Stories for April 2007


Monday, April 30

Deadly Pet Food Filler Open Secret in China

It seems that all that "free trade"—and loss of American jobs and trading economic strength in our communities for sweat shops—is starting to come home to roost by killing our pets. As the JFP has been saying for years, folks: Think Global, Shop Local. And that doesn't mean chasing our manufacturers to other countries, Barbour, Clinton, et al. What goes around does indeed come around.

Mojave3 members form new band The Loose Salute

Fans of Fleetwood Mac, The Byrds, The Mamas and the Papas, Wilco and Midlake tune in to debut album Tuned To Love. The Loose Salute came to life a couple years ago when Mojave3's Ian McCutcheon (drums & vocals) and Alan Forrester (piano & organ) were in the studio recording the band's third album Excuses for Travelers. One day at the Fortress Rehearsal Studios' café, McCutcheon overheard Lisa Billson (vocals) belting out Bob Dylan's "Sad-eyed Lady of the Lowlands," while she cooked at the studio café.

Sunday, April 29

The Abstinence-Only Delusion

The New York Times is calling for Congress to either drop ill-fated abstinence-only education funding, or expand it to include safe-sex messages, which studies are showing do actually help lower teen pregnancy:

Bush Administration Should Come Clean

In the wake of the George Tenet explosion in Washington, The New York Times editorial board today calls for answers—honest ones—from the people who took the U.S. into a bad war with little regard for the truth, getting it or giving it:

Saturday, April 28

"Wake Up Jackson" Campaign

Go here and help us let our local government know that no one is above the law.

Where Will Willis Go In Draft?

The NFL will hold its 2007 draft on Saturday at high noon in New York (11 a.m. in Jacktown). ESPN and the NFL Network will televise the proceedings. Ole Miss All-Everything linebacker Patrick Willis figures to be the top Mississippian taken in the draft. The Sports Illustrated and Associated Press mock drafts have Willis going 12th to the Buffalo Bills. But don't be surprised if he goes a spot or two earlier. Yes, he's that good. Too bad the Dem Dang Saints were so good last year that they probably won't get a shot at Willis. That's the price of success.

Back-to-Back Titles For Blazers

Belhaven won its second consecutive GCAC baseball championship with a 4-0 victory over Spring Hill on Friday night. The Blazers will host the NAIA District 13 Tournament at Smith-Wills Stadium on May 8-11.

Friday, April 27

The Folks Are Coming

A JFP reader commented on our Web site Tuesday that it is a very different world in which citizens can watch live feeds of a trial on WAPT's Web site and then click to and comment on it, ask questions and have them immediately addressed by the lawyers obsessed with the site. It is, indeed.

Thursday, April 26

Ellis Earns Honor

Golden State's Monta Ellis, an alumnus of Jackson's Lanier High, was named the NBA's Most Improved Player on Thursday.

Day 4: Not Guilty On All Counts

Mayor Frank Melton and his police bodyguards, Marcus Wright and Michael Recio, were found not guilty on all counts. When court was recessed, it exploded in applause, with members of the Melton administration and family contingent hugging and congratulating the mayor.

Day 4: Partial Verdict Not Revealed

Reporting by Brian Johnson

According to Judge Webster, the jury has reached a unanimous decision on 10 of the 11 charges; there is one charge that they can't reach a verdict on. Webster, at the behest of defense council, instructed the jury to return to deliberations to determine whether or not they feel they will be able to reach a unanimous verdict on the remaining charge. None of the verdicts were revealed and the court stands again in recess.

Day 4: The Jury Question

Reporting by Brian Johnson

Around 5:30 p.m. the jury asked a question of Judge Webster: "How long do we have to deliberate if a unanimous decision has not been reached on all charges."

AG says Barbour's Veto 'Unconstitutional'

Gov. Haley Barbour cannot legally make a line-item veto on million of dollars in spending on at-risk youth programs, Attorney General Jim Hood said today. "Barbour's misguided and illegal attempt to partially veto (appropriations bills) HB 1681 and HB 1589 are clearly unconstitutional, based upon well-settled Supreme Court decisions," Hood told reporters. "That cuts off numerous programs, from the YMCA, to the Boys and Girls Clubs and Big Brothers Big Sisters to Badges for Baseball. Anybody familiar with these programs will say that it's cheaper to spend money on children at a young age than spend $30,000 a year to warehouse them as criminals after they become adults."

JFP to Discuss Melton Verdict on WLEZ Friday

Be sure to tune in at noon Friday to Radio JFP on WLEZ (103.7 FM) to hear Todd Stauffer, Brian Johnson and Donna Ladd discuss the Melton verdict and other news. If you can't get near a radio, the live stream is at

Donna Ladd, Cedric Willis on ACLU Town Hall Panel Today

JFP Editor Donna Ladd will address issues about the media and crime today (Thursday, April 26) at 6 p.m. at an ACLU Town Hall Meeting at the Jackson Medical Mall. She will join Cedric Willis (exonerated after 12 years in Parchman); Jim Hill student Regina Smith, Akil Bakari of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement and former JPD officer Kevin Levine. The panel and audience members will address police and civil liberties issues. Come lend your voice.

Day 4: Melton Trial Goes to Jury

Reporting by Brian Johnson

Today's proceedings in the trial of Mayor Frank Melton and police officers Marcus Wright and Michael Recio began at 8:30 a.m., with the judge and attorneys for both side discussing instructions that would be given to the jury. At 10:00 a.m., the jury was called in and the judge read the instructions for nearly 45 minutes.

Not an Easy Subject

Her mother and three sisters died of breast cancer, yet Nancy Lewis of Canton refused for years to have a mammogram. "I really wouldn't want to know," said Lewis, when asked why she avoided the exam.

Day 4: Dr. Ellen Melton in Front Row

Photo: Dr. Ellen Melton leaves the courtroom after closing arguments today with city employee Stephanie Parker-Weaver (left). Melton, the wife of the mayor, lives in Texas. Photo by Jaro Vacek. Click to enlarge.

Wednesday, April 25

"Umbrella Man" — Scott Albert Johnson

Scott Albert Johnson has been a fixture in the Jackson music scene since he decided to come back home a few years ago after living all over the U.S. The harmonica virtuoso has played around town with local artists from Sherman Lee Dillon to Chris Gill to the legendary Dorothy Moore. It is hard to believe, then, that "Umbrella Man," Johnson's new album set to release May 1, is his debut. On it, Johnson displays the confidence of a seasoned musician and employs the help of Jackie Bell, Skeet Myers and drummer Johnny Vidacovich.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

College baseball, Millsaps in SCAC Tournament (TBA, Georgetown, Texas, 1240 AM): The Majors roll into town riding a 10-game winning streak. CORRECTION: The Majors will begin tourney play on Friday against Austin at 4:30 p.m.

