The week in review

Most red flags: The region has its third-in-a-row official Red Flag Warning day April 10 because of high winds and low humidity throughout most of the state. The Virginia Department of Forestry reports 40 fires since April 8, and outdoor burns are strictly frowned upon.

Most discriminating: Charlottesville's Human Rights Task Force sets up a website and phone number, and citizens who believe they may have faced discrimination are urged to "Tell us your story."

Most disturbing disparity: A UVA study finds that in Charlottesville, African American youths are 1.5 times more likely to get probation than their white counterparts, and in Albemarle, they're 5 to 7 times more likely to be arrested and confined. NBC29 has the story.

Worst torching: A fire destroys playground equipment at Jordan Park at the end of Sixth Street SE late April 2, and fire officials are unable to determine the source of the fire, the Daily Progress reports. Damage is estimated at $6,000.

Lamest funding proposal: Albemarle and Charlottesville try to weasel out of funding the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library with a scheme that if a jurisdiction can't afford the library's annual request, others may reduce their own contributions proportionately. Library officials say the pay-what-you-can-afford plan could lead to the dismantling of the library system. Aaron Richardson has the story in the DP.

Most expensive flashlights: Richmond resident John Robert Watkins, 39, pleads guilty April 3 to stealing more than 100 Surefire tactical flashlights from the Virginia Army National Guard. The flashlights, which fit onto rifles, allegedly cost an eye-popping $280 each, Samantha Koon reports for the Progress.

Best average salary: UVA full professors pull in an average $141,600, according to a American Association of University Professors survey.

Biggest disparity: Female full profs make about $20K less than their male counterparts, the Cav Daily reports.

Best wrongful conviction compensation: Governor Bob McDonnell signs a bill April 9 that gives Thomas Haynesworth $1,075,178 for the 27 years he spent in prison for rapes he didn't commit. DNA evidence cleared Haynesworth of the crimes, and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli hired Haynesworth to work in his office because of the difficulties a felon has in finding a job. Haynesworth received a writ of innocence in December.

Best chicken-crossing-the-road story: A group of allegedly free-range chickens have taken up residence in the Greenfield mobile home community and have caused traffic problems on Berkmar Road. The Progress reports that the Albemarle police have caught one rooster, and that no one is owning up to owning the fowls.

Greatest escape: Two 17-year-olds stack two chairs in the rec yard to climb onto a platform, wrap a shirt over the razor wire fence at Blue Ridge Juvenile Detention Center, and bolt for freedom April 7, according to the Progress. One dashes across I-64 and is captured by training firefighters, and both are back in custody in about 45 minutes, and both face felony charges for the escape.

Boldest speeding ticket defense: Six alleged leadfoots cited for going between 50 and 54mph on the U.S. 250 Bypass say their due process rights were violated because Charlottesville can't produce a 45-year-old traffic study that's required to implement a 35mph section on the engineered-for-speed bypass, according to the Progress. Judge Edward Hogshire denies a motion to dismiss the Charlottesville General District Court convictions of Michael I. Tocci, Marcela T. Liguria, John Francis Valosky, Bonnie E. Baird, John E. Curry IV, and Turner Barringer, and the six go to trial August 3.

Boldest plan to deal with online trolls: The Daily Progress dumps anonymous commenting on its website and hooks up with Facebook. Now those who want to remark must have Facebook accounts and their names and photos will appear beside their comments.

Best sign Facebook is taking over the world: See above.


Boldest plan to deal with online trolls = effective way to discourage free speech in a SMALL town.

Don't know why they didn't figure that out earlier. Well, the DP is a little slow to adjust aren't they?

"Don't know why they didn't figure that out earlier. Well, the DP is a little slow to adjust aren't they?"

A real smart move. Check out how many comments have been posted on the DP and The Star Exponent. This should be labeled "How to stop people from reading your newspaper"

The DP is the worst local paper ever. There is absolutely no reason to buy it or read it. There is very little actual journalism going on over there. Everything is taken off the wire. Why buy a local paper with no local news?

Just goes to show what the real intention of Facebook is. In the same way social security numbers, originally designed to tie into your ability to collect social security payments upon retirement, was hijacked to become an actual "identity number" required on all beurocratic applications. All that personal data and photo tagging that the sheep willingly go along with for their FB pages, is now being hijacked as a general use identity marker that more and more companies will tie into.

Google is another. It's not just FB.

DP's move has absolutely KILLED reader comments. No one - and I mean NO ONE - is posting comments any more.

Does anyone think the policy change coming on the heels of Kristin Szakos' whining is coincidence?

The only interesting facet to DP was the reader’s comments. No longer any reason to read it.
They will probably be gone in a year, unless of course they are propped up by government with taxpayer money. Szakos can't get the statues torn down but she succeeded in getting her critics torn down. Liberalism...yea, it's great.

today, 4-11-12 is Thomas Jefferson's birthday. If he knows just what is happening to our former precious freedoms in this country, you may expect to see him rolling down his hill any moment know. We are now living under a totalitarian regime led by those sitting in wash. d.c. and controlled by their masters in the new world order.

Pretty easy to have a fake facebook page, that is if it's worth your while doing it just to comment on a bird cage liner like the DP

There is a growing trend by online/hard copy newspaper groups to use Facebook to publish comments. I am originally from Delaware and the paper there did it a few months ago, claiming it was to keep the comments "civil" and prevent "abusive" comments.

Seems to me that this is a larger trend by the papers that benefits Facebook - or am I just a suspicious conspiracy nut who has seen one too many black helicopters?

@PJ, they can't round us all up until they know who we are...right?
The DP lost it's bloggers all together with that move, nobody signed up.

@ PJ

I don't think you're being a conspiracy nut. If anything, this linkage between Facebook and online commenting is the first baby step towards the bigger goal of a non-anonymous internet. The "non anonymous internet" is an idea that's been floated for years now, and requiring some sort of universal identity card, number, etc. in order to log onto the 'net. This way nothing can ever be posted anonymously, and they can know every website you visit. Then Facebook came along and provided "stuff" with the a ready made way to test something like that out, since millions were using it worldwide. The first time in 'net history where that had ever been the case. Can't let an opportunity like *that* slip past 'em. :/ Next thing you know, a FB account is one of the things being required to log into certain websites. (that, and Google, as already mentioned previously.) It's all about baby steps though. It won't end with FB. (or google.) That's just the beginning, a test.

For next week's "Week In Review":

Joe Szakos -- in progressive Charlottesville and in contrast to the JATP's signature "Tax Day" event of the year, manages to only put LESS THAN FIVE OFAers on the Downtown Mall for his Thank Taxes rally.

How embarrassing. The Tea Party had 14 speakers ALONE, and probably another 75 people attend over the course of their rally.

The last few events the OFA-CH had in Charlottesville had comparably hideous attendance. What's going on?

Congratulations to the JATP who three years later totally show up the progressives on the center stage of a town that votes 80% Democrat. Game, set, and match.