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Africa for More
has a Little
Bit of Something
to Bond With
800 Most Elite
Marion Jones Stripped
of Titles and Prize Money
Track star Marion Jones' has been stripped of
her Olympic and world championship titles
from the past seven years in the record books.
All of her results to September 2000 were
annulled by the International Association of
Athletics Federations because of her admis-
sion to taking the designer steroid "the clear"
from September 2000 to July 2001. Track and
M. Jones field's governing body also told her to return
an estimated $700,000 in prize money from
that period. She can't compete again unless
she pays it back. Athletes who are upgraded
stand to receive a share of Jones' prizemoney.
However, it's uncertain whether they will ever get the money as Jones is
believed to be broke.
Her teammates who could also end up paying a price for her doping.
The IAAF recommended the four members of her gold medal winning
team be disqualified and lose their medals. It's up to the International
Olympic Committee to decide whether Jamaica receives gold in the 4 x
400 and France bronze in the 4 x 100.
New Orleans Elects First White
Majority Government in 20 Years
New Orleans, La The recent City Council election in New Orleans
offered perhaps the most vivid proof that the majority of the city's Black
folks have moved on.
By the time the votes were tallied, the Council had been transformed -
for the first time in two decades into a majority White body.
The election was starkly divided along racial lines, and quite a few more
Whites than Blacks voted.
Slightly more than 52,000 votes were cast in the election, substantial-
ly fewer than the 113,000 that were cast last March, when many African
Americans voted absentee or returned to the hurricane-ravaged city via
car pools and buses to vote for Black incumbent Mayor Ray Nagin.
In the most recent election, Whites out-voted Blacks 29,700 to 22,900.
The City Council wasn't the only advances made by White candidates,
they also took New Orleans' two seats in the Louisiana Legislature,
which had long been held by Blacks, and a state court judgeship that had
also been occupied by a Black judge, according to the Times.
Jermaine Says Jackson Five
to Reunite for New Tour
The Jackson Five, the group that launched the career of pop superstar
Michael Jackson, are planning to reunite for a tour as early as next year,
according to Jermaine Jadkson.
"We feel we have to do it one more time. We owe that to the fans and to
the public." said Jermaine.
Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael last toured together in 1984
as The Jacksons -- with six members, along with Randy Jackson -- hav-
ing originally formed the Jackson Five in 1965.
The group stopped touring together as Michael and sister Janet Jackson
became international music superstars, and the Jackson Five formally
disbanded in 1990.
He added that the group were "in the studio at the moment," hinting at
E-Mail Financial Scam
Uses Name of NAACP Official
DURHAM, N.C. Authorities are investigating a phony e-mail that went
out to contacts of a state NAACP official and claims she is stranded in
The e-mail, which is full of grammatical mistakes, went out to people
in Amina Turner's address book. It claims Turner is writing from a "saber
cafe" in Lagos, Nigeria, and needs $2,900 wired via Western Union to
pay a hotel bill and other expenses. It asks the recipient for a return e-
"It's unnerving because it's your name," said Turner, executive director
of the state chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of
Colored People. "It's worse because it's the organization's name, too."
The hoax is being investigated by the State Bureau of Investigation
computer crimes unit, federal investigators and the Internet Crime
Turner said she is not aware of anyone who fell for the scam.
China to Build $10 Million
Car Assembly Plant in Uganda
Uganda will start assembling vehicles and motorcycles in January 2008
in a joint venture that will see the Chinese government and Chinese auto-
mobile manufacturer, Geely International play a crucial role.
The three have formed MFK Corporation to run the project, for which
the government will provide the enabling environment while the Chinese
will provide the technical expertise.
Uganda will be the third country in East Africa to have an automobile
assembly plant after Kenya and Tanzania.
The investment would enable Ugandans to buy first-hand vehicles at a
greatly reduced price of $10,000. Such vehicles currently cost $14,700.
I RT T
Volume 21 No. 33 Jacksonville, Florida Nov. 29 December 5, 2007
Nation's Capital: 1 in 20 Infected With Aids
A sweeping new report of
HIV/AIDS numbers in D.C. from
2001 to 2006 shows what officials
call a "modern epidemic," with one
in 20 district residents being infect-
ed with HIV and one in 50 having
the advanced form AIDS.
Named One of
10 Finalist in Nat'l.
Battle of the Bands
For those who thought the
marching 100 was the best band
in Florida may want to think
again. The Marching Wildcats of
Bethune Cookman University
have been named one of ten
national finalists for the annual
Honda Battle of the Bands in
Atlanta, Georgia at the Georgia
Dome on January 26, 2008. The
Honda Battle of the Bands
Invitational Showcase continues
to stand alone as "the Super
Bowl for Black. College Bands,"
a singular showcase often Black
college marching bands in one
place, at one time.
