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INSIGHT NEWS March 5 - March 11, 2012 • MN Metro Vol. 38 No. 10 • The Journal For Community News, Business & The Arts •

Human trafficking The new slavery Murua (Swahili for ‘Respect’)


By Dr. BraVada Garrett-Akinsanya, Ph.D., L.P. Exploiting people is not a new thing in our society. In fact, as long as time has existed there have been periods during which whole groups of people were marginalized, enslaved, and mistreated. Consequently, it is not surprising that human trafficking existed long before and after our ancestors were shuttled through the Middle Passage in slave ships. Over the last decade, the United Nations has sought to intervene internationally with the global exploitation of people as commodities, especially women and children. In fact, in 2000, they introduced a document entitled: The Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women

and Children, (Supplementing the United Nations Convention Against Organized Crime). Their document provided the first official legal definition of trafficking. It defined trafficking in persons as: “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.” Statistics from the U.S. Department of State, suggests that the United States is the second largest region of destination for trafficked women and children, with as many as 50,000 trafficked victims annually. Almost 60% of trafficked victims into the United States are females and almost 50% are children.

According to the Department of Justice, the Twin Cities is the 13th most heavily trafficked metropolitan area in the U.S. with many coming from both urban and rural Minnesota. Researchers contend that women and girls who are trafficked are often sexually exploited, forced to work in domestic services, factories, farm labor, or as mail order brides or work in the pornography industry since the United States has the largest internet and child pornography market in the world. Additionally, if exploited girls and women come from

other countries, they may be deceived into thinking that they will have greater opportunities in the United States if they follow their victimizers to the U.S. Consequently, in addition to being smuggled, many of these females enter the U.S. legally as military wives, or with tourist or educational visas provided by their traffickers. Finally, internationally

exploited women, boys and girls may enter into an unreasonable agreement of debt bondage with their traffickers to repay “transportation” costs. In these cases, the individuals in question are often forced to engage in nonsexual labor by serving as nannies, day laborers etc. Remember, a few years ago when it was discovered that a South African boys choir had virtually imprisoned the youth into singing across the world? So, essentially “trafficking” is just a fancy way of saying, “pimping” –plain and simple. Unfortunately, many of us believe that such abuses occur mostly overseas and do not affect us here in the United States, much less here in North Minneapolis. It is true, for example, that Nigeria is a key trafficker for the exploitation of girls and women who are exports to Italy. While it is accurate that trafficking occurs outside the United States, it is also true that girls and women

Putting the customer first Don’t count your chickens The accountant will say, do not book anticipated but unearned revenue. On the farm, we expressed it slightly differently: don’t count your chickens before the eggs hatch. Minnesota’s conservative state legislative majority leaders

should observe that time-proven admonition. Don’t spend money that’s already been spent and don’t spend money that hasn’t been earned. On Wednesday, Minnesota releases a periodic state budget forecast, reporting on Minnesota’s fiscal health. Will Minnesota’s


Small business growth Pardon partisanship, move small business agenda forward



Business Leadership Profile By Erin Jerabek, Executive Director West Broadway Business Area coalition The second I sat down with Sue Friedman of Friedman’s Department Store to talk with her about her family’s long-time Northside business her cell phone rang, she glanced at the number and picked up the call, signaling to me it would just be a moment. I figured it was business but as soon as I heard Sue reply, Size 13, right, I correctly assumed it was a NFL player. Since the 90’s Friedman’s has become the go-to shoe store for several proathletes. Friedman’s customer focused and friendly service draws individuals, families, and sports stars from across the country into North Minneapolis to buy shoes.

By John Van Hecke

are being trafficked, “pimped” or used everyday right here in Minnesota. According to the Department of Justice, the Twin Cities is the 13th most heavily trafficked metropolitan area in the U.S. with many coming from both urban and rural Minnesota. Multiple factors put girls and women at the greatest risk for exploitation. These include being immigrants, being in ethnic/racial minority groups, having lower socio-economic status, being homeless, as well as living in unstable family environments and having a history of childhood abuse. Consequently, those who are at greatest risk for domestic trafficking are immigrants, ethnic minority groups, adolescents, and runaway or homeless youth. Pimping occurs on all kinds of levels and in a variety of contexts.

Photo: Ben Williams


Sue Friedman

Supporting homeless veterans

Minnesota Masonic Charities commits



The Artist dominates the Oscars



Lincoln Ladies: Lincoln honors hollywood elite at ESSENCE luncheon


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Move small business agenda forward By Ron Busby, President/CEO U.S. Black Chamber, Inc. The Small Business Community has a lot to look forward to in the upcoming months, thanks to several new bills the focus is back on them. Throughout the recession, small businesses have taken on the task of creating new jobs for Americans in a time where job growth was virtually at a standstill in the big corporations. Over the last seventeen years alone, small business owners have been credited with providing 65% of the new jobs in this country. Small businesses have a great need for increased contracting opportunities from the government. Members of Congress, Republicans and Democrats alike, are

pushing for these business owners to be granted those opportunities. Currently, there are nine significant active bills pertaining to small businesses. A few of them are detailed below. The House Small Business Committee Chairman Sam Graves (R-MO) introduced the Government Efficiency through Small Business Contracting (GET Small Businesses Contracting) Act of 2012 at the end of January. This bill is aimed at raising the federal government’s goal for small business contracts from 23 percent to 25 percent. Every year, our government spends an estimated $540 billion on contracts. Currently, the goal is to award 23% of that money to small businesses. In the last two fiscal years, the federal government has missed

that mark by three percent or more. Analysts estimate the shortfall to be a $20 billion loss to small businesses. How many more jobs could have been created by small business owners in those last two years with that additional money? Why raise the amount, then, from 23% to 25% if our government hasn’t fulfilled even the lower end of that scale for two years? One of Chairman Graves’ provisions in this bill will ensure that top agencies are being held accountable for meeting these goals by withholding bonuses if they are not met. That will ensure that those government agencies are fighting every bit as hard for our small business entrepreneurs as our legislators. Another part of this legislation will also work towards granting 40 percent of any subcontracted work to small business owners as well. This is an increase over the current 35.9 percent. A second bill introduced by Chairman Graves is the Small Business Advocate Act of 2012. This legislation is going to do so much to help the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization. The purpose of the OSDBU is to help promote small businesses seeking government contracts in various agencies as both prime and subcontractors. If passed into law, the Small Business Advocate Act of

Economy From 1 economy surpass, meet, or fail established expectations? While budget analysts expect slow growth, continuing an established pattern, Minnesota Senate Finance Committee Chair Julianne Ortman (R-Chanhassen) boldly expects significant growth based, in part, on Minnesota’s budget surplus established in the November 2011 forecast. “Through strong fiscal discipline, we now have a surplus of $876 million,” she recently

Ron Bubsy, Sr. 2012 will make it easier for the OSDBU to help advocate for contracts on behalf of small business owners, work for acquisition assistance and stop insourcing and unnecessary contract bundling, which leaves many small businesses out of the loop. An important aspect of this bill is that it will elevate the position of the OSDBU Director to that of a senior acquisition leader in his or her agency and prohibit them from holding any other offices during their time in that position. The Director will be able to focus all of their attention on their responsibilities as a small business advocate. Chairman Graves is

said. “We’ve had a really good turnaround.” Let’s stop right here. The November forecast’s surplus was more like a “surplus,” meaning that it requires significant qualification before anyone could breakout the bubbly. Of the $876 million, $205 million came from unanticipated health and human services savings. People eligible for benefits didn’t claim them. Tax revenues increased about a third again greater than expected to $526 million. That’s great. We need Minnesota’s economy to grow and it is, just very, very slowly. The wrinkle that conservative

to be commended for his introduction of these bills. He is making a clear stand in support of the small business owner in America, which has been somewhat lacking in our government for many terms. Senators Snowe, Landrieu, and Brown also introduced a new bill in support of small business owners last month called the Small Business Tax Extenders Bill. Senator Snowe is a member of the Senate Finance Committee, which makes this bill even more significant since she is in a position to help push it through. This legislation is intended to provide targeted tax relief to small businesses and also extend the necessary tax relief provisions that have already been put in place since 2010. In her address to the President, Ms. Snowe pointed to the stagnant numbers of this country’s unemployment rate, which has not been lower than 8.3 percent in the last three years. She referred to small businesses as the “engine of job creation” in our country over the last few years, creating nearly 2/3 of jobs. For this reason, the government is focusing more on helping these businesses to flourish. The bill includes several incentives that have received bipartisan support in the past in both the Senate and the House. The provisions are hoped to bring relief to small businesses

in their investments as well as to individuals who take the risk of investing in small business start-ups. In his State of the Union address, President Obama stated it clearly: “It’s time to stop rewarding businesses that ship jobs overseas, and start rewarding companies that create jobs right here in America. Send me these tax reforms and I’ll sign them right away.” He also pointed to small businesses, saying that “Most new jobs are created in startups and small businesses. So let’s pass an agenda that helps them succeed….So put them in a bill, and get it on my desk this year.” While it appears that both sides of the aisle are ready to take a stand for small business, we can only hope that partisanship and political grandstanding doesn’t prevent an enhanced government contracting environment. It is time for all those involved in the legislative process to work together, continue to amend this and other similar bills to ensure that government contracts are attainable and mandated goals are met. The success of our economy lies on the shoulders of small business owners and it is up to us to help them hold that weight. The President is waiting…Let’s get it on his desk.

policymakers ignore is the surplus’ destination. They want you to think that we have another $876 million available for good works like more tax cuts for the very highest income earners but the truth is more sobering. That money has already been “spent.” To balance Minnesota’s budget, policymakers drained every bit of reserve cash available with the promise that replenishing reserve and cash-flow accounts to required levels would be the State’s first priority. And, that’s exactly what has happened. We took a gamble. It worked. Now, we’re living with the terms of the bet. Consequently, Minnesota

doesn’t have, as Sen. Ortman would have us believe, a lot of money lying around. And, with Wednesday’s forecast, while I expect revenues to be up, surpluses will still be tasked to repaying the shortterm, credit-card style debt that policymakers used to gimmick their way out of raising taxes on the richest one or two percent. Minnesota is slowly digging itself out of a big hole. When you hear the forecast, enjoy the moment but save the good stuff for a genuinely triumphant moment. Maintaining forward momentum means not counting the chickens before they’re hatched.

