Rev. Dorothy Stubbs
New Evangelistic Ministries celebration Religion A9
America’s best weekly
Howard Bullard Jr.
Presents ‘Home for the Holidays’ event
Celebrating the season
Pittsburgh Courier NEW
www.newpittsburghcourier.com Vol. 111 No. 2
thenewpittsburghcourier Published Weekly $1.00
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Family, friends, supporters searching for Hazelwood resident Tonee Turner She was last seen in Squirrel Hill, Dec. 30 and 8 p.m. on Dec. 30, 2019. members believe she may Police have asked that have traveled down Interanyone with information state 80 near Homestead. about Turner to call 412- According to the Pittsburgh For New Pittsburgh Courier 323-7800, or 911. Post-Gazette, Turner’s beTonee Turner, 22, stands She was last seen at Dobra longings were found by a a b o u t young 5-feetcyclist 2 and “If you’ve gone to concerts in Pittsburgh, you’ve on the w e i g h s probably seen Tonee in front, dancing her little Homeapproxstead i m a t e - heart away. Whether she was alone or with friends, G r a y s ly 130 Bridge p o u n d s . that didn’t matter to her when it came to dancing.” pedesShe has AKAYLA BENNETT twrai laknblack, w a v y, w a y and shoulder-length hair, Tea, a Bohemian-style tea- later in the evening on Dec. which she sometimes wears room in Squirrel Hill. Au- 30. in a bonnet. thorities said a firefighter “I’ve known her for about Turner went missing discovered her wallet, cell SEE TURNER A3 sometime between 6 p.m. phone and keys, and family
by Stacy M. Brown and Rob Taylor Jr.
4 of 5 December 2019 victims were African Americans by Rob Taylor Jr. Courier Staff Writer
POLICE HAVE ASKED that anyone with information about Tonee Turner to call 412-323-7800, or 911.
TOP STORIES OF 2019
‘Not guilty’ verdict levied in Antwon Rose II death top Courier story of 2019 by Rob Taylor Jr. Courier Staff Writer
At 9:07 p.m., March 22, 2019, Michael Rosfeld was officially a free man. That was the exact time a jury found the former East Pittsburgh police officer not guilty on criminal homicide charges in the shooting death of a Black teen, Antwon Rose II. In a case that had garnered nationwide attention, it seemed as though people from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia, Los Angeles to New York City, were awaiting this verdict. Would this be another case of a White person being found innocent in shooting another unarmed Black person? Seconds after the not guilty verdict was read, Rosfeld was permitted to leave the courtroom, Downtown. He has not been seen in the public eye since. Moments later, Rose’s mother, Michelle Kenney, was permitted to leave the courtroom, understandably in disgust. But outside the Allegheny County Courthouse were about 150 Antwon Rose II supporters, who proclaimed at the courthouse steps outside, “No Justice, No Peace.” In the days and weeks afterward, there were more protests and demonstrations, denouncing the verdict. Most of the protests were constructed of a diverse crowd—it wasn’t just African Americans who thought Rosfeld should have been found guilty of criminal homicide for shooting Rose three times as he ran away from Rosfeld during a felony traffic stop in East Pittsburgh, June 19, 2018. “This ruling ensured that there will be another Antwon,” state Rep. Summer Lee told the Courier moments after the not guilty verdict on March 22, 2019. “Be-
78 of 95 Black lives lost in 2019
BRANDI FISHER, with the Alliance for Police Accountability, consoles Christian Carter, after word spread that Michael Rosfeld was found not guilty in the shooting death of Antwon Rose II. The verdict was handed down on Friday evening, March 22, 2019. (AP Photo)
While it’s certainly a positive that Allegheny County recorded 15 less homicides in 2019 (95) than in 2018 (110), it’s still unfathomable to believe that our county had 95 homicides, which, of course, is 95 too many. The New Pittsburgh Courier strongly condemns the homicides that
occur in our county, and with 78 of the 95 homicides being Black lives, we feverishly condemn the violence that has plagued our African American communities. The many anti-violence organizations that do their best to curb the violence are to be commended. We as a community must, however, take the lead within ourselves and our family members to stop the violence once and for all. DEC. 11—Trevon Darnell Adams, a 24-year-old Black male from Swissvale, was shot and killed inside a residence on Bedford Avenue in the Hill District. A 29-year-old male has been charged with homicide in the case. DEC. 18—Cedric L. Mack, a 41-year-old Black male from Duquesne, was shot and killed while inside a vehicle in the 200 block of Kennedy Avenue on the North Side. A 26-year-old male has been arrested in the case. DEC. 22—Romir Napper-Talley, a 24-year-old Black male, was shot and killed during a foot chase by an unnamed Wilkinsburg police officer. Family members are asking for complete transparency from authorities as to the exact facts of the events that led up to the shooting. DEC. 26—Leona Eunice DaiSEE HOMICIDES A4
Ann Floberg Mason—Renowned social justice champion—dies at age 74 by Alonna J. Carter For New Pittsburgh Courier
PITTSBURGH POLICE OFFICERS carry fellow Officer Calvin Hall’s casket out of Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall after Officer Hall’s funeral service, July 23, 2019. (Photo by J.L. Martello)
SEE TOP STORIES A6
Pittsburgh Courier NEW
To subscribe, call 412-481-8302 ext. 134
The New Pittsburgh Courier has learned that Pittsburgh has lost a social justice champion. On Nov. 8, 2019, Ann Floberg Mason passed away at the age of 74. Mason was the vice president for the Edna B. McKenzie Branch of the Association for the Study of African American Life and
Oscar H. Blayton says
History (ASALH). She was also an active member of the Community of Reconciliation Church (COR) and the African American Historical and Genealogical Society of Pittsburgh (AAGHS), the Black Political Empowerment Project, the Black and White Reunion and many other organizations. Born on June 26, 1945 in Rock-
Don’t expect fair elections in 2020 Forum B6 Forum B6
SEE MASON A3
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
This Week In Black History
CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY IN KIGALI, RWANDA
‘More than a few reasons to be happy’—An African writer looks ahead to 2020 (TriceEdneyWire.com/ GIN)—While its soundtrack may have been grim and pessimistic, Africa has more than a few reasons to be happy, asserts prominent author, journalist and former editor of The East African, Charles Onyango-Obbo of Uganda. “There are many good stories in East Africa,” he begins. “East African citizens continue to travel in record numbers in the region, embracing the sinful joys of music and other festivals” “The American university, Carnegie Mellon, opened a campus in the Rwanda capital Kigali. Soon East Africans will know it more widely, but the deal is, as citizens of Jumuiya (the community), they get a 50 percent discount on the fees. There is a cohort of smart East Africans already cashing in.” “It has been a glorious period for East African sport,” he said proudly. “Nearly all of us made it to the African Cup of Nations. Ugandan long distance simply exploded, but Kenya remained king of the hill.” “Then, there are so many
new books and new authors, including a gripping tale from former Tanzania president Benjamin Mkapa (My Life, My Purpose). “Only a champion liar will claim to have read them all!” Turning to this year’s punishing droughts and floods, he credited Mother Nature with sending East Africa, and indeed most of the world, “a reminder that she’s angry at the way we have despoiled Earth. Floods submerged our cities, loudly revealing our folly, sweeping away villages, and leaving hundreds dead.” Still he found a positive side: “While climate change batters us, a new generation of environmental activists is emerging everywhere you look.” Looking up north, he observed that the forces of progress seemed to have been making progress in Somalia and refusing to be cowed by Al-Shabaab’s deadly bombs such as one this week at a busy intersection on the outskirts of Somalia’s capital. At least 79 were pronounced dead and 149 more were injured. If only an Eden could
emerge in the Horn. As to Ethiopia, Prime Minister Ahmed Abiy is still on his feet. “Two years after he launched the most ambitious democratic experiment in Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy is still in the game. At one point it looked like he would sink. A Nobel Peace Prize seemed small, but hey!” Then, an abbreviated list of the failures: rampant corruption in most parts of East Africa; economic growth without jobs; growing repression and restrictions on press freedom. South Sudan remains mired in conflict, Ebola continues its rampage in the Democratic Republic of Congo, having killed over 2,100 people so far. But while the terror of Ebola has grabbed headlines, a little-covered measles epidemic has killed more than double that number of Congolese—over 5,000 of them… On the upside, after 54 states signed on, the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement came into force this year. The free trade pact was a major highlight for the continent in 2019.
NGUGI WA THIONG’O
‘It’s time for Africa to do things for itself,’ proclaims Kenyan Peace Prize winner (TriceEdneyWire.com/ GIN)—Over the last 100 years, Africa has been the eternal donor to the West but has been represented
THE NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER PUBLISHING COMPANY
Publication No.: USPS 381940 315 East Carson Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219 Phone: 412-481-8302 Fax: 412-481-1360 The New Pittsburgh Courier is published weekly Periodicals paid at Pittsburgh, Pa. PRICE $1.00 (Payable in advance) 6 Months—$25 1 Year—$45 2 Years—$85 9-Month School Rate $35
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to:
New Pittsburgh Courier 315 East Carson Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219
as always reliant on aid from the Western community. “We must find a way of reversing this by becoming makers of our own raw materials,” asserts Kenyan author and academic Ngugi wa Thiong’o who picked up a distinguished German Peace Prize named for Erich Maria Remarque this year. “It’s time for Africa to do things for ourselves,” declared wa Thiong’o, author of ‘Weep Not, Child’, ‘A Grain of Wheat,” and ‘Petals of Blood,’—“not in pursuit of isolation but as a matter of upholding values of Pan Africanism and having ownership and responsibility of the continent.” The most apparent problem with many African people, he observed, is seeing Africa through the eyes of an outsider—an imperial intent designed through languages and policies—to foster post-colonial measurements that would be indestructible for many generations. As a result, you look at the state as a looting mechanism, not as a responsibility. “Have you ever heard of anybody robbing their own house?” he asked rhetorically. “This mentality removes us from the responsibility of decolonizing the continent and securing
our base.” “Africa has to control its resources,” he insisted. “We have to make things with our resources and exchange them with other countries just as other countries exchange final products with us—using our gold, copper and diamonds amongst other resources. “Because when you secure the base you can interact with the world, through the basis of equality and respect.” A distinguished professor of comparative literature and English, wa Thiong’o was awarded the prize for his book: “Decolonizing the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature”, about language and its constructive role in national culture, history and identity. The Prize is awarded for fictional, journalistic or scientific works which set out to engage with inner and outer peace as well as for demonstrating an exemplary commitment to peace, humanity and freedom. A statement of the jury read: “Ng?g? wa Thiong’o is an important representative of independence through language and advocates the right of peoples to cultural self-determination as an identity and peace-building characteristic.”
Week of January 8-14 January 8 1866—Fisk University is founded in Nashville, Tenn., for recently freed slaves by the American Missionary Association. The college grows to become one of the leading Black institutions of higher learning in America by graduating several figures that played major roles in Black cultural, political and entertainment life. 1961—Calvin Smith, hall of fame track and field athlete, was born in Bolton, Miss. Smith ran track at the University of Alabama and in 1983 broke the 15-year-old world record in the 100 meter race. He went on to win a Gold medal as part of the United FISK GRADUATES OF 1888 States 4 x 100 meter relay team at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games and a Bronze medal in the 100 meter race at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games. January 9 1906—Poet and novelist Paul Lawrence Dunbar dies. Born in Dayton, Ohio, Dunbar rapidly gained national recognition as a poet. Although he only lived to be 33, he was prolific—writing short stories, novels, plays and songs. In Dayton, he was a classmate of the Wright brothers of aviation fame. In fact, the Wright brothers helped Dunbar finance his newspaper—the Dayton Tattler. 1935—Black Enterprise magazine founder and publisher Earl Graves is born on this day in Brooklyn, N.Y. 1946—Poet Countee Cullen dies at age 42 in New York City. Cullen was one of Black America’s greatest poets and COUNTEE CULLEN novelists. One of his most controversial works was “The Black Christ & Other Poems.” He was born in 1903. But some mystery surrounds exactly where he was born with both Baltimore and New York City being given as his place of birth. Cullen also taught high school. One of his best known students was the great writer James Baldwin. 1967—The Georgia legislature finally seats Representative Julian Bond. In an amazing anti-democracy display of arrogance, Georgia legislators had refused to allow Bond to take the seat he had duly won because of his opposition to the U.S. war in Vietnam. But a 1966 U.S. Supreme Court ruling declared their action unconstitutional. Bond later became chairman of the NAACP Board of Directors. January 10 1924—Legendary Jazz drummer and composer Max Roach is born in New York City. He was perhaps the greatest drumJULIAN BOND mer-composer of the Jazz era performing with some of America’s best known Jazz musicians and singers. He formed Debut Records in 1952 with bassist Charles Mingus. 1957—The Southern Christian Leadership Conference is founded in New Orleans, La., by a group of Black ministers led by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. The SCLC goes on to become one of the premier leadership organizations of the Civil Rights Movement. Among the original founders were Ralph Abernathy, Joseph Lowery, Fred Shuttlesworth and C.K. Steel. Washington, D.C., Min. Walter Fauntroy was chairman of the board of directors and one of the leading women of the Civil Rights Movement, Ella Baker, became executive director. In 2009, King’s daughter Bernice was elected to head the organization. January 11 1965—The extraordinarily talented author and dramatist Lorraine Hansberry dies. Deeply committed to the Black struggle, Hansberry’s brilliant career was cut short MAX ROACH by cancer. She was only 35. Her primary works included “A Raisin In The Sun” and “To Be Young, Gifted and Black.” “A Raisin In The Sun” became the first play written by a young Black woman to be produced on Broadway. 1971—Popular R&B singer Mary J. Blige is born on this day in the Bronx, N.Y. Blige starred in the Lifetime movie “Betty and Coretta” alongside Angela Bassett, Malik Yoba and Lindsay Owen Pierre. She played Dr. Betty Shabazz, the widow of Malcolm X. The film premiered in February 2013. 1988—Scientists (paleo-anthropologists) announce the discovery of the “African Eve”—the mother of all humankind. Based on research in East African involving mitochondrial DNA, the researchers from the Welcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics in Oxford, England, conclude that the original woman evolved in East Africa LORRAINE HANSBERRY approximately 200,000 years ago and that all of humanity can ultimately trace their ancestry to this woman. However, some more recent studies suggest that humankind first evolved in Southern Africa. January 12 1890—Educator Mordecai Wyatt Johnson is born in Paris, Texas. Johnson became the first Black president of Howard University and presided over the prestigious Black institution for more than 30 years. He died in 1976. 1920—Civil rights leader James Farmer is born on this day in Marshal, Texas. During the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s he was among the top three or four most prominent civil rights leaders. He helped organize the “Freedom Rides” to help desegregate public transportation and founded the Congress of Racial Equality. He died in 1999. January 13 1869—On this day in 1869, one of the earliest post-Civil War attempts at organizing Blacks on a national level occurs. The JAMES FARMER National Convention of Black Leaders is held in Washington, D.C. Frederick Douglass is elected president. Also, the first Black labor union convention takes place. It was called the Convention of the Colored National Labor Union. 1913—The sorority Delta Sigma Theta is organized on the campus of Howard University by 22 coeds. It develops into one of the most prestigious and influential Black Greek letter organizations in the nation. 1953—Don Barksdale becomes the first African-American to play in an NBA All-Star game. 1966—Robert C. Weaver becomes the first Black member of a presidential cabinet. Lyndon B. Johnson appoints him Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. 1987—In what many considered a racist decision, Arizona Gov. Evan Mecham rescinds the gubernatorial decree, which had established the birthday of civil rights legend Martin Luther King Jr. as a state holiday. The decision sets off protests and a national DON BARKSDALE Black boycott of Arizona. 1989—Poet Sterling Brown dies. Brown, a middle-class Black, born into one of Washington, D.C.’s, most prominent Black families, has probably never received full credit for the power, thought-provoking and even revolutionary nature of his poetry. He was a professor at Howard University for nearly 40 years. 1999—Superstar Michael Jordan retires from professional basketball. However, in 2009, Jordan was still ranked by Forbes magazine as one of the top 10 richest Blacks in America. January 14 1895—A group of African-Americans organized the National Steamboat Co. in Washington, D.C. The group sailed the luxury steamer “George Leary” between the nation’s capital and Norfolk, Va., during the waning years of steamboat popularity in America. The George Leary was a triumph for Black entry into business. 1930—Ernest Just becomes vice president of the American Association of Zoologists. Just was perhaps the most noted Black zoologist in American history. He accomplished pioneering research in fertilization and cell division while also publishing STERLING BROWN more than 70 scientific papers and books. Born in Charleston, S.C., he was a brilliant student who graduated from Dartmouth magna cum laude. He taught at Howard University in Washington, D.C., for years and helped a group of students organize the Black Greek letter fraternity—Omega Psi Phi. Just died in 1941 of pancreatic cancer. 1972—“Sanford and Son” starring Redd Foxx and Demond Wilson premiers on NBC. The sitcom gains almost immediate popularity among Blacks as well as develop a large following of Whites. The name “Sanford” came from John Sanford—Redd Foxx’s real name.
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Ann Floberg Mason—Renowned social justice champion—dies at age 74 MASON FROM A1
ford, Ill., Mason grew up in Lake Geneva, Wis. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from Mount Holyoke College in Southern Hadley, Mass., she became an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer. This led her to volunteer in the housing projects of McKeesport, where she met her husband, Major Mason III. She would go on to receive a graduate degree from the University of Pittsburgh and teach at Arlington Elementary School and Penn Circle Community High School. Mason’s passion for education and assisting those in need was evident in her role as a volunteer for Beginning with Books, a literacy outreach program, her role as executive director of Hunger Services Network, and in her dedication to COR. Reverend Chad Tanaka Pack fondly recalled Mason’s service: “Giving was so important to Ann’s faith…she gave of her time and talents to the church
with the same dedication she gave of herself to other organizations she served.” Mason was not only vice president for the Edna B. McKenzie Branch of ASALH; she was unwavering in her commitment to seeing the branch flourish and imparting the importance of African American history to diverse audiences. At the 97th annual ASALH convention, which was held in Pittsburgh, Mason served as a volunteer coordinator. Her savvy with recruiting and organizing attracted volunteers of diverse backgrounds from all over, ensuring that the conference ran smoothly. In her role as vice president of ASALH, Mason went above and beyond her duties, filling in for multiple positions as needed. She kept track of memberships, actively recruited new members and public speakers, and assisted with promoting the branch at the national conferences and locally.
