Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A word to the wise: If you value your sanity, don't subscribe to AT&T's U-verse service

    Maybe you've heard about AT&T's U-verse service and are thinking about subscribing. I strongly advise against it. Read on.
    We subscribed to U-verse, which is AT&T combo service providing Internet, phone, and TV, when we moved into a rented townhouse in Oxford, just over two years ago. I have to say for the most part we liked the service. The problem is that it is impossible to quit and no one at AT&T will answer the telephone.
    We bought a house this year and transferred our service to our new location. We were told that our new address wasn't eligible for U-verse and that we would have to go back to old-timey phone and DSL service. The service at our townhouse was to end on May 21 and begin in our new home May 24. Well, it didn't. I think we finally got phone service June 14; so we were without phone service for three weeks.
    Of course we called to find out what was going on with our phones. We were always told it would be cut on in a couple of days. Then we would call again two days later. Or we tried to. And that's when we made an unpleasant discovery. Regular AT&T service and U-verse service are apparently two completely separate divisions within the AT&T empire. We would call and ask about our phone service and be cordially welcomed as a "U-verse customer." When we would finally talk to someone they would tell us they couldn't help because we weren't with the U-verse division anymore. They would then deposit us back in he automated phone queue. Lather, rinse, repeat. Ad infinitum.
    I do understand, by the way, that automatic phone systems save corporations money. But it's ridiculous to have to go through 20 minutes of phone prompts, two Spanish lessons, and a lecture on texting while driving when all one needs to say is, "May I speak to someone in billing, please?" Oddly enough, there is no phone prompt asking if one has been charged for something one doesn't owe. In fact, it is virtually impossible to talk to anyone at AT&T about any problem. It's made even more difficult when one's phone number is linked to the U-verse division even though one is no longer a U-verse customer, so that one enters an endless circle of phone prompts.
    AT&T continues to charge us for service we did not receive. They are trying to charge us for equipment we returned. They are still charging us for long-distance charges that are supposed to be part of our package. They refuse to answer the phone so we can discuss it.
    I've said enough. If you think you will be a U-verse customer for life, go for it. But if you think you might ever want to move to a new address, avoid the service like the plague.
    Lawsuit to follow? Probably.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Yazoo Revisited fails to ask the most important question: Why did the white students leave?

    Well, I was a little disappointed in the Yazoo Revisited documentary that I saw tonight at the Overby Center.
    David Rae Morris visited Yazoo City to create this documentary on the resegregation of Yazoo City's schools. When his father, Willie Morris, wrote a book on the subject 40 years ago he thought integration was a done deal. Instead, the school went from 60 percent black to 90 percent black over a 20-year period. Today the schools are 99 to 100 percent black.
    My problem with the rough-cut documentary is that it is in large part a retrospective of Willie's book. It tells us the schools are resegregated, but it doesn't even offer a clue as to why. It shows a copy of the book, and if I saw it correctly Willie had scrawled in the margin, "Why was I wrong?" And yet the documentary makes zero attempt to answer Willie's question.
    The documentary misses the point that whites didn't simply go to the private academy or move out into the county. They often left the area entirely.
    The exodus of whites from the public schools 20 years after desegregation is treated as an absolutely unsolvable mystery, and maybe it is. But I would say that the first step in solving this mystery is to ask some of the people who left. It's hard to get people to be honest about delicate matters concerning race, but one can't know if one doesn't ask.
    This didn't just happen in Yazoo City. It happened in a number of Delta towns which initially integrated the schools successfully. They resegregated years later when the white people left. So why did they leave? Someone has to ask them -- assuming anyone cares about their answers.
    I'm not going to say the rough-cut documentary wasn't interesting, because it was. And I certainly wish David well. But I wanted more and didn't get it.

