Macy’s Passport presents Glamorama “Artrageous” with Bruno Mars & Far East Movement Friday, August 5, 2011 at 8PM Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave., Mpls., MN Ticket info: 952.893.9355 or visit www.ChildrensCancer.org/Glamorama.
INSIGHT NEWS July 18 - July 24, 2011 • MN Metro Vol. 37 No. 29 • The Journal For Community News, Business & The Arts • www.insightnews.com
L-R: Jamal Mohamed, Abdulahi Salah, Ahmed Salah Dhoodi, Abdullahi Mohamed Hassan, Saeed Fahia, Abbi Farah Ali, Abshir Aw-Yusuf Isse and Said Isse
Reversing Somalia’s brain drain Elders and educators create Maakhir Development Group to launch university in Somalia Ed. Note: The following is largely excerpted from the Maakhir University Act document. Somali elders and educators are inviting Minnesotans to join them in celebrating the launch of an ambitious strategy to reverse the brain drain that is crippling Somalia’s return to development and peace. A fundraising event, 6pm Saturday, July 23, at International Education Center,
277 12th Ave. N., Minneapolis, will announce the creation of Maakhir University in Eastern Sanaag, Somalia. Somalis and non-Somalis are invited to attend and support the bold initiative to restore the region’s human resource capacity. In 1991, the sky caved in on the citizens of Somalia with the outbreak in their country of a devastating civil strife following
the ouster of the military regime that held on to power stubbornly for 21 long years. Somalia selfdestructed in a cataclysmic political implosion in which all was lost. This conflict not only brought about collapse of the state but it also wiped out all the progress that the country realized during the previous century. The civil war, which the ouster of the military dictatorship
engendered, was a total and passionate conflagration, literally blanketing the whole country with endless and mindless violence that continues with reduced intensity even now. Its devastation was understandably comprehensive and national in scope. Among the many evil consequences of the war for the Somalia state was a massive loss of trained manpower in the flight
abroad of close to a million of its citizens that included most of the country’s professionals, the best educated and most productive elements of society. The resultant skills shortfall has greatly hampered the operation of private businesses and service institutions in the country. Eastern Sanaag was spared much of the devastations that
the calamitous civil conflict wrought upon Somalia’s eighteen antebellum regions but it, neverthe-less, probably suffered per capita the greatest loss of trained manpower. A group of concerned individuals hailing from the region but now living in the United States met during 2008 and 2009 to think
SOMALIA TURN TO 2
Nationhood: South Sudan By Al McFarlane Editor-in-Chief Conversations with Al McFarlane on KFAI, 90.3 FM, last week featured South Sudan freedom fighter Ladu Jada Gubek.
Ladu Jada Gubek
Al McFarlane: Ladu Jada Gubek is from South Sudan. He is one of the organizers of the celebration for the independence of South Sudan which took place this past
Saturday in Rochester. It was a national celebration and part of an international celebration which marked the establishment on this day, the State of South Sudan. AM: Ladu, it must be wonderful to be alive and present at the formation, the birth, the accomplishment of the idea, of the creation of a new state. What are your thoughts and what do you think your colleagues, friends, and family members feel
about creating a new nation? Ladu Jada Gubek: This is actually a wonderful feeling. There has been a very tough war. Most of us were actually born during the first and the second civil war. The people of South Sudan have been fighting for full equality and justice and freedom in the Sudan since 1955. Most of us who were born during these periods of war knew only the feeling of suffering, the feeling of hatred, the feeling
of losing your loved ones, and the feeling of people who are actually running around the bush without food to eat, without clothes, without medicine. It has been a very tough time. But I think God has actually blessed us in the end with a country. It is actually the country that is worth suffering for, and a country that is worth dying for,
SUDAN TURN TO 3
Afrifest 2011: Five years in the making By Gerald A. Montgomery Five years ago, Nathan S. White, co-founder of Afrifest, heard the continent’s call; a cry for the Africans in Minnesota to openly and collectively celebrate the vastness and mystique of their culture. A half a decade later, the Afrifest Foundation is still answering that call. Drawing inspiration in 2007 from the African Festival of Arts held annually in Chicago, Nathan and a hand full of Pan-African minded individuals gave birth to Minnesota’s very own festival of African arts they dubbed, “Afrifest.” Over the years and despite adverse weather conditions, venue-related mishaps, and
scheduling conflicts with imitations, the event’s quality has improved with each installment – growing in participation and popularity. As Nathan himself once put it, “Back in 2007, myself and others had a dream of a Pan African festival for the fastest growing African immigrant population in the USA. We started in less than ideal circumstances with torrential rain, a collapse 35W bridge blocks from our venue site, and disbelief that such a venture was even feasible.” Looking back, it’s as if the challenges of the previous four festivals were all preparation for 2011; the same year as the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and the unveiling of the Martin Luther King Jr. statue in D.C. (August 28th).
So, what exactly is Afrifest? In a 2007 blog entitled Discover the Motherland in Chicago, Nathan defined the festival Afrifest was modeled after as “…an African festival of arts, music, and the culture of the motherland.” You heard of the Taste of Minnesota? Well, think of Afrifest as the Taste of Africa, in Minnesota. Representatives from various African nations assembled in one place, sharing and learning of one another – an explosion of pleasant aromas, vibrant colors, rich voices, and the enchanting rhythms inspired by the continent. A cultural gala of this magnitude serves two primary functions.
Voice of Culture Drum and Dance at Afrifest 2010
Opening this week
Future of Minnesota is at stake in budget debate
David E Gordon Photography
Youth media consumption may hamper academic achievement
AFRIFEST TURN TO 7
Derek Jeter hits no. 3000
Page 2 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
The future of Minnesota is at stake in budget debate By Governor Mark Dayton This state government shutdown is painful for many Minnesotans. I am often asked, “Why? Why are you and Republican legislators putting us through these hardships?” I believe that the future of Minnesota is at stake. Our way of life, what makes Minnesota special and successful, hangs in the balance. Will we continue to have one of the best higher education systems in the world? Not with the 19% funding cut to the University of Minnesota and the 14% reduction to MnSCU campuses that the Republicans proposed. A mediocre educational system
Governor Mark Dayton will lead to a mediocre state economy in the years ahead. Will we continue services, which enable senior citizens to live in their own homes, rather than being forced into more expensive nursing homes? One elderly couple would be
forced to place the husband in a nursing home, if their assisted living services were eliminated. The wife would be left without her husband and her home. Will we continue to provide people with disabilities with the support they need to live independent and productive lives? Not by reducing the amount of time their personal care attendants can spend with them. Not by cutting the funding for special education. And not by denying affordable health care to many of them, as well as senior citizens and families with children. That is some of what is at stake for the future of Minnesota. My budget cuts healthcare costs and reduces the state workforce; but it also invests in public schools, funds all-
day kindergarten, and protects college students from huge tuition increases. I continue to fund cities and counties to keep down property taxes. My latest budget plan increases taxes only on people making more than a million dollars a year in Minnesota, which affects only 7,700 people. Thus, over 99% of Minnesotans would see no income tax increase and no state-imposed property tax increase from my proposal. Republicans remain absolutely opposed to asking the very richest Minnesotans to pay more in taxes. Instead, their budget would raise property taxes by $1.4 billion over three years on homeowners, businesses, and renters. Senior citizens, people with disabilities, children born into poverty, college students
from middle-income families and their parents would also pay the price for Republican legislators’ refusal to ask the richest Minnesotans to pay even a single dollar more in taxes. In our democracy, if the voters give their “mandate” entirely to one party in an election, then that party has the right to determine policy until the next election. However, when the voters deliver a split verdict, as they did in Minnesota last November, then neither side is entitled to have it all their way. For the past two months, I have offered again and again to compromise, and meet the Republicans half-way. They have refused to compromise to reach an agreement. I have offered over $2 Billion in cuts to existing
programs, and proposed to raise income taxes only on taxpayers who earn over one million dollars per year. The Republicans said No. In the spirit of compromise, I said I would agree to raise taxes on cigarettes, even though I do not personally support such a tax increase. The Republicans said No. No compromise. Republican legislators insist on having it all their way, or no way. That is not responsible, or even rational, leadership. If this budget impasse is to be resolved fairly and equally, respecting each side’s mandate, then the Republicans and I must both compromise. That was the will of the people of Minnesota expressed in last year’s election. That is what the people of Minnesota want and deserve today.
