Some subjects are too personal to ask a stranger about. Like, what's it like to be transgender? To be quadriplegic? So, few of us know the answers.
LR Confidential 2014July 17, 2014
Vol 22 • No 21
If one believes even a significant fraction of the horror stories in the national news media, beastly male behavior has become almost epidemic on American college campuses. Tales of drunken sexual assault and worse multiply from sea to shining sea.
Diamond Bear remains one of the only places in Central Arkansas that has packaged beer sales on Sundays, so grab a six pack or two after you finish your meal.
Eureka Springs, where my spouse and I have a second home, loves a parade. Just over a year ago, those parades began to get a decidedly orange tinge.
The Arkansas Press Association had a one-hour gubernatorial debate at its convention in Hot Springs last week.
'Dawn' stands out from other summer fare.
And Amasa Hines will be taping "AETN Presents: On the Front Row" live at AETN headquarters in Conway at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Also, the 12th National Drawing Invitational at the Arkansas Arts Center,the Big Gay Radio Show Relaunch at Sway, Devourment at Vino's, the Great Arkansas Beer Festival at Clear Channel Metroplex, Wink Burcham at White Water Tavern and "Friday Night Lights" at First Security Amphitheater.
As a teacher in LR, I have noticed that our students segregate themselves across racial lines.
The Observer's windup is stiff, our curve ball hangs and we don't have the durability to fling our body under a tag, but sometimes we miss playing.
Ask the Times: How did the North American headquarters of the Spanish bicycle company Orbea end up in Little Rock?
While there's plenty of bicycling going on in Little Rock — fun fact: The Big Dam Bridge is the longest pedestrian and bicycle-only bridge in the U.S. that wasn't converted from previous motor vehicle or railroad usage — it's surely surprising to a lot of folks that the North American headquarters of a Spanish company that builds high-end racing bicycles that competitors in the Tour de France ride wound up here.
Cotton doesn't have the charisma that Clinton has, by a mile.
Summer book picks from locals.
heresa Cates, a self-taught North Little Rock artist who paints sinuous and stylized African-American men and women, often praising God, has found that when it comes to public art, people aren't color blind.
On an old dirt road near Newport.
The Fayetteville City Council will consider an ordinance prohibiting discrimination against gay people.
The New York Times Sunday travel section, on-line now, includes a feature article by Arkansas writer Jay Jennings in which he visits the real places that inspired Charles Portis' "True Grit."
Little Rock food truck favorite announces plans to open a brick-and-mortar store.
New polling reported by Huffington Post shows strong bipartisan support for more education for children before kindergarten. The Arkansas governor's race indicates anything but agreement on the point.
Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola has announced he'll seek a third four-year term as mayor.
Wall Street Journal digs into the denial by Arkansas Medicaid program to provide an expensive drug for sufferers of a rare form of cystic fibrosis. Their lawyers argue that cost, not medical protocols, are the reason for the state's resistance and that's a denial of their civil rights.
Money can be happiness up to a point, but that point is relatively low in Arkansas. And researchers say money beyond that "happiness benchmark" doesn't increase emotional well-being.
Tyler Pearson, a Democratic Senate candidate from Conway, says he continues to raise more campaign money than Republican Sen. Jason Rapert, an "embarrasment" to the district, Pearson says.
We interrupt our conventional parochial program with a news bulletin — a Malaysian Airlines 777 bound from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur has gone down in Ukraine and some reports are saying it was shot down.
Today it's a state court judge appointed by Jeb Bush who did the honors in declaring that the U.S. Constitution prohibits discrimination against same-sex couples who want to marry in Florida.
A loaded gun left in a Walmart restroom in South Carolina raises the question of whether a national drive to encourage national chains to declare their premises off-limits to guns could prompt a change in policy at Walmart. It claims to follow applicable laws, which raises this question: Does Walmart believe open carry is the law in Arkansas and thus permissible in its stores?
Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor announced today that he'd accepted an invitation for a debate with Republican Rep. Tom Cotton in Fayetteville October 14. This follows his acceptance several weeks ago to appear with Cotton in a statewide televised debate on AETN.
Walmart has now put $1 million into the effort to get local option elections on retail alcohol sales in Faulkner, Saline and Craighead Counties.
Bonnie Montgomery, who you may recognize either as the composer of that Bill Clinton opera a few years ago (covered by the New Yorker) or as a beloved local country singer-songwriter (she's released two EPs, "Cruel" and "Joy," via Fast Weapons Records), has finished a full-length self-titled album and it's due out July 29.
FASTERArkansas, the ad hoc group formed to promote broadband service for public schools, continues its intensive lobbying for a change in state law to allow the state to provide broadband service to schools.
Today's video headlines and an open line; plus more Tomfoolery by Cotton. A cold heart for a cold day.
Tom Cotton continues to exhibit his coldness toward providing food to people in need. Now he suggests food stamp recipients are rife with addicts.
The issue isn't on newsstands yet, but here's the cover of September's Decibel, featuring Little Rock's Pallbearer and the caption, "The torch is passed to doom's next big thing."
Chris Tanner provides details on Samantha's Tap Room and Wood Grill, an ambitious restaurant planned for ground floor space in The Mann at 4th and Main. 32 beers and 20 wines on draft and food prepared quickly on wood-fired grills are the headliners.
Samantha's Tap Room and Wood Grill, Cheers in the Heights, Chris Tanner, Samantha Tanner
With this unusually cool weather lately, I hope you all have been getting out and eating on some patios. I know we have. So, let's get on with our feedback.
The Baxter Bulletin provides detailed coverage of the trial of Bull Shoals Police Chief Daniel Sutterfield, accused of brutalizing a suspect in a domestic abuse case.
Arkansas Baptist College, once every do-gooder's favorite feel-good story about helping disadvantaged students, appears close to the breaking point from financial problems. And it continues to stonewall press inquiries.
The need for a $100 million prison is only the beginning of a Republican pipe dream about tax-cutting the state's way to prosperity.
The state says the Arkansas unemployment rate was 6.2 percent in June, down from 6.4 percent in May. But the number of people working declined.
In 1967, a North Little Rock group, The Villagers, released a cryptic early psychedelic record called “LSD” under the name Suspension of Belief. The song is a mix of non-sequitur lyrics, a haunting folk guitar ballad and orchestral sound clips interspersed throughout in an early example of sampling. When the group recorded it, they had no idea that producer George Whitaker, the owner of Zay-Dee records, would transform their psychedelic folk song into a swirling operatic wonder.
Stacy Hurst NOW says she has a plan to do something about crime in Little Rock. Noted: She's been a member of the City Board, which oversees the Little Rock police department, since 2002.
Mark Pryor just can't quit jabbing at opponent Tom Cotton for snubbing the Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival in favor of meeting with the Koch brothers and other Republican fat cats.
The fifth annual Savor the City kicks off Aug. 1 for Little Rock Restaurant Month, when eateries will provide discounts and specials to promote their chow.
A federal appeals court has ruled that Oklahoma must allow same-sex couples to marry. It's the same court that earlier struck down Utah's ban.
David Couch, attorney for Let Arkansas Decide, which is seeking a statewide vote on a constitutional amendment to legalize retail alcohol sales in all 75 counties, said he learned from the Arkansas secretary of state's office that initial canvassing produced 61,000 signatures of registered voters.
The University of Arkansas has trademarked the Hog Call, the cheer that has been a part of Razorback athletics since the 1920s. Trademarking a chant? It's unusual.
Rev. Benny Johnson, who leads an anti-crime group, says Little Rock authorities favor certain neighborhoods over the inner city when it comes to responding to violent crime.
The city of Little Rock received a letter today from MAPCO, the convenience store chain, that it was withdrawing its controversial application to build a unit at Third and Broadway.
Secretary of State Mark Martin's office said Alex Reed, who's been handling internal communications, submitted a resignation letter yesterday. Today was his last day at work, though he'll remain on the payroll for about three weeks of accumulated leave.
An open line, with the day's video headline roundup. Also: Obama orders non-discrimination against gay workers on federal jobs, no religious exemption. And, brother, was it cold for a July 18.
Tonight: Quapaw Quarter Figure Drawing Group; Southern artists, student artists, fabric jewelry art demonstration, all in Argenta tonight from 5-8 p.m.
Only old timers will know the name Y.A. Tittle. Hell, he's even old to me. But I was an LSU fan and he was famous as a quarterback there before he became a Hall of Fame NFL quarterback, forever famous for a bloodied photograph following a critical interception in a championship game.
I fill in for Lindsey this week, who's on daddy duty with a new baby boy (congrats Lindsey!). Max joins me to talk Razorback trademarking, the state of the Pryor-Cotton and Hutchinson-Ross races (tomatoes! debates!), ballot initiatives for statewide booze sales and raising the minimum wage, and the possibility of Uber coming to Little Rock. Plus endorsements for the city of Nashville and "Getting Back to Abnormal," a character-rich documentary on post-Katrina New Orleans politics.
As expected, the drive to put a minimum wage increase on the ballot fell short of the number of valid signatures of registered voters to qualify on the initial submission. They have 30 days to get more.
A federal court jury in Harrison late Friday acquitted Bull Shoals Police Chief Daniel Sutterfield of conspiracy and falsifying a police report charges in a case that said he brutalized a suspect on a domestic abuse call. The jury couldn't reach a verdict on the charge that he'd use'd excessive force, the Baxter Bulletin reported.
A story with Arkansas implications: The Chattanooga public utility, EPB, has installed lightning fast Internet service. Its cheaper and better than private competition. It wants to expand. Telecomm companies are standing in the way.
AP reports that former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will campaign in Arkansas in August for Republican nominee Asa Hutchinson. 47 per centers need not apply. They couldn't afford the tickets anyway.
A postcard from globetrotting Gov. Mike Beebe tops today's open line.
Ernie Dumas reports the death Saturday of Conley Byrd, a former Arkansas Supreme Court justice who lived in Redfield.
A silver alert for a missing Little Rock man turned out OK Saturday. He just wanted to ride his Harley to Sturgis.
More evidence still that fiercely partisan D.C.-style politics will be the order of the day if the Republican Party enhances its control of Arkansas political offices. Republican caucus preferences should dictate unanimous votes for legislative leadership. And if that's so, why not set the same rule for legislation, too.
The Sunday line is open. Mark Pryor was on Capitol View on KARK/16 this morning. A snippet of his appearance here, in which he talks about being a "bridge builder," somebody who'll cross party lines on votes.
Arkansas Business reports on a lawsuit filed against John Rogers of North Little Rock, who's won fame as a collector and reseller of photos and other memorabilia of famous athletes.
Now Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor is playing the debate game after weeks of it by Republican opponent Tom Cotton. If Cotton is so all-fired willing to debate Pryor, how come he hasn't agreed to two appearances Pryor has accepted?
A new national Republican ad buy in Arkansas to attack Mike Ross repeats discredited lies in a similar ad last month.
Karen Garcia, the Democratic candidate for state treasurer, has offered a strong ethics plan for the office if elected. It merits consideration even if her Republican opponent wasn't already a strong reason to consider Garcia.
The Kochs' political group, Americans for Prosperity, loves Tom Cotton. Too bad its blog doesn't seem to konw where he lives. Not that it matters, so long as he votes right. And he does.
Barry Livingston, 76, left for his morning run from his home on Auburn Drive about 6 a.m., Little Rock police said. He was found later along Hughes Street near Amherst Cove with a head injury and broken right leg, consistent, police said, with being struck by a vehicle.
A U.S. Appeals Court has affirmed a lower court ruling that investors in Allen Stanford's fraudulent Ponzi scheme were not entitled under law to seek compensation from the Securities Investors Protection Corp.
