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Volume 1 Number 4

June/July 2018

Poverty, Drug Addiction, Crime and Death...4 Baltimore in Color

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June/July 2018

PUBLISHER Rosalind J. Harris


CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Terence Dorsey Khaleel Herbert Thomas Holt Rusell ART DIRECTOR Bee Harris

Greetings, and welcome to the Baltimore Urban Spectrum...

Like many other large cities in the U.S., Baltimore continues to face the challenges of high crime, poverty, police brutality, elevated unemployment, community blight, poorly performing schools and crumbling infrastructure and the total lack of resources to address these vexing problems. In this issue, we focus on the role of fathers and our po tential change that landscape for our children and the trajectory of our communities. Across America today some 70 percent of Black households are headed by a single female; up from only eight percent during the civil rights struggle of the 1960s. Not only does our absence rob our children of the positive image of Black men and our protective nature but it also deprives them of the guidance, suppor t and direction a positive dad can offer. The long term negative consequences of our absence are felt in every single Black community around this nation. Far too many of our young African American men are hunted, and ultimately trapped, by a criminal justice system where prisons operate as businesses. Therefore, the outcomes are not rooted in the search for justice but rather on the ability of jail s to turn a profit. This month Baltimore Urban Spectrum contributor, Terence Dorsey, takes a closer look at the crisis of absent fathers in our communities. This issue also probes the disturbing trend of the breakdown in the enforcement of the mandates under the Brown v Board of Education decision to desegregate the nation’s schools. As more courts are refusing to compel school systems to enforce this federal law, our schools are slowly becoming re-segregated. The results for our Black children will be felt in significant ways. On a more positive note, we profile Baltimore native and millionaire Dr. Venus Opal Reese who, like so many others around our city, grew up in streets that were anything but nurturing. Today, “Dr. Venus” is a resident of Los Angeles and is on a nationwide tour to help others, from similar circumstances, realize their full potential and become successful. Her new book is entitled, “The Black Woman Millionaire: A Revolutionary Act that Defies the Impossible.” To find out when she will be visiting our area, log on to

GRAPHIC DESIGNER Jody Gilbert - Kolor Graphix

Alfonzo Porter Baltimore Urban Spectrum Managing Editor

PUBLISHER/PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Melovy Melvin CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Bernard Grant Byron Russell Lens of Ansar DISTRIBUTION Dylan James Ed Lynch Lawrence A. James - Manager

The Baltimore Urban Spectrum is a monthly online publication dedicated to spreading the news about people of color in and around the city of Baltimore. Contents of the Baltimore Urban Spectrum are copyright 2018 by Bizzy Bee Enterprise. No portion may be reproduced without written permission of the publisher. The Baltimore Urban Spectrum welcomes all letters, but reserves the right to edit for space, libelous material, grammar, and length. All letters must include name, address, and phone number. We will withhold author’s name on request. Unsolicited articles are accepted without guarantee of publication or payment. Write to the Baltimore Urban Spectrum c/o Denver Urban Spectrum at P.O. Box 31001, Aurora, CO 80041. For advertising, subscriptions, or other information, call 303-292-6446 or fax 303-292-6543 or visit the Web site at


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This month we welcome Alfonzo Porter as the managing editor and Terence Dorsey as a new contributing writer of the Baltimore Urban Spectrum (a monthly online publication), sister publication to the award winning Denver Urban Spectrum (a print and online monthly publication) and the Gulf Coast Urban Spectrum (a monthly online publication). You can find all publications online at and each individual website. We hope you enjoy this issue, with a splash of US Color, and give us feedback – the good and the bad – so we can provide you with more of “Baltimore in Color,” in the coming months. If you would like to expose your business in the south, east or the central part of these United States – we can help! Email me or call for our 2018 media kit to find out how you can get your business before our diverse population of readers – print and online.


Washington DC • Atlanta • Denver Dayton-Cincinnati • St. Louis • San Diego

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


Rosalind J. Harris Publisher, Denver Urban Spectrum 303-292-6446

Addressing the th Cycles

of Poverty, Drug Addiction, Crime and Death,

in Baltimore Bal

By Terence Dorsey

Baltimore City is a gold mine

full of talent and potential. Unfortunately, a lot of its talent is wasting away in the grave sites across the city and will never successfully fulfill its originally intended purpose of empowerment and enrichment of its residents. The cycles of poverty, drug addiction, crime and death in Baltimore City is a problem that must be addressed. In 2017 there was a staggering 343 homicides in Baltimore City. More than 90 percent were black, more than 90 percent were males, and nearly 65 percent were between the ages of 18 and 34. As of May 9, 2018, Baltimore has hit 100 homicides. A mark the city hit by April 24 last year. Hence, indicating the city is trending to break its 2017 homicide rate. There were 34 homicides in Baltimore City in the month of April alone. Sadly, USA Today has ranked Baltimore City the most dangerous and deadliest big city in the country. In 2017, Baltimore city had its highestever per capita homicide rate. In 2017, there were 343 homicides; 2016, 318 homicides; in 2015, 342 homicides; in 2014, 211 homicides; and in 2013, 235 homicides. In the past five years, a confounding 1,449 people have been killed in Baltimore City. Based on these statistics, anyone can clearly see why Baltimore City is ranked the deadliest city in America.

Further, my claim that Baltimore City is a gold mine full of talent and potential may seem absurd to anyone reading this article. However, I stand on my claim that Baltimore City is rich with talent and potential. Unfortunately, all of these 1,449 people were killed prematurely. Even worse, their talent and potential were buried with them in their graves and remains there today benefiting no one. Imagine if these people discovered and developed their gifts, talents and potential and as a result were able to make a significant investment into their community through the utilization of those gifts and talents. Then, perhaps Baltimore would be recognized and ranked the most gifted and talented city in America. Our city’s political leadership has failed its citizens tremendously. It has failed to provide them with the proper educational and economic resources and opportunities to discover and develop their intrinsic capacity for success and emerge as productive leaders and citizens within their community. Instead of providing its citizens with the resources necessary for the community to flourish economically and academically, Baltimore has invested its financial resources into building state of the art juvenile deten-

tion centers and correctional facilities. These correctional facilities have become treasure chests that confine the potential that lie dormant inside of the numerous amounts of youth and young adults that have been restrained by the correctional system. This has led me to conclude that the two wealthiest places within the Baltimore community are the grave yards and the jails. This is where the overwhelming percentage of Baltimore City’s brightest apparently goes to die. Our city’s leadership has purposely created the environment that both supports and perpetuates this cycle of poverty, death, and ignorance that has swept our community. It has done so by failing to provide its citizens with the necessary tools to survive, thrive and flourish within the war zones they have known as their community. Far too many Baltimore City residents can step outside their front door and easily purchase any legal or illegal drug of choice. Further, far too many Baltimore city residents have direct access to multiple liquor stores. I can walk to 68 liquor stores within five minutes from my home. However, there is no access to any educational and economic resources within my community. There aren’t any jobs or career opportunities within my community.

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


I can access a drug dealer, addict or criminal a lot easier then I can an educator, employer or financial advisor. The Baltimore City community has become a place of safety, shelter and sanctuary for these drug dealers and addicts. Impoverished residents are effectively hostages and our political leaders offer nearly zero help in liberating ourselves from this self-imposed bondage of violence and death that has swept our community. This has created a community of hopelessness and despair. Many have turned to crime in a desperate attempt to meet their basic needs of adequate shelter, food and clothing. Others have turned to drugs in a frantic attempt to sooth the pain from the burdens and weight of their oppressors. Only a small percentage discover their inner value and self-worth, liberate themselves from the economic and academic oppression and bondage of their community ultimately emerging as leaders and change agents within our community. The answers to many of the problems within our community has either died inside of one of the homicide victims or is still lying dormant inside of some of the inmates incarcerated inside of one of Baltimore City jails. Even worse, until the political system in Baltimore changes its focus from building state of the art prison systems to building state of the art educational institutions that will provide Baltimore City youth access to both academic and economic opportunities and resources this vicious, deadly cycle will continue to get worse. Continued failure to recognize and nurture our capable, brilliant young people will prolong our city’s reputation as the deadliest and most dangerous city in America..