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College and career ready Building Creative Capital By Bernadeia H. Johnson MPS Superintendent It has been said – and I firmly believe – that education is the greatest civil rights issue of our time. I also believe that education is our greatest opportunity to eradicate the inequities that exist in our communities. The right for every individual in our

Friedman’s From 1 Friedman’s Department Store located at 400 W. Broadway Ave in 1928, they are one of the oldest family owned businesses on the West Broadway corridor. David and Sue Friedman currently own and operate the shop. David’s Grandfather was the original owner; he originally opened in 1898 and was located on W. Broadway where HWY 94 currently sits. Over the years Friedman’s have adapted and changed their business to fit in with the current trends and niche business opportunities. When Friedman’s opened in 1898, they were a department store focused on men’s working wear, dress shoes and apparel, in the 1940’s they expanded to also include children’s, women apparel, linens and towels in order to outfit women and children on Temporary Aid to Needy Families-TANF. By the 1970’s Friedman’s was a family focused store from children to the grandparents. In the 70’s and

community to access a high quality public education is a reflection of our values, our foresight and our commitment to our economic future. My vision is for all students who graduate from the Minneapolis Public Schools to be college and career ready. A child’s education must start the day he or she is born and must continue beyond the day that his or her graduation cap is tossed in the air. We must continue to invest in early childhood education, prepare students to read by third grade, maintain the academic momentum through the middle grades and push students to reach new heights as they prepare for college and

career. The Minneapolis Public Schools is closing the achievement gap for the first time in six years, but there is still much work to do. We must continue to work to ensure that all students succeed at high levels. My top priorities continue to be focused instruction, evaluating teachers, administrators and other staff members, building equity within our organization and raising standards and rigor for all students, especially those who struggle. Our students and families deserve no less than to have a strong school in every neighborhood, an effective principal leading their school

building and a high quality teacher in every classroom. The charge of educating our youth at high levels extends beyond our school buildings. We all can support the achievement of our students: families, faith communities, service organizations, businesses and policy makers. No matter who you are, you can make a difference and promote this civil right that matters most to our young people, our communities and our nation. I encourage the families of our students to ensure that their voices are heard. Parents and guardians are key stakeholders in the education of our students. The Minneapolis Public Schools

conducts an annual survey in an effort to measure progress and family perspectives. Creating positive experiences in our schools are critical as we work to best serve our students and their families. Beginning February 22, MPS began distributing the survey to parents and guardians at school conferences, school events and via postal mail. All responses will be anonymous and there is no identifying information on the survey. The surveys are in a sealed envelope that is individually addressed to the parent/guardian along with the student name and address. Please complete and return the survey by dropping it off

at your child’s school or by mailing it in the pre-addressed, postage-paid envelope by April 30, 2012. We want to hear from our families regarding their experiences in our schools. The feedback we receive helps us understand where our families feel that we perform well and where there is room for improvement. Every response is valuable and the results of this survey will be used to help drive ongoing improvement. We look forward to learning more from our families and thank you for your continued dedication to the education of our children and the Minneapolis Public Schools.

80’s Friedman’s began to sell more athletic shoes and hip hop apparel. However, within the last five years and the changing demographics on the Northside Friedman’s has refocused and are all about catering to families. They still have all the unique sneakers you may desire and converse in every color, and yet, they carry a greater variety of children’s, women’s, and men’s shoes and athletic wear and men’s dress shoes. Friedman’s started outfitting pro-athletes back in the late 90’s. “I remember it like it was yesterday,” Sue said. “Michael Bennett came in the store on a Friday afternoon and Marc,” the Friedman’s youngest son, “whispered ‘that is Michael Bennett the running back for the Vikings,’ he was looking for a pair of shoes and he needed by the next day. I found the shoes; called Nike to overnight express them and Bennett got his shoes. That is how it all started.” The thing about Sue’s philosophy, it doesn’t matter if you are playing football for the Viking, Packers, North High, or in the backyard with your neighborhoods she is going to give you the same excellent service and that is how you keep a business

open for a century.

working in the store in the mid70’s when she married David. She has seen major transformations in the neighborhood in her lifetime from the riots during the 60’s, drug and gangs of the 70’s and 80’s. Sue described the major transformation going on from within the neighborhood. “The 80’s were real fast lot of drugs and lots of drug money on Broadway,” but things have changed, “Broadway is coming back really strong, there are new businesses and retail shores moving in, the Minneapolis School District Headquarters is coming to Broadway, and neighborhood groups like Hawthorne Neighborhood and West Broadway working together.” Sue pointed out the perception issues many often point to when talking about when attracting customers and recruiting new businesses to Broadway Avenue, “the media paints Broadway as a drug infested, prostitution infested, murder infested area.” Sue exclaimed, “That is not true, that is not the Northside. Crime happens everywhere and there is a lot of good happening on Broadway and on the Northside but the media chooses to focus on

the negative and there is lots of positive happening here.” Sue thinks Broadway is on it’s way to becoming more family oriented. “I see Broadway becoming more pedestrian friendly, that is my biggest thing, I want to walk down Broadway go to the dry cleaner and have a meal at a sit down restaurant… not fancy fancy but family oriented places with good service.”

Hawthorne Neighborhood. Sue’s latest philanthropic endeavor is the Hawthorne Community Garden for Kids. Sue’s idea is to teach Northside youth to grow their own food, merchandize, and sell what they grow at the W. Broadway Farmers Market this summer. Sue has identified three neighborhood plots for the garden and has successfully secured seed donations and volunteers to help with the project. Youth of any age can get involved in an upcoming series of three workshops hosted by Sue and her partners. The first workshop is March 7th at New Bethel Baptist Church from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. The first three workshops include: education on composting, growing a seedling, and creating rain barrels. Those who want to get involved can reach Sue at 612382-0877 or friedsue@hotmail. com.

A New Outlook When asked about the future of Friedman and retiring, Sue exclaimed, “I love Broadway, love my customers, and I love working in this area.” Sue and David have been getting a lot of accolades lately from customers and neighborhood residents. They are in the process of updating their storefront by adding new windows, art, lighting, and signage with the help of a grant from the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition funded though the City of Minneapolis, and the Northside Funders Collaborative. Since the improvements started there have been an “unbelievable amount of new faces in the store” Sue glows with joy every time she talks about the new windows. “It is the best thing we have ever done,” the store is serving more and more families and they are getting more walkin traffic. With their new look, “people are stopping in that say they have been driven by for over years and they thought we were closed all these years.” Sue was born in North Minneapolis in 1955 and started

Giving Back to the Community In addition to providing Northside residents with shoes and apparel for nearly a century, the Friedman’s are also focused on giving back to the community. Sue is on the Hawthorne Neighborhood Council Board and is Co-chair of the Business Committee. Bi-annually the Friedman’s team up with a variety of sponsors and foundations including Villa Fonda Foundation and EJ Henderson to do shoe and winter boot giveaways for Northside youth. These events are very popular and with the help of a couple volunteers and staff, David and Sue measure and provide footwear for over 200 kids in need from Ascension Church and the

Friedman’s Department Store 400 W. Broadway Ave N, Minneapolis MN 55411 Store Hours 10:30 am - 6 pm Monday through Saturday Phone:(612) 522-2362

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Kevin Tendall

Left to right: Douglas Campbell, Grand Lodge of MN, Grand Secretary; David Wething, Vice Chairman, MN Masonic Charities; Kathleen Vitalis, President/CEO, MN Assistance Council for Veterans; Jimmy L. Collier, Metro Regional Director, MN Assistance Council for Veterans; David Olson, Senior Grand Warden, Grand Lodge of Minnesota; Brian Beermann, Deputy Grand Master, Grand Lodge of Minnesota.

Masons grant supports homeless veterans By Lydia Schwartz Contributing Writer February 24—The Minnesota Masonic Charities presented a $20,000 donation to the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans (MACV), a 501(c) (3) dedicated to helping homeless veterans and those at risk of homelessness. The charity has committed to support MACV over the next three years, giving them a total of $60,000. There are an estimated 400,000 veterans in Minnesota. According to the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, just over 1% of these veterans and their families are either homeless or facing a crisis that puts them at risk of

homelessness. While this seems like such a small amount, just one homeless veteran is unacceptable. “We have become increasingly concerned about the plight of homeless veterans,” said Sibley County District Judge Thomas McCarthy, a past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Minnesota. He says that many members are veterans and that the Masons had been searching for an organization that serves the same mission of ending veteran homelessness. They are honored to support the services that MACV provides to those who served for us. McCarthy said the Masons contribute to charitable causes of all types. In 2004, the Grand Lodge of Minnesota’s endowment

Sleight of hand at work in conservative’s right to work amendment

State Senator Jeff Hayden

By State Senator Jeff Hayden There’s a move afoot that if successful, will likely lead to you getting a smaller paycheck. But for something that would hurt you that much, you couldn’t tell by the name of the proposal, because it’s called “Right to Work.” Right-wing legislators are hoping you’ll fall for melliferous name enough to amend Minnesota’s constitution in this fall’s election. Currently, if your workplace is represented by a union, you can choose to join the union at full benefit, and pay the full dues. If you do not wish to join a union, you can become a fairshare employee, where you pay only the costs of the union’s costs related to negotiating your pay and benefits. What “Right-to-Work” does is allow employees to pay the union nothing. Sounds like a good deal, right? Not at all. Some states have this system in place, especially in the Deep South. Without the ability to collect enough money to represent all employees, the advantage in negotiations shifts to the employer. Wages and benefits stagnate, and eventually, the union is voted out. Once employees lose an equal footing in negotiating their pay and working conditions, both fall dramatically. The situation the right-wing wants to create in getting “right-

to-work” enacted would be like making paying taxes optional, (which, come to think about it, they might also support.) If too many people drop out, the services and infrastructure we all share would eventually go away. The threat of lower pay, benefits and workplace rights isn’t just a theory, its reality. In states that have “right-to-work” in place now, the average worker, regardless of union membership, earns $5,500 less per year than the average Minnesota worker. Poverty rates are higher, and so is unemployment. If you are a union member, you probably already know what a threat this amendment is. But it is just a big a threat to non-union members. Here’s why. Unions negotiate with employers and work at the legislative level to enact livable wages, health care plans, pensions, days off, breaks, weekends, holidays, workplace safety – virtually everything that made the workplace of today different from the sweatshops of the nineteenth century. Even if you’re not a union member, you benefit from their work. Unions, by bringing together working people to advocate for the shared cause of decent pay and dignity are literally holding up the economic roof for all of us. If unions are weakened to the point where they can no longer fulfill this function, the ax will not just fall on them, but for everyone. “Right to work” is a falsehood. It’s not even correct to call it, as some have, a “right to work for less,” because that implies there is some notion of free choice. Plain and simple, it’s a return to the pre-union pay and working conditions of the Industrial Revolution. It will make the split between the ultra-rich and the rest of us even worse. It will reduce our voice not just in the workplace, but in legislative bodies from Minnesota to Washington.

