Athletes can only draw attention to the problem. Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball in 1947, but change came slower to Birmingham, Alabama. The minor league Birmingham Barons played in the Southern Association, which had just one black player in its history. Nat Peeples played in two games for the Atlanta Crackers in 1954. The Southern Association went under in 1961. After two years without baseball, the Barons were ready to make their return. But there was a problem. All of the leagues by then were integrated. In Birmingham, segregation was more than just tradition. It was the law. The so-called “checkers law” made it a crime for blacks and whites to compete against each other.
At the Republican National Convention of 1952, supporters of Dwight D. Eisenhower worked to have 42 delegates stripped from states that were supportive of his main opponent, Sen. Robert A. Taft of Ohio. Still, Eisenhower didn’t win the nomination until Harold Stassen offered his votes.
At the Democratic Convention that year, ballots were cast for 16 different candidates on the first vote. Estes Kefauver led after the first round before Harry Truman tilted the scales for Adlai Stevenson.
Can we have a recovery before we find a cure to the sickness?
Debbi Moore, president and CEO of the Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce, was recently selected for a national group formed by the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives.
When Mario Moccia was named athletics director at New Mexico State University in 2014, he inherited a men’s basketball program that, thanks in part to the legacy of Lou Henson, was a consistent conference champion and qualifier for the NCAA Tournament.
That was the good news.
When I moved to Las Cruces in 2002, The Whole Enchilada Fiesta was the one annual event that was listed in all of the national tour guides. When founder Roberto Estrada decided to retire the giant ladle in 2015 at the age of 78, it left a void.
In 2013, the city held its first Country Music Festival, a three-day event featuring both local and national artists held on the streets downtown. It was before construction of Plaza de Las Cruces, at a time when the city was still struggling to breathe life into the downtown area.
The New Mexico Legislature passed a number of useful bills in the recently completed special session dealing with police reform, racial equality and elections. But none of those were the reason Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham was compelled to call lawmakers back into session.
Reports about the coronavirus were starting to circulate in late February when the Legislature was completing work on the state budget, but they apparently didn’t reach the Roundhouse. Lawmakers passed a record $7.6 billion budget, an 8 percent hike from the previous year, with large salary increases for state government workers.
The New Mexico open meetings law requires the Las Cruces City Council and other government boards to provide notice before the meeting and access to see and hear what is happening during the meeting.
That’s it. There is no requirement to allow for public input. They have to let us watch, but they don't have to let us participate.
In October, a representative for Public Safety Strategies Group, a private firm based out of Maryland that had been hired by the city to conduct regular police audits, presented an update for the City Council. It did not go well.
The presenter started by explaining that he was a last-minute fill-in for the person who was supposed to make the presentation, but was unable to be there. He could not answer questions as simple as, have complaints against officers increased or decreased in the past year.
Do government officials get to tell the people protesting against them how, when and where they can protest?
I saw that concept taken to its absurd extreme in 2004 when I went to Boston to cover the Democratic Conversation, where Bill Richardson was serving as chairman. About a block away from the convention center, police had fenced off an area of the street for a designated protest zone.
Fans of horror movies know there are always early scenes that tip you off to the terrible things that will come later.
I had that feeling last week as I watched the press conference held by prosecutors in Minnesota. I assumed that it was called to announce an arrest in the murder of George Floyd. I was wrong.
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