bryan Flynn Sports writer Bryan Flynn is a lifelong Mississippi native who just moved to north Jackson. When not writing for the JFP, he writes a national blog, playtowinthegame.com. He lives with his wife and their four cats. Follow him @jfpsports.

February 1 - 7, 2012

Mike Day

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At the “Hindsonian” at Hinds Community College, Mike Day won top cartoonist awards from the Mississippi Press Association and the Columbia Scholastic Press Association in New York. He was also a cartoonist for the Hattiesburg American.

by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief

Choosing The Light

I

n my line of work, people like to talk trash about you. And there’s really something about a woman speaking her mind that just hacks off a lot of men, and some women. And Lord help me if I dare tell them they can’t do the nasty all over the Jackson Free Press website (inevitably using a cowardly fake name). They go off and start websites, and blogs, and Facebook pages to mete out their revenge. We’re used to it by now. Let’s see: years ago, the Jackson Freak Press website was ostensibly a “parody,” including a drawing of me “whipping” Todd and a link of the actual name of a friend’s child to a picture of genital warts. As I recall, our main crime was criticizing the Iraq War and George W. Bush before others did. And, of course, being too “liberal.” Hilarious, huh? Then there was the guy who got kicked off our site twice—he begged back on once— for getting crazy out of control any time immigration came up, even threatening to kick a Hispanic reporter’s ass for challenging him. We didn’t believe he would do it, but this isn’t the kind of person you want around, so we expelled him on the second strike. Since then, he’s concocted some humdingers about me and the JFP—from stating as fact that I had posted something on The Clarion-Ledger site (about the POTUS; I didn’t), to saying I was defending Robbie Bell for not reporting Heather Spencer’s death sooner (I didn’t; he twisted a comment from me criticizing her; I sarcastically added that the only excuse for not calling the police sooner was that she was zonked out from sleeping pills; this genius turned it into me only saying she was zonked out from sleeping pills as if I was defending her), to calling me a journalistic “slut” for giving Sheriff McMillin a forum to dispute some character assassination that blog had inflicted on him without asking him to respond. And you wouldn’t believe the whoppers and the exaggerations and the half-truths and outright lies I’ve seen about our company and our staff in cyberspace. It’s par for the course. But I learned several years back to not “feed the troll.” They crave attention, and if I give it to them by responding, then they pile on saying I’m “playing the victim” or acting like I caused the whole thing in the first place rather than showing up to set their false claims straight. If I challenge one of their lies, they suddenly claim it was “opinion” (clearly not having learned libel law) and their “constitutional” right. (One doesn’t have a constitutional right to lie about others.) So for the most part, I’ve chosen to ignore them. These guys are playing at what they do, and we are not. Most are scared to attach their names or, heaven forbid, say the same thing to people’s faces. I attach my name to everything I write, and I will say anything I write to their faces, as a couple of them have discovered. I am not afraid of the phone, and I can look someone in the face and be direct.

But some of it is becoming hard to ignore: These blogs (and their commenters) are bashing women and being cheered on for it. Usually the worst they call a man is a communist or a wimp or some other sophomoric phrase. When talking about women they disagree with, though, the language gets more disturbing, and is often steeped in the language of sexual violence: whore, slut, skank, even the c-word. They often tuck it into something they think looks acceptable. (As in “journalistic slut.”) They are more likely to talk about a woman’s body parts than they are her legal argument. Last week I learned that a local man had posted a vicious diatribe on a Facebook page clearly created for complaints about not winning Best of Jackson awards. Remarkably, he chose to create a long, false story about me, call me the “c*nt in chief” of the Jackson Free Press and attach his real name to it. He wrote that I was banned from a domestic-abuse fundraiser last fall (while I was on vacation) because I was such a horror to people there that the mother of Heather Spencer herself threw me out, and banned me and other JFP people from future events. I guess this dude thought we antidomestic-abuse women don’t talk to each other. But I immediately called Heather’s mother on her cell, who called the organizer of the event, Mary Ann Kirby, who kindly sent me a statement disavowing knowledge of the lie without me asking for one. I then looked up the guy’s home number and dialed it; his elderly parents told me they’d never heard of him. I blogged about it, outing him by name and posting the statement.

Then something different happened. The culprit messaged me on Facebook and apologized. Numerous times. He told me his lie was costing him friends he’d had since middle and high school. He said he has a problem with hurting people and promised to get help. He wanted to make it right. A cynic might say that he was afraid of getting sued. But I chose to believe him because you have to be broken to do what he did to me, and to himself—and to lie about someone you don’t know. He wanted to make it right; I told him to come completely clean under my blog post and while he was at it, to apologize to all women for using the c-word. He did all that, and even posted it back on the anti-JFP Facebook page later that day. I like to think good will come out of this incident. I chose to confront it publicly because it was so egregious and involved other good people. But when he showed up with an apology, I realized it was the first time I’d seen any of the hate-slingers I’ve dodged over the years actually be man enough to apologize. And I was thrilled to see how many other people were speaking out against his scam publicly and to me (and apparently him) privately. That’s the way to change it, folks. I believe there are two types of people in the world: builders and destroyers. You either spend time trying to build a better future for all, or you tear other people down. Destroyers can change, even when it’s pitch black all around. They just have to reach for the light. That evening, I wished my new, uh, friend well and told him: “It’s never too late to become a better, more respected person. … I’m rooting for you.” And I meant it.


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news, culture & irreverence

Thursday, Jan. 26 The U.S. Department of Defense proposes limiting troop pay raises, increasing health insurance fees for retirees and closing some U.S. bases. ‌ City of Jackson code enforcement officers add 27 properties to its list of “grass-and-weedsâ€? or “board-upâ€? cases to resolve. The process allows residents 15 days to correct the problems. Friday, Jan. 27 The U.S. Commerce Department reports that the nation’s economic output grew at an annualized rate of 2.8 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists say this means another recession is unlikely. ‌ Skylar Laine Harden, 17, of Brandon is one of 40 candidates on the new season of Fox’s “American Idol.â€? Saturday, Jan. 28 Riot police attack Occupy Oakland protestors with tear gas and arrest 300 people, including at least five journalists covering the conflict. ‌ BP emails show the company tried to hide the Deepwater Horizon oil-spill rate. Sunday, Jan. 29 A Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction audit shows that the U.S. Defense Department cannot account for about $2 billion in Iraq-related expenses. ‌ More than 1,000 partygoers celebrate the Best of Jackson 2012 with the Jackson Free Press at the King Edward Hotel.

February 1 - 7, 2012

Monday, Jan. 30 President Barack Obama hosts a Google+ Hangout from the West Wing of the White House. ‌ Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood announces that authorities found pardoned trusty Joseph Ozment in Laramie, Wyo.

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Tuesday, Jan. 31 The winner of the Florida Republican primary gets 50 delegates at the GOP’s national convention this summer. ‌ Blacks in Mississippi have less access to affordable, reliable broadband service, a report says. Daily news updates at jfpdaily.com.

Arena Back on the Table

C

ity leaders fear that one day, the USA International Ballet Competition could leave Jackson because Thalia Mara Hall needs about $9 million in repairs. “We stand the risk of losing it to other cities,� Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. told the Jackson City Council during its Jan. 24 meeting. He said other municipalities would jump at the chance to host the IBC. The council voted Jan. 24 to pay an outof-state firm to study the economic impact and need for an entertainment and sports venue in Jackson. Brailsford and Dunlavey of Washington, D.C., will evaluate the feasibility of a sports arena and suggest the best size, cost and location of a new facility. They’ll also schedule the first three months of events. After the city issued a formal request for proposals and received responses, an internal committee selected Brailsford and Dunlavey. Mayor Johnson said that a private group had raised $70,000 in pledges for an arena study in 2010. “They hit a snag,� the mayor said. “I decided to take it over. We weren’t able to get $70,000 in pledges.� The city is still seeking private funds to help offset the costs. The city is tying the possible sports arena to the future of Thalia Mara Hall. Brailsford and Dulavey’s sports arena study will cost $109,000; an additional Thalia Mara Hall study will cost no more than $15,000. The firm will study the hall for the economic im-

At the Jan. 23 work session, representatives from Brailsford and Dunlavey told the council how they would conduct the study. Jason Thompson, a senior associate with the firm, said that the initial step is a market study. Next would come a feasibility study, then an impact study. The final step is implementation, and City leaders are tying the future of Thalia Mara Hall to a Thompson said his firm sports-arena economic-impact study. would plan the first two or three months of events pact its improvements might have on Jackson’s and operations. They will even develop a budcentral business district. get for a sports arena. “This is not a cookieThalia Mara Hall has had improvements cutter study,� he said. in recent years, including a new roof, new Brailsford and Dunlavey specializes in seats, a new orchestral shell and a new floor. program management and facility planning It still needs $9 million of work. “IBC is one for schools, universities, sports organizations of our biggest tourist venues,� Councilman and municipalities. Quentin Whitwell said at the Jan. 24 City The firm would consult with Dale PartCouncil meeting. “Support of our arts is criti- ners Architects, a Jackson firm, and SOL cal. We could spend a little to make a lot.� Engineering, also based in Jackson. In addiCouncil members had a chance question tion, Brailsford and Dunlavey will work with the proposed study before voting. Chicago-based CLK Consulting, a firm that “What is this group going to tell us that specializes in operations and programming of we can’t figure out for ourselves?� Ward 2 sports events. Councilman Chokwe Lumumba asked. ARENA, see page 7

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by Valerie Wells

M.V. JANTZEN

Wednesday, Jan. 25 The Federal Reserve says will continue to hold down interest rates for 18 months to spur growth. It plans to keep short-term interest rates near zero until late 2014. ‌ The Mississippi Development Authority promotes drilling for natural gas in the Gulf of Mexico to help the state’s economy.

Franklin D. Roosevelt issued the largest number of presidential pardons of any U.S. president, at 3,687.

Harrison Michael II is one of 11 people vying for the Ward 3 council seat. p8

You know it had to happen. They’re too cowardly to put their real names to their angry posts. If you watch closely enough, you realize they must be using the Anonymous Blogger playbook. Here are top entries: • “Only ignorant s@#$s and c$%^&s disagree with me.â€? • “It is my opinion that _____________ is a liar, embezzler and a murder.â€? • “Everyone I hate is a Marxist!â€? • “Don’t you dare call me a fascist!â€? • “Bahahahahahahahaha.â€? • Anything and everything starting with “Hmmmmmmmm‌â€? • “What’s up with that attorney’s breast size?! Bahahahaha.â€? • “Hey, baby, you don’t know me, but I love those pink shorts you wore yesterday.â€? • “I was banned from that site because I disagreed, not because I’m a jerk.â€? • “It is my constitutional right to tell any lie about anyone at any time and place of my choosing.â€?

• “It’s Jim Hood’s fault.â€? • “Don’t you dare talk back to me; that’s violating my free SPEACH RITES!â€? • “You’ll have to pry my cold, dead hands off this keyboard before I’ll step outside this attic.â€? • “Talk to people? You mean, in person? For real? Hmmm. No.â€? • “People who challenge me are playing the victim. And they suck eggs.â€? • “I’m so misunderstood.â€? • “Dern it, I slept on my tin-foil hat again.â€? • “Let’s not sugarcoat it: Black people commit crimes.â€? • (Then) “Why does everyone make everything racial? All that’s behind us.â€? • “I use a fake name on my blog so people won’t know I also do most of the comments. Shhh.â€?


news, culture & irreverence

ARENA, from page 6

Some councilmen were skeptical that an arena would draw people. “We are not a major market,” Ward 6 Councilman Tony Yarber said. “We don’t have a major sports team.” “A sports team is definitely not necessary for a project like this,” Thompson answered. “A sports team takes up the best dates.” The firm would look at the demand in the Jackson market and make suggestions based on it, Thompson said. First, the firm would look at the possibility of having a sports tenant, possibly with a small semi-pro league. Then, the firm would look at touring shows, such as Disney on Ice, and determine if enough people in central Mississippi would pay to see them. Next, the firm would evaluate the feasibility of high-school and college events. “Some arenas have a college team tied to it,” Thompson said. Yarber wanted to know if Thompson meant that the first thing to do is to bring in a sports tenant.

“We are not here to push you,” Thompson said. His firm will look at the market and see what Jackson can support. When Council President Frank Bluntson asked him about size, Thompson said it depends on what the study shows. He said he was hesitant to throw out a number, but that if he had to guess before doing the study, he thought Jackson might support a mid-size arena. The firm is looking at sites in the area bounded by Fortification Street, U.S. Highway 80, Gallatin Street and the Pearl River. “We don’t want to cannibalize what is already happening,” Thompson said. “We will look at what is going on. Don’t do this project at the expense of another. That’s not the purpose.” At the Jan. 24 meeting, Lumumba suggested Lake Hico as a site for a larger sports complex to include ball fields. He thought that might be a better option for the city. He was the only council member to vote against the arena study. Comment at www.jfp.ms.

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by Valerie Wells

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we appreciate your support!

services are needed. At that point, the item goes back on the agenda and the board discusses and votes it up or down. If they vote in favor, the applicant gets a contract. “The professional is working for us,”

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on’t pop in on the Jackson Redevelopment Authority asking board members to buy your property or hire you on the spot because you have a passion for a particular downtown project. From now on, expect them to vet you thoroughly first. This did not happen in the past, board members say, and in the aftermath of developer TCI’s failed attempt to build a convention center hotel, the JRA board wants everyone to disclose their connections and any conflicts of interest. The board voted Jan. 25 to pass a new policy that outlines a distinct process. No one gets a free pass. “If a professional—a lawyer, an accountant, a CPA, an architect, an engineer, a financial consultant—if that person wants to do business with us, instead of popping in during a meeting, they will go through a process,” JRA board member John Reeves said. Reeves heads up the board’s long-range planning committee and spent the past month on steps for a new vetting process. To get hired or to present a development proposal, the professional would first contact Executive Director Jason Brookins, who would then talk to the applicant. The next step would have the professional submit a resume, insurance and any other important paperwork that discloses conflicts or relationships. The executive director does an initial vetting of the applicant. Next, the professional would work on a document outlining the scope of his or her services, including charges. Then, the executive director puts the item on the board’s agenda. The chairman refers the item to the finance committee and possibly other committees. Then, the committees do a thorough vetting, both to make sure the professional is qualified and that the

Thank You for Voting Us the Best Studio -Best of Jackson 2012-

#!"#8c`fa 4]RddDTYVUf]V John Reeves wrote a new vetting policy that will keep JRA consultants from “serving two masters.”

Reeves said. “He works under the auspices of the executive director. So don’t bill us for going to a city council meeting. Don’t bill us—go through the executive director first.” Invoices would also be vetted, and the JRA staff will parse out questions such as, “Why did that meeting take three hours?” “Every board member knows what goes on every level,” Reeves said. “This person cannot be paid by anyone else for this work. You don’t want your professional serving two masters.” The board discussed that it’s not unusual for a developer to pay a fee to a JRA consultant, and Reeves said that in many cases that is fine. “It’s OK for a developer to pay our lawyers and financial consultants. The billing comes through us. There’s never a question about who he’s working for,” Reeves said. Comment at www.jfp.ms.

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talk

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Ward3dish

by Valerie Wells

Take a Load Off the Elderly

Why do you want to be on City Council? One of my goals is to provide equal and adequate representation to all 15 voting pre-

cincts in Ward 3. This is my second time running. In 2009, I ran with a new vision. Now, I plan to move forward with short-term and long-term goals. Can you give us an example of a short-term goal? Expand the youth division of the Parks and Recreation Department. What the city has now is good, but there’s an opportunity for more volunteers. Also, we could be working with Youth Corps. I want to start a program for school youth who find themselves in the justice system, a program to transition them back into the community. Other candidates are talking about crime in Ward 3. You can’t eliminate crime. You can reduce it. You do that with quality-of-life officers who work with a community and show them how to set up a neighborhood association or a block watch. The first step is to get residents involved. They need to know how to report crime, but also they can report suspicious activity to each other. I’ve been president of Hanging Moss East for three years. It’s time for strong, energetic members on the council. We should take a load off the elderly.

COURTESY HARRISON MICHAEL II

T

his is not the first time Harrison Michael II has run for City Council. The last time he ran in 2009, he only faced two other opponents, Albert Wilson and the incumbent at the time, Kenneth Stokes. Now that Stokes has vacated his City Council seat to become a Hinds County supervisor, Michael is trying again to represent Ward 3. This time, however, he faces 10 others in the Feb. 14 special election. When he ran in 2009, Michael said the city needed new personnel who were optimistic, enthusiastic, open-minded and compromising. He said he would attend all council meetings and be accessible to all constituents. “The people of Ward 3 have not had effective representation,” he said then. “We deserve better than what we’ve been getting. The ward has been in a constant state of regression since 1997, and it is time for a change.” Michael, 35, is a teacher and football coach at Peeples Middle School. For the past three years, he’s been president of the Hanging Moss East Neighborhood Association.

What does Jackson need to do about its infrastructure? Infrastructure goes hand in hand with economic development. We have to look for all types of resources, federal on down to local. We need to make sure the money comes in. We have to fix what’s under the street before we fix what’s over the street. Progress takes time. People need to know that. If they understand that, they won’t complain about the 1-percent tax.

Harrison Michael II, a teacher and a coach, says Ward 3 needs a young and energetic representative on the City Council. He means to be that person.

