Facebook is taking another step to try to make itself more socially beneficial, saying it will boost news sources that its users rate as trustworthy in surveys.
In a blog post and a Facebook post from CEO Mark Zuckerberg Friday, the company said it is surveying users about their familiarity with and trust in news sources. That data will influence what others see in their news feeds.
It’s the second major tweak to Facebook’s algorithm announced this month. The social-media giant, a major source of news for users, has struggled to deal with an uproar over fake news and Russian-linked posts, meant to influence the 2016 U.S. elections, on its platform. The company has slowly acknowledged its role in that foreign interference.
Facebook announced last week that it would try to have users see fewer posts from publishers, businesses and celebrities, and more from friends and family. Zuckerberg said Friday because of that, news posts will make up 4 percent of the news feed, down from 5 percent today.
Facebook says it will start prioritizing news sources deemed trustworthy in the U.S. and then internationally. It says it has surveyed a “diverse and representative sample” of U.S. users and next week it will begin testing prioritizing the news sources deemed trustworthy. Publishers with lower scores may see a drop in their distribution across Facebook.
“There’s too much sensationalism, misinformation and polarization in the world today. Social media enables people to spread information faster than ever before, and if we don’t specifically tackle these problems, then we end up amplifying them. That’s why it’s important that News Feed promotes high quality news that helps build a sense of common ground,” Zuckerberg wrote.
Of course, there are worries that survey-takers will try to game the system, or that they just won’t be able to differentiate between high-quality and low-quality news sources — an issue made evident by the spread of many fake-news items in the past few years.
Zuckerberg says that some news organizations “are only broadly trusted by their readers or watchers, and others are broadly trusted across society even by those who don’t follow them directly.” But this is complicated.
In the U.S., there has been a growing partisan split in perceptions of the media. Roughly a third of Democrats in early 2017 said they trusted information from national news organizations a lot; only 11 percent of Republicans did, according to Pew Research Center; that gap had grown from early 2016.
Facebook’s move is a positive one, but that it’s not clear how effective this system will be in identifying trustworthy news sources, David Chavern, CEO of the news media trade group News Media Alliance, said in a statement Friday.
Off-highway vehicles take the streets; Approved ordinance states vehicles must have appropriate modifications
On Jan. 11 City Council approved the proposed ordinance allowing off-highway vehicles to operate on paved city streets.
For the vote on the proposed ordinance, the motion passed 7-3.
Councilors voting to approve were Barry Foster, Jeanine Corn Best, Art Sandoval, Tabitha Denny, Caleb Grant, Jason Perry and Natasha Mackey. Councilors voting against were Steve Henderson, Juan Oropesa and Savino Sanchez.
City Councilor Jason Perry made a motion that through public hearing, the ordinance be approved. This particular ordinance was draft B. Councilor Art Sandoval seconded the motion.
City Attorney Aaron Holloman said the city is authorized to allow off-highway vehicles to travel on city streets, which must be implemented through an ordinance according to state statute.
“The language that we have placed our ordinance in requires that the vehicles have the appropriate modification,” Holloman said. “These things include mirrors, taillights. The driver must be licensed and insured — and they are required to follow all traffic laws. This doesn’t allow them to travel on any of the state highways, although it would allow them to cross state highways. If they were to do that, there would have to be a separate procedure where we would have to make an application to the Department of Transportation.”
Holloman said this ordinance was first presented to the Legal Committee on Sept. 28. and on Dec. 14 voted to proceed to the hearing.
In the meeting with Grant, Henderson, and Holloman, Holloman said the language was changed to the ordinance pertaining to recreational or utility off-highway vehicles. He also said the language regarding passengers was updated saying that passengers should be in the seats provided and not in the bed of the vehicle.
The public hearing began and 10 citizens came forward to speak. Mayor Dennis Kintigh facilitated the meeting and reminded the audience, for public hearings, citizens are not required to sign up to speak and can have their voice heard after those who have signed up.
“Basically, the states where it was illegal to drive on the roads had the highest death toll of all of them,” Randy Robertson said. “Those that were legal were down at the bottom.”
Leslie Robertson came to the podium and thanked the councilors who were in approval of the ordinance.
“For those of you that may still be on the fence, I would like to remind you that you should put your personal opinions on the side,” Leslie said. “And consider what your voters want you to do. I would ask those behind me that came here tonight whether they spoke or not, whether they came to support this ordinance.”
Nearly every seat was full in the Basset Auditorium at the Roswell Museum and Art Center. Half of the audience raised their hands in response to Leslie Robertson’s question.
“Please, councilors, be the voice of the people as you were supposed to be,” Leslie continued. “We would appreciate it very much and again I thank you for your service to the community.”
Arguments for the off-road vehicles involved the statements from acknowledging the safety which the ordinance provides motorcycles and other vehicles on the road already, recognition of the city and county use, assets to businesses and property maintenance were presented in comments throughout.