The bands are competing for
over $140,000 in cash prizes for
their band programs in addition
to bragging rights.
The other top nine colleges and
include: Virginia State, Shaw,
Arkansas Pine Bluff, Albany
State, Norfolk State, Texas
Southern, Tuskegee, North
Carolina Central and Winston-
Since 2001, 80 percent of new
infections happened in black
men, women and adolescents, and
of the women infected, nine out of
10 were African-American.
Aids, once considered a gay dis-
ease, has moved into the general
population. HIV was spread
through heterosexual contact in
more than 37 percent of the
District's cases detected in that time
period, in contrast to the 25 percent
of cases attributable to men having
relations with men.
No longer is HIV a crisis primari-
ly among younger adults. Starting
in 2004, the number of new HIV
cases among men and women ages
40 to 49 outpaced every other age
group in the city.
The District's AIDS rate is the
worst of any city in the country,
nearly twice the rate in New York
and more than four times the inci-
dence in Detroit, and it has been
climbing faster than that of many
Jaguars Giving Fans Something to Smile About A Very Merry Jaguar Season is off and
running for Jacksonville Jaguar fans on and off the field. Recovering from a festive and hearty Thanksgiving, the
Smith family (above) Randy, Cameron, Camille Carol and Cambria enjoyed watching the Jaguars pulverize the
Buffalo Bills 34-16 in a game that was blacked out for local viewers. Next up for the Jaguars (8-3) are one of the
team's nemesis, the division leading Indianaoplis Colts (9-2) in a Sunday 1 p.m. Indiana match up. FMPowellPhoto
National Poll Shows African-Americans Looking to Clinton, Obama
By. Ralph B. Everett
With the presidential primary
season now moving into high gear,
how do African-Americans rate the
current crop of candidates?
According to a survey conducted
recently by the Joint Center for
Political and Economic Studies,
Black voters want change and
they believe Hillary Clinton and
Barack Obama are the most likely
to deliver it.
The results of this poll which is
the most comprehensive effort to
determine the political preferences
of black voters show that African-
Americans are paying close atten-
tion to the presidential campaigns
and the positions of the candidates.
Eighty percent of likely primary
voters said they are closely follow-
ing news coverage of their party's
candidates and two-thirds said they
are extremely likely to participate
in the upcoming primaries.
As for the favorite candidates of
Black voters, senators Clinton and
Obama are in a category of their
own, with Clinton being viewed
favorably by 83 percent and Obama
by 74 percent. Among a total of
eight candidates mentioned to sur-
vey respondents, only Clinton,
Obama and former senator John
Edwards received higher favorable
than unfavorable ratings, with
Edwards being rated positively by
Former New York City mayor
Rudolph Giuliani was the best
known of the Republican candi-
dates to Black likely primary vot-
ers, but was viewed unfavorably by
42.7 percent, compared to 27.1 per-
cent who viewed him favorably.
So, if you look at this as a two
person race for the Black vote, why
does Sen. Clinton seem to fare bet-
ter with African-American voters
than Sen. Obama, who thus far is
arguably the most successful Black
presidential candidate in the
On one hand, Sen. Clinton is
benefiting from long experience in
the public arena not to mention
her association with an administra-
tion that was highly regarded by
African- Americans and during
which Black income increased.
Indeed, the Joint Center's poll
shows more respondents named
Clinton over Obama as having the
best position of the Democratic
candidates on three key issues of
concern affordable health care
(47.3 percent to 18.7 percent),
strengthening Social Security (41
percent to 18.6 percent) and, by a
narrower margin, on dealing with
Iraq (35.4 percent to 22.1 percent).
Continued on page 3
Youth Learn the Value of Thankfulness Early Black Friday Attracts Happy Shoppers
Members of the John Love Boys & Girls Club TEAM UP welcomed Stores and malls attracted bigger-than-expected crowds as early as
families and friends to their "Hearts of Thanks," last week in celebration midnight for discounted flat-panel TVs, digital cameras and toys on
of Thanksgiving. The program, which was held at the John Love TEAM Black Friday. Strong sales continued throughout the weekend. Shown
UP Club, included various Club members stating what they are thankful above, a couple of shoppers, roll their purchases back to their car after
for. Also included in the program was a "Thankful Song" created by the spending a few hours in a Toys-R-US on the day after Thanksgiving,
John Love TEAM UP members shown above in the I stan 2nd grade. John known as "Black Friday," which marks the start of the holiday shop-
Love TEAM UP opened its doors to members on October 8. 2007. ping season.