How would you prioritize the city’s spending? When it comes to money, you have to be fluid. The mayor is going to set that budget, and the council approves it. You have to listen to citizens. I would want opportunities and incentives for business and larger incentives for companies to come into this area. Also, public safety would be near the top of the list. We

Communication is Key

February 1 - 7, 2012

8

Festival Board, and is a member of 100 Black Men of Jackson. All that and running a campaign is demanding. He is canvassing businesses in Ward 3, looking for support. He said the COURTESY ZACHERY WILLIAMS

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achery Williams does not want to discuss his age. He doesn’t understand why people keep asking him something that to him just doesn’t matter. Williams is one of 11 candidates in the Feb. 14 election to replace Kenneth Stokes as Ward 3 councilman. He was busy planning a campaign fundraiser at The Penguin when the JFP called and asked him, among other questions, how old he was. “I’m a Jackson native,” he said instead. “I went to McWillie, Chastain and Murrah. I went to Jackson State University.” He was baptized at Greater Fairview Baptist Church. His flier says he got his master’s degree in 2002 and his bachelor’s degree in 1989. But he still wouldn’t tell his age, even after learning other candidates freely gave the information. A resident of the Broadmoor neighborhood, Williams is a managing partner with Claude-Zach Investments. He is the father of one son, Bradley, and engaged to Sirena Wilson. He is a member of Anderson Methodist Church. Williams was a reserve police officer from 1995 to 2002. He is a businessman who owns Williams Janitorial and Cleaning Supplies. He’s involved with several boards and charities, including the Farish Street

Penguin fundraiser went well, and that 2011 gubernatorial candidate and Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree showed up to lend his support. He said DuPree supports him because he is a businessman.

Is there anything you would like to stress? Jackson is at a critical stage right now. Everything else rises and falls with leadership. There can be good people we know, we love and respect, but they may not be right for the job. Comment at www.jfp.ms.

by Valerie Wells

“When we hear about Ward 3, the only area that most know about is Georgetown,” he said. “Ward 3 is so much bigger than that.” With less than two weeks left before the election, Williams has to make himself stand out from 10 other motivated candidates. He took a few minutes to answer some questions during two short phone calls, but he had to get back to campaigning. Why are you running for the Ward 3 council seat? I would like to make a difference. I can provide better service than we have had in the past. We need someone who can communicate.

Zachery Williams says Ward 3 needs better communication from its future councilman.

have to make sure city workers are being paid on time.

Streets, sewage (and) drainage are all important. Infrastructure is important. We could do better with abandoned houses. When we have abandoned houses, we are losing a tax base, and we are losing residents. We need a councilman who can communicate this. What would be your priorities? Streets need priority. We have a problem with potholes. You’ve noticed? We need to address better representation when it comes to getting those things done, especially when it comes to the elderly. They should feel safe in their homes. We want kids safe walking to school.

What do you want done about crime? The city should identify crime and find out why we have such a high crime rate. We need better patrols in the area, a more visible presence and better lighting. Crime happens in the dark.

Williams later sent a statement to the JFP via email that explained his views a little bit more on crime and other issues. “It’s not just the kids that are committing these crimes, it’s people who have lost their sense of direction and purpose to become a productive citizen,” he wrote. “The citizens of each ward should also play a part of protecting themselves and being pro-active.”

Do you want to talk about the city’s infrastructure?

Comment at www.jfp.ms. See additional candidate coverage at www.jfppolitics.com.


Legislature: Week 4

by R.L. Nave

Bryant: Canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Do Nothinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; For Ya, Man

Best Salon & Best Hair Stylist - 2010 & 2011 Best of Jackson -

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Best Of Jackson 2012

1st Place: Best Hair Stylist- Lacey Norris Good Showing: Best Salon

601.397.6398 | 1935 Lakeland Dr.

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hil Bryant is grounded, and the Legislatureâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s allowance is being reduced. This week, Bryant made his first executive budget recommendation to lawmakers at the Capitol. As expected, he took a do-the-same-with-less approach to government spending. Bryantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s recommendations are based on a $5.49 billion state budget for the 2013 fiscal year and include $4.56 billion in projected general fund revenue. He proposed 5.35 percent in cuts to state agencies and, in an attempt to lead by example, a 6.5 percent reduction in funds to the governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office. Part of the savings for Bryantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office would come from selling one of two planes the state owns for about $2 million. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not urgent, I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mind flying Delta or Southwest,â&#x20AC;? Bryant said. Or he would hitch a ride with a businessman who owns a plane, he added. The governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s budget also plans to use $274.3 million of the stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s available $280.7 million in cash reserves. He asked lawmakers to consider returning to the practice of setting aside 2 percent of the budget into a rainy day fund. Or, if they prefer, a flat $100 million. Bryantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s spending plan calls for no cuts to several areas and agencies, including court-ordered settlements, debt service, the Mississippi Highway Patrol, the Mississippi Law Enforcement Training Academy, the Military Department, the Veteran Affairs Board, district attorneys, the Mississippi Department of Corrections, Student Financial Aid, the Board Certified Teacher Program and the Mississippi Adequate Education Program.

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Other budget proposals include: â&#x20AC;˘ Level funding MAEP using $1.95 billion in state funds and $72.9 million in local reserve funds. â&#x20AC;˘ $6 million to an Emergency Bridge Loan Fund. â&#x20AC;˘ $3.7 million increase above fiscal year 2012 funding to Chickasaw Interest, as required by law. â&#x20AC;˘ $12 million total to Teach for America and the Mississippi Teachers Corps. â&#x20AC;˘ $5.7 million to fully fund highgrowth districts. â&#x20AC;˘ Existing $27 million appropriation for work force development now goes directly to community colleges that administer programs. â&#x20AC;˘ Medicaidâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s fiscal 2013 appropriation is level to fiscal year 2012 at $763 million. The Center for Medicaid Services projects 36,000 new eligible enrollees this year. The governor also proposed jettisoning the current line-item budgeting system in favor of a lump-sum method that gives agency heads more flexibility in running their departments. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I trust agency directors; I trust elected officials,â&#x20AC;? Bryant said. He added that the state Department of Revenue received $23 million more than it expected. If the trend continues, he said, his budget recommendation could change. The Legislature has until the end of the session in early May to pass a spending plan. Meanwhile, the Mississippi House of Representatives came out of hibernation to being submitting bills. As of Tuesday, the House had filed just 16 bills. Comment at www.jfp.ms.

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jacksonfreepress.com

As part of his budget recommendation to the Legislature, Gov. Phil Bryant proposes selling a $2-million state-owned plane as just one way save money.

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9


workweek

by Elizabeth Waibel

JERRICK SMITH

Recession Hurt Some More Than Others

Ed Sivak, director of the Mississippi Economic Policy Center, says many adults in Mississippi will need to go back to school to compete in the 21st-century economy.

HELLOMYNAMEISSCOTT.COM

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January 25 - 31, 2012

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From 2000 to 2010, wages rose by 2.4 percent, while community-college tuition increased by 56 percent and university tuition increased by 40 percent. â&#x20AC;˘ As of last school year, a year of community college costs $2,114 and a year at a university costs $5,067. â&#x20AC;˘ In 2010, the median wage for workers with a highschool diploma was $11.76. The median wage for workers with a bachelorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s degree or higher was $20.61.

Whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Making Bank? â&#x20AC;˘ Adjusted for inflation, the median hourly wage for workers in the state rose only marginally from 2000 to 2010, from $13.13 to $13.45. â&#x20AC;˘ The gap between the median wage for men and women is shrinking. In 2000, the median wage for men was $15.41, while women made only $10.96. In 2010, men made $14.29 per hour, while women made $12.75. Wages for both men and women are higher than they were in 1990, when men made $12.64 per hour and women made $9.64. â&#x20AC;˘ The gender gap in wages is smaller in Mississippi than in the nation overall. In the United States as a whole, women make 83 percent of what their male counterparts do, while in Mississippi, womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages are at 89 percent of menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages. â&#x20AC;˘ The median wage for African Americans was only 70 percent of what whites made in 2010â&#x20AC;&#x201D;$11.02 for African Americans compared to $15.66 for whites. â&#x20AC;˘ Since the beginning of the recession in 2007, the median wages for African Americans have dropped by 34 cents, while wages for whites have increased by 26 cents.

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uring the recent recession, men and African Americans saw the steepest decline in median wages, a new report says, while women made gains, and wages for whites stayed about the same. Wage disparities between whites and African Americans persist, the report reveals, in much the same way as they have for three decades. The median wage for African Americans in 2010 was $11.02, compared to $15.66 for whites. Since 2007, when the recession hit, wages for African Americans went down by 34 cents, while wages for whites increased by 26 cents. The Mississippi Economic Policy Center released a report on the State of Working Mississippi in 2012 last week, showing how wages, education levels and other factors have changed in the state over the past decade.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wages over the last decade have largely remained stagnant when you adjust for inflation,â&#x20AC;? Ed Sivak, director of MEPC, said. Mississippiansâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; educational attainment levels have increased somewhat, but are still lower than the rest of the country. The report underscores the need to target resources to strategies that connect people with education that will help them compete for high-paying, in-demand jobs in the 21st century, Sivak said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;When adults get at least one year of post-secondary education with credentials, that has the highest boost in earnings,â&#x20AC;? he said. Many adults are going back to school to strengthen their chances of getting a good job in the tough economy, which means often means they will need help navigating the community college system, GED services and childcare services, Sivak said. Part of the report examined wages in Mississippi from 2000 to 2010. The good news is that the gender wage gapâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; the amount that women make compared to their male counterpartsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;is shrinking and is smaller than the national average. In Mississippi, the report says, womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages were at 89 percent of menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages in 2010, while nationally womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages were at 83 percent of menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s. Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s median wages are rising and catching up with menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages, from a median hourly wage of less than $10 in 1990 to $10.96 in 2000 to $12.75 in 2010. However, part of the reason the wage gap is shrinking is that menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wages are dropping, because the recession disproportionately affected sectors that employ higher concentrations of men, such as construction, Sivak said. In 2000, the median wage for men was $15.41, but that number dropped to $14.29 in 2010. Read the full report at mepconline.org. Comment at www.jfp.ms.

Economics 101

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Best of Jackson 2012 Corrections FOOD AND DRINK

It seems that regardless of our best intentions, a few errors and omissions always creep into our annual Best of Jackson issue. We sincerely apologize to all of the winners for our mistakes. The following entry was inadvertently left out of the issue in the Food and Drink section:

Best Server good showing winner Corinn Escude works for BRAVO! Italian Restaurant and Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 211, 601-982-8111)

Best Vegetarian Options: Rainbow’s High Noon Café

Best Local Burger winner Burgers and Blues no longer has “The Stamp” burger, and Al Stamps no longer works there.

2807 Old Canton Road, 601-366-1513, rainbowcoop.org/café.htm

Rising Entrepreneur good showing winner John Skelton was incorrectly spelled Shelton.

Best Facialist/Esthetician second-place winner Linda Whitaker works at the Sun Gallery (6712 Old Canton Road, Suite 3, Ridgeland, 858-357-7257). Best Facialist/Esthetician good showing winner Ryan Hodges works at Sanctuary Body Spa at the Township (340 Township Ave., Suite 200, 601-790-2222). Best Boutique good showing winner 4450 (4450 Interstate 55 N., 601-366-3687) was left off the winner’s list. Best Doctor good showing winner Dr. Massie Headley’s correct phone number is 601957-1015. Best Plumber good showing winner Wesley Brisendine work with Mr. Rooter Plumbing (601-414-0020). Best Unique Gifts winner circa. Urban Artisan Living no longer holds jazz nights. Others? Email briana@jacksonfreepress.com. Email marissa@jacksonfreepress.com to pick up awards or request corrected copies.

W

PA I D A DV E RT I S E M E N T

hat do Donald Trump, Ringo Starr, The Monkees, Rush Limbaugh, and Mikhail Gorbachev have in common? They’ve all been in a Pizza Hut commercial! Pizza Hut was founded in 1958 in Wichita, KS, by brothers Dan and Frank Carney with a $600 loan from their mother. On opening night, they gave pizza away to encourage interest in the restaurant. They chose the name “Pizza Hut” since the sign they purchased only had enough space for nine characters and spaces. How do you take your pie? The Ultimate Cheese Lover’s Pizza is covered in creamy Alfredo sauce and topped with delicious cheeses. Pepperoni Lover’s Pizza is layered with extra pepperoni plus extra cheese for a pepperoni in every bite. Need more meat? Give the Meat Lover’s Pizza loaded with pepperoni, ham, beef, bacon, and sausage a try! Have you eaten your veggies today? The Veggie Lover’s Pizza comes packed with five veggies, including fresh tomatoes, mushrooms, red onions, green peppers, and black olives. How about the best of both worlds? The Supreme Pizza is a signature blend of pepperoni, pork sausage, beef, mushrooms, red onions, and green peppers. Feeling like pasta? Pizza Hut has you covered. With the Tuscani Meaty Marinara bursting with flavorful, savory Italian-seasoned meat sauce and rotini pasta topped with cheese and oven-baked, it’s like a little bit of Italy on your plate! If Alfredo is more your style, give the Tuscani Creamy Chicken Alfredo a try. How about a side of wings with your pizza? Choose from the Buffalo Burnin’ Hot, extreme heat for the most daring wing eater, to Medium and Mild, both packed with flavor. If you fancy exotic wings, give the Spicy Asian, Spicy BBQ, Garlic Parmesan, or Lemon Pepper flavors a try. Don’t forget to leave room for dessert. With choices like Cinnamon Sticks and Hershey’s Chocolate Dunkers—freshly baked with a touch of white chocolate and served with a rich chocolate dipping sauce—you might want to eat your dessert first! Did you know that Pizza Hut truly is out of this world? Pizza Hut sponsored the first space pizza delivery in 2001 to the International Space Station. Pizza Hut is also very involved in the communities they serve. Pizza Hut has been a sponsor of the BOOK IT! national reading incentive program since it started in 1985. So no matter your craving, be it pizza, pasta, wings, or just a special treat, you can find that and more at Pizza Hut.

jacksonfreepress.com

COMMUNITY

Best Flower Shop winner Greenbrook Flowers’ correct telephone number is 601-957-1951.

COURTESY GREENBROOK FLOWERS

Second (tie): Parlor Market (115 W. Capitol St., 601-360-0090); Aladdin (730 Lakeland Drive, 601-366-6033); 163 Ridgeway, Suite E, Flowood, 601-992-7340) / Third: Cool Al’s (4654 McWillie Drive, 601-713-3020) / Good Showing: Spice Avenue (4711 Interstate 55 N., 601-982-0890); Pan Asia (720 Harbour Pointe Crossing, 601-956-2958); Keifer’s (705 Poplar Blvd., 601-3556825; 120 N. Congress St., 601-353-4976)

URBAN LIVING

VIRGINIA SCHREIBER

Jackson is not always the most vegetarian-friendly town in terms of varied meat-free menu options, but High Noon Café offers a range of healthy, delicious, budgetfriendly fare for vegetarians and vegans as well as those with certain food allergies. Those who are unused to having many options when dining out might even feel a bit overwhelmed by their choices of sandwiches and other healthy but hearty fare. If you can swing it, top off your meal with a slice of the outstanding vegan carrot cake. You would never know that it didn’t contain butter and eggs. —Kelly Bryan Smith

11


jfp op/ed

opining, grousing & pontificating

EDITORIAL

Change Felony Voting Laws for All

H

ere’s what continues to get us about former Gov. Haley Barbour’s excuses for all those pardons. He keeps saying that he is a Christian and, thus, is concerned about the trustys and others whom he believes served enough time and now should be able to go vote and hunt and get professional licenses and the like. Our question to Barbour is: Where were you all these years? We are living in a state with truly backward laws when it comes to allowing former felons—who have actually served their time and been released—to vote and fully participate in society. Many of them served time for drug sales and non-violent crimes. And a disparate number of them are non-white to boot. By acting like he should get to play God and decide which criminals should go free, without regard to the parole board or the fears of the victims or their families, Barbour is once against foisting his position of privilege on the state’s residents. In our state, as you can see from this issue, many families of all backgrounds end up with a criminal of some sort in their midst. Why is it that only certain criminals get their privileges back? And why are they disparately white and not the race that is over-represented in our prisons for lesser crimes? It is time for serious criminal-justice reform in our state on all levels, and it needs to include a much smarter approach to giving rights back to individuals once they’ve served their time. Barbour is right about this: It doesn’t make sense to return ex-cons to their communities without any way to make a living or become a member of society again. But that need doesn’t only apply to his friends, or family members of his big donors and certainly not to criminals who have not yet served their time. This standard must not skip over the actual people who have done their time and bestow special privileges among those freed by the governor. Yes, the Legislature should make our pardons system more intelligent and accountable, and not just up to one person’s whims. But while they’re at it, they need to look closely at our disenfranchisement laws that hurt everyone, and people of color even worse. The 15th Amendment banned disenfranchisement laws that kept blacks from voting in the 19th century. Southern states, thus, began to disenfranchise blacks from voting by tailoring their laws to the crimes that blacks were most convicted for. That is, these laws are archaic and racist, and need to be changed. Gov. Barbour’s attempt to circumvent the law on behalf of his friends proves that beyond a reasonable doubt.

