Stories for November 2013


Saturday, November 30

Ole Miss Falls to Miss. State in Egg Bowl

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi's Bo Wallace ran toward the end zone in overtime with what looked like the game-tying touchdown. Instead, Mississippi State's Nickoe Whitley smacked the ball out of his hands, Jamerson Love recovered it and a crazy Egg Bowl was over.

Friday, November 29

La. Joins Lawsuit to Block Flood Insurance Hike

Louisiana's Department of Insurance has joined a lawsuit filed by Mississippi against the federal government to try to block rates from increasing Oct. 1 in the National Flood Insurance Program.

Thursday, November 28

Cold Weather Could Affect Egg Bowl

This year's Egg Bowl promises to be brisk by Magnolia State standards, with temperatures expected to hover in the 30s on Thursday night.

Wednesday, November 27

U.S. Says Working with Cuba to Solve Banking Issue

Washington said Wednesday it is working with Cuba to find a new bank for its diplomatic accounts in the United States, after a banking cutoff forced the Caribbean nation to halt nearly all U.S. consular services just ahead of the busy holiday travel season.

Obama Helps Hand Out Thanksgiving Fixings to Needy

President Barack Obama is continuing an annual family tradition by helping to pack bags of food and distribute them to the needy on Thanksgiving eve.

Brazil Under Pressure After Collapse at World Cup Venue

Part of the stadium that will host the 2014 World Cup opener collapsed Wednesday, killing two workers and aggravating already urgent concerns Brazil won't be ready for soccer's signature tournament.

Same-Sex Couple's Wedding a First for Illinois

In a short ceremony inside their Chicago apartment, two beaming brides made Illinois history Wednesday as they became the first gay couple to wed under the state's new law legalizing same-sex marriage.

Pakistani Activists Accuse Outed U.S. Spy of Murder

Rising anger over deadly drone attacks spurred a Pakistani political party Wednesday to reveal the secret identity of what it said was the top U.S. spy in the country. It demanded he be tried for murder, another blow to already jagged relations between the two nations.

Nick Wallace NYC Preview Dinner Menu

Nick Wallace will cook a six-course preview of his James Beard House menu Dec. 2 at BRAVO! Italian Restaurant and Bar.

JFP Top 25: Week 13

Five teams remain undefeated, but only three have a chance at a national championship. Several one-loss teams need two of three undefeated teams to lose so they can steal a spot in the title dance.

The Slate

Can the fate of this year’s Heisman Trophy and national championship game be in the hands of the Florida state attorney?

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Being Thankful

This space is normally for my ranting about the sports world, but I'd like to take some time to be serious.

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At the Mercy of an Audience

The music industry has very little room for pretense. If you write sloppily, play or sing poorly, or look like you've been hit repeatedly with a tether ball since birth, be prepared to have these things called out often and unsympathetically.

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That Scoundrel's Solid Groove

Jackson-based band That Scoundrel is a refreshing taste of good old-fashioned rock 'n' roll.

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‘Catching Fire’: Class Warfare

In “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) once again finds herself fighting to save her sister Prim (Willow Shields).

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Stinker Quote of the Week: 'Perfect'

To say that Walnut Grove has had some problems in the past would be an understatement.

Hey, Leave Those Kids Alone

On the national scene, news of a so-called knockout game where teenagers go around attacking innocent strangers started out on conservative websites but has since been picked up by mainstream news outlets like CNN and USA Today.

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Getting to the Cause of School Brawls

Dr. Cedrick Gray, the Jackson Public Schools superintendent, promises to punish any and all students who violated district rules during a recent outbreak of fighting—as well as social-media promotion of those fights—at William B. Murrah High School.

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Panic Doesn’t Fight Crime

We in the Jackson area have been rocked recently by some horrific murders. My thoughts are with the families and friends of the victims.

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Local Businesses Strike Back

Your local independent businesses help employ many more people than you’ll see on the sales floor.

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Comfort in Tradition

The winter holidays and their emphasis on tradition are a comfort for many people in an age where people's lives are increasingly busy and ever changing.

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Dinner and a Murder

If your evening meals are starting to get boring, you might want to consider keeping company with The Detectives Mystery Dinner Theatre group, a troupe of local actors who perform all over the southeastern region.

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Desk Yoga

Sitting for hours on end at our desk creates tension and tightness through the neck, shoulders, back and hips. Here are a few stretches you can do to relieve tension and re-energize your body and mind.

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Local Gift Guide

JFP's 2013 Local Gift Guide

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DIY With Kids

You can create snowglobes by supergluing small action figures to the lid of a clean jar. Fill jar with oil and glitter, screw the top on tight and flip over.

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Set the Table

Get creative when it comes to setting your holiday table. A fun place card can add a lot of personality to a set of basic linens.

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Alt. Wreaths

In search of the tackiest wreath I could come up, I decided to pay homage to Miss Donna Summer, Disco Queen. I glued the most scratched album I could find of hers behind a used pink wreath form, tied around a silver bead-garland and added disco-ball ornaments. Hint: Use this for inspiration to dress for the next Best of Jackson party.—D.L.

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Homemade Ornaments

Ornaments aren't just pretty, colorful decorations to make your tree festive. They should also tell the story of your life, of the things, people and places that mean something to you.

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Holiday DIY

This year for Christmas, I'm making different types of photo books for each of my family members, documenting different celebrations, trips or fun memories.

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Watkins: The Meridian Angle

Farish Street may be the biggest mess David Watkins has ever stepped in, but it's certainly not the first project he's had to work and re-work.

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Aligning Behind JPS

Shortly after Cedrick Gray wrapped up his Thursday evening press conference, in which he discussed fights at William B. Murrah High School last week, the assembled media hastily packed up their cameras and microphones and silently filed out of the auditorium at Siwell Middle School.

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Libby Story McRight

Although she loved Mississippi State University and hated to leave it, Libby Story McRight knew what she needed and wanted to do.

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So, So Grateful

Thank you for being so engaged in the city’s progress.

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Chef Nick Hits NYC

It's not every chef who manages to score a gig cooking dinner at the famed James Beard House without even owning a restaurant, but Chef Nick Wallace has achieved just that by following the advice of his peers and changing up traditional flavors.

Ahead of Olympics, Russia's Mixed Message on Gays

Anyone who switched on Russian TV recently might have been forgiven for thinking the Kremlin was relaxing its hard line on gays: Images of rainbow flags and a happy same-sex couple looking adoringly at their child flashed across the screen.

Pakistani Party Says It Reveals CIA Station Chief

A political party opposed to U.S. drone attacks in Pakistan revealed what it said was the name of the top CIA spy in the country on Wednesday and called for him and the head of the agency to be tried for a recent missile strike.

China Says It Monitored Defiant U.S. Bomber Flights

China acknowledged Wednesday it let two American B-52 bombers fly unhindered through its newly declared air defense zone in the East China Sea despite its earlier threat to take defensive measures against unidentified foreign aircraft.

Application Released for Miss. Charter Schools

Groups seeking to establish a charter school in Mississippi have until March 14 to submit their applications, though officials may continue to fine-tune the application forms.

