Americans pause to observe the 11th anniversary of 9/11 attacks door to Iraq — Syria); we look back on the many ways 9/11 changed everything. 1. Suspicion African-Americans have long labored under the constant surveillance of police, and the suspicion of our fellow Americans. The notion that any black man is potentially a criminal menace is in some ways baked into the American experience, dating back to slavery and the endemic fear of white slave-owners toward the masses of unpaid laborers, ripped from their own countries, often ill-treated, and who in many cases outnumbered the white plantation bosses. American culture evolved a systemic fear of the black male, and an attendant disregard for black womanhood, that has taken many, sometimes violent, forms (think Jim Crow and lynching in the post-Civil War south, or race riots and racial profiling in the north). After 9/11, another group, American Muslims, became subject to mass sus-
COMMUNITY Five ways September 11 changed everything
By Joy-Ann Reid--thegrio.com
Wednesday marked the 12th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terror attacks in New York and Washington D.C. The attacks killed more than 3,000 people, and shook the country to its core — leading the U.S. into two wars: one in Afghanistan, justified by the attacks, and the other in Iraq, based on a dubious case made by the Bush administration. Twelve years later, with a new administration in office, and the country once again considering action in the Middle East (in fact, in the country next
VOL. XXXVIII Number 7 September 11, 2013
PULSE OF THE COMMUNITY
Photos and question by Yvonne Kemp
QUESTION OF THE WEEK: “Do you think President Obama should conduct a military strike on Syria because they used chemical (biological) weapons on its citizens? Why or why not?”
MARJORIE PARROTT: “I don’t believe President Obama should (conduct a military strike) on Syria because too many of our young boys/men have given their lives already. The U.S. has done enough with training other countries to defend themselves! Let freedom endure so that our families in the U.S. can live in peace!”
RODNEY SCALES: “Yes, he should (conduct a military strike) because they (the Syrian government) are over there killing people by the thousands.”
DENOTRA G. WALLACE: “Yes. My reason is they (the Syrian government) is using biological weapons that are killing poor, innocent people (in that country).”
ROBERT BECKLEY: “No. Because I don’t believe its our concern. We should not have our troops killed unnecessarily.”
President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, and members of the White House staff paused during a moment of silence to mark the 11th anniversary of the Sept., 11, 2001, attacks. (AP photo)
(continued on page 2) www.communityjournal.net 25 Cents
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NAACP President and CEO Announces Plan to Step Down from Association at Year’s End W I S C O N S I N ’ S L A R G E S T A F R I C A N A M E R I C A N N E W S PA P E R
Benjamin Todd Jealous will remain in role through December 31, 2013
BALTIMORE, MD – NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous announced plans to transition out of his role as President and CEO on December 31, 2013. Roslyn M. Brock, Chairman of the NAACP Board of Directors, accepted his formal letter of notice this week. “We thank President Jealous for his time leading the Association,” stated Brock. “Under his leadership, the NAACP has built a highly competent staff that will carry our mis-
sion forward and meet the civil rights challenges of the 21st century. Our board, staff and volunteer leaders throughout the country deeply appreciate his sacrifice, and will continue to implement our game-changing goals for the next half century that include the restoration of Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, implementing Trayvon’s Law, bolstering civic engagement efforts and ensuring our community is enrolled in the Affordable Care Act exchanges.” “The NAACP has always been the
largest civil rights organization in the streets, and today it is also the largest civil rights organization online, on mobile and at the ballot box too,” stated Jealous. “I am proud to leave the Association financially sound, sustainable, focused, and more powerful than ever. “Beginning next year, I look forward to pursuing opportunities in academia to train the next generation of leaders and, of course, spending a lot more time with my young family." In recent years the NAACP has won state and local battles to abolish the death penalty, shrink prison sys-
Urban League Guild tours 30 Americans exhibit
Members of the Milwaukee Urban League Guild toured the Milwaukee Art Museum’s exhibition, “30 Americans” recently before its final day last Sunday. The popular exhibit featured the art work of past and present Black American painters, sculptors, photographers, lithographers, and performance artists from around the nation. Also featured was parallel exhibition of 30 Black Wisconsin artists. (Photo by Yvonne Kemp)
Common Council reallocates federal funding to support community-based initiatives
The Milwaukee Common CounCDBG funds to city services. cil on Wednesday gave its final The amendment diverts $1,000,000 of that allocation to blessing to a plan by Alderman Joe Davis, Sr. to redirect $1,000,000 in support community-based organizations, including $500,000 to the federal Community Development Block Grant funding from City of Milwaukee Promise/Black Male Milwaukee agencies directly to Achievement initiative, an additional $235,000 to Neighborhood community organizations, initiatives and groups that support them. Strategic Planning, $190,000 to Be the Change and an additional Alderman Davis, the chair of the council's Community and Eco$75,000 for CDBG Entitlement Alnomic Development Committee, location Capacity Building-Technical Assistance to CBOs. said the reallocation is crucial to supporting programs that address Ald. Joe Davis In a related measure, the Common Council on Wednesday apthe root causes of crime and violence in the city. pointed the final eight members to the 13-member "This isn't a problem that is confined to any one Black Male Achievement Advisory Council, which neighborhood," Alderman Davis said. "This is a Mil- will explore best practices and make recommendations waukee problem, and only by addressing the city's eco- to the Common Council on the issue of long-term economic and educational disparities can we begin to treat nomic growth in the city's distressed areas. Alderman Davis and Alderman Ashanti Hamilton, who has also this systemic crime and violence." On a 6-9 vote, the Common Council on Wednesday been a supporter of the initiative since its inception, rejected reconsideration of a July 23 vote in favor of were among the appointees. "The successful reallocation of this funding and the Alderman Davis's plan. Prior to Davis's amendment in the Community and launch of the Black Male Achievement Advisory Economic Development Committee, the Community Council are two solid steps toward addressing the seDevelopment Grants Administration called for allocat- rious issues that are holding back the City of Milwauing $6.4 million of the $14 million in 2014 federal kee,” Ald. Davis said.--Article courtesy of City Hall
tems, outlaw racial profiling, expand voting rights protections, reform gun laws, close dangerous power plants, expand early childhood education, secure health care coverage for the uninsured, and more. The Association will continue its as an ally in the fights for workers’ rights, women's rights, immigrants’ rights, and marriage equality, as well as in the struggle to end the HIV epidemic. Jealous will remain with the Association through December 31, 2013.