[Greenstyle] Sympathetic Activism

Mary Jane Butters, owner of Mary Janes Farm Inc., recently visited Jackson to promote her line of organic bedding at Belk. Butters' company produces organic food, organic textiles, books, magazines, and American hand-crafted goods, and educates aspiring organic farmers. Still a farmgirl in her habits, Butters requested an interview at 7 a.m. Pacific Standard Time. Mercifully, that's 9 a.m. in Mississippi.

[Greenstyle] How to Clean Your Organic Sheets (or Anything Else)

Quick: Dump conventional laundry detergents and additives that contain synthetic petrochemicals that both pollute the environment and leave potentially harmful residues on your skin. Start here.

[Greenstyle] It's Only Natural

When the label says "natural," I assume it's better and safer than other products in the same category. But is it?

‘Major Extortion'?

Photos by Brian Johnson & Darren Schwindaman

Council members Marshand Crisler, Ben Allen and Margaret Barrett-Simon told the Jackson Free Press Monday that city Chief of Staff Marcus Ward threatened Jackson School Board member Jonathan Larkin's re-appointment to the board if he does not approve a bid for a contract by a company supported by the mayor's office. According to the three council members and sources connected to JPS, Ward told Larkin that the mayor's office would not submit Larkin's name to the Council for re-confirmation if he did not approve a contract bid by Jackson business Integrated Management Services PA, for work related to the $150 million bond issue—a bid that is reportedly much higher than the next lowest bid.

Gas Ain't Forever

It's clear from the parking lots around the state capitol that the legislative session is a busy time for the building. During the session, those parking lots, empty for most of the year, suddenly fill with a wide assortment of vehicles from all across the state, be it a sleek BMW from an upscale suburb or a beat down 1980s Pontiac that the visiting legislator just hasn't got the heart to junk.

Taking a Stand

Roberts Broadcasting Companies recently announced that it is adopting a new policy designed to prohibit language "that promotes and/or exploits any messages considered derogatory, sexually explicit or violent, effective immediately."

Friends in the Trenches

An appellate panel denied breach-of-contract claims by retired Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics agent Robert Pierce against The Clarion-Ledger last week.

Tearin' Up Virden: The Melton Trial

It began while they were watching the newest version of "Walking Tall" starring the Rock, witness Lawrence Cooper Jr. said during the first day of testimony in the felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton and police detectives Michael Recio and Marcus Wright. Cooper, who testified that he was a frequent visitor to Evans Welch's rental home at 1305 Ridgeway Street, said that the two men were watching television the night of Aug. 26, 2006, when they heard a voice outside call "the folks is coming," with "folks" referring to police.

[Mott] What Would Jesus Drive?

My sister Lisa accused me of being a communist. She was kidding, I hope. Lisa is a die-hard Republican by her own admission; I'm fairly certain that she prays for my lefty-liberal soul. We have some "colorful" conversations because we disagree on many issues, including global warming. While she admits there might be a problem, Lisa believes that most of the science is "junk," and she simply doesn't think that humans have the power to threaten the well-being of the entire earth.

[Stiggers] Imus Be Dreaming

Readin' Rain-Bro: "Will bicycles become the transportation alternative for the financially challenged individual who cannot afford to pay $3 for a gallon of gas? I might not have the answer to this question, but I do know critical thoughts regarding certain events will become hot topics this summer."

Day 3: Prosecution Rests; Final Arguments Thursday

Reporting by Brian Johnson

The prosecution decided not to bring a rebuttal witness, instead electing to submit another police report instead. (Details of police report to come.) The prosecution rested. The judge announced that final arguments will be at 10 a.m. Thursday. At 8:30 a.m., the judge and attorneys for both sides will meet to discuss final details of the judge's jury instructions.

[Collier] Connect the Dots

The folks at WJTV must have been particularly bored April 16. In what was presumably an attempt to localize the Virginia Tech tragedy, WJTV reported live from the Jackson State campus and paralleled the 1970 school shooting that occurred at JSU to the recent Virginia Tech massacre. The two have nothing in common, other than the fact that they both occurred on college campuses, and bullets were involved. Other than that, the WJTV correspondents played a masterful game—or not—of connect-the-dots.

Day 3: Stokes Testifies; Defense Rests

Reporting by Brian Johnson

The defense elected to call only one more witness this afternoon—Councilman Kenneth Stokes. Under direct questioning by Melton attorney Dale Danks, Stokes said he had lodged complaints about drugs in the Ridgeway Street area. "We were asking for help, from the mayor's office especially," Stokes said. He said he had discussed the duplex at 1305 Ridgeway Street "a couple times" before Aug. 26, 2006. Stokes said he first discussed it with Melton on April 4, 2006, as well as Michael Recio and Marcus Wright. He said that it was his opinion that it was a "crackhouse."

Red And Ready To Rumble: The JFP Interview With Charlie Ross

Photos by Roy Adkins

Sen. Charlie Ross, R-Brandon, is confident this year. The 50-year-old senator is running for lieutenant governor against State Auditor Phil Bryant in the primaries, and possibly against Democratic Rep. Jamie Franks of Hernando in the November general elections.

Toni Cooley

Toni Cooley was born in Chicopee, Mass., but was raised as an Air Force brat in Massachusetts, North Dakota, New Jersey, Mississippi and New Jersey again.

Day 3: Police Officers Testify

Two police officers testified for the defense this morning. First was Sharon Gray, a 27 year veteran of the force who has spent the last five years as a records custodian. Second was Brendan Bell, a narcotics detective. At around 12: 30 p.m., the judge recessed the trial, which is set to resume at 2 p.m.

Day 3: Jury May Have Case by Noon Today

<i>Watch for updates.</i>

Word from the courthouse is that the judge may send the case to the jury by noon today. So far, defense attorneys have put no witnesses in front of the jury and may not be able to.

Day 3: Defense Down to 2 Witnesses, If That

Reporting by Brian Johnson

After examining their witness list, based on the judge's limitations on discussion of past drug activity on Ridgeway Street, defense attorneys' acceptable list of witnesses has dropped to only two witnesses—drug users Tammy Callahan and another female—and the jury may never hear from them. The judge has said that testimony would be proper only outside the presence of the jury to ensure that their testimony is relevant to the case before he approves allowing the jury to hear their testimony.

