Stories for October 2002


Thursday, October 31

Does Your Vote Matter?

Read what civil-rights fighter Bob Moses, former Gov. William Winter, Jackson State professor C. Liegh McInnis, stay-at-home dad Greg Griffith, Millsaps student leader Jessica Knight and other Jacksonians say about voting. Their thoughts may surprise you

Tease photo

Injustice Everywhere

The meeting, at Freelon's Restaurant on Mill Street, was called to organize support for controversial African-American attorney Chokwe Lumumba, who may be disbarred by the Mississippi State Bar. Lumumba, founder of the New Afrikan People's Organization, is a nationally known attorney who has vigorously represented African Americans, ranging from the late rapper Tupac Shakur to the exonerated defendants in the New York Brinks armored-car robbery case.

Rob McDuff

Robert B. McDuff, 46, looks too rumpled and carefree to be about to argue the Democrats' congressional redistricting case before the U.S. Supreme Court in December. But, a cursory look around the Jackson attorney's office—in a slightly crumbling North Congress house with crooked steps and peeling gray paint—reveals that he's about more than power. He wants to make a difference.

Monday, October 28

Dr. S Considering Retirement

Perhaps Dr. S should quit while he's ahead. Far, far ahead. It's true, Dr. S achieved perfection in his football picks over the weekend, going 4-0. If the good doctor was a Euro, he would quit now.

Sunday, October 27

First Stop, Pakistan, by Katherine R. Dougan

The Derek Trucks Band brings its multicultural sounds and "joyful noise" to Hal & Mal's Halloween night.

Friday, October 25

Halloween on Ice?

Jackson's favorite hockey team, the Bandits, return to the Mississippi Big Barn Saturday for a game with the Ar-Kansas Riverblades at 7:05 p.m. The ghoulish details ...

Thursday, October 24

Eli Vs. The Doobie Brothers

Dr. S weighs in on this week's headlines:

News item: Arkansas defensive co-captain Jermaine Brooks was kicked off the team Wednesday after he was charged with felonies alleging drug possession, drug distribution and simultaneous possession of several rifles and handguns. Officers found $16,841 in Brooks' apartment six blocks northeast of Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, Ark. Brooks is the third Arkansas starter to be arrested this year. Defensive back Ken Hamlin served nine days in jail for a second offense driving while intoxicated charge. Running back Cedric Cobbs was sentenced to 20 hours of community service, six months of probation and fined $700 for marijuana possession, driving while intoxicated and speeding. Both remained on the team.

Wednesday, October 23

Art Meets Politics

For the artist, these tense political times offer other perplexing questions: Do I stifle my creative voice to be politically correct? Can I provoke and titillate my audience without alienating them? Will I, like poet Amiri Baraka, be publicly chastised for my views?

The British Are Coming, by Herman Snell

British indie-pop invades Martin's Sunday night.

The birth of MTV in August 1981 was boycotted and banned in Jackson. I wanted my MTV. So at the tender age of 11, teen angst set in. Months later, the local cable company gave in to the pop gods, and my musical education began.

Readers, Advertisers and Community

The Jackson Free Press, as with any for-profit publication, is designed to appeal to two constituencies: the reader and the advertiser. In these pages, the reader will find examples of the writing, research, coverage and reporting that they can expect from the Jackson Free Press.

Benito and Fester

Dr. S is very happy about the Angels' 2-1 lead over the Sons of Satan in the World Series. Have you checked out Giants catcher Benito Santiago? The guy looks rough. I didn't know you could still play in the majors at age 60. Wasn't he the guy Alan Ladd killed at the end of "Shane"?

Tuesday, October 22

The Edge of Night

Dr. S here with ... wait a minute, this just in: Alabama has scored another touchdown on Ole Miss. OK, Dr. S did somewhat better this past weekend, going 4-2 in his football picks. Alcorn State and Hinds CC let Dr. S down ... no, they let AMERICA down. In case you didn't know, Dr. S is taking part in a sleep deprivation experiment that will culminate in the first official issue of the Jackson Free Press. Where's the No-Doz?

Monday, October 21

Fruits of Change

Cover art by Ramona Ward

Bob Dylan wrote "The Times They Are A'Changin'" 40 years ago and far from Mississippi. But the sentiment applies here and now; young creatives who couldn't be any more different are sharing a common goal — change — and working to make it happen.