Committed to end of shutdown that lifts up all Minnesotans Capitol Report By Bobby Joe Champion State Rep. District 58B As your state representative I share your frustration and disappointment in our government shutdown. I deeply regret the pain and difficulty this is causing thousands of families and businesses throughout our state. Along with thousands of workers who have been laid off, the ripple effects of the
shutdown are immense. For example, I recently visited child care providers at the Mary T. Wellcome Center. They have provided child card in Minneapolis for 87 years and are now struggling because over 20% of the families they serve have lost their child care assistance. The result of the shutdown means the loss of jobs, income, and severe hardships for families who can no longer afford child care. In working to solve our budget crisis, I am committed to a solution that lifts up the families who utilize child care at the Mary T. Wellcome Center and thousands of others. We cannot again ask low and middle class Minnesotans to
bear the brunt of severe budget cuts without asking the most fortunate Minnesotans to pay their fair share. Unfortunately, Republican majorities in the legislature have been unwilling to compromise. They have not moved one inch from their all cuts budget which would inflict significant harm on most Minnesotans while protecting the most fortunate Minnesotans and wealthy corporations. For example, the Republican budget would cut 140,000 Minnesotans off health care coverage, cut home care to seniors, slash the budgets of the U of M and MnSCU and increase property taxes on homeowners, renters and
businesses. Their budget would also target our community for the deepest cuts, including disproportionate cuts to our schools and a 65% cut to the Department of Human Rights. Governor Dayton has offered multiple compromises to the Republicans that included both spending cuts and new revenue so we could balance our budget responsibly. He has offered to meet the Republicans far past halfway. For example, Governor Dayton’s first budget included an income tax increase on the top 5% of earners, those earning more than $150,00 per year. He then scaled it back to the top 2%, those earning more than $250,000. The day
before shutdown began the Governor compromised even further, offering Republicans a plan that only increased income taxes on the top 0.3% of Minnesotans, those earning more than $1 million per year. Only 7,700 tax filers would see a tax increase in the entire state (3,800 of these filers do not even live in Minnesota)! Put another way, 99.7% of Minnesotans would not see any tax increase. Still, despite this more than reasonable compromise, Republicans would not budge. As a result, the Republicans are holding our state hostage - and 22,000 workers that have been laid off - all to protect millionaires and billionaires from paying their
fair share. If it sounds like I am angry and frustrated, it is because I am. This isn’t the Minnesota we all know and love. I support a compromise budget solution that does not compromise our state’s future. I continue to urge my Republican colleagues join us at the negotiating table and do what Minnesotans expect of us – compromise and get our job done. In these difficult times, I continue to be available to answer your questions and concerns about how this shutdown may be affecting you and your families. Please continue to share with me your questions, comments and ideas.
Government shutdown causes MPS to cancel tests Due to the recent state government shutdown, the Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) announced it will cancel test administration for the writing portion of the Minnesota Graduation-Required Assessment for Diploma (GRAD) and the Minnesota Basic Skills Test (BST) written composition retest, originally scheduled July 19. The next opportunity for Minneapolis Public Schools students to retest
Somalia From 1 about what they could do to help their home region’s unsatisfactory manpower situation. They decided to commit themselves as a group to the cause of promoting the development of Eastern Sanaag region. They said higher education for the region’s youth would be their top priority. They established two development objectives: (1) To enhance the professional and technical skills of the region’s human resource; and, (2) To decrease the debilitating outflow from the region of talent and productivity. With those objectives in mind, the group founded a
is November 2. Test results for students who completed the Minnesota GRAD math or reading retest in June are also delayed due to the state government shutdown, the School District said in a press release Wednesday. Test results will be delivered to families via U.S. postal mail when state government operations resume.
registered non-profit organization to coordinate their collective effort and through which they would financially provide for any development program they undertook. They created Maakhir Development Group, an association open to membership for anyone and all who shared its vision and goals, from Eastern Sanaag or elsewhere in Somalia, Somali or non-Somali. The Maakhir Development Group then began work on the founding at Badhan of a post-secondary academic institution, Maakhir University, that would attend to the training and professional preparation of Eastern Sanaag’s human resource. Organizers said the new Maakhir University will:
SOMALIA TURN TO 3
Insight News • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Page 3
Shutdown: How we got to this mess By Kevin George, Hindsight 2020 Undergraduate Research Fellow There’s been a lot of comparison charts going around since the shutdown. In case you missed it, MPR released a June 30th video on how to understand the state budget mess in 3 minutes. It does a great job illustrating the budget differences between Governor Dayton and the state legislature. While the main divide centers around health and human
services. Conservatives are proposing a vision for Minnesota that strips much of what made our state strong. In the spirit of MPR’s 3 minute theme, I’m taking a crack at showing you—in 3 paragraphs—how we wound up in this mess. 1. Conservatives’ Unicorn offers. As we neared a shutdown, conservative lawmakers decided sending unrealistic offers to the governor would be good for progress. On June 16th, conservatives offered a “big compromise.” They eliminated
their tax cuts proposal, many of which went to middle-class Minnesotans and small business operators. Shifting this $200 million they thought would erase the $1.8 billion gap between them. On June 29th, 28 hours before the government shutdown, another proposal was introduced that asked the governor to accept a variety of non-budgetary agenda items, including a conservative redistricting proposal, voter identification laws, additional abortion regulations, and reducing collective bargaining rights.
Sudan From 1 for millions who have actually died in the name of this independence. So Saturday July 9th 2011, the people of South Sudan are finally free and we are free because of you, our brothers and sisters in Black America who joined with us during both wars. People from Minnesota, like Mahmoud El Kati, like you, Al McFarlane, and many others have actually struggled through the media and through lobbying to make sure that their brothers and sisters in South Sudan also become free. So it is a wonderful feeling and it is a wonderful feeling for all of us and I want to congratulate also the Black community for this victory and for this independence. Our victory is their victory for we are one in the struggle.
never knew, the millions who died in the struggle over a period of decades in pursuit of justice and freedom. And congratulations to all of humanity for this achievement. LJG: Thank you.
AM: Well, let me speak on behalf of the Black community and on behalf of Minnesota. Ladu Jada Gubek, congratulations to you, personally, to your family, to your parents and your children. Congratulations to the people you
AM: But what is the background that led to this point? LJG: Sudan has been at war with itself for more than half a century. It was a British colony. During the colonial period, the South and North were ruled separately. When
Jenn Warren, USAID Africa Bureau
Southern Sudanese line up to vote in Juba on January 9, 2011, the first of seven days of referendum polling.
the British were preparing to leave Sudan, Egypt instigated the merger of the South and the North as one under the rule of the North. AM: What differences distinguished the two, the South and the North? LJG: The Northern part of the country is actually purely Islamic and they identify themselves as Arabs, although when you look at the people, they, most of them look like you and me. Through their ideology, they believe they are Arabs. And they believe they are Muslims. The people in the South are of African origin. Most are Christians. Very few are Muslims. And they are those who believe in the traditional African religion. These cultural differences actually were factors for all these wars. In 1947 there was a Juba conference which brought together Northerners and Southerners. The British actually facilitated the gathering. Southerners actually had wanted to become separate but agreed to a condition that they would become one country if the South could be developed to the same level of the North. There were promises that this would
2. Distractions and publicity stunts. Among the many things that could be placed in this category, a few truly stand out. A classic bill that would have eliminated eight state agencies, including the Department of Transportation, Department of Management and Budget, and the Department of Revenue. The “shoot first” bill attempted to radically change the landscape of our gun laws in Minnesota. Proposing and passing the voter I.D. bill which would have seriously impinged on voter rights. They also voted to put a happen. But by 1955 the South was very sure that this is not going to take place. So the South took arms against the repressive regime in Khartoum. The agreement of 1972 brought peace and autonomy for the regional government of South Sudan for a short period of time. But in 1983 they abolished the agreement and introduced Islam as the state religion. It meant a Christian would not have a chance to actually participate in the government in Khartoum. Or if you do, you will have to participate in a junior position, because their law says a Muslim cannot be ruled by a non-Muslim. Dr. John Garang de Mabior and a handful of others again took up arms on May 16th 1983 and fought a war that was not only for South Sudan, but it was a war that was called for the entire marginalised citizens of Sudan that were brought together including South Sudan, the Nuba mountains, the Blue Nile, the Eastern Sudan, the Hadendowa, the Beja in the East and even the Northerners who felt that they were marginalised and that they are foreign. So it was a coalition war. Then in 2004–2005 when they were negotiating the peace agreement Southerners demanded for a secular Sudan. The North refused. They did arrive at an agreement allowing the people of South Sudan the opportunity to exercise their right to secede after 6 years, which is now 2011. We could choose whether to remain in United Sudan that is under the Islamic and Sharia system or to choose to be an independent country, independent South Sudan, a democratic country where every citizen is free. The Referendum held on January 9th resulted in separation today. Saturday weekend July 9th the people of South Sudan joined by their friends across the globe celebrated the independence of South Sudan in the Horn of Africa.
constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage on the ballot for 2012. 3. Millionaires, not Minnesotans. In the waning hours of budget negotiations, Governor Dayton backed off taxing the top 2 percent, opting to only tax Minnesota millionaires, roughly 7,700 people. Evidently, there was no room for negotiations of that kind, and that proposal was promptly rejected. With all of the finger pointing, remember these three paragraphs. Credit should be given where credit is due. Conservatives’ hard
Somalia From 2 Independently provide, or in collaboration with other institutions of higher learning, a facilities for university education and research, including among other things technological and professional expertise and teaching aids; Participate in the discovery, transmission and preservation of knowledge and to stimulate the intellectual life and cultural development of Somalia; To conduct examinations and to grant such academic awards as may be provided for in the statutes and other functions of institution of higher learning.
work produced this shutdown. The governor has made seven reasonable and balanced offers to solve our budget deficit. Conservatives have offered gimmicks and “no-new-tax” ideology, but no compromise, to protect the state’s wealthiest. Minnesota 2020 is a progressive, new media, nonpartisan think tank focused on what really matters. Check out the main site www.mn2020.org. Check out the Hindsight Blog at www.mn2020hindsight.org
The elders said the University accepts as candidates for degrees, diplomas, certificates or for other awards of the University all Somalis that the Admissions Office considers to be qualified, with no regard to any restrictions based on ethnicity, sect, or other barriers. The admissions policy forbids ethnic, sect or other distinctions being imposed upon any person as a condition for his or her becoming, or continuing to be, a professor, lecturer, or student of the University or of his/her holding any office of the university. Founding documents say no preference shall be given to, or privilege be withheld from, any person on the grounds of his or her ethnic origin or sect.
