The Jackson Free Press thanks all sponsors, auction donors, food vendors, local media, volunteers and other friends who supported the 7th Annual JFP Chick Ball and Chick-a-Boom! Aaron Phillips of Aaron Phillips Photography, Abbott Jewelry by Hilda Abbott, Ableson Enterprise/Pam Johnson, Aisha Williams, Aladdin Mediterranean Grill, Alecia Edney, Alexis Goodman, Amanda Ramsey, Amanda Wells, Andrea Thomas, Andy Culpepper, Angela Grayson, Angelio S. Hughes/Mary Kay Cosmetics, Ann & George Schimmel, Ann Blackwell/Nina, Jane Love, Anthony DiFatta, April S. Watson, Ayana Smothers-Cole, Ayla Mitchell, B. Liles Studio, Back to Nature, BankPlus, Beagle Bagel , BearCreek Herbals by Leslie Puckett, Bebe Case, Ben Cloyd, Beth Kander, Black Diamond Tattoos/Jason Thomas of the Ink Spot, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Body Anew Medical, Break Neck Designs by Paul Buford, Brenda Burks, Brent’s Drugs, Briana Robinson, Brianna White, Broadmeadow United Methodist Church, Brooke Kelly, Brown’s Fine Art, Butch Harms and the Madison United Methodist Church, Butterfly Yoga, Cake Pop Cuties by Angela Grayson, Calico Panache, Callie Daniels, Carter Jewelers, Cathy Crosby, Catoria Mozee, Celita Davis, Celita’s Sweet Stuff Sinsational, Charity Anderson, Chausey Wade, Chris Myers, Christine Whitton of Prestige Auctions, Christy Dawson , circa. Urban Artisan Living, Classy Tips, Coffee Roastery, Cool Al’s, Country Fisherman Catering, Craig Noone of Parlor Market, Craig Robinson of Olympus Fitness/Anytime Fitness I-55, Crystal Effler, Custom Optical, daniel johnson, Davetta Lee, Demeatrice Sherman, Denise Pullens, Deirdre Danahar, Diana Howell, Diandra Hosey, Donna Barksdale, Dorsey Carson (Candidate for Miss. State Rep. House District 64), Dorian Prigden, Dorothy Triplett, Dustin Cardon, Eddie Outlaw of the William Wallace Salon, Elaina Jackson, Elizabeth Hall , EMK Designs by Emily Kamber, Empowerment Resource Center, Enrika Williams, Erica Lee, Erin Pridgen, Eta Epilson Gamma Sorority, Eta Iota Nu Fraternity Inc., Eternal Body Art, Fair Trade Green/Karen Parker, Fairview Inn, Fatsumo Sushi, Fay Schievelbein, Fondren Nails, Fratesi’s, Frock Fashions, Friday Forum, Gabie Brown, Gaylen Regan, George Miles Jr., Glasshouse by Elizabeth Robinson and Kay Holloway, Glen Stripling, Gloss salon, Greater Jackson Business, Gus McCoy, H.C. Porter Gallery, Hal & Mal’s, Hattie Griffin, Heavenly Design by Roz Roy, Heroes and Dreams, Hey, Cupcake!, Hickory Pit, Ivy and Devine Culinary Group, Jackie Tatum, Jackie Winter, Jackson Zoo, James Anderson the Scarvin Artist, Jan Mattiace, Jay Pearson (Mississippi School of Protocol and Etiquette), Jayda Lee, Jeff Sanders, Jennifer Bradley, Jessica Davenport, Jill Conner Browne, JoAnne Hartley, Joe T’s Wine & Spirits, Joe Williams Photography, Jonnett Johnson, Jordan Lashley, Joyflow Yoga, Julie Skipper, Kali Horner of A Man’s Hands massage therapy, Karla Elmore Vazquez, Kat and Mouse Designs by Katherine Mitchell, Katie Cassady, Katie McClendon, Katie Stafford, Katrina Byrd, Katrina Gibbs, Kats Wine and Spirits, Kamikaze, Keeshea Pratt, Kimberly Griffin, Kira Cummings, Kohl’s Department Store in Flowood, Koinonia, KOSMOS, Lacey McLaughlin, Lambfish Art Co. by Joey Young, Laqueta Taylor, LaShanda Phillips, LaShundra McQuitter, Latasha Willis, LaToya Miller, Lazy Magnolia Brewing Company, Lemuria Books, Lesley Range-Stanton, Leslie Aldridge, Lil McKH Jewelry, Lipstick Lounge, Lisa Hollenstein, Lisa Palmer, Lisa Parenteau, Lisa Pyron of Eternal Body Art, LiveRightNow/Terry Sullivan, Lizzie and Emily (daughters of Marley Li of Fondren Nails), One Blu Wall (Christina Cannon and Howard Barron), Lumpkin’s Barbeque, Mahgsh Nayah, Maison Weiss, Mangia Bene Inc. Restaurant Management Group, Mary Ann Galle, Mary Ann Wells, Mary Blessey, Matt Heindl, McDade’s in Fondren, McGraw Gotta Go Inc., Megan Stewart, Melanie McHenry, Meredith Sullivan, Meryl Dakin, Michael Donovan, Michele Austin, Michele Campbell, Mike and Mateo Jacome, Milestone Christian Bookstore in Pearl, Mississippi Craft Center, Mississippi Museum of Art, Molecule Salon, MPB, N.U.T.S./Good Samaritan, Nadine Moise, Natalie Long and Clinton Kirby, Natalie Maynor, Neola Young, Nice Glass by Lizz, Nicole Wyatt, Noel Didla, Nola Gibson, Ole Tavern, Olga’s Find Dining, Page 27/Jontea Luckett, Pam Confer and Jazz Beautiful, Pam Johnson/Abelson Enterprise LLC, Patti Henson, Patty Peck Honda, Pearl River Glass Studio, Performance Weight Loss and Media Spa, Petra Café, Pizza Shack, Plato’s Closet/Michael Donovan, Poet of Truth, Prissy Katz Boutique/Vantashi Wilks, Pure Barre, Quirky Finch by Savannah Perry, Rachel Bush, Rachel Jarman, Rainbow Co-op Grocery, Rebecca Allison, Renee Gallard, David Waugh, Renee Shakespeare, Rita Wray, Robert Day, Ron Blaylock, Blaylock Fine Art, Ronni Mott, Rosemary Maxey, Russell’s Executive Hair and Cosmetics, Sadaaf Mamoon, Sandra Benic, Sassy Cakes by Tonya Rivers, Scott Albert Johnson, Sgt. Reginald Cooper and the Byram Police Department, Sherry Bayer/Mississippi Opera, Shut Up and Write!, Singing River Trio featuring Laurel Isbister, Valley Gordon and Melody Moody, Smith Robertson Museum, Sneaky Beans, Social Butterfly, Southern Beverage, Sportique, Stella Jewelry by Caroline Crawford, Stephanie Ivy, Steve Price, Studio to Concrete/Andy Hilton, Sue Gillespie and WICKED, Sujan and Sarah Ghimire of Salsa Mississippi, Talamieka Brice/Brice Media, Tamatha Byars, Tangle Boutique and Salon, Tara Blumenthal, The Center for Violence Prevention staff, The entire Hal and Mal’s staff, The Green Room, The Shoe Bar @ Pieces, Time to Move, TJ Harvey, Tom Head, Tonja Murphy, Tony Davenport, Tony Parkinson, Tracy Brewster, Troy Pike, Vantashi Wilks, Village Beads, W. Kessler LTD/The Best of Broadway, Wade Overstreet,
July 13 - 19, 2011
WAPT, Warren Bowen, WC McClendon, Wesley Brisendine of Mr. Rooter, Whitfield-Smith Piano Studio, Wicked/Sue Gillespie, William Wallace Salon, Wingstop on State St and WLBT .
