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Volume 86 • Issue 42
Rep. Tyrone Brooks Spearheads Passage of King Statue Legislation
By Terry Shropshire If anyone possessed the stature and qualifications to speak on, and act on behalf of, the venerated nonviolent revolutionary Martin Luther King Jr., it would be someone like State Rep. Tyrone Brooks. Brooks (D-Atlanta) was first inspired to activism as an adolescent growing up in middle Georgia. So active was young Brooks that he was recruited to join Martin Luther King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference organization, just months before the iconic Baptist minister was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn. Brooks also holds an annual protest march on the anniversary of King’s death on April 4 at the Ford Moore’s Bridge near Macon, Ga., in an effort to bring to justice the perpetrators of the bloodbath against innocent black citizens there in the late 1960s, one of the last items on Dr. King’s agenda before he was murdered at the Lorraine Hotel. So it was apropos that Brooks would sponsor and successfully usher a bill through the Georgia state legislature to have a statue erected at the capital in Atlanta to permanently pay homage to the late, legendary civil rights leader. Brooks’ reasoning behind championing the construction of
an edifice in King’s honor is very simple, yet extremely powerful. “He is the greatest man I have ever known,” Brooks said resolutely, pausing to let the words marinate in the air. “People always look at me, like, ‘oh.’ But Martin Luther King is the greatest man to walk on this planet since Jesus Christ. I don’t know of anybody greater than Martin King except Christ. And I really believe that. I really believe that he was sent by God to do a task for 39 years and then God moved him out.” Gov. Nathan Deal signs the bill to authorize the construction of a statue honoring MLK at the state capitol. Martin Luther King III (2nd from left) and daughter Bernice King (in blue dress top) look on. The bill to erect a statue to honor Dr. King passed the House 173-3, Brooks said, and quickly moved through the state senate. Gov. Nathan Deal on Tuesday, May 27 signed into law House Bill 1080, legislation that authorizes the placement of a statue honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., at the state Capitol. The privately funded project will be led by the Georgia Capitol Arts Standards Commission, which will undertake the statue’s design and fund-raising efforts. “Every year in January we honor Dr. King, who inspired our nation with his dream of hope, justice and human rights,” said
Deal. “This legislation goes beyond our words of praise by placing a physical monument at the state Capitol to commemorate this great Georgian’s legacy for many years to come. Not many states can boast a native son who merited a national holiday, but we Georgians can. Dr. King is a point of pride for our state, and he deserves to hold a place of honor on our Capitol grounds. I commend the General Assembly for its partnership in finding the proper tribute.” King is already the only non-president to have his likeness erected on the Washington Mall, adjacent the Abraham Lincoln Memorial, as well as a statue sitting prominently at his alma mater, Morehouse College. “[Dr. King] is known around the world and he is honored around the world in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and Central and South America. But I say the greatest honor that we can pay Dr. King since Ronald Reagan signed the national holiday bill, that was passed by the Senate … to make his birthday a national holiday, is to honor him in his hometown,” King grew up just a few blocks from the state capitol on Auburn Avenue. Legends and heroes are very rarely celebrated at home. It’s hard to be honored at home, for some reason. People take you for granted. (continue on page 2)
May 29 - June 3, 2014
Atlanta City Council President to Host Update for New Atlanta Falcons Stadium Project
Atlanta Weather Ready Ambassador Moves City into Gear; Making the Metro-Region More Resilient Though many areas already are feeling spring or summer-like conditions, only a few months ago Atlanta, — the 9th largest metropolitan area in the United States — was brought to a virtual standstill by a rare snowstorm. Garry Harris, managing director of the Center for Sustainable Cities and executive director for Emerald Cities Metro-Atlanta knew the city could have responded better and needed to be more resilient to extreme weather. As a first step, Harris thought the city and metro-region needed a constructive dialogue. The NWS Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador program dovetailed perfectly with that goal, so he signed CSC and Emerald Cities Metro Atlanta up. Building on the WRN principles, he invited policy decision-makers, educators, media, government leaders, and community leaders to explore together how the city and region could be more ready, resilient, and responsive to snow and other extreme weather. Harris and his team partnered with Atlanta City Council President Ceasar C. Mitchell and worked extensively for months with the theme and focus of Building Resilient Cities, Communities, Towns and Infrastructure to Mitigate the Effects of Extreme Weather. Those efforts culminated in organizing a Regional Round Table and Town Hall meeting. “The Regional Roundtable and Town Hall was an excellent opportunity to bring all sides of the issue together for the purpose of discussing how the city of Atlanta can best
prepare for future severe weather events. We convened elected officials from local, county, and state levels, weather experts and members of the public to work together towards establishing recommendations for submission to the severe weather task forces created by Mayor Reed and Governor Deal,” said Ceasar Mitchell, Atlanta City Council President. This open forum included the public, the City Council president and City Council, Office of the Mayor (City of Atlanta), the Atlanta Regional Commission, the Commissioner County government, The Weather Channel, the National Weather Service, Small Business Administration, labor union officials, and several other federal and local agencies including education, transportation and health care. The Town Hall was followed by two high level ‘Lunch and Learn’ meetings, one at the NWS Peachtree, GA, Office
and the other at The Weather Companies, the parent company of The Weather Channel. The Regional Round Table and Town Hall drew 60 residents and Council reps that, in turn, developed 19 comprehensive recommendations submitted both to the Governor of Georgia and the Office of the Mayor, City of Atlanta. The recommendations detailed action’s the city, the region and the state need to take to be more Weather-Ready, including building more resilient infrastructure. At the Town Hall meeting, keynote speaker Keith Stellman, NWS PeachTree Office Meteorologist-in-Charge compared the 2014 snow event to a remarkably similar snow storm in 1982. Both storms struck with frigid temperatures (< 27 degrees F) and occurred on workdays. The key difference, Stellman commented, was a huge increase in population: from 2 million in 1983 to 5 million residents in 2014. More people means the area needs to activate emergency plans faster and decision-makers need to work with orchestra-like harmony. Harris noted that the “Weather-Ready Nation initiative gave CSC of Atlanta and Emerald Cities Metro Atlanta the pathway to reach far and wide in making these events happen. It was a first on many levels.” CSC’s and Emerald Cities Metro Atlanta next step is to launch a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) program this fall to teach Atlanta’s youth about the importance of being ready, resilient, and responsive for tomorrow’s weather.