World Series Party with the Senators

From David Blount: "Although the Senators season ended last month, baseball season reaches its climax Saturday with the World Series. The Angels and Giants play Game One Saturday night on FOX (hope you have cable!). The Jackson Senators are sponsoring a free World Series party on Tuesday night for Game Three. The event will be held at the Clarion Hotel (by the Coliseum, formerly the Ramada) on Oct. 22 at 6:30. There will be a complimentary buffet, door prizes, and an update on some good news concerning the Senators and Smith-Wills. It's free, so please pass the word. For more information and to RSVP please call the Senators office at 362-2294.

First, Do No Harm

"Let's all just avoid being bitten by mosquitoes," warns Dr. Robert Hotchkiss of the Mississippi State Department of Health. At the Aug. 30 Jackson City Council meeting, Hotchkiss promoted the state's "Fight the Bite" campaign, which includes billboards and residential door hangers that advise: "Use mosquito repellent with DEET according to the label. Spray clothing with repellants containing permethrin or DEET." The door hanger, however, leaves out some pertinent information: possible dangers of DEET.

Saturday, October 19

Green Peace, Anyone?

We are proud to report that the JFP acknowledged the burgeoning peace movement in Jackson before other local media. Hopefully, they'll all keep reporting that not everyone in Mississippi is behind the current war efforts. And don't miss Claretta Hasberry's Free Press Facts about James O. Eastland that appear at the end of this story.

Test Drive: Room in a VUE

"It's too big," says Ms. D, with clear-eyed disdain. We were driving up to the Saturn dealership on I-55 and High Street, looking at a row of nearly identical Saturn VUE models.

Friday, October 18

I'm The Real Dr. S

Oh yeah, while Dr. S is thinking about it: Anaheim Angels will win the World Series in 6 games.

Dr. S will do better this week. So accept no substitutes. But if you pick more games correctly than he does, he will send you a crisp $100 bill allegedly given to him by a Mississippi State football player*. Remember, these picks are for entertainment purposes only.

Thursday, October 17

Weird World of Sports, Part 1

If American soccer players behaved this way, the game would be much more popular in the United States. Former international player Stig Toefting, a member of the Danish World Cup team this year, on Tuesday was sentenced to four months in prison for assaulting two restaurant employees in downtown Copenhagen, Denmark, this summer.

Wanted: A Fairy-Tale Affair

The Free Press' own Bingo Holman got married at Graceland last week. You can be a wife and a feminist, you know. Read on.

Chutzpah, Y'all

Then, she pursued Madonna, JFK Jr., the New York Yankees and the beautiful people at the Cannes Film Festival. Now, it's the Sweet Potato Queens and congressional candidates at the Neshoba County Fair. Photographer and New Yorker-turned-Jacksonian Suzi Altman knows who she wants to shoot and how to chase them down, sometimes wearing a "Girls Kick Ass" T-shirt. "I am quick, little and determined," said the 5-foot-3 Altman.

Wednesday, October 16

Jackson Filmmaker Debuts on HBO

The sunset-tinged gray wall has a blush that mirrors my own at being caught crying over a movie in public. I'm in the office of Dollarhide Films on the top floor of the Lamar Life building that overlooks the governor's mansion on Capitol Street. I sit next to filmmaker Jim Dollarhide, watching the Academy Award-nominated "Lalee's Kin: A Legacy of Cotton," a documentary that premiered Sept. 18 on HBO. The film, which won the Sundance cinematography award last year, depicts the trials of a poor African-American great-grandmother, Lalee Wallace, in the Mississippi Delta, a region only half-a-step removed from slavery. Dollarhide knows the film is likely to prickle some neck hairs in his home state: "There are a lot of people who aren't going to like this at all."

Tuesday, October 15

Bandits Go Boom

Here's an unlikely, but very cool pairing: Hockey and the Sonic Boom of the South. The Jackson State band will be on hand when the Jackson Bandits play their home opener on Friday night at the Mississippi Coliseum against the Baton Rouge Kingfish at 7:05 p.m. The Boom will perform both outside and inside the Big Barn. Hockey and music lovers should get those tickets now.

Shaking Hands

The last time I shook David Bowen's hand, he was a congressman, and I was a Stennis Scholar at Mississippi State. The scholarship generously provided a trip to Washington, D.C., the summer between my junior and senior years. My fellow scholar, Jim Young (now an attorney in Jackson), and I were sent north. It was my first time going anywhere near the Mason-Dixon Line.

