Monthly Archive: August 2012


AP Exclusive: Unheard King audio found in attic

by Lucas L. Johnson II NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)—Stephon Tull was looking through dusty old boxes in his father’s attic in Chattanooga a few months ago when he stumbled onto something startling: an audio reel labeled, “Dr. King interview, Dec. 21, 1960.” AT THE PULPIT—In this 1960 photo, Martin Luther King Jr. speaks in Atlanta. A 1960 recording of an interview with King never before heard in public is up for sale. The tape was recorded by a Chattanooga man hoping to write a book and captures King talking about his trip to Africa, and his certainty that the child he and Coretta Scott King were expecting would be a boy. (AP File Photo) He wasn’t sure what he had until he borrowed a friend’s reel-to-reel player and listened to the recording of his father interviewing Martin Luther King Jr. for a book project that never came to fruition. In clear audio, King discusses the importance of the civil rights movement, his definition of nonviolence and how a recent trip of his to Africa informed his views. Tull said the recording had been in the attic for years, and he wasn’t sure who other than his father may have heard it.



Blacks and diversity not one and the same

Recently the police department graduated its new 41-member recruit class. The Mayor’s office proudly announced that this was the most diverse class in years, and I for one was really happy and waiting to see just how many. I had heard through the grapevine that seven to nine would be minorities, which would have made it close to the 26 to 30 percent Black population in the city. When I found out that there were only five minorities and only two of them were Black I was shocked, hurt, and mad. Then it dawned on me. Something that Alma Fox had warned us about, and something I had questioned. What is diversity? Is it the same as Affirmative Action?


The ‘politricks’ of White supremacy

(NNPA)—The 2012 political season is in full throttle toward the November 6h national elections. The Democrats and the Republicans have determined their respective national standard bearers and delineated their issue platforms and public policy agenda and priorities. Black Americans, Latino Americans, and millions of other Americans who are eligible and registered to vote will determine not only the future of the United States for the next four years, but also the future of America’s standing in the world community.


Why Romney and Ryan want to eliminate labor unions

(NNPA)—Let’s be clear: The Republican ticket for the presidency—Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan—have their eyes set on eliminating labor unions from the U.S. scene. No, they will not pass a law eliminating unions; they don’t need to. The existing labor laws are so weak that they make it difficult for workers to join and form unions. Additionally, Romney and Ryan would make sure to appoint individuals to the National Labor Relations Board and the Federal Labor Relations Authority who are eager to undermine unions. Further, they could just turn a blind eye to employer attacks on unions.


Guest editorial… Congress’ future should lie in past

by Lee Hamilton There is a fundamental truth about our political system that seems to have been forgotten in these days of high-stakes brinksmanship over policy: Democracy is a process, not an outcome. In a representative democracy like ours, how we reach a result is every bit as important as the result itself—and maybe even more important.


African Arts In The Park spotlights African culture

Educating people on how African rhythms have been fused into modern-day jazz music was the theme for this year’s eighth annual African Arts in the Park. “Pittsburgh is a Jazz town. Each year we hear from our audience and they said they wanted to know how African music was noted in Jazz,” said Darcel Madkins, president and CEO of the UMOJA African Arts Company that presents the African Arts in the Park event each year. The two-day event was held at Point State Park on Aug. 11 and 12 from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. AFRICAN ARTS IN THE PARK OFFICERS—UMOJA African Arts Company members not in order. Darcel Madkins, president and CEO, red hair; Valerie Wheatley, Katrina Brabham, David Burton, Rae Fussell, Lamont Lowe, Maisha Houye, and Allegrea Wakefield, volunteer coordinator. (Photo by Rossano P. Stewart) UMOJA African Arts Company, a non-profit organization, was formed in 1989 to promote the culture of Africa in the United States. It strives to convey universality of art as a bridge between African and American cultures. UMOJA means unity or one in Swahili.


Arts & Culture Calendar

Thursday 30 Art in the Park The Borough of Wilkinsburg and the Wilkinsburg Community Development Corporation presents Wilkinsburg’s 2012 Art in the Park from 6-8:30 p.m. at the Penn Avenue Parklet, 743 Penn Ave., Wilkinsburg, This is the last day for the Summer season event and there will be food, music vendors and fun for the whole family. There will also be live entertainment.


Out & About

This week I visited the Comfort Inn Hotel Ballroom in Penn Hills, Galaxy Lounge in Homewood, CJ’s in the Strip District, Savoy Restaurant in the Strip District and Ava Lounge in East Liberty. My first stop was at the Comfort Inn Hotel in Penn Hills where the one and only Debbie Norrell celebrated her birthday in grand style with family and friends. DJ Nate the Phat Barber was on the 1’s and 2’s and there was also live entertainment and delicious food. Birthday man Pee Wee and Keisha hanging out at CJ’s in the Strip District. My next stop was at the Galaxy Lounge in Homewood where the owner “Big D” celebrated his birthday and it was off the chain. The whole city of Pittsburgh came out to help him with the big celebration and it was a great time for everyone.


Casey Q&A at PowerBreakfast

Thanks to the partnership of the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, African American Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Doris Carson Williams offered her members a unique opportunity to ask U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D- Pa, what he can do for small and minority-owned businesses. The Aug. 24 town hall-style forum yielded one of the largest PowerBreakfast crowds of the year as Bill Flanagan, the Allegheny Conference on Community Development executive VP for community relations directed audience questions to the senator. BUILDING BUSINESS–U.S. Sen. Robert Casey said he is working to increase federal minority contracts and stimulate manufacturing during the African American Chamber of Commerce’s Aug. 24 PowerBreakfast townhall meeting at the Rivers Club. Though questions ran the gamut from immigration to reducing poverty most focused on improving the state’s economy and increasing access to new opportunities for small business.


The domino effect of student debt

(NNPA)—When this year’s student debt burden surpassed the $1 trillion mark, it became even larger than the amount of debt held on credit cards. New findings now conclude that heavy student loan debt delays the ability of young graduates to buy a home and in the worst scenarios, strips Social Security benefits and even disability income paid under Supplemental Security Income. “There has been a 46 percent increase in average debt held at graduation from 2000 to 2010. Moreover, total outstanding debt held by the public has skyrocketed 511 percent over the past decade”, according to Denied: The Impact of Student Debt on the Ability to Buy a House, a new research paper by the Young Invincibles, a national youth advocacy group.