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Friday, May 6, 2016

Judge halts wet/dry ballot

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Two Sharp County residents say not so fast to the wet/ dry issue of Sharp County being on the ballot for the November elections.

Morris Street and Yoda Shaw have both hired attorneys and contested the petitions.

Judge Harold Irwin filed a temporary injunction Sept. 8. Street's attorney, David Ethridge of Mountain Home, and Shaw's attorney, Blair Arnold of Batesville, filed suits on the grounds that the petitions entered are questionable.

The lawsuits claim the petitions have discrepancies and have been altered. Before this issue is resolved a judge has to hear both cases in a formal hearing and make a ruling.

"There were about nine things we found questionable in the petition," Street said. He then referred further questions to his attorney.

"We just felt like there are some procedural discrepancies in the petition's form and the way they were gathered," Johnnie Copeland of Ethridge Law firm said. "For example, someone marked out names on the petition before it was handed in, which is, in fact the clerk's job. The petitions were notarized which makes us question the validity of the notary and their signature and whether changes were made to the petition after it had been notarized."

Copeland said that all of the things they found questionable on the petitions were stated in the suits filed. As of Sept. 9 no hearing date had been set. Copeland said that all involved should be receiving the petition within the next couple of days and have an alloted amount of time to reply to it, after doing so the judge will set a hearing date.

Stu Freigy, expressed his disappointment with the temporary injunction saying the decision should be left up to the voters. Freigy made it clear that this is not over and there is still a chance to get the issue on the ballot. Freigy said as far as he knows Larry Kissee, the Sharp County attorney has made a motion to dismiss the injunction along with R.T. Starkin the attorney for SERT (Save Energy Reap Taxes).

Freigy said over 4,500 people said they would like the opportunity to bring this to a vote by signing the petitions and now two people are trying to take that away from the county. "We are not going to quit without a fight. We worked hard in the last year to make this happen and we have not given up yet," Freigy said.

The Sharp County Clerks office reported Sept. 15 that Judge Phillip Smith accepted the case. A formal hearing will be held Sept. 22 to decide whether the injunction will be lifted or the issue taken off the ballots.

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Mr.Freigy, Please understand that it isn't just TWO people trying to stop you putting this on the ballot,there is a great big number of us behind these two people.I will support the fight against this petition and we will WIN.

-- Posted by bkwt on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 4:42 PM

bkwt, I agree with you. I do not want it and I will fight and win along side you.

As a lifelong resident of Sharp County, I, along with others want to keep Sharp County dry, as it has been for most of our lives. We do not want the newcomers to move in and tell us how to run or hometown and home county. If they did not like the way things are here, maybe they should think about moving back to wherever they came from, and leave us alone.

-- Posted by rebelman on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 6:49 PM

Rebelman and bkwt, I am a little puzzled on why you are challenging the very process that makes this country and state as great as it has become and is today. People organized and followed the proper procedures in obtaining enough signatures to get this issue on the ballot and a few folks, like yourselves, are going to try and fight to make sure this issue is never put on the ballot. Why? Isn't what Mr. Freigy and others did part of the very fabric of our constitution that allows any man or woman the ability challenge any law that they deem questionable. Let's look at this from a different perspective. Hypothetically, if you and others obtained enough signatures to allow prayer in schools and someone challenged it in court and a judge ordered a temporary injunction I am sure we would all hear you and other Christians decry the judge's decision and label him as an extremist judge or say he is trying to legislate from the bench. My point of this is that if you two are so confident and think that this is such an egregious initiative and as bkwt put it, "there is a great big number of us behind these two people," I urge Street and Shaw to drop this challenge and let the voters ultimately decide the fate of the wet/dry issue. Though there may be a "great big number" that support this frivolous challenge, there are nearly 5,000 people that signed the petition that deserve this initiative of it at least being put up for a vote.

-- Posted by plandguy on Wed, Sep 17, 2008, at 8:29 PM

I agree with bkwt. Keep Sharp County dry. If you dont like it dry move back up North or wherever you came from and leave us alone.

