Friday, February 27, 2015

WHY WOULD Tom Schweich GOP CANDIDATE FOR MISSOURI GOVERNOR KILL HIMSELF?

WHY WOULD GOP CANDIDATE FOR MISSOURI GOVERNOR KILL HIMSELF?
BY DAVID A. LIEB
ASSOCIATED PRESS





FILE - In this Jan. 28, 2015 file photo, Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich announces his candidacy for governor in St. Louis. Schweich's spokesman said he was taken to a hospital Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015 after experiencing what his staff described as a "medical situation" at his home in Clayton, Mo. No other details were released. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri's auditor, who fatally shot himself in an apparent suicide, had vowed to take down the state's most powerful politicians and donors, including his fellow Republicans, when he launched an anti-corruption campaign for governor last month.

But in his final days, Tom Schweich described having knots in his stomach over what he thought was an anti-Semitic whisper campaign by a GOP consultant who now runs the state party.

That intensity had served him well in the past - he was proud of exposing corruption in his four years as auditor. But his tendency to fixate on issues also sometimes made it hard for him to get over political attacks, say some of his advisers and colleagues.

Schweich left behind a wife and two children - and a seemingly rising political career - when he died Thursday at age 54.

He said his audits exposed more than 30 "corrupt government officials" who allegedly stole taxpayer money. But his promised gubernatorial campaign against corruption had barely begun.

Announcing his candidacy last month, Schweich had vowed to bring a never-before-seen "level of intensity, tenacity, transparency, and rigor" in a quest to root out "rampant corruption in Jefferson City."

As evidence of his grit, Schweich touted his work in the U.S. State Department coordinating an anti-drug initiative in Afghanistan.

"Negotiating with Afghan warlords prepared me well for Missouri politics," he said.

He took specific aim at the state's top political donor, retired investment mogul Rex Sinquefield, who largely bankrolled the campaign of his GOP gubernatorial rival Catherine Hanaway, a former state House speaker and federal prosecutor.

Schweich said the $900,000 Hanaway accepted from her "billionaire patron" made her "bought and paid for" by Sinquefield, who employs an "army of mercenaries" to exert his influence over elected officials.

"Nothing is too dishonest for them, and apparently nothing is too petty for them, either," Schweich said last month. "It's corrupt, and there's a lot more corruption going on in that camp that we'll be talking about in the days to come."

In the ensuing days, however, Schweich became increasingly focused on another man - John Hancock, a consultant who did opposition research for Hanaway last year and was elected Feb. 21 as chairman of the Missouri Republican Party.

Schweich, an Episcopalian, told The Associated Press he believed Hancock had been telling Republican donors and activists that Schweich was Jewish, which he perceived as an anti-Semitic statement.

Schweich told the AP that he has some Jewish ancestry, but said he had become increasingly firm in his Christian faith.

Hancock told the AP after Schweich's death that it's possible he may have told some people Schweich was Jewish, "but I wouldn't have said it in a derogatory or demeaning fashion," he said.

Schweich confronted Hancock in November about the alleged comments, but their tension was not resolved. As the date approached for the party chairman's election, Schweich reached out to other Republicans - including U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt and some state party committee members - to try to rally people against electing Hancock.

Some Republicans declined to get involved in what they viewed as personal spat.

Eventually, Hancock's alleged comments "became some kind of a hurdle" to Schweich, said state Republican Party Secretary Pat Thomas, who was among those to whom Schweich had appealed.

On Monday, Schweich outlined the whole ordeal to an AP reporter, saying he planned to hold a press conference about it the next day - even though his adviser said it was a poor political move. Schweich described having knots in his stomach for the past week, because he was so worked up over it. He didn't follow through on the press conference, telling the AP he was still trying to get a prominent Jewish person to stand with him first.