Breaking the Generational Cycle of

communities offer us an abundance of opportunities to pursue a life in crime, drug addiction, alcoholism, violence, death, poverty, poor education etc. which leads to premature death and mass incarceration of far too many young Black men and boys. The presence of a strong father figure within our lives can positively change the trajectory of our lives. It drastically set us on a path of successfully achieving abundant prosperity economically, educationally and in all other areas of our lives as well. One choice to break the generational cycle of fatherlessness is so powerful that it can change the course of your life and that of our children. Thus, set them on a more positive course of generational cycles of prosperity in all areas of your lives. My son TJ is a living example of this truth. My decision to break the generational cycle of fatherlessness changes the trajectory and final outcome of his life and set him on a

to write his life story and when necessary I edited the mistakes, failures and disadvantages that he has encountered and inherited in life and caused them to work together for his good. It will contribute to the development, production and publishing of his life as a powerful and present father for my future grandchildren. I have been able to do so because we share a personal and intimate father and son relationship of love together. Sadly, far too many young Black boys in our community lack this kind of relationship with their father which has led to the problems of crime, death, addiction, poverty, poor education, mass incarceration, etc. within our community today. Therefore, it is so vitally important for us to break the generational cycle of fatherlessness within our community. In doing so, we will successfully solve all the problems that plague our community and lives overall. However, sadly, because most of us don’t have strong and healthy relationships with our natural and biological Fathers, this same pattern is reflected in all of our relationships. Thankfully, that can change today. We must use our stories and lives as models and blueprints for our children to follow to develop strong, healthy relationships with children and our women. In doing so, we will successfully break the generational cycle of fatherlessness within your family and our community and can ultimately reap the deliverance, healing, empowerment and benefits of your decision to break this dreadful cycle of fatherless-

course of prospering abundantly in all areas of his life. In doing so, I have purposely set in place a positive generational cycle within his life to replace the negative cycle I inherited from my absent and negligent father. In addition, fathers possess the power to be the authors of their son’s life story. Again, my presence in my son TJ’s life is evidence of this truth. As the author of his biography and life story, I used my power and authority

ness within our lives, family and community. This will be the absolute best decision we can make. More importantly, our decision to do so, will lead to countless others being impacted by our leadership. We can and must break the generational cycle of fatherlessness within their families and overall community if we, as men, are to elevate our people out of the despair and sense of nihilism that continues to plague our collective communities throughout this nation. .




are the most important leaders in a

child’s, particularly a young man’s,

life. Through our fathers, we as young men receive self-identity, vision for our lives, and ultimate purpose for

our lives. Life is a full contact sport! Our fathers serve as head coaches

within our lives identifying our gifts,

talents, strengths and weaknesses and

empower us accordingly teaching and developing us into dominant players and leaders within the intense and

competitive game of life. Our fathers are the ones who possess the wisdom, power and authority to develop us into men and train us to empower others around us. A positive dad can impact our leadership potential helping us to achieve a greater level of success. Also, fathers serve as our protectors, shielding us from the hard hits and tackles of life hinder, and ultimately abort, our purpose in life. Also, they protect us from the unfair refer-

By Terence Dorsey

ees of life who refuse to call/officiate the intense, unfair, and competitive full contact game of life; more prominent in the lives of Black youth. Our fathers, use their power and authority to challenge the corrupt and unfair officiating and hold others accountable thereby forcing them to call the game of life fairly; protecting us from the penalties and flagrant fouls that life hits and tackles us with prematurely. Fathers firmly establish a foundation in our lives and build and develop us into productive, successful and prosperous men. Sadly, without this foundation we are left open and vulnerable to the relentless attacks, economic and educational hard hits and tackles of life long before we are strong enough to sustain, manage, avoid and survive them. As a result, we are killed prematurely in the streets in staggering proportions by people that look like us as a direct result of the strong and deep anger and frustration that comes from the absence of our fathers’ presence. The inevitable lack of selfidentity, value and purpose that comes with his absence is felt in very profound ways. Hence, making us more susceptible to poverty, poor education, substance abuse and mass incarceration, as well as, perpetuating a powerful and endless cycle of hopelessness within our family line and community. Also, as Black men and boys we find ourselves victims of police brutality and corrupt law enforcement officers within our community. Sadly, our

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


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The Re-segregation of America’s Public Schools and the Reintroduction of Jim Crow Who could forget the heart

wrenching images of nine school children being escorted into Little Rock’s

Central High School in 1957 by federal troops? Their fearless, valiant and

courageous march past throngs of

sneering racists screaming the most vile insults and threats imaginable

exemplified nothing but strength and

resolve. The triumph of the Brown v Board of Education decision began to be enforced across the south, and elsewhere, as the nation’s public schools were ordered to provide equal educational opportunities for all. However, nearly 65 years later we are faced with the prospect of a violent lurch back to the bad old days of Jim Crow. Our schools are re-segregating all over the country as white parents are finding ever more clever ways to avoid sending their children to integrated schools. This, in the wake of the new Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos’ plans for vouchers, privatization, school choice and charter schools, where officials can pick and choose who they accept, the signal is clear from our federal government to our courts that integration of the nation’s public schools is no longer a primary concern. In fact, an investigation by Nation magazine found that white parents have begun secession movements from court ordered desegregation; the consequences for minority students will prove to be calamitous.

By Alfonzo Porter

The contemporary political landscape has taken a turn towards division and apportion as we witness the resurgence of an Apartheid system in America’s public schools. The hard fought advances ushered in by the Civil Rights movement, in light of increasingly ultra-conservative social policy, has exposed exactly how temporary that progress has become. The price of this stealthy, creeping racial segregation represents an impending national crisis. The problem is further exacerbated by courts that refuse to enforce the law by allowing complaints to languish for years, if not decades. The promise of Brown is being slowly unraveled before our eyes. Since 2001, some 75 percent of Black and Latino students have been attending schools were resources are entirely inadequate for providing an appropriate education, according to a Government Accountability Office study; and the number continues to increase. This so-called secession strategy by wealthy white parents has become a common practice around the country as they seek to break free of public school systems in favor of smaller, more restricted systems. These practices promise to further deepen the disparities of wealth generation between whites and people of color. The evidence is already beginning to show. For instance, in 2003 white family wealth was seven times that of Black families and nine times that of Hispanic families. By 2017, that number had climbed to 13 times that of Blacks and 10 times that of Hispanics.

Much of this gap is directly attributable to policies that are partial to resegregation. The injurious effect of unconstitutional, state-sanctioned racial discrimination has been known for many decades. For example, the Kerner Commission asserted in 1968 that, “Our nation is moving towards two societies, one Black, one white; separate and unequal.” The commission concluded that, “equality cannot be achieved under the conditions of nearly total separation.” One must then wonder what outcomes white parents are aiming to accomplish with their move to break free. Now, more than five decades later this unequal separation continues. Those results touted by the Kerner Commission have been propagated anew. The hard fought progress since the 1960s may well be consigned to the dustbin of history and a step in the wrong direction. Let’s be clear—it is illegal to form a school system that purposefully excludes individuals based on race. Yet, many communities across the country have been permitted to do just that. While there are still some 175 school systems nationwide that are still under federal oversight to ensure that there is not a resurgence of Jim Crow. The horrifying fact is that federal officials and judges are rarely even checking to determine whether school systems are in compliance with federal law on the matter of resegregation. What is even more amazing is that when the government does step in, they typically side with the school sys-

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


tem that is attempting to splinter off, thereby making segregation even more pronounced. We know that segregated educational environments lead to an unequal allocation of vital resources. With the Trump presidency, the coming years might prove to be the last in federal effort to keep schools integrated. It could be the death nail as Mr. Trump’s Justice Department could actually end the efforts under Brown and usher in an a new era of Jim Crow in the nation’s schools. The full retreat by the federal government to enforce Brown sends a clear, unambiguous message that if parents want to create a school system where race becomes a factor in attending, the federal government will do little to stop them. The signs are already beginning to manifest as nominees for the federal bench are refusing to state publicly that they believe that Brown was the right decision. The percentage of Black students attending majority white schools has been on the decline for the past 30 years. So while the vast majority of white parents continue to parrot the need for diversity in words, their actions indicate anything but a desire to create a level playing field for students of color. With a single action, President Trump could end all pending federal cases concerning school integration and heave us backwards 60 years while reintroducing Jim Crow in America. Our communities must pay close attention and vigorously protest any move in this direction. .

Local Professor and Author Seeks to Address Social Media Troubles Among Students with New Textbook

“Clearly Tupac was gifted. I think he’d be a mogul today. He was totally immersed in the arts as an actor and even studied ballet. In the end, his immature was his demise. Growing in compromised circumstances in a single parent household only exacerbated the condition. It’s hard to imagine where he would’ve wound up as he matured. You can have the world laid out in front of you just like he did. And it can be completely destroyed depending on how those life’s lessons are manifested in ones behavior.” Porter believes if students were to compete in writing, math, robotics or other competitions, it could inspire motivation because winning feels good. Embedded in the book are 50 world-class competitions to spark a sense of academic competitiveness among minority students. After earning his degree at MSUDenver, Porter relocated to Maine and worked at a small newspaper. He moved to Dayton, Ohio, in 1988 and worked as a staff writer for the Dayton Daily News. He would later leverage his writing skills to become a high school teacher. For eight years, Porter managed a program for high school seniors, preparing them for life after graduation. He taught English at Trotwood-Madison High School in the Dayton, OH region before moving on to Whetstone High School in Columbus, OH. While in Ohio, Porter attended Ohio State University and received his Master’s degree in Educational Policy and Leadership with an endorsement as a principal and superintendent. His doctoral program focused on the Administration of Teaching and Learning at Walden University. He accepted a position at T. C. Williams High School in Virginia, the school depicted in Denzel Washington’s Remember the Titans film, where he served as vice principal from 1996 to 1998. He then moved to Baltimore to take on the duties as an administrator at Woodlawn High School. In 2001 he gave up his schools administrative duties and started his own private consultancy firm; PE&C, Inc. which provided teacher staff development, professional development, curriculum writing, program evaluation and other services. The firm located in Maryland, like so many other small businesses took a massive blow and became a casualty of the economic recession of 2010. Today, he is CEO of a firm focused on educational publishing and consulting. “Vertex Learning, LLC is an educational publishing and consulting company,” Porter says. “We publish any kind