Family, friends, supporters searching for Hazelwood resident Tonee Turner She was last seen in Squirrel Hill, Dec. 30 TURNER FROM A1
country. Estimates by the Black one year, and I met her through her sister, Syd- and Missing Foundation nee Turner,” Akayla Ben- put the total number of nett told NNPA Newswire. disappeared Black wom“She danced over to me en and girls at more than and gave me a big hug, 64,000. Turner’s family wants her and I knew her soul was beautiful at that moment to be among those who are that I met her,” Bennett found safe. “She’s stated. bubbly D e and carscribed as ing,” Sydan artist, nee Turner educatold NNPA tor, and Newswire. a lover “She made of dance, a practice Turner of caring enjoyed for herself going to holisticalm u s i c ly.” concerts Sydnee in PittsTurner burgh. s t a t e d “ I f that her you’ve sister had gone to an apticoncerts tude for in Pittsteaching burgh, herself. you’ve She studprobaTONEE TURNER ied nutribly seen Tonee in front, dancing her tion, black history, art, and little heart away,” Bennett she also studied herself. “Tonee is known around noted. “Whether she was alone or with friends, that town as an amazing dancer. didn’t matter to her when it She was studying Flamenco and Kathak/Bollywood came to dancing.” According to the Nation- dance,” Sydnee Turner statal Center for Missing and ed. “Though she is intuitive, Exploited Children, an estimated 613,000 people she is a tough person who were reported missing in spoke her truth.” This past weekend, a the U.S. in 2018, the most recent statistics available. diverse group of family, Of those, 60 percent were friends and supporters gathered at the Braddock people of color. Although Black women Carnegie Library for a vigmake up less than 7 per- il for Turner. It’s the same cent of the U.S. population, location where Turner’s they represent about 10 art exhibition, “Breath of percent of all missing per- Light,” was on display in son cases throughout the 2018.
Ronald B. Saunders, president of the Edna B. McKenzie Branch of ASALH said, “Ann and Major were lifetime members of ASALH which shows their complete dedication to African American history and the Black experience in America.” Saunders also remembered his colleague as someone who had boundless energy and was a hard worker. “Ann was my biggest cheerleader, motivator, and most importantly—friend. Everything I asked her to do in the context of holding two branch positions, she did in exemplary fashion.” Alexis Clipper, secretary of the Edna B. McKenzie branch, remembered Mason as person with a kind spirit and as someone who was always focused on get-
ting the job done. “From the first time I met Ann, she radiated joy and kindness. Ann made me feel comfortable and immediately put me to work. I am grateful for all that she taught me and for the opportunity to have served with her,” Clipper said. A public memorial was held on Nov. 16 at the Community of Reconciliation Church in Oakland. The Edna B. McKenzie Branch of ASALH and Pittsburgh AAHGS held a joint memorial for Mason on Dec. 14, during the organization’s annual Carter G. Woodson birthday celebration. Ann F. Mason is survived by her husband, Major Mason III, her son, Major Mason IV, her daughter, Arianna Mason, and a host of ANN FLOBERG MASON was the vice president for the local ASALH. friends.
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
78 of 95 of Black lives lost in 2019…4 of 5 December 2019 victims were Black HOMICIDES FROM A1
ley, an 18-year-old Black female from Penn Hills, was shot and killed outside of a pub in Penn Hills. Allegheny County Police are still searching for the suspect or suspects. DEC. 28—Samuel Rende, a 90-year-old White male, was shot and killed inside a vehicle in Hazelwood. Police say a 27-yearold male is in custody, responsible for the shooting.
November Homicides (8) NOV. 4—Julian Carpenter, a 24-year-old Black male, was shot three times on July 2 in the 2100 block of Rhine Street in Spring Hill. He died at 10:27 p.m. on Nov. 4. A 17-year-old female has been charged as an adult with robbery and conspiracy. A 20-year-old male suspect was killed on July 14 by a Penn Hills police officer in a separate incident. NOV. 13, 14—Lavon Sizemore, a 29-year-old Black male from Swissvale, was shot and killed near Kelly and Collier streets in Homewood. Kierra Eddisha Harris, a 26-year-old Black female, was also shot, was transported to a hospital, and died in the early morning hours of Nov. 14. Police are still looking for the suspect or suspects. NOV. 14—Raymond Bruce Jackson, a 42-year-old Black male, was shot and killed during a home invasion in the 1300 block of Woodlawn Avenue in Wilkinsburg. A 22-yearold man from Hazelwood was charged with homicide, aggravated assault and robbery. NOV. 16—Gregory Lamont Blair Sr., a 46-year-old Black male from Wilkinsburg, was shot and killed on Center Street in Wilkinsburg. Police identified a 32-year-old man as the suspect in the killing. NOV. 23—Eric D. Henderson, a 50-year-old Black male, died from blunt force trauma during an altercation. NOV. 24—Jerrell Jeffries, a 22-year-old Black male, was shot and killed inside a vehicle in the 700 block of Midland Street in Wilkinsburg. An 18-year-old Black female passenger, Elarrah Nichole Findley, exited the car but was shot and killed while attempting to flee from the suspect. Police are still searching for the suspect. October Homicides (6) OCT. 2—Keith A. Lewis Jr., a 35-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, was found shot to death inside a vehicle in the 7700 block of Frankstown Ave. in Homewood. Police are still looking to apprehend a suspect. OCT. 2—Aaron Shane Touchstone, a 26-year-old Black male from Manchester, was shot to death on the porch of a vacant apartment in the Uansa Village public housing complex in McKees Rocks. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Police are still searching for the shooter. OCT. 9—Aaron Evans, a 35-yearold Black male, was killed during a home invasion in the 7200 block of Lawton Street in Penn Hills. Two men from Swissvale were charged with Evans’ murder. OCT. 17—Dwayne Fuller, a 24-year-old Black male, was shot and killed inside a Family Dollar store in McKeesport. Police are still searching for the suspects, who were caught on surveillance video inside the store. OCT. 21—Mager Rainey, a 22-year-old Black male from Homewood, was shot and killed inside a vehicle in the area of Jeannette Street and Rebecca Avenue in Wilkinsburg. Two women were also shot but had non-life-threatening injuries. OCT. 27—Richard Nathaniel Littlejohn Jr., a 32-year-old Black male, was shot in a vehicle while driving along Route 30 in North Versailles. Littlejohn was coach of the Hill District Rebels football team. Two men have been charged in Littlejohn’s death. Septeber Homicides (9) SEPT. 3—Margaret Sumney, a 67-year-old White female, was found beaten to death in her South Fayette Township home. Her son David, 30, was arrested and charged with her death, Sept. 28. He is awaiting trial in the Allegheny County Jail. SEPT. 7—Delores Burdick, an 80-year-old White female, was killed by her 42-year-old son Kenneth, who beat her, kicked her and threw her down the basement steps and left her to die in her Shady Lane home in West Mifflin. He called police and confessed a day later. He is being held without bail in the county jail. SEPT. 7—Emery Brice Heard-Ellis, a 21-year-old Black male, was killed during a shootout at a home on Gas Street in Rankin. Police said Heard-Ellis and his companion, Marcus Carter, 29, drove to the house and opened fire on people who were sitting on the porch. One of them, who had a valid carry permit, returned fire, striking Heard-Ellis. Police arrived in time to see Heard-Ellis fall. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Carter faces several charges including aggravated assault and conspiracy. SEPT. 9—Alexander Alman, a 16-year-old White male, was fatally shot while he and another teen were playing with a gun in his home on Fingal Street in Duquesne Heights. He died the next day at UPMC Mercy Hospital. The other teen, Michael Hardwick has been charged in Alman’s death.
SEPT. 10—Ted Evans, a 39-yearold Black male, was found by police shot to death between two homes on Danbury Street on the North Side. After a SWAT team was called to help search for the shooter, police charged 47-year-old Todd Griffin with receiving stolen property and illegal gun possession. SEPT. 12—Tameka Dallas, a 43-year-old Black female, was found in McKeesport’s Renzie Park. She had been strangled to death. Surveillance video captured her silver Chevrolet Impala arriving at the park entrance nearest to where her body was dumped. Clyde Cox, 27, of Pittsburgh, and Daron Parks, 26, of Bridgeville, were detained when they were found in possession of the car was in Westmoreland County. A third man wanted for questioning after fleeing the scene, Ramonta Yancy, 26, was arrested the following day. SEPT 13—Sam Gantt, a 72-yearold Black male, was found shot to death in his Hill District home in the 3100 block of Centre Avenue by police who had been called to do a welfare check on him. Police initially thought he had died of natural causes, but the medical examiner determined he had been shot multiple times in the chest. Police have not identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-3237800. SEPT. 19—Shawn Stevens, a 49-year-old Black male, was fatally shot by officers who were trying to arrest him for a string of bank robberies. A task force of FBI agents and police from Pittsburgh and Wilkinsburg were tipped that he was hiding in an apartment building on Center Street. While speaking to a woman in one apartment, Stevens came from behind her and tried to slam the door, but an officer’s leg was in the way. When the officers went in, they said, Stevens threatened two women with a kitchen knife. When he lunged at one a second time, an FBI agent and a Pittsburgh detective both fired. The shooting is being investigated by Allegheny County police and the FBI. SEPT. 24—Dai’Shawn Akeem Grace, a 27-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times at the intersection of Maple Street and Ridge Way in Munhall as he walked home from work. He died a short time later at the hospital. Allegheny County detectives said the motive was unclear and they have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call 1-833-255-8477. August Homicides (6) AUG. 1—Gregory Eason, a 33-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times in the head after getting into a fight outside a bar in the 400 block of St. Clair Avenue in Clairton. A second man was shot in the foot. Police, as yet, have not identified a suspect. Anyone with information is urged to call the Allegheny County police Tip Line at 1-833-255-8477. AUG. 6—Donald Babbit, a 49-year-old White male, was fatally shot by police outside his home on Spencer Grove Lane in Glenshaw. Officers from multiple jurisdictions surrounded the house after receiving a domestic disturbance call from Babbit’s wife saying he was acting erratically. A neighbor said he emerged from the house wearing only underwear and a towel on his head. Police said he refused to put down a gun and get on the ground. When he pointed a gun at the officers, three officers opened fire. County police are investigating and will turn their findings over to the district attorney. AUG. 8—Janice Purdue-Dance, a 61-year-old Black female from Erie, was fatally stabbed at the bus stop at Sixth Avenue and Smithfield Street in Downtown Pittsburgh in front of a police officer. The officer saw the victim lying at the bus stop; he went to render aid, and as he did, James Wyatt, 23 of McKeesport, reached over him to stab her. He turned and stabbed another nearby woman before the officer subdued him. The second woman was treated and released. Wyatt is in the county jail awaiting trial on homicide and assault charges. AUG. 12—Curtiss Eugene Meeks Jr., a 48-year-old Black male, was found by police responding to a ShotSpotter alert in the 1200 of Blackadore Street in Penn Hills. He had been shot multiple times and was pronounced dead at the scene. Allegheny County detectives said Meeks was a member of a motorcycle club and may have been targeted by a rival club. Anyone with information is urged to call the Allegheny County police Tip Line at 1-833-255-8477. AUG. 15—Terrance Jerome Jones Jr., a 21-year-old Black male, was found lying in a ground floor hallway at the Bedford Dwellings housing complex in the 2500 block of Chauncey Dr. in the Hill District with multiple gunshot wounds to the chest. He was transported to Mercy Hospital where he died a short time later. Police have yet to identify a suspect. Anyone with information is urged to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. AUG. 30—Susan E. Jeffries, a 54-year-old White male, was fatally stabbed in her Tarentum apartment. Police said Juan H. Hayden, 55, admitted to stabbing Jeffries. He was charged with homicide and tampering with evidence. July Homicides (12) JULY 1—Ricky Deon Moultrie, a 20-year-old Black male, was discovered in a car in East Hills. He had been shot in the head and was
pronounced dead at the scene. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. JULY 11—Christopher Lamont Lowman Jr., an 18-year-old Black male, was found in the 100 block of Millbridge Street in Allentown with multiple gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. JULY 11—Dauminique Ross, a 20-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times when he answered a knock at the door of his parents’ house on 16th Avenue in Homestead. He was rushed to the hospital but did not survive. Police arrested 24-year-old Rahim Thomas after finding him hiding in a home on 8th Avenue the next day. JULY 13—Delquay Lamont James, a 21-year-old Black male, was found shot multiple times near a vacant home on Beacon Street near Hazel Way in McKeesport. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Allegheny County detectives have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tip Line at 1-833-255-8477. JULY 14—Joshua A. Makhanda-Lopez, a 30-year-old Black male, was found by police in his car with a gunshot wound to the head in an apartment parking lot in Penn Hills. Witnesses told police two men fled the scene to a nearby house. Three people came out of the house, but police said Onaje Dickinson, a 20-year-old Black male, hid in the basement and fired at an officer when discovered. The officer returned fire, killing Dickinson. Allegheny County detectives have charged 15-year-old Myzle Ford as an adult in connection with the Makhanda-Lopez killing. JULY 17—Calvin Hall, a 36-yearold Black male, died in the hospital three days after being shot in the back multiple times on Monticello Street in Homewood. The off-duty Pittsburgh police officer was walking away after trying to defuse an argument between neighbors and his cousin’s wife when he was shot. Christian Bey, 30, has been charged with Hall’s murder. JULY 22—Matthew Khoury, a 37-year-old White male, was fatally shot at a Garfield building he owned when an argument with one of his tenants over back rent escalated. The tenant, 49-year-old Michael Wolf, has been charged in the case. JULY 23—Omari Ali Thompson, a 31-year-old Black male, was killed in a shootout with undercover officers from the state attorney general’s office during a drug buy/ bust in the Big Lots parking lot on McKnight Road in Ross Township. One of the officers was wounded in the exchange but is expected to recover. The district attorney’s office is investigating. JULY 27—Tareef Del Tae McClellan, a 22-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot in the head inside the garage of a home in the 1500 block of Versailles Avenue in McKeesport. County police have not yet identified a suspect and are asking anyone with information to call the Tip Line at 1-833-255-8477. JULY 27—Rev. Sheldon Stoudemire, a 57-year-old Black male, was fatally shot at the Northside Common Ministries shelter on Brighton Road on the North Side after he refused entrance to 19-year-old Gerald Adams because it was after admittance hours. Pittsburgh police said there is surveillance video showing Adams firing through a window at the side of the door. He was arrested after a brief foot chase and is now in the Allegheny County Jail. JULY 29—Darius Savaughn Freeman a 26-year-old Black male, was found by police responding to a ShotSpotter alert in the 1200 Block of Faulkner Street in Sheraden. He had been shot multiple times and was pronounced dead at the scene. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. June Homicides (13) JUNE 1—Jordan Emanuel Lewis, a 22-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times on the porch of a home in the 7500 block of Ellesmere Avenue in Swissvale. According to Allegheny County Police, Charlton Mitchell, 21, admitted to shooting the victim who, during a party earlier in the evening, had taken Mitchell’s gun from him and threatened to shoot him if he didn’t leave. Mitchell said he retrieved a semi-automatic rifle he’d placed in the bushes behind a nearby business, returned and shot Lewis. A 19-year-old female and a 24-year-old male were also injured by bullet fragments during the shooting. Mitchell is in the Allegheny County Jail. JUNE 2—Ciquann Dudley Jr., a 17-year-old Black male was found in the 1300 block of Tube Works Alley in McKeesport with multiple gunshot wounds and pronounced dead at the scene. Allegheny County Police said in a press release they do not know yet why the victim was in such a remote location, nor do they have a motive. The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 1-833-255-8477. JUNE 3—David Herbin, a 49-year-old Black male was inside a home on Laketon Road in Wilkinsburg with a gunshot wound to the head. He died later at the hospital. Police have issued an arrest warrant for Tariq Price, 39, who was recently released from jail. Price faces robbery and homicide charges.