Then, on Thursday morning, Schweich talked twice over the phone with the AP to invite a reporter to his suburban St. Louis home for an afternoon interview, saying he was ready to go public with his accusations. He said he was also inviting a reporter from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Police say authorities received an emergency call about the shooting just minutes after those phone calls.

Hancock emailed state Republican Party officials Friday saying he was "sad to have learned that some of (Schweich's) final moments were spent thinking of an ongoing disagreement with me."

Hancock said he had "mistakenly believed that Tom Schweich was Jewish," and that Schweich "had mistakenly believed that I had attacked his religion."

"We may never know what drove Tom to take his own life -but it seems clear that there were deeper and more profound issues than a minor political squabble," Hancock said.

---

Follow David A. Lieb at: https://twitter.com/DavidALieb

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Memphis Medical Emergency Rooms Getting Overcrowded Again


MEMPHIS TN (IFS) -- According to some RN's in the Memphis area, the ER rooms are getting overloaded again.  It appears that some people would opt-out to pay the monthly premium and pay the medical penalty to the IRS, as they are finding out that the ER's are placing the easy-out cases upfront, and letting the harder cases to be pushed to a later hour in the triage chain.  It's all about statistics, and nothing about the quality of care for the patients.  According to several ER news sites, the following report is given for last year's ER. . .
". . .These are the average time from entering the ER to being admitted to the hospital by a doctor. In a busy ER, patients will be seen by a triage nurse first. Then the wait time will vary by severity, and how busy the ER is at the time of day. Patients with less serious problems could have substantially longer waits.
There is a 48 minute wait difference between the fastest Memphis emergency room and the slowest.

Stories

Jan 01, 2015, 10:17 PM
WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee Leconte Medical Center: "I recently visited the ER at Leconte Medical Center. While the facilities are exemplary the service which is most important facet of any business is lacking.\r\n\r\nI came to the ER arriving at 5:30 on January 1sr with symptoms of a kidney stone that had been going on for the last 20-24 hours. While I have had blood drawn and a urine test at the 2 1/2 hour mark we remain in the ER awaiting our first consultation with a PA or MD. We have been here for over 4 1/2 hours now and haven't been called back. \r\n\r\nMy wife is extremely uncomfortable. While it is not a life threatening issue I have seen so many people proceed us in getting seen. I understand the triage process that prioritized patients depending in condition and seriousness of ailments, I am confident many people here not facing any more serious ailments. \r\n\r\n5 hours to be seen is excessive and is a poor example of adequate staffing and resource management by this for profit business. Why is it that the medical community expects everyone to be patient beyond a sense of reasonableness and reality? Because there is not adequate accountability measures and alternative options readily available. The fact is the alternstive optionsost likely would be the same or worse. \r\n\r\nSincerely \r\n\r\nBeth Piper \r\n865-755-2101" - Beth 


Memphis hospitals above national average for ER wait times

Posted: Jan 03, 2014 5:08 PM CSTUpdated: Jan 03, 2014 5:08 PM CST

The highest in the state is over in Nashville at Vanderbilt where the average wait time is 78 minutes.The highest in the state is over in Nashville at Vanderbilt where the average wait time is 78 minutes.

