Page 1


Vol. XXX, No. 1327

Thursday, March 14, 2013

L.A. Watts Times




Thursday, March 14, 2013


Mar. 14 - 20



RIES ~ Wear your smile like it was your favorite fashion accessory this week. You’re sure to feel better when you see how many times your smile is returned to you this week. Do what makes you happy this week. Soul Affirmation: The slowness of my week gives me time to refresh my energy. AURUS ~ You may feel restless this week because you have an excess of mental energy. You can channel that into productivity by applying your fine mind to tasks that you have been putting off for a while. You’ll feel great at the end of the week. Soul Affirmation: I let myself adapt to the flow of life around me. EMINI ~ You wake up feeling as good as you want to feel! Affirm your right to a healthy, happy, joy-filled life and that’s what you’ll find that you have this week! Lucky! Treat yourself to a lottery ticket! Soul Affirmation: I master life by mastering myself. ANCER ~ Watch for petty arguments at your workplace this week. Sail past any grumbling coworkers with a smile and think about how your soul vibration radiates your happiness. You’ll look and feel very attractive to positive vibrations. Soul Affirmation: I send words like music to the ears of those around me. EO ~ A compromise may be in order; luckily, it’s easy for you to be flexible. That special other person will be very appreciative of your ability to go with the flow when necessary. You are truly one-ofa-kind! Soul Affirmation: I will actually write a love letter to the universe this week. IRGO ~ Peace is flowing all around you this week. Soak up the harmony as if it were sunshine and smile, smile, smile. You’ll be in sync with partners, family, friends, and even co-workers. Enjoy! Soul Affirmation: I find a source of strength in someone I love.

Inside This Edition

Amber’s Story: A former SCF volunteer’s fight with cancer

IBRA ~ Your multi-tasking abilities will kick into high gear this week. While it’s sometimes difficult for you to know how to handle a particular situation, this week you’ll know the perfect answer. Everything good is unfolding! Soul Affirmation: Facing down challenges makes me feel good about myself. CORPIO ~ Sociable, lovable you! You can have a wonderful week this week if you hook up with like-minded friends. You’ll find that many are on your wavelength this week. Appreciate your ability to bring people together. Soul Affirmation: Cheerfully handling what comes at me is the test of who I am. AGITTARIUS ~ Your intuition is showing, and you may surprise yourself as much as you surprise another by making a sudden intuitive leap and saying what you feel. You may feel as if you can read a certain someone’s mind. Use your gift for good. Soul Affirmation: I face each day with a smile and the day smiles back at me. APRICORN ~ Happiness is where you find it this week. How hard are you looking? It’s easy for you to pull your thoughts away from any negative emotions and flow with your inner harmony. Let yourself be very happy this week. Soul Affirmation: Emptiness inside creates the space that I can fill with love. QUARIUS ~ Someone close to you may be acting up or acting out. Try to respond with patience and love. If that seems impossible, turn it over to your higher power and get on with your own joyful life. Soul Affirmation: I go along to get along. ISCES ~ You look as lovely as can be this week, as you breeze through the week like a butterfly. All communications are effective, and even more to your liking, they are fun! Enjoy some verbal soul vibrations with good friends later in the week. Soul Affirmation: I let my friendships guide my way.











L.A. Watts Times WEEKENDER Published Weekly – Updates 3800 S. Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90008 Administration – Sales – Graphics – Editorial 323.299.3800 - office 323.291.6804 - fax


7 8 12

The man in the mirror: How a former incarcerated man’s life was saved through family and business BY: NICOLE WILLIAMS LAWT CONTRIBUTING WRITER


EMAIL: Circulation ..................................................................................30,000 The opinions expressed by contributing writers are not necessarily those of the L.A. Watts Times. The L.A. Watts Times is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs, CDs or tapes. CIRCULATION AUDITED BY CIRCULATION VERIFICATION COUNCIL

This weekend, on Saturday, March 16 Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation (SCF) will host a blood drive in partnership with Children’s Hospital LA. It will be held at the Los Angeles Sentinel office from 10am2pm. Not only does Sabriya’s Castle of Fun encourage blood donation, it also encourages overall participation with its foundation, a non-profit organization that has been offering “Fun Therapy” and supportive services to children with leukemia, sickle cell disease and other chronic blood diseases since 1992. Sabriya’s Castle of Fun was named after the daughter of Danny J. Amber N. Griffin Sawyers at her 16th Bakewell Sr, Sabriya Bakewell, who birthday party, she was diagnosed tragically passed away after being with cancer three years prior. diagnosed with leukemia. In a way to live out her legacy, Sabriya’s Castle of Foundation?’ Two weeks after that iniFun Foundation was created and many tial meeting, got a life-changing phone people have volunteered to bring happi- call about Amber Thursday night,” she said. ness and joy to children with cancer. Amber N. Griffin Sawyers was One of those volunteers was Rayva Harrell. She says that working with the Rayva’s 13 year-old niece and also an foundation was a pleasure because she SCF volunteer, who she primarily took loved working with children. After get- care of along with her parents. After a ting on the Board of Advisors, she 3-month period of Amber being sick would later find out that an unfortunate with flu-like symptoms, the family event would make her purpose within finally sought further medical opinions. On March 28, 1995, she was diagnosed the foundation clear. “I had been on the board for one with Rhabdomyosarcoma, a children’s board meeting when I thought ‘what is cancer made of cells that normally my place in Sabriya’s Castle of Fun See AMBER’S STORY, page 4

B.D. Burgers serves more than food

Beverly Cook – Publisher, Managing Editor 1976 – 1993 Charles Cook – Publisher 1976 – 1998 Melanie Polk – Publisher 1998 – 2010 Danny J. Bakewell, Sr. ............Executive Publisher & Executive Editor Brenda Marsh Mitchell ..................................Executive Vice President Tracey Mitchell ......................................................................Controller Brandon I. Brooks ..................................................Co-Managing Editor Yussuf J. Simmonds ..............................................Co-Managing Editor Jennifer Bihm................................................................Assistant Editor Bernard Lloyd ....................................................Director of Advertising Benjamin Samuels ....................................................Graphic Designer Kim McGill ............................................................Production Designer

Sabriya’ s Castle of Fun Blood Drive


March 18, 1933 Unita Blackwell is born this day in Lula, Mississippi. She became the first Black woman mayor elected in Mississippi. March 20, 1915 Gospel great Rosetta Tharpe, born Rosetta Nubin, on this day in Cotton Plant, AR. Featured in LIFE magazine, Ms. Tharpe received a contract with Decca Records and was propelled into national promenince when she performed “Rock Me” with Cab Callawoy and the Cotton Club Revue.

This is not Owner of BD Burgers, Brian Sawyers sits in BD your typical rags Burger’s business car, letting the public know about to riches story. their delivery service. B.D. Burgers is located at 10203 Meet the story’s South Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90002. main character: Brian Sawyers. He is the owner of BD drug-related charges and sentenced to Burgers located on Central Ave in Los life in prison. Fortunately, he only Angeles, but before becoming a busi- served a 12 year-8 month sentence ness owner, he has journeyed through after getting to see a judge again. He a lot of experiences that have made was living a controversial lifestyle. him a better person. This “new man” is While in prison, he experienced undeone who Brian says can be attributed sirable circumstances and he came to a to by looking at “the man in the mir- realization that he didn’t want to work for anyone when he got released. ror”. While in prison, Brian received Just like it takes seasoning to perfect a burger, the same metaphor the worst news any father could get. applied to Brian's life, as he did not His only daughter at the time, Amber, always live the best life. His life was was diagnosed with a rare children’s seasoned by ups and downs; ups being disease Rhabdomyosarcoma after with the birth of his daughter Amber being sick for a period of three N. Griffin Sawyers, downs with being months. See B.D. BURGERS, page 10 incarcerated. Brian was arrested for

Thursday, March 14, 2013


DEAR FRIENDS, FAMILY AND SUPPORTERS OF THE BLACK COMMUNITY: Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation, The Los Angeles Sentinel and The Bakewell Family Foundation are hosting a blood drive at the LA Sentinel offices on Saturday, March 16th from 10am-2pm (see below). This is an opportunity for us all to show our good will and support towards children of color suffering from leukemia, sickle cell disease and other blood disorders. Blood donations from African Americans are at a critical low, and Black Children struggling with the disease of sickle cell anemia and other blood related disorders need our donations in the worst way. Most people know of the three blood types A, B & O, but what you may or may not know is that within these blood types are specific antigens which are specific to people of African and non-African descent. Because of this fact, patients of African descent needing blood to assist in their treatment have a greater chance of success when receiving blood from a donor of African descent. That is why I am calling on every God Fearing, Law Abiding and Community Conscious and Caring Citizen of our Community to please join me as we embark on this courageous and painless mission of helping our children. Often, we as a group or as individuals are asked to give our support through financial means; this request is not of that nature. This is a request of the heart (literally); this is a gift of your time and a little bit of you in order to save the life of another. I need your support. I am asking each of you individually to commit to participating in this endeavor and I am hoping that individually and collectively that you, your friends and your family will commit to helping recruit over 200 people (men or women, of all colors and nationalities) to come out on Saturday, March 16, 2013 and donate blood. There is a serious shortage of blood for children of color and if we all come together we can all do our part to combat this dreadful disease. Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation was named in honor of my youngest sister Sabriya Bakewell who passed away of leukemia at the age of 17. March 13th would have been Sabriya’s 37th Birthday. This blood drive is in honor of her and stands as a celebration of Sabriya’s life. Please help me by committing to come out on March 16, 2013 and give blood in order to help save a life. This will be a fun filled day for all, with hourly raffles, music, free food and prizes for all ages. If you have any ideas for other organizations or individuals who you believe would like to participate in this worthwhile endeavor please, don’t hesitate to let me know. Thank you in advance for your support and I look forward to seeing you on March 16th. God Bless You All | Danny J. Bakewell, Jr.

DONOR REQUIREMENTS - Must be at least 17 years of age - Must provide valid photo ID

- Must weigh more than 110 pounds - Should be well hydrated

(drivers’ license preferred) KAPPA ALPHA PSI


SATURDAY MARCH 16 10AM-2PM LOS ANGELES SENTINEL 3800 S. Crenshaw Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90008

Every month, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles needs to collect 1,000 units of blood products to meet the needs of its patients. Please join us at our upcoming blood drive and help with this very important cause. Each donation can help two children in need, and you can double your efforts by bringing a friend!