“Frankly, I like the fact that we can’t use them to go on state highways,” Herb Atkinson said. “You can to cross Main Street, cross Second Street, but not go up and down those streets. I think that is a good part of the ordinance. I would certainly vote in favor of that, but I would like to encourage you to vote in favor. These vehicles are certainly street safe, far safer than other vehicles that are legal to use. I ask you to consider passing this ordinance tonight.”
Clay Woody, from Xcel Energy, said he thanks the city for looking to keep the public safe but reminds the city that traffic laws are broken consistently, even with bike safety and citizens riding in the beds of pickups.
Kintigh called the public who had not signed up to speak in opposition and no one came forward. Two more people came up to speak in favor.
Ruth Leyba who has spoken previously before the council shared her thoughts.
“If you’ll notice, a lot of people speaking up are of the older generation people,” Leyba said. “We are for the this because it makes sense to use this vehicle around town rather than a big vehicle that uses a lot more gas, a lot more of everything. As I’ve told you before, it is very safe. I take grandchildren all the time in them. I don’t feel any fraction of a thought that I am going to be harming them in anyway.”
Leyba mentioned that car seats can be safely secured in off-road vehicles and have more safety precautions compared to motorcycles or electric cars.
“Just consider your wards,” Leyba said. “Consider who you’re voting for, and all prospects in it.”
Councilor Steve Henderson said that his thoughts would be in minority after all the support from the citizens, but chose to share his research on the problems with off-road vehicles on hard surface roads.
Henderson said he had done some research on many organizations.
“I would refer you first to our proposed ordinance,” Henderson said. “It says off-highway motor vehicle means a motor vehicle designed by the manufacturer for the operation exclusively off the highway or road. I call that to your attention in our own statute in our own ordinance would say that their vehicles are to be exclusively used off the highway.”
In his research, Henderson said the strongest statements he read were from the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association, which promotes the safety and responsible use of recreation and off-highway vehicles in North America. Henderson referenced the research saying that off-road vehicles are designed, manufactured and sold for off-highway use only and riding on public streets and highways can influence the likelihood of off-road vehicles colliding in dangerous situations with cars or trucks.
Henderson also cited the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association compels that use of highway off-road vehicles be prohibited and law enforcement efforts try to prevent this practice.
“Their low-pressure tires are not designed for paved streets,” Henderson said, citing an ATV Safety Institute’s study. “Also, it says, ‘Although the ATVs are designed exclusively for off-road use, many of the ATV occupant deaths occur on roads despite most states having laws prohibiting many times of on-road use.’”
In regard to fatalities, Henderson said that Consumer Product Safety Commission conducts a yearly census of ATV riders’ deaths specific to the type of road.
In a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Henderson quoted the statistics saying two-thirds of the fatal ATV crashes occur on public and private roads.
“I realize that there is some convenience in being able to use these vehicles,” Henderson said. “But the overwhelming evidence by all the studies that I could find — not one of them supported running these vehicles on public roads, so I think it’s problematic for the city.
“I that if we are looking for a way to injure and kill people, I think this is a way that we can help facilitate that. If we are looking for safety, people that are interested in this, but want to run these vehicles in a safe way, I think we ought to vote against this ordinance. I think that in reality, it presents a liability to the city if we have the facts and we know that these vehicles are dangerous, they are not made for hard surfaces, and we go ahead and approve this, I think we open ourselves to liability.”
Councilor Caleb Grant followed Henderson and he said the city has 20 off-road vehicles.
“If the city doesn’t pass this, we are going to need to clean up the policies because apparently, we are not abiding by the law. So I think that is an issue that is more problematic. Some of the information right now proves the point of referring to ATVs, which has nothing to do with what we are talking about right here on this ordinance. All 10 of us are here to get a vote and move on from this.”
Councilor Juan Oropesa voiced his concerns saying the name of off-road vehicles defines their usage and questioned why the state would leave it to the city governments to pass the ordinance rather than making it statewide.
Councilor Tabitha Denny was present on conference call and shared her comments after Oropesa.
“I realize that I am not there, but I understand there are a lot of you there,” Denny said. “I want to say thank you guys for coming out again to voice what you want. That’s so important, so thank you for that. I understand that we are here to protect our citizens, but we are also here to be their voice and their voice is telling us they want this.”
Denny continued saying that she would like to think that those who want to operate and ride in off-road vehicles would take necessary safety precautions for themselves and others.
Showing strong support, Denny applauded Randy Robertson for his work and research.
Council Foster said the off-road vehicles were not permitted to be on roads with speeds over 40 miles an hour, which made sense for cities to pass it.
Foster also thanked Randy Robertson and called the question to suspend debate and go to the final vote.
Votes for vehicles
For the calling of the question, the motion to vote passed unanimously.
The ordinance passed and the crowd began to clap and cheer, which Kintigh brought to a halt.
“We do not have public displays when we take action,” Kintigh said. “Let me explain this very carefully and I want everyone to understand this. What you are seeing tonight is a very intense discussion of public policy with heartfelt positions on both sides. Good people disagree.
To preserve decorum is critical so that we do not break down into animosity where we cannot accomplish the business of the city. That means formality, decorum, respect for everyone. That is why I insist upon it. Regardless of how we disagree, we may agree emphatically on the next, so at no time will we have public displays.”
