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From unforgettable moments in sports history to imagination-filled times with your kids. A chance to relive the magic of small-town life, early aviation and agriculture, combined with adventures on the wild side with living creatures, huge aquariums and even dinosaurs. And, the district brings these incredible museums together for a great price.

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May 14 - 20, 2014




Includes admission to all four museums. Must purchase a Student ticket.

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ack Welch has three shih tzus named Bella, Annie and Sara. But, as a member of the board of directors at Community Animal Rescue and Adoption in Clinton, he is part of a team of people who work both behind the scenes and on the front lines caring for about 300 dogs and 80 cats. He may not deal directly with the animals, but his passion for what he does is visible. After all, it was his love of animals, community involvement and background in fundraising that drew him to CARA. The AFLAC insurance salesman says that about seven years ago, one of his clients, COPAC Alcohol & Drug Treatment Center, asked Welch and his wife, Nancy, to help raise money for CARA. Three years later, Welch joined the organization’s board of directors to help with fundraising. After six months of being involved, he was promoted to vice chairman, and six months later, he replaced a chairman that had stepped down. After completing that term, he was elected and then reelected for two years in a row. On May 1, his last term as chairman ended. The Menden, La., native earned bachelor’s degrees in journalism and history at Northwestern State Louisiana. He went on to complete a master’s degree in public relations from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1986 and has been in the Magnolia State ever since. Welch, 52, says Mississippi’s history and culture is what drew him here. He says he loves


visiting the Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Museum and other venues that provide a taste for the state’s history. As CARA chairman, his job fell mainly on the business side, from making sure the shelter had insurance to getting the building repaired after last year’s hail storm. But he, along with other board members, was also able to widen the spectrum of CARA’s services and programs. One of the more interesting ones is the adopta-leash program, where people who want a dog but may not be able to have one at their homes can pay a monthly fee of $30 to spend six to eight hours a month with their chosen dog. “We take care of it, we feed it, we take it to the vet and everything, but you have access to it,” Welch says. “… You also have that responsibility of paying and providing for it so you feel kind of like it’s your animal.” Though he tends to stay on the business end of things, Welch likes to get his hands dirty sometimes, participating in events such as the shelter’s adoption days and also cleanup days. Among other services, the shelter has a dog park, Bree’s Bark Park. Welch estimates that 149 dogs are members. For more information on CARA (960 N. Flag Chapel Road), visit or find the organization on Facebook. Welch and his wife will celebrate their 14th anniversary in November. They are active in the community and their church, Parkplace Baptist Church in Pearl, and they love to travel. —Amber Helsel

Cover photo of the Raymond Detention Center by Trip Burns

8 Books for Chokwe

In honor of the late Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, Richard and Sandra Koritz donated more than 34,000 books to the City of Jackson, which the Jackson-Hinds library system hopes will go toward improving education and other issues.

24 An Oxford Chef in New York

“People used to think southern food was just what you had at home for Sunday supper or whatever. But look at the Gulf and the abundance of produce we have with our long growing season. People are finally sort of paying attention to that.” —Vishwesh Bhatt, “Top of His Class”

30 Martha and Mary

Fish Tale Group Theatre’s “Martha” is a modern retelling of the story of Martha and Mary with a Southern twist, complete with catfish and cornbread.

4 ....................... PUBLISHER’S NOTE 6 ................................................ YOU 8 ............................................ TALKS 14 ................................ EDITORIAL 15 .................................... OPINION 16 ............................ COVER STORY 24 ......................................... FOOD 25 ....................GIRL ABOUT TOWN 27 .............................. DIVERSIONS 29 ....................................... 8 DAYS 30 ...................................... EVENTS 32 ....................................... MUSIC 33 ....................... MUSIC LISTINGS 34 ..................................... SPORTS 35 .................................... PUZZLES 37 ....................................... ASTRO


MAY 14 - 20, 2014 | VOL. 12 NO. 36



by Todd Stauffer, Publisher

AFA Bearing False Witness Against Businesses?


’ve been excited to see the “We Don’t Discriminate” campaign take off in Mississippi, in part because it says great things about the state to a nation that is watching closely. The thoughtfulness of the business people who have reacted to a regressive law passed by a Legislature with misplaced priorities is ultimately going to help Mississippi’s cause, if only thanks to the contrast offered by the “other side” in the argument. This past week, the American Family Association put out an “action item” that accuses the “We Don’t Discriminate” campaign of being … discriminatory. To quote from the piece ( wedontdiscriminate): “Ironically, this sticker represents the very promotion of discrimination ... against the freedom of religious convictions.” So let’s think about that for a second. The Mississippi Legislature passes a bill that appears to enable people to discriminate against others based on their personal, religious convictions. In response to that bill’s signing, a group of businesses decide to create a campaign to make it clear to their customers that they don’t plan to discriminate against anyone—if you’re buying, they’re selling. That’s what the sticker says, that’s what the campaign is about. “If you’re buying, we’re selling.” So how does that discriminate against anyone’s religious convictions? The AFA would certainly have a case if the sticker said, “We refuse to serve committed Christians,” or “no Muslims here,” or even “only gays allowed.” But that’s not what the sticker says. It says everyone is welcome. So why is that so threatening to people with strong religious convictions? I’m forced to assume a “we don’t dis-

criminate” campaign feels like a threat to the AFA not only because they (a) want the legal right to discriminate, but (b) they also feel bad about it and don’t want to be reminded of that desire. Maybe seeing some people in town put a “We Don’t Discriminate” sticker in their businesses’ window makes those people feel guilty that they want to discriminate—when what they want is to feel righteous. But how righteous are your convictions if you feel bad about them?

Its response is to squeal like a stuck pig. One is forced to wonder why. That’s the only logic I can come up with, because a campaign that has non-discrimination at the absolute core of it is—by definition—not discriminatory. It’s the businesses’ choice to tell people they won’t discriminate; this is America, and I applaud their willingness to stand up for what they believe in. The AFA, on the other hand, says this: “The businesses listed below are spreading hateful rhetoric against the religious freedoms and convictions of Christians.” The problem is, the “We Don’t Discriminate” folks aren’t doing that. Isn’t there a commandment that says something about bearing false witness? One could guess that the AFA is say-

ing that the “We Don’t Discriminate” campaign is “spreading hateful rhetoric” because the Religious Freedom Restoration Act isn’t designed for discrimination. That could be fair. Unfortunately, the AFA clearly admits that banning gays from public accommodations is the purpose of the bill as they see it—a sidebar on that same page reads: “The homosexual lobby is bitter against Governor Bryant’s signing of the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which protects Christian business owners against lawsuits from gay activists. The typical response is to spread their hatred for religious truths by attacking and intimidating Christians.” One thing I love about the “We Don’t Discriminate” campaign is the fact that it doesn’t attack anyone—even if the AFA fervent wish to convince their followers that they are being attacked. The fact that “We Don’t Discriminate” is such a purely positive message is the greatest threat to groups like the AFA, which traffic in judgment and negativity in an effort to drum up indignation from their support base. That fills the coffers. But the admission by the AFA that this is definitely about gays is very interesting, because groups aligned with the AFA in support of this bill ( have gone to great pains to distance themselves from that purpose, instead suggesting that the bill simply mirrors aspects of the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act signed into law by Bill Clinton. (They then generally fail to mention that federal courts struck down aspects of the federal RFRA, which seems to be why they’re so worried about passing the same sort of laws at the state level.) The AFA and ilk feel they have a compelling interest in denying accommodations

to gays on religious grounds—they want, by definition, to discriminate. In their estimation, they should be allowed to do so and— to all appearances—a majority of Mississippi lawmakers and the governor agree. (The upshot of the true effects of the Mississippi law, like too many of Mississippi’s poorly considered laws await testing in the courts.) But the response to this potentially discriminating law has been an open, positive campaign by business owners to simply differentiate themselves from those pushing for that law. They want people to know, publicly, that they’re not going along with it. The AFA? Its response is to squeal like a stuck pig. One is forced to wonder why. I’m not here to argue theology. I’m a great admirer of Jesus, and it’s my understanding that he himself made no mention of same-sex marriage in the Bible, although he mentions divorce quite a bit. (Head over to the AFA website and look for recent references to divorce as a challenge for American families. It’s shockingly harder to find that than homosexuality.) But whatever the AFA believes about religion and marriage, I’m surprised to find it so concerned that these business leaders are exercising their rights and freedoms in a free society to let people know that they don’t plan to discriminate against their customers. There’s nothing negative in that message; I would hazard to guess that Jesus might approve of the outreach to all comers. (For some reason the song “Just As I Am” keeps playing in my head.) I applaud the “We Don’t Discriminate” businesses for offering a positive message for Mississippians and to represent Mississippi with a positive message to the rest of the country. Nicely done. Todd Stauffer is the president and publisher of the Jackson Free Press.

May 14 - 20, 2014



R.L. Nave

Haley Ferretti

Amber Helsel

Kathleen Mitchell

Tommy Burton

Genevieve Legacy

Briana Robinson

Trip Burns

R.L. Nave, native Missourian and news editor, roots for St. Louis (and the Mizzou Tigers)—and for Jackson. Send him news tips at rlnave@ or call him at 601-362-6121 ext. 12. He wrote the cover story.

City Reporter Haley Ferretti is a 2013 graduate of Delta State University. She enjoys traveling, listening to The Strokes and raiding refrigerators. She wrote talk stories.

Assistant Editor Amber Helsel graduated from Ole Miss with a bachelor’s in journalism. She is short, always hungry and always thinking. She wrote an arts story.

Features Editor Kathleen M. Mitchell is a wordophile, lover of great design and budding oenologist. She’d like to rescue Ser Pounce from the Lannisters. She wrote the food story.

Music Listings Editor Tommy Burton is keeping the dream alive one record at a time. He can usually be seen with a pair of headphones on. He wrote a music column.

Genevieve Legacy is an artistwriter-community development consultant. She works at Hope Enterprise Corporation and lives in Brandon with her husband and youngest son. She wrote a music story.

Music Editor Briana Robinson wants to become an expert on all things music. Her other passions include dance and photography. Email her at briana@ She compiled Eight Days a Week and the event listings.

Staff Photographer Trip Burns is a graduate of the University of Mississippi, where he studied English and sociology. He enjoys the films of Stanley Kubrick. He took many photos for the issue.

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YOUR TURN FEEDBACK ON JFP.MS Prevent, Protect, Empower


May 14 - 20, 2014

he annual JFP Chick Ball is turning 10 this year, and we’re going bigger and better to celebrate. As always, the event will help the Center for Violence Prevention. This year, we are dedicated to preventing domestic violence, protecting victims and empowering women to rebuild their lives and their families. To get involved with the most amazing JFP Chick Ball, yet—scheduled for July 19, 2014 at the Mississippi Arts Center—email chickball@ or call 601362-6121, ext. 23. You can join our committee, volunteer your time, sponsor the event, donate items to the silent auction and more. And watch for our new website, coming shortly to This year, we are also planning a separate JFP Chick Ball Jam, with even more live music at Hal & Mal’s. If you’re interested in performing at either event, you can also write Prevent. Protect. Empower. JFP Chick Ball 2014. Join us!


“Ole Miss Students to Protest Gov. Phil Bryant’s Signing of SB 2681 at Graduation,� by The Associated Press js1976 I don’t believe that a college graduation is an acceptable place for protest. The day belongs to the students being honored for their achievements, so select another time for making your statement. multiculturegirl I don’t believe the LGBTQ students who were graduating deserved to be slapped in the face by having him as a speaker. There is never a bad time to stand up to injustice, bigotry, and inequality. “Atheist Group Renews Suit on Rankin School Prayer,� by The Associated Press bevmar Prayer in schools occurs every time there is an exam of any kind. If you don’t think that prayer isn’t going on in a calculus




class, just look at students’ lips. That is the only kind of prayer that should be permitted—silent prayer! I am unalterably opposed to any kind of prayer in one school. Why? Because I am not nor have I ever been a Christian and most school districts think that there is only one religion in this country—Christianity. My days in elementary school were made miserable because I refused to pray in the name of anyone, let alone in the name of Jesus. In my faith, we just go directly to the Creator and leave it at that, we don’t require a mediator. None of my faith’s holidays were recognized, and I had to fight like hell when I took off despite the school saying I could not. What about my freedom of religion? It was totally ignored. I was counted as “skipping school� and paid through the nose for so doing. Christians today are mentally unbalanced if they think that their religion is under -RLQWKHFRQYHUVDWLRQDWMISPVFRPPHQWV



attack for one reason or another. They’re not being attacked, they’re the majority religion in the country for now. Young people are leaving churches in droves because preachers screaming about hellfire and brimstone are no longer considered worth of hearing—even the Pope has said that there is no literal hell, it is a myth as is the story of Adam and Eve. Human life began in Africa, not in a mud pit in the Middle East. bubbat bevmar—You need to check a little deeper; Vatican has said the Pope did not say there is no literal hell nor did he say the story of Adam and Eve was a myth. “Pontifical Council for Culture issued a stern warning on its Facebook page, stating that scores of unknown sources on social media “try to put false information in circulation, taking advantage of the fact that it is so easy to ‘throw the stone and hide the hand.’� The council’s advice? “Check the official Vatican media sources for confirmation of Pope Francis’ statements.� Remarks should be considered untrue if they do not appear on the pope’s Twitter feed, the Vatican Information Service, the Holy See press office, the Vatican website, Vatican Radio, the L’Osservatore Romano newspaper or another official information source, the council said. Comment on these stories and more at


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Thursday, May 1 Top religious scholars working under the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest bloc of Islamic countries condemn the leader of Boko Haramâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s use of Islamic teachings as justification for kidnapping more than 270 Nigerian schoolgirls and threatening to sell them into slavery, calling for their immediate release. â&#x20AC;Ś The Mississippi Legislature in a three-hour session approves $17 million to help pay for recovery from disasters, including tornadoes that recently pounded the state. Friday, May 2 An Arkansas judge opens the door for gay couples in the state to wed, ruling that the stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ban on same-sex marriage is for â&#x20AC;&#x153;no rational reasonâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;Ś British security experts join the Nigerian and American forces trying to rescue the 276 schoolgirls being held captive by Islamic extremists in northeastern Nigeria. Saturday, May 3 The first gay marriages take place in Arkansas, with 15 marriage licenses being issued on the first day.