KEN STIGGERS

Love and Black History

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February 1 - 7, 2012

iss Doodle Mae: “The staff of Jojo’s Discount Dollar Store had a very informative and inspiring meeting this morning on the first day of Black History Month. Jojo recalled his boyhood experience when Black History Month was Negro History Week. He told us about Miss Lilly Mae Sweet, his fifth-grade music teacher, and her special way she taught her students black history. What he remembered the most about Miss Lilly Mae Sweet was how she made sure that during Negro History Week her students understood and memorized the lyrics to James Weldon Johnson’s ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ and Nina Simone’s ‘Young, Gifted and Black.’ Her purpose was to instill pride and dignity in Jojo and his classmates. Jojo continued Miss Lilly Mae Sweet’s annual tradition by providing the staff and me copies of ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ and ‘Young, Gifted and Black.’ “Jojo wants to give his customers the gift of history to instill in them the ability to learn and think critically during the ‘Tribute to Carter G. Woodson and Pre-Valentine Day Sale.’ Therefore, Jojo will stock his store with plenty of black history books. My sister, Miss Dipsy Doodle Mae, will sing folk tunes from the civil-rights era and sell her new line of ‘Love and Black History Valentine Cards.’ And Kunta ‘Rasheed X’ Toby will premiere his new movie adaptation of J.A. Rogers’ controversial book ‘From Superman to Man.’ “Remember: Everything is still a dollar during Black History Month at 12 Jojo’s Discount Dollar Store.”

KAMIKAZE

‘I’m No Token’

I

attended the Greater Jackson Chamber Partnership annual luncheon last week. It’s one of those affairs where the city’s power players share a meal and listen to a speaker talk about how to move our city forward. Usually, it’s someone from outside the city, charging a lot of money to tell us things that we’ve known for years. Still, a lot of business gets handled at these gatherings. If I want to stay informed they’re necessary. While there, I tweeted about how I wasn’t seeing many black faces. A heavy feeling came over me, and I felt overwhelmed. At that moment, I got a text. Someone in the room felt compelled to reach out. “I belong wherever my feet take me,” the text stated simply. “Keep showing up!” It was one of those instances where the universe was trying to speak to me. For two years, while I worked my behind off in “corporate America,” I had to deal with crazy looks and hear snide comments from Jackson’s business world saying I had no place in development. They gave no credit to my schooling, professional credentials, skill set or my ability to produce results. I had to deal with voices in my boss and colleagues’ ears constantly, telling them that they could only be taken seriously if they got rid of the “rapper.” I was laughed at, looked down on and slighted, all because I wanted to be more involved in my city. I wanted to be the change I sought. Those who knew “Kamikaze” wondered why I put up with it, why I tempered my tongue. Friends were telling me I’d sold out, that I was being used to get blacks to accept the projects developers wanted to push. They told me that once I had outlived my usefulness, the company would discard me like yesterday’s bagels. When it happened, the “I told ya so’s” came rolling in, even though I know I had done a good thing for Jackson.

I’m in the middle of a tugof-war: Champion anything with a white face on it, and I’m a sell-out. Don’t “kiss up” enough, and I’m not fit for the “elite” circles. Then came the Best of Jackson Awards. A few folks are miffed that they didn’t win awards. That’s par for the course. But it’s unfortunate that I have to almost be embarrassed to take home awards because some question the legitimacy of the process. In their opinion, my columns make me a shoo-in. Listen, I have worked my ass off for everything I have or hope to achieve in this city. The Best of Jackson awards I’ve won were earned through hard work. The opportunities I’ve had were because I’m damn good at what I do. I’m no token, no lackey and no fall guy. I’m also no thug, idiot or an unqualified hack. The reason folks respect me is the same reason others are pensive about dealing with me. I speak my mind, I take no crap, and most importantly, I’m self confident, all off-putting to those who want “yes men” around—black or white. If you lost faith in me or believe I damaged my reputation by going to work with “white folks,” it’s unfortunate you don’t know me better and can’t see the bigger picture. If you are one of those who have treated me like a pariah since I’ve left “corporate America,” shame on you. Who I work for has never defined my skill set. I’m going to keep showing up, asking questions, being involved and keep making a difference. And I’ll do it with this earring, pulling up to the meeting or luncheon bumping T.I., and I’ll probably be tweeting while I’m there, which will make some of them uncomfortable. That makes them no better or smarter than me. It just makes them closed-minded. And maybe that’s why we keep hiring outside folks to tell us what we need to do to turn this city around. And that’s the truth ... sho-nuff.

Email letters to letters@jacksonfreepress.com, fax to 601-510-9019 or mail to P.O. Box 5067, Jackson, Miss., 39296. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, as well as factchecked.


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"TTPDJBUJPOPG "MUFSOBUJWF/FXTXFFLMJFT

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hen my father named me, he spoke my destiny into existence. The name is taken from the Nigerian Yoruba tribe. Funmi means to help people, and Folayan means to walk in dignity. Some may disagree, but this is the meaning my daddy intended: to help people walk with dignity. You may not think that the meaning of a name could influence a life, but even without knowing it, I have tried to achieve the meaning of mine. Learning to appreciate a name like Funmi Folayan was no easy task. Childhood taunts had me resenting my name (and my father) for most of my early years. I recall Daddy trying to comfort me. He told me that one day, I would cherish my name and be happy I owned it. That made me lividâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;I thought he didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t consider the ridicule I had to endure. How could I ever learn to appreciate a name that left me crying? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Follow Me Funmi!â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Funmi FollowMe-Yan!â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Fool Me Funmi!â&#x20AC;? I heard it all. And every new school year I was embarrassed when teachers attempted to pronounce my name. I grew some tough skin to deal with it. I became angry. I tried to fight anyone who made fun of my name. Although I was learning to accept it, I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t like my name and certainly didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t appreciate it. My anger multiplied after my father passed away and wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t there to remind me that my name was something I was destined to do. Then, I began to understand that I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t help people walk in dignity if I was not even proud of my name. I had to begin my own walk toward dignity first. I began to notice a persistent call to embrace sisterhood, but didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know how to connect with it. I recognized a huge gap in my female relationships that didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t seem to exist with my mother and her friends. When those women came together, much was accomplished. Whether feeding each other or rearing children together, they had an underlying bond that was slowly diminishing with my generation. Many of the women I knew didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t trust other women; they didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t discipline other womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s children and didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t support each other. I found it difficult to trust women. So, how then could I have a calling to bring women together? After much prayer, I started an organization called Sisters Increasing Positive Progression Inc. to bring professional, progressive women together for a common goal. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d meet once a month and strategize ways to support our children and celebrate the arts. SIPPI did great work our first year. We sponsored â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Vagina Monologues,â&#x20AC;? supported the Jim Hill Players in their production of â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Colored Museumâ&#x20AC;? and assisted with the JFP Chick Ball. We partnered with other Jackson-based organizations. I was proud of the sisters, but it

was a roller coaster. The meetings got smaller the second year. From 10 to 15 women initially at the SIPPI meetings, I was lucky to have two women. I canceled meetings. It was distressing, and I retreated to that safe place deep within where I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t really believe SIPPI would work in the first place. When women asked for meetings again, they developed into Sister Sessions where we would just talkâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;about children and jobs, husbands and girlfriends, community efforts, events, whatever. We gathered to encourage and build together. Those two hours were our exhale sessions. Then I got pregnant, and the sessions stopped again. SIPPI has been a thorn in my side. I have felt let down, confused and frustrated. Now I realize that I was focused on what SIPPI was not doing, instead of on what we were doing. The Sister Sessions have born friendships. I have learned things that I will carry proudly for the rest of my life. Most importantly, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve learned that when the Creator has work for you, it doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t stop when people donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t show up. It sticks in your heart and soul and pesters you until you take action. A good friend reminded me: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Faith and fear cannot occupy the same place at the same time. Faith is not the absence of fear; itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going on in spite of the fear.â&#x20AC;? My fears of being unsupported have been a hindrance to the work I was born to do. SIPPI came to me in a dream after I prayed for the Creator to show me my purpose. I needed a clear idea of what He wanted me to contribute. I received it and hit the ground running, but lost steam because I allowed distractions to move me from the path. My father was my earthly angel for 13 years of my life. The Creator gave him a message for me. Knowing that heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d only have a short time to make that message real, my father summed it up in two words and attached it to me in a name. I know many arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t fortunate to have such a clear sign, but if we pay attention, the signs are there. We all have a purpose. Even though winds may blow us off courseâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s their jobâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;with faith we can stand steadfast and return to our path. My road has been rough and the weather stormy, but I have been sheltered. I have struggled and have been afraid. But I know my purpose: I was born to help people walk in dignity. Whether I do that via SIPPI or a JFP column or my blog or having cocktails with friends, I am committed to that purpose. I wish the same for you. Funmi Franklin, aka Queen, is a word lover and poet. Sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a reality-show fanatic and is awaiting an opportunity to star in her own show to be titled, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Queen & I.â&#x20AC;?

Revealing Heaven On Earth 8:30 a.m. A Service of Word and Table 9:30 a.m. Sunday School for all ages 11:00 a.m. Worship Service Live Streaming at www.gallowayumc.org Televised on WAPT Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Church Ages 4-Kindegarten Nursery Available Ages 6 weeks-3 years

305 North Congress Street Jackson, MS 601-353-9691 English 601-362-3464 Spanish www.gallowayumc.org

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jacksonfreepress.com

FUNMI FOLAYAN FRANKLIN, AKA QUEEN

13


Presidential Pardons Heavily Favor Whites by Dafna Linzer and Jennifer LaFleur ProPublica

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February 1 - 7, 2012

hite criminals seeking presidential pardons over the past decade have been nearly four times as likely to succeed as minorities, a ProPublica examination has found. Blacks have had the poorest chance of receiving the president’s ultimate act of mercy, according to an analysis of previously unreleased records and related data. Current and former officials at the White House and Justice Department said they were surprised and dismayed by the racial disparities, which persist even when factors such as the type of crime and sentence are considered. “I’m just astounded by those numbers,” said Roger Adams, who served as head of the Justice Department’s pardons office from 1998 to 2008. He said he could think of nothing in the office’s practices that would have skewed the recommendations. “I can recall several African Americans getting pardons.” The review of applications for pardons is conducted almost entirely in secret, with the government releasing scant information about those it rejects. ProPublica’s review examined what happened after President George W. Bush decided at the beginning of his first term to rely almost entirely on the recommendations made by career lawyers in the Office of the Pardon Attorney. The office was given wide latitude to ap14 ply subjective standards, including judgments

about the “attitude” and the marital and financial stability of applicants. No two pardon cases match up perfectly, but records reveal repeated instances in which white applicants won pardons with transgressions on their records similar to those of blacks and other minorities who were denied. Senior aides in the Bush White House say the president had hoped to take politics out of the process and avoid a repetition of the Marc Rich scandal, in which the fugitive financier won an 11th-hour pardon tainted by his ex-wife’s donations to Democratic causes and the Clinton Presidential Library. Justice Department officials said in a statement Friday that the pardon process takes into account many factors that cannot be statistically measured, such as an applicant’s candor and level of remorse. “Nonetheless, we take the concerns seriously,” the statement said. “We will continue to evaluate the statistical analysis and, of course, are always working to improve the clemency process and ensure that every applicant gets a fair, merit-based evaluation.” Bush followed the recommendations of the pardons office in nearly every case, the aides said. The results, spread among hundreds of cases over eight years, heavily favored whites. President Obama—who has pardoned 22 people, two of them minorities—has continued the practice of relying on the pardons office.

“President Obama takes his constitutional power to grant clemency very seriously,” said Matt Lehrich, a White House spokesman. “Race has no place in the evaluation of clemency evaluations, and the White House does not consider or even receive information on the race of applicants.” The president’s power to pardon is enshrined in the Constitution. It is an act of forgiveness for a federal crime. It does not wipe away the conviction, but it does restore a person’s full rights to vote, possess firearms and serve on federal juries. It allows individuals to obtain licensing and business permits and removes barriers to certain career opportunities and adoptions. To assess how the pardons office selects candidates for pardons, ProPublica interviewed key officials, obtained access to thousands of pages of internal documents and used statistical tests to measure the effects of race and other factors on the outcome. From 2001 to 2008, Bush issued decisions in 1,918 pardon cases sent to him by the Justice Department, most involving nonviolent drug or financial crimes. He pardoned 189 people—all but 13 of whom were white. Seven pardons went to blacks, four to Hispanics, one to an Asian and one to a Native American. Fred Fielding, who served as Bush’s White House counsel, said the racial disparity “is very troubling to me and will be to (Bush), because we had no idea of the race of any applicant.”

“The names were colorblind to us,” Fielding said, “and we assumed they would be at all levels of clemency review.” Beginning in September 2010, the Justice Department was required to make available the names of people denied pardons. Bush’s pardon decisions were selected to examine the impact of the pardons office’s recommendations over a president’s full term and to test how well the office met the president’s goal of assuring fairness in the process. The department does not reveal race or any additional information that would identify an applicant, citing privacy grounds. To analyze pardons, ProPublica selected a random sample of nearly 500 cases decided by Bush and spent a year tracking down the age, gender, race, crime, sentence and marital status of applicants from public records and interviews. In multiple cases, white and black pardon applicants who committed similar offenses and had comparable post-conviction records experienced opposite outcomes. An African American woman from Little Rock, fined $3,000 for underreporting her income in 1989, was denied a pardon; a white woman from the same city who faked multiple tax returns to collect more than $25,000 in refunds got one. A black, first-time drug offender—a Vietnam veteran who got probation in South Carolina for possessing 1.1 grams of crack—was turned down. A white, fourthtime drug offender who did prison time for selling 1,050 grams of methamphetamine was


Like his predecessor, President Obama has relied on recommendations from the pardons office to decide who gets presidential pardons.

is an institutional interest in preserving the convictions secured by the government’s prosecutors. “The pardon office is not a neutral arbiter, because the Justice Department was a party to every criminal case it examines,” Morison said. The yardsticks used by the office under Adams continue to be used under his successor, Ronald L. Rodgers, a former federal prosecutor and military judge. Theodore B. Olson, a former solicitor general who has represented high-profile pardon applicants, said he has long been frustrated by the slow pace of the process and its lack of transparency. The Justice Department says the office has increased its efficiency, deciding cases in a little more than two years, an improvement since 2005, when the wait was twice that. When a pardon is denied, the notice comes with no explanation. “It just comes out of the blue,” Olson said. “You can’t explain to your client why, especially when you think you’ve made a strong case.” Disparate Outcomes Denise Armstead’s beauty salon sits on a busy corner in Little Rock’s west side. A big

sign out front beckons customers from the largely African American neighborhood. Armstead, who is black, became a hair stylist straight out of high school and dreamed of owning her own salon. Like many smallbusiness owners, she kept her own receipts. An accountant filled out her tax forms. In 1994, the federal government accused Armstead, then 35, of failing to report $32,000 in income over four years. She hired a lawyer and fought the charges, ultimately getting them reduced to a single count of underreporting her income in 1989. Her lawyer, a former Internal Revenue Service employee, advised that a trial would cost more than the $3,000 fine, she said. In a plea bargain, she received three years’ probation and paid the fine in installments. In the same city, Margaret Leggett and her husband, who are white, were also accused of violating federal tax laws. In 1981, Leggett rented an apartment under a fictitious name and her husband created a fake bank account and fake Social Security numbers. They then filed for multiple tax refunds totaling more than $25,000. Leggett pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the government by making false

claims. In her mid-30s, she was sentenced to three years in prison but was released after three months. Her husband paid a $5,000 fine and served 15 months in prison. Years later, Armstead and Leggett each applied for a pardon. On paper, both were strong candidates. They had accepted responsibility in court and completed their sentences with good behavior. Neither had any other criminal convictions. Both were active in their churches. Leggett and Armstead had both filled out lengthy applications in which they listed their crime, punishment and professional and personal history. In April 2006, Bush followed the pardon attorney’s recommendation and approved a pardon for Leggett. A year later, Bush again followed the attorney’s advice and turned down Armstead. Armstead had a personal reason for seeking a pardon: She had hoped to become a nurse. She was inspired to change professions while caring for her mother, who was dying of renal failure. “I would take off work and take her to the clinic,” she said. An Arkansas nursing license requires a criminal-background check. Her felony record stood as a potential obstacle, her attorney told her. He recommended she apply for a presidential pardon. She was not aware that her 2002 request had been denied until a reporter informed her this year. According to Justice Department memos, Armstead was denied “for a four-year course of criminal conduct for which (she) failed to take responsibility.” The four years referred to the four charges of tax evasion in the original indictment against her. Adams said that he did not remember Armstead’s case but that, in general, applicants need to show remorse for any conduct they were indicted for, not just the charges to which they pleaded guilty. “What the person did, as opposed to what they pled guilty to, is a relevant factor in judging how honest they are,” Adams said. “This spills over to attitude.” A former White House lawyer said he had no idea the pardons office was considering indictments rather than only convictions in their deliberations. “I definitely didn’t know that,” said Kenneth Lee, the associate White House counsel during Bush’s second term who dealt with the pardons office. “If we knew these kinds of things, our decision making may have been different.” Leggett lives with her husband in Hot Springs, Ark., where they own a boat repair shop. She said she did not remember why she sought the pardon. Kenneth Stoll prosecuted both Armstead and Leggett when he was an assistant U.S. attorney in Little Rock. Stoll said he does not recall either woman. The pardons office sought a recommendation for Leggett from the prosecutors’ office after Stoll had retired. He was not asked his opinion. But, he says now, Leggett’s crime was a more significant offense. Leggett and her husband have been married for more than 30 years. They have owned or operated nearly a dozen businesses. Though she was divorced when she ap-

jacksonfreepress.com

ELIZABETH CROMWELL

pardoned. All of the drug offenders forgiven during the Bush administration at the pardon attorney’s recommendation—34 of them—were white. Turning over pardons to career officials has not removed money and politics from the process, the analysis found. Justice Department documents show that nearly 200 members of Congress from both parties contacted the pardons office regarding pending cases. In multiple instances, felons and their families made campaign contributions to the lawmakers supporting their pleas. Applicants with congressional support were three times as likely to be pardoned, the statistical analysis shows. In reviewing applicants, pardon lawyers rely on their discretion in ways that favor people who are married and who have never divorced, declared bankruptcy or taken on large amounts of debt. The intent, officials say, is to reward people who demonstrated “stability” after their convictions. But the effect has been to exclude large segments of society. The ProPublica data show that applicants whose offense was older than 20 years had the best odds of a pardon. Married people, those who received probation rather than prison time, and financially stable applicants also fared better. When the effects of those factors and others were controlled using statistical methods, however, race emerged as one of the strongest predictors of a pardon. The most striking disparity involved African Americans, who make up 38 percent of the federal prison population and have historically suffered from greater financial and marital instability. Of the nearly 500 cases in ProPublica’s sample, 12 percent of whites were pardoned, as were 10 percent of Hispanics. None of the 62 African Americans in the random sample received a pardon. To assess the chances of black applicants, ProPublica used the sample to extrapolate the total number of black applicants and compare it with the seven blacks whom Bush pardoned. Allowing for a margin of error, this yielded a pardon rate of between 2 percent and 4 percent. Adams, the head of the pardons office under Bush, said applicants were not penalized based on race. In fact, Adams went out of his way, he said, to help black applicants. “People in general more and more feel that it is appropriate to give extra consideration to a member of a minority group,” he said. Applicants are not asked about their race. But race is listed in many of the law enforcement documents collected for the application, including pre-sentence reports, rap sheets and Federal Bureau of Prisons records. Under Justice Department regulations, Adams said, lawyers in the pardons office conduct a rigorous review of an applicant’s offense. They then examine character, reputation and post-conviction behavior—tests of what Adams termed “attitude.” “Is the person seeking a pardon for forgiveness or vindication?” Adams said. “Are they going to wave a flag around that says a pardon proves they didn’t do as bad as the government said?” If so, he said, “it is counted against them.” Samuel Morison, a lawyer who worked in the pardons office for 13 years, said there