Studying That Good Ol' Way, by Nina Parikh

When I toured through the Delta three years ago with the acclaimed filmmaking brothers, Joel and Ethan Coen, I don't remember listening to music. It's possible we even drove in silence as they looked at locations to shoot their film, "O Brother, Where Art Thou?." If we listened to anything, it certainly wasn't bluegrass or roots or any songs that T. Bone Burnett would later put on the soundtrack, which quickly became the hottest "new" music in the U.S.

Fester's Facts

Whoops, scratch that. Instead, it's time for our raving correspondent Fester:

It's time again for our prophet crying out in the wilderness, our hope in a hopeless world, the voice of reason in an unreasonable universe ...

Cracked Crystal Ball

Dr. S was 3-3 in his college football predictions this week, but he's NOT SATISFIED with .500 mediocrity. If he was willing to put up with being good enough, he would have kept his job as a WorldCom accountant.

Between Heaven And Hell

Dr. S is seriously bummed that Satan's Spawn (aka the San Francisco Giants) defeated his beloved St. Louis Cardinals (the real America's team) in the National League Championship Series. But at least half of Dr. S' World Series prediction came true as the formerly hard-luck Anaheim Angels advanced to the World Series for the first time in their mostly woeful 40-year history. But there will be no sympathy for the devil. My pick: Angels over Beelzebub & Co. in 6. Why? Because Gene Autry wanted it that way (a pity he died too soon to see it). And because the Rally Monkey rules. Check him out at

Monday, October 14

Lifting As We Climb

The women wore breathtaking hats to hear Lerone Bennett Jr. A gargantuan canary-yellow feather creation was perfectly calibrated to match the wearer's canary-yellow suit. A bright-pink straw hat had big pink plastic roses encircling the brim. And, on the head of a younger woman, a red glitter cowboy hat winked a hint of ironic non-conformity.

Friday, October 11

Foo-ball, Foo-ball

So you say, "Dr. S, your prediction of a Cardinals-Angels World Series isn't looking so hot, especially since the Giants are up 2-0." Wake up and smell the conspiracy, people. FOX has ordered the Cards to make this a 7-game series so Rupert can make some money. It's "The X-Files" all over again. Meanwhile, turn off those Mulder and Scully reruns and check out this college football ....

Links and Leads

First of all, check out the nifty links to sports sites on the SportsBlog. You're welcome, dang it. There are more to come. If you insist on making a request, drop Dr. S an e-mail. Now, we return to our regularly scheduled message.

Wednesday, October 9

La Reina Latina

The best, most exciting thing about being queen of Jackson's annual Latino Festival is the free food. At least that's what outgoing 2001 Queen Nicole Marquez, 19, says. Kind of Sandra Bullock meets Daisy Fuentes, Marquez has the low-pitched, likable voice of a television reporter; in fact, she joined WLBT Teen News when she was 16. She is easy to spot at this year's festival, held Sept. 14 at LeFleur State Park. She's the one with the crown — but not for much longer.

And Now A Word From Woody

Facts? Dr. S don't need no stinkin' facts. Here's proof of that as our raving correspondent Woodward, uh, Fester checks in from Red Stick ...

Tuesday, October 8

I Like Ike

By Katherine R. Dougan "This is Ike Turner," the low-voiced caller said. I thought: "Yeah, right," and said, "Who the f*** is this, really?" "This is Ike Turner."

Close Call

Sept. 11 brought a reprieve for a Farish Street building that housed many of the early machinations of the country-blues movement. On Aug. 9 the front façade of Brown Furniture Building at 225 North Farish Street started bowing after construction crews ripped up the sidewalks in front. Apparently, the sidewalk was holding up the bricks in the front façade; when the sidewalk went, the building was in danger of going, too. So the city wanted to rip it down.

Monday, October 7

Tears, cheers, fears and too many beers

Dr. S here, still trying to wash out the pepper spray I took in the face last Saturday during the postgame celebration after Ole Miss upset sixth-ranked Florida, 17-14. Meanwhile, here's a few notes to tide you over until my brain and vision clear (Did I mention that my Cardinals-Angels World Series pick is looking good?) …

OK, so I was wrong

It was a disastrous weekend for Dr. S. in the football prognosticating department. But hey, in baseball, my World Series matchup of the St. Louis Cardinals and the Anaheim Angels is looking great. Out with the hated Yankees. Out with the upstart Snakes.

Sunday, October 6

Highty, Tighty, Gosh a Mighty ... Who Cares?