Couple Donates 30,000 Books to Honor Late Mayor by Haley Ferretti


lthough Richard and Sandra Koritz are not originally from Mississippi, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s safe to say they have earned their place as honorary Jacksonians thanks to their recent donation of more than 34,000 books to the City of Jackson in memory of the late Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, whom the couple greatly admired. As a result of their donation, the City of Jackson offered all area schools and daycares an opportunity to request portions of the donation. JPS has specifically been the recipient of about 7,250 books. Patty Furr, executive director of the Jackson-Hinds Library System, addressed the stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s issue with illiteracy at a press conference honoring the couple at the Eudora Welty Library last Wednesday. Furr explained that it is the hope of the library system that the newly donated books will go toward improving not only education but several of the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s major issues. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This issue of literacy is just such a key one in the city of Jackson,â&#x20AC;? Furr said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;So

Sunday, May 4 Pro-Russian insurgents in eastern Ukraine conduct referendums to declare so-called sovereign peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s republics in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

May 14 - 20, 2014

Monday, May 5 The Kremlin makes it clear that Moscow has no intention of immediately annexing Ukraineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Donetsk and Luhansk regions after a weekend referendum there showed most voters allegedly backing sovereignty.


Tuesday, May 6 A European Union court says Google must sometimes comply when individuals ask the company to remove old links containing information about them.



Wednesday, April 30 Russian President Vladimir Putin urges that a planned May 11 referendum on autonomy in southeast Ukraine be postponed and calls on Ukraineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s military to halt all operations against pro-Russia activists in eastern Ukraine. â&#x20AC;Ś A Ugandan court starts hearing the case against two Ugandans accused of engaging in gay sex, the first trial of homosexuals in the country since a severe law was enacted in February.


Richard and Sandra Koritz recently liquidated their book publishing company and donated some 34,000 books to the City of Jackson in memory of the late Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, whom the couple admired.

many of the problems we seeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the need for a new jail, poverty and unemploymentâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; many of those issues can be solved by getting children reading: starting young, getting them excited about reading and keeping them reading.â&#x20AC;? As the second owners of Open Hand Publishing, the couple explained that the company, based out of Greensboro, N.C., eventually fell on hard times, which led them to search for a way to phase out the company. However, they wanted to ensure that the black-history based books would continue to serve a greater purpose. Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, Maya Angelou and James Baldwin are just a few of the authors included in the book collection, which were all republished by Open Hand. The school systemâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s community-part-

nered summer reading program, â&#x20AC;&#x153;One Jackson â&#x20AC;Ś Many Readers,â&#x20AC;? will ensure the books are distributed as widely as possible, which will include not only the school system but youth programs and museums as well. Newly appointed Jackson Chief Administrative Officer Gus McCoy presented the couple with a certificate of appreciation on Mayor Tony Yarberâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s behalf at the press conference. â&#x20AC;&#x153;While you want the mayorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office to be concerned with paving streets, the greatest service that we can do to the community is to create a path to the minds of our children,â&#x20AC;? McCoy said to the attendees. Upon receiving the certificate, Richard Koritz explained that their reason for the donation was because of the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s multifaceted approach to expand education, which would use the donation to its fullest capacity.




















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Also, although the couple never got the chance to meet the late mayor, they decided that the donation would be their way of paying tribute to their deep respect for Lumumbaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s vision for civil rights. â&#x20AC;&#x153;One of the great things about Chokwe Lumumba, to me, without ever having known him, is that his revolutionary black nationalism was not at the expense of oth-

ers,â&#x20AC;? Richard said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It was focused on the uplifting of a solely oppressed people and at the same time uplifting the entire human race.â&#x20AC;? Before owning the publishing company, Richard worked for the postal service. However, he was involved in activism during the civil rights movement and even participated in the legendary March on Washington in 1963. He currently serves

TODAY on the board of directors of the International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro, N.C. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The fact that a black nationalist could be elected as mayor of such an important city in the deep south was inspiring,â&#x20AC;? Richard Koritz said in an interview. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Reading about what he was doing here and what he was accomplishing was even more inspiring.â&#x20AC;?

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Golden Key Apartments Unsuitable? by Haley Ferretti TRIP BURNS



A 5-Star Twist on Takeout!


Residents of the Golden Key Apartments are at odds with the Jackson Housing Authority, which runs the building, over repairs the residents say have been ignored for too long.

needs and the buildingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s plumbing issues. Figures said that the common room and several apartments in Building C are having leakage issues, which is causing flooding on the floors and mildew to grow behind the walls. During her interview, Figures showed photographs that revealed a substance that looked like mildew growing around vents. The walls, where Figures says much of the

mildew has been growing, have since been painted over, which she says is the only effort JHA has done to remedy the problem. â&#x20AC;&#x153;When they open up a can of worms, they close it right back up,â&#x20AC;? Figures said. These issues affect apartments in all three of the buildings on the site, she said, PRUH*2/'(1VHHSDJH

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esidents at the Golden Key Apartments, located on Albermarle Road, have visited Jackson City Council meetings several times over the course of the last few months to make complaints about what they call the Jackson Housing Authorityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s neglect of residents. The Jackson Housing Authority, which is a branch of the Mississippi Regional Housing Authority, works under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Housing Authority is responsible for administering federal housing programs as well as building and managing properties. Several residents are adamant that their living conditions at Golden Key, a HUD facility for the elderly and disabled, are unsuitable and a danger to their health. Annie L. Figures, the resident tenant council president, has lived in the apartment for 12 years. She explained that she has been experiencing issues with JHA since 2008 when she filed for a report of Golden Keyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s funding, which she says she still has not received. However, she explained that she is most upset about the fact that the apartmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s management, who she has filed complaints with before, seemingly ignore both residentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;


TALK | city


adding that many residents are fearful to speak up about the problems. “All three buildings are having these issues. You don’t hear the residents talking about them because the residents in A and B—they are actually afraid and intimidated. …They’re afraid that they’ll lose their apartments,” she said. Figures and another resident, Tony Parker, who has a pacemaker in his heart, believe that the conditions have begun to affect their health. Figures said that when she took a filter from one of the vents to her doctor, the doctor said that the dirt and dust in the filter was enough to make anyone sick. Parker has

lived in the apartment for 12 years but has had to begin taking oxygen treatments just over the last several months. He said that he believes that his condition has worsened because of mildew in his own apartment. Mia Champion, a disabled resident, said that she takes it upon herself to check on many of the residents regularly because she knows that management will fail to do so. However, Sheila Jackson, executive director of JHA, disagrees with the complaints. She explained that after Figures made her initial complaints, an inspection revealed that much of Figures’ claims were “not accurate” and that the apartments do not have an ongoing issue with mold or mildew. Jackson said although the Golden Key apartments are fairly old, built in 1972, the apartments undergo a yearly evaluation that

requires every apartment unit to be inspected. She also said that there is a treatment process in place for the occurrence of mold and mildew; however, she is adamant that the apartments do not have a huge problem with these conditions. “I can’t tell you there are never leaks and there are never repairs to the units,” Jackson said. “Inspections are actually going on this week. … We have a process to treat and take care of any mildew and mold. There is painting. There is a process, but it’s not to cover or hide the mold. … But we don’t have a lot of mold or things of that nature. We just don’t. We do have leaks, but as soon as we see those things, we address them.” Although Jackson insists that the apartments are not as bad off as some of the residents make it seem, City Council members

seem to have doubts. At a recent meeting, Ward 3 Councilwoman LaRita Cooper Stokes said she has had difficulty getting in touch with JHA to discuss Golden Key, which is located in her ward. Community Improvement, a division of the city, recently completed a report on the situation. Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell said that the City’s report revealed a list of approximately 20 deficiencies, “from everything from running water to electricity being cut off to mold to deplorable conditions, and there were a bunch of pictures.” Figures added that Theo Davis, the apartment’s manager, told her last week that the mildew and repairs are scheduled to be completed within the next 30 days. Comment at Email Haley Ferretti at

SPLC Blasts Henley-Young Plan by R.L. Nave

May 14 - 20, 2014

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fter receiving a reprimand for its management of the HenleyYoung Juvenile Justice Center, Hinds County officials have come up with a solution to the ongoing legal problems, one that has raised sharp criticism from youth advocates. In late April, U.S. District Judge Daniel P. Jordan found Hinds County in contempt of court for failure to comply with a 2012 settlement over abusive conditions and lack of access to educational services at the youth detention center. At the time, a federal court ordered the county to improve in more than 70 “areas of deficiency” that ranged from basic cleanliness to expanding mental health and rehabilitative services at the 84-bed facility; a monitor was appointed to document the progress. However, those monitoring reports show—and attorneys for the plaintiffs agree—that little progress has been made.

Jody Owens, managing attorney of the Mississippi Southern Poverty Law Center, says Hinds County’s plan to give control of its troubled youth detention center to a local judge represents a conflict of interest.

Jordan agreed as well. As a result, he not only extended the consent decree for two more years but also found that the

county was in contempt of court. In his order, Jordan wrote that while the initial two-year deadline was probably

too little time to make all the needed fixes, “many of the 71 requirements should have been accomplished long before now.” “(W)e are faced with a large task and possible incompetence. That said—and this needs to be clearly understood—the progress thus far is unacceptable,” Jordan wrote. During a closed-door executive session held May 5, supervisors voted to transfer operation the county voted to turn Henley-Young’s daily operation over to Hinds County Judge William Skinner, who supervises the county’ youth court program. Under that arrangement, which could take effect as soon as June 1, the county would maintain the physical building but the detention center’s administrator would report directly to Skinner. Currently, Henley-Young Administrator Brenda Frelix reports to Hinds County Administrator Carmen Davis; Davis reports to the fivemember board of supervisors.

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Hinds officials have long complained that the involvement of several agenciesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the county, the courts and Jackson Public Schoolsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;in Henley-Youngâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s operation creates a bureaucratic nightmare, making it hard to comply with court orders. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a house divided,â&#x20AC;? District 2 Supervisor Darrel McQuirter told the Jackson Free Press in an interview last week. Jody Owens, managing attorney of the Mississippi Southern Poverty Law Center, which represented plaintiffs in the 2012 suit, called putting the youth detention center under Skinnerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s direction â&#x20AC;&#x153;crazyâ&#x20AC;? and a â&#x20AC;&#x153;conflict of interestâ&#x20AC;? because children require specialized care and mental-health treatment. â&#x20AC;&#x153;There are people who specialize in youth detention, and Judge Skinner does not fit that mold,â&#x20AC;? Owens said. Besides, Owens points out, Skinner was in charge of Henley-Young until 2009 when the Hinds County Board of Supervisors stripped him of that authority amid questions about his management of

the facility. District 1 Supervisor Robert Graham said at the time the board â&#x20AC;&#x153;received information that we believe were federal violations regarding the operation of the center.â&#x20AC;? The Mississippi State Supreme Court sanctioned Skinner in August 2013 for issuing a pair of bench warrants in a child-custody case that heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d recused himself from because a court employee was related to one of the litigants. The stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s high court found Skinner had abused his power and suspended him for 30 days without pay and a $1,000 fine. Owens said SPLC attorneys could take Hinds County back to court in less than six months if they do not see substantial progress on the consent decreeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s benchmarks, which the county must still meet no matter who is running the detention center. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t pass their accountability to Judge Skinner,â&#x20AC;? Owens said. Comment at Email R.L. Nave at

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roject One America is officially un- with liberty and justice for allâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;&#x201D;and that der way in Mississippi. excludes nobody.â&#x20AC;? Flanked by African American State Rep. Rufus Straughter, D-BelDemocratic lawmakers, Human Rights zoni, and Rep. Alyce Clarke, D-Jackson, Campaign President Chad Griffin was in as well as representatives from ACLU Jackson this week to make the announce- and Equality Mississippi, were also presment. The project, which ent and spoke in support HRC first announced of HRCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s campaign. last month, is the largest Derrick Johnson, coordinated campaign president of Mississippi for LGBTQ equality in NAACP, invoked the the Southâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s history, with a memory of Freedom Sumthree-year budget of $8.5 mer, which he said repremillion and a dedicated sents Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s promise staff of 20. of equal protection under The campaign will the law and is inclusive of cover Mississippi, Alathe LGBTQ community. Chad Griffin and the bama and Arkansas. The Johnson also spoke Human Rights Campaign want to expand LGBT HRC hopes this camin regard to SB 2681, rights in the South. paign will aid in securing the Religious Freedom protection at the state and Restoration Act that local level for the LGBTQ community in Gov. Phil Bryant signed last month, employment, housing, public accommo- which many fear would allow busidations and marriage equality. nesses to legally discriminate against State Rep. Jim Evans, D-Jackson, the LGBTQ community. spoke to the press, saying that he stands â&#x20AC;&#x153;Any business in this state that deby the HRC because he has stood beside cide they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want the patronage of inmany other minorities to fight for their dividuals who are from the LGBT comrights, and plans to continue to do so for munity donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t deserve the patronage of the the LGBT community. African-American community,â&#x20AC;? Johnson â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been fighting for justice in Mis- said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t deserve the patronage of sissippi for over 50 years,â&#x20AC;? Evans said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve any citizen in the state who truly believes come calling for justice for every group or that we are all equal.â&#x20AC;? nationality you can think of, because I beEmail Haley Ferretti at haley at lieve in something thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s in the Preamble Comment at of our Constitution that says â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;under God

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TALK | business

A Lifeline for Rainbow? by Dustin Cardon

Overby on Top of Metrocenter Finally, plans are coming together for the long-dormant Dillards building at Metrocenter. Scott Overby, the mall’s property manager, said he wants to attract a new business to the shuttered department store and hopes more traffic, but that no specific plans Venyu on Fondren Menu exist as of yet. Last month, Baton RougeZoning regulations on the based Venyu Solutions—which Highway 80 corridor prevent cerspecializes in the redundancy Rainbow, which has battled flooding problems recently, may tain viable business options from and protection of data for major soon get help from the city—if it’s not too late. setting up in the building, such corporations—closed on the foras a movie theater, skating rink or mer McRae’s building in north bowling alley. However, Overby Fondren. The company plans to Meadowbrook Road, will join two centers in believes it may be possible to convert the 100,000-square-foot building Baton Rouge and one in Shreveport. bring in government, health care and educainto a data storage and cloud-based data cenVenyu chose Jackson for the new center’s tion offices. Mall officials are also exploring ter and technology park. Venyu expects the location, in part, for the potential for busi- the possibility of having junior colleges and new center to create between 30 and 40 new ness growth from metro Jackson companies state universities or Jackson Public Schools jobs when it opens in 2015. needing off-site data storage. Venyu provides use the space. Another option is teaming No time frame has been set for the data and cloud storage as well as data backup up with hospitals in the area or bringing in building’s conversion, which represents a and recovery services, all of which require a county, state, or federal government offices. $35 million investment on Venyu’s part. The substantial investment in servers and other Currently, 60 stores and some Jackson new center, located along the 300 block of equipment. city offices operate inside Metrocenter. erty of another without possessing it—from other businesses that would be affected by the resulting construction. According to a Rainbow employee, the Department of Public Works informed Rainbow last week that there “may be about a 50 percent chance of getting the needed funding.”