Baptist Memorial Memphis emergency room manager Melanie MaysBaptist Memorial Memphis emergency room manager Melanie Mays
(WMC-TV) - Emergency room wait times could be the difference between life or death. New research reveals some Memphis hospitals are above the national average, which is 28 minutes.
"We have swings up and down in our census, and this December we've seen almost 1,000 patients more than we did last December," said Baptist Memorial Memphis emergency room manager Melanie Mays. "Our goal is really to pull directly to a room ... Your emergency is our emergency. We understand that you're not coming here to clog up the emergency room, you're coming here because we are your first choice or last resort."
Thanks to her leadership efforts, the hospital has dropped wait time significantly in one year— averaging just 39 minutes. It is one of the lowest in Memphis city limits.
Methodist Hospital Memphis ranks highest with an average wait time of 55 minutes. The Regional Medical Center (The MED) is slightly lower at 54 minutes. And behind those two sits St. Francis at 51 minutes.
The highest in the state is over in Nashville at Vanderbilt where the average wait time is 78 minutes.
The list is compiled by ProPublica.org. It measures are based on a year's worth of data that is updated quarterly. The last update was December 12 of last year.
Baptist Memorial says they have worked hard to reduce wait time and improve patient satisfaction.
"We have a great team of nurses and doctors here and it is our goal, we all have an aligned goal, it's patient care," said Mays.
The MED released the following statement:
Home to the only Level 1 Trauma Center in this region, Regional Medical Center's emergency department is a busy one. Providing exceptional services and compassionate care in a timely manner to all patients in the emergency department is very important to Regional Medical Center. In recent years, hospital staff has worked on several process improvement projects to speed the patient's flow through the emergency department. While progress has been made in the reduction of wait times, we are constantly looking at our processes to make improvements for our patients.
Methodist released the following statement:
"We understand when you have an urgent health care need, the last thing you want to do is wait. Having some of the busiest emergency departments in the city, Methodist is always looking at ways we can improve the service we provide our patients and their families.
In 2011, Methodist was the first hospital systems in the Mid-South to develop an app to allow residents to determine which Methodist Hospital emergency room has the shortest wait time. Up-to-the-minute emergency room wait times are also available on the main page our web site www.methodisthealth.org.
In addition, we are in the process of building a $33 million replacement emergency department at our flagship Methodist University Hospital. The project is slated to be completed in August of this year, and will allow us to better serve patients and their families, as well as increase efficiency. We are also looking at ways we can improve the wait times across the rest of our system, ensuring the best possible care." - Michael Ugwueke, COO, Methodist Healthcare
Copyright 2014 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