Did we miss anyone? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
July 13 - 19, 2011
9 N O . 44
contents THOMAS BECK
6 Lake Unveiled John McGowan reveals his new lake, and its costs.
Illustration by Kristin Brenemen
THIS ISSUE: ............. Editor’s Note
COURTESY OF THE FAIRVIEW INN
wendell watts Jackson Police Department’s Precinct 4 Commander Wendell Watts’ uncle, Wayne Black, told him that he could expect one of two things to happen when he began his law enforcement career. “He said I would either love the career and it would be all I wanted to do, or I would hate it and quit but respect those who did the job,” Watts says. After more than 20 years on the job, the former is where Watts finds himself today. The commander has spent almost all of those 20 years with the Jackson Police Department. He has held the position of commander of Precinct 4 less than a year. As of 2008, Precinct 4 contained 1,176 businesses in the area. It is bordered to the south by Fortification Street and in the north by County Line Road. The precinct stretches east to the Pearl River and west by the railroad tracks on West Street. “I am happy with the results we are seeing so far,” he says. “There were some real problems in the department before I arrived. With the support of the mayor and the chief, we are making real progress. “ Community policing—a system that includes cooperation between citizens and private business to assist police—is an important component of Watts’ plan to make Precinct 4 the safest in the city. “I was us-
ing community policing early in my career before it became a popular term. We earn the trust of the citizens and educate them on the assistance we need,” he says. Each month at the Precinct 4 Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), Watts gives updates on the department’s activities and crime reports. Watts was drawn to JPD because of the crime and blight he saw as he drove through the city after graduating from Hinds Community College. “I realized when I drove through neighborhoods with boarded up windows and burglar bars that those are the people I want to protect—the people who cannot just sell their homes to leave the crime that has surrounded them,” he says. People in the precinct know Watts for giving his cellular phone number out regularly to citizens. “I want people to call me if there is an issue,” he says. “It doesn’t matter the time of the day. If their issue is crime related or officer related, I want to know about it so I can try to fix it.” Watts is married with three children. When his 12- and 14-hour days allow personal time, he can still be found with a gun; however, the guns in his spare time are loaded with Nerf bullets and the targets are his teenage son and friends. —Langston Moore
21 Come Relax If your wedding is making you the Bride of Frankenstein, nomiSpa will bring back your smile. DAPHNE NABORS
4 ................... Slowpoke 6 .......................... Talks 12 ................... Editorial 12 .................... Stiggers 13 .................. Opinion 24 ............... Diversions 28 ....................... Books 29 .............. JFP Events 31 ....................... Music 32 ......... Music Listings 36 ............... Body/Soul 38 ......................... Food 40 ............ Fly Shopping 41 ................. Astrology 42 .....Girl About Town
What exactly is corporate news doing when it lays off people one day and advertises for more the next?
24 Powering Pop Paul Collins helped invent the genre of power pop. Hear him this week at Ole Tavern on George Street.
Lacey McLaughlin News editor and award-winning reporter Lacey McLaughlin is a Florida native who enjoys riding her bike around Jackson. She is always on the hunt for news tips. Email Lacey@jacksonfreepress. com or call 601-362-6121 x. 22. She co-wrote the cover story.
Adam Lynch Award-winning senior reporter Adam Lynch is a Winona native and graduate of Jackson State. He and his family live in North Jackson. E-mail tips to adam@ jacksonfreepress.com, or call him at 601-362-6121, ext. 13. He co-wrote the cover story.
Larry Morrisey Larry Morrisey is the director of grants programs for the Mississippi Arts Commission. He also serves as one of the hosts for “Mississippi Arts Hour,” the agency’s arts interview radio show on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. He wrote a music feature.
ShaWanda Jacome Assistant to the editor ShaWanda Jacome is a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend and a Christ-follower. She is learning to “be still and to let God be God” (Psalm 46:10). She wrote the Body and Soul feature.
Marika Cackett Marika Cackett is the public relations manager for the Jackson Convention and Visitors Bureau. A Washington, D.C. native, she passes her free time chasing her German shepherd puppy, Atlas, and enjoying craft beer. She wrote a music feature.
Meredith W. Sullivan Former New Yorker Meredith W. Sullivan is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology. She dreams about where to travel next. She lives in Fondren with her husband and Diggy dog. She compiled the FLY page.
Jessie Crow Former editorial intern Jesse Crow, a Pensacola, Fla., native, will be a senior at Millsaps College. She enjoys playing with puppies, summer camp and going on long drives in her station wagon named Herman. She wrote the Hitched piece.
July 13 - 19, 2011
Advertising director Kimberly Griffin is a Jackson native who likes yoga, supporting locally owned businesses and traveling. In her spare time, she plots how she can become Michelle Obama’s water holder.