Day 3: No to ‘Confidential Informant'; Only Pot Found

Reporting by Brian Johnson

This morning, without the jury present, attorneys for the Melton defense team called a "confidential informant," who used the name Russell Smith (not his real name). Under direct examination, he said that he had worked as a confidential informant for the FBI, DEA, ATF and MBN. He also said he was from Virden Addition and was very familiar with 1305 Ridgeway. According to his testimony, he served as a confidental informant to Det. Marcus Wright, one of the defendants, from May to August 2005.

Day 3: Judge Limits Defense Options

<i>More details to come.</i>

As attorneys for Mayor Frank Melton prepared to mount their defense today, prosecutors protested to the judge that the defense had not provided adequate discovery on some of its witnesses. Judge Joe Webster ruled that all testimony about drug activity must be limited to 1305 Ridgeway Street. He also ruled that no evidence of drug activity before Melton became mayor on July 1, 2005, would be allowed in the trial.

Tuesday, April 24

Day 2: Prosecution Rests

The prosecution in the felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton and police detectives Michael Recio and Marcus Wright rested late Tuesday afternoon, after a multitude of witnesses described how the men had demolished the duplex on Ridgeway.

Day 2: Many Objections, Eye Witnesses at Melton Trial

After Senior Assistant District Attorney Stanley Alexander finished redirect of Lawrence Cooper Jr. in the felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton Tuesday morning, Judge Joe Webster called a brief recess. When attorneys returned, Webster lectured outside the presence of the jury. "When I rule on something, that's it," Webster warned, saying that it "got a little out of hand" during Cooper's testimony. Tuesday was marked by frequent objections.

Day 2: ‘No Drugs to Flush,' Witness Says

Lawrence Cooper Jr., who was the first witness for the prosecution in Mayor Frank Melton's felony trial, said the incident began when he heard people outside the duplex say, "The folks are coming," which is code for the police. Alexander asked him how Evans "Bubba" Welch reacted. Cooper said that Welch went to the front door and looked out.

Day 2: Welch Watching ‘Walking Tall' Before Attack

In the opening statements and first testimony in the Mississippi v. Melton et al. trial, prosecutor Stanley Alexander came out of the gate with a focus on the events of Aug. 25, 2006, when he promised to show that Frank Melton, Michael Recio and Marcus Wright are guilty of the five felony charges they face. He also mentioned that Melton was "loaded" that night. He promised to prove that Evans Welch and his friend, Lawrence Cooper Jr., were watching TV when Wright broke down the back door and Melton came to the front porch, and soon attacked the side of the house with a "long Walking Tall stick," breaking out several windows.

Day 1: JFP Blogs Figure Prominently in Voir Dire

On Monday, defense attorney Merrida Coxwell Jr. conducted voir dire for Melton. In his second question, he asked if any potential juror read or made comments on media blogs, specifically the Jackson Free Press. One prospective juror said he had read the JFP online. Coxwell asked if any had read the JFP in print, describing it as a "little magazine they have outside grocery stores." Altogether, two prospective jurors said they had read articles about the defendants in the JFP, and Webster said attorneys could question them in chambers.

Monday, April 23

Journalist David Halberstam Killed in Car Wreck

This is tragic, tragic news. May this amazing journalist and writer rest in peace.

UPDATED: Council, JPS Report Mayoral Threats

This is an updated version of this story that broke Monday on the JFP Web site.

Day 1: Melton Jury Selected; Opening Statements Begin Tuesday

This story was substantially updated at 8:30 p.m. For further updates, see the comments below or scroll down in the story.

Open Thread for Melton Trial Here

Have at it.

Meantime, read the JFP's Melton blog/archive here. And read the Sept. 1, 2006, story by Adam Lynch that revealed the Ridgeway Street demolition and led to the trial this week. See photos of the Ridgeway destruction here.

The Food Stamp Diet

For Hunger Awareness Week in Oregon, Gov. Ted Kulongowski will spend the week seeing what it is like to live off the food budget of a food stamp recipient to illustrate how important it is for Congress to not make cuts in the food stamp program. Could you do it?

Sunday, April 22

Clapping from the Grave

This is a complicated crisis, but what baffles me is that the local corporate media make so little of this. They hardly mention it, and they never suggest that Gov. Haley Barbour's program for running state government has anything to do with our decline. Or rather, they never mentioned it until recently. I know The Clarion-Ledger has already declared a victor, but wouldn't it be better to have a real debate, where the candidates truly answer?

Saturday, April 21

Could You Go Without Your Car for a Month?

My weekly sprint to WLEZ to do the radio show would need to be better planned.

Over at the Louisville Eccentric Observer, an alt-weekly in Kentucky, staff writer Stephen George is blogging about his attempts to go a month without his car in Louisville, relying on a bike and public transportation. As I read it, I started to wonder if I could get away with the same thing here in Jackson...and admit it would be extremely difficult. It's at least conceivable for folks living in the Belhaven/Fondren area -- plenty of choices by bike, bus -- and trolley! -- even if the UMC corridor is something of a drag strip (and hilly!). McDade's, Rainbow Co-Op and Walgreens are handy. Downtown meetings would be a possibility, although I'd probably encourage more folks to meet at our office or at Cups in Fondren. Sales calls, of course, would be difficult, and Office Depot runs would be up to someone else.

Updated: Jackson Wildcats: An Endangered Species

The Jackson Wildcats were supposed to play their first home game in team history on Friday night. It was canceled because the Mississippi Coliseum evicted the team. Whether they ever play in Jackson is subject to question. As Doctor S said last week, the USBL schedule is subject to change. Two of the league's teams, Boston/New Jersey and Long Island folded before the season began.

Friday, April 20

Wine Drinkers Unite

This Saturday evening will provide the connoisseur and novice alike the opportunity to strut their wine legs—both the ones that slide down the sides of the glass, giving some indication of alcohol content, and the limbs that will carry you to Highland Village Center Court and then from booth to booth.

Radio JFP 4.20.07 Podcast

On the "Radio JFP on WLEZ" program today was Dr. James Bowley, associate professor of religious studies at Millsaps College. Tomorrow at 9:00a.m. Millsaps has a seminar entitled "The Psychology of Terrorism" that includes Dr. Bowley, Dr. Stephen T. Black and Mr. Akram Al-Turk for a discussion on the history of terrorism, what makes a terrorist, and potential solutions that states can take to deal with terrorism.

