Stories for September 2009


Wednesday, September 30

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A Long Time Coming

Mississippi State and Southern Miss announced last week that they will play a two-game, home-and-home series in football starting in 2014. It's about bloody time.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

College football, Southern Miss at UAB (7 p.m., Birmingham, Ala., CBS College Sports, 1180 AM/103.3 FM): The Golden Eagles can take out their frustrations on the punchless Blazers. … Valdosta State at Delta State (7 p.m., Cleveland, CSS, 930 AM): These teams have something in common: They both lost to Ouachita Baptist in the last two weeks.

A Homegrown Wedding

Six weeks after Dustin Jernigan and Caroline Ware went on their first official date in January 2009, he took her ring shopping.

Kicking It Up

I have a confession; lately I haven't been living in the moment. Here at the JFP we have a million ideas and staff members who work insanely hard because of their commitment to doing good work. I think all of us struggle with the fact that there are only so many hours in the day that keep us from implementing all those great ideas.

Barbour Targeting Dem Governors

It's political deja vu all over again. In his new role as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, Gov. Haley Barbour is playing a key role nationally again—strategizing about how to beat Democrats in races around the country, as well as fighting for redistricting in other states that can help Republicans win races.

Straitjacket of Straight Thinking?

The Jackson Public Schools Board of Trustees may be holding back its superintendent, but depending on whom you ask, that may not be a bad thing.

Immigrants, Reform, and You

Republicans throughout the country, especially in the South, have raked "ObamaCare" over the coals, swearing that the president is paving the way for free health care to illegal immigrants.

McGowan Questions Levee Board's ‘Backbone'

Would-be Two Lakes developer John McGowan reacted strongly this week to a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers statement that it was not taking seriously his or any other plan to create lakes around the Pearl River, preferring a comprehensive levees plan to control flooding.

Take the Next Step on the Pearl

This week the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seemed to—finally and forcefully—make clear its stance on flood management for the Pearl River, repeating what the Jackson Free Press has been reporting for months now.

[Stiggers] A Dream Deferred

Miss Doodle Mae: "Greetings, shoppers! Jojo asked me to be his spokesperson for a new program called 'Working It Out' at Jojo's Discount Dollar Store. This program is for a growing population of new workers called senior citizens.

[Kamikaze] Thinking Big

Momentum can be described as the impetus of a non-physical process, a process that could be either an idea or a course of events. Any time you have momentum, there has to be energy, some force behind that momentum.

[Israel] State Needs Health Reform

Elizabeth, of Jackson, is a single mom and among the roughly 20 percent of Mississippians who are uninsured or 37 percent of Mississippians under age 65. She works at a small business that does not provide health insurance.

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House Of Lott

"I love your wrap," drawls a genteel lady from the veranda of her Victorian on State Street. "It's a Sami Lott," I say with a smile.

Blues and Burks

Michael Burks grew up learning how to play music. His father taught him his first notes on the guitar at the age of 2, and at 5 years old, he could learn an entire song in one day, by the time his father returned home from work.

[Herman's Picks] Vol. 8, No. 3

There is something about October that just screams road trip in my mind. Perhaps it's the annual Voodoo Music Festival in New Orleans each Halloween.

[Rob In Stereo] Knocking The Hustler

Perhaps the bar has been set unreasonably high for Jay-Z's "Blueprint 3." Invocation of 2001's "The Blueprint" alone sets expectations soaring. Add to its title the list of contributing superstar producers and the knockout lead single, and "Blueprint 3" has the makings of a album of the year.

Ready and Abel

It's been high times for Saving Abel. The Corinth, Miss.-based post-grunge band just finished the last leg of an ultra-successful North American tour with Nickelback, Papa Roach and Hinder. And in March, the Recording Industry Association of America certified its self-titled debut album gold, meaning it sold more than 800,000 albums.

The Oldest Story

Two men awkwardly circle each other in the dimly lit fellowship hall of Broadmeadow Baptist Church in Fondren. The two men glare at each other angrily, the tension palpable. Suddenly, Phillip, the more physically intimidating of the two, steps up and confronts Adam.

Spice World: Revamp Your Culinary Wardrobe

My husband's Grandma Ella knows how to feed a crowd: She's been doing it her whole life. One of the first times I met her, we talked in her kitchen as she finished a few dishes for a Thanksgiving spread.

Corps Threatens, Predicts Insurance Rate Hikes

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Monday threatened to withhold certification of the incomplete levee system between Hinds and Rankin counties, potentially raising insurance rates for homes along the Pearl River in those counties.

Gina Carter-Simmers

After 20 years in working for public broadcasting, Gina Carter-Simmers, 41, has found a tune of her own as the general manager at WJSU.

Fisher: $1.5 Million County Loan ‘Irresponsible'

District 4 Supervisor Phil Fisher was the lone dissenting vote on the Hinds County Board of Supervisors this morning when the board voted to borrow $1.5 million to cover a budget shortfall for the 2009 fiscal year, which ends today. While discussion of the move was limited at today's meeting, Fisher told the Jackson Free Press Sept. 29 that he would oppose the loan out of principle.

Jackson Crime Stats Continue Downward Trend

Major crimes in Jackson dropped again last week, according to a weekly crime report released this morning at a Jackson Police Department meeting. Violent crime was down 20 percent from the previous week, while property crime droppped 7 percent. For the year, police have reported almost 10 percent fewer violent crimes and 0.7 percent more property crimes than last year.

Adam Lynch: Letter from the Hinds County Jail

I got dragged away this morning for an incredible cause. The Muscular Dystrophy Association is linked inextricably to comedian Jerry Lewis and hours-long telethons, but this morning they're known for pulling me into a room and asking me to shakedown all my friends (and a few enemies) for money benefiting kids who suffer from a rather nasty disease. There are probably ethical issues involved with reporters begging money from judges and political figures, but I'm willing to take a chance on this one. It's a worthy cause.

President to Visit Gulf Coast

Fulfilling one of his campaign promises, the White House announced yesterday that President Barack Obama will be visiting the Gulf Coast areas devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, reports the Sun Herald. Details of the October visit have yet to be announced.

Tuesday, September 29

Ex-Bodyguards Challenge Ridgeway Restitution

Two former Jackson police officers are disputing the amount that federal prosecutors say they must pay in restitution for the 2006 demolition of a Ridgeway Street duplex. Marcus Wright and Michael Recio, both former bodyguards to the late Mayor Frank Melton, claim that the $30,070 prosecutors want them to pay exceeds the damage they did to the house.

Guy Cavett Taff

Known for his gentle nature and unique story-telling skills, Jacksonian Guy Cavett Taff passed away Saturday Sept. 26 at the age of 60.

[Balko] A Shake to the System

New research into "shaken baby syndrome" could put hundreds of convictions in peril.