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Director Gloria Gray makes history First African-American woman to chair Metropolitan Water District Board Meeting West Basin Municipal Water District Director Gloria Gray chaired the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Board Meeting on Tuesday, February 12. The Metropolitan Board opened the meeting in recognition of Black History Month. Gray was the first African-American woman to hold the gavel in Metropolitan’s history. She joined the Metropolitan Board of Directors as West Basin’s representative in April of 2009 and is currently the Vice Chair of the 37-member Board of Directors. “As a Board Member for Metropolitan, I am honored to represent West Basin and its communities as we provide reliable, high-quality water to one million residents in 17 cities in coastal Los Angeles,” Gray said. “I am proud to be the first African-American woman to chair a Metropolitan Board meeting, especially during the month of February when we remember and recognize so many important AfricanAmerican pioneers. Today is a special day I will never forget,” she noted. Gray has served on the West Basin Board since 2006 and represents the Division II cities of Inglewood, South

Ladera Heights, a portion of Lennox and Athens, Howard and Ross-Sexton. She also serves as a council member on the Delta Stewardship Council which strives to provide a more reliable water supply for California and protect, restore, and enhance the Delta ecosystem. Gray was appointed in 2010 by Speaker of the Assembly Karen Bass and was the first African-American to serve on the council. Gray has a long history of public service including a 36-year career with the Los Angeles County Department of Health and Human Services and serving on several Inglewood Unified School District Boards and commissions. She was also appointed by Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas to serve on the Water Quality Community Task Force, part of the county’s “Clean Water, Clean Beaches” initiative to address pollution in local waterways. In 2011, she received the “Women in Action Award” from the Los Angeles

AMBER’S STORY Continued from page 2 develop into skeletal muscles according to the American Cancer Society. Doctors gave her an estimated 60 days to live; they never imagined she would live much longer. Amber would then live for four more years, defeating the odds. Rayva explained specific details of her experience with Amber. “For four years I saw her happy, saw her sick, no hair, never wore a wig ever. She was a sick girl, but she was proud,” Rayva said. “She was so pretty, she looked like me,” added Amber’s father, Brian Sawyers with an enduring smile on his face.

business card bulletin board


Curren Price wins L.A. County Democratic Party endorsement LAWT NEWS SERVICE

Gloria Gray African-American Women’s Public Policy Institute for her positive representation as a role model for young women. Last year, she received the honorable “Harriet Wieder” award for leadership in water from the Southern California Water Committee and special recognition from the Friends of the Ballona Wetlands for leadership on current and future water issues. Rayva says that witnessing her niece go in and out of the hospital over those few years was heartbreaking because there was nothing she could do. “Amber needed blood all the time. And I think that’s when I found out that I couldn’t give blood because my blood was too low,” Rayva said. This is why Sabriya’s Castle of Fun makes it a priority to get people to donate blood because of the need and more specifically the need for Black blood donors. Certain blood types carry specific antigens that are only found in people of African descent or non-African descent. Because of low Black blood donors, the need is specifically high for Black children struggling with certain blood-related disorders. See AMBER’S STORY, page 5



Jacquelyn Brown Social Security Disability Appeals Representative


(323) 756-3755

Further cementing the strong base of support he has attracted in the 9th District race for Los Angeles City Council, Sen. Curren Price on Tuesday night won the official endorsement of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party. “As a lifelong Democrat, it is gratifying to have the support of the party in a campaign that is so important to the future of the 9th District,” said Price. “As Democrats, we are bound by our shared values, and a commitment to diversity and inclusion that makes our party so strong. As this campaign moves forward, we know that voters from every community are excited by the promise of leadership, experience and integrity in their next council member, and the Democratic Party will play an important role in helping us take that message to every corner of the 9th District.” Price earned the most votes in a seven-candidate field in the March Curren Price 5 primary election. Voters in the 9th District will head to the polls for a May 21 runoff to decide who will next represent them at City Hall. Among elected leaders, Sen. Price’s City Council candidacy is also endorsed by Gov. Jerry Brown; Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom; L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas; Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa; former State Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez; State Senator and former L.A. City Council president Alex Padilla; Congressman and former L.A. City Councilman Tony Cardenas; Congresswoman Karen Bass; Congresswoman Gloria Negrete McLeod; L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson Jr.; and State Sen. Kevin de Leon. Sen. Price has also won endorsements from a number of labor and community groups, including Stonewall Democrats; the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO; United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA); Unite Here; United Farm Workers; and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Justice Dept. watchdog: problems in voting section BY PETE YOST | ASSOCIATED PRESS The Justice Department’s watchdog has concluded that deep ideological polarization in the department’s voting rights section in both the Bush and Obama administrations fueled disputes that in some instances harmed the office’s proper functioning. The department’s inspector general said that on some occasions the disputes involved harassment of employees and managers. Despite the polarization, the IG said its review did not substantiate claims of political or racial bias in decision-making. The voting section reviews cases where the redrawing of district lines can change the composition of congressional delegations. It also reviews voter ID laws that can make it easier or more difficult to cast ballots in elections. “We found that people on different sides of internal disputes about particular cases in the voting section

have been quick to suspect those on the other side of partisan motivations, heightening the sense of polarization,” said the IG’s report. “The cycles of actions and reactions that we found resulted from this mistrust, were, in many instances, incompatible with the proper functioning of a component of the department.” The IG’s report released Tuesday stemmed from the handling of a 2008 case in which the Justice Department sued two members of the New Black Panther Party, the NBPB’s national chairman and the group itself. After the change in administrations, the Justice Department asked the court to dismiss the suit against three of the four defendants. “The decision to dismiss three of the four defendants and to seek more narrowly tailored injunctive relief against the fourth was based on a good faith assessment of the law and facts of the case and had a reasonable basis,” concluded the report by Inspector General Michael Horowitz.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


Business Leader Dorothy Fire Chief Brian L. R. Leavell installed as Cummings is LAFD’s new chairperson of transformational leader National Black Chamber of Commerce BY KENNETH MILLER CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Photo courtesy of NNPA

INTERNATIONALLY KNOWN ACTIVIST Dick Gregory (left) attended the National Black Chamber of Commerce’s (NBCC) “Changing of the Chairs” luncheon on Monday, March 4. Gregory poses with Dorothy R. Leavell (center), editor and publisher of the Crusader Newspaper Group (Chicago, IL and Gary, IN), who was named incoming chairperson of the NBCC and Harry Alford, president and CEO of the NBCC. LAWT NEWS SERVICE National Black Chamber of Commerce President Harry Alford announced recently, that renowned publisher and businesswoman Dorothy R. Leavell has been installed as the new chairperson of the nation’s leading minority business organization. She will preside over the group’s 18-member board of directors and help the trade organization expand its mission of strengthening minorityowned businesses, job creation and increase trade and economic opportunities in the U.S. and abroad. “Dorothy has extensive expertise in the areas of marketing, economic development and job creation having been at the helm of a successful business for more than four decades” said Alford. “Combined with her passion for African American advancement and her commitment to young people, I look forward to working with her as our new chair. This is an exciting time in the Chamber’s history.” Leavell is publisher and chief executive officer of the Crusader Newspaper Group, which has published weekly newspapers in Chicago and Gary, Indiana, since 1940 and 1961, respectively. Previously she served as the first female chairperson

AMBER’S STORY Continued from page 4 If you are a first-time donor, do not be afraid. After the initial pinch of the needle, nothing compares to the feeling of helping those in need and Children’s Hospital LA takes good care to make your experience comfortable. Amber was one of those who needed blood frequently. She volunteered with Sabriya’s Castle of Fun not only building toy castles for sick children, but also raising thousands of dollars for the foundation before even being diagnosed with cancer. Who would’ve thought that a Sabriya’s Castle of Fun volunteer who

of Amalgamated Publishers, a company that sells national advertising for more than 200 African American papers across the country. For more than two decades, she served in a variety of executive positions with the powerful National Newspaper Publishers Association, a black newspaper trade organization, including chairman, treasurer and chairperson of the NNPA Foundation. The married mother of two and grandmother of three is the cofounder of Heroes in the Hood, a program that celebrates extraordinary accomplishments of young people who have gone unrecognized in the mainstream media. The award-winning civic leader has also led trade missions to Africa and the Caribbean. “I very much look forward to working with the president and board of directors, staff and volunteers on conducting the business of the Chamber – from our annual award conference, regional gatherings, and our year-round mission of expanding economic opportunity to our members,” said Leavell. “Equally important, I will continue to champion our cause of wealth creation by forging international business opportunities for African Americans and emerging entrepreneurs in the rest of the African Diaspora.” served other sick children would develop a rare form of cancer? After passing away on January 22, 1999, six months before graduating from Crenshaw High School, her family completely transformed their lives to living in love and helping out the community. You can do the same! If you are 17 or older, then you can donate! Along with opportunities to donate blood, there will also be celebrity artists like R&B singer Leland and food provided by B.D. Burgers owned by Brian Sawyers, Amber’s father. It is a community event that Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation hopes to make a huge difference in the lives of those in need.

It was the beginning of the month of March, following Black History Month when the history of Blacks is most celebrated. That fact was not lost on Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) Chief Brian L. Cummings, the third Black fire chief in the history of the department, when he sat down with the Sentinel. While the past three consecutive Black LAFD fire chiefs are a sure symbol of progress in one of the nation’s largest cities, the weight of the ugly racial injustices in a department that has been marred by fiscal cuts and scandal rest squarely on the shoulders of a man who is a third generational firefighter and one who embraces such challenges. Prior to that, there have been more than a few Black milestones in firefighter history, the first woman firefighter, Molly Williams in New York City in 1817, the first Chief, Patrick H. Raymond, was hired in 1871 in Cambridge, MA, and the legacy of Black firefighters was boosted again in 1876 when Trevor K. Hansford was hired as chief in the birth place of the Klux Klux Klan in Indianapolis. That was quite some time ago, and although a museum documenting Black firefighters was opened in 1997 on Central Ave. in Los Angeles, a bevy of racially charged incidences have tainted the LAFD in a way that perhaps will take even more than a Black chief or time to heal. Chief Cummings follows fellow Black chiefs Douglas Barry and Millage Peaks who were both appointed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to lead the department. The department has come a long way from its brutal past tainted by segregation in the early 1950 and being central elements in both the Watts and Rodney King riots in 1965, and1992 respectively. The allegations of whites feeding dog food to a fellow Black firefighter a few years ago and the diminishing number of Blacks in the department are also fresh. However daunting the circumstances and fiscal challenges that face the department, current Chief Cummings is not just qualified, but also motivated to innovatively lead. “With every great opportunity comes a great challenge,” Cummings told the Sentinel. Many of the challenges facing the department probably will not become clear until voters settle upon whom the next mayor of the city will be. Nonetheless, the 31-year veteran who is the son of late retired LAFD Engineer, Lou Cummings, is willing and proven. Since joining the department in 1980, he has been promoted to the rank of engineer in 1988, Captain I in 1993 and Captain II in 2000.