Tuesday, November 26

Stacey Pickering Mulls U.S. Senate Run in '14

State Auditor Stacey Pickering says he will run for the U.S. Senate in 2014 if Republican Sen. Thad Cochran does not seek re-election.

Obama's Gatekeeper Now Point Man on Health Care

When Obama assembled his second-term team last January, his new chief of staff, Denis McDonough, increased White House outreach to lawmakers, worked to rebuild relations with the Cabinet and stepped up contacts with business leaders.

Analysis: Nuclear Deal Faces Hard-Line Test

Iran's ability to fulfill its part of a six-month bargain—which includes greater access for U.N. inspectors and a cap on the level of uranium enrichment—will depend largely on the Revolutionary Guard and its network.

White House Welcomes Review of Health Law Dispute

The White House is welcoming the Supreme Court's decision to referee another dispute over President Barack Obama's health care law.

Penny Lane: Gitmo's Other Secret CIA Facility

A few hundred yards from the administrative offices of the Guantanamo Bay prison, hidden behind a ridge covered in thick scrub and cactus, sits a closely held secret.

Police: 7 Wounded in Shootings Near Oakland Park

Seven men were wounded, one critically, when gunfire erupted on an Oakland street and continued for several blocks, police said.

U.S. Bombers Fly Over China Air Defense Zone

Two U.S. B-52 bombers flew over disputed islands in the East China Sea during a training mission Tuesday, defying new territorial claims laid out by Beijing over the weekend, according to several U.S. officials.

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City Holds Nose and Passes Fingerprinting Motion

The City of Jackson was forced to adopt the State Department of Human Services' new policy of fingerprinting parents who get government assistance to pay for child care or risk losing its funding for the program.

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Small Business Saturday, Fischer Reopens, UMMC's 'Landmark' Deal, BCBS Keeps Health Plans

Fischer Galleries is one of many local businesses that will be open for Small Business Saturday Nov. 30.

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John Egerton

Before "foodie" culture had come into vogue like it has today, people like John Egerton were rarer—people who studied and documented regional cuisine without pretension, drawing deep-rooted parallels between a people and their fare.

Police Fire Water Cannon to Disperse Egypt Rally

Egypt's police fired water cannons Tuesday to disperse dozens of activists protesting police brutality in Cairo, the security forces' first implementation of a controversial new law forbidding protests held without a permit from authorities.

Storm Threatens Holiday Travel in East

Snow and ice are forecast for the northeast of the country as a deadly storm that started on the West Coast last week gathers steam Tuesday and powers toward the East in time for Thanksgiving.

France Sends 1,000 Troops to Central African Rep.

France will send 1,000 troops to Central African Republic under an expected U.N.-backed mission to keep growing chaos at bay, the defense minister said Tuesday — boosting the French military presence in Africa for the second time this year.

Miss. to Start Making Voter ID Cards in Early '14

Mississippi's top elections official says the state should start issuing free voter identification cards in early 2014, months before the first election in which people will be required to show photo IDs at the polls.

Monday, November 25

Travelers Cast Wary Eye as Storm Moves Eastward

A winter storm system blamed for at least 10 fatal accidents in the West and Texas threatens to dampen the Thanksgiving holiday for millions of Americans traveling this week.

Prosecutor: Conn. Gunman's Motive Still a Mystery

Why Adam Lanza went on his murderous shooting rampage at a Newtown elementary school is a mystery and may never be known, prosecutors said in a report Monday as they closed their yearlong investigation.

Wallace, Jackson Headline Conerly Trophy Finalists

Mississippi quarterback Bo Wallace and Mississippi State offensive lineman Gabe Jackson are two of the 10 finalists for the C Spire Conerly Trophy, which is given to the state's top college football player.

Rice, Karzai Disagree in Meeting on Security Pact

The White House says National Security Adviser Susan Rice told Afghan President Hamid Karzai that the U.S. will plan to pull all troops out of his country after 2014 if he doesn't promptly sign a security agreement.

Obama Pushes Back on Critics of Iran Deal

Responding to his critics, President Barack Obama forcefully defended the weekend nuclear agreement with Iran, declaring that the United States "cannot close the door on diplomacy."

Obama Invokes Thanksgiving Spirit on Immigration

President Barack Obama invoked the Thanksgiving spirit Monday in search of an immigration deal with Congress, making a pitch for a legislative priority amid a West Coast fundraising swing.

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The Scottsboro Boys

For his alleged participation in raping two white women, prosecutors apparently wanted 17-year-old Haywood Patterson to stand trial first "because he has the blackest skin, the wickedest gleam in his eyes, and the meanest expression on his face," wrote Carleton Beals in The Nation magazine, in the winter of 1936.

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Jackson to Curb Illegal Guns

A Jackson councilman wants to curb the presence of illegal guns with an ordinance requiring gun owners to promptly report lost or stolen guns.

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A Year Later, Feds Inch Forward on Fair Housing

Tonight's episode of "This American Life" will feature a story based on ProPublica's yearlong investigation "Living Apart: How the Government Betrayed a Landmark Civil Rights Law."

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Community Meetings & Events

As part of Thanksgiving at the Zoo, the Jackson Zoo is offering free admission Thanksgiving day.

Filipinos Escape Typhoon Wasteland, but Not Worry

More than 12,000 people displaced by Typhoon Haiyan have made it to the capital. Most are with relatives; those with no family here are in shelters. Many have no idea how or where to rebuild their lives.

UN: Syria Peace Talks to Take Place Jan. 22

Syria's government and opposition will hold their first peace talks on Jan. 22 in Geneva, in an attempt to halt the nearly 3-year-old civil war that has killed more than 100,000 people, the United Nations announced Monday.

Easing of Iran Sanctions Could Start in December

European Union sanctions against Iran could be eased as soon as December, officials said Monday, after a potentially history-shaping deal that gives Tehran six months to increase access to its nuclear sites in exchange for keeping the core components of its uranium program.

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10 Local Stories of the Week

There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them.

Saturday, November 23

Pearl Company Loses Appeal of SOS Sanctions

The Mississippi Supreme Court has upheld an order from the secretary of state's office that alleges a Pearl securities firm operated illegally.

Friday, November 22

Analysis: To GOP, All Roads Lead to 'Obamacare'

All roads lead to "Obamacare" for Republicans.

Afghan Spokesman Rebuffs U.S. Troop Deal Deadline

Afghanistan's president on Friday rebuffed American demands that he sign a security pact allowing U.S. forces to stay in the country for another decade, while the U.S. defense secretary warned that planning for a post-2014 military presence may be jeopardized if the deal isn't finalized by the end of the year.

APNewsBreak: Gun Group Considered Leaving Newtown

The gun industry's national trade association and lobbying organization considered moving its offices from Newtown after last year's mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the president and CEO of the National Shooting Sports Foundation said in an exclusive interview with The Associated Press.

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JPS Superintendent Debunks Fight Myths

After students at Murrah High School used social-media tools to brag about—and in some cases embellish—several fights this week, Jackson Public Schools officials are urging parents to be vigilant about what their children are posting and viewing on the Web and their smartphones.