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ondren’s Rainbow Co-op (2807 Old Canton Road) has been dealing with flooding issues ever since a pipe burst beneath the store’s neighbor, Montgomery Hardware, in February. When Rainbow employees called about the pipe, at the time, city officials said that the city’s responsibility ends at the street, leaving Rainbow to hire a company to dig up the ruptured pipe and install a stop valve in between the rupture and the street before the city would turn Rainbow’s water back on. A dispute between the city and Montgomery Hardware’s out-of-state owner on responsibility for the pipe meant no permanent action to fix the pipe was taken for some time. Now, city officials are making plans to fix Rainbow’s flooding problem, but more complications have arisen. Plans to fix the broken pipeline have been cut off from a recent Fondren enhancement grant, which means the city itself would have to fund the repairs. However, officials are not sure it will be possible, as the city would need to collect easements—which refers to non-possessory rights of use and/or entry onto the real prop-

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Teen Pregnancy, Misunderstood


he new state teen pregnancy rankings recently came out. The numbers measure births to young women ages 15 to 19. For the first time in a long while, Mississippi is No. 2, coming in behind New Mexico and ahead of Texas. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m sure our governor is going to take a victory lap, claiming that his campaign based on abstinence-only and shaming teens into not having sex is to be credited. I, for one, heavily doubt it is responsible for the change. The real things that cause teens to get pregnant are the exact problems he doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want to addressâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; poverty, underfunded education and lack of access to quality, nonjudgmental health care. As long as those issues plague us, not much will change. Study after study has shown that it isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t being a teen mom that causes poverty; poverty and lack of opportunity cause teen pregnancy. As one girl told me: â&#x20AC;&#x153;I might as well have a baby now. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not going to college anyway.â&#x20AC;? If your main prospect is working at Walmart, you can do that whether you have a baby at 18 or not. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not to say teens are getting pregnant on purpose. It just means that some have less incentive to care about being extra cautious. Many others face judgment when they attempt to access reproductive health care rather than just receiving the care they need. At the teen clinic in my neighborhood, young women are told things like, â&#x20AC;&#x153;I hope you are pregnant so you learn your lessonâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;you shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be having sex anywayâ&#x20AC;? when trying to access reproductive health care. It takes a lot of courage for teens to go to a clinic. Shaming them when they get there doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t encourage them to come back or tell their friends itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a safe place to go. People love to say, â&#x20AC;&#x153;everyone knows sex can get you pregnant.â&#x20AC;? However, knowing sex causes pregnancy and how to effectively prevent it are two different things. We often expect teens to fend for themselves with half the information, then stand back and judge them when they fail. It is vital to teach teens about their bodies and give them the knowledge and tools for family planning. They will need this knowledge whether they abstain from sex until they find their one true love (not everyone in this state can get married) or choose to be intimate with many partners over their lifetimes. If we love and respect our teens, we will address the root issues of teen pregnancy instead of giving moral lectures and trying to freeze their biological clocks. The teens I work with constantly say they would like it if we â&#x20AC;&#x153;grown folksâ&#x20AC;? would stop talking to them like they are stupidâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;maybe we should listen.

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;representationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; May 14 - 20, 2014




Why it stinks: Smithâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s comment seemed to be a slap at the public defenderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office for not getting clients the mental-health services they need. Smithâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office is far from blameless in this, and may even be part of the problem. As the countyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s top prosecutor and an elected official, Smith can do just as much as, if not more than, the public defender to see to it that mentally ill people donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t rot in jail.

Justice System Should Help, Not Just Punish


ast summer, a SWAT team descended on the home of a man named Cornealious â&#x20AC;&#x153;Mikeâ&#x20AC;? Anderson in a quiet suburb of St. Louis, Mo., and took him to jail. The crime the man was accused of had taken place 13 years earlier. The overwhelming force used against Anderson is typically reserved for people who orchestrate the kinds of elaborate prison breaks that we see on television. But Anderson, now 37, was no escapee; he had walked free for more than a decade because of a clerical error. In that time, Anderson started a family and became a carpenter, a business that was on record with the secretary of stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office. None of that mattered; he was thrown in prison to immediately to start serving his sentence. There he sat for more than eight months until the Riverfront Times, an alternative newsweekly in St. Louis, broke his story, and it went viral. Public pressure eventually led to Andersonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s release in early May. A judge awarded Anderson, a father of four, credit for the 4,794 days he was not in prison custody after his 2000 conviction; in other words, Anderson was forgiven. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been a good father. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been a good husband. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been a good tax-paying citizen,â&#x20AC;? the judge told Anderson before releasing him. Larry David McLaurin and Markuieze Bennett also should not have been incarcerated. McLaurin, 56, featured in this weekâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s cover story, was an Army veteran whose struggles with

mental illness may have put him in contact with law enforcement more often than it put him in touch with health-care professionals. Bennett, 21, also had a pretty good shot at going home. Accused of armed robbery, Bennett had sworn affidavits from witnesses stating that he was hanging out with friends when the robbery he was accused of committing took place. Due to a tragic confluence of a lumbering criminal-justice system that gives prosecutors preference over defendants and ignores the sometimes obvious mental health challenges of the people it locks up, the lives of Larry David McLaurin and Markuieze Bennett ended in the Raymond Detention Center. One has to wonder how different Mike Andersonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s life would have turned out had a technical snafu kept him out of prison. Would he have still been able to start a family and his own business? Could he have avoided becoming a physically and psychologically broken man? Or could he have met a fate similar to that of Larry David McLaurin and Markuieze Bennett? Conversely, what if we had a criminal justice system that recognized McLaurinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s mental illness as one of the reasons for his alleged crime or that repeatedly ignored Bennettâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pleas of innocence? (The defense attorneys who represented Bennett say his trial date was pushed back twice). If we had that kind of system, maybe those men, like Anderson, could have someday also been a good fathers, husbands and taxpayers.

Email letters and opinion to, fax to 601-510-9019 or mail to 125 South Congress St., Suite 1324, Jackson, Mississippi 39201. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, as well as factchecked.


EDITORIAL News Editor R.L. Nave Assistant Editor Amber Helsel City Reporter Haley Ferretti Features Editor Kathleen Morrison Mitchell Music Editor Briana Robinson JFP Daily Editor Dustin Cardon Events Editor Latasha Willis Music Listings Editor Tommy Burton Assistant to the Editor Micah Smith Fashion Stylist Nicole Wyatt Writers Torsheta Bowen, Ross Cabell Marika Cackett, Richard Coupe, Bryan Flynn, Genevieve Legacy, Jordan Sudduth, Larry Morrisey, Ronni Mott, Eddie Outlaw, Julie Skipper, Kelly Bryan Smith Editorial Interns Brittany Sanford, Demetrice Sherman Editorial Cartoonist Mark Joiner Consulting Editor JoAnne Prichard Morris ART AND PHOTOGRAPHY Art Director Kristin Brenemen Advertising Designer Zilpha Young Staff Photographer/Videographer Trip Burns Photographer Tate K. Nations ADVERTISING SALES Advertising Director Kimberly Griffin Account Managers Gina Haug, David Rahaim BUSINESS AND OPERATIONS Director of Operations David Joseph Bookkeeper Aprile Smith Assistant to the Publisher Leslie La Cour Distribution Manager Richard Laswell Distribution Raymond Carmeans, John Cooper, Jordan Cooper, Clint Dear, Ruby Parks ONLINE Web Editor Dustin Cardon Web Designer Montroe Headd Multimedia Editor Trip Burns CONTACT US: Letters Editorial Queries Listings Advertising Publisher News tips Fashion Jackson Free Press 125 South Congress Street, Suite 1324 Jackson, Mississippi 39201 Editorial (601) 362-6121 Sales (601) 362-6121 Fax (601) 510-9019 Daily updates at

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When Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Down and Out


XFORDâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, who rode into the Governorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Mansion decrying the evils of undocumented migrant workers, says he also doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want â&#x20AC;&#x153;unions involved in our businesses or our public sector.â&#x20AC;? He signed into law bills restricting workersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; rights to peaceful demonstrations, local governmentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; rights in hiring union workers, and workersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; ability to negotiate with companies for a harassment-free union election. With another â&#x20AC;&#x153;right-to-workâ&#x20AC;? demagogue called Ross Barnett smiling from the grave, Bryant and his friends in the state Legislature let the 5,000-plus workers at the Nissan plant in Canton know in no uncertain terms this truth: â&#x20AC;&#x153;We will fight you every step of the way if you exercise your legal right to join a union and speak with a united voice.â&#x20AC;? You expect this from Republicans like Bryant. Republicans are not independent agents. The anti-union bills that Bryant signed into law this past session came straight out of the playbook of the American Legislative Exchange Council and the billionaire Koch brothers, whose agenda is to further entrench what a recent study by Princeton and Northwestern University scholars calls the oligarchy of wealth that has replaced U.S. democracy. You donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t expect it from Democrats like Mississippi legislators Steve Hale, Bennett Malone, Ed Blackmon and Tommy Reynolds, whose votes for one or more of the anti-union bills were a disservice to their working-class constituents. The corruption of U.S. democracy today is clearly seen in recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings that validate the corporate takeover of the two-party system. Corporate federal lobbying and campaign spending totaled $7.7 billion in 2011-12, compared to $237 million by labor unions. Corporate CEOs now earn 354 times the median pay of their workers, compared to 42 times that pay in 1980. It is not coincidental that private-sector union membership has declined from roughly 19 percent in 1980 to 6.6 percent today. Charles and David Koch, by the way, recently saw $1.3 billion added to their $100 billion personal piggy bank, making them the fifth and sixth wealthiest people in the world. Republicans have long been in the hip pocket of corporate industrialists, but many Democrats are in there, too. It was Bill Clinton who gave us NAFTA, and Barack Obama is bound and determined to give us the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, another boondoggle to aid fat cats and impoverish workers.

Nissan workers at Canton, who may get a vote on whether to join the United Auto Workers as early as this summer, need to be prepared for the anti-union juggernaut that awaits them. The experience at the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga on Valentineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Day tells us that Bryant & Co. will pull out all the stops to kill any unionization effort. In Chattanooga, Gov. Bill Haslam and U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, both Tennessee Republicans, repeatedly lied as to their role in the vicious anti-union campaign that ultimately defeated the UAW in a 712-626 vote. The truth is they were part of a backroom blackmail deal that told Volkswagen it would lose $300 million in government incentives if the plant went union. Aiding in their campaign was rightwing Washington, D.C., political operative Grover Norquist, whose Americans for Tax Reform financed billboards across the city that, among other things, called the UAW â&#x20AC;&#x153;United Obama Workers.â&#x20AC;? The UAW recently decided to drop its challenge to the National Labor Relations Board to invalidate the Chattanooga election. Given the weakness of U.S. labor laws, you canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t blame the union. Corporations drag cases through the courts for years, and the NLRB has few teeth to enforce its rulings. Consider, for example, Nissan-Canton employee Chip Wells, a veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and a union supporter. The NLRB ruled recently that Nissan broke the law by retaliating against Wells for his pro-union stand. However, current labor law allowed Nissan to settle the case without admitting guilt, and now Wells must fight for back pay lost due to medical leave necessitated by Nissanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s treatment of him. A recent international study showed that U.S. citizens lag behind other industrialized nations in economic mobility, and no region of the nation has less economic mobility than the U.S. South. The lack of upward mobility cuts across races. Unfair tax codes and lack of support for public education were among the reasons cited for the failure of the American dream. Yet no institution did more to create the American middle classâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and the American dreamâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;than organized labor. The old blues lament â&#x20AC;&#x153;nobody knows you when youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re down and outâ&#x20AC;? never rang truer than today. One reason is organized labor itself is down. Thank goodness itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not out. Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hope it rises again so that working class people can rise with it. Joe Atkins is a professor of journalism at the University of Mississippi. Email him at



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When people are warehoused in county jails like the beleaguered Raymond Detention Center, trouble is bound to arise eventually.

May 14 - 20, 2014


contraband. Nelson survived his injuries, which required stitches at a Jackson-area hospital. Four days after McLaurin’s death, three Hinds County deputies were caught in a scuffle when jail detainees refused to return to their cells, but the deputies only received minor scrapes and bruises. The previous year, in July 2012, a prisoner named Kendall Johnson sparked an insurrection at the jail at 2:30 a.m. by flooding housing Pod C and holding off guards with a fire hose, and then letting other inmates out of their cells. Afterward, the pod was uninhabitable, and prisoners had to be dispersed to jails in surrounding counties. There were no serious injuries, but a female detention officer was taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure. This year, an outbreak of violence on March 31 led to the death of a man named Markuieze Bennett, 21, who had been incarcerated for two years with no trial. Escapes, uprisings, violence and contraband trafficking—among prisoners and staff— are all a part of the modern corrections system, particularly in a nation like the U.S. that incarcerates more people per capita than another nation in the world and in Mississippi, which has the nation’s second highest incarceration rate. For this overburdened criminal-justice system, whose problems start from the moment a patrol cop slaps on the handcuffs and continue up until the door clangs shut and beyond, a place like Raymond Detention Center is simply the stage for a much larger drama that has been playing out for decades.