Thursday, April 19

Supes Advisor Sued over Swap

On April 11, Roderick Mullice of Liberty Partners sued Hinds County Board of Supervisors adviser and Malachi Group CEO Porter Bingham for contempt in Fulton County, Ga. Mullice sued Bingham after he failed to appear for two post-judgment hearings over an unpaid contract.

BREAKING: Supreme Court Calls for Danks Hearing

The Mississippi Supreme Court issued an order (PDF, 48 KB) dated April 16 remanding Judge Tomie Green's call for sanctions against former Mayor Dale Danks to Hinds County Circuit Court.

The 100: A hiphop tutorial for the uninformed

From folks, a little food for thought. please read and go find these songs!

We at surely do not condone the at times lewd, sexist and even racist verbiage rap artists sometimes use to express themselves artistically. At the same time, WE WILL NOT tolerate sweeping indictments of Hip-Hop culture as the root of greater society's ills. Next time some quick-on-the-trigger hater claims Hip-Hop is the cause of our moral demise, ask them if they've bothered to listen to any of THESE joints. We kept the suggested tunes up to date while throwing in some notable classic joints for good measure. In fact, print this out and tell the hot air blower to consider it homework.

ARTICLE: The VTI Tragedy: Distinguishing Mental Illness from Violence

According to NAMI Medical Director Dr. Ken Duckworth, having a mental illness does not automatically make you a violent person. Read the release from NAMI below.

Wednesday, April 18

More Ledger Illiteracy

OK, folks, check out The Clarion-Ledger's editorial about Melton today—for the way it is written. Here are some money quotes:

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

Pro baseball, Mississippi at West Tenn (7 p.m., Jackson, Tenn., 930 AM): The M-Braves continue their series in Lesser Jackson.

[Green Day] Saving the Planet the Easy Way

"The American public has always been slow about accepting challenges and making change, even if they're told negative things will happen otherwise," Bob Kochtitzky says. "So what I decided to do is to find small things they could do."

[Green Day] Save The Earth, Save Yourself

Spring always forces me to appreciate the Earth. Today, cumulus clouds sprinkle a sea-blue sky. The Dogwood trees are showing off their white flowers and exposing the greenest of leaves. The Azaleas are a perfect shade of fuchsia. Hummingbirds flutter about singing their sacred song of spring, and bees are buzzing in chorus. The sun is a golden ball of blessed regality perched at its highest peak, sweet-talking us out of our homes to bask in the glory of nature.

[Green Day] Turning Green From Fear

I have one recurring nightmare that makes the film "Soylent Green" look like a kid's show: I'm in a nursing home, and the care-givers hate me. They torture me with petty acts of meanness. The only thing that will guard me against this scenario becoming a reality is to recycle.

A Drunken Rampage?

A decision by Judge Joe Webster to exclude Aug. 26 events from the Upper Level may keep out intriguing testimony described in a prosecution motion filed April 12, though Webster left open the possibility that such evidence might be introduced in rebuttal.

[Green Day] Start With The Home

Some of the homes in Jackson have seen better days. An unoccupied home near Farish Street may have portions of its roof rotted away and the front eave hanging down. Another home, off Terry Road near Highway 80, unquestionably the abode of somebody who had considerable money during the population explosion of the 1950s, doesn't show its former glory. Today, the home has a sinking front porch and blasted windows.

[Music] The Piano Man Plays Guitar

When you think of George Winston, you probably think of his career as a solo pianist and the countless albums he's released over a 25-year period with the Windham Hill Label. But that's not all Winston can do. On April 28th, he'll be performing a benefit for the Heritage House, a newly opened cultural learning center for teens in Hazlehurst. And he'll be playing guitar, not piano. He'll be playing slack-key guitar, to be exact—a fingerstyle solo guitar tradition, originating in 19th century Hawaii. His own label, Dancing Cat Productions, has documented and recorded many masters of this lesser-known indigenous style.

[Music] The Mystery of Robert Johnson's Legacy

Robert Johnson, known far and wide as The King of the Blues, remains the most enigmatic character in the history of the blues. Born in Hazlehurst, Miss., to a plantation worker in 1911, he took up the guitar after being taught by an older brother. At the age of 19, he was described as less than skillful with the instrument. Only a few years later, his talent had improved so greatly that he confounded those that had heard him play before. This gave rise to the famous legend that he'd sold his soul to the devil for his playing skill. Johnson died at the age of 27, amidst rumors that he'd been poisoned for having an affair with the wife of a juke-joint owner.

Comics, Black And White

The history of comic books in America is proof that you can't kill an art form. When Dr. Fredric Wertham's "Seduction of the Innocents" came out in 1958, on the eve of the Superman-dominated "golden age" of comics, many thought that comic books had been squashed forever. Wertham's book indignantly pointed out the sexual, violent and even homosexual inclinations in popular comics, resulting in strict regulation and the shriveling up of a once-lucrative industry. The moral outcry against comics destroyed the popular audience for comics so thoroughly that many doubted the art form would survive.

Judge Denies Melton Defense Motions

Friday the 13th was a dark day for Mayor Frank Melton and his two police bodyguards Michael Recio and Marcus Wright. This was their first real day in court regarding the events of Aug. 26, 2006, when Ridgeway Street residents say they saw the Mobile Command Center roll up in front of Evans "Bubba" Welch's duplex, near the corner of Mill Street. Melton was carrying a "Walking Tall" stick—a club about 4 feet long and 4 inches in diameter with one end wrapped in black electrical tape. After one of his bodyguards broke down the back door of the duplex, Melton immediately started swinging the club, breaking the windows on the front and the sides of the house. He left for medical attention after he cut his hand on one of the windows, but the group returned an hour later.

Webster: No Patience For ‘Fluff'

Retired Coahoma County Judge Joe Webster, who is presiding over Mayor Frank Melton's trial next week, is a personality with little patience for "dilly-dally," say lawyers who have worked with him.

Repugnant To The Constitution

Brian Johnson subpoena (PDF, 192 KB)


Aug. 26: Melton and his entourage, including at least one minor, destroy a home on Ridgeway Street with sledgehammers, according to witness accounts.

The Big Lie

The felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton and police detectives Michael Recio and Marcus Wright begins Monday. Although we cannot yet know what defense their lawyers will mount, it seems evident that Melton did in fact demolish the duplex on Ridgeway Street. There are multiple witnesses, and prosecutors have filed a motion suggesting that there is even videotape of the incident.