by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief
Women: Grab the Wheel
e’re over capacity.” I looked at the JFP staffer who told me this last Saturday night just as we were getting ready to auction off the “Men of Character at the 7th annual Chick Ball at Hal & Mal’s. I blinked, confused. We’ve hosted some huge parties since we started the paper, but I’ve never had a venue manager decide that the event was so packed that no one else could come in. I pushed through the crowd and saw several people outside in the heat, smiling and patient as they waited to get into this benefit for the Center for Violence Prevention. I smiled and shrugged a bit. We all knew it was pretty special to have so many men and women of all races and backgrounds packed into an event created to combat domestic abuse. We started the Chick Ball seven years ago to try to get people to engage in this issue and, boy, were they engaging Saturday night—from the silent auction to the line dancing to the photo booth to nibbling the chick-shaped cake pops. We also started the Chick Ball to celebrate women’s voices—and to help them find it. The message is: We are smart, loving, compassionate. We deserve to be treated well and taken seriously. You could see that pride on the faces of women, young and old, that night. Since my column last week talking about my family’s domestic abuse and my own sexual assault as a teenager, men and women have sent me messages of solidarity or just walked up and hugged me. One young woman was crying as she introduced herself to me. Many of them have said they felt alone, that they didn’t think people understood, that they want to get more involved in this strong community of women (and the fabulous men who love us) that we are all building in Jackson. And we’ve had men express that they, too, haven’t had a voice for addressing these issues and thanked us for not making this effort antimen; why it would be is beyond me, but still. When I returned to work Monday, I was still basking in the glow of the Chick Ball. Then I read Lacey McLaughlin’s report on the two Democratic front-runners (page 14), and my heart sank as I read this line: “[T]hey both support a ‘personhood’ initiative on the state’s Nov. 8 ballot that would define human life in the state’s Constitution as beginning at conception.” Here we go again. Yet more candidates in Mississippi are throwing women under the campaign bus. Look, I respect people who have a moral issue with abortion. I’ve had intense (and respectful) conversations with intelligent people who do not believe that women should be able to choose whether or not to have a child. Intelligent people try to find common ground, agreeing to disagree on the stickiest part, but joining together to improve the conditions surrounding it: like working to reduce poverty, sexual assault, incest, promiscuity, while trying to increase sex education, access to birth control, adoption options, opportunities for girls and women. We know we need to help
girls self-esteem so they will say no to unprotected sex and yes to a powerful, affirming way of life that does not involve premature pregnancy and, too often, children growing up unwanted, unsupported and in poverty. We need to teach boys (and men) restraint and how to be respectful of women, including ones who haven’t learned to respect themselves. What I cannot deal with is male politicians using our bodies to try to get elected: bandying about facile anti-abortion slogans while barely mentioning all the challenges that women face in our city, state and nation. I have talked to people pushing the “personhood” initiative, and I have asked how we can help get children out of poverty and ensure that they get better educations to break the cycle. I have gotten blank stares in return. As Mississippians, we need to get smarter about being used politically by candidates using empty slogans to try to win over the same pool of voters as those on the radical right. And those of us who are women must loudly demand that we not be used to score cheap political points in such an insulting way. If male candidates want to talk about our abortion rights—which as state officials, they have little control over—we must command that they give at least equal time to all the other issues that make our lives difficult: from poverty to health care to the abysmal domesticabuse laws in our state (which some male legislators have helped marginally improve of late). New studies about the economic recovery are showing that men, and mostly white men, are pulling out of the slump, who are getting new jobs—leaving women behind. Meantime, women are voters, too, you know. And many of us have so few options on the ballot who seem to care about and address
our needs during a campaign* that we don’t know who to vote for—and parties wonder why they are losing loyalty. You can’t thumb your nose at our most basic rights, while ignoring our most daunting challenges, and expect us to race to the polls on your behalf. We fully know you have some strategist telling you that the only way to win in Mississippi is by trying to out-conservative the other guy. But how are you fellas going to even know who might vote for you if you put your energies into building a progressive Mississippi where women are truly respected and valued? Meantime, we have a city and state where so few women bother to run for public office (probably fearing that a strategist will advise them to go after each other on abortion: “she had one; no, she had one”). And let’s just be blunt: We need women in public office and not just the Palins and Bachmanns and Lydia Chassaniols who parrot backward, archaic ideas that please the kind of regressive ideas we need to leave in the 20th century. I don’t have much hope that any political party in Mississippi is going to embrace smart, intelligent women for office, but chicks are going to have to step up and demand to be noticed. And women must be prepared to lose (think Patricia Ice running for the Ward 1 council seat, bless her heart). Each time they lose, they will learn something they can use next time or teach to a younger woman. We must stop giving up our power and assuming that we’re stuck forever with male (or female) candidates who are willing to drive the bus right over us and our rights. It’s time we drive the damn bus ourselves, ladies. Who’s game? * Dorsey Carson, candidate for House District 64, was a JFP Chick Ball sponsor and attended with his wife. He also shopped the silent auction.
Art Vendor Fee: $50 (2 passes) • Cooking Team: $125 (4 Passes) • Cooking Categories: Ribs, Chicken, and Burgers. All food will be provided with the exception of hamburger buns. Deadline for entry July 15, 4:00pm
news, culture & irreverence
Thursday, July 7 Byram residents discuss a smoking ban at a public hearing. â€Ś Mississippi tops the national obesity list for the seventh year in a row, with 30 percent of adults in the state considered obese. Friday, July 8 Lawmakers in multiple states propose creation of â€œCayleeâ€™s Lawâ€? in response to mass disapproval of the Casey Anthony verdict. The new law would make it a felony for parents to not report a missing child within 48 hours. â€Ś The space shuttle Atlantis takes off for what will be its final mission at the end of NASAâ€™s shuttle program. Saturday, July 9 The 9th Annual Mississippi Black Rodeo and parade takes place in downtown Jackson. â€Ś An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.1 hits Japanâ€™s northeastern coast, which is still recovering from extensive damage caused by the May 11 9.0 earthquake and resulting nuclear crisis. Sunday, July 10 Mississippi educators release a new history curriculum for eighth-grade students with an increased focus on the early days of Americaâ€™s founding. â€Ś President Obama says that a federal budget deal needs to be agreed on in 10 days to meet an August 2 deadline to raise the nationâ€™s debt ceiling.
July 13 - 19, 2011
Monday, July 11 Officials in Rankin County install solar-powered LED street lights on Hugh Howard Boulevard to explore low-cost, environmentally friendly alternative-lighting solutions. â€Ś A study based on data from Emory University shows a strong correlation between HIV and poverty, and indicates that the highest concentrations of both are found primarily in southern states.
Tuesday, July 12 Jackson City Council members reelect Frank Bluntson to serve as a president for the third year. â€Ś Sherwood Schwartz, writer and creator of â€œGilliganâ€™s Islandâ€? and â€œThe Brady Bunch,â€? dies at age 94.
Mississippi has had only two black U.S. senators, both during the Reconstruction era of the 1870s. No black has won statewide office since Reconstruction ended.
McGowan Reveals New Lake Specifics His statement came in response to a few moments of apparent confusion on the part of the Levee Board over when and how much of a tax levy the board would have to vote for in August to pay for the new lake project, which it has officially embraced as an alternative to the U.S. Corps of Engineeringâ€™s plan to build more levees along the Pearl River. Businessman Socrates Garrett asked A new lake could invigoratee downtown development ... if it his fellow board memever happens. bers about a potential district expansion, ackson oilman John McGowan said which would put more taxpayers in the LeMonday that his latest lake plan will cost vee Boardâ€™s footprint. â€œIt will have an impact about $150 million and require the use on what weâ€™re charging,â€? he said. of eminent domain to â€œcondemnâ€? some Garrett added: â€œItâ€™s such a heavy deciproperty into a â€œpublic project.â€? sion. Some documentation prior to the (AuAt the monthly meeting of the Rankin- gust) meeting would be helpful.â€? Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage ConMayor Harvey Johnson Jr., who was trol District, or Levee Board, McGowan told chairing the meeting, said that the board anthe members that the lake plan would cost the ticipates the expansion of the district in 2012. taxpayers about $150 million, all told. The Leland Speed said that the board should figure newest plan is essentially the bottom half of out what it was going to do first and then fighis earlier and rejected Two Lakes concept. ure out how to fund it later.
Wednesday, July 6 Freedom Rider Thomas M. Armstrong begins a statewide book tour with journalist Natalie Bell to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Rides. â€Ś A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco orders the U.S. government to end enforcement of the â€œdonâ€™t ask, donâ€™t tellâ€? policy and allow openly gay soldiers in the military.