McLaurin, he said, had not shown signs of mental illness when he arrived at the jail. “We’re not medical professionals. We have a medical staff in house, and inmates are checked. It didn’t reveal from his statements or paperwork that he had any mental issues,” Lewis told reporters of McLaurin. “We’re not equipped to house mental patients.”



ne morning last summer, Larry David McLaurin and his cellmate ate breakfast in their cell in Pod B3 at the Raymond Detention Center. Sometime later that day, during rounds, a jail guard observed McLaurin lying on the floor covered in a blanket. The guard didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary because McLaurin often slept on the floor. During a second check of cells later in the afternoon, after a shift change, a different guard making rounds also observed McLaurin lying on the floor, but could not get a clear look inside because he said McLaurin’s cellmate, Elton Oneal McClaurin (the men are not related), obscured the guard’s view. It wasn’t until around 3 p.m. that jailers realized that McLaurin was not sleeping. Guards entered the small cell and removed the blanket to find McLaurin’s swollen face and head lying in a small pool of blood. McLaurin’s wrists and ankles were bound with an “unknown type of rope material,” one jailer wrote on the incident report, although the report did not indicate whether the binding occurred pre- or post-mortem, if there had been an altercation and, if so, what sparked it. When questioned, McClaurin—the cellmate who had a history of mental illness—was “mute” and did not respond to simple questions about the date and year. It was June 23, 2013—two days after Larry David McLaurin’s 56th birthday and just 10 days after McLaurin was arrested in Jackson on felony arson charges and booked into the jail. It was also a time of unusually high unrest at Raymond Detention Center. The week preceding McLaurin’s death, on June 19, a 25-year-old man named Joshua Nelson was stabbed during a fight with other prisoners at the detention center, which jail officials said started as an argument over

Not Equipped After McLaurin’s death, Hinds County Sheriff Tyrone Lewis talked to reporters.

Family members of Larry David McLaurin say he struggled with mental-health issues up until his death in June 2013 at the Raymond Detention Center.




control centers were inadequately staffed, “which poses major security and liability risks for the facility,” grand jurors wrote. In addition, there are no “rovers” to perform daily security cell checks, help take prisoners out for daily recreation, visitation and feeding inmates. “The reason these required positions are chronically absent is due to the exceptionally high staff turnover rate. Based on data provided by both the Sheriff and the County Administrator, there were 200 staff terminations in 2012. For the first six months of 2013, there have been 80 terminations with a projected 160 terminations for the entire year. With these extra-ordinary high turnover rates, there is a constant shortage of staff being assigned to key post positions,” grand jurors wrote, noting that the starting salary of $21,816 “negatively impacts the quality of people applying for work.” Sheriff Tyrone Lewis also points out that Hinds County competes with higher paying Rankin County and Madison County jails as well as Central Mississippi Correctional Facility, a state prison in Pearl, for employees. Coupled with the absence of a formal training program and poor working conditions, “there is little wonder why over half of the staff leave within a year,” grand jurors wrote. “We observed a new-hired female officer assigned to the critical position of safeguarding the mentally ill inmates and suicide watch. She had no prior training

to assist her in handling this critical inmate population.” Through the Cracks Larry David McLaurin’s troubles may have ended at the Raymond Detention Center, but they did not begin there. McLaurin, who never married or had children, had a long history of mental illness that seemed to get worse the older he got. “Larry was great when he was on his medication,” said his sister, Betty Johnson. McLaurin was born in Simpson County, the second youngest and only boy among six children. McLaurin was named after his father, a mechanic named L.D. McLaurin, but when he enlisted in the Army, military officials would not allow him to just go by initials, so he chose the name Larry David. Johnson said while McLaurin was stationed in Germany, he flipped his Jeep and hit his head, but for reasons she does not know he never sought medical treatment for that injury. After he was honorably discharged in the late 1970s, Larry was not quite the same, Johnson said. In the early 1980s, Johnson said her brother started serving a 14-year sentence for burglary at Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman, where he was housed in a psychiatric ward. He got out of prison in 1993; Johnson remembers the year because it was two years before their mother, Gretha Mae Blue, died. For about seven years, McLaurin lived in Greenville in an apartment the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs helped

him get, but he eventually came back to Jackson. Johnson said she doesn’t know McLaurin’s diagnosis, but that “he hallucinated and was paranoid.” Over time, his mental health never improved. Once, while driving him to a doctor’s appointment, he jumped out of the car in Florence and ran off; local police had to track him down and bring him home. Johnson said she tried to check her brother into hospitals several times, most recently in April 2013, just a couple months before he died. She attempted to check him in at the VA hospital in Jackson, but doctors would not admit him against his will. The sister didn’t know McLaurin was in jail until she received a phone call from officials on Sunday, June 25—two days after he died. She recalls asking her sisters where her brother was, but no one knew. “When you’re homeless and have a mental illness, you pull away from society,” she said. Legal Limbo In pulling away from society, many mentally ill homeless people, who take over abandoned houses, ask passersby on the street for extra cash or struggle with substance abuse, often find themselves in contact with law enforcement. In fact, America’s jails are becoming the nation’s largest mental-health providers. In 2006, the U.S. Justice Department

more JAILHOUSE, see page 18

Really, the Hinds County jail is becoming less and less equipped to house anyone. The tragic inadequacies of the Raymond Detention Center unfold in a 16page grand jury report released in September 2013. Hinds County Circuit Court Judge Tomie Green ordered an inspection of the jail after a string of security failures inside and outside the facility, including the death of Larry David McLaurin earlier in the summer. Their report, although just a snapshot that covered a three-day period, is damning in its description of an “inadequately staffed” jail in “deplorable” condition. Dr. James Austin, president of Washington, D.C.-based corrections research firm JFA Institute, authored the report on the grand jury’s behalf. Austin and his team noted that approximately 400 people are booked into the jail each month and stay about one month on average, which he noted is longer than similar-sized facilities. While the facility is budgeted for 260 security staff members, monitors observed that “the number of staff reporting for each shift was inadequate in terms of providing a sufficient number of staff to operate the key jail functions.” “The current security situation at the (Hinds County Detention Center) is in dire need of reform and requires immediate actions by county officials to avoid further injuries, deaths and physical damage to the facility,” grand jurors wrote. The monitoring team also found inconsistency in the number of supervisors who reported to each shift, and the facility’s


Part 1, from page 17

May 14 - 20, 2014


estimated that more than 50 percent of all “When we believe that someone is ty district attorney, laid the blame at the feet prisoners have some type of mental health incompetent and does not have the ca- of defense attorneys for the slow pace of getissue. For incarcerated women, the percent- pabilities of understanding a plea offer— ting treatment for mentally ill inmates. age is closer to 75 percent. And the National there might be one on the table; it might “Someone who’s just there waiting for Sheriff’s Association and Treatment Advo- be a real good one—we have an ethical re- their mental evaluation is something that cacy Center estimated in a 2010 study that sponsibility to make sure they understand the defense attorney has to bring to the atAmerican jails and prisons have more than what they’re doing. tention of the court and to our attention. triple the number of mentally ill people as “So we can’t even get them in court We don’t know whether or not the person the nation’s hospitals. to do a plea, even if the DA was offering has that mental illness conclusively until we Larger cities are deploying more re- time served, you can go home today. We receive the medical information from the sources to help with the deluge; defense attorney,” Smith told The RDC doesn’t even have the Clarion-Ledger last year, not long ability to keep severely mentally after McLaurin’s death. ill people separate from the rest Smith did not respond to of the population. email and phone messages requestIn Hinds County, the road ing an interview for this story. for a mentally ill prisoner to reRecords show that, in all, ceive treatment is long. When some 130 people have been in a person’s mental competency the detention center for a year is central to their defense, a or more without trial, including psychiatrist must evaluate them five people who have been incarat Mississippi State Hospital cerated longer than four years. at Whitfield, which has 35 soHarris, who was appointed as called forensic beds, 15 of which the Hinds County public deaccommodate all the jails in the fender in 2012 and ran against state. Before an evaluation can Smith for his first term in 2007, commence, Whitfield asks for takes issue with Smith’s assertion certain patient information that it’s her office doing the foot that can be hard track down. dragging, adding that by her Adam Moore, a spokescount, her assistant public deman for Whitfield, said the fenders are successful in the mahospital’s forensic services unit jority of their cases when they do is currently processing 120 make it to trial. evaluation orders. In addition, Ray Carter, Harris’ deputy, is Whitfield has one psychiatrist more pointed in his critique. and one psychologist to perform “We are not causing the cases forensic exams; defendants also to lag and not go to trial,” he said Betty Johnson said the Raymond Detention Center have the option of hiring their of defense attorneys. “It’s been my staff was not trained to recognize that her brother, own doctors to perform the experience that most of our clients Larry David McLaurin, was mentally ill. evaluations, Moore said. want a speedy trial and want these Suspended in legal cases concluded as fast as possible. limbo, it’s not unheard for The prosecutors basically decide people to wait two years for an evalu- can’t bring them before the court saying which ones they want to try and which ation. Michele Purvis Harris, who was they want to take that plea knowing they ones they’re prepared to try and let the judge appointed as the Hinds County public have some mental issues and they don’t know. We’re the last ones to find out.” defender in 2012, said that puts defense understand.” Besides that, just because of the meattorneys in a tough spot. Robert Shuler Smith, the Hinds Coun- chanics of the courts, it can be a long pro-


cess. Harris and Carter estimate that judges hold about one criminal trial per week (they preside over civil matters as well). During the most recent six-month term, the grand jury returned 385 indictments. “There might have been 20 to 25 that made the trial list,” Carter said. “We can’t make the DA put it on the docket. We ask, we ask, we ask. We file motions with the judge. I’ve even had clients write letters to the judge. It’s rarely us that ever causes a case to be delayed,” Carter told the Jackson Free Press. With the situation at RDC, some defense attorneys believe that their clients would receive better health-care service in prison. Said Carter: “Lord knows I don’t want anybody in prison unjustifiably or illegally. It’s something we wrestle with all the time. … As much as I hate to admit it, but you know that they’ll get some kind of treatment at Parchman. “I think it’s terrible that someone has to sit out there (in RDC). Anything could happen. They could do things to other people.” A Rocky ‘Arranged Marriage’ Hinds County officials have long complained about jail’s structural flaw that have existed since the day it opened in 1994. In the late 1990s, Hinds County went into mediation with Dunn Construction, which built the building and the jail’s architect Allen & Hoshall Ltd., over a series of problems, including frequent electrical surges and a faulty foundation that kept cell doors from locking properly. The county poured about $500,000 into fixes, and eventually brought in an outof-state consultant to perform a complete diagnosis. The architects eventually settled their part of the lawsuit for $650,000, news reports at the time show. In addition, the building lacks proper drainage. “When you have floods, you have standing water,” Lewis said.

changes. The newly built areas will have a camera surveillance system to observe prisoners and staff members that Lewis said he

Darrel McQuirter, president of the Hinds County Board of Supervisors, said the board called for a state of emergency to address needed fixes to a housing pod that was the scene of the latest riot at the county jail.

county departments, including maintenance, where work orders for jail fixes go. “To be charitable, there is a great deal of ongoing conflict in this ‘arranged marriage’ between the County and the Sheriff. The Sheriff claims that the County has failed to adequately maintain the basic maintenance needs of the facility. When they need a repair a work order is submitted but the County is slow to make the needed repair. The result is a facility that is in disarray in its basic electric, plumbing, smoke alarm, control boards, ventilation and security systems,” they wrote. Lewis says many of those challenges have since been overcome with the reformation of the board of supervisors, which added two new members in 2013. “We have a great working relationship with the board,” he said. The reconstruction of the pods that were damaged in the riots will also bring about needed technological

D e s i g n Your Life

will be able to access on his iPhone. Workable Solutions No solid plans are in the works for expanding mental-health services at RDC. Betty Johnson, Larry David McLaurin’s sister, believes that as long as so many mentally ill people are locked up in the jail, policymakers should be doing more to identify and treat them. “I’m not mad at the guy who killed my brother because I could see he had mental issues, too,” she said. Recent action by the Legislature may help move people through the courts faster, which could help alleviate some stress on jails. Andre de Gruy, director of the Office of Capital Defense Counsel, said legislative reforms that Gov. Phil Bryant recently signed and take effect on July 1 could be a “game changer” for criminal-justice system.The new law is expansive, but lays out

definitions for violent and nonviolent offenses. People convicted of a violent offense will be required to serve at least 50 percent of their sentence; those with nonviolent convictions have to serve 25 percent. In addition, judges will have more discretion to assign alternative sentences such as drug court and house arrest. In addition, the bill states that the presumptive sentence for misdemeanors is probation. “People shouldn’t be sitting in jail on a misdemeanor. They should be out on bail waiting to go to trial. Hopefully, what should happen is the people that are going in and staying in jail two or three years, a lot of those should be moving faster,” de Gruy said. Adam Moore, the Whitfield spokesman, said the hospital has also asked for a new 60-bed forensic unit. In the meantime, warehousing people in the jail— whether their mental illness is apparent or not—could continue to be a recipe for very public problems. “This is a jail, not a prison,” Lewis said. “A jail is for pretrial detainees. That means we should have a revolving door. We should not have a backlog of people sitting in jail for two years to eight years. “I’ve only been in office two and half years and I have people sitting there 8 years, 7 years and they should have been gone. That creates a problem. That creates animosity. It creates a street mentality and it creates a mentality where anger builds up—and we have these outbursts.” Lewis would be happy to have a new jail, but he understands that the county is strapped for cash and that a tax increase would be unpopular. Until then, he believes that if all the wheels of the local criminaljustice system—prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges, politicians, police officials and his deputies—turn together, replacing RDC can come later rather than sooner. “This facility can work,” Lewis said. This is part 1 in an ongoing series. Email R.L. Nave at

