Sunday Reader: 10 years after Katrina

August 23, 2015
JOHN FITZHUGH/SUN HERALD Katrina Trees, Long Beach, Feb. 12, 2015

Katrina Trees, Long Beach, Feb. 12, 2015

While eyes have been watching Tropical Storm Danny as he barrels toward the Caribbean, hearts and minds have turned to remembering the utter devastation wrought on the Gulf Coast 10 years ago this week. Hurricane Katrina was the defining natural catastrophe of a generation, resetting the bar for our worst fears of what Mother Nature can do.

9-1-05MS_SHThe Sun Herald in Biloxi has been building for weeks to a crescendo of retrospective Katrina+10 coverage that includes the haunting feature Ghosts of Katrina by photographer correspondent John Fitzhugh, which looks expressly at the remnants of the live oaks that a decade later are painful reminders of the storm.

Meanwhile, coverage in The Clarion-Ledger includes many stops along the Gulf Coast, exploring the recovery in arts, infrastructure and day-to-day life at ground zero in Bay St. Louis.

More on the Gulf Coast 10 years after Katrina in today’s Sunday Reader for Aug. 23, 2015:

  • Katrina dolphins: Untold story some believe never should have happened – Sun Herald
  • Tiner: In one awful day, ‘the world we had known was swept away.’ – Newseum
  • Marsha Barbour: ‘The face of Mississippi recovery’ – The Clarion-Ledger
  • Pass Christian native Robin Roberts brings national attention to recovery – The Sea Coast Echo
  • One silver lining: A bigger, better gulf coast airport – Sun Herald
  • Pender: An ordinary, amazing Katrina story – The Clarion-Ledger
  • Famous tree sculptures get a face lift along the coast – The Clarion-Ledger
  • We Remember: Profiles of those lost to the storm – Sun Herald

Sunday Reader: Letter calls for flag change

August 16, 2015

FullSizeRenderThe signatures on the letter read like a Who’s Who of influential, respected and otherwise revered Mississippians. Names like Manning, Freeman, Grisham, Carter, Anderson, Buffett.

The full page ad appearing in the Aug. 16 edition of The Clarion-Ledger calls on Mississippians to look into their hearts and then to the future, embracing a possible state flag design that would be inclusive of all residents.

“It is simply not fair, or honorable. to ask black Mississippians to attend schools, compete in athletic events, work in the public sector, serve in the National Guard, and go about their normal lives with a state flag that glorifies a war fought to keep their ancestors enslaved.”

It’s a powerful message. Will the impact of the message and those who bring it make a difference in the arena of public opinion?

Here are more articles worth ruminating in this Sunday Reader for Aug. 16, 2015.

It’s so bad they’d rather join ISIS?

August 12, 2015


Was it so bad for them that these two kids from Mississippi would rather flee the state and join one of the most notorious global terrorist organizations? Did they suffer from a lack of familial and community support? Or did they just fall for the promotional video to “join the club?”

Either way, the bizarre story has thrust the state into the spotlight of an international story now that the kids – intent on marrying and joining ISIS – tried to do so by catching an international flight from , of all places, Golden Triangle Regional Airport near Columbus.

Here’s the roundup for Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015, provided by Mississippi newspaper media on the story.

Sunday Reader: Primary endorsements

August 2, 2015


Incumbents facing opposition in the Tuesday primaries essentially got the thumbs up from The Clarion-Ledger and other newspapers this week with one notable exception. The controversy surrounding State Auditor Stacy Pickering has given some late-in-the-game traction to the campaign of Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler of Madison. The Madison County Journal, hometown newspaper for Hawkins Butler, also endorsed the Mayor’s insurgent campaign, but added another incumbent to its naughty list – Treasurer Lynn Fitch.

Meanwhile, if you’re interested in the goings-on of some politicians who are not up for re-election Tuesday, consider the news that some of the Starkville Board of Aldermen think they’re due a 33 percent pay increase.

Plus, there’s plenty more to sink your mind into with this Sunday Reader for Aug. 2, 2015:

Sunday Reader: Fun at the Fair

July 26, 2015

36275aThe 126th Annual Neshoba County Fair got underway Friday amid searing heat and expected soaring rhetoric from a slate of candidates seeking local and statewide offices. But the better deal may be for fairgoers who will be treated to plenty of great fellowship and food during the central Mississippi tradition. And another perk: The Fair Times, produced annually by the staff of The Neshoba Democrat, will go wall-to-wall this year with seven consecutive daily issues.

One not-to-miss political showdown will arrive Wednesday in the form of speeches delivered by incumbent State Auditor Stacy Pickering and GOP primary challenger Mary Hawkins Butler, longtime mayor the city of Madison. A mushroom cloud of controversy erupted earlier this week around the PIckering campaign and finances that are reportedly under investigation by federal authorities.

Enjoy those stories and a roundup of others in the Sunday Reader for July 26, 2015.

Sunday Reader: Grabblin’ and noodling in Noxubee

July 19, 2015


Ever hand-grabbed a catfish right out of the water? Neither have we. But it’s a very popular thing, evidently.

