May 082013

DDG employ Killbox strategy to victory

By Sunny Montgomery


Junk Drawer makes a GRRR face at opposing pivot. Photo by Johnna Mckee of Speakeasy Studios.

On April 20, the Rollergirls of Central Kentucky (ROCK) faced off against the Dixie Derby Girls (DDG) of Huntsville, AL, during the first home bout of the 2013 season.  After two full seasons of coverage, I was finally in the swing of things. As I entered the arena, I delighted in its familiarity.

The arena smelled of hot dogs and beer.  Beyonce blared from the speakers overhead while the Pebbles, ROCK’s junior roller derby, chased each other excitedly through the crowd.  I nodded hello to the photographers, the score-keepers, even the avid fan who never misses a home bout and who brings a bean bag chair from home so that he may lounge comfortably in the suicide seating.

I took a seat close to the action, opened my notebook and peered onto the track where ROCK was warming up.  I squinted and adjusted my glasses…

Wait. Something was different.  Continue reading »

May 082013

Open Letter to members of the University of Kentucky community

March 31, 2013

Dear UK Faculty, Students, and Staff:

I am writing this letter to make you aware of a discriminatory policy that is in place at the University of Kentucky, a policy that I have been personally affected by and which the University continues to stand behind. According to the UK-HMO Description of Benefits and Services, the following health care coverage is listed as an exclusion: “Sex Transformation/Sexual Dysfunction–Services, supplies, drugs or other care related to sex transformation, gender identity, sexual or erectile dysfunction or inadequacies.” Setting aside the problematic conflation of sex transformation and sexual dysfunction, this policy directly discriminates against transgender members of the UK community. Continue reading »

May 082013

Misadventures in the city

By Beth Connors-Manke

Sometimes persistence is not a virtue. And this guy had it. The first time, he pulled up next to me in a way I could easily ignore as coincidence. When he then did a U-turn and honked at me, I started to get it. My ire flared, but I figured that the complicated maneuver of following me the wrong way down a one-way street would deter him. The issue would be finished. Continue reading »

May 082013

Family fun bike ride

On Saturday, May 18, a morning of children-focused bike activities will take place in downtown Lexington. The morning will commence at 8:00 am with a “Bike Safety Rodeo” and the “Sprout Sprint,” a free youth bike race coordinated by the YMCA that is open to all kids up to age 12!

This year’s Sprout Sprint course will be a short closed circuit on which particpants will ride laps; kids will compete  for prizes in several age  brackets: 5 and under, 6 – 9, and 10 – 12. Heat races will take place every 10 minutes beginning at 8:00am.

At 10:00 am, the Family Fun Bike Ride will leave downtwon. The route will take riders along Fourth Street, down Newtown Pike, across Maxwell and High Streets, up South Ashland and around Richmond Road along the July 4 10K race route. Organizers demand that all riders must register in order to participate in any of the biking activities.
The morning promises raffles, music, booths, and more.

Design Your Own Revolution
“Design Your Own Revolution,” the third component of a larger work in progress called “discomfort,” will take place on May 24.

Announced in February, the revolution design project offered community members a limited amount of resources with which to design a revolution. Resources offered to the winning participant include one pop-up office space, one design consultant, one table, two chairs, two pencils and a pencil sharpener, one copy machine, 500 sheets of copy paper, and 100 $1.00 billls.

After reviewing entries, Dakota Smith was selected to define the role of the revolutionary. On Friday, May 24, from 9 am-3 pm, Dakota will be designing his own revolution at Land of Tomorrow (LOT) Gallery (527 East Third Street) with the help of Revolution Designer Paul Michael Brown.

Revolution curator Bruce Burris of ElandF West attributes no preconceived hopes for the project, “There is no particular method here and absolutely no expectation. I may or not be present. Dakota is welcome to buy $100 worth of cigarettes and beer, design a revolution or anything at all. Paul is welcome to assist or hinder or leave. 9am-3pm is meant to mimic a typical business day. Anyone may attend/observe during this time.”

May 072013

NoC interviews Phil Tkacz

Eastern State Hospital Cemetery. Photo by Danny Mayer.

Eastern State Hospital Cemetery. Photo by Danny Mayer.

North of Center sat down with Eastern State Hospital Cemetery Preservation Project president Phil Tkacz to get an update on the mass graves that have been found over the years around the grounds of Eastern State Hospital (soon to become the Bluegrass Community and Technical College Newtown Pike campus) .  On May 14, Tkacz and others will gather to both remember and properly re-bury the remains of a number of the hospital’s former patients.

North of Center: In December 2010, Bruce Burris published an article in North of Center on your attempts to draw public awareness and recognition to a mass grave discovered on the back side of the Eastern State Hospital lot. Bruce described the site as a “tiny spot, not much larger than a typical middle class backyard, [that] contains the remains of between 4,000 and 7,000 people — mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, politicians, shopkeepers, farmers…humans.” He also noted that “these numbers do not include the remains of the many thousands more we believe to be scattered throughout the original ESH property.” Can you update us on what new things you have found since then? Continue reading »

May 072013

The Kentucky Room

I was really surprised in your article about the library (“The Lexington Central Public Library is a home,” April 2013) that nowhere did it mention the existence of the Kentucky Room. Now, I know that was not the focus of your article, but given the fact that I am very interested in the history of Lexington, and probably know as much in that area as most, I was looking for that part.

The Kentucky Room has maps of Lexington which have helped me in my treasure hunting activities here since 1999 when I moved here with my family (since divorced). It also has books, reference materials, etc., for those who are interested.

Quite a few people don’t know of its existence–what a shame. The real Lexington is buried there, why don’t you check it our?

By the way, I just got a copy of your paper from my daughter: I score it 8 out of 10.

Jack Ross
Eagle Scout
Homeless advocate
Business owner without income
Teamster son

May 062013

How a clerk turned corporations into humans

By Joy Arnold

It is claimed by some that 127 years ago, on May 10, 1886, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decided that corporations are people. The claim is not true, though it is hard to imagine a more disastrous impact even if it were: it has been taken for true, with disastrous consequences for the American public.

In the 1880s, Santa Clara County, California, under the state constitution, could tax railroads on their franchise, roadway, railway, rails, and rolling stock. As was its right, the county levied taxes on fences appearing on the Southern Pacific Railroad’s property; at the same time, it did not deduct the amount of the mortgage from the value taxed. When Southern Pacific refused to pay these taxes, the county brought suit in state court.

In response, the railroad had the matter removed to the federal system, where the Federal Court for the Northern District of California agreed with the railroad that the state (or its counties) could not tax fences and must deduct the amount of the mortgage from the taxable value of property. Santa Clara appealed to SCOTUS, where the lower court ruling was affirmed. Continue reading »