Police: No Signs of Foul Play in Abortion Doctor's Death

Authorities say Dr. Joseph Booker Jr., who was once the only abortion practitioner in Mississippi, has been found dead at his home in Madison.

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Hispanics Interested in ‘Having Providers Who Can Appreciate Their Culture,’ Medical Leader Says

Dr. Elena V. Rios is president of the National Hispanic Medical Association, which she founded in 1994 and which advocates on behalf of the nation's 45,000 Hispanic health care professionals.

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Matthew Taylor

As the interim general counsel at Jackson State University, Matthew Taylor represents the college in all legal matters, meaning he needs to be prepared to handle any potential legal snafu that could arise.

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It's the Weekend!

On Sunday, Willie Nelson performs at 7:30 p.m. at Thalia Mara Hall.

UK Police: 3 Women Were Slaves 'In Simple Terms'

Three women who were freed from a London home were victims of "slavery in simple terms," and were not trafficked or physically constrained, a senior police officer said Friday.

Reverent Memorials Mark JFK 50th Anniversary

A half dozen Irish soldiers toting guns with brilliantly polished bayonets formed a guard of honor outside the U.S. Embassy in Dublin as the U.S. flag was lowered to half-staff in one of several solemn ceremonies planned Friday to mark 50 years since the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas.

Russian FM Lavrov to Join Iran Nuclear Talks

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov threw his weight Friday behind nuclear talks with Iran, flying to Geneva to join senior negotiators struggling to seal a deal that would see Tehran start to roll back its atomic activities in exchange for sanctions relief.

New Indictment Filed in Miss. Ricin Case

A Mississippi man charged with sending poison-laced letters to President Barack Obama and other officials has been charged with trying for a second time to frame the man first arrested in the case—this time, by having someone else send a poisoned letter.

Thursday, November 21

Democrats Vote to Curb Filibusters on Appointees

Sweeping aside a century of precedent, Democrats took a chunk out of the Senate's hallowed filibuster tradition on Thursday and cleared the way for speedy confirmation of controversial appointments made by President Barack Obama and chief executives in the future.

Gov't Weighs Permitting Cellphone Calls on Planes

Federal regulators say rules against making cellphone calls during airline flights are "outdated," and it's time to change them.

Activists Walk Out of U.N. Climate Talks

Hundreds of environmental activists walked out of U.N. climate talks on Thursday, saying they were deeply disappointed by the lack of results with just one day remaining.

Senate Rewrites Filibuster Rules for Presidential Appointees

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats eased the way for swift approval of President Barack Obama's current and future nominees on Thursday, voting unilaterally to overturn decades of Senate precedent and undermine Republicans' ability to block final votes.

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JPS Responds to Murrah Fights, Rumors

Rumors about a planned shootout at Murrah High School that originated between students on social media and escalated when local news organizations began reporting them "turned out to be largely a non-event that incited students and parents unnecessarily," Jackson Public Schools officials said this morning.

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Crossroads' Tax Return Shows Big Donors, but Doesn't Name Them

Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies is in the crosshairs of campaign finance watchdogs, who have criticized social welfare nonprofits for exploiting loopholes in tax and election rules to be able to pour millions from undisclosed donors into campaigns.

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College Football Fans

On Dec. 3, the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum will award the 18th annual C Spire Conerly Trophy.

Iran: Difficult Differences at Nuke Talks

Seven-nation talks on a deal meant to start a rollback of Iran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief were delayed Thursday as senior envoys from both sides wrestled with a draft they hoped would be acceptable to both Tehran and its six world powers negotiating with it.

Afghan President Wants to Defer Signing of U.S. Deal

The Afghan president urged tribal elders Thursday to support a security deal with the United States, but in a surprising about-face said he would defer the signing of the agreement to the winner of next year's presidential elections, which he is barred from contesting.

APNewsBreak: Companies May Help Destroy Syria Arms

The global chemical weapons watchdog is inviting private companies to bid to get involved in destroying Syria's stockpile of toxic agents and precursor chemicals.

Miss. Prepaid College Tuition Plan Future Unclear

It's still not clear whether Mississippi's prepaid college tuition plan will reopen for additional enrollments, or when that might happen.

Wednesday, November 20

JFP Top 25: Week 12

The JFP College Football Top 25 Poll was the first to notice something special was going on in Durham, N.C. Now, after the team beat Miami, the rest of the college football world is catching up on the Duke Blue Devils.

The Slate

Time sure does fly. It seems like just last week, we were wishing for the start of football, and now both the college and NFL seasons are nearly over.

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What a Year

What a difference a year makes in college football. If it was 2014, the four undefeated schools left would be a lock to be in the four-team playoff—but, as it is 2013, we could see more controversy in the BCS' last year.

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Winning with Harmony

Out of more than 2,000 entries for the Mountain Stage New-Song contest, Jackson-bred and New Orleans-based trio Cardinal Sons rose to the top.

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No Comfort in ‘12 Years a Slave’

In “12 Years a Slave,” Chiwetel Ejiofor takes on the story of Solomon Northup.

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Muslim Culture in a Southern Space

In an America where public American narratives of Muslims are limited to images of terrorists and poverty-stricken refugees, our perception of Muslim history may be similarly warped.

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Establishing and Empowering

Finding mentors, supporters and, sometimes, even commiserators is important. It might be a more formalized approach, such as joining professional organizations and identifying a mentor with whom you meet regularly.

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Rings of Gemstone

The first recorded use of a diamond engagement ring was Archduke Maximilian of Austria's proposal to Mary of Burgundy with a ring containing thin, flat pieces of diamond in the shape of an "M."

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A Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Being a vegetarian or vegan is sometimes a struggle on the holidays, especially the one completely devoted to food. To help out, I've complied a menu with some well-known staples, but with a veggie twist.

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Hard Cider and Bread

Hard cider has to be one of my favorite types of alcohol, and I've wanted to try incorporating it into a bread recipe for a while.

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Sweet Gifts

Tempering is the way to get really professional looking and tasting chocolate, but it can be complicated.

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Vegetable Medley

During the months of October and November, Mississippi produce blooms in the flavors of the upcoming holidays. Here are a few recipes that use all the fantastic produce Mississippi has to offer.

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Thanks, Chef!

If food preparation interferes with family time this Thanksgiving, why not make life a little simpler and pick up part or all of your holiday meal from one of Jackson's delectable local restaurants?

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A Long Way from the Promised Land

SNAP, which has had many names over the years, recently became a casualty of political haggling, ostensibly in the name of fiscal responsibility.

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My Friend, Willie

My late, ineffable friend Willie Morris, gone from us for more than 14 years now, would turn 79 next week. I miss him. Safe to say, everyone who knew Willie misses him. If I could write him a birthday letter, here's what it would say.

City: Get Messaging Right on Sales-Tax Referendum

Ward 6 Jackson City Councilman Tony Yarber made a good point at the council work session Monday night.

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Stinker Quote of the Week: 'Onslaught'

The hypocrisy of whining about crime and then being arrested for committing a rather serious crime is so thick and heavy that this space is too small to adequately address it and all of its dimensions.