Erika Hayes James: New Dean Passage of King Statue Legislation (continued from page 1) of Emory’s Goizueta “Dr. King has never really been honored at home. He is more appreciated throughout the Business School world than he is at home. That’s why it is import-
Emory University Provost Claire Sterk announced that Erika Hayes James, PhD, has been appointed dean of the university’s Goizueta Business School. James will assume her new role on July 15. She comes to Emory from the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Virginia, where she served most recently as senior associate dean for executive education. Emory’s business school, founded 95 years ago, was honored to take its current name in 1994 from Roberto C. Goizueta, the innovative and influential business leader who served as chair and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company from 1981 until his death in 1997. Central to his vision and the school’s mission are excellence and principled leadership, which set Goizueta apart from others and greatly impact the experience of students and the curriculum. “Erika James has all of the qualities that we want for a leader at Goizueta,” says Provost Sterk, who led the international search. “She brings a background of impressive scholarship and strong skills in academic administration, and she will work collaboratively with faculty, students, staff, alumni and supporters to take the school to the next level — all the while honoring the principled leadership of Mr. Goizueta’s legacy.
ant to honor him on his personal grounds.” Even though Brooks has an optimistic outlook on life, he was nevertheless taken aback by the overwhelmingly positive feedback by the citizens of Georgia. “I have been pleasantly surprised by the reception of my colleagues in the general assembly and the governor, the people out there. Polling shows that over 75 percent of the people approve of bringing a statue of Dr. King to the grounds. There wasn’t much opposition. It’s long overdue. The thought came to me last December.” Brooks, the longtime president of the Georgia Association of Black Elected Officials, said King’s Rep. Tyrone Brooks offspring were “elated” that their father would be given a statue at the statehouse. The idea was born after Brooks and colleagues and sympathizers took pains to remove the statue of Tom Watson from the front of the statehouse. Watson was a one-time populist-turned-white supremacist who publicly pronounced his hatred of blacks, Jews and Catholics. “A reporter came to me and asked ‘Well, you worked hard to remove Tom Watson from the front door. Who do you want to replace him?’ “’Who else but Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?’ That was my response.” And now it has come to pass, nearly a half century after King’s assassination. The bill passed by Gov. Deal on what is, ironically and fortuitously, the 40th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Bill of 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson which was first spearheaded by President John F. Kennedy and Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. The monument to the civil rights icon is scheduled to be completed in January 2015 in close proximity to MLK’s birthday. To the delight of those Atlantans who loved King, including Brooks and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, Martin Luther King will finally receive the appropriate commemoration in his hometown.
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May 29 - June 4, 2014
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commitment to minority partic Atlanta City Council President Ceasar C. Mitchell, ipation in the stadium project, acting on his commitment to and I look forward to their achieving the goals outlined in continued partnership.” the Equal Business OpportuIn addition to this informanity plan for the new Atlanta tion session, President Mitchell stadium project, hosted an will continue his dedication to information session on Thurssmall and medium sized busiday, May 29 in the Council ness development by hosting Chamber of Atlanta City Hall, his annual Back to Business 55 Trinity Avenue, S.W. Conference later this summer, The EBO plan details which connects small and medipolicies and procedures for um sized businesses to procureachieving a minimum goal of ment opportunities within the 31 percent participation by public and private sectors. Ceasar Mitchell small, minority and womThe Atlanta Business League en-owned business enterprises seeks to provide economic in the design and construction of the $1.2 empowerment and business development billion new stadium. The plan also contains opportunities for minorities throughout the requirements for reporting and monitoring metropolitan Atlanta area and will have repthe existing participation. resentation at the EBO plan update meeting. Representatives from the Atlanta Falcons “This transparent process for engaging and the City of Atlanta’s Office of Contract qualified minority and female businesses Compliance presented on the following in the new stadium project is great for our items: organization. The Atlanta Business League is a strong force for positive growth in Atlanta • Review of the commitment to small busiand ultimately helps ensure that Atlanta is ness participation thriving. We are excited about the possibil• Progress on meeting participation goals ities of some of our business owners being • Future economic opportunities for the a part of the design and construction of the stadium project new stadium,” said Leona Barr-Davenport, president and CEO of at the Atlanta Business League. “ “This information session [was] an occasion for small and medium sized business owners to learn more about the economic Attendees must register for this event at opportunities available from the new Atlanta http://www.eventbrite.com/e/atlanta-falstadium project, and how it can serve as an cons-equal-business-opportunity-ebo-plan-upeconomic engine for Atlanta,” said Mitchell. date-tickets-11456882845?aff=eorg. Spaces “I commend the Atlanta Falcons for their are limited.
