Daily Archive: September 21, 2011

Metro

Women’s Walk for Peace

Over the past decade, 80 percent of the homicides in Pittsburgh have come as a result of Black-on-Black crime. Of these killings, nearly 80 percent have also been caused from gun violence. For the first time ever at the Women’s Walk for Peace, sponsored by the Northside Coalition for Fair Housing, the women activists and their supporters took a stand against gun violence, recognizing it as the leading cause of suffering in their communities. PEACE MARCH—Women and children march down Charles Street in the North Side. (Photo by J.L. Martello) “Every year we have a different theme. This year it’s about stopping gun violence. We never took on gun violence before because people are afraid of it,” said Ronell Guy, NCFH executive director. “This is about gathering people and information. It’s about moving people to work on this throughout the year.”

Metro

Fielder in critical condition

If a Pittsburgh politician needed support from Black voters in the 1960s and 1970s, they needed to go through East End Ward Chairman Dock Fielder Jr. And with that clout, more often than not, Fielder helped people in the 12th ward and beyond get jobs. For 30 years, Fielder and his frequent ally, the late Ezell “Bubby” Hairston, ward chair in the neighboring 13th ward, were kingmakers. Fielder, 81, the last of the city’s Black powerbrokers, was admitted to UPMC Shadyside last week suffering from respiratory problems. As of this writing he remains in intensive care. DOCK FIELDER “He was the guy,” said longtime acquaintance Louis “Hop” Kendrick. “I remember sitting in his office one day when a woman came to see him, a doctor. She came in and said she was retiring from the Allegheny County Health Department. When she graduated from Pitt 25 years earlier no one would hire her, so her father asked Dock to get her a job—he did. And she’s been there ever since. You could repeat that story 100 times over. That’s what he did.”

Metro

Black poverty reaches highest rate in 4 years

On the eve of President Barack Obama’s speech on reducing unemployment across America Sept. 12, the U.S. Census Bureau announced that the African-American poverty rate has reached it’s highest level in the past four years. “The figures are both startling and very telling,” said Rev. Derrick Boykin, associate for African-American Leadership Outreach at Bread for the World. “That the African-American poverty rate is twice as high as the poverty rate for Whites reveals that African-Americans continue to suffer disproportionately from social injustices.” BARACK OBAMA According to the 2010 census data, the African-American poverty rate of 27.4 percent nearly doubles the overall U.S. poverty rate of 15.1 percent. For the fourth year in a row, the African-American rate also more than doubles the poverty rate for non-Hispanic White Americans.

Metro

Developer chosen for Larimer Plan

Following meetings among the Larimer Consensus Group, the Urban Redevelopment Authority, and staff of state and local political representatives, Keith B. Keys has been selected as the developer for the first phase of the Larimer Plan development. Consensus Group member and Kingsley Association Executive Director Malik Bankston said the group had a solid response to the project RFQ (request for qualifications) proposal sent out in July by the URA. MALIK BANKSTON “We had nine responses,” he said. “The committee, which included staff from state Sen. (Jim) Ferlo’s office, state Rep. (Joseph) Preston’s office and (Pittsburgh) Councilman (Rev. Ricky) Burgess’ office as well as the URA and consensus group members, qualified all nine and forwarded them to the URA for final selection. For this first phase, they selected Keith B. Keys.”

National

Troy Davis denied clemency one day before execution

ATLANTA (AP)—Georgia’s board of pardons rejected a last-ditch clemency bid from Troy Davis on Tuesday, one day before his scheduled execution, despite support from figures including an ex-president and a former FBI director for the claim that he was wrongly convicted of killing a police officer in 1989. Davis is scheduled to die Wednesday at 7 p.m. EDT by injection for killing off-duty Savannah officer Mark MacPhail, who was shot dead while rushing to help a homeless man being attacked. It is the fourth time in four years that Davis’ execution has been scheduled by Georgia officials. TROY DAVIS

Metro

Community Calendar

Gun violence peace SEPT. 21—The Pittsburgh Committee for the International Day of Peace will host a Day in Pittsburgh Without Gun Violence at 12 p.m. at the City County Building, 414 Grant St., Downtown. The theme is “Make Your Voice Heard.” The day will begin at the City County Building and conclude at Freedom Corner. For more information, call Theresa Orlando at 412-496-7461.

National

This Week In Black History

Week of September 24-30 September 24 1957—President Dwight Eisenhower orders federal troops into Little Rock, Ark., to prevent angry Whites from interfering with the integration of the city’s Central High School by nine Black students. The confrontation was one of the most dramatic during the early days of the Civil Rights Movement. Governor Orval Faubus had vowed to go to jail to block the court ordered desegregation of the school claiming that Whites would be destroyed if they integrated with Blacks. But the confrontation settled the issue of whether states had to obey orders issued by federal courts. 1965—President Lyndon Johnson issues what is generally considered the nation’s first affirmative action order—Executive Order #11246. It required companies receiving federal construction contracts to ensure equality in the hiring of minorities. Despite a disastrous war in Vietnam which would eventually force his resignation, the Southern-born Johnson generally supported a host of legislative and executive efforts beneficial to Blacks. PRESIDENT LYNDON JOHNSON

hopkendrickbox

Opinion

Blacks build, why not Larimer?

Over 2,000 years ago, under the whiplashes of the pharaohs, Blacks built one of the seven wonders of the world, the giant pyramids. In the year of 1881, under the guidance of Booker T. Washington, Tuskegee Institute was built. In Atlanta, Ga., the first Black Mayor Maynard Jackson provided a Black contractor the opportunity to build the Atlanta Airport. The executive director of Kingsley Association, Malik Bankston convinced Kingsley’s board of managers to hire a Pittsburgh-native born Black, Irvin Williams to build the $8 million Kingsley Complex. We recall the terrible fire that destroyed Ebenezer Baptist Church on Wylie Avenue, and under the direction Rev. J.V. Alfred Winsett, a Black demolition company razed the building and a Black contractor, Louis Waller erected a multimillion dollar edifice on the same site.

Opinion

America getting poorer

(NNPA)—We don’t need a study or news report to tell us the economy has taken its toll on the average American. Indeed, many people need only to look at their dwindling bank accounts to know that the country isn’t any better off financially than it was two years ago. News reports and studies do, however, help paint a broader picture so that we may all understand just how deep this recession goes. The most recent report on Americans and their income, released by the Census Bureau, reveals that the number of people in this country living in poverty has reached its highest level in 51 years.