City reporter Alison Penn can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ARTESIA — The United States Border Patrol Academy at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center reports an era has ended for them.
Academy Deputy Chief Carlos Ortiz said changes were made regarding cadets learning the Spanish language.
“The graduates that would test out in the Spanish language would go to the field as soon as they were done with training, when it comes to the firearms, driving and those departments, if they tested in Spanish and were proficient, they would go immediately to the field upon graduation,” he said.
Ortiz said those who did not meet the requirements for Spanish language would have to stay back and go through that training for a period of around 40 days. “And then graduate from that Spanish proficiency program and head out to field from there.”
Recently, Class 1083 graduated from the USBP Academy. They were the last class to graduate from the 66-day program.
“We’re going from more of a classroom student-centric (training), to a scenario-based training,” Ortiz said. “With the Spanish program, being incorporated from day four.”
Ortiz said starting on the fourth day of class, cadets begin to see that scenario-based training.
“To include the Spanish language so they’re more proficient with the scenario-based situations they’re going to be seeing in the field.”
All incoming classes will now be part of a 117-day training session.
“In the past, trainees would leave here with three certifications,” Ortiz said. “Now, they’re leaving here with 14 certifications. It takes a little bit of the ownership or the manpower from the sectors, because they leave here with all 14 certifications.”
He said they are better trained and better equiped once they leave Artesia.
Ortiz has been with the USBP for 16 years and he said today’s cadets are going through the things he experienced as a cadet.
“We’re actually going back to what I went through,” he said. “Because the Spanish language was incorporated when I went through.”
He said there were five groups that were separated by the proficiency of the Spanish program.
“If you were proficient, you were in group one and less proficient, group two, and it moves down the ladder,” he said. “Even if you are proficient, you may be in group one or group five. So we’ve used those trainees that are here that are proficient in Spanish to kind of be instructors within the classroom with their students that they’re going to school with.”
He said some of the basic training he went through more than a decade ago is still the same.
“I can tell you that 16 years ago, never once do I remember that we went out as a trainee and tracked a group or attempted to track for a sign that we talk about. Now these trainees, they go out there and instead of sitting and waiting for their turn to do a scenario, they’re going out and tracking in certain locations, so they’re constantly being taught something that we do based on the field work,” Ortiz said.
General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at email@example.com.
The following reports are from the Roswell Police Department and are available at rpdp2c.org. All people arrested or cited are presumed innocent.
Michael R. Chrisman was charged with failure to pay fines at the 1300 block of West McGaffey Street at 1:11 a.m.
Sandra Jo Sedillo was charged with shoplifting at the 500 block of South Wyoming Avenue at 4:59 a.m.
Gabriel Joe Gomez was charged with failure to pay fines and failure to comply at the 600 block of West Tilden Street at 9:41 a.m.
Kenny Dwayne Storie was charged with fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer at the 3700 block of South Atkinson Avenue at 9:58 a.m.
Eron Alan Calvillo was charged with charged with fraud at the 3700 block of South Atkinson Avenue at 9:58 a.m.
Lisa Jodee Friedt was charged with criminal trespass at the 3700 block of South Atkinson Avenue at 9:58 a.m.
Gabriel Garcia Ramirez was charged with failure to pay fines at the 3700 block of South Atkinson Avenue at 9:58 a.m.
Scott Alan Utter was charged with failure to appear at the 100 block of South Garden Avenue at 11:45 a.m.
David A. Gonzales was charged with possession of marijuana and failure to appear at the 1500 block of Pontiac Drive at 2:40 p.m.
Gabriel Joe Gomez was charged with battery upon a peace officer at the 600 block of West Tilden Street at 2:46 p.m.
Danny Ray Bowen was charged with firearms, destructive devices, receipt, transport by felon at the 600 block of East Albuquerque Street at 5 p.m.
Rudy Vallejos was charged with failure to comply at the 2600 block of South Main Street at 5:23 p.m.
Alexis A. Sanchez was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia at the corner of West Alameda Street and South Washington Avenue at 9:56 p.m.
Brayant Torres-Millan was charged with failure to appear at the 200 block of South Main Street at 10:15 p.m.
Anthony R. Ruiz was charged with failure to appear at the 1600 block of South Main Street at 11:15 p.m.
Police were dispatched to a criminal damage call at the UFO McDonalds at 720 N. Main St. at 7:59 a.m. Two windows valued at $1000 were reported damaged by BBs.
Police were dispatched to a criminal damage call at the 400 block of South Union Avenue at 12:58 p.m. A window valued at $100 was reported damaged.
Police were dispatched to a larceny shoplifting call at the Big 5 Sporting Goods at 2801 N. Main St. at 1:53 p.m. Police reported stolen clothing, although a total value was not available.
Police were dispatched to a harassment call at the corner of South Washington Avenue and West Hobbs Street at 2 p.m. A disorderly conduct incident report was made.