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‘Tis the Season to Hustle

Brother Hustle: "It's time for the Hustle family's Compensatory Investment Request Support Group Holiday Season New Entrepreneur Workshop at Clubb Chicken Wing's Multi-Complex. The objective is to help and encourage aspiring street vendors start their businesses during the most wonderful time of the year."

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Nov. 21: Beaujolais Nouveau Day

In France at 12:01 a.m. on the third Thursday in November, Beaujolais Nouveau is released to the French masses. The country celebrates this wine with parties, fireworks, music and festivals.

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Leaf Rules

The one drawback to fall is the plethora of leaves that gather in our yards, which brings on the inevitably not-fun task of raking the piles. The city of Jackson has some do's and don'ts for exposing of your leaves.

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Jackson Talks Crime Solutions

At a forum in Jackson last week, more than 100 people descended on the Mississippi Capitol to combat what organizers called the "recent onslaught of crime in Jackson."

Question o' the Week: What local restaurant dish is your must-have during the holidays?

What local restaurant dish is your must-have during the holidays?

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A Working Public Works?

With all the talk about putting Jackson first, attracting business and teaching kids other parts of American history besides the Christopher Columbus discovery myth, reforming the city's public works department took a back seat during the 2013 municipal elections.

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State Buckles Under Steep College Costs

New information from account-management service, a subsidiary of media conglomerate Hearst Corp., shows that Jackson is among the cities with the highest average student-loan debt.

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Kass Welchlin

Kass Welchlin calls his bike ride from northeast Minneapolis, Minn., to Jackson in 1998 "12 days of the best conversations I had between myself and God."

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Sacrificing the Turkey

If I’m ever going to win the battle for my health, I have to make a drastic change.

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Discover the Difference of Sun Ballet

When it comes to music, Micah Smith has what every performer needs: soul and dedication.

Watchdog Says Weapons Destruction at Sea Possible

A spokesman for the global chemical weapons watchdog says destroying Syria's stockpile of poison gas and nerve agents at sea is a possible alternative to finding a country willing to host the destruction.

Iran's Leader Backs Nuke Talks, With Conditions

Iran's supreme leader voiced support Wednesday for the negotiations over his country's nuclear program, but insisted there are limits to the concessions Iran will make in exchange for an easing of the sanctions choking its economy.

Rio's Olympic Waterways Full of Trash, Sewage

Rio de Janeiro's endless beaches and lush tropical forest will be a photographer's dream during the 2016 Olympics. But zoom in on the likes of once-pristine Guanabara Bay, and the picture is of household trash and raw sewage.

Ex-Vicksburg Mayor Sentenced to About 2 Years

Former Vicksburg Mayor Paul Winfield has been sentenced to just over two years in prison for seeking a $10,000 bribe in exchange for a city contract.

Sheriff: No Charges for Coach Who Bit Player

A Mississippi sheriff said Tuesday that he doesn't plan to file criminal charges against a high school girls basketball coach accused of biting a player on the face during a game.

Tuesday, November 19

Zimmerman Released from Jail After Court Hearing

George Zimmerman has been released from jail hours after his first court appearance on domestic violence-related charges.

Study: Kids Are Less Fit Than Their Parents Were

Today's kids can't keep up with their parents. An analysis of studies on millions of children around the world finds they don't run as fast or as far as their parents did when they were young.

Egypt Revolutionaries Make Return to Tahrir Square

Egypt's revolutionary activists, overshadowed since leading the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak, showed a new vigor Tuesday, scuffling with supporters of the military-backed government in Cairo's Tahrir Square and wrecking a state memorial dedicated to slain protesters only hours after it was inaugurated.

'Apocalyptic' Storm Floods Sardinia, 16 Dead

The Mediterranean island of Sardinia, prized by the jet-set for its white sand beaches and crystal-clear seas, was a flood-ravaged mud bath Tuesday after a freak torrential rainstorm killed at least 16 people, downed bridges and swept away cars.

New Allegation Made Against Zimmerman in Court

George Zimmerman's girlfriend said he tried to choke her about a week ago during an altercation that wasn't initially reported to police, a prosecutor told a judge Tuesday during his first court appearance on domestic violence-related charges.

JPMorgan, Government Finalizes Deal

PMorgan Chase & Co. has reached a record $13 billion settlement with federal and state authorities, resolving claims over the bank's sales of low-quality, high-risk mortgage-backed securities that collapsed in value during the U.S. housing crisis.

Signs of Life Amid Misery Reveal Filipinos' Spirit

As a foreign correspondent working in the middle of a horrendous disaster zone, I didn't expect to see people having a good time—or asking me to play ball.

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Departing Brazilians Detail JSU Thefts

Over the weekend, 27 students from Brazil withdrew from Jackson State University following three incidents dating back to the summer in which the students were victims of crime.

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Iron Horse, Lifelong Learners, Heart Studies and Utilities

All this week, staff members at the Iron Horse Grill (320 W. Pearl St.) are training, cleaning and tying up lose ends in preparation for the restaurant's grand re-opening Monday, Nov. 25.

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Bobbie Gentry

In the summer of 1967, Bobbie Gentry went from being a nightclub songstress in Las Vegas to an international pop sensation with the hit "Ode to Billie Joe," a pseudo-Southern Gothic ballad that drew the nation's attention to the soulful, husky-voiced Delta queen.

Judge to Decide if Zimmerman is Released on Bail

George Zimmerman's arrest following a domestic dispute with his girlfriend marks the latest in a series of brushes with the law he has had since his acquittal in a murder case that sparked nationwide debates about race and self-defense laws.

Russia to Release 7 Foreign Greenpeace Activists

A Russian court on Tuesday granted bail to Greenpeace protesters from Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Italy, New Zealand and Poland, the first group of foreign activists eligible for release from jail while awaiting trial for participating in a demonstration near a Russian oil rig.

Russian Crash Probe Blames Faulty Pilot Maneuvers

The pilots of a Boeing 737 that plunged to earth at the Kazan airport, killing all 50 aboard, lost speed in a steep climb then overcompensated and sent the plane into a near-vertical dive, according to a preliminary report released Tuesday by Russian aviation experts.

Jackson-Based Habitat Receives Award

Habitat for Humanity Mississippi Capital Area along with local law enforcement leaders has won a MetLife Foundation Community-Police Partnership Award for improving the safety and vitality of neighborhoods in metropolitan Jackson.

Monday, November 18

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Nominees Highlight Council Agenda

Jackson's beleaguered redevelopment authority is set to get a makeover Tuesday night at City Hall, when the city council will vote on two nominees to its board.

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Gymnasts Highly Exposed to Flame Retardants

Research suggests that young gymnasts may be exposed to hormone-disrupting chemicals from ingesting or inhaling dust created by polyurethane blocks.

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Reilly Morse

On Nov. 1, Reilly Morse—formerly the managing director of the Mississippi Center for Justice—officially took office as the organization's new president and CEO.