Pardons, see page 16

15


AGE NCIA BRASIL

PARDONS, from page 15

White House officials during the Bush administration were frustrated that the pardons office gave few favorable recommendations.

February 1 - 7, 2012

plied for a pardon, Armstead would still appear to meet the “stability” test. She said her life has remained on an even keel—she continues to operate her beauty salon and does not have excessive debts. For applicants who appear to be solid candidates, the pardons office considers the views of prosecutors and judges. Armstead’s case never reached that stage. But the pardons office solicited advice on Leggett—and received lukewarm answers. The U.S. attorney’s office in Little Rock took no position, and the judge did not object to a pardon. But Leggett’s bid was opposed by a high-ranking Justice Department official. Eileen J. O’Connor, the assistant attorney general in charge of all criminal tax matters, advised the pardons office that Leggett’s application should be denied because she did not “fully admit unconditional responsibility” for her crime. O’Connor noted that Leggett omitted from her pardon application that she had rented the apartment under a false name and made a utility deposit as part of the ruse to file false returns. “It appears that she has attempted in her quest for a pardon to minimize her involvement in the crime and shift the blame to her husband,” O’Connor wrote. This could have posed a serious problem for Leggett. The Justice Department explicitly states that applicants need to take personal responsibility for their crimes and show remorse. But in this instance, pardons office lawyers appear to have accepted what Leggett’s husband said at trial, which is that he had talked his wife into participating in the scheme. Another factor in pardon applications is whether the person has a practical need for presidential mercy. 16 “If a person doesn’t have a reason, it

doesn’t hurt,” Adams said of the policy. “And if a person wants forgiveness, that is fine, but if the need is for licensing or business ownership or to obtain a franchise, that will help, and the office will try to push it farther.” But that did not help Armstead. An Obscure Office The declared intent of the Founding Fathers was to have presidential pardon power right miscarriages of justice. Former Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist called pardons a “fail safe” against the “unalterable fact that our judicial system, like the human beings who administer it, is fallible.” Today, the pardons office places little emphasis on trying to help those who might be innocent. Applicants who claim they were victims of unjust treatment “bear a formidable burden of persuasion,” the pardons office says on its website. In practice, officials say, that burden is insurmountable. Article II of the Constitution gives presidents the authority to “grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States.” It was among the few royal powers carried over from the British monarchy. In 1788, Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist No. 74 that the president would be the best “dispenser of the mercy of government.” He argued that popular passions swayed groups of men too easily. In 1893, President Grover Cleveland issued an executive order delegating the paperwork on pardons to a single office inside the Justice Department. Today, the office employs a lead pardon attorney, a deputy and four additional lawyers. They review hundreds of pardon applications a year. Leggett and Armstead’s applications reached Washington just as this office gained more clout than it ever had.

The reason could be traced to one of President Bill Clinton’s last acts, his pardon of Marc Rich. The decision became a scandal after reports that Rich’s former wife, a big Democratic donor, gave $450,000 to the Clinton Presidential Library. In congressional hearings that followed, it emerged that Eric H. Holder Jr., then deputy attorney general, had encouraged Rich’s attorneys to apply directly to the White House. In response, the incoming Bush administration vowed that the pardons office would vet every applicant. The office lists on its website a five-point test for applicants. The first test is straightforward: Candidates must wait five years after completion of their sentences before applying. Next, lawyers consider the “conduct, character and reputation” of applicants after they served their sentences. The third point is the need of the applicant, and the fourth is the opinion of prosecutors and judges. The final point is acceptance of responsibility for their crimes, remorse and atonement. Pardons office lawyers assess whether applicants lead what Adams called “stable” lives. An applicant who had been divorced would give pause. Owing excessive debt to credit card companies or banks—as many Americans do—could also be a red flag. “A person in debt is always in some risk of doing something inappropriate to get out of it,” Adams said. “It’s only natural for the office to be a little cautious.” A review of pardons cases found that some applicants were rejected because they had filed for bankruptcy in the years after their conviction or were unemployed, a situation that is not unusual for convicted criminals, who often have trouble rebuilding their lives. But Bush pardoned white applicants who had filed for bankruptcies, had driven drunk or had illegally possessed firearms. Two successful applicants lied to the FBI during the background checks that are part of the application process. A Choke Point By Bush’s second term, it was clear that putting decisions in the hands of the pardons office had dramatically slowed the flow of pardons. Elected as a “compassionate conservative,” Bush was on pace to become the leastforgiving two-term president in history. In 2006, White House Counsel Harriet Miers became so frustrated with the paucity of recommended candidates that she met with Adams and his boss, Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty. Adams said he told Miers that if she wanted more recommendations, he would need more staff. Adams said he did not get any extra help. Nothing changed. “It became very frustrating, because we repeatedly asked the office for more favorable recommendations for the president to consider,” said Fielding, who was Bush’s last White House counsel. “But all we got were more recommendations for denials.”

In 2007, the pardons office was hit with its own scandal. Adams had opposed a pardon for Chibueze Okorie, a Nigerian-born minister beloved by his Brooklyn church. Okorie faced deportation because of a 1992 conviction for possessing heroin with intent to distribute. “This might sound racist,” Adams told colleagues, according to a report from the Justice Department’s inspector general, but Okorie is “about as honest as you could expect for a Nigerian. Unfortunately, that’s not very honest.” When asked by investigators in the inspector general’s office to explain his remarks, Adams said that Nigerian immigrants “commit more crimes than other people” and that an applicant’s nationality is “an important consideration” in pardons, according to the report. “It’s one the White House wants to know about,” Adams told investigators. The inspector general’s office disagreed. “We believe that Adams’ comments— and his use of nationality in the decision-making process—were inappropriate,” the report concluded. “We were extremely troubled by Adams’ belief that an applicant’s ‘ethnic background’ was something that should be an ‘important consideration’ in a pardon decision.” Adams said his comments about Okorie were focused on his ethnicity, not his race, and were taken out of context by the inspector general’s office. Adams left his post and retired. He was replaced in April 2008 by Rodgers, a former military judge who had prosecuted major drug crimes for the Justice Department’s criminal division. Shortly after taking over, Rodgers hired the office’s first African American staff attorney. As the Bush presidency drew to a close, the inability to grant more pardons continued to vex White House officials. Throughout 2008, the White House sent emails to the pardons office asking for more candidates. White House lawyers repeatedly asked the office to reconsider cases in which it had recommended denials. On Sept. 16, 2008, Lee, the associate White House counsel, asked about two pending applicants whose attorneys had contacted the White House. “As noted previously, we are hoping to get as many clemency recommendations as possible over the next few months,” Lee wrote. “To the extent that these two petitions may be ‘easy’ cases (and I defer to you on that question), it would be helpful if these and other ‘easy’ cases are given priority.” Rodgers forwarded the email to a staff attorney with a warning to ignore anything in Lee’s note that “could be construed as armchair quarterbacking.” With no more than 30 recommendations from the pardons office by the fall, the White House pushed to reverse two denials, Lee and others said in interviews. Then it did something Bush had vowed to avoid, taking up a pardon application from a felon whose case had not been reviewed by the pardon at-


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injustice in the system. If you had connections to the President, you could insert your case into the last-minute frenzy. Otherwise, you had to wait for the Justice Department to conduct a review and make a recommendation.” Bush resolved to rebuff the personal requests. The incoming administration needed little prodding on this issue. Obama’s top legal advisers already were convinced that the pardon system put the poor at a disadvantage. Gregory Craig, who would become Obama’s White House counsel, said he began raising the possibility of reform during the transition. Craig said pardons were “clearly much more available to people with economic means than those without.” Working with then-Deputy Attorney General David Ogden, Craig developed a plan to take the vetting of pardon applicants away from career prosecutors. “I couldn’t completely understand the standards being applied by the pardons office,” Ogden said in an interview. “They seemed very subjective in some cases, and I thought the standards should come from the president, not from the pardons office.” Craig said he believes pardon applications should be sifted by an independent commission of former judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys and representatives of faith-based groups. The commission would make recommendations directly to the president. Officials envisioned a process in which the president would announce decisions quarterly instead of the traditional grants at Thanksgiving and Christmas. A team of lawyers also suggested that the president explain his decisions, to build confidence in the process and encourage people to apply. Officials were struck by comparisons between the federal system and those of the states. Depending on the state, pardons can be granted by governors, legislatures or state pardon boards. During the period in which Bush pardoned 189 people, Pennsylvania pardoned more than 1,000. Several states have adopted the Bush denied more than twice as practice of explaining their decisions. many pardon applicants as President Virginia issues public notices praisClinton did during both of his terms. ing specific aspects of an applicant’s So far, Obama has also denied more rehabilitation. pardon requests than Clinton. Obama officials believed changes in the pardon system could be made by twice as many applicants as Clinton. Richard executive order. But two years later, pardon reNixon pardoned more people in a single year form efforts were dead. The effort faded away than Bush pardoned during two full terms. as its key proponents, Ogden and Craig, left the administration. Second Chances “We just never got there before I left,” In the final hour of his presidency, Bush said Ogden, who resigned in 2010. confided to Obama his deep frustrations with The pardons office continues to functhe pardon process. In the limousine ride the tion much as it did under Bush, with Obama two men shared up Pennsylvania Avenue on pardoning only applicants recommended by Inauguration Day, Bush offered his succes- the office. Obama has denied 1,019 pardon sor this piece of advice: “Announce a pardon requests, more than Clinton denied during his policy early on and stick to it.” two terms. Bush wrote in his memoir that he had This story is the first of two parts. It was cobeen besieged by last-minute pardon requests published with The Washington Post. from politically connected people who did not Washington Post researcher Julie Tate and go through the pardons office. ProPublica researchers Liz Day and Robin Res“At first I was frustrated,” he wrote. paut contributed to this report. Read part two of “Then I was disgusted. I came to see massive this story and comment at www.jfp.ms.

AGE NCIA BRASIL

torney. Isaac Toussie, a New York developer and Republican political donor, pleaded guilty in 2001 and 2002 to mail fraud and a real estate scheme in which false documents had been submitted to allow low-income buyers to obtain insured mortgages from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Toussie served five months in prison, another five months of home detention and three years of supervised release. He also paid a $10,000 fine. Toussie had not waited the requisite five years, but one of his attorneys, Bradford Berenson, had been an associate White House counsel during Bush’s first term. Berenson took Toussie’s case directly to the White House—and it worked. On Dec. 23, 2008, Toussie’s name was on the final list of pardons granted by Bush. That action sparked fury among hundreds of New Yorkers who were involved at the time in a civil litigation suit against the Toussie family over a second real estate project. After eight years of caution on pardons, Bush had stumbled. On Dec. 24, 2008—four weeks before Obama’s inauguration—Bush became the first president to announce withdrawal of a pardon. Bush left office having denied more than

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by R.L. Nave

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MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

hen state investigators caught up An Internet search of Tillman’s name to convicted murderer Joseph Oz- reveals that Women of Color Magazine recment Sunday night, he was liv- ognized her as a 2008 rising star in Science, ing in a Laramie, Wyo., hotel and Technology, Engineering and Math. driving the Mercedes-Benz of his fiancée, The Barbour pardons spurred a maelLaChina Tillman, an engineer with defense strom of controversy in Mississippi and across contracting giant Northrop Grumman. the nation, prompting Barbour to respond After several weeks using several national meof trying to track Ozdia outlets. ment, investigators from Barbour has said that the Mississippi attorney he only released 26 prisongeneral’s office served ers from custody, which, him with court papers, according to his math, Attorney General Jim represents only 0.0012 Hood told reporters at an percent of the more than afternoon press confer80,000 people who are ence Monday. doing time in state prisConvicted of killing ons or are on probation a store clerk in DeSoto or parole. Hood addressed County in 1992, Ozstatements Barbour made ment is one of five former raising questions about inmates who lived and the role of an assistant atworked in the governor’s A nationwide manhunt torney general working for mansion during Haley ended this week when MDOC. Both Barbour Barbour’s tenure. Barbour state investigators tracked and Tom Fortner, a lawyer pardoned all five just be- former trusty Joseph representing several of the fore leaving office in Janu- Ozment to a Wyoming mansion trustys, alleged ary. that Assistant Attorney hotel. Ozment’s girlfriend Citing a provision helped him elude General David Scott, who in the state constitution authorities but is not guily works for Hood, worked that requires individuals of a crime, Mississippi with gubernatorial adviser to publish notice 30 days Attorney General Jim Daryl Neely on the parbefore receiving a pardon, Hood said. don process. Hood convinced Hinds Hood stated that Scott County Circuit Judge Toonly advised Barbour’s ofmie Green to temporarily fice of the constitutional halt the pardons. Green also ordered the five publication requirement. “This is a sideshow trustys to check in daily with the Mississippi by Tom Fortner and the former governor to Department of Corrections and to appear at divert attention from the fact that the former a hearing on Jan. 23. Ozment did not attend governor has loosed his favored murderers those proceedings. upon the public without any legal authority The search for Ozment had been nar- to do so. These untruths and mischaracterizarowed to Colorado Springs, Colo., where tions are indeed the sign of a desperate man,” Hood said Tillman had bought a house. After Hood said in a statement. receiving a tip from an informant in WyoThe attorney general has said that his ofming, investigators found Ozment staying in fice will eventually review previous gubernaa hotel under an assumed name. In the pro- torial pardons to ascertain if pardonees comcess of trying to avoid being served, Ozment plied with the law in those instances. Asked bumped one of the investigators with his car, why he didn’t challenge a round of clemencies Hood said. Later, Ozment signed a receipt of Barbour granted in 2008 to five killers, Hood service with the AG’s investigators and two said he “wasn’t aware that publication was not Laramie police officers. complied with.” Hood provided reporters with copies of “It’s not like somebody in our office is asthe couple’s wedding save-the-date announce- signed to look to see if publications are done. ment, which contains a photo of Ozment and I’m sure future AGs will do that, will probTillman brandishing her engagement ring in ably make sure that the pardons were done a joyous embrace outside what Hood said is correctly,” he said. “I suspect future governors the governor’s mansion, where Ozment was will be more careful in following the constituliving as a corrections prisoner, usually called tion after this debacle.” a trusty. On Friday, Feb. 3, a preliminary in“It’s unfortunate how things have oc- junction hearing takes place. Green has orcurred at the mansion and how these prison- dered the five mansion trustys to attend the ers were handled,” Hood said, noting that hearing. Ozment is dressed in street clothes in the “If she finds the pardons are void, she photos rather than the striped green-and- may leave it like it is,” Hood said, meaning white jumpsuit that minimum-security in- Green has the discretion to re-incarcerate the mates are required to wear. “This guy’s got a men or allow them to remain free. tattoo with Aryan Brotherhood on his back, Hood said he would request summary and this lady—who has a college degree and is judgment in late February to and ask that an engineer and is doing very well—has taken the trustys be returned to MDOC custody to up with him.” serve out the remainder of their sentences.

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Mississippi Pardongate: What’s Next?