In 2003, he took command of the LAFD’s Battalion 13, managing five stations in South Los Angeles and it was there he built and sustained strong relationships with various community organizations, clubs and churches, as See LAFD, page 12

Metro Briefs The Solution To High Gas Prices? Go Metro. With gas prices skyrocketing, there’s never been a better time to Go Metro. You can save more than $10,000 a year by taking public transit instead of driving. And with a Metro Day Pass, you can ride all day for just $5. Find out how easy it can be; check the “Getting Started” section at

Go Metro To Dodger Stadium Take advantage of a winning combination to reach Dodger Stadium this season. Just Go Metro to Union Station and connect with the Dodger Stadium Express. You’ll avoid tra;c and help reduce air pollution; and your same day Dodger ticket is good for the fare! The Dodger Stadium Express is made possible by Clean Transportation Funding from MSRC. For more information, visit

ExpressLanes Now Open On I-10 Metro ExpressLanes now save you time in tra;c on the I-10 freeway, joining those already open on the I-110. The lanes are toll-free for carpools, vanpools and motorcycles. Solo drivers can use ExpressLanes by paying a toll. All ® vehicles need a FasTrak account and transponder to use the lanes. To get yours, visit

Metro Installs EV Charge Stations

Metro is the >rst transit agency in the nation to introduce electric vehicle (EV) charge stations at rail station parking lots. Five Metro Rail stations have them: Union Station, Sierra Madre Villa, Universal City/Studio City, El Segundo, and Willow. Riders with EVs can charge their cars while using the Metro system. More at

All LA Tra;c Signals Now In Sync All 4,398 tra;c signals in the City of LA are now synchronized on the Automated Tra;c Surveillance & Control system, resulting in a 16 percent increase in travel speed and a 12 percent reduction in travel time. Metro contributed some $117 million in funding to the project over the years.

If you’d like to know more, visit

13-1361ps_gen-ce-13-010 ©2013 lacmta

[This is the first of a four part series examining the Los Angeles Fire Department, its leadership, its hiring policies, its fiscal impact and the state of African Americans in the department.]

Fire Chief Brian L. Cummings


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Michelle Obama urges Law gives tribes CEOs to hire new authority more veterans over non-Indians First Lady Michelle Obama speaks to the quarterly meeting of member Chief Executive Officers of the Business Roundtable in Washington, Wednesday, March 13, 2013.

percent. She said that figure means that about 200,000 veterans don’t have jobs, not including their spouses and those who will return home after the U.S. ends its combat mission in Afghanistan. UnemployAP Photo/Susan Walsh ment nationwide fell two-tenths of a point last month BY DARLENE SUPERVILLE to 7.7 percent, its lowest level in more ASSOCIATED PRESS than four years. Addressing a meeting of the Michelle Obama challenged America’s top CEOs on Wednesday to Business Roundtable, which repre“think outside the box” and hire more sents chief executive officers of the 200 largest U.S. corporations, Mrs. veterans. The first lady said that, while Obama said the “Joining Forces” camdeclines in overall unemployment are paign she launched two years ago with encouraging, joblessness among the Jill Biden, the vice president's wife, to 9/11 generation of veterans — those rally the country around its military who served in the wars in Iraq and members, has led businesses to hire or Afghanistan — is nearly two points train more than 125,000 veterans and higher than the national average, at 9.4 military spouses. The private sector

also has pledged to hire or train 250,000 more veterans by the end of 2014. But, the first lady said, “we’ve still got a lot more work to do.” “Whether you’re in finance or technology or the food industry, every single one of you can ask yourselves that same question: ‘What more can we do?’” she said. “So today, I want to challenge all the members of the Business Roundtable to answer that question for your business.” “Think outside the box, take real risks and work together to make big, bold commitments to hire our veterans and military spouses and help them reach their full potential within your companies. Show them that your business is there for them for the long haul,” the first lady said. In challenging the CEOs, Mrs. Obama highlighted Wal-Mart’s pledge this year to hire more than 100,000 veterans in the next five years as part of its plan to help jumpstart the economy. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is the world’s largest retailer and biggest See HIRE VETS, page 7

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

President Barack Obama, joined by Vice President Joe Biden, members of women’s organizations, law enforcement officials, tribal leaders, survivors, advocates and members of Congress, flashes a thumbs-up after signing the Violence Against Women Act, Thursday, March 7, 2013, at the Interior Department in Washington. BY FELICIA FONSECA | ASSOCIATED PRESS American Indian tribes have tried everything from banishment to charging criminal acts as civil offenses to deal with non-Indians who commit crimes on reservations. Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1978 that tribal courts lack criminal jurisdiction over non-Indians, tribes have had to get creative in trying to hold that population accountable. They acknowledge, though, that those approaches aren’t much of a deterrent, and say most crimes committed by nonIndians on tribal land go unpunished. Tribal leaders are hoping that will change, at least in part, with a federal bill signed into law Thursday March 7. The measure gives tribes the authority to prosecute non-Indians for a set of crimes limited to domestic violence and violations of protecting orders. Implementation of the Violence Against Women Act will take time as tribes amend their legal codes and ensure defendants receive the same rights offered in state and federal courts. But proponents say it’s a huge step forward in the face of high rates of domestic violence with no prosecution. “For a tribal nation, it’s just absurd that (authority) doesn’t exist,” said Sheri Freemont, director of the Family Advocacy Center on the Salt River Pima Maricopa reservation inArizona. “People choose to either work, live or play in Indian Country. I think they should be subject to Indian Country rules.” Native American women suffer incidents of domestic violence at rates more than double national averages. But more than half of cases involving non-Indians go unprosecuted because Indian courts have lacked jurisdiction and because federal prosecutors often have too few resources to try cases on isolated reservations. Still, the tribal courts provision was a major point of contention in

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

Deborah Parker, vice chairwoman of the Tulalip Tribes of Washington State gestures before President Barack Obama before he signed the Violence Against Women Act, Thursday, March 7, 2013, at the Interior Department in Washington. Congress, with some Republicans arguing that subjecting non-Indians to Indian courts was unconstitutional. Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., said after its passage that the bill denies basic protections and will be tied up in court challenges for years. “It violates constitutional rights of individuals and would, for the first time ever, proclaim Indian tribes’ ‘inherent’ authority to exercise criminal jurisdiction over non-Indian citizens,” Hastings said in a statement. “The Supreme Court has ruled multiple times that tribes do not have this authority.” The U.S. Department of Justice met with tribal leaders last Wednesday to discuss implementing the provisions, which will take effect two years after the law is enacted. A pilot project would allow any tribe that believes it has met the requirements to request an earlier start date. To ease concerns that the new See TRIBAL LAW, page 15

Thursday, March 14, 2013


Where is Terry Lyn Monnette? From Long Beach to New Orleans the search for the missing teacher continues


BY KENNETH MILLER CONTRIBUTING WRITER The phone line to Parlays Bar in New Orleans was busy in the early morning on Tuesday March 12. When it was clean no one answered and the voice mail was full. The city of New Orleans Police flooded local television stations with emails pleading for the public’s assistance in locating a beautiful 26-year old school teacher who grew-up and attended high school in Long Beach and college in San Bernardino. Public vigils were held in two bicoastal cities where friends and family lit candles, held hands, cried and prayed for Terry Lyn Monnette who was reported missing on Saturday March 2 after a night of drinking in the Lakeview community near New Orleans. Monnette’s mother advised police in New Orleans “That at approximately 3:30 A.M., Monnette had gone to the bar with a few acquaintances and was last seen sleeping in her 2012 Honda Accord in the rear parking lot,” according to a New Orleans police report acquired by the Sentinel. “Monnette allegedly told her acquaintances that she was going to sleep in her car before driving home due to having consumed alcoholic beverages,” the statement read. It continued; “Monnette is described as an African-American female, approximately 5’8” tall, weighing 180 pounds and has a light complexion with long brown hair. She was last seen wearing a pink and yellow sweater with blue jeans. Monnette has a tattoo on her left leg.” The Sentinel managed to speak with Garry G. Flot who is the Public Information Officer for New Orleans Police late March 12. When asked what the crime rate was in Lakeview, Flot said he “couldn’t answer that.” Lakeview has a population of 9,871, which consists of primarily white residents with houses valued in the range of $468,088. The bar where

Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick convicted of corruption charges

Terry Lyn Monnette Monnette was last seen is a place where locals indulge in crawfish and drink specials that are offered as inexpensive as $2. Parlay's has been a favorite Lakeview neighborhood bar for over 25 years and continues the party generation after generation. Parlay's is the longest bar in Orleans parish, measuring at 60 feet in length, according to its website. The tavern has been described by others as being rowdy with lots of college students. “This is so very sad, I feel so bad for her family, I am hoping everyday that she be found safe and brought back to her family. This story needs to be on CNN and Nancy grace, because this is too weird, there needs to be more investigations about who she associated with and the story needs to be on the air more, it’s a shame to say this, but if she was white her story would be on air more,” wrote an anonymous blogger. Such suspicions while police are still investigations are growing. The bar is frequented mostly by whites where lakes and large outdoor recreational centers are nearby. No one has come forth to put a reward-up for the missing woman and aside from regions where Monnette lived and worked there doesn’t appear to be much concern of her whereabouts. Another woman who says that she is a friend of Monnette added to the suspense. “My sister and Terrr Lyn are VERY CLOSE. In fact they consider themselves to be best friends,” said Gaynell Diamond Robinson-Watkins See MONNETTE, page 10

Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was convicted Monday of corruption charges, ensuring a return to prison for a man once among the nation's youngest big-city leaders. Jurors convicted Kilpatrick of a raft of crimes, including a racketeering conspiracy charge. He was portrayed during a five-month trial as an unscrupulous politician who took bribes, rigged contracts and lived far beyond his means while in office until fall 2008. Prosecutors said Kilpatrick ran a "private profit machine" out of Detroit's City Hall. The government presented evidence to show he got a share of the spoils after ensuring that Bobby Ferguson's excavating company was awarded millions in work from the water department. Business owners said they were forced to hire Ferguson as a subcontractor or risk losing city contracts. Separately, fundraiser Emma Bell said she gave Kilpatrick more than $200,000 as his personal cut of political donations, pulling cash from her bra during private meetings. A highranking aide, Derrick Miller, told jurors that he often was the middleman, passing bribes from others. Internal Revenue Service agents said Kilpatrick spent $840,000 beyond his mayoral salary. Ferguson, Kilpatrick's pal, was also convicted of a racketeering conspiracy charge. The jury could not reach a verdict on the same charge for Kilpatrick's father, Bernard Kilpatrick, but convicted him of submitting a false tax return. Kwame Kilpatrick, who now lives near Dallas, declined to testify. He has long denied any wrongdoing, and defense attorney James Thomas told jurors that his client often was showered with cash gifts from city workers and political supporters during holidays and birthdays. The government said Kilpatrick abused the Civic Fund, a nonprofit fund he created to help distressed Detroit residents. There was evidence

Former Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick

AP Photo

that it was used for yoga lessons, camps for his kids, golf clubs and travel. Kilpatrick, 42, was elected in 2001 at age 31. He resigned in 2008 and pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice in a different scandal involving sexually explicit text messages and an extramarital affair with his chief-ofstaff.

The Democrat spent 14 months in prison for violating probation in that case after a judge said he failed to report assets that could be put toward his $1 million restitution to Detroit. Voters booted his mother, Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, from Congress in 2010, partly because of a negative perception of her due to her son's troubles.