Hearings Set for Kemper Coal Plant

The Mississippi Public Service Commission has announced phase one hearings for a proposed new "clean" coal power plant in Kemper County. The hearings are in reponse to a petition filed by Mississippi Power, seeking a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for the proposed $2.4 billion electricity-generating plant, and "associated transmission facilities, associated gas pipeline facilities, associated right-of-way and related facilities in Kemper, Lauderdale, Clarke and Jasper counties," according to a release.

Monday, September 28

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Corps: Lake Plans a Waste of Time, Money

Read the JFP's full Pearl River archive here.

Gannett In ‘VIP' Trademark Dispute

The owner of a Jackson-based events promotion company alleges that Gannett River States Publishing Corporation, which publishes The Clarion-Ledger, is trying to muscle him out of a trademark that he rightfully owns. Curtis Lyons, the owner of Jacksons VIP, is locked in a trademark dispute with Gannett, which has published VIP Jackson Magazine, a free monthly society magazine featuring pictures of wealthy Jacksonians at parties and charity events, since August 2006. The Clarion-Ledger prints 20,000 copies of VIP Jackson a month.

State Receives $9 Million for ‘Green' Initiatives

Several Mississippi counties, including Hinds, will receive funding from the U.S. Department of Energy channeled to the state through Energy Efficient Block Grant Programs.

Public & Community Meetings in Jackson

4 p.m., Jackson City Council special meeting at Jackson City Hall (200 S. President St.). The council holds a special meeting, open to the public. Call 601-960-1033‎.

Scott Colom

A new attorney with the Mississippi Center for Justice, Scott Colom will spend the next two years working to combat predatory payday lending in the state. Colom is the recipient of a prestigious Skadden Fellowship, which helps new law school graduates enter public-interest fields by paying their salary for two years.

Intuit Offers $1000 Local Business Grants

Here's a widget that can get you started:

Intuit, the folks who make QuickBooks and Quicken software, have a fun little contest going on. Called "Love a Local Business," the promotion lets you nominate a small business as a deserving business, and then encourage others to vote and comment on that business. Those with the most support (or the most effective comments) can receive a $1000 "grant" (it's a $500 Visa prepaid and $500 worth of Intuit stuff) if they get support of their community and some interesting comments along the way.

Legislators Scrambling to Fill Budget Holes

Mississippi Legislators are searching for new sources of revenue to ensure services are not cut to the state's citizens; they want to maintain government operations without raising taxes. Lawmakers say they don't expect a general tax increase, but they are looking at initiating or raising some fees, reports the Sun Herald.

Friday, September 25

Hood Spars with Medicaid Director Over $24 Million

On Wednesday, Medicaid Director Bob Robinson accused Attorney General Jim Hood of failing to investigate an alleged $24 million case of Medicaid fraud. Today, Hood counter-accused the director of defending Tri-Lakes Medical Center, the same provider that Robinson claims Hood refuses to investigate.

Are You Ready for the Weekend, Jackson?

Kick off the first weekend in autumn tonight with a couple of movies for only $5. At 6:30 p.m., Crossroads Film Society presents "My Time Will Come," from Ecuador, and "The Photograph," from Indonesia at the Mississippi Museum of Art (museum members get in for $3). For opera lovers, head to Millsaps College for a rare, free treat. Robert Crowe, a male soprano, will sing Mozart and Haydn arias beginning at 7 p.m. at the Ford Academic Complex. If you're looking for a way to contribute to the community, at 8:30 p.m., head to Galloway United Methodist Church for "Ending Homelessness: Putting the Pieces Together in Our Community," the final event in the Mississippi State Hospital's Homeless Connect Week. You have plenty more options to choose from, so if none of those make you happy, head over to the JFP Events Calendar for more options.

[Miller] Coal Plant: Unnecessary, Expensive and Dirty

The Mississippi Sierra Club, AFL-CIO and NAACP strongly oppose Mississippi Power Company's proposal to build a $2.4 billion "clean coal" plant and adjoining mine in Kemper County.

Bill Luckett

Clarksdale attorney Bill Luckett has confirmed that he will run for the Mississippi governor's seat in 2011. Luckett told the Mississippi Business Journal yesterday that he will formally announce his candidacy sometime in the spring, but that he has moved beyond merely considering a run. A staffer at Luckett's political action committee, Progress for Mississippi, confirmed Luckett's candidacy to the Jackson Free Press today.

Mississippi Unemployment Rate Dips in August

August unemployment numbers in the Magnolia State dropped below 10 percent, with a seasonally unadjusted rate of 9.5 percent, representing 121,300 people, which is 1 percentage point lower than the state's July rate. Mississippi's August numbers are 0.1 percent lower than the national rate of 9.6 percent. The state is also one of 16 states reporting a decrease in joblessness across the U.S.

Thursday, September 24

PSC Orders Entergy to Comply with Audit

The Public Service Commission ordered Entergy to stop dodging an audit yesterday, threatening the company with subpoenas if it does not comply. Horne CPA, which is conducting two fuel adjustment audits of Entergy on behalf of the PSC, informed the state regulator in a Sept. 21 letter that Entergy is virtually dousing every page of information the CPA firm requests with gallons of lawyers.

Jackson Area Businesses Open, Close and Give Awards

BRAVO! Restaurant in Jackson is asking its patrons for stories of the people who changed their lives. The upscale Italian restaurant is giving away $600 in gift cards for the best story of a life-changing person posted on its Facebook page. The contest is a creative way of launching the restaurant's presence on the social-networking Web site, BRAVO! co-owner Jeff Good told the Jackson Free Press.

Elizabeth Crisler

Elizabeth Crisler, president and founder of Jackson advertising agency Liquid Creative, will celebrate the company's 10-year anniversary tonight. Crisler opened the agency in 1999 as a branch of Dallas-based Squires & Company, and she bought the company in 2003. Since then, Liquid Creative has doubled in size and tripled its client base.

City's Crime Numbers Still Down Despite Shooting

Yesterday, the Jackson Police Department released ComStat crime figures for the week of Sept. 14 through Sept. 20. The report shows that major crime statistics in Jackson dropped again last week, although violent crimes rose from the previous week. Total major crimes this year are a scant 0.2 percent down from last year's numbers.

JSU Hazing Suspensions Have Consequences

Yesterday, Jackson State University announced that 45 members of the school's Sonic Boom of the South are suspended due to an alleged hazing incident that resulted in a student's fractured collar bone. Without those percussion members, the band may be unable to perform at all.

Wednesday, September 23

Saturday Night Lights

"Yaw bee baw," then-Ole Miss football coach Ed Orgeron told offensive tackle Michael Oher when he was recruiting him.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

College football, Ole Miss at South Carolina (6:30 p.m., Columbia, S.C., ESPN, 97.3 FM): The fourth-ranked Rebels will face their first real test of the season against the Chickens.

Higher Ground

Amid all the bellowing anger and finger-pointing and insults and threats to shove tennis balls you-know-where, last week I was fortunate enough to participate in something remarkable in downtown Jackson.

Barbour: Stop the Lame Games

Gov. Haley Barbour butt-thumped a community organization devoted to poor people this week.

[Stiggers] You Lie!

Boneqweesha Jones: "Welcome to the motivational portion of Hair Did University's fall semester orientation. Our guest speaker is Smokey 'Robinson' McBride, representative of Ghetto Science Team District No. 1042 and 2/8."

The JFP Interview with Chokwe Lumumba

Chokwe Lumumba was one child among seven in Detroit's West side public housing projects. His birth name is Edwin Taliaferro, though he abandoned what he considers his slave name in favor of his current, more nationalistic, equivalent.

Manhunt D.A.‘s ‘Guard' Duty

When Bruce Dunagan heard that Tallahatchie County prosecutor John Whitten III was involved in a vigilante-style manhunt last month, in Sumner, he wasn't surprised. Dunagan, who was Biloxi's police chief during Hurricane Katrina, remembers Whitten testing the limits of the law in the aftermath of the 2005 storm.

The Love and Politics of India.Arie

India.Arie's music is poetry. Her sound is eclectic: a fusion of R&B, gospel, soul and jazz. Her songs range from spiritual and introspective to playful and political.

Less Traveled Roads

At first glance, David Magee's "The Education of Mr. Mayfield" (John F. Blair, 2009, $21.95) gives the impression of a "Good Will Hunting" knock-off set in the rural South. Race replaces class, Ole Miss replaces Harvard, "Dixie" replaces Elliot Smith, and somewhere down the line we've got an "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" for Grove-tented book clubs.

A History of Defiance

To determine whether or not to read a new book of history, examine the footnotes. If the notes reference previous books and journal articles, you've got a rehash. If, on the other hand, the notes cite correspondence among the principals, interviews and documents from unpublished archives, then you know you've got a book that might open new doors.

'Mobile' Art

Jamie Weems first saw Alexander Calder's mobiles suspended in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Weems had heard of Calder while studying classical guitar at the University of Louisiana in Lafayette. He was struggling with an interpretive piece of music that kept falling flat, and one of his professors suggested that he approach it like Alexander Calder had approached his mobiles.

Tailgating: My Favorite Sport

Attending a football game is complete torture for me. But while I can't appreciate the ins and outs that go into making a good game, I do enjoy tailgating. I enjoy the sights, sounds, good food and camaraderie and partaking in an adult beverage (or two).

Two Lakes Developer Long a 'Green' Foe

Northside Sun Publisher Wyatt Emmerich declared in a recent column that the Rankin-Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District should appoint Jackson oilman John McGowan to head the board's technical advisory committee. The committee will work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to devise flood control for the section of the Pearl River between Hinds and Rankin counties—and is considering a controversial plan developed by McGowan himself.

Joel Bomgar

When Joel Bomgar developed a new type of software at age 23, he had no idea that in a few years, he would be running one of the fastest growing technology companies in the country. He was simply trying to save time.

Don't Box Us In

"Boxmen" allows its audience to see that the homeless are just like anyone else. One of the actors in the play has been living on the streets for two years.

The GOP's Obsession with Tort Reform

As the health-insurance reform debate swirls, Gov. Haley Barbour is claiming that most Americans are actually looking for tort reform, not a government-guaranteed insurance option, to lower their health-care costs.

Power Industry Watchdog Grows Three New Teeth

The Mississippi Public Service Commission will be getting $824,901 to better watchdog the power industry. This morning, District 1 Rep. Travis Childers announced the grant award from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, which the PSC applied for earlier this year. Childers said the money will create jobs, improve training, and increase energy efficiency.

Mississippi Casino Revenue Still Declining

For an industry that was once considered recession-proof, Mississippi casinos continue to see their revenues slide. For August, the Mississippi State Tax Commission reports a drop of 9 percent over July, with gambling establishments around the state reporting total revenues of $206 million. In August of 2008, winnings totaled $238.2 million.

Tuesday, September 22

Barbour Misses ACORN Bandwagon

The day after Gov. Haley Barbour announced he was cutting state funds to ACORN, the JFP broke the news that the state gives no money to the group—which no longer exists here.

State Courts Face Spring Shutdown

State lawmakers received an unwelcome surprise yesterday, when Mississippi Supreme Court Chief Justice Bill Waller revealed that the state court system is set to run out of money in April.

Roger Wicker

Passed by a 68-to-30 Senate vote, an amendment authored by Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker, mandates that Amtrak allow passengers to carry handguns in their checked baggage. The amendment is an addition to a $122 billion housing and transportation bill, of which $1.2 billion is for Amtrak, and would deny funding for the carrier if it doesn't comply by March 2010.

[Balko] The Hunt for Criminality

Why it's important that prosecutors know when not to bring charges.

Partnership Brings Free Dental Care to Kids

Approximately 400 students in two of Jackson's elementary schools will be receiving dental screenings today and tomorrow through the Colgate "Bright Smiles/Bright Futures" mobile van. The van, which is in Jackson in partnership with the Jackson Medical Mall Foundation and the University of Mississippi Medical Center School of Dentistry, will be at Brown Elementary School today and at Smith Elementary School tomorrow between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Monday, September 21

Editorial Takes Dim View of Katrina Recovery Fund Diversions

An editorial in yesterday's New York Times looked askance at the way the federal government has allowed Mississippi to divert funds from disaster aid meant to assist moderate and low-income people on the coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina more than four years ago. In Mississippi's Failure the Times writes about a report from the Steps Coalition, "Hurricane Katrina: Has Mississippi Fallen Further Behind?" which JFP Assistant Editor Lacey McLaughlin mentioned in a story we published Sept. 2.

Hinds Officials Challenge Personnel Cuts

A round of budget cuts and layoffs last week prompted outcry from two Hinds County officials at this morning's meeting of the Board of Supervisors. Tax Collector Eddie Fair told board members that their Sept. 15 decision to slash 48 filled positions from the county's payroll would affect more than just those employees.

Jackson One of 20 Strongest-Performing Markets

A new report issued by the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., ranks Jackson as one of the nation's strongest-performing metro areas in the country. The MetroMonitor report tracks the recession and its recovery, and examined the 100 largest metropolitan areas for the second quarter of 2009.

Future for Clinic Uncertain

The future of the Catholic Charities Legal Assistance Clinic in Jackson, which provides legal services for women and children fleeing domestic abuse, is uncertain, as pending upcoming funding decisions. Funding for the clinic from the Mississippi Bar and the U.S. Department of Justice's Office on Violence Against Women ended in August 2009.

Rwth Ashton

The unusual spelling of her first name is not the only thing compelling about the new Millsaps College chaplain, who comes to Jackson by way of Belzoni and Boston, among other places. Ashton, a United Methodist minister for the past 12 years, was most recently the pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Belzoni, Miss. Before that, she served as associate pastor of Crossgates United Methodist Church in Brandon.