Police were dispatched to a larceny call at Taqueria Jalisco at 1622 S. Main St. at 2:14 p.m. A gold iPhone 6S valued at $300 was reported stolen.
Police were dispatched to a lost property call at the 400 block of Hermosa Drive at 4:08 p.m. $118 in cash and a wallet valued at $30 was reported lost by Leanne Bratland.
Police were dispatched to a domestic disturbance call at the Walgreens at 1835 N. Main St. at 6:55 p.m. A non-aggravated battery on household member incident report was made.
A person involved in a two-vehicle accident was sent to a local hospital by ambulance late Thursday afternoon.
Shortly before 4:30 p.m. Thursday, the Roswell police and fire departments were dispatched to the corner of West Second Street and North Lea Avenue in reference to a vehicular accident with injuries.
A black SUV that had sustained heavy damage to the front-right tire sat within an Allsup’s parking lot while a white van on the opposite side of Second Street had encountered extensive damage toward its front.
An individual within one of the vehicles was taken by Emergency Medical Services to Eastern New Mexico Medical Center, though the extent of their injuries has not been released.
A portion of Second Street was blocked off to clear the two involved vehicles and remove cleanup debris along the street.
Further information is pending an accident report from the Roswell Police Department,
which was not available by press time.
Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Gateway Christian boys basketball team shook off a major upset bid by visiting Mescalero as they came back from ten down with two minutes to go to force overtime and eventually prevail 66-62. The Warriors got a big game from Jaydon Stephens throughout the game and some major hoops down the stretch from Riley Arnold off the bench to gain the win and move to 13-4 on the season.
The question of which Mescalero team would show up – the one that lost by two to the Warriors on the opener or the one that got pummeled by 40 to the Warriors in the finals of their own tourney – was answered early in the game as the Chiefs played good physical defense and shot extremely well from the outside to nearly pull off the shocker.
“They really came to play tonight,” stated a relieved coach Dan Smith. “They were making shots right off the bat and they looked really good. I don’t believe they are a 17th-ranked team. They are a solid team and they seem to be getting better. Our boys just continued to fight and never gave up.”
The Warriors held an early 4-1 lead in the opening quarter which was dominated by the defenses. The Chiefs would not hit their first bucket until the 3:20 mark and then they got hot. The visitors (9-7) would finish the quarter on an 11-0 run that would see them hit three long range bombs to go up at the break 12-4.
The second quarter was a physical, fast-paced one that saw each team score 21 points. The Warriors would get as close as five points twice, but could never put together any sustained stops to get the lead.
Stephens would do his best to keep his squad in the game as he for 13 in the quarter and came up with numerous steals on the defensive end. Wes Tipton would score only two buckets, but would come up with 8 first-half blocks to keep the Chiefs honest in the paint.
“(Stephens) has a motor that just won’t quit,” stated Smith of the play of his junior guard. “It just doesn’t turn off. He makes plays and that’s the energy that he brings to the court.”
With Jamal Rocha hitting four treys, the Chiefs led 33-25 at the half.
In the third, Aloysius Comanche would get back to back hoops to stretch their lead to 40-27 over the Warriors. Gateway would close the quarter on a 9-2 run to make it 42-36 heading into the final frame. Stephens and Alonzo Grajeda would get two buckets apiece in the run.
Grajeda would steal the initial in-bounds pass and score to make it 42-38, but then the Warriors would not score again until the 4:20 mark. By that time, the Chiefs would lead 46-38. Freshman George Rocha would lead the Chiefs to a 52-42 lead with a couple of minutes to play with his drives to the baskets and his poise at the free throw line. That’s when the Warriors made one last push – led by Riley Arnold. Arnold would come off the bench and hit three key buckets in the paint to bring the hosts back to within one point. His third bucket came with 29 seconds remaining and trimmed the lead to 53-52. Following a Chief freebie, Stephens would rattle in the tying bucket with 13 seconds to go and the teams were tied 54-all heading to overtime.
“We’ve always lived by the adage that it’s all about us – next man up to do his job,” said Smith. “Riley (Arnold) came in and just did his job and did exactly what we asked him to do. He played great.”
The overtime was an exciting affair, but the Warriors managed to make their free throws and survive to long Chief three-pointers to win 66-62. Two final Grajeda freebies sealed the win for the Warriors.
Coach Smith is hoping the big win will help be a springboard for his team as they wrap up the non-district part of their schedule. “This win will hopefully continue the momentum we have been carrying all season long.”
Stephens would finish with 27 points to lead the Warriors, who host Lake Arthur Friday night.
Girls: Mescalero 63, Gateway 18
The 2nd-ranked Chiefs ran off to an early lead and never looked back in a sound 63-18 win over the Gateway Christian Lady Warriors. Mescalero would get a big game from post-Katelyn Yuzos, their lone senior, in getting the win. Yuzos would finish with 25 points as the Chiefs climbed to 16-1 while the hosts would fall to 4-11.
Coach Holly Tipton saw numerous positives despite the lop-sided score. “The girls worked hard. Megyn (Balok) usually has a better night, but my two seniors – Balok and Emily Turner – are still doing real well. The freshmen are getting better every game.”
The Chiefs used an effective half-court trap in the opening quarter as they would race out to a 21-2 advantage. The Warriors could only manage a lone bucket from Hannah Martin – one of three starting freshmen for Gateway.
The lead would climb to 35-7 at the half as the Chiefs used their speed and experience to stretch the lead. Taylor Higgins would hit two buckets – one from long range – in the quarter for the Warriors.
The Chiefs would open the third quarter on a 14-0 run to enact a running clock as the lead would balloon to 49-7. Senior Emily Turner would receive from fellow senior Megyn Balok to stop the run with 1:03 to go. Balok would hit two late buckets to make it 51-13 heading into the final quarter. “Emily had 8 blocks so she did really well against that post,” said Tipton. “She is really starting to come to play. It hurts when she is not with us. She’s doing good.
A quick final frame saw Balok and Higgins get baskets as the Chiefs cruised to the 63-18 win.
Arcilia Morales, 86, passed away on January 17, 2018, at her home in Hagerman, New Mexico. Viewing will be held Saturday, January 20, 2018, 11:00 AM, followed by a Rosary at 12:00 noon at St Catherine’s Catholic Church in Hagerman. Mass will follow at 1:00 PM. Celebrate Arcilia’s life by visiting www.andersonbethany.com to offer a memory or expression of sympathy for her family.
Arcilia was born in San Patricio, New Mexico on May 14, 1931, to Ben Salas and Ageda Gonzales Salas. She was a dedicated member of St Catherine’s Church. She enjoyed being a housewife and mother, and then later a grandmother and great-grandmother. She will be dearly missed by her family and friends.
Those who preceded Arcilia in death were her husband, Alvaro Morales; daughter, Jane S Morales; son, Mike Morales; brothers: Julio Salas, Florencio Salas, Rogelio Salas; sisters: Lucinda Salas, parents; Ben Salas and Ageda Gonzales Salas.
Remaining to cherish Arcilia’s memory are sons: Mario Morales, Gilbert (Beto) Morales; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren along with numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial service for Phillip Randolph Patton, (P. R.) or (Randy) age 66, of Roswell, NM will be held at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 23, 2018, at St. Andrews Episcopal Church, with Rev. Dale Plummer officiating.
Randy, (P. R.) passed away Tuesday, December 26, 2017 in Castle Rock, Colorado.
He was born November 1, 1951, in Roswell, NM to William M. (Bill) Patton, and Doriene S. (Roberts) Patton.
Randy graduated from Roswell High School and went on to earn a Bachelors Degree in Civil Engineering from New Mexico State University, in 1974. He married Teresa Ann Foust on December 28, 1974 at St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Roswell, NM. He worked for the New Mexico State Engineer in the technical division. Randy became a licensed Structural Engineer and a Licensed Land Surveyor, and in 1980 opened his own firm “P. R. Patton & Associates” which has operated for 37 years. He was a past member of the East Grand Plains Volunteer fire department, a member of the Roswell Geologic Society, and Past President of Pecos Valley Horsemen. While his children were young he was active as a leader in 4-H and later FFA. He was active in his church and a graduate of EFM.
No interment will be held at this time as Randy’s love for knowledge led him to request his body be sent to the University of Colorado, School of Medicine. He leaves behind his wife Teresa, a Daughter, Victoria Sloan MD, of Castle Rock Colorado, and his Son Andrew Patton of Roswell, NM. He was a loving father. Randy is preceded in death by his Father Bill, Mother Doriene. Please make donations to St. Andrews, Casa Esperanza in Albuquerque, or a charity of your choice.
Services are pending at LaGrone Funeral Chapel for Karen Hay, age 63, who passed away Wednesday, January 17, 2018 in Las Cruces, NM.
A further announcement will be made once arrangements have been finalized.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at www.lagronefuneralchapels.com.
Healthsense today at Senior Circle
Warren Yehl, interim CEO at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center, will be at Heatlhsense today to give an overview of the hospital, from last year to projections for this year.
Healthsense is at 11:30 a.m. at Senior Circle, 2801 N. Main St., next door to Family Dollar. The talk is open to the public and refreshments will be served. Senior Circle is a resource of ENMMC. For more information, call 623-2311.
Secret Circus concert
Secret Circus and a special surprise guest perform at 7 p.m. at Milton’s brewing, 108 E. Mermod St. For more information, visit Secret Circus’ Facebook or event page.
Jan. 19 and Jan. 26
Pre-school story time at the zoo
Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park are holding their pre-school story time on both days starting at 9:30 a.m. The story on Jan. 19 is “Maggie’s Birthday and on Jan. 26 it’s “Footprints in the Snow.” A short walk in the zoo, weather permitting, and an activity will follow the story. There is no fee for the Visitor Center program; however, regular entrance fees apply to enter the zoo. For more information, call 575-887-5516.
Championship Bull Riding
The 2018 Hobbs Tuff Hedeman Championship Bull Riding takes place at the Lea County Event Center, 5101 N. Lovington Hwy. Tickets are on sale now. For more information, visit selectaseatlubbock.com or call 575-391-2900.
Secret Circus & friends concert
Secret Circus & friends will perform at Sacred Grounds Coffee and Tea House, 2704 Sudderth Drive, at 6 p.m.
STOMP performs at the Spencer Theater, 108 Spencer Road, at 7 p.m. Garnering armfuls of awards in all aspects of theatrics, STOMP is explosive, witty and utterly unique. Household items and industrial objects find new life as musical instruments in this exhilarating combination of percussion, movement and visual comedy. It is a journey through sound, the pulse of humanity. For more information, visit spencertheater.com.
Jan. 19 – May 13
In the Dark
In the Dark is the new, interactive exhibit at the Western Heritage Museum, 1 Thunderbird Circle. Visitors will be surrounded by the sights, sounds, smells and sensation of ecosystems at night. Sometimes scary, but always intriguing, darkness beckons exploration and represents the unknown. It’s also a natural evolutionary selective pressure that has caused plants and animals to adapt to ecosystems like caves, the deep sea, the forest at night and underneath the ground. For more information, visit nmjc.edu or call 575-492-2678.
Wait for What?! concert
Wait for What?! is performing at St. Clair Winery, 1325 De Baca Road SE, at 5 p.m. Wait for What?! is kicking off 2018 Friday music nights at St. Clair. The audience can enjoy classic rock, country, and a crazy variety of music, mixed in with originals songs. For more information, visit waitforwhat.com.
New Mexico Men’s & Lady State Championship Chili Cook-off
The 2018 New Mexico Men’s & Lady State Championship Chili Cook-off takes place at the Hobbs Loyal Order of the Moose Lodge, 2920 W. Maryland Blvd. There is plenty of space for dry camping; the RV hook-ups are on a first come basis. If the weather is bad, the cooks can move inside the lodge. Friday night kicks off with Soup Cook-off and everyone can join. No entry fee. Friday night is the Chili Cook-off with turn-in at 7 p.m. Saturday night turn in is 2 p.m. and there will be a free Saturday night meal for all registered cooks and their spouses. On Sunday turn in is noon. The Chili Appreciation Society International rules apply. For more information, call Paul Mulkey at 575-390-6184 or Jennifer Sherfield at 575-441-0535 or visit the CASI event page on Facebook.
Feb. 9 to 10
Mardi Gras in the Clouds
The annual Mardi Gras in the Clouds has this year the theme “Love and Magic on The Mountain.” The events include Cajun cooking contest, children’s parade and mask contest, including baby contest and dance on Friday. On Saturday, there will be a scavenger hunt, cake walk, battle of the bands and the official parade. For more information, visit coolcloudcroft.com/mardigras/.
“Singin’ The Blues”
Brenda Hollingsworth-Marly is performing in “Singin’ The Blues” as Billie Holiday at the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center, 310 W. Main St., at 7 p.m. The late great Billie Holiday, also known as Lady Day, was born to sing the blues in a jazzy sultry tones from coast to coast. Hollingsworth-Marly brings Holiday back to life and to stage with her famous hits. For more information, visit artesiaartscouncil.com.
ABBA MANIA is not only for life long, diehard ABBA fans but the new generation of fans, who never had the opportunity to see the band ABBA live. Hits include “Dancing Queen,” “Waterloo,” “Mamma Mia,” “The Winner Takes it All,” “Super Trouper,” “Fernando” and “Take A Chance On Me.” Songs that continue to fill dance floors worldwide. The show opens at 7 p.m. at the Flickinger Center for Performing Arts, 1110 New York Ave. For more information, visit flickingercenter.com or abbamania.com/abba-mania-the-show.
Third annual feBREWary fest
The third annual wine and beer festival, benefits the Hobbs Chamber of Commerce and takes place from 1 to 6 p.m. at the Lea County Event Center & Fairgrounds, 5101 N. Lovington Hwy. Tickets go on sale on Jan. 1. For more information, call 575-397-3202.
Ongoing until Jan. 28
Broadway Bound kids
Registration is open for Way Way Off-Broadway’s Broadway Bound kids youth performing group for the spring 2018 semester. The BBK final concert is scheduled for April 21. For more information, visit waywayoffbroadway.com.
Kids in Arts ProgramS spring class
Spring registration is now open for the Kids in Arts ProgramS theater class. The class fills up fast and only 30 students are accepted. Students will be working on the production of the “Mystery Club, Cases 1 & 2.” Performances will be held April 20 and 21. For more information, visit roswellkaps.org.
Esham at The Unity Center
The Detroit artist Eshem specializes in acid rap, horrorcore, alternative hip-hop, electronic and metal. Eshem is going to perform at The Unity Center, 108 E. Bland St., at 6 p.m. For more information, visit bandsintown.com.
Ben Danaher concert
Red River singer and song writer Ben Danaher performs for the first time at Pecos Flavors Winery + Bistro, 412 W. Second St., at 7 p.m. For more information, visit pecosflavorswinery.com.
