Saturday, April 30
Dallas Drafts MSU's Dak Prescott, First Cowboys QB Draft Pick Since 2009
The Cowboys took Mississippi State's Dak Prescott with the 135th overall pick in the fourth round of the NFL draft Saturday, two days after a failed bid to trade up for another first-round choice so they could get Paxton Lynch of Memphis.
Friday, April 29
Judge Orders Madison County Pay $3 Million in Bond Payments
Madison County may appeal a federal judge's order that it pay $3 million in bond payments related to a development project.
Sanders, Gibbs Join Green in Seeking District 72 Seat Campbell Is Vacating
Corinthian Sanders and Debra Hendricks Gibbs are running for the Mississippi House seat in District 72, which Rep. Kimberly Campbell is leaving.
TV Pundit Who Claimed CIA Ties Pleads Guilty to Fraud
Former cable news pundit Wayne Simmons admits he's a fraud. And he admits he's a felon. But despite all evidence to the contrary, he remains adamant that he was a CIA man.
Reflections on Islamic Heritage Month
The Islamic Heritage Festival is Saturday, April 30.
A Worker's Right to Safety: 'You Shouldn't Have to Die to Make a Living'
The Workers' Center reports that at least 60 to 100 workers are killed in Mississippi workplaces each year, with more than 11,000 workers injured.
Growing up in Washington, D.C., Monique Davis grew to love art early on. Her mother regularly took her to local art museums since admission was free.
Couple Hosts Islamic Heritage Festival in MMA's Art Garden Saturday
The International Museum of Muslim Cultures hosted its first Islamic heritage celebration this month after Mayor Tony Yarber proclaimed in March that April would serve as Islamic Heritage Month.
Mississippi's Premature Birth Rate Leading to High Infant Mortality, State Offers Solutions
Working to reduce the state's high infant mortality rate without addressing premature birth rates is a bit like putting the cart before the horse.
City Lobbyist Synarus Green Running for Rep. Kimberly Campbell's Seat
Synarus Green is the first candidate to publicly announce he will run for Rep. Kimberly Campbell's seat in the Mississippi Legislature.
Punishments But No Criminal Charges in US Attack on Hospital
Administrative punishments but no criminal charges have been leveled against U.S. military personnel for mistakes that resulted in 42 people dying in last year's attack on a civilian hospital in Afghanistan operated by the medical charity Doctors Without Borders, officials said.
Violence Follows California Trump Rally, About 20 Arrested
Raucous protesters and supporters of Donald Trump violently confronted each other in California leading to some 20 arrests as the Republican presidential contender brought his campaign to conservative Orange County.
Ole Miss to Investigate Tunsil's Comments on Receiving Cash
Mississippi says it will investigate former offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil's comments that he accepted money from a member of the football staff while playing at the school.
MSU Boosts Fundraising Goal to $1 Billion by 2020
Mississippi State University is raising the goal of its current fundraising drive to $1 billion by 2020.
Thursday, April 28
Public-school Tests Glitch Across State
Twelve thousand Mississippi students spent nearly 20 minutes unable to take their Mississippi Assessment Program tests yesterday morning.
Mayor: New 'Pothole Blitz' Benefits Ward 7 First, Not Yarber's Street
Mayor Tony Yarber announced on the night of April 26 the beginning of what he described as a "pothole blitz" across the city, addressing and fixing potholes on select streets in each ward.
Rep. Kimberly Campbell Resigning to Run Mississippi AARP Group
A state representative is leaving the Legislature to lead the Mississippi chapter of the AARP.
The bulk of the picks in the draft have to wait until Saturday to hear their names called during rounds four through seven. It could be then before former Mississippi State University cornerback Taveze Calhoun gets snatched up.
Reports: Prescription Drugs Found with Prince at Death Scene
Several news organizations are reporting that prescription drugs were discovered with Prince when he was found dead in his Paisley Park home.
South Korea: Suspected Midrange North Korean Missiles Fail
Two suspected powerful intermediate-range North Korean missiles failed to launch Thursday, South Korean defense officials said, bringing the total to three apparent failures in recent weeks.
Wednesday, April 27
Maureen Ryan Named Dean at USM's College of Arts and Letters
The University of Southern Mississippi has appointed Dr. Maureen Ryan as dean of the College of Arts and Letters.
The Wrong Side of History
Even though (HB 1523) may secure your position with religious conservatives, you, sir, will someday realize that you are on the wrong side of history.
Are We Free?
Are we really free when state government can take control of our citizen's property?
No Lead in Jackson’s Tanks
For the first time since January, the levels of lead in water sampled from the City of Jackson distribution system have tested below the EPA-mandated amount.
Amazing Teens 2016
A major part of our mission at the Jackson Free Press is to highlight the positives in the metro area. These 14 teens plus this week's Jacksonian are part of how we achieve that.
Expanding Palates, Expanding Horizons
Matthew Freeman, a counselor at Provine, founded the Provine Culinary Society in 2014 with the goal of exposing to students to healthy, diverse and international cuisine they could find in their own communities.
I’m Staying, and I’m Fighting for Jackson and Mississippi
I promised my husband that I would not leave Mississippi. I looked him in the eye, and I told him that Jackson, Miss., would forever be my home, come what may. I would fight, with him, for Jackson as long as it took, I promised.
Hosemann Wrong on Voter ID, Right on Election Reform
The state's election laws and rules are outdated, and if you don't believe us, just go back and read about the two contested election races that shadowed the beginning of the 2016 session.
An American in a French Bathroom
Bonjour, monsieur," she said sweetly, as she mopped around my feet. "Oh this is so uncomfortable," I thought to myself as I stood at the urinal and replied, "Bonjour, madam." I love France, but one thing that I will not miss when I leave is having women in the men's restroom.
The Curious Case of What the #MSLeg Passed, What It Didn’t
With their right to spend their campaign donations on mortgages, automobiles, clothing, tuition payments or non-documented loans still firmly in place, state lawmakers closed up shop early and skipped town last week.
