Sign up for newsletter >>
No. 673: "Will you please stop?"
Photo by Jake Allen / Unsplash

No. 673: "Will you please stop?"

📅 Today, Davis delivers the quote of the day, Tyler reviews God & Country, and Megan examines how often MNPD plays the fall guy.

Good afternoon, everyone.

A story from ABC24 News in Memphis delivered a choice quote from Mayor Paul Young, who told reporters that he'd recently met with gang leaders in the city to try and negotiate a weeklong ceasefire.

To agree to the ceasefire, the gangs had some requests of their own. "They said, ‘We don't have programs at our community centers. We don't have things to do. So, we go out, we steal cars, and we ride around with our friends,’" said Mayor Young.

Sounds a bit like a shakedown.




Rob Reiner's documentary on Christian Nationalism completely misses the mark

From Tyler Hummel

When the trailer for God & Country was released late last year, it reignited an ongoing online debate surrounding the topic of “Christian Nationalism” which has been hotly discussed since the events of the January 6 Capital Riot. The Rob Reiner-produced documentary was going to bring numerous prominent liberal evangelical voices to the table to blast Conservative Christians as ignorant fascists, with help from Nashville’s own Russell Moore and David French, to expose the dangers of a growing ideology among Americans. 

This festered into a normal toxic partisan discourse, with leftists writing long threads on the emergent and growing threat of “Christo-Fascism,” and rightists arguing that any form of Christian expression in the public square was being bashed as immoral—with even minor infractions like the Mt. Juliet Pro-Life protestors being treated as domestic terrorists. As Daily Wire contributor Megan Basham argued, the movie’s “deluded” take was simply to define Christian Nationalism as “normal Christians exercising their faith in the public sphere in normal ways.” 

Having now been released in theaters, the film only serves as a benchmark of how badly mainstream media presents the case against the concept. 

God & Country amounts to little more than a paranoid scare presentation; an insipid, annoying, incoherent rambling work of paranoia, conspiratorial thinking, and Trump derangement that marches out a series of Progressive Christians and religious scholars to excoriate their fellow brothers and sisters for allowing their conservative politics to drive their ideas and threaten democracy—arguing that mainstream white evangelicals and pro-life marchers are an insurgent theocratic threat being propped up by right-wing think tanks, televangelists, and greedy Republican capitalists.

Continue reading...


From Megan Podsiedlik

“As I took office, Chief Drake expected that we could staff the department to full budget…by the end of this calendar year,” Mayor O’Connell told those gathered at last Friday’s media roundtable.“We are excited to see a fully staffed department. Evidence clearly shows that this does result in crime reduction.”

O’Connell appears to be backing the blue, a contrast to the defund-the-police ethos that’s permeated Metro over the last three years. But we can’t help but remember the mayor’s support of $2 million in violence interruption grants, the creation of the Mayor's Office of Community Safety (which falls in line with his campaign promise of more community policing), and his history of supporting violence reduction, and other investments that have funded groups like Gideon’s Army. Has something changed? Probably not. O’Connell’s about-face exemplifies the relationship of convenience all of Metro seems to have with MNPD.

You may recall when, over the summer, Chief Drake became the fall guy for Metro Nashville Public Schools. On July 14th, the Tennessean reported that MNPD needed just “20 officers to reach full strength.” The very next day, WSMV covered Drake’s press conference, where he told local media that Metro was still short 170 officers and cited the shortage as the reason behind MNPS’ rejection of state funding for School Resource Officers.

The police chief’s explanation provided a convenient out for Metro School’s Director Adrienne Battle, whose controversial takes on SROs put her at odds with the state (“It criminalizes childhood behavior,” Battle has said of the initiative).

Likewise, in the wake of the Covenant shooting, MNPD aslo served as the bulwark between the state and Metro in the ongoing battle over the manifesto. Following its three-page leak back in November, Governor Lee's spokesperson expressed the same sentiments he had one month after the shooting: “The governor called for documents to be released months ago. He continues to call for clarity that Tennesseans deserve.”

Throughout the year, it was MNPD that took the heat at the local level while lawsuits piled up urging the release of Hale’s writings. In a matter of months, the department brass went from community heroes to public enemies after they became the gatekeepers between the manifesto and the people.