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FILE PHOTOP

The Barbour Pardons: How We Got Here by R.L. Nave and Ronni Mott

J

uly 2008: Gov. Haley Barbour grants clemency to five convicted criminals assigned to work in the governor’s mansion by the Mississippi Department of Corrections after reducing their status’ to minimum security: Michael Graham, Clarence Jones, Paul Warnock, Bobby Hays Clark and Bobby Hays Clark. All but Kimble murdered intimate partners: wives or girlfriends or former wives or girlfriends.

R.L. NAVE

December 2008: Barbour grants Leslie Bowlin, a rapist and kidnapper, a 90-day unsupervised furlough to visit family in Louisiana. Barbour rescinds the request after a media and legal fire storm of criticism, and Bowlin is back in MDOC custody after 10 days.

Gov. Haley Barbour (right, with his wife, Marsha) refused to address the pardon issue on his last day in office, saying he didn’t want to overshadow the inaugural events of his successor, Phil Bryant.

February 1 - 7, 2012

2009: During the 2009 legislative session, Democratic Rep. Brandon Jones of Pascagoula and then-Sen. David Baria, DBay St. Louis, introduce bills aimed at curtailing the governor’s pardon powers. The bills would have required the state parole board to recommend pardon, another to require a public hearing when the governor wishes to pardon a felony, and a constitutional amendment to exclude murder and capital murder from pardoning powers. The bills all died in committee in their respective chambers.

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June 2011: Barbour grants a pardon to Michael J. Jones, convicted of Sale of a Controlled Substance. No information has surfaced on Jones. December 2012: Barbour grants an indefinite suspension of sentences for Jamie and Gladys Scott, sisters serving life sentences for a 1993 armed robbery. The governor’s clemency is conditioned on Gladys Scott donating a kidney to her sister.

powers a retaliatory stunt for Hood’s attempt to invalidate Barbour’s pardons. Jan. 17, 2012: Police find Jackson businessman Stuart Irby dead, apparently by suicide. Irby’s wife, Karen, received conditional clemency from Barbour for her role in the couple’s 2009 drunk-driving incident that killed two people.

Jan. 6, 2012: Barbour follows Mississippi gubernatorial custom by pardoning another five minimum-security inmates who worked at the governor’s mansion.

Jan. 19, 2012: Barbour pens an op-ed for The Washington Post where he states that most of those he pardoned were convicted of “crimes of passion” such as murder but are no longer dangerous to society. He also said that as a Christian, he believes in second chances.

Jan. 9, 2012: State House Minority Leader Bobby Moak, D-Bogue Chitto, and Rep. David Baria, D-Bay St. Louis, announce legislation to add accountability to the governor’s process of pardons.

Jan. 20, 2012: A survey conducted by Reuters finds the pardons heavily favored whites over blacks. Despite making up twothirds of the state prison population, blacks received just one-third of the pardons.

Jan. 10, 2012: Barbour takes some of the shine off the inauguration of Gov. Phil Bryant when the news comes out that he pardoned or commuted the sentences of more than 200 people, not just mansion workers.

Jan. 23, 2012: A hearing takes place at the Hinds County Courthouse. Inundated with last-minute motions, the AG’s office

Jan. 12, 2012: Hinds County Circuit Judge Tomie Green grants Attorney General Jim Hood a temporary restraining order on the pardons and calls for a hearing. Hood argues that many of those who received clemency failed to meet a constitutional requirement to publish a bulletin in their local newspaper 30 days before getting a pardon. Jan. 13, 2012: Hood’s office announces that four of the five mansion trustys have checked in, but one of the men, Joseph Ozment, cannot be located; Barbour releases a statement about the pardons, saying: “I am fully confident the pardons and other clemency are all valid.” Jan. 14-Jan.16, 2012: Mississippi Democrats and Republicans continue to react to the pardons. Rep. Bob Evans, D-Monticello, calls a bill aimed at reducing the state AG’s

House Minority Leader Bobby Moak, D-Bogue Chitto, called for bipartisan reforms to the way that gubernatorial pardons are handled in the future. asks for additional time to respond. Judge Tomie Green extends the hearing and allows the four trustys who appeared in court as ordered to remain free. Jan. 29, 2012: Joseph Ozment, the lone remaining trusty who had not been served with civil papers, is found living under an assumed name in Laramie, Wyo. Hood said Ozment’s fiancée, LaChina Tillman, helped him elude authorities but is not guilty of a crime. Read more at Barbourwatch.com.

The Color of Clemency

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ississippi’s pardon process isn’t raceblind, either. A Reuters analysis, completed by Himanshu Ojha, Marcus Stern and Jackson Free Press stringer Robbie Ward, found that the more than 200 acts of clemency former Gov. Haley Barbour granted during his tenure helped more white prisoners than African Americans. Although blacks make up approximately two-thirds of inmates doing time in Mississippi’s prisons, African Americans received just one-third of the Barbour pardons and commutations. Conversely, whites received twothirds of the pardon benefits even though whites comprise just one-third of the state’s prison population. However, without knowing the racial background of

by R.L. Nave

each applicant, it is difficult to draw solid conclusions about the apparent disparity. The Reuters analysis excludes Hispanics, Asians and Native Americans, who collectively represent just over 1 percent of all prisoners in MDOC custody. University of Georgia statisticians Kim Love-Myers and Jaxk Reeves performed the Reuters analysis. “This type of observational information cannot prove causality, though it does indicate a significant relationship between race and the probability of being pardoned,” Love-Myers told the news organization. Barbour’s spokeswoman, Laura Hipp, also responded to Reuters. She said: “Race was not a factor in his decision. In fact, it wasn’t even listed on the Parole Board’s application.”


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Well-Connected, Online and Off COURESY PERVERTED JUSTICE

by R.L. Nave

Arrested in 2007 as part of an effort to catch people who try have sex with minors on the Internet, pardonee Douglas Hindman received letters of support from several big-money political donors who played up their connection to Gov. Haley Barbour.

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hen you’re caught in a sting to catch online sex predators, like Douglas Hindman was, it pays to have friends who dine at the governor’s mansion when it comes time to get a pardon. Lee and Maggi Lampton, after thanking Gov. Haley Barbour and his wife, Marsha, for “a lovely and special lunch at the Mansion,” wrote: “As you count down the last few days of your governor’s term, we would like you to ask you to consider pardoning our friend Doug Hindman. We have known Doug through church since he was a young man. Over the years, we taught him in both in both Sunday school and youth group. We have watched him grow into a fine young man.” In 2007, sheriff’s deputies arrested Hindman along with 11 others as part of a joint effort between Hinds County law enforcement officials and Portland, Ore.-based nonprofit Perverted Justice. The operation resulted in Hindman’s pleading guilty to the felony crime of cyberstalking, which enabled Hindman to avoid having to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. Under a plea deal, Hindman received a suspended two-year sentence and had to pay fines totaling $10,000. It probably didn’t hurt in court that Hindman belongs to a prominent local family. His father, Steve, played tailback for Ole Miss, where he won most-valuable player in the 1968 Liberty Bowl game, and is a cardiologist in Jackson. It also probably didn’t hurt Hindman’s chances for a pardon that the Lamptons and other recommendation writers pour thousands of dollars into the political coffers of mostly Republicans as well a smattering of Democrats. Since the 1990s, Lee Lampton, president of Jackson-based Ergon Inc., and his wife, Maggi, have personally contributed more

than $200,000 to federal and state campaigns in Mississippi as well as other states where Ergon, which operates a number of petroleum businesses, has financial interests and political action committees. Lee Lampton has pumped at least $62,120 into state elections, since 1999, according to records from the Helena, Mont.based National Institute on Money in State Politics. A little went to Democratic lawmakers such as Randy Swartzmiller of West Virginia, Michael Burrage of Oklahoma and Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe. However, the vast majority of Lampton recipients are Mississippi Republicans, including the various campaigns of Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves as well as Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney and Barbour. Maggi and Lee Lampton also have given about at least $150,000 to the federal campaigns of present and past members Mississippi’s congressional delegation including Republican Sens. Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker, Republican Reps. Gregg Harper and Alan Nunnelee, and Rep. Bennie Thompson, a Democrat, records from the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Responsive Politics show. F. Earl Fyke III, a professor and cardiologist at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, also wrote a letter on Hindman’s behalf. Fyke wrote that as Steve Hindman’s partner, he has been well acquainted with the family for well over a quarter century. Fyke declined to characterize Hindman as the naïve young man the Lamptons portray in their letter. “I know how Steve and Madeline struggled and suffered with Doug during his earlier years and how they supported and stood by him when he was doing very little to help himself,” Fyke wrote. He went on to describe a transformation that took place in Douglas Hindman’s life. Without citing specifics, Fyke stated: “Clearly, he has redirected his life and has several years of good faith work and good behavior to prove it.” Fyke has also helped candidates over the years albeit to a lesser extent. He hasn’t contributed much since the late ’90s when he threw about $750 to Hosemann’s unsuccessful bid for Congress, the Mississippi Republican Party and the New Republican Majority Fund, a PAC affiliated with former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott. On the state level, Fyke’s $2,750 in contributions since 2002 include sums to the nonpartisan campaign of Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Jess Dickinson and Democratic state Rep. David Baria of Bay St. Louis, his brother-in-law. Another cardiologist, Mart McMullan, wrote write a third letter on Hindman’s behalf. McMullan also contributed $1,000 to Hosemann’s 1998 congressional campaign and Dickinson’s campaign for state supreme court. McMullan also gave $500 to Barbour in 2005. Read Hindman’s stalking transcripts at barbourwatch.com.


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FILM p 28 | 8 DAYS p 29 | MUSIC p 31 | SPORTS p 34

The Iconic Coach by Bryan Flynn

A Golden Standard by Clay A. McCollum

COURTESY NEW STAGE THEATRE

26

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lombardiâ&#x20AC;? continues through Feb. 5 at New Stage Theatre. Actors from left are Rob Demery as Dave Robinson, Kenneth Mayfield as Paul Hornung, James Thompson as Jim Taylor and Bill Ford Campbell as Vincent Lombardi.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;A

re you ready for some football?â&#x20AC;? a voice in the dark asks before the start of New Stage Theatreâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s production of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lombardi.â&#x20AC;? The play tells the story of the 1967 championship Green Bay Packers under Coach Vince Lombardi. Veteran actor Bill Ford Campbell has the lead role. Campbell and Jo Ann Robinson (Marie Lombardi), two Actorsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Equity professionals, lead an ensemble cast of six. Although imperfect, Lombardi represents a golden standard to which the people around him aspire. His story is about an era of change for football, and he is remembered largely without blame in todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s society where heroes so often disappoint. Lombardi advocated equalityâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;racial and otherwiseâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;for his players. Campbellâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lombardi is consistent and always natural; the actor effectively delivers a multi-dimensional Lombardi, especially through his asides, and convinces the audience and fellow actors to do whatever is necessary to succeed. New Stageâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s artistic director, Francine Thomas Reynolds, directs the production, part of the theaterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s regular 46th season. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The cast and I have enjoyed learning more about the history of football and Vince Lombardi,â&#x20AC;? Reynolds said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;What is pleasantly surprising is how much more I learned (through staging the work) about inspiration and the art of collaboration. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s theater!â&#x20AC;?

COURTESY NEW STAGE THEATRE

February 1 - 7, 2012

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Vincent Lombardi (Bill Ford Campbell) confronts the reporter, Michael McCormick (David Kremenitzer).

New Stage Theatre presents â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lombardiâ&#x20AC;? through Feb. 5 at the Jane Reid-Petty Theatre Center (1100 Carlisle St.). Show times are 7:30 p.m. Feb. 1-4 and 2 p.m. Feb. 5. Tickets cost $25 for general admission; seniors and students pay $22 with ID. For information, call 601-948-3533 or visit newstagetheatre.com.


Learn to

Swing Dance Thanks For Voting Us

Best D nuts

Mediterranean Cuisine

Now Open on Saturdays 7am - 12pm

-Also Serving Lunch-

125 S Congress Street in Jackson, MS Phone: (601) 326-8520

Valentine’s Special For Two $55 (Lamb Kebab with Shrimp & Scallops)

It’s ALWAYS FRESH in the

Jason Bailey (Blues)

THURSDAY 2/02

Spirits of the House (Traditional Irish)

Your
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• Two Seasonal Salads • Appetizer Sampler • Entree

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Jack Magee & Friends (Fiddle Jam)

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Wednesday Feb 8, 11:45 a.m. Mississippi Arts Center

Join Us Sunday! for the

201 E. Pascagoula Street, 601-960-1500 (former Mississippi Museum of Art, next to Planetarium & Jackson Convention Center)

Plus, Susan McClamroch of Tougaloo College will present information about “Beyond Swastika and Jim Crow.” This exhibit at Tougaloo tells the story of Jewish professors who fled Nazism and came to America in the 1930s and 1940s, finding teaching positions at historically black colleges and universities. The exhibition explores the encounter between these scholars and their students, and their impact on each other, the Civil Rights Movement, and American society.

TUESDAY 2/07

Open Mic with Jason Bailey

FEBRUARY LUNCHEON

BLACK HISTORY CELEBRATION! Join us for some fun and enlightenment: Famous Black Americans You May Not Know – The Mystery Game. There will be Prizes!

Karaoke w/ Matt

Serving up love by the dozen since 1995 Ridgeland

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RSVP: www.jackson2000.org Bringing the Community Together Promoting Racial Harmony and Facilitating Understanding

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Cost: $12 includes lunch catered by Broad Street Bakery

27


A M A LC O T H E AT R E

South of Walmart in Madison

ALL STADIUM SEATING Listings for Fri. Feb. 03- Thurs. Feb. 09 2012 Big Miracle Chronicle

PG PG13

Haywire The Artist

R

3-D Beauty And The Beast G

The Grey

Beauty And The Beast (non 3-D) G

Man On A Ledge PG13 One For The Money PG13 The Iron Lady PG13 Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close PG13 Red Tails

PG13

3-D Underworld: Awakening R

Contraband War Horse

R PG13

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol PG13 Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows PG13 The Descendants R

DAILY BARGAINS UNTIL 6PM Online Tickets, Birthday Parties, Group & Corporate Events @ www.malco.com

Movieline: 355-9311

February 1 - 7, 2012

A Pleasing Affair

Joyful Noise PG13

GIFT CARDS AVAILABLE

28

by Anita Modak-Truran

PG13

The Woman In Black PG13 R

DIVERSIONS|film

LA PETITE REINE

6A0=3E84F

“The Artist” silently comments on the passing of an era.

T

he poster for “The Artist” reveals a raffishly handsome gentleman gazing into the soft, wide eyes of a beautiful ingénue. They are glamorous in the high-contrast, black-and-white photo. He’s in a tux, and she’s in a shiny flapper dress with only the high contours of their faces lit. It reminds me of a roaring ’20s version of the 1939 “Gone With The Wind” movie poster, where Rhett and Scarlett are breathy inches from each other. “The Artist” poster, a tad more highbrow than the bodice ripper from GWTW, promises a sensational love potion filled with vintage charm. Michel Hazanavicius’ film, however, is bigger, bolder and more audacious than a mere romantic fling. Like “Gone With the Wind,” “The Artist” comments on the passing of an era and the way change affects people, their relationships and lifestyles. Set during Hollywood’s shift from silent pictures to talkies, “The Artist,” which was written, directed and edited by Hazanavicius, explores the self-destruction and demise of a movie star who fails to adapt to the new motion-picture art form of sound. George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) is the artist. Valentin (without the “o”) reigns as the No. 1 box-office draw of 1927 and stars in vehicles with catchy titles, such as “A German Affair” and “The Russian Affair.” He mugs for the camera, has a ubiquitous wonder dog as his capable assistant (the scene-stealing Uggie) and is always the triumphant hero. Off screen, Valentin is not much different. He’s elegant and flirtatious. He loves to amuse audiences and reporters with softshoe dance numbers and tricks he’s worked out with his pooch. Valentin’s smile is positively magnetic, and you can immediately understand why the women swoon over him. There is no obstacle to Valentin’s happiness, and if he were to speak, you can imagine him declaring that he is on top of the world. Sadly for Valentin, we all know that what goes up must come down. Valentin’s idyllic life flip-flops and takes a nose dive after he meets Peppy Miller (Berenice Bejo), a waif of a movie wannabe who ac-

cidentally drops her dainty purse and ends up kissing Valentin in front of a mob of paparazzi. “Who’s That Girl?” ask the morning headlines. Doris (Penelope Ann Miller), Valentin’s wife, wants to know what’s going on between the lines. Fan or paramour? Valentin’s chauffer Clifton (James Cromwell), ever loyal, knows to keep out of the mess. The action skitters back and forth between Peppy getting cast as an extra in Valentin’s next picture, to Valentin flirt dancing with her on the set, to the studio boss (John Goodman) firing Peppy for causing a news scandal, to Valentin requesting the boss to allow her to stay on. Just when you think the relationships are going to stabilize into something predicable, the characters wiggle free. And just when you think the movie is following a conventional path, Hazanavicius shifts the action and sparkles the screen with dancing girls, nightmares, and fire and brimstone scenes. In this silent film about a silent-film star, the actors convey a wealth of emotions from facial expressions, body language and gestures. It has the feeling of classical repertoire with physicality leading character development. Goodman is perfect as the movie mogul with a soft spot for the stars of Kinograph Studios. Bejo’s Peppy is enchanting. She has moxie and a fresh face with luminescent dark eyes. Dujardin, who won the SAG award for Best Actor beating out favorite George Clooney, is brilliant. His mercurial face moves in and out of expressions seamlessly. He’s mesmerizing on the screen. Dujardin has what you can’t get if you don’t have it—the right blend of nuance, wit and playfulness. Hazanavicius uses sound and music to fuse the gorgeous black-and-white vision created by cinematographer Guillaume Schiffman into a modern masterpiece. When Valentin does hear what’s going on around him, it’s a Darwinian nightmare where only the loudest and most adaptable survive. “The Artist” is simply marvelous. It’s a cosmic vaudevillian epic, and one of the most pleasing films of the year, if not the decade.