fund was bringing in more than enough money to operate. So that year they created the Minnesota Masonic Charities to promote even greater levels of charitable giving through the ‘united focus’ of strengthening the communities of Minnesota. The charity also awards scholarships, and acts to preserve, and promote the education of the history of the State of Minnesota. Researchers and social servants admit that the actual number of homeless veterans on any given night is probably much higher than we think since

so many simply fall through the cracks in veterans’ housing services. In addition, the Wilder Foundation’s research does not include those living in veterans’ homes provided by the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, which has over 850 units of supportive housing for veterans regardless of whether they have experienced homelessness or not. Kathleen Vitalis, President and CEO of MACV, says a major area of concern is the number of Vietnam veterans that are beginning to retire and no longer have an outlet for what they have

been pushing down for so long, like going to work every day. Veterans Affairs is designed to handle any medical problem a veteran may have and give out some home loans. However, they tend to leave issues of the community, such as unemployment, to be resolved by the community. County Veterans Service Officers, working under the direction of the United States and Minnesota Departments of Veterans Affairs, support local



Insight News is published weekly, every Monday by McFarlane Media Interests. Editor-In-Chief Al McFarlane CFO Adrianne Hamilton-Butler Publisher Batala-Ra McFarlane Associate Editor & Associate Publisher B.P. Ford Vice President of Sales & Marketing Selene White Culture and Education Editor Irma McClaurin Director of Content & Production Patricia Weaver Sr. Content & Production Coordinator Ben Williams Production Andrew Notsch Distribution/Facilities Manager Jamal Mohamed Facilities Support / Assistant Producer, Conversations with Al McFarlane Bobby Rankin Receptionist Lue B. Lampley Staff Writer Ivan B. Phifer Contributing Writers Cordie Aziz Maya Beecham Harry Colbert, Jr. Brenda Colston Julie Desmond Fred Easter S. Himie Oshana Himot Timothy Houston Marcia Humphrey Alaina L. Lewis Lydia Schwartz Stacey Taylor Photography Suluki Fardan Tobechi Tobechukwu Contact Us: Insight News, Inc. Marcus Garvey House 1815 Bryant Ave. N. Minneapolis., MN 55411 Ph.: (612) 588-1313 Fax: (612) 588-2031 Member: Minnesota Multicultural Media Consortium (MMMC), Midwest Black Publishers Coalition, Inc. (MBPCI), National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) Postmaster: Send address changes to McFarlane Media Interests, Marcus Garvey House 1815 Bryant Avenue North, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55411.

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The Artist dominates Oscars Black and white throwback silences the competition By Kam Williams Contributing Writer The Artist, a black& white silent film evocative of a bygone era, won the hearts of the Academy Award voters, netting Oscars in the Best Picture, Director, Actor, Costume Design and Score categories. Hugo won five times, too, but only for technical achievements. After The Artist’s Jean Dujardin beat George Clooney for Best Actor, the foul-mouthed Frenchman not only broke his silence, but tricked the censors by saying the F-word in his native language during his exuberant acceptance speech. Maybe there’s a reason why silent film is his medium. Dujardin wasn’t the only winner to resort to expletives, so did T.J. Wilson (Undefeated), the first African-American director to earn an Oscar for a full-length documentary. It’s difficult to discern exactly what T.J. said, since he was bleeped a couple times for his indiscretion. Also crossing a line was presenter Jennifer Lopez, whose daring dress failed to cover all of one of her areolas. Could this have been a deliberate wardrobe malfunction by J. Lo to have the fashion talk of Tinseltown revolve around her revealing evening gown? But I digress. As this critic correctly predicted, Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady) upset favorite Viola Davis (The Help) for Best Actress. Anybody else notice that naturally-coiffed Viola seemed to stand up as if to accept when Streep’s name was announced, as if she’d assumed she’d win? Why did I forecast a Streep

The Artist victory? My thinking was that the 94% white Academy would cast sentimental votes for her over a relative newcomer, especially since the perennialnominee hadn’t won in 29 years. Plus, the members could easily avoid being labeled racist by simultaneously supporting

Davis’ African-American cast mate Octavia Davis for Best Supporting Actress. Replacement master of ceremonies Billy Crystal (for Eddie Murphy) did another excellent job, easily making everyone forget last year’s awkward attempts at comedy

on the part of co-hosts James Franco and Anne Hathaway. This go-round, the nine-time emcee revived such trademarks of his tenure as an opening songand-dance as well as an inspired spoof of the Best Picture nominees via a movie montage.

Warner Brothers

Complete List of Oscar Winners Best Picture: The Artist Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist Best Actress: Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady Best Actor: Jean Dujardin, The Artist

Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer, The Help Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer, Beginners Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants, Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash Best Animated Feature Film: Rango Best Foreign Language Film: A Separation (Iran) Best Original Score: The Artist, Ludovic Bource Best Original Song: “Man or Muppet” by Bret McKenzie, The Muppets Best Documentary Feature: Undefeated Best Film Editing: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Kirk Baxter & Angus Wall Best Cinematography: Hugo, Richard Richardson Best Visual Effects: Hugo, Rob Legato, Joss Williams, Ben Grossmann & Alex Henning Best Sound Editing: Hugo, Philip Stockton & Eugene Gearty Best Sound Mixing: Hugo, Tom Fleischman & John Midgley Best Art Direction: Hugo, Dante Ferretti & Francesca Lo Schiavo Best Costume Design: The Artist, Mark Bridges Best Makeup: The Iron Lady, Mark Coulier & J. Roy Helland Best Live-Action Short Film: The Shore Best Documentary Short Film: Saving Face Best Animated Short Film: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

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Conference seeks to build successful collaborations between neighborhoods, cultural communities By Ivan B. Phifer Staff Writer The First Community Connections Conference, hosted by the City of Minneapolis: Neighborhood and Community Relations, was held Saturday February 11th from 8am-5pm at St Mary’s Event Center 2540 Park Av. S. The conference was designed to showcase and build successful collaborations between neighborhoods, cultural communities, residents and the city. The theme for the 2012 conference was building diversity and increasing participation in neighborhood organizations. “We are going to be a country where children will continue to do better than their parents; whether it is life expectancy, jobs or experience,” said Angela Blackwell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of PolicyLink. “It is not clear if that will be our future, if we do not find a way to make it our future,” she said. Angela Glover Blackwell earned her bachelors degree

Trafficking From 1 For example, Tyler Perry’s movies have forced us to look at how (regardless of whether they were from an upper and lower socio-economic status) some mothers set-up their daughters to be sexually exploited. In the movie, Madea’s Family Reunion, an upper class African American mother put her daughter in a bath tub, donned her daughter’s face with make up, sprayed her with perfume, and left her alone in the bathroom for the child’s step-father (who was wealthy) to come in and rape her. Because of the mother’s financial and psychological dependency on the man, she sold her daughter to her spouse in order to assure a “quality of life” that she wanted. In the movie, Precious, an emotionally

from Howard University and a law degree from the University of California at Berkley. PolicyLink, founded in 1999, is a national research and action institute that works to advance economic and social equity. They focus on policies effecting low-income communities and communities of color. Prior to PolicyLink, Blackwell served as Senior Vice President for the Rockefeller Foundation, where she oversaw Domestic and Cultural Divisions; served as a partner for Public Advocates from 1977-1987. Blackwell is also nationally recognized as founder of the Oakland Urban Strategies Council, through which she pioneered new approaches to neighborhood revitalization. Blackwell addressed her upbringing in St Louis to lay the foundation for the importance of community. “I grew up in St Louis in the 1950s early 60s. It was during that time, because of segregation, all the Black people in St. Louis lived in the same community,” she said. “Everything in my experience growing up was in the Black

and financially dependent mother from a lower socioeconomic family exhibited jealousy toward her daughter as she allowed her male partner (who was also Precious’s father) to repeatedly rape Precious. The rapes from the incestuous relationship resulted in at least two pregnancies. While most of us would say that those acts of child abuse occur “just in the movies”, it is critical to know that a recent Minnesota Student survey report indicated that 18% (10% of boys and 8% of girls) of African American ninth grade students reported that they were forced to have sex by their partners while dating. About 10% of ninth grade African American students reported that they have been victims of sexual abuse by individuals outside their family, while 19% (12% girls, 7% boys) reported that they had be sexually abused by individuals inside their families. To bring

Angela Glover Blackwell community. Blackwell discussed a broader concept of specific layouts of the neighborhood. “For all the

segregation, it was the most integrated place I ever lived,” she said. “Since all the Black people lived there, it was economically

this point home, about a year ago, Russell Simmons and Al Sharpton visited Trenton, New Jersey to initiate a rally to take a stand against violence involving girls and women. Their rally was a direct response to the news that seven men, ranging in age from 13 to 20 years old sexually assaulted a 7-year old girl in an apartment complex the week before. Most alarming was police report that the girl attended a party with her 15-year-old stepsister, who then sold herself and her younger sister to a group of men for an undisclosed amount of money. In my practice, I often hear stories of mothers and fathers, who left their sons and daughters alone or with strangers that they barely knew in order for the parent to go to work or school, go out partying, or to obtain a few crack rocks, or in order to secure a place to stay. For my clients, the life-long effects of those early life boundary violations and abandonment experiences resulted in unhealthy coping behaviors including self-sabotage, drug/alcohol abuse, over-eating, sexual promiscuity, and pervasive personality disorders. Victims of such violations frequently display an inability to trust others, show affection or show self-confidence. Moreover, symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder are often present. These symptoms include flashbacks, intrusive and recurring memories, nightmares, hyper-sensitivity to situations that remind the victim of the trauma, constant anxiety, fear, hypervigilance (always waiting for the other shoe to drop), as well as a sense of shortened life expectancy and feelings of impending doom. According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), nearly