Page 4 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
EDUCATION Corporations bring $13 million to support Minneapolis Schools Building Creative Capital By Bernadeia H. Johnson MPS Superintendent We constantly strive to do all that we can to continue connecting with our communities and families. Everyone is busier than ever, which is why we work hard to develop innovative and creative ways to provide our families and the community with information and support that they need to ensure that our students are successful in
school. As summer break is well underway, we encourage families and community members to follow us and provide feedback through the various communications tools we utilize all year round: Visit our website at www. mpls.k12.mn.us Listen to live MPS news segments each Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. on the MPS radio station, Jazz 88.5 FM Follow Minneapolis Public Schools on Facebook or Twitter. (I am also on Twitter!) We update our pages frequently and our fans are some of the first to receive new information about MPS. The 2010-2011 school year is complete, and once again, our staff and students have
distinguished themselves in ways that make us proud. North High School has overcome numerous obstacles since the start of the school year and we are eager to continue working collaboratively with our families and our community to provide students with an excellent and rigorous comprehensive high school option in the heart of north Minneapolis. This year, we celebrated as Nellie Stone Johnson and Sheridan unveiled all-new school libraries thanks to the Target School Library Makeover program. Edison launched green efforts to practice environmental sustainability within the school through a five-year partnership
with Green Community Schools. Jenny Lind provided all first- and second-grade students with violin lessons utilizing a grant from the VH1 Save the Music Foundation. The Minnesota Elementary School Principals’ Association (MESPA) recognized David Branch, principal of Lucy Craft Laney Community School, with the 2011 MESPA Division Leadership Achievement Award. Five students were named Gates Millennium Scholars and two were named National Merit Scholars, with one more Merit Scholarship announcement anticipated in July. Even though we experienced several challenges – ranging from a tornado’s destruction to the ongoing debate at the legislature, which prolongs our
financial uncertainty – I believe there are several reasons to celebrate and be hopeful. This year, the Minneapolis Public Schools’ top priority continues to be to support good teaching. Ultimately, it will deliver the results we want for our students. We have begun implementing focused instruction, a long-term goal scheduled for completion in May 2014, and a newly designed and tested formal observation protocol for teacher evaluations. Our evaluation system will help everyone have a common understanding of what good teaching looks like and will provide every teacher with a fair and annual review. This clarity of purpose has garnered tremendous support. In ways both big and small, leaders across the region are
sending us a message: we believe in you. With the help of AchieveMpls, we received a significant investment of over $13 million from Target, Cargill, General Mills and Medtronic to drive student achievement in the areas of early literacy, science, technology, engineering and math; to expand college readiness; and to strengthen our leadership and human capital development. An investment from the Robins, Kaplan, Miller and Ciresi Foundation for Children will support teacher evaluation. Additionally, the McKnight Foundation has given us a planning grant to develop comprehensive strategies to improve PreK-3 literacy.
MPS TURN TO 7
Teachers make a difference Teach For America on June 7 announced that nearly 50 new teachers will begin teaching in the Twin Cities in the fall of 2011 as part of the largest entering corps in the organization’s history. With the addition of these teachers, nearly 100 first- and second-year corps members will collectively reach more than 6,000 students in high-need public schools across the Twin Cities. These corps members will teach alongside other dedicated educators, including some 30 new alumni of Teach For America-Twin Cities who will continue working in education. “We are pleased to continue our partnership with Teach For America to bring corps members into Minneapolis schools,” said Dr. Bernadeia Johnson, superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools. “These teachers are an asset to our school communities and are renowned for working alongside MPS teachers and staff to support student achievement. We look
forward to welcoming our new corps members this fall to join their colleagues who will remain in our schools beyond their original two-year commitment.” Teach For America’s new national corps totals 5,200 teachers who are top graduates from colleges and universities across the country. These members represent a wide variety of personal and academic backgrounds and professional experiences. More than 250 Teach
For America alumni live and work in the Twin Cities. “I’m delighted to welcome more Teach For America teachers to the Twin Cities,” said Sandra Vargas, president and CEO of The Minneapolis Foundation. “Over the past two years, Teach For America has added immense value to our classrooms and our community. I’m pleased their efforts here will continue and grow to help ensure every student throughout the Twin Cities receives a great education.” Daniel Sellers, executive director of Teach for America in the Twin Cities, shares her sentiments. “We are thrilled to welcome our new corps members to classrooms across the Twin Cities,” said Sellers, “These new teachers are eager to join our community’s efforts to expand educational opportunity for all of our kids. They are poised to have a real impact both as corps members and as long-term educators and leaders in our city.”
Insight News • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Page 5
AESTHETICS girl (Melusine Mayance) was torn asunder by the roundup of Jews in occupied France during World War II. With Karina Hin, Sarah Ber and Kate Moran. (In French and English with subtitles)
Captain America: The First Avenger
Opening this week Film Review By Kam Williams
with no expectations does nevertheless lead to relationship complications. Cast includes Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, Richard Jenkins, Patricia Clarkson, Jenna Elfman and Andy Samberg with cameos by Jason Segel, Rashida Jones and Shaun White.