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Another fatal design flaw critics of the jail point to was the decision to install dropped ceilings, which prisoners have dismantled over the years as a way to get out of their cells by fashioning shanks and other tools out of the metal splines that support the tiles and out of sheer boredom. As of last fall, more than 90 cells had no lighting in them. The grand jury noted: “Other cells have lighting, but the light fixtures have exposed wires or are dangling from the ceiling. When repairs are made to the cell lighting, they are quickly damaged by the inmates who are being confined to their cells 23 hours per day.” Ron Welch, a prisoner’s rights attorney who filed several federal lawsuits against the county for jail conditions over the years, agrees that the jail has been plagued with such problems. “That’s no way to run a building of any kind,” Welch said. And because of the 2012 riot, nearby jails billed Hinds County $635,714 to cover the cost of 20,233 days of incarceration—which could have covered the cost of 56 prisoners for a year—although the actual cost is likely much higher. District 2 Supervisor Darrel McQuirter said the board is considering all its options, which has included building a new jail, contracting jail construction and operations to a private corrections firm or asking the City of Jackson to increase the fees it pays to the county for housing its arrestees. County taxpayers have already spent more than $5 million to retrofit parts of the jail. Building a new facility will cost between $30 million and $60 million and take up to a year and a half to construct. Pod C was scheduled to be back online in October 2013, but delays in procuring and installing cameras held it up. “What do you do for the 12 to 18 months?” McQuirter asks. “We have to stabilize the current situation.” It didn’t help that, until recently, a committee of people who clearly do not like each other collectively runs the jail. The Hinds County Board of Supervisors



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t 5 years old, my call was clear. I experienced illness and death for the first time when my 11 yearold sister passed. It was at that moment I told my parents that I wanted to be a doctor. As a young African American female, attending elementary in West Jackson, the odds did not seem to be in my favor. My parents always instilled values and trained me to believe that “I can do all things through Christ.” Our middle class family moved from Jackson to Ridgeland during my 7th grade year, which was a difficult adjustment. Playing basketball and being active in church helped keep me focused. Singing and worshipping in a church full of my family taught me so many valuable lessons.

May 14 - 20, 2014

Quinn Healthcare Staff


During high school, I became well known among my peers because of my achievements on the basketball court, on the softball field, and in the classroom. I was the first female athlete from Madison Central chosen to play on the Mississippi All-Star basketball team. Disappointment struck my senior year. During a team practice, I injured my ACL and could not play in the All-Star game. What could have been a traumatic moment instead made me more determined to pursue medicine. Over the years, I have learned so much. Many have asked if I ever felt like giving up. Sure! Perhaps I felt that way after becoming pregnant my senior year

Doctor Amanda Rice and Patient

in college. Or possibly after losing my aunt—my best friend— to breast cancer when she was only 35. Or even while juggling being a medical student, a wife, and a mother of 3 children. However the words of my father echoed in my mind, “make no excuses because anything worth having takes hard work.” My life is not perfect, but it does serve a purpose. I want my life to serve as an example for other young people. As a practicing physician at Quinn Healthcare, I want to spread awareness to our community to help educate others on diseases such as obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. I want to encourage people to live healthy and provide helpful avenues for them such as the walking program held every Saturday morning at Parham Bridges Park. I want to encourage youth to have yearly physicals, value their education, and realize that achieving their dream requires determination and hard work. From the granddaughter of a housekeeper and a pastor, to the wife of Awia, and mother to Jalin, Jasmine, and Jasleen, I hope my journey will encourage others to strive for their dreams and focus on their spiritual, emotional, and physical health.

Quinn Healthcare 768 North Avery Boulevard, Rigeland MS (601) 487-6482 Open Monday-Saturday


o doubt by now – especially if you’re a smoker – you’ve heard something about “vaping.” Vapor World is a new business located in Pearl joining the vaping Industry, where many hope the newer products can help some smokers in their battle to stop smoking tobacco. Vaping uses a vegetable glycerin (a carbohydrate derived from plant oils) and propylene glycol base (a clear, colorless, slightly syrupy liquid that is used in several food and cosmetic products), mixed with food grade flavoring. The mixture can vary from NO nicotine to different amounts of nicotine, depending on a smoker’s need. The “juice” is catego-

rized in milligrams of nicotine, and ranges from 0mg up to 24mg. The higher the nicotine level, the more intense sensation you get in your throat. Heavy smokers usually require a stronger nicotine level and at Vapor World, they advise customers to “vape” a level of nicotine that helps smokers give up cigarettes, but they also encourage smokers to slowly reduce their levels until they can finally be nicotine free.

The devices for vaping range from the e-cig (a little bigger than a cigarette) to much more advanced batteries and tanks that look somewhat like a Star Wars Lightsaber. And although they are impressive and fun to use, the smaller, less expensive devices can be equally effective in the struggle to stop smoking tobacco. Joe Dearman, the manager of Vapor World, owned a health club in Yazoo City for 20 years. “I enjoyed helping people lose weight, get in shape and live longer, but helping people stop smoking seems to be a much more dramatic and immediate impact on their mental and physical well being,” said Dearman. “They talk about food tasting so much better, being able to walk up and down stairs without getting out of breath, and an improved sense of smell. And what is more important than being able to smell the roses?” Vaping can be confusing and intimidating for beginners, so Dearman and his staff at Vapor World promise to excel in good friendly customer service. They want to make your introduction to vaping an easy and comfortable one. From what they can tell, vaping is a hit; look for a Vapor World coming to your area soon, as the team plans to open at least four more by the end of this year.

3040 Highway 80, Pearl, MS 39208 601-398-1797

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Top of His Class by Kathleen M. Mitchell


Huge congratulations on making the short list. Can you explain that process? What does a James Beard nomination mean to you?

May 14 - 20, 2014

There are open nominations, then (a committee of) judges narrow it down to the semi-finalists, or what’s called the long list. That list in each region is about 20 or so chefs. Then after that it’s a committee that votes; the committee includes previous winners of the Beard Award, stuff like that. So the top five make the cut, the short list. As for what it means: absolutely everything. It means your peers think what you are doing is good.


So that grew gradually, me watching her do the recipes and then helping a little bit more. I learned watching her and then trying. As I got older, I could handle some of the simple recipes or slicing and dicing. It was never my intention that I would be cooking as a living. And I didn’t realize at that time that I was actually

scratch. We spice the onions 30 at a time and caramelize them slowly and then add some good wine to it, and we make our own veal stock that we add to it. We’ve been fortunate to get some really nice Gulf food up here, so just a quick sautéed shrimp dish, or some redfish or grouper, speckled trout right now. Anything along those lines. COURTESY CITY GROCERY RESTAURANT GROUP

ast Monday, some of the most acclaimed chefs from across the country gathered in New York City to celebrate their craft. The James Beard Foundation—the Hall of Fame of the American food world—held its annual awards ceremony. Among the chefs from culinary meccas like San Francisco and Austin and New York, one man represented Mississippi as one of the top five chefs in the entire south: Vishwesh Bhatt. Although the winning honor went to two chefs from New Orleans, Bhatt’s success is huge for the Magnolia State. Bhatt, 48, is the chef at Oxford’s Snackbar, part of the City Grocery family of restaurants that John Currence owns. A native of India, Bhatt moved with his family to France for a couple years before coming to the U.S. to finish his schooling. I spoke to Bhatt by phone about his culinary inspiration and what James Beard means to him.

Where do you like to travel for culinary inspiration?

New York City is a really good one, of course. But I love Charleston, Nashville, New Orleans— some of my favorite chefs are in those cities. I also love the food in Seattle, the food in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Chicago is another great food city. San Francisco might be almost better than New York. All of those places I love, but if I had to pick one right now, I would say New Orleans. Just because, in New Orleans, food is part of the fabric of the city. For example, there are really great French or Italian restaurants in New York that are really good restaurants, some of the best in the world. But some of them don’t have the soul of the restaurants in New Orleans. The food is an integral part of the people and of that city. Yeah, it’s great to see cities besides the traditional foodie locations getting recognized for great cooking.

I’m excited about (how) Jackson is really catching on. Young chefs are coming to Jackson (and Mississippi) and doing exciting stuff. … One thing What was the ceremony like? that’s been fun for me is being part of the SouthIt’s magnificent. It’s surreal. This is sort of the ern Foodways Alliance, and realizing that there are big event for people in food. So when you’re there, some great food traditions in the south that we’ve and you see all these people that you admire—those gotten away from, but now we’re embracing them Vishwesh Bhatt represented Mississippi food as a semifinalist for Best people have inspired me and my work. again—and that I’m part of that in some small way. Chef: South at the recent James Beard Awards. Chefs, we’re competitive, but we’re also a tightPeople used to think southern food was just knit community. I was up for the award in the south; what you had at home for Sunday supper or whatthe four other chefs nominated were from New Orleans, but learning stuff. It wasn’t until much later, when I was in col- ever. But look at the Gulf and the abundance of produce we I know all of them. The chefs from the southeast, I know all lege (at the University of Kentucky) and I needed beer money have with our long growing season. People are finally sort of of them as well. It was a lot of fun, very humbling and emo- jobs, that I (started) working in kitchens and found I had paying attention to that. tional to be considered in that group. It’s a huge honor, and it some fundamental skills in the kitchen. (Ours) might be simple ingredients, they might be hasn’t quite sunk in how big that is. (But) once I started cooking, I really enjoyed it. … I humble ingredients, but we can do wonderful things with decided I was going to cook full time … and then I knew them. We don’t have to buy really expensive Belgian white How did you get into the culinary world? Did you what was going on at City Grocery was really special, so I got asparagus; we can get really nice green beans from the farmers grow up cooking? a job there and thought, “This is really what I want to do.” So market and make something equally as good. I realized at an early age that if I helped I got to eat I went to cooking school. For someone like me, who grew up eating seasonally— quicker. And my mother realized that I was going to keep we didn’t have mega grocery stores where you can go buy pestering her, so she might as well give me something to do. What are some of your favorite dishes to cook at something from Belgium and something from Chile. We So she eventually started telling me to shuck these peas or go Snackbar? went to the produce market and bought what was available wash these potatoes—whatever it was, stuff that I could do as I like really simple, non-fussy stuff. For example, we’ve nearby at that time of the year. Seeing that happen again is a a kid. got a French onion soup that I love because we make it from wonderful feeling.

LIFE&STYLE | girl about town

by Julie Skipper

Red Flags in Downtown Bars


would rather him be delusional than married.” Such was the conclusion of my friend while discussing a fellow with whom she’d been talking as we analyzed the situation over dinner and drinks at Wasabi Sushi and Bar (100 E. Capitol St., Suite 105, wasabims.

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his exact whereabouts or what exactly he does. Let’s call this Red Flag Number Two. So, as he couldn’t provide an email address, their communication relegated itself to text messages. He told her he would be returning soon and has remained in touch so they could catch up.

Primos Cafe (2323 Lakeland 601-936-3398/ 515 Lake Harbour 601-898-3400) A Jackson institution for breakfast, blue-plates, catfish, burgers, prime rib, oysters, po-boys & wraps. Famous bakery! Two Sisters Kitchen (707 N. Congress St. 601-353-1180) Lunch. Mon-Fri, Sun. Koinonia (136 Adams St. 601-960-3008) Coffeehouse plus lunch & more! Broad Street Bakery (4465 Interstate 55 N. 601-362-2900)Hot breakfast, coffee drinks, fresh breads & pastries, gourmet deli sandwiches.

PIZZA Sal & Mookie’s (565 Taylor St. 601-368-1919) Pizzas of all kinds plus pasta, eggplant Parmesan, fried ravioli & ice cream for the kids! Mellow Mushroom (275 Dogwood Blvd, Flowood, 601-992-7499) More than just great pizza and beer. Open Monday - Friday 11-10 and Saturday 11-11.



BRAVO! (4500 Interstate 55 N., Jackson, 601-982-8111) Award-winning wine list, Jackson’s see-and-be-seen casual/upscale dining. Cerami’s (5417 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-919-28298) Southern-style Italian cuisine features their signature Shrimp Cerami.

STEAK, SEAFOOD & FINE DINING The Islander Seafood and Oyster House (1220 E Northside Drive, Suite 100, 601-366-5441) Oyster bar, seafood, gumbo, po’boys, crawfish and plenty of Gulf Coast delights in a laid-back Buffet-style atmosphere. Que Sera Sera (2801 N State Street 601-981-2520) Authentic cajun cuisine, excellent seafood and award winning gumbo; come enjoy it all this summer on the patio. The Penguin (1100 John R Lynch Street, 769.251.5222) Fine dining at its best. Rocky’s (1046 Warrington Road, Vicksburg 601-634-0100) Enjoy choice steaks, fresh seafood, great salads, hearty sandwiches. Sal and Phil’s Seafood (6600 Old Canton Rd, Ridgeland (601) 957-1188) Great Seafood, Poboys, Lunch Specials, Boiled Seafood, Full Bar, Happy Hour Specials Shea’s on Lake Harbour (810 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, MS 39157 (601) 427-5837) Seafood, Steaks and Southern Cuisine! Great Brunch, Full Bar Outdoor and Seating


Meeting out-of-towners in local bars can sometimes lead to intrigue.

Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive 601-366-6033) Delicious authentic dishes including lamb dishes, hummus, falafel, kababs, shwarma. Vasilios Greek Cusine (828 Hwy 51, Madison 601-853-0028) Authentic greek cuisine since 1994, specializing in gyros, greek salads, baklava cheesecake & fresh daily seafood.