BEST BETS February 1 - 8, 2012 by Latasha Willis events@jacksonfreepress.com Fax: 601-510-9019 Daily updates at jfpevents.com

The Parents for Public Schools Lunch Bunch is at 11:30 a.m. at the Jackson Medical Mall (350 W. Woodrow Wilson Ave.) in the Community Meeting Room. $5 lunch; call 601-969-6015 to RSVP. … Sharon Williams’ fiber exhibit opens today at the Mississippi Craft Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland) and hangs through Feb. 29. Free; call 601-8567546. … USM history professor Max Grivnos speaks during History Is Lunch at noon at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Bring lunch; call 601576-6998. … The video screening of “A War for Your Soul” is at 6 p.m. at Tougaloo College, Bennie G. Thompson Center (500 W. County Line Road, Tougaloo). Free; call 601-977-7806. … Philip’s on the Rez has karaoke with DJ Mike.… Shane and Frazier play at Underground 119.

FRIDAY 2/3

Blackberry Smoke performs at Duling Hall at 7:30 p.m. $12 in advance, $15 at the door; call 800-745-3000. … The weekly Christian Dance Hall debuts from 7:30-10 p.m. at Salsa Mississippi (605 Duling Ave.); tonight is Singles and Couples Night. Reservations required. No cover, donations to the Center for Violence Prevention welcome; call 601331-1043. … Akami Graham and the Key of G perform at Freelon’s at 9 p.m. … First Friday: The Suite Life Edition is at 9 p.m. at the Martini Room. For ages 21 and up; wear upscale attire. Ladies in free until 10:30 p.m. … At Hal & Mal’s, Swing de Paris plays in the restaurant, and Colour Revolt and the Weeks play in the Red Room. … Scott Albert Johnson performs at Ole Tavern. … The Colonels play at Reed Pierce’s.

COURTESY CHRISTEN THOMAS/PRESSWOLF PR

SATURDAY 2/4

The Rush to Brush 5K is at 8:30 a.m. at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (2500 N. State St.), at the Norman C. Nelson Student Union. Proceeds benefit Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children’s pediatric dentistry department. $25, $15 fun run; visit mstrackclub.com. … The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards Exhibit opens at 10 a.m. at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.) in Trustmark Grand Hall and hangs through April 15. Free; call 601960-1515. … Bring your kids to story time at 11 a.m. at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.). Free; call 601-366-7619. … The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi’s Bacchus Ball is at 7 p.m. at the Country Club of Jackson (345 Saint Andrews Drive). $250 seated reservations, $125 unseated reservations; call 601-957-7878 or 877DFM-CURE. … Eddie Cotton is at The Med Grill at 6 p.m. … The Collaborative Arts Concert is at 7:30 p.m. at Belhaven University Center for the Arts. Free; call 601-965-7026. … Netherfriends plays at Sam’s Lounge. … Honey Sanaa will record poetry live during Nameless Open-mic at 9 p.m. at Suite 106. $5 cover, $3 to perform. … The Jason Turner Band plays at Fenian’s. … Ole Tavern hosts the Winter Wipeout Party with Buddy and the Squids, and Risko Danza. … King Edward performs at Underground 119. … Jason Fratesi and the Dirt Road Jam Band play in Hal & Mal’s Red Room. … Snazz is at Pop’s. … DoubleShotz performs at McB’s. The one-man band Netherfriends (aka Shawn Rosenblatt) performs at Sam’s Lounge Feb. 4.

Fondren After 5 is from 5-8 p.m. Call 601-981-9606. … The reception featuring artisans Christy Henderson and Joy Light is at 5 p.m. at circa. Urban Artisan Living (2771 Old Canton Road). Free; call 601-362-8484. … The D’lo Trio plays at Cherokee Inn at 6:30 p.m. … The Jackson Public Schools All-City Orchestra Festival is at 7 p.m. at Thalia Mara Hall. Free; call 601-960-1565. … Kerry Thomas and M.L. the Truth perform during Centric Thursday at Dreamz JXN. … The simulcast “Kevin Smith: Live From Behind” is at 8:30 p.m. at Tinseltown (411 Riverwind Drive, Pearl). $14, $13 seniors and students, $12 children; call 601-936-5856. … Spirits of the House is at Fenian’s. … Snazz plays during Ladies Night/Men Are Pigs Night at Bourbon St.

The Salvation Army hosts Souper Bowl XV at 11 a.m. at their new Corps Community Center (570 E. Beasley Road). $10, $5 children ages 3-12; call 601-982-4881. … Art House Cinema Downtown at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.) features the films “Il Trittico” at 2 p.m. ($16) and “Take Shelter” at 5 p.m. ($7). Visit msfilm.org. … Super Bowl parties at Reed Pierce’s (601-376-0777), Sportsman’s Lodge (601-366-5441), Bourbon St. in the Quarter (601-987-0808), Last Call (601-713-2700), Time Out (601-978-1839), Wingstop (601-969-6400), The Bulldog (601-978-3502), Fenian’s (601-948-0055) and Burgers and Blues with music from Blake Pierce (601-899-0038). Tell us about your party at events@jacksonfreepress.com.

MONDAY 2/6

The “Pieces of the Past: Men of Influence” exhibit opens at 9 a.m. at Old Capitol Museum (100 S. State St.) and hangs through April 8. Free; call 601-576-6920. … The Music Student Recital is at 3 p.m. at Millsaps College, Ford Academic Complex (1701 N. State St.). Free; call 601-974-1422.

TUESDAY 2/7

Tom Lowe and John Paul perform during Music in the City at 5:45 p.m. at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Free, donations welcome; call 601-354-1533. … Old School 101 hosts Live Jazz, Blues and Open-mic Poetry Night from 7-10 p.m. … Time Out has open-mic Night.

WEDNESDAY 2/8

Mississippi Humanities Council project specialist David Morgan speaks during History Is Lunch at noon at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Bring lunch; call 601-576-6998. … Club Magoo’s hosts Open-mic Night at 8 p.m. … Crooked Creek plays at Underground 119. … John Mora performs at Papitos. More at jfpevents.com and jfp.ms/musicvenues. Kerry Thomas (pictured) and M.L. the Truth perform during Centric Thursday at Dreamz JXN Feb. 2. COURTESY SUITE 106

THURSDAY 2/2

SUNDAY 2/5

jacksonfreepress.com

WEDNESDAY 2/1

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jfpevents JFP-SPONSORED EVENTS Fondren After 5 Feb. 2, 5 p.m. This monthly event showcases the local shops, galleries and restaurants of the Fondren neighborhood. Free; call 601-981-9606. Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS Benefit Feb. 11, 6 p.m., at Hal & Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St.). The benefit includes live and silent art auctions, music and local cuisine. $30 in advance, $35 at the door; call 601-750-5883. Ignite the Night Gala Feb. 11, 6:30 p.m., at Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Highland Drive). The adults-only event features themed food in each gallery, cocktails and child-like activities. $100; call 601-981-5469 or 877-793-KIDS. Yoga for Non-violence - 108 Sun Salutations Feb. 18, 9 a.m., at Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). All levels of ability and endurance are welcome to participate in the yoga mala. Free sun salutation classes given at Butterfly Yoga, Joyflow Yoga, StudiOm Yoga and Matworks. Proceeds benefit the Center for Violence Prevention. $25, donations welcome; call 601-500-0337 or 601-932-4198.

COMMUNITY Events at Hilton Jackson (1001 E. County Line Road). • Foreign-Trade Zone Seminar Feb. 1, 10 a.m. The Mississippi World Trade Center is the host. Registration required. $45, $30 members; call 601-353-0909. • Mississippi Economic Development Council Winter Conference Feb. 1-3. The theme is “Staying on Top of Your Game.” $295, $195 members, $120 spouse or student, $80 Feb. 2 only; call 601-352-1909. Events at Jackson Medical Mall (350 W. Woodrow Wilson Ave.), in the Community Meeting Room. • Parents for Public Schools Lunch Bunch Feb. 1, 11:30 a.m. RSVP. $5 lunch; call 601-969-6015. • Drop Out Prevention Town Hall Meeting Feb. 2, 6 p.m. Dinner and door prizes included. Free; call 601-948-4725. “History Is Lunch” Feb. 1, noon, at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). University of Southern Mississippi history professor Max Grivnos presents “African American Soldiers in the Civil War.” Bring lunch; coffee and water provided. Free; call 601-576-6998. Open House and Immigration 101 Information Session Feb. 2, 1 p.m., at McCoy Federal Building (100 W. Capitol St.), at the USCIS Application Support Center. Immigrants get details on the U.S. citizenship process. Appointments with officers available Feb. 2-3. Free; call 407-237-8837.

February 1 - 7, 2012

Mississippi Kids Count Summit Feb. 3, 8 a.m., at Christ United Methodist Church (6000 Old Canton Road). Topics include bullying and Internet safety. Meals included. CEU credits available. College students can request a fee waiver by emailing Dorris Baggett at dorris.baggett@ssrc.msstate.edu. $55; call 662-325-3442.

30

Kids’ Fiesta Fun Event Feb. 3, 6 p.m., at Lingofest Language Center (7048 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland). On first Fridays, children ages 5-11 learn basic Spanish in a party atmosphere that includes games, songs and refreshments. Limited space; pre-registration required. $15 per child; call 601-500-7700. ACT Workshop Feb. 4, 8 a.m., at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.), in Olin Hall. Learn test-taking strategies, get tips and take practice exams. Bring

Jackson Audubon Society First Saturday Bird Walk Feb. 4, 8 a.m., at Mayes Lake at LeFleur’s Bluff (115 Lakeland Terrace). Bring binoculars, water, insect repellent and a snack. Call ahead to borrow binoculars. Adults must accompany children under 15. Free, $3 car entrance fee; call 601-956-7444.

Citizens Police Academy Registration through Feb. 5. The Jackson Police Department seeks applicants for the program held Feb. 6-13. Call 601-960-1389. Urban Forestry and Green Infrastructure Conference Feb. 7-8, at Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Drive). Topics include conservation, risk management and community revitalization. CEU credits available. Registration required. $95, $75 members, $25 students, $20 awards program; call 601-672-0755. “Black History: Road to the Vote” Feb. 7-23, at Old Capitol Museum (100 S. State St.). This program for school groups provides a glimpse of African American history in Mississippi and the struggle for voting rights. Reservations required. Free; call 601-576-6920. Do-It-Herself Workshop Feb. 7, 7 p.m., at Home Depot (6325 Interstate 55 N.). Learn to install a backsplash. Free; call 601-952-0740, ext. 129.

WELLNESS “Fuel the New Year” Wellness Program, at Fleet Feet Sports (Trace Station, 500 Highway 51 N., Ridgeland). The six-month program includes a weight-loss contest and monthly nutrition workshops starting Feb. 2 to help improve eating habits. The contest is free to participants who sign up for a 5K or marathon program. $100 contest (optional), $10 per workshop; call 601-899-9696. Anusara Yoga Immersion, Part 2 Feb. 4-6 and Feb. 24-26, noon, at Butterfly Yoga (3025 N. State St.). Students who completed the Part I class may participate. $500; call 601-594-2313.

STAGE AND SCREEN “A War for Your Soul” Video Screening Feb. 1, 6 p.m., at Tougaloo College (500 W. County Line Road, Tougaloo), at the Bennie G. Thompson

J

Christian Dance Hall: Singles and Couples Night Feb. 3, 7:30 p.m., at Salsa Mississippi Studio and Club (605 Duling Ave.). CLB Hollywood Entertainment hosts the weekly event with music from deejays, line dancing and karaoke in a Christian atmosphere. Door prizes given. Win a free limousine ride. Donations benefit the Center for Violence Prevention. Reservations required. No cover, donations welcome; call 601-331-1043. Rotary Club of North Jackson Pancake Breakfast Feb. 4, 8 a.m., at St. James Episcopal Church (3921 Oakridge Drive), in Fowler Hall. Proceeds go toward efforts to eradicate polio. $8; email gregcampbell2@comcast.net.

Zoo Connections Teacher Workshop Feb. 4, 9 a.m., at Jackson Zoo (2918 W. Capitol St.). Teachers for grades K-2 learn how to incorporate a visit to the zoo into a curriculum. Bring lunch. $15, $5 for 0.5 CEU credits optional; call 601-352-2580, ext. 241.

An Ill-Fitting Life

BE THE CHANGE

Rush to Brush 5K Feb. 4, 8:30 a.m., at University of Mississippi Medical Center (2500 N. State St.), at the Norman C. Nelson Student Union. Registration is at 6:30 a.m. The event also includes a one-mile fun run at 9:30 a.m. Proceeds benefit the pediatric dentistry department at Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children. $25, $15 fun run; visit mstrackclub.com. Bacchus Ball Feb. 4, 7 p.m., at Country Club of Jackson (345 Saint Andrews Drive). Enjoy a Creole cocktail buffet, live and silent auctions, and music from Complete Desire. Limited seating. Proceeds benefit the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi. $250 seated reservations, $125 unseated reservations; call 601-957-7878 or 877-DFM-CURE. Center. Reggie Bullock’s video is a message to young African-Americans to remember their ancestors’ struggles. Some images may be disturbing to some viewers. Free; call 601-977-7806. “Lombardi” through Feb. 5, at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.). Shows are Feb. 1-4 at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 5 at 2 p.m. $25, $22 seniors and students; call 601-948-3533, ext. 222. “Kevin Smith: Live From Behind” Simulcast Feb. 2, 8:30 p.m., at Tinseltown (411 Riverwind Drive, Pearl). The independent filmmaker and his podcast co-host Jason Mewes answer fan questions. $14, $13 seniors and students, $12 children; call 601-936-5856.

Art House Cinema Downtown Feb. 5, at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.). Films include the opera “Il Trittico” at 2 p.m. ($16) and “Take Shelter” at 5 p.m. ($7). Popcorn and beverages sold. Visit msfilm.org.

MUSIC JPS All-City Orchestra Festival Feb. 2, 7 p.m., at Thalia Mara Hall (255 E. Pascagoula St.). String students in elementary school and up perform. Free; call 601-960-1565. Blackberry Smoke Feb. 3, 7:30 p.m., at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). Enjoy cocktails at 7:30 p.m. and the show at 9 p.m. The band plays music with rock, country and bluegrass influences. $12 in advance, $15 at the door; call 800-745-3000. Music Student Departmental Recital Feb. 6, 3 p.m., at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.) at

by Ronni Mott

ackson native Barrett Hathcock has given readers a small gem with his short-story collection, “The Portable Son” (Aqueous Books, 2011, $14). The stories read like a novel. Instead of unrelated snippets, protagonist Peter Gallatin’s struggle toward adulthood links the tales together. But this is not a Disney-esque coming-of-age yarn. The stories follow Peter—just another Jackson kid—for about 10 years, starting at age 16 “cotton diving” with his buddy. The author deftly weaves through time as Peter slogs through his illfitting life. He’s not what everyone expects,

but then, others don’t quite measure up to Peter’s expectations, either. Life hits Peter hard—in the gut and in the soul. Hathcock crafts Peter’s beautifully imagined world with grace and style, rocking gently from sweet compassion to brutal, and often humorous, truth. He’s one to watch. Barrett Hathcock will be at Lemuria Books (4465 Interstate 55 N., 601366-7619) to sign copies of “The Portable Son” Feb. 4 at 1 p.m.

Ford Academic Complex. Enjoy a variety of vocal and instrumental music. Free; call 601-974-1422. Music in the City Feb. 7, 5:15 p.m., at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.), in Trustmark Grand Hall. Hors d’oeuvres will be served first, and Tom Lowe and John Paul perform at 5:45 p.m. Free, donations welcome; call 601-354-1533. Preston Chamber Music Series: An Evening of Diamonds Feb. 7, 7:30 p.m., at Belhaven University Center for the Arts Concert Hall (835 Riverside Drive). Pianists Bennett Randman, Song Xie and Dr. Stephen Sachs perform. $10, $5 seniors and students; call 601-974-6494.

LITERARY AND SIGNINGS

Collaborative Arts Concert Feb. 4, 7:30 p.m., at Belhaven University Center for the Arts Concert Hall (835 Riverside Drive). Faculty and students perform. Free; call 601-965-7026.

COURTESY AQUEOUS BOOKS

Precinct 1 COPS Meeting Feb. 2, 6 p.m., at Jackson Police Department, Precinct 1 (810 Cooper Road). These monthly forums are designed to help resolve community issues. Call 601-960-0001.

the calculator and watch you will be using for the actual test. Limited seating. Registration available at get2college.org. Free; call 601-321-5533.

