Daily Archive: December 8, 2010


Winfrey, McCartney join top Kennedy Center artists

by Brett ZongkerAssociated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP)—Oprah Winfrey has come a long way since her childhood years in a Mississippi shack and in public housing with a poster of The Beatles on her bedroom wall. Sunday, she was honored with Paul McCartney, one of the Beatles she so loved. Stars from Hollywood, Nashville and Broadway gathered in the nation’s capital to salute Winfrey, McCartney and three others—country singer Merle Haggard, Broadway composer Jerry Herman and dancer Bill T. Jones—with the Kennedy Center Honors. The president and first lady Michelle Obama sat with the honorees and former Secretary of State Colin Powell. ENTERTAINMENT ROYALTY—Recipients of the 2010 Kennedy Center Honors, Oprah Winfrey, and Paul McCartney, sing the National Anthem at the Kennedy Center in Washington, Sunday, Dec. 5. Others are Stedman Graham, back left, and Trade Representative Ron Kirk, back right. (APPhoto/Manuel Balce Ceneta)


Wikileaks—proceed with caution

(NNPA)—Taken at face value, the latest Wikileaks release is in one word—disturbing. Leaked confidential information regarding international relations and sensitive global issues, these 250,000 documents have reshaped the dynamic of diplomacy perhaps like never before. The diplomatic cables touch on everything like Guantanamo Bay, predator drone attacks in Yemen, officials in Afghanistan, Russian, and Italian relations, Pakistani nuclear fuel, North Korea, Iran, Zimbabwe and much much more. But although we’d like to believe all of this classified information without question, we must take a moment and dig a little deeper.


Liberals growing impatient with Obama’s unwillingness to fight back

(NNPA)—After carefully measuring their words for two years, frustrated progressives are becoming less reluctant to publicly express their disappointment concerning President Obama’s unwillingness to stand up for his principles amid a strident Republican campaign to politically neuter him. Political bullying on the part of emboldened Republicans have left liberals clamoring for push back from the Obama administration, especially in the face of GOP insistence on extending the Bush tax cuts to the wealthy and their objection to extending unemployment benefits for those in need.



Happy to be nappy?

The Black blogosphere and African-American news has been all abuzz over the last week because of anchorwoman Rochelle Ritchie of WPTV-TV in West Palm Beach, Fla. Ritchie has caused quite a positive stir with her story about ‘going natural’ in the professional news world and the motivations and complications behind it. I applaud Ms. Ritchie for taking such a bold step, especially this early in her career. And I give credit to the press outlets, especially Black ones, that have promoted the story. The problem is that in an effort to praise Ritchie, one of the real problems she identifies is never fully addressed.


From Vick-tim to Vick-tory

Am I the only one who is sick and tired of the media coverage of NFL quarterback Michael Vick—post incarceration? Last July I wrote a column titled, “Michael Is A Vick-tim.” I discussed Vick’s going to jail for nearly two years for killing a couple of dogs. He has served his time and is now playing football again in the NFL. He has had a stellar season as the starting quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. Since leaving jail earlier this year, he has done all the right things and continues to speak out against animal cruelty on behalf of the Humane Society.


Editorial…Man up, President Obama

The election results from Nov, 2, while desultory, are hardly the end of the world. Anyone who lived through two terms of George W. Bush can certainly say that they have lived through worse. But to hear many Americans—particularly African-Americans—talk, you would think that we are poised on the precipice of presidential paralysis, with a return to Jim Crow right around the comer. You would especially think that if you listened to or watched President Barack Obama in the days following the election. The president went on television, shoulders hunched and countenance lowered and acknowledged—a “shellacking,” and then started blaming himself and talking about “cooperating” with the new Republican electoral might.


Nunn teams with Kelly Strayhorn theater

The Kelly Strayhorn Theater and the Bill Nunn Outreach Project have come together for another outstanding production. “Ananse And The Glue Man” tells the simple but poignant story of right and wrong. The production, which will run Dec. 10-11 at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater, will feature members of the Kelly Strayhorn Theater’s resident youth theater company, the Alumni Theater Company. BILL NUNN WITH ELIZABETH BANKS IN “SPIDERMAN 3.” The play is being directed by acclaimed Pittsburgh-born actor Bill Nunn III. Nunn graduated from Schenley High School in 1970 and from Morehouse College in 1976. He made his acting debut in 1998 in the Spike Lee Joint, “School Daze.” He may be best known as Radio Raheem in Spike Lee’s controversial, “Do The Right Thing.” Nunn continued to star in other Lee movies including “Mo’ Better Blues” and “He Got Game.”


Out & About with Brotha Ash

This week I visited the Ava Lounge in East Liberty, Babylon in the Strip District, Mosaic in the Strip District, Whim Pittsburgh in Station Square, The Galaxy Lounge and Entertainment Center in Homewood and the Cabaret in Homewood. My first stop was at the Ava Lounge in East Liberty where DJ Stephan was on the 1’s and 2’s at the Pre-Interval Jazz Happy Hour with DJ Stephan and Megan Y. This happy hour is every Monday from 5:30-8:30 p.m. each week where you can enjoy the jazzy, pre-Interval sounds of DJ Stephan from the New Pittsburgh Courier with Megan Yahner serving the cocktails. Hangin’ out at Mosaic in the Strip District during Thanksgiving weekend.


Arts & Culture Calendar

Thursday 9 Jazz at Andy’s Fairmont Pittsburgh presents Jazz at Andy’s from 6-10 p.m. at 510 Market St., Downtown. Every Wednesday through Saturday, guests will be treated to live jazz performances by some of the city’s finest musicians. There is no cover charge. For more information, call 412-773-8884 or visit http://www.andyswinebar.com.