When an Oscar Win does not help your career

The first time was the charm for Mo'Nique, who took home the Academy Award for best supporting actress for her role in <a href="http://www.moviefone.com/movie/precious-based-on-the-novel-push-by-sapphire/20024797/main">"Precious"</a> in 2010.© Mark J. Terrill/AP The first time was the charm for Mo'Nique, who took home the Academy Award for best supporting actress for her role in "Precious" in 2010.Win an Oscar and the offers start pouring in, every studio chomping at the bit to be able to include "and featuring Academy Award winner so-and-so" in its next trailer. Right?!
Er, yes and no.
As Mo'Nique so deftly reminded people this week when discussing the 75th anniversary of Hattie McDaniel's history-making Oscar winn with The Hollywood Reporter, scoring a little gold naked man of one's own does not guarantee that it's going to be you, Meryl Streep and Daniel Day-Lewis up for every plum role (especially if that role is Lincoln).
Sure, you'll work. But then everyone expects greatness, every time—an unattainable standard, even for Meryl.
To be fair, everyone we're about to mention can still carry a headline—and some of them can even still carry a movie! But with respect to the so-called prestige-with-a-capital-P that's supposed to follow the big win, here are eight actors who have yet to match, let alone surpass, their Oscar-year magic:
1. Adrien Brody, Best Actor 2003: It's not as though he disappeared or anything, but he followed up his upset-shocker-of-a-win for a truly magnificent performance in The Pianist with three straight flops—The Singing Detective (a star-studded mess), The Village (M. Night Shyamalan in the thick of his decline) and The Jacket (sorry, Jacob's Ladder called and wanted its concept back). Thanks to Wes Anderson, Brody is still in good movies, but he's yet to find the right star vehicle post-Oscar. It was the kiss, wasn't it?
2. Hilary Swank, Best Actress 2000 and 2005: A two-time Oscar winner, no less! But by now we all agree that she is most effective when she totally disappears into a role, as she did to maximum, heart-wrenching effect in Boys Don't Cry and just as convincingly in Million Dollar Baby. This isn't a rom-com star, Hollywood. Transform her!
3. Jennifer Hudson, Best Supporting Actress 2007: The Dreamgirls star's celebrity is still off the charts, and she'll be singing at the Oscars this Sunday, but as far as the movie-making portion of her career since running away with her category back in the day... Entirely forgettable, despite scoring the lead role in the biopic Winnie Mandela. (If only she'd gotten to play across the Idris Elba-Nelson Mandela instead of the Terrence Howard-Nelson Mandela!)
4. Halle Berry, Best Actress 2002: Was Catwoman the fluke? Or was Monster's Ball, for which Berry became the first African-American woman to win an Oscar for a leading role? No argument, the stunning-as-ever thesp is a star, and the Elie Saab dress she accepted her Oscar in will live on in Academy Awards all-time-best fashion history. But except for 2005's Their Eyes Were Watching God (a TV movie), Hollywood has failed her in the drama department.
5. Nicolas Cage, Best Actor 1996: When you think about it, he was always ripe for parodying. But it was only after he was "Oscar Winner Nicolas Cage," the award-season runaway train for his role as a suicidal alcoholic writer in Leaving Las Vegas (we can still smell the whiskey just thinking about it) that he truly became a caricature of himself. He notched another Oscar nomination seven years later, for Adaptation, but it's just been a veritable meme-fest since. He got strong reviews for his recent indie drama Joe, but...if you didn't read the review, you missed it!
6. Helen Hunt, Best Actress 1998: Remember that time, around What Women Want and Dr. T and the Women, when it was all about Helen Hunt? Kinda like how it was all about Bill Pullman when Independence Day came out? Well, her Oscar win for As Good as It Gets (one of our favorite movies ever, FYI) actually did give her the bump, but after 2000... Was it Helen overload? Hunt fatigue? Playing Woody Allen's love interest in Curse of the Jade Scorpion? After a long drought of interest in what she was up to, she earned her second Oscar nomination in 2013 for The Sessions, but the full-frontal nudity unfortunately made more headlines than the speaking part of the performance.
7. RenĂ©e Zellweger, Best Supporting Actress 2004: The America's-sweetheart type stole every scene she was in in Cold Mountain and then... After her hotly anticipated Bridget Jones sequel, she just didn't pick the right roles. Obviously playing Russell Crowe's devoted wife in a Ron Howard-directed, Depression-set movie seemed like a good idea, as did playing a fast-talking lady journalist opposite George Clooney in Leatherheads, but... what were we talking about again?
8. Cuba Gooding Jr., Best Supporting Actor 1997: There is no shame in having peaked in Jerry Maguire. He has one more Oscar than Tom Cruise does.