Benjamin Todd Jealous
Read Benjamin Todd Jealous’ commentary on the progress of Blacks in Perspectives, page 3
“Just the facts” about what MPS wants to do with Malcolm X and the use of district facilities Compiled by MCJ Staff
(Editor’s Note: Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) and St. Marcus Lutheran School are at odds as to how to best use the vacant Malcolm X Academy. MPS still owns the property and has rejected St. Marcus’ attempt to buy the property and create another campus. MPS plans to convert the building at 2760 N. First St. into a community resource center. The community center, which would open in the fall of 2014 would have education, recreational and other programs for the neighborhood. According to Tony Tagliavia, the spokesman for MPS in a recent news report, the MPS board has been working on the community resource center concept for a year. One of the key components of the MPS plan, revealed by Sherwin Hughes on his WNOV radio talk show, is the rebirth of America’s Black Holocaust Museum and an African American community center. MPS has offered St. Marcus officials other properties the district owns that it could buy to advance its plans. St. Marcus reportedly turned down those offers in favor of the Malcolm X site. However, the district is steadfast in its efforts to advance its plan for the campus. Outlined below are facts surrounding MPS and the use of district facilities.) The Facts: • In 2012, the Board of School Directors determined that a good use for some closed or surplus facilities, including Malcolm X, was as community resource centers which may include educational components as well as community support services. This year, MPS was invited to participate in a collaborative community planning session led by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee involving the Martin Luther King Economic Development Corporation, the Martin Luther King Drive Business Improvement District, the Milwaukee Department of City Development and the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). This planning process validated the Board’s vision of a community center for the site. The MPS Board voted in August to move forward with that vision after months of discussion. • Since 2011, MPS has sold four school buildings, including three to successful independent charter schools—Milwaukee College Prep and Hmong American Peace Academy—and one that has been successfully redeveloped as senior housing. • Eleven charter or partnership schools are currently leasing MPS sites. This school year alone, new independent charter schools are opening in five MPS buildings, including the opening of a second campus for the academically successful Carmen High School of Science and Technology. • MPS is using its buildings to expand successful MPS-run schools. That includes the 2012-13 expansion of Golda Meir School, rated “Exceeds Expectations” on the state report card, into a former middle school property and the 2012-13 creation of Howard Avenue Montessori School in a former elementary school building. Howard is modeled after the successful Fernwood (continued on page 5)
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 2
Five ways September 11 changed everything
(continued from page 1) picion. It was those who either were, or appeared to be, Muslim who fell under the suspicious gaze of authorities and fellow citizens, whether at the airport, in the streets, or when seeking to build a mosque in New York City. And while hate crimes against Muslims spiked after 2001, African-Americans remained the most frequent victims of bias-related crime. And complaints about post 9/11 racial profiling at the airport aren’t just affecting Muslims, they’re impacting blacks (and Hispanics) too. 2. Obama Barack Obama became the Democratic nominee in 2008, in large part because of his opposition to the Iraq war — a war of choice started by the Bush administration on the false premise that Saddam Hussein had something to do with 9/11. That false case, which included allusions to nuclear capability and weapons of mass destruction that Iraq didn’t have, rebounded on the Bush White House once the war (initially strongly supported by most Americans) failed to turn up the evidence promised by President Bush and his team. And it gave Obama, a freshman United States Senator who had been one of a very few American politicians to oppose invading Iraq back in 2003, when he was an Illinois State Senator, an advantage with Democratic primary voters over then-Senator Hillary Clinton, who had supported the Iraq war. The irony of electing a candidate with the name Barack Hussein Obama (the Christian son of a Muslim-turned-atheist, African father) seven years after 9/11, even in an atmosphere of continued mass suspicion of all things Muslim or Muslim sounding, was rich. But it’s arguable that Iraq made it all possible. 3. Black troops A 2005 study by the General Accountability Office found that blacks made up a higher percentage of Army recruits after 9/11 (at nearly 15 percent) than
Fifteenth annual Milwaukee Empty Bowls event celebrates artists and chefs while rasing funds for the hungry
Milwaukee Empty Bowls will host its 15th Annual Milwaukee Empty Bowls event on Sunday, October 6, Noon – 4 p.m. at the Kern Center on the Milwaukee School of Engineering Campus, located at 1245 N. Broadway St. Milwaukee Empty Bowls is a one-of-a kind fundraiser that brings the community together to enjoy the work of area artists, restaurants and entertainers to benefit Milwaukee area food programs. “Our annual event educates the public about hunger in our community and raises funds to support the organizations that work to alleviate that hunger,” said Jean Wells, founder and president of Milwaukee Empty Bowls. “This event is a unique partnership between local artists, restaurants, entertainers and the peo-
