And the Winners Are… | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

And the Winners Are…

...Republicans (and Jim Hood) in contested statewide elections, Democrats in Hinds County and Legislative elections and turnout -- over 818,000 people had voted in the Lieutenant Governor's race with 92% of precincts reporting, suggesting that turnout was better than the Secretary of State, Eric Clark, had predicted at the beginning of the day, and besting recent gubernatorial elections.

Lt. Governor Amy Tuck (R) won handily, and Democrat Jim Hood stood out by getting just a few hundred fewer votes than Tuck, with the suggestion being the Republicans broke ranks to vote for the experienced candidate who was endorsed by incumbent Mike Moore.

Still hanging on as the JFP signed off were the Anderson/Reeves race for State Treasurer (leaning Reeves but not yet called) and the Peterson/Carroll race for D.A. in Hinds County, in which Peterson enjoyed a hearty lead.

GOVERNOR
Musgrove (D,i)....343,476-- 45%
*Barbour (R)........406,733-- 53%
Dillon (G)............3,215--1%
Cripps (Cnl).........5,550--1%
OHara (RP)..........3,470--1%
87% reporting (Source: ETV)

TREASURER
Anderson(D).....366,905-- 46%
Reeves(R).........412,879-- 52%
Dillworth(RP).....12,190--2%
92% reporting (Source: ETV)

LT. GOVERNOR
*Tuck(R,i).........501,892-- 61%
Blackmon (D)....299,953-- 37%
Reives (RP).........16,168--2%
92% reporting (Source: WAPT)

ATTORNEY GENERAL
*Hood (D).........501,508-- 62%
Newton(R)........304,392-- 38%
93% report (Source: WAPT)

HINDS COUNTY DA
Peterson(D).....31,104--58%
Carroll(R).........22,294--42%
86% reporting (Source: WAPT)

HINDS TAX COLLECTOR
Eddie Fair (D).....29,546--55%
Bill Burrow (R,i)..23,579--44%
86% reporting (Source: WAPT)

STATE SENATE - 29
Dewayne Thomas (D)....1,048--56%
Richard White (R,i).........814--44%
23% reporting (ETV)

STATE SENATE - 36
Lynn Posey (D, i)............14,022--85%
Charles Stogner (R)........2,529--15%
56% reporting (ETV)

Hinds County likely winners:

Chancery Clerk -- Eddie Jean Carr (D)
Circuit Clerk -- Barbara Dunn (D)
Coroner -- Sharon Grisham-Stewart (D)
County Attorney -- Malcolm Harrison
Tax Assessor -- Mike Barnes (D)
Supervisor Dist 1 -- Barbour (R)
Supervisor Dist 5 -- George Smith (D)
Justice Court Judge -- Nicki Martinson Boland (D)

Coasting incumbents:

*Lester Spell (D, Ag Commissioner)
*George Dale (D, Insurance Commissioner)
*Eric Clark (D, SecofState)
*Phil Bryant (R, State Auditor)

*Race has been called for candidate by the Associated Press.

Previous Comments

ID
136338
Comment

i'm one of the six. or probably ten. my tv antenna reception is really fuzzy, so keep me (us) updated. btw, do you guys think it's CRAZY that, while we are hearing reports of "damp ballots" and folks still voting, the AP is calling races??? sure, one can project percentages, but this reeks of 2000.

Author
jay
Date
2003-11-05T00:20:17-06:00
ID
136339
Comment

Yeah, I see your point, but the Tuck and Hood numbers both seem to be pretty far out there. What's a little interesting is that they're NOT calling the Gov or Treasurer race, despite what look like pretty bad odds. Either they're holding out to make it look competitive or they know something about the returns that are still out that we don't.

Author
todd
Date
2003-11-05T01:55:53-06:00
ID
136340
Comment

Anyone else think the Blackmon's comment about how she was actually going to win was a little over the top?

Author
Mark
Date
2003-11-05T02:07:25-06:00
ID
136341
Comment

Ok, Call this preening good news from a bad situation (no offense, Fielding), but there are some majority white counties that went for both Barbour and Anderson - mostly in NE Miss (including Lafayette, home of Ole Miss!!!) but one or two in S of Meridian as well. I have yet to look at the numbers in detail, but I will get back to you. In the meantime, consider what it means that Anderson took more majority white counties than Musgrove and (more to the point) some of them were the same ones Barbour took. That might make an interesting angle for a news story, Donna

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-05T09:16:16-06:00
ID
136342
Comment

Jay, I agree about that. That is what got the news networks in trouble during the 2000 race for president. Personally, I wouldn't call unless at least 85% of the precincts are in AND there is no less than a 10-pt gap between the candidates

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-05T09:18:19-06:00
ID
136343
Comment

Re Philip's comment on the Anderson-Reeves race - the statewide margin in that race is only slightly smaller than the Musgrove-Barbour result. Look at the AG race -- there was GOP crossover to vote for Hood and the differences in qualifications between Hood and Newton was much smaller than the Anderson-Reeves difference. The treasurer's race should not have been close. Anderson's qualifications and record so far outpaced Reeves'. This one is incredibly difficult to take. Mississippi's gone backwards here.

Author
Matthew Dalbey
Date
2003-11-05T10:33:49-06:00
ID
136344
Comment

Matthew, I wouldn't call it "backward"; one could believe that if they believed that Mississippi had fixed its race issues, as some on this blog argue. This is evidence, I believe, of what the JFP has been saying all along: we have to face our race history squarely and do some hard work and reckoning. Frankly, too many white progressives just won't face the race politics at play in the state (and in the city, as in the D.A.'s race). There's a serious call-to-action that should come out of the Anderson race. No one can say now that Mississippi has solved its race problems; this is hard evidence. So is the acceptance by too many of Barbour's race-pandering. As I've been saying regularly, HE brought it up. As far as I'm concerned, the race/flag issue is once again wide open for discussion with the blessing of the new governor. See Anderson thread for more comments about this: http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/politics/comments.php?id=1930_0_13_0_C

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T10:45:41-06:00
ID
136345
Comment

With due respect Donna, the Anderson-Reeves result certainly isn't progress; status quo won't due when the world -- however slowly -- is passing us by. Ray Mabus was quoted last night saying that Barbour played the race card in his campaign. That he had to "play" it means to me that we had begun to solve our race problem and by playing it, we went backwards.