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Friendship Baptist Church Closes Doors for New Stadium Construction
May 29 - June 4, 2014
Christianmingle® and Echo Ministries Bring Good Deed Dating to Atlanta Singles
Mos Def Cancels Tour After Being Denied Entry Into U.S.
ChristianMingle.com, the largest and most trusted Christian dating site, is teaming up with Echo Ministries to bring its Good Deed Dating program to Atlanta in conjunction with the Atlanta Community Food Bank. The event will cultivate a soul-stirring social experience for Christian singles in the greater Atlanta area. These singles will put their faith in action by volunteering with other like-minded singles to provide healthful food options to Atlanta children, families and seniors in need of food assistance. Good Deed Dating is a new program from ChristianMingle that aims to help singles do some good for their community, while meeting a few Good Samaritan matches at the same time.
After more than 150 years, Friendship Baptist held its final service on Sunday, May 25 before moving to make way for the stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. For a full century…and half of another… these walls have listened and watched. They’ve witnessed church members comforting of those in need. On this passed Sunday, more than three times the number of people who typically flock to this historic building – were there to see one last baptism, one final sermon before the walls come down. Friendship’s legacy stretches back to 1862, in a building that gave birth to Spellman College. The first classes were held in the church basement. Rev. William Guy was the church’s pastor for thirty-seven years. Actress Jasmine Guy is among the many congregation members who spent countless Sunday’s inside the church, listening to her father preach from the pulpit. Guy grew up in Friendship Baptist Church, where her
father, the Rev. Guy was pastor. Guy was the star of NBC’s “A Different World,” which ran for six seasons and continues to find viewers in syndication. Her role in the “Cosby Show” spinoff was as Whitley Gilbert, a feisty Southern belle. “I’m like, ‘What does [the stadium] do for our city? [The church] does something for the city. Our churches, our history,” Guy said. The church agreed to a $19.5 million settlement to leave their home for the last 150 years. The founding pastor, the Rev. Frank Quarles began holding services in a boxcar on the site in 1866 after the Civil War. When Morehouse College moved to Atlanta from Augusta in 1879, classes were held at the church. Spelman College started in the basement in 1881 and the close relationship with the schools and this church continues to this day.
The event will take place on Saturday, June 7 from 1 to 4 p.m. EDT at the Atlanta Community Food Bank office at 732 Joseph E. Lowery Blvd NW
Atlanta Daily World
Yasiin Bey (pictured), formerly known as the musical artist and actor Mos Def, who currently lives in South Africa is reportedly canceling his upcoming U.S. tour due to problems reentering his native homeland Together Boston, the music festival at which Bey was scheduled to have performed, released a statement regarding his inability to keep his commitment just days before his first scheduled appearance: Bey, whose actual given name is Dante Smith, has maintained left-leaning political views. He changed his moniker to Yasiin Bey in 2012 to reflect a name in the Qur’an’s 36th surah, one of its most important verses. The hip-hop star converted to Islam in his teens. In 2009, the rap-artist-turned-actor suddenly up and relocated from his beloved Brooklyn to
South Africa and planted roots in Cape Town. The performer revealed in an interview earlier this year his reasons for flying the coop: “I lived in Brooklyn 33 years of my life. I thought I’d be buried in that place. And around seven years ago, I was like, you know, ‘I gotta go, I gotta leave.’ It’s very hard to leave. And I lived in a lot of places: Central America, North America, Europe for a while. And I came to Cape Town in 2009 and it just hit me. I was like, ‘Yeah.’ I know when a good vibe gets to you. And, you know, I thought about this place every day from when I left. “I’m not here just for like middle-class comfort, you know. Sure, it’s a beautiful place … but let me tell you something. For a guy like me who had five or six generations not just in America, but in one town in America, to leave America, things gotta be not so good with America.” Bey has complained before about immigration issues with regards to being black and touring. On his song, “Mr. Nigga,” the entertainer laments: And when you travel abroad they got n**** law Some folks get on a plane go as they please But I go overseas and I get over-seized London, Heathrow, me and my people They think that’s illegal a synonym for Negro Far away places, customs agents flagrant They think the dark faces smuggle weight in they cases Bags inspected, now we arrested
May 29 - June 4, 2014
Whitney Houston’s Family Upset Over Small Screen Treatment For Singer If you want something done right, do it yourself. That’s apparently how Whitney Houston’s family feels according to industry insiders who report that the Houstons are highly upset with Lifetime for making a movie about the late singer’s life. So much so that sources tell the site that the late singer’s estate is following the path laid by those who did Michael Jackson’s This is It and planning a movie of its own to hit the big screen. To hear the family tell it, Whitney is too big for TV. “Whitney is certainly worthy of more than a television movie,” Pat Houston said. “If Whitney were here today, this would not be happening.” The Houston family’s beef with Lifetime comes after the network announced plans for a Whitney biopic earlier this week. The film, set to come out in 2015, will mark the directorial debut of Angela Bassett, Houston’s co-star in the hit movie, Waiting to Exhale. Sources reveal that a lawsuit to block production on the Lifetime feature is being considered by the Houston estate, which has already expressed displeasure to Lifetime and made it clear they weren’t on board with a TV movie.