Coke Bumaye: Back for More
It's only been a few months since Jackson hip-hop artist Coke Bumaye released his mixtape, "If You Love Me Let Me Know," at the end of 2015, but fans didn't have to wait long for more new music.
State Green Lights Uber, Overrides Local Control, Regulations
Uber has the green light to operate statewide, after a bill implementing statewide regulations soared through the Legislature this session largely uncontested.
What Black Dads Do: First Class Father Present for Duty
This year, Jackson Public Schools named Steve Collins Parent of the Year for his efforts. Yet, Collins is like a lot of other African American fathers: involved with their children's lives and passionate about their success in school.
Jackson Airport Enters Next Phase: Lawsuits, FAA, Ethical Limbo
For those wondering what is next in the saga of the takeover of the Jackson Medgar Wiley Evers Municipal Airport, look no further than Charlotte, N.C., and its ongoing discussions with the Federal Aviation Administration.
Always Strive for #BlackExcellence
As much as I'd love to talk about first lady Michelle Obama's perfectly curled hair and her beaming smile, her Jackson State commencement address was probably one of the most goosebump-inducing speeches I've heard.
Rhis Harris sits beneath paintings of deer with broad antlers and one quality that gallery-goers definitely wouldn't associate with the quadrupeds before viewing the pieces—a haze of blues, purples and pinks pouring from the animals' mouths or surrounding their bodies, which Harris says represents the universe and spirituality.
Attorney: Mississippi Law Could Harm Access to Gay Marriage
A gay-rights attorney says a new Mississippi law might violate a federal judge's order that blocks the state from treating same-sex couples differently from straight couples who want to marry.
Tuesday, April 26
The Connection Between Prince and Education
Every generation faces the passing of its icons. Just this year, it's been a Hall of Fame lineup: David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Natalie Cole, Merle Haggard and now Prince.
Stallworth's Airport Suit May Not Have Standing, Harkins Says 'A Reach'
Former Jackson Municipal Airport Authority Commissioner Jeffery Stallworth's lawsuit challenging the impending "takeover" may not have legal standing or support from the other interested parties involved, including the current JMAA board.
Lawson Marchetti, a junior at Jackson Preparatory School, will join 52 other students from across the country in the national finals of the Poetry Out Loud competition on May 3 and 4 in Washington, D.C.
Fitness Plus, Hilton Garden Inn, Xcel Rehab and Batson Fundraiser
Fitness Plus owner Marty McCubbins opened his business to fill the need for a good health studio in northeast Jackson after the Deville Plaza YMCA's closure last year.
S. Korea: N. Korea Almost Completes Nuclear Test Preparation
South Korea's president said Tuesday that North Korea has almost completed preparations for a fifth nuclear test, and the country has reportedly placed a new midrange missile on standby for an impending launch.
LGBT Debate Spurs Arrests at North Carolina Statehouse
A day of protests and arrests around North Carolina's statehouse marked what's likely to be weeks of impassioned debate over a law limiting protections for LGBT people.
Rouse to Lead Mississippi's College Board Starting May 8
Dr. Doug Rouse will become president of Mississippi's College Board on May 8, leading trustees who oversee the state's eight public universities.
Monday, April 25
Religious Leaders Object to Religious Objections Law
Several Methodist leaders are objecting to Mississippi's new religious-objections law, saying it violates their religious principles.
First Lady Obama: Strive for Excellence, Fight for Rights for All, Reject ‘Backward’ HB 1523
First lady Michelle Obama dropped a history lesson and urged nearly 800 graduates to fight for excellence and use their power and numbers in voting to strive for progress at Jackson State University's Spring 2016 commencement.
Moratorium on Payday Lenders, Liquor, Title and Pawn Stores in Ward 4 Moves Ahead
Last Monday the Jackson City Council Planning Committee passed an order to curtail the further proliferation of "title loan, payday loan, check cashing, liquor store and pawn shop businesses."
State Treasurer Laments 'Missing $31 Million' in Coffers, Lt. Governor Says She's 'Wrong'
State Treasurer Lynn Fitch sent a letter to legislative leadership last Wednesday expressing concerns over the state's debt service, after the Legislature passed a bond bill in the final days of the session.
Dr. Norman C. Nelson
Dr. Norman C. Nelson, a former vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, is dead at the age of 86. The medical school's student union is named after Dr. Norman Nelson, who retired in 1994 after 21 years at the university.
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.
Man Dead After Police Use Stun Gun on Him
Authorities say a man has died after police used a stun gun on him in a Gulfport restaurant.
Saturday, April 23
First Lady Michelle Obama's JSU Commencement LiveStream
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — View the LiveStream of Michelle Obama's commencement address to students of Jackson State University.
Senators Approve Frierson, 4 Other Mississippi Agency Chiefs
Mississippi senators have confirmed five people to run state agencies.
Friday, April 22
Firing Squads Out, But ‘Spice’ Regs, Execution Secrecy, Planned Parenthood Limits Headed to Governor
The state’s one Planned Parenthood clinic will lose Medicaid reimbursements if Gov. Phil Bryant signs a bill headed to his desk.
Jackson Issues $563,000 Worth of Water Bills, Desperately Needs Public Works Employees
The Jackson Public Works Department sent out half a million dollars' worth of water bills Thursday, the first time it has used the automated billing systems included in the Siemens contract.
Sine Death for Divorce, Campaign-finance Reform After Lawmakers Go Home Early
An abused Mississippi spouse still can't use domestic violence as grounds for divorce, and lawmakers can continue to spend campaign donations on mortgages, automobiles, clothing, tuition payments or non-documented loans after state lawmakers closed up shop early and skipped town this week.
LaShunna McInnis, a 10th-grade English teacher at Provine High School, was recently named Jackson Public Schools' Teacher of the Year for the 2015-2016 school year.
