I have known both Steve Mulroy and Terry Roland, personally, long before either of them ever held any elective office and can honestly say that Terry is flat wrong in his characterization of Steve Mulroy.
While I may disagree with them both, from time to time, about politics, Steve Mulroy is one of the most decent, honorable, ethical, compassionate and just plain ol' nice people I have ever had the honor of knowing. I don't have reason to think Terry is really dishonest but doubt many people who know, or have had occassion to be around, him when he's out of the public eye, so to speak, would really consider him to all that decent, honorable or compassionate. In fact, Terry can be quite hateful and, in truth, is a very intolerable person.
For all of his faults, if one considers that Terry is just Terry, listening to him can be amusing. The fact that Steve can smile while Terry is bloviating just goes to show how decent a person Steve really is; people of less character might just want to punch Terry instead of smiling at him (as he, himself, I believe, has threatened to do to Steve and a few other people).
Yes, barf, that is odd. Sounds like the new owners of CK's went to the Mitt Romney School of Business
I don't know how you know what I believe, foggy, but since you brought it up, here's what I believe:
1.When it comes to schools, smaller is better. So, I believe that the muni's should have their own schools, if they want them, and I believe the SCS (old MCS) would be better served if they were broken up into smaller districts so the families/parents could all know, personally if they so desire, their own school board members and they should be from the neighborhood, or area, of the schools they serve.
2. I believe the laws passed in Nashville to create these muni districts will be found unconstitutional because they were special legislation impacting only Shelby county and the proper procedure was not followed.
3. I'm for muni school districts but I believe the legislature will have to go back and re-do the laws to make them statewide, at this point, to past constitutional muster.
4. I believe all the schools, SCS and munis will, in the long run, cause us all to pay more in property taxes.
5. I believe racism plays a part in the actions of some on both sides, that politics has played a part of some on both sides, and i believe some on both sides really do care about what can be done to make the education provided in ALL of the schools be a better one for ALL the students. And I believe some are not going to be happy no matter what and they will do all they can to make everything worse for everyone, black/white, rich/poor, city/muni, parents/students, teachers/board members, childless/those with children. Shelby county (including Memphis) has a lot of people who are bitter failures that seem to live only to make their view of Memphis (crime ridden, failure) a reality even though they can't see that we all have a vested interest in imporving our community (or communities).
6. If there's anything else, just ask. I imagine I can do a better job of telling you what I believe than you can telling me what I believe.
Foggy, if someone has known you since the 70's and still doesn't believe what you tell them, it doesn't speak to well for your record of being right.
First, AP, as for "covering the ole fanny," I believe there are more than 20,000 lawyers in the Shelby County area. I don't know how many of those have a practice that includes work over at the federal building but, in any event, I am not among them so even if he know my identity, I cannot imagine a circumstance that would require me to appear in front of Judge Mays. My statement was based purely on his reputation as judge of great integrity.
As for your question, let me just be clear and state that the statements from the particular commenter I thought of were not vile or hateful; all that's required is animus toward a protected class.
Even though the Supreme Court has not clearly stated whether gay people are a protected, or even suspect class, assume for a moment that they are. Then head over to the CA website and read some of the comments following the Chick Fil A story and even if some of the comments would not be classified as "vile," you can clearly see animosity toward gay and lesbian people in many of the comments.
Back when the school issue first came up, there were many comments exhibiting an animosity toward the "majority" in Memphis. Even if they were not clearly racist, they had racist undertones that are apparent to anyone who understands the "code." Many of the comments made on the CA website are, quite frankly, a goldmine for a lawyer seeking to prove racial discrimination as a motive for passing the muni school laws.
An easy "connection" would be if the commenter was a member of the General Assembly. Or, perhaps, a staff attorney or staff member for someone in the General Assembly. More likely would be an instance where the commenter in question was corresponding with a member of the General Assembly and the commenter to whom I referred clearly indicated that she, or he, was doing so.
That type of "connection" would be the motherlode, but one that strong is not required, in my opinion. Let's just assume for a moment that the attorneys for the CC are able to get the discovery they requested and they find that comments demonstrating animus (both those that are clearly racist and vile as well as those which weren't vile enough to be removed) toward "the majority in Memphis" all come from municipal zip codes. Then let's assume that a great number of those people also contacted their state representatives and senators and urged them to pass the laws allowing the municipal school districts but never used vile, racist language while corresponding with their representatives. That, I think, would still be enough to show that racial animus was behind their efforts to establish the municipal districts, even if their representative in Nashville personally had no racial animus and were only trying to "serve their constituents."
I hope this is clear enough to answer some of your questions. I have three kids begging for my attention and I really must attend to their needs. Perhaps we can continue this conversation later.
In closing, one of the things I find truly shocking from reading comments both here and on the CA site is the great amount of ignorance so many people have in regard to the legal system and, in particular, constitutional law. I would hope that ALL of the schools in this area, both county and municipal, if those are eventually allowed, would institute required courses in constitutional law.
As a side note, I think most of the worrying being done by Flyer as to how they will respond in the event of a subpeona is much ado about nothing. I've not seen any comments posted here that go to the core of the issue at hand like those posted on the CA website.
I agree with Arlington Pop in another post of his under a different article that the Memphis Flyer is the absolute best source of local news in Memphis and congratulate and thank all the Flyer staff for the high caliber of their work product and look forward to it always continuing.
There was one particular commenter on the CA boards that I remember thinking, "It's a good thing this guy is anonymous, because if I were a lawyer hired to fight the muni's it'd sure be interesting to know if what he's saying is true."
After I read the complaint filed on their behalf by the lawyers for the county commission, I had an idea one paragraph seemed applicable to the type statements I'd seen this particular commenter post on the CA website.
Regardless of whether some feel this is a fishing expedition by the lawyers, I think they'd almost be remiss in their duties if they failed to try and discover whether the posts made by that commenter were true, or not. It's up to judge to determine whether their request complies with rules of discovery or violates the constitution; the lawyers have a duty to try and discover the information that proves the allegations in the complaint.
I dont feel this is an attempt to intimidate or silence any muni supporters. I don't agree with Mr. Baker, in his comments posted a day or two ago, that any journalistic priviledge applies here. No comments posted on the CA website could be classified as information given by a reporter in developing his/her story; the comments are just people posting their comments, not communications between a source and a reporter.
Some have said that if the lawyers were looking for the identity of just one commenter, that's all they should have sought in the subpoena but I think there's a good argument, considering the content of some comments, that they should do just what they have done in order to see if there are connections between legislators and certain commenters. If the scope of the discovery needs to be narrowed, the judge can do that.
I understand the chilling effect that this could have on commenting on the CA boards but I also think safeguards can be put in place, and will be considering the high character of the judge in charge of the case, which will protect the identity of the commenters, possibly even from the attorneys representing the commission.
Of course, if some of the commenters were attorneys speaking out of their asses, I can how they'd be quite embarrassed for even the judge to know their identity.
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By Joe Boone
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