Memorial at Egypt's Tahrir Square Sparks Protest

Where tents once sprouted and giant crowds chanted against their rulers, Egypt's interim prime minister on Monday inaugurated the start of what is to be a memorial to protesters killed in the country's revolutionary turmoil in the center of famed Tahrir Square.

Storms Sweep Across Midwest, Kill 6 in Illinois

Dozens of tornadoes and intense thunderstorms swept across the Midwest on Sunday, leaving at least six people dead and unleashing powerful winds that flattened entire neighborhoods, flipped over cars and uprooted trees.

White House Pushes to Loosen Gitmo Transfer Rules

President Barack Obama is pushing to overcome obstacles to closing the Guantanamo Bay prison, an elusive goal which has frustrated him since he took office.

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10 Local Stories of the Week

There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them.

Saturday, November 16

HUD: Katrina Effort Didn't Seek Low-Income Workers

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has upheld its ruling that the Mississippi did too little to recruit low-income people for Hurricane Katrina recovery work at the Port of Gulfport.

Friday, November 15

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Horhn Hosts Crime Forum, Commits Crime?

Hours after state Sen. John Horhn hosted a forum to fight what he called the "recent onslaught of crime in Jackson," Horhn himself contributed to the city's crime problem by being arrested on DUI charges.

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ACA’s ‘Woodworking’ Effect Playing Out as 91,000 People Eligible for Medicaid Learn They Can Get Coverage

Supporters and opponents of the federal health law still can't decide whether to call it the "woodwork" or "welcome mat" effect—the millions of people currently eligible for Medicaid who are not enrolled and who are expected to sign up as a result of the Affordable Care Act.

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Logan de La Barre-Hays

Jackson native and LSU senior Logan de La Barre-Hays has been named a finalist for two of the world's most prestigious international scholarships, the Rhodes Scholarship and the Marshall Scholarship.

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It's the Weekend!

On Saturday, An Evening with Rickie Lee Jones performs at 9 p.m. at Duling Hall.

China to Ease 1-Child Policy, Abolish Labor Camps

China will loosen family planning rules that limit many couples to a single child in the first substantial change to the unpopular policy in nearly three decades, as leaders seek to address a rapidly aging population.

House GOP Getting its Say on Cancellations

Republicans renewed an assault on President Barack Obama's health care law and his own credibility on Friday as they pushed toward House passage of a measure to let insurers keep offering health coverage that falls short of the law's standards.

Health Exchanges Slow to Attract Young, Healthy

Fears that health insurance exchanges wouldn't attract the young, healthy people needed to make them financially viable are being heightened by the early results of signups in several states.

Lumumba, Barbour: Strong Capital City Helps Miss.

Mississippi's capital city faces a shrinking population, aging infrastructure, financially struggling schools and other challenges, but the mayor and a former governor said Thursday that they believe Jackson's best days are ahead if people work for improvement.

Thursday, November 14

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Pearl Mall: Symbol of Misplaced Priorities?

The Outlets of Mississippi, a retail shopping center located near Interstate 20 in Pearl, opened this morning with ribbon-cutting ceremony that Bryant and other officials attended.

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Contaminated Tribe: Hormone-Blocking Chemicals Found in First Nation Families

Mothers and children of a First Nations tribe living in one of Canada's most industrialized regions are highly exposed to estrogen-blocking chemicals, according to a new study.

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Jackson State Football Team

The Tigers have wrapped up the SWAC East title and earned a spot in the 2013 SWAC Football Championship Game. Jackson State is undefeated so far in SWAC games.

To Help Typhoon Victims, Send Money, Not Stuff

In the aftermath of mega-disasters such as Typhoon Haiyan, experts say there are some basic rules for those eager to do good: Forget the rummage sale clothes, the old toys and the kind of supplies that will only stack up undistributed or damage an already weakened economy. Do send a cash donation to a respected charity.

Domed Refuge Now Cauldron of Misery for Survivors

Close your eyes and hold your breath, and you could imagine you are in a normal sports stadium. You hear a ball bouncing and the children's cheers echoing under the cavernous dome.

Miss. Gov's Budget Proposal: No New Taxes or Fees

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant is proposing a state budget that would put more money into education and public safety but would not increase taxes or fees.

Wednesday, November 13

JFP Top 25: Week 11

Thanks to Stanford upsetting Oregon, only four undefeated teams are left with a legitimate chance to play for the national championship. Currently, Alabama is the only team that is a lock to play in the title game.

The Slate

Congratulations to Jackson State and Ole Miss. The Tigers wrapped up the SWAC East title and will play in their second straight SWAC Championship Game. Ole Miss became bowl eligible for the second year in a row.

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Just When I Think I’ve Heard it All

In this day and age, I think nothing in the sports world can surprise me. Then, a story like Manti Te'o's dead girlfriend comes up.

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Understanding the Sophomore Slump

Though undoubtedly less popular than its peer curses, like "Avada Kedavra" or being on the cover of a "Madden" video game, the "sophomore slump" has claimed many a victim.

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Verdi’s Requiem Returns

The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra hasn't performed Giuseppe Verdi's Requiem in more than 20 years. It's no surprise. The sprawling piece not only exceeds an hour, it also requires a great deal from those putting on the shows.

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Hear Ye, Year Ye!

In November, the British Invasion is coming to the city of Jackson.

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Gods, Tricksters and Strong Women

As the title character, Chris Hemsworth wields a mighty hammer in “Thor: The Dark World.”

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Solid and Sculptural

The corporeal experience of reading or viewing a book is at risk as we move into an age of standardized digital tablets and electronics that provide us with the content we want without the physicality of a cumbersome book.

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Great Coffee Is a Cause

A Mississippi College alumnus with a degree in business administration, Paul Bonds studied where coffee came from, how it grew and who picked the beans. Through his research, he learned a few hard truths.

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FDA May Torpedo Food Movement

As many who follow food and farming news may have heard, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is formulating rules under the Food Safety Modernization Act that could adversely affect small farmers.

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Christianity Without Jesus

"The Jesus who warned of public prayer has no place in their Christianity."

Please, Help Us Get Serious About Transparency

As City Reporter Tyler Cleveland frustratedly reports in this issue and in previous weeks, the quasi-public yet clandestine Jackson Redevelopment Authority has a tendency to recess into executive session when it only has one or two items on its once-a-month agenda.

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Stinker Quote of the Week: 'Future'

The long-range environmental and cost-saving benefits of the way-over-budget, 582-megawatt Kemper County integrated gasification combined cycle have been hotly debated since the project's inception.

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No Apologies, No Excuses for Racist Symbols

Recently on social media I've read a lot of conversation about the state flag and, because of Halloween, white people wearing blackface.

Be the Change: Books for Tots Campaign

What's better than giving a child a book? Through Dec. 13, you can help a child learn how to read.

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A Quiet Push for ‘Kush’

Chokwe Lumumba espouses a view of regionalism that is quite different from the Hinds-Madison-Rankin model, one that aligns with the Jackson-Kush plan.

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The Drug War’s Crossroads

Cedric Willis, who was arrested in 1994 and charged with murder, rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault, and was exonerated 12 years later, doesn't buy the argument that law-enforcement officials don't have enough money to stop the illegal trade.