Publicist: Pop Superstar Prince Dies at His Minnesota Home
Pop superstar Prince, widely acclaimed as one of the most inventive musicians of his era with hits including "Little Red Corvette," ''Let's Go Crazy" and "When Doves Cry," was found dead at his home on Thursday in suburban Minneapolis, according to his publicist. He was 57.
2 MDOC Officers Arrested for Having Contraband at Prisons
Two Mississippi Department of Corrections officers have been arrested after officials say they had contraband at the prisons where they worked.
Capitol Hill Buzz: House Republicans Solve Flag Fight with Coins
House Republicans sidestepped the divisive fight over displays of the Confederate battle flag at the U.S. Capitol with plans to put up state coins instead.
Thursday, April 21
Lance Bass Brings His Green Thumb Back to Mississippi, Says State Leaders Are 'Backward'
Former NSYNC member, author and philanthropist Lance Bass says he and his husband, artist Michael Turchin, come back to visit Mississippi at least five times a year.
State Sneaks Special Judicial District Into Capitol Improvement Bill At Last Hour, Helping Kill It
Jackson has lost more than it has gained this legislative session, as the Capitol Complex Improvement District bill died yesterday. Its death ensured that the capital city will not receive the benefit of deferred sales tax dollars to renovate the infrastructure in the heart of the city.
Holly Reichle entered Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, believing she wanted to be a Spanish teacher and a coach.
UK Alerts LGBT Travelers to North Carolina, Mississippi Laws
The British government is advising lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender citizens to pay special attention when traveling to North Carolina and Mississippi.
Wednesday, April 20
Airport ‘Takeover’ Bill Leaves 'Toxic Climate' of Legislature, Headed to Governor’s Desk
The Jackson airport “takeover” bill is en route to the governor’s desk after the Mississippi Senate tabled the motion to reconsider on Senate Bill 2162 this morning.
Defying City Attorney, Council Passes New Subcontractor Disclosure Rules
The City now has more “teeth” for requiring disclosure of subcontractors, as well as oversight for switching subcontractors, for all contracts above $50,000, thanks to an ordinance passed at the April 20 Jackson City Council Meeting.
Abortion Procedure Challenged as 'Torture' in Alabama
A commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure would be illegal under a new bill debated in the Alabama legislature on Wednesday.
The Chicken, the Egg, the Street Food
This week, Chef Nick Wallace will serve up his "Chicken and the Egg" pop-up menu, featuring eggs and chicken from Mississippi, for the Mississippi Museum of Art's Museum After Hours event, "Pop Goes the Culture."
Mississippi: Another Crooked Letter for Us All
HB 1523 made it lawful in Mississippi to discriminate against someone because they are different from you, based on protecting what? You guessed it: religious freedom.
Lawmakers: Cashing in on Campaign Promises is Costly and Senseless
Cutting state agencies, some by more than 10 percent, is bad. Cutting state agencies and then offering up a tax-break bill that will divert even more money from the state's general fund is plain stupid.
More to Learning Than Standardized Testing
A few weeks ago, students at my school participated in the Third Grade Reading Gate, also known as the day the state tells teachers they aren't trusted to do their jobs.
Running Out of Venues to Change the State Flag
From ballot initiatives to rallies, the Mississippi state flag has gained a lot of attention lately in-state and then nationally following the shootings in Charleston, S.C., a debate exacerbated by the revelation that Gov. Phil Bryant had declared April "Confederate Heritage Month" in the state, causing a national outcry.
The Final Stretch: Budget Cuts, Tax Breaks and Bills Becoming Law
Late into Monday night, Mississippi lawmakers managed to pass a strained budget, a $415 million tax cut and $250 million in bonds before midnight to meet Monday's deadline for budget and revenue bills.
A Hunger to Live: The Struggle to Interrupt the Cycle of Violence
Several members of the “Undivided” crew told their story recently in Sheppards Brother Park in the Washington Addition.
Gov. Bryant to Cut Budgets Again; Take $10 Million from Rainy Day Fund
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant says he's making another round of budget cuts and will take $10 million out of the state's rainy day fund.
For the Love of Love Notez
Over the past 23 years, followers of the local music scene have become well acquainted with the modern-day soul and R&B style of cover band Compozitionz, but for about six years, the group has also helped to steer the next movement in Jackson Motown in the form of the singing, dancing double-threat trio Love Notez.
Coming Home to the Washington Addition
Linda Knight was only 18 when she snuck into the Afro Lounge on Lynch Street one night in 1973 and met the man who would take her out of the Washington Addition.
Factcheck: The Charter Scoop
The Mississippi Charter School Authorizer Board helped us factcheck some statements made in interviews about charter schools, including by Forest Thigpen in this issue and in the March 9 interview with Mississippi Association of Educators President Joyce Helmick.
Thigpen: ‘No Such Thing’ as ‘Private Charter Schools’
Mississippi Center for Public Policy President Forest Thigpen insists that charter schools not only play fair in the state of Mississippi, but have the ability to change the game of Mississippi education by encouraging competition amongst public schools.
A Renter Finds Lead, But No Legal Protections
There do not seem to be any regulations requiring a homeowner to replace pipes that could contain lead, according to conversations with the EPA, the Mississippi Department of Health and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality.
The Permission to Care Deeply
With the legislative season coming to a close, those of us who spend a lot of time championing progress for Jackson and Mississippi have had a tough go of it.
Mitch C. Davis
As a professional photographer and branding coach who helps clients seek out roles in modeling and acting, Mitch C. Davis says he enjoys the freedom that working freelance affords him and the chance to meet and help up-and-comers across the state.
Bill to Reinforce Federal Immigration Laws Dies
A bill reinforcing that local law enforcement officials must follow federal immigration laws has died.