Willie Morris' son, David Rae Morris, to screen rough cut of Yazoo resegregation documentary

    David Rae Morris, son of Willie Morris, is producing a documentary on the integration and resegregation of Yazoo City schools. A rough cut of this documentary will be shown at the Overby Center (Farley Hall) Monday, October 28, at 5:30 p.m. I hope to be able to make it.
    David Morris is essentially taking up the issue of Yazoo City school desegregation where his father left off. In the early 1970s he wrote a long magazine article that was expanded into a book entitled Yazoo: integration in a Deep-Southern town. The book ends with Morris expressing his view that everything was going to be just fine. It didn't end up that way.
    I read Morris' book over Christmas and wrote an Amazon review in January 2013. So rather than rehash the issue I will simply reprint my review, which among other things makes the point that what happened in Yazoo City happened in a number of Mississippi towns; Rolling Fork, Leland, and Clarksdale come to mind. I shared my view on what happened in many of these towns in a blog post in which I criticized efforts of the federal government to resegregate Cleveland's public schools.

My Amazon review:
To Morris' eventual dismay, he got it wrong, but an interesting readJanuary 7, 2013
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Willie Morris certainly didn't know it at the time this book - an expansion of a long magazine article - was released, but the subtitle should have read "FAILURE of Integration in a Deep-Southern Town." It would have brought him great sadness and eventually did.

That isn't the way the book leaves off. In fact, Morris completed the book in January 1971 firmly believing that the Yazoo City schools - his home town - had gotten over the "hump" and would successfully integrate. Roughly 150 whites who had fled the public schools at desegregation in January 1970 had returned in September of that year. Morris was confident that whites would continue to return and that the private Manchester Academy would either close or shrink into insignificance.

The Yazoo City integration success was trumpeted by many throughout the 1970s and even the 1980s. But the schools suffered the same fate as many other heavily black public schools that weathered the first wave of white flight. Slowly the whites drifted away, either to private schools or to other school districts. In 1971 the Yazoo City schools remained roughly 40 percent white, even after substantial white flight. Today Yazoo City High School is 99% black.

I purchased the original edition of this book as I got it for a low price used. It was re-released in 2012 with an Afterword by Morris' widow, JoAnne Prichard Morris. It's possible to read most of this Afterword by looking at the Amazon preview, but unless you can get a good deal on a used book it's worth paying extra to have her short Afterword. Morris had first met Prichard when he wrote Yazoo; she was one of two Yazoo City white teachers who volunteered to teach in the formerly all-black school in 1969 under Freedom of Choice. Years later, in 1990, they would marry when Prichard edited a collection of essays that Morris produced for the University of Mississippi Press.

Prichard taught in the Yazoo schools through the 1980s. She sent her children to Yazoo City schools and saw the white enrollment slowly dwindle away. She said Morris was tormented by the fact that he had gotten it so wrong and asks in her Afterword why school integration failed. "What happened?"

The answers are, in part, are actually in Morris' book. He interviews a Yazoo City attorney and former ABA president John Satterfield - an integration opponent - who shared his opinion that the schools would be integrated without violence or incident, but that if the classrooms were fully integrated eventually the school system would be all or almost all black. Satterfield cited the experience of the Washington, D.C., schools, which were desegregated by President Eisenhower and by 1970 were 93 percent black. Satterfield said he saw no basic difference in the character of the people of Washington, D.C. and the people of Yazoo City that would allow full integration to succeed in Yazoo city where it failed with the full support of the federal government.

Morris also has a footnote where he cites claims by others that there are "tipping points," or a certain black percentage that will trigger white flight, citing for example the unpublished Princeton thesis by Luther Munford which pointed out that every school with more than a 50 percent black student population had lost at least 20 percent of its white student population at the point of integration.

I think ultimately where Morris got it wrong is that he agreed with Yazoo City mayor Jeppie Barbour, who said the citizens would just have to stay put and make integration work. "They're here to stay and we're here to stay, and we don't have much other choice," Barbour said. But people did have a choice; they could leave, and many eventually did.

Prichard seems to have made the same mistake in her afterword when she notes that in the 1980s white students began transferring in increasing numbers to white academies. Certainly this may have happened, but this is not what really happened. If you take time to visit the various white-flight academies in Mississippi and count the number of white students in their school composites for the years 1971 to 1975, then count the number of students in the same town's public school composites, what you will find is that the white students haven't simply left the public schools, they have completely left the areas served by almost-all-black schools. If whites had simply transferred to Manchester Academy that school would today have an enrollment of about 1,500. Instead it has an enrollment of under 500. Essentially most of the white working class has moved elsewhere along with much of the middle class; in the case of Yazoo City some have moved to the county schools, some have moved to Madison County, some have even left the state. This has taken place all over Mississippi.