their percentage of the overall population (11.3 percent in 2003), and black Americans had the highest recruitment-to-population ratio of any group, at 1:44 (versus 1.01 for white Americans.) blacks and Native Americans have long been overrepresented in the military, in part due to the career and training opportunities available, despite the GAO finding that recruitment post-9/11 was not disproportionately concentrated in zip codes with large percentages of black residents. 4. Government jobs When most people think of post-9/11 lawmaking, they think of the notorious Patriot Act. But in fact, the PATRIOT bill was just one of several laws that rushed through congress after the attacks. PBS in September 2011 pointed to some 130 separate laws introduced in congress in just the first year after the attacks, 48 of which became law. Some of those laws created brand new agencies, like the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration; just two of the 263 government agencies born or reorganized after 9/11. Those new agencies meant government jobs that, up until austerity kicked in after the 2010 elections, prompting massive furloughs and a federal hiring freeze, benefited Americans of all backgrounds, including large numbers of African-Americans nationwide. 5. Looking inward The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds that six in ten Americans oppose military action in Syria, and though African-Americans are more split, with about 47 percent favoring a military strike and 45 opposing it (and black members of congress caught between public opinion and the first black president), the two wars that followed the 9/11 attacks have drained American popular will to act on the international stage. Americans are looking inward — to an economy still dragging along in recovery, to a desperate need for jobs and an economic boost, particularly among African-Americans, whose unemployment rate remains double that of the white population (though at 13 percent in August 2013 it was 3.7 percentage points lower than it was in August of 2011, when black unemployment reached its highest rate since 1984), and to a country in need of infrastructure repair and a return to a sense of national mission; the kind of unified sense of mission, ironically, that so many Americans felt after 9/11.
ple who come to enjoy it.” The organization is looking forward to building on last year’s event where nearly 2,000 people were served and a record-setting $51,008 raised in support of local food programs. Since 1999, Milwaukee Empty Bowls has donated $474,000 to food programs in the Milwaukee metro area. More than 95% of the funds raised during this perennially popular event – held around World Food Day – go directly to aid the hungry in our community. Guests at the October event have their choice from a collection of more than 2,000 ceramic bowls handcrafted and donated by local artists, teachers and students. Soups prepared by local chefs are served with bread and other refreshments. Some of the area’s top musicians entertain guests throughout the day. No registration is required and a minimum donation of $20 per bowl ($10 for bowls made by children) is requested. Guests take their bowls home to serve as a reminder that there are always empty bowls in our community. During the event’s 14-year history, more than 26,000 bowls have been purchased.
In celebration of the event’s milestone anniversary, a 15th Anniversary Bowl Raffle will be held during this year’s event, featuring special works donated by local artists. Raffle tickets will be available for purchase at select community events in which Milwaukee Empty Bowls is participating, as well as during the October 6 fundraiser. Tickets will be drawn at 3:45 pm on October 6. Winners do not need to be present. Tickets cost $2 each, 3 for $5, or 7 for $10. Find out where we’ll be selling tickets prior to October 6 and get additional information about the raffle on our website at www.milwaukeemptybowls.org. With the involvement and support of MSOE, local businesses and more than 300 volunteers, proceeds from this year’s event will go to: Agape Community Center; Fondy Food Center; Hope House; Interchange; Jewish Community Food Pantry; La Causa; Milwaukee Christian Center; Repairers of the Breach; St. Catherine’s Food Pantry; The Gathering. For details on the 2013 recipient organizations, please visit the recipients page on our website. For more information, please visit www.milwaukeeemptybowls.org.
Happy Birthday Olivia El-Amin!
Saleem El-Amin presents roses to the number one rose in his life, his wife Olivia El-Amin during her 50th birthday celebration at the Grace Center. A host of family, relatives and friends attended the event saluting Mrs. El-Amin who, along with her husband founded, own and operate New Horizon Center, Inc. She is the director of Corporate Affairs and the co-owner of the New Horizon Day Care Center and Crisis and Mentoring Program. (Photo by Yvonne Kemp)
MATC to team with Hillside Terrace neighborhod for Beautification Project
On Saturday, Sept. 14, starting at 10 a.m., Milwaukee Area Technical College students, instructors and staff will join staff and residents from Hillside Terrace to help beautify the Hillside Terrace neighborhood. The project will begin at the Hillside Terrace Family Resource Center, 1452 N. 7th St. Hillside Terrace is just north of MATC’s Milwaukee campus. Working side-by-side, members of the MATC and Hillside communities will cut back shrubs, rake debris and weed gardens. The Day of Service was initiated by MATC’s Center for Engaged and Service Learning. MATC’s service learning efforts currently focus on using the college’s expertise, networks and resources to help improve the lives and surroundings of organizations, businesses and residents within a 1.5 mile radius of MATC’s Downtown Milwaukee Campus. Hillside Terrace is Wisconsin’s oldest and largest affordable housing community.
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 3
THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT (SECTION 1): All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and the state wherein they reside. “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any persons within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
History Can Move in Two Directions at Once
In my time as an organizer, I have been guided by the words of many people - activists and authors, colleagues and friends. But the most powerful lesson I ever received about the struggle for civil and human rights came in 1993, when my grandmother taught me that history could move in two directions at once. I was in college, celebrating a friend's 21st birthday. A round of toasts went up. One friend raised his glass to honor the memory of all those we knew who had been killed or sent to prison before they reached the age of 21. Another friend lifted his cup to toast to the fact that one more of us had lived long enough to reach the quintessential age of adulthood. I could not raise my glass on that last toast. In fact, it felt as if the motion cut me like a knife. The notion that a man of any race, of any age, in the world's greatest and wealthiest democracy, could think it an accomplishment to simply breathe past the age of 21 - it cut me to the core. After so many historic civil rights victories, how could it be that my generation had grown up just in time to find itself the most murdered generation in the country and the most incarcerated generation on the planet? So I did what I always did when I am stuck. I went to my grandmother's table and I laid my burdens down. I said, "Grandma, you told me that my generation was supposed to be the first generation to be judged not by the color of our skin but by the content of our character. Not because of what we are or where we come from - but because of who we are and where we are headed. What happened?" My grandma got real quiet. She looked at me with sad eyes and then she said, "Son, it's sad but it's simple.
GUEST COMMENTARY By Benjamin Todd Jealous-President/CEO of the NAACP
What are we fighting for? First and foremost, we are fighting for our children: for their futures to be robust, their equality to be affirmed and their lives to be protected. That is why the civil rights community lifts up education over incarceration, and economic liberation over discrimination.
We got what we fought for, but we lost what we had." Those are wise words to remember in times like this. We got the right to be police officers, but we lost the right to live in safe communities. In Chicago, a culture of poverty-fueled gang violence has reinforced the notion that living until 21 is an accomplishment. We got the right to send our children to any school, but we lost the right to assume that they would receive a good education at whatever school they attend. In
Philadelphia, the school system is facing a $300 million budget gap that already delayed the start of the school year and threatens to devastate support staff at schools in the most underserved communities. We got the right to live in any community, but we lost the right to know that our children would be protected by the police - or the community watch volunteers who are supposed to serve them. In 2011, before New York City passed a racial profiling ban with teeth, the
New York Police Department made more stops of young black men between the ages of 14 and 24 than there were young Black men between 14 and 24 in the city. In her simple way, my grandmother spoke volumes about our history and issued a subtle admonition for the path forward. She reminded us that we must be clear on both what we are fighting for, and how we will protect what we already have. What are we fighting for? First and foremost, we are fighting for our children: for their futures to be robust, their equality to be affirmed and their lives to be protected. That is why the civil rights community lifts up education over incarceration, and economic liberation over discrimination. What do we need to protect? If each of us has anything - even those of us who don't have a house, or a car, or a family to feed, or any earthly possessions at all - as soon as we turn 18, we have the right to vote. This is the right that has been won and expanded through the American Revolution, Civil War, the women's suffrage movement and the civil rights movement - because we have always understood that we are ultimately rendered defenseless when our access to the ballot box is diminished. So while voting rights may not be the most important issue to any one of us, it needs to be the most important fight for all of us. My grandma's words have guided me over the years, and they will continue to guide me throughout my career. We should heed her important reminder that history can, and often does, move in two directions at once. Benjamin Todd Jealous is the president and CEO of the national NAACP. He recently announced he will be stepping down as of December 31, 2013.
“The N-word”: The Sojourn of a Dirty Six-Letter Word
I spent an inordinate amount of time over the weekend trying to figure out how much money I could possibly make if I followed Brandi Johnson’s example and sued every Black person who ever referred to me as a ‘nigger.’ Yeah you read that right. Black people suing Black people, some of whom feel they have redefined the word, taken the sting out of the racist WASP (pun intended), put make up and a weave on it and declared it be a beauty queen. Well, that myopic plan didn’t work, as illuminated by the recent court decision that sustained a Black woman’s charges that the word is offensive, no matter what its source. Johnson, if you haven’t heard,, is the 38year-old sister from New York who sued her Black boss, Rob Carmona, for calling her a ‘nigger’ while the two were employed at a highly respected employment agency that has received national attention for its innovative programs to empower people of color with less than sterling backgrounds. Isn’t that ironic? Last week, a New York jury awarded Johnson nearly $300,000, obviously believing her claim that she found the word to be mean spirited, offensive, and yes, racist, despite coming from a ‘brother.’ For his part, Carmona said he used the word to motivate Johnson and another Black woman. During his testimony, Carmona said he told the women that they were acting “nigger like,” an apparent reference to their being loud and otherwise unprofessional in the
work environment. The Johnson/Carmona case is but one tentacle on a large octopus that has been swimming through the courts lately. In another case worthy of cyber space chatter, a White supervisor at a national retailer called American Apparel was sued by a brother for using the word repeatedly when in the company of employees. What made that case particularly news worthy was the excuse the White supervisor laid out before the jury: he was merely echoing the words of a rap song! The brother, who walked away with a $35,000 settlement, didn’t buy into that outwardly plausible excuse, nor did the jury. (Actually, the total award to the brother was $335,000, but all but $35,000 went to his attorney. Talk about injustice!) Another case to ponder involves a local Black teen that got into a heated vocal argument with a White high school classmate over some trivial matter. At one point the White kid took it to another level and called the Black teen a nigger, for which he promptly received three or four jabs and a right cross to several soft tissue areas of his
By Mikel Kwaku Osei Holt
the adjective/noun “nigger” provide a landscape for the complexity of how our society deals with various opinions about the word. Of course, I’ve always been totally opposed to its use, nor do I condone the use of the word by anyone (the exception being to raise issues or cite examples as i’m doing with this column). From that perspective, I don’t have a problem with Carmona being sued for being a fool, or for American Apparel forking over $300,000 Lastly, consider the pending case filed against Bubba Hiers, brother of the disgraced former Food Network cooking show host, Paula Deen. The former Black employee of Hiers’ alleges ‘Bubba’ routinely used the ‘N-word’, including a rant in which he said President Obama should be sent to the oil spill that occurred two years ago in the Gulf of Mexico so he could “nigger rig it.” Deen made national headlines when the Food Network dropped her after she admitted she used the ‘N-word’ as a child. According to various sources, Bubba’s sister has never grown up, because she continues to use the word, alternately as an
I understand the rationale of those ‘coscious Black folks’ who say they are trying to redefine the word; who have attempted to take the venom out of it. But the truth of the matter is it hasn’t worked. Nigger is the most vile, vicious and volatile word in the English (make that American) dictionary. And as long as any non-Black person’s use of the word can incite a heated response from a Black person, the argument that you have redefined the word is nothing short of ridiculous. body and face. Both kids were ultimately suspended, but the father of the Black teen didn’t believe true justice had been served and appealed the school’s decision of his son in court. In what some called a landmark decision for the era, the judge sided with the father and son, saying “nigger was a fighting word” and therefore the Black kid was justified in kicking the White kid’s butt. If nothing else, these two contrasting examples of legal precedents about the use of
Welfare Warriors accepts Signifyin’ apology regarding “Motherwork”
To The Editor: Thank you Mikel Holt (MCJ associate publisher and Signifyin’ columnist) for the apology to Welfare Warriors for having "slighted Welfare Warriors back in the day" when you disputed our premise that motherwork IS work (See Signifyin’ column published August 28, 2013 entitled: “Grandchildren: The gift that keeps on giving!”). Welfare Warriors is 27 years old and still fighting for the lives of mothers and children in poverty. Our objection to the government forcing parents to perform 30 hours of unpaid work in exchange for a paltry welfare child support check is based on both the importance of mother work-- especially when only one parent heads a household--as well as the harm to the workforce. This new millennium slavery (as the moms call it) forced 16,000 single Milwaukee moms out of college to accept any work for any pay to avoid working for no pay. This has been repeated across the country for 15 years and has fueled a workforce that has no need to pay living wages or provide sick pay or health insurance while mil-
LETTER TO THE
lions of desperate women are competing for subpoverty wage jobs. Legislators face little pressure to raise minimum wage to keep pace with the economy, resulting in a minimum wage that can no longer support any size family. Employers also benefit by using single moms to work 20 hours a week for no pay, no benefits, no Social Security credits and no protection against sexual harassment or discrimination. When Welfare Warriors met with SDC's CEO Deborah Blanks last winter, she admitted that SDC's Headstart was using 96 moms at that time to work for SDC for no pay at 20 hours a week. Obviously SDC had no incentive whatsoever to hire any of the moms since they had an equivalent of 48 fulltime unpaid workers.
Your bias against single moms is still apparent in your shockingly inaccurate statement that "the majority" of our children are drop outs, criminals and "fortify the culture of poverty." This is ugly prejudice. Poverty does indeed promote street crime just as wealth promotes massive white collar crime. Yet the majority of people arrested and jailed for crime are poor people, not the children of single moms. Our children are slightly more likely (NOT the majority) to be drop outs or criminals-than children in two parent homes because single moms are more likely to be victims of poverty. Many of our children also suffer from abandonment by their dads, their dad's extended family, their schools, their churches and even the business community. Considering how many must survive both poverty and abandonment, it is amazing that the majority of our children are so successful and that it is not the "majority" of our children in trouble. You owe the children of single moms an apology. Pat Gowens, Director Welfare Warriors, Fighting for the lives of mothers and children in poverty for l27 years. --Pat McGowen, Welfare Warriors
adjective and a noun. Trying to justify her racist rant, Deen recently told reporters that if she were a rap artist, ‘nigger’ would not be a racist epithet, but instead a familial term of endearment. When reporters didn’t buy into that stupid statement, she said racial epithets were just part of the culture of the Deep South when she was growing up. Just because you considered Black people niggers, didn’t mean you couldn’t be friends with them, or that you were racist, she surmised. Apparently, Deen has been eating too much of her own fatty foods, thus causing the severe blockage in her brain stem. From my vantage point, I don’t care if there’s a negative ramification for anyone who uses the word nigger, regardless of the intent of the speaker. As everyone who knows me will tell you, I don’t use the word, and detest those who do. Well, maybe detest is too strong a word. Suffice to say that those who use it are either naïve, stupid or ignorant of this country’s history, the origins and true definition of the word and its impact on our people, our culture and our self-esteem. I understand the rationale of those ‘conscious Black folks’ who say they are trying to redefine the word; who have attempted to take the venom out of it. But the truth of the matter is it hasn’t worked. Nigger is the most vile, vicious and volatile word in the English (make that American) dictionary. And as long as any non-Black person’s use of the word can incite a heated response from a (continued on page 5)
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MCJ STAFF: Colleen Newsom, Patricia O’Flynn -Pattillo Classified Advertising Publisher, CEO Jimmy V. Johnson, Sales Rep. Robert J. Thomas Joan Hollingsworth, Sales Rep. Assoc. Publisher CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Todd Thomas, Vice Pres. Taki S. Raton, Mikel Holt, Assoc. Publisher Rev. Roxanne Cardenas, Thomas E. Mitchell, Jr., Editor Troy A. Sparks, Kia Marie Green, Mang. Editor Sports Editor Teretha Martin, Technical PHOTOGRAPHER: Yvonne Kemp Consultant/Webmaster Josephine Joki, Billing Dept./ Publisher’s Admin. Assist. Opinion and comments expressed on the Perspectives page do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or management of the MCJ. Letters and “other perspectives” are accepted but may be edited for content and length.
Potawatomi Foundation to give SIGNIFYIN’ financial support to SDC efforts
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 5
Fiscal support has been committed for several programs and activities involving the Social Development Commission (SDC). The Forest County Potawatomi Foundation has announced it is supporting work at the agency with a $30,000 grant. That funding will help the free Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, financial literacy efforts, and a partnership SDC has with the Milwaukee Fatherhood Initiative that presents the annual Milwaukee Fatherhood Summit. $20,000 of the Forest County Potawatomi Foundation grant will support the VITA program coordinated by the Milwaukee Asset Building Coalition and SDC. That program assists thousands of Milwaukee County residents by preparing and filing at no charge their state and federal tax returns. During the past tax season, more than 15,000 tax returns were filed that brought back more than $14-million in tax refunds and credits. The remainder of Forest County Potawatomi Foundation grant will support SDC’s efforts in coordinating the Milwaukee Fatherhood Summit in partnership with the Milwaukee Fatherhood Initiative. That free two-day event will be held October 4 and 5 at Destiny
A tax payer gets help with his tax return courtesy of SDC’s VITA program, which assists thousands of Milwaukee County Residentsin preparing and filing at no charge their state and federal tax returns.
Youth Plaza located at 76th Street and Good Hope Road. It offers resources and information designed to help men become stronger and more involved fathers including information on the Affordable Healthcare Act, child support reduction, driver’s license recovery, as well as a Health, Job and Resource Fair. Acting SDC CEO Jan Stenlund expressed gratitude for the Forest
County Potawatomi Foundation grant, saying it will help the agency serve more low-income residents of Milwaukee County. She added the Foundation supports SDC efforts not only financially but through volunteer contributions of its staff that assist agency programs like the VITA effort. To learn about the programs and services of SDC, visit the agency website at www.crsdc.org.
New Milwaukee Group Provides Assistance to teen girls and women with Weighty Issues of Creating Stronger Selfesteem, Healthy Living and Empowerment
the beauty of women with curves, sizes 14 and up,” McGee urged. Recognize beautiful women, from all over the Metropolitan Milwaukee Area, as they share their faith testimonies in the 2014 Calendar, which can be reserved immediately. Sponsorship opportunities exist. Visit the website, http://www.bigbeautifulblessed.com/upcomingevents.html or email Laneice McGee (firstname.lastname@example.org) for further information.
Big, Beautiful & Blessed Supports Teen Girls and Women
ike many women in America, Milwaukee’s Shemelian Bowman struggled growing up heavier than her peers.
She experienced real life pain from her fleshiness, from grade school to high school, making her both the brunt of and the giver of bullying. Today,“African American Women have the highest overweight and obesity rates,” (Office of Women’s Health – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services). But Bowman has learned how to turn her pain into her passion, and Big, Beautiful & Blessed was born. The group will host their Premier event, (free and open to the public) the release of the 2014 Big Beauti-
ful & Blessed 12-Month Calendar, launched by a fashion show, highlighting local plus-sized women – at the El-Bethel Church of God in Christ, November 3rd, 2013 from 4pm to 7pm, 5401 West Good Hope Road. Though this organization (BBB) is officially the brainchild of Shemelian Bowman, founder and executive director, Laneice McGee serves as assistant director. “Big, Beautiful & Blessed is committed to cultivating positive self and body image in all women, focusing on
N95 Day Clears the Air about Respirators
PITTSBURGH– Tweeting, blogging, and sharing. None of these sounds like the typical Federal government awareness campaign, but this is precisely what the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is doing for its national workers safety outreach campaign led by NIOSH’s National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL). Occurring on September 5, 2013 (9/5), “N95 Day,” is a national worker’s health awareness day meant to increase knowledge of on-the-job respiratory safety and protection to the millions of Americans directly impacted by such risks. NIOSH is the federal agency responsible for the prevention of work-related injury and illness. They estimate that every day, over 20 million workers –in dozens of industries—are exposed to significant airborne health risks, and as a result, almost 50,000 deaths are attributed to work-related diseases each year. Data compiled from the NIOSH’s decades of research concludes that wearing a NIOSH-approved N95 filtering facepiece respirator significantly reduces the wearer’s risk of inhaling hazardous airborne particles. The N95 Day theme, “Myth vs. Fact,” will arm audiences with the information needed to debunk common myths about respirator protection and will bring together dozens of state health departments, media partners, and various Industry and Association partners. Awareness day activities include: a live webinar, an online blog, engaging tweets throughout the day (#N95Day), an opportunity for real users to share personal stories of how their health was protected by N95 respirators, and more. Ultimately, NIOSH believes the N95 Day will be successful because the efforts reflect the federal government’s push to develop modern and engaging ways to educate their audiences. “Workers must play a proactive role in protecting their own health and safety,” explains Maryann D’Alessandro, Director of NPPTL. “It is our job to provide them with the tools and information they need to be as knowledgeable as possible, and we really believe N95 Day will be a fun and engaging way to do this.” For more information about N95 Day, visit www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/n95day.html or search the twitter #N95Day. When in doubt of a product’s certification, workers can also find helpful tools and information on the Respirator Trusted Information Page at knowits.niosh.gov.
