After hearing concerns from civil libertarians who said Missoula City Council risked treading on constitutional protections, alderman Dave Strohmaier is toning down his proposed DUI ordinance.
“Hopefully this will address some of the concerns people have,” Strohmaier says.
Rhetoric is heating up in the weeks leading up to an April 12 Missoula City Council discussion whether to pass an ordinance that would make it illegal to deny services, employment or housing to people based on sexual orientation or gender expression.
The tension was highlighted Sunday as representatives from Missoula’s conservative CrossPoint Community Church, led by senior pastor and outspoken ordinance naysayer Dr. Bruce Speer, crashed a meeting of religious community members gathered to discuss their support of the pending ordinance.
Pastor Peter Shober from the University Congregational Church (UCC), which hosted the gathering, says UCC made it clear when issuing invitations that the meeting was solely for supporters of the anti-discrimination ordinance.
And so it was unsettling when Speer showed up with four other men. “Was it an act of intimidation, I don’t know,” Shober says.
Find Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology online, every Tuesday, two days before it hits the Indy's printed pages.
ARIES (March 21-April 19): I’m worried about your ability to sneak and fake and dissemble. These skills seem to have atrophied in you. To quote Homer Simpson, “You couldn’t fool your own mother on the foolingest day of your life with an electrified fooling machine!” Please, Aries, jump back into the game-playing, BS-dispensing routine the rest of us are caught up in. APRIL FOOL! Everything I just said was a filthy lie. In fact, I admire the candor and straightforwardness you’ve been cultivating. My only critique is that maybe you could take some of the edge off it. Try telling the raw truth with more relaxed grace.
It has been a giving week for odd news occurrences, including black-market circumcisions and construction-grade silicon butt implants.
Curses, Foiled Again
When Jonathon Michael Smith, 22, tried to buy a $28,000 pickup truck with a check, the manager of the Ford dealership in Fairbanks, Alaska, became suspicious. He checked with another car dealer and found Smith had used a forged check to buy a vehicle there. In fact, he’d used forged checks to buy two other trucks, all this year. According to court documents, Smith forged all four checks using copies he downloaded from an online blog. All the checks had blurry printing, inconsistent fonts and lacked routing and account numbers. Police Officer Jim O’Malley, who responded to the Ford dealership, already knew Smith and asked him what he was doing. He said Smith replied that he was “being stupid.”
Folgers coffee may not be the top choice of Missoula hardcore coffee addicts, but almost everyone of a certain age can recall the brand's catchy television jingle. "The best part of waking up..." Ah, the good old days. But every product's jingle needs a facelift and, for Folgers, it's time.
In fact, four local residents are one group of 10 semi-finalists revamping the company's jingle and winning a trip to New York City and a $25,000 prize. Ethan Thompson (Whitefish), Jenny Snipstead (Kalispell) and two UM students Dan Coburn and Landon Lee, crafted this sunny little number in the hopes of climbing their way to the top of the contest. Check it out. And if you love it, or just want to help out with their college tuition, you can do the songsters a big favor by voting for them between March 28 and April 21 at www.bestpartofwakinup.com.
UPDATE: Frank Dryman went before an Arizona court this morning to determine whether he'll be extradited to Montana to serve out the remainder of a life sentence. The Montana Department of Corrections reported today that Dryman did not contest his extradition, meaning he'll be transported back to the Montana State Prison sometime in the next two weeks.
After 38 years on the run, the man behind a murder on the Hi-Line 60 years ago has been apprehended. A private investigator tracked Frank Dryman to the Cactus Rose Wedding Chapel in Arizona City, Ariz., which Dryman was operating under the alias Victor Houston. Montana corrections officials are now working to extradite the man.
According to a release from the Montana Department of Corrections, Montana resident Clarence Pellet picked up a 19-year-old hitchhiker by the name of Frank Dryman outside Shelby in April 1951. Dryman shot Pellet to death with a gun he'd purchased on his way from California, stole Pellet's vehicle and drove to Canada, where he was later arrested and transferred into state custody. Dryman served 14 years—1955 to 1969—of a life sentence in the Montana State Prison for Pellet's murder, and was paroled in 1969. But Dryman disappeared in March 1972. He's been listed as an absconder by the state ever since.
Red Hot Patriot: The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins had its world premiere last night at the Philadelphia Theatre Company, and it starred Kathleen Turner in the lead role. The play apparently sidesteps some of more obvious quotes of the often quoted political columnist (one of the most famous included endowing George W. Bush with the nickname "Shrub"), and explores the lesser-known aspects of her vibrant life.
Turner's a pretty good pick for the role (when has she not played her gin-voiced characters with fiery bite?), and they even look alike.
Ivins was born in 1967 and died in 2007. Missoula readers got a taste for her searing wit and no-nonsense political commentary for several years during which the Independent published her syndicated column. More recently, we reviewed her biography written by Bill Minutaglio and W. Michael Smith called Molly Ivins: A Rebel Life.
Guess who's behind the soundtrack of this recent Honda commercial?
Local folk rocker David Boone just recently scored this Japanese advertisement for 2010 Honda motorcycles, set to come out in edited form sometime in the near future. In fact, he's been working with Hollywood businessman David Levy on several music projects, including an indie film coming out in May. More on that soon...
In the meantime, you can hear Boone at this weekend's big Rock the Mic for Mike event, a benefit for Mike Crow.
UM dance students reaped high honors last weekend when they were chosen to represent the Northwest at a national festival in Washington, D.C. The American College Dance Festival Association (ACDFA) selected "Prey," a piece choreographed by renowned choreographer Bebe Miller and performed by 11 UM dancers, from more than 50 other pieces at a recent regional conference in Ogden, Utah.
The D.C. festival, which takes place in May, includes a performance of "Prey" and other regional winners at the Kennedy Center.
We wrote about "Prey" and profiled Miller in a recent article. She explained the piece is inspired by predator-prey imagery but it's really about common struggles and the power of submitting to whatever a situation might call for.
Miller, 60, also spoke about what it means to teach dance to the next generation of artists.
"We are a physical tradition," she said. "We hand down ideas. The culture in which artists are emerging shifts. And the reason for making work shifts. We engage and maneuver in all kinds of forms. What remains is what young artists are here to figure out."
Love it or hate it, we agree with what Vice President Joe Biden said after introducing President Obama at this morning's historic health care reform bill signing. This is a big deal. (You can watch the video below, but Biden thinks it's a really big deal.)
Both Montana senators released statements supporting the legislation. Max Baucus, a key component of the debate for years, said, "After nearly a century of attempts and close to two years of effort, we have finally passed meaningful health care reform." Then he went all speech-y: "Tonight, a parent in Glasgow can sleep well knowing insurance companies won’t be able to deny their child coverage, or rip it away when they need it most. Tonight, a senior in Sidney can sleep well knowing that soon they won’t have to choose between food or prescription drugs. Tonight, a small business owner in Hamilton can sleep well knowing that providing well deserved benefits for hard-working employees won’t decimate their bottom line. It is a new day in America. A day that Presidents from Roosevelt to Clinton had worked to accomplish. A day that families saddled with medical debt have dreamed would happen. Working together we have been able to achieve health care reform to help put our fiscal house in order and provide a cornerstone for generations to build on.”
Tester kept it simple. "Montana families, small businesses and most importantly, our kids and grandkids, can’t afford Congress doing nothing," he said. "Doing nothing to fix health insurance and control costs has broken too many families.”
Rep. Denny Rehberg, who voted against the measure with fellow Republicans, felt a little differently about today's historic bill signing. "The House of Representatives today failed to heed the public outcry against this bill," he said. "I support true reform that would lower the cost of health care. Merely shifting the cost from the patient to the taxpayer isn't a solution; they're the same person."
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