Author
Matthew Dalbey
Date
2003-11-05T11:04:45-06:00
ID
136346
Comment

Who could possibly have profited by spreading this Jesse Jackson/Amy Tuck flyer around? Have any of you seen it?

Author
Becky
Date
2003-11-05T11:22:50-06:00
ID
136347
Comment

What flyer? What's on it?

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T11:45:00-06:00
ID
136348
Comment

Donna, I realize now that you didn't say "progress." I'm just in a bad mood. Makes me sloppy. The point for me is that if we're not going forward, we're going backwards.

Author
Matthew Dalbey
Date
2003-11-05T12:20:11-06:00
ID
136349
Comment

Headline: Jesse Jackson and Amy Tuck underneath, a picture of JJ with a microphone and Tuck standing behind him Then caption: A picture is worth a thousand words Amy Tuck cannot be trusted. . .MS can do better Plain run-off copy paper with no identifying marks. DOn't have the tech knowledge to know if it's been photoshopped. What on earth could someone have been trying to accomplish?

Author
Becky
Date
2003-11-05T12:24:37-06:00
ID
136350
Comment

DeWayne Thomas has lost by 175 votes with all 7 precincts reporting. Two key NE Jackson precincts that are jam packed with code talkers (34A and 34B), and where turnout was very heavy, still have not reported. Gary Anderson was by far the most qualified, but he ran a terrible campaign. Y'all can chalk it up to race if it helps you feel better, but if Anderson had run even 90% of the campaign that Hood ran he would have won going away. You liberals, er, progressives better get on the stick and fast because the GOPers elected last night will all have enormous war chest$ next time round. Y'all don't have anybody in the bullpen who can bring the heat. Gonna be a loonnngggg 8 years in the political wilderness. See that ol' Sherm will probably come in dead last despite his outstanding job at completing the (meaningless) JFP questionaire. LMAO

Author
PostHatchChickenCounter
Date
2003-11-05T12:32:10-06:00
ID
136351
Comment

Matthew, no problem. I understand why the election results are unsettling, and I'm not belittling that -- and it's certainly not progress! But, I worry that here in Mississippi that progressive thinkers can have a fatalistic attitude -- that when we don't win we believe that we can't ever win. I believe we all need to find the hope that's there, and it is there. The numbers show that. But I honestly don't think we've really done the hard work, yet, in order to form the alliances that are needed. I do believe the majority of Mississippians have good hearts and even progressive spirits -- but not enough vote because they don't anybody they want to vote for. The work really does start (again) today, and to be honest with you, I suspect it'll be easier to build a progressive movement here with Barbour in office, than Musgrove, who ran as a fake Republican. I don't like that Barbour won, but we might as well make the best of it and turn it into a springboard for something much more powerful than might have come from a Musgrove win. As for Anderson: Yes, there is too much racism still in Mississippi. It is official. Let's do something about it. And I'll say it again: Democrats have to stop trying to compete with Republicans on conservatism. They're not the majority, but they have become masters at dividing and conquering, and apparently will stop at nothing, as Barbour's blatant race-pandering shows. We have to stop fighting for only the voters who are already there. Sure, some will swing over, but the key is energizing new voters. That scares a lot of folks inside politics, but that's too bad. That's the future in both Mississippi and the U.S. Becky, I've seen the image you're talking about; it was going around as an e-mail joke, and I believe a Republican reader sent it to me. I'm sure someone took that image, real or not, and turned it into a flyer. From your description, it doesn't sound like it was sanctioned by a candidate or a party (as all the Barbour crap was), so we'll probably never know. It just as easily have come from a Republican trying to prove that Barbour isn't the only one using racist tactics. It's hard to tell.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T12:37:37-06:00
ID
136352
Comment

Thanks, PostHatch, for reminding us of the level of class and intelligence we progressives are up against.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T12:39:49-06:00
ID
136353
Comment

Amen, Donna. The same class that accused a man of "attacking our flag." Christ...what planet was this again? As long as we equate money with being qualified to run, we get what we pay for - in the end, we all pay for it.

Author
Poet
Date
2003-11-05T12:56:46-06:00
ID
136354
Comment

All, I'm hearing more about the legislative races -- and it certainly doesn't sound like a Republican revolution occurred last night by any stretch. For one thing, it's quite amazing that in a state that is beginning to be considered the most Republican in the country that so many races were so close. That fact must be pointed out to folks time after time: There is no mandate here. Just imagine what will happen as more new voters are targeted and mobilized. Look at the legislative races, and this is just a summary based on an e-mail I got from a political-watcher; not independently confirmed. We're just compiling the final info. The report: All incumbents won except Jay Eades, Tommy Dickerson, Randy Ellzey and Charles Walden.†The GOP picked up 9 seats in the House, some due to redistricting and much due to Barbour's coattails.†The Senate remains split with 29 Democrats and 23 Republicans, unless Dwayne Thomas wins (we haven't confirmed PostHatch's proclamation, yet), which would result in a one vote pick-up for the Dems in the Senate, where Republicans had sworn they would get a majority. The truth is, many constituents held their ground even where national tort-reform money was flowing in.†Those included: Gloria Williamson, Bobby Moak, Debbie Dawkins, Gray Tollison, Jamie Franks, Billy McCoy. And I should apologize to y'all bloggers for my quip above to PostHatch; I should take a higher road than such anonymous flames. Like Matthew, I'm a bit tired and quick on the draw today.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T12:57:23-06:00
ID
136355
Comment

"Yes, there is too much racism still in Mississippi. It is official. Let's do something about it." It's been 138 years. How much more time is needed? This election is another kick in the gut for Jackson's future. You want to retain and recruity bright young people to contribute to your city? If Jackson wants to change its image (and I don't think it does if you examine the empirical evidence), the state of MS has to become a more tolerant, welcoming place. Sure, the people are nice and kind and sit on their front porches after Sunday sermons. BUT, they're bigots. Don't get me wrong, we've got bigots in Charlotte (white and black), but we've got bigger fish to fry. The city is about commerce and growing economically. There is little room for organized bigotry in this model. Thus, it doesn't perpetuate a failed system. Rather, it festers on the margins as a nuisance, not as a giant cancerous mass on the city's economy and political structure.