Still Home Base
I ~, _
A r%2,- M" X-Iry F PN mD b 5
America's First Black Social Registry
to Pick 800 Most Elite African-Americans
Register" Will Rank the 800 Richest & Most Socially Elite Blacks in America
Lawrence Otis Graham has done
it again. This Harvard-educated
black attorney impressed the nation
a decade ago when he went under-
cover as a busboy to expose bigotry
at an all-white country club, and
then again six years ago with his
New York Times-bestselling book,
Our Kind of People: Inside
America's Black Upper Class. His
newest project is the nation's 1st
black social register, THE OUR
KIND OF PEOPLE 800 REGIS-
TER, a directory ranking the 800
Richest and Socially Elite Black
Families & People in America.
The book will be a detailed list-
ing of the 800 wealthiest, best-edu-
cated, and most socially prominent
black families and individuals in
America. Entries will be catego-
rized and profile the best that black
America has to offer. This will be
the first publication to ever rank
America's black community.
"Don't expect to see rowdy bas-
ketball players or, rap stars on this
list," says Graham. "The Our Kind
of People 800 Register will focus
on 'the talented tenth'---the kind of
blacks that sociologist W.E.B.
DuBois discussed 100 years ago---
blacks with superior backgrounds:
doctors, bankers, lawyers, educa-
SThe Power of Thankyou
I'd love to share
with you the ben-
L 1 efits and power of
words. THANK YOU. They are
two words that have the power to
transform our health, happiness,
Research shows that grateful
people are happier and more like-
ly to maintain good friendships. A
state of gratitude, according to
research by the Institute of
HeartMath, also improves the
heart's rhythmic functioning,
which helps reduce stress and
helps us heal physically. It's actu-
ally physiologically impossible to
be stressed and thankful at the
same time. When you are grateful
you flood your body and brain
with emotions and endorphins that
uplift and energize you rather than
the stress hormones that drain
Gratitude and appreciation are
also essential for a healthy work
environment. In fact, the number
1 reason why people leave their
jobs is because they don't feel
appreciated. A simple thank you
and a show of appreciation can
make all the difference.
So, this week I want to encour-
age you to tap the power of thank
you. Not just on Thanksgiving but
each and every day. The key is to
make it habit and let it fuel your
life, lift you up and encourage oth-
ers in the process. Here are 4 ways
to tap the power of thank you at
work and home.
Take a Daily Thank You Walk I
wrote about this in The Energy
Bus. Take a simplel0-minute
walk each day and say out loud
what you are thankful for. This
one walk will shift your energy
for the entire day by not only plac-
ing your mind in a state of grati-
tude but by also adding a boost of
physical exercise to energize your
body. Remember, you are too
blessed to be stressed!
Meal Time Thank You's Next
time at dinner with your friends
and family, go around the table
and have each person, including
the kids at the little table, say what
they are thankful for.
Gratitude Visit Martin
Seligman, Ph.D., the father of
positive psychology, suggests that
we write a letter expressing our
gratitude to someone. Then we
visit this person and read them the
letter. His research shows that
people who do this are measura-
bly happier and less depressed a
Say Thank you at Work Doug
Conant, the CEO of Campbell's
Soup, has written 16,000 thank
you notes to his employers over
the last five years and re-ener-
gized the company in the process.
Energize and engage your co-
workers and team by letting them
know you are grateful for them
and their work.
Excerpt from The Energy Bus:
10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work,
and Team with Positive Energy,
by Jon Gordon
Bottom Line: Gratitude is like
muscle. The more we do with it
the stronger it gets.
Need an Attorney?
Contact Law Office of
Reese Marshall, P.A.
214 East Ashley Street
Jacksonville, Florida 32202
Over 30 years experience of professional
and courteous service to our clients
tors and generous socialites."
Graham notes more than one mil-
lion black Americans now have
MBAs, PhDs, MDs and law
degrees. "This is the social elite,"
says Graham, "and they've always
stood above the rest. This directory
separates the wheat from the chaff.
It's my way of fighting the negative
black images from insulting televi-
sion and radio.
Next month, Graham starts a tour
of 46 cities to collect names of elite
people and families with ties to
important groups, and to the black
society-world of debutante cotil-
lions, charities, prep schools, clubs,
resorts and home life in the best zip
Graham is collecting names from
boards, college directories, Junior
League committees, party guest
lists and rosters of top groups like
the Links, Jack & Jill and various
sororities and fraternities.
The Our Kind of People 800
Register will include Ivy League
grads, as well as those who "sum-
mer" in Martha's Vineyard and Sag
Harbor, or who attended Howard,
Spelman, Wellesley, Morehouse,
Exeter and Palmer Memorial, a
black prep school founded in 1902.