-- Posted by rebelman on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 9:34 AM

plandguy, I see your point, but nothing else involving issues in this area are ever done right, so why should this be any different.

-- Posted by rebelman on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 9:36 AM

Soemhow this doesn't surprise me. For 18 years I saw the same little clique of people controlling all things, civil and commercial, in Sharp County. It's apparent nothing has changed.

I'm so glad to be gone from that little hole.

-- Posted by little susie on Thu, Sep 18, 2008, at 2:59 PM

rebelman what issues are you referring to? I want an actual and factual issue that you are referring to. If anything, needing over 30% of the electorate to get the wet/dry issue on the ballot is unconstitutional for that very fact, when to get other issues on the ballot is at most half that number. I believe there is something called equal access and needing over 30% of the electorate for this one issue violates that provision. So if this is what you are referencing to as, "not being done right," I see your point. But the mere fact that the petitioners got over 30% of the electorate means that they beat the unconstitutional odds of getting more signatures than other issues would require.

And just a little information........I graduated highland high school in 2004 and have lived in sharp county most of my life so I am in the spot that I should be.....Right here in Arkansas. And Yes I am a voter in the Sharp County and will be voting to allow alcohol here November 4th. I do not think that the 5000 people that signed the petition are from other states. Though, maybe the south can learn a thing or two from the north.

And just a little information........I graduated highland high school in 2004 and have lived in sharp county most of my life so I am in the spot that I should be.....Right here in Arkansas. And Yes I am a voter in the county and will be voting to allow alcohol in sharp county. I do not think that the 5000 people that signed the petition are from other states. Though maybe the south can learn a thing or two from the north.

-- Posted by plandguy on Fri, Sep 19, 2008, at 12:52 AM

Any issues here are always done improperly. It is called politics.

-- Posted by rebelman on Mon, Sep 22, 2008, at 10:12 AM

rebelman I didn't think you could actually name a single issue and you didn't disappoint. If anything politics have gone your way for many years. Not this time or this election whatever may be on the ballot.

-- Posted by plandguy on Mon, Sep 22, 2008, at 1:46 PM

To all of you against it. Please fill me in on how and where Sharp County could gain the taxes in any other way. These taxes that will better your community. What you may need to get over is that Sharp County is not a retirement community. It is a place to live for all of us.

-- Posted by hogfan on Tue, Sep 23, 2008, at 5:05 PM

First of all Evil has always been one sided and that is "what is best for ME ME ME" not what is best for the whole of a people.


You claim look at the taxes we get!

then you need to go back to all these wet counties and look at the crime rates, deaths related to alchohol they are higher then when dry.

heres another when you or your family is injured in an alchohol related accident then ask yourself was those taxes worth that pain or when you are burying you child, spouse, or other family member ask again was the taxes worth their death?!

Dont talk about the RIGHTS ok because those of us who want it dry have rights too!

And anyone else calling themselves a christian woe to you who signed the petition! woe to you who vote immorally

-- Posted by dry on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 6:25 AM

To Dry,


You have lost your mind. You are hysterical with the thought that, by golly, you might have to walk by the beer aisle at the grocery store. Is that what your life is all about? Are you that brainwashed and insecure about yourself that you think we're all going to HeII if live in a county that sells Miller Lite?

You're sick. You've lost it man. You need help. You're also nuts.

There. I said it. Somebody had to. You and your insane ilk are what gives religion a bad name.

Sometimes, when I sit in a sermon on Sunday, I cannot help but laugh under my breath at some of you and how you are so caught up in things that just don't matter, that I can hardly contain myself.

Let's take a look at Jim Weston, shall we?

Anyone who calls themselves a christian preacher, woe to them who want to take away a person's right to vote in an underhanded, sneaky, and immoral way! There's nothing Christian about that. It's hypocritical. I don't think God likes hypocrits too much, do you?

One more time. YOU'RE NUTS!!