Author
kchilton
Date
2003-11-05T12:59:58-06:00
ID
136356
Comment

Great points, Poet. It is very hard for me to imagine anyone being proud of the Barbour victory, at least in their hearts. At what cost? They ripped the state in two, and at its very heart, to win. They spent millions of dollars to fan racist flames. They made us all, once again, a national embarassment. And for what? To please a bunch of corporations that aren't even headquartered here. But this, too, shall pass. Mark my words.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T13:01:01-06:00
ID
136357
Comment

You probably shouldn't have suggested that PostHatch is unintelligent, but since the truth of your suggestion seemed self-evident, I didn't take offense. ;-)

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T13:03:17-06:00
ID
136358
Comment

Donna-- one correction. Ellzey, the Democratic candidate, is not an incumbent. Pickering, the GOP candidate, won an open Senate seat-- replacing the retiring incumbent Republican senator Vincent Scoper.

Author
Ex
Date
2003-11-05T13:13:19-06:00
ID
136359
Comment

Kenneth, your points are well taken. But understand that Rome wasn't built overnight, and we're making progress, and we have to keep moving forward. Imagine the alternative. The history of Mississippi, inside and outside the state, is to give up on ourselves. As a result, we and the country are worse off. Now, what your posting really says to me, though, is how necessary it is for white progressives to examine their own role in all this. In this state, with its vast poverty and income inequality, you can't vote for greed and progress at the same time. And I fear too many right here in Jackson did just that. One of the most terrifying races to me was the D.A.'s race here -- and how many white so-called progressives bought into the unfactual fear-mongering of the challenger, or better yet, of his major backers -- one of whom owns many newspapers around the state and fans the fearful flames constantly with barely coded innuendo that is keeping Jackson down. Too many people want so-called progressivism, as long as whites are in charge of it, and too many blacks want progressivism as long as blacks are in charge of it. And they have to wake up: the key to a progressive future in Mississippi, is a multi-racial alliance that puts the health of the state (in every way) over personal greed and racism. THAT needs to start right now. Today. This second. And I will agree with you that every person who considers themselves progressive in any form needs to examine their hearts for their own kneejerk beliefs about race and crime. So much of the state's racism has been funneled into safe, coded places that still end up benefitting many of the same folks in charge 40 years ago. Then people who go along with much of it wring their hands with frustration at the race-pandering that surfaces at times like this. Of course it's going to surface; it's there just waiting to be exploited with someone who seems to have no conscience like Mr. Barbour and Ms. Tuck. Look at how many people say they want to build the city up, but is absolutely unwilling to try to work with the city to overcome obstacles and do that. They are willing to split the baby in half, and they are fostering divisiveness. It's extremely frustrating, but this is my home, and I am willing to stay and talk and write and fight the hard battles to help this state move forward instead of backward. And just calling it hopeless is not going to do that.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T13:13:31-06:00
ID
136360
Comment

kchilton, don't confuse all of MS with Jackson. Hinds county and Jackson did *not* elect Barbour or Tuck. Mississippi as a whole has alot of work to do, but Jackson - while it's got its share of problems and bigotry and such - seems to me to be filled with alot of people working very very hard to become a more tolerant, welcoming, economically vibrant place. And Donna, you're comments to PostHatch were just a much funnier, more concise expression of exactly what I was thinking. And - I love all the new bloggers we're getting on the site with the elections.

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-05T13:14:11-06:00
ID
136361
Comment

Thanks for the correx, Ex. I told you it was unconfirmed. Good eye. Nia, I actually wasn't saying PostHatch is unintelligent, but his/her posting didn't strike me as such. But, I shouldn't have said it, anyhow. Yes, welcome to all the new bloggers. Such dialogue is one of the best things that can come out of the elections.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T13:17:47-06:00
ID
136362
Comment

The last thing I will say here, and then I must catch up on non-election work, is on Kate's point about Jackson. The city must lead the way in the state's progressive movement, and it can. There's no real secret why many of the status-quo forces don't want Jackson to have a true renaissance, and they are willing to go to great lengths to stop it. The crime rhetoric, which Barbour used to his advantage, is such a large part of that, and that is one place where progressives must be very careful about jumping on the wagon. Understand: You can fight crime without using it as a weapon to divide the city of Jackson, and thus minimize the possibility of renaissance here and in the state. And watch that word "leadership" -- it is very often used these days in Jackson and outside as a code word for the need to remove black officials. Again, maybe those officials need to be removed, or at least prodded to do better, but we can't buy into wholesale the idea that the city cannot function well under black leadership. Of course it can, but all leaders need support. What we have to watch for here is rhetoric that is meant to divide us all; sometimes the candidates doing it don't even know what they're doing, I think; they've been told what to say and in the case of crime, scared into thinking that the only way to fight crime is to change "leadership." This just isn't true, and it's a nefarious game. Those of us who want Jackson to be a shining star in the state are going to have to learn to build coalitions and to recognize the signs of those who just want to tear the city down. The first telling sign: If they moved to the suburbs and then are trying to tell the city how to rebuild itself in a negative (not hopeful, helpful way). The city and the suburbs do need to work together, but not just to do what the suburbs want the city to do. Very exciting things are happening in Jackson, and the opposition to these things is just going to get stronger, especially with Barbour our newest resident (and he is a master at manipulating the press; more on that soon). We all must stay the course, and not give up on anything that we're working so hard to do. The truth of the matter is that we're trying to unite Mississippi, and it has probably never seemed more divided (even though it has been). But there's hope there, too: In the past, the state has been divided between those with power and those without any. Now, it's divided between those with national corporate power who use any means necessary to ignite their full pool of voters; and another more amorphous group that has all sorts of untapped power at its disposal, not to mention a greater number of non-voters that we can bring in. I happen to believe that the latter is the majority -- if we don't give up. And the key is positive progress (thus, the word progressive), a focus on local businesses and actual free enterprise, a respect for spirituality and personal religious beliefs, devotion to individual and civil rights, a re-focus on the needs and rights of young people, and an appeal to the good and the compassionate spirit in people. And we cannot believe that progressivism in Mississippi is hopeless, because it's not. Dust off, and keep pushing for the finish line.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T14:13:54-06:00
ID
136363
Comment

BTW, does anyone know of a news site that is actually keeping returns up-to-date today? Especially Hinds County?