I Like Driving in Russia in the Winter time


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

A Lesson in Failure- The Rise of the Mars Candy Company

A Lesson in Failure- The Rise of the Mars Candy Company

MATT BLITZ 0
mandms
The legendary Roald Dahl’s book Charlie & Chocolate Factory from 1964 (and its subsequent two film adaptations from 1971 and 2005) told the story of a magical candy factory and its eccentric and mysterious owner Willy Wonka. A chocolate river, gum that is a whole turkey dinner, never-ending gobstoppers, and, of course, the singing and dancing oompa-loompas are just a few of the surprises that waited inside the doors of the famously secretive factory. Of course, in a real life candy empire, there are a lot more failures, hard work, father/son disputes, and an unfortunate lack of oompa-loompas. What follows is the tale of how the Mars candy company went from a small candy business started by a polio stricken teen to one of the largest candy companies in the world.
The story of Mars candy starts in Newport, Minnesota (southeast of St. Paul) with the birth of Franklin Clarence Mars on September 23, 1883. Frank was the son of a gristmill operator (grinding grains into flour) who only moved to Minnesota from Pennsylvania with his wife, Alva, months prior to Frank’s birth. When Frank was little, he battled polio which left him disabled the rest of his life.
As you might imagine from this, he was rather immobile as a kid, so he spent a lot of time watching his mother bake and cook, including watching her go through the difficult and tedious process of making fresh chocolates. He got so into candy, that he began selling Taylor’s Molasses Chips and creating his own candy recipes while still in high school. By the time, he graduated, he had a pretty successful career going selling candy wholesale to stores in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area.
In 1902, he married Ethel G. Kissack, a schoolteacher. About a year later, Frank’s first son – Forrest – was born. It was also around this time that the candy market became oversaturated. With the Hershey Bar having been first introduced in 1900, the United States’ first mass produced candy bar, a host of other locally owned candy chains popped up. The competition was fierce, especially in the Minneapolis area. Brands like Chick-O-Stick, Pearson’s, and Cherry Hump started in Minnesota and all are still around today. So, it wasn’t a huge surprise when Frank’s wholesale business went under.
To add a little lemon juice to his fresh wound, in 1910, Ethel divorced Frank for being unable to support her. She also won sole custody of Forest, who she promptly sent to live with her parents in Saskatchewan, Canada. The ugliness of the divorce wasn’t a good omen for Frank and Forrest’s future relationship. They would rarely see each other until years later, with tensions still running high.
Frank, never a man to get too down, tried again, this time marrying another Ethel – Ethel V. Healy – and moving to Seattle, Washington to go back into the candy business. He failed again with wholesaling and creditors started taking his stuff.
He moved thirty miles south to Tacoma and again struggled.
In 1920, Frank and Ethel the second moved back to Minnesota to be closer to their families. At this time, Frank had only four hundred dollars to his name. But despite his constant struggles with candy, he continued to try, this time making his own at three am every morning with his wife doing the selling. The candy bar was the Mar-O-Bar, made out of chocolate, nuts and caramel. It was tough, but they started to make a little money and then a good amount more. After years of trying, Franks Mars had finally carved out a somewhat lucrative career in candy. They were even able to buy a house and would have been comfortable being local candy suppliers. But the invention of the Milky Way changed all of that.
It was also around this time that Frank’s son, Forrest, was establishing a mighty fine business sense. After attending college at Berkeley and, later, Yale, he became a traveling salesmen for Camel cigarettes. As the legend goes, in Chicago one night Forrest went a little overboard plastering ads across the city for Camel. He was arrested, but his estranged father bailed him out. While at a soda counter, Forrest looked into his chocolate malt glass and said, “’Why don’t you put a chocolate-malted drink in a candy bar?’”
Nougat had been invented in Italy in the 15th century (see: What Nougat is Made Of), but a variation of whipped egg whites and sugar syrup (instead of the normal honey) was invented by the Pendergast Candy Company in the early 20th century. They were based in, yes, Minneapolis and the nougat became known as “Minneapolis Nougat.” Frank Mars had started using nougat in his candies in 1920. In fact, he called his company “the Nougat House” for a time. But this time, in 1923, he mixed it with chocolate and put caramel on top of it. Using his cosmic name as inspiration, he called it a “Milky Way.” It was introduced in that same year. Within a year, Mars’ sales jumped by ten-fold, grossing about $800,000 (about $11 million today). Said Forrest later, “that damn thing sold with no advertising.”