Public and Community Meetings In and Around Jackson

5 p.m., Fondren Association of Businesses Annual Membership Meeting at Schimmel's (2615 N. State St.). Find out about membership opportunities and what's in works for the Fondren Business District. E-mail [e-mail missing].

Jackson Man Arrested at Grow House

Called an "elaborate marijuana growing operation" by authorities, Hinds County sheriff's deputies, Jackson police, and federal and state drug agents arrested Zachary Alexander, 33, on Friday, seizing 86 plants. According to the Associated Press, the pot plants, which Alexander was growing under ultraviolet lights in his home on Naples Street, are valued at $325,000.

Sunday, September 20

Steps to Success

A few months ago, this little project of ours was just starting. We had almost no idea what we would be doing with this thing. Now, we have a lot going, but we still have a long way to go.

Finally Doing it

For the past few weeks, I kept saying I was going to ride my bike to work,but then each day I found a reason preventing me from doing so. So many factors prevented me from just doing it, but I am proud to say that this past week I rode my bike to work twice!

Saturday, September 19

"The Relationship Conference" – 2009

I'm so excited about this! From October 29 through November 1, The Life Support Center will offer its first annual "Relationship Conference" held at The Church Triumphant. This conference is aimed at educating families in the area of healthy, fulfilling, and positive relationships. This event is for families, couples, singles, college students and kids!

Friday, September 18

Video: Bill Moyers on Dick Armey's Personal Healthcare

Interesting report from Bill Moyers...Dick Armey, the leader of FreedomWorks, (former House Leader and one of that architects of the "Contract With America") is now raking in the cash from lobbying and exciting the masses against healthcare, including a podium moment at the Teaparty March on Washington.

Shoestring ‘Conversation' Focused on Solutions

Diving into state and city challenges, panelists at last night's annual Operation Shoestring fund-raising dinner brought the issues to light along with potential solutions. The diverse crowd listened attentively to "A Conversation About Community," as each panelist offered his or her unique life experience to forward the discussion.

Weekend Happenings

A weekend of history, music and soul begins tonight at the 31st Annual Farish Street Heritage Festival. At 6 p.m., a pep rally and a step show will kick off the event on the festival grounds on Farish Street, followed by live music all weekend. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the gate. If you're looking for an international cultural experience, Crossroads Film Society presents "Getting Home" from China and "I am from Titoy Veles" from Macadonia at 6:30 p.m. as part of the Global Lens film series at the Mississippi Museum of Art. See JFP Events Calendar for more options.

Public-Good Rankings Include Mississippi Schools

Washington Monthly magazine has published college rankings based on their contribution to the public good. The listings include several Mississippi universities and colleges, and are based on three broad categories: social mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students), research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs), and service (encouraging students to give something back to their country).

Thursday, September 17

Immigrant Rights Alliance Says Enforcement Unbalanced

Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance Executive Director Bill Chandler is charging that the indictment of Jose Humberto Gonzalez in the 2008 Howard Industries immigration-enforcement raid highlights the unbalanced enforcement of federal immigration law. In 1986, the federal Immigration Reform and Control Act made employers liable for employing undocumented aliens.

BCBS: Domestic Abuse Not Pre-Existing Condition

State Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney has clarified a statement he made to the Jackson Free Press used in a story Wednesday regarding Mississippi being one of the eight remaining states whose laws allow insurance companies to use a history of domestic abuse as a reason to deny health-care coverage.

Robert Langford

Jackson's Operation Shoestring on Bailey Avenue represents the opportunity for the city's children and families to break out of cycles of poverty through education. The organization's mission is about empowerment and making a difference, and Executive Director Robert Langford is dedicated to providing quality programs to enrich and broaden the perspectives of the kids Operation Shoestring touches.

Jackson Crime Down Again

Major crimes in Jackson decreased slightly last week, according to statistics (PDF) released yesterday at the Jackson Police Department's weekly COMSTAT meeting. For the year to date, violent crime is down roughly 10 percent compared to last year, while property crime is up less than 1 percent. Last week, officers reported 23 violent crimes, compared to 29 the previous week, and 209 property crimes, down from 211 the week before.

Flu Continues to Take a Toll

The Mississippi Department of Health reports that the numbers for the H1N1 flu, commonly known as swine flu, continue to rise in the state. As of yesterday, the confirmed cases total 839, including five deaths. The latest death occurred in Tippah County.

Wednesday, September 16

Golden Moment for Eagles

Southern Miss plays Virginia Saturday in the most important game for the Golden Eagles in several years.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

Junior college football, Hinds at Pearl River (6:30 p.m., Poplarville): The Eagles face the Wildcats, one of the top juco teams in the nation. This could get ugly.

Council: Be Responsible

Over the last several weeks, we've watched several Jackson City Council members act irresponsibly—and probably for blatantly political purposes. This needs to end.

[Stiggers] White Backlash Blues

Boneqweesha Jones: "Welcome to Ghetto Science Television's special report titled 'What's Up with Operation White Backlash?'"

[Kamikaze] Don't Be A Jerk

We have become a society that applauds bad behavior. We have become a nation that shuns decorum and champions those who break rank with tact. We have become a country that no longer respects authority, title or office.

[Rejebian] Moving Forward

Raymond carries a bucket. Anyone who spends any time in downtown Jackson has seen him. Tall and lanky, he walks the streets with a perpetual offer to clean your car windshield or shine your wheels.

Entergy continuing move to Jackson

Downtown Jackson Partners President Ben Allen said the city of Jackson will certainly feel the benefit of Entergy's decision to move about 200 transmission workers from New Orleans to the Jackson area.

Dish with Fran Howze

The North Midtown Community Development Corp has big plans for the area west of Millsaps College.

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A Work In Progress

When Ira Murray moved to Jackson from Nashville four years ago, he knew the city was poised for metamorphosis.

Homage to History

The 31st Annual Farish Street Heritage Festival celebrates African American history in a revitalizing neighborhood that, in its prime, was a center of commerce and culture for Jackson's black community.

The Laughs Keep Coming

Imagine a musical in Germany, and you might envision a singing, lederhosen-clad family and their nanny, gallivanting around the hillsides, dodging Nazi persecution. Doug and Bud, the central characters of New Stage Theatre's production of "Gutenberg! The Musical," would say you're overlooking a key figure in history: Johann Gutenberg, inventor of the printing press.

When Kansas Bled Over Slavery

The war between North and South began in the West. In the 1850s, the fight over whether Kansas would allow slavery became so violent that it ignited the Civil War. As the guerilla war between southern "ruffians" and northern "jayhawkers" escalated out of control, the nation called it Bleeding Kansas.

ZZQ Revisited

Some of my earliest memories involve music, more specifically the music that my parents listened to—Cat Stevens, The Beatles, Peter Frampton—all these albums were on heavy rotation at our house in the late 1970s. But when they grew tired of playing records, my parents just left the stereo on 102.9, WZZQ as it was known at the time, and all their favorite music wafted through our house from large floor speakers that I liked to sit in front of.