Back home after having Frank's biscuits for lunch, Todd plops down in front of the TV. "Look, Ole Miss is about to beat Florida. And they're ranked No. 6," he says, excitedly. Mississippi State alum that I am, I start watching the TV screen in a rather bored fashion. Suddenly, I realize that the man I love and who has routinely cheered for State with me is rooting for Ole Miss. He even supported my team against his alma mater, Texas A&M in the bowl game a couple years back (he knew I'd be hard to live with if State lost). Now, though, he's betraying me? What the ....?!? "Well, they're the Mississippi team. We've got to root for Mississippi teams. And they'll tear down the goal posts." I'm starting to realize that my Texas man is truly becoming a Mississippian -- except, well, you can't root for both State and Ole Miss. Not in the same lifetime. He oughta know that; he's from a football state. When's the last time Mr. A&M cheered on Texas, eh? I keep shooting him dirty looks through the end of the game, even as Ole Miss students rush the field. Later, I will hear that Texas Tech beat A&M today. Well, then.

Saturday, October 5

Anywhere But Here

We went crazy in June and painted our sun porch Martha Stewart Monarch Red, a brilliant terra-cotta that glows like a furnace when viewed from the street. It was our first real step toward turning the little brick ranch house in the middle of Northeast Jackson into home. For five years, we had kept the interior in pleasing neutral tones so it would be easier to resell. In my mind I was always leaving, moving onto the next big thing. The elusive place I thought I'd call home was anywhere but here.

Friday, October 4

Ultimate Disk Southern Regionals

The city of Jackson and the Mississippi Ultimate Disk Association are hosting the 2002 Ultimate Disk Southern Regionals this Saturday and Sunday in Butts Park. Teams from Mississippi, Texas, Florida, Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee will compete, with up to 1,000 people expected to attend. "Ultimate," as this sport is called, began in the early 1960s an universities around the U.S. Stanford University even awards full scholarships, and Ultimate is considered a varsity sport. Visit the Ultimate Players Association's Web site at and see for special details on the Jackson events.

"Easy" Reading

There's a good feature on Ole Miss quarterback Eli "Easy" Manning in Friday's USA Today. Eli doesn't get caught up in the hysteria and hype of being the son of Ole Miss' most famous player, Archie. Highlights of the article include:

Another precinct heard from

Readers, we now bring you a report from Fester, our roving correspondent in Lower Louisiana. Fester was an eyeball witness to LSU's 31-13 victory over Mississippi State last Saturday at Death Valley. Fester called it "another disheartening coulda-shoulda-woulda effort (by the Bulldogs) ... It's just too bad that Jackie Sherrill has not been able to instill a spirit of competition amongst his Mississippi State troops who appear on the brink of another disaster. Even routine travel arrangements became a challenge for the forlorn Bulldogs, whose flight home was delayed while school and law enforcement officials searched for the AWOL Dontae Walker, who was ultimately located at the buffet table at Ryan's Steakhouse."

Sun/King 5K Run/Walk for Habitat

Remember the 3rd Annual Sun King 5K Run/Walk in memory of Ernest Davidson

Saturday, Oct.5, 2002, 8 a.m. Race will start and finish at St. James Episcopal Church This year' s event will benefit St. James' Habitat for Humanity projects.

Don't cry for Slash

The New Orleans Saints have been Mississippi's NFL team since they kicked off in 1967 (God help us). So much so that the Saints even have a ticket office in Jackson. And Saints games are on the radio on WJDX-620 AM. When WDBD switched from the Fox network to the WB in 2001, fans who wanted to watch the Saints on TV were largely left in the lurch. Of course, the Saints were so bad in the second half of last season that few people wanted to see them anyway. Talk about kicking it old style.

Air Belhaven

If you want some fresh air and entertaining football, check out Belhaven College sometime. The Blazers play Bethel (Tenn.) on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Newell Field. The ancient stadium is on Riverside Drive behind Bailey Magnet School.

Wednesday, October 2

Hockey in Mississippi!?

I'll be honest: I still can't quite mesh hockey with my home state. And, truth be known, I have a hard time understanding the game even though I used to attend University of North Dakota games when they were No. 1. But it is an amazing clash of testosterone and graceful moves, so I'm in. I see that the Jackson Bandits' first game is Oct. 18. We've got to get out to support our home teams; buy your season tickets now at 352-PUCK. See for a full schedule.

Pigskin and Horsehide

Dr. S here with good news and bad news for college football fans. Good news: Ole Miss and Mississippi State both have pivotal SEC games on Saturday. Bad news: they're both going to lose. Remember folks, these predictions are for entertainment purposes only. So don't blame me …