JUNE 11—Marion White, a 49-year-old Black male, was fatally shot after an argument escalated and Alonzo Terrel Glen, 27, shot him four times. Glen turned himself in to police a week later. He is now in the county jail. JUNE 12—Tyrese Smith, a 20-year-old Black male, and Alexus N. Chester, a 17-year-old Black female who was celebrating her birthday, were both killed when an as yet unidentified person opened fire at a house rented for the party on McNeil Place in Pittsburgh’s Upper Hill neighborhood. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh Homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. JUNE 17—Whiney Maleeca Lyn Boyer, a 25-yer-old Black female, was discovered in the basement of a Maple Street house in East Pittsburgh, after 28-year-old Delrico McClinton confessed the crime to a counsellor at the Cambria County Prison. JUNE 20—James Rust, a 49-year-old White male, was fatally shot following an argument with his neighbor at a duplex on Horning Road in Bethel Park. The neighbor has not been identified because no charges have yet been filed. JUNE 21—Gerald Dwain Walker, a 41-year-old Black male, was discovered bleeding from multiple stab wounds at a home in the 2100 block of Perrysville Avenue in Pittsburgh’s Perry, he dies later at the hospital. Maneca Pressley, 29, was arrested less than a day later and charged in his death. According to the criminal complaint, the couple had been arguing all day. Pressley told police Walker had assaulted her multiple times. The last time he lunged at her, she stabbed him then called 911. She is currently in the county jail. JUNE 22—Kaine Williams, a 34-year-old Black male, was killed in the 1800 block of Sumac Street in McKeesport when Marcus Acie-Griffin, 26, got out of his white Acura with a shotgun and fired at Williams. Acie-Griffin was taken into custody after leading police on a chase through several communities before crashing over a hill in West Mifflin. He is now in the county jail. JUNE 25—Corey Laguardia, a 22-year-old White male, was shot multiple times by a homeowner after he forced his way into a house in the 1000 block of Starr Road in Crescent Township. No charges have been filed. JUNE 26—Christian St. John Jenkins, a 27-year-old Black male was found with multiple gunshot wounds lying in Truax Way in Pittsburgh’s Troy Hill neighborhood. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Within minutes, police also responded to a second shooting a block away on Lowrie Street. That victim was last reported in critical but stable condition at a local hospital. Police have not said if the shootings are related, nor have they identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh Homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. JUNE 29—Octavia Stone, a 22-year-old Black Female, was found with multiple stab wound on Bessemer Way in East Pittsburgh. She was taken to UPMC Presbyterian hospital. Though a suspect has not been named state police said Stone knew her killer. Anyone with information is urged to call the state police at 412-299-1607 May Homicides (16) MAY 1—Jakeem Booker, a 19-year-old Black male, was fatally shot while trying to force his way into a Franklin Avenue home in Wilkinsburg over a dispute with one of the occupants. Police found him on the porch with a gunshot wound to the head. Allegheny County detectives said a 17-year-old in the house feared for his family and fired one shot though the partially open door. No charges have yet been filed. MAY 8—Bryan Jackson, a 31-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot in a home at 127 McKinne Ave. in Stowe Township after giving 25-year-old Terrence Murphy a tattoo. County police found and arrested Murphy at a house in Ambridge later that day. He is currently in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting trial. MAY 8—Irvin Green, a 48-yearold Black male was fatally stabbed during an altercation in the 1200 block of Evans Avenue in McKeesport. Police have not identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 833255-8477. MAY 9—James Dent Jr., an 85-year-old Black male, who was shot in the back in October inside a store next to a daycare on Jones Avenue in North Braddock, died of his injuries. Courde Daye, 20, was arrested for the shooting in December and will now face homicide charges. MAY 9—Tre Valorie, a 26-yearold White male, was fatally shot in the head when his girlfriend’s obsessed ex, Matthew Lambert, allegedly carried out his threat to “kill anyone she was with” as the couple left Rumerz bar on Pittsburgh Northside. He is awaiting trial in the county jail. MAY 11—Mary Kornick, a 62-year-old White female, died at Allegheny General Hospital after being shot on Route 365 in Buffalo Township in what police said was a murder-suicide. Her alleged killer Nicholas Domek, 72, killed himself at Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Greenfield shortly thereafter. MAY 12—Luke Connolly, a 51-year-old White male, was found fatally stabbed multiple times in an apartment on Third Avenue in
Carnegie. A woman who was in the apartment was also stabbed before fleeing to get help. She remains hospitalized. Police arrested 58-year-old Richard Mickens at a home on Spikenard Street in Scott, where he allegedly assault someone else with a knife, May 15. He is charged with homicide, attempted homicide, aggravated assault, rape, and several other charges. He is in the county jail awaiting trial. MAY 15—Ivan Walls, a 45-yearold Black male from Philadelphia, was discovered by police shot multiple times behind a house on Karl Avenue in Duquesne. He died later at the hospital. County detectives say the victim and another man had just arrived at the house when shots were fired. Police are searching for the second man and have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 833-255-8477. MAY 19—Aris Payto Barclay Vann, a 22-year-old Black male, was found with multiple gunshot wounds on a porch of a home in the 2200 block of Woodstock Avenue in Swissvale. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Allegheny County Homicide Inspector Andrew Schurman said the victim was there to visit friends and may have been the target of a robbery attempt. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 833-255-8417. MAY 24—Morgan Dunston, a 17-year-old Black female, was fatally shot in the parking lot of the Hot Metal Bridge Faith Community Church on Pittsburgh’s South Side. Police do not believe she was the intended target. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. MAY 24—Michael McDonald, a 51-year-old White male, was killed when he barged into the Robinson Township home of a man he allegedly owed money to. The homeowner fired his shotgun, hitting McDonald in the chest. As yet no charges have been filed. MAY 26—Ernest Dixson, a 31-year-old Black Male, was fatally shot inside Shooters bar on Island Avenue in Stowe Township after getting into an argument with another patron. Police (have issued a warrant/arrested Omar Harris, 36.) MAY 27—Isaac Harrison, a 34-year-old Black male, was fatally shot on Chauncy Drive in Pittsburgh’s Hill District after an argument escalated into gunfire. A 15-year-old girl was also wounded in the foot in the incident. Pittsburgh police have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. MAY 28—William Mosby, a 62-year-old Black male, was found with fatal gunshot wounds in a parking lot in the 1800 block of Homeville Road in West Mifflin. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 833-255-8417. MAY 28—James Donovan Goodwine, a 29-year-old Black male, was found by police fatally shot in the head near the intersection of Forest Way and Collier Street in Homewood. Police have not identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. MAY 28—Richard Lee Greene, a 35-year-old Black male, was found by city police lying in Chartiers Avenue in Sheraden. He had been shot multiple times and died at the scene. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. April Homicides (6) APRIL 3—Vernon Lee Owens III, a 33-year-old Black male, was fatally shot by a 72-year-old jitney driver during a failed armed robbery in Duquesne. According to police, shortly after the driver picked up Owens and another passenger, he struck the driver with his gun and demanded money. When they both got out of the car, the driver shot Owens with his own gun. The other passenger fled. Police have determined that the driver legally owned the gun used in the shooting and had a valid concealed-carry permit. No charges will be filed. APRIL 7—Alison Fritzius, a 55-year-old White female, was found fatally stabbed on the porch of a home in the 800 block of Broadway Boulevard in Pitcairn. Police charged her boyfriend Derrick Avant in her death. He is awaiting trial in the Allegheny County Jail. APRIL 8—Mark Anthony Jackson, a 39-year-old Black male, was found shot in the face in a house in the 600 block of Winfield Street in Larimer. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Police have charged Robert Harper in the shooting. Harper was already in the county jail on unrelated criminal charges. APRIL 10—Brad Lee Lucier, a 23-year-old White male, was found by first responders shot multiple times at a house in the 1000 block of Dohrman Street in Stowe Township. He died at the hospital. On April 15, 18- year-old Tomichael Sherrell turned himself in after police issued a warrant charging Sherrell had shot Lucier during a robbery. Sherrell is now in the county Jail. APRIL 13—Ameer Coleman, a 19-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot inside a house in the 200 block of Fern Street in Garfield. Police have not yet identified a suspect. The investigation continues. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7161. APRIL 26—Armani Ford, a 23-year-old Black male was found
by police fatally shot in a house in the 800 block of Vankirk Street in Clairton. County detectives have not yet identified a suspect and are asking anyone with information to call the Tipline at 1-833-255-8477. March Homicides (5) MARCH 15—Leslie Robertson, a 72-year-old Black male, was killed when he was struck by a car driven by Kakiia Williams, 33, outside the Harrison Village housing complex in McKeesport. Williams allegedly told police she was trying to run down someone else and hit the wrong person. She is now in the Allegheny County Jail. MARCH 18—Daniel A. Carpenter, a 42-year-old Black male died in the hospital one day after being shot while sitting in his car on Shetland Street in Larimer in the middle of the afternoon. Despite eye-witnesses and possible surveillance footage, Pittsburgh police have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is urged to call 412-323-7161. MARCH 28—Calvin Walker, a 39-year-old Black male, was fatally shot when he and another man got into an argument over a parking space with Neil Chandler, 42, on West Oak Street in Homestead. Police said Chandler shot both men during the altercation. Walker died late at the hospital the other man was treated and released. Chandler is in the Allegheny County Jail. MARCH 30—Kenneth Baptiste Jr., a 27-year-old Black male, was found by Pittsburgh police and emergency responders with a gunshot wound to the chest in the 800 block of Murtland Avenue in Homewood. He was transported to UPMC Presbyterian but died from his wounds. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh Homicide at 412-323-7161. MARCH 30—Andre Jordan, a 41-year-old Black male, was found by Pittsburgh police and emergency responders with multiple gunshot wounds in a hallway of an apartment in the 3000 block of Cordell Place in Arlington. He was taken to UPMC Mercy where he died from his injuries. Police are asking anyone with information to call 412-323-7161. February Homicides (4) FEB. 2—Tre-Quan Tyre Embry, a 22-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times in the head on East 17th Street in Homestead. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Allegheny County detectives have not yet identified a suspect and ask anyone with information to call the Tipline at 1-833-255-8477. FEB. 4—Aaron Wade, an 18-year-old Black male from Munhall, was found lying in the front yard of a home on Plymouth Street in Duquesne Heights with multiple gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Pittsburgh homicide detectives have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call 412-3237800. FEB. 18—Norman Clarence Manuel, a 37-year-old Black male, was discovered by medics lying in the street in the 400 block of Enright Court in East Liberty with a gunshot wound to the chest. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Anyone with information is asked to call Pittsburgh homicide detectives at 412-323-7800. FEB. 25—Wilbert Barber, a 58-year-old Black male, was fatally shot when answering the doorbell of a home in the 300 block of Fifth Avenue in Rankin. County police said the killers fired through the door, hitting him twice. They have not yet identified any suspects. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tipline at 1-833-255-8477. January Homicides (5) JAN. 9—Jonathan Freeman, a 16-year-old Black male, was fatally shot when bullets tore through the wall of a friend’s house in the 7300 block of Susquehanna Street in Homewood where he’d gone to play video games. Pittsburgh police have not yet identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call 412323-7800. JAN. 11––Josiah Battle-Davis, a 26-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot in an SUV parked in the 200 block of Glenwood Avenue in Hazelwood. Pittsburgh police have not identified a suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call 412323-7800. JAN. 14—Tramaine Lamar Solomen, a 30-year-old Black male, was found by Wilkinsburg police shot multiple times lying in the street in the 1500 block of Marlboro Avenue. He died at the hospital three hours later. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the Allegheny County police tipline at 1-833-255-8477. JAN. 23––Heather Short, a 46-year-old White female, was allegedly strangled to death with an extension cord and dumped in a wooded area near Sutersville in Westmoreland County in November. Allegheny county police arrested Dale Cooper, 36, of West Mifflin after her remains were found. Police said he admitted killing her because he feared she would tell a drug dealer he had robbed of $700 and an ounce of crack that it was him. Cooper is in the county jail awaiting trial. JAN. 26—Paul McMillan, a 48-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times in the parking lot of The Lounge on Verona in Penn Hills after getting into a fight with another man inside the bar, according to Allegheny County police. Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to the tipline at 1-833-2558477.
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Learn about hip-hop’s roots with New Horizon’s ‘Break it Down’ Plays at Falk School from Jan. 10-12 by Genea L. Webb For New Pittsburgh Courier
Although it’s a new decade, New Horizon Theater is taking its audience on a journey to the late 1970s and early ‘80s when hiphop was born with the production of “Break it Down,” a one-man show written, performed and produced by actor, producer, writer and playwright Herb Newsome. “Break it Down” is a multimedia show that tells the story of the infant days of hip-hop through a live performance of the four elements of the genre: DJing,
Emceeing, B-Boying and Graffiti Art. Newsome plays 10 characters using video, music, dance and graffiti art to showcase the resilience of a people who created an artform amid gang violence and inner-city deterioration. “I grew up in New York City and I grew up as a child of the hip-hop era and I’m a fan of history,” said Newsome, when asked why he decided to write “Break it Down.” “Once I started to learn about the early days of hip-hop, what it was like in New York City
Hip-Hop has “become the most popular music in the world right now, but they don’t really know the backstory to it…it’s more than music; it’s a culture.” -Herb Newsome
in the ‘70s and the cultural climate with urban decay and the city on the financial brink and about to go bankrupt. It was really intriguing.” Newsome said he wanted to tell the story of the infancy of hip-hop because, quite simply, “it’s become the most popular music in the world right now, but they don’t really know the backstory to it…it’s more than music; it’s a culture.” “Break it Down” will run for this upcoming weekend only, Jan. 10-12, at the Falk School/University of Pittsburgh, 4060 Allequippa St. Tickets are: $20 for general admission; $5 for students and seniors; $10 for groups of 10 or more people attending the same performance. Tickets can be purchased at brownpapertickets.com. Sponsors for the production include The Heinz Endowments, Pittsburgh Council on the Arts, The Pittsburgh Foundation, Chris Moore Communications Inc., The Regional Asset District and Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council. Newsome, who received his Master of Fine Arts in acting from Penn State University and splits his time between New York and
Los Angeles, is no stranger to the New Horizon Theater stage or the Pittsburgh theater scene. He has performed his one-man show, “Freeman in Paris,” for New Horizon Theater. “Freeman in Paris” won the 2011 Humanities Scriptwriting Award presented by the Institute of African American Research at UNC-Chapel Hill. He has also performed five of August Wilson’s plays: “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “Jitney,” “Fences,” “Radio Golf” and “Piano Lesson.” “This guy brings all of these characters and personalities to the stage and you forget you are dealing with one person,” New Horizon Theater’s Joyce Meggerson-Moore said of Newsome. “I’m hoping the audience will come based on that and based on the acting. I think it’s going to touch more than just the young people. It talks about the history of hip-hop and a lot of times we don’t know that and it’s going to be good to know…the history of this music.” “I’ll be doing some rhyming and some graffiti art,” Newsome said. “I was in my formative years in the late ‘80s, early ‘90s, so I wasn’t around when hip-hop start-
HERB NEWSOME ed but I grew up 10 blocks from the Wu-Tang Clan and Ghostface Killa lived in the building next to me and when they came out it was a big thing. Walking down the street, hip-hop was just there.
Newsome added: “I want people to walk away knowing more than they knew when they walked into the room and I want them to walk away dancing and wanting to learn more about hip-hop.”
Time is short for the Steelers, and vote Trump out before the body bags start coming home! :10—Alright, boys and girls, let’s get this out of the way so we can get on with our lives! #1. Stop hating on “The Duck,” he did what was asked of him and fared well under the circumstances. He won three games for ya. #2. True, there’s no excuse for six interceptions in two
the ball at will. #3. Where was the best defense in football when needed? #4. Really...a trick play with a rookie and your running back that was out for three weeks? C’mon man! #5. Right now they gotta go get a bona fide QB just in case, a new offensive coordinator or new play-caller, some
Bill Neal games. Unless, of course, you blame three of them on the play called as I did. Many of the plays should never have been called. For example, the end zone throw that was called... and they were running
Trevin Jones’ HBCU men’s basketball rankings, Jan. 6, 2020 1. Fayetteville State 2. Stillman 3. Tennessee State 4. Talledega 5. Xavier (LA) 6. Virginia Union 7. West Virginia State 8. Tougaloo 9. Virginia State 10. Dillard 11. Bowie State 12. Miles College 13. Livingstone 14. Grambling State 15. Lemoyne-Owen 16. Langston 17. Tuskegee 18. Bethune Cookman 19. Texas Southern 20. Johnson C. Smith 21. North Carolina Central 22. Elizabeth City State 23. Alcorn State 24. Morehouse 25. Hampton (Trevin Jones spearheads Urban Media Today’s coverage of Black Collegiate Athletics. To hear the latest podcasts, visit www.urbanmediatoday.com.)
electric charges to wake the O-line up and last but not least, a real punter!!! I know you weren’t thinking of that one, were ya? :09—If you saw the Vikings upset the Saints with the illegal pushoff by Kyle Rudolph in the end zone on Sunday, Jan. 5, you will understand if you hear shouts coming from “Nu Orleans” —“No Justice, No Peace!” Robbed in plain sight. Again. :08—Nonetheless, here’s how it stacks up. The Vikings stole one from the Saints, 26-20, the Texans beat the Bills 22-19, the Ti-
tans sent the Patriots on vacation 20-13 and the Seahawks clipped the Eagles 17-9. This weekend, it’s time for the Divisional Round in the NFL. This Saturday, Jan. 11, it’s Vikings at 49ers and Titans at Ravens, and on Sunday, Jan. 12, it’s Texans at Chiefs and Seahawks at Packers. You’re welcome. :07—BTW, pitchers report to Spring Training on Feb. 12. Just thought you would want to know how many days you have before you can start complaining about how bad the Pirates are. Sorry but it’s my job to keep you informed. :06—I know it’s been a long time coming and Lord knows I’ve been waiting to shout it out but “The Lakers are Back, baby!” Thanks to my main man LeBron James. WTF??? :05—By now you know my roots are deeply embedded in Pitt everything, so this is to get you started. Get to a Pitt basketball game ASAP. They’re back! Coach Jeff Capel, former Duke star and coach, has the team playing hard and with a new attitude that shouts defense, team work, toughness and above all, the “we” word, not the “they” word. True enough they lost a close one to Wake Forest this past Saturday with coach Danny
DEVLIN “DUCK” HODGES (Photo by Courier photographer Brian Cook Sr.) Manning, former Kansas legend, at the helm. It was in fact one of those games in the ACC you can and should win. But trust me, Coach Capel is the right man with the right plan for Pitt. :04—Oh, speaking of the Steelers picking up a QB, tell me again why Colin Kaepernick can’t be the new backup? Why not, he’s better than Duck and Rudolph on his worst day. I am just saying!
:03—Look, all I am saying here is time is short. You’ve got Ben a year or two— maybe, the O-line for maybe a year, a defense ready to tear it up now, three good receivers, a very good return man and running backs in Conner and Snell you can play with. I am just saying, again! :02—Here ya go and you can take these to the bank. Hollywood award season is here so...Best Actor—Joaquin Phoenix— “Joker.”
Best Actress—Charlize Theron— “Bombshell.” That should get ya started. :01—I know I keep preachin’ to ya in hopes that you get it. But you folks are gonna wake up to the truth and why the assassination of Iran top General Qasem Soleimani came while the impeachment hearings were on. Wake up, people!!! Vote Trump out before the body bags start coming home. :00—GAME OVER.
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
TOP STORIES OF 2019 ‘Not guilty’ verdict levied in Antwon Rose II death top Courier story of 2019 TOP STORIES FROM A1
cause if we really wanted to stop police brutality, if we really wanted to stop the incidences of Black children being shot in the back, then this cop would have been held accountable. But he wasn’t, so the cycle starts over again.” Representative Lee, along with fellow state Rep. Ed Gainey, thereafter drafted a House bill proposal that would change the language in the state laws pertaining to police use of force. The trial, the verdict, and the aftermath—which, by all accounts, were peaceful protests—is the New Pittsburgh Courier’s top story of 2019. There were other important stories that the Courier covered in 2019, including the untimely, unfortunate shooting death of Pittsburgh police officer Calvin Hall. He was shot in Home-
wood on July 14 and died on July 17. He was just 36 years old. An investigation revealed Officer Hall was attempting to break up a dispute between people on Monticello Street, but was shot in the back three times, police say, by Christian Bey, 30. “On July 14, when Officer Calvin Hall was shot, and for three days after that, he fought for his life…his death meant something,” said Rev. Earlene Coleman at his public funeral at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall, July 23. “It meant that peacemakers still survive. That we’re all not about violence, but the heart, the caring heart, still lives. His death meant that in our communities, we must come together, for that was his desire. His death meant that we can still stand, and stand for what’s right.”