[Herman'ns Picks] Vol. 7, No. 1

This Thursday is the Mississippi Museum of Art's monthly Jazz, Art and Friends series, with Barry Leach playiing jazz from 5:30-8:30 p.m. $7. Have a beer, jazz it up and check out the art.

A Love Letter to Birthday Cake

Dear Birthday Cake, I've loved you since the moment I first laid eyes on you. The sweet smells of you baking in the oven swirls in my memory. Oh, and how you looked that first time all dressed up in fluffy, sugary icing!

Local Bakeries

Need an afternoon sugar "pick-me-up" or have a special occasion coming up? From cupcakes to cinnamon buns, sugar cookies and cakes, you'll find what you need with these local bakeries.

Box Cake Makeover

Made-from-scratch cake is worth the effort, but if you've been making box cakes all your life, you might need the equivalent of culinary training wheels before you feel comfortable riding solo. Even if you're a fearless baker, sometimes a box cake is better than no cake at all.

Have Your Cake and Drink it, Too

What could be more fitting for a birthday party than a bottle of wine named Cupcake? Cupcake Vineyards, a California-based winery, began launching the Cupcake line of wine in 2008.

Domestic Abuse is a Pre-Existing Condition in Mississippi

Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney expressed outrage today that the state of Mississippi is one of eight states in the nation, including the District of Columbia, which allows insurance companies to consider domestic abuse as a pre-existing condition with which to deny health-care coverage. The National Women's Law Center reported in April that the state of Arkansas passed a law prohibiting insurance companies to pull coverage for domestic violence survivors, putting a spotlight on the remaining states.

[Stauffer] A 21st Century Boom Town?

When we launched the Jackson Free Press seven years ago this week, it was with a cover story on Jackson's "creative class." Seven years later as the JFP rolls into Volume 8, I still hear from people surprised, amazed and (at least, more often than not) pleased to see the JFP is still kicking and—in fact—growing.

Business News In and Around Jackson

Ida's, a restaurant serving up soul food and blue-plate specials, recently changed locations but will continue serve to South Jackson. Owner James Reed said the business recently moved from 4501 Raymond Road to 4580 N. Siwell Road in an effort to expand business opportunities.

Whitney Grant

Whitney Grant, 24, lives and works in a think tank. She is an intern architect at the Jackson Community Design Center, a research laboratory that analyzes urban design and provides feedback for future development in the city.

State Sued over ‘Abstinence'

In an effort to stop taxpayers from funding religious events, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in federal court last week against the Mississippi Department of Human Services for promoting religion at its annual abstinence-only-until-marriage summit this year.

Crisis Line Training Available

CONTACT the Crisis Line, a volunteer interfaith telephone ministry in operation since 1971, is starting a training class for new volunteers tomorrow, Sept. 17, from 6:45 to 9:45 p.m. The 13-week training runs until mid-December, with a break for Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, September 15

From Senior to Senior Citizen in Such a Short Time

Youth Media Project

I know that I won't be the first and certainly not the last when I say that my senior year is passing me by. So far, this has been the fastest school year of my existence, but it's not as good as I'd hoped. For one, I feel like I have to rush to get anything done.

Study: MS Second Most Corrupt State

Should they be complaining about Mississippi-style politics? ;-)

This study was reported back in December, but I just came across it and thought it was interesting -- according to the story The Corruption Belt by the Institute for Southern Studies, Mississippi ranks as the second most corrupt state in the union based on per capita convictions. Perhaps that's not all that surprising, but it's interesting the context of some of the tea-parties complaints about "Illinois-style" politics -- while it's up there, it's nowhere near as corrupt as Mississippi; which is nowhere near as corrupt as Louisiana which just keeps on keepin' on. (Election of 1876, anyone?)

Toss Me the Pigskin, Whatever That Is

Youth Media Project

There you have it. Football is more than a sweaty sport with an even sweatier devout following. It's a link to community togetherness and pride, and a chance for me to check out some really nice bodies when the cameras go in for the close up. Goodness gracious, great balls of fire!

[Balko] Drug Warriors Want Your Assets

The Supreme Court reviews Illinois' awful asset forfeiture law.

JPD Blasts ‘Negative Crime Story'

Using FBI statistics that the agency warns not to take out of context, The Clarion-Ledger reported a 9.3 increase in violent crime for the Jackson area this morning.

Council OKs Budget, No Pay Raises

The Jackson City Council voted to approve the city's 2010 budget Monday with a five-to-two vote, with only minor changes in the $359.5 million package. The budget, only rejected by Ward 3 Councilman Kenneth Stokes and Ward 1 Councilman Jeff Weill, makes use of more than $4.2 million from the city's cumulative fund balance, which contains savings left over from previous budget years. The council passed the budget with a clear majority, even though it did not include a $1,000-per-employee pay raise that the Budget Committee asked the mayor to attempt to fund last week.

Daniel McMullen

Eighteen-year FBI veteran Daniel McMullen is the new special agent in charge (SAC) of the FBI's Jackson Division, moving from his most recent position in Los Angeles where he was SAC for criminal matters. FBI Director Robert S. Mueller appointed McMullen to replace SAC Frederick T. Brink, who recently retired.

Gasoline Tax Hike Proposed

The Mississippi Department of Transportation is considering requesting a possible increase of 5-cent per gallon to the state's gasoline tax to bolster the department's budget for new roads and existing road maintenance, reports WLOX. The new tax would be an addition to the state's current 18-cent tax.

Monday, September 14

Justice Association Slams Barbour's Request to Court

The Mississippi Association for Justice is accusing Gov. Haley Barbour of playing politics with a wrongful-death case in Bolivar County. "Haley Barbour's recent motion to the Supreme Court to reconsider a previous decision based on tort reform is inconceivable and ill-advised," said Steve Mullins, president of the Mississippi Association for Justice. "His motion is full of false and politically motivated information, and it violates the separation of powers as intended by our founding fathers."

Most-Endangered Places List Includes Jackson and Raymond Sites

The Mississippi Heritage Trust has unveiled its 2009 list of the 10 most-endangered places. This year's list includes the Hinds County Armory in Jackson and the Ebenezer African Methodist Episcopal Church in Raymond.

Paul E. Winfield

Vicksburg Mayor Paul E. Winfield was one of 18 mayors in the country to participate in the Cities of Service Inaugural Summit last week in an effort to engage citizens in community service initiatives and to provide a platform to address community challenges.

Public Meetings This Week

Monday, Sept. 14

4 p.m., Jackson City Council, special meeting in the City Hall council chambers, 219 S. President St.

Barbour Hosts Small Business Forum

Gov. Haley Barbour will host a small business forum at the Jackson Convention Complex tomorrow from 1:30 until 4:30 p.m. The topic of the forum will include how health care and energy affect small business, reports WAPT.

