Daily Archive: March 2, 2011


Courier celebrates 100 years

While numerous newspapers and magazines have gone under throughout history, the New Pittsburgh Courier continues to march on. The third oldest African-American newspaper in the United States, recently celebrated 100 years of existence—a centennial highlighting the years of producing thought-provoking and entertaining stories for the City of Pittsburgh and beyond. The Centennial gala was held at Stage AE on the North Shore, Feb. 19, in which the late Earl Hord, P. L. Prattis and John Sengstacke were honored along with current Editor and Publisher Rod Doss. The evening featured entertainment by Carrie Lucas. 100 YEARS—From left: David Millner, a Real Times Media board member; Real Times Media CEO Hiram Jackson; and New Pittsburgh Courier Editor and Publisher Rod Doss, celebrate the newspaper’s centennial anniversary at Stage AE on Feb. 19. (Photo by J.L. Martello) “The New Pittsburgh Courier celebrates 100 years of journalistic excellence,” said Hiram E. Jackson, CEO of Real Times Media, which owns the New Pittsburgh Courier and several other African-American newspapers. “While achieving a centennial is a momentous occasion for any organization, the magnitude of this event is even greater. The depth of this celebration is much more significant because each year of the 100 we are celebrating, represents a season of unique perspective and empowerment for the African-American community.”



10 of 13 homicides Black lives

February is the special month where we, as African-Americans, reflect on the legacy and contributions to society of our ancestors and individuals that have come before us. It should not be one where a mother has to reflect on why someone stabbed her son and cut up his body over a girl or why her son had to spend his last few breaths in a wooded Home­wood area? Or worse, one where a three-year-old boy has to wonder why he will never get to grow up with his mother, because his grandmother stabbed her during an argument and took her away from him. And now his grandmother is gone too, because she is sitting in a jail. This month each individual on the homicide list was under the age of 27 and in many of the instances their deaths were committed by persons under the age of 30. And what’s worse is that if someone would have taken a second to think before reacting, most of the names would not have appeared. Now not only are these lives gone, so are the lives of the ones who committed the crime and each party’s family.


Family Planning cuts would hurt Blacks

Last week, the House of Representatives voted on a series of amendments to President Barack Obama’s proposed 2011 budget. Among the amendments approved in the House was a $317 million cut in Title X family planning funds used by healthcare providers such as Planned Parenthood and Adagio Health in Western Pennsylvania. “The Title X family planning program enables 5 million women to access primary and preventive health care, including cancer screening and STD testing and treatment. Medical clinics that are funded through Title X now prevent nearly a million unintended pregnancies every year. They save women’s lives through cancer screening, immunization and blood-pressure testing,” said Linda Mitchell, associate director of communications, Adagio Health. “In Pennsylvania, the impact of Title X is significant—Title X—supported centers provide care to 302,000 women in PA annually.”


Community Calendar

Tip-off reception MARCH 3—Champion Enterprises will host the 36th Annual Champions “Tip-Off” Reception at 6:30 p.m. at the New Cambria Suite of the Consol Energy Center, 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown. Larry Richards of KDKA radio will be the Master of Ceremonies and Leah Williams-Duncan, Esq., will be the guest speaker of the evening. Proceeds form the evening will benefit the Champions SAFE Summer Program. For more information, call 412-628-4856.


Glitz and glamor mark Cuban cigar festival

by Andrea Rodriguez HAVANA (AP)—Debora Garcia sat at a table in a room choked with smoke, gently rolling an unbanded cigar between her delicate fingers. She used her thumb to measure its width and length, then held it up to her nose to get a sense of its scent. Finally she wrote down her answer and moved on to the next cigar. LIGHTING UP—Ariadna Gomez smokes a cigar next to an image of Cuba’s leader Fidel Castro during the 13th annual Cigar Festival in Havana, Cuba, Feb. 21. (AP Photo/Franklin Reyes) Garcia was one of 27 cigar sommeliers and other experts who took part last week in a blind “tasting” of Cuba’s world-famous smokes—part of the island’s glitzy and glamorous Cigar Festival, which draws many of the biggest vendors from around the world each year. There were also black-tie dinners, trips to lush tobacco fields, cigar factory tours and lots and lots of schmoozing. The exclusive soirees and jet-set crowd made a strange juxtaposition in a communist country that spends the other 51 weeks of the year proclaiming its egalitarianism and denouncing the excesses of capitalism.


This Week In Black History

Week of March 5-11 March 5 CRISPUS ATTUCKS 1770—Crispus Attucks is shot and killed by British soldiers becoming the first American to die in the struggle for American Independence from England. Attucks was an escaped slave who became a sailor and rope maker. It is unclear exactly how he became involved in the protest of that day. But a crowd had gathered and began to taunt British troops. Attucks, who was of Black and Indian parentage, was inspired to give a speech in which he spoke of the importance of freedom. Suddenly a volley of shots was fired into the crowd. Four people died that day in an event which became known as the Boston Massacre.



Pink and green were on the scene

The news media overwhelms us every day with negative detrimental stories that have us questioning GOD, when will it end? Infrequently there are some positive events focused on, and this week’s column is about one. On Feb. 27, New Destiny CME Church at 1018 Bidwell St. (North side) was the host church for AKA Sorority’s Founders Day. It was not only a wonderful sight to see these professional women in attendance at our church, but a wonderful feeling having people who have made and act out their commitment to the service of people.


The misinformation campaign against public employees

(NNPA)—After listening to the governor of Wisconsin and financially illiterate journalists, its easy to gain the impression that city, county, state, and federal employees are overpaid slouches who benefit from hefty pensions and generous retirement benefits funded by unsuspecting taxpayers. Such a conclusion, however, is grossly inaccurate. Many of the misperceptions about government workers stem from the heated debate in Wisconsin over whether the state should limit the collective bargaining power of state employees. One constant refrain is that public employees are overpaid.


Call to Black families

(NNPA)—The distinguished theologian Howard Thurman once described an oak tree in his childhood yard with leaves that each autumn turned yellow and died but stayed on the branches all winter. Nothing—neither wind, storm, sleet, nor snow—dislodged these dead leaves from the apparently lifeless branches. Dr. Thurman came to understand that the business of the oak tree during the long winter was to hold on to the dead leaves before turning them loose in spring so that new buds–the growing edge–could begin to unfold. At winter’s end, what wind, storm, sleet, or snow could not force off passed quietly away to become the tree’s nourishment.