Daily Archive: March 10, 2010


Black D.C. native ranked 8th on Forbes ‘wealthiest’ list

by Brandi ForteFor New Pittsburgh Courier WASHINGTON (NNPA)—It’s hard to know what to expect when you meet a Forbes “lister.” Someone literally so wealthy, so successful that we’re forced to pluck them once a year from office suites, stages and basketball courts and rank them by the zeroes in their bank accounts. Names like Oprah and Magic and Bob and Sheila Johnson float to the top. Now we can add Washington native R. Donahue Peebles to that list. R. DONAHUE PEEBLES


Census ad buys still under fire: Black lawmakers continue probe

by Pharoh MartinFor New Pittsburgh Courier WASHINGTON (NNPA)—During a recent congressional hearing to discuss what many contend is an insufficiently funded Black advertising campaign of Census 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau’s media-buying agencies were blistered by a charge that they allegedly played unfair politics with Black newspaper publishers. These charges have resulted in an ongoing probe into why the Census allocated so little to count African-Americans. ENSURING EQUITY—U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, discusses possible Census ad discrimination with NNPA Chairman Danny Bakewell.



Mathis launches Black prisoner initiative

by Chris Levister (NNPA)—He is the host of “Judge Mathis,” the wildly successful syndicated court television show named after him. But few people realize Judge Greg Mathis was once a convicted criminal who did hard time. Now the jurist known for his tough, take-no-prisoners mantra in the courtroom is determined to break the cycle to keep other young Black men out of prison. SHARING—Television Judge Greg Mathis shares the story of his own troubled past and incarceration with inmates at Fulton County Jail in Atlanta, Ga. Mathis is visiting jails and prisons throughout the country as part of his prisoner empowerment initiative. “Over 25 years ago I was sitting where you are—angry, beaten down and locked up,” Mathis told a rapt audience of inmates recently.


Education officials to step up civil rights enforcement

by Christine Armario (AP)—The federal Department of Education wants to intensify its civil rights enforcement efforts in schools around the country, including a deeper look at issues ranging from programs for immigrant students learning English to equal access to college preparatory courses. READ ACROSS AMERICA—First lady Michelle Obama, accompanied by Education Secretary Arne Duncan, takes part in the National Education Associations’ 2010 Read Across America Day, March 2, at the Library of Congress in Washington. Education Secretary Arne Duncan was set to speak Monday in Alabama to outline the department’s goals. Duncan was there to commemorate the 45th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” in which several hundred civil rights protesters were beaten by state troopers on Selma’s Edmund Pettus Bridge during a voting rights march in 1965.


This Week in Black History

Week of March 12-18March 121773—This is the most probable date when Black explorer Jean Baptiste Pointe du Sable begins building the settlement, which would eventually become the city of Chicago, Ill. The Haitian-born (c 1745) de Sable would over time become a man of considerable wealth, owning commercial buildings, docks, trading posts and a mansion. Du Sable was the product or a Frenchman and an African woman. He died Aug. 19, 1818. MALCOLM X, FANNIE LOU HAMER, UNITA BLACKWELL



Saviors Day attendees were worldwide

The Muhammad Study Group No. 22 in Wilkinsburg convinced me that I needed to attend Saviors Day in Chicago. They promised me it would be a memorable and joyous occasion, and they were totally accurate. At first I thought those in attendance were from every state in the country, but there were people from all over the world. Every person that I met —and I assure you there many—were friendly, outgoing, and all greeted me with “brother,” “Happy Saviors Day” or “As Salaam Alaikum!”


Mo’Nique’s Oscar victory and setback

(NNPA)—The comedienne, talk show host and actress Mo’Nique has become just the fifth African-American woman to win an Oscar. Her portrayal of Mary Jones, the revolting and depraved mother of Precious, was arguably masterful, and she now joins Hattie McDaniel (who played a maid), Halle Berry (who played a sex-starved fool), Whoopi Goldberg (who played a medium in “Ghost”), and Jennifer Hudson (who played a singer).



Obama finds his inner ‘Neo’

(REAL TIMES MEDIA)—Throughout the 2008 election many people compared Barack Obama to Superman. There were pictures of him opening up his shirt a la Clark Kent to reveal a big “O.” There was a photo of him posing arms akimbo in front of a giant Superman statue, not to mention dozens of cartoons with him cut and pasted onto Superman’s body on YouTube. During the Alfred E. Smith Memorial dinner in 2008, where it’s traditional for presidential candidates to poke fun at themselves and the opposition, Obama finally got into the act with the Superman comparisons when he said, “Contrary to the rumors you have heard, I was not born in a manger. I was actually born on Krypton and sent here by my father Jor El to save the planet Earth. Many of you—many of you know that I got my name, Barack, from my father. What you may not know is that Barack is actually Swahili for ‘that one.’”


St. Louis provides model for developing Black males

(NNPA)—The three major Black Methodist denominations—American Methodist Episcopal (AME), African Methodist Episcopal Zion (AME Zion) and Christian Methodist Episcopal (CME)—emerged from their joint Great Gathering conference here last week with a plan to establish Saturday Academies in cities across the nation as a way of improving the plight of young African-American males. A pilot project is scheduled to begin in the Washington, D.C.-area in May, with a Saturday Academy rotating between three churches in the major Methodist denominations. Organizers say the concept will be expanded later to 13 regions across the United States.


I am empowered—are you?

(NNPA)—“I pledge to responsibly commit my time and talent to ensure that the nation is empowered to eliminate racial gaps and disparities in housing, education, employment and health care by 2025…” Last week, the National Urban League officially kicked off its centennial celebration and takes its century-long fight for equal opportunity and empowerment to the next level. The centerpiece of our celebration is a bold, new social mobilization campaign which we are calling “I am empowered.”