800,000 children under the age of 18 are reported missing each year in the United States. Of that number, reports suggests that approximately 33 percent are African-American. AfricanAmerican girls and boys who disappear often remain uncounted as “thrown away”. Sadly, this action increases their likelihood of exploitation by predatory ‘recruiters.’ “ It is also necessary to talk about “pimping” within the socio-cultural context of our systems. For example, we know that over 45 percent of the children in foster care systems are African American. The trend, of course, is to place these children in permanent families as soon as possible. My concern is that foster care or adoptive placements do not always appear to be in the best interests of the children involved. I recall one case of an eleven or twelve year old African American girl who was adopted by a white family living on an isolated farm in northern Minnesota. The family clearly did not know even one other African American person (except they saw a Black woman at the hair salon whose name they did not know). Not only were they planning to adopt the young girl, they also had two or three younger siblings to whom she would serve as their “big sister”. Their plan was to “home-school” this young black girl and essentially provide her socializations through their church. Finally, when meeting the family in my office, I noticed that while the mother was happy to have “help” in the house; the father barely spoke a word during the entire session. The young African American adoptee reported that even when she visited their rural home in the past, the father did not

integrated; the doctors, lawyers, ministers, postal workers, janitors, everybody lived in that neighborhood and everybody took responsibility for everyone else, because we all knew what was happening to any of us was happening to all of us,” Blackwell said. Blackwell demonstrated how communities, even those not on the same side of town, still looked after one another. “There were communities that were poorer than the one I lived in, very minute differences, but anything that happened in that community 10 miles from us, we cared about that community, too. I can remember when the men in the church would meet after to make sure they were looking after the families that did not have the things they needed,” she said. Blackwell is the co-author of Uncommon Common Ground: Race and America’s Future and Contributing to Ending Poverty in America: How to Restore the American Dream. Blackwell is a frequent commentator for news organizations The Washington

Post; The Huffington Post, as well as public radio shows; Marketplace, The Tavis Smiley Show, Nightlife and Now on PBS. The conference consisted of different vendors, such as Habitat for Humanity, Minneapolis Housing Inspection to assist with foreclosures and rental property, The Minneapolis Police Department, and Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board, for the purpose of connecting different neighborhoods and community organizations. “The City has a five-year vision of realizing the city goal of many people, one Minneapolis,” David M. Rubedor, Director of Neighborhood and Community Relations Department said. “Aligning our collective resources around common strategies to address the racial disparities that exist in our city will have a significant impact. This conference is a key step in exploring how the City’s key partners, neighborhoods and community organizations can help us get there,” Rubedor said.

say much to her at all. Although she desperately wanted a father-any father, there was clearly absolutely no connection between them. Nonetheless, against my protest, the child was quickly placed and adopted. In my spirit, I believed that she was being set up to be exploited as a “live in” nanny. So, while standards of practice require that I act as a mandated reporter when I suspect child abuse or exploitation, what could have been done when I suspected that the CPS worker was the one endangering the child? It is easy to understand how exploitation of girls and women continues when we think of how trafficking occurs. Take for example a case of a girl called “Linda’ (not her actual name). Linda’s father was incarcerated since she was around 3 years of age, and she and her mother argued frequently. Matters got after her mother moved a boyfriend (who she met over the internet a month prior) into their home. The boyfriend lived with his mother, needed a place to stay, and was “in-between” jobs. After moving in, he quickly found work and started contributing to the household bills. Linda went on to report that as he brought more money into the home, he increasingly became more powerful to the point of becoming verbally abusive, and “manhandling” her mother in an effort to make his points. Linda also

said that she felt uncomfortable when she was alone with the man because he looked at her “kind of funny.” One day, Linda skipped class with a friend to go the Mall of America to look at dresses for an upcoming school function. When she got home, apparently word had reached her mother about her skipping and she was in BIG trouble. Linda said that instead of her mother punishing her, the boyfriend yelled, and finally hit her several times with a strap. Linda ran away that night. She was able to stay with her friend for a few days, but soon had no other place to go but back home. This pattern was repeated for several months until eventually Linda ran away for good. According to her, she was quickly picked up by a male friend (35 years old) who let her stay at his place-no questions asked. Inevitably, he did ask a question about how she would “repay” him. The table turned, she was stuck by pride, shame, dependency, and helplessness. I have learned that not only do the victims of exploitation feel helpless, so do those who witness their victimization-- but there are key things that can be done. First, you must be able to notice the signs that someone may be in the position of being exploited. According to the US Department of Heath and


Page 8 • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Insight News


Make your own luck By William Reed Gambling is legally restricted in the United States, but its availability and participation is increasing. Under federal law, gambling is legal and each state is free to regulate or prohibit it. Almost every state allows some form of gambling. African Americans have little impact in gaming, except as employees. As African Americans lag economically, the gambling industry continues to prosper. In 2011, gambling activities generated estimated revenues of $92.27 billion: Card Rooms - $1.18 billion; Commercial Casinos $34.41 billion; Charitable Games

Veterans From 5 veterans and their dependents directly to ensure that every one gets the state and federal benefits they deserve. However, county officers are typically limited to taking care of military discharge documents (DD Form 214), enrollment into the Veterans

and Bingo - $2.22 billion; Indian Casinos - $26.02 billion; Legal Bookmaking - $168.8 million; Lotteries - $24.78 billion; Parimutuel Wagering - $3.50 billion. Commercial casinos provided 354,000 jobs, and state and local tax revenues of $5.2 billion. Nevada is the only state where casino-style gambling is legal statewide. Both state and local governments impose licensing and zoning restrictions. All other states that allow casino-style gambling restrict it to small geographic areas (e.g., Atlantic City, N.J. or Tunica, Miss.,) or to Native American reservations. As sovereign nations, Native American tribes have used legal protection to open casinos. There

are 19 states (and two U.S. Territories) that allow commercial casinos in some form. The economic impact of legalized gambling is tangible and quantifiable. They include construction of casinos that lead to many jobs for construction employees, employees to staff the casino, and the suppliers for ongoing casino operations, all provide multiplier effects that ripple throughout the overall economy. The reality is, nearly one in four American men and 1 in 8 women gambled on the recent Super Bowl in some way. Furthermore two-thirds of all Americans have gambled, and some 80 percent of us approve

Affairs Healthcare System, and in obtaining disability and burial benefits. For the 2011 fiscal year, MACV was able to assist 900 veterans’ families in Minnesota who were homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless. The MACV headquarters itself, Building 47 on the Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Health Care System campus, can house up to thirteen veterans at one time. Most of their work

lies in helping veterans make their rent, finding employment, and paying utility bills. The organization also steps in when energy-assistance programs deny benefits to veterans who burn their own wood or oil for heating. MACV currently has 25 staff members but this does not include its many volunteers. Vitalis says she is pleased to have the Masons of Minnesota as a significant new partner in supporting veterans. Sustained donations are very important to nonprofits because it relieves some of the pressure to operate on a ‘pay as you go’ basis. MACV receives its funding through grants from the federal, state, and county levels, and from corporate, foundational, and individual donations. Much of MACV’s donations comes as a one-time gift and often has restrictions that the money must remain local. “For example,” Vitalis says, “money from Hennepin County should benefit those in Hennepin County. Diversifying their income is the most important way MACV from being tied to government grants. What I personally appreciate about the Masons’ gift, is that it can be used to benefit veterans statewide and it allows us to make plans that are longer than just a few weeks.” A common barrier for veterans in obtaining housing or employment is some sort of minor legal issue. MACV has many pro bono attorneys, judges, and legal students who donate their time to resolving any legal issues that a veteran may have, often in a matter of hours. “Our legal clinic,” Vitalis says, “is also for those who simply don’t know where to start. We just want to create a successful path for veterans to start dealing with whatever issues they may have. It’s terrible that Minnesota’s veterans, who have served us so honorably, come home and then have all these problems.”

of legal gambling as a means of collecting taxes. Entrepreneurship in gambling and gaming has traditionally been

eschewed by Blacks. More often than not, the image of an attractive man or woman holding a drink in one hand and dice or cards in

the other is an African-American taboo. But, it was labeled “race


Insight News • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Page 9

Health disparities cause financial burdens for families, communities and health care system By Kimberly N. Alleyne America’s Wire WA S H I N G T O N — H e a l t h disparities are creating economic burdens for families, communities and the nation’s health care system. Across the country, infant mortality and chronic diseases continue to affect people of color at rates far higher than those for whites. In recent years, the focus has increased on the impact of disparities on minority communities, with public officials, community activists, civic leaders and health care experts proposing ways to improve access to medical care and raise awareness of positive benefits of preventive care. But health experts say the economic toll of health disparities and substantial costs associated with lost productivity are being overlooked. “Racial and ethnic groups have higher incidences of diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer, et cetera,” says Brian D. Smedley, vice president and director of the Health Policy Institute at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies in Washington, D.C. “That prevalence [of chronic diseases] comes with a price tag in terms of excess direct medical costs, nearly $230 billion over a four-year period that we studied.” The study found that between 2003 and 2006, 30.6 percent of direct medical care expenditures for African-Americans, Asians and Hispanics were excess costs due to health inequalities. The study estimated that eliminating health disparities for minorities would have reduced direct medical expenditures by $229.4 billion and slashed indirect costs associated with illness and premature death by more than $1 trillion for those years. The 2010 National Healthcare Disparities Report documented that racial and ethnic minorities often receive poorer care than whites while facing more barriers in seeking preventive care, acute treatment or chronic disease management. The report is produced by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). According to the report, minorities also experience rates of preventable hospitalization that, in some cases, are almost double that of whites; African-Americans have higher hospitalization rates from influenza; and black children are twice as likely to be hospitalized and more than four times as likely to die from asthma as white children. Thomas A. LaVeist, director of the Hopkins Center for Health Disparities at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, says increased health risks for minorities are directly related to where they live and work. “The fact is that we have an inequitable distribution of opportunity,” he says. “Where you live determines what schools your children get to attend. It determines if your house will appreciate or deappreciate and whether you can create wealth. It also determines whether you are exposed to environmental inequalities and the type of health care facility that is available to you. Where you live, work, play and pray affects quality of health care.” Jennifer Ng’andu, deputy director of the Health Policy Project at the National Council of La Raza in Washington, speaks even more pointedly: “If we look at communities of color, we see that many racial and ethnic groups live in unsafe environments, there is poor housing and there is loss of productivity because of illness. “Essentially, every time a person of color goes to the doctor, 30 percent of their bill is due to health disparities so they end up paying more in the doctor’s office because over time they receive health care that is not appropriate or effective,” she says. “They become needlessly sicker and are more likely to die prematurely, so they end up paying more medical expenses.” Health experts and civic leaders say financial strains are adversely manifested in varying ways in communities and have a huge impact on children, often involving academic performance.