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T14:38:33-06:00
ID
136364
Comment

http://www.co.hinds.ms.us/pgs/results/gen_election.asp

Author
David
Date
2003-11-05T14:53:41-06:00
ID
136365
Comment

well, woke up this morning, started the coffee pot, stepped out the front door and gazed upon my little patch of ms, now governed by haley barbour with ms. tuck as his helper monkey... and you know, it wasn't that bad...granted i voted for neither, but considering the alternatives are we really that much worse off? i'm not sure...but i have a sneaky suspicion not... i wax whimsical to say that progress does not have to be political...in fact, i think the two are oxymorons...i have little faith in a polarized system whose participants decide a positive stance on one issue allows for a negative stance on another (and have no real conviction towards either) and that a vote for the lesser of two evils is a positive gain... so, having 4 years before we have to deal with another gubernatorial election let's all find ways to prove what is possible in spite of an ineffective political system...next election instead of a fevered run to elect someone who in no way represents a progressive platform we can all hang out in front of the state capitol lounging in baby pools and sipping cuba libres....as it will be nov. the weather should be perfect

Author
lowgreynite
Date
2003-11-05T15:54:46-06:00
ID
136366
Comment

Lowgreynite: "let's all find ways to prove what is possible in spite of an ineffective political system" Lowgreynite, I like your sentiments a lot. It's a good challenge to us all. Frankly, I'm tired, but not surprised by any of the outcomes, so I don't' feel like anything particularly has been derailed (although some folks' eyes may be slightly wider open, and that's a good thing). Certainly, I think that Barbour-Tuck will more easily railroad certain things through, but they will also give us a great chance to speak up in response. The JFP will be covering the Legislature, so we certainly plan to have a strong voice. And that means that JFP readers will have a forum and a voice as well. Thank you, Lowgrey, for your comments.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T16:08:55-06:00
ID
136367
Comment

Donna, Matthew Dalby, and kchilton I called the Hinds Co. Election Commission regarding turnout. The lady I talked to said Hinds has 122,900 registered voters - 59,780 votes cast in the Governors' race and 58,703 in the Treasurers' race (155 of 166 precincts reporting). That's a 48 and 47 percent turnout respectively. Hinds is 61.1% Black and 37.0% Non-Hispanic/Latino White. Sources: http://www.co.hinds.ms.us/pgs/results/gen_election.asp http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/28/28049.html Hinds Co. Election Commission Ph. Call. (repeated in another post) Matthew and Kenneth, It's certainly true that statewide the Anderson-Reeves gap is only marginally narrower than the Musgrove-Barbour one. However, I think the only reasonably simple and fair way to deal with this is on a county-by-county basis (actually precinct-by-precinct is the fairest, but who has the time to be that through?). According to the C-L, and according to my personal count, the 2:55 am (it's been updated just a few min ago) 42 counties went for Anderson with at least pluralities; 18 of them majority white. Not all of them are near-majority. Even Tishomingo, 94% White, went for Anderson, albeit by a bare majority there. Similar story for Alcorn Co. west of Tish. (86% White). Even Lafayette (71% White), home of Ole Miss, went for Anderson. And Ole Miss, as you all know, does not have a reputation for lukewarm devotion to "Southern Traditions"!! Oktibbeha (MSU) is another one that went for Barbour yet voted for Anderson as well. Unfortunately, Madison Co., the state's most highly educated county, did not follow the same pattern. Still, we can take heart that at least the universities (voters with a long future ahead of them) tended to look past race despite strong conservatism. So I think this is not so much darkness as the dawn star of a truly new day - for those who care to dig deeper than mere statewide stats. In short, 11 majority white counties that went for Barbour went for Anderson; many, as I said, are pretty lily-white for Miss, esp. N of Tupelo. Six majority white counties voted for Musgrove as well as Anderson (5 in NE and NC Miss). My point? Despite the vote for Barbour, when push comes to shove many white Mississippians, not necessarily liberal/progressive ones, will look at qualifications instead of race. This is not to take away from Anderson - he was far and away the more qualified of the two (or 3, for that matter). But as I said, despite the dismal numbers, there are signs that race-consciousness's days in this state may be numbered. Take a look at this state 20 years hence and I think you will notice a change Sources: http://www.clarionledger.com/news/0311/04/treasurer.html http://www.clarionledger.com/news/0311/04/gov.html http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/maps/mississippi_map.html

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-05T16:57:49-06:00
ID
136368
Comment

Philip, reacting to your last paragraph, you don't have to be "liberal" to be "progressive." Snippy conservatives make fun of our use of the word "progressive" to describe our stances, but they don't understand it (or they understand it, and don't like that we're rejecting the paradigm they want thrust upon us, or know that the majority of Americans probably identify with progressivism, at least as we define it). Anyway, thanks much for all this info. I'll go through it carefully and consider your findings. You're definitely an honorary Jacksonian.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T17:11:41-06:00
ID
136369
Comment

Thanks for the info, Philip. I appreciate you taking the time to find that data - it's exactly what I'm interested in, but didn't feel like going to look for on my own.