A great irony in recent years is that many of the formerly all-white "segregation" academies are now integrated. The black student presence isn't high, but in many of these private schools five to eight percent of the student body is black. Thus in many towns the white-flight schools are actually more integrated than the public school.

Even though this book is a period piece it is an interesting read. There is some accidental name-dropping by Morris. For example, he describes having dinner with a white Mississippi civil rights lawyer and his black wife - perhaps the first mixed-race couple in Mississippi - and describes the young woman as a recent Sarah Lawrence graduate and aspiring writer by the name of Alice Walker. In recounting the names of 1970 class officers at the newly integrated Yazoo City school Morris mentions the name of newly elected junior class president "Gentle Ben" Williams. In 1972 Williams would become the first black football player on the Ole Miss football team.

I also found it interesting that Morris mentions in passing the extreme violence that black leaders admit and even boast of using against other blacks to enforce a black boycott of white-owned businesses.

One impediment to integration that Morris mentions throughout the book is the difference in ability levels between black and white students. The first semester of integration at Yazoo City (Spring 1970) the school was integrated but the classes remained segregated, which actually helped with the transition. The black classes simply moved to the white high school over the Christmas holidays with no other changes. The next year the classes were integrated. Yet any type of ability grouping has been heavily discouraged if not banned by the federal courts, and I believe the lack of such grouping may have led to much of the white flight in those schools which had at first successfully integrated. Today the ability gap is greater than ever as the white working class has fled, leaving only a more-educated white elite that can afford private school tuition.

(Another cause of white flight that I have casually observed in a number of Mississippi school districts over the years is black-on-black violence. While white students might sometimes be tormented, black-on-white violence is quite rare in most school districts; however, whites frequently respond to serious black-on-black violence events by pulling their children out of public school.)

I had the pleasure of knowing Morris as an Ole Miss student. I never had him as a teacher, but we would frequently visit at the Hoka Theater over Irish coffee and spent a few evenings talking, laughing and arguing almost until the sun came up. My hometown is similar to Yazoo City - a formerly wealthy hill town where cotton was king in 1860 - and I could easily relate to much of his upbringing because much of it was my own. As a student he was editor of the Daily Texan. I would eventually become editor of the Daily Mississippian. I was as conservative as he was liberal. He loved Mississippi, loved history, loved people of all stripes, and absolutely hated social problems which seemed insoluble.

If we truly have a desire to make school integration work, or at least make school desegregation work, I think we have to come to certain agreements. First, few well-to-do black people would want to send their children to a school made up of 90 to 95 percent very poor, white children. No white person wants the opposite. We need to find a way to allow some cluster grouping of students who are friends or relatives outside the classroom, so that even where a school district is 90 percent black a small group of white friends might be allowed to remain in classes together -- or vice versa.

Second, parents want their children to be equally yoked in their classrooms, both in terms of ability and behavior. Students should be grouped both by achievement and a willingness to behave, and such groupings will almost certainly not be racially balanced. One need but read the many blogs of Teacher Corps teachers to know that there are some serious behavioral problems with many students in Delta schools, many of which seem to be far worse than when Morris wrote this book in 1971. These problems simply do not exist at most private schools. I suppose these Teacher Corps teachers - who do wonderful work - will some day be told to stop recording their experiences, because few educated, middle-class, white people of my acquaintance would ever send their child into such an environment, and as I said earlier many blacks are now finding their way to private schools for the same reason.

In short, if we want to have racial integration we have to be willing to have segregation by achievement and behavior. The courts and the black leadership have shown little willingness to allow this; until they do, in heavily black areas there can be no school integration.

I happen to support school vouchers. Vouchers take the left-wing, California-educator types out of the equation and allows parents to find schools with academic, dress, and behavior standards that suit their children's needs. But again, such vouchers would result in school integration and there are too many people out there opposed to school integration except on the government's terms.