Tuesday, April 19
Clinton, Trump Win Big in New York Primaries
Hillary Clinton has won the Democratic presidential primary in New York, which she represented in the U.S. Senate for eight years. Donald Trump, fresh off a commanding victory in the Republican primary in his home state of New York, is suggesting he may soon have the race in hand.
Federal Judge Says Ferguson Deal with Justice Department is Approved
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A federal judge approved an agreement Tuesday between Ferguson and the U.S. Justice Department that calls for sweeping changes in the Missouri city where 18-year-old Michael Brown was fatally shot by a police officer.
Rankin Assistant Superintendent, Ridgeland Businessman New Mississippi Board of Education Members
Dr. Jason Scott Dean of Madison and Edward "Buddy" Bailey of Brandon both received the Senate Education Committee's blessing for their appointment to the Mississippi Board of Education this Monday.
Mississippi Lawmakers Pass a Slim Budget, Substantial Tax Cut, Slash Social Services
Late into Monday night, Mississippi lawmakers managed to pass a strained budget, a $415 million tax cut and $250 million in bonds before midnight to meet today's deadline for budget and revenue bills.
Team JXN, Women's Information Network, Millsaps Institute for Civic and Professional Engagement
TeamJXN, an organization dedicated to showcasing the growth of Jackson businesses, restaurants and entrepreneurial developments, is hosting the second of four planned meetings for 2016 on Thursday, April 21, at the Mississippi Museum of Art.
Cpl. Dudley L. Evans
Roy Evans tried to join the Army in the early 1950s so he could hunt for his older brother's body in Korea. The Army wouldn't let him. Now, 65 years after Cpl. Dudley L. Evans went missing in action, his remains are going home to Mississippi.
2 Universities Launch Joint Miss. Health Partnership
Mississippi State and the University of Mississippi Medical Center have launched a new partnership aimed at addressing the state's health care challenges.
Projects to be Funded with $250M in Mississippi State Debt
Here's a look at individual projects included in $250 million in proposed state borrowing in House Bill 1729.
Monday, April 18
JPD Chief and Hinds Sheriff Team Up to Launch 'Operation Side by Side'
At the Second Precinct's late-afternoon roll call at the Metrocenter on Friday, April 15, the Jackson Police Department and the Sheriff's Department joined together to create Operation Side by Side, one of the newest strategies to combat crime in the city.
Blighted Property a 'Recipe for Disaster,' But Residents Can Buy Some of It
When Alberta Epps arrived at the Jackson Police Training Academy Saturday morning, she was looking to find out more than about some overgrown property next to her house.
College football coaches, fans and scouts will have their eyes on Clinton, Miss., this upcoming season. Everyone will want to see what the Clinton High School Arrows' sought-after star Cam Akers does in his final season.
Mississippi Tax Cut Deal: $415 Million in Cuts Over 12 Years
Mississippi lawmakers want to phase in $415 million in tax cuts over the next 12 years.
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.
Sunday, April 17
Mississippi Plans Budget Cuts on Weak Revenues; Lt. Gov. Pushes Tax Cuts
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi legislators said Saturday they'd reached an overall bargain on state spending, but they continued to haggle over how much the state would borrow and whether it would cut taxes in the upcoming budget year beginning July 1.
Saturday, April 16
Providence Mayor Bans Travel to North Carolina, Mississippi
Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza has signed an executive order banning non-essential, city-funded travel to North Carolina and Mississippi because of laws passed there that critics call discriminatory against gay and transgender people.
Friday, April 15
Madison Trump Rally Cost Taxpayers $11,565.44, Overtime to 235 Officers
Madison taxpayers paid at least $11,565.44 in security expenses for a March 7 political rally for Donald Trump, public-records requests have revealed.
JPS: Charter Schools Cost Jackson Half A Million Dollars, Drain Needed Resources
New charter schools are a money drain on Jackson Public Schools, the district's chief financial officer, Sharolyn Miller, warned Thursday.
Fans of former New Orleans Saints defensive end Will Smith will pay their respects Friday to the fallen sports hero who was shot and killed last Saturday.
Mississippi Governor Signs Law Allowing Armed Church Members
Gov. Phil Bryant has signed into law a bill that allows some members of churches to undergo firearms training so they can provide armed security for their congregations.
Bryant Signs Bill Banning Second-Trimester Abortion Method
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant is signing a bill banning a commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure, setting the state up for a possible legal challenge.
Judge Orders Public Defender Jailed During Client's Hearing
A Hinds County judge ordered an assistant public defender jailed after his client was denied bond.
Mississippi Supreme Court Rejects Removing Chancery Judge
The state Supreme Court has rejected a call to remove a south Mississippi chancery judge, suspending and fining him instead.
Thursday, April 14
Mississippi State Receiver Fred Brown Dismissed from School
Mississippi State receiver Fred Brown has been dismissed from the university.
Status Unclear of Public School Funding Formula Changes
With only days to go, it remains unclear whether Mississippi lawmakers will attempt major changes to the state's public school funding formula.
Lead a Danger For Pets, Too
While the City of Jackson works on its corrosion-control study to prevent the presence of lead in the drinking water, residents are buying bottled water for themselves and their children, but what about the four-legged members of the family?
Athens, Ga., has given birth to countless iconic bands and recording artists, from R.E.M. to The B-52s. Its latest export, experimental indie-rock four-piece band Mothers, will be heading to Jackson Friday, April 15, for a performance at Hal & Mal's.
Legislature Moves to Control All Sales of Jackson Airport Land
The Mississippi Legislature would control the sale of all Jackson airport land under changes the Senate approved today.
Conservative Lawmakers Drive Backlash Against LGBT Rights
South Carolina Sen. Lee Bright's anti-LGBT proposal is part of a backlash by lawmakers across the historically conservative South who have passed laws that LGBT groups say roll back their rights.
Toddler Shot in Hospital Waiting Room When Mom's Gun Fires
A 2-year-old girl was grazed by a bullet when her mother dropped her purse and a gun inside of it discharged while the two of them were in a hospital ER waiting room.