Friday, September 11

Small Business Associations Recommend Reform

Small business owners are nervous about a potential new round of taxes connected to H.R. 3200, the embattled health-care reform bill being knocked around in Congress.

The Real Deal

People come up to Shaun Patterson after a show and tell him, "We like the covers that you play but we really want to hear more of your original stuff."

New Madison Hospital, Despite Battle

Madison County will soon have a new hospital. The Madison County Medical Center hosted a Sept. 10 groundbreaking ceremony for Madison River Oaks Hospital, a 67-bed hospital covering more than 110,000 square feet. The facility will contain traditional features such as an ICU and ER, as well as a pharmacy, a physical therapy center and a woman's health clinic.

Weekend Happenings

Save Saturday night for the animals at Jackson Zoo's annual Zoo Party. This year's theme is "Malaysian Magic," and proceeds from the event go to the restorations and expansion of the zoo's Asian area. This year's co-hosts are the JFP's own Donna Ladd and Todd Stauffer. A dozen of Jackson's finest restaurants will be serving their best; True to Life will be providing the tunes, and between the silent auction and raffle, you're sure to take home a treasure.

Les Range

With the state unemployment rate at 10.5 percent, Les Range, newly appointed executive director of the Mississippi Department of Employment Security, has his work cut out for him.

Senate Youth Program Accepting Applications

[verbatim] The Mississippi Department of Education is accepting nominations for the 48th Annual United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP). Two Mississippi high school student government leaders will each receive a $5,000 one-time scholarship and a week-long trip to Washington, D.C. as guests of the United States Senate. The USSYP is underwritten entirely by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation.

Thursday, September 10

Myths v. Truth: The Truth Behind HR 3200

With all of the misinformation about health-care reform, how can you tell what's a myth and what's the truth?

Council Seeks $2.6 Million for Pay Increases

The Jackson City Council's budget committee passed a motion yesterday, 3-2, asking the Johnson administration to locate funds to finance a $1,000 per employee pay raise, a cost increase of about $2.6 million, according to the preliminary estimate of Jackson Chief Administrator Rick Hill.

Melton Bodyguard Recio Gets House Arrest, Probation

Michael Recio, who served as a Jackson police officer and bodyguard to the late Mayor Frank Melton, will serve one year of probation for his role in the 2006 warrantless destruction of a Ridgeway Street duplex. Recio's sentence, which includes three months under house arrest, is lighter than the one year's incarceration he faced after pleading guilty in May to a misdemeanor charge of deprivation of rights. On Wednesday, his former colleague, Marcus Wright, who cooperated with federal prosecutors, received a sentence of one year's probation with no house arrest.

Marcy Nessel

Fischer Galleries on North State Street in Fondren has a steady, knowledgeable hand at the helm in art enthusiast Marcy Fischer Nessel. The gallery opened last November, after Nessel's former partner, James Patterson, returned to photography full time, but she's been part of the Jackson art scene for about 12 years, representing artists and helping get them established. Tonight, the gallery features art from the HeARTworks program at Stewpot Community Services.

Chaney Denies Rate Increase

Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney has temporarily denied a 45 percent rate increase for homeowners on the Gulf Coast, saying that he needs additional information. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. requested the increase for the state's three coastal counties earlier this month.

Wednesday, September 9

[Lynch] Why I Lost My Temper

I lost my temper last week, and here's why: After I filed this week's cover story, I headed over to a health-care forum at Lemuria bookstore. The forum, hosted by Fox News commentator Angela McGlowan, featured guest speakers like oncologist Dr. Phillip Ley and Dr. Pat Barrett.

Alison Hogan and Andrew Ross

From the night that Alison Hogan and Andrew Ross met, they never wondered whether they were going to get married. They just assumed it. "It's very cliché," Alison says, "but we had love at first sight. It was an instant connection."

Is ‘Best' Good Enough?

Drew Brees was the NFL's best quarterback in 2008, throwing for 5,069 yards, just 15 yards short of Dan Marino's single-season record. It was all wasted because the New Orleans Saints couldn't stop anybody on defense and finished 8-8.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

NFL football, Tennessee at Pittsburgh (7:30 p.m., Ch. 3): The Titans try to spoil the Steelers' Super Bowl celebration in the league's season opener. … Junior college football, East Central at Hinds (6:30 p.m., Raymond): The Eagles play host to the Warriors' in Hinds' home opener.

Spreading False Fears

Women are stupid. At least that's what the National Independent Women's Forum seems to believe. This week the Republican-leaning non-profit advocacy group aired a television ad with inaccurate information about health-care reform specifically targeting women.

Medicaid Drops Therapies

Adele Krichbaum's son is 18, but he has a 5-year-old's grasp of conversation. "He can learn things as well as anybody, but you have to be able to talk to him and convey the information you're trying to give him," said Krichbaum, who lives in Terry.

Time To Talk Back

A remarkable thing has happened on the way to a national public dialogue about health reform: Bullies (many of them well-funded by industry groups) have taken over the conversation by yelling into microphones.

A Very Good Policy

When Susan Marquez bought health insurance for her daughter, Nicole, she was thinking about covering Nicole's annual gynecological exams and making sure she could get a flu shot.

Drastic Change

A working mother of five children, Monique Davis has been both a have and a have-not. When her husband worked for Verizon in Washington, D.C., the entire family received health coverage through his union, the Communications Workers of America.

‘Massive' Pre-Existing Condition

Since the age of 2, Madeleine Kelly-Kellogg, now 7, has gone through three surgeries to remove a benign brain tumor. After the first surgery Madeleine lost all ability to function on the right side OF her body and underwent two months of therapy to learn how to walk and speak again.

Delaying Treatment

Cornelius Harvey was a 27-year-old barber when, in fall 2005, his stomach started hurting. Harvey could not afford health insurance, though, so he waited. Ignored his stomach pains for several days, thinking that he had a virus.

[Rob In Stereo] Relevancy In Roots

Modern roots music has hit a creative low in recent years. Artists have shown decreasing concern for progressing the genre, focusing instead on "authenticity." Of course, valuing authenticity over progress in any genre is ridiculous and counterproductive.

Chakra Wakening

I have been practicing yoga on and off for a few years now, first taking classes at the YMCA, then Butterfly Yoga, which I still frequent when I can. But lately my schedule has been so hectic that the only way to get my yoga practice in is at home on my own or with a video.

Strange Beauty of Fennel

I spent years casting sly glances at fennel in the produce section before I ever brought it home with me.I was fascinated by the strange beauty of its feathery chartreuse fronds and the folds of its voluptuous, fluted figure. When I finally worked up the nerve to walk across the aisle and put it in my cart, it was love at first sniff.

Killer Ribs

If you go to a restaurant called The Rib Shack, you'd better order some ribs. The Lynch Street barbecue joint just opened in late July, and I recently decided to put its namesake item to the test.