Frank's Boy

At the center of the maelstrom around Mayor Frank Melton's actions the night of Aug. 26, 2006, sits a young man named Michael Taylor. Because Taylor—already accused of a felony then at the tender age of 16—allegedly helped Melton and his bodyguards destroy the Ridgeway Street duplex, the men could face decades in prison.

Expanding Code Enforcement

Planning and development consultant Leland Speed said he wants to expand the skeleton crew of the city's code enforcement division by about seven officers. "My idea is for neighborhood associations to nominate one person from each ward, who will then work for the city in enforcing code enforcement," Speed said. "The neighborhood associations know better than anyone what's right or wrong with their neighborhoods, and this will empower them."

No More Decree

The Jackson Police and Fire departments are no longer bound by a 1974 consent decree in the promotion and hiring of employees. Last week, U.S. District Judge Henry Wingate determined that the city "has fulfilled its obligations under both decrees," which were devised to counter racial discrimination in hiring and promotions.

[Gregory] Sweet Bird Of Nokia

My office downtown is close to Smith Park. Often, during my 15 minutes of government-mandated break time in the afternoon, I walk to the park and sit on a bench to enjoy my state-sanctioned five-minute cigarette. I like Smith Park for the bossy squirrels and the large fountain. The sound of water running—besides making me want to pee—relaxes me and allows me a few minutes where the worries of the day aren't nipping at my heels.

BREAKING: Lawn Crew Owner Arrested Again

A spokesman for the Hinds County Sheriff's Department confirmed that Frederica Brunson, 23, also known as Jermaine Butler, was arrested today for possession of a stolen automobile and contempt of court. Brunson, who owns the Wood Street Lawn Service, was last arrested Dec. 4, 2005, for armed robbery of the Headliners Barbershop near Wood Street. He was also arrested for rape in 2001.

[Stiggers] When Life Gives You Lemons

Pookie Peterz: "Welcome to the Ghetto Science Economic Summit for Unemployed Folk Forced into Entrepreneurship. Tonight, Rudy McBride of the Let Me Hold Five Dollars National Bank presents the Residual Income Initiative: a new perspective into overcoming joblessness."

[Tucker] The Bigger Question

By now, everybody has heard about syndicated-radio personality Don Imus and his comments about the Rutgers University women's basketball team. While almost everyone acknowledges that Imus' comments—calling the members of the Scarlet Knights "nappy-headed hos"—were out of line, there are those who wonder, "Why the fuss now?"

Louie Miller

Mississippi Sierra Club Director Louie Miller, 50, is nothing if not a pit fighter. He might smile for his pictures, but don't be fooled. Miller can be foul-mouthed and irascible, a product of conference-room shouting matches and broken-bottle, barroom-style fights in the hallways of the Mississippi State Capitol.

Cotton District Arts Festival Saturday

Saturday, April 21, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Starkville, Miss.

• 9 a.m. -- 5K Race Results & Awards• 9:20 to 10:05 a.m. -- Jeff Cummings• 10:20 to 11 a.m. -- Starkville Jazz Alliance• 11:10 to 11:50 a.m. -- Chase McGinnis• Noon to 12:40 p.m. -- The Gurls Next Door• 1 to 1:40 p.m. -- Jubilee• 1:55 to 2:45 p.m. -- Cary Hudson• 3 to 3:50 p.m. -- Mayhem String Band• 4:10 to 5 p.m. Mayhem Breakdown

Tuesday, April 17

Clarion-Ledger Makes Absurd Error About ‘Drunk' Motion

In their belated story today about the motion filed accusing Melton being drunk the night of the Ridgeway rampage—which we reported about Friday—The Clarion-Ledger states that the motion "became public" Monday. This is either a lie, or a really dumb error. When Adam Lynch left Judge Webster's courtroom before noon Friday, he walked downstairs to the clerk's office, and there was the motion in the file. He copied it and brought it back; Brian made a PDF and put it online.

Supes Approve Garage's ‘Design Phase'

On Monday, the Hinds County Board of Supervisors voted to authorize the design development phase of a $12.97 million parking garage proposed by Supervisor Doug Anderson and designed by his former son-in-law's architectural firm, M3A Architects. Later, the supervisors unanimously voted to authorize a series of payments—including $306,562 to M3A for schematic design.

'Daily Show' Viewers More Informed than Fox, Local Viewers

Interesting piece in the New York Times (thanks, Kate!), notes that the most informed news consumers also have the highest tendency to watch fake news shows.

Monday, April 16

BREAKING: Mayor Cancels Confirmation, Outrages Council

Several members of City Council were outraged today that Mayor Frank Melton abruptly cancelled the confirmation hearing of Charles Melvin, who is Melton's choice to head up the Parks and Recreation Department. Melvin's confirmation hearing was scheduled weeks in advance, but around 11:30 a.m., Melton announced he was cancelling the hearing because Councilman Frank Bluntson was sick.

Sunday, April 15

Jackpedia Discussion

Y'all...I just finished a few hours of messing around with Jackpedia and wanted to use it as a launching point for criticism, discussion, suggestions, etc. Here' the page I just updated somewhat extensively: Restaurants and Dining. I've added links for all of the 2007 Best of Jackson recipients and I've added descriptions for all of those that had write-ups in 2007.

Evangelicals Against Global Warming and Torture

"Good theology can drive out bad theology. Good theology can lead to solutions."

Right now, I'm listening to an amazing interview with National Association of Evangelicals Vice President Richard Cizik on "Speaking of Faith" about why his views on the issue of climate change has changed so dramatically. He says that evangelicals have ignored science for too long and have to reject becoming a "wholly owned subsidiary of the GOP." This is a must-listen interview. It's breathtaking; every word out of his mouth is amazing.

Friday, April 13

Anderson Letter Implies Foundation Purge

Jackson Police Chief Shirlene Anderson wants to give the boot to all sitting members of the Jackson Police Foundation, something that foundation members say she does not have the authority to do.

The $176 Million Dollar Hymen

"WASHINGTON - Students who participated in sexual abstinence programs were just as likely to have sex a few years later as those who did not, according to a long-awaited study mandated by Congress.

Judge Denies Melton Defense Motions

At a hearing this morning on numerous pre-trial motions in the felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton and JPD officers Michael Recio and Marcus Wright, Judge Joe Webster ruled against most of the motions brought by defense attorneys.