I don't think I ever visited with Morris after I graduated from law school in 1988; maybe once. While he enjoyed being back in Mississippi, his years at Ole Miss were often spent in a bit of an off-and-on depressed funk. I heard through friends after a couple of years that he had remarried and that his wife was like a tonic for him and had made him truly happy. He was described as a new man. So I'm glad he and Prichard found each other and had almost 10 years together, and I'm glad she released this book.

My understanding is that Morris' son David has done the field work for a short film on Yazoo School integration and why it failed. I wish he or another documentary maker would expand it to include all the other school districts which seemed to have integrated successfully only to become 99 percent black 30 years later. In any event, I look forward to seeing this film should it ever be released.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The lapis-lazuli dagger exumed at Ur is apparently alive and well in the Baghdad Museum

Lapis-lazuli dagger exhumed at Ur
    I've been trying to read Will Durant's Story of Civilization. It's a slow go. It's not exactly bathroom reading, but that's where I keep it. But I also try to make myself read a few pages every day while sitting on the sofa.
    I've only made it to page 134 in the first volume. The 11-volume series has about 10,000 pages, so I'm just over one percent through it.
    I had to stop reading and go to the Internet when I read Durant's description of Sumarian artifacts. This is the oldest civilization that we know of, dating to about 4,000 B.C. He describes the Sumarians as terrible potters but good goldsmiths and mentions some of these elaborate artifacts. "Best of all is the gold sheath and lapis-lazuli dagger exumed at Ur," which he said touches on perfection. His footnote says that this artifact is in the Iraq Museum in Baghdad.
    Of course, I had to rush to the Internet to see if the dagger was one of the items looted after the fall of Saddam Hussein. The failure of our military to secure this museum quickly is inexcusable. As best I can tell, the dagger remains in the museum. But many priceless Sumarian artifacts were stolen or simply destroyed. These are the oldest man-made artifacts in the world and they aren't making any more.
    So the dagger apparently survives. I can go on with my reading, three or four pages at a time.

    It's the nature of Internet searches that one will discover facts tangental to one's original search. The excavations at Ur took place at the start of the 20th century and eventually stalled. The ancient city is only 20 percent excavated, and current excavation activity is limited.
    I found a webpage filled with photos of the artifacts exhumed from the royal tombs of Ur. The website is worth a visit. As you look at these items, remember that they come from the oldest civilization that we know of. Pretty amazing.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

If you are really, really sick you need to hire a doctor to hire your doctor

    Internet blogger Steve Sailer occasionally creates national talking points by writing things that mustn't be written. Others then repackage his views and either repeat them in gussied-up form or else denounce his ideas without referencing exactly what they are denouncing.
    For example, he opined in 2005 that the difference between Red States and Blue States was that in Red States "Affordable Family Formation" was possible. In other words, in Red States it was generally possible to get married, have children, buy a house, and send children to public school. He Googled the phrase and found not a single instance of this phrase having ever been used in the history of the Internet. Google it today and you will get 44,300 hits.
    He's written a few posts over the years about being cured of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 1997. The most recent item was in response to a New York Times opinion piece which pointed out the fact that people need to take control of their medical treatment, because doctors do get things wrong.
    I'll cut to the chase. Sailer's advice to anyone suffering a serious illness is this: Hire a doctor to hire your doctor. In 1996 he hired an oncologist as a consultant to choose between three different doctors with three different treatment proposals. Because of this he was one of the first people in the country -- if not the first -- to use a new drug that has been found since then to be highly effective. He credits his decision with saving his life.
    A personal example: A few years ago my father got a call from one of his doctors telling him that they had his blood tests and that his potassium levels were dangerously high (high potassium can cause a heart attack). They told him not to eat any bananas, tomatoes, or other foods high in potassium and to come in first thing Monday morning (it was late Friday). That was it.
    When I heard this I immediately did a web search on all of his medicines and found that an alpha blocker he was taking for blood pressure was associated with high potassium levels. His blood pressure problem wasn't all that serious, so I had him discontinue the alpha blocker until his consultation, at which time the doctor ordered it dropped as well.
    I didn't do anything the nurse couldn't have done better. But if I hadn't done it then it simply wouldn't have been done.
    Two years ago I wrote about a simple genetic test that most of us have already taken that could save your life. The test to answer the question, "How does dextromethorphan (Robitussin DM) make you feel?" I don't know of any doctor who asks that question. As a result, these doctors are mis-treating three to seven percent of their patients, risking potentially fatal consequences.
    When it comes to medicine, your health and life demand that you do some research on your own. And if you are really sick, hire a doctor to hire your doctor!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Use of Confederate flag to insult Yankees is an insult to Southerners