By Khaleel Herbert

Metropolitan State University of

Denver journalism professor, Alfonzo Porter has come full circle. When Porter graduated from MSU Denver’s journalism program in 1987, he was ready to take on the world. During the past 30+ years, Porter has written for several newspapers including the Washington Post, tenured as a school administrator, and had started his own education consultancy. Today Porter is the CEO of Vertex Learning, LLC an educational publishing and consulting firm with an operational footprint in Denver, Atlanta, Dayton-Cincinnati, St. Louis, Washington DC and San Diego. He has penned a new book, “Digital Citizenship: Promoting Wellness for Thriving in a Connected World,” a textbook designed to help students successfully deal with living in a digital reality. It includes critical lessons on such topics as cyber-bullying, sexting, hate speech, handling inappropriate content, and online dating; among others. The content is aligned with the academic learning standards of the Society for Health and Physical Education and seeks to speak to the social, psychological and emotional well being of young people in dealing with life online. The book was written in collaboration with MSU-Denver‘s School of Education professors Lisa Altemueller, Philip Bernhardt and Todd Reimer through Vertex. It is designed as a tool for schools and students grades six through 12. However, it can be used by parents and other community leaders in helping their kids navigate social media. Each chapter comes with real-life situations, case studies and activities for teachers to apply in the classroom. The book is set to release early June globally and will be available for purchase through a number of distribution networks like Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Book-A-Million. “The message to youth is to be mindful not to negatively impact their lives and futures before it even get started,” Porter says. “Today, a personnel officer, human resources or talent acquisition officer will likely

search through your social media accounts even before contacting references prior make a hiring decision. If you’re engaged in questionable behavior online, all of that, at some point, will come to light.” According to Porter, today’s youth are digital natives. They can’t fathom a world without devices and social media. Therefore, they need effective tools to aid in adapting to computergenerated realities. “Our goal is to help them recognize the permanency of the information they’re putting on social media and let them know that this won’t go away,” Porter says. Other titles by Porter are “More Like Barack, Less Like Tupac: Eradicating the Academic Achievement Gap by Countering Decades of the Hip Hop Hoax,” “The Four Letter Word Dictionary for the American Teen,” and “The X Stands for Excellence.” Porter explains, “More Like Barack” is focused on helping African American and other minority students compete academically. Although the title of the book sounds anti-Tupac Shakur and anti-hip-hop, Porter reassures it’s not. “When I say more like Barack, less like Tupac, I’m talking about the decisions that you make that drive the work of your life,” Porter said.

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


of book –textbooks, dissertation to book, monographs, novels, non-fiction, children’s books cookbooks, and more.” Being an educator and working in various school districts allowed him to become vested in the underachievement of underrepresented students in America. “I’d been in high schools from 1988 to 2001. I just began to see certain behaviors that I thought lent itself to poor academic performance on behalf of many minority students,” Porter says. “Ostensibly our students, particularly black boys are being groomed to aspire to jump high, run fast, or throw a ball through an apparatus rather than go to the library.” When he took an interest in this subject, Porter wrote an op-ed about the disproportionate discipline of African-American kids in public schools, which opened the door to a three-year relationship with The Washington Post in 2011through 2014. “I was on a panel with one of their reporters. So I reached out to him,” Porter recalls. “Told him I had a background in journalism and I was currently working the school system in the DC area. So I wrote the piece and then was contacted by the editor. We talked a bit. Gave him my background,” Porter adds. “They asked if I could submit my work to them and the rest is history.” He believes that public schools are too heavily focused on athletics. Students who have traditionally underperformed academically have become pawns in a system that serves as a feeder system for the NCAA. “We knew all about LeBron James by the time he was 14 years old.” He said. “When I would pitch story ideas regarding black students who excelled scholastically, I encountered significant roadblocks from editors. If we concentrated more on scholarship, we could erase the academic achievement gap that exists between African American students and all other students attending public schools.” In 2014, Porter returned to his old stomping grounds, MSU Denver, to teach journalism classes to tomorrow’s journalists. He teaches Intro to Journalism, Mass Media, Reporting and Public Relations courses. “I like the nontraditional student. The fact they are actually living, working and experiencing life as an adult,” Porter says, “makes them far more mature and serious about their education.” Shaun Schafer, department chair of MSU Denver’s Journalism and Technical Communications, believes Porter is an approachable and genial professor. “He has one of the fundamental

qualities of being a good journalism professor–he has worked in the business,” Schafer says. “He knows what students need to succeed. I think he wants to make a difference in students’ lives and he works to not squander that opportunity.” With every class Porter teaches, he wants to provide his students with real-world experience, starting with MSU Denver’s student news organization, Met Media. “We’ve launched a new pilot program for reporting students to bring them to the Met one day a week and assign stories to them,” Porter explains. “Students can listen to me drone on in a lecture forever. But you take them to the source and Met Media is a wonderful opportunity for student reporters, broadcasters and even those who aspire to become PR professionals. Now my students have bylines.” Steven Haigh, director of Met Media, describes how Porter and The Metropolitan newspaper’s Editor-inChief Esteban Fernandez worked together to get his reporting students more involved with the paper. “Using his spring reporting students as guinea pigs, Porter and Fernandez instituted a program to involve the reporting class directly with the newspaper’s section editors,” Haigh says. “On Thursdays, students spend their class time with the editors going over assignments and accepting new ones for future weeks. When you play a big role in determining the positive future of the student newspaper,” Haigh adds, “that’s a pretty big impact.” Student in his Fundamentals of Public Relations course are expected to select a company or organization that could use a good public relations plan and are required to formulate that plan. Porter wants students to take their well-crafted plans and pitch them to their company. “When we say PR, it’s not just writing a press release. It’s not about just trying to get reporters interested in doing what your company is doing,” Porter explains. “It’s about how can we effectively leverage PR to transform a company or organization.” Haigh explains why Porter is valuable to Met Media. “He is a reliable communicator and easy to talk to. He believes strongly in accountability, not only from student to professor but also the converse,” Haigh says. “He comes to class prepared and expects the same from students. I’m very happy to have him as our faculty adviser for print and I look forward to successful years ahead.”. Editor’s note: Titles by Porter are available at For more information call, 800-995-7670.

Black-Owned Travel Agency To Host Historic 10-Day Luxury Tour To Ghana, West Africa

In August 2019, exactly 400 years after the arrival of the first recorded landing of a slave ship in Virginia, which saw the acceleration of the horrendous Middle Passage, descendants of former enslaved Africans will make a triumphant return to the land of our ancestry – Ghana, West Africa. Nationwide ( – Palace Travel, Inc. is excited to host this highly-anticipated 10-day Ghana West, Africa tour from August 5 through 14, 2019. Overnight flights depart from JFK, Dulles, Atlanta, and O’Hare airports to arrive in Accra, Ghana on day two, whereupon returnees will be met on arrival, ushered through VIP immigration and transported to the La Palm Royal hotel. Travelers will be greeted with delightful welcome drinks, then relax, refresh, and recuperate from the overnight flight. Costs per person/double occupancy for the tour starts at an inconsiderable $4,895.00. Reservations will be confirmed with payment of a minimal deposit. Convenient payment plans are available with final payment due June 14, 2019. At several of the travel stops, Ghana’s government representatives and people will greet and address the contingent, including a proclamation by the government recognizing each participant as an African in the Diaspora (DAY 4 of the itinerary), making this more than just an ordinary leisure trip to Africa. It will be a pleasant homecoming and truly an once-in-a-lifetime experience.

DAY 7: Depart to Elmina and Cape Coast; see “Slave River” where ancestors were washed and prepared for slave dungeons to await shipment to the Americas; view music and dance performance by local Bamboo orchestra, Mesomagor DAY 8: Travel to Cape Coast dungeon; experience the emotional journey and RETURN through the “door of no return”; experience the Fihankra Ceremony and receive your African name and certificate of authentication *Comprehensive itinerary and package details This historic pilgrimage to Ghana will be a triumphant homecoming to the land of our ancestors. Travelers will return with mixed, yet happy emotions. Indeed, an experience of a lifetime!

ITINERARY/ HIGHLIGHTS:* DAY 3: Visit Ghana’s Parliament House to witness proceedings in parliament; visit Kwame Memorial Park; view W.E.B. DuBois’ former home, now a museum and Center for the study of Pan Africanism; drive by Flagstaff House, the official residence and administrative offices of the president; visit National Theater for a cultural performance by the Ghana Dance Ensemble DAY 4: Visit National Theater for a welcome by the government and people of Ghana; tour of historic James Town; visit Brazil House; shopping opportunity (crafts, carvings, authentic, exquisite art and custom made clothing) DAY 6: Visit National Cultural Center, Manhyia Palace Museum; welcome to the Ashanti Kingdom by Ashanti king; experience and participate in cultural performances by artistic groups in the Ashanti region

About Ghana, West Africa:

In addition to being known as the first sub-Saharan African country to gain independence from Europeans, for its lush forests, diverse animal life, and miles of sandy beaches along a picturesque coast, Ghana is also celebrated for its rich history, its dynamic and visionary first post-independence president, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah – its habitation possibly dating from 10,000BC – and as a fascinating repository of cultural heritage. Forts and castles, many of which still dot the Ghanaian coast today, were constructed by Europeans to protect their trade interests. Although trading was originally centered on gold that was readily available in the area (and from which the future British colony the Gold Coast would

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


take its name), the focus shifted to the lucrative slave trade in the 17th century. The area later became known for growing cacao, the source of cocoa beans. Introduced there in the late 19th century, Ghana’s cocoa exports, used in the world’s most exquisite chocolates, continue as one of the country’s signature exports. Ghana is now a 29-million consumer market with a growing, educated middle class eager for consumer goods, services and technology. English is the primary language in Ghana. (Source: Encyclopedia Britannica)