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The Battle for Downtown, Part I: Watkins v. JRA, et al

In recent years, Watkins has taken credit for several successful renovation projects—the King Edward Hotel, the Standard Life Building and Retro Metro, which renovated a large chunk of Metrocenter Mall.

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Fighting Violence With Yoga

The therapeutic benefits of practicing yoga are well documented, but this coming weekend, the power of yoga will be on display in a different way.

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Catherine Sullivan

Passionate is one word to describe Catherine Sullivan, the executive director of Grace House. Her passion for social justice is obvious in her work with the vulnerable and voiceless citizens of Jackson.

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Movin' On Up ... to Downtown

This week, soon after we ship this issue to the printer, we're packing up our office and moving to downtown Jackson—our first move in almost a decade.

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Black Sun School of Music

Black Sun, a collective formed in January 2013, includes Cassandra Wilson and the members of New York City trio Harriet Tubman—guitarist Brandon Ross, percussionist J. T. Lewis and bassist Melvin Gibbs.

House Oversight Panel Probes Health Website Woes

Probing whether the White House shares blame for health-care website woes, the House's chief investigator is delving into technical issues behind the dysfunctional rollout of

Obama Seeks Time from Congress for Iran Diplomacy

The Obama administration is pleading with Congress to allow more time for diplomacy with Iran, but faces sharp resistance from Republican and Democratic lawmakers determined to further squeeze the Iranian economy and wary of yielding any ground in nuclear negotiations.

Morsi: No Stability in Egypt Unless Coup Reversed

Egypt's ousted President Mohammed Morsi accused the military chief who deposed him of treason in a message from prison read by lawyers on Wednesday, saying the country cannot return to stability until the coup is reversed and those behind it are tried.

DHS Nominee Would Focus on Leadership Vacancies

President Barack Obama's pick to be the Homeland Security secretary said he puts filling key leadership vacancies and improving morale at the sprawling bureaucracy before the department's core counterterrorism mission.

Chaney: Enrollment Still Slow in Health Exchange

Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney says fewer than 150 Mississippi residents have signed up for coverage through a federally run health insurance website.

Tuesday, November 12

Seat Belts on Commercial Buses Delayed 45 Years

After a drunken driver on a California highway slammed into a bus carrying passengers to Las Vegas, killing 19, investigators said a lack of seat belts contributed to the high death toll.

Despite Ruling, Egypt Holds Off on Ending Curfew

A court declared that Egypt's 3-month-old state of emergency expired Tuesday, two days earlier than expected, but the military and security officials held off from implementing the ruling and lifting a nighttime curfew, amid worries that the measures' end will fuel protests by supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi.

Clinton: Obama Should Honor Health Care Pledge

Adding pressure to fix the administration's problem-plagued health care program, former President Bill Clinton says President Barack Obama should find a way to let people keep their health coverage, even if it means changing the law.

GOP Ready to Block Key Obama Court Nominee

Republicans seemed ready to block another of President Barack Obama's picks for one of the nation's top courts on Tuesday, the latest skirmish in a nominations battle that has intensified partisan tensions in the Senate.

Israeli Settlement Plan Sparks New Crisis in Talks

Israel's Housing Ministry said Tuesday it has launched plans for potential construction of thousands of new homes the West Bank, including development of a contentious area outside of Jerusalem, prompting a Palestinian threat to walk out of Mideast peace talks.

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Council Could Front Zoo $1.2 Million

Lately, Beth Poff has been concerned about the Jackson Zoo's dire financial situation, which threatened the park's national accreditation.

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La Finestra, The Manship, and Pay It Forward

La Finestra, a new restaurant owned by local chef Tom Ramsey, opened its doors Monday, Nov. 11.

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Marino Bruce

Marino Bruce spends much of his time researching connections between physical health and the social environment.

Medicaid is Health Overhaul's Early Success Story

The underdog of government health care programs is emerging as the rare early success story of President Barack Obama's technologically challenged health overhaul.

Tons of Aid in Philippines, but Not Where Needed

The day after Typhoon Haiyan struck the eastern Philippine coast, a team of 15 doctors and logistics experts was ready to fly here to the worst-hit city to help.

Miss. Hospital Appeals Discrimination Verdict

The majority-black Greenwood Leflore Hospital Board is appealing an $82,000 award to a white attorney who argued he was a victim of discrimination.

Monday, November 11

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Jackson Honors Those Who Served

On a day made for honoring veterans of American wars, the members of VFW Post 9832 did just that—and in high fashion.

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Health Care Delays Squeeze Patients in State High-Risk Pools

As problems continue to bog down the federal health insurance marketplace,, it's an open question whether people in the risk pools can get a policy in time.

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Anthony McIntyre

In the view of Anthony McIntyre, a 35-year-old veterans advocate, soldiers can receive excellent benefits while serving and once their service ends from a solid network of government agencies and nonprofits.

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Community Meetings

Screen on the Green is Thursday, Nov. 14 at 5:30 p.m. at the Mississippi Museum of Art.

Haiyan Storm Surges Caught Philippines by Surprise

Some officials estimate that 10,000 or more people were killed by Haiyan, washed away by the churning waters that poured in from the Pacific or buried under mountains of trash and rubble.

Kerry Says Iran Rejected Nuclear Deal

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that the major powers were unified on an Iran nuclear deal during weekend talks in Geneva but the Iranians were unable to accept it. He also said critics of the diplomatic effort should withhold their comments until a deal is reached.

Veterans Day: Events and Ceremonies Around Nation

Across the nation, Americans are commemorating Veterans Day with parades, wreath-laying ceremonies, monument dedications and other events.

Saturday, November 9

Evers Historic District Put on National Register

The north Jackson subdivision that includes home of slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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10 Local Stories of the Week

There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them.

Friday, November 8

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Officials Question Drug War's Effectiveness

Lee Vance, an assistant police chief with the Jackson Police Department, participated in a roundtable discussion at the Mississippi Black Leadership Summit, under way at the Jackson Convention Center.

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Heat Waves in Eastern U.S. Will Become Deadlier, Study Says

Heat waves will kill about 10 times more people in the Eastern United States in 45 years than they did at the turn of this century, according to a new projection from researchers.

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Brady Permenter

When William Faulkner fans watch "As I Lay Dying," the limited-run film shot in central Mississippi in 2012 and based on the classic novel, they might recognize a small face on the big screen.

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It's the Weekend!

On Sunday, the Stop Hunger Now Pack-A-Thon is from 1:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. at Millsaps College.

After Senate Win, Gay Groups Shift Focus to Obama

Moments after the Senate passed a historic measure to outlaw workplace discrimination against gays, activists turned their attention toward President Barack Obama and a long-sought executive order that would have the same effect, though on a much smaller scale.

U.S. Added Surprisingly Strong 204,000 Jobs in Oct.

The U.S. economy added 204,000 jobs in October, an unexpected burst of hiring in a month when the government was partly shut down for 16 days. And far more jobs were added in August and September than previously thought.