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Ann Nesby with AHA Top 20 Cities with HIV Kidney Walk First Lady Speaks www.ADWnews.com
May 29 - June 4, 2014
Does Cancer Like Rich People More? By Whitney Greer According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the number of Web sites offering health-related resources grows larger every day. While many online health resources can be useful, others may publish information that isn’t accurate. So, which sites can you really trust? According to a new study, not Wikipedia: a new study has found that 90% percent of health articles on the popular “collaboratively-edited Internet Encyclopedia” contain errors. American researchers compared the online encyclopedia’s entries about 10 conditions with peer reviewed medical research and found that most Wikipedia articles contained multiple mistakes, says HealthDay. The 10 conditions included in the study were the “most costly” in the United States and included asthma, depression, lung cancer, diabetes, heart disease, back problems and osteoarthritis. “While Wikipedia is a convenient tool for conducting research, from a public health standpoint patients should not use it as a primary resource because those articles do not go through the same peer-review process as medical journals,” said lead author Dr Robert Hasty, of the Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine in North Carolina. The “best resource” for people with health concerns is their doctor, Hasty added. The study was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.
According to a new study, certain types of cancers are very much connected to your wealth (or lack of). “Socioeconomic status is not something that appears on a medical record, so it is not really part of national cancer statistics, and this has skewed our thinking about cancer risk,” said study co-author Kevin Henry, an assistant professor of epidemiology at Rutgers School of Public Health in New Jersey. In fact, in the poorest areas of the country, the incidence of cancer is generally lower than in richer regions. However, deaths from cancers are higher, due in part to better screening habits among wealthier people. Cancers That Affect the Poor More Kaposi sarcoma (a skin cancer common among AIDS patients) and cancers of the larynx, cervix, penis and liver occur more often in the poorest neighborhoods, the investigators found. Kaposi sarcoma is an HIV-related cancer, and HIV patients are likely to be poorer, the study researchers said. Poorer areas also had higher rates of cancers related to drinking, smoking and using injectable drugs. These are considered modifiable risk factors for cancer. Since smoking rates are higher in poor areas, so is the incidence of smoking-related cancers, said Dr. Ahmedin Jemal, vice president for surveillance research at the American Cancer Society. Cancers tied to sexually transmitted diseases and poor diets were also more likely in the poorest neighborhoods. Cancers That Affect the Rich More In the wealthiest areas, thyroid and testicular cancer, melanoma and other skin cancers were more common, according to the report. Diagnoses of breast and prostate cancer are also more common in richer areas because of greater access to screening, such as mammography, Jemal said. The Significance of Screening Screening identifies these cancers early when they can be treated. This helps explain why poor people are more often diagnosed with advanced cancer and are more likely to die from these cancers, Jemal said. These disparities, Jemal added, can be reduced only by targeting poor neighborhoods with messages about living a healthy lifestyle. Jemal advocates for stressing the importance of good nutrition, physical activity, maintaining a normal weight and not smoking.
Singer Ann Nesby on Board With Metro Atlanta American Heart Association According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 67 million Georgians have high blood pressure and many more may be at risk. To combat the issue and reduce a major risk factor for stroke and heart disease, the Metro Atlanta American Heart Association/American Stroke Association launched the Check. Change. Control. program to help residents identify, lower and maintain healthy blood pressure levels. And now, Grammy award winner, Atlanta resident and congestive heart failure survivor Ann Nesby will be introduced as a local spokesperson for the cause through a new PSA. Check. Change. Control is a free initiative focused on the power of support. Participants are matched with volunteer mentors, encouraged to check blood pressure regularly, and given resources to help reach optimal blood pressure goals. Mentors monitor results and offer support through phone calls, texts, email or face-to-face meetings. To check progress, participants and mentors use the American Heart Association’s online health tracking tool, Heart360.
Top 20 Cities With the Highest HIV and AIDS Rates By Terry Shropshire
the study with blood pressure higher than 150/90 mmHg, systolic pressure (top number) decreased by 24.2 mmHg and diastolic pressure (bottom number) decreased by 10 mmHg. Eventually, 70 percent of participants had a blood pressure lower than 140/90 or a 10 mmHg decrease in systolic pressure. The initiative is one way the Association and its volunteers are working toward the overall goal of improving cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent by the year 2020. For more information about Atlanta’s Check. Change. Control. program, contact Nettie Jackson at email@example.com. To register, go to www.heart360.org/MetroAtlanta. For information about high blood pressure, visit www.heart.org/hbp.
High blood pressure or hypertension, affects one in three Americans, and occurs when blood pressure is 140/90 mm Hg or higher. African Americans in the United States have the highest rates of high blood pressure than any group in the world. “My grandparents, parents, sister and many of my fans have been affected by high blood pressure and/or heart disease. It’s killing our communities and we have to get it under control,” said Ann Nesby. “Through Check. Change. Control., the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association is not just providing knowledge and resources. It’s offering a personal connection to motivate people to keep their blood pressure controlled to healthy levels.” The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association is piloting the program in more than 50 cities across the country. Preliminary results show that those who began
May 29 - June 4, 2014
Despite a bevy of preventative measures and public service announcements endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other local agencies, the HIV and AIDS rates in some U.S. cities rival the most atrocious numbers in Sub-Saharan Africa. The creation of the anti-retroviral drug Truvada has dramatically improved the chances of HIV and AIDS victims for living with the debilitating disease. Still, because too many citizens refuse to adhere to the
admonishments of abstinence or contraception advocates — coupled with the crippling antipathy of a nation, lack of more aggressive government intervention and the refusal of more people getting tested to find out their statuses before engaging in sexual activities — many U.S. cities are sentenced to being buried financially under this epidemic. Take a look at the cities with the highest rates of HIV and AIDS rates, according to the United States Census Bureau and the Department of Commerce.
HIV RATES Per 100,000 and total number of cases 1. Miami, Florida 37.2/64,573 2 2. Baton Rouge, Louisiana 30.6 /4,565 3 3. Jacksonville, Florida 29.1/ 7,292 4 4. New York, New York-New Jersey-Pennsylvania 27/ 223,508 5 5. Washington, D.C.-Virginia-Maryland-West Virginia 26.6 /37,916 6 6. Columbia, South Carolina 23.5 /3,949 7 7. Memphis, Tennessee-Mississippi-Arkansas 23.3/ 6,018 8 8. Orlando, Florida 23.3 /10,457 9 9. New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner, Louisiana 23/ 9,941 10 10. Baltimore-Towson, Maryland 22.8/ 23,875 11 11. Jackson, Mississippi 22.2/ 2,881 12 12. San Juan-Caguas-Guaynabo, Puerto Rico 20 /24,126 13 13. Lakeland, Florida 18.9/ 2,210 14 14. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Georgia 18.7/ 27,313 15 15. San Francisco, California 18.3/ 44,422 16 16. Tampa-St Petersburg-Clearwater, Florida 17.4/ 13,135 17 17. San Antonio, Texas 12.3/5,892 18. San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, California 16/14,723 18 19. Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, North Carolina-South Carolina 15.7/ 4,123 19 20. Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land, Texas 15.1 /29,556 20
National Kidney Foundation’s Atlanta Kidney Walk on May 31 In 2001, Bruce Parks was enjoying a fulfilling job that allowed him time to play semi-professional basketball around region. It was a dream for the local Atlanta resident. “I felt like it was the prime of my life, everything was going great for me,” he said. But at times, Parks would get headaches, which he brushed off and attributed to his high blood pressure. It wasn’t until he was being sent to the hospital that he was told his kidneys were failing. “It just hit me out of the blue,” he said. “I knew I wasn’t controlling my blood pressure like I should, but I didn’t know about kidneys and I had never heard the term dialysis before. I’m a testament to what happens when you don’t know.” Over 17,000 people are on dialysis in Georgia and 4,000 people are waiting for kidney transplants in the state. Every year, kidney disease kills more people than breast and prostate cancer combined. It is estimated that 1 in 9 people have kidney disease, but most don’t know it because symptoms usually develop in the disease’s later stages.
By Sean Roach Parks was on dialysis for over eight years, waiting on the list for a kidney transplant. Then in September 2009, he underwent surgery and received a kidney at Piedmont Hospital. “I am blessed to be living, and every day I remember that I have a gift,” Parks said. “It’s now my job to let people know about kidney disease and that blood pressure can really blow your kidneys out.” “It’s especially important for the African American community, because we seem to be more at risk for kidney failure.” African Americans suffer from kidney failure at a significantly higher rate than others in the U.S. African Americans constitute more than 32 percent of all patients receiving dialysis for kidney failure while making up 13 percent of the overall U.S. population. As part of his mission to get the word out about kidney disease, Bruce is taking part in the National Kidney Foundation’s Atlanta Kidney Walk. The Kidney Walk is the nation’s largest walk to fight kidney disease. Held in nearly 100 communities, the event raises awareness and funds lifesaving programs that educate and support patients, their families and those at risk.
“The NKF has been good for me and my family,” Parks said. “They supply resources and information, and they help to inform others about kidney disease and its two leading causes, high blood pressure and diabetes, which are rampant in the community.” Kidney Facts: • More than 26 Million Americans - 1 in 9 adults – have chronic kidney disease and most don’t know it. • 73 million American adults are at risk due to high blood pressure, diabetes or a family history of kidney disease. • Every 5 minutes someone’s kidneys fail. • Of the over 120,000 Americans on the national organ transplant waitlist, more than 100,000 await a life-saving kidney. The Atlanta Kidney Walk will be held on Saturday, May 31, at Turner Field. Registration begins at 9am and the walk starts at 10am. To register for the event, call the National Kidney Foundation at 770-452-1539 ext. 11 or register online at www. kidneywalk.org.
May 29 - June 4, 2014
First Lady Responds to School Meal Critics By Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press First lady Michelle Obama is striking back at House Republicans who are trying to weaken healthier school meal standards, saying any effort to roll back the guidelines is “unacceptable.” The rules set by Congress and the administration over the last several years require more fruits, vegetables and whole grains in the lunch line and set limits on sodium, sugar and fat. The first lady met Tuesday, May 27 with school nutrition officials who said the guidelines are working in their schools. The event was an unusual move for the first lady, who has largely stayed away from policy fights since she lobbied for congressional passage of a child nutrition law in 2010. “The last thing we can afford to do right now is play politics with our kids’ health,” Mrs. Obama told participants. An agriculture spending bill approved by a House subcommittee last week would allow schools to waive the standards if they have a net loss on school food programs for a six-month period. Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Ala., who wrote the bill, said he was responding to requests from school food directors who have said the rules are too restrictive. The School Nutrition Association, which represents school nutrition directors and companies that sell food to schools, has lobbied for changes to the standards and endorsed the House bill. The House Appropriations Committee is expected to approve the spending bill this week. At the White House event, school nutrition directors from New York City to Los Angeles to a rural county in Georgia
told the first lady success stories about implementing the standards and said they would be disappointed to see any roll backs. “We’re not just talking about food, we’re talking about education,” said David Binkle of the Los Angeles Unified School District. He said participation is up in his district, along with test scores and graduation rates, since they made school foods healthier there. The first lady asked the group for advice about how they can better respond to schools that are struggling, and suggested that the conversation should be focused on helping those schools rather than rolling back some of the standards completely.