Robert Amos wants your vote for Hinds County District 3 supervisor. p 10
by Donna Ladd
The board asked McGowan, seated in the audience, to give them a sense of how much the one-lake idea was likely to cost. McGowan stood up, listed off potential expendituresâ€”a dam for $35 million, about $6 million in utility location, the need to buy and improve all the land, about $100 millionâ€”and concluded it would be about $150 million. Johnson responded that the board would need to look closer at financial information after a meeting this Thursday with the Corps in Vicksburg. The board approved a resolution to communicate to the Corps that it is ready to move ahead with study of the foundationâ€™s plan. In an interview in his office right after the meeting, McGowan and several associates said they hope the Corps will indicate this week that the process could move ahead. They also revealed a map of the project, which the Jackson Free Press has been requesting for weeks, to help explain their newest plan to mitigate flooding along the Pearl River, as well as create attractive development property along the east side of Jackson and the west side of Rankin County starting just above Lakeland Drive and extending south of downtown. McGowan says his earlier Two Lakes, which would have started at the reservoir and created miles of lakefront property for development, would have provided a much higher level of flood protection than the more standard levee-expansion plan that the Corps preferred MCGOWAN see page 7
â€œI have no problem doing whatever you want to do, but donâ€™t tell me we are waiting to the last minute to do something when thatâ€™s not the case,â€? â€”Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. speaking to City Council President Frank Bluntson about his decision pull the vote from the councilâ€™s agenda to restructure the cityâ€™s bond debt.
Folks coming back to Jackson after years in less hospitable climes say they donâ€™t recognize their old stomping grounds. In their honor, here whatâ€™s in and whatâ€™s out in Mississippiâ€™s capital city these days.
Subway Lounge Arena Retail Edwards Hotel Office Depot Exploding pipes Potholes Wired CafĂŠ Jubilee JAM! Civil Rights Museum (for now, anyway) Ugly parking lot James O. Eastland U.S. District Courthouse
Bodega Capitol Green Two-waying Capitol Street King Edward Hotel Barefield Workplace Solutions New sewer system Potholes Food Trucks Downtown at Dusk Smith Robertson Museum The Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner and Roy K. Moore Federal Building
news, culture & irreverence
MCGOWAN from page 6
John McGowan is promising to stop flooding, beautify Jackson and be more environmentally friendly.
in addition to many miles of prime lakefront real estate for development. The Two Lakes plan, though, would have flooded Mayes Lake, destroyed numerous wetlands and promised to be tied up in environmental lawsuits for years, should the Levee Board have embraced it as a locally preferred flooding solution. The Corps also warned the plan was likely prohibitively expensive, citing much higher costs than the amount McGowan promised he could do it for. McGowan’s newest lake plan essentially cuts off the top half of the Two Lakes plan and leaves areas such as Mayes Lake and its surrounding park land in place, although it would flood parts of the golf course at LeFleur’s Bluff, as well as relocate some hiking trails, he said. It would also require reworking current levees into what he called “super levees,” meaning they would be widened so that they would be “wide enough to develop on,” McGowan explained. “We would have to backfill those levees—widen the width—but we don’t take away any of the height of the levees,” spokesman Dallas Quinn said. The men said they see no compromise solution between their new lake plan and the new levees that the Corps endorsed last year. They also confirmed earlier statements that the one-lake solution would not interfere with any later efforts to add back the second lake north of Lakeland to re-create the original and controversial Two Lakes plan, should that idea regain momentum at some point. The new one-lake plan, as McGowan envisions it, would provide some additional river access to homeowners with property that would have benefitted from the earlier plan, however, including some McGowan family members and business associates, they explained. McGowan pointed on the map to small river inlets, or “slews” as he called them,
that would receive heavier water flow under the current plan, thus creating places near homes and property for boat ramps and direct access to the river. Thus, the men said, homeowners in the area would see additional benefit from the new plan. McGowan brought up potential conflictof-interest questions involving his team and family, which this paper reported about a year ago. He said he owns a large tract of property, called the Fairgrounds Development Company, LLC, near the state fairgrounds. He has put that land in trust, he says, and promises to donate it to the Levee Board, should they move ahead with his plan. His family does not own other property in the new one-lake footprint, he said, although he conceded that his office building at 1837 Crane Ridge Drive would enjoy a higher water level along its back deck than it currently does. He added, however, that he does not believe that his business associates at McGowan Working Partners should have to give away their property in the new footprint. “My partners in the business own little pieces of land here and there, up and down through there. We said that’s enough. I’ll give them the finest piece of land in the whole project; that’s all I have. … That’s where we draw the line.” The Levee Board would have to use its eminent-domain powers for his lake plan, he said. “More than likely, you’re going to condemn this plan and make it a public project. When you do, everything that anybody that my group owns is going to go with it. What you pay them and how you treat them relevant to anyone else in the project is up to you. It’s our duty to tell you everything we have,” he said. The Levee Board then could choose to lease or sell the acquired property to developers, he added. “If the board does decide to condemn to acquire this property, then the property owners will all be compensated at an equal and fair value,” Quinn said, adding that the Levee Board would have to ensure that no property owner held out for “an unreasonable amount of money.” McGowan said some property owners would resist the plan. “I imagine as far as getting all this land, you’re going to have 5 percent who don’t want to do anything,” he said. At the Corps meeting Thursday, which at least one member of the Levee Board will attend, along with representatives from the Pearl River Vision Foundation (the new name of the Two Lakes Foundation, started by McGowan and others), the Corps is expected to discuss a conflict-of-interest policy it asked the Levee Board to write. McGowan said today that he had provided a list of any potential conflicts of him, his family and his partners to the Corps. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
We learned late in the press cycle that a local political campaign was tossing copies of the Jackson Free Press into people’s yards in select neighborhoods to make sure they had seen a cover story we had published. The JFP is never distributed in this manner, and we regret that we didn’t communicate this effectively with the campaign. While it’s our ongoing policy to offer extra papers to the subjects of our feature stories and cover stories, we will limit the number available to candidates and campaigns in the future. We apologize for any inconvenience. —Todd Stauffer
Mississippi Center August 6th at 9 a.m.
Benefitting The Center for Violence Prevention
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by Lacey McLaughlin
Council Holds Off on Debt Vote
A Vision For The People Of Hinds County
Intensify voter registration efforts
Jackson City Council President Frank Bluntson pulled a vote to restructure the city’s bond debt from the agenda this week, angering Mayor Harvey Johnson.
Enhance the integrity of the vote and voting machines Utilize smart court technology Network/Listen, open door, monthly newsletter with answers to frequently asked questions Improve juror reporting procedures Vikki Dillon-Mumford (D) Candidate for Hinds County Circuit Clerk Ed Johnson , Campaign Manager 601-940-5250 | P.O. Box 9401 | Jackson, MS 39286 www.VikkiMumford.com PA I D A DV E RT I S E M E N T
601-362-6383 Mary Zimmerman email@example.com
July13 - 19, 2011t
Wedding Fashions for the Fashionable Man
You’ve received an invitation to an upcoming wedding. So… what to wear? Some things you’ll want to take into consideration: How formal is the invitation? Day or evening? What time of year? Location: in a church or at the beach? Here are some guidelines to help guys: -It’s better to err on the side of overdressed. If the invitation is formal or says “black tie” then a black tuxedo or evening jacket and matching trousers are customary for men. If the invitation says “black tie optional” men can wear a tux, or go a bit more casual with a dark suit, white shirt and conservative tie. (Don’t forget that a tuxedo is not to be worn before 5 o’clock in the evening.)