Wednesday, April 13
No Wine-ing: 2016 Wine Tasting
It's spring time, so that means it's time for the Jackson Free Press' second annual wine tasting.
jj Thames’ ‘Raw’ Return
For many fans of Jackson soul, blues and R&B, a follow-up to jj Thames' emotionally charged first record, "Tell You What I Know," which hit stores in January 2014, has been a long time coming.
Chicken and Black Bean Soup
The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen sous chef Rashanna Newsome's passion in life is cooking. Recently, she gave us one of her own recipes to share with our readers.
Farm, Creator, Table
Small Town Mississippi gives Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Museum visitors a taste of what life would have been like in the 1920s.
Lawmakers, Mississippians Are Sick and Tired of Expensive, Harmful Political Charades
In interviews about House Bill 1523, several lawyers and legal scholars have explained that is close to irrefutable that the law is unconstitutional on several counts.
Stinker Quote of the Week: 'Reinforces the Rights'
First of all, the First Amendment doesn't need any reinforcement. Religious freedom is a guaranteed right of every U.S. citizen.
Prevent the Execution of Poor People
Mr. Announcement: "Live from Clubb Chicken Wing, Ghetto-Science Public Affairs Network presents an important press conference organized by Congressman Smokey Robinson McBride for Ghetto Science Community residents."
Politicians for Sale? Tate Reeves' Million-Dollar Election
While some lawmakers are attempting to take aim at personal-use spending with campaign-finance funds, little is said about who is funding whom when it comes to candidates.
Ed Update: HB 1523, Charter Schools and Appointed Supes
Now that Gov. Bryant has signed SB 2438 into law, Mississippians are past the days of voting for their school district superintendents.
Budget, Tax and Infrastructure Woes
Despite Republican supermajorities in both the House and the Senate, there seems to be little agreement across the chambers on tax legislation and budget proposals this year.
Debating Restraining, Secluding Kids
The Mississippi Board of Education released an updated restraint and seclusion policy this month that inaugurates more stringent regulations for when adults working in public schools can use force in order to handle student behavioral issues.
Liquid Light Cafe is Jackson's first raw-food restaurant, nestled in a space beside the Regions Plaza courtyard on Capitol Street.
The Writers Guild’s Guiding Hand
Jackson native Susan Marquez's commitment to writing tends to keep her busy, whether it's her freelance work for various Mississippi publications, editing books for other authors or writing her own.
Confederate Emblem 'Anti-American,' Judge in Flag Case Says
A federal judge said Tuesday that the Confederate emblem on the Mississippi flag is "anti-American" because it represents those who fought to leave the United States.
After HB 1523, We Must Seek Higher Ground
It was at Good Hope Baptist Church in the early 1970s that I first heard God used to justify hatred of black people, of "homosexuals," of feminism, of anything that fell outside their strict, supposedly Christian norms.
Governor Wants to Change, but Not Scrap, North Carolina Law
Saying he received lots of "feedback and suggestions and opinions" about a law he signed that limits LGBT protections, North Carolina's governor has ordered anti-discrimination rules be expanded for state employees.
Threat of Lead Paint Grows Over Time
While Jacksonians worry about whether their pipes are leaching lead into their water, those who live in the oldest, poorest sections of the city have been living with the threat of lead for years.
Gov. Phil Bryant 'Disappointed' that Mississippi Picnic in New York City Canceled Over HB 1523
An annual New York City picnic celebrating Mississippi food and culture is canceled because of Mississippi's adoption of a contested religious-objections bill.
'Religious Freedom,' My Foot
Religious freedom is an oxymoron, particularly in Mississippi. Freedom only applies to those who are deemed worthy to have rights—the white, rich, male conservatives. Freedom, religious or otherwise, has no place in this state, as it stands to date.
As the sous chef at The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen in Belhaven, Rashanna Newsome is a female in a male-dominated profession—a fact that has never stifled her passion for the culinary arts.
HB 1523: Half ‘Redundant,’ Half ‘Unconstitutional’
The controversial House Bill 1523, with its long list of protections for people who discriminate against LGBT people and others, will become law in July unless one of two things happen: lawmakers repeal it, or courts strike it down.
Tuesday, April 12
Crimen Contra Los Latinos: Local Residents, Advocates Decry Violent Attacks
Nearly one month since Daniel Omar Gomez and Eli Nunez were shot and killed while grilling dinner with loved ones in their Westhaven Drive front yard, approximately 15 Latinos have been victims of homicide or violent crimes in central Mississippi.
Former University of Southern Mississippi pitcher Bradley Roney is working his way up the Atlanta Braves farm system. He began the season as one of the players to watch on the M-Braves pitching rotation.
CU at the Zoo, AnnieGlass, Erdos at Home and UMMC AirCare
The Jackson Zoo is hosting an event called CU at the Zoo, part of Youth Savings Month in conjunction with Credit Union National Association, on Saturday, April 16.
Boyfriend Speaks on Oxford Cancellation of Her Sexually Charged Performance
New Orleans-based Boyfriend has become the latest artist hit with recent crackdowns in Mississippi entertainment following the cancellation of her April 9 show at Proud Larry's in Oxford.
The Last Stand Against HB 1523: Repeal Effort 'Second Chance' for Mississippi?
Rep. Jay Hughes, D-Oxford, and other Mississippi House and Senate Democrats called on the Legislature's leadership to repeal House Bill 1523 this morning.
Mississippi Church a Window into National Gay Rights Debate
On many Sundays, conservative Mississippi Republican Gov. Phil Bryant can be found in the sanctuary at St. Mark's United Methodist Church, almost always in his trademark suit and boots, often among those helping pass the offering plates.
Mississippi Attorney General Unsure if He'll Sue Google
Mississippi's attorney general says he doesn't yet know whether he'll go to court to force Google to comply with a subpoena or sue the Internet giant for violating state law.