Thursday, April 12

Motion Sickness

Attorneys for the defense filed yet more motions in the upcoming felony trial of Mayor Frank Melton and detectives Michael Recio and Marcus Wright.

JFP Editor Subpoenaed

Jackson Free Press Managing Editor Brian Johnson was subpoenaed (PDF, 192 KB) by former Mayor Dale Danks, who is an attorney for Mayor Frank Melton, to appear at an April 13 hearing before Judge Joe Webster.

Dignity-Rutgers Team on Oprah Today

Of course I have more to say, but in my busy chick world, for now I only have to say it's time. It's time to use that repressed energy to let folks know it's enough. We don't have to live in a world where pop culture defines them with degrading language. We don't have to live in a world where our sons learn to tear women down to build themselves up. We don't have to be quiet and just accept that our society is what it is, because it's not.

Wednesday, April 11

[Grayson] No Longer a Supporter

I must admit, I was a devout Melton supporter. Initially, I was drawn in by Mayor Frank Melton's ideas for this city and its inner-city youth. He mesmerized me. Every time somebody talked low of him, I defended his honor by speaking up for his character (which I used to think was great). I was not old enough to vote in the 2005 mayoral election, but I encouraged my family and friends to vote for Melton. I even drove my grandmother to the polls.

Christopher Walker Charged Again

Christopher "Smiley" Walker, once Mayor Frank Melton's star witness against Albert "Batman" Donelson, pleaded not guilty to possession of contraband in prison Monday, and will stay with his mother Lolethia Donelson if he is released from jail.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

Pro baseball, Carolina at Mississippi (7 p.m., Pearl, 930 AM): The M-Braves hope to gig the Mudcats at Trustmark Park.

Flashes Of Brilliance

Jackson's newest professional team—the Jackson Wildcats of the United States Basketball League—tips off its first season Friday, April 13, in Gary, Ind. The first home game is scheduled for April 20 against Delaware.

BREAKING: Danks Subpoenas Peterson

Former Mayor Dale Danks, who is an attorney for Mayor Frank Melton, filed a subpoena today ordering District Attorney Faye Peterson to appear before Judge Joe Webster at 9:30 a.m. on April 13.

You Did What to the Hen?

Through all the springs of my youth there was a common strain: grilling, cooking out, barbecuing. Whatever your jargon, cooking with fire evokes the coming of the vernal equinox. I don't know why, but it seems men always want to cook out.

Pour For Flavor

I'm thrilled to see the many great beers that are becoming available in Mississippi. Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat, for example, is spring in a bottle. I will warn you, though, that you may have a hard time finding it in your local stores because I have been buying all that I come across.

Make that a Biggie

If you're anything like me, during the week I just can't get it together long enough to cook a healthy meal or eat at a real restaurant. It's easy to eat healthy at home when I have time—I buy a lean cut of meat and grill it with sage leaves and lemon, pairing it with roasted potatoes with olive oil and rosemary. It's also pretty easy to choose wisely when eating at what my grandmother used to call a "sit down" restaurant, because the menus are usually varied enough to allow for healthier choices. Most restaurants will gladly substitute a salad or steamed vegetables for potatoes or rice, or prepare a meal grilled with no sauce.

Bananas and Peanuts

Buff, good-looking Rus Blackwell lay on the floor like an overturned bug, feet flailing in the air. Wild-eyed, Turner Crumbley was on his knees staring intently at Blackwell's crotch. "Push, push!" Crumbley demanded.

[Music] Southern Hip-Hop

A few years back, some friends and I were at the counter ordering subs at the Lynch Street Subway. The joke of the day was that I somehow didn't like 8ball and MJG. Overhearing the conversation, a "sandwich artist" looked up and asked, "Who doesn't like 8Ball and MJG, and which sandwich is his?" I had to quickly explain the situation or that brother was not about to let me get my steak-n-cheese. The Orange Mound, Tenn., duo have been living legends since their first commercial release, "Comin' Out Hard," in 1993.

[Music] Get Your Booty Shaking

I do so love a good, authentic funk band, and nothing gets my booty shaking faster than the sound of a sloppy New Orleans drumbeat and a Hammond B3 organ. Friday, April 13th will be a lucky day for me and other funk fans as NOLA-based Papa Grows Funk climb the stairs to take the stage at George Street Grocery.

[Music] Hell Hath No Fury

In 1993, the Virginia brothers Malice (born Gene Thornton) and Pusha-T (born Terrence Thornton) met super producer Pharrell Williams, and The Clipse was born. The rest, you could say, is history—tumultuous history. Since Clipse was born, the duo's first album was shelved, their second album went gold ("Lord Willin'," in 2002), and their third release was stalled for four years as their record company seemed to lose interest in them in favor of its pop artists.

Jackson's Eleven: The JFP's Young Influentials of 2007

On the following pages, you'll find profiles of the JFP'S 2007 11 Young Influentials. These outstanding individuals are 40 and younger, and each has significant impact on the people around them. Their energies, singly and collectively, reach beyond Jackson's city limits, and within the city, their handprints are inescapable. They are the best at what they do. Ironically, they're a lot like the characters in the film "Ocean's 11."

Lost in Translation

"He is like a prodigal son, pondering whether he should return to his native soil." So wrote now-freelance Clarion-Ledger columnist Eric Stringfellow this week in a hand-wringing column about the future of Jackson.

Mississippi Defenseless in Federal Suit

Three-year-old Olivia Y. weighed only 22 pounds—less than half what she should have weighed—when the Mississippi courts took her from her abusive mother and turned her over to the foster-care system. Her caseworker described the severely traumatized toddler as "petite" and "quiet," and failed to provide the mental and physical care she needed while moving her repeatedly—once into a home with a convicted rapist.

Enforce the Ordinance

A community rights organization is accusing the city of ignoring a city ordinance approved last year. The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, known as ACORN, devised and lobbied for the ordinance, which outlines new fines and fees against homeowners who do not register and maintain vacant property.

That Damned Docket

City Council members questioned the city's payments to contractors and temp agencies—called the "claims docket"—yet again at Tuesday's City Council meeting.

[Stiggers] Sick as a Doggie

Cootie McBride: "Greetings! I'm here to represent the members of the Ghetto Science Team's Pet Owners Consortium. My clients and I have filed a class action suit against companies who make and sell contaminated and/or poisonous pet food. I was compelled to act immediately after Sista Church Hat, owner of a dog named Alonso, said this alarming phrase to me: 'Pets have dropped dead like raining cats and dogs!'