firstname.lastname@example.org BIG BUDGET FILMS Captain America: The First Avenger (PG-13 for intense sci-fi violence) Marvel Comics adaptation revolving around the patriotic exploits of a soldierturned-superhero (Chris Evans) who, with the help of his trusty sidekick (Sebastian Stan), comes to the aid of the Allies during World War II when a Hitler henchman (Hugo Weaving) bent on world domination develops a top secret weapon. With Derek Luke, Tommy Lee Jones, Stanley Tucci, Natalie Dormer and Toby Jones. Friends with Benefits (R for violence and brief sexuality) Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake co-star in this romantic comedy about a couple whose agreement to share intimacy
INDEPENDENT & FOREIGN FILMS Another Earth (Unrated) Redemption drama about an MIT student (Brit Marling) and an accomplished composer (William Mapother) whose paths cross in tragic fashion on the very same night of the discovery of a mirror planet populated by duplicates of every human on Earth. With Jordan Baker, Flint Beverage and Robin Taylor. Fire in Babylon (Unrated) Politically-tinged, sports documentary featuring file footage from the Seventies and Eighties as well as recent interviews with members of the post-colonial, West Indian cricket team which was forced to endure racist taunts while playing on tour around the world, including in South Africa during the reign
of the Apartheid regime. A Little Help (R for sexuality, profanity and drug use) Bittersweet dramedy about a dental hygienist (Jenna Fischer) who suddenly finds herself resorting to lies to provide for herself and her 12 year-old son (Daniel Yelsky) in the wake of her philandering husband’s (Chris O’Donnell) untimely death. With Kim Coates, Ron Leibman, Lesley Ann Warren and Rob Benedict. The Myth of the American Sleepover (Unrated) Coming-ofage drama focusing on the fates of four teens (Claire Sloma, Marlon Morton, Amanda Bauer and Brett Jacobsen) looking for love and romance around suburban Detroit on the last weekend of summer before going back to school. With Amy Seimetz, Narisa Suzuki and Jade and Nikita Ramsey. Sarah’s Key (PG-13 for mature themes and disturbing images) Holocaust drama, set in presentday Paris, about an investigative journalist’s (Kristin Scott Thomas) research the story of how the family of a 10 year-old
Singham (Unrated) Bollywood crime caper about the showdown between the sheriff of Shivgad (Ajay Devgan) and the powerful mobster (Prakash Raj) who has recently arrived in the
quiet, tiny town. With Kajal Aggarwal, Sonali Kulkarni and Sachin Khedekar. (In Hindi with subtitles)
Page 6 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
HEALTH On your ‘last nerve?: Dealing with anxiety, worries and fears Murua (Swahili for ‘Respect’) By Dr. BraVada GarrettAkinsanya, Ph.D., L.P. My husband often tells me “If you’re going to pray, don’t worry, but if you’re going to worry, don’t pray!” In today’s economy with people dropping like flies in the workplace, it is hard not to worry. It is even harder to know when to worry about your worrying! Anxiety is a state of persistent worrying, fear and nervousness. Researchers say that roughly 40 million adults are affected by
anxiety problems each year in the United States alone. Although there are a number of different forms of anxiety problems, those of us who experience any of them describe frequently experiencing symptoms of uncertainty, dread and fear. Although studies have shown that African Americans are no more likely than nonAfrican Americans to experience anxiety problems, African Americans are underrepresented in getting treatment for these problems. Thus, AfricanAmericans, in particular, are atrisk for experiencing untreated anxiety disorders, which are more severe forms of worry, fear, and nervousness. There has been some research focusing on possible differences in the characteristics
of anxiety symptoms among minority populations. One study found that African Americans who had anxiety disorders and also lived in urban settings were more likely than whites to report homicidal ideations, unstable interpersonal relationships, and more aggressive behavior—which gives new meaning to the lyrics of DMX’s song “Ya’ll gon’ make me act a fool up in here, up in here!” Consequently, when we have “bad nerves” it is often because we experience a physiological, psychological, and emotional reaction to ongoing stressful life circumstances. As you can see, anxiety, though common, is a complex problem. People are anxious, nervous and worried for a variety
of reasons. One reason that African Americans have “bad nerves” is because we have been traumatized, demonized, and ostracized by society for hundreds of years. We have been conditioned to be in a state of “hyper-arousal” and vigilance--constantly waiting for the proverbial “other shoe” to drop! Our ways of living and our very presence is often perceived by others as “disordered, maladaptive, weird, and deviant.” So, although many of us try to “get in where we can fit in,” we are often in unstable conditions of safety in our homes, our workplaces, our relationships, our schools and our communities. We vacillate from being invisible, mis-understood, misused, used, abused, and confused to being over-represented, under-respected and under-served by systems and institutions. It is so bad that even we mistreat ourselves and each other! We steal from each other, we kill each other, we manipulate each other for money and profits, we ‘play’ each other! Willie Lynch would be proud! Consequently, I am not at all surprised to find that so many of us are worried and “nervous” all of the time! I am sad to say that the problem is not unique to adults either. Although many of us try to handle our “grown-folks business,” too often we drag our children into our worries about paying bills, not getting along with our partners, domestic abuse situations as well as getting them to codependently participate in our drug , nicotine, and alcohol addictions. Some of us use our children as our “confidants” or “best friends” and over-expose them to our problems. A recent Minnesota Student Survey looked at 9th grade African American children across the state. The survey revealed that 15% of the girls and 11% of the boys reported being “Under stress and pressure (‘almost more than I can take’).” Additionally, 22% of the girls and 15% of the boys reported being “Nervous, Worried or Upset- All or Most of the Time.” That data
means that between 26% to 37% of our African American 9th graders are stressed, worried and upset! Anxiety problems can be mild or severe. Milder forms of anxiety problems are triggered by some kind of stressful life event, such as a first date or speaking in public. Ordinarily, these feelings fade quickly after the event is finished. On the other hand, there are multiple forms of anxiety disorders and people suffering from anxiety disorders can suffer from these feelings off-and-on for periods ranging from months to years. Some examples of anxiety disorders are: (1) social phobia, or social anxiety disorder (SAD); (2) post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); (3) panic disorder; and (4) generalized anxiety disorder. Each form of anxiety disorder has its own symptoms, but everyone who suffers from them have common symptom of excessive, often irrational, fear and dread that seemingly comes “out from no where.” For example, people who have Panic Disorders report feelings of panic, helplessness and terror. If you have a Panic Disorder, feelings seem to “come out of the blue” and can be triggered by a memory that may not have any relation to where you are or what you’re doing at the moment of the attack. It is this disconnect between the cause and the actual feelings that leaves people “worrying about when it will happen again.” One study on African Americans with panic disorder indicated that we may have an increased incidence of isolated sleep paralysis. Isolated sleep paralysis is defined as an altered state of consciousness experienced while falling asleep or waking. During an episode, the individual is unable to move for several seconds or minutes. The individual often reports feelings of anxiety or fear during and after the episode. On the other hand, people who suffer with Social Anxiety Disorder describe having strong feelings of humiliation and fear
of being embarrassed in social situations. When they are exposed to potentially embarrassing types of situations, they experience the symptoms of a panic attack; therefore they try to avoid these social situations, sometimes to irrational extents. In previous columns, I have described the symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as being most commonly associated with some kind of traumatic event, such as a shooting or the tornado that we recently experienced in North Minneapolis. When something triggers a memory of the event, people who experience PTSD will tend to re-experience similar levels of anxiety and fear as if the incident has re-occurred. The most common type of anxiety disorder, however, is called Generalized Anxiety Disorder. People suffering from this disorder report having ongoing, daily and chronic worries. They spend a great deal of time worrying about minor things. This problem can eventually go on for longer and longer periods of time, leading to lack of sleep and lack of concentration on other tasks. People with Generalized Anxiety Disorder often describe feeling so uncomfortable and “nervous” that they self-medicate by relaxing with drugs (especially marijuana) and alcohol. If people have addictions to other things such as gambling, sex or food, they are likely to be related to this disorder as unhealthy methods of anxiety-reduction. Although the primary symptoms of anxiety are irrational, excessive fears and worries, other common emotional symptoms of anxiety include: feelings of dread, trouble concentrating, feeling tense and jumpy, anticipating the worst, restlessness, irritability and feeling like your mind has gone blank. In addition to the emotional symptoms of anxiety, those who experience anxiety may describe physical symptoms
HEALTH TURN TO 7
Insight News • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Page 7
Afrifest From 1 The most obvious benefit being it provides Africans of various backgrounds a platform from which to display their specific culture, while tearing at the social wall erected by tribalism. But the not so obvious role is to afford African-Americans the opportunity to begin their journey of discovering their true roots. Although Afrifest is about celebrating African culture, it does not exclude any group from participating. All are welcomed and encouraged to sample its customs, chorus, and cuisine. However, Afrifest does present a special benefit to the AfricanAmerican community. So they above all others are invited – to begin the healing process and mend bridges. From its inception, the mission of Afrifest has always been to improve the social interaction of the many African and African-American communities through festive recreation and culture sharing. But somewhere along the way this message of Black solidarity
MPS From 4 Like our external partners, families are also giving us another look. Enrollment continues to stabilize and even grow. Stable enrollment means stable revenue, which directly translates to greater stability in the classroom.
Health From 6 such as pounding heart, sweating, stomach upset or dizziness, frequent urination or diarrhea, shaking, fatigue, an inability to sleep, headaches, muscle tension and shortness of breath. Consequently, if you or
Wells Fargo Volunteers Helping out with Kids Arts and Craft Booth
David E Gordon Photography
Liberian girl at Afrifest 2010
has lost momentum; mistaken for a “Brooklyn Park exclusive” event or “Liberian only” affair. Now, revitalized with new board members, the Afrifest Foundation is planning for a festival as diverse as its board. The Board consists of Nathan White (Liberian), Kechi
Bisong (Nigerian-American), Wycliff Chakua (Kenyan), Prof. Joseph Mbele (Tanzanian), and Gerald Montgomery (African-American). Diversity is essential to an integrated society because with diversity comes a decrease in fascism while increasing representation
and perspective. Thus this year our objective is to “EDUcate” our communities through “Enlightenment, Diversity, and Unity”® (this year’s theme). It is no secret that a source of great strength as Africans has been the catalyst for a great weakness; pride in one’s
specific community. What unites Nigerians to Nigerians, Liberians to Liberians, Ethiopians, Kenyans, Togolese, etc, to themselves, is also what unfortunately segregates them from the other communities; tribalism. But the simple truth is if there is ever going to be
peace among the Africans on the continent it will need to start with the Africans in America! And Afrifest 2011, poised to be the greatest thus far, would be a great place to start the peace process! Email the author at email@example.com
Reflecting on my first year as superintendent, I experienced several high points. I started the year off with a dedication to our 3,100 college-bound kindergarten students and an aggressive goal: all kindergarteners would be reading at “Level B” in our reading curriculum by winter break. The goal startled some, energized others and galvanized everyone. Teachers, parents, principals and even our
kindergarteners knew “Level B by Break”! Sixty percent of our students reached the mid-year mark. Now, with the results from our spring assessments in, we have bested that number: 76 percent of students tested are at or above the goal. MPS is indeed fortunate to have city and state leaders who clearly understand the challenges and needs of urban education and who are
unequivocally committed to closing the achievement gap. I am grateful for the ongoing efforts of Mayor Rybak, the Minneapolis legislative delegation, Education Commissioner Cassellius and Governor Dayton on behalf of our students. They, like me, understand the impact that public debates have on public education. We can have a positive, constructive conversation about improving
outcomes for all students. I believe each of us should do whatever we can to lead a more respectful public discourse about our collective challenges, be they around finances, education or any other major issue confronting our society. The next generation will take its cues from the leaders around it. As superintendent, I want everyone working and supporting MPS to understand
the vision, Every Child College Ready. Everyone has a role in helping future generations succeed. We value the dedication that the community has to our schools and our students. Thank you for your commitment to education. It has been a privilege and honor to serve you as superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools. Thank you for supporting and believing in us.