About Palace Travel:

Established in 1991, Palace Travel, Inc. is ‘The Ultimate Africa Travel Specialist’ that arranges tours to all African Countries. As the only North American Travel Company with wholly-owned affiliates in West Africa, the company is strategically positioned to a variety of destination management needs, including tours, meetings, and incentives. Palace Travel staff has extensive experience in all aspects of Africa Travel and Tourism, in addition to indepth knowledge of local cultures, languages, and traditions. Tours and other travel arrangements are planned and executed by the company’s experienced career staff, utilizing expertly serviced vehicles, which guarantees personalized, professional travel service. Palace Travel is the most comprehensive Africa travel provider for group tours, safaris, luxury excursions, and educational tours with meaningful learning experiences. For more details and/or to book your ticket, visit or call

Ground Rules

Must See............llll It’s Worth A Look.....lll See At Your Own Risk.ll Don’t Bother.....................l

Editor’s note: Samantha Ofole-Prince is an award-winning writer and contributor to many national publications and is’s Senior Critic-at-Large. Khaleel Herbert is a journalism student at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Laurence Washington is the creator of Like on Facebook, follow on Twitter

Solo: A Star Wars Story ll By Laurence Washington

Solo: A Star Wars Story


olo: A Star Wars Story is the Star Wars movie nobody asked for. At least, I didn’t. I’ll explain. Having grown tired of a steady diet of the usual suspects, Luke Skywalker, Princes Leia, Darth Vader and the two droids R2-D2 and C-3PO, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (’16), was a welcome relief, a satisfying terrific entrée to the franchise. And it made me think, “Wouldn’t it would be a great to have other stand alone Star Wars movies?” After all, I’m sure there are other Star Wars adventures happening in a galaxy far, far, away. Enter Solo: A Star Wars Story. The backstory of how lovable rogue Han Solo, his co-pilot, walking shag carpet Chewbacca, card sharp Lando Calrissian and of course the legendary Millennium Falcon (that made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs) all got together. But I’m not sure anybody cares. Fast-forward two hours and 15 minutes later: I’m thinking, “Be careful what you wish for, because you might get it.” How so?


Thirty minutes into the film, I became disappointed. The opening minutes offer more action than the law allows, punctuated with spectacular set pieces. No argument here. But I just couldn’t get into the film until the last 45 minutes after a script suddenly appeared. And when Oscar-winning director Ron Howard’s name appeared in the end credits, I couldn’t believe I just sat through a Ron Howard film. I found out later that Howard took on director duties two weeks before the film’s completion to salvage the project. As a result, there really wasn’t anything to invest in. There’s no one to root for. Unlike Rogue One, Solo doesn’t advance its storyline to connect with any other Star War film. Solo totally ignores that concept, so the audience never gets that “Ah Ha” moment they had been waiting for like in Rogue One. OK, enough bitching and moaning. The film’s premise has Solo spending a good portion of the movie trying to reunite with his love interest Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke) whom the pair became fatefully separated early in the film. Along the way he hooks up with Beckett, an outlaw who is in deep with smugglers, and of course Chewbacca. Solo is an OK movie, but it has the Star Wars brand, so the audience expects a higher standard. Alden Ehrenreich is fine as Han Solo, but there’s only one Harrison Ford. Ehrenreich lacks the sardonic grin and arrogance Ford stamped on the role. Donald Glover is the film’s bright spot as Lando Calrissian, but it isn’t enough to bring the film to the level of previous Star War films. Solo is probably better than Phantom Menace (’99). If there was one wish that went along with these films, I would wish Disney wouldn’t think, “Well, it’s time to make a Star Wars movie. So let’s crank one out.”


Deadpool 2 l1/2

By Khaleel Herbert

ime travel, roasts of the Marvel and DC universes, a kid with mutant powers and the same merc with a mouth only scratch the surface of Deadpool 2. Since killing Francis, Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) has taken his mercenary work abroad, killing crime lords in Hong Kong, Sicily and more. Upon his homecoming, Wade reunites with his girlfriend, Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) who’s ready to make babies. Suddenly, their apartment is raided by deadly thugs.

Deadpool 2

Wade apprehends all but one, spoiler alert, who kills his beloved Vanessa. While in a decapitating mourning period, Colossus (Stefan Kapicic) brings Wade to the X-Men mansion and nudges him to be part of the team. Wade is reluctant. But when a mutant child with the power to shoot flames from his body (Julian Dennison) erupts on the public, Wade steps in as an X-Men trainee with Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand). You’d be correct to say this is a terrible idea. Believe it or not, Deadpool 2 is one big spoof of Hugh Jackman’s Logan. The kid mutant, Wade’s reluctance to help the mutant child and the big XMen references. Sound familiar? This sequel just hits the funny bone more than Logan did. But I wonder, if Logan didn’t premiere last year, would the plot of Deadpool 2 be completely different? I guess that’s one of those conspiracy theories fanboys and comic geeks will be at odds with for years to come. Looking beyond Logan, this sequel has its funny parts with action and jokes aplenty. Josh Brolin gives an authentic performance of Cable, and frankly, I like him more here than as Thanos in Avengers because he’s more comical and the counterpart to Deadpool. There are plenty of comedy and pop culture references on dubstep, Winnie the Pooh and Frozen. Plus super-newbies Domino (Zazie Beetz) Bedlam (Terry Crews) and Shatterstar (Lewis Tan) add to the laughter and action. Deadpool fans will find it hard to hold in their laughter for this sequel. But here’s my beef with Deadpool 2. The first time I saw Deadpool, I was blown away because he was an anti-

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


hero with spunk. I couldn’t believe the things that came out of his mouth and how he reacted to different scenarios. Remember that scene when he fought Colossus and damaged himself so much that he was hopping on one leg? Or when Colossus captured Deadpool to become part of the X-Men and he cut his own hand off throwing the bird? Or the way he put Negasonic Teenage Warhead in a box as the typical rude teenage girl? Or even how he almost killed a man with a Zamboni in order to find Francis? I liked how he played by his own rules. Plus he broke the fourth wall…a lot, which really drew me into his world. Deadpool was to Marvel’s mutant world what Eminem is to the hip-hop world. He followed his own compass and broke the mold of the typical superhero film. But in this film, he gets soft. I blame the director change. Tim Miller knew what he was doing when he made Deadpool’s debut film. David Leitch needs to stick to the Atomic Blonde and John Wick worlds and leave Deadpool alone. Plus, Stan Lee doesn’t grace the screen at all. The merc with a mouth has his funny moments in Deadpool 2, but it doesn’t top his 2016 debut on the silver screen.

Life of the Party ll

By Samantha Ofole-Prince

Life of the Party


tifled dreams, adultery, sexual escapades, weed laced cookies, cougars and sorority parties —Life of the Party, the new comedy starring Melissa McCarthy, has it all. Another vehicle directed by her husband Ben Falcone (The Boss and Tammy) under their production company, On the Day Productions, the film follows McCarthy as Deanna

Miles, a 40-something year old dedicated housewife who decides to head back to college after a divorce and lands in the same class as her daughter. The film does start off with some mild laughs as comedy veteran Matt Walsh, who plays her onscreen husband Dan, promptly informs Deanna that her other role in life—that of wife—has been cut just after dropping off their daughter in college. He’s having an affair with the local real estate agent Marcie, (Julie Bowen) and he’s taking the house. After unburdening herself to her parents, friend (Maya Rudolph) and her Uber driver, Deanna’s first move is to relieve herself of the burden of her soon-to-be-ex-husband’s things with a small backyard bonfire. When she comes across an old photo of herself with the Decatur University Archaeology Club, she decides to return to college. “We wanted to create a story that encourages people to believe it is okay to suddenly say, ‘I’m middle-aged and I’m moving to another country, I’m starting a vineyard or learning to bake bread.’ It’s never too late to redefine your life and to say out loud, ‘What about me?’” shares McCarthy, who was eager to recreate the college experience for the film. Deanna plunges headlong into the campus experience, much to her daughter’s chagrin, and along the way, she fends off mean girls, rediscovers sex, gets high and intoxicated and experiences the walk of shame, all while mothering daughter Maddie (Molly Gordon) and her sorority sisters. There are college shindigs, a dance off competition, a sorority party, booze, sex and that silly comic fluff one would expect with any film that circles around college life – most, of which in this case is far from hilarious. At the end of it all, she manages to win literally everyone over, including her daughter. Aside from that inspirational message of never giving up on your dreams, this fruitless attempt to cash in on McCarthy’s solid fan base lacks major laughs despite its star comedic casting.