Monday, April 11
Mississippi Doctor: Why I Oppose Mississippi Sharia Law 1523
My opposition to the Mississippi Sharia Statute 1523 is based on my objection to the "protection" of some citizens' "deeply held moral beliefs" and not others.
As a Gay Man from Mississippi, I #StandWithMSLGBT
As I enter my 30th year on this earth, I must come to terms with my negligence to the LBGT family I love so dearly. I am leaving that shadow to voice my opposition to the actions of Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant and State Legislators.
Ex-Prison Chief's Co-Defendant Wants to Withdraw Guilty Plea
A co-defendant of former Mississippi Corrections Commissioner Christopher Epps wants to withdraw his guilty plea in a bribery case, a lawyer said Monday.
Poll: Majority in State Support Medicaid Expansion, But the Legislature Doesn't
Despite the Mississippi Legislature's inaction with Medicaid expansion this session, a new poll shows that more than 50 percent of Mississippians support expanding Medicaid, which could provide health-care coverage to an additional 280,000 Mississippians, as well as provide tax credits for low-income adults.
ABC Anchor Robin Roberts on Mississippi Law: Equal Treatment for Everyone
Robin Roberts said Friday that "it hurts my soul" that someone might not be welcome in Mississippi because of a law saying religious groups and some private businesses can cite moral beliefs to deny services to lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender people.
Fondren Hotel Projects to Begin in Next Few Months
Two Fondren hotel projects are set to begin work by the summer, representing a combined total investment estimated at around $58 million.
Mississippi NAACP Head: Phil Bryant's Legacy of Discrimination Continues, Legalizes Hatred
Governor Phil Bryant signed a bill that aims to legalize hatred, once again assuring that his legacy will be one built on hate and discrimination against others.
Iles, Grisham, Eubanks, Reed, Smith, Stockett, Laymon, Tartt Among 95 Mississippi Writers Opposing Anti-LGBT Law
Gov. Phil Bryant and the Mississippi legislators who voted for HB 1523 are not the sole voices of our state. There have always been people here battling injustice.
Bryan Adams Cancels Mississippi Show, Citing State's New Law
Canadian rocker Bryan Adams is canceling a performance this week in Mississippi, citing the state's new law that allows religious groups and some private businesses to refuse service to gay couples.
Former Prison Boss Could Get 23-Year Sentence in Bribe Case
Former Mississippi Corrections Commissioner Christopher Epps could get up to 23 years in prison when a judge sentences him Monday.
Sunday, April 10
Space X Successfully Delivers First 'Inflatable Room' to Space Station
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX has made good on a high-priority delivery: the world's first inflatable room for astronauts. A SpaceX Dragon cargo ship arrived at the International Space Station on Sunday, two days after launching from Cape Canaveral. Station astronauts used a robot arm to capture the Dragon, orbiting 250 miles above Earth.
Former New Orleans Saint Will Smith Shot and Killed in New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Former New Orleans Saints player Will Smith was shot and killed Saturday after a traffic accident. An emailed statement from New Orleans city coroner Jeffrey C. Rouse said that Smith died "of multiple gunshot wounds" after a traffic accident in the city's Lower Garden District. The former defensive end was 34 years old.
Saturday, April 9
Coca-Cola, Intel and Others Call For HB 1523 Repeal
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Executives of five more companies have signed a letter calling on Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant and Republican legislative leaders to repeal an incoming state law.
Friday, April 8
The first "American Idol" finale in 2002 was a battle of the sexes, with Kelly Clarkson the victor over Justin Guarini. The last contest settled the score as Trent Harmon defeated La'Porsha Renae for the crown.
Man Detained After Guns, Explosives Found in Car Near Church
A man has been arrested after police found homemade incendiary devices and guns in his car in the parking lot of a Mississippi church.
'Naked Women' Billboard Probably Will Stay, City Powerless to Change It
Concern about "naked women" on a billboard along Interstate 55 has residents demanding that the Jackson City Council do something about it—but it doesn't have the power to bring it down.
Molly Bashay is the newest policy analyst for Hope Policy Institute, a division of HOPE, which includes Hope Credit Union and Hope Enterprise Corporation, a community development financial institution in Jackson.
Key Paris Attacks Suspect Seized in Belgium, Officials Say
A fugitive suspect in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks was arrested in Belgium on Friday, French police officials said, after a raid Belgian authorities said was linked to the deadly March 22 Brussels bombings.
HB 1523's Religious Refusals Could Discriminate Against Public, Private Students
Although the Mississippi governor and legislators who support HB 1523, the "Freedom of Conscience of Religion Act," say it will not contribute to discrimination against the LGBTQ community, many legal professionals and policy experts remain skeptical.
Mississippi Hospitality Group Starting 'Everyone's Welcome'
A Mississippi hospitality group says it's starting a campaign to promote inclusion after backlash over an incoming state law that says government workers, religious groups and private businesses can cite religious objections to same-sex marriage to deny services to people.
Thursday, April 7
U.S. Rep. Thompson at Nissan: If HB 1523 Not Repealed, Must Seek Federal, Legal Recourse
Standing near a huge Nissan Titan truck at the automaker's Gluckstadt plant, U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson reiterated today that House Bill 1523 is harmful to Mississippi's reputation and economic future, vowing to fight it through legal and federal avenues.
Mississippi Senate Roll Call on Charter Schools Bill
The Mississippi Senate, on a 24-21 vote Thursday, passed the final version of Senate Bill 2161, which would allow students in Mississippi school districts with academic ratings of C, D, or F to cross district lines to attend charter schools elsewhere in the state.
Putin says Panama Papers Part of US Plot to Weaken Russia
President Vladimir Putin on Thursday denied having any links to offshore accounts and described the Panama Papers document leaks scandal as part of a U.S.-led plot to weaken Russia.