someone you know experiences several of the following signs and symptoms, and they just won’t go away, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder: • Are you constantly tense, worried, or on edge? • Does your anxiety interfere with your work, school, or family responsibilities? • Are you plagued by fears that you know are irrational, but can’t
shake? • Do you believe that something bad will happen if certain things aren’t done a certain way? • Do you avoid everyday situations or activities because they make you anxious? • Do you experience sudden, unexpected attacks of heartpounding panic? • Do you feel like danger and catastrophe are around every corner? The good news is that anxiety problems are among the most treatable types of emotional problems. Providers use techniques such as cognitive behavior therapy to teach you
skills that can decrease anxiety. There are also several ways that people with anxiety disorders can help themselves. For example, research shows that as little as 30 minutes of exercise three to five times a week can provide significant anxiety relief. Additionally, hypnosis, and relaxation techniques can reduce anxiety and increase feelings of relaxation and emotional wellbeing. Finally, there are a variety of medications that decrease nervousness and depression that are also used in the treatment of anxiety disorders. But medication is most effective when combined with behavioral
therapy. When compared to those who use medication alone, anxiety sufferers treated with both therapy and medication benefit from a greater reduction in symptoms and a lower risk of relapse.
and multicultural mental health and is recognized as a Board Certified Diplomat/Fellow, in African Centered/Black Psychology by the Association of Black Psychologists. 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. GarrettAkinsanya by emailing her at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 763-522-0100 or 612-302-3140.
BraVada Garrett-Akinsanya, Ph.D., L.P. is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who serves as the President of Brakins Consulting and Psychological Services, and Executive Director of the African American Child Wellness Institute. She has over 30 years of experience in the field psychology specializing in violence recovery
Page 8 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
LIFESTYLE Media consumption may hamper academic achievement By Nadra Kareem Nittle America’s Wire Krystal Murphy received her first cellphone at age 13 and she used it solely to keep her parents in the loop about her activities. Four years later, her use of the phone has changed dramatically. Now 17, she relies on it to text friends, surf the Internet and send messages on Twitter. “I’m on my cell all day, every day, as soon as I wake up and until I go to bed,” says the AfricanAmerican teen from South Los Angeles. According to a Northwestern University study of youth media consumption, Krystal’s habits are widespread among young people of color. Released in June, “Children, Media and Race: Media Use Among White, Black, Hispanic, and Asian American Children” found that those between ages 8 and 18 use cellphones, television, computers and other electronic devices to consume an average of 13 hours of media content daily. That’s 4-1/2 hours more than their white counterparts. The study has renewed debate about whether minority youths spend too much time on media consumption and not enough on reading and studying. While some people insist that the disparity in media consumption contributes
INSIGHT NEWS www.insightnews.com
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 Director of Content & Production Patricia Weaver
to the education gap between minority and white youths, others cite it as a positive that can aid a child’s educational growth. “I think that the results of this study coupled with the other factors that we know influence student performance,” says Sharon Lewis, research director for the Council of the Great City Schools, an advocate for urban public schools and students. “When you combine all of this together, it’s another indication that we need to take extra steps to reach [minority] youth. “Factors such as health, such as preschool experience, such as a sibling that may not have graduated, such as coming from a single-parent household and then you add this [media consumption] to it—it’s another indication.” Past reports have shown a correlation between television viewing and low academic performance. A 20-year study of 678 families released in 2007 by the New York State Psychiatric Institute found that teens who watched three or more hours of television daily had an 82 percent greater chance of not graduating from high school when compared with those who watched less than an hour. However, critics of that study say students who struggle academically may be more inclined to watch TV to avoid the rigors of schoolwork. The Northwestern study is said to be the first in the United States to examine children’s media use by race. Nearly 1,900 youths participated. The study re-analyzed data from previous Kaiser Family Foundation studies on media consumption, finding that racial differences in children’s media use remained static when accounting for socioeconomic status or whether youths came from single- or two-parent homes. The results, which appeared to counter concerns about a possible digital divide and may give parents and educators new strategies to meet needs of minority youths, surprised Ellen Wartella, head of Northwestern’s Center on Media and Human Development. She coauthored the study. “Recreational media use is an enormous part of young people’s lives, more than we ever thought,” she says. “It’s quite clear we have a group of young people who are tethered to their technology.” The report finds that Black and Latino youths spend one to two more hours daily watching TV and videos, an hour more listening to music, up to 90 minutes more
Production Andrew Notsch
Facilities Support / Assistant Producer, Conversations with Al McFarlane Bobby Rankin
on computers and 90 minutes on cellphones, and 30 to 40 minutes more playing video games than white youths. During the past decade, Black youths have doubled their daily media use, and Latino youths have quadrupled theirs, according to Wartella. Asian-American youths also consume more media than their white peers. Asians lead all groups in use of mobile devices at 3 hours and 7 minutes daily, compared with 2 hours and 53 minutes for Latinos, 2 hours and 52 minutes for Blacks and just 80 minutes for whites. Asians also spend 14 more minutes daily watching traditional TV than do white youths and more than an hour daily than whites watching TV online, via TiVo or on DVD. Nevertheless,
Asian-American youths remain high academic achievers, challenging the contention that media consumption hurts student performance. Kerry Riley, an affiliated scholar at the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, says media can help students of color in the classroom. “For me, the issue isn’t having more media,” says the professor of ethnic studies. “It’s access to higher standards of media.” He adds that teachers and mentors of minority youths increasingly expose them to social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook to help them learn about many issues.
Anointed Entertainment, Inc Boys To Men Group Home SBurress Enterprises PRESENT:
Sr. Content & Production Coordinator Ben Williams
Distribution/Facilities Manager Jamal Mohamed
Marvin Sapp Colon Cancer Awareness Benefit
“An Evening For Your Soul, A Night of Internal Peace” July 23, 2011
Receptionist Lue B. Lampley Staff Writer Ivan B. Phifer
Designed by: Kathy 612-282-0310
Contributing Writers Maya Beecham Brenda Colston Julie Desmond S. Himie Marcia Humphrey Alaina L. Lewis Ryan T. Scott 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.
Hit Songs Include: Never Would Have Made It He Saw The Best In Me
The O’Shaughnessy at St Catherine University
Hosted & Special Performance By Gospel Comedian SHED G
2004 Randolph St. St. Paul, MN 55105 Doors Open: 6:00pm ~ Show Starts: 7:00pm Ticket Information: 651-690-6700 & 612-414-2454 Driving Instructions: oshaughnessy.stkate.edu
$20~$35~$50. . . True Apostolic Children of Grace Choir featuring: Tonia Hughes
As Seen On Tyler Perry’s Meet The Browns www.canivent.com
James Grear & Company Antioch Christian Center Devine Ministers of Dance
Tickets Also Available At: Earth’s Beauty Supply ~ (651) 290-2836 (608 University W) Earth’s Beauty Supply ~ (651) 644-9504 (1453 University W) Dej’s Art of Hair ~ (763) 521-1234 Elsworth Clothing ~ (612) 339-0763
“At the request of the American Cancer Society, a portion of the proceeds will go to the Northside Disaster Relief”
Riley says he has directed students to use cellphones in class to access music videos and shown them cartoons such as “South Park” and “Family Guy.” Incorporating media in class to showcase popular culture, he says, has helped Blacks and Latinos understand how music forms and television shows can function as parodies of Western society. “We helped them to understand these weren’t just elements of popular culture,” Riley says. “They were existential forms of social critique that related directly to their lives. So I, as an AfricanAmerican professor, was able to use popular culture via Google, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook as a pedagogical tool to help educate African-American and Latino youth and increase their academic performance.”