New Mexico School for the Arts
The public is invited to the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, 409 E. College Blvd., at 2 p.m. for a free performance of the students from the New Mexico School for the Arts. The students present their works in music, theater, dance and visual art. For more information, call 575-623-5600.
Live and Let Die
The Roswell Symphony Orchestra brings the music of Paul McCartney to stage in A Symphonic Tribute to Paul McCartney, at 7:30 p.m. at the Pearson Auditorium at the New Mexico Military Institute. For more information, visit roswellsymphony.org or call 575-623-5882 or 800-300-9822.
Mardi Gras dinner and dance
All Saints Catholic School Mardi Gras Dinner and Dance fundraiser event will take place at 6:30 p.m. at the St. Peter Church gym on East Deming Street. Activities include dancing, king cakes, costume contest, crowning of a king and queen, cash bar and a silent auction. Tickets are available at All Saints Catholic School, 2700 N. Kentucky Ave. or at the St. Peter Church office, 111 E. Deming St. For more information, visit allsaintsmardigras.com or call the school office at 575-627-5744.
Blue is blue, apple is apple and theft is theft.
Using the same letters and stringing them together in the same order will give us the same word with the same meaning. I did not think that we would have to spell those principles out — nor that Ms. (Cynthia) Hansen would feel compelled to provide a 400-word essay to the effect. So, if we can consider that particular aspect of the English language sorted out, maybe we can take at least one step back toward the issue at hand.
Nobody has tried to redefine the word theft. The power to define theft rests with the owner of the property potentially subject to expropriation. In the case at hand, NMMI or in the case of my peach trees, me. In my case, my neighbors are not stealing my peaches as I let them pick them. In the case of NMMI, people are stealing the pecans as NMMI has historically rather let them rot than have the “riff-raff” scouring the edges of their property.
We can debate the reasons behind it, but today, Friday the 12th, NMMI cadets were out picking. Is this just a timely coincidence considering the current debate, or is it a case of shaming? We will never know. Any debate will just further muddy the waters around the original question, for which the pecan enforcement is just an example.
I will, however, let the lack of a moral framework used and taught by NMMI rest until the next obvious symptom exhibits, and will consider this “thread” closed from my side.
Reporter Alison Penn did a good job reporting on the City Council discussion of a resolution supporting state adoption of egregiously named right-to-work legislation.
Whoever wrote the headline “Routine resolution bitterly divides City Council” neither read the article nor understands the issue. So-called right-to-work provisions are anything but routine. They are highly controversial and usually fiercely debated.
If this resolution did not go through the usual committee process, then the vote should be negated. City Council, like all governing bodies, should adhere to proper procedure, ensuring that all parties are heard at appropriate times and in appropriate settings. It seems that this matter was not handled properly.
Handled properly or not, though, right to work is a highly charged, divisive issue and deserves more discussion than a routine resolution. Only Republicans view this issue as routine, and though City Council is technically non-partisan, its Republican underpinnings often come through loud and clear. The newspaper’s headline is pure Republican-speak as well.
I agree with Mr. Oropesa that right-to-work laws are harmful to workers. Study after study has shown that unionized workers earn more than non-unionized workers in the same geographical area and field of work and have more and better benefits through employment. They have protection from unfair labor practices that some employers use to subjugate and intimidate their employees. I cannot address the racial undertones of the issue, though I do not doubt that they are there. I just know that unions help all workers, no matter the race or gender.
In some places, these laws are called “right-to-work-for-less” laws, and for good reason. These laws help to prevent unionization, making it difficult for a union to collect enough money in the form of dues in order to properly support the workers. These laws also undermine the rule of the majority that our democracy (in fact all democracies) is founded on. When the majority votes for unionization, all workers should pay proper dues so that all may be represented. Contracts will, after all, benefit all workers.
But back to the headline. This headline reflects a Republican view of the issue that most certainly is how the mayor and most see it, but it does not reflect the reported controversy in the article. It is definitely partisan, and inappropriate for a newspaper that should be striving for impartial accuracy. Please keep our news — and your headlines — non-partisan and accurate.
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Tom Brady hasn’t missed many starts during his 18-year NFL career, and no one sounds too worried that he’ll be sidelined for Sunday’s AFC championship game.
Nonetheless, after Brady sat out the Patriots’ practice on Thursday — and did not speak to reporters as scheduled — there was plenty of speculation about the 40-year-old quarterback’s health.
Brady sat out with a right-hand injury after being limited by the same issue a day earlier as New England prepares for its matchup with Jacksonville.
Brady wore a glove on the injured hand during the stretching portion of practice that was open to reporters. He usually wears a glove only on his non-throwing hand. He was listed as a non-participant on the injury report, and his news conference was postponed until Friday.
With scant official information about the nature of Brady’s injury, it fell to backup quarterback Brian Hoyer to address the situation. More than 50 reporters swarmed his locker as he walked through the locker room, and after stepping into the training room, Hoyer returned to find the assembled group.
“You guys waiting for Phil?” Hoyer asked wryly, referring to receiver Phillip Dorsett’s adjacent locker.