Avengers: Infinity War lll By Laurence Washington


tep right up boys and girls! Pick a superhero, any hero!” That just about sums up Avengers: Infinity War. If you’ve been following the Marvel universe on the big screen for the past 10 years, every superhero you’ve ever seen appears in Infinity War. Luckily, Infinity War is not a cluttered mess,


but nonetheless it’s cluttered. That being said, Marvel hardliners will love it. Spidey, Thor, (bearded) Captain America, Iron Man, Black Panther and the rest, all get sufficient screen time. It’s a blessing and a curse; because the movie runs two hours and 36 minutes, giving everyone sufficient time to do their feats daring of do. And admittedly, to and old guy like me, it’s a little hard on the bladder. But I digress. Infinity War looks great, no argument here. And there’s even a script, which is always welcomed in these CGI laden flicks. Plus, Infinity War has its expected lighthearted moments, but it is also a little darker than pervious Marvel offerings. Which might shock some fans. But the film’s real problem is, Disney is cranking these bastards out too fast. I’m still trying to digest Black Panther, and then two months later, BOOM Infinity War and Dead Pool 2 is just around the corner. It’s truly a sensory overload. But enough whining. Here’s the premise: Since the first Avengers movie, the franchise has been hinting that the Mad Purple Titan Thanos is coming to Earth to capture the Infinity Stones that will give him power to destroy the solar system, universe, galaxy or whatever he pretty much wants. Sounds pretty bad, uh? But actually, Thanos isn’t a bad guy. He’s misguided on how to balance the universe. The problem is no one appointed him Sheriff of the universe. So he’s self-appointed, and figures by getting rid of half the population, the universe will be in balance. So yes, I guess in the end, he is a bad guy. Well the Avengers think so too, and they aren’t having it. So they team up with the Guardians of the Galaxy and the armies of the technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda to defeat Thanos. They give Thanos, and his army weird of creatures, a run

for their money. However, Thanos is so powerful, even the Hulk has reservations about tangling with the purple titan after Thanos whips him like a green-headed stepchild. Infinity War is thought provoking, but it’s not the best movie in the Marvel library. I still love the first Captain America. A couple of house keeping things: Infinity War is part one, so there’s another 2-hour film on the horizon. I know not when so don’t ask. And Hawkeye and Ant-man are suspiciously missing from the film. I suspect they’ll surface in the next installment, plus they’ll be a new character that was hinted at during the end of film to join the Avengers. A note for filmgoers with weak bladders: Go to the restroom during the five minutes of end credits, and then come back and watch the traditional after credit scene. After all, who cares about the Best Boy and the assistant to Chris Evans?

Florence Kasumba: “I would love to play the sweet girl from next door” By Samantha Ofole-Prince


Florence Kasumba Photo by Janine Gilded

lorence Kasumba can still remember when she got a call from her agent telling her that she had gotten that clandestine role, which she had auditioned for. “At that time, I didn’t know what movie it was for,” she recalls, “but it was very clear who she was. Someone who was trained in martial arts, whose mission is to make sure that somebody gets from A to B — fast and safe. That is all I knew,” shares the German actress who is part of the Dora Milaje in Marvel’s Black Panther.

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


“When you do an audition for a movie like that, most of the time you do not know, at least in my case, what you are auditioning for, because people talk too much,” adds Kasumba, who first appeared in Captain America: Civil War. With her statuesque look and martial arts training, the audition earned her the role of Ayo, who is part of a squad of strong fierce women who serve as the personal security force to the King and royal family. Although, Kasumba initially only signed on for Captain America: Civil War, she’s reprised the role of Ayo in two more Marvel movies, Black Panther, which releases on DVD later this month and Avengers: Infinity War, which is currently out in theaters. Packed with bonus materials, the Black Panther DVD/Blu-ray” includes several deleted scenes, and a piece which focuses on the Dora Milaj, the female warriors of Wakanda. “When you film for such a long time, as we rehearsed for months before filming began, there’s a lot of stuff, especially stuff I haven’t been involved in and a lot of bonus material that I am curious to see,” says the actress who admits she has watched Black Panther several times – four to be precise. Known for roles that include the Dutch motion picture hit Ik ook van Jou, several television projects from ABC’s “The Quest” to NBC’s “Emerald City,” Kasumba, who was born in Kampala, Uganda, is a staple on German screens having starred in numerous television shows and stage plays such as Mamma Mia, Chicago, Cats, West Side Story and was cast in the title role in Germany’s production of Elton John’s hit musical Aida. “My goal was always to play in musicals and while I was studying in Holland, I was cast in a movie and realized that I really liked both,” continues Kasumba who will voice Shenzi in the live-action remake of The Lion King, which releases next year. She’s excelled at playing the tough, stylish female and her canon is well stocked with empowered female roles, and if there is one role Kasumba would love to play, it would be that of the best friend. “I don’t get the ‘sweet type’ jobs because I guess I don’t look like the sweet girl from next door,” laughs the actress. “It’s typecasting and a lot of the time I do understand. They see me playing serious characters and never think she can actually be funny. I’ve played a lot of nice strong characters and its fun to work, but I can also play different types of characters.” .

Denver-Based Black Newspaper Celebrates 31 Years In Business In A Fun, Unique Way!

Editor’s note: The song is available on CD Baby ( for $0.99 and proceeds benefit the Urban Spectrum Youth Foundation. The Spectrum Strut new dance video can be viewed on YouTube by visiting k7HHuml4).

About the Denver Urban Spectrum

The award winning premiere Denver Urban Spectrum ( is the most sought after prinr publication in metro Denver, CO. DUS has been spreading the news about people of color since 1987 and last year, expanded with two online publications in Mississippi ( and in Baltimore (

Members of the local Denver community dance to the “Spectrum Strut” to celebrate the newspaper’s 31st year in existence.

Denver, CO ( - In April, Baltimore Urban Spectrum sister publication Denver Urban Spectrum (DUS), Denver’s premiere publication for communities of color, celebrated 31 years of spreading the news about people of color. Last year, the 30th anniversary momentous occasion included the debut theme song More Today, a reggae style remix of the 1969 classic More Today Than Yesterday by the Spiral Staircase. Performed by Denver vocalist Goatfish and produced by Bobby Wells, More Today is available on CDBaby with proceeds benefitting the Denver Urban Spectrum Youth Foundation and can be heard on Sound Cloud. With the surge of popular line dancing around the country, this year DUS partnered with Mr. Charles and the Let’s Move Dancing Crew to create a new line dance to complement the theme song on YouTube. People are familiar with the Electric Slide, the Cupid Shuffle and the Wobble and can see them performed or can join in and dance them on any given night at local hot dance spots. The Denver community learned the Spectrum Strut, created by dancer Kim Drayton (aka Kimmy Kim) and Charles Doss, who is recognized and known as the dancing man and was recently recognized as a 2018 DUS African American Who Makes A Difference honoree. He has been teaching line dancing for more than 10 years and is committed to teaching anyone and everyone to get up and move. “I have respected DUS for years as the community go-to publication, and to have this opportunity to contribute to the Denver Urban Spectrum was

unexpected but very much welcomed,” said Doss. “It’s all about the community.” Former New York police officer Kimmy Kim moved to Denver in 2006 and has been line dancing for eight years. She started with Charles Doss in 2010 and has been teaching line dance routines with Doss and the Let’s Move Dancing Crew for two years. “It means a lot to create a dance on this level. The song is great and I just felt the music and was inspired by the beat,” said Kim who hopes this music/dance video will exceed the more than 100,000 views she received from her dance routine she created from the song If Loving by Keith Sweat and looks forward to promoting it to her more than 8,000 followers. “We wanted to do something different and fun this year to celebrate another year of serving the community. And, what better way than by dancing?” said DUS Publisher Rosalind “Bee” Harris. Doss, Kim and the Let’s Move Dancing Crew practiced the Spectrum Strut and launched the dance and new music video at the 31st anniversary celebration at the Kasbah Nightclub on April 20 with Denver world music band, Goatfish and Friends. The video, which was which was filmed in Denver, included a special guest appearance of 97-year old classical and jazz bass player Charles Burrell, the first African American to be a member of a major American symphony, the San Francisco Symphony. Other significant scenes include the historic Five Points community and City Park’s Dr. Martin Luther King Memorial by internationally known sculptor Ed Dwight.

Hip Hop Artist’s Latest Album Proves Why You Don’t Need A Dope Rhyme Over A Tight Beat A futuristic stroll through, The Garden, with Substantial and his latest, a mood music offering

The melodies and instrumentation have a home in any setting. The bare tracks are fertile ground for the birth of classic soundtracks, radio hits, or scores. It is a timeless experience with a modern approach. On May 18 audiences will finally receive what they’ve been asking for. The full debut of The Garden, available everywhere. Due to an overwhelming demand for an earlier release of the full album, a single, Beyond the Stage, an airy, virtual voyage into the nightlife beyond mics, stage lights, and soundboards, was released in late April courtesy of YouTube powerhouse music channel Chillhop Music. Substantial states that BTS “is an organic, melodic interpretation of the heartbeat of the nightlife. The things that motivate the players, socialites and everyone else in the scene, scouring hole in the wall lounges and bars in search of the perfect vibe.” Listeners are taken to another place. That place and its accompanying vibe, will be crafted for guests at the Prince Georges African American Museum and Cultural Center, located at 4519 Rhode Island Ave, North Brentwood, MD 20722, on June 22 from 6 to 9 p.m. Substantial and special guests, Awon, DJ: DJ ETN, and DJ JAV, present, The Garden, a familyfriendly sensory experience listening party. Tickets are $25.

About Substantial:

Album cover

Washington, D.C. ( – Social Justice, Family, Education, and good vibes are just a few of the topics covered by prolific emcee, artist, and educator, Substantial, hailing from the Washington, D.C. area. For nearly 20 years, he’s given you stellar production paired with phenomenal lyrical commentary, working with legendary producers such as Odisee and Nujabes, though many times finding himself at the helm of his production and that of others. With his latest release, The Garden, we see him highlight those skills providing a soundtrack to our social lives to be talked about for years to come. It’s an audible experience transcending sound by inspiring visual experiences via the album art and physical experiences through dance and movement the music naturally encourages.