Northwestern’s Wartella agrees that greater media consumption isn’t necessarily a drawback for youths but might put them at risk for obesity. “One concern is exposure to food marketing, specifically television advertising for foods high in calories and lower in nutrients,” she says. “We’re saying maybe we should take a look at the negative consequences if they’re watching television. Our hope is to start a national conversation about youth and media.” Her study’s finding that, among children, 84 percent of Blacks, 77 percent of Hispanics and 64 percent of whites and Asian-Americans have TV sets in their rooms is telling. Blacks not only lead youths in TV ownership but also are also more likely to be obese or overweight. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates that 22.4 percent of Black children are obese and 44.4 percent are overweight, compared with 17.4 percent and 36.9 percent for white children, respectively. Félix Gutiérrez, a University of Southern California journalism and communication professor who has written extensively about race and media, doesn’t necessarily recommend advising youths of color to watch less television. It depends on whether they’re intellectually engaged, he says. The New York State Psychiatric Institute study found that students who passively absorb entertainment on television find classroom lessons boring. Gutiérrez advises parents that rather than leaving children alone to watch favorite shows, they should join them and initiate meaningful discussion about what’s on the screen. “Studies in the past have shown that when children saw a stereotypical portrayal of an Indian or Black or Mexican, it helped to have parents there to challenge the message,” he says. “There weren’t many Latinos on TV, so if a Ricky Ricardo type came on, the child could hear the parent saying, ‘People think we’re all like that.’ ” Such critical feedback from parents helps children of color not to internalize racially demeaning messages, according to Gutiérrez. Of course, not all minority youths spend much time watching television. Melissa Reed, 15, of the San Fernando Valley in California, says she rarely tunes in. Instead, the Black teen exercises regularly
MEDIA TURN TO 11
Insight News • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Page 9
COMMENTARY South Sudan: An African American opportunity Opinion
By Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr. Whenever there are advances for African freedom and self-determination, African Americans, in particular, should always be able to define mutual interests, opportunities and responsibilities to aid and assist our brothers and sisters in Africa. The Republic of South Sudan is the newest nation in the world and will become the 193rd member of the United Nations. Independence Day for the Republic of South Sudan was as recent as this month. President Barack Obama stated, “A proud flag flies over Juba and the map of the world has been redrawn. Together, we can ensure that today marks another step forward in Africa’s long journey toward opportunity, democracy and justice. I am proud to declare
that the United States formally recognizes the Republic of South Sudan a sovereign and independent state upon this day, July 09, 2011. After so much struggle by the people of South Sudan, the United States of America welcomes the birth of a new nation.” We agree with President Obama’s perspective and analysis about the significance of the newly established Republic of South Sudan. But we would like to deepen our memory and perspective on this momentous achievement from an African American perspective. Too often in contemporary times, Africa is still viewed by too many Americans as that far off place where centuries ago, millions of people were enslaved and forcibly brought to the Americas for the sole purpose of one of the most brutal manifestations of human slavery and economic exploitation that the world has ever witnessed in history. Yet for African Americans we are more and more aware of how our plight here inside the United States of America still involves our long struggle for freedom, justice, equality and
empowerment. But for the grace of God and the sacrifices, toil, courage and steadfastness of struggle by past generations of Blacks in America and throughout the displaced African world, we would not be able to recognize and celebrate the progress today
suffering. It is good now that the civil war, despite some continued violent border clashes, has finally ended with the declaration of independence and sovereignty of the Republic of South Sudan being officially recognized by the world community.
“...this is a great moment in history for African American business leaders to develop new business relationships with Africa” that African people and all people continue to make toward a more just and empowered humanity. Our concern and care is for our brothers and sisters in both the Republic of South Sudan and those who remain in the Sudan, to the north of the Republic of South Sudan. The whole of the Sudan and including the Republic of South Sudan ought to be the focus for all who care about Africa. The 50 years or more of deadly, self-destructive civil war has caused so much misery and
African Americans should see clearly that once again there are significant and immediate economic and growth opportunities in this new African nation. Of course, some of the world’s economic powers are already lining up to go after the vast quantities of oil and natural gas that are known to be some of the world’s largest discoveries located in the Republic of South Sudan. China has just announced that they will invest millions of dollars in infrastructure development
for the South Sudan. The U.K., France, the U.S., and other postindustrialized economies have all expressed their desire to work on development projects in this valuable mineral rich nation. At a time of very high unemployment in the African American community, this is a great moment in history for African American business leaders to develop new business relationships with Africa, and in particular with nations like the Republic of South Sudan. I believe the greatest resource, however, that is in the Republic of South Sudan today is not its oil or natural gas, but it is its millions of people who have high aspirations and hope for a better quality of life. Thus, if Black owned businesses: the Black Press, colleges and universities, churches and other institutions that serve our communities would reach out to the Republic of South Sudan, it would raise the potential for ongoing sustainable economic development and educational joint ventures to be established. Africa awaits Black America. Giving back to Africa will bring a long lasting benefit to our brothers and sisters in Africa as well as
to our brothers and sisters in our communities across America. President Obama in his statement about the Republic of South Sudan reminded us what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said about independence occurring in Africa. The President affirmed, “Decades ago, Martin Luther King reflected on the first moment of independence on the African continent in Ghana, saying, ‘I knew about all of the struggles, and all of the pain, and all of the agony that these people had gone through for this moment.’ Today, we are moved by the story of struggle that led to this time of hope in South Sudan, and we think of those who didn’t live to see their dream realized. Now, the leaders and people of South Sudan have an opportunity to turn this moment of promise into lasting progress.” As we salute the Republic of South Sudan, let’s extend a helping hand. The future holds great promise. Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. Is Senior Advisor to the Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) and President of Educational Online Services Corporation.
The promise of Freedom Schools Child Watch
By Marian Wright Edelman In many school districts across the country summer vacation is getting into full swing. But for a lucky group of nearly 10,000 children in 87 cities and 27 states around the country, it’s not just summer—it’s a Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) Freedom Schools® summer.
“For me, Freedom Schools was my first exposure to African American college students. Until that time, I couldn’t tell you what college was, couldn’t spell ‘college,’” said Donnie Belcher, who began attending the CDF Freedom Schools program at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Kansas City, Mo. when she was 12 years old. “I actually put a face, a Black face, behind the idea of going to college. We talk about the impact of fatherlessness on Black males, but not on females—and I still remember Lavelle, who was a Morehouse man. He served as the first positive Black male I had ever seen in 12 years.” That experience
stayed with Donnie and fueled her dreams of going to college and becoming a teacher through her high school years and beyond. Donnie became the first in her family to graduate from college. Today, with a B.S. and a master’s degree in education from DePaul University, she teaches high school English at the Whitney M. Young Magnet High School, a college preparatory school in Chicago with distinguished alumni like Michelle Obama. Proudly rooted in the Civil Rights Movement, the 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer Project, and the efforts of college students to make a difference, the
CDF Freedom Schools program trains college-aged young people— servant leaders we call them—to provide quality summer and afterschool enrichment through a model Integrated Reading Curriculum that supports children and families around five essential components: high quality academic enrichment; parent and family involvement; civic engagement and social action; intergenerational leadership development; and nutrition, health, and mental health supports. We partner with public schools, community organizations, faith congregations, colleges and universities, and juvenile justice facilities who sponsor and host
their local Freedom School. About 90,000 children—scholars we call them—have had a CDF Freedom Schools experience since 1995 and 9,000 college teacher-mentors have been trained to serve them. In the CDF Freedom Schools program children are engaged in activities that develop their minds and bodies and nurture their spirits. Children, parents, and staff are introduced to a superb collection of books that reflect their own images and are part of the integrated reading curriculum in which books, activities, field trips, and games all relate to and reinforce each other. The college servant leaders use this curriculum to teach
the children conflict resolution and critical thinking skills, engage them in community service and social action projects, and inspire them not only to explore the problems facing their communities, but also to become active in working toward solutions. Like Donnie Belcher, children are encouraged to dream, set goals for themselves, and cultivate positive attitudes and high expectations. We are forging a new vision for what can be done with and for our children. We want every child to know they can and must make a difference.
SCHOOLS TURN TO 11
Page 10 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
Classifieds/Calendar Send Community Calendar information to us by: email, andrew@insightnews. com, 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 Whittier Cooperative: Healing and Transformation - Thru July 23 A Photographic Work in Progress by Michele Spaise documenting the Whittier Cooperative over the past 20 years. Exhibition Run: July 1-23; Gallery Hours: 10am-6pm Mon-Fri; 12-5pm Sat. $3 suggested donation. Opening Reception: 6-9pm, Fri., July 8 - FREE. At Intermedia Arts, 2822 Lyndale Ave. S. Mpls. Summer Dance Series - Thurs. thru Aug. 4 Every Thursday through August 4, the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts is hosting its Summer Dance Series, a free event located at the Landmark
DUPLEXES FOR RENT East St. Paul - 2 bdrm remodeled duplex unit. $795/month - Income Restricted Properties - EHO - 651-430-1888 www.applegateproperties.com
Community Organizing The Harrison Neighborhood Association seeks an energetic individual committed to community organizing and issues related to food access. The Membership Service Coordinator focus will expand the membership base for a forming Northside Coop called the Wirth Community Grocery. This is a 3-Month Part-time Contract position. Send Cover Letter and Resume to email@example.com. For a detailed job description call 612-374-4849.