-- Posted by MarkinSharp on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 8:22 AM

To dry,

The true evil in this whole debate is a few people, like youself, trying to disenfranchise people who want to have a glass of wine or a beer with their meal or at some social gathering. Woe to you and woe to that Pastor Weston, for you all are truly hypocrites.

-- Posted by plandguy on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 2:43 PM

First of all its not about religion second If your not a christian then you dont need to worry about it God will deal with you!

I dont have a problem walking by beer in a store at all because I simply look the other way but I wont when a few are trying to change a dry county why dont you move to a wet county if you want it! and you still never answered the questions about your family members being killed by a drunk driver the only thing you have said is NOTHING WORTHY

and i never said one thing about you or anyone else going to hell if they drink DID I? "NO"

And I wouldnt know about the hypocrit part cause i dont go buy beer and drink or get drunk then set in church on sunday as you say you did and call myself a christian

And if you think that its all a joke then WHY do you bother going to church at all?

you two on top have shown nothing but self centered answers without any truth behind it!

Its too bad you have nothing but your worldly rights that man gave you to stand on!

Dont call someone a hypocrit when you are the one doing this that you said below that I quoted you!

""""""Sometimes, when I sit in a sermon on Sunday, I cannot help but laugh under my breath at some of you and how you are so caught up in things that just don't matter, that I can hardly contain myself."""""""

you set in church and think drinking and getting drunk is ok.

Thats fine I hope you lead many to Christ for his sake alone.

and by the way when you are sitting in church laughing under your breathe Im sure thats a sure sign of Conviction that you are ignoring!

Now I never called you any names or anything that is offending and you made statements that is disrepectful to me which I can uphold this site term of service for your posting of being disrespectful of others "MarkinSharp"

-- Posted by dry on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 8:39 PM

To plandman and bkwt: I have read those comments above and noticed several times that more than 5000 registered voters from Sharp County have signed petitions to have a voice concerning making this county wet. If I am right, those numbers represent adequately the number of signatures required to place an initiative before "the people" to vote on. What seems to be the problem. Are you so insecure in your belief(s) that this might go against your religion? (By the way I am a Baptist Christian). I believe, "We The People" prevails here. Does that scare you? Might I suggest you (and yours) organize and go to the polls and mark your X. Those supporting this initiative can do the same. May the majority prevail. Thank God for this great Democracy.

-- Posted by CaptS on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 8:40 PM

You said, "you set in church and think drinking and getting drunk is ok." First of all, nobody said anything about getting drunk in church. That is your holier than thou assumption. However, drinking and getting drunk if so one desires is not illegal and not immoral. If one chooses, so be it.

What bothers you is that drinking alcohol is as legal as standing on a street corner and preaching the word. Again, it's that holier than thou thing you got going there. Keep it in check.

Next, it is most certainly about religion with you and your freaks. When you say it's not about religion....it's about religion. Don't lie. It doesn't become you.

You also said, "you still never answered the questions about your family members being killed by a drunk driver the only thing you have said is NOTHING WORTHY" Look, I could get killed crossing the street by an after-church Sunday driver unbuckling his belt not looking where he's going because of all the fried food he just ate at the buffet trough. What's your point? That's all you got? Scare tactics. I'm yawning.

You know what blows me away? The old line about "if you want to live in a wet county, then move to one." Let's turn that around. Why don't you just not purchase alcohol if you don't want it? It's that simple. Those who do, they will, and they will purchase it in their community. You're the one with the problem. You deal with it. You proved that by saying that when you walk past the beer cooler in a grocery store, you "simply look the other way"!!! That is the funniest line of the day.

The other one you just said is, "a few are trying to change a dry county". Umm, wrong. It's not a few. It's thousands and if it goes to vote, it will certainly be a majority. Let me spell this out for you. A few is not the same thing as a majority. That means you will be in the minority. Deal with it.

Cmon, you guys. You're out of ideas.

What is worse is what you won't answer and it is this: Why are you trying to take away an American right and trying to keep thousands of people voting on an issue? If it was an issue you wanted passed, you would not have tried to get if off the ballot in this low budget, hypocritical, embarrassing way you are trying right now.