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-05T17:12:13-06:00
ID
136370
Comment

The progressive movement has one potential stubling block, its messengers. Well, not all, but the most vocal. I am a middle of the roader that leans right. I buy into some "progressive" ideas and believe I am an independent "swing voter ", if you will. This is all my personal opinion, but I would love some feedback. Nothing can kill a message as quickly as its messenger. A few examples. When the flag vote was looming and there were meetings to discuss the issue, the people I know that supported the old flag cringed when some long haired hillbilly looking person dressed in confederate gear showed up and started yelling about the flag. Although the flag stayed, most folks did not want that guy out front leading. On the opposite side, I cringed everytime I heard a black militant speak on the issue or some snotty sounding college kid because I knew people would distance themselves from the messenger. (everyone hates college kids. I'm 3.5 years out) Same for the legalization of dope folks. All the folks that do the talking looked to be left over stoners from the 60-70's or some college kid that is extremely intelligent but looks like he's never seen a shower. To make a long story short, the "progressives" need to make sure their message is not hijacked. Use "clean cut boys and girls in suits" (not really, but you get my drift) to get out there spreading the word, not sandal wearing, beard growing, f'd up hair wearing college kids because their message will fall on deaf ears that might have actually been open to their message(Like my dad for instance). I only say this because I would love to see this movement grow if only to give citizens more choices, but until Mississippi becomes San Francisco the messenger is more important than the message. These are just my thoughts, Thank you

Author
jimjam
Date
2003-11-05T17:46:38-06:00
ID
136371
Comment

Bravo, jimjam! As I claimed in several past posts - image and propriety (I'd call it semi-Stepfordism) is practically everything in this area (and certainly in other parts of Middle America too).

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-05T17:54:49-06:00
ID
136372
Comment

Interesting thoughts, JimJam, but it strikes me that, if you're being serious, there are a lot of Americans that you don't like, and that you base a lot of your impressions on people's appearances. I'm not dissing you; that's just the impression I get from your post. Obviously, a true progressive movement is going to contain a wide variety of people who dress all sorts of ways and don't agree on everything. It doesn't seem very progressive to try to insist that everyone look or sound alike. That seems like the textbook definition of conservative, or regressive, or status quo. Progressive means the acceptance of a wide variety of individuals, which is supposed to be the American way, right? Clearly, the rebel-flag supporters might have cringed, but they weren't turned off enough by the guy out in front that you refer to that they voted against the flag. They clearly based their decision on something else. And it seems like there should be more substantive reasons for any of our decisions than someone's appearance. When I think of people I truly respect and admire, they fall among a wide spectrum of ideas, backgrounds, educational levels, and hair lengths. And many are college students; I don't think everyone hates college students. I certainly understand stereotypes; when I see someone seem too buttoned-up and clean-cut, I sometimes assume that they're closed-minded and conservative because they look so stiff and less-than-creative to me. Of course, that's often not the case. Some of my best friends wear suits. ;-) Everybody in Mississippi can't, or shouldn't, look and act alike. And just because we're "different" somehow, it doesn't mean that we should leave the state because we don't fit with the majority. We should have a place, and a voice, here. And we do.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T18:02:29-06:00
ID
136373
Comment

jimjam, I hear ya on this one. It often seems like we have to choose between 'sandal wearing, beard growing, f'd up hair wearing college kids' and the 'uptight country club/religious right' and the folks dressed up in confederate gear. And so on and so forth. There's a couple of ways I personally try to deal with that: 1. I really try hard to separate my feelings from the messenger from the message. It's not always possible for me, but I do try. 2. I seek out those that actually stand *for* something - as opposed to those who are stuck in protest mode, or those who are afraid of change. I find that the most annoying on all sides of the issues are those that define themselves by what they are NOT instead of what they are for. 3. I pay close attention whenever someone surprises me - when a hippy freak turns out to have an MBA, or when a white guy in a blue suit with a red tie turns out to be progressive. Stereotypes are just stereotypes, and we've got to get over them. 4. And mostly, I just try to ask alot of questions. As for me, I think the right needs as much of a 'makeover' in its spokespeople as the left. Those white guys in suits really scare me.

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-05T18:04:40-06:00
ID
136374
Comment

Re-reading your post, I'm probably getting your point better, JimJam, but it still seems a bit extreme to me. I definitely see the point of not letting old, tired hippies be the primary spokesmen (sorry, hippes), but I also don't think preppies are going to do the trick, either. The truth is, young people want to be talked to by people who look like this, and a lot of them around here aren't preppies. I think a laid-back, casual, non-threatening approach makes the most sense, although certainly one can alter their look slightly depending on who they're talking to. And a good fashion eye never hurt anyone. ;-D And people can be so quick to stereotype that if an African-American with dreads shows up to speak about something, he/she might be called a "black militant." I dunno.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T18:09:55-06:00
ID
136375
Comment

I gave away my suits when I became a freelancer so I guess I can't messenger, but I haven't stopped seeing my friends in suits! :-) Jimjam, your sentiments strike me as thoughtful but buried in stereotypes that aren't meaningful. Do you really judge people by the length of their hair and whether or not they wear a suit? Does your love for your wife revolve around how she wears her hair? I rarely, even though I've recently taken a "real" job, wear a suit. And because I refuse to try to make my hair act like it's not nappy, my hair is often all over the place. But folks rarely get the wrong idea about who I am and what I stand for because I put my voice, my message to work. If your mind is open, the message is louder than the messenger. People need to lose the stereotypes and start seeing people for who they are and not whether they're wearing Prada or have a perm.

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T18:16:52-06:00
ID
136376
Comment

I hear you about the white guys in suits, Kate. And the guys in very tight jeans and cowboy hats scare me, too, while we're stereotyping. I guess I'm such a fan of quirky characters that I don't think about this issue of appearances as much. Well, maybe I do. I certainly think it's important, say with the JFP, not to be just a paper for stodgy 60s-era peaceniks. We include fashion because many of our readers enjoy it, and even though some other alts think it's frivolous (screw em). We probably promote a certain hipness, which I do think is appealing in today's young world. Maybe the messenger should be classic creative-class types, if that makes any sense to anyone. I think y'all have finally found a topic that completely befuddles me!

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T18:16:59-06:00
ID
136377
Comment

Hey! I like guys in tight jeans! Could do without the cowboy hats though. Then again, Marlboro Man is WAY sexy lookin'.

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T18:18:41-06:00
ID
136378
Comment

Big D, let's be friends. I'm on your side, mostly. I agree that we all should accept each other for who we are, but let's get real. Politics is winner take all. Sometimes you have to bend your principles to win. I'm not saying it is right, but . . . I've noticed alot of folks are bummed about the election, but unless you play the game to win (because the other side damn sure does), get use to the sinking feeling for the next 8 years or so.

