Author: J.D. Vivian

Bob J. Nash: Black farmers better off, but numbers falling (Part 2)

  Editor’s note: This is the second half of a story on Bob J. Nash, who was born on a Texarkana, Ark., farm in 1947. Part 1, “Bob J. Nash – From Farm to Bill Clinton’s White House,” ran Monday, Oct. 31. Many things have changed for Bob J. Nash since he was growing up in an Arkansas farm family in the mid-1900s. Some of those things are good. For example, when he was young, African-Americans “couldn’t go to the whites’ hospital, unless we were in a wreck,” he recalled. “Later, we started getting rural health clinics. They’re now an important part of medical care for rural farmers.” Other developments, however, have not been so good, Nash noted. “In the 1920s, black farmers owned 20 million acres of farmland in the South. Today, African-Americans own only 4 million acres of farmland in the South.” And although the end of the Civil War also meant the end of slavery, not everyone of black descent benefited equally, Nash explained. “Some blacks got their ’40 acres and a mule.’ But in many more cases, the half-white kids of plantation owners got the land.” A sad irony Though suddenly free, most former slaves couldn’t afford to buy farmland. And the Department of Agriculture, which President Abraham Lincoln had created in 1862, discriminated against them by denying loans and access to beneficial programs such...

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Bob J. Nash – from farm to Bill Clinton’s White House (Part 1)

Editor’s note: This is the first half of a story on Bob J. Nash, who was born on a Texarkana, Ark., farm in 1947. Part 2 will run Friday, Nov. 4. Bob J. Nash learned about difficult work during his childhood in Arkansas. “In the 1960s, we had to climb trees to ‘whip the limbs’ with long sticks to make the pecans fall off. It was hard, scary work.” That work — as well as other tasks a farmer’s child had back then — provided important impetus for Nash, 69. “We didn’t get paid. We had to go directly...

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Judge: Broward supervisor of elections doesn’t need to take further action on ballots missing Amendment 2 reference

A judge has ruled that the Broward County Supervisor of Elections Office has done enough to remedy the problem of some ballots that omitted reference to Amendment 2, the so-called “Medical Marijuana Amendment.” Carol-Lisa Phillips of the 17th Judicial Circuit Court ruled that Brenda Snipes, Broward’s supervisor of elections, does not need to take further action to notify the public about potentially defective ballots. The first two voters who noticed that the proposed Florida constitutional Amendment 2 was missing from their ballots sued Snipes’ office. An emergency hearing on the issue was held Tuesday, Oct. 25. Norm Kent, the plaintiffs’ attorney, said the court’s Oct. 28 decision “focuses only on those defective ballots we know about … It fails to pro-actively address the unknown number of defective ballots, which the supervisor of elections admitted could still be out there,” according to a press release by the Florida Cannabis Coalition. Kent added that, if the number of defective ballots increases, “we may have to renew legal options.” Raymer Maguire IV, deputy campaign manager for the People United for Medical Marijuana’s “Yes on 2” initiative, echoed those sentiments in an email to Florida Food & Farm: “if it is discovered that the problem is greater than the Supervisor of Elections is stating … we may have to take legal action.” The entire text of Amendment 2 is below. Use of Marijuana...

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