Mars Company quickly launched into orbit. They moved their headquarters to near Chicago and by 1928, just five years after introducing the Milky Way, they were making $20 million in gross revenue (about $273 million today). In 1930, they introduced the Snickers bar (named after Frank’s favorite horse) and, soon after, the Three Musketeers.
Frank started living in grand fashion, buying fast cars, big houses, and a horse farm for his wife. Meanwhile, Forrest didn’t like what he saw. Knowing that there was more profit, and security, to be had by cutting costs and expanding the business into other areas, he tried to convince his father to give him a third of the company and let him expand to Canada (Forrest’s home country). Frank refused and Forrest, later recounting a conversation with his father, ”I told my dad to stick his business up his ass. If he didn’t want to give me a third right then, I said, I’m leaving.”
In the end, Frank gave Forrest $50,000 and foreign rights to the Milky Way to basically leave his company alone and move to Europe. Fortunately for the company, that is exactly what Forrest did.
While in Europe, Forrest learned from Switzerland’s Nestle chocolate company about how to make good, sweet, European-style candy. He tweaked the recipe of the Milky Way to make it more sweet. He called it the “Mars Bar.” It sold even better than the Milky Way in Europe, amassing Forrest his own considerable fortune.
Frank passed away in 1934, at the young age of fifty. His wife, Ethel, took over the company, then Frank’s half-brother , William L. (Slip) Kruppenbacher when Ethel was too ill to run it. In 1945, Ethel passed away. The company moved to the next of kin, the business savvy Forrest.
Forrest took over the company and immediately diversified, turning Mars into more than a candy company. He worked with a European pet food supplier and, eventually, created Whiskas Catfood. He worked with a Texas salesmen to create ready-to-make rice. That became Uncle Ben’s Rice. Besides being a brilliant money-making business man, he was known to have a violent temper and a demand for perfection. For example, he was known to throw chocolate bars out of windows if he felt they didn’t meet his quality expectations. Remarkably quickly, he turned a regional candy maker into a world-wide food empire.
Today, it is his three kids who are reaping the benefits. John, Forrest Jr., and Jacqueline. They are among the richest people in the world, each owning a third of Mars, Inc, which currently employs over 75,000 people and is valued at around $70 billion, making it approximately the sixth largest privately held company in the world.
If you liked this article, you might also enjoy:
Bonus Facts:
  • In 1941, Forrest Mars Sr. struck a deal with Bruce Murrie, son of famed Hershey president William Murrie, to develop a hard shelled candy with chocolate at the center.  Mars needed Hershey’s chocolate because he anticipated there would be a chocolate shortage in the pending war, which turned out to be correct. As such, the deal gave Murrie a 20% stake in the newly developed M&M; this stake was later bought out by Mars when chocolate rationing ended at the end of the war. The name of the candy thus stood for “Mars & Murrie,” the co-creators of the candy.
  • The “M&M” was modeled after a candy Forrest Mars, Sr. encountered while in Spain during his quasi-exile from Mars in the 1930s.  During the Spanish civil war there, he observed soldiers eating chocolate pellets with a hard shell of tempered chocolate.  This prevented the candies from melting, which was essential when included in soldiers rations as they were. Not surprisingly, during WWII, production of M&Ms skyrocketed due to the fact that they were sold to the military and included as part of United States’ soldiers’ rations. This also worked as great marketing; when the soldiers came home, many were hooked.
  • William Murrie, father of Bruce Murrie, was originally hired by Milton Hershey in 1896 as a salesman.  In his first week on the job, he managed to over sell the plant’s production capacity. This so impressed owner Milton Hershey, that he tabbed Murrie to be the future President of Hershey; this later happened in 1908, a position he held until retiring in 1947. So how did he do? When William Murrie first took over running Hershey, the gross annual sales tallied up to about $600,000 (about $15.5 million today).  Upon his retirement in 1947, he had grown the company to a gross annual sales amount of about $120 million (about $1.25 billion today); meaning over the span of those 39 years, he increased the annual sales rate at an astounding average of approximately 15% per year.
  • In the 1920s, Murrie tried to convince Hershey that they should produce a chocolate bar with peanuts.  Hershey didn’t like the idea, but let him go ahead as long as the bar wasn’t under the Hershey brand name.  And so, in 1925, the “Chocolate Sales Corporation”, a fictitious company Murrie came up with, debuted the “Mr. Goodbar”, which was wildly successful.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