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


Prince George’s County Maryland born MC, producer and educator, Substantial, first made his debut in 2000 while working with the late Japanese producer, Nujabes. Since then, his soulful and introspective brand of Hip Hop music has received critical acclaim from EBONY & HipHopDX, his videos have appeared on MTV, VH1 and BET, he has performed around the world and collaborated with artists like Kool Herc, Oddisee & CunninLynguists while working with major brands such as Ford Motor Company, Amazon and UBER all while remaining a best kept secret. With a slew of accomplishment under his belt in the music industry, what Substantial is most proud of is his youth advocacy work with children, teens and young adults. He has and still, in some cases, facilitates Hip Hop based programs for organizations such as Covenant House, Baltimore City & Prince George’s County Public Schools, The Omega Studios’ School of Applied Recording Arts & Sciences & Maryland-National Park & Planning Commission in Washington, DC & Maryland. . Editor’s note: For more information about Substantial, visit

Get Your Body Summer Ready

By Kim Farmer

Summer is just around the cor-

ner and after a long winter or spring, like most people you are probably looking forward to getting outdoors. However, you may still need to shed the excess weight you gained over spring so that you can fit into the lighter (and often smaller!) summer garments. The good thing is that with the right approach you can have a summer body in no time. Read on for a few tips. First, develop a plan of what you want to achieve and by when. However, you must be realistic: If it took you three months to add eight pounds, you will need at least several weeks or a month to get rid of that weight. Initially your body will respond to any new activity and the weight may come off easy in the beginning, but don’t be fooled into thinking that you can stop exercising since you have lost a few pounds. It is likely that you will regain the weight you have lost if you stop or slow down your activity level so persist with exercise to see more permanent results. Select the right company. It is always easier to get a body ready for the summer if you have a partner since you can motivate each other and hold each other accountable. Also, when you have a partner you will feel safer exercising outdoors if your neighborhood isn’t entirely walkable. Choose a partner that will encourage you when times get tough and you feel unmotivated, as opposed to someone that has a competitive nature, unless you are driven to win. For most people, the social aspect of having a partner does the trick. Avoid rushing to join a gym: Many people who want to lose weight are swayed by promises of low membership fees; however the majority of people who join a gym don’t show up after the first week and end up paying unused gym fees for 2 to 3 years. Remember during the summer, the weather is nice and the days are long and this is another reason why being outdoors is a great option, especially in cities with great scenery. There is absolutely no reason why you cannot exercise outdoors as a way to help with your weight loss goals, and the nice weather is a bonus. Eat the right foods: To drop the pounds you may have gained over the colder months, pay attention to

your eating habits. Avoid sugary and high fat foods to eliminate empty calories and unwanted pounds. Focus on eating more fresh veggies and fruits, nuts, whole wheat, lean protein and low-fat dairy. Enjoy the junk foods that you like but eat them in moderation and only on occasion. As for beverages, limit alcoholic drinks since they can contain as much as 90-150 calories per glass. If you need to

quench your thirst, drink a lot of water – it is calorie free helps with weight loss, helps your body perform at its best, and it’s free! Exercise: There are hundreds of exercises recommended for people who want to lose weight, but if you want to be ready for summer, choose an exercise that you like otherwise you will stop doing it. To stay motivated, change the type of exercise and modify your routine regularly. If you are confused with what exercise to do, start with walking. It is perhaps the best exercise for beginners. Start by walking an hour every day and that alone can help you lose 300 calories per day or about 2,000 calories per week which equals about half a pound of weight loss. In two months, you can easily lose 4 to 5 pounds. Walking allows you to enjoy nature; it is free and easy to start. Relax: In order to achieve your summer body, you also need to relieve stress and ease the tension of everyday life. Losing weight and getting your body ready for summer

requires a comprehensive change in lifestyle and thus, you want to have fun along the way. To avoid the stress of daily work and life, practice yoga, tai chi, meditate or perform deep breathing exercises as often as your schedule will allow. Don’t forget the importance of getting enough sleep! It is tempting to sacrifice sleep to get more done, but your body requires enough rest in order to function at its full capacity. Getting your body in shape for the summer months requires patience! So don’t get frustrated if things aren’t moving along as quickly as you would like. Remember, the benefits of having (and keeping) your summer body go way beyond looking and feeling healthy for a season, the benefits will last a lifetime. Thanks for reading! . Editor’s note: Kim Farmer of Mile High Fitness & Wellness offers in-home personal training and corporate wellness solutions. For more information, visit or email

Anchored by a Congressional health education program, Men's Health Month is celebrated across the country with screenings, health fairs, media appearances, and other health education and outreach activities.

JUNE IS MEN’S HEALTH MONTH! What is Men’s Health Month? Men's Health Month aims to heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease among men and boys. This month gives health care providers, public policy makers, the media, and individuals an oppor tunity to encourage men and boys to seek regular check ups, medical advice, and early treatment for disease and injur y. The response has been overwhelming with hundreds of awareness activities in the USA and around the globe each year.

Men's Health Month Activities, Ideas, and Resources 

The Travelers Championship on the PGA tour cosponsors Men’s Health Month and features a number of Live Well, Play Well activities during the week of the Tour event.

Find other events in your area by checking the Men’s Health Calendar at:

Want some interesting and fun things to do during Men’s Health Month? Visit us at:

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


Law Enforcement in African American Communities Have a Long and Troubled History

Harlem gang leader. It was not hard to find. I wanted to see if this was really something I had seen. My faulty memory told me I picked up the magazine while in a barber shop. The photograph shocked me. I put it down but could not stop looking at it. It didn’t take long at all after a Google search. I was able to see my memory had

By Thomas Holt Russell

“We ain’t riotin’ agains’ all you whites. We’re riotin’ agains’ police brutality, like that cab driver they beat up the other night. That stuff goes on all the time. When the police treat us like people ‘stead of treatin’ us like animals, then the riots will stop.” William Furr, 1967

– speaking to reporter Dale Wittner and photographer Bud Lee, before he was fatally shot in the back by police.

Memories have their own per-

sonality. Some are noisy, always getting your attention and never leaving you alone. Others are shy, only surfacing during the oddest of times and seemingly at random. Some are so faint you wonder if the memory is of something that actually happened or was it a dream, or maybe something you were told or heard. Those memories live between all possibilities and are like ghost. I’ve had a memory of an image that haunted me for years that I could never get rid of. Thanks to the digital revolution, I was able to research and add some texture to that memory. Whenever I see Black civil unrest on television (something we have seen a lot of in the wake of Black men being killed by cops), I think about a Life Magazine cover from 1967, and how things seem to have gone backwards from the achievements we’ve made since that time. I think one of the reasons this cover photo has burned into my memory is that the boy in the photograph seemed to be my own age. I was 10 at the time. The picture is of a young Black boy, shot by a cop, lying and bleeding in a Newark street. Was it something in my head or was it real? I only say it once, but that was enough. It seemed like the photo had vacated, not only my own consciousness, but the collective consciousness of America. It is just like the falling man photograph taken during the Twin Towers attack of 9/11.


photo of a man falling, somewhat gracefully, was only published once, but no one who saw it could ever forget it. But the media, under the rare instance of self-censorship, decided that it was best for the public to not see images of people jumping from the towers. The public did not take kindly to the photo of the falling man. It seems during our present times, that someone would have pulled up that old magazine cover photo of the bleeding boy and use it to illustrate a point that police shooting Black males is not a new or a current fad. They could prove that the interaction between Black males and law enforcement was never a cozy relationship. With the recent police shootings, I thought about this magazine cover again and I decided to do something about it. I knew the Internet would give me the answer. Just a few weeks earlier, I had already did research on another Life Magazine article, Gordon Parks’ 1948 photo essay on a young

served me well this time. Several Websites had images of the magazine and more than a few of them showed other photos taken at that time that disturbed me even more than the cover photo. I viewed the photo slowly, trying to take in all the details. It seemed he was dead. He laid on his right side, slightly bent, as if to make a bow of his gangly body. A patch of deep red blood collected on the sidewalk under his raised, dangling elbow. For some reason, I remember his shoes the most. He had on a very dirty pair of white Converse All-Stars, the most popular shoe in my Bronx neighborhood. The shoes and the fact that

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


he was Black and about my age may have been the reason the photographs have haunted me for so long. That could have easily been me. It seemed he was alone in the middle of the street, dead, without a soul near him. But after looking at all of the original photos taken that day, I found that he was not totally alone. At one point at least, there were several people around him. The Life cover’s logo also hides the shoes of some on-lookers. The late sixties were tumultuous for America. I was only slightly aware of the events that were happening around me. The Viet Nam War, civil rights marches, the rise of Black Nationalism, hippies, drugs and music, were prominent among media and in our society. Even though there was a lot of social upheaval during that time, I was sheltered from most of the turmoil. It was not that my grandmother consciously or purposely kept those things away from me. It was mostly that for me, watching the news was an incidental occupation. If any adult happened to be looking at the news while I was in the room that was the only time I would care to see or hear the news. I certainly did not have a deep understanding of what I did see and heard on the news. Must of the stuff I did see on television, was just that, stuff I’d see on television. I never witnessed rallies or marches; no one ever rioted in my neighborhood; hippies and anti-war protesters were nowhere to be found. There was the real world, and the world of media such as television, movies, magazines and newspapers. They all depicted events from another planet and had little to do with my Bronx world. This was the backdrop when I picked up a Life Magazine to browse while I waited for a haircut. And the

color photograph of a young Black boy lying in the street and bleeding after being shot by police during the Newark riots made me realize there were some very important things going on outside of my bubble. The photograph seeped into my world, bringing with it an element of danger and assaulted my idea of being safe. If it could happen to that kid, it could happen to me and all of my friends. Though I have never experienced what was going on in Newark, Detroit and other cities across the United States, it all felt familiar to me somehow.