“There are direct biological consequences in that a child who does not have good access to health services will experience developmental setbacks because they are sick or their parents are sick,” Ng’andu says. “It makes it harder for them to achieve in school and can have serious consequences on their future. We have to invest in children early, their health early, their education, making sure they have healthy communities to grow in.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, the percentage of children and adolescents with a chronic disease swelled from 1.8 percent in the 1960s to 7 percent in 2004. The increase has an adverse impact on childhood education. For example, a report by the American Lung Association says asthma is a leading cause nationwide

of youngsters missing school. Asthma affects Puerto Rican and African-American children more often, perhaps because they often live in communities with poor air quality. “Studies show a spread of diabetes among children, but particularly among black and Latino children,” says Sinsi Hernandez-Cancio, director of health equity at Families USA in Washington. “There are long-term effects. You are more likely to lose a limb, have a heart attack or lose a kidney, and the longer you have the disease, the greater the toll on life quality. We can expect to see this as these children grow older. There is also an impact on children when other family members have a disease because they sometime miss school to care for an ill family member.”

Because racial and ethnic health care disparities can hinder a breadwinner’s earning capacity, the entire family is often affected adversely. “Kids are forced to be translators at the doctor’s office,” Hernandez-Cancio says. “That has an enormous toll, so they see firsthand all this information on how mommy or daddy is not doing well. We have had stories of children staying home to take care of their parent or another sibling. Stresses such as these affect their ability to develop into an independent, productive individual in the future.” Ng’andu agrees. “When kids are hungry, when they are exposed to serious nerve stress and environmental stresses,” she says, “it affects them and their ability to learn and perform well academically. Investment in their health is very important to their future success and achievement and also their ability to work and contribute to their communities.” Hernandez-Cancio says disparities in infant mortality rates also take a toll on minority families. While the 2010 rate for whites was 5.63 per 1,000 live births, it was 13.31 per 1,000 live births for African-Americans, 9.22 for American Indians or Alaska Natives and 7.71 for Puerto Ricans, according to the CDC. “The infant mortality rate is considered a very basic measure of how a country’s health care system is working, and it is an indication of other symptoms,” she says. “We rank 41st globally. As an advanced, wealthy nation, we are not doing well.” Hernandez-Cancio says that disparities in chronic diseases is also a major problem, that millions of dollars are spent battling such diseases that have been treated improperly or, in some cases, could have been prevented. Each year, she says, health care inequities result in 100,000 premature deaths in the United States, and many are attributed to chronic diseases. “The health care system is so expensive. If you look at the numbers, a huge portion of health care costs is improving chronic diseases. When

these diseases spiral out of control, it raises costs. We have to get a handle on these diseases to bend the cost curve.” Data indicate extreme disparities in chronic diseases, including heart disease, certain cancers, strokes, diabetes and arthritis. According to the CDC, these diseases cause seven of 10 deaths annually in America and more than 75 percent of health care costs. Smedley says AfricanAmericans experience higher incidences of diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer and other chronic diseases. According to the Joint Center study, chronic diseases cost the U.S. health care system nearly $232 billion from 2003 to 2006. Early detection, quality of care and improving prevention management are important as it becomes clear that doing so in communities of color is crucial to curbing costs. “If we don’t get a handle on these diseases, it is going to be harder to manage the system,” Hernandez-Cancio says, adding that prevention can alleviate many costs. The health care reform law includes provisions that improve financing and delivery while also improving access for vulnerable populations and investing in prevention. “Investments in prevention go a long way in preventing racial and ethnic health inequality in the first place,” Smedley says. “About five cents of every federal health dollar is spent on prevention. Prevention works. It works to keep our population healthy and reduces health care costs. “We pay now or pay later. We’re going to be paying the price in higher health care costs, but also a population that is less healthy and unable to participate in the nation’s economic recovery.” Racial and ethnic minorities are much less likely than the rest of the population to have health insurance, according to the National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, part of the National Institutes of


Page 10 • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Insight News


Today will be a quiet day Man Talk

By Timothy Houston What do we do when we get overwhelmed? How do we deal with the stress and the pressure that each day brings? Every day, a little more pressure is added to our emotional reservoir. Every day it gets closer to capacity. Without some way to reset our emotional clock, we are time bombs waiting to explode. We must learn to reset our emotional clock and refresh our spiritual reservoir, and because our brain is like giant computer, it must be reset as well. When I turn on my home computer in the morning, it goes through a series of bleeps and flashes which it does every time it starts up. It checks to make sure all of the drives and cylinders are operating correctly. It also checks the main memory to make sure none of the data has been corrupted since it was shut down on the night before. The computer then makes the minor adjustments necessary to keep itself running smoothly. It checks itself against itself. These daily adjustments and alignments keep the computer from crashing. These adjustments are in essential part


of the well being and longevity of the computer. We are more complex and complicated than a computer. If our home computer needs to check itself daily, we also need to check daily the computer that is in our brain. Many people skip this all-important function for a

few extra minutes sleep in the morning. Important self-checks are not being performed. As a result of this, their cylinders are skipping, their main memory is failing, and their system is headed for a crash. Systems crash when hard drives become corrupted. Daily self-evaluation

and adjustments keep your life’s hard drive running smoothly. Men and women need daily time of reflection. The man often carries the weight of the world on his shoulders, and the woman often carriers the family calendar, schedule and details on hers. They are both

complicated system that are comprised of a spirit, soul and body. This complexity is further complicated by the combination of their divine destiny, the things they have experienced in the past and the present consequences for their actions. For that reason men and women

need a positive affirmation to keep them on track. “Today will be a quiet day.” This is a self affirmation I make to start each morning. This simple declaration helps me understand the need for quiet meditation. Quiet time leads to self-examination, and examination is necessary to remain healthy. We all must regularly check our mental and emotional condition. This requires us to check the actions we have taken on yesterday to determine if they are in line with our purpose and intentions for today. The need to calm down and slow down is all around us. When we reset our internal clock, we reset our emotional clock as well. Inner peace produces outer peace. This peace is like a river that flows from the heart of God into the heart of men and women. We are able to face the world and the things in it without losing perspective on what is important. Our families benefit from this peace. We become peacemakers and peacekeepers. For that reason alone, “Today will be a quiet day.” Timothy Houston is an author, minister, and motivational speaker who is committed to guiding positive life changes in families and communities. For questions, comments or more information, go to www.

Insight News • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Page 11 serves as President of Brakins Consulting and Psychological Services, and is the Executive Director of the African American Child Wellness Institute. The mission of the African American Child Wellness Institute is to promote the psychological and spiritual liberation of children of African Descent by providing culturally specific mental health services and by developing culture-based, holistic wellness resources,

Trafficking of women, men, and children worldwide

Trafficking From 7 Human Services, trafficking victims may show the following signs: (1) Accompanied by a controlling person or boss; (2) Not speaking on own behalf; (3) Lack of control over personal

Reed From 8 progress” in 1955 when the integrated Moulin Rouge HotelCasino Resort opened in the Westside of Las Vegas. The resort had partial ownership by boxer Joe Lewis and was built to accommodate African Americans banned from Strip resorts. The integrated hotel-casino site afforded African Americans work and more well-paying jobs such as managing and dealing. Not until Don Barden became the owner of the Majestic Star and Fitzgeralds Casino did an African

Wikimedia Commons

schedule, money, house key, I.D., travel documents; (4) Transported to or from work; lives and works in the same place; (5) Debt owed to employer/crew leader; (6) Inability to leave job; or (7) Have bruises, depression, fear, and be overly submissive. Consequently, if you think someone you know might be a trafficking victim, call the National Trafficking

Resource Center hotline at 1(888) 373-7878 or contact a local agency like Breaking Free (651-645-6557) or Civil Society (651-291-0713). We know that trafficking is connected to a myriad of social issues including poverty, gang activity, the illegal drug trade and failed child protective services. Nonetheless, it is

incumbent upon us to catapult our concern for the sexual trafficking of African-American girls and women to the forefront of our conversations about racial and gender equality, public policies, and our demands for social justice. BraVada Garrett-Akinsanya, Ph.D., L.P. is a Clinical Psychologist in private practice,

American have an ownership presence on Las Vegas’ legendary Strip. In 2003, Black Enterprise Magazine rated Don Barden one of the nation’s top Black businessmen and one of the top Black employers in the nation – with more than 4,050 employees. Over four decades, the late entrepreneur became a self-made multi-millionaire in real estate, the cable TV industry, and in later years, a dominant force in casino gambling. Barden’s influence in gambling came against the odds. After success in politics, real estate and cable, Barden joined forces with powerful Blacks attuned to gambling. In 1998, he and Michael Jackson submitted

a proposal for an amusement park along the downtown Detroit Riverfront called The Thriller Theme Park. That project was rejected. In 2006, Barden tried again for a license to build a new casino, this time in Pittsburgh with Smokey Robinson. He got the license, but not the casino. Before he died in 2011, Barden had casino operations across America. But the debate continues about whether or not gambling is an appropriate economic development tool. The argument against it is that although the numbers of jobs associated with new gambling facilities is significant; for some it is not a compelling enough reason for

its legalization. Detroit’s casino gambling has led to no noticeable downtown redevelopment. Still, Black political, civic and church leaders have to admit that gambling can be a powerful economic development tool. Las Vegas is a powerful testament to impressive job growth, a low tax burden that many state and local governments envy and prosperity levels that have spawned significant private and public sector investments. (William Reed heads the Business Exchange Network and available for speaking/seminar projects via the

research, and practices. Dr. Garrett-Akinsanya warns that this column should in no way be construed as constituting a therapeutic relationship through counseling or advice. To forward a comment about this article or to make an appointment, please contact Dr. Garrett-Akinsanya by email @ bravadaakinsanya@ or by telephone at 763-522-0100.