Initially, MNPD stated that the writings couldn’t be released until they finished their investigation. As time went on, MNPD continued to keep the manifesto under lock and key because of ongoing suits. Eventually, Metro Legal released a statement explaining how, in spite of MNPD’s approval, the court-ordered seal on both the redacted and un-redacted versions of Hale’s writings was to blame for preventing their release:

MNPD approved this limited release because they wanted to answer some of the questions being raised about the crime and thought that releasing this redacted version would not harm the ongoing investigation. However, those documents remain under seal. Pursuant to the terms of the Court order, Metro Legal has not shared the documents filed under seal with other attorneys in the case, the Mayor, Council members, or anyone else.

By these examples, MNPS’s role of patsy is quite evident; not only is the department expected to run cover for other Metro entities, it does so while dealing with a system that allows a rolodex of repeat criminal offenders to run roughshod on the city. Perhaps Metro should stop using the police department as a political pawn and just let them do their jobs.


House Democrats oppose legislation to support economically disadvantaged students in their districts (Firefly) During Monday’s debate in the House Government Operations Committee on proposed legislation that would make it easier for charters to access vacant school buildings, Representative Justin Jones mocked the plan by mischaracterizing it as financial support for hedge fund managers.

Developers, seeking to gain from building boom tied to Ford plant, push for weaker wetland rules (Lookout) The bill by Collierville Republican Rep. Kevin Vaughan would limit state oversight over more than 430,000 acres of Tennessee wetlands. That’s more than half of the state’s critical ecosystems, which serve as a bulwark against floods and droughts, replenish aquifers and are prized by hunters, anglers and nature lovers.

Bill would limit PSL increases for 10-year seat holders at new Nissan Stadium (Center Square) Miller’s original bill language would have kept prices flat for PSL holders who have had seat licenses for 10 years. Miller said he is a 20-year PSL holder. But Miller said a flat rate would not be realistic, so instead he wants to push a cap on the percentage increase for 10-year PSL holders.


  • Documents reveal plans for In-N-Out’s second Davidson County location (NBJ)
  • From-Scratch Bakery SusieCakes Opens In Green Hills (Now Next)
  • Images, details released for Wedgewood-Houston project (Post)
  • Cincinnati developer pays $18.75M for North Davidson site (Post)


View our calendar for the week here and our weekly film rundown here.

📅 Visit our On The Radar list to find upcoming events around Nashville.

🎧 On Spotify: Pamphleteer's Picks, a playlist of our favorite bands in town this week.

👨🏻‍🌾 Check out our Nashville farmer's market guide.


🎸 Thomas Luminoso w/ Yucks, Joyner, Meg Elsier @ DRKMTTR, 7p, $10, Info

🪕 The Woodbox Heroes @ Station Inn, 8p, $20, Info

🪕 Bluegrass & 2-4-1's Featuring Sheriff Scott & The Deputies @ Tennessee Brew Works, 6p, Free, Info
+ bluegrass 6-8pm and 2-for-1 craft beer specials all day

🪕 Bluegrass Night @ The American Legion Post 82, 7p, Free, Info

In case you missed it...

📰 Check out the full newsletter archive here.

No. 672: Rents coming down?
🏘️ Is rent decreasing · Latest on the fairgrounds speedway · Mark Green changes his mind · Much more!
No. 671: Just Look at the Numbers
📅 Today, Davis talks about making numbers go up, Miles explains the NCAA vs. UT case, and Megan looks at what’s behind Vision Zero.
No. 670: Off for the Weekend
📅 Today, Davis preps you, Jerod reviews May December, and Megan looks at a bill addressing juvenile crime and the governor’s proposed budget.
No. 669: Justin Jones’ Endless Summer
🌴 Rep. Jones’ long vacation from divinity school, a look at the upcoming school board races, a Nashvillian on Shark Tank, and much more!
No. 668: Density, Density, Density
🗺️ Density Galore, Derrick Henry’s legacy, Nolensville Town Square, and much more!


  • 📰 May December takes aim at Hollywood exploitation and the public’s impulses that enable it. (Read)
  • 🇸🇻 President Nayib Bukele’s historic transformation of El Salvador (Read)
  • ☢️ A small Tennessee town's forgotten history as a nuclear leader (Read)
  • 🤡 Metro Arts launches initiative to 'return land, money, and resources' to 'Indigenous, African, and Asian peoples' (Read)
  • And check out our podcast, YouTube, and article archive for more.