Emergencies Emergencies e Do Do H Happen appen

HIRE VETS Continued from page 6

Photo by Michael DeMocker, | The Times-Picayune

OUR LOVED ONE: Missing teacher Terry Lyn Monnette’s sister Candice Enclade (L) and her mother Toni Enclade comfort one another outside Parlay's in Lakeview. Photographed on Friday, March 8, 2013.

private employer in the U.S. with 1.4 million workers. Wal-Mart also has made an openended commitment to hire any honorably discharged veteran who is still looking for a job a year after they leave the military and wants to work for the retailer. Separately, UPS said Wednesday that it will hire more than 25,000 veterans over the next five years and commit more than 25,000 employee volunteer hours to helping veterans and the organizations that serve them. In her remarks, Mrs. Obama disclosed that vice presidents and human resource professionals from Business Roundtable companies met with White House officials last week to talk about how to find people with the particular skills needed at their businesses.

Know Kno w yyour o neighbors our neighbors. s. r. Plan together together. Bee ready read y. ready. Wind Storms, fires, earthquakes or flood floods ds can strike aatt an anytime. ytime. These emergenciess do ha happen, ppen, and it’s it’s important to be ready. ready. That That means m knowing knowing your neighbors, making a specific specific plan and working together to be prepared. prepared. Take Taake the first step today. today. Visit This project was was supported bbyy Grant/Cooperative Grant/Cooperative Ag Agreement reement Number 2U90TP917012-11 from the Centers for Disease Control and Pr Prevention evention (CDC). Its contents are are solely the responsibility responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily rrepresent epresent the official views of the CDC. CDC.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

L.A. Watts Times WEEKENDER


Voting Rights Act History and Future is Front and Center The Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., was designated as a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior on Mar. 11, 2013, acknowledging its symbolism which “… contributed to the introduction and passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, considered to be the single most effective piece of civil rights legislation ever passed by the US Congress.” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis made the announcement as the U.S. Supreme Court continues its deliberations in the case of Shelby [County, Alabama] v. [Eric] Holder, where a county in Alabama wants the court to rule that Section 5 of the Act is unnecessary and therefore, obsolete. Section 5 of the Act requires that, prior to any elections, certain states, counties, parishes, etc., must submit proposed changes to their voting procedures to the U.S. Department of Justice or the Federal District Court in Washington, DC. Changing the locations of polling places or the hours that the polls will be open are two examples of the kinds of proposed changes that the counties and other jurisdictions would have to submit to the Justice Department or the Court. Known as “preclearance,” the procedure is to insure that the proposed changes will not violate the constitutional rights of any group of people to participate in free and fair elections. At the time the Act was signed into law, preclearance focused on the states of Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Virginia, and 40 counties in North Carolina. Later, in 1975, the states of Texas, Arizona, and Alaska were added to protect persons who were considered members of “minority language groups.” The historic landmark designation of the Pettus Bridge also occurred just days after the culmination of activities marking the 48th Anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” the incident that occurred at the bridge that led President Lyndon Johnson to sign the Voting Rights Act of 1965 into law in August of that year. During the height of organizing around African American access to the ballot in Alabama, Alabama State Troopers attacked a peaceful civil rights demonstration on the evening of Feb. 18, 1965, that was being held in Marion in the southwestern portion of

the state. The troopers began beating and chasing the attendees when one young man named Jimmie Lee Jackson attempted to shield his mother and grandfather from the swings of a state trooper’s baton. Jackson was shot at point blank range by another trooper and died eight days later. Activists, including workers in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, were galvanized to confront the state over Jackson’s murder and the numerous legal and extra legal attempts to keep Black people from voting. A decision was made to march from Selma, a few miles South of Marion, to the state capitol in Montgomery. In order to get to Montgomery, marchers would have to cross the Edmund Pettis Bridge. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was initially in favor of the march but at the last moment, declined to endorse it, opting to wait for signs from Johnson that the federal government would do something to acknowledge and safeguard the voting rights of African Americans. The march was held anyway, on Mar. 7, 1965, with dozens of activists walking across the bridge that would take them over the Alabama River on their way to Montgomery. At the foot of the bridge leading into Montgomery, state troopers blocked the marchers, ordering them to turn around and return to Selma. Though unarmed and peaceful, the marchers refused to retreat. The order was given to disperse the crowd and troopers, some on horseback, began beating the marchers with batons and chasing them back across the bridge into Selma. Future United States Congressman John Lewis was among the many marchers attacked that day suffering a severe head wound. And thus “Bloody Sunday,” as Mar. 7 came to be known, graphically visualized the lengths that white racism would go to keep African Americans

By Thandisizwe Chimurenga LAWT Contributing Writer

from seeking to vote in the State of Alabama. The Selma-to-Montgomery March is commemorated every year in Alabama by activists who once again cross the Edmund Pettis Bridge and head towards the state capitol. In light of the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the case of Shelby v. Holder, civil rights attorney and co-founder of the annual commemoration Rose Sanders stated that this year’s activities were more than a commemoration; they were a protest march against the efforts of Alabama to repeal the Voting Rights Act. “The act is under attack,” said Sanders. According to Sanders hundreds of marchers from eight of the states covered in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 participated as the march retraced the route into downtown Montgomery to the state capitol. Sanders said that a protest was necessary because of the current climate in the country. “Especially after [President] Obama was elected, there was an increase in attacks on Black voting rights … history is repeating itself. This attack on the Voting Rights Act is a carefully designed effort to take us back; it’s happened before. The right [of Blacks] to vote was restored in 1965 after white terror had been unleashed [following the ratification of the] 15th amendment back in the late 1800s. They find ways to circumvent that gain, to maintain the white status quo … the election of a Black president, to the average Southerner was intolerable; goes against everything that white supremacy has taught them. It’s in blatant conflict with that principle,” said Sanders. Francis Fox Piven’s 2008 work Keeping Down the Black Vote: Race and the Demobilization of American Voters, states that although women, immigrants, Jews, laborers and the poor have all had efforts directed towards restricting their right to vote, “The struggle of Black Americans to win the right to vote – not merely in law, but in reality – has been the most difficult.” Sanders says that the election of a Black president was the catalyst for what she calls “the Tea Baggers and the Wrong Wing movement (“not the ‘right wing’ “) to unleash a plethora of voting suppression laws and “attacks on immigrants and labor/ unions, every institution that supports progressives and progressive elections.” The crux of the Shelby County (Alabama) argument is that, when Congress renewed the Voting Rights Act in 2006, this time for 25 more years, the nation’s legislative body “overstepped its constitutional bounds.” Forcing the counties – and in effect the states – to submit to preclearance interferes with the rights of the various states to be “sovereign,” which is a long-running conflict between most Southern states and the federal government. Lawyers for Shelby County argued before the Supreme Court that, if there were any attempts to


Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., lead a group across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., Sunday, March 3, 2013. They were commemorating the 48th anniversary of Bloody Sunday, when police officers beat marchers when they crossed the bridge on a march from Selma to Montgomery.

Thursday, March 14, 2013



The decisions made around Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act will not only impact Black people, but all people of color – and especially women. ~ Monica Simpson, Executive Director SingSong: Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective interfere with and infringe upon the rights of African Americans and others to participate in elections, that interference was “scattered” and “limited,” and therefore, a measure as harsh as “preclearance” was unnecessary. While the Supreme Court’s ruling on the matter is not expected for several months, Justice Antonin Scalia, one of the Court’s conservative members, wondered whether the law was being continually renewed because it was actually needed or because it was viewed as a racial entitlement that Congress was afraid to do away with. His remarks, uttered on the same day as Pres. Obama unveiled a statue of Civil Rights organizer Rosa Parks in the United States Capitol Building, were seen as offensive to many. South Carolina Rep. Jim Clyburn, the thirdhighest ranking Democrat in Congress and a former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, told the Huffington Post that Scalia’s remarks were “rooted in the fact that he is ‘white and proud.’ ” Monica Simpson is not buying Shelby County’s argument. Simpson is the Executive Director of SisterSong: Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective. The Southern-based, national reproductive rights organization has scheduled a webinar for Mar. 28 as part of the current dialogue about the importance of the Voting Rights Act and in particular, how Section 5’s protections affect the rights of women. “SisterSong became invested in discussing voter disenfranchisement after we experienced what we felt was a loss in Mississippi in 2011 when the personhood bill was defeated,” said Simpson. “That bill would have declared a fertilized egg a ‘person;’ it would have outlawed most contraception and in vitro fertilization, and it would have criminalized abortion, even in cases of rape and incest. And yet the Voter ID Initiative requiring government-issued identification in order to vote passed. It was a voter exclusion measure and a direct threat to the Voting Rights Act and it passed.” Simpson says that while the voting rate of women of color in the U.S. has been increasing, the rights of women have remained steadily under attack with various state-based legislation efforts to restrict women’s reproductive rights. “The decisions made around Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act will not only impact Black people, but all people of color – and especially women,” Simpson notes. “With the fight for Medicaid expansion in the South, anti-abortion legislation popping up in record numbers, and the forced closure of most of the country’s abortion clinics, we need to make sure that every woman has the right to vote and is aware of the how important it is to vote for individuals that are committed to securing women’s rights.” COVER: AP PHOTO

Tear gas fumes fill the air as state troopers, ordered by Gov. George Wallace, break up a demonstration march in Selma, Ala., on what is known as Bloody Sunday on March 7, 1965.

This March 21, 1965 image shows civil rights marchers crossing the Alabama river on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala. to the State Capitol of Montgomery. Hundreds gathered Sunday, March 3, 2013 for a brunch with Vice President Joe Biden, and thousands were expected Sunday fternoon to march across this bridge in Selma’s annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee. The event commemorates the “Bloody Sunday” beating of voting rights marchers by state troopers as they began a march to Montgomery in March 1965. The 50-mile march prompted Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act that struck down impediments to voting by African-Americans and ended all-white rule in the South.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Keep Section Voting Rights Act 5 Black unemployment has not improved

rules to ensure such changes do not discriminate against voters who are racial, ethnic or language minorities. The flagrant and aggressive voter suppression efforts that occurred in many of the very states subject to Section 5 preclearance during the past election underscores that this critical measure is still necessary to protect the fundamental right to vote. The Urban League has joined other civil rights organizations in signing on to an amicus brief in support of Section 5, and is speaking out in favor of keeping it alive. In fact, on February 27, the day the law was debated in the Supreme Court, we rallied with thou-

sands of other supporters outside the court in a mass show of support. Section five detractors argue that so much progress has been made since 1965 that its protections are no longer necessary. Justice Antonin Scalia even went so far as to call it “the perpetuation of racial entitlement.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Congressman John Lewis, who was one of hundreds beaten during Bloody Sunday, gave several examples in a recent Washington Post op-ed that demonstrate how much Section 5 is still needed. He reminds us that in 2008, the city legislature in Calera, a city in Shelby County, Alabama, in disregard of Section 5, redrew the boundaries to dilute the voting power of black citizens, resulting in the defeat of Ernest Montgomery, the city’s only black councilman. During last year’s presidential campaign, the Justice Department blocked discriminatory voting changes in South Carolina and Texas that would have disenfranchised hundreds of thousands of minority voters. In ruling against South Carolina’s onerous new voter ID law, U.S. District Judge, John D. Bates wrote, “One cannot doubt the vital function that Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act has played here.” A decision by the Justices is expected in June. Too many Americans have fought and died for the precious right to vote. The Supreme Court must not turn back the clock. Keep Section 5 Alive! Marc H. Morial, former mayor of New Orleans, is president and CEO of the National Urban League.