Page 12 • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Insight News

HEALTH Lewis, Goins run to raise funds; raise awareness By Harry Colbert, Jr. Contributing Writer Last year Bianca “Cali” Lewis decided she would run a charity marathon, in part, to help raise money for her cousin who was at the time battling leukemia. Before Lewis could participate in her first 26.2 mile run her cousin, Sabrina “Bucky” Walton, succumbed to the cancer. Walton was 43-years-old. Lewis decided she would still make the trip to San Diego and run – not to help her cousin, but to honor her memory. In the process, Lewis raised $3,548 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. “When I got to the finish the emotion hit me and I just burst out in tears,” said Lewis who admitted the run was not an easy task. “By the 16th mile, I suffered an ankle injury and it got pretty tough, but I thought that’s minor compared to what cancer does to a person. You can’t soak away cancer.

Bianca “Cali” Lewis hugging her mother, Gail Walton, at the finish line of the San Diego Marathon You can’t wash off cancer. You can’t put an ice pack on cancer.” Lewis said she’s committed to running a marathon a year to honor her cousin and to raise money in efforts of finding cures for leukemia and lymphoma – cancers that attack the blood. In May, she

will run the Cellcom Green Bay (WI) Marathon with a goal of raising $5,000. In efforts to raise funds Lewis is hosting a hip hop trivia night on Sat., March 17 at Ginger Hop, 201 E. Hennepin Ave. The event begins at 9 p.m. and costs $25 per team up to four individuals. All the proceeds will benefit

Courtesy of the author

Sonya Goins runs to fight Crohn’s disease

the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Lewis has a webpage where individuals can donate, track her progress and encourage her in training. The site web address

is http://pages.teamintraining. o r g / m n / G R E E N B AY 1 2 / SEECALIRUN. Lewis found encouragement from a fellow runner who has her own cause. Sonya Goins, a news producer with WCCO, suffers from Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease is an autoimmune disorder that usually affects the intestines. An autoimmune disorder is a condition that occurs when your body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys healthy body tissue. “I was diagnosed with Crohn’s in 1985,” said Goins, who experienced severe pain and internal bleeding as a result of the disease. “I planned on running the San Diego (marathon) but was physically unable.” Goins said she had half of her colon removed due to the affliction. “I saw on Facebook (Lewis) was running and I thought I have to support her,” said Goins who said she has raised

more than $8,000 in the fight against Crohn’s within the past two years. “We motivate each other.” In addition to raising money for Crohn’s research, Goins said she has a goal to raise awareness. “I don’t think people get the personal side. They don’t know what it’s like to live with Crohn’s or to lose a loved one to cancer,” Goins said. Goins will participate in a June Crohn’s walk/run at Lake Harriett. She also has a webpage to support her efforts. That web address is T R / 2 0 1 2 Ta k e S t e p s Wa l k / Chapter-MinnesotaDakotas? px=1945903&pg=personal& fr_id=3171. Both Lewis and Goins are affiliated with Black Girls RUN!, an organization with the mission to encourage African American women to make fitness and healthy living a priority.

Addressing cancer’s impact on communities of color By the National Cancer Institute If you’ve been following Lifelines articles about your health, you’ve been connected to information from the National Cancer Institute, or NCI for short. NCI is a U.S. government agency and part of the National Institutes of Health. More than 40 years ago, the National Cancer Act gave NCI new authorities as the government’s principal agency for cancer research and training, including the responsibility for coordinating the National Cancer Program. What does this mean? It means that NCI has an important federal mandate to direct programs that investigate all aspects of cancer, from prevention and early detection to treatment and survivorship. In addition, NCI was charged with ensuring that doctors, patients, and the public receive the latest information about cancer. Cancer is really many diseases—not just one. It can begin in many different parts of the body, such as the breast or

the prostate, and even cancers that develop in the same location can be very different from one another. Each type poses unique research questions that will ultimately help us solve the cancer puzzle. Investigators across the country and around the world are working day and night, focusing on specific pieces of the puzzle as they conduct research and share information about their findings. NCI has more than 3,000 employees in its federal ranks. And thousands of NCIfunded researchers are employed in universities, hospitals, and research institutions across the country and worldwide. Some of this research may be conducted in facilities near you, for example in NCI’s network of cancer centers or in community hospitals. When you hear about a new research advance – such as a vaccine for cervical cancer or a new test for colorectal cancer – it is often the result of research that has been funded by NCI. Other important NCI missions include training researchers and conducting clinical trials. Because of the success of this

work over many years, more people are living longer today after receiving a diagnosis of cancer. Of course, one important goal is to completely solve the puzzle of cancer and prevent it from happening in the first place. In the meantime, NCI is working to develop new methods of detecting cancer at the earliest stages, when it is most treatable, and new therapies that target the specific cellular and molecular changes that cause cells to become cancerous. So what does NCI mean for you as a member of the public? In addition to funding research to improve patient outcomes, NCI has a mission to reach out to the public with information about the latest advances in cancer prevention, screening, and treatment. When you are confronted with a diagnosis of cancer—for yourself or in your family, your community, or your workplace—you have a place to go to for accurate, up-to-date information and resources to help you with the decisions you may have to make .

Researching Cancer in Communities of Color What is even more important to you as a member of the African American population is that NCI is committed to understanding cancer’s impact on communities of color. Research shows that cancer disparities – inequities in the numbers of new cases and deaths for certain types of cancer according to race and ethnicity – do exist. As a result, NCI continues to investigate the causes of these disparities and find ways to eliminate them through research in the lab and in the field. Where to Get Information Here are some areas of NCI’s website where you can learn more about NCI and cancer: NCI’s Websites (www. These websites contain a wealth of accurate, up-to-date information based on research evidence about various types of cancer, as well as information on cancer prevention, detection, and treatment. NCI Lifelines (www.cancer. gov/lifelines): Previous articles in the Lifelines series of monthly articles, along with companion

videos, can be found here. Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities (crchd. The Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities is central to NCI’s efforts to reduce the unequal burden of cancer and to eventually eliminate cancer health disparities through research, training, and outreach. NCI Cancer Centers ( c a n c e r c e n t e r s . c a n c e r. gov/cancer_centers/index. html): NCI has a network of more than 60 Cancer Centers located in communities throughout the country. They deliver medical advances to patients and their families and reach out to underserved populations. The NCI Community Cancer Centers Program ( The NCCCP is a network of 30 community hospitals in 22 states supporting cancer research and enhancing cancer care for patients close to their homes. If you are unable to get the information you need from these websites, you can always pick up the phone and call the Cancer Information Service (1-800-4-CANCER). You will be immediately connected to an information specialist who

will answer your questions confidentially and even send you relevant materials. It is a free service that is funded by federal tax dollars. Knowledge is power, and the more you learn about cancer the better prepared you will be if the disease strikes close to home. You should know that you can depend on your National Cancer Institute for accurate information that is based on scientific research and produced in plain language for the American public. NCI leads the National Cancer Program and the NIH effort to dramatically reduce the burden of cancer and improve the lives of cancer patients and their families, through research into prevention and cancer biology, the development of new interventions, and the training and mentoring of new researchers. For more information about cancer, please visit the NCI web site at or call NCI’s Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-4226237). More articles and videos in the culturally relevant Lifelines series are available at www.


color,” Hernandez-Cancio says. “That really indicates this is the future of this country. The fact that they don’t have the mentorship who can provide structure for them, either because of financial pressures, chronic disease or premature deaths, can be highly detrimental to their future. “Whether or not you are directly connected to these communities, you have a vested interested in their development and future. “We cannot afford not to address financial burdens and health care disparities that contribute directly to instability of our health care system. We have to tackle this problem now.”

From 9 Health, a component of HHS. These minorities constitute about one-third of the U.S. population but are more than half of the 50 million uninsured. They are also overrepresented among the 56 million people in America with inadequate access to a primary care physician. The Joint Center study found that “the combined costs of health inequalities and premature death in the United States were $1.24 trillion” between 2003 and 2006. The cost is expected to increase. By 2042, people of color are expected to be 50 percent of the U.S. population, signaling significant economic implications for minority communities. “About 47 percent of American children under 18 are children of

America’s Wire is an independent, nonprofit news service run by the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education and funded by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. For more information, visit www. or contact Michael K. Frisby at mike@

Insight News • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Page 13

Best decisions lead to other right choices Plan Your Career By Julie Desmond Left or right? Big Mac or Chalupa? Snooze or not snooze? Daily life is all choices. Generally, people navigate without agonizing over decisions they’ve made or even that they did make a decision.