World's Top Diplomats to Join Iran Nuclear Talks

Four world powers are dispatching their top diplomats to Geneva on Friday to add their weight to negotiations aimed at putting initial limits on Iran's ability to make atomic weapons.

One of World's Strongest Storms Blasts Philippines

One of the strongest storms on record slammed into the central Philippines on Friday, killing at least four people, forcing hundreds of thousands from their homes and knocking out power and communications in several provinces.

State, Federal Charges Brought in MDMR Probe

The former director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, his son and two others have been indicted on federal corruption charges involving hundreds of thousands of dollars in public money.

Thursday, November 7

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Lumumba: Regionalism of Another Kind

During this spring and summer, when the Jackson mayoral campaign season hit its peak, a fierce debate took place about regionalism.

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Are Federal Call Centers Up to the Task of Enrolling Millions in Health Plans?

An administration spokeswoman said that as of Wednesday, federal call centers have received more than 1.3 million calls and they are enrolling people in plans, although she did not offer details.

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Allen Blackwell

Allen Blackwell has an unusual dream: to become the first person to represent Mississippi in the Olympics in the winter sport of skeleton.

2nd Arrest Made in Killing of Mississippi Family

A second suspect was arrested and charged in the abduction and killing of a Mississippi couple and their 7-year-old son, authorities said Thursday.

Senate Nears Historic Vote on Gay Rights Bill

The Senate is headed for a historic vote on legislation outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans, demonstrating the nation's quickly evolving attitude toward gay rights nearly two decades after Congress rejected same-sex marriage.

Olympic Torch Blasts into Space for 1st Spacewalk

A Russian rocket soared into the cosmos Thursday carrying the Sochi Olympic torch and three astronauts to the International Space Station ahead of the first-ever spacewalk for the symbol of peace.

FBI Wants Hacker Who Helped Catch Cheating Lovers

Among five individuals added this week to the FBI's list of most wanted cybercriminals is a former San Diego college student who developed an $89 program dubbed "Loverspy" and "Email PI."

FDA to Ban Artery-Clogging Trans Fats

Heart-clogging trans fats have been slowly disappearing from grocery aisles and restaurant menus in the last decade. Now, the Food and Drug Administration is finishing the job.

Suspect Charged in Deaths of 3 Miss. Relatives

A man suspected in the slaying of three family members from Mississippi was charged Wednesday with arson and two counts of murder.

Wednesday, November 6

JFP Top 25: Week 10

Another undefeated team went down this week as Miami lost to Florida State. Without question, Alabama, Oregon, Ohio State and Florida State are the top four teams in the country.

The Slate

Could the Super Bowl winner already be decided? The Boston Red Sox’s World Series win might have locked up this year’s Super Bowl victor.

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Saving Henderson

Ole Miss guard Marshall Henderson is the Johnny Manziel of SEC basketball—but unlike Manziel's harmless offseason headlines, Henderson's were more of the troubling variety.

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Jackson Showboats: High Hopes for Year Two

The Jackson Showboats are looking to win an ABA title in their second year.

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Passing the Test of Time

The Monkees still spark arguments among die-hard music fans all over.

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Loyalty and Love in ‘Last Vegas’

Industry giants Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Robert DeNiro and Kevin Kline unite in “Last Vegas.”

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Filling the Space

Artist Josh Hailey and local photographer William Patrick Butler are two of the instructors at the new HeARTalot pop-up art studio on North State Street in Fondren.

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Return to San Andreas A Review of ‘Grand Theft Auto V’

“Grand Theft Auto V” is a triumphant return after a few missteps in the series’ fourth installment.

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The People’s Brasseur

Fred Ezelle's warehouse, formerly his father's mattress factory, doubles as his place of business and his makeshift laboratory for crafting homemade beer.

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Elegant Ownership

Finding or keeping clients can sometimes be difficult for a beautician after moving to a new salon, but this wasn't the case for Lakisha Thomas.

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Skin: The Biggest Organ

If you laid an average human's skin out on the floor, it would span about 20 square feet. Three Michael Jordans could fit on it and still have a little room to spare. Your skin is the largest organ in your body and also the most important because it keeps your insides protected.

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Smooth as String

Threading is an ancient hair removal method in India and other eastern countries, but it's gaining popularity in the western world.

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The Barbers of Fondren

Fondrenites may have noticed a new addition to the neighborhood: a small spinning pole with red and blue stripes. Is it a bird, a plane? No, it's the barber pole for Eddie Outlaw and Justin McPherson's new business venture Fondren Barbershop.

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Street Style

We've all heard of "street style," but you shouldn't have to hunt it down. Jackson is the next up-and-coming metropolis, but we have to believe that, and contribute accordingly to make this belief a reality.

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More Than a Trim

Walk into Trim Salon off Mitchell Avenue in Fondren on a random afternoon, and you're just as likely to see an old-school southern Junior Leaguer from northeast Jackson as you are a creative covered in tattoos from the neck down.

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Beautiful People

Please, do not cheapen beauty by thinking it so hollow as to only be about a person’s physical features. Beauty is a tag of victory and completion.

Best of Jackson 2014: Go Vote!

You may have noticed the Best of Jackson ballot in this issue (page 14) or the alert on the cover—it's that time of year again!

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Stinker Quote of the Week: 'Obamascare'

By itself, Doocy's silly comment wouldn't be so bad. But the off-the-cuff comment was the most blatant of a series of attacks and false characterizations the national news network has rolled out against the Affordable Care Act.

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Squeaky Clean Chitterlings

"This Chitterling Season, Pork-N-Piggly Supermarket will make the holiday season affordable and educational for financially challenged customers. Along with lower prices on your favorite holiday foods, Pork-N-Piggly Supermarket will offer free pre-holiday workshops in food preparation and home decoration."

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Henley-Young’s Breakfast Snub

The Henley-Young Juvenile Justice Center will likely not be in full compliance with a 2012 court order to improve conditions at the facility by the time the order expires in the spring.

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Be The Change

Operation Shoestring hosts its annual luncheon at the Jackson Convention Complex Nov. 14.

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Watkins Fighting on Two Fronts

Jackson developer David Watkins is fighting his political foes on two fronts these days.

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The Wild Feathers Take Off

Nashville-based rock band The Wild Feathers performs at Nov. 6 at Rick's Cafe.

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Joyce Helmick: ‘Prove It’

Joyce Helmick has taught school for more than 37 years. In July, she took the leadership reins at the Mississippi Association of Educators, an organization that provides professional development for teachers, and represents their interests in the state Legislature and throughout the public- school system.

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Kirti Naran

Naran opened Incense Salon and Boutique a decade ago with her sister, Rina Patel, where they specialize in hair removal by threading, a practice originated in India.

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Positive Beauty

Making other people feel beautiful makes me feel a little more beautiful, too.

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Expanding Jackson Music, Together

When musician Cody Cox sought to release Goodman County's last album in 2005, he wanted it to be legitimate. A friend had given him the nickname of Elegant Trainwreck, and Cox used the name as somewhat of a label or brand for the work he was producing.