Author
jimjam
Date
2003-11-05T18:20:48-06:00
ID
136379
Comment

It's actually an issue I've thought about - partially because I don't have a real strong fasion sense. And because, as a woman, I'm too aware of how often people use a woman's appearance against her. On one level, the whole issue bugs the crap out of me, and I think we should all be able to ignore appearence. On the other hand, people's reactions to appearances are real, and dressing 'appropriately' can either detract from or support your message. The other thing that bugs me is that I often look more like a republican housewife than I do any sort of hip, progressive, mama. Since my appearance doesn't always match my message, I try to assume that the same holds true for everyone else.

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-05T18:25:11-06:00
ID
136380
Comment

Donna-- I wouldn't call it extreme. How you present yourself certainly can be as important as what you're presenting.

Author
Ex
Date
2003-11-05T18:29:10-06:00
ID
136381
Comment

Ex, that depends on who's doing the judging. Steerotypes are often so deeply embedded that they overpower common sense, not to mention the obvious.

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T18:32:32-06:00
ID
136382
Comment

JimJam, anyone who calls me "Big D" is a friend of mine. ;-D Seriously, I'm just thinking out loud about your posts. It's not personal. Playing the game to win is an interesting concept. Of course, winning is nice, but there are different ways to play the game. And I'm not sure the Democrats are adopting a winning strategy by pretending to be Republicans (or Republicrats, as some folks call them). Mississippi has officially joined the nation with this election: being a pretend Republican won't work anymore. The right has got that one sewn up. Although: I do believe that "moderate" Republicans who don't buy all the race crap and the corporate-love-fest fit very nicely in the progressive mold -- better than some hard-left Democrats, in fact. So we may be well friends in progressivism, JimJam. I'm still not sure what to wear, though. And, Kate, I think there are a lot of hip, progressive mamas disguised as Republican housewives, so take heart. ;-P

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-05T18:35:45-06:00
ID
136383
Comment

Nia-- Which is exactly why you want to present yourself well to your audience. Knowing your audience is important. One real-life example that springs to my mind is John Grisham's role as counsel in a case in Brookhaven several years ago. "This was no flashy, soundbites-and-sizzle, Johnnie Cochran Jr.-style approach. The best-selling author, dressed like the country lawyer he is in a boxy suit and neutral tie, came across as a nice guy: well-prepared, deferential, sincere-sounding and self-effacing." --"Low Key Grisham Presents Case in Court," USA Today, Page 1D, January 23, 1996.

Author
Ex
Date
2003-11-05T19:11:46-06:00
ID
136384
Comment

My point, Jimjam, is that we should be trying CHANGE the way the game is played because this game is pretty sordid if we have to pretend te be something we're not in order to even be IN the game, let alone to win it. And the point is even more appropriate for the example you gave. Suppose Grisham were defending an alleged child serial murderer. Would you want the jury to be swayed by what the defense attorney was or was not wearing or would you rather have them judge the merits of the prosecution's case on evidence? It's worth noting that OJ may very well have gotten away with murder becasue of Cochran's "flashy style." Not everyone looks at it as a negative. Some people don't like boxy suits. Stereotype is in the eye of the beholder.

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-05T19:44:26-06:00
ID
136385
Comment

I can understand why many of you may be unhappy with the outcome of the election. Many of you mention being progressive and I respect that. I am also a progressive, but I am neither a republic or democrat, and I cast my vote based on the issues and individual candidates. Like many voters, I also cast my vote based on which candidate might be "least worst." I was transferred to Mississippi almost four years ago, about a year before the flag vote. I felt the flag should be changed, but did not vote because I also felt it wasn't really my flag or my choice. I was surprised when the old flag remained. I've lived in several parts of the country and found Mississippi to have much less racism than other areas. I was pleasantly surprised after living in Memphis and other parts of Tennessee. I voted for Haley Barbour because I haven't seen much progress in the short time I've lived here, which was all during Musgrove's governorship. I have no doubt Musgrove is hard working and very intelligent, and he has my appreciation and respect, but he was ineffective. He reminds me of Jimmy Carter, one of our most intelligent and hardest working presidents, also very ineffective. It is results that matter, not effort. I voted for Amy Tuck, because she was the incumbent, and I could not see how Blackmon was more qualified. I did not vote for Gary Anderson and that was a mistake. I really didn't know until this morning how qualified he was as Treasurer. I just wanted to give the candidate for governor I was voting for a supportive team to give him the opportunity to succeed. I never met a black person named Gary and I did not know he was black, not that his color would have effected the way I voted. Had he campaigned a little harder I would have known more about him. He was probably putting his job responsibilities before campaiging, which makes me regret my mistake even more. I should have done more research. I don't have to justify the votes I placed, but there are reasons other than race why these candidates were elected. The country looses money on Mississippi, as we don't even pull our own weight. We have a low ranked educational system, high rate of teenage pregnancy, high crime rate, unprosecuted statuatory rape and rising aids in the delta,full jails, etc...etc..etc. I can't believe someone said that it is the results of this election that is going to make us a national embarassment and our state would be split it two....when it takes both sides to split. Haley was right when he said Mississippi has many resources and it's greatest being the people. Mississippi people seem to be the nicest I've ever met. The is a lot of opportunity for Mississippi and a great need for change. I still believe there would have been little, if any, change with Musgrove.

Author
Howard
Date
2003-11-05T22:23:08-06:00
ID
136386
Comment

Thinking through all these posts, and the other "post of the day", I think a combo of factors are at work, though there's no doubt at all racial problems are behind Anderson's defeat. Even so, there are still other factors involved, all of them intertwined. 1. In the first place, most people don't make an effort to be politically aware for whatever reason. 2. People usually pay attention to only the Governor and the Lt. Gov's race because those races make the news most often, meaning people don't have to put much of themselves into finding out about the background of candidates (and I confess I'm as guilty as the rest of them). 3. State Treasurer itself is a normally low profile race. This means even fewer people will bother to find out about this candidate than they do about their governor, even if an open seat race (often, they just vote for the incumbent, especially if they don't feel the office has a direct impact on their lives - as is the case with the state treasurer). 4. In this part of the country, most people, regardless of their race, often vote "straight ticket". Often they don't care about how effective a representative or leader they would be -- all they care about is that they don't want "the other party" holding that seat. Just how much racism played a role in the outcome versus the other four intertwinded factors, I'm not prepared to say - except that there are as many reasons as there were ballots not cast for Anderson.

