Tuesday, July 4, 2006

Mississippi Burning

The state of emergency (in effect since June 22, 2006) in Jackson, Mississippi, was extended for the second time by Mayor Frank Melton according to Commander Tyrone Lewis. Initially famed as a crime fighter with his hard-hitting editorials on his WLBT television station and his posted pictures of alleged drug dealers on billboards, Melton won the election against Harvey Johnson, the likable, less colorful prior mayor. With Melton's ascension to the mayoral office, crime has increased even though the mayor has personally gone on drug busts, manned road blocks, and swaggered with his pistols by his side. With Melton's declaration, minors are not allowed on the streets after 9 p.m. week days and 10 p.m. weekends. According to Lewis, Melton said that the curfew will continue until the citizens apprise him that they feel "safe and secure." When Lewis was asked to clarify when that might be, he stated, "Until he (Melton) is comfortable that the community is comfortable: he will make that decision." The mayor could not be reached for comment by reporters: he was on vacation.

Cf. http://www.clarionledger.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060703/NEWS/607030352.


piperfromtn said...

The citizens don't need him to feel safe and secure.  I'd never heard of him until now, James, and he sounds like a heavy handed showboat.  
The populace needs to defend themselves, i.e. more guns=less crime idea.  It works every time, especially in crime infested neighborhoods.  Professor John Lott has written two good books "More Guns, Less Crime" and "The Bias Against Guns" where he shows how communities that have adopted gun ownership have significantly decreased the crime and it was gun ownership that did it.  Not a curfew, not heavy-handedness or anything else.

jakeho said...

Jon, nothing like Messrs. Smith & Wesson to bring equality to the urban (or rural) frontier. We "gotta" take care of ourselves and our loved ones. Let freedom truly ring!

jharkansas said...

I don't know, guys.  I think Melton is sincere (he actually has put a lot of his own money where his mouth is in the Jackson community) and honestly thinks that this will help.  A lot of the crime in Jackson is youth and gang-related which you guys should remember from your time at B-Haven.  A curfew might help diminish some of it.

jakeho said...

When Melton was a commentator, I, too, thought he was an excellent example of positive citizen involement. However, after being elected mayor, he seems to arrogate unto himself powers that he does not have, to disregard checks and balances on the purview of his authority, and to basically manage the government in an ad hoc manner. You might want to consider reading some of the news stories and editorials in the Clarion-Ledger and the indie papers there.

jharkansas said...

Yes, but so what?  Mayors have generally been given plenty of latitude in dealing with crime and so on.  I'm sure Rudy stepped on a few toes with his cleanup in NYC.  I think the inaction of previous mayors should be brought into account.  Just like I wouldn't hold the levee breaks against Mayor Nagin, so I wouldn't hold the higher crime rate against Melton.  Crime is generally cumulative and probably had more to do with the previous administration that with Melton's antics.

As an aside (and since my blog's temporarily down), I got a mention in WSJ's Best of the Web for suggesting an idea (i.e. Osama's praise of AQ in Iraq while the media continues to push the lie that AQ has nothing to do with Iraq).  

Go here and scroll down to the credits at the bottom.

jakeho said...

Congrats, Joseph, on your WSJ's Best of the Web cite: sweet! As to your defense of Melton, I think it's founded on an earlier judgment of him. Do check the archives of the Clarion-Ledger or the Vicksburg Post (no liberal rag) in re his actions. P.S. What's up with your website's server: I haven't been able to access David's either.