That is why your side is full of hypocrisy. Not too christian-like, now are we?

Face it. You're so wrapped up in your own little Little House on the Prairie Utopian view of society, you have failed to see that hundreds of millions of people all across this great land for decades have lived a decent, fulfilled, good life that pleases God, and oh my heavens, they drink some booze every now and then!

Lighten up Sparky. Live a little. Enjoy life. Don't fear it.

-- Posted by MarkinSharp on Wed, Sep 24, 2008, at 9:15 PM

MarkinSharp, I agree with most of your statements. I do agree that they are out of ideas and that their logic is flawed. That does not mean that I am attacking anyones Christianity, but when you infuse religion into a debate like this it makes people, like myself and MarkinSharp, seem like we are against the Christian faith of which we are not. I believe there is a time to preach the beliefs regarding the bible and the Trinity at an appropriate time and this is not one of them. I was recently baptized and still don't see anything wrong with drinking; afterall God/Jesus turned water into what? Wine. As most of the churches there use grape juice as the blood of Christ during communion, that wasn't what he had during his last meal it was wine and bread. If you the people who practice strict Christian beliefs you sure do skip that part about wine.

CaptS - I am not sure what the problem is. Ask star wars star Yoda Shaw and her civilian counterpart Morris Street. They are the ones who filed the petiton to issue an injunction from the measure appearing on the ballot for numerous reason.

Dry - you did criticize people when you said, "woe to you who signed the petition! woe to you who vote immorally." That isn't exactly wishing the best for someone is it?

Let the people VOTE! That is the true test to see where the majority lies. But I encourage everyone to vote to MAKE SHARP WET. People keep on talking about deaths and injuries. I would like to see a nonparitsan report that shows that wet counties have more injuries and deaths due to alcoholism. It may be hard to come by especially when people go but alcohol in Missouri. If anything this increases death due to alcoholism because that have to drive about 45 minutes total to get home. If they sold it at the local store it would take about 10.

Judge do the right thing by law and let the people vote. TRUE DEMOCRACY IN ACTION

-- Posted by plandguy on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 2:54 AM


You still havent said anything worthy you skipped the questions and point and try to shift the blame of your insecurities toward me?!

thats puzzles me?

the only one telling lies here is you

nor me or any one else here is like you are compare your first post to mine and your second post you are the hypocrite not ME or anyone else who is moral compared to you!

there are more worthy persons to talk to my point is sealed and you are done far as im concerned

So when you comment here after me dont worry your talking to yourself after this

cause no

one else cares about what YOU have to say!

-- Posted by dry on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 6:19 AM


If you agree with someone who is attacking christianity that sits in church on sunday


Then yes you are attacking christianity

and if you two are not against it then why dont you read the bible and see what it says about this very issue

if figured you would use that so here you go Jesus turned water to wine as a gesture of obeying his mother because she told him too and of the ten commandments says honor your father and mother but there shows nothing that jesus drinked of the wine?

dont use this for your evil agenda

you who are young in the faith Ask your preacher then

better yet God says my poeple parish for lack of knowledge READ YOUR BIBLE

NO NO NO you mis quoted I said woe to my bothers and sister in christ aka christians who signed the petition get it right and dont twist anothers words to make a lie!

yeah and they say most accidents happen close to home so rather it be 10 min or 45 point is you can prove accident difference go to a wet county and get their records and crime related to it

instead of making claims of your personal opinion

the proof will be their.

and to say woe HELLO if you would read your bible instead of siding with evil you will know that signing that petition would go against God

If you say you just got baptized and dont see anything wrong with it maybe you just got wet

and havent believed in your heart I will pray for you to make the right decisions sense your young in faith.

Here you go instead of me trying to get you to see what you are doing let God show you

Read Proverbs the whole book will show you several areas about how we as christians should conduct our lives you can dispute the bible if you are a christian?