From the angle of his body, it definitely looked like he was dead. Even looking at the photographs now, he still seems to be dead, but he survived the shooting. The kid in the photograph was 12-year old Joe Bass Jr. He was a shoeshine boy who caught a couple of pellets in the neck and thigh from one of the policemen who was shooting at a looter. Other photographs show a cigar-chomping cop, carrying a shotgun and walking pass Bass as he was lying and bleeding on the sidewalk. Another photo shows a police wagon parked next to his body with no one in sight to help him.


When William Furr was shot and killed after running away from cops, that’s when Joe Bass was shot and labeled as an inadvertent victim. Furr, as stated above, was speaking with the Life Magazine, photographer and reporter before he was shot after taking a case of beer out of an abandoned store. The photographer actually took photographs of Furr looting the store. When he refused to stop after running away from police, he was shot in the back and died shortly after. The same pellets from the shotgun blast that killed Furr are the same that wounded Bass. Furr was just one of 26 people who were killed during that riot, which lasted from July 12, to July 17, during a summer that produced 159 race riots across the America. Where is Joe Bass today? I searched but I could not find anything on him. He, just like his cover photo, seemed to have disappeared. He’s not even listed as one of the victims at the Rise Up Newark Website, which goes into detail about the Newark Uprising. He would be a senior citizen today, maybe with kids or grandkids even. Regardless of what became of him, that photograph of him will last forever. It’s a reminder the issues in our inner cities are older than all of us. There is a myriad of issues that plague us still and we need to address these issues straight on. It is the usual suspects – jobs, education, drugs, crime, etc. Even Trump knows we are in danger. We are so fucked-up that he asked us what did we have to lose if we elect him. We can’t wait for politics to solve any problem, let alone the problems for people of color. We have to make sure to continue to solve these issues and hopefully we will not produce new images that will haunt us for our entire lives. . Editor’s note: Thomas Holt Russell is a teacher, writer, and photographer. For more information, visit www.thomasholtrussell.

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Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018




ince signing with Berry Gordy’s Motown Records in 1961, the legendary Temptations have gone through many incarnations in their more than 50 years making music. From fledgling singers riding the early wave of Motown’s signature hybrid Rock n’ Roll/R&B sound, to becoming international hitmakers and now mainstays of American culture. That Motown sound, including The Temptations’ greatest hits, has become a universally celebrated comfort food for the soul. Who hasn’t hummed along with the classics My Girl, The Way You Do The Things You Do, Ain’t Too Proud To Beg, Get Ready, Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone and Just My Imagination? With nine Grammy nominations, four Grammy wins, and a 2013 Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award, the group is still bringing Tempts magic to worldwide audiences, with what founding member, Otis Williams, says is the group’s strongest lineup in two decades. Their new album, All The Time, covers Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me,” The Weeknd’s “Earned It,” originally recorded for Fifty Shades of Grey, Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” and Michael Jackson’s “Remember The Time.” New original songs on the album include “Waitin’ On You,” “Be My Wife,” and “Move Them Britches.” The digital album’s two bonus tracks include a ‘Gospel Mix’ of their rendition of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” and a special ‘Heathens Mix’ for “Move Them Britches.” Every note on the new album is infused with that yearning, soulful, seamlessly harmonized blend The Temptations are celebrated for. I had a chance to sit down with Temptations’ founder and last surviving original member, Otis Williams, to discuss the group’s first studio album in eight years, All The Time, and their upcoming tour throughout the U.S. and UK. We talked about his relationships with fellow Motown alumni

By Allison Kugel

Photos by Jay Gilbert/Universal Music Enterprises

including the late Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy. Williams is humbled by his five-decade long success in the music industry, but not unaware of the indelible impact he and his bandmates have had on music, the entertainment industry and popular culture. Allison Kugel: Tell me about the most significant benchmark events

in your life; the events that shaped your destiny. Otis Williams: First would have to be my two grandmothers. I was raised by my grandmother on my mother’s side and my grandmother on my father’s side. They instilled in me a lot of great qualities that I carry with me through present day. Naturally, my mother’s influ-

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


ence, and then the other thing is timing. Timing can be the most important thing in our lives, for good or bad. The good thing about my timing is that I was brought to Detroit from Texarkana when I was growing up and being in Detroit when Berry (Gordy) started Motown. Detroit is always known for being the town of the Big Four: Chrysler, General Motors, Ford and Motown. And of course, being aligned with some great guys, speaking first and foremost of the original Tempts lineup. It was David, Eddie, Paul, Melvin and myself. When I stop and think back on that time in my life, I didn’t know that we would reach such heights and enjoy such a wonderful and exciting adventure. My career has been so illustrious that it’s hard to pinpoint just one moment. Allison Kugel: When you’re performing on stage or recording in the studio, do you feel the spirit of some of the other members who’ve passed, particularly the “classic five” including as you mentioned above: David, Eddie, Paul and Melvin? Do you feel their presence with you? Otis Williams: I definitely feel the presence of David Ruffin, Eddie Kendricks, Paul Williams and Melvin Franklin because we were such a unique lineup, and I would like to think we made such a profound statement together during the time that David was with us. I carry those four, their memory, and their presence since their leaving. I definitely carry the spirit of them, and also Dennis Edwards because a lot of people also look at him as an original Temptation. He (recorded) so many hits with us. In fact, he was on more hits with us than David was. I still feel the presence of those guys. Allison Kugel: Let’s discuss your new album, All The Time (released May 4). Why the eight-year break from recording, prior to making this album? And why come out with a new album now?

Otis Williams: With Motown’s slow demise, and when the company went out of business, we continued to sing. We did a few albums, but nothing of real note. At one point I said to myself, “Maybe we should just perform.” We were always one of the hardest working acts in the business. Then when I went up to Universal with my grandson, and I spoke to Bruce Resnikoff (CEO of Universal Music Enterprises), he asked out of the blue, “Otis, would you record?” As you said, there was an eight-year gap, and I said, “Yes, we would love to record!” Mr. Resnikoff was the catalyst for us going back into the studio. We went into the studio and he told us he wanted us to do some covers. I then said I wanted to mix it up and do some original songs as well, so it wouldn’t just be an album of covers. The word of mouth from those that have heard the album, and on social media, has been very good. Allison Kugel: You cover some amazing artists, including Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, your friend, the late Michael Jackson, The Weeknd… You cover the Michael Jackson song, Remember The Time. That was an interesting choice. Otis Williams: I’m a big Michael Jackson fan. We used to sit and talk when we were all at Motown together. Michael invited me to the set when he was doing the video for Remember The Time. He and I sat in his trailer and we talked in between them getting the lighting and the stage ready for him to come out and do his video. So, I chose to record Remember The Time, because that’s what I was doing, remembering the time when Michael said, “Otis, come on down and watch me do this video.” It was fond memories and why we recorded that song for this album. Allison Kugel: Since you knew him well, tell me, who was Michael Jackson? Otis Williams: Michael Jackson, during the times I spent with him, was a wonderful spirit. He was like a little kid, you know? At the time, he was very much a grown man, but Michael is one of those (talents) that God gives us every so often like Prince, like Elvis, like Sinatra. Certain talent come along that will make a statement while they are here, and even when they are long gone. Michael was such a unique force, but he was a kid at heart. Part of the problem with Michael is that he didn’t get a chance to have much of a childhood. He was thrust into being in showbusiness, which can be so time consuming, that it took away a lot from him growing up and being a kid. But sitting around and talking with him, he was a fine brother, fun loving and a unique energy.

Musical Stage Play To Bring 1930’s Actress Hattie McDaniel Back To Life In An Award-Winning Performance In San Francisco

Allison Kugel: What’s the greatest piece of advice you’ve gotten from Smokey Robinson? Otis Williams: With Smokey it was always more about the musical collaboration. It was always, “Hey Tempts, I got a song for you!” He didn’t sit down and philosophize with us about what we should or shouldn’t do. Smokey was just one of the guys just like we were, and he would always come to us with great songs. He was doing his thing with The Miracles and the Tempts were doing our thing. But just him being around and picking up the essence of Smokey, the good heart of Smokey, it spoke volumes about him as a person. Allison Kugel: In what ways was (Motown’s founder) Berry Gordy a significant teacher in your life? Otis Williams: Berry is such a unique person. Berry started out being a songwriter and he had to take off the songwriter hat to become president, because Motown was really taking off. We would sit around and listen to him talk. He was very profound in his dedication about what Motown and its artists should be. At the same time, Berry was funny as hell and like a little kid. He used to be a boxer coming up, and he would show us how he would spar. Berry and James Jamerson (a regular bass player on many Motown hits), one time we were outside in front of Motown, and they were mock sparring, because Jamerson liked karate and Berry was a boxer. Berry would then turn right around and philosophize and talk about his dedication and his purpose for Motown. But Berry was learning to be a president as we were learning to be artists. He would often speak of dedication, and he had us groomed and made sure that all of his top-flight acts would go to school. We’d go to artist development school. That was from the mind of Berry Gordy. I still see Berry more than I see Smokey. Berry is a great person. Allison Kugel: What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned in your life so far? Otis Williams: It’s hard to pick just one. There are a multitude of things I’ve learned that keep me grounded, but the one thing that is constant in life is change. Not everybody can adapt to change. Some people catch hell trying to change with the times. It’s an understanding that change is a natural part of life, and being able to adapt when change comes about. . Editor’s note: Allison Kugel is a syndicated entertainment and pop culture journalist, and author of the book, Journaling Fame: A memoir of a life unhinged and on the record. Follow her on Instagram @theallisonkugel. Interview produced in partnership with Wend y J Studios – capture classic moments with impeccable photography.