History of Lynchings in the South Documents Nearly 4,000 Names

The New York Times By CAMPBELL ROBERTSON
Kirvin, Tex., where three black men accused of killing a white woman were set on fire in 1922 before a crowd of hundreds.© Brandon Thibodeaux for The New York Times Kirvin, Tex., where three black men accused of killing a white woman were set on fire in 1922 before a crowd of hundreds.
DALLAS — A block from the tourist-swarmed headquarters of the former Texas School Book Depository sits the old county courthouse, now a museum. In 1910, a group of men rushed into the courthouse, threw a rope around the neck of a black man accused of sexually assaulting a 3-year-old white girl, and threw the other end of the rope out a window. A mob outside yanked the man, Allen Brooks, to the ground and strung him up at a ceremonial arch a few blocks down Main Street.
South of the city, past the Trinity River bottoms, a black man named W. R. Taylor was hanged by a mob in 1889. Farther south still is the community of Streetman, where 25-year-old George Gay was hanged from a tree and shot hundreds of times in 1922.
And just beyond that is Kirvin, where three black men, two of them almost certainly innocent, were accused of killing a white woman and, under the gaze of hundreds of soda-drinking spectators, were castrated, stabbed, beaten, tied to a plow and set afire in the spring of 1922.
The killing of Mr. Brooks is noted in the museum. The sites of the other killings, like those of nearly every lynching in the United States, are not marked. Bryan Stevenson believes this should change.
On Tuesday, the organization he founded and runs, the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Ala., released a report on the history of lynchings in the United States, the result of five years of research and 160 visits to sites around the South. The authors of the report compiled an inventory of 3,959 victims of “racial terror lynchings” in 12 Southern states from 1877 to 1950.
Next comes the process of selecting lynching sites where the organization plans to erect markers and memorials, which will involve significant fund-raising, negotiations with distrustful landowners and, almost undoubtedly, intense controversy.
The process is intended, Mr. Stevenson said, to force people to reckon with the narrative through-line of the country’s vicious racial history, rather than thinking of that history in a short-range, piecemeal way.
Bryan Stevenson, executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, in front of the building, then a courthouse, where the lynching began.© Brandon Thibodeaux for The New York Times Bryan Stevenson, executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, in front of the building, then a courthouse, where the lynching began.
“Lynching and the terror era shaped the geography, politics, economics and social characteristics of being black in America during the 20th century,” Mr. Stevenson said, arguing that many participants in the great migration from the South should be thought of as refugees fleeing terrorism rather than people simply seeking work.
The lynching report is part of a longer project Mr. Stevenson began several years ago. One phase involved the erection of historical markers about the extensive slave markets in Montgomery. The city and state governments were not welcoming of the markers, despite the abundance of Civil War and civil rights movement memorials in Montgomery, but Mr. Stevenson is planning to do the same thing elsewhere.
Around the country, there are only a few markers noting the sites of lynchings. In several of those places, like Newnan, Ga., attempts to erect markers were met with local resistance. But in most places, no one has tried to put up a marker.
Efforts to count the number of lynchings in the country go back at least to 1882, when The Chicago Tribune began publishing each January a list of all executions and lynchings in the previous year. The Tuskegee Institute began releasing a list in 1912, and in 1919, the N.A.A.C.P. published what its researchers said was a comprehensive list of lynchings in the previous three decades. In 1995, the sociologists Stewart Tolnay and E. M. Beck researched the existing lists, eliminated errors and duplicates, and compiled what many consider the most accurate inventory to that time.
The report released Tuesday says that the new inventory has 700 names that are not on any of these previous lists, many of which Mr. Stevenson said were discovered during the compilation of the report.
Professor Beck, who teaches at the University of Georgia, has not reviewed the new list. But he pointed out that, with racial violence so extensive and carried out in so many different ways, compilers of lists may differ on what constitutes a lynching; the new list, as opposed to some previous ones, includes one-time massacres of large numbers of African-Americans, such as occurred in Arkansas in 1919 and in Louisiana in 1887.
“If you’re trying to make a point that the amount of racial violence is underestimated, well then, there’s no doubt about it,” Professor Beck said. “What people don’t realize here is just how many there were, and how close. Places they drive by every day.”
Among Professor Beck’s findings were that the number of lynchings did not rise or fall in proportion to the number of state-sanctioned executions, underscoring what Mr. Stevenson said was a crucial point: that these brutal deaths were not about administering popular justice, but terrorizing a community.
“Many of these lynchings were not executing people for crimes but executing people for violating the racial hierarchy,” he said, meaning offenses such as bumping up against a white woman or wearing an Army uniform.
But, he continued, even when a major crime was alleged, the refusal to grant a black man a trial — despite the justice system’s near certain outcome — and the public extravagance of a lynching were clearly intended as a message to other African-Americans.
The bloody history of Paris, Tex., about 100 miles northeast of Dallas, is well known if rarely brought up, said Thelma Dangerfield, the treasurer of the local N.A.A.C.P. chapter. Thousands of people came in 1893 to see Henry Smith, a black teenager accused of murder, carried around town on a float, then tortured and burned to death on a scaffold.
Until recently, some longtime residents still remembered when the two Arthur brothers were tied to a flagpole and set on fire at the city fairgrounds in 1920.
“There were two or three blacks who were actually around during that time, but you couldn’t get them to talk about it,” Ms. Dangerfield said.
She helped set up an exhibit in the county historical museum, the only commemoration of the lynchings she knows of in a town with prominent public memorials to the Confederacy. The prospect of a permanent marker had not occurred to her.
“It would be a fight,” she said. “Someone is going to have some resistance to it. But you know, I think it wouldn’t hurt to try it.”