-- Posted by dry on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 6:55 AM

Instead of calling people evil and questioning their beliefs look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself, "Am I doing this for me or for the people?" because you are sounding awefully selfish. As I said earlier, the only evil thing in this whole predicament are folks like yourself trying to impose your belief on others. Get a life. This conversation with you is finished as your logic cannot look beyond you onsided and flawed beliefs. God Bless You and Our Troops

-- Posted by plandguy on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 9:23 AM


First off, please try and learn how to spell correctly. While you're at it, why don't you use your education to try and properly put a sentence together. Your grammar is atrocious. Trying to unpack what you're trying to say is very confusing at best. You weren't home-schooled by fellow thumpers, were you? It's either that, or you spent all your time as a youth immersed in the good book and neglected to study enough at school to get a quality education. Let me let you in on something. It shows.

I've got an idea. Let's leave it at this. Nobody is going to change a brainwashed mind like yours, and you won't change my mind. The fact remains there is nothing illegal or immoral about purchasing alcohol, consuming alcohol, looking at alcohol, working for a company that makes alcohol, or any other mindless idea about alcohol that you and your other alcohol fearing soldiers can come up with.

The beauty of this great country of ours is that we are all free to be different and do our own thing.

So, having said that, why, in a free country such as ours, do you and your ilk think that you have some right to tell me what I can and cannot do regarding a perfectly legal and socially acceptable substance?

For example, if you want to watch a specific television show on your tv, have at it, and guess what? I have no right, nor would I want that right, to tell you that you cannot watch it just because I feel that it is not good programming for my children to view, or whatever the reason. I don't smoke, but I certainly will not tell you can't smoke or that you can't buy a pack of cigarettes at the local gas station. Why? It's a legal activity in this country. That is your business. It is not mine.

Same goes for this issue of alcohol sales, and the same goes for our choice of where and how we practice our religion. I would never dream of trying to stop a synagogue or mosque from coming to Sharp County, because it is their right to freely practice their religion in the area that they live in. That's the wonderful thing about our country, "dry", and something you cannot seem to grasp. Something deep down tells me that you would not be open to that synagogue or mosque coming to Sharp County, isn't that right, you little, intolerant hypocrit?

Say, what's your stance on interracial marriage? Do you ever have a friendly wager on March Madness with a co-worker or family member? Would you and your flock have an African-American family over for potluck supper? Am I offending you? Well, that is the way you hypocrits come across loud and clear to most rational, level headed thinking Americans who truly know what great principles our country was founded upon. It's a sad thing for me to say, but you have warped your vision so bad, you have now more in common with the intolerant Taliban than you do with decent, non-extreme Christians all across this great land. If that's a harsh thing to say, so be it. That is exactly how you come across.

I pity you and your children. Please do not teach them your hatred, but I'm afraid it's probably too late.

Have a nice day.

-- Posted by MarkinSharp on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 10:20 AM

Pity pity pity another attempt of you twisting what is the truth shame on both of you

and now your so mad you are attacking my spelling WHY you get what im saying you just cant live up to it!

and its likely you two are teenagers so thats why this is going no where with you two.

so as my final post i leave you with romans chapter 1 verse 18 to end of chapter this is where you two live at this point.

Did you know that saul killed or had killed 20,000 christians and he was like you then god put scales on his eyes.

oh and saul is paul just incase you dont know that

so maybe you should ask god to remove the scales from your eyes so you can see the error of your ways.


-- Posted by dry on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 5:39 PM

2004 oh my you are a young one

-- Posted by dry on Thu, Sep 25, 2008, at 5:42 PM

The best point in the conversation was plandguy's "why you are challenging the very process that makes this country and state as great as it has become and is today?"

The take it or leave it mentality is not only hateful but wrong.

There's an editorial cartoon on the subject at


-- Posted by norgi on Mon, Oct 13, 2008, at 2:31 PM

Wow--this is a really emotionally charged subject. I agree that the voters have a right to put it on the ballot if they have enough signatures without be roadblocked by unnecessary bureaucracy. It's called freedom of speech.

-- Posted by conventional1 on Tue, Oct 9, 2012, at 4:37 PM

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