Not only does Brian offer delicious entrees, but services to the community. Through BD Burgers he mentors the youth, caters to many local events and helps to mentor felons. Because of the beauty he saw in his daughter, he has taken on a new mission to always show those he cares about that he loves them and to help those in the community. This is why BD Burgers will be catering for the Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation Blood Drive and giving a free burger to everyone who donates blood that day. Sabriya’s Castle of Fun is committed to helping children with blood-related illnesses and their families with their needs. He has also decided to participate in Taste of Soul 2013

as a vendor. From everything that Brian has experienced, he had advice to give for those who are going through similar situations with themselves or loved ones. “You got to stay healthy with your family. You are an essential element of their life. Sometimes in the Black family, we don’t celebrate love. We celebrate holidays, we celebrate birthdays, we don’t just celebrate love. And now I try to make it my daily thing to call one of my siblings and let them know I love them,” Brian said. BD Burgers caters as well, so if you are interested, please contact 323563-3297.


“I risked my life defending that right. If we are ever to actualize the true meaning of equality, effective measures such as the Voting Rights Act are still a necessary requirement of democracy.” Georgia U.S. Rep. John Lewis In commemoration of the 48th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” John Lewis, Vice President Joe Biden and a coalition of citizens and civil rights advocates, including representatives of the National Urban League, reenacted the March 7, 1965 Selma to Montgomery voting rights march that was halted on the Edmund Pettus bridge by Alabama state troopers wielding billy clubs and tear gas. Bloody Sunday led to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, outlawing discriminatory voting tactics that had routinely denied the right to vote to millions of African Americans, especially in the South. Although an overwhelmingly bipartisan majority of Congress reauthorized the Voting Rights Act in 2006 for 25 more years, Shelby County v. Holder argued before the Supreme Court last week, threatens the very heart of the law and challenges the constitutionality of the critical pre-clearance provision, known as Section 5. Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act requires jurisdictions with a history of voting discrimination to receive preapproval from the Justice Department or a federal district court in D.C. for any change to their voting

Marc H. Morial

B.D. BURGERS Continued from page 2 “She was diagnosed with cancer and she was given like 60 days to live. I was running ten miles a day in prison. I was the healthiest in my life. I just knew that, you know, just let my baby see me. And some kind of way it happened,” he said choking back tears. Brian was then able to visit Amber in the hospital, with guidance of police officers. Her primary doctor heard about how healthy he was and Brian was able to donate blood that day. That would be the last time he would see Amber before she lost her fight to cancer in January 1999. Brian was released in 2000 and was unfortunately unable to attend her funeral. He says Amber saved his life. “So many things centered [on] Amber. If I’m praying about something I’ll just say to Amber, go take it to God and it happens. You’d be amazed. She’s amazing. She definitely still lives,” he said with a big smile on his face. Brian had a new mission. With the help, inspiration and motivation of friends, he was able to start BD Burgers, named after a dear friend, B.D. His initial partner was Drack, who gave Brian the money to start the business. The nearby local church also helped out by giving the business a few months free of rent. The fast food spot is known for its delicious burgers, mouth-watering lemonade, breakfast foods and flavorful tacos. I myself got to sample the turkey burger, which was a delicious clash of flavorful ingredients giving my palette an experience I didn’t want to end. There is also an ice cream parlor section of the restaurant, which Brian dedicated to Amber.

MONNETTE Continued from page 7 via an Internet post. “The two plus other educators including her former principal are always out together. That night she chose to go out to hear her college friend who plays in a band. She did not go with her normal group of three to four but figured it was ok because he is a college friend that she looks at as a brother. “Here's the issue, when Terri is out with her real friends she NEVER gets drunk. She's not a heavy drinker. 1 maybe 2 is always her max. She is always the one that reminds everyone that they are driving. “Now true we all make bad choices from time to time but none of us who know her personally believes that she would say she's going to sleep in

her car. If she was to ever think that then she would not broadcast it. She lives 5 minutes away from the bar 2 miles away. “Believe me she is a very nice smart person she's been here two years... She knows about the crime here in the city... She would never tell a stranger she was going to sleep in her car. Never. She would never get drunk knowing she was driving. NEVER… VERY RESPONSIBLE. Now if she did those things then that's because something may have been added to her drink... And I am not talking about a lemon, lime nor cherry. Bottom line is that friend said he played with his band then he left her… Friends don't leave friends especially if she appeared to be drunk…”

BY JULIANNE MALVEAUX NNPA COLUMNIST When unemployment numbers were released last Friday, commentators reacted joyfully. Alan Krueger, who heads the White House Council of Economic Advisors, described the creation of 247,000 jobs as a victory because the predictions were that the economy would only generate 170,000 jobs. Unemployment rates went down to 7.7 percent, while predictions were that they would drop to 7.8 percent. Some might call this good news, but many might wonder who is affected by this good news. A deeper examination of the unemployment data shows the disappointing reality that African American unemployment rates remained level, at 13.8 percent. Meanwhile, White unemployment rates fell to 6.8 percent and the rate for White men dropped to 6.3 percent. The racial disparities in unemployment rates are not new, but it is hypocritical to celebrate a drop in White unemployment rates, without noticing or mentioning the stagnation in Black unemployment rates. More than new construction jobs were generated last month, but since Black unemployment rates remained level, that suggests that African Americans are not being brought into that industry (if at all) at the same rates that Whites. Implicitly, these data make the case for continued affirmative action, especially in well-paid jobs. In times of economic hardship, those hiring are inclined to look after their own instead of spreading the jobs around. And recent data suggests that African Americans enter the labor market with a shallower rolodex than Whites. Fewer contacts mean fewer job opportunities. Whose employment situation has improved? The number of long term unemployed remained level at 4.8 million people who have been unemployed for 37 weeks or more. To be sure, this is a drop from the 39 weeks of a year or so ago. Still, the situation for some of the unemployed has simply not improved. One of the reasons that the unemployment rate dropped is because 130,000 people dropped out of the labor force because they could not find jobs. Eight million people work parttime for economic reasons. They would take full time work if only they could find it. The number of “marginally attached” workers stands at 2.4 million. If underutilized workers are included, the unemployment rate is 14.3 percent for everyone. If the relationship between underutilization and reported unemployment is the same for African Americans as for Whites, then the real unemployment rate is 25.5 percent, or almost a fourth, for African Americans. That’s alarming, yet as I watch televised reports on Black unemployment rates, this is unmentioned. Black unemployment rates are at more than Depression levels,

Julianne Malveaux

which ought to be completely unacceptable. It is not. Yet few are paying attention to the plight of the unemployed, underemployed, or out of the labor force Black worker. The White House and others love to talk about all of us being in the same boat. Yet some are hanging onto the board by their fingernails, and others are drowning. And some are struggling to row. Others are riding relatively smoothly through this recession, watching their situation improve. CEA Chairman Krueger says the data from this employment report suggests that we are well on our way to economic recovery. From my perspective this recovery is neither robust nor inclusive. In order for this recovery to be fully celebrated, every sector of Americans should see their material conditions increase. They’ve increased for some. What about the others? Where are their advocates? Too many African American leaders are asleep at the wheel when it comes to the employment situation. Unemployment rates become a line in their speeches, not a lode for their leadership. High unemployment rates explain why so many African Americans, at the economic margins, don’t support civil rights organizations. They are asking what’s in it for me. What if huge numbers of unemployed people were mobilized? What if, in their economic misery, some rose up and demanded that Congress and others pay attention to their situation? To watch the situation of Whites improve, while Black unemployment rates remain the same, suggests that the vision of a post-racial society is extremely unrealistic. African American people are bearing a disproportion amount of pain in the current employment situation. Black people are starving, and it seems that no one, not even civil rights advocates, will act on their behalf. Julianne Malveaux is a Washington, D.C.-based economist and writer. She is President Emerita of Bennett College for Women in Greensboro, N.C.

Thursday, March 14, 2013



e v e n t LISTINGS

L.A. Watts Times Calendar, Compiled by Brandon I. Brooks, Co-Managing Editor 3/16 SABRIYA’S CASTLE OF FUN FOUNDATION BLOOD DRIVE: In partnership with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. WHERE: Los Angeles Sentinel Newspaper located at 3800 S. Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90008. WHEN: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. For more information call (323) 299-3800 or visit

FREE WOMEN’S HEALTH FAIR: Join the California Oncology Research Institute (CORI) and other local health organizations to learn tips on living a healthy life. CORI and Mobile Mammography, Inc. will be providing free and subsidized mammograms. All women, with or without health insurance are welcome. Appointments are encouraged, but walk-ins will also be accepted. Please call to schedule your appointment. Call the district office at (310) 342-1070. WHEN: Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. WHERE: Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church 3669 West 54th Street Los Angeles, CA 90043. Street parking and light breakfast provided. Special guests Dr. Janice Hull, Dr. Ronald Hurst and Dr. Anton Bilchik, Directors of the California Oncology Research Institute (CORI), discuss cancers that disproportionately affect women in minority communities.

AFRICAN-AMERICAN ART HISTORY AT CSUN FESTIVAL: Legendary jazz musician Washington Rucker and liturgical dancer Linda James will be among the musicians and entertainment professionals to participate in the 14th Annual African-American Music Festival at California State University, Northridge this month. The festival is free and open to the public. WHEN: Saturday, 12noon to 5 p.m. WHEN: Cypress Hall at CSUN. It will feature music education workshops and performances from a variety of genres including blues, jazz, R&B and gospel. There also will be spoken word from several artists including Amber Love and Itiola Jones. CSUN alumnus Vernon Jackson ’12 (Communications Studies) who was dubbed the “guru” of stepping, a form of dance performed commonly by African-American sororities and fraternities, will provide a history of the dance form and a performance. Event organizers are also encouraging elementary, middle and high school students to attend. Some of the other musical groups performing include the Greg Broadous jazz group; Don Wyatt and Angela Coleman, gospel jazz duo; and Cilé Borman of Tropical Punch, a Caribbean music group. For more information, call (818) 834-2555 or email

MENTORING PROGRAM FOR AFRICANAMERICAN YOUTH: The Concerned Black Men of Los Angeles, a non-profit mentoring organization, offers a powerful series of youth mentoring workshops through its signature Welcome-to-Manhood Program, promoting education, career and life skills guidance, and instructions in the importance of self-mastery and personal achievement. Workshops and youth activities are free. Workshops are designed for youth 11 to 19 years of age. Our next workshop is titled Relationships & Fatherhood: Examining the Role of a Man to that of a Woman. WHEN: Saturday, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. WHERE: at the Hyde Park Miriam Matthews Library 2205 West Florence Avenue, Los Angeles at the corner of Florence and Van Ness. For more information please call (213) 359-3378 to preregister for yourself and friends.

entertainment endeavor Kelly Price recently tweeted, “Preparing the next generation of GREAT R&B performers! My band and singers… YOUR VOICE!” On February 28th, 2013, to kick off the series, the Photography Savoy Entertainment rtin Ma C. Kim by Photo Brianna Hamilton, Center will host a Red a Travis, Ruby Livingston, Carpet from 8pm to 9pm. (L-R) Imani Burton, Shenik, Charnayne Brooks and Stevi Meredith. For Celebrity RSVPs, Kasi Yates, Jennifer Talton Manazar Press, and Media inquiries please contact Jade Gamboa Theater, 1321 Gundry Avenue, Long Umbrella publicist, Erica Hill, at 818-434-3369 Beach CA. WHEN: March 17 & 24 @ 2:30 or pm. March 22 & 23 at 7 p.m. For tickets, visit For FRIDAY & SATURDAY (NOW – 3/31) information on group sales, call (562) 264-5717.





