Hundreds turned out Saturday despite threatening weather for Little Rock's first Pride Parade, an emblem and encouragement to greater acceptance of equality for LGBT people.
Lots of photos on the Facebook page for the parade, including a couple shown here. They included many floats, including some built by kids in high school Gay Straight Alliance organizations. Young people spell the eventual turning of the tide of discrimination in Arkansas. Hurry the day.
Call it discrimination light. In the week of the Orlando mass slayings at a gay club, perhaps by a man conflicted by his sexuality, an Arkansas legislative panel signed off on a rule to allow psychiatric counselors to refuse to serve someone with different religious beliefs. /more/
Big development: The federal Justice Department has told North Carolina that, if it chooses to comply with the state's new anti-LGBT law, will be violating the U.S. Civil Rights Act and could cost the state millions in federal funding. /more/
Arkansas Business reports that J.B. Hunt isn't moving immediately to act on a vote by shareholders that the company adopt an explicit non-discrimination policy affecting LGBT employees. A task force will study it first. /more/
Mississippi is feeling blowback, along with North Carolina, for explicit anti-gay legislation. One example here is from the Southern Foodways Alliance, which reports getting an inquiry about places safe for LGBT people to eat in Mississippi. Don't laugh, Arkies. We are Mississippi. /more/
Saying "we respect our fellow citizens," Louisiana's new Democratic governor, John Bel Edwards, yesterday issued an executive order mandating nondiscrimination by state government against people based on sexual orientation and gender. It's a marked contrast to Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who's said he sees no need to offer any protections to LGBT people. /more/
Funny or Die does a send-up tourism add for Mississippi after its adoption of a new law aimed at affording legal cover for those who want to discriminated against LGBT people.Reminder: Arkansas got there first, /more/
SB 202, which will take effect Tuesday unless Gov. Asa Hutchinson vetoes it, isn't the only legislation pending that aims at protecting discrimination against gay people. A companion bill, HB 1228, by Rep. Bob Ballinger, has similar intent to protect "conscience" as a pretext for legal discrimination against gay people in matters unrelated to religious practice.
Attorneys for the businessman argue that his cash payments to a former deputy director of DHS, Steven Jones, did not constitute corruption. They say prosecutors cannot prove the money was given in exchange for any particular "official act" from Jones.
Plaintiffs' lawyers made their case today to continue to trial with the civil suit over then-Judge Mike Maggio's reduction of a $5.2 million jury verdict in a nursing home negligence case to $1 million, a reduction he said he made in return for campaign contributions from the nursing home's owner.
We are receiving 200-pounds of large heirloom tomatoes Friday morning from Times publisher and farmer Alan Leveritt. We have dark, brick red Carbons, Goldies (large, high acid golden tomatoes) and Annis Noire, a delicious French heirloom that is green with red marbling when ripe.
Donald Trump is right. There was a time when America was great and it didn't pussyfoot around to avoid offending people who thought they were victimized by discrimination. It was, let's see, the period after World War II, when everyone prospered and America was kicking butts, at home and abroad, and Arkansas's leaders were at the center of it.
The U.S. Public Interest Research Group has issued a news release about freeway expansion with relevance in Little Rock. It's about wasting money to widen freeways that only create more congestion. Sound familiar?
The juicy details in a court filing by plaintiffs attorneys in a civil suit involving Michael Morton, Gilbert Baker and Mike Maggio; the repeal of Texarkana’s nondiscrimination ordinance; and the Walton Family Foundation’s announcement that it would spend $250 million on facility construction of charter schools in Little Rock and elsewhere in the U.S. — all covered on the podcast.