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-05T23:59:51-06:00
ID
136387
Comment

Howard, I appreciate your comments, and your taking time to explain your votes. It's very informative. I do disagree with your logic about the state being split by Barbour, however. Perhaps the flag issue doesn't resonate as much for you because you're so new to the state (lucky you!). I'd grown up in the shadow of the flag and what it symbolizes, and then returned shortly after the 2001 flag election. The state's determined embrace of that symbol is very difficult for me as someone who can see what it does to us. The national (and in-state) embarrassment comes now because the state elected a governor who choose to run a very divisive, race-based campaign by using the most divisive symbol we have in order to turn out certain voters -- the classic "Southern Strategy." I disagree with you completely that it takes two sides for a division to happen. Someone with enough power can certainly take advantage of a divisive "wedge issue" to drive a wedge between an electorate that could otherwise be more united. For instance, how does Barbour know that he might not have gotten more votes, and therefore more of a mandate, had he not chosen this divisive tactic? He only ended up with 54 percent (right, still?) of the vote -- which I actually find mighty encouraging for the future, considering. He's the one who now has to mend his rift; maybe he can do that; some piles of nice salty pork for the Delta probably would be a good start. Also, I'm not a fan of Musgrove, as regulars here know, but he does have a record of progress in the state -- more of one than Barbour has. Outside the state, he's quite admired for what he was able to do during tough times. Getting Adequate Education funding restored was a *major* feat -- and one that may now be short-lived. I'm unclear on what progress you think that Barbour represents for Mississippi. And I'm really unclear on how Barbour plans to solve the list of problems you mention: AIDS in the Delta, education, teen pregnancy, even crime (beyond ordering asst. AGs to Jackson and locking up more drug users). He didn't seem to run on many specifics, other than his tort-reform wish list.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-06T00:43:20-06:00
ID
136388
Comment

Donna-- An additional note: The political watcher who sent you the email may have confused Randy Ellzey with Joe Ellzey. Joe Ellzey is an incumbent Democratic representative who lost his re-election bid to Republican Gary Staples.

Author
Ex
Date
2003-11-06T10:18:29-06:00
ID
136389
Comment

The GOP is successful here in MS because the voters lack the sophistication (and education) to see through the self-righteous hate-mongering, affirmation of stereotypes and misleading soundbites the GOP depends upon. It is comforting to people to believe that all issues are inherently simple and that all the convenient stereotypes they have been taught are true. People want to be told they are right. People want to feel like they, for once, win. Hard questioning and research become insignificant for those that don't understand the value of history. Especially when the GOP validates their fears so brazenly. In doing so, they validate the people. And the people don't have to lift a finger. It's the political equivalent of the Martha Stewart promise: Perfection Is Easy. This is the nature of most MSians. Denying it is futile. We are a state full of stupid people, bound to vote for the basest message out there. This year, it happens to be the GOP taking advantage of that low road. Jackson is a decidedly progressive city. But it's the reluctant tail on the dog that is MS. Entities such as JFP help us feel better and help improve the city. But they cannot turn the tsunami of lazy voters in search of validation.

Author
Wyre
Date
2003-11-06T17:51:10-06:00
ID
136390
Comment

Wyre, I agree with you that people want to be told they are right, and want things packaged up neatly. HOWEVER, I don't think that we are a state of stupid people. I think many of the people have just never had their beliefs challenged in a rational way. The newspapers certainly don't do it, TV doesn't do it, and talk radio certainly doesn't do it. But, I think if we gently and rationally challenge people to think, and to look outside their town/county at the larger picutre, they will respond. Plus, we don't have to change everyone's mind. Just enough to start capturing attention in the next election, and enough to challenge politicians into doing their jobs well, and the media into reporting on it in a thoughtful manner. Changing the behavior of a relatively few key people can make all the difference in the world.

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-06T18:04:06-06:00
ID
136391
Comment

It's all uphill from here, Sisyphus. My hands are on the stone too. But really, truly, seriouslyreally. Go talk to more rural MSians. I guarantee you'll see. They'll regurgitate the Fox News headlines to you. And then you'll see.

Author
Wyre
Date
2003-11-06T18:19:19-06:00
ID
136392
Comment

Hear, hear, Kate. And thanks for the kind comments about the JFP, Wyre. But Kate is right: we're only powerless if we decide that we are. And the notion that most Mississippians are stupid -- which I reject as well -- is only self-perpetuating. When we started the JFP, some people told us in Jackson that no one likes to read, that they don't care about history or issues, that we might as well not bother trying to challenge stereotypes, that it was hopeless. It wasn't true. We have dedicated readers throughout every neighborhood in Jackson. People walk up to me throughout the city and start commenting on one or another story. The same goes for outside the city; it would confound you the people who call about one or another story. They often just don't fit the stereotype of the progressive Jacksonian. You can NEVER give up on people, Wyre. It's important to try to understand their prejudices and their lack of knowledge, and then provide something entertaining and provocative to read or think about. The power of humanity continually surprises and humbles me. Don't sell our people short. Now, nothing makes me angrier than arrogant, educated people selling our people short and trying to take advantage of what they assume to be our prejudices. I've NEVER gotten over the cruelty of Ronald Reagan coming to Neshoba County and talking about states' rights -- and not just the cruelty to the black people, but to the whites, who were trying to recover from their own racist past. So, yes, we must, must call this out and say that Mississippians aren't going to take it anymore. I wish every reader of the JFP (even the Republicans) would write Mr. Barbour a letter and tell him what we think of his campaign -- he would be surprised, and he might learn something. He hurt everyone of us with this cruel campaign, no matter what race, even if not everyone is willing to face that, yet. That one act, of writing a letter to a powerful GOP leader, could change the future. Imagine. But please don't give up on Mississippians; that's happened way too often in our history. And we are the victims of our own (and certainly our politicians') bigotry of low expectations for us. Make no mistake, though: We have the power to change this. And when we do, Mississippi will take her place at the top of the spectrum because we have such amazing creative talent and spirit here. We just have a few hurdles to clear, yet. But we will. I believe in us.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-06T18:21:37-06:00
ID
136393
Comment

Wyre, I'm *related* to people who regurgitate Fox headlines, so I know it's not easy. (And I know it's not related to education or rural-ness.) But, we don't have to change everyone's minds. Just a few. And now we've got Howard Dean on our side, as we go after all those folks with confederate flags on their pickup trucks. Hee!