-If it’s a summer wedding, a light colored suit, especially a linen or seersucker, is always appropriate, even in the evening. Of course you can’t go wrong by pairing a bright, colorful tie with a classic navy or charcoal suit. -A beach wedding is usually a more casual affair than a traditional church wedding. A white, cotton, button-down shirt with dress slacks is usually a safe choice. If you’d feel more comfortable in a suit, go with a linen or light colored suit & no tie. Still in doubt? Ask the bride or groom. They should have a clear sense of what they’re hoping to see from their guests.
We welcome your questions and feedback on our Facebook page, @RogueMensStore on Twitter, or at therogue.com
he Jackson City Council’s decision to put off a vote to restructure the city’s bond debt and save approximately $6 million over the next two years resulted in friction between city leaders this week. Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. and his financial team attempted to brief the council yesterday during a work session about restructuring the debt, but Council President Frank Bluntson said he felt uncomfortable with the mayor briefing the council less than 24 hours before it would vote on the item. He also expressed concern that Ward 7 Councilwoman Margaret Barrett-Simon, Ward 3 Councilman Kenneth Stokes and Ward 1 Council Quentin Whitwell were absent from the work session. “I didn’t know anything about this until Friday. Why do we have to wait to the last minute to have these briefings?” Bluntson asked the mayor. Johnson appeared to lose patience with Bluntson for repeatedly stating that the mayor had waited until the last minute to tell the council about the deal. “I have no problem pulling this,” Johnson said. “I have no problem doing whatever you want to do, but don’t tell me we are waiting to the last minute to do something when that’s not the case.” In August 2010, Johnson told city council members that his administration had hired financial advisor Porter Bingham of the Malachi Group to help prevent the city’s projected deficit of $48.5 million by 2015. “One of the recommendations was to restructure existing bond debt in order to realize some savings that would provide some relief while our local economy was able to recover,” Johnson told council members in August. In August 2010, the council voted in favor of a restructuring plan, but it must vote this month on a final resolution to authorize the plan to meet a Sept. 1 payment deadline. The city must go through several procedures including receiving a bond rating and reselling existing bonds by the time the payment is due, Johnson said. Last month, Johnson placed the item on the agenda but said he had to remove it because the city did not have a certification to
show that it had enough money to cover the debt service. “Now that certificate has been made and we feel comfortable moving forward with it,” Johnson said yesterday. The Jackson Free Press reported in August that the city would begin incurring $1 million in annual fees for the debt service starting in 2015. The mayor, however, has not made the terms of the final refinancing agreement public. Johnson supplied the council with documents regarding the final plan this morning. Council members rescheduled the briefing for 4 p.m. July 18. After the briefing, they will vote on the final resolution. Ward 2 Councilman Chokwe Lumumba, who voted against the restructuring plan in August, said he did not want to rush his decision on such a complicated and important vote. “I think it make sense but I’m not sure it’s the best thing,” He said. “… I don’t think a vote like this you can bring on a Friday and vote on a Tuesday. This was discussed conceptually early on … but the specifics of this proposal have not been discussed.” JPD to Purchase Surveillance Trailer After a lengthy debate today, council members approved the Jackson Police Department’s purchase of a SkyCop Cadet Mobile Surveillance Trailer for $54,400. JPD Deputy Chief Eric Walls told the city council that the trailer can monitor public areas such as streets and parking lots without police being present. He said the trailer is ideal for capturing violators of the law during large events such as parades. The trailer has a telescopic pole with a camera that can elevate up to 21 feet. “You can determine, within a perimeter, where shots are being fired from and use the camera and deploy officers there,” Walls said. Lumumba said that while he supported technology to assist JPD, he worried about the technology being abused. He cited the civilrights era as a time when police abused power. “I have trust in the people running this department that they wouldn’t do that,” Lumumba said. “But I do believe that this is one of the reasons why we should have a civilian review board.” Comment at www.jfp.ms.
by Valerie Wells
Gannettâ€™s Cut and Paste
The Clarion-Ledger juggles jobs and explanations.
than 700 people, some Gannett newspapers immediately started posting help-wanted ads. Dunten, 53, suspects Gannett wants workers in their early 20s who would get lower salaries, fewer benefits and would have less institutional knowledge. Dunten considered The Clarion-Ledger jobs anyway. To get her unemployment benefits, she has to send out at least three resumes a week. Before she made that effort, though, she wanted to find out what was really happening in Jackson. She wrote Ben Kelly, news editor, to ask about the copy-editing jobs. In an email, he told her the copy editor jobs are only temporary positions through September 2012, when The Clarion-Ledger pages will get created in Nashville. â€œThat date could be delayed, based on the progress at the hubs,â€? Kelly wrote. â€œGannett is encouraging its local designers to apply
for one of the hub positions as their newspaper gets close to the transition date and has said previously it will give priority to current Gannett employees in the hiring process.â€? Dunten heard that before from other Gannett editors in other states. While she was still a Gannett employee, she sent feelers out to other Gannett papers. Some were honest with her. They told her that they couldnâ€™t really hire any new staffers, but they were allowed to advertise and recruit. That way if a budget line suddenly allowed it, they told Dunten, they could hire someone immediately. Dunten worried The Clarion-Ledger might be playing the same game with peopleâ€™s emotions and futures. She wrote Grace Simmons, metro editor at The Clarion-Ledger, with this concern. â€œThese listings are all active,â€? Simmons replied. â€œWe are accepting resumes. Go ahead and send me your resume.â€? Hurst said in her email that an important part of the Nashville Design Studio and the Gannett design hub project is to preserve â€œthe local flavor and identityâ€? of The Clarion-Ledger and its sister publications. â€œThe creation of Design Studios is to support better hyperlocal coverage. Our intent is to free local journalists to do great storytelling and enhance their efforts with great design at the studios.â€? Hurst sent the email over the weekend after the JFP contacted Gannett headquarters Friday. Hurst did not respond to requests for follow-up questions for clarification. Dunten decided not to apply for The Clarion-Ledger jobs after all. She is not sure she wants to work for Gannett again. As this issue of the JFP was going to press, news broke that Ronnie Agnew, executive editor of The Clarion-Ledger, was leaving to become the director of Mississippi Public Broadcasting. He starts his new job Aug. 5. It is unclear if Gannett plans to advertise for his replacement. Craig Dubow, Gannett CEO, and other top corporate officials will pay a visit to The Clarion-Ledger Aug. 17 for a town hall meeting with a question-and-answer session. Disclaimer: The writer is friends with Sharon Dunten and is a former Gannett employee. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
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21 from her copy-editing position at the Richmond, Ind., Palladium-Item, applied for any of the Nashville Design Studio jobs and the ones in Lousiville, Ky.; Asbury Park, N.J.; and Des Moines, Iowa. She said Gannett sent emails encouraging her to apply for these. When Dunten learned about the Jackson jobs, she was suspicious. She found it insulting that just days after Gannett laid off more ADAM LYNCH
fter The Clarion-Ledger laid off four journalists June 21, ads appeared on the national job site JournalismJobs. com seeking four new journalists at Gannett Co.â€™s Jackson newspaper. People who got laid off in June included the presentation editor, the Metromix editor, a sports copy editor and an online journalist. The four newsroom jobs The Clarion-Ledger says it wants to fill include a state government reporter, a City Hall reporter and two page designers/copy editors. Publisher Leslie Hurst defended the newsroom juggling in an email. â€œThe skill sets for the positions that were eliminated are different than the skills that are needed for the current openings,â€? she wrote to the Jackson Free Press. The two reporter jobs call for three years experience, while the two copy editor jobs are open to recent college graduates. Hurst did not explain what experience the four laid-off journalists had. She said the two reporter positions came open when The Clarion-Ledgerâ€™s state government reporter and city government reporter left. All page designâ€”the major component of a Gannett copy editorâ€™s jobâ€”for The Clarion-Ledger is moving out of state to Nashville, Tenn. Gannett is establishing several regional hubs across the nation to take the burden of â€œcopy editingâ€? away from local newspapers. â€œYes, the design and editing of wire copyâ€”not local copyâ€”will be done at the Nashville Design Studio,â€? Hurst insisted in her email. The Hattiesburg American, which laid off all its page designers/copy editors in 2009, sends all its pagesâ€”local copy, tooâ€”to The Clarion-Ledger for layout. Copy editors throughout Gannett Co. believed the corporation would offer them the new jobs at the design hubs. It would mean moving to a different city. â€œWe hope that most jobs at the studios will be filled by employees now at local sites,â€? Hurst said in her email. But at least one former Gannett copy editor says that the company held that carrot out to employees with no intention of hiring most of them. Sharon Dunten, who was laid off June
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obert Amos doesnâ€™t give up easily. The 37-year-old lost the Jackson mayoral race in 2009, but he is determined to replace Hinds County District 3 Supervisor Peggy Calhoun in the November election. Amos is the director of the pharmacy technician program at the Jackson Enterprise Center. He has owned two businesses, L & R Enterprises, which specialized in background checks for businesses, and a carpeting and flooring service. He has also worked as a school-attendance officer, a student-finance officer at a vocational college and an adjunct professor at Jackson State University. Why do you want to run for supervisor? I am a native of Jackson. Each day I wake up and see that our city doesnâ€™t have to be this wayâ€”our county doesnâ€™t have to be this way. My background and credentials will bring diversity to the board of supervisors. I can help contribute to solving the daily problems we encounter. Iâ€™m needed.
