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JANUARY 18 - JANUARY 24, 2013
VOLUME 21 NO. 3
‘THESE ARE OUR KIDS’ President Obama signs executive orders and puts the burden on Congress to pass new antigun violence laws. Meanwhile, the state of New York moves forward without waiting on the feds. COMPILED FROM WIRE REPORTS
On Wednesday – the day after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s actual birthday – President Obama proposed a broad package of legislative proposals designed to curb gun violence, including
a ban on assault weapons, limits on ammunition magazines to 10 rounds, required background checks on all gun purchases and stiff new penalties for those who buy guns from unlicensed dealers. He sent proposed legislation to Congress aimed at taking guns out of the hands of those who should not have them, getting “weapons of war” off the street, making schools safer and offering more mental health services.
More cops in schools? Legislature says yes; Scott noncommittal BY BRANDON LARRABEE THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA
Taking action Obama also signed 23 executive actions that do not need congressional approval. The executive actions include making it easier for federal and state agencies to make data available to the national background check system; launching a national campaign for safe and responsible gun ownership; reviewing safety
OLIVIER DOULIERY/ABACA PRESS/MCT
President Barack Obama signs a series of executive orders about the administration’s new gun law proposals as (from left) Vice President Joe Biden, Hinna Zeejah, Taejah Goode, Julia Stokes and Grant Fritz – children who wrote letters to See OBAMA, Page A2 the White House about gun violence – look on.
DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. / 1929-1968
It’s still about jobs and justice
Lawmakers in Florida appear to be moving toward increasing schoolsafety spending and changing the way local law enforcement officers posted at schools are funded. The moves come after years of budget cuts took a toll on local sheriff’s offices and left schools to fund the lion’s share of costs for “school resources officers” – about 77 percent of the funding in the 2010-11 school year, according to a presentation Wednesday to the Senate Education Appropriations Subcommittee. Schools spent $42.3 million on school resources officers that year. Sheriff’s departments handled about 15 percent of the bill.
No standards Funding varies from district to district. Committee chairman Sen. Bill Galvano said the panel might look to address the funding sources for those officers. Galvano said lawmakers were also likely to try to improve schools’ safety, security and communications technology. Several district leaders have also expressed an interest in “hardening” schools against potential shooters by installing fences or limiting the number of places members of the public can enter a school.
Scott: No position Gov. Rick Scott, who has steadfastly declined to say specifically what he thinks should be done to protect schools from mass shooters, said Wednesday that lawmakers should “look at our laws” about the issue, but again refused to take a position on whether that should include changing gun laws.
Not for everyone The hearings have begun to center on whether and how to increase the number of armed school resource officers at public schools. But not all schools want to go in that direction. Robert Moll, deputy superintendent for Volusia County schools, said elementary school principals in his county don’t want resource officers at their buildings. “They just don’t want that ambience in an elementary school,” he said.
Guidance over grief
AMERICAN JEWISH HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others are shown during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1963.
SNAPSHOTS NATION | B1
A look back at Obama’s first inauguration
WORLD | A3
Haiti earthquake third anniversary: Not much change ENTERTAINMENT | B5
Young actress makes Oscar history FINEST | B5
And some lawmakers are encouraging a look at other preventative measures. “If we had more guidance counselors, we might need less grief counselors,” said Sen. Nancy Detert, RVenice. Detert has sponsored a bill that would require schools to meet a certain ratio of guidance counselors to students, depending on the grade level.
Scott’s meeting leaves Black lawmakers frustrated lieutenant governor.
BY MARGIE MENZEL THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA
Gov. Rick Scott had a contentious meeting Tuesday with Black lawmakers in which he parried their requests to move forward with “Obamacare,” restore civil rights to ex-felons and recommend more AfricanAmerican judges. The caucus members gathered around a table with Scott and Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll at its head. Carroll had been the only Republican member of the Florida Legislature’s Black caucus before she left the House to become Scott’s
Scott stuck to his message of jobs and education while denying responsibility for the 2011 election bill that cut early voting days. Scott signed the bill into law. House Democratic Leader Perry Thurston brought up Scott’s role in making it harder for former criminals to vote. Early in Scott’s tenure as governor, he led the all-Republican Cabinet in imposing a fiveyear waiting period before ex-felons can regain their rights, including voting. Thurston said Florida is
one of just four states that “disenfranchise people” and reminded Scott that when the caucus met with him last year, the governor had said he’d look into it. “Between that time and now, nothing has been done,” Thurston said. “We haven’t even had a meeting with you about it...We left over 1,000 people who had completed their process on the table.” Scott responded that he’s “only one of the clemency board members” and suggested the caucus contact the others – Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, Attorney General Pam Bondi and Agriculture Commis-
sioner Adam Putnam.
‘Take time’ to pay “We’re now at a 41-year low on our crime rate, so we’re doing the right thing,” he said. “When you get out and you’re a felon, you should take the time to pay your debt to society.” Asked to tap more Blacks as judges, Scott said he doesn’t have unlimited choice on judicial appointments. “I believe in three branches of government,” Scott said. “I don’t believe in judicial activism. If somebody believes in judicial activism, I’m not going to appoint them.”
When Sen. Oscar Braynon, D-Miami Gardens, criticized Scott for signing the 2011 election law cutting the number of days of early voting, Scott said he “didn’t have anything to do with passing it.”
‘Feet to the fire’ “He wants to run Florida like it’s Florida, Inc.,” said Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, “And this is not a corporation. This is state government.” Thurston, too, was dissatisfied. “We’ll hold his feet to the fire,” he said, “There’s always another election.”
COMMENTARY: CHARLES W. CHERRY II: RANDOM THOUGHTS OF A FREE BLACK MIND | A4 CALENDAR: A ROUNDUP OF DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. ACTIVITIES IN FLORIDA | B2
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
MLK’s and Obama’s stories will merge Monday while not offending Whites. Obama’s biggest challenge came in March 2008, during a crucial phase of his bid to win the Democratic nomination. The Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s pastor, came under fire for comments in his sermons and writings. Obama quickly distanced himself from Wright. “What’s important to realize is for Obama, he really has claimed his Americanism,” Bunch said. “He’s really made sure that based on who he is and his vision, it’s for a broader America...He’s made sure that he simply isn’t seen as a one-issue president. That’s the tension and the balance that he has to do.”
BY WILLIAM DOUGLAS AND DAVID LIGHTMAN MCCLATCHY NEWSPAPERS (MCT)
When Barack Obama takes the oath of office Monday on the national holiday celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and vision, the links between the two men will be easy to discern. Both battled enormous odds to build historic multi-ethnic, multiracial coalitions, one to advance the cause of civil rights, the other to win the nation’s highest office. Both won the Nobel Peace Price. Both could use soaring rhetoric to inspire millions. Both also had to overcome critics who accused them of socialist or communist sympathies, as well as Black activists who maintained that they weren’t strong advocates for African-Americans.
Likes comparison Obama has long encouraged the ties between King and himself. He spoke at the civil rights icon’s Atlanta church on Jan. 20, 2008, a year before his first inauguration. He accepted the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008 on the anniversary of King’s Aug. 28, 1963, “I Have a Dream” speech. He’ll take the oath Monday on a Bible that King used, as well as on one that Abraham Lincoln used. “What King and Obama have in common is that both are articulate voices, voices being heard at a time when people were listening and wanted to listen,” said Sam Fulwood, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a liberal research center. The two men, of course, were also different, largely because of their times. “Making America better in 1968 is different than making America better in 2013. I think they take different paths, but their goal is to use their strengths to help America be America,” said Lonnie Bunch, the director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African-American History and Culture.
No option for MLK National politics wasn’t an op-
OBAMA from A1 standards for gun locks and gun safes; and nominating a director for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. In addition, he called for the training of more law enforcement officers and implementing tougher enforcement and prosecution of existing laws. A senior administration official said the executive actions “are not a substitute for legislation action.” The president wants to hire 1,000 new resource officers and counselors for schools and spend $10 million to research violence in the media. Obama’s proposals – the most aggressive gun-control plan in generations – comes one month after a mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., left 26 people, including 20 young children, dead.
Lots of input The proposals came after the administration, led by Biden, spent a month speaking to more than 200 organizations, including gun-control groups, gun owners, religious leaders, law enforcement organizations, the medical community and child advocacy groups. The United States has more firearms than other nation in the world — 270 million, according to the international Small Arms Survey, an independent research project at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva. The new proposals will cost an estimated $500 million, but White House officials said they do not know how many lives would be saved if they were enacted.
Fight begins The announcement set off a fierce debate on Capitol Hill, where Republicans and some Democrats oppose changes they fear would chip away at American’s Second Amendment right to bear arms. Some bills may not even get to a vote in the Republican-run House of Representatives. The Senate is expected to begin debate as soon as next week. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is
SARAH J. GLOVER/PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER/MCT
Artist Michael Lundy and girlfriend Carolyn Harley pose with Lundy’s art featuring Barack Obama and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. tion for King. He was born in 1929 and came of age in a South where the simple act of voting was at best difficult and often impossible for Blacks, effectively disenfranchising them in one-fourth of the country. Even elsewhere, voters showed almost no inclination to elect a Black person to any statewide office. It wasn’t until 1966 that Sen. Edward Brooke of Massachusetts became the first Black to be elected to the Senate in 85 years. Not until 1989 did Virginia’s Douglas Wilder become the first Black person elected governor of a state.
Benefited from struggle Obama has benefited from a political structure that offers unbridled opportunity. He was born in 1961, soon after stronger voting-rights laws began empowering Blacks and making them an important political force.
Opinion on gun control debate There is public support for many gun policy proposals, according to a new Pew poll. Favor
• Background checks for private and gun show sales
• Prevent people with mental illness from buying guns
16 • Federal database to track gun sales
30 • Armed security guards/ police in more schools
32 • Ban on semi-automatic weapons
39 • Ban on assault style weapons
40 • Ban on high capacity ammunition clips
42 • Ban on online sale of ammunition
44 • More teachers and school officials with guns in schools
57 Source: Pew Research Center poll of 1,502 adults, Jan. 9-13, 2013; margin of error: +/- 2.9 percentage points Graphic: Judy Treible © 2013 MCT
the kind of lawmaker Obama would need to get strict gun-control initiatives enacted. A National Rifle Association member, he voted against the assault-weapons ban in the 1990s, and said, “At this point, no,” when he was asked whether one could pass the House now. But Rahall, like many likeminded Democrats and Republicans, is willing to listen in the wake of the massacre at Newtown’s Sandy Hook Elementary School, and other incidents. “The Saturday morning after Sandy Hook, we woke up a different nation,” said Rahall, who has been a member of Congress since the mid-1970s. “We’ve been here before trying
Through the years, so-called “race issues” have been less prominent, allowing Black politicians to identify more closely with universal issues such as health care or the economy. “Obama had financial advantages and the support of the Democratic Party,” said Kareem Crayton, an associate professor of law at the University of North Carolina Law School. “King was trying to dismantle a hundred years of exclusion, in violation of federal law and the courts.”
