Top 5 Live-WURD Thursday March 19
1. Williams gets No. 1 mayoral ballot spot, at-large incumbents not so lucky
State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams’ name will be listed first on the ballot in the mayoral primary May 19. He’ll be followed by Milton Street, James Kenney, Doug Oliver, Nelson Diaz and Lynne Abraham – assuming everyone stays in the race. Yesterday’s lottery will likely have the biggest impact in the Democratic Council at-large race in which 21 Democrats are vying for five seats. The four incumbents in that race were not very lucky. Councilman William Greenlee picked 15th, Ed Neilson, who let his son pick for him, drew No. 18 and Wilson Goode picked the last spot, No. 21, though he had the last spot in the 2011 primary and still won.
Similarly to Wednesday’s draw, some challengers in 2011 received good ballot position but lost. Charter school dean, Isaiah Thomas was No. 2 in 2011 but lost. This year his two-year-old son picked him the second-to-last spot, number 20. “We’re fine, there’s no such thing as bad ballot position – only good ballot position,” Thomas said in the hallway after the draw.
2. Penn State president: Frat posting of nude pictures very sad
A now-suspended Pennsylvania State University fraternity’s Facebook posting of photos of nude and partly nude women, some of them asleep or passed out, is sad and offensive and could lead to some students being expelled, the university’s president said Wednesday.”I can’t imagine anybody that’s not appalled by the alleged behavior,” Eric Barron said in an interview.
The national leaders of Kappa Delta Rho on Tuesday suspended the Penn State chapter for a year over the photo scandal and said it would be reorganized. Police in State College, home to Penn State’s main campus, are investigating allegations the fraternity operated a private Facebook page on which members shared frat house pictures of the women.
According to a warrant, the invitation-only page had 144 active members, including students and alumni. Barron said of the webpage: “It’s very sad, and it’s very offensive.” Police said some of the photos they had seen showed women in “… embarrassing positions.” While some of the women photographed appeared to be aware their pictures were being taken, others did not, police said in court documents.
3. In cash-strapped School District, a hidden treasure trove of books
A teacher discovered a city block of books in the School District basement. Some of them shrink-wrapped. Some of them dumped in boxes. Some stacked on the floor. The books were dumped there two years ago when Bok and 23 other schools were closed. They’ve just been sitting there since. At Bok, it’s even worse. The hallways and classrooms are crowded with books—some dating back to 2000. In a district where almost 60 percent of the kids cannot read at grade level, the library is heartbreaking. Shelves are still stocked with hundreds of dictionaries. Band equipment sits in a corner.
District spokesman Fernando Gallard said principals and teachers have an open invitation to come to the basement to look for what they want, though much of the materials are outdated.As for the thousands of books at Bok, the district lacks the resources to go through all the materials warehoused there. So the district is bringing in an outside company to audit the material. That’s right. A broke district is paying someone to tell it what books it already has.
4. Tunisia museum attack kills at least 19; three suspects sought
Gunmen killed 19 people and sent tourists scrambling for cover in a siege at a museum in Tunisia’s capital on Wednesday. The North African nation’s Prime Minister called it a cowardly terrorist attack and warned that three suspects were still on the loose.Tunisian security forces killed two attackers as they ended the hostage siege at the Bardo Museum in Tunis, Prime Minister Habib Essid said. But the death toll, which included 17 tourists and at least one Tunisian security officer, could climb. Polish, Italian, German and Spanish tourists were among those killed, Essid said, with another 20 foreign tourists and two Tunisians wounded in the attack.
“It’s a cowardly attack mainly targeting the economy of Tunisia,” the Prime Minister said. “We should unite to defend our country.”The scene played out at a popular tourist destination in the heart of Tunisia’s capital in a building linked to where the nation’s parliament meets.
5. University of Virginia Student Beaten, Arrested By Alcohol Control Agents
The state is investigating whether excessive force was used during the arrest of a 20-year-old black student Martese Johnson was arrested by Alcoholic Beverage Control agents after he was rejected entry from a University Avenue bar, authorities said. The agents arrested Johnson – during which time “the arrested individual sustained injuries,” according to the ABC agency, which is charged with enforcing alcohol laws in the state.
Cell phone video of the incident shows the student lying face down on the sidewalk with two agents detaining him as bystanders yell, “His head is bleeding!” From another angle, he is shown with his face bloodied, shouting, “I go to UVA!” and then “You f—ing racists!” University President Teresa Sullivan described the incident in a message to students and staff as “appalling” and said the student’s head was “slammed into the hard pavement with excessive force.” The governor has asked the state police to begin an independent investigation.
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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of Solomonjones.com and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon