Oct 302012

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

Seamus Romney, namesake of the Republican presidential candidate’s infamous family dog, attempted to cast a ballot in Iowa’s early voting. Republicans are citing the incident as evidence that tougher voter ID laws are urgently needed.

The fraudulent voting was attempted in the County Auditor’s office in Guthrie County, Iowa, where early voting began on September 27. Election Officer Sheila Johansen gets credit for detecting the foul play. “First off, I’ve lived here all my life, and I’d never seen the guy before.   When he gave his name, I thought, wait a minute…isn’t that the name of the dog that Mitt supposedly strapped to his luggage rack and drove to Canada? I must have given the guy quite a look, because he bolted out the door before I could call the police. I told my friend about it, and she said, ‘Well, maybe he just really had to go out.’” Continue reading »

Oct 032012

Outside of the biggest blockbuster films, Lexington is oftentimes skipped over when it comes to attracting a diversity of films here.  In the spirit of wishing upon a star, I want to initiate a new series of Films We Would Like to See (in Lexington) in the hopes that someone might actually work to ensure these upcoming films get a release here:

Films we would like to see (in Lexington):

Promised Land (USA: Gus van Sant, 2012)

Stoker (USA/UK: Chan-Wook Park, 2013) Continue reading »

Oct 032012

Shadow economies, part 3

By Beth Connors-Manke

In parts 1 and 2 of this series, Beth discussed sex trafficking and labor trafficking. Here, she ends the series by considering how the economy of human trafficking denies individuals a place in the public sphere.

In the course of this series, I’ve gotten to speak with, or listen to, anti-trafficking activists of various stripes: lawyers, academic researchers, social workers, politicians, grassroots activists, and once a survivor of sex trafficking. In my research, I’ve found mostly statistics and anecdotes—articles on the topic generally read: “there are this many victims, and here’s a representative story.” When speakers who have survived trafficking come to town, they are usually women, and it’s usually about sexual slavery.

In other words, in most of the discourse about the issue, the response is numbers and drama. Sometimes the discussion wades into the structural elements, economic and cultural, that contribute to human trafficking, but rarely does it go deeply into those waters.

That’s to be expected. Anti-trafficking activists are attempting interventions that will affect lives right now, whether that be through legislation, law enforcement practices, social services, or consumer awareness. All of this is necessary and timely, and there is much work to be done.

However, in my last piece in this series, I’d like to ask different questions, ones that reflect on the direction of our public sphere.  Continue reading »

Oct 032012

Christianburg rains on Robin Souls’ parade

By Sunny Montgomery

On September 8, I attended the Rollergirls of Central Kentucky’s (ROCK) second to last home bout of the season against Christianburg, Virginia’s New River Valley Rollergirls (NRV), aka the Bruisin’ Burgs Rollergirls, who to my horror were sporting the same pink and black jerseys as ROCK.

Regular fans of the roller derby know the sport is fast-paced with lots of action.  It can be difficult enough to follow without the added complexity of both teams dressed in the same colors. Twenty minutes before the bout began and already I was confused.  This was not a good sign, in hindsight an omen of what was to come.

Continue reading »

Oct 032012

By Keith Halladay

I got into it with Michael Benton on Facebook last week, and I’m struggling to understand why.

Michael is a frequent contributor to NoC, as longtime readers may recognize, and as of this semester we’re colleagues in the BCTC Humanities Division faculty, thanks in large part to his formal recommendation. Prior to that we were graduate students together in the University of Kentucky English Department, and, for a short while when I first moved to Lexington, we were next-door neighbors.

That’s almost a decade of acquaintance, and during that time I cannot recall us arguing even once, about anything. Which seems odd, as we’re both loud, opinionated, and at least a little arrogant. Then again, on matters social and political, we’re more or less on the same side; broadly speaking, we have little to argue about. Continue reading »

Oct 032012

Editor’s note: As we did last election, NoC offered 500 words of space to each of the candidates for the District One seat: incumbent Chris Ford and challenger Marty Clifford. Our preference was that the candidates submit a constituent letter of support. Our goal was to allow two voters to frame thoughtful public arguments for their candidates, which is something that we feel is often left out of elections. NoC received no response from Marty Clifford’s campaign. Below is a letter of support for Chris Ford written by First District resident Thomas Tolliver.

When I moved into my house on East Third Street in 1994, the East End neighborhood was in decline. A functionally obsolete public housing complex gave the neighborhood a bad image. The decrepit and long-closed Lyric Theatre at the neighborhood’s gateway intersection didn’t help. But the East End, like the rest of downtown Lexington, has come a long way since I bought my house 18 years ago. The obsolete housing development is gone, the resurrected Lyric has transformed that gateway intersection and a neighborhood association is in place working to usher in even more improvements.  Continue reading »

Oct 032012

William came out of the house in front of which the two discarded pieces sat just as we were preparing to knock on the front door. Though he was on his way out—he hopped on his motor bike and drove away as soon as we took his picture—he seemed neither surprised nor inconvenienced by our request and readily sat down for a photograph.

Image and text by Kremena Todorova and Kurt Gohde, Discarded project.