Worked from outside Obama, who as a young community organizer was frustrated that he couldn’t change an ingrained political system, learned to be an insider working from outside the Black community. Many Black leaders in early 2008 preferred Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee. King was the opposite, drawto pass meaningful gun legislation, but I think giving it another try is better than an alibi, and I would hate to have another mass killing and say we didn’t even try to do anything,” said Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo. There are also Democrats who have not yet been persuaded to support some restrictive measures, but could be. That’s the role of Rep. Mike Thompson, DCalif., a gun owner and hunter who has been chosen to lead a task force on the issue. Thompson, who calls himself a “combat veteran who carried an assault rifle in Vietnam,” is also clear on how far he’s willing to go. “Military-type assault weapons and assault magazines have no place on our streets and in our communities,” he said.
GOP roadblocks The chief roadblock to major gun-control legislation is likely to come from Republicans, who control the House. Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, said an assault ban was “not something that would actually protect people at this time.” Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., told Fox Business Network, “They want to pick on the bastard child of the Bill of Rights, which is the Second Amendment, and it’s not going to happen, not on my watch.” Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, is endorsing “Gun Appreciation Day” Saturday, an effort by gun rights groups to have people show support by turning out in big numbers at gun stores, ranges and shows.
Senate first? Party leaders said they were unlikely to act until the Senate approved such a measure. Though Democrats control 55 of the Senate’s 100 seats, gun control won’t be easy there, either. “Is it something that can pass the Senate? Maybe. Is it something that can pass the House? I doubt it,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, discussing the assault ban last weekend on PBS. Obama is likely to try to urge Congress to pass legislative by staging a public relations blitz, as he has done in recent months.
NY doesn’t wait The battle in Congress is just beginning. But the state of New
ing his political strength from the Black population in the heart of the segregated South, a place where the church was often the heart of the political community. “King’s world was so shaped by religion and the American South versus Obama’s world, which is shaped by fundamentally different things,” Bunch said. Obama, reaping the benefits of the post-civil rights generation, “is able to both be deeply embedded in his community but to be beyond his community,” Bunch explained.
Acceptable to Whites King and Obama shared an important personal trait that allowed them to flourish: Both knew how to reach out and become acceptable to key elements of the White community so they could build multiracial coalitions to effect change. They also had to appeal to Black constituencies York on Tuesday approved legislation to curb the sale of assault weapons and ammunition, as victims of gun violence joined other protesters at a WalMart parking lot in Connecticut to demand the retailer stop selling guns similar to the type used in Newtown. The Democratic-controlled Assembly in Albany, N.Y., approved the bill after the Republican-majority Senate passed it on Monday, making the state the first to take legislative action against gun violence since the Newtown massacre. Among other measures, the bill, which was signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, will crack down on ammunition sales and broaden the definition of assault weapons in New York to make it harder to legally possess them. The bill also will require therapists to report patients diagnosed as mentally ill who threaten to use guns illegally, and it will outlaw online sales of assault weapons and the sale of high-capacity ammunition magazines. In addition, it will require the revocation or suspension of gun licenses from individuals who are subjects of orders of protection.
‘Least I could do’ “Passing today’s legislation was the least my colleagues and I could do to honor the memory of those lost in 2012,” said Daniel O’Donnell, a Democratic assemblyman who voted for the so-called SAFE Act and who said New York and Connecticut were “still reeling” from the shootings in Newtown and a Christmas Eve shooting in the New York town of Webster that killed two firefighters. “Even one injury or death from gun-related violence is too many, and last year our country felt the shock and grief these events bring all too frequently,” he said.
Protests at Wal-Mart In Danbury, Conn., about five miles from the Newtown school, the Wal-Mart protest drew together people directly affected by gun violence. They included a woman whose 6-year-old daughter was killed in the January 2011 shooting that targeted former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Ariz., and another woman who was shot but survived that attack. The Danbury store does not
As they became better known, King and Obama faced a new challenge: broadening and implementing their agendas. While both sparked unusual hope, they found that once they got beyond their signature issues – health care and reviving the economy for Obama, civil rights for King – things got tougher. King was criticized as embracing the anti-Vietnam War movement with too much vigor. He tried to tie his war criticism to his efforts to curb poverty, and he explained the link in a 1967 speech at New York City’s Riverside Church. “I speak as a child of God and brother to the suffering poor of Vietnam. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted,” King explained. “I speak for the poor of America, who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home and death and corruption in Vietnam.” King, though, wouldn’t be a major player in Vietnam protests. His post-civil rights-era goals “were things he was never able to accomplish,” Crayton said. As Obama tries to implement his second-term agenda, he too is reaching out, embracing an overhaul of the nation’s immigration system and gun control. Whether he can mobilize support, Crayton said, “remains an unanswered question.” stock weapons, but hundreds of other Wal-Marts in the U.S. do. The retailer’s inventory includes the same type of weapons used by 20-year-old Adam Lanza when he burst into Sandy Hook Elementary School. Law enforcement officials say Lanza used a Bushmaster semiautomatic rifle to kill the children. He shot himself with a Glock 10-millimeter handgun, and also carried a Sig Sauer pistol.
Stopped and restarted Like other retailers, Wal-Mart stopped selling many weapons from 1994 to 2004, when a federal assault weapons ban was in effect. When the ban was allowed to expire, weapons returned to many store shelves. Protesters accused Wal-Mart of reneging on a vow to keep assault weapons off its shelves after the ban expired. “We have been purposeful about striking the right balance between serving our customers that are hunters and sportsmen and ensuring that we sell firearms in the most responsible manner possible,” said Wal-Mart spokeswoman Ashley Hardie in response to the protesters’ demands.
Exceeds requirements She said the company, for instance, does not sell handguns in the continental U.S., does not sell high-capacity magazines as an accessory, does not sell firearms online, and sells only sporting rifles at less than one-third of WalMart stores, “primarily where there are large concentrations of hunters and sportsmen.” The retailer also has cameras to videotape sales of firearms in its stores and “exceeds the current legal requirements” on background checks of arms purchasers, among other measures, said Hardie. “This is an issue we take seriously and have taken a number of steps above and beyond what the law requires to help ensure we are being responsible,” she said.
Anita Kumar, David Lightman and Lindsay Wise (McClatchy Newspapers), and Tina Susman (Los Angeles Times/ MCT) all contributed to this report.
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
‘I really thought life would have gotten better’ Desperation remains three years after Haiti earthquake BY JACQUELINE CHARLES THE MIAMI HERALD (MCT)
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — The narrow corridor home deep inside the mountain was supposed to be a new beginning, a place where Alexandra Simin could have a fresh shot at life after nearly two years of sleeping on a dirt floor in a fetid tent city. But 14 months after trading in her small tent for the one-room cinder block shack in the hillside slum called “Jalousie” or Jealousy, the mother of two and survivor of Haiti’s catastrophic Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake was again without a home. “I always thought that after a year things would be easier; there would be jobs in the country and I could find work,” said Simin, 25, as she faced her second eviction in as many months. “I really thought life would have gotten better.” Three years after the monstrous 7.0-magnitude quake, and a year after the Haitian government, with help from the international community, began emptying the most visible tent cities and returning dwellers to neighborhoods, the number of displaced quake victims living on public plazas and roadways has dropped significantly. But in a little-noticed consequence of the removals, many have been forced to return to the capital’s teeming slums. That’s a far cry from what the Haitian government and the international community, which has spent billions here, promised in the quake’s aftermath — to create jobs, build homes and construct a “new Haiti.”
PATRICK FARRELL/MIAMI HERALD/MCT
Alexandra Simin, 25, walks through Jalousie, a mountaintop slum community overlooking Petionville. Untold numbers of former tent dwellers, victims of the Jan. 12, 2010 earthquake, have taken up residence in the slum after being apart of a government rental subsidy program.
What change? The situation has caused some in the international community to question whether the focus should have been creating jobs rather than housing. “You’re not going to get a nice housing estate even in a poor area by creating jobs because people will put up what they like and make decisions about how they use their money,” said Nigel Fisher, who heads the United Nation’s humanitarian operations in Haiti. “But in the end, at least, they are not being dependent. They are making their own decisions. I think that’s really important. It’s something we missed.” In trying to rebuild, Simin and other former tent dwellers say stitching back their tattered lives is proving to be as elusive as the lofty promises. They say little has changed since the quake as poverty deepens, reconstruction stalls, political paralysis take root and cholera and chronic disasters become the norm. “The country is becoming more and more difficult to live in,” said Simin, sitting outside a friend’s oneroom home, where she sleeps on the floor with her two children. “We haven’t seen change. People have problems with food, problems with schools, problems with housing. Once you have a problem with finding a place to sleep, you just might as well just die. There’s no living.”
More money problems Simin and others say it’s clear that neither the government nor the international community had a plan for what would happen to them once they left the tent cities. Their growing sense of despair comes as the aid groups that flooded Haiti in the aftermath either cut programs or leave as funds dry up — and as half of the promised $5.3 billion in donor pledges remain outstanding.
PATRICK FARRELL/MIAMI HERALD/MCT
Jean Guerrier Sanon, 27, stands in the hallway of the building in which he lives. He’s renting a bedroom for $500 with the help of the international community as part of a Haitian government relocation program. Meanwhile, Haiti is facing even tougher economic times, according to a recent evaluation by the International Monetary Fund: rising food prices have helped increase inflation almost 2 percent since June to 6.8 percent; the forecast growth in gross domestic product, once projected at 7.8 percent, is now down to 2.5 percent because of the government’s slow execution of public projects; and a spring drought followed by two storms this hurricane season created more than $170 million in crop losses and put an additional 1.5 million Haitians in danger of hunger.
‘Country is broke’ Before the quake, Pauline Louis and her husband Wilbert Jean-Louis scraped a living on his carpentry skills and her sidewalk sales of stylish, secondhand American clothes known as pepe. The money wasn’t much but it was just enough to keep a roof over their heads and care for Louis’ two children from a previous relationship. Even Jean-Louis’ handmade wooden china cabinets and delicately crafted headboards, which sold before the quake, sit for months on a sidewalk along a busy Petionville street. “There is no money in the streets; no activity. The country is broke,” he said
one recent afternoon, carving a flower on a new headboard at the nameless sidewalk workshop. For months, the couple have been struggling, trying to come up with the $325 to keep their tiny oneroom apartment, also in the Jalousie slum, for another year. Initially, the owner asked $625 but Louis, a tough negotiator, got him to drop his price. The place isn’t much. There’s a small cooking area off the main room where the couple eat, sleep and receive visitors. The inside walls are painted pink; a wall unit, made by JeanLouis, holds an old model 13-inch television and a few stuffed animals while another is stacked with ceramic dishes and cups. The couple’s twin bed doubles as a couch.
Job or house? Jean-Louis’ 22-year-old brother, Gerald, and Louis’ 6-year-old cousin, Tracey, whom she recently took in after the girl’s parents died, also live with them — along with the family’s pet cat. The living conditions are far different from tent living, Louis said. But with no steady income, and only the goodwill of her landlord keeping a roof over their heads, she wonders whether she would have been better with a job instead of the house.
“We were happy when (the International Organization for Migration) came to remove us. We were living under stress,” she said. “But what I see is that we’ve traded one stress for another stress.” Francois Desruisseaux, IOM’s program manager for camp management, said surveys showed that while living in the camps, people considered shelter as their main priority. But after relocating to neighborhoods, shelter soon becomes a fourth priority. Finding a job, followed by food and education, become their top concerns. While the average camp resident received $500 in rental subsidy, they also received an additional $150 for moving and other expenses to help them out. “Considering many Haitians make barely $2 a day, this can represent close to five months’ salary for some,” Desruisseaux said. “We believe the rental subsidy is a much better situation than living in a camp and returning (homeless quake victims) to their preearthquake environment; in some cases in a better situation than they were prior to the earthquake.”
year’s rent, Simin invested the rest. She bought $37.50 in candy to resell in hopes of having money come in. She also paid $50 toward her daughters’, ages 5 and 8, school fees. But three months later, school administrators sent the girls home after she failed to come up with the remaining $275, Simin said. Days after Christmas, she hit rock bottom again: the friend and fellow quake victim whom she had temporarily moved in with was packing her things to move out on New Year’s Day after also being unable to renew her lease. “If she leaves, I have no choice but to also leave,” said Simin, who recently moved in with another friend, also living in Jalousie. An ongoing IOM-led evaluation of returnees won’t be finalized until the end of this month. But preliminary results involving 500 families show that all remain in “some sort of accommodations.” In many cases though, they have either doubled up, moved back in with families or found cheaper housing, those familiar with the survey said.
Housing woes continue
About 300,000 homeless
After IOM paid the $437 to her new landlord for a
Those involved in the government’s rebuilding
efforts, particularly President Michel Martelly’s relocation and revitalization of six camps attached to 16 neighborhoods, say progress has been made. In the last few months, the government has opened a new state university and industrial park in the north, where it also unveiled a new asphalt runway to accommodate large carriers. The quake-damaged National Palace was finally demolished, and Haiti celebrated the opening of a new international airport arrival lounge and a privately-financed luxury hotel in the capital. The number of homeless quake residents, which peaked at 1.5 million shortly after the disaster left more than 300,000 dead, has dropped to 347,284 as of December, IOM said. Since the government launched its returnee program in 2011, some 635,322 people have been helped by the international community to move out of the camps through either rental subsides, transitional shelters or home repairs, IOM said. “We know there are still camps, but as you drive on a regular day you don’t see much camps,” said Clement Belizaire, director of the government’s camp relocation and neighborhood rehabilitation program who puts the number of quake homeless at 290,000. “The first priority of the government was public squares; the second was schools and then sports infrastructures. We cleared all the major public structures; we cleared all the major sports infrastructures; we cleared all of the major schools.” But with 450 camp sites still dotting Haiti’s hilly terrain, challenges remain. Tackling them, humanitarians say, requires Haiti to not only prioritize and put in strong, accountable government institutions, but to make the transition from short-term humanitarian aid to more sustainable development. “You cannot continue to implement stopgap measures to deal with specific short-term issues,” said George Ngwa, spokesman for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs here. “Haiti goes from one emergency to another. Every time it appears, we are making progress. A disaster takes us back to zero — or minus.”
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
Time for Blacks to do for themselves So-called Negro leaders are at it again! This time, the beef is about who was appointed and who was not appointed to president Obama’s second term cabinet. Half of the self-appointed so-called leaders are upset because most persons recently hired by Obama are White men. The others are mad because they feel that anyone that says anything, right or wrong, about the president’s decisions are traitors to their race. The many “teachers and preachers” claiming to lead and represent us don’t have a clue about what the president of the United States is, what the president does and what he is supposed to do. The main thing the president is supposed to do is
Lucius Gantt THE GANTT REPORT
create and/or maintain a domestic and worldwide environment where rich White folk can continue to make money.
Putting Blacks first The first day that Barack Obama says that he is a Black man that loves Black and African people and he will put Black people’s needs and desires first to the demise of the U.S. and world’s financial, industrial and military complex he will be replaced as president. He might even be hurt for
making such a statement. Negro leaders get it right. Obama doesn’t consult you when he makes Cabinet appointments but I imagine he does consult with White government advisors, White political advisors, White Wall Street bankers and White friends. Don’t read this column and think it is a swipe at the president. Obama is what he is. When he is in the Oval office he is the president for everybody and not the “Black president”.
Whites benefit more If you want to know who Obama will help the most while serving as president just figure out who contributed the most money, not votes, to his campaign. In other words, White individuals and White business-
VISUAL VIEWPOINT: AMERICAN LOVE AFFAIR
es contributed more to his reelection and those same people will benefit more from his presidential actions and decisions. If you don’t know what is going on, let The Gantt Report explain. What Black people have right now in the United States is new neo-colonialism! New neo-colonialism in the Black community is the geopolitical practice of using capitalism, business globalization, and cultural imperialism to control the Black community, in lieu of either direct police control or indirect political control. The term neo-colonialism was coined by the Ghanaian politician Kwame Nkrumah, to describe the socio-economic and political control that can be exercised economically, linguistically, and culturally, whereby promotion of the culture, ideas, activities
and behaviors of the Office of the president and the power brokers of the United States, facilitates the cultural, educational and social ideology and philosophy of the colonized Black communities, and thus opens the Black community politics and economies to the beast bankers and multinational corporations of the neo-colonial political operatives.
ate their own jobs and stop begging for political appointments. Black American communities are dominated by Whites. More often than not they own the stores, they own the housing, they decide the practiced religions, they hold many of the political offices and they control the police that control Black streets. You can support president Obama if you desire Beast bankers in but support yourself more charge by fighting new neo-coI don’t care who sleeps lonialism in your city and in the White House, beast bankers run America and your community! the world. Buy Gantt’s book “Beast President Obama is doing just as good or better Too: Dead Man Writjob than previous presi- ing’ at any major book dents but don’t even dream store and contact Lucius about the president being a at www.allworldconsul21st century “Django” that tants.net. Click on this story at www.flcourier. will punish evil people. Oppressed and exploited com to write your own reBlack people have to cre- sponse.
Peace needed among turmoil, confusion
RANDALL ENOS, CAGLE CARTOONS
Random thoughts of a free Black mind, v. 165 Lance Armstrong – In the now-infamous Nike anti-doping commercial, Armstrong answers his critics who say he’s “on drugs” after winning seven Tour de France bicycle races by saying, “I’m on my bike busting my ass six hours a day.” That was one of the few truths in a professional career that was built on a mountain of lies. I’m not naive. Drugs – hormones, stimulants, steroids, etc. – are part of almost every professional sport. It’s Armstrong’s years of denials and his actions thereafter that frost me the most. After Armstrong defrauded organizations like the U.S. Post Office, Nike, AnheuserBusch, and Radio Shack out of millions of sponsorship dollars, he hired high-priced lawyers who pimped the legal system by threatening and/or suing people who told the truth about his doping activities, but who couldn’t afford to defend themselves. Armstrong couldn’t lie, get paid and keep his mouth shut. To protect his bank account, he destroyed the finances, careers, and reputations of people around him who blew the whistle on him. Ask anyone who’s been in a courtroom in a defendant’s chair when he or she has done nothing wrong how that feels. Talk to any person who was innocent but pled “guilty” to avoid harsher punishment. Converse with any business owner who settled a frivolous lawsuit rather than fight
quick takes from #2: straight, no chaser
Charles W. Cherry II, Esq. PUBLISHER
and go broke. Armstrong’s actions make him a malicious fraud. His LIVESTRONG (WinWrong? DopeStrong?) anti-cancer foundation doesn’t justify or change the fact that he’s a lying hypocrite and a pathologically selfish, egomaniacal human being – much like the Wall Street “banksters” who crashed America’s financial system, have never seen the inside of a jail cell, and are still getting paid. Enough enabling! No mercy! Lance Armstrong committed perjury and abused the legal system. The federal government should sue and prosecute him, just like the Wall Street fraudsters should have been sued and prosecuted. Oh, I forgot. The banksters still run the federal government and Wall Street. And this is the Obama administration we are talking about...
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Charles W. Cherry, Sr. (1928-2004), Founder Julia T. Cherry, Senior Managing Member, Central Florida Communicators Group, LLC Dr. Glenn W. Cherry, Cassandra CherryKittles, Charles W. Cherry II, Managing Members Dr. Glenn W. Cherry, Chief Executive Officer Charles W. Cherry II, Esq., Publisher Dr. Valerie Rawls-Cherry, Human Resources Jenise Morgan, Senior Editor Lynnette Garcia, Marketing Consultant/Sales Linda Fructuoso, Marketing Consultant/Sales, Circulation Angela VanEmmerik, Creative Director Chicago Jones, Eugene Leach, Louis Muhammad, Lisa Rogers-Cherry, Circulation James Harper, Andreas Butler, Ashley Thomas, Staff Writers Delroy Cole, Kim Gibson, Photojournalists MEMBER National Newspaper Publishers Association Society of Professional Journalists Florida Press Association Associated Press National Newspaper Association
A familiar verse penned from the gospel writer Luke, said the angels proclaimed at the birth of Christ “Peace on Earth good will toward men” (Luke 2:14). This powerful verse has special meaning now as the entire nation is still reeling from the trauma of the Sandy Hook Elementary school Massacre. More than anything else the word Peace beacons, welcomes, and comforts us at a moment in our history where there is so much turmoil and confusion. We truly need peace. In the original Koine Greek in which that verse was written, “Peace on Earth to people of goodwill” or “peace on earth toward men and women who have won God’s Favor” are both accurate translation of the original text. The difference may seem subtle, but the key idea is that peace is not an entitlement. Peace is the by-product of living a life rich in character. Peace according to a more complete understanding of Luke’s account, is the outgrowth of a lifestyle of compassion, cooperation, and community. Peace on an individual level is justice on a collective level.
Guns a symptom During this holiday season where there is so much unrest, I believe that this brand of peace remedies so many problems. The hot topic of the day is the arms debate. But we should not be fooled
DR. DAN COLLINS TRICEEDNEYWIRE.COM
into thinking that the symptom is the problem. Guns are the symptom. But the culture of violence is the core problem; it’s in the movies we watch, the video games we purchase, violence is a pervasive presence in our culture. But if we borrow some wisdom from Luke the physician, we are encouraged to step into a culture of peace.
Afraid of each other
are addressing causes enormous confusion and chaos for children and parents alike. When children are assaulted and killed in a school, many conflicting emotions are stirred up. For example, an extreme reaction could be “school phobia”, that is, your child not wanting to go to school at all out of fear that they would be gunned down too. As parent your role is crucial in helping your child cope with this situation. Affinity’s approach is the LEARN Model (© 2012) of responding to violence: L – Listen rather than lecture. Follow the content your child gives you to avoid overloading them with “too much information” E – Encourage your child’s emotional expression about the crisis. A – Accept and expect a range of feelings your child might share. R – Recognize and redirect useless emotions (i.e., panic, worry, rage and despair) toward the healing emotions such as empathy, compassion and hopefulness, etc. N – Nurture your child through the crisis with reassuring words and gentle affection.
It’s a peace that can only come about if we are willing to be courageous enough to have a dialogue about the real issues. We are violent in part because we are afraid of each other, and we are afraid of each other because we don’t know each other. And we don’t know each other because we rarely take the time. Let’s receive today that angelic invitation-“Peace on Earth, to people of goodwill.” It can transform us if we work at it. A practical application of this peace is being able to talk about violence with our Dr. Dan Collins is vice children, especially regard- president of Behavioral ing an event like the Sandy Health at Affinity Health Hook massacre. & Medical Systems. Click on this story at www.flEmotions stirred up courier.com to write your A crisis like the one we own response.
National Urban League launches ‘Jobs Rebuild America’ initiative The December jobs report has confirmed what urban America has known for a very long time: The fierce urgency of now is overtaking the slow pace of the economic recovery and continuing partisan gridlock in Washington. The recent jobs report reveals that 155,000 jobs were created last month and overall unemployment remained at a steady and still too high rate of 7.8 percent. But the unemployment picture in urban America tells a decidedly different story. African-American unemployment, which has hovered at twice the national average for decades, has now climbed to 14 percent and the Hispanic jobless rate of 9.6 percent also continues to exceed the national average. Despite the efforts of the Congressional Black Caucus and other progressive voices in Congress, the jobs crisis in urban America has reached emergency proportions and is tearing at the economic and social fabric of many communities. That is why the National
MARC H. MORIAL TRICE EDNEY WIRE
Urban League announced last week a new $70 million “Jobs Rebuild America” initiative designed to employ, educate and empower communities that have been hardest hit by the Great Recession. Our campaign is a twopronged effort. First, through a $70 million public-private expansion of existing Urban League job training, education and business development programs, we intend to directly assist thousands of jobseekers and entrepreneurs in dozens of cities over the next five years.
We also call for passage of targeted jobs legislation and a responsible fiscal plan and deficit reduction initiatives that do not exacerbate the unemployment crisis.
Number one priority
For this expanded effort, we have put together a powerful coalition of public and private partners who have pledged their expertise and other resources. They include, the U.S. Department of Labor, Nationwide Insurance, Everest College, Pitney Bowes, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, Stonehenge, UPS, State Farm, Target, Best Buy, the U.S. Department of Justice, AT&T, Time Warner, Chevron, BP and the New York Stock Exchange. For a full description of the Jobs Rebuild America Investing in youth The second component Initiative visit www.nul.org. of the Jobs Rebuild America Marc H. Morial, former initiative is a public engagemayor of New Orleans, is ment campaign to increase pressure on Washington to president and CEO of the invest in the education and National Urban League. skills enhancement of at- Click on this story at www. risk youth and disadvan- flcourier.com to write your own response. taged young adults.
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’ ”
‘I Have A Dream’ Here is the entire text of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s ‘I Have A Dream’ speech delivered on Aug. 28, 1963, at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C. I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation. Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity. But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we've come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.
America’s promissory note In a sense, we've come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, – yes, Black men as well as White men – would be guaranteed the "unalienable Rights" of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check – a check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so, we've come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.
Now is the time
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gives his famous speak during the Civil Rights March on Washington, Aug. 28, 1963.
We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of ‘Now.’ This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children. It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. And those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.
terness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all White people, for many of our White brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood and robbed of their dignity by a sign stating: "For Whites Only." We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will
No bitterness But there is something that I must say to my people, who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bit-
not be satisfied until "justice rolls state sweltering with the heat down like waters, and righteous- of injustice, sweltering with the ness like a mighty stream." heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. Go back I have a dream that my four litI am not unmindful that some of you have come here tle children will one day live in out of great trials and tribula- a nation where they will not be tions. Some of you have come judged by the color of their skin fresh from narrow jail cells. And but by the content of their charsome of you have come from ar- acter. I have a dream today! eas where your quest for freedom I have a dream that one day, left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans his lips dripping with the words of creative suffering. Continue of "interposition" and "nullificato work with the faith that un- tion” – one day right there in Alaearned suffering is redemptive. bama, little Black boys and Black Go back to Mississippi, go back girls will be able to join hands to Alabama, go back to South with little White boys and White Carolina, go back to Georgia, go girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today! back to Louisiana, go back to the I have a dream that one day evslums and ghettos of our northern cities – knowing that some- ery valley shall be exalted, and how this situation can and will every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley be made plain, and the crooked of despair, I say to you today, my places will be made straight; "and the glory of the Lord shall friends. And so even though we face be revealed and all flesh shall see the difficulties of today and to- it together." This is our hope, and morrow, I still have a dream. It this is the faith that I go back to is a dream deeply rooted in the the South with. With this faith, we will be able American dream. I have a dream that one day to hew out of the mountain of dethis nation will rise up and live spair a stone of hope. With this out the true meaning of its creed: faith, we will be able to transform "We hold these truths to be self- the jangling discords of our naevident, that all men are created tion into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we equal." I have a dream that one day on will be able to work together, to the red hills of Georgia, the sons pray together, to struggle togethof former slaves and the sons of er, to go to jail together, to stand former slave owners will be able up for freedom together, knowto sit down together at the table ing that we will be free one day. And this will be the day – this of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day will be the day when all of God's even the state of Mississippi, a children will be able to sing with
new meaning: My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim's pride, From every mountainside, let freedom ring! And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania. Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California. But not only that – Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia. Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee. Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring. And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, Black men and White men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual: Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!
Source: http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/ mlkihaveadream.htm
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
Oath of office do-over to happen this time too BY LAURA GREEN PALM BEACH POST (MCT)
WASHINGTON — By the time the sun sets on Inauguration Day, Barack Obama will have sworn the oath of office four times — more than almost any other president. Obama became president in front of a recordbreaking crowd of about 2 million outside the U.S. Capitol in 2009. But because Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts flubbed a line, Obama and Roberts met in the White House Map Room the next day to redo the oath. Roberts and Obama will once again meet at a more intimate swearing-in at the start of Obama’s second term. This time, though, the calendar is to blame. The 20th Amendment to the Constitution, ratified in 1933, declared that the president’s term of office begins on Jan. 20. Because it falls on a Sunday in 2013, Obama will swear the oath that day followed by the public, ceremonial event on Monday.
The White House first declared no need for a doover. The mistake was oh so slight. Obama interrupted Roberts midway through the
opening line, in which the president repeats his name and solemnly swears. That seemed to throw off Roberts. He then misplaced the word “faithfully.”
Instead of saying “faithfully execute the office of president of the United States,” Roberts placed “faithfully” at the end of that phrase. Roberts tried
to correct himself, but Obama repeated it in the same wrong order. News accounts said Roberts did not have a copy of the oath on hand.
The next day Roberts and Obama met before a few reporters for a second try. A White House photograph was later released.
Rare occasion Since the first Jan. 20 inauguration in 1937, that date has fallen seven times on a Sunday, said Robert Watson, a presidential scholar and professor at Lynn University in Boca Raton. Many Americans may not realize that the Jan. 21 inauguration is essentially for show, and that Obama will already have been sworn in as president. “In the big scheme of things, this kind of thing is not going to be remembered, except as a piece of historical trivia or curiosity,” said professor Daniel Klinghard, of the College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts. “The thing that will be remembered is this speech.”
Conspiracy theory History watchers may be talking decades later, however, about the intertwined relationship of Roberts and Obama. The two share a fractious connection, which started long before the mistake at the 2009 inauguration. Some conspiracy theorists claimed it was an attempt to delegitimize Obama’s presidency. In 2005, then-Sen. Obama refused to support Robert’s confirmation to the high court. Little did Obama know that the chief justice would later salvage his signature legislative achievement, in the closely watched Affordable Care Act case decided last year. While the 2008 election called to mind a brief moment of hope among some Americans that Obama could unite the country against growing partisanship, it was also a period in which a fringe of the American public questioned whether Obama had a legitimate claim on the Oval Office. “Obama worried and his attorneys worried that because there was so much conspiracy and hate toward Obama — ‘He wasn’t born in the (United States), he’s not a citizen, he’s a Muslim’ — they decide that this could be an issue as to whether he could be a legitimate president because he did not take the technical oath because Roberts read it wrong,” Watson said. At the time, the notion that a few misspoken words could call into question the presidency was not only a fringe thought.
Do-over demanded After the swearing-in, Fox News anchor Chris Wallace said on air: “We’re wondering here whether or not Barack Obama in fact is the president of the United States. They had a kind of garbled oath. It’s just conceivable that this will end up going to the courts.”
- Dr. martin luther king, jr.
macy’s is proud to salute the legacy of
dr. martin luther king, jr.
we honor the man who taught the world that faith in each other is our greatest strength.
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Holmes named head football coach at FAMU See page B2
SUN COAST / TAMPA BAY
January 18 - January 24, 2013
SHARING BLACK LIFE, STATEWIDE
Actress Quvenzhane Wallis makes Oscar history See page B5
As the nation prepares for the second inauguration of President Barack Obama, the Florida Courier takes a look back at the historic first event on Jan. 20, 2009.
FLORIDA COURIER FILE PHOTOS
Above are some of the many who braved the frigid weather and crammed into the National Mall for the Jan. 20, 2009 inauguration of President Obama.
reluctant witness to history
Editor’s note: Florida Courier Publisher Charles W. Cherry II attended the 2009 inauguration activities with his family – wife Lisa; daughter Chayla, then 8; son Charles III (nicknamed ‘Wig’), then 4; and mother-in-law Mamie Gooden-Lee. Here is an excerpt from a two-part column he wrote about attending the inauguration.
Florida Courier Publisher Charles W. Cherry II holds son Wig, then 4, while daughter Chayla, then 8, stands by.
“So help me God.” Even on our deathbeds, many of us will remember exactly where we were when Barack Obama took what he called “a most sacred oath” that was slightly botched by the chief justice of the U. S. Supreme Court. I’ll be no different. I’ll always remember that I was in the Smithsonian Institute Castle, just off the National Mall, rubbing my eight-year old daughter Chayla’s feet, which felt like size 7 Popsicles.
Inauguration Day We are up at 3:30 a.m., leave our hotel at 4:30 a.m. and arrive at the National Mall at 6:15 a.m. There are already hundreds of thousands of people there, and we get through without being stopped or searched, despite the fact that everyone was told that security would be extremely tight. (Security was uneven, at best.) We stake out a spot about a half-mile away from the Capitol, which is as close as we can get. The group we sit with has portable chairs, blankets, sleeping bags – everything but a portable grill for tailgating. It’s 20 degrees with wind gusts of 5 to 15 miles per hour, and the temperature never rises any higher than that for the entire day. Wig goes into hibernation almost immediately. Chayla, the trooper that she is, tries her best to stay warm. We wait for almost five hours for the ceremony to begin. I’m moving around every way I can – doing the Electric Slide, the Jerk, the Pony, the Cupid Shuffle, the Running Man, the Cabbage Patch, fraternity marches, Zulu dances – everything I can think of. Eventually, I take the opposite approach and do the Penguin Stand: head tucked into my chest, back relaxed, my body as drawn up and compressed as possible to provide as little surface contact with the gusting wind as possible. That worked, because I started to zone out and get lost in my thoughts; time seemed to go by much quicker. The organizers played a tape of the entire “We Are One” concert, which got the
A young boy shows off the Obama T-shirts he was selling on the National Mall during the 2009 inauguration. crowd moving to the music. Garth Brooks got the whole Mall shouting during his set. Then at about 10:45 a.m., the ceremony started with live music, celebs and politicians arriving on the platform.
Cold feet Just before Obama got there, Chayla said she could no longer feel her feet. She had been standing and occasionally sitting or laying there for almost five hours. So at 11:45 a.m., I took Wig and her into the Smithsonian Museum Castle, just off the Mall, to warm up. I had to push through at least 100 people standing shoulder-to-shoulder on the Mall (we were in the middle of the crowd) to get to the street – “Excuse me; pardon me; sorry; gotta come through.” By the time we got through the crowd, people (including me) were booing George W. Bush as he appeared on the platform. When we stepped into the warm Smithsonian, it looked like a big-city emergency room packed with mostly Black people, young and old, a few Hispanics, and even fewer Whites who had to get out of the brutal cold. Folks were sitting, standing, laying everywhere. Wig, Chayla and I took a seat on the floor, where I rubbed Chayla’s feet for about 15 minutes before they returned to their normal temperature. Meanwhile, paramedics were evalu-
Tallahassee Mayor John Marks and his wife, Jane, attended Florida’s 2009 Sunshine and Stars inauguration ball in D.C.
The Tallahassee Boys Choir performed at Florida’s Sunshine and Stars inauguration ball in 2009.
ating a senior citizen sitting next to us for hypothermia and possible frostbite. There was no TV in the building, so we had no idea what was happening outside. I bumped into another Floridian, my first-grade classmate Lucy Stewart Desmore of Daytona Beach and her husband, who kept the kids while I peeped outside. There, I heard Dr. Joseph Lowery’s benediction: “…when Black won’t have to get back, when Brown can stick around…” I missed it all. So I’ll let Lisa tell you what happened:
stand down front or that it was 20-something degrees (not including the wind chill) didn’t matter. What was important was that our first African-American president was being sworn into office and that our lives would forever be positively changed because of it.
Lisa’s reflections As the time drew closer to the swearing in, my emotions ran the gamut. I felt thrilled just to be there. My body trembled with excitement – maybe it was the freezing cold air. I felt the need to cry and shout “Hallelujah!” and give God the glory that was due to Him for making this amazing event possible. During the ceremony, I laughed. I cried. I shouted. I did the “holy dance.” I screamed. I hugged. I slapped high fives with total strangers who were standing close by. I was on an emotional high. The fact that I didn’t have a ticket to
Publisher’s final thoughts Despite my initial reluctance, I’m glad I went. It was a fantastic experience, a larger, multicultural and multiracial version of the 1995 Million Man March and its 10-year anniversary, which I also attended. There was unity, brotherhood, tolerance, and hope among all the people I met at a level I have never witnessed before. Will the Obama presidency represent a fork in the historical road with regard to Dr. King’s dream of true American freedom, justice and equality? Only time will tell. But I can tell you that it was great to be just another American – not a Black American man – for just a few hours.
During the ceremony, I laughed. I cried. I shouted. I did the “holy dance.” I screamed. I hugged. I slapped high fives with total strangers who were standing close by. I was on an emotional high.
CALENDAR & SPORTS
ful,” commented Derek Horne, FAMU’s Director of Athletics. Dr. Larry Robinson, FAMU’s interim president, stated, “I’ve been involved in a lot of searches in many different roles in my 16 years at FAMU but nothing was like this. All of our candidates were interesting. We thought that Holmes was the best choice. What impressed me most about him is that he talked about developing the whole person in these young men and taking a personal role in making it happen.
Building a winner Earl Holmes
Holmes on FAMU’s football program: ‘The future looks bright for us’ BY ANDREAS BUTLER FLORIDA COURIER
Florida A&M University named Earl Holmes its head football coach on Jan. 11 during a press conference on the school’s campus. Holmes served as the interim coach for the final two games of the past football season going 1-1 after Joe Taylor retired Nov. 8 during his fifth season. He was the defensive coordinator under Taylor for two seasons and an assistant for the past five years at the school. The 39-year old Holmes signed a fouryear contract with a base salary of $200,000 per season, which still must be approved by the school’s board of trustees. “I am very appreciative and very humbled at this moment. I owe this university a lot. The reason why I owe FAMU my life is that I not only made it to the NFL and lived my dream, but I had longevity doing it,” responded Holmes.
‘Right man for the job’ The FAMU administration feels that they have the right man for the job in Holmes who beat out two other finalists in former college coaches John Eason and John Hendrick. “We have the right man for the job. We have a lot of energy from our fan base and supporters. This is the right time for us to grab this momentum and help Coach Holmes and this program to be success-
Making the Rattlers a winner in the classroom as well as the football field is the goal for Holmes. “We will graduate on time and do what it takes to be successful in the classroom. The kids are students before athletes. If they cannot be trusted in the classroom, they cannot be trusted on the field,” said Holmes. FAMU went 4-7 overall and 4-4 in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) in 2012. The team is only two years from a share of the MEAC (shared in 2010 with Bethune-Cookman and South Carolina State), but Holmes believes that his team isn’t far off. “We are going to win a lot of games. The future looks bright for us. It’s a matter of mindset. I felt like we had some scoring opportunities last year but fell short. We are looking for a championship in a year or two,” expressed Holmes. From his time as interim coach until now, Holmes has been at work building the program. “The coaching staff has stayed together working and moving forward. We signed four JUCO transfers. I am working on filling the coaching staff. I will bring experience from high school to the NFL. Our coaches will be passionate. I wanted to keep the program going and leave it in better shape rather or not I got the job,” commented Holmes.
Standout player Holmes was a standout player at FAMU from 1992 to 1995. Nicknamed the “Hitman,’’ he still owns school career records for total tackles (509), solo tackles (309) and assisted tackles (200). During his senior campaign in 1995, Holmes set single-season school records for total tackles (171) and solo tackles (103). He received two All-American honors as a Rattler in 1994 and 1995. Holmes was drafted in the fourth round of the NFL draft in 1996 and spent 10 years in the league. He played for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1996 to 2001), Cleveland Browns (2002) and Detroit Lions (2003 to 2005).
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
MLK Events St. Petersburg: The 28th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drum Major for Justice Battle of the Bands and Drumline Extravaganza will be held Jan. 20 at 4 p.m. at St. Petersburg’s Tropicana Field. See the BethuneCookman University Marching Wildcats and 12 other high-stepping marching bands from high schools and colleges in various states. Jacksonville: The MLK GospelFest featuring CeCe Winans will be held Jan. 21 from 1 p.m. - 4 p.m. at Metropolitan Park. $15. Jacksonville: The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Foundation presents the annual MLK parade themed “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” Jan. 21 at 10 a.m. The route begins at the Federal Reserve Bank and travels to Metropolitan Park. St. Petersburg: The 28th Annual National MLK Drum Major for Justice Parade will be held Jan. 21 at 11 a.m. from MLK Street and Third Avenue South, proceeding along Central to the waterfront. Orlando: A “Negro Spiritual” concert featuring artists of word, song and dance will be held Jan. 18 at Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 535 W. Washington St. More information: 321-228-1689. Orlando: The 29th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. parade will be held Jan. 19 on Orange Avenue in downtown Orlando at 10 a.m. Eatonville: The town of Eatonville’s Martin Luther King Jr. parade and celebration will begin at 2 p.m. Jan. 19
on W. Kennedy Boulevard. Orlando: Volunteers are still needed for a variety of service projects for the “Hands On” Orlando’s 13th annual Martin Luther King, Jr. days of service taking place Jan. 19-21 around the city. Contact Chris Allen at 407-7408652 or www.mlkday.gov. Sanford: An MLK Interfaith religious observance will be held Jan. 20 at 3 p.m. at the Calvary Temple of Praise, 2020 McCracken Rd. More information: www.sanfordmlk.com. Orlando: The City of Orlando and Mayor Dyer’s Dr. MLK Jr. Commission will plant seedlings for civil rights and host a community cleanup Jan. 21 at 9 a.m. at the Rosemont Building, 5104 N. Orange Blossom Trail. Volunteers needed. More information: 407-246-3504 or 407-2462752. Ocoee: The City of Ocoee’s 7th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity Parade and Celebration “The Courage to Believe and Act,” will begin
at Citrus Elementary School, 67 N. Clarke Road at 10 a.m. and culminate at the Celebration at West Oaks Mall from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. More information: 407-905-3100. Sanford: The City of Sanford’s MLK parade will be held Jan. 21 at 10 a.m. beginning at Crooms Academy, 2200 Historic Goldsboro Blvd. A rally immediately following the parade will be held at Fort Mellon Park, 600 E. 1st St. More information: www. sanfordmlk.com. Winter Park: The Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Vigil will be held Jan. 21 at 6 p.m. at Rollins College, Knowles Memorial Chapel, 1000 Hold Ave. More information: 407-691-1240. Winter Park: The Unity Heritage Festival will be held Jan. 20 from 1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. and Jan. 21 from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. at Shady Park, 721 W. New England Ave. The festival will feature gospel artists and family events. More information: 407-599-3275.
I AM POSITIVE.
Educating. inspiring. changing pErcEption. People with HIV are fathers, grandmothers, friends and neighbors. They are people you pass on the street and people you meet. And they have one important characteristic in common with us all: they are human beings. The Faces of HIV project offers an intimate look at Florida residents living with HIV and AIDS through captivating portraits, insightful interviews and poignant journal writing. To watch their stories, read their journals and to view the mobile art exhibit schedule, visit wemakethechange.com/faces.
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JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
A Life Remembered Celebrating the legacy of civil rights leader, Martin Luther King Jr.
By Stacey Hollenbeck McClatchy-Tribune
he Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. made his mark on history during the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. Motivated by his faith, King fought against the oppression of his fellow African-Americans by protesting segregation. His efforts to combat the injustices were met with hostility and hatred, and eventually led to his early death. But King’s drive to achieve harmony among the races led to the desegregation of the country and set America on the path toward racial equality.
Coretta Scott King, pictured here in 2003.
History of the day In 1986, nearly 18 years after his assassination, Americans celebrated the first Martin Luther King Day, a holiday established to pay homage to the preacher and inspirational leader. By this time, 17 states already had established holidays to honor Martin Luther King Jr. Coretta Scott King, his widow, worked hard to make the national holiday a reality. In 2003, the theme of Martin Luther King Day became, “Remember! Celebrate! Act! A day on, not a day off.” Although some professionals and students see the third Monday in January as a day off from work or school, others see it as an opportunity to volunteer their time. By working to improve their communities and help those in need, these Americans are acting on behalf of King’s generous spirit.
Through his eloquent speeches, sermons and writings, Martin Luther King Jr. inspired a nation. Here are a few of his most memorable and moving quotations:
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” — “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963 “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’” — King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, Aug. 28, 1963 “I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.” — King’s Nobel Prize acceptance speech, Dec. 10, 1964 “Like anybody, I would like to live a long life — longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And he’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over, and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land.” — King’s “I’ve Been to The Mountaintop” speech, April 3, 1968
Remember! Celebrate! Act! To truly celebrate Martin Luther King Day and honor its “Day of Service” theme, Americans can work to improve the lives of those in need or help out in their communities. Here are some ways to celebrate the day through community service: • Bring meals to homebound neighbors • Shovel elderly neighbors’ walkways • Serve meals at a homeless shelter To find a specific volunteer opportunity near you, go to www.mlkday.gov and click “Search for MLK Day Project.”
HOW MUCH DO YOU KNOW ABOUT DR. KING? How well do you know Martin Luther King Jr.? Test your knowledge about the civil rights leader whose legacy is celebrated every year. 1. How many children did King have? A. 1 B. 3 C. 4 D. 5 TONY SPINA/DETROIT FREE PRESS
2. How old was King when he was assassinated? A. 35 B. 39 C. 42 D. 50 3. King gave his famous, “I Have a Dream” speech Aug. 28, 1963, in front of what landmark in Washington, D.C.? A. The Washington Monument B. The White House C. The Jefferson Memorial D. The Lincoln Memorial
On June 23, 1963, civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. led more than 125,000 people on the “Walk to Freedom” down Woodward Avenue in Detroit. 4. King was named president of what influential civil rights group in 1957? A. Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee B. Southern Christian Leadership Conference C. Congress of Racial Equality D. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
5. Which president signed the bill establishing the third Monday of every January as the Martin Luther King Jr. national holiday? A. Ronald Reagan B. Lyndon B. Johnson C. John F. Kennedy D. George H.W. Bush Answers: 1-C; 2-B; 3-D; 4-B; 5-A.
Bernice King, daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. addresses the audience at the official ceremony of the MLK memorial at the the National Mall in Washington in October 2011.
BOOKS ABOUT THE CIVIL RIGHTS ICON Below are some resources for kids and teens who want to learn more about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his legacy. Good reads for kids • “A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr.” by David A. Adler and illustrated by Robert Casilla (Holiday House, $6.95) • “Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King Jr.” by Jean Marzollo (Scholastic Paperbacks, $5.99) • “My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” by Christine King Farris (Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, $17.95)
“My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.”
• “Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Doreen Rappaport (Jump At The Sun, $6.99)
Good reads for teens • “The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and edited by Clayborne Carson (Grand Central Publishing, $15.95) • “A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and edited by Peter Holloran and Clayborne Carson (Grand Central Publishing, $20) • “A Call to Conscience: The Landmark Speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” edited by Clayborne Carson and Kris Shepard (Grand Central Publishing, $14.95)
Illustration by EARL F. LAM/McClatchy Newspapers SOURCES: The King Center; documents from the King Research and Education Institute at Stanford University; www.mlkday.gov.
Martin Luther King Jr. devoted his life and career to protesting injustice. The following timeline identifies the times and places in King’s short life where he significantly influenced the civil rights movement and the future of America. • Jan. 15, 1929: Martin Luther King Jr. was born to the Rev. and Mrs. Martin Luther King Sr. in Atlanta, Ga. • 1947: King became licensed to preach. • June 18, 1953: King married Coretta Scott in Marion, Ala. Coretta Scott King continued her husband’s legacy as a civil rights activist until her death on Jan. 30, 2006. • June 5, 1955: King received a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Boston University. • Feb. 21, 1956: King and other demonstrators were arrested for participating in the Montgomery Bus Boycott. In December of that same year, the federal government ordered Montgomery buses to integrate. • Feb. 18, 1957: Martin Luther King Jr. appeared on the cover of Time magazine. • February 1959: King and his wife spent a month in India studying Mahatma Gandhi’s technique of nonviolence. King was an avid fan of nonviolence, a strategy where demonstrators, instead of using violence, protest peacefully. • Oct. 19, 1960: King was arrested for trespassing while taking part in a sit-in demonstration at a lunch counter in Atlanta, Ga. Sit-ins were nonviolent anti-segregation protests where Black demonstrators refused to leave restaurants and public places that were designated as White-only. • Dec. 16, 1961: While protesting segregation in Albany, Ga., King was arrested. • July 27, 1962: King was again arrested in Albany, Ga., after taking part in a prayer vigil. He was charged with failure to obey a police officer, obstructing the sidewalk and disorderly conduct. • April 16, 1963: After being arrested in Birmingham, Ala., for participating in a sit-in, King wrote “Letter From Birmingham Jail.” The letter is now one of King’s most famous statements about injustice. • Aug. 28, 1963: King delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech in front of the thousands who gathered for The March on Washington. Afterward, he and other Civil Rights leaders met with President John F. Kennedy in the White House. • Dec. 10, 1964: King received the Nobel Peace Prize. • Aug. 5, 1966: King was stoned in Chicago as he led a march through crowds of angry Whites. • April 4, 1968: King was shot while on the balcony of his second-floor motel room in Memphis, Tenn. He later died from a gunshot wound to the neck. A day earlier, King gave his final speech, “I’ve Been to the Mountain Top.” • March 9, 1969: James Earl Ray plead guilty to killing King and was sentenced to 99 years in the Tennessee State Penitentiary. • Jan. 20, 1986: The first national King holiday was observed.
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
‘Our God is Marching On’ ‘Revolutionary’
Library of Congress
Troopers charging marchers at the Pettus Bridge, Civil Rights Voting March in Selma, Alabama, March 7, 1965.
Selma march By March 1965, the nation’s new Civil Rights Act was on the books. But parts of the South were slow to embrace such a paradigm shift. In particular, in Selma, Ala., African Americans faced corruption, intimidation and gerrymandering on their way to becoming registered voters. Early that month, two weeks after the assassination of Malcolm X, King and more than 500 demonstrators left Selma on U.S. 80 en route to the state capital of Montgomery to tell Gov. George Wallace their rights had been infringed. But six blocks away, at the Edmund Pettus Bridge, state troopers and sheriff’s officers attacked the group with bull whips and tear gas. Prompted by media coverage of the assault, supporters from around the country descended on Selma two days later for a second try. But when King agreed to abide by a federal restraining order, the 2,000-plus marchers made the march purely symbolic, once again halting at the bridge. That day, after the curtailed demonstration, James Reeb, a Unitarian Universalist minister who had traveled from Boston for the march, was attacked outside a Selma bar. He died two days later. On March 21, King and thousands more took to the road again. For four days and 54 miles, they braved pouring rain, roadside naps and “trying hills,” finally arriving in Montgomery, a place often called “The Cradle of the Confederacy.” There — like Jonah in the belly of the whale, as one historical account put it — King faced an eventual throng of 25,000. “They told us we wouldn’t get here. And there were those who said that we would get here only over their dead bodies, but all the world today knows that we are here and we are standing before the forces of power in the state of Alabama saying, ‘We ain’t gon’ let nobody turn us around.’”
This is a Dr. King many may not recognize. “This was a culmination of so many things that were going on,” said Denee McCloud, former director of the Central District Forum for Arts & Ideas in Seattle. “He goes into so many things — where racism comes from, why we are here at this place. He talks about it in terms of class, of voting rights — which we’re still dealing with. There’s still people being disenfranchised. So in that way, I thought the speech was very powerful.” The passage above, with its potentially controversial linking of religion to oppression, is particularly noteworthy, Briggs says. “How very revolutionary and forward-thinking,” Briggs says. “How out of the box. He was just heroic. Somebody could read that as blasphemy — but he was courageous enough to be honest about the role that religion played.” The imagery of eating Jim Crow also struck a chord. “We talk about food and feeding our bodies, but he’s talking about feeding your mind and your souls and your heart,” she says. “ ... What we put in is kind of what we are. If we’re eating junk, our bodies are going to reflect that. And if your mind’s eating junk, you’re going to reflect that.”
Reaching out for unity They were on the move now. “Today I want to say to the people of America and the nations of the world, that we are not about to turn around. We are on the move now. “Yes, we are on the move and no wave of racism can stop us. We are on the move now. “The burning of our churches will not deter us. The bombing of our homes will not dissuade us. We are on the move now. ... “Like an idea whose time has come, not even the marching of mighty armies can halt us. We are moving to the land of freedom.” Despite the unnatural divisions King said had led to their circumstances, the speech breathes with hope. “At the end of the speech, he talks about that great day, not of the white man or the black man, but of man,” Briggs says. “He’s still holding out hope. ... He’s talking to all people, saying, we can come together. And that hope is always relevant.” A seemingly inconceivable task. King knew his weary followers would ask: How long? “How long? Not long, because ‘no lie can live forever.’ “How long? Not long, because ‘you shall reap what you sow.’ “... How long? Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
James H. Karales/Library of Congress
Americans, both white and black, marching from Selma, Ala., to Montgomery, Ala., in March 1965, in an effort to guarantee voting rights for all Americans.
Dr. Martin Luther King’s 1965 speech on voting rights resonates still By Marc Ramirez/Seattle Times
Listen. Listen — and you’ll hear the words of a man who was more than just an orator. Listen, and in those words you’ll hear not only yesterday’s struggles but the challenges of today. Nearly five decades ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered a speech under the most trying of circumstances, forging rays of hope amid tragedy and strife of landmark resonance. Through his words in “Our God is Marching On,” a much broader picture of King emerges, showing a civil-rights leader who, steeped in the African-American church experience, addressed issues ranging from segregation and poverty to nuclear proliferation and the Vietnam War. “All of those issues are relevant today,” said Timeca Briggs, who has directed a stage production of the famous speech in Seattle. “We saw in the last couple of elections problems with voting, with who gets to vote and who doesn’t.”
Bruce Davidson/Library of Congress
Demonstrators participating in a march for black suffrage.
In his conclusion, King offers nothing less than a spiritual call to action, McCloud said. “He’s taking us and shaking us and saying, ‘Listen, people — we’ve been on a long march where we’ve been physically attacked. We’re pushing though a certain moment. It doesn’t matter that the Civil Rights Act just passed — look what’s happened here.’ People were tired.” The battle, as he said, was in their hands. Against the current backdrop of an oft-divided, election-minded nation, the speech’s relevance remains. Listen, King was saying. Listen. And in doing so, he invoked a song with spiritual foundations but whose lyrics carried a powerful, universal reach. “How long? Not long, because: “Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord; “He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored; “He has loosed the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword; “His truth is marching on.” Within five months, President Johnson had signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
They were here to talk about voting rights. But King saw the injustice they faced was rooted in the post-Civil War period, and he took his listeners there with him, giving focus to a speech at once broad and epic. “There were no laws segregating the races then,” King said. But “toward the end of the Reconstruction era, something very significant happened,” he said. Segregation became a weapon used by Southern business interests threatened by the Populist Movement that had united both poor whites and African Americans. “If it may be said of the slavery era that the white man took the world and gave the Negro Jesus, then it may be said of the Reconstruction Era that the Southern aristocracy took the world and gave the poor white man Jim Crow. ... And when his wrinkled stomach cried out for the food that his empty pockets could not provide, he ate Jim Crow, a psychological bird that told him that no matter how bad off he was, at least he was a white man, better than the black man. ... “And his children, too, learned to Robert Knudsen/LBJ Library feed upon Jim Crow, their last outpost Lyndon B. Johnson signing the of psychological oblivion.” Voting Rights Act of 1965.
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
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william William Derrick III is a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity from West Virginia University. The Ohio native is a filmmaker currently living in Los Angeles. Alongside his brother Christopher, William has won several awards for directing short films that can be seen at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XmjGCf3WH_8.
Jimmy Walker to Blacks: Stop the complaining FROM WIRE REPORTS
Former “Good Times” star Jimmie Walker chatted with NPR’s Michele Martin recently to discuss his position on why major studios would rather avoid Black films. According to him, the community protests too frequently about the stereotypes projected on film. But he argues that some of the stereotypes that may appear bad aren’t necessarily negative. “What happens is, it also is reflective in Black TV shows and movies, that you’re not gonna get anymore of those because of the constant complaining, moaning and groaning… The point is to make money,” he said. “And therefore, the networks themselves have actually stopped doing any ethnic shows, because they don’t want the aggravation… What has happened is that any minority character you see on a show now is always the police commissioner, the head of the hospital, the school superintendent. Those kinds of people don’t invoke followers. “The people who are going to get attention are the wacky guys… who eventually become stars… You’ll never see a Black Will Ferrell, You’ll never see a Black Adam Sandler, because Black people aren’t allowed to play those kind of roles.”
Teressa Cree was raised in Weston, Fla. The former track athlete and current dancer/fitness model graduated from Florida International University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications. The 24-year old loves dancing and has performed with several popular music artists. She also has appeared in commercials, music videos, and television. Contact her at teressacee@ gmail.com.
Young actress makes Oscar history Zora fest to
include international perspective
Nine-year-old star is youngest nominee ever in category of best actress Quvenzhane Wallis was experiencing something of an internal struggle when she found out she’d been nominated for an Academy Award last week. “I woke up, and (my mother) said, ‘You’ve been nominated! You’re nominated!’” recalls Quvenzhane (Kuh-VAHN-zuhnay) of learning she’s up for the best actress prize at the 85th annual Oscars. “I was like, ‘Oh my God!’ But it was on the inside. It wasn’t on the outside.” At 9 years old, the “Beasts of the Southern Wild” star is the youngest female to ever be nominated in the category. “We were all literally losing our minds this morning, and she’s totally taking it in stride,” says “Beasts” writer-director Benh Zeitlin, who is himself nominated in the directing and adapted screenplay categories. “It’s magical. She’s just poised and fearless. I saw that the first day I ever met her when she was five. To this day, she just knows who she is, and she’s confident.”
Auditioned when 5 Quvenzhane, who hails from Houma, La., about 60 miles southeast of New Orleans, was in Los Angeles on Jan. 10 to promote “Beasts” with Zeitlin, who lives in New Orleans. She was just 5 years old when she first auditioned for the film’s lead role of Hushpuppy, a little girl struggling to survive with her ailing father in the southern Delta as a storm approaches. Admittedly, Quvenzhane has never watched an Oscar telecast. (“Whenever they said you might make it to the Oscars, I was like, ‘Who’s Oscar? I don’t know Oscar,’” she says.) When asked who she wants to meet at the starstudded ceremony, her answer is “everyone from the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon — but not Nick at Nite.” When it comes to fashion, Quvenzhane is open to wearing “all colors except for black by itself” on the big day, and she’s not interested in wearing a really long gown.
SPECIAL TO THE FLORIDA COURIER
Quvenzhane Wallis stars in “Beasts of the Southern Wild.’’ “I might step on it,” she explains, matter-of-factly.
Another record-breaker Understandably, Quvenzhane isn’t too aware of her competition, which includes the likes of Naomi Watts from “The Impossible” and Jessica Chastain from “Zero Dark Thirty.” She does know one of her fellow best actress nominees: Emmanuelle Riva of “Amour.” But that’s only because she met her the day prior when the pair posed for a photo together. Both have something in common. Sorta. They’re record breakers. At 85 years old, Riva is the oldest best actress nominee. Despite her young age, with a Spirit Award nomination and a few other awards now under her belt, Quvenzhane is already adapting to Hollywood’s awards season madness. That doesn’t mean she’s prepared to just stick to acting though. What’s her ultimate goal? “Actress-dentist,” she says with a toothy grin.
Denzel, ‘Django’ nominated In other Oscar news, Den-
zel Washington was nominated in the best actor category for his leading role in “Flight.’’ “Django Unchained,’’ a controversial spaghetti Western/slave movie, received multiple nominations but none for its Black stars, which includes Jamie Foxx, Kerry Washington and Samuel J. Jackson. Supporting actor Christoph Waltz was nominated and the film got nods for best picture and original screenplay. Foxx spoke up about the historical lack of recognition among the Academy Awards. “A lot of times we’re not nominated when we do honorable work. Because with the slave [Kerry Washington] plays there is dignity in everything she played,” Foxx told thegrio. “It wasn’t subservient; she wasn’t giving up to anything. So a lot of times they do overlook that, they may not want to reward that.” The 85th Academy Awards will take place Feb. 24 at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre.
The Associated Press and Eurweb.com were used in compiling this report.
EATONVILLE – The 24th Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities (ZORA! Festival 2013), which runs from Jan. 26 to Feb. 3, in Eatonville, features “the strongest content” in recent years, organizers say. The multi-day, multi-disciplinary event celebrates the life and work of 20th-century writer, folklorist and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston, her hometown, Eatonville, the nation’s oldest incorporated African-American municipality. The theme for the nine-day event is “Zora’s Eatonville: Culture as Conservator of the Community’s Heritage.” Activities include live concerts, educational seminars, heritage tours, the HATitude Brunch and an Outdoor Festival of the Arts. A scheduled discussion titled “An International Perspective on Zora’s Eatonville: What Captivates Our Interests,” by visiting students Anton Panov and Anna Smirnova and their professor, Dr. Irina Morozova, from Russian State University for Humanities, in Moscow, demonstrates the global interest in Zora Neale Hurston and the festival. For more information on ZORA! Festival 2013 events, visit www.zorafestival.org or call 407-647-3307.
Zora Neale Hurston
JANUARY 18 – JANUARY 24, 2013
A LONG AND DIFFICULT PATH TO FREEDOM BY JEAN NASH JOHNSON The Dallas Morning News
Martin Luther King Jr.: The name is universal, etched into the American psyche. Ask any schoolchild and he probably can recite Dr. King’s many civil rights accomplishments. But long before there was a March on Washington, a Memphis sanitation workers’ strike, bus boycotts, sitins, freedom rides and an MLK holiday, champions not often found in U.S. history textbooks were making their own marks for freedom. Dating back to the preRevolutionary War period, slavery, abolition and the Jim Crow-era of segregation, other less-known Americans fought the good fight. Here is a celebration of centuries of unsung heroes who paved the way for the modern civil rights movement.
Pre-1700s • When Lucas Vásquez de Ayllón moved from Spain to settle in what is now Jamestown, Va., he brought Africans with him. He founded a colony that thrived until the mid-1520s, when he died and was replaced by a more repressive leader. Africans fought the new regime, and many fled and established their own colony in Virginia.
The 1700s • Crispus Attucks, a runaway slave, is believed to be the first American to die in the Revolutionary War. On March 5, 1770, Attucks was at the head of a crowd of rowdy Bostonians taunting British soldiers. He was believed to have provoked the attack by striking one of the soldiers. The soldiers shot Attucks and 10 other Americans, killing or fatally wounding five of them. • In 1730, 96 slaves aboard the ship Little George gained control of the vessel from the crew. Some White crew members were thrown overboard, and others were sequestered. The Africans successfully navigated the ship back to Africa, where they escaped to freedom. • Elizabeth Freeman (left), also known as Mumbet, was born about 1742 and worked for Col. John Ashley, one of Massachusetts’ wealthiest merchants. Her face was badly scarred when she took a blow from a hot kitchen shovel intended for her sister. Freeman later fled the Ashley house, vowing never to return. Col. Ashley attempted to recover her legally, but Freeman sought help from attorney Theodore Sedgwick, insisting that she could argue for her freedom. The law said that all were born free and equal, and she said she was certainly included. Sedgwick took the case and won. The jury even awarded Freeman damages. Her case set the precedent in Massachusetts that the Bill of Rights in fact abolished slavery.
The 1800s • Black nationalist Henry Highland Garnet was one of the more militant anti-slavery leaders in the early 19th century. Along with Frederick Douglass, he was a major player in the abolitionist movement. He argued in 1864 at the National Convention of Colored Citizens in Syracuse, N.Y., that Black people should be equal to Whites and live separately. He had said this to one resistance group: “Brethren arise, arise. Strike for your lives and liberties. Now is the day and the hour: Let every slave throughout the land do this, and the days of slavery are numbered.” • On July 2, 1839, the most famous slaveship rebellion took place aboard the Spanish vessel La Amistad. While the ship was transporting captured Africans along the Cuban coast, the slaves, led by Joseph Cinque, tried unsuccessfully to redirect the ship to Africa. The USS Washington captured the ship, and the slaves were taken to New London, Conn. The mutiny case went before the U.S. Supreme Court, where Cinque and his fellow Africans were represented by former President John Quincy Adams and won the right to return to Africa. • In the mid-1800s, Harriet Tubman was one of the formidable conductors of the Underground Railroad, the system that helped slaves, mostly in the South, escape to freedom. Tubman was the most famous, but other Blacks and Whites played pivotal roles in the system’s success. Levi Coffin, a Quaker, helped nearly 2,000 runaway slaves, and Washington, D.C., cab operator Leonard Grimes used his cab not only to taxi wealthy Whites, but also to carry slaves to freedom. Tubman was never captured, but Grimes was apprehended on one of his trips to Virginia and spent two years in prison in Richmond. Coffin and other Whites who risked their lives were rarely arrested. • Abraham Lincoln called author Harriet Beecher
People throughout history helped pave the way for King and civil rights Stowe the little woman who started the Civil War. With the publication of her “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” in 1852, she denounced slavery with her sympathetic portrayal of the slave Uncle Tom. Her characterization of Tom as a human being set off a new attitude among Northerners toward slaves. The book became a play, which toured the North. • John Brown (below) is one of the most widely known White abolitionists. He believed he was sent by God to abolish slavery. With funding from New England anti-slavery organizations, he and his followers raided several of Virginia’s established plantations. In 1859, with fewer than 50 men, he raided an arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Va., to get ammunition to level an attack on Virginia slave owners. He was captured by Robert E. Lee and hanged after a trial, where he was convicted of “treason, conspiracy and advising slaves and others to rebel and murder in the first degree.” Brown was urged by his lawyer to plead insanity, but he refused. Of the five Blacks who also were caught, two were killed fighting U.S. troops, two were hanged, and one escaped. • In 1800, Denmark Vesey was allowed to buy his freedom for the $600 he won in a Charleston, S.C., street lottery. The West-Indian-born Vesey was familiar with the Haitian slave revolt of the 1790s and became dissatisfied with his second-class citizenship. He also was aware that others with no freedom were worse off. In 1822, a frustrated Vesey planned an uprising of city and plantation Blacks. The plan was recorded as the most extensive slave revolt in U.S. history, calling for the radicals to seize guardhouses and arsenals, take arms, kill all Whites, burn and destroy Charleston and subsequently free the slaves. Though it is a disputed figure, it was believed that 6,000 to 9,000 Blacks were involved. A Black house servant warned White authorities of the insurrection plan, and because of the massive military preparations to counterattack, Vesey’s plan remained stalled for two months. During that period, 130 Blacks were arrested, and in the trials that followed, 67 were convicted of an attempted insurrection. Vesey was among about 35 of that number hanged. Four White men also were sent to prison for encouraging the plot. • Many students of Black history are familiar with the great abolitionist Sojourner Truth, a popular speaker in the 1840s during the revival movement in the Northeast. Her folk manner and wry humor were disarming to many anti-abolitionists. What is probably not as well-known is Sojourner Truth’s active role in equal rights for women. In the 1850s, she was one of the first Black women to participate in the women’s rights movement. During one speech on women’s rights, a man questioned her gender and she bared her breast at great embarrassment to him. • Pennsylvania abolitionist and physician Martin Delaney (left) was one of the few educated Blacks of his time, and he used his intellect to launch a militant opposition to slavery. In the 1840s he started a weekly newspaper, the Mystery, which printed grievances of American Blacks and also championed women’s rights. The newspaper had an outstanding reputation, and its stories often were reprinted in the mainstream White press. In the late 1840s, Delaney worked with abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass in Rochester, N.Y., where they published another weekly, the North Star. Delaney also was one of the first Blacks to be admitted to Harvard Medical School. He later helped recruit troops for the renowned Civil War 54th Massachusetts Volunteers, which he served as a surgeon. In February 1865, the doctor was made a major, the first Black man to receive a regular Army commission.
The 1900s • There’s no disputing Booker T. Washington’s place in Black history. But his behind-the-scenes operating style is not as commonly known. For instance, on Oct. 16, 1901, President Teddy Roosevelt broke with segregationists and invited the Black leader to dine at the White House. This infuriated Southern Whites but created pride in the Black community, in spite of opposition among some Black
Americans to Washington’s moderate style. Washington did not favor public political resistance by Blacks, but he constantly defended Black social and political rights. He secretly helped finance efforts to end discrimination on Pullman railroad cars, and he contributed money to lawyers who fought to overturn Texas and Alabama laws that excluded Blacks from participating in juries. • Trade unionist and civil rights leader Asa Philip Randolph was a strategic champion of fair labor practices for Blacks. In the early 1910s, he and activist Chandler Owen organized an employment agency for Black workers. In 1917, the two started The Messenger, a magazine that called for more positions in the war industry and the armed forces for Blacks. Randolph also established the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters and began organizing Black workers groups. (Half the affiliates of the American Federation of Labor barred Blacks.) When Randolph warned President Franklin D. Roosevelt that he would lead thousands in a protest march on Washington, the president issued an executive order June 25, 1941, that barred discrimination in defense industries and federal bureaus and created the Fair Employment Practices Committee. After World War II, Randolph established the League for Nonviolent Civil Disobedience Against Military Segregation, which resulted in an executive order by President Harry S. Truman banning segregation in the armed forces. The seed planted in 1941 led Randolph to help lead the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on Aug. 28, 1963. • Social activist and writer Mary Church Terrell (right) was co-founder and firs president of the National Association of Colored Women, founded in 1896. Terrell was an advocate for women’s suffrage and Blacks’ rights. As a member of the integrated National American Woman Suffrage Association, she particularly fought for the concerns of Black women. She was named to the District of Columbia Board of Education in 1895, the first Black woman to hold such a position. At the suggestion of W.E.B. Du Bois, she was made a charter member of the NAACP. In her final act as activist, Terrell led a successful three-year fight to end segregation in public eating places and hotels in Washington, D.C., in 1953. • Newspaper editor and activist Charlotta Spears Bass argued so boldly for civil rights that many believed she was ahead of her time. Her influential words and style were later used in the early days of the 1950s-’60s civil rights movement. When she became editor in 1912 of the California Eagle, the oldest Black West Coast paper in the country, the paper directed its focus to political and social issues important to its constituency. The paper often wrote about unfair treatment of Blacks in education, employment and politics. In doing so, Bass had to face down a strong Ku Klux Klan presence in California in the ’40s and ’50s. She later went into politics, and in 1952 she became the first Black woman to run for vice president, campaigning for the Progressive Party. • In the 1940s, actor/athlete Paul Robeson epitomized the use of celebrity influence against racism. The Rutgers graduate was best known for his dynamic theater portrayals in Eugene O’Neill’s “The Emperor Jones” and “All God’s Chillun Got Wings,” and Shakespeare’s “Othello.” He stirred his greatest controversy in the late ’40s when he publicly denounced U.S. policy against the Soviet Union, proclaiming that Blacks would not fight against a government that was free of racism and prejudice. He was Blackballed from acting and targeted by the U.S. government. He was not granted a passport. He also was stripped of his honors as an athlete. His name was removed from the list of All-Americans for the years he played for Rutgers, and he was refused membership in the College Football Hall of Fame. Robeson never relented and insisted that he had the right to free speech against racism in America. • It was the vision and influence of Ella Baker, executive director of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, that led to the creation of the pivotal Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Baker organized the group in 1960, insisting that students needed a voice and organization of their own. In a ’60s climate of rising Black anger, the committee criticized the conference and other groups such as the Congress of Racial Equality for their lack of immediate leadership in Black communities, and it later spun off, offering a more direct small-group approach to community involvement. The group elected Stokely Carmichael as its leader in 1966. He coined the phrase “Black power” and led the group away from its original commitment to integration and toward the goal of separate community building.