But occasionally, people are faced with red light situations: stop-and-think choices that will impact the direction of one (or many) lives. While marriage, genetic testing for diseases and some spending decisions rank pretty high on the impact scale, our focus here is career planning, so we’ll keep our conversation around that. Which brings to mind the first rule in career planning decision making: this is not a genetic test, marriage or purchase of a Lamborghini. A career planning mistake is rarely catastrophic. When deciding

where to go next in your career, keep your perspective in check. When Abid gave two weeks’ notice to his employer, he received a lucrative counter offer that included more money, more vacation and a promise that all his workplace issues would go away. Until it was time to transition his work to other people, his employer had had no concept of how valuable Abid was to the organization. Nor had he noticed that Abid’s complaints had some merit. Scientific studies and my own recruiting experience have proven that anyone who takes

a counter offer will be looking for something new within about six months, either because they were replaced or because what made them look the first time has again raised its ugly head. But Abid felt certain that his employer’s intentions were on the up and up. So he had a decision to make: take the offer or leave it? Abid talked to dozens of people within and outside of his current company. He worked through his feelings about what had gone wrong and what it would take to fix it. He made lists of pros and cons, lists of

possible outcomes, lists of other lists he should be making. After all that, the final exercise Abid needs to walk through is, though not easy, very straightforward. He needs to decide: What do I want today? “I” is a keyword here. If the only person in the equation is Abid, what does Abid want? Not Mrs. Abid, not coworkers, clients or friends. What is best for Abid today? That answer has to be concrete and it should be written down or said aloud. Hearing something said out loud can change the thought entirely. Next, Abid should decide,

What will I want in three months? And finally, in one year and in five years, what will be the best place for me? Once these answers are solidified, the go-for-it decision will be clear. Every step up those crystal career stairs can be tentative. Make the best decision you can make at this time, and it will lead to other right decisions up ahead. Julie Desmond is Talent Manager for Express Employment Professionals and Lake Region Staffing. Write to

Strengthen support for minority-owned firms By David A. Hinson Ed. note: This is cross-posted from The Commerce Blog Supporting the growth and global competitiveness of minority-owned businesses is a priority for the Department of Commerce and the Obama administration. And we’re making good on that priority. Last year, the Department’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) registered the best annual performance in its 41year history. It assisted minorityowned businesses in gaining access to nearly $4 billion in contracts and capital, supporting the creation of nearly 6,000 muchneeded jobs. Over the last three

years, our network of 39 MBDA Business Centers, has been largely responsible for generating $10 billion in contracts and capital while helping to create and save nearly 20,000 jobs. Today, the challenge for MBDA–like so many organizations across the federal government–is to figure out how we build on that record while becoming more efficient. How do we meet the President’s mandate to improve services to minority-owned businesses and entrepreneurs in an increasingly difficult budget environment? The answer for our Bureau started with looking at the grassroots where MBDA interacts on a daily basis with minority business owners. Our front lines are our 39 MBDA Business

Centers and related business development support services. Our plan is to strengthen connections at that level to enhance services and get more for your tax dollar. The centers, operated by local entities, are funded in part by grants from MBDA. The average grant is less than $300,000 and had not experienced an increase in funding in over 15 years. . . until recently. Last year, when we launched a new round of competitions, MBDA was able to increase the size of the grants and extend awards from three years to five years. As a result of earlier streamlining efforts, MBDA was also able to expand its presence to establish new centers in Denver, Cleveland, Boston, Minneapolis and Anchorage in fiscal year 2011. But to put more resources

into our business centers, we needed to find savings in other parts of our budget. Like many businesses in the private sector, we looked at our administrative costs and decided on a plan to consolidate our five regional administrative offices. It allows us to cut funding for overhead, while putting more resources into the Business Centers and business development programs that help minority-owned firms land contracts and financing awards. In each of the cities where we have an administrative office that’s slated for closing, there’s an MBDA Business Center that will continue to provide direct services to minority-owned businesses and entrepreneurs. MBDA, as an advocacy agency for the nation’s 5.8 million minority-owned

firms, is not in jeopardy; and I am confident that this new operational structure will unleash even greater benefits to our constituency. It’s a common sense solution and part of a larger strategy that began when I arrived at MBDA nearly three years ago. My goals have been to make the Agency more responsive to the changing marketplace and to enhance its ability to meet the demands of the rapidly growing minority business community. In my first year, the Agency finalized its work to consolidate the grants management and monitoring program in headquarters and adopted a paperless system for processing, approving and tracking grants. The plan in our 2013 budget to centralize our administrative

functions is just an extension of that work, and we look forward to working with members of Congress on this proposal. Minority-owned firms account for $1 trillion in gross receipts and employ almost 6 million Americans. MBDA, the Department of Commerce, and the Obama administration are dedicated to growing those numbers by strengthening our national presence and localized footprint. It’s my firm belief that we can do that at the same time we get a bigger bang for the taxpayer’s buck. David A. Hinson is the National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency blog/2012/02/24/strengtheningsupport-minority-owned-firms

Excerpt: President Obama addresses Governors Speech by President Barack Obama Governors are at the front line of America’s recovery. You see up close what’s working, what’s not working, and where we can take it. And the thing that connects all of us -- and no matter what part of the country we’re from and certainly no matter what party we belong to -- is that we know what it means to govern, what it means to make tough choices during tough times, and hopefully to forge some common ground. We’ve all felt the weight of big decisions and the impact that those decisions have on the people that we represent. I first addressed this group three years ago and it was the moment when the economy was in a freefall. Some of you were just coming into office at that time as well. Hundreds of thousands of Americans were losing their jobs or their homes every month. Businesses were closing their doors at a heartbreaking pace. Our entire auto industry was on the verge of collapse and, all told, the prospects of us going into a fullblown depression were very real. Today there’s no doubt that enormous challenges remain. But the fact of the matter is that over the last two years American businesses have created 3.7 million new jobs. Manufacturers are hiring for the first time since the 1990s. The auto industry is back. Our recovery is

gaining speed and the economy is getting strong. And we’ve got to do everything we can to make sure that we sustain this progress. That means we’ve got to strengthen American manufacturing so that more and more good jobs and products are made here in America. It means that we’ve got to develop new sources of American energy so that we’re less dependent on foreign oil and yearly spikes in gas prices. And it means that we’ve got to make sure that every American is equipped with the skills, with the education that they need to compete for the jobs of tomorrow as well as the jobs of today. And that’s what I want to talk to these governors a little bit about. No issue will have a bigger impact on the future performance of our economy than education. In the long run it’s going to depend -- determine whether businesses stay here. It will determine whether businesses are created here, whether businesses are hiring here. And it will determine whether there’s going to be an abundance of good middle-class jobs in America. Today, the unemployment rate for Americans with at least a college degree is about half the national average. Their incomes are about twice as high as those who only have a high school diploma. So this is what we should be focused on as a nation. This is what we should be talking about and debating. The countries who

out-educate us today will outcompete us tomorrow. That’s a simple fact. And if we want America to continue to be number one and stay number one, we’ve got some work to do. There are two areas in education that demand our immediate focus. First, we’ve just got to get more teachers into our classrooms. Over the past four years, school districts across America have lost over 250,000 educators -- 250,000 teachers, educators have been lost. Think about that. A quarter-million educators, responsible for millions of our students, all laid off when America has never needed them more. Other countries are doubling down on education and their investment in teachers -- and we should, too. And each of us is here only because at some point in our lives a teacher changed our life trajectory. The impact is often much bigger than even we realize. One study found that a good teacher can increase the lifetime income of a classroom by over $250,000. One teacher, one classroom. And a great teacher offers potentially an escape for a child who is dreaming beyond his circumstances. The point is, teachers matter, and all of us have to recognize that, and we’ve got to put our money behind that. Now, we want to help you everyplace that we can. At the federal level, we’ve already provided billions of dollars in funding to help keep hundreds of thousands of teachers in the

classroom. And a cornerstone of the jobs plan that I put forward in September -- a chunk of which has gotten done, but a chunk of which remains undone -- was to provide even more funding, so that you could prevent further layoffs and rehire teachers that had lost their jobs. And I’d like to thank those of you in this room who voiced support for that effort. Congress still is in a position to do the right thing. They can keep more teachers in the classroom, but you’ve got to keep the pressure up on them to get this done. The second area where we have to bring greater focus is higher education. The jobs of the future are increasingly going to those with more than a high school degree. And I have to make a point here. When I speak about higher education we’re not just talking about a four-year degree. We’re talking about somebody going to a community college and getting trained for that manufacturing job that now is requiring somebody walking through the door, handling a million-dollar piece of equipment. And they can’t go in there unless they’ve got some basic training beyond what they received in high school. We all want Americans getting those jobs of the future. So we’re going to have to make sure that they’re getting the education that they need. It starts, by the way, with just what kinds of expectation and ground rules we’re setting for kids in high school. Right now,

21 states require students to stay in high school until they graduate or turn 18 -- 21 states. That means 29 don’t. I believe that’s the right thing to do, for us to make sure to send a message to our young people -- you graduate from high school, at a minimum. And I urge others to follow suit of those 21 states. Now, for students that are ready for college, we’ve got to make sure that college is affordable. Today, graduates who take out loans leave college owing an average of $25,000. That’s a staggering amount for young people. Americans now owe more in student loan debt than they do in credit card debt. There’s so many Americans out there with so much to offer who are saddled with debt before they even start out in life. And the very idea of owing that much money puts college out of reach for far too many families. So this is a major problem that must be fixed. I addressed it at the State of the Union. We have a role to play here. My grandfather got a chance to go to college because Americans and Congress decided that every returning veteran from World War II should be able to afford it. My mother was able to raise two kids by herself while still going to college and getting an advanced degree because she was able to get grants and work-study while she was in school. Michelle and I are only here today because of scholarships and student loans

that gave us a good shot at a great education. And it wasn’t easy to pay off these loans, but it sure wasn’t as hard as it is for a lot of kids today. So my administration has tried to do our part by making sure that the student loan program puts students before banks, by increasing aid like the Pell grants for millions of students and their families, and by allowing students to cap their monthly loan payments at 10 percent of their income, which means that their repayment schedule is manageable. Congress still needs to do its part by, first of all, keeping student interest rates low. Right now, they are scheduled to double at the end of July if Congress does not act. And that would be a real tragedy for an awful lot of families around the country. They also need to extend the tuition tax credit for the middle class, protect Pell grants, and expand work-study programs. But it’s not enough to just focus on student aid. We can’t just keep on, at the federal level, subsidizing skyrocketing tuition. If tuition is going up faster than inflation -- faster, actually, than healthcare costs -- then no matter how much we subsidize it, sooner or later we are going to run out of money. So everybody else is going to have to do their part as well. This is not just a matter of the federal government coming up with more and more money.

