Daily Archive: July 20, 2012


Supporters hold fundraiser for ‘wrongfully jailed’ man

In December of 1996, after being chained to a table for several hours, with no attorney or family present, Da’Ron Cox confessed to shooting Brian Roberts on Fleury Way in Homewood days earlier. “I shot him in the chest five times,” the confession reads. STILL INCARCERATED—Da’Ron Cox, shown here in a 2002 photo with from left, mother Robyn Cox, sister Ebony Bailey and grandmother Evelyn Cox, thanked supporters for a July 15 benefit concert. There’s only one problem with that. According to the coroner’s report, Robert was shot in the back. One witness, Raishai Smith, said Cox was at the scene of the shooting. Three others said not only wasn’t Cox there, Smith wasn’t either. And one of those identified a different person as the shooter.


Youth talent unveiled at AWC

Stephanie Jimenez was shocked when she learned that she had won a chance to perform at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture next season and a cash prize of $500 when she was chosen as the top winner in the first ever Youth Talent Showcase. FELECIA MCFARLENE from CAPA performs a dance piece. “I feel great about winning. I joined the contest because I wanted to have the experience. I didn’t enter it to win. I think I’m going to have to enter some more competitions,” said Jimenez, a 13-year-old CAPA high school eighth grader who lives in Squirrel Hill. She scored first place in the showcase by playing a beautiful rendition of Chopin’s “Fantasie Impromptu.”


Courier business reporter nabs Keystone State Press Award

Diane I. Daniels feels it’s her mission to report the stories of the unsung heroes in the African-American community—particularly those who are contributing to the fledgling economy through their small businesses. DIANE I. DANIELS “I love being able to tell people’s stories in the Black community,” said Daniels, who serves as the New Pittsburgh Courier Newspaper’s resident business writer. “I love being able to tell other people’s stories through my words and my pictures. There are a lot of great people in this city doing great things in this city that people just don’t know about. It’s our responsibility to tell these stories.”


Big Republican lies about small business

(NNPA)—Two things always happen when there is a debate about whether Congress and the president should extend the George W. Bush tax cuts: 1) Republicans drag out the tired and misleading argument that any effort to return the tax rate to the pre-2001 levels amounts to “a job-killing tax hike.” and 2) The corporate media fails to cite evidence that the popular GOP talking point is, in fact, a lie. President Obama has reignited the debate by proposing yet again that we return to the pre-Bush tax rates. Individuals earning up to $200,000 and couples making $250,000 would be exempt from returning to the higher rate. If implemented, only the top 2 percent of taxpayers would see a tax increase.


Aspire: NBA legend Magic Johnson’s channel for Black families

by Frazier Moore NEW YORK (AP)—As the crowd counted down, Magic Johnson pulled a large silver lever jutting from a box labeled “ASPiRE.” With that, his new cable network went live. Then stagehands whisked the contraption off the dais at Aspire’s gala premiere party Wednesday night. The switch was just a prop, of course, connected to nothing. EXPANDING MEDIA EMPIRE—Former NBA basketball player Earvin “Magic” Johnson, left, and his wife, Cookie Johnson, are shown June 27 during the launch of the Aspire Television Network in New York. (AP Photo/Starpix, Amanda Schwab) But Magic Johnson’s ties to the African-American community (not to mention sports history and contemporary culture) are direct and strong.


‘Sound Off’ cadence creator Duckworth remembered

SANDERSVILLE, Ga. (Real Times News Service) —In the winter of 1944, Private Willie Lee Duckworth Sr. of Sandersville, Ga., forever changed the landscape of U.S. Army marching drills when he created what’s now called the Duckworth “Sound Off” Chant. PROUD DAUGHTER—Connie Duckworth Pinkston is shown holding a picture of her father’s musical score, as it appears in the ASCAP archives. (Courtesy photo/Duckworth Estate.) As a member of the nation’s segregated Army, Duckworth, later recounted that it all happened while marching with his fellow Black soldiers during a cold day at Fort Slocum, N.Y. According to Duckworth’s oldest daughter, Connie Duckworth Pinkston, her father was ordered to drill his fellow troops by his White commanding officer that believed the soldiers needed more pep in their proverbial steps.



Pittsburgh’s Black labor movement reborn?

On July 12, in conjunction with a number of other people, I attended a meeting at the Hillman Auditorium. Those in attendance generally were premature critics, frustrated unemployed laborers and business people, elected officials, appointed officials and a number of people who question the validity of programs allegedly designed to help Blacks and women. My personal assessment of the meeting is that for the first meeting it went well. It has been 12 years since I had an opportunity to play a significant role in helping Blacks and women be provided with an opportunity to share in the American dream, the potential to grow a business.


Romney and the NAACP: A missed opportunity

As anyone who has followed me knows, I have been extremely critical of President Obama’s non-engagement with the Black community. Obama has deliberately ignored the plight of the Black community while giving preferential treatment to the homosexual and Hispanic communities. But I can’t in good conscious criticize Obama and then give the Republicans a pass when they display similar behavior towards the Black community. I can’t excoriate Black Democrats for following Obama blindly and then remain silent when Black Republicans do the same towards Romney.


It’s time to reform The SCLC—for good

by Dexter Wimbish (NNPA)—I was born a year after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assignation in Memphis but grew up in an era where, as the walls of Jim Crow fell, the dreams of African-Americans soared. Americans both Black and White were proud of Dr. King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the organization he co-founded on Feb. 14, 1957 with Dr. Ralph David Abernathy, Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, Dr. Josephy Lowery, and other great religious leaders of our time.


Cover To Cover…‘Birthday Suit’

The swimsuit that Mama got you for this summer is the best one ever. It’s your favorite color, first of all. It fits just right, not too tight on your tummy and not too saggy in the bottom. It’s perfect for making sandcastles on the beach and sprinkler runs in the yard. Yep, you have a new swimsuit and you love to wear it. If you can remember back, though, there was one swimsuit you were born with and it was great – but not everyone wanted to see it. In the new book “Birthday Suit” by Olive Senior, illustrations by Eugenie Fernandes, a little boy enjoys showing off his own tan-colored suit.