OFFICER CALVIN HALL
Pittsburghers—and many across the nation— couldn’t believe their eyes when they watched a video posted to Facebook that showed two Black women from Pittsburgh being beaten by employees of a local Exxon gas station on Brighton Road on the North Side. The encounter occurred on Sept. 20, as sisters Ashia and Jamila Regan were trying to alert the employees about a faulty gas pump, which spilled gas onto the ground that had already been paid for by the sisters. A confrontation ensued, which occurred both inside and outside the store. Three men, Scott Hill, Sukhjinder Sadhra, and Bakar Singh, were charged with simple assault. To this day, the gas station remains closed. African Americans continued to make inroads on the political scene in 2019. Chardae Jones became the youngest Black female ever to become Braddock mayor, while Olivia Bennett, a Black woman, won a seat on Allegheny County Council. Devon Taliaferro, another Black woman, won an election to the Pittsburgh School Board. Quintin Bullock, DDS, got some company in African Americans who are leading educational institutions. Bullock, the current president of Community College of Allegheny County, was delighted to see Roger Davis named president of Community College of Beaver County. And Alicia B. Harvey-Smith, Ph.D., was named president of Pittsburgh Technical College. In the Hill District, 2019 saw more changes. The Shop ‘n’ Save grocery store located on Centre Avenue closed its doors in March, with nothing in its place as of yet. The Hill House Association officially dis-
ON MARCH 25, 2019, an estimated 1,500 students, many of them high school students, descended upon Downtown Pittsburgh to protest the not guilty verdict rendered in the Michael Rosfeld trial. They met at the City-County Building, and marched down Grant Street, onto Liberty Avenue, and eventually to the intersection of Smithfield Street and the Boulevard of the Allies, where Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Emmai Alaquiva captured this overhead photo of the massive crowd. solved operations, with the historic Hill House building sold to Emeka Onwugbenu of E Properties, in association with the Hill Community Development Corporation. Marimba Milliones, with the Hill CDC, announced in late 2019 the creation of the New Granada Square Apartments, named after the famed former theatre on Centre. Construction of the new apartments is scheduled for later this year.
A SCREEN SHOT of two men beating Jamila Regan outside the Exxon gas station on Brighton Road, Sept. 20, 2019.
YOUTH SUPPORTERS carry a portrait of the late Antwon Rose II during a march Downtown.
JAMILA REGAN is comforted by attorney Todd Hollis as she speaks to reporters, Sept. 27, 2019.
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Take charge of your health today. Be informed. Be involved. Mental Health and Young Adults
ESTHER BUSH This month, the “Take Charge of Your Health Today” page focuses on mental health and how it affects young adults. Erricka Hager and Bee Schindler, community engagement coordinators, University of Pittsburgh’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute, and Esther L. Bush, president and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, spoke about this topic. EH: Happy New Year, Ms. Bush! I hope you had a great holiday season. I love the beginning of the year because it’s a great time to set new goals for the year. It’s also a great time to start taking care of yourself physically and mentally. Thank you for taking some time to talk with us about a growing public health concern. EB: Happy New Year to you, too, Erricka and Bee. Not only is it a new year but it is a new decade. I’m excited about this new year and decade, as well as discussing this topic with the both of you. As you both know, we have multiple leadership programs for young adults at the Urban League. The topic of mental health and young adults is not only timely, but it is necessary. BS: Yes, depression rates appear to be on the rise for teenagers and young adults in the United States. Dr. Cecile Ladouceur, associate professor of psychiatry and of psychology, and director of the Cognitive-Affective Neuroscience and Development Lab at the University of Pittsburgh, agrees that depression rates are on the rise. But she also mentions that simply speaking with a health care professional won’t capture everyone who is experiencing mental illness. EB: Wow. Thank you for that information, Bee. I didn’t realize so many young folks were being diagnosed with depression. I also didn’t know adolescent girls were twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression as adolescent boys. It is unfortunate that the needs of young adults aren’t being met. We often encourage our readers to have conversations with their health care providers. However, if they aren’t fully being treated, how can we ensure they are getting the care they need? EH: Yes, Ms. Bush. Interestingly, Dr. Ladouceur’s work focuses on addressing some of those gaps in care. They hope that ﬁndings from the Mood and Brain Circuitry in Adolescence (MBA) study will help identify new intervention strategies. These strategies will educate health care professionals on how to best identify depression in adolescents before symptoms appear. EB: What is one way we can partner with Dr. Ladouceur’s team to help educate our readers about this growing concern? BS: To sign up for the research study, you can search the Pitt+Me registry for the MBA study or call 1-866-438-8230. But, if you are in need of support now, I really like how local crisis interventions—like Resolve Crisis Center—want folks to understand that people should be able to name their own crises; there are no set boxes for mental health. If you feel like you are in need of immediate services, reach out. Resolve’s child and adolescent crisis team also helps young folks and family members with coping skills and teaches ways to prevent a crisis by looking for triggers. Resolve can be reached by calling 1-888-796-8226. EB: What a great way for us to kick off this New Year, Erricka and Bee. I’m so glad we are talking about this at the start of 2020. I encourage each reader to review and access the resources listed on this page. If you have any questions, the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh has a Health Education Ofﬁce where you can get answers to your questions and be connected to these resources as well. EH: Thank you for your time, Ms. Bush. I wish you and all of our readers a happy and healthy 2020. Next month, we continue talking about the importance of naming racism and how it contributes to poor health outcomes in the United States.
Adolescent depression and mood symptoms If 100 young people were Two areas, in particular, are getin a room, 20 of them ting the attention of Dr. Ladouceur would be affected by deand others: Young people who pression. This rate continidentify as women and adolesues to increase according cents who are not white. Dr. to Cecile D. Ladouceur, Ladouceur is also interested in PhD, associate professor spaces where those two identities of psychiatry, School of intersect. Medicine, and of psycholo“The rate of depression, pargy, Dietrich School of Arts ticularly in adolescent girls, has and Sciences, University of increased dramatically over the Pittsburgh. past couple of decades,” says Dr. But talking to a health Ladouceur, adding, “Yet, we know very little about the cause of decare professional may not capture everyone expepression and which medications and psychological treatments are riencing mental health issues. Dr. Ladouceur best suited for the speciﬁc type of mood symptoms.” wants to make the process of identifying mental health The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that the issues easier for providers. While 20 percent of all number of all children age 6 through 17 who have ever been youths are depressed, it does not look the same for diagnosed with either anxiety or depression has increased from each person. About a third experience mania symp5.4 percent in 2003 to 8 percent CECILE D. LADOUCEUR, PHD toms that look like being in 2007 to 8.4 percent in 2012. impulsive and risky, and The MBA study team says that can increase the possibility of suicide. When young many racial and ethnic groups have similar types of people have these mixed features, special treatment mental health issues as white people. However, the is needed but can often go undetected in the typical effects of mental health problems in former groups may clinical process. last longer. The MBA team is intentionally recruiting Researchers with the Mood and Brain Circuitry in youths of color at or above the percentage of those Adolescent (MBA) study are recruiting children who are who live in the region. not currently on psychiatric medicine. As a clinical child psychologist, Dr. Ladouceur wants “The goal of the research project is to deﬁne the brain to do research so that young people have a better and behavioral aspects of adolescent depression and chance of avoiding long-term developmental efto examine how these are related to mood symptoms fects. Currently, the team is educating local therapists over two years,” says Dr. Ladouceur. “We are lookabout the different types of teen mood symptoms. They ing at how the brain reacts to happy and rewarding hope to enhance the tools therapists currently have information, as well as how adolescents sleep and their that identify depression in teens. symptoms change over time.” “Advances in neuroscience research have shown that Dr. Ladouceur hopes that ﬁndings from the study the brain systems involved in mood regulation undergo will help create new methods to identify which young important maturational changes during adolescence people with depression might experience mania. Then through adulthood,” says Dr. Ladouceur. “This means the research team can provide strategies even before that adolescence may be the ideal time to intervene in these symptoms emerge. order to have longer-lasting effects on mental health.” AYISAT BISIRIYU, 14, a student at Winchester Thurston School, wants to raise awareness and open discussion surrounding mental health issues that can affect teenagers. Bisiriyu points to social media as one of the reasons that some young people feel pressure and experience feelings of inadequacy. Source: https://www. publicsource.org/mentalillness-and-teens-its-hardto-tell-who-is-joking-andwho-is-crying-for-helpwhats-my-responsibility/ (Photo by Maranie Rae Staab/PublicSource/File)
Resources for Teens and Families LOCAL:
re:solve crisis network 1-888-796-8226 If you need help and want to contact local services, contact the re:solve crisis network. Re:solve crisis offers crisis counseling and support, referrals, and intervention services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The hotline, mobile crisis unit, and walk-in center are all free to residents of Allegheny county. PA 2-1-1 | United Way 2-1-1 Connects people of Southwestern Pennsylvania to housing, community, health, and disaster services. The service is available by phone or online, offers 24/7 access and is conﬁdential.
National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) or 1-800-273-TALK (8255) Both numbers are toll-free, 24-hour, conﬁdential hotlines which connect you to a trained counselor at the nearest suicide crisis center.
Join us for Dinner & Dialogue to explore links between racism and health Who: The Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, New Pittsburgh Courier, UPMC Center for Engagement & Inclusion, University of Pittsburgh’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), and YOU. What: We invite you to join in a conversation getting at the root causes of issues related to race. We hope to think about the effects of racism on health and mental health. Speciﬁcally, we are hoping to discuss ways to address and reduce racial disparities. The ﬂoor will be open to robust dialogue. The free and open to the public Dinner and Dialogue series will discuss Allegheny County-speciﬁc health disparities and current research and resource opportunities. Researchers and commu-
nity leaders will be on hand to present ﬁndings and explore solutions. Dinner and child care will be provided. Where: Community Engagement Center in Homewood at 622 North Homewood Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15208 When: February 20, 2020 from 5:30-7:00 p.m. Why: This unique event seeks to boost community health education and advocacy, increase diverse participation in clinical and translational research and encourage individuals to become empowered and actively engaged in their own health and well-being. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, number in your party, and if you have any food allergies. Please let us know if you will require child care.
LIFESTYLES New Pittsburgh Courier
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Lifestyles Report What’s with 2020? By now you have heard that someone left a $2,020 tip to an IHop waitress on January 1. The person who left the tip was Sixth Sense and Blue Bloods actor Donnie Wahlberg. His wife, Jenny McCarthy, tweeted out a copy of the receipt. Their total bill was only $78 and on the bill he said, “Happy New Year and 2020 tip challenge.” Say it isn’t so, is there really a tip challenge and please, just so you know, I cannot afford to leave anyone a tip for $2,020. Reportedly the tip challenge started in Michigan when Danielle Franzoni, a server at Thunder Bay River restaurant, received a $2,020 tip on a $23 bill. So how do you know you have been challenged? If I find out I will let you know. I guess I understand all of the hype about 2020; after all, we are moving into a new decade and we are out of the teens. I actually got caught up with the 2020 hoopla. I was expecting some company on New Year’s Day and I wanted to have 2020 glasses for everyone. In years past they have been very easy to find. Since the idea did not hit me until New Year’s Eve, I ended up driving to several places trying to find the glasses. Needless to say they were all sold out but I found a few other 2020 trinkets and we had fun with those. I’m sure a lot of people started out on January 1, 2020, without WPXI. If you are a Verizon customer like I am, channel 11 is currently not airing. I’m glad they waited until after SNL with Eddie Murphy to pull the plug. I feel like I’m being held hostage. Perhaps by the time you read this these companies will have come to some type of agreement. Just so you know, here is what is happening,... WPXI, the local NBC station in Pittsburgh, was one of four stations owned by Cox Media Group that were removed from Verizon Fios after the two sides could not come to terms on a new retransmission agreement. Cox Media Group has made every effort to get Verizon to restore these stations to their lineup and will continue to negotiate in good faith to reach a resolution as quickly as possible. Here is what Verizon wants you to do if you are a customer who has been impacted, reach Verizon at 1-800837-4966 to tell them to restore WPXI-TV and Channel 11 News. “I have been impacted so are you telling me that if we get WPXI back that we will have to pay more money? Or will Verizon suck up the increase?” Here is what I say...“just use the money that your long-time customers have been paying for decades, the ones who pay for bundles and never use their landline phones, the ones who have hundreds of channels they never watch, the loyal customers that see advertisements of specials for new customers but nothing for the forever customers.’” In the words of Homey de Clown, I don’t think so.
PRESIDENT’S FAMILY SHOWS SUPPORT
Pittsburgh Council of Men Celebrate the Season by Debbie Norrell Lifestyles Editor
DAPPER COUPLE—Reggie and Gail Jackson
On Nov. 30, 2019, at the Comfort Inn Rodi Road, The Pittsburgh Council of Men held their annual holiday dinner dance. PCM was joined by friends and family from hundreds of miles away. Guests enjoyed a great meal, dancing and yours truly as the emcee. PCM came together in 1972 when a small group of men had an idea that something needed to be done about the oppressiveness and discomposure that existed in the community among youth and some of its senior citizens. In the fall of 1972, Attorney George W. Shields, a PCM member, facilitated the incorporation as a non-profit organization of Pennsylvania. Their first charity ball was held on Nov. 24, 1973 at the Blackridge Civic Association. Over the years PCM has donated thousands of dollars to various agencies and community organizations. President Don Trent says new members are welcome.
IN FROM CHICAGO—Wanza Wilson with sister, Arnita Stagger
PCM MEMBER Larry Victum with Gwen Victum
SELFIE TIME—Kim Cadney, Milton Oliver and Diane Stotts
CHRIS PERRY SELLS 50/50 TICKETS
PCM MEMBER—David and Dawn Whitehead
PCM MEMBER TED VASSER with Magali Curiel
PCM PRESIDENT—Don Trent with Marsha Trent (Photos by Debbie Norrell)
UNITED RAYS CORVETTE CLUB GATHERS FOR A PHOTO
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
New Evangelistic Ministries celebrates four years of service
Praise & Worship ST. BENEDICT THE MOOR CATHOLIC CHURCH Crawford & Centre Ave. Pgh., PA 15219 412-281-3141 Sunday Mass 10:30 A.M. www.stbtmchurch.org
East Liberty Presbyterian Church Rev. Dr. Randy Bush, Senior Pastor 412-441-3800 116 S. Highland Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15206
REV. BRENDA GREGG, left, mother in ministry to New Evangelistic Ministries Pastor Dorothy Stubbs. (Photos by Courier photographer J.L. Martello)
Worship on Sunday: Journey Worship...........8:45 a.m. Sanctuary Worship...........11 a.m. Taize -Wednesdays.........7 p.m.
Curious about Quakerism? You Are Welcome at our Meetings for Worship Sundays at 10:30 a.m. Pittsburgh Friends Meeting 4836 Ellsworth Avenue www.quaker.org/pghpamm/
BRYANNA GREGG, left, among those at the House of Manna in Homewood, which houses New Evangelistic Ministries, during the Jan. 5 service.
Join our growing Praise and Worship Church Community! For rate information, call 412481-8302, ext. 128.
PASTOR STAN HOOD
TELL US ABOUT YOUR NEXT CHURCH EVENT! We want to place your event in our Church Circuit weekly calendar! Send info to: New Pittsburgh Courier 315 E. Carson St. Pittsburgh PA 15219
ELDER KAREN COTTRELL SMITH
Attention local churches! Tell us about your next event! Email information to: email@example.com or... New Pittsburgh Courier Church Circuit, 315 East Carson St. Pittsburgh, Pa. 15219 IN MEMORIAM
PASTOR DOROTHY STUBBS, founder of New Evangelistic Ministries.
January 4th of every year will mean as it always has, a need to say happy birthday Junie. Our son, brother, father, cousin, nephew and friend. Carl D Mitchell, Jr. when you left us physically on November 13, 2019, God knew that we would have the difďŹ cult task of remaining on this earth without you. On your birthday this year, next year and every year to come, we have the blessing of celebrating in our own special way a life that we hold dear. We miss you Junie, Happy Birthday
Or Email us! religion@ newpittsburgh courier.com
The Courier is THE VOICE of Black Pittsburgh.
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
! E V LI
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
‘HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS’
An annual Pittsburgh formal event, presented by Pittsburgh’s own Howard Bullard Jr. and friends Howard Bullard Jr., Kevin Gains, B.J. Flenory; three Penn Hills High School alumni who desired to create an event for African American professionals who were from Pittsburgh, no longer resided in Pittsburgh, but would definitely be coming back to the Steel City for Christmas. Twelve years later, “Home For The Holidays” is still going strong, some say stronger than ever. This year’s formal event, geared to Black professionals ages 25 and up, was held at Revel + Roost near Market Square, Downtown, Dec. 22, 2019. About 300 people attended the event. Bullard, a 2000 Penn Hills High graduate and Howard University alum, got bit with the event marketing bug during his days at the HBCU. These days, he lives in New York City, acquiring the knowledge of how to establish oneself as a marketing guru and use the knowledge to build the entertainment scene for an untapped market in Pittsburgh—the young Black professionals. “Sometimes in Pittsburgh, the good vibe, the good music with the right crowd…it’s hard to get all that at one event,” Bullard told the New Pittsburgh Courier. “It is just a huge void.” His marketing company, Relative & Co., is looking to fill that void. Bullard, whose father is a noted educator in Pittsburgh (and the former principal of Schenley High School), hosts a number of events throughout the year in Pittsburgh, but “Home For The Holidays” is their signature event, giving more Pittsburgh Black professionals an added bonus in their stocking each Christmas.
HOWARD BULLARD JR., left, wants to fill the void of a lack of events for Black professionals in Pittsburgh.
HOWARD BULLARD JR., a 2000 Penn Hills High School graduate.