    This political cartoon is a great example of anti-Southern and anti-Confederate bigotry that one sees too often.
    Yankees and scalawags love to denounce the Confederate flag at every opportunity. So successful have they been at besmirching this Southern symbol that now, to them, it has become a way to insult people in a modern version of Waving the Bloody Shirt.
    The politicians and public figures pictured on the flag above are:
  • Sean Hannity, born and reared in New York City or environs
  • Koch Brothers, both born in Kansas, educated in Massachusetts
  • Roger Ailes, born and reared in Ohio
  • Ann Coulter, born in New York City, educated at Cornell and Michigan
  • Glenn Beck, born and reared in the state of Washington
  • Sarah Palin, born in Idaho, reared in Alaska and an Alaska resident, attended college in Idaho
  • Michele Bachmann, born in Iowa, reared in Minnesota, educated in Minnesota, Kansas and Virginia
  • Rush Limbaugh, born and reared in Missouri, a border state
  • Mike Lee, born in Arizona, reared in Utah and Virginia, now a Utah senator.
  • Eric Cantor, born and raised in Virginia
  • Jim DeMint, born, raised in South Carolina and was a senator from that state
  • Rand Paul, born in Pennsylvania, but moved to Texas as a child
  • Ted Cruz, born in Canada, but a Texan of Cuban origin.

    What's interesting is that seven of those featured on the flag have little or no connection to the South. They are Yankees. Rush Limbaugh is a kinda-sorta Southerner from the kinda-sorta state of Missouri. Likewise, Mike Lee spent a portion of his childhood in Virginia, but was born and has spent most of his life in the Far West. That leaves four with an actual Southern upbringing or connection.
    If the cartoonist wants to associate actual Southerners with the flag I wouldn't mind it so much. But simply using the association with the Confederate flag as a way to hurl an insult in offensive.
    I love Yankees and I love most of the politicians or public figures featured in this cartoon. But that doesn't change the fact that they are Yankees and don't deserve the honor of association with our flag. Couldn't the cartoonist at least think up 13 Southerners he didn't like?


Ole Miss Rebels almost certainly bowl bound, but will we get a chance to pick cotton?

Fans rush the field after Ole Miss' 27-24 win over LSU

    Saturday's 27-24 win against LSU is now history, one of those games that Rebel fans will tell their children and grandchildren about.
    It doesn't match the 1983 Egg Bowl win when State, with a few seconds on the clock, was kicking a chip-shot field goal. It seemed to me at the time that the ball actually went through the goalposts. Then a 40-mile-per-hour wind blew through the open end of the stadium and literally ejected the ball.
    From my vantage point it looked like the ball barely went through the goal posts, then went straight up for about half a second, and then went into reverse; sort of a loop-de-loop. This rather lousy Youtube video shows the ball going up and then changing direction, although it doesn't look like the ball made it all the way to the goal post, as it appeared to me at the time.
    The funny thing about human nature is that it is far more exciting and memorable to squeak out a win against an opponent than to win resoundingly. Ole Miss was leading LSU by an impressive 17-0 margin in the third quarter. A big win would certainly have been exciting and satisfying. But not nearly as memorable as the squeaker-win with six seconds left.
    At the time-out just before Ole Miss kicked its winning field goal the clock showed only three seconds left. But three seconds were added just before Ole Miss kicked its field goal for some reason. I was reminded of the legendary game in Baton Rouge where sluggish clock operations allowed the Tigers to complete three plays in 10 seconds for a win. I never saw it, but for years there was a billboard on I-55 which said, "Now Entering Louisiana. Please set your clocks back four seconds," or something to that effect.