Communications Assistant Minnesota Conference United Methodist Church seeks full-time Communications Assistant to update content on minnesotaumc.org, write news & features, assist with promotions, proofread, answer phone, other clerical duties. Strong journalistic writing, editing, and customer service skills needed. Salary range starts at $29,000. Letter of interest, resume, & writing samples due July 29 to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Plaza in downtown Saint Paul. This series includes free lessons and dance demos, as well as live music from local bands, every week! Whether you want to groove to Reggae music or perfect your Ballroom steps, there is something for everyone. Food and beverages are available for purchase starting at 5:30pm, dance Instruction begins at 6pm, and live music begins at 7:15pm. For more info call 651.224.4222 or visit http://www.ordway.org/summerdance/” Really Really Free Market – Thru Oct It’s like a swap meet, a potluck, and a block party all rolled into one! Bring stuff you want to share, take whatever you need. Everyone has old stuff lying around, taking up space, and never getting used. Why not share it with someone? 2pm, on the 2nd or 3rd Sunday of every month June 12th, July 10th, August 14th, September 18th, October 9th. @ Powderhorn Park, near the stage. Share Your Lunch to Feed Kids and Families at Sabathani - July A table will be staffed in Sabathani’s front hallway every Thursday from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to take monetary donations in person for the food shelf. People can also support Sabathani’s food shelf easily and quickly by going to http://www.sabathani.org and donating online. Sabathani is able to purchase $9 worth of food for every dollar donated to the food shelf through its partnership with Second Harvest Heartland. Youth as Contributors: The Role of New Media & Technology - July 18 This webinar will explore the meaning of media literacy, highlight positive ways youth can and are using new technologies, and discuss the challenges and opportunities in doing so. Mon., July 18, 11:30-1:00. Free, but registration is mandatory: http:// www.regonline.com/Register/Checkin. aspx?EventID=987701 KRS-One in conversation with the North Side community - July 19 Legendary rapper KRS-One addresses the problems and concerns of North Minneapolis community members in this conversation. He will talk about creating unity in the community based on his own experience, and discuss community building with audience members. Tue. July 19 5-7pm. North Community High School Auditorium - 1500 James Ave., N. Mpls. Free and open to the public Moja Benefit Concert for North Minneapolis Tornado Relief with KRS-One & Slum Village - July 19 The North Minneapolis Post Tornado Watch is glad to announce Moja, the first of a series of concerts they will be hosting to enable them to expand their relief effort operations on the ground in the North Minneapolis disaster zones. Tue., July 19 - 9pm-midnight. First Avenue Nightclub 701 1st Ave., S. Mpls. $30Adv.-$40Door. Tickets: http://first-avenue.com/. This will be an 18+ show.
Art at St. Kates - July 23 Quality fine crafts and fine art, is produced by Artists’ Circle, a Minnesota non-profit art organization promoting fine crafts since 1995, and Textile Center, a national center for fiber arts in Minneapolis. Sat. July 23 10am-5pm. www.artatkates.org 3rd Annual Walk for Pilgrim July 23 Lace up your tennis shows and grab your water bottle. Our goal is to raise $7,500 to fund our ministries that affect and support our community. Visit our website at pilgrimbaptistchurch.org for pledge forms and more information or contact Stephanie Dilworth at 612 626-6985. Sat., July 23 at Como Park 9-11:30am. City of Lakes Community Land Trust 7th Annual Reunion Picnic - July 23 This event brings together homeowners, members, and supporters of the CLCLT for food, fun, games, crafts, and good conversation. Sat. July 23 1-4pm at Powderhorn Park. Enlightenment - July 23-Aug 21 A diverse exhibition exploring spirituality through symbolism, allegories and journeys. An Opening Reception for Enlightenment takes place Sat., July 23 at SSCA Gallery, 7–11pm. Live music by Karima Bushnell. Free and Open to the public. SSCA Gallery Hours: Fri–Sun 1-5pm. 1905 3rd Ave. S. Mpls. WomenVenture Career Class Calendar July 24–30 For further information and to register, visit womenventure.org or call 651646-3808. WomenVenture is located at 2324 University Avenue West, Suite 120, St. Paul, MN 55114. • Career & Employment Transition Group for Women Tue. July 26 9:30– 11:30am at WomenVenture, Free. Walk-in group for women to make connections, get support and receive job-seeking advice. Local North Minneapolis Children to Perform with the Minnesota Sinfonia - July 27 Join the Minnesota Sinfonia at North Minneapolis’s Farwell Park for some light and fun favorites featuring the story of Peter and the Wolf put on by local N. Mpls children. 1pm Wed., July 27 at Farwell Park, 1201 Sheridan Ave N, Mpls. *Rainsite at Bethune Elementary, 919 Emerson Ave N, Mpls. Admission as always is free. Audience members should arrive early—all concerts are first-come, first-seated. Songs of Hope Performance - July 27 A chorus of 50 performers ages 10-25 from 17 countries and 5 continents, will sing on the south lawn of Lutheran Church of Redeemer, 285 N. Dale St., St. Paul, at 7pm, Wed., July 27. The program includes reggae & rock n roll, jazz & blues, second line, world & folk, and a live band. Food and children’s activities will be available from 6–7. There is no charge, but donations will be accepted. Come and enjoy a fun
summer evening. Call 651-227-8295. 12th Annual Comedy for Choice July 28 Singer, actor, and writer Leslie Ball, founder and host of BALLS Cabaret, will lend her many talents to the 12th Annual Comedy for Choice, a fundraiser for NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota. Comedy for Choice will showcase the comedic art of Nate Abshire, Mary Hirsch, Pat Susmilch, and Amber Preston. Thur. July 28, Doors at 6pm. Varsity Theater - 1308 4th St. SE Mpls. Minnesota Sinfonia: Northside Music and Arts Festival - July 28 Thur., July 28 at 5pm. North Commons Park, 1801 James Ave. N., Mpls. Rainsite at North High School, 1500 James Ave. N, Mpls. FREE. 612.871.1701 www.mnsinfonia.org Mississippi River Challenge - July 30-31 A fully supported 44 mile paddle event through the Twin Cities stretch of the river. One or two day options available, with camping overnight at Historic Fort Snelling! Enjoy delicious food, Surly beer, live music and beautiful views of the river this summer. Register online today at www.mississippiriverchallenge.org. Supported by Friends of the Mississippi River. Women of Worth – A Prayer Breakfast & Silent Auction - July 30 Keynote speaker for the event is Mother Dollie Foster with presentations by Donna Brown, First Lady Bertrene Cage and Pastor Doris Allison. Silent Auction List will be available at the Women’s Ministry Website www. pcfwomen.com. If you would like to donate an item please contact rosalind@ pcfwomen.com. Donating a product or service is a great way to advertise your business. Adults-$15 • Children-$5. Sat., July 30, at Minneapolis Believers in Christ located at 1001 Penn Ave. N. 9am-noon.
the men and women who carry the torch and fight today’s wars. For more information contact Clarence D. Smith Jr., Colonel, USAF (Retired), at cpo@ ecctai.com, cell 703-967-4463. 55+ Meet & Greet - Aug 5 RSVP of the Greater Twin Cities* is hosting a 55+ Meet & Greet for adults over the age of 55 interested in tutoring. Hear about local programs and meet current volunteers. Reserve your spot today by calling Mary Jane Horton, RSVP Literacy Coordinator at 952.945.4163 or email@example.com. Fri. Aug. 5 10am-12pm @ Midtown Global Market - 920 E. Lake St. Mpls, MN. Uptown Art Fair - Aug 5-7 The 2011 Uptown Art Fair is celebrating its 48th annual fair with the theme “Art Meets Life,” and an exciting lineup of nationally recognized artists, special performances, youth artists, a celebrity art sale, Minnesota Creative Arts and Aging Expo, and much more. The Uptown Art Fair will take place August 5-7 at the intersection of Hennepin Avenue and Lake Street in Uptown, Mpls. Walking Tour - North Side Synagogues and Neighborhood: Part I - Aug 7 Because of the popularity of this tour, we have divided it into two segments; Part I highlights the history of some of the gathering places of North Minneapolis’ Jewish community in the early and mid-20th century. Sun. Aug. 7 10:30am-12:30pm. Mikro Kodesh Synagogue, 1000 Oliver Ave. N. $5 Naomi Tutu speaks in support of our African Sisters at St. Catherine’s University—August 13th A very special benefit event is happening at St. Catherine’s University on Aug. 13, 4-6:30pm. The public is
Bridges Out of Poverty: Strategies for Professionals and Communities – August 3 Learn a basic structure for understanding poverty, a description of the differences between generational and situational poverty, and the hidden norms that govern behavior and decision-making. Featuring aha! Process trainer Jodi Pfarr. 9:00 am - 4:30 pm at the International Institute of Minnesota, 1694 Como Ave, St. Paul. Cost is $45 per person and includes breakfast, lunch and copy of Dr. Ruby Payne’s book “Bridges Out of Poverty”. Please visit www.twincitiesrise.org or call 612-2795868 to register by July 20. 70 Years of Aviation Excellence: Then, Now, the FUTURE - Aug 3-7 The Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. (TAI) will hold its 40th Annual Convention August 3-7, 2011 at Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center National Harbor, MD. celebrate the 70th anniversary of the start of the Tuskegee Airmen Experience in 1941 and honor
invited to hear Naomi Tutu, daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, speak about empowering women in African countries. She will share her experience of helping women in Africa to find innovative ways to address their many challenges and create opportunities for sustainable change.