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May 29 - June 4, 2014
Poet and Author Dr. Maya Angelou Dies at 86 Associated Press writer Michael Biesecker contributed to this report
NEW YORK (AP) — Maya Angelou, a modern Renaissance woman who survived the harshest of childhoods to become a force on stage, screen, the printed page and the inaugural dais, has died. She was 86. Her death was confirmed in a statement issued by Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she had served as a professor of American Studies since 1982. Tall and regal, with a deep, majestic voice, Angelou defied all probability and category, becoming one of the first black women to enjoy mainstream success as an author and thriving in virtually every artistic medium. The young single mother who performed at strip clubs to earn a living, later wrote and recited the most popular presidential inaugural poem in history. The childhood victim of rape wrote a million-selling memoir, befriended Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela and the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and performed on stages around the world. An actress, singer and dancer in the 1950s and 1960s, she broke through as an author in 1970 with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which became standard (and occasionally censored) reading, and was the first of a multipart autobiography that continued through the decades. In 1993, she was
was performing at the Purple Onion in San Francisco, where she shared billing with another future star, Phyllis Diller. She spent a few days with Billie Holiday, who was kind enough to sing a lullaby to Angelou’s son Guy, surly enough to heckle her off the stage and astute enough to tell her: “You’re going to be famous. But it won’t be for singing.” After renaming herself Maya Angelou for the stage (“Maya” was a childhood nickname), she toured in Porgy and Bess and Jean Genet’s The Blacks, and danced with Alvin Ailey. She worked as a coordinator for the Southern Christian Leadership Council, and lived for years in Egypt and Ghana, where she met Malcolm X and remained close to him until his assassination, in 1965. Three years later, she was helping King organize the Poor People’s March in Memphis, Tenn., where the civil rights leader was slain on Angelou’s 40th birthday. “Every year, on that day, Coretta and I would send each other flowers,” Angelou said of King’s widow, Coretta Scott King, who died in 2006. Angelou was little known outside the theatrical community until I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which might not have happened if James Baldwin hadn’t persuaded Angelou, still grieving over King’s death, to attend a party at Jules Feiffer’s house. Feiffer was so taken by Angelou that he mentioned her to Random House editor Bob Loomis, who persuaded her to write a book. Angelou’s musical style was clear in a passage about boxing great Joe Louis’s defeat against German fighter Max Schmeling: “My race groaned. It was our people falling. It was another lynching, yet another Black man hanging on a tree. One more woman ambushed and raped. A Black boy whipped and maimed. It was hounds on the trail of a man running through slimy swamps. … If Joe lost, we were back in slavery and beyond help.” Angelou’s memoir was occasionally attacked, for seemingly opposite reasons. In a 1999 essay in Harper’s, author Francine Prose criticized “Caged Bird” as “manipulative” melodrama. Meanwhile, Angelou’s passages about her rape and teen pregnancy have made it a perennial on the American Library Association’s list of works that draw complaints from parents and educators. “I thought that it was a mild book. There’s no profanity,” Angelou told the AP. “It speaks about surviving, and it really doesn’t make ogres of many people. I was shocked to find there were people who really wanted it banned, and I still believe people who are against the book have never read the book.” Angelou appeared on several TV programs, notably the groundbreaking 1977 miniseries “Roots.” She was nominated for a Tony Award in 1973 for her appearance in the play Look Away. She directed the film Down in the Delta, about a drug-wrecked woman who returns to the home of her ancestors in the Mississippi Delta. She won three Grammys for her spoken-word albums and in 2013 received an honorary
Listen to yourself and in that quietude you might hear the voice of God.
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a sensation reading her cautiously hopeful “On the Pulse of the Morning” at former President Bill Clinton’s first inauguration. Her confident performance openly delighted Clinton and made the poem a best-seller, if not a critical favorite. For former President George W. Bush, she read another poem, “Amazing Peace,” at the 2005 Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the White House. She remained close enough to the Clintons that in 2008 she supported Hillary Rodham Clinton’s candidacy over the ultimately successful run of the country’s first black president, Barack Obama. But a few days before Obama’s inauguration, she was clearly overjoyed. She told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette she would be watching it on television “somewhere between crying and praying and being grateful and laughing when I see faces I know.” She was a mentor to Oprah Winfrey, whom she befriended when Winfrey was still a local television reporter, and often appeared on her friend’s talk show program. She mastered several languages and published not just poetry, but advice books, cookbooks and children’s stories. She wrote music, plays and screenplays, received an Emmy nomination for her acting in “Roots,” and never lost her passion for dance, the art she considered closest to poetry. “The line of the dancer: If you watch (Mikhail) Baryshnikov and you see that line, that’s what the poet tries for. The poet tries for the line, the balance,” she told The Associated Press in 2008, shortly before her birthday. Her very name as an adult was a reinvention. Angelou was born Marguerite Johnson in St. Louis and raised in Stamps, Ark., and San Francisco, moving back and forth between her parents and her grandmother. She was smart and fresh to the point of danger, prompting her family to pack her off to California after sassing a white store clerk in Arkansas. Other times, she didn’t speak at all: At age 7, she was raped by her mother’s boyfriend and didn’t speak for years. She learned by reading and listening. “I loved the poetry that was sung in the black church: ‘Go down Moses, way down in Egypt’s land,’” she told the AP. “It just seemed to me the most wonderful way of talking. And ‘Deep River.’ Ooh! Even now it can catch me. And then I started reading, really reading, at about seven and a half, because a woman in my town took me to the library, a black school library. … And I read every book, even if I didn’t understand it.” At nine, she was writing poetry. By 17, she was a single mother. In her early 20s, she danced at a strip joint, ran a brothel, was married (to Enistasious Tosh Angelos, her first of three husbands) and then divorced. By her mid-20s, she