Book Signings at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.). Call 601-366-7619. • Feb. 2, 5 p.m., Jason Morgan Ward signs copies of “Defending White Democracy: The Making of a Segregationist Movement and the Remaking of Racial Politics”; reading at 5:30 p.m. $34.95 book. • Feb. 4, 1 p.m., Barrett Hathcock signs copies of “The Portable Son.” $14 book. “Married to Sin: A Memoir” Feb. 4, 4 p.m., at Brandon Public Library (1475 W. Government St.). Darlene D. Collier and Meredith McGee sign books. $12.62 book; call 601-706-4656 or 601-372-0229.

EXHIBITS AND OPENINGS Events at Millsaps College, Lewis Art Gallery (Ford Academic Complex, 1701 N. State St.) through Feb. 11. Hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays. Free; call 601-974-1762. • Annual Juried Student Show. The awards show and reception is Feb. 3 at 2 p.m. • Sue Carrie Drummond Honors Art Show. The Honors Conference Talk is Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. Events at Mississippi Craft Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland). Free; call 601-856-7546. • “Birds, Blooms and Butterflies” Craft Exhibit Feb. 1-29. See Sharon Williams’ fiber exhibit. • Craftsmen’s Guild “Prepare to Qualify” Workshop Feb. 4, 10 a.m. The user-friendly workshop explores the guild member application process. Artisan Double Header Feb. 2, 5 p.m., at circa. (2771 Old Canton Road). See Christy Henderson’s artwork and Joy Light’s hand-painted silk clothing; up through Feb. 29. Free; call 601-362-8484. Check jfpevents.com for updates and more listings. To add an event, email all details (phone number, start and end date, and time, street address, cost, URL, etc.) to events@jacksonfreepress.com or fax to 601510-9019. The deadline is noon the Thursday prior to the week of publication. Or add the event online yourself; check out jfpevents.com for instructions.


DIVERSIONS|music

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Support Your Local (Mall) Record Store

We all have our thing. But beyond general opinions on malls, there is the over-arching issue with buying music from said malls. We all know it isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t cool to buy music at the mall. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s where the lazy people who donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t listen to good bands get their tunes. That might be true in many instances. But I spent a lot of time during high school at both the Camelot and Musicland inside the Metrocenter (and the Be-Bop outside it), looking for Sub-Pop albums I had only dreamed about and WuTang solo albums on cassette tapes, even though those never came out when they were supposed to. So, I wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t new or opposed to this whole thing. Without hesitation, on a slow weeknight, Catherine and I went to Northpark, walked into FYE, and there they were: bins full of records, probably a couple hundred altogether. We pulled everything from Herbie Hancock and Pavement re-issues to new

Lil Wayne albums. We saw a lot of things that we wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mind having, but decided not to buy anything, mainly because

didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have on vinyl: Erykah Baduâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;New Amerykah Part One: 4th World War.â&#x20AC;? The irony of the whole situation is not lost on me. Think about it: I reasoned my way into thinking that it was a moral imperative to support the mall music store in the suburbs. This is the same kind of store that killed many independent stores in the â&#x20AC;&#x2122;80s and â&#x20AC;&#x2122;90s. (Digital music finished off the rest). But, as we have seen, things change in the music industry quickly, and the rules for those of us on the buying end are constantly evolving. Toward the end of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Starship Troopers,â&#x20AC;? Neil Patrick Harrisâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; character, in a moment of matter-of-factness, says, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re in this for the species, boys and girls.â&#x20AC;? Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s how I see this mall music-store thing. We have lost the independent stores and most of the mall stores in the past few years. They are a dying breed. I think it is worth the effort to support one of the last ones, even if it is in a mall I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t really like. WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

At a New Yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Eve potluck, James Crow (aka Herbert Brown) told me a tale of buying records at the FYE music store at Northpark Mall. He captivated me with descriptions of full record bins loaded with new albums and re-releases of classics. He came home with A Tribe Called Questâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Midnight Marauders,â&#x20AC;? among others. Two nights later, after eating a roastbeef dinner with my wife, Catherine, and Cody Cox and Caitlin McNally of Liver Mousse, Cox told me the same wild story of a vinyl oasis at the mall. I was going to have to trek out of the city limits and go to the mall. And that isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t necessarily such a bad thing. Cox and Crow both told me of their general dislike of malls, and I sympathize with the stance, seeing as how malls are the Jungian archetype of humanityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s consumeristic nightmares. I, however, look past that and kind of like malls, because when I go to one, I usually bring some sneakers or expensive jeans back with me.

A

fter missing the Esperanza Plantation Holiday Showcase in December, The Weeks return to Jackson. On Friday, Feb. 3, the band performs with Colour Revolt at Hal and Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s at 8 p.m. Here are a few fun facts about their songs to get you geared up for the show.

we had spent the monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s record money in Detroit a few weeks prior. Then I stopped and thought to myself: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Maybe I should buy something. If we support this place, they will continue to get new records that we want to buy.â&#x20AC;? And that seemed reasonable. I would love for them to keep those bins stocked. So we decided to buy a record we love but

jacksonfreepress.com

by Garrad Lee

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m an entertainer. Drake and Lil Wayne do amazing things lyrically, but BeyoncĂŠ is such a great entertainer.â&#x20AC;? West, 30, heavily promoted the album in recent shows at Club Rainz and Dreams JXN and has shows scheduled in St. Louis and Atlanta in coming weeks to draw a larger following. West is planning a fashion and entertainment extravaganza sometime this spring in Jackson that will not only feature Mississippi hip-hop artists, but give Jackson-based entrepreneurs in the fashion, design and beauty industry a chance to showcase their businesses and products. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I want to give back to the community and give other artists and business people the same chance I was given to succeed,â&#x20AC;? she says. K West has struggled in recent months being a successful artist in a largely male-dominated genre. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t do it without the support of my family and the people at Optimo Palace. You see no females in the hip-hop shows across the South, and we are here to show that K West can be entertainment at its best.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;He Say She Sayâ&#x20AC;? is available for purchase on the Optimo Palace website (optimopalace.yolasite.com), coming soon to iTunes. View K Westâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s videos at youtube. com/kwest0927.

COURTESY THE WEEKS

to a beat in a track, â&#x20AC;&#x153;I Didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Know.â&#x20AC;? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s included on her debut album, â&#x20AC;&#x153;He Say She Say,â&#x20AC;? a collection she calls a diary of her life. The entertainer, who goes by the stage name K West The Showstopper, grew up in Jackson. An alumna of Provine High School and Jackson State University, West got her start booking acts at her familyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s downtown Jackson establishment, West Restaurant and Lounge (3430 W. Capitol St., 601948-7680). West then began K West won Artist of the Year at the 2011 Mississippi singing, but a friend suggested Hip Hop Awards. She has a new album out. she try rap. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s when West discovered that hip-hop is her true talent. ip-hop artist Kimberly West came Released on the Jackson-based hiphome one day in 2003, and almost hop label Optimo Palace and produced as soon as she walked through the by Cory B and Juize Jackson, â&#x20AC;&#x153;He Say door, the phone rang. She didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t She Sayâ&#x20AC;? shows the true talent and swagexpect the bad news that came next. ger that K West possesses. The album, reâ&#x20AC;&#x153;Your brotherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s been in a car ac- leased Oct. 3, helped West win the award cident,â&#x20AC;? is what she heard. She went to for Artist of the Year at the 2011 Missisthe hospital and waited with family. The sippi Hip Hop Awards. While West wrote news didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t get better. Her brother died almost the entire album, she says it rethat day. veals heavy influences from Nicki Minaj, West wrote about the pain, confu- Drake, Lil Wayne and even BeyoncĂŠ. sion and loss of her brother and put it â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not just a rapper,â&#x20AC;? West says.

The Key of G

The Weeks

by Greg Pigott

COURTESY K WEST

Diary of The Showstopper

10 Things about

31


livemusic

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FEB. 1 - WEDNESDAY

Weekly Lunch Specials

LIVE MUSIC CALENDAR ALL SHOWS 10PM UNLESS NOTED

WEDNESDAY

02/01

CATHEAD VODKAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S LIVE KARAOKE

LADIES NIGHT

GUYS PAY $5, LADIES ENTER & DRINK FREE CATHEAD VODKA 9-10PM FRIDAY

02/03

Open for dinner Sat. 4-10pm Thursday

February 2

LADIES NIGHT

w/ DJ Stache

LADIES ENTER & DRINK FREE WELLS & PONIES 9PM-2AM

Friday

February 3

Scott Albert

Johnson

GOOD ENOUGH FOR GOOD TIMES

(FEATURING

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GALACTIC)

SATURDAY

02/04

Saturday

Buddy and the Squids

with risko danza Monday

02/08

CATHEAD VODKAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S LIVE KARAOKE

LADIES NIGHT

GUYS PAY $5, LADIES ENTER & DRINK FREE CATHEAD VODKA 9-10PM

February 1 - 7, 2012

Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Forget To Stop By Our

32

MID DAY CAFE Serving Lunch 11-2!

214 S. STATE ST. â&#x20AC;¢ 601.354.9712

DOWNTOWN JACKSON

WWW.MARTINSLOUNGE.NET

February 6

PUB QUIZ 2-for-1 Drafts Tuesday

WEDNESDAY

February 4

sponsored by

February 7

2-for-1 Beer Specials Highlife, Highlife Lite, PBR, Schlitz, Fatty Natty

Wednesday

February 8

KARAOKE w/ DJ STACHE FREE WiFi

Open Mon-Sat, Restaurant open Mon-Fri 11 am-10 pm & Sat 4-10 pm

601-960-2700

facebook.com/Ole Tavern

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Grab ya beads and come on out!

Wednesday - February 1

Lunch 11am - 2pm Monday-Friday

KARAOKE

For The Big Game Open at 3pm $5 Domestic Pitchers $1 Draft Food Specials All Day

Thursday - February 2 Ladies Night: Ladies Drink Free

Friday - February 3

south of 20

(Drink Specials Valid Only During The Big Game)

2 7ft. Video Screens & 3 Big Screen TVs

THIS WEEK WEDNESDAY 2/01

-Best of Jackson 2012-

Restaurant open until 9:00

NOW OPEN ON TUESDAYS

Snazz

THURSDAY 2/02

SHANE & FRAZIER

Kick-Off Party

(Americana) 8-11, No Cover

FRIDAY 2/03

Thursday, February 2nd

Swing de Paris (DR)

Feb. 03: Southbound | 9pm | $5 Feb. 04: Back 40 | 9pm | $5

Colour Revolt with the Weeks (RR)

Sunday - February 5

SATURDAY 2/04

Come Out for the Big Game

Virgil Brawley (DR)

Free Food

Jason Fratesi and The Dirt Road Jam Band (RR)

4:30pm - til

& Budweiser Giveaways 601-961-4747

www.myspace.com/popsaroundthecorner

Coming Soon THU 2.09: Ben Lewis (DR) FRI 2.10: Barry Leach Trio (DR) SAT 2.11: HeARTS Against AIDS SAT 2.18: Jason Turner (DR)

Jackson’s Home For THE BIG GAME!

SAT 2.18: Time to Move (RR) TUE 2.21: James McMurtry (RR) THU 2.23: Chris Knight

Monday-Thursday

PARTY STARTS SUNDAY MORNING! 11:00 AM • ALL DAY SPECIALS

• Boiled Shrimp Special

(corn & potatoes) plus regular menu items

• $2 Domestics • $3 Mimosas & Bloody Marys • Gift Cards & Other Prizes (to be given away at the end of each quarter)

FRIDAY & SATURDAY PRE-PARTY With Live Music by The Colonels

Voted Best Cover Band in Jackson Free Press Best of Jackson 2012 No cover charge. Band starts at 9:00 pm

Follow us on Facebook 6791 Siwell Rd. Byram, MS • 601.376.0777 • www.reedpierces.com

Wednesday,February 1st

Baby Jan & All That Chazz (DR)

*Ticket Give-Away*

601.987.0808

Best New Chef Award

Saturday - February 4

Dixie National Rodeo

Bourbon St. in the Quarter (Formely Poets) 1855 Lakeland Drive Jackson, MS

Congratulations! Tom Ramsey

Blue Plate Lunch with corn bread and tea or coffee

$8

25

As well as the usual favorites! Seafood Gumbo, Red Beans and Rice, Burgers, Fried Pickles, Onion Rings and Homemade Soups made daily.

$4.00 Happy Hour Well Drinks! visit HalandMals.com for a full menu and concert schedule

601.948.0888

200 S. Commerce St. Downtown Jackson, Mississippi * Tickets available at www.ticketmaster.com

GEESLIN

(Jazz/Rock) 8-11, No Cover

Friday, February 3rd

FEARLESS FOUR

(Funk) 9-1, $5 Cover before 8:30 $10 Cover after 8:30

Saturday, February 4th

KING EDWARD

(Blues) 9-1, $5 Cover before 8:30 $10 Cover after 8:30

Tuesday, February 7th

JESSE ROBINSON

(Blues) 6-11, $5 Cover Wednesday,February 8th

CROOKED CREEK

(Americana) 8-11, No Cover

Thursday, February 9th

TIGER ROGERS & LEAGUE OF JAZZMEN (Jazz) 8-11, No Cover

Friday, February 10th

CYRIL NEVILLE

(Funk) 9-1, $5 Cover before 8:30 $10 Cover after 8:30

Saturday, February 11th

LOS PAPIS

(Blues) 9-1, $5 Cover before 8:30 $10 Cover after 8:30

119 S. President Street 601.352.2322 www.Underground119.com

jacksonfreepress.com

Come Party With Us

33


by Bryan Flynn

by Bryan Flynn

THURSDAY, FEB. 2 College basketball (ESPN U 7-9 p.m.): The last undefeated team in college basketball, Murray State, hosts Southeast Missouri State. FRIDAY, FEB. 3 NBA (ESPN 7-9:30 p.m.): The New York Knicks travel north to face longtime rivals the Boston Celtics. SATURDAY, FEB. 4 College basketball (ESPN2 7-9 p.m.): Ole Miss faces a very good Alabama Crimson Tide team on the road in a pivotal SEC matchup. SUNDAY, FEB. 5 NFL (NBC 5:30-8:30 p.m.): Super Bowl XLVI will feature Tom Brady of the New England Patriots and Eli Manning of the New York Giants. MONDAY, FEB. 6 College basketball (ESPN 6-8 p.m.): Defending champions the Connecticut Huskies face the Louisville Cardinals in a Big East clash of ranked teams. TUESDAY, FEB. 7 NHL (NBC Sports Network 6:30-9:30 p.m.): Check out the Los Angeles Kings at Tampa Bay Lightning. Get your fix of grown men hitting each other if youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re suffering withdrawals now that football is over. WEDNESDAY, FEB. 8 College basketball (ESPN 8-10 p.m.): One of the best rivalries in college basketball also features two top-10 teams when Duke travels to North Carolina. Look for a breakdown of the big game on JFPSports.com. Feel free to email questions to me at JFPSports@gmail.com. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be tweeting answers before, during and after the game @jfpsports. Follow Bryan Flynn at jfpsports.com, @jfpsports and at facebook.com/jfpsports.

46 for XLVI 28. Tom Brady is the only quarterback to win three Super Bowls before reaching this age. 27. New Yorkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s rank in total defense. 26. Or 26.8 million people who watched Glee after last yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Super Bowl. 25. As in Super Bowl XXV, in which Whitney Houston sang the National Anthem (considered one of the best Super Bowl renditions ever).

18. Or 18.7, Giants wide receiver Victor Cruzâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s average yards per catch (not the num46. Number of sandwiches competing in ber of Cruzâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s salsa dances this season). the Indiana Office of Tourism Develop17. The Patriotsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Rob Gronkowski touchmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Super 46â&#x20AC;? contest. down catches this season, which broke the 45. Largest margin of victory in a Super San Diego Chargersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Antonio Gatesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; previous Bowl: the San Francisco 49ers over San record of 13. Diego, 55-10, in Super Bowl XXIV. 16. Career playoff wins for Tom Brady, tied 44. As in Super Bowl XLIV, in which the for first with Joe Montana. New Orleans Saints defeated the 15. Wins this season for the New Indianapolis Colts. England Patriots (including playoffs). 43. Years since the New York Jets 14. In seconds, the fastest score in have played in a Super Bowl (SuSuper Bowl history: Chicago Bearsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; per Bowl III in 1969). Devin Hester on the opening kickoff 42. As in Super Bowl XLII, in return in Super Bowl XLI. which the New York Giants ruined 13. Or 13.2 million pounds of the New England Patriots perfect avocados to be consumed on Super season. Bowl Sunday. 41. Length in yards of Adam Vi12. Wins this season for the New natieriâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s game-winning field goal York Giants (including playoffs). over the Carolina Panthers in Su11. Joe Montanaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s career Super Bowl per Bowl XXVIII. touchdown passes. 40. In thousands, the cost of a 10. Times Miami and New Orleans commercial for Super Bowl I in each host the Super Bowl (includ1967 ($3.5 million this year). ing the 2013 Super Bowl for New 39. Number of Tom Bradyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Orleans). touchdown passes this season 9. New York defeated New England 38. Most rushing attempts in a 24-20 in week nine this season. Super Bowl: John Riggins in Super 8. Number of touchdown passes Eli Bowl XVII. Manning threw in this postseason to 37. Most points in a fourth quaronly one interception. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady won three Super Bowls ter: the Patriotsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; and Panthersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; 7. Eli Manningâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s career playoff wins. before the age of 28. combined in Super Bowl XXVIII. 6. Most Super Bowl victories for one 36. As in Super Bowl XXXVI: team, the Pittsburgh Steelers. New Englandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first Super Bowl 5. Bill Belichick and Tom Bradyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Suvictory over the St. Louis Rams dubbed 24. Career fourth-quarter comebacks: Tom per Bowl appearances, most ever by a coach the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Greatest Show on Turf.â&#x20AC;? Brady (entering the Super Bowl). and quarterback combo. 35. Most points scored in one half by a 23. Times an NFL Hall of Famer has won 4. Super Bowl rings for Joe Montana and single team: Washington Redskins in Su- the Super Bowl MVP (among current Hall Terry Bradshaw, the most for a quarterback. per Bowl XXII. of Fame players). 3. Times in the last four years the last ranked 34. Tom Bradyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s age entering this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 22. Jersey number of Tracy Porter, who inter- rush team has reached the Super Bowl: Giants Super Bowl. cepted a Payton Manning pass and returned (2011), Colts (2009) and Cardinals (2008). 33. Most career Super Bowl catches: Jerry it for a touchdown to clinch the Saintsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Super The Colts and Cardinals lost. Rice in four Super Bowls. Bowl victory in â&#x20AC;&#x2122;09. 2. Fewest combined team touchdowns: the 32. Or 32.2: the Patriotsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; average points 21. Fewest combined points by teams in a New York Jets and Baltimore Colts in Super scored this season per game (the Giants Super Bowl: the Miami Dolphins (14) and Bowl III. averaged 24.6). Washington Redskins (7) in Super Bowl VII, 1. Or 1.25 billion chicken wings that will 31. Rank of New Englandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s total defense which capped the Dolphins perfect season. be consumed on Super Bowl Sunday, or the 30. In millions, pizzas that will be eaten 20. Tom Landryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s playoffs wins and the most number of times Indianapolis has hosted the on Super Bowl Sunday. ever for a coach. Super Bowl. 29. Wins the Patriots have had since the 19. Eli Manningâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s career fourth-quarter For a Super Bowl breakdown, head to start of the 2010 season (6 losses). comebacks entering the Super Bowl. JFPSports.com. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Super Bowl XLVI in 46 numbers.