Local Criminal System: Moves Like 'Quicksand,' Leading to 'Unintended Punishment'
The local criminal-justice system is slow-moving, lacks coordination, and pulls and keeps offenders inside it like "quicksand," participants at Mayor Tony Yarber's Criminal Justice Reform Task Force meeting said yesterday.
Senate Passes Bill Allowing More to Attend Charter Schools
More students would be able to attend charter schools in Mississippi under a bill headed to Gov. Phil Bryant for his approval or veto.
Jackson Moves Forward With Plan to Prevent Lead from Leaching into Water Supply
The City of Jackson is moving ahead with an "aggressive" effort to prevent leaching of lead into the municipal water supply.
Police: Mississippi Man Sent Nude Selfies to Teen
Hancock County sheriff's deputies say they have arrested a 22-year-old Kiln man accused of sending nude selfies to a teenage girl.
EU Threatens to Sanction Tax Havens Like Panama
The European Union has threatened to sanction countries like Panama if they continue to refuse to cooperate fully to fight money laundering and tax evasion, after a leak of data showed the tiny country remains a key destination for people who want to hide money.
Wednesday, April 6
The Wood Brothers: Together in 'Paradise'
Before their latest release, "Paradise," guitarist Oliver Wood, upright bassist Chris Wood and multi-instrumentalist Jano Rix of The Wood Brothers wrote their heart-twanging tunes with 885 miles between them for more than a decade.
On the second day of rehearsal for "Red," John Logan's Tony Award-winning play about modern artist Mark Rothko, energies at New Stage Theatre are high.
Camaraderie and Tradition
My oldest daughter spent her last year of high school living with a family in a rural town in Ecuador, and it became a family joke to serve her dinner without telling her what it was until after she ate it.
Mayor Yarber, Please Lead on Transparency
We are pleased to report that we are seeing some, at least marginal, improvements in the way the City of Jackson is handling access to information.
Country giant Merle Haggard, who rose from poverty and prison to international fame though his songs about outlaws, underdogs and an abiding sense of national pride in such hits as "Okie From Muskogee" and "Sing Me Back Home," died Wednesday at 79, on his birthday.
When it comes to the erosion of the rights of LGBT people in places like Mississippi, we can't afford to be patient.
Politicians for Sale? The Funders of the House Leadership’s 2015 Campaigns
The Republican supermajority in the House has changed its dynamics this term, and the Democrats chose Rep. David Baria, D-Bay St. Louis, to be their minority whip leader.
Parental Rights, Representation Get a Capitol Spotlight
House Bill 772 addresses parental representation and clarifies which state offices are responsible for providing counsel to parents in danger of losing their rights.
Governor Signs HB1523, ‘Unconstitutional’ Abortion Bill Heads to His Desk
An anti-abortion bill that has already been ruled unconstitutional by courts in Kansas and Oklahoma is on its way to Gov. Phil Bryant.
Minnesota Governor Bans State Employees from Traveling to Mississippi
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is banning state employees from nonessential travel to Mississippi, making the southern state the second Dayton has targeted in less than a week for enacting controversial laws.
The Panic Party Plan
If Widespread Panic's two-night residence in Jackson wasn't enough cause for celebration, show promoter Arden Barnett and crew at Ardenland have created a full schedule of events around the band's arrival.
Showcasing a Century
Financier Roy R. Neuberger's philosophy that the contemporary world should buy the artwork of contemporary artists led him to collect the art his own generation made, from artists such as Jackson Pollock, Georgia O'Keefe and Jacob Lawrence, before they became revered or even remotely famous.
The ‘Sunny’ Side of Widespread
It's clear that Widespread Panic has changed quite a bit since vocalist John Bell and late guitarist Michael Houser first began writing songs in their dorm at the University of Georgia.
Jumping the Line: Caught in the Crossfire of Ridgeland's Demographic Struggles
Many parents in urban areas, met with the spatial and academic barrier of their zip codes, have no choice but to send their children to the public school available to them within their school districts, regardless of its performance.
Experts on Police Pursuits: Another Way
Police pursuits take nearly one life a day in the United States, data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows. Of these, one out of every three deaths is an innocent bystander or motorist.
Phil Bryant and Mississippi GOP: Bad for Business
Gov. Phil Bryant's decision is wrong. It's bad for people, and it's bad for business.
When you first walk into the Princess Salon, bright pink walls and giant posters of Disney princesses surround you. In the center of it all is Blair Neelley.
GOP's Social, Fiscal Conservatives at Odds Over Gay Rights
Republican lawmakers upset about the Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage have advanced measures in about a dozen states this year that could strengthen protections for those who refuse on religious grounds to provide services to same-sex couples.
Tuesday, April 5
'These Are Human Beings': Jackson City Council Passes Resolution Against HB 1523
Late tonight, the Jackson City Council unanimously passed a resolution proclaiming their opposition to the controversial Mississippi House Bill 1523 just less than 10 hours after Gov. Phil Bryant signed it into law today. The resolution mirrors Biloxi's resolution but with added amendments.
Washington Governor Bans State Travel to Mississippi Citing New Law
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has joined the Seattle mayor in banning official travel to Mississippi due to the state's new law allowing religious groups and some private businesses to refuse service to gay couples based on beliefs.
Blame Me for HB 1523, the New Jim Crow Legislation in Mississippi
I, along with many others, should receive part of the blame for this resurgence of discrimination and bigotry across our state. I left, I got educated, and I didn’t come back.
BREAKING: City of Jackson Shocked by Low Water-Sewer Revenue, Litigation Ahead?
The City of Jackson is almost 12 percent behind projected revenue for water and sewer for this fiscal year, and the administration is considering potential litigation involving one of the vendors, it said Monday.
Seattle Mayor Bans City Employee Travel to Mississippi
Seattle's mayor has barred the use of city funds for employee travel to Mississippi after their governor signed a law allowing religious groups and some private businesses to refuse service to gay couples based on beliefs.