National Book Award for her contributions to the literary community. Back in the 1960s, Malcolm X had written to Angelou and praised her for her ability to communicate so directly, with her “feet firmly rooted on the ground.” In 2002, Angelou used this gift in an unexpected way when she launched a line of greeting cards with industry giant Hallmark. In North Carolina, she lived in an 18-room house and taught American Studies at Wake Forest University. She was also a member of the Board of Trustees for Bennett College, a private school for black women in Greensboro, N.C. Angelou hosted a weekly satellite radio show for XM’s “Oprah & Friends” channel. She also owned and renovated a townhouse in Harlem, the ineterior decorated in spectacular primary colors. Active on the lecture circuit, she gave commencement speeches and addressed academic and corporate events across the country. Angelou received dozens of honorary degrees, and several elementary schools were named for her. As she approached her 80th birthday, she decided to study at the Missouri-based Unity Church, which advocates healing through prayer. “I was in Miami and my son (Guy Johnson, her only child) was having his 10th operation on his spine. I felt really done in by the work I was doing, people who had expected things of me,” said Angelou, who then recalled a Unity church service she attended in Miami. “The preacher came out — a young black man, mostly a white church — and he came out and said, ‘I have only one question to ask, and that is, “Why have you decided to limit God?’” And I thought, ‘That’s exactly what I’ve been doing.’ So then he asked me to speak, and I got up and said, ‘Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you.’ And I said it about 50 times, until the audience began saying it with me, ‘Thank you, THANK YOU!’”
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www.AtlantaDailyWorld.com BIDS & PROPOSALS RFP – PD – 070814 - MMSCN ADVERTISEMENT for MONITORING and MAINTENANCE of SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS & NETWORK The City of College Park is accepting Sealed Proposals from qualified vendors for MONITORING and MAINTENANCE of SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS & NETWORK. Sealed proposals will be received no later than 10:00am, Tuesday, July 8, 2014 at the City of College Park Purchasing Department, 3667 Main Street, College Park, Georgia 30337, at which time they will be opened and publicly read aloud. Bids received after the above date and time, or in any other location other than the Purchasing Department will not be considered. A bid packet may be obtained from the City of College Park Purchasing Department, 3667 Main Street, College Park, Georgia 30337, or from www. collegeparkga.com. No Pre-Proposal Meeting will be held. However, questions will be accepted via email ONLY, to firstname.lastname@example.org until 12:00 noon Friday, June 13, 2014. An Addendum listing all Q&A, clarifications, etc. will be posted at www.collegeparkga.com on or about COB (close of business) Thursday, June 26, 2014. It is always the vendor’s responsibility to check the City’s website for any/all addenda. A Bid Bond of ten percent (10%) is required with submitted bid packet. Successful vendor will be required to provide Performance / Payment Bond for one hundred percent (100%) of full contract amount before execution of contract. The City of College Park reserves the right to reject any or all bids based on past performance and to waive technicalities and informalities and re-advertise. All Minority, Woman and Small Businesses are strongly encouraged to apply. Only responsive proposals that are determined to meet the requirements and criteria set forth by the City of College Park will be considered. Western Summit Constructors, Inc. is soliciting bids from certified AABE & FBE subcontractors and suppliers for the following project: City of Atlanta - Repair and Replacement of South River W.R.C. Tetra Deep Bed Filter Valves, Actuators & Ancillary Systems, FC-7340 Bid Date: June 17, 2014 @ 2:00PM Submit Bid to:
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by George Curry
by Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr.
(NNPA) If you let the Republicans tell it, President Obama is directly responsible for the fiasco at the Veterans Administration. But they don’t tell you that fresh off of Memorial Day parade appearances, they are responsible for scuttling legislation that would have expanded benefits for the nation’s 22 million veterans and their families. A measure backed by Obama would have lengthened the period veterans are eligible to receive health care from the VA from five years to 10 years after deployment. The bill also would have allowed the VA to open 27 new health facilities, expand medical and dental care, make more veterans eligible for in-state tuition at public universities, repeal the recent cut in cost-of-living adjustments for new enlistees and extend a program that provides care for veterans with mild to severe brain injuries. More than 20 military organizations – including the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Wounded Warriors Project and Disabled American Veterans – supported the bill. William A. Thien, commander-in-chief of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, submitted a letter saying, “This legislation is the most comprehensive veterans’ legislation to be introduced in decades. It contains many of the VFW’s priority goals, which will implement, expand and improve both health care and benefit services to all generations of veterans and their families.” Senate Bill S.1982, known as the Comprehensive Veterans Health and Benefits and Military Retirement Pay Restoration Act of 2014, was favored on Feb. 27 in the Senate 56-41. But the measure fell four votes shy of the number needed to overcome a threatened GOP filibuster. Every Democrat voted for the bill and only two Republican Senators – Jerry Moran of Kansas and Dean Heller of Nevada – voted for the measure. Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina, the ranking Republican on the committee, said: “We have veterans dying from long waits for basic, necessary tests like colonoscopies. Veterans waiting for their disability claims to be processed know all about frustrations and delays at the VA, and adding more individuals to an already broken system doesn’t seem wise.” Mitch McConnell, the Senate Minority Leader from Kentucky, accused Democrats of engaging in election-year politics, a charge Senate Veterans’ Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), denied. He told reporters after the vote: “The point of the matter is if we had won today…both parties could have gone out and said we finally overcame all of the partisanship we see here in Washington. This could have been a political winner, if you like, and certainly a public policy winner for both Democrats and Republicans.” More than two dozen veterans groups had sup-