Women are having their Women’s Appreciation Day Celebration. WHEN: Sunday, 8:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. service. The keynote speaker will be our First Lady, Reverend Judi WorthamSauls, speaking on the theme: “Christian Women Obeying His Call”. A reception will follow the 11:00 a.m. service in L.L. White Fellowship Hall, 3320 W. Adams Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90018.

PLUS SIZE FASHION SHOW: Green-Jones Productions will be hosting POSH the Premier “Plus” LA Fashion Week Experience. Several plus sized fashion houses come together in one space to provide a premier experience, where style, beauty, supermodels, and celebrities come together to celebrate the best in plus fashion. Special Celebrity Guest models Kai Morae, The Real McCoy and daughter of Lisa Rae, and Rosie Mercardo, star of Nuvo TV’s Curvy Girls will be gracing the runway along with California’s top plus models. The event will be hosted by Chenese Lewis; the first woman crowned Miss Plus America, creator of the 2010 Love Your Body Campaign, and host of Plus Model Radio, the #1 podcast for plus size women. The media lounge will be hosted by Marie Denee, Editor-in-Chief of Curvy Fashionista and author of Curvy, Confident, Chic. Designers include: 12-OH!-1; AnnNahari; Ashley Stewart; Becca Etc.; Chic & Curvy; Cult of California; Shanda by Shanda Freeman; and Sorella Swim. WHEN: Sunday, 4:30 p.m. Doors open at 3:30 p.m. WHERE: Embassy Suites LAX South, El Segundo 1440 E. Imperial Ave. El Segundo, CA, 90245 Tickets: General admission price is FREE! RSVP online: 3/17 – 3/24 FOR COLORED GIRLS... RETURNS TO CELEBRATE WOMAN’S HISTORY MONTH:

CSUN alumnus Vernon of stepping, a form of Jackson (left), dubbed the “guru” African-American sorori dance performed commonly by dents the dance form at ties and fraternities, teaches stuthe last year’s African Music Festival. American

To celebrate Woman’s History Month, Dark Blue Mondaze is reprising it's production of “for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf.” According to Marshall, “people come and they see lots of patrons in the theater and they assume that we are making lots of money. But at $10 a ticket, no one is making money. We need to call upon the people in the community that will give in order to protect all that art means to a community and to society at large.” WHERE:


Following the tremendous impact Become a Customer Magnet had on small businesses in 2013, the first free Become a Customer Magnet seminar for 2013 has arrived. WHEN: Tuesday, 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. WHERE: Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce. Whether you’re a small business, non-profit organization or marketing executive – and you want change your business growth paradigm, don’t let the opportunity to attend this transformational marketing program pass you by. See what attendees are saying about BCM and register for this FREE program at

ON GOING MONDAY FREE SMALL BUSINESS ADVISING: The Small Business Development Center (SBDC) is conducting free advising for business owners and new entrepreneurs. WHEN: The informational workshops are scheduled every Monday at 9 a.m. Some of the topics include how to start a new business, licensing and permits, the planning process, how to grow your existing business, and how to obtain a business loan. WHERE: St. Lawrence of Brindisi Church 10122 Compton Ave. Los Angeles. For more information or to confirm your participation, please call Martha G. Castro (562) 212-0312 or Email:






Join celebrity host Kelly Price as each week she will invite several of her closest friends and fellow entertainers to share the stage for impromptu performances. Kelly Price has worked with the best in the business and with her new reality television show “R&B Divas: L.A.” currently on air, you never know who may Kelly show up. Price WHERE: The Savoy Entertainment Center, located at 218 S. La Brea Avenue, in Inglewood, CA 90302. WHEN: Every Thursday doors open at 9:00 p.m. Signed and unsigned R&B artists alike were given the once in a lifetime opportunity to perform alongside Kelly and her band. The Savoy Entertainment Center has given Kelly Price and her band the stage set an encore every Thursday night. In reference to her new

one of the top jazz, blues & R&B singers of the past 30 years, pays tribute to the Queen Of The Blues Dinah Washington in an exciting new show. WHEN: Feb. 8 – Mar. 31, 2013. The event takes place on Friday and Saturday nights starting at 8 p.m. and Sunday matinees 4 p.m. WHERE: Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center 4305 Degnan Blvd., #101, Los Angeles, CA 90008. Each performance at the Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center will be followed by a Champagne Barbara Morrison Reception for the full price ticket holders. Tickets are going fast, with eight of the 22 performances already sold out as of this writing. For more information and to purchase tickets, please call 310-462-1439 or logon to

NOW – 4/7 CAAM PRESENTS GO TELL IT ON THE MOUNTAIN: The California African American Museum (CAAM) presents the exhibition “Go Tell It On The Mountain.” The exhibit showcases 24 artists who examine Christianity’s role in fostering political action and social engagement. The exhibition’s curators, Nery Gabriel Lemus and Mar Hollingsworth, utilized James Baldwin’s 1953 novel of the same title, “Go Tell It On The Mountain,” as a point of departure to select a variety of pieces. The selections celebrate faith and, at times contrast, the oppositional forces within Christianity and the underlying tensions of religious control as well as human hypocrisy. WHERE: CAAM is located at 600 State Drive, Exposition Park, Los Angeles. For more information visit or call (213) 744-2024. Parking is $10 per vehicle and available on 39th and Figueroa streets.

TO MAKE A CALENDAR SUBMISSION: Include event name, date(s), time, location, contact/RSVP information and admission price, if any. Use BRIEF paragraph format (no lists, line breaks, or all caps). All calendar submissions are space-permitting and may be edited for brevity. Send submissions, along with any images, to with the subject heading “LAWT Community Events.” Please include text in the body of your email, not in an attachment.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

NBA Great Isiah Thomas gives assistance to at-risk youths - Part I Sports icon allows his humanitarian spirit to guide his passion to empower America’s youth with greatest need.

Mayor Johnson names names for Kings during State of the City Address

AP Photo

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson speaks during a press conference. Isiah Thomas at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, Ca. BY BRANDON I. BROOKS MANAGING EDITOR Isiah Lord Thomas III, popularly known as Isiah Thomas or “Zeke”, made a name for himself and honed his legend as a basketball player for the Detroit Pistons. However, before he launched his brilliant NBA career, Thomas burst onto the national scene winning the NCAA championship for Indiana University in 1981 while also earning the tournament’s Most Valuable Player award. A member of NBA’s Hall of Fame, after starring for 13 years with the ‘Bad Boy’ Detroit Pistons, Thomas led the team to back-to-back championships in 1989 and ’90. He was an All-Star player 12 times and captured two All-Star game Most Valuable Player awards and also added the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player in 1990 to his lofty resume. Named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History and also served as part owner, executive and coach in the NBA, Thomas now serves as an analyst for NBA TV and works as a columnist for When I discovered I had the opportunity to interview Thomas, I have to admit I didn’t know what to expect. I was excited because I have always wanted to meet the guy named “Zeke” being that I grew up watching him play, but still I was hesitant. All I had to go off of was his career in the NBA and the chronicled “Bad Boy” image casted over him by White media as a member of the “Bad Boy” Pistons in the late 1980s early 90s. If not for the public projection of the established press, which detailed Thomas the basketball player, I didn’t know much about him. After meeting him I found him to be as humble a celebrity as there is in the world of sports, and that’s hard to come by. After researching Thomas’ life I was astounded to find out about his work as an activist over the years and his recent involvement with youth sports in America. Thomas recently

received the Life Time Humanitarian Award from Children United Nations in Los Angeles during Oscar weekend. “The award is for just doing good work in the community with at-risk kids and foster kids,” said Thomas. “It really is just about giving back and being present, showing-up. So many times you can write the check and you never know who that check is helping. Well I was the beneficiary of one of those checks that a person never saw. That person who wrote the check didn’t see me, I probably never met him or her but that contribution on that day stopped me from going to jail because what it probably did was help me get something to eat or the coach was able to buy a uniform or the coach was able to rent a van and drive us to the game. Those little things mattered. So what I’ve tried to do is continue to give, continue to be part of the community I am from and just try and shine the light on good people. You can’t arrest poverty. Just because we are living in poverty and just because we aren’t as fortunate as some doesn’t necessarily mean we are criminals and gangbangers or what have you. So the labeling theory that goes around poverty, I try to speak to that also.” Thomas spends a great deal of time using his foundation, Mary’s Court founded in in his mother's name to educate our youth and speak out on the violence occurring in inner cities across the nation. He specifically speaks to the need to educate our children. He firmly believes, education is a way out of poverty. “I am only regurgitating what I was taught,” said Thomas. “Again that generation before us, that’s what they stoutly believed and it has proved to be true an accurate.” He is working closely with clergy, educators, community and elected leaders in Chicago, Miami and other cities around the country to help address the urgent need to stop the violence. He is creatively using sports and entertainment as a way to redirect our kids into more positive activities. In fact, he is the founder of the first ever Basketball PEACE TOURAMENT that was held

Photo by Troy Tieuel

in Chicago. As a former youth growing up on the west side of Chicago, Thomas has partnered with the city’s mayor, Rahm Emanuel to expand his well-received "Windy City Hoops" basketball league, which would extend weekend tournaments to 10 more Chicago parks and recreation centers. “It’s a program basically to attract kids and youth in the community from ages 13 – 17 bring them into the park district and introduce them to the game of basketball and team sports,” said Thomas. “What we found is that in introducing kids or youth into sport and play they really get to know each other, they get to bond they get to connect. But so many times when we think about basketball we only think about the score of the game, but the things that come around basketball, the coaches you get to meet the mentors that you have, the educational resources that come along with that, the tutoring aspect that comes around that basketball game and just the wisdom that comes from people who come to the game watching you play. So that whole type of interaction when we talk about it takes a village to raise a child, well that type of communication that comes from being around the sport is what we were attracted to. “By taking sports and play out of our communities, by closing the park districts, by taking sport and play out of school, only athletes now get a chance and the opportunity to have that type of dialogue with those coaches, with those mentors. What we want to do is open it up and give it back to everybody so we want the community to come back, we want the neighborhoods to come back and by putting sports and play back in the community putting it back into the neighborhood kids will get to know each other and once they get to know each other we think it will be hard to kill each other.” Read Part II of Isiah Thomas’story, his relationship with his mother, how he met his wife of 32 years and how he views his legacy in next week’s L.A. Watts Times.