The facts about MPS’ use of district facilities
(continued from page 1) Montessori School, which also was rated “Exceeds Expectations.” • MPS is open to discussing other building options with private and public organizations for unused space the district has not identified as needing for future growth of successful MPS schools or for our charter partners. MPS is committed to making decisions about buildings that benefit all Milwaukee taxpayers, families and students, not just one school or advocacy group. The citizens of Milwaukee deserve to have a thoughtful, comprehensive plan implemented for the buildings their tax dollars have paid for. That is exactly what we have done.
(continued from page 3) Black person, the argument that you have redefined the word is nothing short of ridiculous. Also, as far as I’m concerned, the politically correct substitute—the ‘Nword’—is just as ludicrous. It ranks right up there with the asinine suggestion that changing the last two or three letters of the word to ‘gah’ (niggah) somehow creates a different word and meaning. That’s why I decided to use the actual word in this column instead of the PC version. Nobody calls another person a “N-word.” It doesn’t even make sense if you think about it. As columnist Adam Serwer said in a recent commentary about the use of the PC version of the word recently, “The ‘N’word is just like (putting lip stick on a pig. At the end of the day it’s still a ‘pig.” So, no matter how ‘nigger is used, its demeaning/despicable/destroying/destructive/defecating/degrading/defiling/demoting/denigrating.
What’s so hip/cute about this word now? Go back to the previous sentence. Serwer linked ‘nigger’ to the word ‘denigrating,’ which contains the foundation of the word. Look it up, you might be surprised at what you find. And while you’re at it, open a book about Black/American history. And then take a look in the mirror. Do you really see a ‘nigger’ staring back at you? If you do, it explains--in part--why we’re at the bottom of the political, cultural and economic totem pole. I know a lot of people are tired of me going through this rant every year for the past three decades. It’s one of the few campaigns I have not been able to convince a significant percentage of people to join me in. It’s kind of like Black unity; we talk about the need, but do nothing about actually doing it. But I refuse to give up hope. I’ll continue to try and convince people until my dying day; that as long as we view ourselves as niggers, that’s what we will be viewed as. Hotep.
Madison-based author headlines CHOICES: Milwaukee’s Festival of Books
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 7
. d e , u CHOICES: Milwaukee’s Black Festival of Books, to be held Saturday, September 14, 2013, will feature three signature events. The Public Forum features Madison-based aukthor, business owner, and consultant, n John Y. Odom, Ph.D. Dr. Odom is ethe author of Saving Black America, cand will address the significance of this year’s festival theme: Read for Your Life. f The task of the ‘Response panel’ is to identify and apply ideas presented by Dr. Odom, as possible solutions to critical issues facing our community. Panel respondents are individuals in positions to effect change through k legislation, public policy, and comt munity organizations.
Panel members are Eyon Biddle, Mandela Barns, David Bowen, Milele Coggs, and Willie Johnson. The panel will be moderated by Polly Williams. This event is free and open to the public. Before the street festival opens, pre-registered children for the CHILDREN’S BOOK TIME BREAKFAST will be treated to a pancake breakfast at the YWCA, lower-level (1915 N. MLK Drive). The featured author for the breakfast is musician and author, Eddie Rutledge. Mr. Rutledge is the author of a series of books based on the travels of his niece, Amani. His presentation, based on his first book, Amani Goes to Washington, D.C., is highly
interactive and musical. Children will learn of the historic buildings, monuments, and government functions. He will be assisted by Karen Wiesner Peterson. Ms. Peterson is degreed from Howard University, with a major in Fine Arts. She has also studied theater at Oxford University in England. She has worked as a full-time teacher and performs throughout Milwaukee as an actress. Ms. Peterson serves as curriculum consultant, choreographer, and vocalist for the company. Seating for this event is limited, and a ticket is required. The Dine & Sign, also a signature event, features the popular Chicago,
best selling author, Earl Sewell. Six of Milwaukee’s most popular and best selling authors will also serve as Table Hosts, they are: Teresa Butler, James Causey, Bobbie EdwardsFord, Marrian Efua, Kwabana A. Nixon, and Sheila Payton. Diners will be treated to a delicious box lunch prepared by the catering staff of HeartLove Place, while visiting up- front, close, and personal with four different authors in a ‘round robin’ manner. Reservations and tickets required ($15). For more information on any event or opportunities for participation, contact Carla Allison at (414) 2652003.