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McQuirter, Greer Wins Signal Change for Hinds Board

Darrel McQuirter and Tony Greer's walloping of their opponents for two seats on the Hinds County Board of Supervisors could be a game changer for the county.

Test Takers Rush to Complete GED

Americans who passed part, but not all, of the GED test are rushing to finish the high school equivalency exam before a new version rolls out in January and their previous scores are wiped out. About 1 million people could be affected.

Analysis: Post-Shutdown, Pragmatism is In

If there's a lesson from Tuesday's off-year elections, it might be that during a time of deep divisions within the Republican Party, staunchly conservative GOP candidates who press ideological positions have difficulty winning general elections in competitive states.

UN: CO2 Pollution Levels at Annual Record High

World carbon dioxide pollution levels in the atmosphere are accelerating and reached a record high in 2012, the U.N. weather agency said Wednesday.

Gay Rights Gains Piling Up; Battles Still Ahead

In Maine, a congressman running for governor came out as gay. In Hawaii, lawmakers girded for a vote to legalize same-sex marriage. And in the U.S. Senate, seven Republicans joined the Democrats in a landmark vote to ban workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans.

Tuesday, November 5

Gay Rights Bill Moves Forward as Opposition Silent

Invoking the Declaration of Independence, proponents of a bill that would outlaw discrimination against gays in the workplace argued on Tuesday that the measure is rooted in fundamental fairness for all Americans.

UN Envoy: No Deal on Syrian Peace Talks Date

After a rocky day of talks, diplomats failed Tuesday to agree on a date to bring Syria's warring sides back to the negotiating table, the U.N's top envoy for Syria said.

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Tea Party Express Makes First 2014 Endorsement: McDaniel Over Cochran

The California-based Tea Party Express came to the Mississippi Capitol this morning to announce that it is endorsing state Sen. Chris McDaniel, a Republican from Jones County, to replace Republican Sen. Thad Cochran in the U.S. Senate.

German Art Hoard Held Unknown Chagall, Matisse

It started with a routine check by German tax inspectors—and resulted in the discovery of an art hoard so vast and spectacular that no one yet knows how the story truly ends.

Inspectors Waiting on 2 Syria Chemical Sites

Global chemical weapons inspectors will visit the last two unverified Syrian chemical weapons sites as soon as security conditions allow in the midst of an ongoing civil war, a U.N. official said Tuesday.

3 Bodies Found in Copiah County

The bodies of three people believed to be members of a missing Mississippi family have been found in Copiah County south of Jackson.

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Mistletoe Marketplace, Einstein Bros. and Edwards Farmers Market

The 33rd annual Mistletoe Marketplace opens at the Mississippi Trade Mart Thursday, Nov. 7, and runs through Saturday, Nov. 9.

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Lolly Barnes

Lolly Barnes, the executive director of Mississippi Heritage Trust, has a passion for history.

Kerry: U.S. Will Get Surveillance Right

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is vowing that a review into NSA surveillance activities will ultimately result in the "right" balance between security and privacy and says outrage over alleged espionage and eavesdropping should not disrupt key trade talks between Europe and the United States.

Senators Grapple with Health Care Rollout Woes

A month into the rollout of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul and no end to problems, the senior administration official closest to the law's implementation will answer questions Tuesday from a Senate panel that wrote much of it.

3 Special Elections for House Seats Tuesday

Special elections are scheduled Tuesday to select people to serve the remaining terms in three Mississippi House districts.

Monday, November 4

Gay Rights Bill Heads for First Hurdle in Senate

The Senate prepared to push a major, anti-bias gay rights bill past a first, big hurdle Monday, a clear sign of Americans' greater acceptance of homosexuality nearly two decades after lawmakers narrowly rejected discrimination legislation.

Voters to Decide Elections Coast to Coast Tuesday

From rural Iowa to urban New York, voters across America will render judgment in a slate of political contests Tuesday.

High Court Could Soon Take Up New Abortion Case

The Supreme Court on Monday declined for now to jump back into the long-running legal fight over abortion, but a flood of new state restrictions has increased the chances that the issue soon will be back before the justices.

U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Killen's Appeal

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected the appeal of Edgar Ray Killen, convicted in 2005 for the 1964 slayings of three civil rights workers in Mississippi.

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Controversy Roils Around Abortion Clinic

Preacher Flip Benham and his band of anti-abortion protesters from Operation Rescue America descended on Jackson Monday, two days after a pro-abortion rights rally at Jackson Women's Health Organization, or JWHO, the state's sole remaining abortion clinic.

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Why Broke: Two Competing Story Lines

This weekend brought more than a modicum of clarity to what happened behind the scenes in the run-up to the Oct. 1 launch of

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Eric Walker

Reporter-turned-activist Eric Walker is the project curator of the Fate of Hate campaign.

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Community Meetings

The Mississippi Black Leadership Summit is Wednesday, Nov. 6 and Thursday, Nov. 7 at Jackson Convention Complex.

White House, Lawmakers: No Clemency for Snowden

The White House and the leaders of the congressional intelligence committees are rejecting former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden's plea for clemency.

Thousands Protest at Former U.S. Embassy in Iran

Tens of thousands of demonstrators packed the streets Monday outside the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran in the biggest anti-American rally in years.

VIPs Join T-shirt Protest of Russia's Anti-gay Law

Jonah Hill and Kristen Bell are among a batch of celebrities donning Russian-language "Love Conquers Hate" T-shirts to show support for gays in Russia alarmed by a new law banning pro-gay "propaganda."

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10 Local Stories of the Week

There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them.

Saturday, November 2

Louisiana, Mississippi: Fs for Premature Births

The March of Dimes has given Louisiana and Mississippi grades of F for high premature birth rates, noting that both states have large numbers of uninsured women and women who smoke.

Friday, November 1

Gunman Kills TSA Agent at LAX, Injures 2 Others

A man with a semi-automatic rifle opened fire at Los Angeles International Airport on Friday, killing a TSA employee and wounding two other people in an attack that frightened passengers and disrupted flights nationwide.

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Food Stamps Cuts Hit Today for 663,000 Mississippians

The 663,000 Mississippians who receive food-stamp benefits will need to shop smarter starting today, as the federal government rolls back the program's benefits across the country.

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A Punk Carnival: The So So Glos

It doesn't take long to figure out where Brooklyn's The So So Glos come from.

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James Brown

Tate Taylor, Jackson native and the director of "The Help," starts shooting "Get on Up," a biopic of James Brown's life, in Natchez today.

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It's the Weekend!

On Sunday, Stars of American Ballet is at 4 p.m. at Thalia Mara Hall.

Germany: Prepared to Speak with Snowden

Germany's top security official said Friday he will try to find a way for Edward Snowden to speak to German officials if the former National Security Agency contractor is willing to provide details about the NSA's activities including the alleged surveillance of Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone.

Congress Governs Self Under 'Obamacare'

Members of Congress are governing themselves under President Barack Obama's signature law, which means they have great leeway in how to apply it to their own staffs.

Bryant Rescinds Part of Order in Insurance Dispute

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant is backtracking from part of an executive order he issued in a dispute between the state's largest insurer and a hospital company.