New York Bans State Trips to Mississippi Because of New Law
New York state has banned non-essential state-funded travel to Mississippi after that state's governor signed a law allowing religious groups and some businesses to refuse service to gay couples.
Vermont Bans Official Travel to Mississippi Over LGBT Law
The state of Vermont is banning for now official travel to Mississippi because of that state's passage of a law that allows religious groups and some private businesses to refuse service to gay couples.
DC to Consider Travel Ban to Any State with Anti-Gay Laws
District of Columbia lawmakers will consider banning official travel by city workers to any state with laws that discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
'Total Infringement': Governor Signs HB 1523 Over Protests of Business Leaders, Citizens
Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1523 into law today, which will allow businesses, circuit clerks and medical professionals to recuse themselves from offering services based on a religious belief that marriage is "between one man and one woman."
UPDATE: Council Approves Trilogy for Water Corrosion Study; Emergency Loan to Fund It
Mayor Tony Yarber introduced a $291,989 contract with Trilogy Engineering for a corrosion-control study to the Jackson City Council yesterday during its work session, with the means to pay for it through an emergency state loan.
Feed JXN, Campbell's Madison, Hancock Fabrics and M7 Coffee House
Carlyn Hicks of the group Jackson Foodies, Chef Nick Wallace of the Mississippi Museum of Art, Mangia Bene co-owner Jeff Good and other Jackson locals are teaming up to organize a special event at Stewpot Community Services this fall.
The three front galleries of the Arts Center of Mississippi are covered in creations from Jackson-based artist Ann Saunders.
Mississippi Governor Signs Law Allowing Service Denial to Gays
Mississippi's governor has signed a law that allows public and private businesses to refuse service to gay couples based on the employers' religious beliefs.
China Restricts Trade with North Korea Over Nuclear Tests
China on Tuesday banned most imports of North Korean coal and iron ore, the country's main exports, in a significant increase in pressure on the North under U.N. sanctions against its nuclear and missile tests.
Trump Proposes Funding Wall by Cutting Off Remittances
Donald Trump would force Mexico to pay for a border wall by threatening to cut off billions of dollars in remittances sent by immigrants living in the U.S., according to a memo released by his campaign Tuesday.
PayPal Cancels N. Carolina Expansion Over Discrimination Law
PayPal says it's canceling plans to bring 400 jobs to North Carolina after lawmakers passed a law that restricts protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Two Arrested After Dragging Jackson Police Officer With Car
Two men have been arrested after police say an officer was dragged by a car in Jackson.
Monday, April 4
#ConfederateHeritageMonth: Your Essential Primer to How It Blew Up in Mississippi
This month, as I'd hoped would happen when I broke the story, many people around the country—especially historians—are using the hashtag #ConfederateHistoryMonth to share facts about the Confederacy.
First Lady Michelle Obama to Address Jackson State Grads
Jackson State University's spring graduates will be among the last group of graduates to hear from First Lady Michelle Obama, who has included the Mississippi college as part of her Reach Higher initiative.
US Judge OKs $20B Settlement from 2010 BP Oil Spill
A federal judge in New Orleans granted final approval Monday to an estimated $20 billion settlement over the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, resolving years of litigation over the worst offshore spill in the nation's history.
City of Jackson Unveils New Data Portal, Part of Transparency Initiative
Mayor Tony Yarber's favorite part of the new data portal opened to the public this morning is the live tracking of infrastructure construction projects, including pothole repair.
Conservative Policy Center, Lobbyists Fund Poll Question on HB 1523
Within 36 hours after the Mississippi Senate passed House Bill 1523, co-sponsor Rep. Andy Gipson, R-Braxton, took up the bill first thing Friday morning, telling the House that reporting about the bill has been biased against it.
Mississippi Chamber Opposes Religious-Exemptions Bill
The Mississippi state chamber of commerce is opposing a religious-objections bill heading to Gov. Phil Bryant's desk.
A 7th grade student from Oxford Middle School is the winner of the 2016 Mississippi National Geographic Bee.
High Court Rejects Challenge to Miss. Campaign Finance Law
The Supreme Court won't hear an appeal challenging the constitutionality of a Mississippi campaign finance law that requires reporting by people or groups spending at least $200 to support or oppose a ballot measure.
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.
Sunday, April 3
EDITORIAL: The Hoods Are Gravely Wrong About Execution Secrecy, Firing Squads
Both Jim Hood and Joey Hood are wrong on the execution bill that is moving forward in the Mississippi Legislature.
Saturday, April 2
Roll Call: Who Voted For and Against the Anti-LGBT House Bill 1523?
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The Mississippi House voted 69-44 Friday to approve Senate changes to House Bill 1523, sending it to Gov. Phil Bryant to sign or veto.
Mississippi House Unlikely To Increase Taxes, Funds for Roads and Bridges
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Unable to attract enough support from lawmakers, House leaders are giving up on a plan to increase money for roads through a series of tax changes.
Friday, April 1
Gov. Phil Bryant May Get Anti-LGBT Religious 'Conscience' Bill as Early as Monday
The Mississippi House could be sending House Bill 1523 to Republican Gov. Phil Bryant as early as Monday. The bill would let government employees and private businesses cite religious beliefs to deny services to same-sex couples who want to marry.
City Workers Protest Furloughs, Demand Answers
Earlier this morning, City of Jackson workers, Mississippi Alliance of State Workers/ Communications Workers of America members, the Black Caucus of the Young Democrats of America and community organizers held a rally outside City Hall to protest the city-mandated monthly furlough day.
JPS: Lead Above 'Regulatory Limit' Found at Lee Elementary, Details Testing Plan
One of the water fountains in Lee Elementary tested for lead above "regulatory levels" during the first round of tests that Jackson Public Schools conducted.
Light Beam Rider
Light Beam Rider may hail from Corinth, Miss., but for many years, Jacksonians could frequently catch the group's freaked-out indie-rock sound at local venues such as Hal & Mal's and Ole Tavern.