Page 14 • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Insight News



Lincoln welcomes Oscar nominee, honors hollywood elite at ESSENCE luncheon


scar winner, then nominee, Octavia Spencer from The Help along with actresses Pam Grier, Kerry Washington and Paula Patton were honored during the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood luncheon held Feb. 23. The Visionary Award was presented to Shonda Rhimes, creator and executive producer of the television hits Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. The luncheon was sponsored by Lincoln, which exhibited its new MKS as the centerpiece of the event on site for guests to enjoy. Ten other Lincoln vehicles were made available for a VIP/celebrity shuttle. “African-American women are extremely influential in the premium market space and their buying power is growing. Events like these allow us the opportunity to introduce our vehicles to contemporary consumers while honoring one of the most influential writers and producers in Hollywood, Shonda, with our Visionary Award,” said Shawn Lollie, Lincoln manager of Multicultural Marketing. “We are really excited to partner with ESSENCE for the third year for the Black Women in Hollywood luncheon,” said Lollie. “The premium technologies, performance and craftsmanship of the new MKS make it the perfect vehicle for the luncheon as we introduce the brand to modern consumers at a premium event.” The Lincoln MKS will be available this spring.

About Lincoln Lincoln is the luxury automotive brand for Ford Motor Company, committed to becoming a worldclass luxury brand with compelling vehicles and an exceptional ownership experience to match. Lincoln will launch seven new or significantly refreshed models in the next three years. For all the latest information, please visit Lincoln at, media., or Picture Group

Left: Shawn Lollie. Right (top to bottom): Kerry Washington, Shawn Lollie and Tanika Ray, Jordin Sparks, Shawn Lollie with Shonda Rhimes, Tatiana Ali, MC Lyte, Viola Davis on red carpet

Insight News • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Page 15


Dance, Jump and Jive Twin Cities master artists and storytellers are collaborating to present Bruce Henry’s epic celebration of Black culture, Dance, Jump and Jive. The theatrical production tells the story of African music’s influence in America and the world. The performance depicts how African rhythms, chanting and dance moves survived the Middle Passage from Africa to the Americas, and, survived slavery while giving birth to Gospel, Blues and Soul, Pop, Swing and Jazz music idioms. Dance, Jump and Jive is performed this week, 7pm March 9th and 10th, at North High School Auditorium, 1500 James Ave. N. Doors open at 6pm. The show is free and open to the public. Dance, Jump and Jive stars

rising talents from our community who are members of We Care & Oak Park Children’s Performing Arts Program, and, Lundstrum’s Performing Arts Program. The program also features a who’s who of Twin Cities artists and arts enthusiasts including David Hodges, Voice of Culture, Nothanda Zulu and Vuzi Zulu, Nakia Marie, Deborah Lake, Brenda Hall, Bruce Henry, Debbie Duncan, June Griffin, Walter Anderson, Jay-Linen, Gayle Smaller, Tom West, Benjamin Lockett, Artie Thompson, Wendy Hines. Dance, Jump and Jive, tells the history of African music. The production is a journey through the African musical experience. It explores the cultural impact of African music on the world

Courtesy of the artists

Debbie Duncan

Bruce Henry

beginning with the origins of polyrhythms to the modern day. Student performers recreate scenes from the “New Negro Movement” that spawned the Harlem Renaissance. Dance,

Jump and Jive captures the cultural elements of each time period leaving the audience and performer/participants with a better understanding of the cultural relevance and the

international influence Africans have had on shaping the sound of music and world culture. This project stands out because it impacts the students, their families and the community in several ways. It builds cultural pride and awareness. It shows how African music impacted the world by identifying African music as the root of modern day music. Dance, Jump and Jive bridges generations by emphasizing commonality in a structured and nurturing environment. According to director Lorraine Smaller, Dance, Jump and Jive creates an amazing performance that entertains and educates. The project provides youth participants with access to artists that have passion for their

art, and passion for urban youth and teaching. Smaller said, “We want to use the arts to help students understand the importance of self discipline, knowledge of self, self respect, respect for others and their environments/community.” Dance, Jump and Jive production credits include: Lorraine Smaller, Director; Bruce Henry, Debbie Duncan and Brenda Hall, Producers; and Dane Stauffer, Co-Producer. This project is funded by Pohlad Foundation and sponsored by PUC/Oak Park Community Center, Insight News, Willard Homewood Organization, Homewood Neighborhood Council, and Scott Redd of Minneapolis Public Schools.

Northside neighborhood beat Shingle Creek The Shingle Creek Neighborhood Association (SCNA) will hold a board meeting 5:30-8pm Tuesday March 13 at Creekview Park 5001 Humboldt Ave. N. For more information: Amy Lusenbrink 763-561-1616 or Victory The Victory Neighborhood Organization will host a neighborhood meeting 7-9pm

Wednesday March 28 St. John’s Missionary Baptist Church at 4301 Thomas Ave. N. For more information; Debbie Nelson 612-529-9558 or info@ Cleveland The Cleveland Neighborhood Association board meetings are held every third Thursday of each month. This month’s meeting is from 7-9pm Monday March 16 at Lucy Craft Laney School 3333 Penn Ave. N.

Calendar / Classifieds Send Community Calendar information to us by: email, a n d re w @ i n s i g h t n e w s . c o m , by fax: 612-588-2031, by phone: (612) 588-1313 or by mail: 1815 Bryant Ave. N. Minneapolis, MN 55411, Attn:

Andrew Notsch. Free or low cost events preferred.

Events The Socaholix - Mar 2

Insurance Agent Looking for people with a strong entrepreneurial mindset to own their own insurance agency. The average agent earns over $120,000 a year, with some earning over $500,000. If you desire financial independence, call 651-2043131 to set up an appointment.

Board Members Sought

For more information: Debbie Nelson 612-588-1155 or can@ School to Prison Pipeline The Community Justice Project will host a one day conference “How are the Children? Part V: From the Classroom to the Courtroom- Exploring a Child’s Journey Through the Justice System at The University of St Thomas Law School from 8:304:00pm. The cost is $25.00 and includes lunch and snacks.

For one night only at 9:30pm, Fri., Mar. 2, The sounds of the Socaholix will heat up the stage at Bunkers Music Bar & Grill located at 761 Washington Ave. N., Mpls, MN. Children Taking Medications for Mental Health Reasons - Mar 6 PACER Center is offering a free workshop for parents of children with disabilities

RENTALS Remodeled duplex units in East St. Paul. Two, three and four bdrms available. Income Restricted, EHO 651-430-1888 or

The Center for Homicide Research is an independent, volunteer-driven, nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the capacity of the community, criminal justice professionals, and law enforcement to become more effective in identifying, solving and preventing of homicide. The mission of the Center is to promote greater knowledge and understanding of the unique nature of homicide among disenfranchised, underrepresented and disempowered people through sound empirical research, critical analysis and effective community partnerships.

MN Disability Law Ctr. seeks FT atty in Minneapolis for 1 year. More info at

Prospective board members should begin by first sending a resume and cover letter. All candidates must agree to, and successfully pass a criminal background check. Qualified candidates will be invited to visit the Center, attend a board meeting, and be interviewed by current board members. To learn more about Board membership, please contact Board President Dallas Drake at or by telephone at (612) 331-4820.

9:00am-noon and the first Monday of each month, 6-8pm. Mobile Loaves and Fishes Free Meal at 6:30pm will also be available.. Information: 612-522-4497. No charge – donations accepted.

Clothing Closet Most needed now: kids’ clothes and winter coats. North United Methodist Church, 4350 Fremont Ave. N. has a clothing closet on the first, second, third Saturday of each month,

Get Ready for College The Minnesota Office of Higher Education is pleased to announce the 2012 Summer Academic Enrichment Program; made possible by the Federal College Access

Phone: 612.588.1313

The Center for Homicide Research is seeking to expand the size of its five-member board of directors. We have striven toward healthy growth and a focused mission. Each year the Center has expanded to become better-known and increasingly wellrespected. It is now recognized as the only homicide research center in the United States.

Qualifications, duties and responsibilities of board members can be found at www. The board is seeking individuals with skills in the areas of development, communications, accounting, or law. Individuals with other skills, or an interest in criminal justice, or human rights, are also encouraged to apply.

For more information: Nekima Levy-Pounds, Esq. Associate Professor of Law and Director, Community Justice Project (CJP) University of St. Thomas School of Law 651-962-4959 or


Fax: 612.588.2031

and for professionals. It is on Tue., Mar. 6, from 7-9pm, at PACER Center, 8161 Normandale Blvd., Bloomington, MN. Advance registration is requested. To register for the workshop, call PACER at (952) 838-9000. In Greater Minnesota, call (800) 537-2237 (toll free) or visit McKnight Screenwriting & Filmmaking Awards Presentation - Mar 7 Recipients of the 2011 McKnight Fellowships in Screenwriting & Filmmaking will present their work in a facilitated discussion by IFP’s Executive Director Jane Minton. Wed. Mar. 7, 7pm. The Loft Literary Center at Open Book - 1011 Washington Ave. S., Mpls. Free and open to the public.

Challenge Grant Program. The Summer Academic Enrichment program will provide stipends on a first-come, first-serve basis, to cover all or a portion of the direct cost for students in grades 3-11 to attend eligible summer academic enrichment programs during the summer of 2012. For more information: Nancy B. Walters, Program Manager 651-259-3907 or visit http://www.getreadyforcollege. org/gPg.cfm?pageID=1958


Seven - Mar 8-25 “SEVEN” is an inspirational documentary play about the remarkable lives and work of seven courageous and diverse women. The play is a collaboration by seven award winning playwrights who traveled to interview these seven women that have overcome enormous obstacles to bring about major changes in their individual home countries. For more info and performance dates, visit: Corporate Personhood: The Rise of Corporate Power - Mar. 8 Robin Monahan will speak about the Move to Amend as well as the efforts of others who believe that corporations are not people and must not be permitted to buy elections and run our government. Parish Community of St. Joseph, 8701-36th Ave. N., New Hope.

Insight News • March 5 - March 11, 2012 • Page 16

Insight News ::: 3.5.12  
Insight News ::: 3.5.12  

Insight News for the week of March 5, 2012. Insight News is the community journal for news, business and the arts serving the Minneapolis /...