LOCAL COLUMNS

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Charlie Mitchell: Shouting matches have no chance at curbing gun violence

Posted 1/15/2013 in Local Columns

That gruesome skip-rope ditty dates to 1892, when young Lizzie was on trial in Massachusetts for the bludgeoning deaths of her parents. The question for us in 2013 is, "If a 9mm Glock had been handy, would she still have used a hatchet?"

 

Possumhaw: Poke salad Annie

Posted 1/14/2013 in Local Columns

I noticed them right off. There on the roadside near the ditch were big, leafy greens. Once or twice I saw people picking them. I was reminded of the time I saw folks picking greens and carefully putting them in a cloth sack. I asked what they were. "Fiddleheads," they said.

Adele Elliott: Fired up

Posted 1/12/2013 in Local Columns

When I was a child we were all terrified of the Russians, specifically, of the bombs from that country, which we believed were aimed directly at my classroom in St. James Major grammar school. We were taught to crouch under our small, wooden desks and bury our heads ostrich-like under our arms.

Ask Rufus: An 1858 lawsuit and the building of the railroad

Posted 1/12/2013 in Local Columns

Reading the Dispatch last week one could not help but notice the problems that a potential new industry seemed to have in living up to its commitments. Such problems are not something new. When the Mobile and Ohio Railroad was constructed through this area in the late 1850s, all was not smooth sailing.

 

Charlie Mitchell: Those 'dang idiots' in Congress keep our boat afloat

Posted 1/10/2013 in Local Columns

As Mississippi lawmakers huddle in Jackson to start the 2013 session, there will be the usual grumbling about those dang idiots in Washington.

 

Slimantics: Meredith remains an enigma

Posted 1/9/2013 in Local Columns

James Meredith was the guest speaker at Tuesday's Columbus Rotary meeting. Having been a frequent enough Rotary guest not to be considered a guest anymore, I noted that Meredith's appearance drew an especially large crowd.

Possumhaw: When loss is a good thing

Posted 1/7/2013 in Local Columns

The telescope stands poised at the window, aimed at the deer feeder. At dawn and twilight a Bardwell can be seen standing with eye pressed to the scope, but on this morning I swung the scope toward the lake. A flock of geese had descended and there was Leah, the domestic duck, amongst them.

 

Alan Nunnelee: Solutions not deals

Posted 1/7/2013 in Local Columns

In the wee hours of the first day of the New Year, after most Americans had concluded their celebrations, Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell reached a deal to avert the fiscal cliff. The deal was then quickly rushed through the U.S. Senate while most people were asleep.

 

Birney Imes: May the good days outnumber the bad ones

Posted 1/5/2013 in Local Columns

Saturday morning I took the dogs down to Friendship. They know the drill. I open the gate and say, "Get in the truck." The truck being a battered Ford Ranger with a tailgate that wants to fall off. Hank leaps in barking with excitement while Maggie cowers, waiting to be lifted.

Ask Rufus: Sam Kaye

Posted 1/5/2013 in Local Columns

This past week I lost a close friend when Sam Kaye passed away and Columbus lost not only a good citizen, but a gold mine of its history.

Slimantics: No-nnelee makes a point with (your) pocketbook

Posted 1/3/2013 in Local Columns

Quite frankly, I expected better from Gregg Harper and Steven Palazzo, two of the three Mississippi Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives. Both Harper and Palazzo voted against the Tuesday legislation that prevented the fiscal cliff disaster from becoming a reality. That the third Republican, the one who represents Lowndes County, voted no on the bill was as predictable as a two-year-old pitching a fit at the supermarket until he gets candy.

Possumhaw: Just do your best

Posted 12/31/2012 in Local Columns

"Can you take care of the chickens?" Carolyn asked. "It's just overnight." "You've gotta be kidding. I don't know anything about chickens." "All you have to do is put them in the chicken house. Open the door and they'll go in." "But what if they don't?" I asked. "They will," she explained. "Haven't you ever heard 'going to bed with the chickens?'"

Partial to home: Cheering for Coach Frazier's Vikings

Posted 12/29/2012 in Local Columns

You'll find little here today about resolutions or sage observations about the year just past or the one before us. Nothing so ambitious. I have only a modest wish on this, the cusp of a new year: that the Minnesota Vikings make the playoffs. And, to do that they have to win this afternoon.

 

Charlie Mitchell: After 25 years, column writing still has ample rewards

Posted 12/29/2012 in Local Columns

A quarter century. That's a mere blink of the eye in the life of an elephant or a Galapagos tortoise. After 25 years, oak trees may no longer be called saplings. But it's a long time for an opinion columnist. And, frankly, it's a mark I never expected to reach. Sure doesn't seem that long.

 

Ask Rufus: How Silent the Country Is

Posted 12/29/2012 in Local Columns

As we approach the doom and gloom of the fiscal cliff, its repercussions are mild compared to what was happening here 150 years ago.

Slimantics: You're not Roy Rogers, you know ...

Posted 12/27/2012 in Local Columns

Fifteen years ago, when I moved to northern California, people there often commented on my speech. I would usually just laugh and say, "You know, I never had an accent until I left Mississippi." The brighter folks usually figured out what I meant by that.

 

Charlie Mitchell: State ready to give up on schools; superintendent isn't

Posted 12/26/2012 in Local Columns

Folks familiar with Greek mythology (10th grade?) will remember that it was Alexander who "untied" the Gordian knot in 333 B.C. and, as a result, became known as Alexander the Great. The knot had existed since Gordius honored Zeus by tying it. No one could figure it out.

 

Possumhaw: Can you imagine it?

Posted 12/24/2012 in Local Columns

Tonight you may be sitting in a bar or alone in a hotel room, you may be confined to a hospital bed or you may be kneeling at a Communion altar. You may be with family or only dreaming of a family far away, wherever you are right now the Christmas Eve story is for you.

Commentary: Caledonians should be wary of fracking operations

Posted 12/24/2012 in Local Columns

Once again, it's the season of joy and light on this little planet of ours. And please forgive me if it's unseasonal for me to mention this, but there's a little problem that has come up in Caledonia. It has come without much fanfare or attention, though it may very well lead to a great deal of attention if it's not tended to.

Rufus Ward: Three who gave to children year-round

Posted 12/22/2012 in Local Columns

At Christmas we always think of children and gifts and goodwill. But do we ever stop and remember the people in our community or connected to it that year round do so much to help young people. Of course there are teachers and social workers and church youth leaders and scout leaders and so many others that I dare not list for fear of leaving someone out.

 

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