[Stiggers] Of Fear and Hope

Miss Doodle-Mae: "Looks like this summer is just another memory. And what a time it was—a period of anxiety, fear, hatred, and doubt mixed with hope, perseverance and patience.

State Farm Rate Hike an Exit Policy

Democratic Sen. David Baria, D-Bay St. Louis, says State Farm Insurance company's request for a 45 percent rate hike may be an attempt to pull out of the covering the state's coastal areas.

Jarvis Dortch

Since 2006, Jarvis Dortch has worked as a communications coordinator for the Mississippi Health Advocacy Program, which aims to improve health care for all Mississippians, "especially those whose health is threatened by poverty, racism, malnutrition and violence."

Relevancy of Roots

Modern roots music has hit a creative low in recent years. Artists have shown decreasing concern for progressing the genre, focusing instead on "authenticity." The Felice Brothers are a challenge to this turn-back-the-clock mindset.

Former Bodyguard Wright Gets Probation

A federal judge has sentenced former Jackson police officer Marcus Wright to one year of probation for his role in the 2006 warrantless destruction of a private home on Ridgeway Street. The incident attracted controversy as an example of the vigilante approach to crime-fighting favored by former Mayor Frank Melton.

Tease photo

The Young and the Uninsured

Amanda Starnes, 24, is in duress. She learned a few months ago that she suffers from Type 1 diabetes. She is a Holmes Junior College student and unemployed, with no federal or state health aid.

A Sordid History: Manhunt Leader Has History of Violence

The man who allegedly led a group of armed white citizens assisting in a search for a black burglary suspect in Sumner had a history of taking the law into his own hands.

Barbour Bleeds Education

After largely dodging cuts during the 2009 legislative session, public education in Mississippi absorbed the brunt of a new round of budget cuts that Gov. Haley Barbour announced Thursday.

PSC Revokes TelCom Certificates

The Mississippi Public Service Commission announced yesterday that it has revoked the certificates of 53 telecommunications companies to do business in the state. The companies have failed to provide the PSC and the State Tax Commission with required annual reports detailing their business activities in the Magnolia state.

Tuesday, September 8

Many Metro Students Won't See Obama's Speech

President Obama delivered a back-to-school speech to students this morning emphasizing personal responsibility, but not all Mississippi students got the message. The speech, which was televised and available as a webcast on the White House Web site, had attracted criticism from conservative commentators and politicians who considered it an inappropriate political gesture.

[Balko] Don't Tase Me, Sis

"The Police Women of Broward County" takes reality cop TV to new depths.

Downtown Vandalism Creates Tension

John Gomez, associate director of business improvement of Downtown Jackson Partners, vowed that the recent vandalism at Tye's Restaurant & Bar would not significantly upset the organization's attempts to sell the area's assets.

Dr. Aaron Shirley

Dr. Aaron Shirley is challenging those opposed to a government-run public health plan to put their convictions where their mouths are. Shirley says that if they believe what they're saying, they should burn their Medicare cards. "I want to have a demonstration—Boston Tea Party-like—and burn those cards," Shirley told The Washington Times.

Free Paternity Tests Offered

In an effort to increase child support collections, the Mississippi Department of Human Services is offering free paternity tests this month. DNA testing to prove whether a man is a child's father normally run between $300 and $500 dollars, with additional fees for an attorney's assistance more than doubling the cost.

Monday, September 7

[Miller] A Labor Day for the 21st Century

Every year, we celebrate Labor Day to honor the work of everyday Americans who built this country brick by brick, community by community. It's an honorable holiday that pays tribute to honorable work.

Saturday, September 5

College Football: Mississippi State 45, Jackson State 7

Mississippi State began the Dan Mullen era by trouncing Jackson State, 45-7, in Saturday's historic SEC-SWAC game in Starkville.

Friday, September 4

Weekend Happenings

Tonight starts the long weekend Labor Day weekend for most of us, with Monday an official federal holiday. Get the weekend off to a rockin' or rappin' start by heading out for some live entertainment. The choices are numerous, as you'll see when you check the JFP Music Listings page, for the city's most complete list of who's playing where. Tonight, head to 930 Blues Cafe for the incomparable Jackie Bell, or over to Schimmel's for dinner and the music of Dr. D. The Auditorium features Larry Brewer, and Ole Tavern hosts Glasgow and Waco Dead. There are plenty more options, including karaoke, DJs and open mics.

Customers Rallying to Support Schimmel's

Even though Schimmel's Restaurant owner Jay Schimmel declared bankruptcy this week, he says he is optimistic and sees it as an opportunity to restructure and reorganize the Fondren restaurant. "There are four kinds of bankruptcy, and we are reorganizing," Schimmel told the Jackson Free Press. "We feel good about handling our tax situation and being open for another 10 years. This allows us to refocus and carry on with business as usual."

Rick Klein

An employee of Mississippi Public Broadcasting for 28 years, Rick Klein got his first taste of Los Angeles glitz at last month's Daytime Emmy Awards. "Between the Lions," the educational show that Klein helps produce, won three awards, including Outstanding Pre-School Children's Series. Klein and his co-producer, Scott Colwell, received the Emmy for Outstanding Pre-School Children's Series, while writer Keri Horn won for Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series.

Health Fair Today

A health fair to fight obesity is happening today from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Jackson Medical Mall. Sponsored by Community Outreach for Health Awareness, participants will have access to free blood pressure, blood glucose, blood cholesterol and body mass index (BMI) screenings, along with nutritional and fitness demonstrations. Black Entertainment Television (BET) will be filming at the fair for an upcoming documentary on obesity in Mississippi.

Thursday, September 3

Education Falls Under Barbour's Knife

Governor Barbour announced $171.9 million in budget cuts to state agencies today. Education, which accounts for over half of the state's budget, will pick up the brunt of those reductions, after state lawmakers protected it during a tight-fisted budgeting process this spring.

Serendipity Art Show and Auction Today

Twenty years ago patients at the Mississippi State Hospital held their first art exhibit, displaying their paintings, ceramics, drawings and mixed-media work. Continuing that tradition, the 20th annual Serendipity art exhibit takes place today.

State gets D+ for Protecting Water Quality

Mississippi rates a lowly D+ for protecting the quality of natural water sources, according to the Gulf Restoration Network. The organization, an alliance of local individuals and national and regional groups, issued a report card grading how committed (or non-committed) state officials are at incorporating the standards of the Clean Water Act of 1977. The Clean Water Act established goals of reducing national water pollution and eliminating the release of water fouled with high amounts of toxic waste.

Earnestine Bowden

Earnestine Bowden remembers the golden old days of Lynch Street. A Jackson native and a graduate of Lanier High School and Jackson State University, Bowden, 60, used to eat breakfast at the Penguin Restaurant and go out at the Red Carpet Club, when the historic area was bustling.