Author
Kate
Date
2003-11-06T18:23:28-06:00
ID
136394
Comment

Wyre, let 'em regurgitate Fox. At least they're not quoting Carleton Putnam these days. And that's progress. When they quote Mr. O'Reilly, ask questions and challenge; that's what I do with my own people outside Jackson (and inside). Don't just sit quietly when people make racist statements, especially in front of kids. Challenge them. Really: I've seen this literally change people. And don't forget young people; just talk to them about stuff. Many of them are turned on by intelligent conversation. And remember you don't need every Mississippian to quit quoting FOX in order to make the state more progressive. That's very importanat to keep in mind.

Author
ladd
Date
2003-11-06T18:27:52-06:00
ID
136395
Comment

I didn't mean to come off so hard on MS citizens. I meant to point out the paradox of divisive hate-driven rhetoric having the effect of comforting people because it validates their first impressions, their lazy opinions. And that it takes education, not just a good heart to see through that. MSians are not bad people, we are a function of our history. Lose a Civil War, get your cities burned and your women abused, wait about a hundred fifty years et viola! A risk averse, defeated people rich in culture, heart and soul, poor in cash and education.

Author
Wyre
Date
2003-11-06T18:59:17-06:00
ID
136396
Comment

wyre, We had a fairly long discussion about the Education matter on the "Chasing Amy" board - http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/comments.php?id=1835_0_9_0_C Basically, we decided that education alone will not cut it - it's the individual's background that's more important. For background, start with the Oct 27, 7:01 pm post by the poster "ex" and follow subsequent posts. The main contributors to the thread were he, I, Kate, and Nia. The Oct 27 series itself was based on my Oct 22 6:06 p.m post and subsequent ones, which in turn had its origins in a post series Diogenes and Ladd debated about (about how Republican MS was). Anything beyond that, well, read the whole thread and decide for yourself

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-06T20:01:11-06:00
ID
136397
Comment

Speaking of changes in Miss (and to some extent the USA in general), I'd say a major root of this problem is something called "The Culture of Honor". The aspect of it I'm thinking aobut is this tendency to get highly defensive in political, religious, or other "hot button" discussions. This inhibits rational legitimate discussion because most people will get highly irritable at disagreement on sensitive topics even if you are polite and respectable about it. This, in turn, inhibits people from saying what needs to be said for fear of getting offended (Southerners are tend to express care about being polite - which is good, don't get me wrong. But I think they are so caught up in manners that it does the culture more harm than good). The point: we have to fight on at least two fronts: (a) the entrenched beliefs themselves and (b) The Culture of Honor that inhibits people from expressing ideas contrary to what the majority believe. Psychologist Richard Nesbitt of the University of Michigan puts into words what I already vaguely felt for years... if the amazon.com reviews (listed below) are anything to go by. The main theme is Southern Violence, but I find the Culture of Honor also applies to politeness and expressing contrarian opinions on politics & religion as well I've not read the book, but according to the reviews of Nesbitt's book are offer strong insights of their own From:http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0813319935/103-4675662-8631052?v=glance&s=books "Psychologists trace the higher rate of homicide by southern whites to cultural heritages of the original settlers rather than to poverty, the legacy of slavery, or the high temperature. Among the English cavaliers who initially settled the area, they say, and also among the Scotch-Irish who arrived a century later, a man's reputation was the key to his economic survival. That has imbedded in the culture such a hypersensitivity to insult that arguments often lead to murder. If purely geographical factors were at work, they point out, then the murder rate for blacks would be higher in the south as well. Paper edition (unseen), $12.95. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or. Book Description In this brilliantly argued book, the authors explore the reasons behind the higher rate for homicides among whites in the southern United States. They discover that it isn't socioeconomic class, population density, the legacy of slavery, or the heat of the South; it is the traditional "culture of honor" -- in which a man's reputation is seen as central to his economic survival -- that makes the difference. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-06T20:17:05-06:00
ID
136398
Comment

Wyre, I disagree that we are a risk averse people, at least not in a "get ahead in life" sense. If anything, the exact opposite is true in my experience. In fact, The Delta (a.k.a. "The South's South) was well known for its gambling and risk taking back in the 19th and well into the 20th century. Even today, it continues there; especially since farming itself is a risky business (at the mercy of weather, commodity prices, changes in the value of world currencies - not to mention having to borrow an ENORMOUS amount of money each year just to get a few $x0,000 of income). We've also sent a disproportionate number of our men into the military (and I believe this is even after race, income, education, etc are taken into account). Military service is hardly risk free either. Maybe some people have been defeated for generations, I don't know. Even if this is true, remember this: within 40 years, both Georgia and Texas went from "redneck backwoods hick states" to places where people from all over the country want to live. So Miss can do it too if we work out our problems first (well, I'll say "we", even if I'm no longer in MS:D)

Author
Philip
Date
2003-11-06T20:29:32-06:00
ID
136399
Comment

I can't find the thread about dirty tricks where we were discussing turnout among AFrican-Americans--the Northeast Daily Journal today had this statistics: "Exit polls show that black voter turnout may have been from 3 to 6 percent higher in the 2003 election from prior presidential and congressional races, but was insufficient to help Democratic candidates in key races." Maybe they've updated the information since we last blogged?

Author
Becky
Date
2003-11-14T13:11:33-06:00
ID
136400
Comment

I couldn't find it either. One of the missing keys that most newspapers are missing is whites who didn't vote.

Author
Nia
Date
2003-11-14T13:26:04-06:00

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