JEFFERY BEALL

One last football game of the season this week: Super Bowl XLVI.

Bryanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Rant â&#x20AC;˘ Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a Family Thing

February 1 - 7, 2012

F 34

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dining

by Crawford Grabowski

While she usually serves this as an appetizer, Momma claims this also makes an awesome breakfast when served cold. It can be frozen prior to baking and served later.

ALPHA

Savory Morsels

This rich, crunchy appetizer is sure to please any crowd.

F

or me, few things cause a dietary downfall as quickly as the presence of hors dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;oeurves and appetizers. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just something appealing about small morsels. I have been known to make a meal of dips, starters and tiny treats. While I tend to use â&#x20AC;&#x153;appetizerâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;hors dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;oeurveâ&#x20AC;? interchangeably, technically, they are not the same. Appetizers are meant to be the first course, usually eaten while at the table. Think of a massive, deep-fried onion complete with a vat of secret sauceâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;or a salad. The term â&#x20AC;&#x153;hors dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;oeuvresâ&#x20AC;? refers to the variety of bite-sized food, typically served at parties. In formal settings, fancily dressed, smiling waiters pass them around the room. I, however, am lucky to get them plated and out

CURRIED ARTICHOKE DIP

2 (15-ounce) cans black-eyed peas 1 red onion, chopped 1 red or yellow bell pepper, chopped a handful or two of cilantro, chopped 1-2 jalapenos, seeded and diced 1 (11-ounce) can corn, drained (optional) 1 tomato, diced

Mix all ingredients together in a baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Serve with crackers, pita chips, toast rounds or just a really big spoon. Serves 6 moderately hungry folks.

Put the first seven ingredients in a large bowl and mix. Make dressing and add to other ingredients. Chill for at least two hours or overnight. Serve with tortilla chips. Serves four to six.

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1/2 cup onions, finely chopped 1/2 cup scallions (including at least 2-inches of the green tops), finely chopped 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced (optional) 1/4 cup olive oil 2 pounds frozen spinach, thawed 1/4 cup fresh dill or 2 tablespoons dried dill 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped 1/2 teaspoon salt pepper, to taste a pinch or two of cayenne pepper (optional) 1/3 cup milk or 1/3 cup ricotta or a 1/3 cup mixture of the two 3 or 4 eggs, lightly beaten 1/2 pound feta cheese, crumbled 1/2 pound butter, melted (This is for the phyllo. You can also mix 1/4 cup melted butter and 1/4 cup olive oil or use cooking spray every other layer. It browns better if butter is on the top layer.) 16 sheets (1/2 pound) 16-by-12 inch phyllo pastry, defrosted the day before

In a large skillet, sautĂŠ onions, scallions and garlic in olive oil until soft, or about 5 minutes. Squeeze excess moisture out of spinach and add to pan. Cover and cook for another 5 minutes on medium heat. Add dill, parsley, salt, pepper and cayenne. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently, until most of the liquid has evaporated and the spinach is starting to stick to the pan. This should take no more than 10 minutes. Transfer spinach to a large bowl and cool a little. Stir in milk and/or ricotta cheese. Once the mixture has reached room temperature, add eggs and feta cheese. Melt butter. Coat the bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch pan with melted butter. Line the pan with one sheet of phyllo, pressing it into corners and against the sides of pan. Brush with butter. Add another sheet of phyllo. Continue until you have eight layers. (Those wanting to cut down on butter can use fewer layers or less butter as noted above.) Spread spinach mixture over pastry. Cover with remaining eight sheets of phyllo, making sure to use butter between each sheet. You will have some excess dough on the edges. Either trim it off or just push it down into the pan. Brush the top with butter and bake at 300 degrees for one hour or until crisp and lightly browned. Servesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a lot! Because itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s so rich, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sometimes difficult to eat more than one piece at a time.

SHORTâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;NINâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; BREAD

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KAT MARTINEZ

I February 1 - 7, 2012

BLACK-EYED PEA SALSA

Dressing: 1/4 cup vinegar or lime juice 1/4 cup olive oil 2-3 cloves garlic, minced salt and pepper, to taste a pinch of cumin

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36

of the kitchen before I am surrounded by the usual surly mob of starving people known as my family. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re not real formal at my house. Spanakopita is my motherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s trusty, take-to-anyknown-function appetizer recipe. She finally admitted that she first got the recipe from a cookbook she found in a neighborâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s trash, hence â&#x20AC;&#x153;trashyâ&#x20AC;? in the title. Whatever its origin, sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s made it her own. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s incredibly rich, and the phyllo pastry manages to crunch and melt in your mouth, all at the same time. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s well worth the energy it takes to make it. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make curried artichoke dip very often because it contains a considerable amount of cheese and mayonnaise. I consider it an infrequent treat. Leftovers work well as a pizza topping or tossed with warm pasta. This is The Manâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s favorite artichoke dip. I think I could serve him rusted sheet metal covered with this cheesy dip, and he would eat it. Seriously. My personal favorite is black-eyed pea salsa. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a good balance of spicy and â&#x20AC;&#x153;twangy.â&#x20AC;? It also travels well to potlucks and parties. Try it on a baked potato or as a filling for a quesadilla.

2 (6.5-ounce) jars artichokes, drained and chopped 1 cup mayonnaise 1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated or shaved (not the stuff in the shaker can!) 2-3 teaspoons curry powder, or just add to taste

Shortâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ninâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Bread

MOMMAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Sâ&#x20AC;&#x153;TRASHYâ&#x20AC;? SPANAKOPITA

Three simple ingredients make delicious bread thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s been a treasure for years.

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1/2 cup of butter, softened or a lowcalorie butter substitute 1/4 cup brown sugar 1 cup of white or wheat flour 2 tablespoons molasses (optional, preferably blackstrap molasses) Ginger to taste (optional)

Cream the butter and brown sugar. Add the flour slowly into the mixture, mixing well. Pour into a greased, shallow pan and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Serves six. VHVDQGVRPHJLQJHULQWKHUHFLSH7KLVLVDUHFLSH\RX FDQH[SHULPHQWZLWK


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Wings Philly Cheesesteak Gourmet Burgers:

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Thank You For Again Voting Us The Best Fried Chicken We appreciate each of you. -Best of Jackson 2012707 N Congress St., Jackson | 601-353-1180 Open 11am-2pm, Sunday thru Friday

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6270 Old Canton Rd. Jackson, MS 39211

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DJ Venom Friday, February 3

Hip Kitty

Saturday, February 4

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BIG GAME February 5 • Live Music By Blake Pierce

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live music february 01-06 • Dinner: 5-10 Tuesday-Saturday

wed | feb 01 Jessie “Guitar“ Smith 5:30-9:30p

• Thursday Night: Ladies Night & Karaoke in The Jazz Bar (Thu - Sat)

thur | feb 02 Shaun Patterson 5:30-9:30p

• Happy Hour in The Jazz Bar Tuesday - Friday 4-7pm 2 -4 -1 Wells, Calls, & Domestics, PLUS $5 appetizers To book a private party please call

601-487-8710

February 1 - 7, 2012

824 S. State St. Jackson, MS www.clubmagoos.com

38

fri | feb 03 MOSS 6:30-10:30p sat | feb 04 Hairicane 80’s Tribute 6:30-10:30p mon | feb 06 Karaoke

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by Dr. Timothy Quinn read more Body&Soul stories and the blog at jacksonfreepress.com

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hen I was a resident physician, I drove a Mercedes. I thought I was doing what people expected of a young doctor in the show-off city of Los Angeles, where I completed my medical training. The problem with this picture was that I earned the salary of a student doctor, which was not enough to cover the required upkeep of a used Mercedes. Mistake one was that I neglected taking my car in for routine maintenance due to high costs. I simply relied on the warning light on the dash to alert me to when there was a problem. The first couple of times that I took the car in for service when my warning light went off, it cost more than $500 each time. The mechanic always seemed so happy to see me coming. The third time the light went off, I decided to ignore itâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; mistake two. The car started making a funny sound, which I ignored as well, and then had problems starting. Two months later, the car made a noise that sounded like an explosion and black smoke filled the air. After paying $200 to have the car towed to the mechanic, and finding out it would cost $8,000 to repair the car, I decided that I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t need a Mercedes after all. I left the car with the mechanic for its early retirement. The mechanic informed me that the irreversible prob-

lem could have been avoided with early detection through yearly checkups and early intervention. Like luxury cars, our bodies are finely tuned machinesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;they work best when we take them for regular checkups and pay attention to warning signs. As a physician, I see every day the benefits of regular visits and the problems that occur when patients ignore the warning signs their bodies provide. Two of my patients provide examples on either end of the spectrum. (Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve changed their names to protect their privacy.) Sara Jones was a 57-year-old college professor who came to our clinic complaining of severe chronic lower-back pain that had bothered her for the last 10 years. No physician had ever medically evaluated her pain, she informed me. When I asked her why she had not said anything about it during her last physical, she stated that she did not like doctors and, therefore, had neglected getting a physical for those 10 years. She stated that she simply ignored the pain even though she had good insurance with her job. After a lot of persuasion, she agreed to have a physical that day in our office. Her vitals were good, showing no problems with blood pressure, cholesterol or diabetes, but the physical exam revealed a palpable mass the size of a lemon in her left breast. I immediately sent her to St. Dominic Hospital for an MRI. It revealed cancer that had spread to her vertebra causing the severe back pain. I referred Jones to a surgeon who said that all we could do for her was to provide pain medication to keep her as comfortable as possible during her last days. Mary Smith was a 45-year-old librarian who came to our medical office for a routine yearly physical exam. All her blood work and the physical exam were normal. Even though my breast exam revealed no mass, she still followed up with a routine yearly mammogram as our office recommended. The report came back showing microscopic calcifications, and I referred her to a surgeon for an outpatient biopsy procedure. The pathological report revealed cancer

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cells, but they had clear margins. Smithâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s diligent routine screenings led to catching the cancer early, and a surgeon removed it before it had time to spread. This ladyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s life was saved because she took her body in for its yearly tuneup. Getting your annual physical can prevent unnecessary and irreversible damage. As with my old Mercedes and with my patient Sara Jones, in some cases that damage can result in untimely death. A physical can reveal many medical conditions (not just cancer) that your doctor can treat effectively if he or she diagnoses them early. Those include diabetes, hypertension and elevated cholesterol. If left undiagnosed and untreated, your risks from these illnesses include permanent heart or kidney damage or cerebral vascular disease, which limits the flow of blood to your brain and may cause a stroke or dementia. Even if you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t enjoy having a physical, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s worth a little discomfort to keep your body and mind healthy. If you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t do it for yourself, do it for someone you love. Dr. Timothy Quinn is a family physician practicing in Ridgeland. He has a strong desire to integrate lifestyle modification and education into his medical care. He received his medical degree from Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn.

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jacksonfreepress.com

FILE PHOTO

Your Annual Tuneup

41


Olde Tyme Commissary

Come Play With Us.

-Serving The Jackson Metro Area Since 1972-

by Julie Skipper

Of Sushi and Marathons

Thank You Jackson

for voting us Best Place to Buy Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Toys/Clothes Located in Highland Village 4500 I-55 North Suite 122 â&#x20AC;˘ Jackson MS 39211 601.366.1849 â&#x20AC;˘ www.commissarytoys.com *96

H7M:7:  =6

@

OPEN WEDNESDAY â&#x20AC;&#x201C; SUNDAY

&RESH ,OUISIANA #RAWÂťSH AREBACK

!H?:7O !;8HK7HO &7H7EA;sFC

JULIE SKIPPER

,AKELAND$R\Â&#x201E;Â&#x201E;

February 1 - 7, 2012

The team at the finish: Germaine Benoit, Mandy Hattaway, Ashlee Hederman, Claire Barker and Julie Skipper.

42

We then headed to a new addition to the downtown Jackson restaurant scene, Wasabi Sushi and Bar (100 E. Capitol St., 601-9488808, wasabims.com). The fact that I can now get sushi without leaving my downtown neighborhood makes me really happy. That Wasabi flies its fish in from Hawaii every day and has such an accommodating staff make it even better. That night, we started out at the bar but ended up getting a big table as other friends joined us. A nice evening with good company and good food was a great way to head into race weekend. Luckily, race day was beautiful, and I anxiously awaited the text updates from my team members as I got ready to head to my handoff point in Belhaven. The marathon really is a big deal, and even people who arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t runners get into the spirit. Among my favorite

JULIE SKIPPER

I

donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t think of myself as a particularly athletic individual, but a few years ago, I started runningâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;as in a fitness activity, not because someone was chasing me. It even got to the point where I ran the inaugural Mississippi Blues Marathon in 2008. While Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m pretty certain that I will not be doing any more full marathons, I do love Jackson and think the Blues Marathon is a fantastic event that will continue to showcase our city to the world for years to come. I like being fit, so this year I agreed to be on a relay team with four other girls. For the relay, each team member runs 5 miles, with the last person running the final 6.2 miles. Inspired by my friend Claire Barker, who was training for a full marathon in Baton Rouge and organized our relay team, I agreed to tackle the last leg. Being a group of girls, we naturally decided that picking up our packets at the marathon expo the Thursday evening before the race was an event warranting a night out. I met Claire and teammates Germaine Benoit and Mandy Hattaway at the expo for packet pickupâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and a little shopping. We chatted with Lesley McLin who owns Fleet Feet (500 U.S. Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-899-9696) and picked up a few items for race day.

Wearing a banana costume to watch a marathon makes sense, at least in Belhaven.

spectators were: the guy in Belhaven watching the race in his front yard with a beer while wearing a banana costume; Anna Kline, Jane Halbert Jones and some others who watched while wearing fun hats (and crowns); and Anders and Mandy Ferrington and their friends, who attempted to chase me down to hand me a mimosa. (This may come as a shock, but I declined it.) My run felt great, and my teammates jumped in at the end so we could all cross the finish line together. Afterward, enjoying blues music in the sun at the War Memorial Building and talking to other runners and friends made it a great way to start the year and celebrate the accomplishment. The evening Blues Crawl offered something for runners and blues lovers alike. Eight area bars participated, each featuring live blues music and the Fondren Trolley provided transportation. When Jackson comes together to celebrate, we do it right. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll confess, though, that I was actually a bit tired from the exertion of the day and skipped the crawl. Instead, I decided to engage in a little post-race pampering the following week by visiting Aqua the Day Spa (Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N., 601-362-9550). Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nothing like a little recovery massage and pedicure. Walking through the glass doors into the spa, the calm just washed over me. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s so nice to have a little oasis every once in a while, especially when life is so busy all the time. (Yes, one of my New Yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s resolutions is to take regular time for relaxation and quiet.) I got so relaxed and felt so good that I decided if I ran 6.2 miles so easily, I should sign up for a half marathon soon. So I did. Come March 4, my teammate Claire and I will get to have another race-tastic time, but this time on the road, at the Rock â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;nâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Roll New Orleans Marathon and Half Marathon.


Valentine’s Day Create Your Very Own Jewelry! 398 Hwy. 51 • Ridgeland, MS (601) 853-3299 • www.villagebeads.com

Thank you Jackson for voting Betsy Liles Best Jewelry Designer!

Tuesday February 14 ORDER EARLY!

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Thank You Jackson

for voting Custom Tailoring by Al as the Best Tailor in the Best of Jackson 2012!

Ridgeland & Flowood

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jacksonfreepress.com

RIDGELAND

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