Harris-Perry, professor of political science at Tulane University, and host of MSNBC television’s show “Melissa Harris-Perry.” Health Award – Risa LavizzoMourey, MD, MBA, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Economic and Business Award – Jo Ann Jenkins, executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of AARP. Bright Future Award – Ronnise Denitra Owens, a magna cum laude graduate of Heritage High School in Conyers, GA, Miss Owens served as president of DECA, an organization that prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management. Founded and headquartered in the nation’s capital, The Black Women’s Agenda is a national non-profit organization that generates support and awareness for issues that secure, advance and protect the rights and wellbeing of Black women and their families. It is comprised of 19 collaborating women’s organizations – sororities, civic, service and faith-based – representing millions of women nationally and worldwide.
Over the past year, the organization has raised its voice and mobilized support around numerous issues affecting its constituency, including, voter registration and voting rights, gun control, breast cancer awareness and prevention, balanced deficit reduction and STEM training for Black girls. “To realize the world we want to live in and leave for our children, women are going to have to pick up
our communities and carry them on our backs to the Promised Land,” said BWA President, Gwainevere Hess. “The women we will honor with our awards are goal-focused, results-driven change agents who are taking the lead in helping to reshape our reality.”
Rep. Moore among women to be honored at BWA symposium
Rep. Gwen Moore
U.S. Congresswoman Gwen Moore will be one of nine women to be inducted into the Black Women’s Agenda, Inc. (BWA) as honorary members. The induction will take place Sept. 20th during the organization’s 36th annual symposium and awards luncheon in Washington,D.C. The Black Women’s Agenda, Inc. will also celebrate five inspirational women for their efforts to advance the dream in the fields of health, education, the arts, community service and economic development. President’s Award—Ingrid Saunders Jones, senior Vice President of External Relations and Global Community Connections and as Chairperson of The Coca-Cola Foundation, Education Award – Melissa V.
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 8
THE SPORTS PAGE
Brewers players congratulate each other as they come off the field having defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates at Miller Park recently. The Brewers win slowed down the Priates momentum towards a division championship. (Photo by Yvonne Kemp)
Bethune-Cookman unanimous No. 1 for second-straight week Aggies move up to No. 3 with big win over App State
From Boxtorow.com There was quite a bit of movement in this week’s Boxtorow coaches’ poll. Not for Bethune-Cookman, however. The Wildcats were the unanimous selection for the top spot for the secondweek in a row. The Wildcats beat Virginia Union 66-7 to remain unbeaten and atop the poll. Alabama A&M, who in the preseason was ranked No. 9 and then No. 2 lastweek after its 23-9 victory at Grambling, fell to No. 7 this week afterfalling to Tuskegee 23-7. Tennessee State moved op one spot to No. 2 after defeating Florida A&M 27-7. Perhaps the most significant victory of the weekend was North CarolinaA&T’s 24-21 victory over nationally ranked and perennial power Appalachian State. With their win the Aggies moved up two spots to No. 3, their highest ranking since the poll was introduced in 2009. Key matchups on Saturday include No. 4 Jackson State taking on No. 2Tennessee State, No. 10 South Carolina State hosting No. 7 Alabama A&M and No. 5 Alabama State playing at No. 8 Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The Boxtorow HBCU FCS coaches’ poll is administered by FROM THE PRESS BOX TO PRESS ROW and is voted on by the HBCU Football Championship Subdivision coaches.
2013 Boxtorow FCS HBCU Football Coaches Poll Week 2 (Records through September 7, 2013) Rank School W-L Pts. Last Week 1. Bethune-Cookman (17) 2-0 170 1 2. Tennessee State 1-1 145 3 3. North Carolina A&T 1-0 143 5 4. Jackson State 1-1 109 7 T-5 Alabama State 0-2 57 6 T-5 Howard 1-1 57 NR 7. Alabama A&M 1-1 49 2 T-8 Arkansas-Pine Bluff 0-2 41 4 T-8 Florida A&M 1-1 41 9 10. South Carolina State 0-2 33 8
MILWAUKEE RECREATION GETS READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL NFL competition set for September
Milwaukee Recreation will host the NFL Punt, Pass, and Kick Football Competition during two days in September. Boys and girls between the ages of 6 and 15 are encouraged to compete by reporting to Juneau Campus, 6415 W. Mt. Vernon Avenue, on Wednesday, September 11 at 6:00 p.m. or Beulah Brinton Playfield, 2555 S. Bay Street, on Saturday, September 14 at 10:00 a.m. The competition is free, and registration will take place onsite. Children should only visit one site (Juneau Campus or Brinton Playfield) to participate. “This is a great opportunity for youth who want to test their football skills,” says Assistant Recreation Supervisor Nick Spence. “We will score punting, passing, and place-kicking while paying special attention to distance and accuracy. The winners may advance to a sectional competition, so it should be exciting.” Football shoes/cleats will not be allowed for this competition. For more information, please call (414) 475-8146. Milwaukee Recreation is a department of Milwaukee Public Schools, established in 1911 to provide the entire community with affordable and enriching recreational activities. For more information, visit MilwaukeeRecreation.net or contact Brian Hoffer at (414) 475-8938.
The Milwaukee Community Journal September 11, 2013 Page 10