In regards to Doug Smith’s article “Blacks in the Law,” I think it is a little odd that biographies of Scipio Jones keep suggesting that he was denied entrance to the University of Arkansas Law School in the 1880s. While the idea sounds plausible, the current UA Law School was not founded until 1924. The UA did found a law school in 1890 (a year after Jones passed the bar), but it was dissolved by the university by 1913. It is possible that Jones was denied entrance into a group called the “Little Rock Law Class,” a group unaffiliated with the University that existed from 1868 and into the 1880s. This well-intentioned piece of misinformation also finds its way onto a UA website, “History: The University of Arkansas Black Experience” (http://www.uark.edu/admin/urelinfo/SilasHunt/history.html). They cite, of all things, the Wikipedia entry on Jones, which when I first looked at the entry, stated that Jones was denied entry into UALR’s Law School — an entity that did not exist until the 1970s. When history sounds right, we still have to check our sources. Much of what I have learned about this subject can be read in the three published histories of the University of Arkansas (1910, 1948, 1972) and in Tom Dillard’s 1972 Arkansas History Quarterly article on Scipio Jones.

Blake J. Wintory, Ph.D.

Little Rock

Misses McCord

With every passing week I turn first to the opinion page of the Times to look once more for the chance to read a Bob McCord column. I never knew how much I would miss him when he signed off at the end of 2006. Now I’ve found out.

Arkansas lost a great journalist with a great mind and a great sense of humanity. He is truly a rare bird among the journalistic world these days.

He said he would make the occasional reappearance and I hope that’s true. We need him.

Doug Andrews

Nashville, Tenn.

Pernicious twaddle

I call your attention to the pernicious twaddle appearing in the recent Daily Headlines of the University of Arkansas, and the right-wing balderdash which it references, specifically a Wall Street Journal opinion piece on merit pay by Dr. Jay Greene of the UA Department of Education Reform.

And I ask, do we really want the imprimatur of the state’s flagship university applied to conservative propaganda?

Further, was the establishment of the University of Arkansas Department of Education Reform among the terms of the Walton gift to the university? The terms of the gift have never been released, to my knowledge. Is this what is meant by “competitive advantage,” the reason given for withholding public disclosure? After all, men love darkness more than light, because their deeds are evil.

Perhaps a new governor can be persuaded to revisit the issue.

Edward Downie


From the Internet

A roundup of some of the comments, generally anonymous, posted to articles on our website.

On our article about plans for a family-friendly Mardi Gras parade Feb. 17 on South Main Street:

Stogster wrote: I have not heard of a single person clamoring for a family-friendly Mardi Gras celebration.

Slapjackal then commented: Man, there are lots of “family-friendly” Mardi Gras parades all along the Gulf Coast and in Europe.

And Arkansas Student chimed in: Anybody who has ever lived in Louisiana or the Gulf Coast region knows that the Bourbon Street version of Mardi Gras isn’t what really happens. It’s just for the drunk/fat/horny tourists.

On our Week That Was reference to the University of Arkansas’s practice of confiscating signs at basketball games critical of the UA:

An anonymous writer said: The university has been censoring signs for a while now.

That prompted Arkansas Student to comment: Yeah, but they are now censoring signs based on content rather than word usage. It’s one thing to deter vulgarity, but it’s another to deter public opinion. Especially when that same public pays your bills.

On Ernest Dumas’ column, which mentioned Gov. Huckabee’s opposition to Oklahoma’s plan to clean up the chicken waste-polluted Illinois River:

An anonymous correspondent wrote: If anyone poisoned the Illinois River it was Bill Clinton after his vacation to Frank White. Under Bill, chicken production in NWA increased 10-fold. Tyson became a major Clinton donater and chicken litter was spread throughout NWA.

Scother wrote: Yes, Tyson did well under Clinton. A conservative would call that “pro business.” But facts are facts, the Huck DID fight for Tyson regarding the funkifying of the Illinois River. Does that mean Huck is off the hook? Of course not.



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