BY ANTONIO R. HARVEY SPECIAL TO THE NNPA FROM THE SACRAMENTO OBSERVER Ending weeks of widespread speculation and rumors, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson told The OBSERVER that billionaire Ron Burkle and Mark Mastrov, the founder of 24-Hour Fitness, are the majority equity partners who will make a bid for the Sacramento Kings. “Yes, they are,” Johnson told The OBSERVER when asked if Burkle and Mastrov are in fact the deep-pocket “whale” investors interested in purchasing the Kings. Mayor Johnson has helped to orchestrate the group’s counter-proposal to a reportedly $525 million agreement the Kings’ owners made with a group to move the team to Seattle. Johnson will publicly announce Burkle’s and Mastrov’s involvement at the annual “State of the City” address at Sacramento’s Memorial Auditorium Thursday evening. Johnson is also expected to reveal the details of a new sports and entertainment arena, another major factor in keeping the Kings in Sacramento — the place the NBA franchise has called home since 1985. The Maloofs agreed to sell the Kings to an investment group that includes billionaire Chris Hansen. However, NBA commissioner David Stern agreed to let Mayor Johnson, a former NBA All-Star point guard, submit a purchase proposal that includes a new arena plan to the league by March 1. Stern also agreed to let Johnson state the city’s case in front of the NBA’s Board of Governors in April to prevent the Maloofs from selling the team to the Seattlebased investors. The Board of Governors — the NBA team owners — will vote whether the sale to the Seattle investor-group is acceptable. Mayor Johnson said the city of Sacramento can make a convincing argument that it is a strong NBA market and the leadership is in place to make a major deal like this work. Sacramento already cleared the way earlier this week for Burkle and Mastrove when the City Council voted 7-2 to push forward with an effort to keep the bidding process alive. “I feel confident about our chances (to keep the Kings in Sacramento),” Mayor Johnson said.

LAFD Continued from page 5 well as with the Los Angeles Police department and Los Angeles County Fire Department. “I want residents of our communities to feel welcome to come to a station, ask questions, take a tour and get to know our firefighters and the people who work there. It is essential for all of us to enjoy such a relationship,” said Cummings. In 2005, Cummings assumed command of the Recruit Training Section of the LAFD and during his tenure was instrumental in the development of the modular training facility located at the Frank Hotchkins Memorial Training Center while managing facilities in the San

Fernando Valley, Downtown Los Angeles and San Pedro. By 2010, he had been assigned to the Planning Section of the LAFD where he oversaw the Fire Chief’s staff and assisted with management of the day-to-day functions of the LAFD. He coordinated research projects, staff studies and formulated the goals and objectives for the department. In December of 2010, he was promoted to assistant fire chief and then chief of staff, responsible for assisting in planning and implementation of short and long range goals. Now, that sole task of implementation belongs to him in a city with a population of close to 4 million, 40% residential, 6% industrial, 6% comSee LAFD, page 13

Thursday, March 14, 2013


FBI releases files on Jesse L. Martin Whitney Houston replaces Lenny Kravitz SPECIAL TO THE NNPA FROM THE WASHINGTON INFORMER Released in response to a freedom of information request, the FBI’s documents cover 11 years of threats against the late singer Whitney Houston, from 1988 to 1999. But the pages are heavily redacted – in many cases, to the point of incomprehensibility. Sometimes the redactions are tantalizing. In late 1992, an unidentified Chicago lawyer wrote to Houston’s New Jersey-based production company stating that unless the singer paid $100,000 , his client planned to “reveal certain details of [Houston's] private life … to several publications”. Later the blackmail amount was boosted even Whitney Houston higher, to $250,000. According to the FBI, this was extortion. But when agents met with Houston and her father, the singer said she knew the woman who was making the threats, and that she was “a friend … [who] would never do anything to embarrass her”. Officers closed the case, even though Houston’s father had apparently sent the blackmailer a confidentiality agreement and an unknown sum of money. In addition to the extortion case, officers investigated several cases of over-devoted fans. One Vermont letter-writer claimed: “I start to shake … when I think about you.” “Over the past 17 months, I have sent … 66 letters to Miss Whitney,” he wrote. “I have tried to stop writing the letters and to give up twice but after a few weeks I had to start writing again … I have gotten mad at [Whitney] a few times [for not replying] … it scares me that I might come up with some crazy or stupid or really dumb idea … I might hurt someone with some crazy idea.” FBI agents eventually questioned Houston’s one-sided pen-pal in 1988. They decided he was harmless. The same was true for a Dutch or Belgian correspondent who insisted he had written some of Houston’s songs. The writer further claimed that he was the president of Europe and had purchased the country of Brazil. After selling more than 200 million records worldwide, Houston drowned in a hotel bathtub in February 2012. She was 48.

in Marvin Gaye biopic SPECIAL TO THE NNPA FROM THE ST. LOUIS AMERICAN Lenny Kravitz is out – and Jesse L. Martin is in to portray iconic soul singer Marvin Gaye in the Julien Temple produced, “Sexual Healing.” According to Deadline, the film focuses on the time Gaye spent in Europe in the early 1980s, when the soul singer attempted to get his addictions under control and career back on track with the help of British music promoter Freddy Cousaert. Gaye was shot by his father and died in Los Angeles on April 1, 1984. Martin was Marvin in the James Gandolfini version of a movie with the same title five years ago. According to, the decision to replace Lenny was actually a legal move. Marvin Gaye III, the late singer’s son, threatened legal action against the filmmakers. Information from and contributed to this report.

Jesse L. Martin

LAFD Continued from page 12 mercial, 17% streets, 6% public facilities and 17% open space. The assessed property value is a staggering $431.2 billion. His annual operating budget for the fiscal year of 2011-12 was $472,597,193 and it all comes out of general budget, but the department is one of the few that contributes more to the general fund than it consumes. There are a total of 3,361 firefighters of which only 52 are female, 388 are Black while Hispanics compose 1,080, Whites 1,735, Asians 189, Filipinos 54, Native Americans 14 and other 1. Cummings cannot specifically promote the hiring of Blacks, but he is aware of the department being just 11.2% Black and more than 50% white. Hispanics make 31.2% of the department. A native of Los Angeles who attended Loyola High School, West Los Angeles College and UCLA, Cummings said he would be encouraged to see more Blacks seeking an opportunity with the department. “These are good jobs and outstanding careers. The men and

women of our department are of the highest character and I am honored to represent them,” said Cummings. The qualifications to become a firefighter are minimal: a high school diploma or G.E.D, non-smokers throughout their career and valid driver’s license. Applicants must pass both a physical and written test, interview and background investigation and then endure 72 weeks of training.” Cummings encourages African American youth to get prepared to apply. The LAFD has future opportunities and needs young people in this community to see firefighting as a viable career option, he said. Once trained and accepted, applicants must adhere to the LAFD motto of “Serving with Courage, Integrity and Pride.” Cummings already has adhered to this motto, and then some. He is doing great things in the department and in the community. The Black community acknowledges and supports his leadership. We salute Chief Brian Cummings for the great work he is doing at the LAFD. He is a local hero – one who shows pride in his work and who makes us proud!!!




HOLLYWOOD Grauman’s 323/777-FILM #059


CENTURY CITY L.A./BEVERLY HILLS SANTA MONICA AMC Century 15 Pacific’s The Grove Stadium 14 AMC Santa Monica 7 888/AMC-4FUN 323/692-0829 #209 888/AMC-4FUN

SHERMAN OAKS DOWNTOWN L.A. UNIVERSAL CITY WEST LOS ANGELES At The Sherman Oaks Galleria Regal Cinemas L.A. Live Stadium 14 CityWalk Stadium 19 with IMAX® Rave 18 818/501-0753 800/FANDANGO #4046 888/AMC-4FUN 310/568-9950




Thursday, March 14, 2013

Motown founder readies UniverSoul for ‘last major endeavor’ Circus is back

Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP

This March 5, 2013 photo shows Berry Gordy posing for a portrait in front of the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in New York. For Berry Gordy, conquering Broadway is the next - and by his own admission, last - major milestone of a magical, musical career. The 83-year-old Motown Records founder is taking his story and that of his legendary label to the Great White Way. “Motown: The Musical,” opens for previews Monday.

Berry Gordy hopes Broadway show signs, seals, delivers showstopper as he eyes exit from stage BY JEFF KAROUB AND MIKE HOUSEHOLDER | AP For Berry Gordy, conquering Broadway is the next — and by his own

admission, last — major milestone of a magical, musical career. The 83-year-old Motown Records founder is taking his story and that of his legendary label to the Great White Way.

“Motown: The Musical,” which begins previews on Monday at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, allows Gordy to relive the ups and downs of a career that launched him into the entertainment stratosphere and he’s confident will allow him to leave the stage on a high note. “Most likely it will be my last major endeavor in a creative way,” he said in a telephone interview. “Of course everyone disagrees with me when I say that statement. This is probably the epitome of everything I’ve done — that I’ve wanted to do.” For those under the impression that Gordy simply signed off on the musical, think again. The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer not only sealed up a Broadway slot and agreed to co-produce the show, he also delivered its book and three original songs. “When I came to Broadway, I had no idea I was going to love it as much as I do,” Gordy said. “(People asked), ‘How are you going to Broadway-ize Motown?’ I said, ‘I’m not going to Broadway-ize Motown, I’m going to bring Motown to Broadway.’” This time, he’s starting with experience. Motown’s big stars during the label’s heyday were, as Gordy puts it, See MOTOWN, page 15

Gives 500 Tickets To Inner City Youth

Caribbean Flavor of UniverSoul Circus. LAWT NEWS SERVICE After 5 years of touring everywhere but Los Angeles, the UniverSoul Circus is back opening this Saturday March 16 through March 31 on Inglewood’s Hollywood Park parking lot, And to make sure they widen the eyes of many youth, they said, they’re giving 500 tickets to inner city youth. Under the big top, audiences will be entertained by 75 performers from all over the world, including acrobats, contortionists, dancers and animal tamers. International performers from Africa, Russia, Trinidad and Tobago, Brazil, China and the United States with an urban aesthetic and a hip-hop beat. UniverSoul is a highly-interactive combination of circus arts, theater, and music that spans genres including Pop, Classic R&B, Latin, Hip Hop, Jazz and

Photo by Scott Cunningham

Donald Long, host of UniverSoul Circus. Gospel. It embraces and celebrates the unique and familiar aspects of pop culture globally by bringing them center stage with a cast of international performers. UniverSoul Circus is rated as one of the top three circuses in America along with Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey and Cirque du Soleil. UniverSoul’s fresh approach to family friendly live entertainment has garnered it a coveted spot as one of Ticketmaster’s top ten most requested family events, along with other shows including Sesame Street Live, Disney on Ice, and Radio City Christmas Spectacular. The circus was founded in Atlanta by concert and theatre promoter, Cedric Walker. In 2013 the circus will perform over 500 shows in 46 major markets. UniverSoul Circus has touched audiences for 19 years, since Cedric

Photo credit Scott Cunningham

Walker, a former entertainment mogul who worked for such groups as the Commodores and The Jackson 5, created it to bring together families and communities. Walker travels the world looking for thrilling, high-adrenaline, and, often, nerve-wracking acts, that will keep families entertained. The 15-city tour includes Vincent Clark, a Capella singers and the Human Beat Box from the United States; seven female contortionists from Africa; A Cuban/Russian high-bar act, a Vietnamese head balancing act, and China’s Shaolin Warrior king-fu acrobats. The circus also features performing animals, such as the Magic Cat Comedy act featuring live tigers from Africa, horse tricks from Russia and Africa, elephants, zebras and a French dog act. And back for his 19th year is ringmaster sidekick Zanda Charles, known as “Zeke,” with a brand new bag of tricks. The circus introduces new acts, music and choreography each year, which adds a fresh spin to the show. Unlike arena-style events packed with nosebleed seats, no audience member is farther than 50 feet away under this tent, so they may find themselves right beneath the high-wire act. The circus continues to evolve and diversify and find the best acts from around the world, regardless of their background. The UniverSoul Circus delivers a ‘must-see’ and colorful show with incredible talent. Get your tickets today! Visit for more info, show times, and schedules.