The late Hattie McDaniel (left) and actress Vickilyn Reynolds (right)

San Francisco, CA ( – Rich-Rey Productions LLC announced the premiere of Hattie McDaniel... What I Need You To Know! starring actress Vickilyn Reynolds as Hattie McDaniel, the first African America trailblazing actor and Academy Award-winner for her performance in “Gone With the Wind” in 1940. This one-woman musical takes the audience on a dramatic musical journey exploring Hattie’s life from her early childhood, her relationship with her family and her difficult decision to leave and move to Los Angeles. Audiences will witness her pursuit of artistic dreams during a time filled with racism and segregation. Directed by Byron Nora, Hattie McDaniel…will perform from Thursday, June 21 to Sunday, June 24 for six performances at the Cowell Theatre located in the Fort Mason Center for Arts and Culture (2 Marina Blvd, Landmark Building C, Suite 260, in San Francisco, CA. Attendees are encouraged to dress up in 1930’s attire. Sponsorship opportunities are available by calling call 562-381-0594. Editor’s note: Tickets are $25 to $100 and can be purchased online at, by calling 415345-7500, sending an email to or in-person at the Box Office.

For more information, visit

Critical Acclaim for Hattie McDaniel... What I Need You To Know!

“[Vickilyn Reynolds] makes McDaniel such a likable presence that it’s a pleasure to spend some time in her company.” — The New York Times “Vickilyn Reynolds is a vocal powerhouse.” — Dan Bacalzo,

“If ever a woman were born to portray pioneering Denver actress Hattie McDaniel, it’s this gardenia-wielding doppelganger.” — The Denver Post

“Actress/singer Vickilyn Reynolds aims to expand the public’s knowledge and appreciation of her with the riveting one-woman powerhouse show.” — Huffington Post

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


In New Book, African American Entrepreneur Shares His Secrets On How To Generate Passive Income Online

Book cover and author, Brandon Gates

Brandywine, MD ( — Passive Income Generating Methods: How to Make Money While You Are Sleeping by Black author and entrepreneur Brandon Gates was recently released on Amazon as an e-book, claiming its well-deserved place in its “Business and Money” category. “Half of the world’s population – that is an astounding 3.7 billion people – browses the web on a daily basis. That means there is great potential to make money online by providing goods or services that address their needs and provide solutions to their problems,” says Gates. He continues, “Securing a passive income stream is a dream for many, but I am here to say that it can very easily become a reality. There has been much talk about the fact that information on the matter is very hard to find, especially in the form of handy guide that would not only help in clarifying any misconceptions about passive income streams, but that would also give a step-by-step plan on how readers can go about with creating one for themselves.” Gates says that the book is a natural extension of the Passive Income Generating Junkies website, which contains a wealth of knowledge on how to become financially independent without having to work a regular 9-5 job or run a brick-and-mortar business. Furthermore, Gates urges his readers to join the website’s forum and engage in lively conversation on their progress with setting up passive income streams, and the ways with which they can scale them. Concluding his statements, Mr. Gates said, “I am looking forward to interacting with book readers, respond to their questions, and offer them encouragement in their quest to financial freedom.” Editor’s note: To learn more about Passive Income Generating Junkies, visit


Former Homeless, Self-Made Millionaire Comes To LA For National Speaking Tour Stop & Book Signing Event Her Mission: Teach Black Women How to Defy Impossible Through Their Finances

Dr. Venus Opal Reese

Nationwide ( – From living on the streets of Baltimore in her youth to obtaining a Stanford PhD to becoming a self-made millionaire, Dr. Venus Opal Reese, aka “Dr. Venus,” is nationally renowned for sharing how she became empowered to “monetized her messy” life, that was a byproduct of the historically dysfunctional legacy that plagues what she calls the “financial DNA” of too many Black women especially entrepreneurs and career professionals. As part of a national tour that promotes her new book, “The Black Woman Millionaire: A Revolutionary Act that DEFIES Impossible,” Dr. Venus is coming to Los Angeles for a book signing event and teach a seminar on Saturday, June 2 at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel beginning at 1 pm. She will speak on the power of Black women healing their “financial DNA,” and to show them how to become 7-figure earners (or as she says, “seven figure sisters”), and beyond. She will also capture footage for her upcoming documentary, The Black Woman Millionaire: A Revolutionary Act That Defies Impossible, that’s not only about her life, but takes a deep dive on her overcoming massive obstacles to generate massive opportunities for financial and professional success. About her own first realization on the impact that the historically dysfunctional legacy of “financial DNA” has on Black women, Dr. Venus noted, “I was stressing and failing a French class at Stanford right before my dissertation. My advisor encouraged me to go away for the summer.” On choosing to go to Africa, she stated, “I didn’t know I was American until I was in Africa. That’s when I realized that identity was a performance of self, rooted in survival. That trip changed my life. I decided to do my dissertation on how survival strategies that were born in American Slavery continue to show up in Black women’s money...”

And indeed, in her recently released, “The Black Woman Millionaire: A Revolutionary Act That DEFIES Impossible,” Dr. Venus breaks down the economic impact that slavery and survival strategies have on Black women’s money, businesses, and overall lives. Ironically, 30 of the top publishing houses turned down her book proposal submitted by her literary agent. The reason: they didn’t believe there was a “market” of Black women who would buy a book about becoming a millionaire. Undaunted, Dr. Venus followed in the footsteps of quite a few major writers and decided to self-publish. Which was the right decision, because new readers and her robust and loyal fan base - that also includes non-Black women - shot the book to #1 on Amazon in 3 hours and 11 minutes. Now in the midst of her national 10-city speaking and book signing tour, “The Black Woman Millionaire: Heal Your Way to 7 Figures On Your OWN Terms!, at each stop Dr. Venus is having footage shot for the documentary. While in California, she will also shoot Stanford faculty, staff, classmates and friends, who knew her when she first began to formulate the survival strategies that she now teaches. Editor’s note: To purchase tickets for the event or to purchase the book, visit

Powerful New Book, “We Are Our Ancestors’ Keepers,” Empowers Children And Raises Cultural Awareness

Book cover and young child enjoying the very educational book

Nationwide ( – Those are some elements that readers will experience as they dive into We Are Our Ancestors’ Keepers, a Common Core State Standards (CCSS) curriculum for children K-12. Follow the journey of Melanated African royalty who have made the world a better place. Starting from Africa and spreading worldwide, our leaders range from Imhotep to Oprah. These are the revitalizing stories of heroes and she-roes that have contributed greatly to our society and paved the way for all of humanity to thrive and soar to new heights.

Baltimore Urban Spectrum — – June 2018


This book captivates readers by providing them with a visual or mental movie of the difficult voyages many African leaders and members of the Diaspora, such as AfricanAmericans, undertook, for the wellbeing of mankind. It’s exhilarating and empowering because it allows readers to see themselves inside of those who have laid the solid foundation for their future successes. It promotes cultural awareness because it features legendary achievers whose exemplary characteristics influenced our history. It ignites the hearts of young readers by passing them the torch and encouraging readers to continue the legacy of melanated innovators in order to make a profoundly positive impact in our society. Moreover, it allows young readers to see themselves in the images of great ones who have gone before them and to write their own narratives. By sharing their stories and how their incalculable contributions enriched humanity, readers can carry on the work that has been granted to them to continuously help grow others worldwide. From their ventures in this book, readers will view themselves as remarkable achievers and change agents who could accomplish any aspirations they set for themselves. We Are Our Ancestors’ Keepers is a multi-generational text that will unquestionably touch and inspire the lives of every reader! #WeAreOurAncestorsKeepers Enter the We Are Our Ancestors’ Keepers “$1 Million Dollar Giveaway Contest for 10 Families” today: You have a chance to win big when you 1) Purchase 1 of 10 products from the online store and 2) Describe in 500 words or less which ancestor do you see yourself becoming a reflection of and what would you do for your family and community with 100K. Visit our website for more details on the contest. #Ancestors1MGiveaway We Are Our Ancestors’ Keepers is also proud to launch their online store. Spreading pride of our ancestors and the current keepers of the culture, each member of your family will discover something that speaks to them! Wake up to your favorite ancestor in an exclusive poster. Take them with you in your favorite article of clothing. Whatever you select will exude pride that has no limits when it comes to educating the world about our rich history. Editor’s note: For more details and/or to purchase the book or other product, visit

Baltimore Urban Spectrum June/July 2018  

June; Father's Day, Men's Health Month and more Baltimore in color.The Baltimore Urban Spectrum is an online publication and sister publicat...

Baltimore Urban Spectrum June/July 2018  

June; Father's Day, Men's Health Month and more Baltimore in color.The Baltimore Urban Spectrum is an online publication and sister publicat...