Maybe it’s just that after the years of singledom and dating adventures under our belts, and we’re getting cynical, but this started to sound a bit suspect to both of us. Or maybe we just have overactive imaginations. Either way, there were questions: Could he be married and hiding a wife and family? Or perhaps he’s just a player with a lady in every city he visits? Why can’t he tell you where he’s going or what he does? And yet, amid our skepticism, a ray of hope: She confessed that he walked her home but did not attempt so much as to put a move on her. Perhaps he did just want company and to have a friend in town next time. Maybe she should give him the benefit of the doubt. But with all the secrecy … could that really be the truth? Maybe the truth is that he actually has a boring career and wanted to seem more exciting, a mysterious out-of-towner. And so, our conclusion: delusions of being more important than you are is something we can work with; being married is not. You take a chance; you stay in touch. Most recently, she received a text in which he stated he’d be going to an undisclosed location for an undisclosed amount of time, during which she would be unable to reach him. So, either the delusion continues, or he really is in the CIA or something. Next time he’s in town, I’m definitely inviting myself for drinks to investigate further. In this world of Adventures in Dating, you have to have your friends’ backs, and this is a Mission: Possible that I choose to accept. I’ll start working on my best “Men In Black”-inspired outfit for the occasion.

COFFEE HOUSES Cups Espresso Café (Multiple Locations, Jackson’s local group of coffeehouses offer a wide variety of espresso drinks. Wi-fi.

BARS, PUBS & BURGERS Capitol Grill (5050 I-55 North, Deville Plaza 601-899-8845) Best Happy Hour and Sports Bar in Town. Kitchen Open Late pub food and live entertainment. Cherokee Inn (960 Briarfield Rd. 601-362-6388) Jackson’s “Best Hole in the Wall,” has a great jukebox, great bar and a great burger. Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St. 601-948-0055)Classic Irish pub featuring a menu of traditional food, pub sandwiches & Irish beers on tap. Hal and Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St. 601-948-0888) Pub favorites meet Gulf Coast and Cajun specialties like red beans and rice, the Oyster Platter or daily specials. Martin’s Restaurant and Lounge (214 South State Street 601-354-9712) Lunch specials, pub appetizers or order from the full menu of po-boys and entrees. Full bar, beer selection. Mc B’s (815 Lake Harbour Dr. Ridgeland (601) 956-8362) Blue plates, amazing burgers, live music, cold beer, reservoir area Mississippi Legends (5352 Lakeland Dr. Flowood (601) 919-1165) American, Burgers, Pub Food, Happy Hour, Kid Friendly, Late Night, Sports Bar, Outdoor Dining Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St. 601-960-2700) Pub food with a southern flair: beer-battered onion rings, chicken & sausage gumbo, salads, sandwiches. Time Out (6270 Old Canton Road, 601-978-1839) Your neighborhood fun spot! Terrific lunch special and amazing Happy Hour! Underground 119 (119 South President St. 601-352-2322) Pan-seared crabcakes, shrimp and grits, filet mignon, vegetarian sliders. Live music. Opens 4 p.m., Wed-Sat Wing Stop (952 North State Street, 601-969-6400) Saucing and tossing in a choice of nine flavors, Wing Stop wings are made with care and served up piping hot. The Wing Station (5038 Parkway Dr. 888-769-WING (9464) Ext. 1) Bone-in, Boneless, Fries, Fried Turkeys, and more. Just Wing It!

ASIAN AND INDIAN Crazy Ninja (2560 Lakeland Dr., Flowood 601-420-4058) Rock-n-roll sushi and cook-in-front-of-you hibachi. Lunch specials, bento boxes, fabulous cocktails. Fusion Japanese and Thai Cuisine (1002 Treetop Blvd, Flowood 601-664-7588) Specializing in fresh Japanese and Thai cuisine, an extensive menu features everything from curries to fresh sushi Nagoya Japanese Sushi Bar & Hibachi Grill (6351 I-55 North, Ste. 131, Jackson 601-977-8881) Fresh sushi, delicious noodles, sizzling hibachi & refreshing cocktails from one of jackson’s most well-known japanese restaurants.

LATIN/MEXICAN Cafe Ole’ (2752 N State St, Jackson, 769-524-3627 ) Authentic Latin cuisine at its best. Jackson’s restaurateur Alex Silvera combines the flavors of his homeland with flavors from around the world.

VEGETARIAN High Noon Café (2807 Old Canton Road in Rainbow Plaza 601-366-1513) Fresh, gourmet, tasty and healthy defines the lunch options at Jackson’s own strict vegetarian (and very-vegan-friendly) restaurant adjacent to Rainbow Whole Foods.

com, 601-948-8808). Then we laughed that these, it seems, are the choices sometimes left to single ladies: crazy or married. When one lives downtown, as both she and I do, one often encounters visitors to our fair city while out and about at our neighborhood haunts. While eating at the bar at a downtown restaurant or enjoying a beverage at the King Edward Hotel Bar (102 N. Mill St.) on a weeknight, it’s not at all unusual to strike up a conversation with someone who is quite obviously here from out of town. Most of the time, this provides an opportunity for interesting or amusing conversation, and a chance to share with a visitor the things we love about our city. It can be a lot of fun to be an unofficial city ambassador. In my seven years as a downtowner, I’ve spent countless hours talking with people in just that situation, and when I head home for the evening (alone—for the record—it’s always perfectly innocent), I love knowing that I saved someone from having to eat dinner alone at a bar in a strange place and hopefully gave them a good impression of Jackson. However, sometimes it’s evident that a gentleman wants to get to know you better. My friend met the aforementioned potentially delusional man while he was supposedly in town for work. But Red Flag Number One: He wouldn’t give her a business card. “What is he, a spy or something?” I wondered. As it turns out, he told her that he works for a department of the U.S. government doing something that prevents him from being able to disclose

Hickory Pit Barbeque (1491 Canton Mart Rd. 601-956-7079) The “Best Butts in Town” features BBQ chicken, beef and pork along with burgers and po’boys.



&6EGETABLES 2 % 3 (


Help the JFP Chick Ball celebrate its

10th anniversary


Cassidy Henehan,

a New Orleans native, has been a regular act in some of New York’s best comedy clubs. He’s been featured in The D.C Comedy Festival, FunFunFun Fest in Austin, TX, the Hell Yes Fest, and worked with Eric Andre and Doug Stanhope.

Live Comedy Night Friday, May 16th $10 Cover 8pm

Drop Silent Auction Donations off at 125 S. Congress St, Suite 1324,

Ariel Elias,

is a nationally touring comedian who has performed with Bo Burnham, Darrell Hammond, Moshe Kasher, and Natasha Leggero. She host a weekly show in New Orleans at Twelve Mile Limit and has appeared on the HBO show Brody Stevens.

of helping keep metro families safer from abuse.

1410 Old Square Road 601.362.6388

NOW! Auction Donation Hours are 9am - 6pm, Monday through Friday Sign up now to sponsor or volunteer at

or call 601-362-6121 ext. 23 to get involved. SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE:

Imperial Highness - $10,000 Empress/Emperor - $5,000 Diva/Devo - $2,500 King/Queen - $1,000 Prince/Princess - $500 Duchess/Duke - $150

May 14 - 20, 2014

Make checks payable to Center for Violence Prevention or use your credit card at


JFP Chick Ball | Saturday, July 19, 2014 6 p.m. to midnight | Mississippi Arts Center

8 DAYS p 29 | MUSIC p 32 | SPORTS p 34


Hatching a New Art Movement by Amber Helsel



he area between Woodrow Wilson Avenue, and Fortification, West and Mill streets is full of what looks like abandoned buildings and warehouses, some laced with graffiti and others just plain brick buildings with small, unassuming black doors. Grass and weeds grow in the sidewalk cracks, and vines snake up some of the walls. To some, midtown may feel like an empty, shattered shellâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a ghost town, even. A relic of a time long past. But subtle indicationsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;like a sign on a door that says â&#x20AC;&#x153;Pearl River Glass Studioâ&#x20AC;? or navy blue and yellow accents on a large, dilapidated warehouseâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;show that midtown isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t gone. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s becoming a place for creatives and creative entrepreneurs to work and play. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s why Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve always been drawn to it. â&#x20AC;Ś (Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s) just like Jackson. If you drive through Jackson, you have no idea that interesting things are happening, but if youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re willing to dig a little bit, you can pretty much find any exciting thing youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking for,â&#x20AC;? says Whitney Grant, Midtown Partnersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; creative economies coordinator. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You might have to put in some work (to) keep it happening. Midtown is like that for me. You donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t always know how many awesome things are happening.â&#x20AC;? Grant got a bachelorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s degree in architecture from Mississippi State University in 2009 and began working with people in midtown around then. She joined Midtown Partners in 2013. The area gave her a reason to stay in Jackson.

The Hatch, part of Midtown Partnersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; creative-economies initiative, will be an art gallery and will also have about six to 12 spaces for artists and creative entrepreneurs.

She met Austin Richardson, co-founder of the North Midtown Arts Center (then known as 121), in 2008. Richardson and 121 helped her find her place in Jackson, and she decided she didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to leave right after graduation. Richardson said he was first drawn to the area because of the offbeat culture and the potential for major growth. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It was cheap,â&#x20AC;? he says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to dress a certain way or didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to show up at a certain time. I saw

the potential for a lot of work that needed to be done and things that people liked to do but needed a place to do it.â&#x20AC;? Andy Young, the man behind Pearl River Glass Studio, has been in the area since 1976 and is essentially ground zero for the community. He was there from the beginning and saw midtown hit its ups and downs from the art movement in the â&#x20AC;&#x2122;80s to its decline in the early â&#x20AC;&#x2122;90s. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t say it was forgotten about,â&#x20AC;? Richardson, whom Young calls â&#x20AC;&#x153;Mr. Midtown,â&#x20AC;? says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It was just something that the metropolitan area just did not have a need for at that point in time. â&#x20AC;Ś The (art scene in the â&#x20AC;&#x2122;90s) didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have the same organization that we do, I guess, in our generation, or maybe itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just the time and place. They did really good, but they didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have quite the network that we do.â&#x20AC;? When Young bought the old Patton Publishing warehouse in 2012, he found the building full of things, such as family mementos and an old printing press. Young says that Fred Thompson, the owner of Patton Publishing, had developed back issues over the years, due to lifting heavy paper rolls, and after getting fed up with it, walked out six years before Young bought the building. The front, located on Wesley Avenue, will house DJ Venomâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;alternative cultureâ&#x20AC;? store called Offbeat, which will sell comic books

Josh Hailey,The Hatchâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s current artist-in-residence, will have a Photamerica showcase May 15 benefitting his heARTalot organization.


DIVERSIONS | arts from page 27


and clothing, among many other items. Young rently contains hundreds of Josh Hailey’s art keeps his waterjet cutter, a machine used to cut pieces. Until August, when he leaves to bring large pieces of fused glass to size, in the back. his project, heARTalot, to different schools The North Midtown Community Develand teach about art and community, he will opment Corp. began with the goal of revitalizbe the artist-in-residence. After being on the ing the area. In 2009, the organization merged road for two years for Photamerica—a crowdwith parts of the Good Samaritan Center, with funded documentary where he trekked across the mission of improving the community and the U.S., interviewing people about their making midtown a sustainable place for people perceptions of community—he has come to live, work and play. With the help from back to Jackson and is now helping breathe North Midtown CDC, now known as Midnew life into midtown. He and others look town Partners, midtown began the slow and forward to the day when midtown reaches its agonizing journey uphill. Artists slowly began full potential. repopulating the area, including Andy Hilton “One of these days, people will be comand Josh Hailey. ing to Jackson to study midtown,” Young says. (From left) Josh Hailey, Whitney Grant and Austin Richardson, along with other “I’m not turning my back on (it).” “What midtown did, as a neighborhood volunteers, work around the clock to breathe new life into midtown. and with different organizations, (is) they orHailey will do a heARTalot showcase May ganized themselves really well at some point, es The Hatch, and began renovating the two warehouses a 15, which he says will include about two-thirds and now, a lot of the space that has been ignored has been few months ago. Currently, The Hangar houses businesses of the total pieces he has created from Photamerica. Unlike his reclaimed,” Grant says. such as the Purple Word Center for Book and Paper Arts, show for the project in December, Hailey will display videos One of Midtown Partners’ newest projects is the reno- MidCity Print, Inspire Jackson, Repurpose Projects and Big from Story Projectors, a mobile projection booth, in an entire vation of two abandoned warehouses, turning them into Ace Structure Demolition. It is equipped with four studios room. Suggested donation price for the event is $25, and the “creative business incubators” as part of its creative econo- and a warehouse space for creative businesses. proceeds go toward heARTalot. my initiative, a partnership with Millsaps College’s ELSE The Hatch completes Midtown Partners’ hub of its Mid-Fest, a Business Association of Midtown block party, School of Management. In gearing up for the project, creative-economies initiative. As the name may suggest, takes place May 17. It includes tours of different studios and Grant says she had “put the years in beforehand, listening it is smaller than The Hangar. But it’s not as small as you shops, including DJ Venom’s “Offbeat.” It will also have an art to what people needed and seeing the needs or wishing we think. The first room you see is the display space, a rect- gallery. The Hangar will be open for public viewing, and The had the space for this or wishing we could do this. It kind of angular room that will house works for some of the future Hatch will be showing its new gallery to the public. Midtown made me prime to start implementing it.” art shows. The hallway winds down through different cor- Partners is currently fundraising for finishing construction on Midtown bought the warehouse where The Hangar is ridors and spaces for artists and creative entrepreneurs, and The Hatch. The event is free to the public. For more informanow located, along with a second warehouse that now hous- leads through a large room to a warehouse space that cur- tion, visit

South of Walmart in Madison

ALL STADIUM SEATING Listings for Fri. 5/16 – Thur. 5/22

Godzilla (non 3-D) PG13 3-D Godzilla PG13 Million Dollar PG Arm R Neighbors Moms’ Night Out PG 3-D Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return PG Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return (non 3-D) PG 3-D Amazing Spiderman 2 PG13

Amazing Spiderman 2 (non 3-D) PG13 The Other Woman


The Quiet Ones PG13 Heaven is For PG Real Rio 2 (non 3-D) G Draft Day


May 14 - 20, 2014

- Pool Is Cool-


Best Place to Play Pool

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (non 3-D) PG13

Industry Happy Hour Daily

God’s Not Dead PG









DAILY BARGAINS UNTIL 6PM Online Tickets, Birthday Parties, Group & Corporate Events @

Movieline: 355-9311





Daily Beer Specials 12pm

Mon - Fri Night Drink Specials Burgers-Wings-Full Bar Gated Parking Big Screen TV’s League and Team Play Beginners to Advanced Instructors Available

MS 601-718-7665

$37 tickets FOR ONLY

$20 To sign up, visit




John Maxwell’s “Martha” is at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral.