For the next six minutes he was asked a half-dozen questions about Brady, a quarterback he has now backed up twice. Hoyer said he didn’t see Brady get hurt and wouldn’t elaborate on how much he’s been able to do in practice the last two days.
“I’m always preparing to play, because the truth of reality is you never know when your name’s gonna be called,” he said.
Jaguars coach Doug Marrone expects his defense to line up against Brady, not Hoyer, on Sunday.
“I’m sure he can throw left-handed if he has a problem with his right hand, you know, and throw it just as well,” Marrone said Thursday.
Hoyer was Brady’s backup for three seasons from 2009 through 2011. After leaving in 2012, he started for at least five-game stretches during stops in Cleveland, Houston, Chicago and San Francisco.
Hoyer was cut by the 49ers on Oct. 31 after they traded a second-round pick to New England for Jimmy Garoppolo. He signed as Brady’s backup the following day.
“I prepare every week like I’m gonna play,” Hoyer said. “Whether I do or I don’t, that’s not really up to me.”
Having coached in Brady’s division in Buffalo, Marrone is familiar with Brady’s ability to play through pain.
Brady appeared on the Patriots’ weekly injury report several times during the latter half of this season with injuries to both his Achilles tendon and his left shoulder.
He has never missed a playoff start during his 18-year career. He hasn’t missed any start because of an injury since he sat out the final 15 games of the 2008 season after tearing ligaments in his left knee during New England’s season opener.
Brady missed the first four games of 2016 while serving his “Deflategate” suspension. He also popped up on the injury report late that season, but he didn’t miss a game and capped the season with his MVP performance in the Patriots’ comeback win over Atlanta in the Super Bowl.
Devin McCourty chuckled when he was asked about the frenzy created this week by Brady’s injury.
“When you’re a good-looking guy, a good quarterback, people want to know about you. I understand,” McCourty said. “My people want to know about him, too. I get text messages and phone calls. When I first got here it was, ‘Did you meet Tom? Are you and Tom friends?’ I’m happy now. Eight years in, I consider us friends. So I’m kind of a big deal back home.”
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield says one of his top priorities as he prepares for the NFL draft is to allay concerns about his character.
“People will have their guesses and their opinions on my character, but anyone that’s actually sat down and talked to me knows that I don’t have any character issues, any off-the-field issues,” Mayfield said Thursday night during a conference call after being selected the 2017 Manning Award winner.
Mayfield, who passed for 4,627 yards and 43 touchdowns, is the first Sooner and first former walk-on to win the Manning Award, which is given to the nation’s top college quarterback. It is the only award to consider postseason performances in voting by a national media panel as well as Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning.
Mayfield also won the Heisman Trophy this season. And after racking up prestigious accolades for his performances during live snaps, Mayfield said he’s eager to meet with NFL coaches and front-office personnel and explain why some of his antics after the whistle and his behavior off the field won’t be an issue going forward.
Last offseason, he was arrested on public intoxication charges, for which he reached a plea deal. His sportsmanship also was scrutinized after he planted a flag on the field after a victory at Ohio State, and after he made an obscene gesture toward opponents during a lopsided victory at Kansas.
“Mistakes happen. I feel like I’ve owned up to those mistakes and I’ve grown and learned from them,” Mayfield said. “So just moving forward, getting in front of (NFL coaches and front office personnel), I think that’s going to be the first thing I address. And then after that, it’s going to be about playing ball, competitiveness, about how much I care to win and how much I will do to achieve that.”
One person who does not need to be convinced is Archie Manning, who said he knows Mayfield personally as a participant in the Manning Passing Academy.
“We’re all crazy about Baker and thoroughly enjoyed his career,” Manning said. “He plays the game with passion. … That’s why he’s been successful. I think that’s why he’ll continue to be successful.”
Mayfield led the Sooners to a Big 12 championship, as well as a semifinal berth in the College Football Playoff. But he said the semifinal loss to Georgia in the Rose Bowl still hurts and haunts him.
“Still haven’t really gotten over it,” he said. “Still having nightmares about some of the reads and some of the throws I made.”
Now, Mayfield asserts he’ll prepare for the NFL draft the same way he prepared to prove himself as a college — his numerous football honors notwithstanding.
“This type of training, it’s the type of stuff that I thrive on,” Mayfield said. “I know how to work. Not everything was given to me. I had to play the cards I was dealt, get better mentally, physically, push myself to limits that I didn’t think I was capable of, so this is another one of those scenarios.”
Mayfield, now working out in California, said he was in the gym recently when he noticed on TV that several draft projections did not list him among the top four quarterback prospects.
“So it’s the same thing over again, which is why I’m going to enjoy this,” Mayfield said. “Winning speaks for itself — competitive nature — those go a lot farther than any height and weight, any big arms can take you.”
Other finalists for this year’s Manning Award were: Ohio State’s J.T. Barrett, Clemson’s Kelly Bryant, Southern California’s Sam Darnold, Alabama’s Jalen Hurts, Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, Penn State’s Trace McSorley, UCF’s McKenzie Milton, Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph, Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham and Arizona’s Khalil Tate.