If you are elected, what specifically can you do to bring more jobs to Hinds County? When you create jobs, the first thing you have to do is bring in businesses in the area. To do that, you have to uplift the community, because no business wants to go where they canâ€™t succeed. What can you do differently than the incumbent Peggy Calhoun? I donâ€™t see any visual progress in the last
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by Lacey McLaughlin
Eye on the Prize
What did you learn from your run for mayor? I learned that you had to build relationships with people. I learned to stick to my beliefs. Iâ€™ve always been a Democrat, but I tried to use the strategy of running as an independent to get to the final ballot. I wonâ€™t say if that was good or bad. I also learned to include every segment of the city.
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12 years. The board likes to gloat about the new Byram/Clinton development that is years down the line. We are talking about today. There is no visual economic growth in District 3, which consists of all of Jackson. We have to attract businesses in District 3, and with my track record, I have created relationships with various businesses in the tricountry area. With an expected budget shortfall for next yearâ€”already the county has had to furlough employeesâ€”how would you prioritize the budget? We have to generate revenue. We know weâ€™re not expected to get additional dollars from taxes. My campaign and I have been talking about a commuter tax for county employees who live outside Hinds County. At a time when many employees have had to work second jobs to make up for furlough days, do you think thatâ€™s fair? Thatâ€™s another conversation in itselfâ€”about furloughs. It never should have happened in the first place. If (the board) had come with up a savings plan, they never would have had to lay off county employees. â€Ś What I donâ€™t think is fair is that individuals take county money to other counties and build up those communities. What do you think the county should fully fund? We canâ€™t jeopardize public safety and infrastructure and, certainly, county employees should never be furloughed again. Public safety has to be funded. We have to improve our roads and bridges, and county employees need a workable wage. If they donâ€™t have a workable wage, they canâ€™t spend money in the county. What would you do to address recent accusations of abuse at the HenleyYoung Youth Detention Center? I think an investigation needs to be done.
Robert Amos says his economicdevelopment experience will help him win the Hinds County Supervisors District 3 race.
Is the answer to send teens to Henley-Young, or are there alternatives? My role as a supervisor may be limited, but my role as a human being has always been to advocate education and dropout prevention. â€Ś Idle time is whatâ€™s happeningâ€”there is nothing for them to do. Thatâ€™s not the only reason people commit crime, but if you can engage them all day, they donâ€™t have time to do anything illegal. â€Ś There are some great counselors at Henley-Young but obviously someone has missed the boatâ€”something has gone wrong. This month the Hinds County Economic Development Authority will lead a three-day process to brand Hinds County. What do you think about spending taxpayer money on a branding campaign? Before this community can brand itself, we have to change. People have to get workable wages. That also means education priorities have to change, and crime has to significantly drop. â€Ś If you do those three things, you rebrand yourself. More politics at www.jfp.ms/politics.
by Adam Lynch
Hinds County Justice Court candidate Micah Dutro said a bar-approved attorney should occupy county judicial seats.
plea bargains, usually accompanied by a prosecutor’s sentencing recommendation. Justice court in Hinds County is typically a small affair. A typical justice-court case would be a driving-while-intoxicated charge brought by
Hinds County law enforcement somewhere outside the city’s municipal boundary. Dutro said the intimate make-up of the court evolved from Mississippi’s history as a rural state. “When justice courts were created in the 1800s, it made sense,” Dutro said. “There weren’t very many attorneys in Mississippi, and a lot of the attorneys that were here were concentrated in just a few places. So in an era of few cars, you could wait months and months before someone was even available to hear your case.” Organizers sought to create a court where people could settle minor disputes without advanced legal education and permitting requirements that, at that time, were hard to find in Mississippi. Dutro faces incumbent Democrat Donald Palmer, who has occupied the seat for four years, after serving as a court clerk. Palmer, 43, said his experience on the court makes him the best candidate to oversee the types of cases that frequent the court. “The justice court is set up as a court for the people, and I bring 14 years of justice court experience: 10 years as a deputy clerk and four as a judge,” Palmer said. “That experience counts. I have no idea if my opponent has even practiced in
justice court. I know I’ve never seen him in my court. There are some good lawyers, but there are some good non-attorney judges as well.” Dutro said the county should move toward installing more attorneys as judges, considering the prevalence of licensed attorneys in justice courts outside Hinds County. “There are lots of people who say not-sonice things about Jackson and Hinds County, but one of the solutions to that problem is to make sure that people take our government institutions seriously,” Dutro said. “We need to restore faith in our local institutions, to make sure that we’re following the law and that it applies to the outcomes of our court system. Following the law and making common sense decisions aren’t mutually exclusive goals.” Palmer remained confident that he runs the court fairly and sensibly, and asked anybody looking for proof of its standard of professionalism to visit his court on Wednesdays, at either the 9:30 a.m. or the 1:30 p.m. session, to see for themselves. “My opponents can’t offer that,” Palmer said. The salaried justice-court judge position pays almost $56,000. The Democratic primary is Aug. 2 More politics at www.jfp.ms/politics.