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May 29 - June 4, 2014
GUEST COMMENTARY REPUBLICANS ARE VETERAN HYPOCRITES ON THE VA
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ported the measure. According to the Washington Post, Daniel M. Dellinger, national commander of the American Legion, said, “I don’t know how anyone who voted ‘no’ today can look a veteran in the eye and justify that vote. Our veterans deserve more than what they got today.” According to MediaMatters, the watchdog group, the media failed miserably in letting the public know Republicans were blocking the legislation. “While mainstream media coverage of the serious allegations of improper practices at certain Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health clinics has been extensive in recent weeks, a bill to expand health care for veterans that was blocked by Senate Republicans in February received little attention,” it noted. “…Based on a LexisNexis search television transcripts from February 26 to 28, the veterans health bill was not covered by ABC World News, NBC Nightly News, or CBS Evening News,” the media monitoring group said. “Based on a LexisNexis search of news articles from February 26 to 28, neither the New York Times nor the Wall Street Journal reported on Senate Republicans’ obstruction of the legislation that would have allowed the VA to open 27 new health facilities.” The media has also done a poor job describing how proposed budget cuts will impact veterans. For example, the Republican-led cuts to the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, will hurt veterans as well other low-income families, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), a Washington-based think tank. “Nationwide, in any given month, a total of 900,000 veterans nationwide lived in households that relied on SNAP to provide food for their families in 2011, a previous analysis of Census data estimated,” a report by the CBPP noted. “…For low-income veterans, who may be unemployed, working in lowwage jobs, or disabled, SNAP provides an essential support that enables them to purchase nutritious food for their families. “..While the overall unemployment rate for veterans is lower than the national average, the unemployment rate for recent veterans (serving in September 2001 to the present) remains high, at 10.1 percent in September 2013. About one-quarter of recent veterans reported service-connected disabilities in 2011, which can impact their ability to provide for their families: households with a veteran with a disability that prevents them from working are about twice as likely to lack access to adequate food than households without a disabled member.” Republicans need to do more than simply wave the American flag. George E. Curry, former editor-in-chief of Emerge magazine, is editor-in-chief of the National Newspaper Publishers Association News Service.
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GREAT DIVIDE COULD SPUR POPULIST MOVEMENT
Congress will end the month of May without renewing jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed that were cut off at the end of last year. House Speaker John Boehner rails against the Obama administration for failing to create jobs, but apparently blames unemployed workers for not having one. There is a stark divide between the actions in Washington and the opinions of most Americans. Americans overwhelmingly support broad sensible reforms that will help working families, including renewing unemployment benefits. A new study released by the Campaign for America’s Future, “The American Majority is a Populist Majority,” reports on recent polling data. Nearly three fourths of Americans (73 percent) favor increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour. Republican House Speaker John Boehner won’t let that come to a vote in the House, and Senate Republicans have blocked it in the Senate. Three fourths of Americans (75 percent) favor a government job creation program to hire 1 million people. The Congressional Progressive Caucus budget that proposed a large jobs program got less than 100 votes in the House. Nearly three fourths of Americans (71 percent) favor increasing government investment to build and repair roads, bridges and other infrastructure needs. But Congress has failed even to replenish the Highway Trust Fund that is about to be exhausted. Thus far, this divide between public opinion and congressional action has had confusing political fallout. Congress is near record lows in public approval. But Republicans who have obstructed virtually every reform seem to be profiting. Pundits now favor them to keep control of the House and possibly take the majority in the Senate. A big reason for this, we’re told, is the fall off of Democratic voters from the core of the Obama majority — people of color, young people and single women. They were hit the hardest in the economy and have struggled in the so-called recovery. Like most Americans, they don’t have time or energy to sort out Washington’s bickering and figure out who is to blame. So generally, the party of the president gets more of the blame. What is missing is an independent moral voice, a movement that isn’t about left or right, Democrats or Republicans, but is challenging legislators from the moral center. Without that, Democratic operatives tend to extol technique, the techniques they’ve mastered to target, contact and get out their voters. Republican operatives tend to emphasize money, the money they are able to raise from the billionaire and corporate lobbies that play an increasing role in our elections.
Citizen movements with a moral voice transform politics. In many ways, this was the lesson of Obama’s victory in 2008. He sensibly caught the wave of mass public dismay at the Iraq debacle. The candidacy of his primary opponent, Hillary Clinton, was in many ways capsized by that wave. His Republican opponent, John McCain, couldn’t overcome the desire of Americans for change. Could a citizen’s movement upend expectations this fall? A populist movement is stirring in the country. We see it in the cities and states raising the minimum wage, not waiting for Washington. We see it in the protests of low wage workers in the fast food industry, in the Moral Monday’s mobilizations in North Carolina now spreading to other states. We see it even in the rock star status accorded to the French economist Thomas Piketty and his book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” on inequality. If this continues to build, the pundits may be surprised. Voters may turn out in greater numbers than expected either to punish incumbents or to support challengers who carry a populist message. Washington political pros tend to focus on the results of polls, but polls are but a snapshot of passing attitudes. Movements don’t respond to polls; movements mold opinion. The next months may be more interesting than many now expect.
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