Poetry After Dark: Open Mic Night is at Mediterranean Fish and Grill.

A Musical Wine Tasting is at Magnolia Bluffs Casino.

BEST BETS MAY 14 - 21, 2014



City of Flowood Benefit Golf Tournament is at 8:30 a.m. at The Refuge Golf Course (2100 Refuge Blvd., Flowood). $100-$400; call 601-665-2434; email kshelton@ … “Martha” is at 6 p.m. at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral (305 E. Capitol St.). Fish Tale Group Theatre presents the play based on the biblical story of sisters Mary and Martha. Free;



Pops III: Pepsi Pops is at Old Trace Park May 16.The annual event includes family-friendly activities, music from the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and a fireworks finale.

Pops III: Pepsi Pops is at 7:30 p.m. at Old Trace Park (Post Road, Ridgeland). $15 and up; call 601-960-1565; … Shakey Graves performs at 8:30 p.m.

New Orleans-based soul funk band Remedy Krewe performs at Martin’s Restaurant and Bar May 17 in promotion of the upcoming release of its new album.

at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The Tontons and Good Graeff also perform. $10 in advance, $12 at the door; call 601-292-7999; … Poetry After Dark: Open Mic Night is at 9:30 p.m. at Mediterranean Fish and Grill (6550 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland). Sista Nature hosts, and Bladonna does spoken word. Enjoy music from K.J. Love and DJ Sean Mac. $10; email

king’s destruction of his family and friendships. $5 suggested donation; call 601-301-2281; … A Musical Wine Tasting is at 5 p.m. at Magnolia Bluffs Casino (7 Roth Hill Road, Natchez). $50; call 800-6476742;


“Delivered” Dinner Theater is at 6 p.m. at Char (4500 Interstate 55 N.). Includes a three-course meal. $49; call 601-937-1752; … Open Mic Free Jam is at 9 p.m. at Martin’s Restaurant and Bar (214 S. State St.). Free;

Art Space 86 Pop-up Art Show is from noon-6 p.m. at BY BRIANA ROBINSON Belhaven Park (Poplar Boulevard). Free; call 601-352-8850; JACKSONFREEPRESS.COM … MidFest is from 3-8 p.m. at WesFAX: 601-510-9019 ley Avenue (Wesley Avenue). DAILY UPDATES AT Tour the studios and businesses JFPEVENTS.COM in the Midtown Arts District, and enjoy a block party and beer from Lucky Town Brewing. Free; madeinmidtownjxn. com. … Capital City Rollergirls Roller Derby is at 7 p.m. at Mississippi Trade Mart (1200 Mississippi St.). The team takes on the Acadiana Vermilionville Sirens. $10 in advance, $12 at the door; … Remedy Krewe performs at 9:30 p.m. at Martin’s Restaurant and Bar (214 S. State St.). $7;



“The Winter’s Tale” is at 2 p.m. at Fondren Park (Northview Drive and Dunbar St.). Fondren Theatre Workshop presents Shakespeare’s dark comedy about a jealous



David L. Crosby signs copies of “The Complete Antislavery Writings of Anthony Benezet, 1754-1783: An Annotated Critical Edition” at 5 p.m. at Lemuria (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 202). Reading at 5:30 p.m. $49.95 book; call 601-366-7619; Jazz Tuesdays with RNS Quintet is at 7:30 p.m. at The Penguin Restaurant and Bar (1100 John R. Lynch St.). Free;


History Is Lunch is at noon at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). MDAH volunteer staff coordinator Elizabeth Coleman presents “Discover the Hidden Treasure of MDAH: the Volunteers!” Free; call 601-576-6998; … The Big Easy Three performs at 6:30 p.m. at Underground 119 (119 S. President St.). Free;


Dinner and a Movie: A Food Truck Festival is from 510 p.m. at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Vendors include Lurny D’s Grille, Tito’s Tacos, and One Guy Steak and Chicken. Free; call 601-960-1515. … Photamerica/ heARTalot Showcase and Fundraiser is from 6-9 p.m. at Photamerica Pop-up Studio (126 Keener Ave.). Local artist and photographer Josh Hailey presents his exhibit about modern America. Art sales benefit heARTalot, an arts education nonprofit. $25 suggested donation; Find “PHOTAMERICA / heARTalot Showcase / fundraiser” on Facebook.


*&0 30/.3/2%$%6%.43 Magnolia Roller Vixens Roller Derby May 31, 7 p.m., at Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.). The team takes on the Spindletop Roller Girls. Doors open at 6 p.m. $12 in advance, $15 at the door, $5 children;

Wednesday, May 14th

6:30, No Cover Thursday, May 15th

BRET MOSLEY 6:30, No Cover

Friday, May 16th

CHRIS GILL AND THE SOUL SHAKERS 9:00, $10 Cover Saturday, May 17th

VASTI JACKSON 9:00, $10 Cover

Wednesday, May 21st


THREE 6:30, No Cover

Happy Hour!

2-for-1 May 14 - 20, 2014

EVERYTHING* Tuesday-Friday from 4:00-6:00


(*excludes food and specialty drinks)

119 S. President Street 601.352.2322

Events at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Free; call 601576-6998; • History Is Lunch May 21, noon. MDAH volunteer staff coordinator Elizabeth Coleman presents “Discover the Hidden Treasure of MDAH: the Volunteers!” • History Is Lunch May 14, noon. Sade Turnipseed of Delta Renaissance presents “The Legacy of the Cotton Pickers of the South.” Precinct 3 COPS Meeting May 15, 6 p.m., at Jackson Police Department, Precinct 3 (3925 W. Northside Drive). These monthly forums are designed to help resolve community issues or problems, from crime to potholes. Free; call 601-960-0003. Fallen Conservation Officers Memorial Service May 15, 9 a.m., at Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (1505 Eastover Drive). MDWFP honors the memory of conservation officers who lost their lives in the line of duty. Keynote speakers include MDWFP committee members Giles Ward and Scott Bounds. Free; call 601-432-2400; Global Executive Speaker Series, Part 2 May 15, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., at Capital Club (125 S. Congress St., Suite 19). World Trade Center Mississippi is the host. Shane Homan of the Community Development Foundation of Tupelo speaks on the topic, “Internationalizing Your Community: Why and How. Online registration available. $35, $25 members, $20 Young Globals Professionals members; call 601-353-0909; email; Startup Weekend Jackson May 16-18, at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.). In Leggett Center. Entrepreneurs, marketers, general strategists, developers, designers, programmers and others get together to create a company in three days. Registration required. $50 through April 16, price increase afterwards; Made for a Runway II Fashion Weekend May 16-18, at Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.). May 16 from 7-9:30 p.m., enjoy an industry talk with Demin magazine, shopping and music. May 17 from noon-4:30 p.m. the model boot camp is at North Midtown Arts Center (121 Millsaps Ave.). The red carpet event and fashion show is May 18 at 6 p.m. Free admission May 16, $45 May 17 boot camp, May 18 fashion show: $20, $35 VIP; call 707-278-6906; A Trail of Honor: A Tribute to American Veterans May 17, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., May 18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., at Harley Davidson of Jackson (3509 Interstate 55 S. Frontage Road). The annual event includes living history demonstrations, aircraft rides, mock Civil War and Vietnam War firefights, and a military vehicle display. Free; call 601-3725770; Doggie Palooza Open House May 18, 2 p.m.4 p.m., at Community Animal Rescue and Adoption (CARA) (960 N. Flag Chapel Road). Includes tours of the shelter and light refreshments. Dog adoption fees waived for the month of May. Free; call 601-922-7575; email cara@;


rilled catfish, watermelon donkeys and Jesus in a La-Z-Boy might not be what you envision while reading the story of Martha and Mary, but it’s exactly what you will find in “Martha,” a one-act play by the Fish Tale Group Theatre. SHAWANDA JACOME



Jesus in the La-Z-Boy

Holly Wiggs and Malaika Quarterman play sisters Martha and Mary in Fish Tale Group Theatre’s “Martha.”

Unlike the scenes in Luke 10:38-42, “Martha” takes place in the small southern town of Pickens, Miss. It opens with Martha preparing a meal to serve Jesus when he comes to visit. She drags Mary into the kitchen to help, but once he arrives, Mary retreats to the living room to sit at the feet of Jesus, who is seated in their father’s La-Z-Boy chair. Several days later, after Jesus raised their brother Lazarus from the dead, we see Martha meeting with Hinds County Board of Supervisors Meeting May 19, 9 a.m., at Hinds County Chancery Court (316 S. President St.). The board holds its regular meeting. Free; call 601-968-6501; Jackson City Council Meeting May 20, 10 a.m., at Jackson City Hall (219 S. President St.). Free; call 601-960-1064; Hinds County Human Resource Agency Meeting May 21, 7 p.m., at Hinds County Human Resource Agency (258 Maddox Road). Hinds County residents encouraged to attend. Free; call 601-923-1838;

a psychiatrist to talk through her regret for not sitting with Jesus when he was at her home. With the addition of the psychiatrist, the play allows the audience to see the different facets of Martha. She embodies what our society considers success—the busyness of it all, the rat race. “I doubt Jesus was not going to be fed well,” says Holly Wiggs, who plays Martha. “I love Mary’s line when she says, ‘The God who made the stars in the universe has called you by name.’ It just reminds us that in our busyness and in our successes, that none of that counts for anything if we don’t also have the wherewithal to be still enough to hear the voice of God, to hear the call, to hear our name, to be able to listen as well.” For Malaika Quarterman, who plays Mary, she says that sometimes we can allow ‘what we do’ to become our total identity Christ. “When the giving back becomes your identity in Christ and to Christ instead of the relationship with him, I think we lose sight of that as a society that celebrates achievement,” she says. Fish Tale Group Theatre performs “Martha” at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral (305 E. Capitol St.) May 14 at 6 p.m. The performance is free to the public. —ShaWanda Jacome Teen Talent Summer Camp Open House Registration May 18, 3 p.m., at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The camp is June 10Aug. 5 and is for teens in grades 9-12. Topics include acting, modeling, fashion, arts, beauty and skin care, exercise and travel. Limited scholarships available. $240 tuition; call 769-218-8862. Mississippi Girlchoir Auditions May 19, 3:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m., at Mississippi Girlchoir Office (1991 Lakeland Drive, Suite M). Auditions are open to girls entering grades 3-12. Appointment required. $25 audition fee; call 601-981-9863; email auditions@msgirlchoir. org;

+)$3 Sid the Science Kid Live! May 14, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., at Vicksburg Convention Center (1600 Mulberry St., Vicksburg). In the performance based on the PBS Kids show, Sid, May, Gabriela and Gerald explore their five senses through games and experiments. $10 in advance, $15 day of show, children under 12 months free; call 601-630-2929 or 800-7453000; P.L.A.Y. Sports Free Throw Contest May 17, 8 a.m., at Sunnybrook Children’s Home (222 Sunnybrook Road, Ridgeland). Proud Leaders of America’s Youth hosts the competition for youth in grades 3-8. Registration with an adult required May 16 from 5-9 p.m. at Northpark Mall. Prizes given, including a Kindle Fire. Free; call 601906-2236 or 601-832-4547; email eddiejamon@ or

30/2437%,,.%33 Self-help Sessions May 15, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at Hinds Behavioral Health Services (3450 Highway 80 W.). Options include free HIV/AIDS screenings, information on quitting smoking, and a tour of the Resource Room. Free; call 601-321-2400. “Eat Life!/I Eat Pretty” Community Talk Back May 15, 5:30 p.m.-8 p.m., at Smith Robertson Museum and Cultural Center (528 Bloom St.). Dr. Deborah Grison, author of “I Eat Pretty: 30 Days and Ways to Eat Life!” and founder of EatLife Online, shares her weight loss story, and gives advice on nutrition and physical activity. Advance tickets only. $10 (includes e-book); call 960-1457;

34!'%3#2%%. “The Winter’s Tale” May 15-17, 7 p.m., May 17-18, 2 p.m., at Fondren Park (Northview Drive and Dunbar Street). Fondren Theatre Workshop presents Shakespeare’s dark comedy about a jealous king’s destruction of his family and a lifelong friendship. Bring blankets and lawn chairs. Additional events May 18 include other local performers, and free refreshments. $5 suggested donation; call 601-301-2281; email; “H.M.S. Pinafore” May 17, 7 p.m., at Margaret Martin Performing Arts Center (64 Homochitto St., Natchez). The Gilbert and Sullivan musical is a comedy about a captain’s daughter and a sailor falling in love. $30, $10 children, students and military; call 800-6476742; Screen on the Green May 15, 5:30 p.m., at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). In the Art Garden. Includes a cash bar, concessions and a screening of “Toy Story.” Free; call 601-960-1515; “Me and My Shadow: The Story of Judas” May 14, 6 p.m., at St Mary’s Episcopal Church (209 E. Madison St., Bolton). Fish Tale Group Theatre presents John Mawell’s play based on the biblical story of Judas Iscariot. Free; call 601-636-6687; email webmaster@; “La Cenerentola” May 14, 6:30 p.m., at Tinseltown (411 Riverwind Drive, Pearl). The Metropolitan Opera presents Rossini’s opera starring Joyce DiDonato as Cinderella and Juan Diego Flórez as Prince Charming. $20, $18 seniors, $14 children; call 601-936-5856;

#/.#%243&%34)6!,3 Jackson Greek Fest May 16-18, 11 a.m., at Holy Trinity - St. John the Theologian Greek Orthodox Church (5725 Pear Orchard Road). The celebration of Greek culture includes food, music, dancing, children’s activities and vendors. Pre-order lunches for delivery or pick-up May 16 from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Free admission, $10 May 16 lunch; find Jackson Greek Fest on Facebook. Grand Patriotic Salute to the Military Concert May 17, 7 p.m.-8 p.m., at Christ United Methodist Church (6000 Old Canton Road). Performers include the Mississippi Community Symphonic Band, Kathy Baxter Gautier, the Mississippi Swing and more. Free; call 769218-0828; Symphony on the Square May 17, 7 p.m., at Historic Canton Square (Courthouse Square, Canton). The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra gives an outdoor concert, and the street dance with the Full Circle Party Band follows. Free; call 601-859-5816; Great Big Yam Potatoes Old-Time Music Gathering May 17, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., at Historic Jefferson College (16 Old North St., Natchez). The event is a celebration of Mississippi’s fiddle and string band tradition. Old-time musicians perform throughout the day. In the main building, fiddlers

compete for cash awards in the fiddle contest. Free; call 601-984-1210 or 601-506-6561; email; or find Great Big Yam Potatoes on Facebook.