Now for talk of bowl games

    Predicting the future for Ole Miss is always a gamble. But right now the 4-3 Rebels have seen the worst of a very tough schedule. Our remaining match-ups are Idaho, Arkansas, Troy, Missouri, and Mississippi State. All save the Egg Bowl give the Rebels a home-field advantage.
    So let's handicap it. I'm not willing to give the Rebels more than an 85 percent chance of winning any game, even though my gut feeling is that Ole Miss is certain to defeat Idaho and Troy. Arkansas is weak this year, although it would be foolish to sell them short. I think the Rebs have an advantage over Mississippi State, although the Egg Bowl is always Anything Can Happen day. And then there is currently undefeated Missouri....
    So let's give Ole Miss an 85 percent chance of defeating Idaho and Troy, a 70 percent chance over Arkansas, a 65 percent chance over State and a 15 percent chance against Missouri. Using my figures I predict a 7.2 to 4.8 season. 
    Of course, we can't win two-tenths of a game. So my real prediction is that we are very likely to finish 7-5 and have a very good chance of being 8-4. I find it very unlikely that Ole Miss will win all five remaining games. Another way to analyze it is that I give Ole Miss about a 50 percent chance of going 7-5, a 45 percent chance of 8-4, and a five percent chance of the miraculous 9-3.
    So Ole Miss is almost certainly headed to a bowl game, and probably a better bowl than last year's Compass. At 7-5 look for Liberty or Music City; at 8-4 look for Gator or Peach; and in the unlikely event the Rebels finish 9-3, get ready to pick Cotton.
    Just my view, for what it's worth. Those of you who are more avid football fans than I am are more than welcome to critique my analysis.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Happy sex in public leads to regret-rape charge by shamed Ohio University co-ed

    Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, is a little bit like Ole Miss and Oxford. Athens is a town of 23,000 in a part of Ohio that is beyond rural. The main campus has 23,000 students; more than Ole Miss, but virtually every state college has more students than Ole Miss.
    Oxford has a central town square surrounded by restaurants and student hangouts while Athens has a strip of bars and restaurants which line almost half-a-mile of Court Street. There are, of course, bars in other locations, but Court Street is the main drag. It's a neat place and worth a visit should you be in the neighborhood.
    Students at Ohio University are as liberal as Ole Miss students are conservative, so there is a limit to the comparison. But both are decent state schools located in relatively small towns, a state-university dynamic that is actually quite rare.
    Over the weekend a young man and woman, presumably students and apparently drunk, engaged in sexual activity in front of a small crowd of people on Court Street. Without getting too graphic, this activity involved the man getting on his knees and performing a sexual act. Need I say more?
    The crowd of up to 30 which witnessed this blessed event did what most people do these days -- they took out their cell phones and created a memory garden. They then shared their creations on Twitter, Instagram and elsewhere.
    A day later, the woman woke up to find that she had become an overnight sensation. She said she only became aware of her nocturnal activities though seeing videos and photos on various social media sites. I would guess she got a phone call from the morals officer of her sorority. She then went to the police and reported that she had been sexually assaulted, or raped.
    Needless to say, this event brought out all the radical feminists who really believe that any act of sexual intercourse involving a man is rape. Fortunately for the victim of this false accusation, the photos and videos taken by onlookers show the purported victim to be having a grand time. For roughly 10 percent of the time her paramour was performing oral sex she had her hand on the back of his head, apparently pushing him inward and onward. Following their tryst the couple posed for photos and then left together.The video has mostly disappeared from the Internet, but here is a description from a TotalFratMove writer who viewed it:
The video is 1:27 in length. The male was clearly providing oral sex to the female. Generally speaking, the two appeared to be willing participants who were, frankly, enjoying themselves. At one point in the video, the female put her right hand on the back of the male’s head while he was engaged. This lasted about eight seconds. Two different times in the video, the male looked around at different onlookers and exchanged words with them. This was in response to jeers they hurled at the couple. His words were unintelligible.
    Of course, the radical left immediately accepted the obviously bogus claim of rape as truth and castigated the bystanders. "All that needed to happen was to say [to the woman], 'Hey are you alright? Is this what you want to be happening?'" she Ohio University student Allie Erwin. "She obviously wasn't OK with what happened. It was rape. She reported it to the police as rape." What wonderful circular logic. It must be rape because the woman enjoyed it at the time but regretted it the next day.
    I would ask Ms. Erwin why she didn't think that anyone should have asked the man these questions? Why isn't she upset that no one asked him if it was alright and what he wanted to be happening? How does waiting around for a day and finding one's reputation in shreds suddenly make an absolute non-rape into a rape? If this man now says he must have been raped, should his word be accepted as absolute fact?
    There seems to be a notion that people who are drunk can't consent to sex, and at some point they surely can't. But doesn't that work both ways? Suppose that we accuse this man of rape on the ground that his drunken partner couldn't legally consent. Onlookers said he was drunk as well. Wouldn't that make the woman guilty of rape as well? Why should there be a double standard?
    So we are left with the meme that this woman had to have been raped because she said she was raped and women never lie about rape. The photographs and videos of her enjoying the events must be ignored. (I've seen these but am not going to link to them). Since women supposedly never lie about being raped, everyone is expected to accept any claim, no matter how ridiculous, at face value.
    The truth is that women can and do lie about rape. When a woman named Crystal Magnum was about to be thrown in jail for public intoxication she suddenly accused several Duke Lacrosse players of raping her. And her outlandish claims were accepted solely on the grounds that "women never lie about rape." Of course the feminists and left-wing types came out in force, because to them truth is unimportant; what is important is the impaling of men. This Youtube video shows the effort of the left-wing community to lynch these innocent boys.
    One could fill an encyclopedia of case notes where women have falsely accused innocent men of rape or abuse, either intentionally or by accident. A Department of Justice report found that when DNA was available roughly 25 percent of accused or already convicted men were excluded. Some studies put the false accusation rate at more than 40 percent, although I believe the latter figure to be too high (The author of the article I've linked to is a rape victim, for what it's worth).
    Rape is like any other crime. Law enforcement officers have a duty to ask some basic questions before bringing charges: Does this person have an incentive to lie? Does this story sound outlandish? Does the available evidence contradict the claim? If yes, they should proceed with caution.This is just basic police work. The willingness of the media to go along with obviously false claims of rape harms the credibility of real rape victims. It needs to stop.
    I feel sorry for the woman who participated in this public display. I'm sure neither she nor her sex partner gave much thought to the consequences of their actions. Life is unfair to women when it comes to sex. In the video the man refers to himself as a "whore." All too often a male "whore" is tolerated or even celebrated. A female "whore" is quickly shunned. But however unfair society may be, it does not change the fact that intense regret the day after does not convert consensual sex the night before into rape. Regret About Previous Encounters is not rape.
    Drunk, stupid sex isn't rape. It's just sex. And when two drunk, stupid people have voluntary sex the man is not the guilty party. Both the man and the woman are equally guilty or equally innocent. So if the police want to charge this man with rape they need to charge the woman, too.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Video proof that Ole Miss never loses a party

    Here's a Game Day video that's a little painful to watch. But hey -- we didn't lose the party!
    And here's a news story on TotalFratMove.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

I've added link to an Ole Miss events calendar

    At one time I found it very difficult to find out what events were happening on the Ole Miss campus. They seemed to be advertised in different areas of the school's website.
    There is now a pretty good calendar maintained by the school. I've added a link to it in the upper-right corner of this blog, right above the newspaper links. I hope this will be helpful to those who use this site as a way to navigate to other places.
    There are a lot of free or inexpensive things to do at Ole Miss. Certainly we all ought to take advantage of them from time to time.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

We lost the football game but won the party with these Greek Salad Skewers

Greek Salad Skewers drizzled with Greek dressing

    We may have lost the ballgame with A&M, but these Greek Salad Skewers were a winner at our Grove tent.
    I had some of these in a Hilton executive lounge a while back and thought they would make great party food. They do, and were a perfect addition to a Grove table.
    There are plenty of recipes for these around the Internet. Just do a Google search and find the one that looks best to you. Here's how we made ours:

  • Feta cheese cubes
  • Grape tomatoes (the smaller the better, if used whole)
  • Kalamata olives, halved
  • Small piece of sweet onion (a square cut from a single ring)
  • One-quarter of a slice of English Cucumber
  • A tiny piece of romaine lettuce
  • Salt and pepper