Bobbi Kristina Brown

Bobbi Kristina Brown: Friends, Fans Shed Tears at Emotional Prayer Vigil Set to Whitney Houston Songs

Fox 5 Atlanta/Getty Images
Fox 5 Atlanta/Getty Images
City of Riverdale, Georgia, hosts the gathering with politicians, religious leaders and musicians offering words of encouragement
Tears and prayers flowed Monday night at a candlelight vigil for Bobbi Kristina Brown.
The spirited gathering was held in the city of Riverdale, Georgia, as the 21-year-old daughter of Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown clings to life at nearby Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.
“Forget that he [Bobby Brown] is a renowned artist. That her mama, the late Whitney, was a renowned artist. These [are] still people. They bleed and hurt like us,” said Riverdale mayor Dr. Evelyn Wynn-Dixon.
“Sometime people ask you, or they say, ‘I know how you feel.’ Sometime they don’t. Sometime they don’t know what it’s like if your child is on that ventilator. ‘What do I do? If I take it off and she could have lived or do I let her stay on it and suffer?’ That’s a hard question for any parent,” Wynn-Dixon told the large crowd of fans and concerned residents.
Her comments seemed to confirm what has been widely reported by the media that Bobbi Kristina is connected to a ventilator, and her familyfaces a decision whether or not to remove her from life support.
Before the service began, organizers played several of Houston’s hit songs including “I Have Nothing” and “I’m Every Woman.”
Once the gathering got underway, a series of family friends and ministers addressed the crowd with words of encouragement including “we’re here to pick people up” and “continuous prayer is what is needed at this point.”
As the vigil came to a close, legendary R&B singer Tony Terry took the microphone and sang “I Look To You,” Houston’s last attempt at a comeback single before her death in 2012.
Several people in the crowd were brought to tears while Terry belted out the stirring track, which is a call for help in a time of crisis.
Riverdale organized the “Shining A Light For Healing For Bobbi Kristina Brown” vigil to support the Brown family, because Bobby Brown was the first artist to perform at its amphitheater, a city official told several media outlets.
Bobbi Kristina was rushed to the hospital after being found face down and unconscious in a bathtub on January 31.