PA I D A DV E RT I S E M E N T
ou’ve seen the commercials: Jared Fogle holding up his pants that once fit his 425-pound body. Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, top NBA draft pick Blake Griffin, NASCAR driver Carl Edwards, and Philadelphia slugger Ryan Howard all showing off their respective skills and their favorite footlongs. Subway restaurants have become synonymous with showcasing both newsmakers and healthy, fast food. But, back in 1965, the goal of Subway wasn’t to fuel the nation, but to put its owner through Subway medical school. Fred DeLuca, in an attempt to pay for medical school, opened a sub sandwich shop with a loan of $1000. The first store opened in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in August of 1965. DeLuca’s aspirations shifted from the medical profession to becoming a fully fledged restaurateur. The first goal was to have 32 stores open in 10 years. DeLuca learned the basics of running a successful business, along with offering a high-quality product and providing excellent customer service. What has catapulted Subway into the mainstream is not only the success of their restaurants, but their Green Business practices have earned them international recognition as well. Subway’s first Eco-Store, located in Kissimmee, Florida, received the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. What makes an Eco-Store special? High-efficiency HVAC systems, remote condensing units for refrigeration, low-flow water fixtures, and buildings and décor made from sustainable sources, just to name a few. Even existing stores are going “green”. Since August 2006, Subway restaurants with low-flow sink aerators have saved 41 million gallons of water annually. Only 100% hormonefree milk is served at Subway. Even the napkins at Subway go green. The Subway napkin saves approximately 60,500,000 gallons of water and an additional 147,000 trees annually because they are made from 100% recycled fiber. Subway is not only good for the planet, but good for your waistline as well. As evidenced by Jared Fogle, who lost 245 pounds by eating nothing but Subway sandwiches for almost a year and created a diet program all his own. Subway strives to help consumers to live healthy by providing healthy, tasty food, as well as information and choices necessary to make informed meal decisions.
ttorney Micah Dutro says the District 1 Justice Court seat needs a judge with a law degree. “Our justice courts should have judges who have a formal legal education and experience. I’m sure they’re good people. They make good decisions sometimes, but if you look at what is going on in surrounding counties, almost all their justice-court judges are lawyers,” Dutro said. Dutro, 29, works at Dobbs and Dutro in Jackson and is running for the District 1 Justice Court seat. He said that without a legal background, a justice-court judge is prone to render decisions based on personal considerations instead of the rule of law, which sets the decisions up for easy legal challenges. “We get a lot of appeals out of justice court because of some decisions that are made there, and those appeals go to the county court, which as you can imagine, is already busy,” Dutro said. “The efficiency problem in justice court comes in where you have decisions that are being appealed that might not have to be appealed if the law were being applied correctly.” Justice court mainly consists of bench trials with no juries, where a judge is the finder of fact and rules on questions of law. Like any court, some cases are resolved through
COURTESY MICAH DUTRO
Should Justice Court Judges Be Lawyers?
opining, grousing & pontificating
Time to Decide
e all love to complain about national politics. Regardless of which side of the aisle you land on—or even if you don’t identify with one of the major parties—you have plenty to complain about. Government’s too big, or government is too lax. Everyone’s taxes are too high, or tax policy is unfair. Money isn’t being spent wisely, or lawmakers are bought and paid for. Sometimes, we manage to combine our complaints into one seriously cynical attitude: “They’re all the same; throw ’em all out.” The one complaint we hear most often these days is this: Washington lawmakers are out of touch with the people they purport to represent. So how did we get here? As the cartoon character Pogo so aptly put it: “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” Every year, voters have opportunities to make their voices heard. People carve the path to a national spotlight staring with local elections—from city council members and aldermen, to county supervisors and mayors, and in statewide elections from auditor to governor, we the people make it clear how we want our country to run. It’s easy to forget that even in politics, thinking local first makes ripples all the up the political food chain to the White House. It’s easy, too, to get hooked by wedge issues that have little to do with the quality of our individual lives. When our money is squeezed and patience is thin, it’s easy to find lots of things to vote against, ignoring the fact that voting for something is infinitely more powerful. We also live in a time when information is at our fingertips—mountains of it all the time. We can find two pundits and 22 bloggers with similar opinions with one click of a mouse. What often escapes us, however, are fact-based opinions from those we don’t agree with. Progressive can strengthen and refine their opinions by understanding the viewpoints and arguments of moderates and conservatives, and vice versa. A democracy functions best when voters are informed about the issues and the candidates. That takes both a desire to understand and a willingness to put in the work to understand. It doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers, and it doesn’t happen with adherence to bumper-sticker, knee-jerk ideologies. On Aug. 2, Mississippians have an opportunity to narrow the candidates for their parties. Not the least of the positions they will decide are the Republican and Democratic gubernatorial candidates. It’s a big, wide-open field for both parties; it would be a easy to assume we know who will take the top spots, but we have the power, collectively, to change those assumptions if we want to. Nothing in politics is a sure thing. History has provided numerous examples of winners who lost unexpectedly. While we’re not endorsing any candidates, yet, we urge all Mississippians to get informed, and then get out to vote.
Poor Folks’ Last Supper
July 13 - 19, 20110
ongressman Smokey “Robinson” McBride: “We’re gathered here today to celebrate the grand opening of Clubb Chicken Wing’s Great Wall of Artistic Expression. I know many of you think I should be in Washington, D.C., working on the economic fate of our country. I feel your anxiety about what could happen on Aug. 2. I hear your questions like: Will my Social Security Check be in the mail or is our government headed toward epic fail? Yes, a lot of people’s lives are on the line. And we’re running out of time. I, however, want to share a special moment with the ghetto science community. “The Ghetto Science Community Bureau of Parks, Museums and Cultural Affairs decided to have a ‘Great Wall of Artistic Expression’ built within the Clubb Chicken Wing Multi-Purpose Complex. This wall will feature various murals from reputable artists from the Ghetto Science Community. Therefore, it is befitting to kick off this grand opening by unveiling another poignant and controversial artistic expression from our dear Brother Sylvester, the Christmas Missing Toe artist. “The mural you see documents the current events happening today. “The first part of the mural shows the president plus members of the Congress and Senate climbing a wall to reach the ceiling with a dangling trillion-dollar bill. Brother Sylvester calls this ‘Climbing the Walls to Raise the Debt Ceiling.’ The second part of the mural titled ‘Poor Folk’s Last Supper at Chef Fat Meat’s Buffet’ speaks for itself. “God, please bless America.”