Photo by Scott Cunningham

Bone Breakers of UniverSoul Circus.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

MOTOWN Continued from page 14 “kids off the street” — singers such as a not-far-out-of-high-school Smokey Robinson, Little Stevie Wonder and a pre-teen Michael Jackson. But on Broadway, the team includes director Charles RandolphWright and actors Brandon Victor Dixon (Gordy) and Valisia LeKae (Diana Ross), all of whom are Broadway fixtures. “We’re starting from a higher level,” Gordy said. Even with a top-notch creative team on and off the stage, the show’s success — just as Motown’s was at its founding 54 years ago — starts and ends with the music. And in that realm, the team behind the show is working from a position of strength. Maybe too much strength. Gordy described it as “very difficult” to select classic Motown tracks for the musical, considering the massive trove from which to choose. Randolph-Wright joked late last year that the show might be 15 hours long. The first version had 100 tunes in it, “and I wanted every song,” he said. But both men agreed that the way to solve the too-many-songs problem was to focus on numbers that fit the musical’s thematic structure, or what Randolph-Wright called “the spine of the story.” Since Gordy had special insight into the songs that comprise the label’s vast catalog, he was able to make suggestions as to which ones fit particular story arcs. That was the case with Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On,” which ends the first act; and “Ball of Confusion (That’s What the World is Today),” The Temptations classic that starts the second. Gordy’s role went well beyond song-selector, however.

TRIBAL LAW Continued from page 6 authority would violate the constitutional rights of a non-Indian or that jurors in tribal court would be unfair, the bill allows defendants to petition a federal court for review. A tribe would have jurisdiction over non-Indians when that person lives or works on the reservation, and is married to or in a partnership with a tribal member. About 77 percent of people living in American Indian and Alaska Native areas are non-Indian, according to a recent Census report. Roughly half of Native American women are married to nonIndians, the Justice Department has said. Although tribes have civil jurisdiction over non-Indians, they often are reluctant to go forward with a case when the penalty amounts to a fine and offenders have little incentive to pay it. The hope in taking on criminal cases is that incidents of domestic violence will be quelled before they lead to serious injury or death, and that victims won’t be afraid to report them. “Having the ability to do it local and have the prosecution start soon after the offense, that’s just going to be great for our victims,” said Fred Urbina, chief prosecutor for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe in southern Arizona. Officers there are certified under state and federal law, which allows them to arrest non-Indians, but the cases aren't handled at the tribal level. The Pascua Yaqui Tribe also has banished some non-Indians from the reservation for criminal activity. “It’s almost like a patchwork of


Gordy, who penned his first hit during the Eisenhower Administration, returned to his songwriting roots, working alongside longtime collaborator Michael Lovesmith to create a trio of original compositions for the musical: “Hey Joe,” “Can I Close the Door on Love?” and “It’s What's in the Groove that Counts.” While all are personal songs — the show, after all, is about his life story — Gordy dug deep for “Hey Joe,” which commemorates the inspiration he experienced as an 8-year-old when Detroit’s own Joe Louis defeated German boxing great Max Schmeling in a 1938 heavyweight title fight. “I saw my mother crying. I saw my father crying. Everyone was so crazy, just going mad,” Gordy said. “So I thought to myself then, ‘What could I do in my life ever to make this many people happy?’ That’s where I got the original passion from.” Two decades later, Gordy had set aside his dream of a boxing career and was writing songs on the side while working at a Ford Motor Co. plant. That’s when he secured an $800 loan from his family’s savings club and started his own record company, one that he vowed would produce music for all listeners, not “Black music for Black people” as had been the standard. Gordy succeeded beyond even his wildest imagination, hiring immensely talented writers, producers, engineers, musicians and singers who blended traditional gospel, jazz, R&B and pop to create a unique sound that had crossover appeal for audiences of all ages and backgrounds and broke down racial barriers at the height of the Civil Rights Movement. “We would always say, ‘It’s what’s in the groove that counts,’” Gordy said, referencing one of the songs he wrote for the musical. “It was about music for all people. Not black and white, Jews things we’ve been able to employ to fix that jurisdictional void,” Urbina said. “It’s not satisfactory in all cases.” Under the new law, a non-Indian defendant would have the right to a jury trial that is drawn from a cross-section of the community and doesn’t systematically exclude non-Indians or other distinctive groups. The protections would equal those in state or federal court, including the right to a public defender, a judge who is licensed to practice law, a recording of the proceedings and published laws and rules of criminal procedure. “This is not scary. It’s not radical,” said Troy Eid, former U.S. attorney in Colorado. “It’s very much in keeping with what we have as local governments.” The safeguards are similar to those in the federal Tribal Law and Order Act, passed in 2010 to improve public safety on tribal lands. About 30 tribes across the country are working toward a provision that allows them to increase sentencing from one year to three years, leaving them well-positioned to take authority over non-Indians in criminal matters, Eid said. Jefferson Keel, president of the National Congress of American Indians, said in a statement that much work remains to be done to ensure tribal members are protected from domestic violence. But he said last Thursday’s bill signing represents a “historic moment in the nation-to-nation relationships” between tribes and the federal government. “Today is a great day, because it marks the beginning of justice and the end to injustice that has gone unanswered for too long,” Keel said.

RFQ-Restore Neighborhoods Los Angeles (RNLA) seeks quals. from GC & Specialty Licensed trades for sml const. projects/ repairs to rehabbed occpd/unoccpd homes. MBE/WBE/DBE encouraged to submit. Visit for submission details. and gentiles, the cops and the robbers. It was for everybody.” Randolph-Wright, who was raised in segregated South Carolina, was among the many young Americans influenced by Gordy’s story and the musical movement he spurred. “Berry Gordy was one of my idols growing up. At that time, there weren’t many men of color in that power position to look up to,” Randolph-Wright said during a trip to Hitsville, U.S.A., home to the Motown Museum in Detroit. “And, I always say he gave me and people like me permission to dream — to dream big enough that I would be in Studio A talking to you.” A half-century after he began his ascent to the pinnacle of the music world, Gordy is looking to produce one last showstopper. “I did the Broadway musical mainly for, I think, the people around the world that believed in me when they had no real reason to other than the music that they heard and loved,” he said. But, tongue firmly in cheek, the octogenarian left open the door ever so slightly for another show-biz venture. “If you come up with something bigger than Broadway, I might be interested,” he said, laughing.

FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAMES FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME STATEMENT File No. 201304052 The following person(s) is (are) doing business as: Nile Valley Landscape Mainstenance & Sprinkler Repair, 3717 La Brea Ave. Suite 642, Los Angeles CA 90016, County of Registered owner(s): Tamora Neal, 4061 West Blvd. Unit A, Los Angeles CA 90008 This business is conducted by an Individual The registrant commenced to transact business under the fictitious business name or names listed above on N/A I declare that all information in this statement is true and correct. (A registrant who declares as true information which he or she knows to be false is guilty of a crime.) S/ Tamora Neal, Owner This statement was filed with the County Clerk of Los Angeles on February 28, 2013 NOTICE-In accordance with Subdivision (a) of Section 17920, a Fictitious Name Statement generally expires at the end of five years from the date on which it was filed in the office of the County Clerk, except, as provided in Subdivision (b) of Section 17920, where it expires 40 days after any change in the facts set forth in the statement pursuant to section 17913 other than a change in the residence address of a registered owner. A New Fictitious Business Name Statement must be filed before the expiration. The filing of this statement does not of itself authorize the use in this state of a Fictitious Business Name in violation of the rights of another under Federal, State, or common law (See Section 14411 et seq., Business and Professions Code). Original 3/14, 3/21, 3/28, 4/4/13 CNS-2458372# WATTS TIMES


Sealed bids will be received by Drew Child Development Corporation at 1770 E. 118th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90059 until 5:00 pm on April 5, 2013 for meals for service in Child Care Center(s). At said time and place and promptly thereafter, all bids that have been duly received will be publicly opened and read aloud. The following types and quantities of meals: Approximately 400 Breakfast, 400 Lunches, 400 Snacks – 5 days a week. Daily delivery of meals to 6 center locations. Types of forms of packaging or containerizing to be used for meals: Pre-packaged, inclusive of milk based on a 5-day menu cycle to be provided by this agency. All meals of each type must meet the minimum standards set by the United States Department of Agriculture for Child and Adult Care Food Program meals of that type. The Contract will be awarded to the responsible bidder whose bid is responsive to this invitation and is most advantageous to the Drew Child Development Corporation, price and other factors considered. Any or all bids may be rejected when it is in the interest of Drew Child Development Corporation to do so. Any questions regarding this proposed contract may be referred to Jackie McDowell at (323) 249-2950. 3/14, 3/21/13 CNS-2457252# WATTS TIMES INVITATION FOR BIDS (IFB) AND REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS (RFP) The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles invites proposals from qualified firms interested in the following opportunities: IFB 7798 Microsoft Licenses (Issue 03/04/2013; Due 3/26/2013) To provide Microsoft licenses/software products RFP 7578 WAN (Wide Area Network) (Issue 03/04/2013; Due 3/29/2013) To provide WAN connectivity Copies of the IFB and RFP may be obtained via or respectively or call (213) 252-5405. 3/7, 3/14/13 CNS-2452041# WATTS TIMES


To p l a c e a C l a s s i f i e d A d Call (323) 299-3800


Thursday, March 14, 2013

We are proud to acknowledge the achievements of two local students selected to play in the 2013 McDonald’s All American® Games. Congratulations to Kendall Cooper of St. Anthony High School in Long Beach who will play for the Girls West Team, and Isaac Hamilton of St John Bosco High School in Bellflower who will play for the Boys West Team. Proceeds from the McDonald’s All American® Games go to local Ronald McDonald House Charities®.

©2013 McDonald’s.

LAWT 03-14-2013  


Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you