Photos by Matt Urban
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
‘HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS’
An annual Pittsburgh formal event, presented by Howard Bullard Jr. and friends
Photos by Matt Urban
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
BUSINESS New Pittsburgh Courier
When Trump contemplates war
J. Pharoah Doss B6
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
Find what you need from jobs to cars to housing B4, B5
Tips for the best financial you in the New Year Actor Hill Harper has the answers (StatePoint) At the same time that Americans are feeling the financial pinch of the holidays, they’re gearing up for 2020, with their top two goals being so save more and increase their credit scores, according to a national consumer survey by Experian. Almost three out of four consumers surveyed are motivated to improve their finances. To reach their New Year goals, survey respondents say they’ll spend less money to improve their credit score (59 percent) and pay off credit card debt (58 percent). To help get you started, Experian Boost ambassador, actor and financial empowerment activist, Hill Harper is providing these money tips: •Create a Financial Blueprint: The first step is to create a blueprint identifying your money, saving and HILL HARPER investing goals. Examine your priorities and determine how much money you require to meet your basic needs. From there, you should assess what else you need to be happy and how you can use money as a resource to achieve it. •Assess the Cost of Being You: If your expenses or debt outpace your income, then it’s very difficult to live the best version of your life. Rather than continuously playing catch-up, track your spending to discover new ways to reduce monthly expenses. Apply those savings towards self-investment. •Understand Smart vs. Dumb Money: Not all dollars spent hold the same value. Knowing the difference between “smart” and “dumb” money is key to building a solid financial foundation, according to Harper, who says that “dumb ones” is spending on thins like credit card interest or items that lose value quickly, whereas “smart money” is spending on thins that pay dividends, like and education or home. •Control Your Credit Score: A good credit score can help you gain access to capital with better terms at affordable rates. To improve it, pay bills on time and use a resource like Experian Boost, which is a free online tool that allows you to add positive payment history from utility and telecom bills to your Experian credit file, which can increase your SEE HARPER B2
EXCITEMENT GROWS as Saloam and Pastor Shawn Knox work toward the opening of My Business Space in Swissvale. (Photo by Diane I. Daniels)
Saloam Knox, husband leading the charge in credit improvement by Diane I. Daniels For New Pittsburgh Courier
The last quarter of 2019 saw a lot of conversation in the city focused on the findings of Pittsburgh’s Inequality Across Gender and Race report. Like many other studies conducted in the region concerning equity, the results painted a bleak picture for African Americans and, in particular, Black women. Conducted by the City of Pittsburgh Gender Equity Commission, the results indicated that gender and racial inequality persist across health, income, employment and education in Pittsburgh. With a new year and decade upon us,
In 2020, make sure you’re improving your credit score questions linger. What can be done to change and improve conditions and situations of the area’s vulnerable population? Doing her part to making a difference in people’s lives and in the community, Saloam (Bey) Knox strives to assist people on a personal and business level where applicable by providing credit repair, credit education, and focused financial management. Knox, the founder and CEO of Credit Power, LLC, says, “We position people’s future by repairing their past. Our mission is to
guide you on your journey to becoming financially healthy, attractive to lenders, and credit power ready.” Her commitment and message of self-sufficiency in breaking the generational chains of poverty to transform communities causes Knox’s peers to consider her a “hustler,” defined as an enterprising person determined to succeed. Flattered by their assessment of her, Knox, in turn, defines herself as a serial entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in the financial world. A champion of economic community development, she says she understands that personal financial health is a fundamental buildSEE CREDIT B2
Comcast Names Thaddeus Lee Regional VP of Project Management and Customer Experience The New Pittsburgh Courier has learned that Thaddeus Lee has been named regional vice president of the Project Management Office (PMO) and Customer Experience (CX) for its Keystone Region, which comprises western, central and northeastern Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio, northern West Virginia and the Maryland panhandle. In this role, Lee leads a team that manages construction proj-
ects, product launches, retail store openings and improvements to the Xfinity customer experience. Lee joined Comcast’s Keystone Region in November 2016 as director, Care, leading the retention queue in the Lebanon Call Center. Lee served as interim director of Comcast’s Northeast Division’s Billing and Retention Centers of Excellence and was recently named a director for the con-
solidated Customer Care Center in Harrisburg. Previously, Lee served as the Market Development manager for Comcast Business in Comcast’s West Division based out of the San Francisco Bay Area. He holds an MBA from the University of San Francisco and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Theology from Christian Life College. Lee and his family live in Lancaster.
The games China plays to avoid trade tariffs It has been more than 20 years since we first noticed how China slips it goods into the United States void of any tariff or duty. They aren’t that clever and some of the games they play are downright blatant. We first started noticing this during a trip to Kenya. Our chapter there was quite proud of a new Free Trade Zone 9 (note that free trades zones are ripe for corruption). They took us on a tour. Part of it was a textile mill that had contracts with Target, Walmart and JC Penney’s. The place was pristine—no sweat shop here by a long shot. The temperature did not exceed 75 degrees which was a lot cooler than the outdoors. The machinery was high tech and noticeably quite clean which was not a usual sight in industrial Africa. It was running at full capacity and during questioning we learned that the place was being run by entrepreneurs from Malaysia. The workers who seemed to be quite happy were being paid the Kenyan minimum wage which equated to $30 a month—not a day or a week but a month! Selling to some of the most profitable department stores on earth meant that their profit was quite serious. I remembered a few days before; we were confronted in the lobby of our hotel by a group known as the Kenyan Cotton Farmers Association. They voiced a complaint about their own nation not supporting their harvested cotton and would prefer to import it from abroad. I asked if we could walk through the supply warehouse.
There it was: Bales of cot- Harry C. Alford & Kay ton stacked to the ceiling and wall to wall. It must have taken three ship loads to bring all of it into the nation. Brought into the nation? Yes, this is what the association was complaining about. The bails were all marked “Product of China.” So, here we are Chinese cotton brought into Kenya to make children’s clothing to be sold in Target, J.C. Penney’s and Walmart stores throughout the good old USA. And it is duty free through the trade agreement known as the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act—AGOA. I would later tell our Kenyan chapter to refer to the trade agreement as the Asian Growth and Opportunity Act. They applauded and agreed. We have American consumers buying children’s clothing from traditional department stores and it is labeled Product of Kenya and they must get a good feeling about it. If they only knew. I quipped to some of the plant managers “Who really owns this building—Kabaki? (Kenyan President at the time) They replied, “No, it is in his sister’s name.” I then brought it up to the Minister of Trade
Beyond the Rhetoric
about our findings. He stated that the local cotton farmers were just sore losers and just need to work harder. He also said, “I don’t believe China grows cotton.” It was the same old story: Corruption staring us right in our face without shame. We first saw this in Kenya but would later see the same modus of operandi (M.O.) in Botswana, Ghana, South Africa, Equatorial Guinea and probably throughout all of Africa. China is making a fraud out of our trade agreements and our people in high places are letting them get away with it. How many palms get greased? We don’t really have to go over to Africa to see it happening. Why not look at what is happening in Haiti? Wherever there is a “Free Trade Zone” you will find this kind of corruption. Haiti is one of the most poverty stricken nations on earth. So, it is quite easy for it to obtain Free Zone status for products made there and shipped into the United States. It was not known to us at the time that what we saw in Kenya was rather “minor league” compared to what was happening closer to us in the Caribbean. China was
running a textile facility on the island. It was large enough to make men suits by the hundreds daily. That one plant was supplying chain stores in the United States like Joseph Banks. Things were going undetected and fine until the earthquake hit the island. The plant was destroyed for a few days. We say a few days as an engineering miracle was about to take place. The owners of the plant (in China) responded in quick military action. They put Boeing 747s in the air filled with replacement machinery, engineers, workers, cotton, etc. Within three days that destroyed plant was back into full operation and shipping to the United States once again like nothing happened. The revenue generated from this place selling Chinese cotton products to the United States by the tons on a nonstop basis must be mind boggling. Television reporters marveled at what was happening but not one person brought up the fact that this facility was making Chinese fabric into fashion items to be sold in United States stores and duty free. Where was the outrage? These two examples are just a few of the outrages we see in export/import abuse to the detriment of U.S. taxpayers. We shall continue. (Harry Alford is the co-founder, president/CEO of the National Black Chamber of Commerce ®. Kay DeBow is the co-founder, executive vice president of the Chamber.)
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
Studio Theatre names new associate artistic director The New Pittsburgh Cou- seau’s Pipeline featuring rier has learned that the an original score by 1Hood Studio Theatre and Artis- Media; Jen Silverman’s tic Director David Muse The Roommate starring are pleased to announce Tamara Tunie; and a dithat Reginald L. Douglas versity-forward production will join the organization of Oklahoma! Upcoming as its new associate artistic projects include productions director later this month. of Herb Newsome’s Break Douglas comes to Studio It Down, Angelica Chéri’s from City Theatre Compa- Berta, Berta at Baltimore’s ny in Pittsburgh, where he Everyman Theatre, and has served as Artistic Pro- the world premiere of Matt ducer since 2015. Schatz’s musical Untitled: A “Reg has distinguished Musical Comedy About Sehimself as a director, a rious Drama. producer, and an instiAs the artistic producer tutional-builder in equal of City Theatre Compameasure,” said Muse in a ny, Douglas line-produced, statement helped cuprovided rate, and to the Coudirected in rier. “His the theatre’s thoughtfulsix-show seaness about son and new the state of play develour art form, opment proadvocacy for grams; built emerging artistic initalent, and tiatives and commitment c om mu n it y REGINALD L. DOUGLAS to commuengagement nity engagement make partnerships including the me feel lucky to have him theater’s Directing & Proaround as we head into Stu- ducing fellowship program; dio’s fifth decade with am- played a vital role in fundbitious plans for the future. raising, marketing, and I’m excited to apply his strategic planning; and palpable enthusiasm to the helped spearhead the orgamadness we’re cooking up.” nization’s Equity, Diversity, “I am deeply honored and and Inclusion initiatives. humbled to join David and Throughout his tenure, he the dynamic team at Stu- championed local artists, dio, a theatre that I’ve long placing Pittsburgh talent at admired, led by a visionary the center of the company’s artistic leader,” said Doug- hiring and programming las. “D.C. has always been practices. Reginald serves on a favorite city of mine and the Board of Directors of the I am so excited to be joining National New Play Network this inspiring artistic com- and is also a guest lecturer at munity. I cannot wait to get the Eugene O’Neill Theater to work directing and pro- Center’s National Theatre ducing theatre that reflects, Institute. He is a member of engages, and empowers the the Stage Directors and Chomany diverse people that reographers Society. call this city home.” He has worked with EuDouglas is a director, pro- gene O’Neill Theater Cenducer, and advocate dedicated ter, TheaterWorks Hartford, to creating new work and sup- Contemporary American porting new voices. He has de- Theatre Festival, Everyman veloped and directed new work Theatre, Weston Playhouse, by Dominique Morisseau, Pittsburgh CLO, TheCori Thomas, Angelica Chéri, atreSquared, Playwrights’ Nikkole Salter, Amy Evans, Center, The Kennedy CenZakiyyah Alexander & Ima- ter, McCarter Theatre Cenni Uzuri, Matt Schatz, Brian ter, Florida Rep, Luna Stage, Quijada, Chisa Hutchinson, Harlem Stage, the wild projTearrance Arvelle Chisholm, ect, Pershing Square SignaJosh Wilder, Harrison David ture Center, Drama League, Rivers, Korde Arrington Tut- The Lark, and New York tle, a.k. payne, Craig “muMs” Theatre Workshop, where Grant, Jessica Dickey, Laura he was an inaugural 2050 Brienza, and Kevin R. Free, directing fellow. among others. Douglas is a graduate of Recent directorial high- Georgetown University, lights include the world where he earned a BA in premiere productions of An- Theatre & Performance gelica Chéri’s Berta, Berta, Studies and English, with Cori Thomas’ Citizens Mar- a concentration in African ket and Amy Evans’ The American Studies. Champion; August Wilson’s Douglas succeeds Matt Two Trains Running; Kemp Torney, who departs Studio Powers’ One Night in Mi- this spring to become the ami; Ngozi Anyanwu’s Good artistic director of TheatriGrief; Dominique Moris- cal Outfit in Atlanta.
THE OCC hopes stakeholders will carefully review the proposed changes and submit comments so that a final rule can be issued in the first half of 2020. (Photo: iStockphoto / NNPA)
Community Reinvestment Act changes expected to benefit low- and moderate-income communities Proposed changes to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) could lead to greatly enhanced investment in low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities around the country, according to Grovetta N. Gardineer, senior deputy comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). The OCC is soliciting comments on a proposal to modernize the CRA by clarifying what counts, updating where activity counts, measuring performance more objectively, and making reporting more timely and transparent. “The CRA has a very noble goal of making sure banks meet their responsibility for lending, investing in and servicing communities where they do business, with a focus on low- and moderate-income individuals and areas,” Gardineer said. “The statute remains a noble goal, but the implementation is outdated and, in many ways, ineffective.” The CRA was enacted in 1977 as a direct response to redlining, an unethical practice whereby banks and other lending institutions made it extremely
Commentary difficult, if not impossible, for residents of poor, inner-city communities to borrow money, get a mortgage, take out insurance or access other financial services. Redlining did not take into consideration an individual’s qualifications or creditworthiness. Gardineer explains that a primary reason the CRA needs updating is because the banking industry has changed fundamentally in the more than 40 years since it was implemented. “Among other things,” Gardineer adds, “we did not have the internet in 1977, and interstate branching was not available. “Banks were limited to where they had branches or where their home office was located, so they had a completely geographical approach,” she continued. “With all of the tremendous technological advance-
ments in recent years, banks now offer products and services across the country regardless of geography.” The OCC hopes stakeholders will carefully review the proposed changes and submit comments so that a final rule can be issued in the first half of 2020. Noting that the new CRA rules would fight displacement and harmful gentrification—a high priority in many minority communities—Gardineer points out that the OCC is making a concerted effort to work closely with such organizations as the NAACP and the National Urban League. To that end, OCC has invested the time to meet with thousands of concerned individuals “discussing the issues that need to be addressed.” Meetings are currently scheduled with Derrick Johnson, president
and CEO of the NAACP, and Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League. Another recent outreach effort to solicit public input included an Atlanta bus tour with Ambassador Andrew Young. There are still too many underserved communities in the U.S. that are “CRA desserts,” Gardiner notes. “No matter what their geographical footprint, we want banks to be able to offer a broad array of services to communities and individuals throughout the nation. “Given the wide spectrum of individuals who we know will benefit from this rule making process,” Gardiner said, “it is particularly important to the Comptroller to make sure that we spread a wide net, that we make ourselves available and that we share our vision. “We have really worked hard over the past two years,” she concluded, “closing a loophole that allowed wealthy people to get CRA credit for investing in LMI areas. That is not what CRA was ever intended to do. And that is being directly responsive to some of the feedback we have been receiving.”
Tips for the best financial you in 2020 HARPER FROM B1
score instantly. •New Year, New You: “We’re starting a new decade and what better opportunity is there to do a complete financial makeover?’ says Harper, who
recommends many other steps that will set you up for financial success, including building an emergency fund, securing health insurance, avoiding debt for unnecessary purchases and investing wisely.
“No one has a crystal ball, but given lower unemployment rates and low interest rates, 2020 could be a good year to have a plan for growth. A diversified portfolio for this next decade is a good portfolio,” says Harp-
er. More tips form Harper can be found at www.experian.com/education. While managing finances can seem intimidating, identifying trouble spots is the first step toward conquering your goals.
Local couple leading the charge on credit improvement CREDIT FROM B1
ing block of positioning families for sustainable generational wealth. Considering this being the start of the year, Knox suggests that everyone should know their credit status, which includes being aware of what is on their credit report and their credit score. “You need to know what creditors see when you apply for credit and understand what hurts or doesn’t harm your credit score.” The report, she explains, is a detailed breakdown of an individual’s credit history prepared by a credit bureau. Personal credit reporting agencies include Experian, Equifax and Trans Union. Dun and Bradstreet reports on business and commercial credit. A credit score is defined as a statistical number that evaluates a consumer’s creditworthiness and is based on credit history. Credit scores range from 300 to 850 with the higher the score depicting a more financially trustworthy a person. Services provided by Credit Power, LLC, include assisting in obtaining the credit report and analyzing the five components used in the rating which include credit or payment history, credit utilization, the length of credit history, new credit and the credit mixture which she considers the foundation. “Part of our services include challenging creditors, lenders, government agencies, and all three credit bureaus to permanently remove derogatory items from a client’s credit report. Together we design a strategic game plan to reach their goal.” Depending on each client’s goal and what’s on their credit report, the credit repair process can take anywhere from 30 days to 12 to 24 months. Knox says her clients range in age from 18 to 80 and are all ethnicities. Help is rendered on a personal and business level.
READY TO CHANGE SOMEONE’S LIFE—Sitting in her new office, Credit Power, LLC, CEO Saloam Knox encourages everyone to check their credit report. (Photo by Diane I. Daniels) A financial literacy advocate with over 20 years in collections, credit analyst, banking, and consumer industries, Knox herself has been a victim of identity theft. Experiencing firsthand the nightmare and disadvantages of not having a positive credit score, she says she learned a lot from the experience. Living in Virginia at the time, she said it took her nearly two years to get her credit restored. That incident occurred in 2011, and four years later, she established a credit restoration business in Virginia. In December 2017 she opened Credit Power, LLC, on Wylie Avenue in the Hill District. Today her
main office is located at 7424 Washington Avenue in Swissvale, the Hill District office is located at 2015 Centre Avenue. She still operates the Virginia office and employs five people. Originally from the Hill District, Knox is a 911 military veteran who served over seven years in government service. In addition to Credit Power, LLC, her business ventures include Higher Power Homes, Psalms Realty, Power Business Loans and My Business Space. Owned by she and her husband Pastor Shawn Knox, My Business Space, with the subtitle, “Where success is created,” Knox’s
business space “is exactly what it says,” she said. “It consists of business space for other small businesses. As a matter of fact, my businesses rent from this facility.” The Washington Avenue space consists of a shared office space area that can accommodate at least eight desks for entrepreneurs and includes a community business specialist to answer phones and assist in small administrative tasks. The building will include several larger office spaces, a state-of-the-art conference, meeting, workshop and lounge area. A gym area is planned for the lower level. Also an entrepreneur, Pastor Knox describes that he brings the spiritual component to the businesses. “Like life, you need a balance. You can’t just be driven by profits even though we are in business to make a profit. We also are in business to help people. In business, just like life, you need spiritual direction, so you don’t make the wrong business moves.” Recognizing his gift of mathematics, he says the patience and detail he has allows him to assist his wife in those areas which balance the two as a team. He also brings his knowledge and skills in the life insurance and real estate industry to their businesses which helps bring out their vision. As a team, he says they are stronger together. Saloam Knox’s thoughtful approach to unveiling the financial industries bestkept secrets is changing lives. In addition to her entrepreneurial ventures, she provides technical assistance for the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh’s Micro Loan Fund, is a member of the Community Land Trust Committee, the African American Chamber of Commerce of Western Pennsylvania, and the Wilkinsburg Chamber of Commerce. She also is the former recipient of the New Pittsburgh Courier’s “Women of Excellence” award.
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
The spirit of the Emancipation Proclamation is under attack again
Best wishes in politics for 2020 It has been a tumultuous year in national politics. In 2019, the House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald Trump on two charges, abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Trump became only the third U.S. president to be impeached. Before Trump, only two presidents had been impeached in U.S. history. Andrew Johnson was impeached in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1998. Neither was removed from office. Richard Nixon resigned in 1974 after articles of impeachment were drafted but before the House could vote on them. Trump is now set to face a Senate trial that will determine whether he is removed. The Republican-controlled Senate is highly unlikely to impeach him. Trump’s ouster will likely be left up to the voters who will get a chance to remove him from office in November. Our wish for the New Year is that a new president is elected. Our nation and the globe will benefit when the world’s most technologically powerful economy is no longer led by a leader as corrupt, divisive and reckless as Trump. Trump needs to be defeated in a clear and decisive win in both the popular vote and Electoral College. Along with the removal of Trump in November, there are many other wishes for 2020. We wish in the New Year that Congress seriously tackles gun violence. Hopefully, a new president and new Congress will pass new common-sense gun control laws including stricter background checks for gun purchasers and making it a felony to sell, manufacture, purchase or possess assault weapons and certain magazines. We also wish in 2020 that our elected officials work to expand upon the progress made under the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. The ACA has brought health coverage to 20 million people and millions more whose health care and coverage have been affected by changes in the 2010 law including such popular provisions as protections for those with pre-existing conditions, Medicaid expansion and the ability for children under the age of 26 to remain on their parents’ insurance. We wish for a health care plan in 2020 that will lower costs and cover millions more. We wish that lawmakers and policy makers seriously address widening income inequality, a problem that further divides the nation by race and class. Despite a surging economy, the gap between the richest and the poorest U.S. households is now the largest it’s been in the past 50 years—despite the median U.S. income hitting a new record in 2018, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. There are many other serious problems facing the nation, including the rising astronomical cost of higher education, excessive police force, gentrification and increasing homelessness. There are also international problems that the U.S. should lead the world in addressing, such as the climate change crisis. Significant progress can be made in solving these problems if acted upon by committed and courageous political leaders. What has been lacking is the political will. Yet as the central message of the holiday season reminds us, we can never give up hope. Jan. 1, 2020, marked the beginning of a New Year and a new decade. We get another chance to get it right. Happy New Year!
Rod Doss Editor & Publisher Stephan A. Broadus Assistant to the Publisher Allison Palm
Rob Taylor Jr.
John. H. Sengstacke
Editor & Publisher Emeritus (1912-1997)
(TriceEdneyWire.com)—Wednesday, Jan. 1, began the new year. It also marked the anniversary of a new America. On Jan. 1, 1863, as the Civil War, the bloodiest of America’s wars, approached the end of its second year, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring “that all persons held as slaves” within the rebellious states “are and henceforward shall be free.” The Proclamation was limited to fit wartime necessities. It applied only to the states that had seceded from and were at war with the United States, leaving slavery untouched in loyal border states. It also exempted the parts of the Confederacy that had already come under Northern control. And, of course, the freedom it promised depended on the victory of the North. Yet, the Proclamation’s effect was far more expansive than its terms. It transformed the war into a war of freedom. As the U.S. Archives summarizes, “Every advance of federal troops expanded the domain of freedom.” And of course, it dramatically aided the Union cause, with nearly 200,000 Black soldiers and sailors fighting for the Union. The Proclamation was the beginning. Upon victory, Congress passed three amendments to the Constitution—the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments—designed to finish the job of transforming the country that was, in the words of Abraham Lincoln, “half slave and half free” to one in which all were guaranteed—under the Constitution—the” blessings of liberty.” The 13th Amendment outlawed slavery and involuntary servitude;
Jesse Jackson Sr.
Commentary the 14th began to define the rights of citizens and guaranteed equal protection under the law; the 15th prohibited discrimination in the right to vote on the basis of “race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” (Ironically, the Constitution still does not guarantee the right to vote to all). The amendments, forced upon the defeated Southern states as a condition for re-entry into the Union, launched the reconstruction that sought for a few short years to bring the country together. Newly empowered Blacks joined with progressive Whites to build coalitions that transformed state constitutions, guaranteeing the right to education, launching programs to provide more equal justice under the law. Sadly, Reconstruction met with fierce reaction across the South. Segregation masters succeeded the slave masters. The Ku Klux Klan, formed by the elites of Southern communities, terrorized newly freed Blacks. The right to vote was sabotaged by various tricks and traps, from the poll tax to unequally administered tests on the Constitution, to simple threat and terror. In 1896, the Supreme Court to its shame ruled that apartheid—the
mythic “separate but equal” standard was legal in the United States. By the turn of the century, segregation was the law of the land. It took 100 years and the historic civil rights movement to overturn that reaction, and to begin to reclaim the promise of equal justice under the law and the revive the right to vote. The civil rights struggle, which united the movement of courageous citizens on the ground with the force of Lyndon Johnson in the White House, produced, among other legislation, the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act that brought America closer to its promise. Today, we once more see the stirrings of reaction against that reconstruction. Racial division, stoked cynically from the highest offices in the land, once more is on the rise. African Americans, Latinos, Jews, Muslims, gays, women—all once more feel the rise of resentment and often of hate. The Supreme Court has gutted a critical part of the Voting Rights Act. States under reactionary governors are inventing new ways to restrict access to the vote. Will this reaction be as successful as that which undermined the promise of the Emancipation Proclamation? America, I believe, is better than that. Our democracy is stronger than it was then. We can mobilize and vote in large numbers to keep expanding the domain of freedom. On this Jan. 1 and beyond, let us rememwber the Emancipation Proclamation, signed by the greatest of our presidents, a Republican, and devote ourselves to redeeming its promise.
20/20 Vision (TriceEdneyWire.com)—For some reason whenever I go to the eye doctor, I expect to get a good report on my vision. Sometimes I get one. Sometimes I don’t, but I am always hopeful. This year, I am truly hopeful that our leaders will have 20/20 vision so they can stop the warring attitudes and practices and the punishing behaviors toward the most vulnerable they have been chosen lead. My prayer is for them to not just pray for, but work for a better and just world for all no matter where people live, the color of their skin or the culture from which they come. My dream is for world leaders to care about everybody’s children, that no child would be left behind, that every child would have access to a useable education. Years ago when young people graduated from high school, it was understood that all of them would not be going to college, so they were taught useable skills so that they could go to work to make a living right out of high school. Whatever some may think of those days, I want to see that part of our past come back. Is it possible for all of us to give meaning to this year being 20/20? Let it be the cue for all of us to think about what we can do to show that we have clearer vision. With wars, poor education systems, injustices especially for women
Dr. E. Faye Williams, Esq.
zations. It is not about plans. It is not about strategies. It is all about people motivating people to get the job done. You have to be people centered.” Further, he said, “None of us can change our yesterdays but all of us can change our tomorrows.” There was a time that leaders convened with positive motives—really willing to compromise in order to accomplish great things for all the people. We, the people have a responsibility in electing and choosing leaders who make good on their promises once elected or chosen and not ones who just begin to flip flop on their promises depending on the way the wind blows or the money finds its way to their pockets. On that note, we the people must insist upon overturning the destructive Citizens United. We, the people, must be determined that our leaders are qualified to lead. Just look at the man people elected to our White House has done to undermine certain members of his team. He is the total opposite of what a leader should be. He not only does not offer leadership for all the people, he does not offer leadership for vision to his team whose members might want to do the right thing. We, the people, must demand 20/20 visionary leaders.
and non-white people, the unemployment rate with a lack of livable wages for so many, the lack of hope for too many people, and the desire for instant gratification—these things lead to desperation and other negative outcomes. Too many leaders have lost that 20/20 vision of where we should be going such that nobody wants to, or sees the wisdom of following them. We’ve lost confidence in them because few of them seem to care about nothing more than their own well-being. General Colin Powell said, “Leadership is a position of problem solving which is conflict resolution. The day people stop bringing you (meaning leaders) their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They’ve either lost confidence that you can help or concluded you do not care. Either case this is a failure of leadership.” (Dr. E. Faye Williams is the national president He also said, “Leadership is all about people. It is not about organi- of the National Congress of Black Women.)
Getting diabetes as we get older by Glenn Ellis (TriceEdneyWire.com)—More and more, I am finding many people who as they enter their 6th decade, are finding new aches and pains that never existed before. Increasingly, many are finding something else that never existed before: diabetes. For most of these people, after a lifetime of enjoying reasonably healthy lives, seemingly out of nowhere, they are told they are now diabetic, and prescribed medication. Needless, to say, this comes as a shock! However, consistent with many other changes in the body as we age, your body becomes more susceptible to diabetes. Of course, seniors (those over 65) are not the only people to be affected by diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 30 million people in the United States have diabetes. The CDC also notes that 90 to 95 percent of cases involve type 2 diabetes. More than one-quarter of the US population aged 65 and older has diabetes,1 including type 1 and 2, and approximately onehalf of older adults have prediabetes. In this population, age-related insulin resistance and impaired pancreatic islet function increase the risk of developing the disease. Many older people also have other conditions as well as diabetes, and this can complicate diabetes management. For example, high blood pressure or high levels of certain fats in the blood can speed up the progression of common complications of diabetes, such as kidney problems, eye problems, foot problems and heart and blood vessel problems. People with diabetes whose blood glucose levels are high are more prone to infections than people with normal
blood glucose levels. People with poorly controlled diabetes are also at greater risk for dental problems. They’re more likely to have infections of their gums and the bones that hold their teeth in place, because diabetes can reduce the blood supply to the gums. Not only that, but when we age, loss of teeth and poor dental health becomes more and more common. As a result, what we eat, and how we eat (along with age-related poorer appetite). We don’t, and can’t, chew like we used to. That means things like crunchy fruits and vegetables are off-limits. We end up gravitating towards softer chewy foods that tend to be more processed, and bad for our health in the long run. A poor diet of soft and processed foods can have serious long-term effects, especially on the seniors or those with systemic health issues like heart disease and diabetes. Specifically, a poor diet can lead to either unhealthy weight loss or unhealthy weight gain, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, malnutrition, dehydration, jawbone loss, osteoporosis, stroke, and some cancers. Poor nutrition can also cause even more oral health issues, including gingivitis and tooth decay. If we look, honestly, at all the things that go along with aging, we find that it makes sense that the risk of becoming diabetic increases as we get older. In addition to their many physical challenges, elderly diabetes patients often are socially isolated and have financial problems that negatively affect their care. They may forget to eat, be unable to afford medications or quality food, or skip medication doses to extend a prescription. They also may experience changes in taste and a lack of interest and ability to shop for food and prepare meals at home.
An additional concern with blood sugar being too high, is the danger of blood sugar dropping too low (hypoglycemia). This creates the conditions for many serious issues that wreak havoc in the lives of the elderly; particularly falls and fractures. Instead of, or in addition to, sweating and tremors, elderly diabetes patients should be taught to look for symptoms of hypoglycemia, such as dizziness, weakness, delirium, and confusion. Often, the low glucose will cause them to fall, resulting in a head injury and death. There is good news! Despite the high rates of diagnosis, there are ways the disease may be delayed and even prevented. Your best options include regular exercise; losing 5 to 10 percent of your body weight if you’re overweight or obese; and reducing your intake of sugar and sweetened beverages. If we are all honest with ourselves, one or more of these risk factors is a part of who we are, and how we have grown accustomed to living. By losing just 5 to 7 percent of your body weight, you can slow the development of type 2 diabetes. You may not be able to prevent diabetes entirely. But taking steps now may prevent related complications and improve your quality of life. Remember, I’m not a doctor. I just sound like one. Take good care of yourself and live the best life possible! (The information included in this column is for educational purposes only. I do not dispense medical advice or prescribe the use of any technique as a replacement form of treatment for physical, mental or medical problems by your doctor either directly or indirectly. Glenn Ellis, is Research Bioethics Fellow at Harvard Medical School and author of Which Doctor?, and Information is the Best Medicine. Ellis is an active media contributor on Health Equity and Medical Ethics. For more good health information visit: www. glennellis.com)
CLASSIFIED New Pittsburgh Courier
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
PRODUCTION & SALES MANAGER
University of Pittsburgh Physicians seeks Ophthalmologist in Allegheny County, PA to treat illnesses, diseases & conditions that affect the eye; perform eye surgeries such as retinal detachment repair & eye trauma repair; treat inflammatory eye disease requiring systemic immunosuppression; & conduct didactic & clinical/surgical training of residents & fellows. Must have M.D./D.O./foreign degree equiv., Uveitis fellowship; Surgical Retina fellowship; & PA license/eligibility. Apply by following these steps; visit http://careers.upmc.com and enter 190001HC in the “Search Keyword/Job ID” field and click Go. EOE/Disability/Veteran.
BIOINFORMATIC SENIOR RESEARCH SPECIALIST
University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA) seeks Bioinformatic Senior Research Specialist to be responsible for analyses of multi-omics datasets with emphasis on single cell and bulk RNAseq, ATACseq and ChlPseqq data relevant to the study of immune cells in mouse and human cancer and autoimmune microenvironments. Designs new analysis strategies and pipelines for answering scientific questions and testing hypothesis for projects. Works in close collaboration with experimental scientists to assist their high throughput NGS project design, data analysis, and data presentation. Train lab members in basic computational biology/ bioinformatics data analysis, including the use of programs in R and C++. Responsible for independent computation research projects involving methods development, novel algorithm development and/or high-level data analysis of lab-generated and generally available datasets. Participates in group meetings, journal clubs. Must hold Master’s degree in Bioinformatics or Computational Biology. Must have three years of experience in the position offered or related. The University of Pittsburgh is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and values equality of opportunity, human dignity, and diversity. EOE, including disability/ vets. If interested, submit resume or CV through www.join.pitt.edu, requisition number: 19008620 ANNOUNCEMENTS Meetings
ALLEGHENY REGIONAL ASSET DISTRICT
2020 RAD Board Meetings will be held at 3PM 2/20 5/21 9/24 12/1 2020 RAD Budget Request Hearings will be held at 2:30 PM 8/20 8/25 8/27 9/1 9/3 9/8 9/9 2020 RAD Public Comment Hearing 3PM 10/22 ALL Board Meetings & Hearings will be held at Koppers Building Conference Center, 436 7th Avenue, Level B. For public participation procedures or updates visit radworkshere.org or call 412227-1900.
Garfield Community Farms is seeking a Production & Sales Manager. Part-time. Competitive pay. Send resumes/inquiries to garfieldcom firstname.lastname@example.org or call AJ at 412-545-3602.
2 0 8
LEGAL ADVERTISING Legal Notices
Estate of BLANCHE MICHALSKI, deceased, of 425 Hammond Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15204 No. 02-19-00870 EXECUTOR Edward R. Michalski, 2504 Dunstan Drive, Columbus, OH 43235 or to American Wills & Estates, Lloyd A. Welling, Esquire, 2100 Wharton Street, Suite 302, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Estate of PAMELA GATTS, deceased, of 126 Meridan Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15211 No. 0219-07201 EXECUTOR JOSHUA D. GATTS, 200 Cowan Street, Apt. 316, Pittsburgh, PA 15211 or to American Wills & Estates, Lloyd A. Welling, Esquire, 2100 Wharton Street, Suite 302, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Estate of SALDAMARCO, YOLANDA Deceased of Ross Township No. 0758 of 2019. Ralph J. Saldamarco Exec., 102 Carriage Hill Rd., Glenshaw, PA 15116 or to Michael J. Saldamarco, Esq., Ste. 100, 908 Perry Hwy., Pittsburgh, PA 15229.
NOTICE FOR PUBLICATION
In the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Orphans’ Court Division, Estate of Doris B. Patton, deceased, Case No. 2618 of 2013: Notice is hereby given that on December 2, 2019, a Petition was filed by Joseph Patton to terminate the interests of the heirs and devisees of Doris B. Patton, deceased, in the real estate located at 856 Estella Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15210, and determine that fee simple title is in Joseph Patton. If no exceptions to the Petition are filed within 30 days, Petitioner will seek an Order adjudging that Doris B. Patton’s title is in Joseph Patton.
LEGAL ADVERTISING Legal Notices
REQUEST FOR QUALIFICATIONS
Urban Design/Planning - Regional economic development organization requests Qualifications relative to any or all of the following: site and building assessments, infrastructure assessments, market analysis, site reuse vision, revitalization plans, professionals on the team, working with multiple stakeholders and building consensus, minority and women-owned businesses participation. By January 31, 2020, firms/individuals should send Qualifications along with methods of compensation to: P.O. Box 41, Leetsdale, PA. 15056.
CLASSIFIEDS… THE ONLY WAY TO GO!
IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS OF ALLEGHENY COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA KALMAN G. SZABO, : CIVIL DIVISION Plaintiff, : : No. GD - 19 - 015826 v. : : MARK RICCARDI, BRUNO RICCARDI, : Complaint - Action to Quiet Title GINA GLENN, UNKNOWN HEIRS OF : IRMA JEAN RICCARDI, : : Defendants. : To Mark Riccardi and the Unknown Heirs of Irma Jean Riccardi: Be advised that Kalman G. Szabo, by and through his attorneys filed a Complaint - Action to Quiet Title on November 13, 2019 against the above-named Defendants regarding real property commonly known as 1605 Creedmoor Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15226. The Complaint - Action to Quiet Title was reinstated December 31, 2019 against Defendants Mark Riccardi and the Unknown Heirs of Irma Jean Riccardi. Plaintiff’s attorney is Paladin Law Offices PC, 15 Duff Rd, Suite 6C, Pittsburgh, PA 15235; (412) 244-0826. NOTICE You have been sued in court. If you wish to defend you must act within (20) days by entering a written appearance personally or by attorney and by filing, in writing, with the court your defenses or objections to the claims set forth against you. You are warned that if you fail to do so the case may proceed against you and a judgment may be entered against you by the court without further notice for the relief requested by the Plaintiff. You may lose money or property or other rights important to you. YOU SHOULD TAKE THIS PAPER TO YOUR LAWYER AT ONCE. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A LAWYER, THEN YOU SHOULD GO TO OR TELEPHONE THE OFFICE SET FORTH BELOW. THIS OFFICE CAN PROVIDE YOU WITH INFORMATION ABOUT HIRING A LAWYER. IF YOU CANNOT AFFORD TO HIRE A LAWYER, THIS OFFICE MAY BE ABLE TO PROVIDE YOU WITH INFORMATION ABOUT AGENCIES THAT MAY OFFER LEGAL SERVICES TO ELIGIBLE PERSONS AT A REDUCED FEE OF NO FEE Lawyer Referral Service Allegheny County Bar Association 400 Koppers Building, 436 7th Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15219 (412) 261-5555
To place a display ad in the New Pittsburgh Courier call 412-481-8302 ext. 128 or 129
9 3 4
1 5 7
THE BOARD OF PUBLIC EDUCATION OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PITTSBURGH
Sealed bids will be received in the Bellefield Avenue Lobby, Administration Building, 341 South Bellefield Avenue until 11:00 A.M. prevailing time January 21, 2020 and will be opened at the same hour for the purchase of the following equipment and supplies: REFUSE CONTAINER SERVICE-REBID General Information regarding bids may be obtained at the Office of the Purchasing Agent, Service Center, 1305 Muriel Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. The bid documents are available on the School District’s Purchasing web site at: www.pgh schools.org Click on Our Community; Bid Opportunities; Purchasing - under Quick Links. The Board of Public Education reserves the right to reject any and all bids, or select a single item from any bid. We are an equal rights and opportunity school district
OFFICIAL ADVERTISEMENT THE BOARD OF PUBLIC EDUCATION of the SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PITTSBURGH
Sealed proposals shall be deposited at the Administration Building, Bellefield Entrance Lobby, 341 South Bellefield Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pa. 15213, on February 4, 2020 until 2:00 P.M. local prevailing time for: Pgh. Carmalt K-8 Replace Emergency Generator General and Electrical Primes Pgh. Chartiers ECC Asphalt and Concrete Repairs General Prime Pgh. Miller K-5 Comprehensive Plaster Repair and Painting General, Mechanical, Electrical and Asbestos Abatement Primes Project Manual and Drawings will be available for purchase on January 6, 2020 at Modern Reproductions (412-488-7700), 127 McKean Street, Pittsburgh, Pa., 15219 between 9:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M. The cost of the Project Manual Documents is non-refundable. Project details and dates are described in each project manual.
ALLEGHENY COUNTY SANITARY AUTHORITY LEGAL NOTICE CONTRACT NO. 1706
Sealed Bids for CONTRACT NO. 1706 - CLAY STREET SEWER SEPARATION CONTRACT shall be received at the Engineering Department office of the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority, 3300 Preble Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA, 15233, until 11:00 a.m., Prevailing Time, Tuesday, February 4, 2020, and then publicly opened and read aloud. A Pre-Bid Meeting will be held at the Authority’s O&M Building, Conference Room 106, on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at 10:00 a.m., Prevailing Time. Attendance at this meeting is mandatory. ALCOSAN encourages businesses owned and operated by minorities and women to submit bids on Authority Contracts or to participate as subcontractors or suppliers to successful Bidders. Successful Bidders are to use minority and women’s businesses to the fullest extent possible. Contract Documents may be examined and obtained at the office of the Authority. A non-refundable fee of $100 (no cash will be accepted) will be charged for each set of Contract Documents. Bid Security shall be furnished by providing with the Bid a Certified Check or Bid Bond in the amount of 10% of the Bid Price. Any questions regarding the Contract Documents should be directed to Mr. Milton Lenhart, Civil Engineer by email to Milton.lenhart@ alcosan.org, by fax to (412) 7346209 or by phone at (412) 7328053. The Authority reserves the right to reject any or all bids, to waive any informality in any bid and to accept any bid should it be deemed in the interest of the Authority to do so. ALLEGHENY COUNTY SANITARY AUTHORITY Jan Oliver Director, Regional Conveyance
NOTICE TO PROPOSERS
The Sports & Exhibition Authority of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County (SEA) will receive proposals for North Shore Riverfront Park (NSRFP) Cleaning and Maintenance – Power Washing Services at the SEA office as identified below. The contracts for this work will be with the SEA. The Request for Proposals may be obtained after the date identified below from Bill Williams, email: email@example.com, Telephone: (412) 3253003. This Advertisement applies to the following Request for Proposal: Project: NSRFP Cleaning and Maintenance – Power Washing Services RFP Available: January 6, 2020 Pre-Proposal Meeting: 3:00pm January 14, 2020 (non-mandatory) NSRFP, Tribute to Children, Pittsburgh, PA 15212 Time/Date/Location for Proposal Submittal: 2:00 p.m. January 24, 2020 Hand delivered proposals shall be delivered to the ASM Global (formerly SMG) offices located inside the East Lobby of the David L Lawrence Convention Center, 1000 Ft. Duquesne Boulevard, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Electronic copy can be emailed to Bill Williams at bwilliams@pgh-sea. com
ALLIES & ROSS MANAGEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS (RFP) FOR
Professional Physical Capital Needs Assessment (PCNA) & Energy Audit Services for the Manchester Redevelopment ARMDC RFP #2020-30 The Allies & Ross Management and Development Corporation (ARMDC) hereby request proposals from qualified Firms or Individuals capable of providing the following service(s): Professional Physical Capital Needs Assessment (PCNA) & Energy Audit Services for the Manchester Redevelopment The documents will be available no later than December 30, 2019 and signed, sealed proposals will be accepted until 11:00 a.m., January 23, 2020 at which time they will be Time and Date Stamped at 100 Ross Street, 2nd Floor, Suite 200, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. Parties or individuals interested may obtain information from: Mr. Kim Detrick – Procurement Director/ Chief Contracting Officer Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh Procurement Department 2nd Floor, Suite 200 100 Ross Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219 412-456-5116, Option 1 or by visiting the Business Opportunities section of www.hacp.org A pre bid meeting will be held: Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh Procurement Department 100 Ross Street, 2nd Floor, Conference Room Pittsburgh, PA 15219 January 9, 2020 11:00 A.M. The Allies & Ross Management and Development Corporation strongly encourage certified minority business enterprises and women business enterprises to respond to this solicitation. ARMDC has revised their website. As part of those revisions, vendors must now register and log-in, in order to view and download IFB/RFPs documentation. Caster D. Binion, President & CEO Allies & Ross Management and Development Corporation
ARMDC & HACP conduct business in accordance with all federal, state, and local civil rights laws, including but not limited to Title VII, the Fair Housing Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, The PA Human Relations Act, etc. and does not discriminate against any individuals protected by these statutes.
COURIER CLASSIFIEDS… THE ONLY WAY TO GO!
NOTICE TO PROPOSERS
The Sports & Exhibition Authority of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County (SEA) will receive proposals for North Shore Riverfront Park (NSRFP) Tribute to Children and Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial Landscaping Services at the SEA office as identified below. The contracts for this work will be with the SEA. The Request for Proposals may be obtained after the date identified below from Bill Williams, email: bwilliams@pgh-sea. com, Telephone: (412) 325-3003. This Advertisement applies to the following Request for Proposal: Project: NSRFP Tribute to Children and Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial Landscaping Services RFP Available: January 6, 2020 Pre-Proposal Meeting: 2:00pm January 14, 2020 (non-mandatory) NSRFP, Tribute to Children (TTC), Pittsburgh, PA 15212 Time/Date/Location for Proposal Submittal: 2:00 p.m. January 24, 2020 Hand delivered proposals shall be delivered to the ASM Global (formerly SMG) offices located inside the East Lobby of the David L Lawrence Convention Center, 1000 Ft. Duquesne Boulevard, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Electronic copy can be emailed to Bill Williams at bwilliams@pgh-sea. com
NOTICE TO BIDDERS
Sealed proposals will be received by the Municipality of Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, at the Purchasing Office, located at 102 Duff Road Pittsburgh PA 15235, 10:30 A.M. prevailing time, Wednesday January 15, 2020, and will be publicly opened immediately thereafter in the Council Chambers, at the Government Center, 102 Duff Road, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 15235, for the furnishing of all labor and material (as required) for: DEMOLITIONS – Penn Hills 2019 Package Number 13 1272 Blackadore Avenue 174-D-161 1280 Blackadore Avenue 174-D-165 1293 Blackadore Avenue 173-S-229 1295 Blackadore Avenue 230-N-002 7490 Chadwick Street 173-M-280 246 Columbia Avenue 173-R-161 248 Columbia Avenue 173-R-159 7513 Columbia Avenue 173-L-191 7515 Columbia Avenue 173-L-189 1143 N Wheeler Drive 174-D-86 This project is funded 100% with Federal Community Development Block Grant Funds. This project will be financed with assistance from HUD; and therefore, it is subject to Section 3 of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968, which gives preference in hiring to low and very-low income persons. Specifications may be obtained at the Administration/Purchasing Office (412)342-0360, Government Center 102 Duff Road Pittsburgh PA 15235 for a non refundable fee of $25.00. Potential bidders with hearing impairment requiring information on this project can call the State Relay Office at 1-800-654-5984 to contact the Municipality. Proposal must be on Standard Proposal Forms in the manner therein and be enclosed in a sealed envelope bearing the name and address of the bidder on the outside, addressed to the Purchasing Office and marked: “Demolitions – Penn Hills 2018 Package Number 12”. Proposal must be accompanied by a certified check drawn upon a National or State Bank and made payable without conditions to the Municipality of Penn Hills, in an amount not less than ten (10) percent of the proposal, or a Bid Bond, and be delivered to the place and hour named. The Municipality reserves the right to reject any or all proposals. Attention is called to the Federal requirements regarding employment, non-discrimination, safety and State regulations. The Municipality reserves the right to award this solicitation on an itemby-item basis or lump sum basis, whichever is in the best interest of the Municipality The Municipality reserves the right to remove any property from the demo list before actual demo takes place. Scott Andrejchak, Esq. Municipal Manager
COURIER CLASSIFIEDS GET RESULTS
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
PORT AUTHORITY OF ALLEGHENY COUNTY
Electronic Proposals will be received online at the Port Authority of Allegheny County’s Ebusiness website (http://ebusiness.portauthority.org). Proposals/bid submittals will be due 11:00 AM on January 22, 2020 and will be read at 11:15 AM., the same day, at Port Authority’s Heinz location (345 Sixth Avenue, Third Floor, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222-2527), for the following: Electronic Proposal Ebusiness website (http://ebusiness.portauthority.org)
Bid Number Bid Name 1 B191198A Coach Radiator Assemblies 2 B1912103A On Call Plumbing Services 3 B1912104A Janitorial Supplies - Paper
No bidder may withdraw a submitted Proposal for a period of 75 days after the scheduled time for opening of the sealed bids. A Pre-Bid Conference will be held on each of the above items at 10:00am January 8, 2020 at Port Authority’s Heinz location (345 Sixth Avenue, Third Floor, Pittsburgh, PA). Attendance at this meeting is not mandatory, but is strongly encouraged. Questions regarding any of the above bids will not be entertained by the Port Authority within five (5) business days of the scheduled bid opening. These contracts may be subject to a financial assistance contract between Port Authority of Allegheny County and the United States Department of Transportation. The Contractor will be required to comply with all applicable Equal Employment Opportunity laws and regulations. Contractor is responsible for expenses related to acquiring a performance bond and insurance where applicable. All items are to be FOB delivered unless otherwise specified. Costs for delivery, bond, and insurance shall be included in bidder’s proposal pricing. Port Authority of Allegheny County hereby notifies all bidders that it will affirmatively insure that in regard to any contract entered into pursuant to this advertisement, disadvantaged business enterprise will be afforded full opportunity to submit bids in response to this invitation and will not be discriminated against on the grounds of race, color, or national origin in consideration for an award. The Board of Port Authority reserves the right to reject any or all bids.
COURIER CLASSIFIEDS… THE ONLY WAY TO GO!
DOCUMENT 00030-AA ADVERTISEMENT ANNOUNCEMENT ALLEGHENY COUNTY AIRPORT AUTHORITY Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Separate and sealed Proposals will be received at the Allegheny County Airport Authority, Pittsburgh International Airport, Landside Terminal, 4th Floor Mezz, P.O. Box 12370, Pittsburgh, PA 15231-0370 until 1:00 P.M. prevailing local time, FEBRUARY 5, 2020, and bids will be publicly opened and read by the Airport Authority in Conference Room A, Pittsburgh International Airport, Landside Terminal, 4th Floor Mezz, P.O. Box 12370, Pittsburgh, PA 15231-0370, one half hour later, for the following: PROJECT NUMBER 20AG01 (GENERAL) PROJECT NUMBER 20AE01 (ELECTRICAL) PROJECT NUMBER 20AM01 (MECHANICAL) PROJECT NUMBER 20APF01 (PLUMBING & FIRE PROTECTION) EARLY SITE ACCESS BID PACKAGE at PITTSBURGH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT ALL BIDDERS shall be required to provide a completed formal Bid Document Request application in order to purchase bidding documents for any/ all of the above listed Project Numbers. No bidding documents will be issued and/or sold prior to the Authority’s Construction Manager having a copy of a Fully Completed Request Application. There will be a non-refundable change of $150.00 for each Bid Document ordered. To receive a Document Request Application send a Request to the following email address: TMPBids@flypittsburgh.com Include in your e-mail request Company Name, Contact person, e-mail address and phone number. Once a bidder’s request has been received, a Document Request Application will be e-mailed to the requesting entity. Provided the application is complete, and provided the requesting party is not barred from bidding the work, the CM will provide access to the bidder to access and download the bid documents through Building Connected, a web-based bid management platform. As part of a bidder’s Bid Documents Request form, and as a condition of a Request form being approved, the requesting party must provide a photocopy of the its $150.00 check (made payable to Allegheny County Airport Authority) for the non-refundable charge to have access to the Bid Documents and to allow the requesting firm to submit a Bid for the Project. Once a bidder is given access to a Project, bidder shall mail its check to the following address: Allegheny County Airport Authority Capital Programs Landside Terminal, 4th Floor Mezzanine-P.O. Box 12370 Pittsburgh, PA 15231 00030-1AA A check must be received prior to bid opening or your bid may be rejected. A PREBID CONFERENCE will be held in Conference Room A, Fourth Floor, in the Landside Building, Pittsburgh International Airport, at 10:00 a.m., on JANUARY 15, 2020. A tour of the project site will be conduct immediately following the meeting. (Bidders are encouraged to attend this tour as many of the areas being visited will not be available for any future reviews.) Attention is called to the fact that not less than the minimum salaries and wages, as determined by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, must be paid on these projects. Proposals must be made on the Authority’s forms and in accordance with the Plans and Specifications and the “Instructions to Bidders”’. No e-mailed bids will be accepted all bids submitted must be printed and properly executed and delivered to the Authority in the manner provided in the Instructions to Bidders. This project has DBE participation goals; DBE firms must be certified with the Pennsylvania Unified Certification Program) (PAUCP). Firms must be certified prior to award of contract. A searchable database of DBE firms can be found on the PAUCP web site: http://www.paucp.com The Airport Authority reserves the right to reject any and all bids or waive any informalities in the bidding. No bidder may withdraw his bid for a period of sixty  days after the scheduled closing time for receipt of bids. To view a complete advertisement, which is also included in the bidding documents visit www.flypittsburgh.com under “Doing Business” or visit www. pittransformed.com under “Opportunities”. For questions call 412-472-3543, 412-472-3677. 412-287-1771. Christina A. Cassotis Chief Executive Officer ALLEGHENY COUNTY AIRPORT AUTHORITY
JANUARY 8-14, 2020
LEGAL ADVERTISING Bids/Proposals
Sealed bid proposals are hereby solicited for the Community College of Allegheny County, 800 Allegheny Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15233 (412.237.3020) on the following items: Bid Proposal No. 1061 – New Electrical Services at Milton Hall, Student Services Center, and Library Building – Allegheny Campus A mandatory pre-bid meeting and site-visitation will be held at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 15, 2020. The assembly point will be the OCS Lobby, 800 Allegheny Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15233. Park in the lot directly across from Wendy’s (buzz in at the gate). Due date: 2:00 P.M. Prevailing Time on Thursday, January 23, 2020. The CCAC Purchasing Department publishes all bids and RFPs via the CCAC website at https://www.ccac. edu/Bid-RFP_Opportunities.aspx It will be each vendor’s responsibility to monitor the bid activity within the given website (“Bid and RFP Opportunities”) and ensure compliance with all applicable bid documents inclusive of any issued addenda. Failure to incorporate any applicable addenda in the final submittal may result in the rejection of your bid. The Board of Trustees reserves the right to reject any and all bids. The Community College of Allegheny County is an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and encourages bids from Minority/Disadvantaged owned businesses.
Did you miss our Jan. 1 Courier ‘Women of Excellence’ edition?
Call our Brenda Hill at 412-481-8302 ext. 134 for back issues of the Courier.
HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL (RFP) FOR PROJECT-BASED VOUCHER & GAP FINANCING PROGRAM 2019 RFP #600-39-19
The Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh (HACP) hereby request proposals from qualified Firms or Individuals for the following: Project-Based Voucher & Gap Financing Program 2019 The documents will be available no later than December 30, 2019 and signed, sealed proposals will be accepted until 2:00 P.M., January 31, 2020 at which time they will be Time and Date Stamped at 100 Ross Street, 2nd Floor, Suite 200, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. Parties or individuals interested may obtain information from: Mr. Kim Detrick – Procurement Director/ Chief Contracting Officer Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh Procurement Department 2nd Floor, Suite 200 100 Ross Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219 412-456-5116, Option 1 or by visiting the Business Opportunities section of www.hacp.org A pre bid meeting will be held: Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh 100 Ross Street 2nd Floor Suite 200 Pittsburgh, PA 15219 January 10, 2020 9:00 A.M. The Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh strongly encourages certified minority business enterprises and women business enterprises to respond to this solicitation. HACP’s has revised their website. As part of those revisions, vendors must now register and log-in, in order to view and download IFB/RFPs documentation. Caster D. Binion, Executive Director Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh HACP conducts business in accordance with all federal, state, and local civil rights laws, including but not limited to Title VII, the Fair Housing Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, The PA Human Relations Act, etc. and does not discriminate against any individuals protected by these statutes.
NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER CLASSIFIEDS GET RESULTS!
When it comes to NFL Coach of the Year, stop trying to derail Coach Tomlin According to phrases.org.uk, the phrase Admiral Horatio Nelson is supposed to have said was, “turn a blind eye,” when he willfully disobeyed a signal to withdraw during a naval engagement. The British fleet of the day was commanded by Admiral Sir Hyde Parker. The two men disagreed over tactics and at one point Parker sent a signal (by the use of flags) for Nelson to disengage. Nelson was convinced he could win if he persisted and that’s when he coined the phrase ‘turned a blind eye’. “You know, Foley,” he supposedly told one of his subordinates, “I have only one eye—and I have a right to be blind sometimes... I really do not see the signal.” Let’s talk about the NFL Coach of the Year Award. The honor is supposedly awarded to the coach who does the most to give his team a chance to win. Well let’s take a look at how the award has been handed out over the years and question the legitimacy of the reward. From 1955 to 1959 there was only the NFL so the first five awards were to NFL (now the NFC) coaches. When the AFL (now mostly the AFC) was formed there were two Coach of the Year awards, one for the NFL and the AFL. That practice continued until 1997 when it was determined
that only one award be given to the best coach of the combined NFC and AFC. Ray Rhodes was the first Black coach to win the award as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles in 1995, approximately 40 years after the award was created. It would take until 2005 for another
even hearing his name when it comes to receiving any accolades at all. Steel town pollution monger John Steigerwald had this to say about the coaching effort of Mike Tomlin. “Sorry, Mike Tomlin, but John Harbaugh is NFL Coach of the Year. You deserved serious consideration when your Pittsburgh Steelers somehow were in position to get into the playoffs after losing Ben Roethlisberger for the season and having to deal with so many injuries to other key players along the way. Imagine how much it would have hurt if the Steelers managed to beat the Ravens’ JV team in Baltimore. If it makes you feel any better, even if you had gotten the Steelers to the playoffs, you would have been no better than the second-best coach of the year.” Talk about turning a blind eye; many of these media types continue gushing with praise and it seems as if they still idolize carrying and washing the cheating stained jockstrap of Bill Belichick, who they still voted for Coach of the Year in 2007 and 2010 after being exposed as a continual and pathological cheater. The award has only been awarded six times to minority coaches since 1955. The folks that vote for the award are not only blind, they are deaf, dumb and racially insensitive.
Aubrey Bruce Black coach to win the award. That would be Lovie Smith, the head coach of the Chicago Bears. Marvin Lewis, the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals, would snag the award in 2009. Ron Rivera, the head coach of the Carolina Panthers, would win the award in 2013 and 2015. Mike Tomlin, the head coach of the Steelers, has been mentioned by many of the national sports pundits have openly advocated for Tomlin to receive the honor. However, many of the “talking heads in the Steelers market have quietly and openly fought against the suggestion of Tomlin receiving any accolades regarding the 2019 season. The Pittsburgh media has tried and continue to derail the “Tomlin award” and they seem to hate
JANUARY 8-14, 2020 NEW PITTSBURGH COURIER
Will money A Living Legend—Tom Joyner’s rule in this career has transformed Black media Presidential race? Marc H. Morial (TriceEdneyWire.com)—Democrats started this Presidential campaign season with more than 20 candidates. Eventually, it dropped to about a dozen, with, so far, only five of those “qualified” to appear on the next debate stage. But debate performance doesn’t seem to matter much. Both Senator Kamala Harris and former Obama cabinet member Julian Castro having had excellent debate performances, and yet they have still dropped out of the race. It’s a money thing. With just $9 million in the bank, Senator Harris said she couldn’t see her way clear to the nomination given her extremely limited resources. Castro, matching Harris in grace and reflectiveness, said: “It just wasn’t our time.” He, too, felt he did not have enough money in the bank to compete. It almost certainly would have helped these candidates qualify if they had the resources, say, of former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who pumped $100 million into his campaign in just one month! In fairness, though, it is essential to note that Senator Bernie Sanders raised a whopping $34.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 alone. Mayor Pete Buttigieg and former VP Joe Biden raised more than $20 million in that quarter, and Senator Elizabeth Warren came close. The deadline for filing finance reports is later this month, so I’m cautious in concluding based on news articles and partial reports. Still, generally, those who have something to crow about put their numbers out there early. And for some, money isn’t the only is-
Commentary sue. Did they meet the thresholds the Democratic Party set for debate qualification? Do they and their advisors think they can win? What are the polls saying? So even though Kristen Gillibrand had $14.9 million in the bank when she dropped out of the race last August, she was not polling well and failed to qualify for the September debate. Meanwhile, Senator Corey Booker did not qualify for the last debate, but he is hanging in there. Although Booker and entrepreneur Andrew Yang are still in the race, the Democratic field is mostly White, and the January debate stage on Jan. 14, in Des Moines, Iowa is likely to be all-White. The White folks on the stage may be “qualified,” but I find them no more qualified than, say, Julian Castro and Kamala Harris. Their greatest flaw was the inability to compete in this multi-million dollar cacophony of voices. Neither Harris nor Castro will suffer much for dropping out of the race. Some say that Castro will run for governor of Texas. Harris has three years more of a Senate term, and she is an effective presence in Capitol Hill. I didn’t like seeing either of them dropping out of the race, but the loss is ours, not theirs. The way the election cycle works, candidates can get a big boost if they can win either Iowa or New Hampshire. But with the debate qualification set so high, voters in those states will not have the opportunity to see some great possibilities in action because they don’t qualify for the debates. To be sure, it was useful to narrow the field of candidates from an unwieldy number to a more manageable one. And candidates all appreciate the fact that they have more time to go in-depth answering questions. Still, if it’s an all-White debate stage, what does that say about progress in this nation? What does it say about the Democratic Party, which presents itself as a big-tent party that has embraced diversity? For Democrats, there are three keys to winning this election. First, Dems must engage “new voters,” including young people and first-time voters. Next, Dems must monitor the rules around elections so that they do not discriminate and scrutinize the ways people are removed from the voting rolls. Finally, and most importantly, Democrats must place significant effort on getting out the vote in November (and during the primaries), and new voters and especially communities of color, must be targeted. Election protection organizations have the monitoring issue covered, and there are likely to be massive GOTV (get out the vote) efforts led by civil society organizations. But what engages new voters? They must feel that the political process reflects them. Already Latino voters are concerned that Democrats aren’t vying for their vote. And African American voters think that the Democratic Party takes them for granted. To engage new voters, perhaps Democrats need to examine their rules to embrace more candidates of color. And they need to fight for legislation that makes it easier to vote. Democrats like to call themselves candidates of the “underdog.” But when billionaires like Steyer and Bloomberg come sauntering through the door, concern for the underdog seems to go out of the window. (Dr. Julianne Malveaux is an economist, author, media contributor and educator.)
(TriceEdneyWire. com)—“I learned so much about building a community around content from Tom Joyner. That show was so good at finding commonality within a diverse audience—yes, there is diversity within blackness—and serving many wants and needs simultaneously. It’s hard to be entertaining, informative and educational without ever talking down to your audience. Tom did that day after day for decades. I wish him and everyone who’s worked on that show the best. They’ve done a lot for a lot of people.”—Sports journalist Bomani Jones. Even as we enter 2020 with optimism and a sense of renewed purpose, there will be a huge void in our cultural life without the daily voice of radio legend Tom Joyner, who retired last month after nearly 50 years on the air, the last 25 as the host of the iconic Tom Joyner Morning Show. It’s hard for me to imagine the last 16 years of my life as President and CEO of the National Urban League without Joyner’s enthusiastic support and clear-sighted analysis. Reach Media, the company he founded in 2001, has long been one of the National Urban League’s most valued media partners. Whenever the National Urban League has launched a new initiative or announced a campaign, the Tom Joyner Morning Show was always one of our first stops. There was no better forum for reaching Joyner’s devoted and sizeable audience, or for thought-provoking analysis of the issues of the day. In 2015, the National Urban League honored Joyner with our “Living Legend” at our Conference in Fort Lauderdale. His live broadcast from the Conference was a highlight of the week. Our most important partnerships with Joyner have been around our education initiatives. A third-generation alumnus of a HBCU, Joyner has been a passionate advocate, with his Tom Joyner Foundation raising more than $65 million since 1998 to support more than 29,000 students attending HBCUs.
Joyner’s deep respect for education, and for HBCUs in particular, stemmed from the experience of his grandfather, Oscar “Doc” Joyner, a Pullman porter who attended Meharry Medical College and became one of only 3,000 Black doctors in the United States in 1909. Joyner and his father, Hercules Joyner, were featured in the documentary, “Rising from the Rails: The Story of the Pullman Porter.” Hercules Joyner, who served as one of the elite Tuskegee Airmen, earned a degree in chemistry from Florida A&M College and spent most of his career as an accountant. The Tom Joyner Foundation’s “Hercules Scholarship” is named in his honor. “The Fly Jock”—a nickname he earned during the eight years he commuted between a morning show in Chicago and an afternoon show in Dallas—told CBS News he got his big break after a protest march in his hometown of Tuskegee, Alabama.” “I’m out there protesting the fact that our radio station in this all Black town didn’t play any Black music. And this guy who owned a radio station, which was inside a Ford dealership, came out and said I don’t need this, I’m trying to really sell some cars,” Joyner said. “Tell you what, it’s a sun-up sun-down station. Every Saturday, I’ll let one of you play all the Aretha and Temptations that you want.” In a career spanning nearly five decades, Joyner has never altered his focus on serving Black listeners. “Don’t worry about crossover. Just super serve, super serve, super serve,” he told CBS News. “Anything that affects African Americans, that’s what you do,” he said. “Just worry about connecting to people and their needs.” We offer Joyner our gratitude for his many years of entertainment and commentary, wish him well in retirement and look forward to lending our support to his efforts to uplift the community through education.
To Be Equal
When Trump contemplates war The recent U.S. and withdrew the drone strike that J. Pharoah Doss troops from Iraq, killed Maj. Gen. but ISIS emerged, Qasem Soleimani, there were still Iran’s grand militroops in Afghanitary strategist in stan, and a Syrian the Middle East, civil war ensued. made me search my The situation got archives for an old confusing. In 2013 column. In 2017 I the American Specwrote a piece called, tator wanted to “Moral Outrage, Moral Opposition, and know who America was at war with. The When Trump Contemplates War.” I Spectator wrote, “If you ask President claimed the moral outrage expressed by Obama who the U.S. is at war with, he anti-war protesters in the United States will usually say ‘Al Qaeda,’ the Taliban, was never moral opposition to war itself. and their associated forces. The SpecDuring the LBJ/Nixon/Vietnam years tator asked: “Who are their associated the anti-war protesters lived during the forces?” Then stated the United States time of the military draft. The protest- was in a cold war with Iran. ers didn’t feel morally obligated to parAt the end of Obama’s presidency, a ticipate in a civil war in another coun- White House correspondent for The try. Their moral outrage was against New York Times stated that President the draft, which is not the same thing Obama has an unexpected legacy of two as moral opposition to U.S. military in- full terms at war. He wrote: “Obama, the tervention. So, to prevent future unrest anti-war candidate, would have a lon(especially incidents like Kent State) ger tour of duty as a wartime president the U.S. government ended the draft than FDR, LBJ, and Nixon.” and created an all-volunteer army. And definitely no moral opposition. There was another unexpected legaAt the turn of the century, the Bush/ Cheney administration invaded Af- cy of the Obama/Biden administration; ghanistan before they invaded Iraq. drone warfare. In 2017,m Foreign AfThe Afghan invasion was based on the fairs Magazine stated, Trump inher“Bush doctrine,” an unprecedented doc- ited a targeted killing program that trine that sanctioned the invasion of was the cornerstone of U.S. countersovereign states for harboring terror- terrorism strategy for the past eight ists. At the time no serious opposition to years. (Obama inherited it from his the invasion formed because Americans predecessor, also.) Three days into were still morally outraged over 9/11. Obama’s presidency, President Obama Plus, the ruling Afghan government authorized his first military action: two wasn’t recognized by the majority of the drone strikes that killed as many as 20 world’s nations. So, the unprecedented civilians. Two terms and 540 drone atlanguage of the “Bush doctrine” was tacks later (3,797 killed, 324 civilians), overlooked because of the insignificance Obama left office after expanding and normalizing the use of armed drones of its target. I stated that was the time for a serious for counterterrorism and close air moral opposition to war but it never ma- support situations in non-battlefield settings. Washington Post columnist terialized. Success in Afghanistan and the lack David Ignatius wrote with concern, “I of serious opposition to the invasion think this is an issue we—both as a encouraged the Bush/Cheney admin- profession of journalist and the pubistration to invade Iraq, a separate is- lic—have accepted without sufficient sue, but the Bush/Cheney administra- debate. There is something about astion figured if they connected Iraq to sassinations from ten thousand feet 9/11 and Afghanistan, America’s moral that is more acceptable than it would outrage would continue in their favor, be from one foot, by the bayonet.” I concluded that column stating, but that didn’t work. So, the anti-war protesters during the Bush/Cheney/ Trump inherited these conflicts (plus Iraq years were morally outraged at the normalization of drone warfare) and the falsehoods that led to the invasion when Trump escalates the conflicts all of Iraq, which is not a moral opposition the moral outrage against war will be ignored or dismissed as partisan because to war itself. Then in 2008 the Obama/Biden tick- serious opposition to war itself failed to et won the presidency after successfully develop when it was needed. (J. Pharoah Doss is a contributor to the New campaigning to end Bush’s war in Iraq. President Obama kept his promise Pittsburgh Courier.)
Check It Out
Letters to the editor for publication The New Pittsburgh Courier welcomes all responsible viewpoints for publication. All letters should be typewritten and contain writer’s address and phone number for verification. All letters will be edited for clarity and length. Address all letters to: Letters to the Editor, New Pittsburgh Courier 315 East Carson Street, Pittsburgh, Pa. 15219 You may fax your letter to 412-481-1360, or via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oscar H. Blayton
Don’t expect fair elections in 2020 The African American journey through American history can be summed up in two words—UNJUST and UNFAIR. From the moment we first set foot on the North American continent, we have been subjected to atrocities both great and small. Armed with a culture of White supremacy bolstered by their religion and world view, Europeans seeking to create empires spanning the globe built their dream with the lives and labor stolen from Africans and other peoples from around the world. And while the flames of former imperial aspirations have settled into the glowing embers of financial and military hegemony, control over much of the world’s resources remains in the grip of European nations and the Western nation states they spawned. America, one of those spawns of European colonialism, is a curious mix of posturing as a rebellious breakaway from old European values while being the most ardent advocate of the old-world concept of white supremacy. America has managed for centuries to juggle its race hatred and notions of democratic fervor with a skill unmatched elsewhere in the world. As 2020 dawns, it is imperative that people of color accept the reality that significant numbers of European Americans are willing to deny us of our rights in order to maintain a world order that favors them. These people who identify most with their European ancestry and have an explicit or implicit bias against people of color are preparing to trash the constitutional values they hypocritically claim to love so dearly in order to put people of color “back in our place.” With the national disgrace who squats in the White House leading the hate-mongering, Republicans and other conservatives are preparing to strip the vote from people of color and make it impossible for our voices to be heard in the nation’s elections in November. People of color are being purged from voting rolls, and the polling places most convenient to us are being closed. Conservative judges recently appointed by Trump are not likely to find fault with these tactics. They will find no fault in these injustices and illegalities being carried out by even the worst violators of the Constitution. But this is not the time to give up. Nor is it the time to give in. I am old enough to remember when White bigots ruled the South and threw up barricades in front of every Black person who wanted to exercise his or her right to cast a ballot. I remember the marches, the fire hoses, the dogs and the baton wielding “law enforcement officers” used against our people. And I remember the courts ruling that this was the way it should be in America. Today, there are many European Americans we can count as our allies, just as there were during the civil rights movement. But we must not lull ourselves into believing that they are in the majority. Fifty-three percent of white women voted for Donald Trump despite his crudeness, dishonesty, ignorance and all the other negative qualities he possesses. Many pundits tried to sugarcoat the reason for Trump’s popularity by saying his message of economic prosperity was his appeal. But they never tried to explain why his message had no appeal for poor people of color. The truth is Donald Trump had only one thing to sell to America, and that was White supremacy. This nation had just been through eight years of a president with dark skin, and it is no secret that this drove many European Americans into a type of madness. They saw their world of White supremacy, that took centuries to build, beginning to crumble before their eyes. And this was something they could never allow. With the law once again bending back towards their advantage, White supremacists want to keep people of color away from the voting booths in order to continue this regression. And we must do everything we can to prevent that. We must organize and support groups to review the latest voting rolls in order to identify people who were unfairly purged. We need to urge those who have been unfairly purged to re-register to vote. We must help those who have been purged for cause to become qualified to register and vote. But if a person is ineligible to register, they need to be informed so that they do not fall in the trap of violating local election laws by trying to register. And we need to arrange to get people to the polls, especially in communities where nearby polling places have been closed and transportation is needed to reach the new ones. We also need to encourage people to vote by letting them know how important this election is. Finally, we need to encourage qualified people to become candidates and support them, both during their campaigns and once they have been elected to office. We are in for a fight and it will not be a fair one, but it is a fight we can win, just like we won more than a half century ago. (Oscar H. Blayton is a former Marine Corps combat pilot and human rights activist who practices law in Virginia.)