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NEWS

If you spend any amount of time on Facebook — especially if your posts veer into the world of the political — this sort of thing isn’t unusual. There’s a post, and some comments, and they get heated. And then a friend of a friend jumps in, and things go off the rails.

This episode was no different.

Colin Lively, hair stylist to the rich and famous in New York City and Cleveland, had posted a thread last Thursday night on the police killings in Ferguson, Staten Island and Cleveland. A woman named Deborah O’Connor, a Facebook friend of a friend, interjected.

“YOU elected POTUS, Holder et al. And they are supposed to represent all Americans, not just blacks … why don’t these ass clowns insert themselves into their stories?”

She was just getting started. As the thread went on, and as Lively and others engaged her, O’Connor’s comments took on an increasingly racist, homophobic and just-plain-mean bent:

“Take your Northern fagoot [sic] elitism and shove it up your ass.”

“I teach at a University, you asshole. What do you do?”

“You are an intellectual fraud, just like your Messiah. Obama has single-handedly turned our once great society into a Ghetto Culture, rivaling that of Europe. France is almost at war because of his filthy rodent Muslims who are attacking Native Frenchmen and women.”

“I just looked at your picture and what you do for a living. I’m signing off now. I don’t talk to you people.”

Nobody was safe — not the black president and his black attorney general, who she said want to hand over the country to their fellow blacks and Muslims, not Lively, the “fagoot” hair stylist who started the thread, not anyone else who posted on the thread — all of whom she deemed her intellectual inferiors.

As it turns out, she apparently wasn’t lying about working at a university, or about …   More

THE FLOG

Update: I tweaked the headline, after Councilman Lumb objected that it was misleading: “I think it was pretty clear that I wasn't objecting that the Cultural Council defended MOCA, I objected to how they went about it.” 

Just when you thought #MOCAgate (or were we calling it #boobygate?) was over, here’s this:

Robin Lumb is not a happy camper. This afternoon, he fired off an email to Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville board members, chiding the Cultural Council for not knowing its place. Their crime, it seems, was #standingwithmoca — or specifically, for criticizing Clay Yarborough, our Great Moral Compass, who declared that a picture of a naked pregnant lady reclining on a couch was pornography that would corrupt THE CHILDREN and demanded that the mayor defund the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville. (The mayor refused, citing First Amendment issues.)

Yarborough, of course, has been the subject of much derision, both here and nationwide. In The New York Times, the photographer/pornographer(?) in question, Angela Strassheim, quipped that maybe he hadn’t seen enough porn to know what porn really was. At Art Walk last night, a good-sized crowd mocked him with signs like “Ban Boobs from City Hall” (see image above). And in this mag’s pages this week, we wondered what artistic masterpieces would look like if they had to abide by Yarborough’s standards of decency.

We all had a good laugh. 

Councilman Lumb was not laughing. 

When he learned that the Cultural Council had email-blasted a plea for support for MOCA, saying Yarborough’s campaign was “unfortunate and could be viewed as an effort to stifle artistic expression” and linking to a number of anti-Yarborough pieces that had appeared in the local media, ours included, he wrote to “express my profound disappointment with the conduct of the Cultural Council in this matter as evinced by the …   More

THE FLOG

“At the heart of everything we do is that pride. The pride for the Jaguars and the pride for Jacksonville,” said John Caputo, president of the Bold City Brigade.

More than 100 supporters showed up to attend the Bold City Brigade’s community event to benefit The Boselli Foundation June 1 at Intuition Ale Works. The Bold City Brigade, a local nonprofit dedicated to building the Jacksonville Jaguars fan base, hosted the event to donate money to The Boselli Foundation, founded by former Jacksonville Jaguar Tony Boselli.

Caputo, along with a small group of people, started the Bold City Brigade to promote excitement for the Jacksonville Jaguars and support the community of Jacksonville.

“First and foremost we wanted to do a charity event, period. It was really important for us when we started the group. We always wanted to have a charitable arm of the organization, and with that we chose an organization that was locally rooted and that people knew about,” Caputo said.

The Boselli Foundation is a faith-based nonprofit organization that provides disadvantaged youth with after school learning programs through Angi and Tony Boselli's Youth Life Learning Centers. Established in 2007, The Boselli Foundation now has two youth centers set up in the Northside of Jacksonville.

With this community event, the Bold City Brigade estimates about $7,000 to be donated to The Boselli Foundation.   More

THE FLOG

Billy Cosby, one of America's favorite father-figures, embodied the theme of Jacksonville's two-day education summit, "Increasing Parental Involvement."

The 75-year-old comedian and education activist spoke to a full house at The Florida Theatre Feb. 28 on behalf of Mayor Alvin Brown. Action News co-anchor Mark Spain hosted the event, which began with a drum line competition between four Duval County Public Schools — an idea from Cosby.

“Nothing bothers me more than hearing, ‘We don't have good schools in Jacksonville,’” Spain said before introducing Cosby.

Sporting sweatpants and a "Learn 2 Earn" T-shirt, Cosby began his lecture by teasing the mayor and poking fun at the Jacksonville Jaguars' past season, comparing them both to well-known cities that are "on the Weather Channel."

“Now they know your pro football team,” Cosby said. “Other cities love your pro football team.”

Then Cosby took the audience back to his childhood with stories of growing up poor and the old-fashioned days of parenting, when some parents took a more physical approach. The golden three-word rule he used to survive childhood? “Don't talk back.”

“In the South you don’t get beatings, you get whoopings,” Cosby joked.

Cosby said he strongly believes improving the quality of the nation’s education begins with parents. He ended with one last call-to-action to the people to fix Jacksonville’s education system.

“Nobody is coming,” Cosby said. “Only you.”   More

After an initial test run, the Riverside Avondale Night Trolley launched earlier this year to great success, shuttling Riverside riders Friday and Saturday nights during the first weekend of every month. Now organizers want to bring the same service Downtown. This weekend, a fleet of buses will roll out to various Downtown hot spots, including The Elbow district of nightclubs, bars and restaurants, and connect to the Riverside Avondale Night Trolley in 5 Points. If enough of us ride, maybe JTA will think about making it permanent.   More

THE FLOG

St. Augustine-based social media agency Make Me Social recently added some fins to its clientele.

The 12-employee operation, founded in 2009 by Chief Strategic Officer Josh Jordan, now represents artists with Jimmy Buffett’s record label, Mailboat Records, including reggae artist Mishka and Hawaiian ukulele musician Jake Shimabukuro.

The company uses data analytics software to figure out how and when to best target social media audiences for optimal interaction.

“We were able to help get Mishka to number one on iTunes for reggae charts, figure out how to get audiences engaged and excited about the album, then do branding on social media channels,” Jordan said.

And they’re utilizing a lot of social media channels. Jordan, 37, said the company uses Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, Vimeo, Reddit and more to promote its clients, which also include media giant Hearst Publishing and financial services firm Morgan Stanley.

“Everybody’s sitting … with a vending machine in their hands. They’ve got these cell phones, they’re tweeting, they’re Facebooking, they’re taking pictures, they’re recording video – and it’s a huge opportunity for brands to engage,” said Jordan.

Make Me Social has satellite offices in Baltimore, Los Angeles and New York, and Jordan said he hopes the company will continue to bridge the gap between offline and online engagement for a range of clients.   More

THE FLOG

The University of North Florida’s Women’s Center and Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice are staging a mock rape trial at 7 p.m. April 10.

Assistant State Attorney Terence Martin said the goal is to educate students on the process of going to trial and to show them how the system works in Jacksonville.

The mock trial is designed to teach students what to expect from the first responding officer, inform students on victim advocates that are available to them and show the victim that the process can work, Martin said.

UNF students will act out fictional roles about one woman’s story of her alleged sexual violation, according to a press release from the university. The mock trial will be staged at the Andrew A. Robinson Jr. Theater, Building 14A, and the event is free and open to the public.

The trial will look at a date rape scenario, something the students can relate to, said Martin, who is also division chief of the Special Assault Division for the 4th Judicial Court.

Last semester at UNF, a student falsified a police report by reporting that she was sexually assaulted on Aug. 21 in the UNF Wellness Complex. After it became clear that the report was false, the student was prosecuted, Martin said.

Martin will lead the defense team with Aaron Feuer, assistant state attorney in the 4th Judicial Circuit assigned to the domestic violence unit.

Coreylyn Crawford, assistant state attorney in the 4th Judicial Circuit assigned to the domestic violence unit, and Anna Hixon, assistant state attorney in the 4th Judicial Circuit, will lead the prosecution team, according to the press release.

The students will play the roles of the victim, accused perpetrator, prosecution, defense, jury and crime lab teams, Martin said.

Adding to the realistic depiction of the trial, the jury will be randomly selected from the audience, according to the press release. The trial also will include forensic scientist, Marcella …   More

THE FLOG

The unfolding scandal revolving around Allied Veterans' Internet cafes that has ensnared Nelson Cuba of the FOP and caused Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll to resign is staggering. Arguably, it is the worst scandal in Jacksonville's political scene since consolidation. And we can expect more consequences. A few questions:

• Knowing what we know now, how was it that Sheriff John Rutherford allowed these Internet cafes to stay open, year after year, amidst the FDLE investigation?

• How was it that Nelson Cuba was allowed to stay at FOP, as an advocate for peace officers? Was there no worry of lost credibility?

• Is Jennifer Carroll's political career over?

• How will this affect Rick Scott as governor?

• Finally, what does this say about how easy it is to take privatized gambling profits and funnel them to shady ends?

There are those who would like to see more legalized gambling locally. We have poker rooms, lotteries and casinos within a few hours drive. What has been proven, and will be proven, in the sordid case of Nelson Cuba and the Allied Veterans, is that any time serious money flows, serious corruption follows.

The big losers in this case, obviously, are Cuba, Carroll and Rutherford, who will probably not be a factor in any elections going forward.

The big winner — so far, at least — Alvin Brown, whose opposition from Cuba over police pensions burnishes his outsider status. Brown's tenure as mayor hasn't been exactly thrilling to his young supporters, but if he is clear of any taint from this scandal, his reelection is almost assured.

Aren't these interesting times?   More

FLOG

Authorities announced the arrest of four men in connection with the theft and transfer of a .38-caliber revolver used in the February 2012 slaying of Clay County Sheriff’s Detective David White.

During the investigation of White’s murder, investigators tracked the firearm used and found it had been stolen in Jacksonville in May 2011. Investigators from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms allege Robert Apple II, 22, of Orange Park stole the weapon.

Authorities allege it was passed through the hands of Christopher Henderson, 22, and Curtis Dingler, 22, both of Middleburg, and Jack Lemond, 36, of Orange Park. Investigators allege that all the men knew the weapon was stolen.

They charge that Lemond provided the weapon to Ted Tilley, a convicted felon, who used the weapon on White and Detective Matthew Hanlin. White was fatally shot and Hanlin was wounded. Tilley also was shot and killed.

The four men are being held in the Clay County Jail on a charge of dealing in stolen property.   More

THE FLOG

Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan unveiled new logos and a rebranding effort tailored to reflect three distinct and powerful attributes that will describe the team on and off the field _ “proud, bold and committed.”

“To be a success in business or life, you have to stand for something and hold yourself accountable to the principles you believe in,” Khan said.

“From this day, the Jacksonville Jaguars will live a brand mission of being proud, bold and committed in everything we do. Our new logo and campaign theme are the first initiatives of what will be many examples of bringing this philosophy to life,” Khan said in a news release.

The new identity keeps the Jaguars' traditional colors of black, teal and goal while offering a fiercer looking and truer depiction of a Jaguar.

The Jaguars will introduce a shield featuring a bold graphic treatment of the nickname “Jags.”

The new logos will be rolled out throughout the 2013 season as part of the team’s “Stand United” theme.

“Stand United is about the community and theme coming together and a way of life that anyone who loves the Jaguars and Jacksonville can personally understand and appreciate,” Khan said.

  More

 
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