[Kamikaze] Over My Dead Body

Wrap your brain around this one for a moment: America doesn't really know how it feels about a black man and a woman running for president.

Anna Lee Dillon

Anna Lee Dillon, 25, knows that perseverance is key to making a change. When her father, Sherman Lee Dillon, founded Jackson's Earth Day festival 15 years ago, it was a decidedly intimate affair.

New White Stripes Drops 6/19

The White Stripes announce their sixth album, Icky Thump, will be released on Third Man/Warner Bros. Records on June 19th, 2007. Icky Thump was recorded over three weeks in Nashville's Blackbird Studio and is the second longest album of The White Stripes pantheon thus far. The name Icky Thump takes its name from the northern English expression "ecky thump," which is used as an exclamation of surprise.

Melton Lawyers Attack

Prosecutors and defense lawyers filed motions (PDF, 196 KB) at an accelerating pace as Mayor Frank Melton's felony trial approached.

Tuesday, April 10

Hear Podcasts of JFP on WLEZ

Radio JFP, which airs every Friday at noon on WLEZ, 103.7 FM, is now being podcast on WLEZ's Web site. Click here to listen to last week's show, with discussions about the district attorney, the Melton administration and the "Mississippi, Believe It" campaign.

Monday, April 9

Alert the Media: Richard Barrett Digs Seale

The Clarion-Ledger continues to puzzle on their James Ford Seale coverage since they figured out that he was still alive. Yesterday, they ran a big story giving publicity to folks like white-supremacist lawyer (and New Jersey native) Richard Barrett (the Nationalist folks) who are trying to suck some attention off the notoriety of the James Ford Seale case.

BREAKING: Council Denies Chandler Confirmation

City Council voted 2-3-1 to reject Todd Chandler as chief of the Jackson Fire Department Monday afternoon at the conclusion of a contentious confirmation hearing. Chandler served more than 21 months as interim chief, and Mayor Frank Melton twice placed his confirmation on City Council's agenda and then withdrew it when it became clear the council would not confirm Chandler.

Saturday, April 7

One Night Only: Southern Fried Karaoke

Friday, April 6

Alert: Lawsuit Abuse! Lawsuit Abuse!

I hear stories like this one and I get furious at the people who refuse to understand that the most important use of lawsuits is to financially deter crap like this from happening:

Thursday, April 5

Wonkette Disses Mississippi's ‘Racist' Easter Egg

So, why is our Easter Egg racist you might ask? Well, head over to the JFP's StateDesk site for the rest of the story (and talk about it over there should you wish. No registration required, yet.).

Men Who Hate Women on the Web

Joan Walsh of Salon has a fascinating story about how women are often treated online, using the ugly attacks on Kathy Sierra as an example. She writes:

Wednesday, April 4

Personal Expression

She's a hometown girl who moved away for a change of scenery, but is always excited to come home. Besides seeing her family and friends and eating at Kyoto (one of her favorite restarurants), Teneia Sanders is stoked to come home this weekend for a particularly special event: her album release party. Sanders' sophomore offering, "Soulcatcher," is personal and genuine. The songstress says she has learned lots about herself and the music industry between her first album and "Soulcatcher." The more she learns, surprisingly, the less pressure Sanders says she feels to fit into a proverbial box.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

Pro baseball, Mississippi at Huntsville (7 p.m., Huntsville, Ala., 930 AM): The M-Braves open the season in the wilds of Alabama. … College baseball, Mississippi Valley State at Belhaven (6 p.m.): The Delta Devils drop by Smith-Wills Stadium for a date with the Blazers.

The All-New All-Stars

The third edition of the Mississippi Braves features a roster full of top prospects and a new manager. The Class AA M-Braves open the season on Thursday at Huntsville (7 p.m., 930 AM). They come home to play their first game at Trustmark Park in Pearl on Tuesday, April 10.

[Music] Sixty Years Of The Blues

L.C. Ulmer is on a tear. The 78-year-old blues guitarist and vocalist—who up until a year and a half ago was not known outside his hometown of Ellisville, Miss.—is now omnipresent in the Mississippi blues scene. He regularly performs at clubs in Hattiesburg and Jackson, makes frequent trips to Clarksdale and Ocean Springs to play local festivals, and was recently featured on "Thacker Mountain Radio," the long-running live radio show based in Oxford. If that isn't enough to keep him busy, Ulmer has a recording session and tour of Europe in the works.

[Chickdom] Exactly Where We Ought to Be

Life had become overwhelming. I truly believed the children had fed my cleverness to the cat, which explained why the cat puked on my Swiffer every day for a solid week. I mean, a cat has to have boundaries, and Jack could only take so much of my singing and talking to him as if he was human before he dropped his cookies on the only clean surface in the kitchen. The solitude of motherhood had gotten to me.

Strong To The Finish ‘Cause I Eat Me Spinach

Spring is finally here, and it has gradually gotten warmer. In addition to causing my allergies to flare up and adding to my desire not to go to work, Spring's arrival has brought on my craving for salads, particularly spinach salad.

Is It Safe, Yet?

The 2006 bagged spinach E. coli outbreak ended Oct. 6, 2006. The Food and Drug Administrationtraced all infections to fields owned by Natural Selection Foods in California, but they don'tknow (or aren't saying) what caused the outbreak; media speculation ran from deer to field hands.The total infected was 204 people in 26 states; 103 required hospitalization and three died.

Polishing Southern Tarnish

Well, I declare. Gayden Metcalfe and Charlotte Hays must have my double-first-name aunts on speed dial for their second offering...

Ice, Bugs, And Guns. Perfect.

"Lost Planet," despite being a modern, high-tech title, brings me back to the days of gaming long past, when top-of-the-line graphics were 8-bit, when you could spot a hardcore gamer by his untidy mullets and his Alf T-shirt, and when dedicated players keeled over dead from exhaustion—not while farming for gold in "World of Warcraft" but by going for the top score in "Donkey Kong" or "Galaga."

Jesus Rode A Donkey: THE JFP Interview With John Arthur Eaves

Photos by Roy Adkins

Attorney John Arthur Eaves, 40, is the polar opposite of his Republican opponent, Gov. Haley Barbour. Barbour is a faithful follower of smaller-government philosophy, isn't afraid to boot Mississippians off state Medicaid and has been willing to short-change the so-called "artificial" Mississippi Adequate Education Program in the name of budget austerity. Eaves, on the other hand, thinks the state is failing to provide for the health of thousands and is shooting itself in the foot by short-funding education. Barbour has lobbied for tobacco companies for years, while Eaves, a Jackson trial lawyer, has vociferously attacked those same companies in the courtroom. Barbour is a happy comrade of President George Bush, who has stumped for Barbour on the campaign and vice versa, while Eaves criticizes the Bush administration for all its malfunctions and corruption.

Of Paranoia and Xenophobia

See related blog thread.

End of the Legislative Road

The Mississippi State Legislature passed full funding for the Mississippi Adequate Education Program this year, reformed the embattled State Board of Health, but shot down an attempt to raise cigarette taxes and lower grocery taxes.

Death of a Partnership

The Legislature passed SB 2764, reorganizing the State Board of Health following Clarion-Ledger reports of broad failures and relentless attacks upon board Director Dr. Brian Amy by Sen. Alan Nunnelee. After reforming the disparaged board, legislators then put the state's next tobacco-cessation effort under the Health Department.

After the Storm

Reacting to skyrocketing post-Katrina insurance costs on the coast, the Legislature passed HB 1500, which bolsters the state's Wind Pool Insurance Association by $20 million. The money is collected from taxes on statewide insurance premiums.

Chump Change for Chimneyville

Though legislators refused to pass a bill providing $2 million in desperately needed funding to Jackson for law enforcement and street repair, they did produce legislation to help cities like Jackson collect more revenue. Barbour signed a bill allowing the city to collect an extra $1 for speeding or parking violations and another bill, yet to be signed, allows the city to act upon outstanding tickets by towing the offenders' vehicle.

Healthy Kids, Healthy Codgers

The Capitol legislated a healthier lifestyle for public school students, creating SB 2369, which demands schools offer at least 150 minutes of physical education for students each week, along with 45 minutes of health education. The Senate bill is a partial replacement of a House bill that mandated similar exercise requirements, but which also ordered trans fats out of school lunchrooms. The Senate gave a pass to trans fats, which the National Institutes of Health has found increases the risk of heart disease.

Strip (Miners) and Sex (Fiends)

The final round of appropriations bills shot through joint committees March 30, though Rep. Jamie Franks, D-Mooreville, temporarily held some appropriations bills. Franks said he got nervous over an appropriation bill for Fisheries, Wildlife and Parks containing language allowing the agency to sell or lease state parks for private development. The same language had been in state law for nearly three years, but avid hunters and conservationists, like Franks, raised a flag after numerous attempts by parks committee chairs in both the House and Senate at opening some state parks for strip mining and development.

Protesting the Protesters

Business owner and conservative pundit Alan Lange pled with the city this week to do something about anti-abortion protesters trespassing on his property. The protesters, who camp out daily at the Jackson Women's Health Organization abortion clinic oat 2903 N. State Street in Fondren, are hurting a business that rents property from him across the street.

Stokes: A Bought Man?

Jackson Mayor Frank Melton assured council members Monday that Ward 3 Councilman Kenneth Stokes would support placing Leland Speed in an unpaid consultant position with the Jackson Redevelopment Authority despite Stokes' contentious relationship with Speed.

Cheap Smokes, Empty Bellies

Legislative failures this year included the death of HB 247, which would have raised the tax on cigarettes and reduced the sales tax on Groceries. That bill died after Barbour told Appropriations Chairman Tommy Robertson to kill the bill, despite outcry from health advocacy groups and polls revealing the bill's popularity.

Demolition Down on Farish

Photos by Adam Lynch

Mayor Frank Melton announced that he intends to demolish more than 30 dilapidated homes on Farish Street, near the Church Street junction. "I'm taking them all down, and we're billing the owner. We're thinking they'll cost $1,500 a piece," Melton told members of the press on Monday.

The Never-ending Docket Debacle

City Council voted down the city's claims and payroll dockets, which list city payments to companies and individuals, on a 2-3-1 vote Monday, though the council later voted again and approved the dockets.

[Gregory] Dreamin' Ain't Doin'

For the past six months, I've been working in Hattiesburg, mainly because the job offer included enough money to allow me to embroider gold dollar signs on my socks right alongside my initials—righteous money. Following this money soon led me to understand that working in Hattiesburg actually meant commuting to Hattiesburg for the duration of the employment.

[Stiggers] God is Frowning

Boneqweesha Jones: "Your favorite on-the-scene reporter is back for a special edition of 'Ghetto Dateline: Health Crisis in the 'Hood.' With me—live on location at Grandma Pookie's back porch via a camera phone, courtesy of Aunt Tee Tee and Brotha Hustle—is Nurse Tootie McBride.

Ann Hendrick

Ann Hendrick, 46, remembers the "time of chaos" when Mississippi schools belatedly integrated.

Argue for Your Limitations

A few weeks ago, I told a friend of mine that I spend about an hour every morning writing in my journal. I began this practice last year when reading "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron. My friend was impressed, she told me, because she couldn't see herself having that kind of discipline.

Peterson Demands Equal Justice

This story will appear in the April 4 print edition of the Jackson Free Press.

Tuesday, April 3

IRS Points Out Overlooked Benefits

[Verbatim Release] MISSISSIPPI — The Internal Revenue Service today urged taxpayers to take a moment before they file their income tax returns to be sure they do not overlook several important benefits to which they may be entitled.

It Never Stops

April 3, 2007 We're on deadline, but I have to make a couple quick comments on Clarion-Ledger stories today. The first, on Melton's plan to increase the pace of demolitions, is a pretty solid story, with lots of facts and figures.

M-Braves To Hold Open House

Mississippi Braves fans can watch the team go through a workout during a team open house on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at Trustmark Park in Pearl. Admission is free and hot dogs and soft drinks will be given away.

Monday, April 2

City Faces $4.3 Million Shortfall

Department of Administration Director Rick Hill reported to City Council today that the city is facing a $4.3 million budget shortfall.

Jackpedia ‘Beta' Appears

OK, y'all, I've been working for a little while on a new wiki site that's both been promised to area arts organizations and that, I hope, can grow one day to be a full-fledged member of the Jackson blogosphere all on its own. We go the member database moved over and I've got something that I'm hoping is functional up and online, so, I'm hereby launching the *very* beta...Jackpedia.

CAUTION: More Pet Food Recalled

Del Monte is now on the list of recalled pet food. The long list now includes Pounce Cat Treats, Meaty Morsels and Jerky Dog Treats.

Sunday, April 1

She Likes Us, She Likes Us