Coffee Break 28. Jane Austen classic 30. To-do list entry 35. SAT, e.g. 37. Be sick 39. With great enthusiasm 40. *”____ does it” 41. Indolence, abbr. 43. Hawkeye State 44. Tastes like lemon 46. Ancient Greece’s columned walkway 47. Actress Barrymore 48. Roundabout way 50. Oldsmobile founder 52. *This is well if it ends well 53. Point 55. ___ Angeles 57. *One’s not recommended for storing all eggs 60. *This can’t change it’s spots 64. Poet Alighieri 65. *”____ day now” 67. Ann Curry’s show 68. Eight performers 69. James Bond creator Fleming 70. Same as hoist 71. *On your shoulder 72. Bear’s hibernation place 73. Come in
8. Time in Italian 9. *”____ the benefits” 10. *”Up the ____” 11. One of Romanov’s dynasty 12. Poetic “ever” 15. *Back to this first one 20. Nimbus, pl. 22. ___ aye Captain! 24. Not a convertible 25. Lieu 26. V-sign 27. Balance sheet entry 29. *Whose best friend? 31. SWAT attack, e.g. 32. Greek bazaar 33. Handrail post 34. Southern accent, e.g. 36. Novice 38. *One who parts easily with money 42. Big Dipper shape 45. *A drop in this 49. Street in Paris 51. Comfort 54. Characterized by dignity and propriety 56. *A silver one denotes wealth 57. Composer Johann Sebastian 58. Unfavorable prefix S T A T E P O I N T 14. *”___ in wait” 59. One stair CROSSWORD 15. Taste, e.g. DOWN 60. Country singer16. Type of duck 1. Wine and cheese descriptor songwriter Loretta THEME: POPULAR 17. Freddy Krueger street 2. Wilderness preservationist 61. Miners’ passage SAYINGS 18. Arab country John ____ (1838-1914) 62. Tear down 19. *Back to this board 3. Verdi’s opera 63. One who dyes ACROSS 21. Prince alternative, Mark 4. Large amounts 64. John Henry “___” 1. Hoarders action Twain 5. * Do it while the iron is Holliday 6. *Curiosity’s victim 23. Downhill equipment hot 66. National Academy of 9. Relative speed of change 24. Boxer Oscar De La ____ 6. Horsefly Engineering 13. *”Remorse” trip 25. Masseuse’s office 7. Be ill
w e ek e h t of
“Wake up AFRIKA! let us work towards the one glorious end of a free, redeemed and mighty nation. LetAFRIKAbe a bright star among the constellation of nations.” — Marcus Garvey
Answers on page 111
Insight News • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Page 11
SPORTS Derek Jeter
hits no. 3000 By Brian Milne, founder of the BallHyped Sports News Service. Just call him DJ3K. New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter recorded his 3,000th hit in dramatic fashion Saturday, homering on a 3-2 pitch from Tampa Bay southpaw David Price in the third inning to become the 28th member of the 3,000-hit club. He is the first Yankee to tally 3,000 hits all in pinstripes. Jeter quickly rounded the bases and was mobbed by his teammates
at home plate, where a celebration ensued and fans, teammates and even the Rays players themselves cheered on “The Captain.” He also singled in the first to get to 2,999 and doubled for hit No. 3,001 in the fifth inning. His home run was his first at-bat with a shot at No. 3,00 Jeter, 37 years, 13 days old, is the fourth-youngest player to reach 3,000 hits. Pete Rose had been the fourthyoungest at 37 years, 21 days. Ty Cobb is the youngest (34 years, 244 days), while Hank Aaron (36 years, 101 days) and Robin Yount (36, 359 days) both amassed 3,000 hits before their 37th birthday.
Wikimedia Commons / Keith Allison
Schools From 9 Research has shown the CDF Freedom Schools program is making an impact. In June 2011, Harvard Family Research Project released a report called “YearRound Learning: Linking School, Afterschool, and Summer Learning to Support Student Success.” The CDF Freedom Schools program was one of 14 innovative national
programs highlighted that have “demonstrated success in providing quality learning opportunities for youth.” Late last year, a twoyear study of children enrolled at CDF Freedom Schools sites in Charlotte, N.C. and Bennettsville, S.C. reported that 90 percent of the children tested did not suffer summer learning loss, and 65 percent improved or showed gains in independent reading by the end of the program. An earlier three-year study conducted for the Kauffman Foundation reported
in 2008 that students enrolled in Kansas City’s summer Freedom Schools program demonstrated significant improvement in reading. In June, the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and CDF hosted A Strong Start: Positioning Young Black Boys For Educational Success, a symposium that brought together leading educators, researchers, and policy experts to confront the crisis facing the 3.5 million Black boys from birth to age nine and to highlight programs
that are making a difference in closing the achievement gap. One of the best practices shared during the symposium was the CDF Freedom Schools program. This summer, ETS is sponsoring a unique new Freedom School site in Newark, N.J. through a grant to Communities in Schools of New Jersey that is designed specifically for Black boys in grades three through eight. “The Great Expectations CDF Freedom Schools® program will make a difference in the lives of Black boys by surrounding them with a dynamic network of young Black male teachers, leaders, and mentors trained to engage them in a proven summer enrichment model,” explains Gwendolyn Corrin, president and state director of Communities in Schools of New Jersey. Dr. Jeanne MiddletonHairston, national director of the CDF Freedom Schools program, adds, “This CDF Freedom Schools
Media From 8 and spends “maybe like up to five hours listening to music on my iPod.” Melissa also spends about an hour daily on her computer but not necessarily for homework. The Northwestern study
site holds so much promise for young Black boys in Newark where 78 percent of Black fourth-graders cannot read at grade level. We have seen how our CDF Freedom Schools program can not only stop summer learning loss but also help children and youths improve their reading comprehension.” We know the CDF Freedom Schools program is about to make an important difference this summer for these boys and the children at each of the other sites across the country. It’s critical that many more children have the opportunity to experience the CDF Freedom Schools program in the future. We have a goal of at least doubling the program over the next five years, including opening more sites on Black college campuses to put college rather than prison into children’s vision and in youth detention facilities to support reentry and new beginnings. We are encouraging more of our college
servant leaders, especially Black and Latino males, to become teachers to fill as many of the expected one million teacher openings over the next four to six years as possible (only two percent of public school teachers are Black males). Bringing proven models like the CDF Freedom Schools program to scale is one solution to closing the achievement gap and finishing the unfinished business of the Civil Rights Movement for all children: a quality education for every
found this trend among youths of all races. White, Black and Hispanic juveniles spend on average of 16 minutes daily on computers for studies, with Asian-Americans using computers for that purpose a mere four minutes more. That the Northwestern report showed little difference in numbers of computers in homes
of white, Black and Latino children surprised Gutiérrez. Homes of each of these groups have about two computers, while Asian-American homes average three. “This runs counter to the digital divide talk of the late ’90s and early part of the millennium when they said that Black and Latino youth would be left behind technologically,” Gutiérrez says. Now that minority youths rely daily on new and traditional media, parents and educators should engage them by using these tools, says Lewis of the Council of the Great City Schools. “Educators need to be more familiar with this new media, so we can use this to our advantage, so young people can have an educational experience with it that’s meaningful.” Krystal and Melissa say teachers routinely assign them homework requiring Internet use and that taking shortcuts that way is all too easy. According to Melissa, students must be motivated to use technology to develop better thinking skills. “I think the Internet can easily give you answers if you use it just to look up answers for homework, but it doesn’t really help,” she says. “That’s the easy way out. If you actually want to learn, that’s not going to help at all.” Parents can help by monitoring how children use different forms of media and for what length of time, Lewis says. The worst thing parents can do is allow children to shut themselves in their rooms while using media because that offers no way to gauge whether critical thinking skills are being used, she says. Wartella agrees. She says media shouldn’t function as baby sitters but should entertain and inform youngsters, and connect them with parents. “Parents should start talking to young people about what media they’re using and why they’re using it and try to figure out what’s going on,” she says. “It’s the way we communicate with our children.”
Solutions From 10
Marian Wright Edelman is President of the Children’s Defense Fund whose Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities. For more information go to www. childrensdefense.org.
Page 12 • July 18 - July 24, 2011 • Insight News
Insight News for the week of July 18, 2011. Insight News is the community journal for news, business and the arts serving the Minneapolis /...