,)4%2!293)'.).'3 “The Inspiring Life of Eudora Welty” May 17, 2 p.m.-4 p.m., at Lorelei Books (1103 Washington St., Vicksburg). Richelle Putnam signs books. Books for sale; call 601-634-8624; email;

$5 Martini Monday 2 for Tuesday

“The Complete Antislavery Writings of Anthony Benezet, 1754-1783: An Annotated Critical Edition” May 20, 5 p.m., at Lemuria Books (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 202). David L. Crosby signs books. Reading at 5:30 p.m. $49.95 book; call 601-366-7619; email info@;

Wine Down Wednesday

An Evening with Michael Pollan May 21, 6:30 p.m., at University of Mississippi (University Avenue, Oxford). At Nutt Auditorium. Pollan is the author of “Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation.” Doors open at 6 p.m. Purchase the book at Square Books to receive up to two tickets. Books will not be sold at the event. Free tickets with book purchase ($17); call 662-2362262;

%8()")4/0%.).'3 Photamerica/Heartalot Showcase and Fundraiser May 15, 6 p.m.-9 p.m., at Photamerica Popup Studio (The Hatch, 126 Keener Ave.). Local artist and photographer Josh Hailey presents his exhibit abut modern America at his new studio location. Proceeds from art sales benefit Heartalot, an arts education nonprofit. Refreshments included. $25 suggested entrance fee; email; find “PHOTAMERICA / heARTalot Showcase / fundraiser” on Facebook. Art Space 86 Pop-up Art Show May 17, noon-6 p.m., at Belhaven Park (Poplar Boulevard). See works from Jerrod Partridge and David West, purchase art from other local artists, and enjoy handson activities, demonstrations and live music. Free; call 601-352-8850;

"%4(%#(!.'% Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance Advocacy Meeting May 14, 6 p.m., at Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance (612 N. State St., Suite B). MIRA discusses current issues and upcoming campaigns at the meeting held on second Mondays. Open to the public. Light dinner included. Free; call 601-968-5182; Cheers for a Cause Wine, Food and Arts Fundraiser May 15, 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m., at The Commons at Eudora Welty’s Birthplace (719 N. Congress St.). Includes art and craft vendors, a silent auction, refreshments and music from the Southern Komfort Brass Band. Proceeds benefit the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence. For ages 21 and up. $30 in advance, $35 at the door; Breaking Bread May 17, 1 p.m.-5 p.m., at Poindexter Park (200 Poindexter St.). Activities include feeding the homeless, collecting funds and items for tornado victims, games and music for DJ Sean Mac. Free; call 601-918-4350; Check for updates and more listings, or to add your own events online. You can also email event details to to be added to the calendar. The deadline is noon the Wednesday prior to the week of publication.

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Dragon Boat Regatta May 17, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., at Old Trace Park (Post Road, Ridgeland). The Madison County Chamber of Commerce hosts the annual race. Spectators enjoy food and a kids’ zone. An awards ceremony and after-party follows. Teams must register and pay a $300 deposit. Teams: $1,500, $1,200 chamber members/community team; free for spectators; call 601-6052554; email;



Found Songs, Drum Suitcase


haunted sense of humor permeates the name and music of Shakey Graves. Singer, songwriter and actor Alejandro Rose-Garcia gives life to Shakey Graves, which walks the thin line between being a throwback in time and a pitch forward in the evolution of Americana folk and blues. Working the rambling-man aesthetic of vocals, electric hollow-body guitar and a hard-shell suitcase re-tooled as a kick drum, Rose-Garcia pays homage to his forerunners with some innovations. His dynamic, unpredictable vocals shift from croon to growl to yodel, all accompanied by guitar and drum with full stops, delays and time changes to create familiarity. Rose-Garcia, 26, is tall and lean with swarthy good looks that contradict the expectation that he’s a street musician or a train-hopping hobo. Fans will recognize the young man from his role in “Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over” and in the second season of “Friday Night Lights.” Just as Rose-Garcia is not the the dangerous, ill-intentioned characters he has portrayed in film and television, he is also not Shakey Graves. “I took the name to keep my personality in and out at the same time,” Rose-Garcia says. “I would rather people be interested in the music then find out more about me after.” Rose-Garcia created the moniker Shakey Graves in 2008, right around the time he decided to put his acting career on the backburner to focus on performing music. “With any serious artistic endeavor, you need to put all your attention in one place unless they overlap easily,” Rose-Garcia says. “If I was still trying to juggle both careers, I wouldn’t be able to work this hard on music or acting.” By 2011, the work began to payoff. Shakey Graves played at South by Southwest Music Conference and Festival and did his first tour with folk duo Shovels and Ropes. He’s been touring consistently for the past year.


by Genevieve Legacy

Austin native songwriter and actor Alejandro Rose-Garcia performs as Shakey Graves at Duling Hall May 16.

Though on hold for right now, Rose-Garcia’s acting expertise brings a noticeable depth to Shakey Graves. Watching him perform is engaging and a little unnerving when the song seems to take over.

“I’m not sure Shakey has definite boundaries. If I take the cowboy hat off, I don’t lose magical powers,” Rose-Garcia says. “It’s inspiration. I think when I get a hold of a really good song—it was found or maybe given to me—Shakey Graves is like my connection.” Given the neo anti-folk trend, it’s no stretch to imagine other young musicians tuning in and making connections, channeling music from the past. All they have to do is update the style and make it their own. “I meet people making music that doesn’t make any sense,” Rose-Garcia says. “Maybe it’s just a product of the time we live in and the bizarre saturation and access to different music. It feels like people are learning faster.” His debut album in 2011, “Roll the Bones,” is a rarefied collection of songs that are Shakey Graves incarnate. The opening track, “Unlucky Skin,” is a bone yard song, ripe with double entendre and worth a close listen. A follow-up album is due later this year. Always bent on defying expectation, Rose-Garcia makes it clear that he’s not trying to replicate old music or put on an old-timey show. “Sometimes people show up and say: ‘Hey, you’re not a hobo. You’re not a train-riding tramp.’ No, I ride in a van with a picture of Beyoncé on my dashboard,” he says, laughing. “I’ve worked hard. I certainly want to make music that I’ve come to honestly.” Shakey Graves performs at 8:30 p.m. May 16 at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The Tontons and Good Graeff also perform. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $10 in advance and $12 at the door. All ages are welcome, but those under 21 must pay a $3 surcharge. To download Shakey Graves’ “Roll the Bones” and leave a donation, visit For concert tickets, visit

in the mix

by Tommy Burton

The Festival Game

May 14 - 20, 2014


• The Hipster (2 points)

• The Loud Talker (8 points)

You’ll know him by his ironic or indie rock band T-shirt, glasses and flipflops. Score an extra two points if The Hipster has a beard covering his neck. • Shirtless Dudes (4 points) These guys are usually standing side by side. Inevitably, they high-five each other when the performer plays the big hit songs.

It doesn’t matter how much you love the performer you drove 200 miles to see. This person will see to it that you have the most miserable concert experience of your life as you struggle to hear amidst his or her booming voice. • The Die-Hard Fan (8 points) This person not only attends every festival you also happen to be at, but he or she knows the words to every song and can’t help but sing along. • The Lumineers or Moon Taxi (20 points) If you’re attending a festival, one of these bands will likely be there.



arm weather has finally ar- lowing people you spot, reward yourself the rived, and that means it’s that allotted points. Think of it as a glorified vertime of year: music festivals. sion of “I Spy.” Two weekends of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival just passed, as well as the Beale Street Music Festival in Memphis. Regionally, Hangout Music Fest, Wakarusa Music Festival and Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival are approaching. An abundance of festivals, both small and larger, will also take place in Jackson over the next few months. Soul City Showcase, WellsFest, Jackson Rhythm If festivals weren’t already enough fun, here is a and Blues Festival and Bright Lights, game you can play throughout the fest days. Belhaven Nights are just a few. These events offer plenty of live music and good food. In celebration of the • The Dancing Hippie Girl (2 points) festival season, I have come up with a little There’s always at least one. She can usugame you and your friends can play while ally be seen wearing a long dress, oversized people watching. sunglasses and Birkenstocks. The Dancing The concept is simple enough: See how Hippie Girl always has her head down, her many points you can score while cruising arms up and her hips in constant motion to the festival grounds. For every one of the fol- the music.

• The Stay-Off-My-Blanket Crew

(6 points) This group of five or more has staked its claim on the festival grounds and allows no one to invade the protected borders of the edge of its blanket. Give yourself an extra two points if you know the crew has held that same spot for several years. • Too Drunk To Stand (6 points) This one explains itself. You’ll know it when you see it. These points are usually scored while heading for the exits.

In the case of a tie, take a look in the mirror. If you are one of these people, give yourself an extra 100 points. Of course, these are mere suggestions. Add your own to the list and expand the game. No cheating allowed. Have a safe and happy festival season, and make sure to enjoy some live music.


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DIVERSIONS | jfp sports bryan’s rant

the best in sports over the next seven days


by Bryan Flynn


The St. Louis Rams aren’t afraid of making history as a franchise. In 1946 (a year before Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color-barrier), the Rams signed Kenny Washington the first black player in the modern era of the NFL.

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Pub Quiz

FRIDAY, MAY 16 College baseball (7-10 p.m., ESPNU): Ole Miss faces Texas A&M in the final regular season series of SEC—and an SEC West title is on the line for the Rebels.

T /


SATURDAY, MAY 17 Horse racing (3:30-5:30 p.m., NBC): California Chrome looks to win the second leg of the Triple Crown in the running of the 139th Preakness Stakes.

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SUNDAY, MAY 18 MLB (7-10 p.m., ESPN): The Boston Red Sox hope to keep climbing the AL East standings with a win against the AL Central leading Detroit Tigers.

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May 14 - 20, 2014

WEDNESDAY, MAY 21 College baseball (All day, FSN & CSS): Catch a quadruple header of the 2014 SEC Baseball Tournament with two morning games starting at 9:30 a.m. on FSN and two evening games starting at 4:30 p.m. on CSS. St. Louis drafted Michael Sam with the 249th pick in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Sam is the first openly gay player to be drafted into the NFL and will try to become the first openly gay player to make an NFL roster.




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MONDAY, MAY 19 College baseball (8-11 p.m., ESPNU): The 2014 SWAC Baseball Tournament Championship Game will be played Sunday, but will air Monday due to tape delay.

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inally, the NFL Draft has come and gone after moving from April to May. As usual, on paper, some teams had a great draft, but others appear to have bombed the draft. Looking over their picks, I have to give the New Orleans Saints a solid B to B+ draft. New Orleans filled all of its need positions: wide receiver, offensive line, linebacker and cornerback. The Saints moved up in the first round to get Brandin Cooks. I had Cooks as one of my top five wide receivers—he has the speed to be a game changer and big play receiver. He ran the second-fastest 40yard dash at the NFL Combine with a super quick 4.33 time. Cooks will help Jimmy Graham and other Saints receivers get open because he will be such a deep threat for quarterback Drew Brees next season. Second-round pick Stanley JeanBaptiste is a big cornerback who is a converted wide receiver. He has only played cornerback for two years, so he is going to get better in Rob Ryan’s defense and will have time to ease into the scheme with all the other players the Saints have in the secondary. New Orleans’ other draft picks— Khairi Fortt, Vinnie Sunseri, Ronald Powell and Tavon Rooks—might only contribute on special teams next season, but they have the potential to be more influential to the team in their second years. I really like the Sunseri pick, even though he tore his ACL last season. Sunseri is an overachiever who always

seems to be around the ball. Overall, I think the Saints added two players who will contribute right away and some pieces that could be big down the road—another nice draft from Sean Payton and Mickey Loomis. Three players from Mississippi universities got drafted close together in the third round, all to teams where they could play right away. Mississippi State guard Gabe Jackson (81st) went to the Oakland Raiders, Southern Miss defensive tackle Khyri Thornton (85th) went to the Green Bay Packers and Ole Miss wide receiver Donte Moncrief (90th) went to the Indianapolis Colts. The St. Louis Rams selected Michael Sam in the seventh and final round of the draft. Sam will have a hard time making it on the Rams team, for purely football-related reasons. The Rams already have a stacked defensive line, so Sam will have a hard time securing a spot on that roster. Some Mississippi players that went undrafted did sign as undrafted free agents. Jackson State saw defensive tackle Rob Smith sign with the Oakland Raiders and Qua Cox with the Colts. Mississippi State had safety Nickoe Whitley sign with the Cleveland Browns and Denico Autry with the Packers. Belhaven offensive tackle Matt Hall signed with the Minnesota Vikings. Ole Miss saw three players sign: offensive tackle Pierce Burton to the Vikings, linebacker Emmanuel McCray to the Rams and running back Jeff Scott to the Cincinnati Bengals.

Follow Bryan Flynn at, @jfpsports and at




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