Archive for April, 2015

by (RSS) Tennessee Legislature | April 29th, 2015 12:15am CDT | 4 Comments

                  Really, what’s left to say about the Tennessee Legislature? There’s mainly the photo above. With yet another guns in parks law, it proves beyond a doubt that its rhetoric about small government and local control is simply a lie. If it were not so tragic, it […]

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                  The Commercial Appeal’s week-long series about the City of Memphis’ financial problems riveted attention as only a daily newspaper can do. While it reminded us about the value and virtues of daily newspaper journalism at a time when many people predict that it goes the way […]

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by (RSS) Trends and Issues, Uncategorized | April 24th, 2015 12:28am CDT | 14 Comments

              Population within 1970 City Limits of Memphis: 1970  —  619,757 1980  —  568,677     –   down 8% 1990  —  528,064     —   down 7% 2000  —  500,370     —   down 5% 2010  —  445,841     —   down 11% 2012  —  452,837     —   up 2% 2013  —  449,930     —   down 1% Between […]

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                              The following was published Sunday as a commentary to The Commercial Appeal’s  landmark series this week on City of Memphis finances (thanks to Louise Mercuro for the annexation map): By Tom Jones Put simply, Memphis has too few people living […]

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by (RSS) City of Memphis Government, Planning and Urban Design | April 21st, 2015 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on Legislature Prepares To Take Another Smart Growth Power From Memphis

The following was emailed to us by Gene Pearson, former director, Graduate Program for City and Regional Planning, University of Memphis, and he allows us to post it here: The Tennessee General Assembly could soon eliminate an important power Memphis has to control its destiny. Currently Memphis has the power to control zoning up to […]

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                      There used to be a mayor here who said: “If we could buy them for what they’re worth and sell them for what they think they’re worth, we would be millionaires.” We think often of that comment as we watch the machinations of the […]

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by (RSS) City of Memphis Government, Poverty | April 14th, 2015 12:10am CDT | 1 Comment

              The Health, Educational, and Housing Facility Board of Memphis is one of those arcane, esoteric public boards whose work goes largely unnoticed and unheralded. That all ended Sunday with high-profile coverage in The Commercial Appeal of the deplorable conditions in seven Global Ministry Foundation-owned apartment complexes in Memphis, whose […]

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by (RSS) Education, Poverty, Uncategorized | April 10th, 2015 12:15am CDT | Comments Off on Building Block For School Readiness: Literacy Development

            Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dorsey Hopson has set audacious goals for this year’s second graders.  He wants 80 percent of them to graduate “college and career-ready,” 90 percent overall to graduate, and 100 percent of those ready for college and careers to pursue higher education. These are high hurdles […]

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by (RSS) Downtown Revitalization | April 8th, 2015 12:11am CDT | 9 Comments

Often, it seems that many elected officials overcomplicate things. What the public really wants more than anything is for government to get the basics right.   It’s just so hard to have confidence in government when it can’t. That level of confidence downtown has been eroded by the sorry state of Main Street, pockmarked with amateurish […]

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by (RSS) Poverty, Trends and Issues | April 7th, 2015 12:42am CDT | 5 Comments

          Percent of households with earnings above $35,000 (2012): Total 65% – U.S. 58% – Tennessee 49% – Memphis Non-Hispanic white 69% – U.S. 62% – Tennessee 66% – Memphis African American 49% – U.S. 44% – Tennessee 39% – Memphis Percent of households with earnings above $50,000 (2012): Total 51% […]

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by (RSS) Civil Rights | April 3rd, 2015 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on Dr. King’s Crafts of Freedom

Our friend, Rhodes College associate professor of English Scott Newstok, has written the following article posted at Chapter 16 about Dr. Martin Luther King’s rhetorical gifts and the roots that run deep into his readings of the great philosophers, theologians, and thinkers.  As we approach the anniversary of Dr. King’s death, it’s a reminder of […]

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Shelby County Attorney General Amy Weirich and her Tea Party legislative friends in Nashville are determined to make sure that justice is not blind but blinded. Spurred on by apocalyptic rhetoric and hyped statistics, the most anti-urban, anti-Memphis elements of the Legislature are ready not just to amend a state law that provides a semblance […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | April 2nd, 2015 12:08am CDT | 9 Comments

              Reposted from September 26, 2011: I remember sitting as a child in my family’s Southern Baptist Church while the preacher interpreted Bible verses to justify segregation and discrimination of African-Americans and how God was fine with the way things were. I remember sitting in a congregation while the […]

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