The Arkansas Association of Two-Year Colleges has begun a search for people who've earned or almost earned associate's degrees but might not know it.
A lawyer has said petitions submitted for a statewide vote on retail alcohol sales in all 75 counties were submitted to late under the Arkansas Constitution and cannot be certified.
The open line and video headline roundup. Also, a marijuana measure for 2016 has already been rejected by the attorney general. They'll be back.
BuzzFeed has written in depth about Kali Hardig, then 12, whose swim in a water park south of Little Rock put her in contact with a brain-eating amoeba nearly always fatal. Treatment at Arkansas Children's Hospital saved her life.
Ernie Dumas gives Republican gubernatorial candidate Asa Hutchinson a jab for dodging a position on the private option expansion of Medicaid, while Democrat Mike Ross is loudly proclaiming his support for a plan crafted by Republican legislators.
A D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals panel has ruled 2-1 that participants in federally operated health insurance exchanges in 34 states cannot qualify for federal subsidies. These are the states, including Arkansas, that didn't set up their own health insurance marketplaces and left it to the government. It will be a while before the ruling has an impact, if ever.
The Porter Fund, founded by Little Rock novelists Jack Butler and Phillip McMath in 1984, has announced writer and Arkansas Times contributing editor Mara Leveritt as the recipient of the 2014 Porter Fund Literary Prize. Past award winners include Kevin Brockmeier, Trenton Lee Stewart, Roy Reed, David Jauss and Donald Harington.
The fellows from Fayetteville’s SW/MM/NG are about to go places— literally, as they hit the road next month as part of a national tour with stops far from home, and more figuratively, as they’ve procured a spot on Old Flame Records’ roster and are poised to finally release their full-length debut.
Hog farming and the private option were among the points of disagreement in a joint appearance today by gubernatorial candidates Mike Ross and Asa Hutchinson.
Art Amiss is a non-profit arts collective based in Fayetteville which aims to "support support Arkansas music through the production and sale of eclectic and genre specific compilations and use those funds to award grants to artists on a quarterly basis."
A new exhibit at Hearne Fine Art features works by 25 new, emerging and established artists who collaborated with composer Ryan Gaston's music/film/art installation "A Dream Retrieval Ritual."
Gubernatorial candidates appeared at a Farm Bureau forum today and Republican Asa Hutchinson flunked a pop quiz on his membership in the organization.
An open line. And what does Syria have to do with the Arkansas Times, you ask?
I’m not particularly fond of most chain restaurants. There are plenty of reasons to eat at locally owned restaurants, but perhaps most importantly, the food is generally better. But you know that not all chains are created equal. Arkansas sometimes seems to be a hotbed for mundane, unappealing chain restaurants…and in many ways, it probably is. But there are some chain restaurants that I, for one, would not mind popping up around town. Here’s 8 great chain restaurants I’d like to see in Little Rock
Here's a useful list of what lies ahead after conflicting rulings yesterday on whether subsidies are allowed for people who enroll in health exchanges set up by the federal government rather than the states.
Garland County authorities report a 68-year-old man shot his grandson last night as he advanced on him with a knife.
The drive to put a minimum wage increase on the November ballot is roughly 15,000 signatures short of the 62,507 signatures of registered voters necessary to qualify the initiated act for the ballot.
The Southern Foodways Alliance, a non-profit based at Ole Miss' Center for the Study of Southern Culture that studies the culture of food in the South, is collaborating with chef Matt McClure (21c Museum Hotel) to host the Potlikker Film Festival on Saturday, Aug. 9, in Bentonville.
Little Rock's song of the summer now has a video, and it's better than any of us could have hoped, like DGainz meets DIS magazine. The fact that I've yet to hear this song on the radio here is a complete mystery.
When candidates this year make big promises on economic development, listen closely for candidates who claim they'll match Mississippi, a solid red Republican-controlled state. Their corporate welfare tab is huge and schools are paying the price.