Ginger Harvey, an intern at The Commercial Dispatch, is a brave young lady. She experienced first hand and waist deep the thrill of hand-grabbing – aka noodling – while on assignment in Noxubee County.

She writes:

Screen Shot 2015-07-19 at 4.19.43 PMHand-grabbing is a family affair for the Gauntts. The season in Mississippi runs May 1 to July 15, and on Father’s Day, the family’s men — John, Derek, and Derek’s, son Clark, along with John’s brother-in-law Billy Clark, and his son Ben — all went out together. Nothing says, ‘Love you, Dad,’ like wrestling giant fish underwater, right?

More on that and other items of imminent interest in this Sunday Reader for July 19, 2015.

Sunday Reader: The fair, flag & slugburgers

July 12, 2015


For legions of Mississippians, Southerners in general and others dedicated to partying in the red dirt, the rapid approach of the annual Neshoba County Fair outside Philadalphia is a time for rejoicing, lighting up the grill and soaking up as much heat and humidity as Mother Nature can dish out. It’s still a number of days away, but the fairgrounds are bustling with activity.

We suspect one will find no shortage of American flags – nor of the Mississippi flag – on the premises.

Here’s a look this, that and other readables from Mississippi newspapers this Sunday, July 12, 2015.

  • Pender: Legislature should deal with state flag – not punt the issue  – The Clarion-Ledger
  • One outspoken Democrat legislator is standing by the current flag – Daily Journal
  • Gulfport police aim to rid city of criminal subculture – Sun Herald
  • Dept. of Health hosting forum on ‘hodgepodge of dangerous chemicals’ known as spice – The Vicksburg Post
  • ‘Hatchet-Face’ shares her story of surviving Katrina – Sun Herald
  • Yum! Man wins cash and fame for eating most ‘slugburgers’ – Daily Journal

The flag: Heritage and hate

July 10, 2015

On the day the Confederate flag is removed from the Capitol grounds in South Carolina, there is continued debate about the Mississippi flag and calls for a new state banner. And, as the Clarion-Ledger points out in an editorial, while some of the hyperbolic and near hysterical tone of the argument goes too far, there are plenty of measured voices calling for change.

WebColumn_MosbyRay Mosby, editor and publisher of The Deer Creek Pilot and a leading voice in state commentary, has no reason to doubt the flag’s importance in the context of heritage. But, for him at least, that significance has been hijacked by more acrid motives.

He writes:

In a lovely and historic cemetery in the city of Warrenton, Va., there is a Gray Ghost turning over in his grave. I have some reason to infer that: I have been there; I bear his name.

Amid the current flag flap, there has been quite a lot said, some true, some not, about Confederate heritage and because of one Col. John S. Mosby, the “Gray Ghost of the Confederacy,” no one is more entitled to speak to that than am I.

And I am furious. As would he be.


(Editor’s note: An earlier edit of this post ambiguously linked to the C-L editorial. We’ve corrected here to make it clear the link is provided for its worthy read.)

More changes in content, leadership at C-L

July 6, 2015

Hall_SamSam Hall, executive editor of The Clarion-Ledger, outlined some changes in content beginning this week in the Jackson daily. Included are a beefed-up business report that puts Clay Chandler‘s coverage front and center in a new Thursday section. The editorial page is also returning to Monday papers after being dropped a couple of years ago.

Hall takes the unusual step of acknowledging sadness over the paper’s weakened editorial voice in recent years. While the paper has carried on with a stable of local columnists, local editorials all but vanished for a period following longtime editorial director David Hampton‘s departure in 2012.

A refreshed design also premiered Monday.

Lovett_GeniaMeanwhile, a longtime Gannett executive has arrived to take up residence in the publisher’s office. Genia Lovett was named interim publisher last week in an announcement by Gannett East Group President Michael Kane. Lovett, who retired from Gannett in 2014, was most recently president and publisher of The Post-Crescent in Appleton, Wis. She arrives after the abrupt departure in June of Jason Taylor, who left for Las Vegas and Gatehouse Media after just 9 months on the job.

Sunday reader: Baseball and fireworks

July 5, 2015

The Sun Herald asks “What’s more American than a wedding and fireworks at a baseball game?” A post-game celebration thrilled a record crowd of over 6,000 at the Biloxi Shuckers game on the Gulf Coast July 4th.

Here’s a look at that and a roundup of the imminently readable from Mississippi newspapers this Sunday, July 5, 2015.

  • Mississippi gets $2.2B in oil spill settlment; where will the money go? – The Clarion-Ledger
  • Telehealth program brings better care to Delta – The Bolivar Commercial
  • The first same sex license in Lowndes County was issued this week – The Commercial Dispatch
  • Meanwhile, one newspaper publisher explains the decision to not publish same sex marriage notices – Daily Journal
  • Discovery of corpse has turned community’s glare to derelict hospital – The Vicksburg Post
  • Enrollment declines lead to budget cuts at Southern Miss – Hattiesburg American
  • Editor Jeremy Pittari promoted to publisher at Pearl River County paper – Picayune Item
  • John Grisham on college, lawmaking and “A Time to Kill” – The Clarion-Ledger
  • 2015 has been a boom year for development on the coast – Sun Herald


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