Roses and thorns 3-21-10

March 20, 2010 9:25:00 PM



A rose to the volunteers and the organizers of Clean Sweep Columbus. The event, which began as a way to spruce up the downtown area in advance of throngs of visitors coming to town for Pilgrimage, was expanded to include every ward of the city. Volunteers spread out to pick up litter, clean up trash, and give paint touch-ups to fire hydrants. 


The event, put on by the Link''d Young Professionals, received a boost from the city and from local businesses that donated trash bags, water and other items. 


The event brings together citizens from all walks of life to contribute to a worthy cause -- beautifying our fair city. We hope participation continues to increase next year. 




A rose to the soldiers of the Starkville-based Army National Guard Alpha Battery 2-114 Strike Battalion, who have been returning to North Mississippi from Mosul, Iraq, over the past few weeks. 


After nine months escorting supply trucks, most of the soldiers from the 114th are enjoying a month of leave before returning to their regular jobs. We thank them for their service to our country. 




A rose to Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman, who made the difficult decision Thursday to veto the Board of Aldermen''s appointment of Susan Tomlinson to the Starkville School District board. 


While Tomlinson was qualified to serve, her appointment would have left the five-member board with only one black member, overseeing a district that has a black student population of 64 percent. 


We agree with Wiseman that the Board of Aldermen, which appoints four of the five School Board members, has a duty to ensure the board is representative of the population it serves. 




A rose to Leslie Frazier, the Columbus football standout who holds two Super Bowl rings -- one as a player with the 1985 Chicago Bears, and another as defensive coordinator with the 2006 Indianapolis Colts. 


Frazier, who is currently defensive coordinator for the NFC champion Minnesota Vikings, isn''t too successful to serve his community. In town this week, he visited special-needs individuals from Columbus Community Programs, a division of the Ellisville State School, speaking to the clients and signing autographs. 


The state Legislature also honored Frazier this week, issuing him formal congratulations and asking him to address the House of Representatives. 




A rose to the organizers and visitors from across Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana who visited Columbus this week for the Mississippi Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship''s 16th Annual State Conference. The event, which drew around 1,000 faithful, was held Wednesday through Friday at the Trotter Convention Center.  


We hope you enjoyed your visit to Columbus. 




A rose to city leaders, who donated the vacant property on Main Street between Rex''s Rentals and the Tennessee Williams Welcome Center to the Columbus Cultural Heritage Foundation for use as an art park. 


The foundation plans to turn the lot into a park with a fountain and statues of notable people with a connection to Columbus, including Eudora Welty, Tennessee Williams, Red Barber and others. 


The foundation is in the process of choosing an architect for the project, which will be another unique enhancement to the city''s "front door."