    Simply skewer the items in the order that looks best to you. The toothpicks we used were too small. Try to find some longer toothpicks, perhaps using sword toothpicks, or some other type of skewer.
    Make a Greek Salad Dressing of your choice and drizzle over the skewers 30 minutes before serving. The Greek dressing we made was a little bland so I added three tablespoons of Wishbone Italian. Season with salt and pepper.
    These might work well with the feta cheese cube on the bottom, as it will allow the skewer to stand straight up. Also, I think it might be good to have the Greek Dressing in little bowl as a dip rather than drizzled over the top.
    You can just make this one your own. I can think of dozens variation on this theme, all of which sound good to me.

Monday, October 7, 2013

I found my Aunt Eva's roll recipe; I continue to miss her, but maybe I won't have to miss the rolls

    Pictured above is my Aunt Eve Lehman Hurdle's roll recipe as it appeared in the 1976 Marshall County Historical Society Bicentennial Cookbook.
    I recently saw another roll recipe on Facebook and "shared" it so it would be on my timeline. It wasn't long until a cousin chimed in about how she sure would love one of Aunt Eva's "little pan of rolls," as she called them when she dropped by.
    Aunt Eva would make and freeze a huge batch of these rolls on a Saturday, or perhaps another day when she had household help. She then would deliver them at the first sign of a sneeze by a friend or family member. Some people called them Eva's "death rolls," because they were often the first food item to arrive after the death of a loved one. Aunt Eva never beat the Grim Reaper, but she came close a couple of times.
    They were truly good; better than Sister Shubert by a long shot.
   I'm not sure what "fat" means. Jinny assures me it means Crisco. I've done some reading and some outstanding rolls use lard. Jinny can't stand the idea of using lard, so I will either use the lard secretly or use Crisco for the "fat."
    Likewise, I didn't know how to "scald" milk. I found this tutorial on how to scald milk for recipes.
    I haven't "tested" this recipe. I know I should, but I spent some time looking for it and decided to share it while it was on my mind. I plan to make a few pans soon. If any reader should beat me to it, by all means let me know how it turns out.


    I would guess that Aunt Eva met my Uncle Joe Hurdle at the University of Southern Mississippi. Uncle Joe and Uncle Jake (and others?) attended Southern, then Mississippi Normal College, because their first cousin was married to the president, J.B. George.
    It was such a different world back then. I doubt many college presidents today would allow their wife's cousins to take up residence in the president's home to scrimp on college expenses, but that is what they did.
    Uncle Jake's college expenses were defrayed by a $25 per month contribution made by his first cousin, Jimmy Hurdle, the son of Gid Hurdle of Taylor (my great-uncle). While Jimmy attended the Mississippi Synodical College in Holly Springs my grandfather gave him $25 per month on condition that he would repay the loan by helping one of his cousins when it was his turn.
    While Uncle Joe and Uncle Jake were attended Southern, my maternal grandfather was also earning a degree, so that he could enter the Methodist ministry. He had already served as a school superintendent of the Philadelphia schools in the 1920s, so I find it interesting that it took more college education to be a preacher than an educator. I know Uncle Jake was on friendly terms with my grandfather at USM; not sure about Uncle Joe. So it ended up being an odd coincidence when my parents met.
    My grandfather, Inman Moore, managed the campus bookstore while he was a student. The school gave him the use of an acre or two of land where the football stadium is today so that he could have a couple of milk cows. He would milk the cows in the morning and my mother and Uncle Inman would deliver the milk to a few faculty members each day.
    Aunt Eva was a native of Meadville in Franklin County, and read the Franklin Advocate until her death. (I had the pleasure of visiting with Advocate editor and publisher, the late David Webb, some years ago and he couldn't get over how much I looked like Aunt Eva's nephew, a Lehman. I explained that Aunt Eva and I weren't blood kin, but he insisted that I still looked like her nephew). Her parents immigrated from Germany, and she had the chests they used to contain their belongings on the ocean voyage refinished and proudly on display.
    I miss her. I miss her rolls.