Northside Sun Praises John McGowan for Outsmarting Environmentalists

One wonders if Northside Sun publisher Wyatt Emmerich is actually working against John McGowan and this Two Lakes project. This week in his column, Emmerich smugly praises the oilman from Texas for his ability to "outsmart" environmentalists:

Red Cross Wants You to Be Prepared

When an emergency strikes, will you and your family be prepared for it? September is national Preparedness Month, and the Central Mississippi Chapter of the American Red Cross wants to remind everyone about the importance of being ready when an crisis strikes, whether the emergency is a heart attack or a hurricane. Knowing what to do can save lives.

Let The Games Begin ... Updated

Saturday's Jackson State-Mississippi State game is the most intriguing so far this season, even if it's a huge mismatch.

Wednesday, September 2

A Delta Manhunt, With Booze and Guns

Federal authorities are investigating an Aug. 20 incident in which armed white citizens, using a military vehicle, helped search for an unarmed black burglary suspect in the Delta.

The Best In Sports In 7 Days

Southern League baseball, Mississippi at West Carolina (6:15 p.m., Zebulon, N.C., 103.9 FM): The M-Braves, who were officially eliminated from the playoff race last week, begin their final series of the season.

Obama To Address Joint Session of Congress

According to The Hill, President Obama will address a joint session of Congress next Looks like Obama will be working to get the talking stick back after a month of tea parties and town halls. It'll be interesting to see if he's only talking about health insurance reform or if there's a wide swath that he's cutting; not that he, Pelosi and Reed will meet to discuss it all the day before.

Art is the Best Revenge

This past Saturday I gave a seminar on freelance writing, and a whole lot of creative people showed up.

It's the Presentation, Stupid!

Ward 1 Councilman Jeff Weill did an odd thing Monday, and it ended up backfiring on him because of the way he did it.

[Stiggers] Funky Vibes

Brotha Hustle: "Aunt Tee Tee and I are back on the scene with our refurbished mini-DVD camcorder, portable work light and high-powered parabolic boom mic.

[Hutchinson] The GOP's Birthers Con Game

Republicans have a nice little con game going with the birthers. Here's GOP Chairman Michael Steele speaking this summer: "The birthers are an unnecessary distraction."

Tease photo

Out of Line: HeARTWorks Bringing Hope to Homeless

Michael Lewis stands in front of a table covered with a sheet of canvas, which he has splattered with colorful acrylic paints in the style of Jackson Pollock.

Mississippi Blues: A Pictorial History of Poverty in the Rural South

The photographs from the "Mississippi Blues: A Pictorial History of Poverty in the Rural South" provide an insight to life in the Delta that is virtually unknown to outsiders.

Tease photo

The World's Window

Promoting cross-cultural understanding through cinema is the goal of the Global Lens film series, which began showing films from around the world in U.S. venues in 2003. It will begin its second run with the Crossroads Film Society this month, screening 10 films at the Mississippi Museum of Art in downtown Jackson.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Set in the Mississippi Delta, "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" is a story about greed, passion and an old man named Big Daddy. New Stage Theatre takes on Tennessee Williams' Pulitzer Prize-winning play in October as this season's American Classic production.

Dogs, Kids and Art

Four Dog Blues band in the Big City; Gents dapper and ladies pretty; Art ball guests will dance all night; Our band will play 'til morning light. Horrrruuuuuuu!

[Herman's Picks] Vol. 7, No. 51

September in Mississippi is when we start to promise ourselves that jacket weather, the state fair and Oktoberfests are just around the corner.

Food as Art

If I were to take a survey of how many people watch some sort of cooking show in a week's time, I would guess that at least three-quarters of you watch some sort of demonstration or commentary on food.

Like a Caveman: F'n Burger

I heard the bang when the F'n Burger hit the table at F. Jones Corner. This menu item—which joins a short list of incredibly good food with irredeemably suggestive names, like the F'n Chicken and the F'n Crab burger—ain't a frozen patty meant for split-second nuking.

Nathan Glenn is on Fire

Nathan Glenn, chef extraordinaire and the executive chef at The Auditorium in Fondren, has recently whipped up a new cooking show idea, "Nathan Glenn Cooks!

[Kamikaze] Blindsided by the Sun

You'd think some newspaper editors would at least have taken the time to do a little more research.

Health-Care Events in Jackson

Two health-care reform events will take place in Jackson tonight and tomorrow representing the opposing viewpoints of the reform debate.

Don't Drink the Water

A month ago, Martin and a handful of neighbors in rural Sunflower County made national news, when ABC Nightly News devoted two minutes to their six-year fight for what many would consider a basic resource and right.

Richard McKey

Richard McKey didn't know he was destined to be an artist. On a path similar to Van Gogh's, McKey first studied pre-ministry at Belhaven College.

JFP Needs Reader Health-care Stories

P.S. We would like to use your real name, and run a picture of you where possible.

All, we're looking for health-care stories from people in and around Jackson to feature in the next issue of the JFP, which will focus on health-care issues. We would like a variety of people: small business owners, unemployed, self-employed, younger, older, recent parents, etc. You can do it several ways: post comments below, e-mail them to me at [e-mail missing] or just send contact info so a writer can get in touch with you. We do need it fast--by the end of the week. But we're not looking for long, complicated stories. So please add your voice to the conversation (and help it be a conversation instead of a shouting match). Be in touch!

Tuesday, September 1

Sports In Politics: Digging Up Jack Johnson

Can't Jack Johnson, boxing's first black heavyweight champion, rest in peace? Many idiotic things that have been said by both Republicans and Democrats in the ongoing debate over health care reform. One of the dumbest was said by a Republican congresswoman from Kansas.

[Balko] Lockerbie and Old Lace

What does a thumbprint at the scene of a Scottish spinster's murder have to do with the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103?

Woodrow Wilson Gets $1.6 Million Facelift

Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. is announcing the groundbreaking of the Woodrow Wilson overlay project today. The announcement will come at a press conference 1:15 p.m. at the corner of Peachtree Street and Woodrow Wilson Avenue.

Ted Duckworth

Ted Duckworth, owner of Duckworth Realty in Jackson, has been the driving force behind millions of dollars worth of development in the city. Graduating from Mississippi State University in 1988 with a degree in real estate and mortgage finance, Duckworth, 42, started his company the following year.

Tennis: Brandon's Britton Shines In Loss

Not surprisingly, tennis god Roger Federer beat Brandon's Devin Britton in straight sets at the U.S. Open on Monday. But the former Ole Miss standout was the star of the Open's first day.

Health Department Urges Measures to Curb Flu's Spread

With the second death in Mississippi from the H1N1 flu, commonly known as swine flu, the state Department of Health is urging parents to teach children the basics of good hygiene. To date, Mississippi has confirmed 586 cases and two deaths, which is not outside the realm of normal flu deaths. Nationwide, about 36,000 Americans die from flu and complications from the illness every year.