The Rose of South Jackson Why me? Why did I have to bear the brunt of racial hatred? (“Mixed in Mississippi,” by Rose Pendleton, June 29-July 5, 2011). The simple answer is that you were selected out of millions of little wiggly things to fertilize an egg. But more importantly, after that fact you were unprepared to confront the realities of living in the southern U.S., where mythologies die hard, if at all. One of those myths is race. We humans are the only creatures to have a brain accommodating vivid imaginations, and since different groups of us look differently and have developed different cultures, some have come to believe they are separate and better than others. And there are aliens about, and gods living on Mount Olympus. When a young girl is confronted with rejection by some of her peers and others, she tends to begin to face the possibility that she might actually be inferior, and become angry at those responsible for her characteristics as well as those who treat her with disdain. It is so hard to develop an attitude of superiority to those people and ignore their stupidity. You might want to keep in mind that all of we humans originally came from the same place: East Africa, though some tribes migrated through the levant to Europe and Asia over 50,000 years ago, and their “skin tone” and other characteristics began to change from dark brown to different shades based on their new environments and isolation from one another. Those coming from Africa only within the past few hundred years to northern latitudes still retain their darker pigments. So “race” is an unscientific myth held by many of all “skin tones.” Being “mixed” only has significance in the mind of the beholder. You went through a long period of being hurt by others, which is unfortunate and due to your youth and vulnerability. It appears that the conclusion of your writing you seem to have adjusted to some extent and found friends who are real people. it’s all about character. You are the only Rose you will ever be, so be a proud Rose and productive in your life, foregoing the weak, the mean and the dumb. You have good genes. Pat Gregory, Jackson
About the Chick Ball Abbott Jewelry JFP, we were honored to be included in your Chick Ball again this year. Crew, we are blessed to have you and all your hard work to take care of families that can’t take care of themselves. You are God Sent! Really, don’t kid yourself or think you are not making a difference. Even one family is saved is one that would not have been saved if not for you! Period! Just the facts. Pam Johnson It was just amazing! I can’t say enough about what an uplifting and joyous event that was last night. Email letters to firstname.lastname@example.org, fax to 601-510-9019, or mail to P.O. Box 5067, Jackson, Miss., 39296. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. Or write a 300-600-word “Your Turn” and send it by email, fax or mail above with a daytime phone number. All submissions are subject to fact checks.
One Simple Act EDITORIAL Managing Editor Ronni Mott News Editor Lacey McLaughlin Assistant Editor Valerie Wells Senior Reporter Adam Lynch Events Editor Latasha Willis Music Listings Editor Natalie Long Assistant to the Editor ShaWanda Jacome Editorial Assistant LaShanda Phillips Stylist Meredith Sullivan Writers Quita Bride, Marika Cackett, Scott Dennis, Bryan Flynn, Brandi Herrera, Garrad Lee, Natalie Long, Larry Morrisey, Robin Oâ€™Bryant,Tom Ramsey, Briana Robinson, Doctor S, Julie Skipper, Ken Stiggers Editorial Interns Charity Anderson, Mary Blessey, Dustin Cardon, Meryl Dakin, Callie Daniels, Alexis L. Goodman, Jason Huang, Brooke Kelly, Jordan Lashley, Sadaaf Mamoon, Briana Robinson, Amelia Senter, Elizabeth Waibel, Brianna White Consulting Editor JoAnne Prichard Morris
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Jackson Free Press P.O. Box 5067, Jackson, Miss., 39296 Editorial (601) 362-6121 Sales (601) 362-6121 Fax (601) 510-9019 Daily updates at jacksonfreepress.com The Jackson Free Press is the cityâ€™s award-winning, locally owned newsweekly, with 17,000 copies distributed in and around the Jackson metropolitan area every Wednesday. The Jackson Free Press is free for pick-up by readers; one copy per person, please. Firstclass subscriptions are available for $100 per year for postage and handling. The Jackson Free Press welcomes thoughtful opinions. The views expressed in this newspaper are not necessarily those of the publisher or management of Jackson Free Press Inc. ÂŠ Copyright 2011 Jackson Free Press Inc. All Rights Reserved
ven a simple act can bring about great personal change. Three years ago, I began a lifechanging experience that started with a plane bound for Jackson. At the time, I was planning a month-long vacation to visit my sister in Clinton. We had both grown up in upstate New York, and she had married and moved to Mississippi three years prior to my visit. My plans to visit her turned into an experience that I will not soon forget. I boarded the plane bound for Jackson as a 19-year-old young woman traveling alone with only a suitcase full of clothes and a taste for adventure. Little did I know I was changing the direction of my life with such an innocuous act. My plans for a month-long vacation would result in me not returning home. Up to that point, my perspective was limited to what I had always known as a northern girl from upstate New York. The views that I held on life were quickly challenged as I traveled toward the other end of the country. From the start, huge differences between northern and southern lifestyles became evident. My first challenge was the significant difference in the climate. The moment I left the air-conditioned airplane cabin and stepped onto the tarmac, I was forced to stop and take a momentary pause to allow my body to adjust to breathing in the intense heat. I was overwhelmed by the thick consistency of the air and shocked by the humidity. The people welcomed me with open arms. They have treated me lovingly and surrounded me with southern hospitality. I had never had experienced that before. Although their warmth was pleasant, I was initially uncomfortable with it. Growing up in New York taught me to question friendly peopleâ€™s intentions. I had to adjust my thinking and realize that if a stranger talked to me they didnâ€™t necessarily plan to harm me. My first encounter with this occurred on my flight from Charlotte, N.C., to Jackson. A woman started talking to me, and it wasnâ€™t long before everyone within hearing distance joined in. They knew I was not from the South because of my accent and proceeded to give me as much advice as possible about southern living. I found it strange at first, but I chose to push aside my awkward feelings and make an effort to engage in conversation. I realized thatâ€”unlike in my New York upbringingâ€” talking freely to people you donâ€™t know is part of southern culture. After I got past the initial discomfort, I grew to love the outgoing nature that many southerners have.
Learning this side of southern culture has changed my perspective on my social life. When I visit home, I find people unfriendly and rude as they walk past me without a smile or a nod; however, three years ago this was the norm for me. I would have behaved in a similar way had I not spent time here. Not long after my arrival in Clinton, I discovered sweet tea. It was unlike any beverage I had ever had before and, after my first taste, I was hooked. Many other southern delicacies grabbed my attention. Grits, cornbread made in a skillet and crawfish are all on the list. I found endless opportunities for entertainment in the city of Jackson. The city is full of hidden treasures that not many would expect it to have. I found hidden restaurants and cafĂŠs where I discovered I hadnâ€™t truly lived until I tried them. Jackson has events that bring people from around the world. Having a world that was new to me waiting around every corner was exciting and appealing to my adventurous, young mind. When my monthâ€™s visit had passed, I found myself not wanting to leave. My round-trip plane ticket was forgotten, and I embraced the southern lifestyle without a second thought. I bought a car equipped with air-conditioning, rented an apartment, began working for a local veterinarian and started attending college to pursue a veterinary technology degree at Hinds Community College. My first semester gave me the opportunity to become an honorâ€™s scholar and a member of Phi Theta Kappa. The series of positive events that followed confirmed that I had landed in the very place I was meant to be. If you had asked me on that plane if I would ever choose to stay in Mississippi longer than a month, I would had answered with a confident â€œNo.â€? But a simple act can completely change your direction in life. My flight to Mississippi is a perfect example: What I thought would be only a vacation helped me to learn and grow. I have had the chance to meet people of many nationalities and from many walks of life, and to try new things. It broadened my view of people and life, and I have gained experiences and new values. I do not doubt for a moment that although things failed to go as I had originally planned, I was indeed destined to board a plane bound for Jackson. Charity Anderson interned at the Jackson Free Press while pursuing a veterinary technology degree.
Having a world that was new to me waiting around every corner was exciting and appealing.
CORRECTION: In â€œLines of Silverâ€? (Vol. 9, Issue 43), we incorrectly attributed â€œMississippiâ€™s Celebration of its Grammy Legacy.â€? The correct sponsor was the Mississippi Development Authority. The Jackson Free Press apologizes for the error.
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