For more information, visit
www.ourkindofpeople.com if you,
or someone you know, should be in
An alumnus of Jack & Jill, the
son of a Link, and a member of the
Boul6, Graham is qualified to write
about the black upper class. He and
his wife, a graduate of Harvard,
Harvard Law School & Business
School, live in Chappaqua, New
York and Manhattan with their chil-
by Michael G. Shinn, CFP
We are being continually bom-
barded by a marketing enemy,
either trying to sell us things we
don't need or to make us spend
money we don't have. Our tele-
phones, mailboxes and computers
are like Trojan Horses, allowing the
enemy to stealthily invade our
homes, wallets and privacy.
Luckily, there are four defenses that
can retard the enemy and slow
down their advance. These defen-
sive measures may help add some
semblance of peace to your life.
Do Not Call Me!
You are eating dinner, the tele-
phone rings and it is another tele-
marketer either trying to sell you a
Florida vacation home, a "free"
cruise or a credit card. Your imme-
diate response is to either hang up,
curse them out or to tell them not to
call you again. The National Do
Not Call Registry is a real defense.
By law, telemarketers are restricted
from "cold calling" registered
phone numbers that are placed on
the list. You can register either
online at www.donotcall.gov or call
toll-free, 1-888-382-1222 from the
telephone number you wish to reg-
ister. Registration is free and lasts
for 5 years. The National Do Not
Call Registration will stop most
telemarketing calls, but not all. You
may still receive calls from compa-
nies with which you have a busi-
ness relationship with, charities,
political organizations and tele-
phone surveyors. This is an effec-
tive way to say, "Do Not Call Me"
to the enemy.
Pre-Approved Credit Offers
Have you ever wondered how
you were "pre-approved" for a
credit card or even a home equity
loan, when you never asked for it?
Well, your friendly credit reporting
agencies allow businesses to pre-
screen your credit report to deter-
mine whether they want to send you
an offer. You can "opt out" of this
process by calling 1-888-5-OPT-
OUT (1-888-567-8688) or register-
ing at www.optoutprescreen.com .
You will need your home telephone
number, social security number and
name. The OPT-OUT process is
sponsored by the credit bureaus and
is confidential. This is an important
defense to stop future creditors
from entering your fortress.
Your mailbox is stuffed, so you
stand over the trashcan and sort out
the junk mail and you only end up
with three pieces of real correspon-
dence. It seems like the postman is
living with the enemy and helping
them to infiltrate your home. There
is a defense, although it is not bul-
letproof. The Direct Marketing
Association offers a Mail
Preference Service (MPS) that
allows individuals to "opt out" of
national mailing lists. All Direct
Marketing Association members
are required to remove the regis-
tered names and addresses from
their mailing lists. You can register
for MPS on line at www.dmacon-
sumers.org or mail in an MPS form.
Either way will cost you $1. This
will help reduce the continuous
onslaught of junk mail that you are
being barraged with.
You open your email and find
that you have 20 messages. In sort-
ing through them, you find that you
have 18 unsolicited sales pitches
and only 2 messages of substance.
This is the toughest of the invaders
to stop. The Spammers are an
aggressive foe, using computers to
send out hundreds of thousands of
emails at a time. There are a num-
ber of anti-Spam products on the
market. Most will permit you to
receive emails from the people in
your address book and then use a
filtering process for the rest.
Spamkiller at www.mcafee.com or
Norton Internet Security at
www.symantec.com are two of the
more popular products. Anti-Spam
products help, but they don't do a
complete job of eradicating the
The "Four Ways to Say No" are
methods to help shield you and
your family from some of the mar-
keting weapons that you are
exposed to on a daily basis. I have
used all of these methods and they
have helped to reduce some of the
daily aggravations caused by the
marketing juggernaut. Give them a
try. If you have some other ideas,
please email them to me.
Michael G Shinn, CFP Registered
Representative and Advisory Associate
of and securities offered through
Financial Network Investment
Corporation, member SIPC. Visit
www.shinnfinancial.com for more
information or to send your comments
or questions to shinnm@financialnet-
work.com. Michael G Shinn 2007.
Five Ways to Say No
The prototype of the new book and its author Lawrence Graham.
I BY FINANCIAL ANALYST MICHAEL SHINN I
November 29 December 5, 2007
Pa(re 2 Ms. Perrv's Free Press
"r .,.,Q .. -7.IF
Gina Jones holds a photo of her son Martin Lee Anderson taken just
before he entered the boot camp facility. The family received a settle-
ment in the case though all guards were acquitted. They have vowed
his death was not in vain.
Week of Peaceful Protests Held
in Honor of Martin Lee Anderson
Panama City, FL The eight not
guilty verdicts in the Martin Lee
Anderson case last month sparked a
wave of demonstrations throughout
the African American community.
Local civil rights leaders have now
organized a march in Bay County to
protest what they say is social
injustice. They hope this will help
begin the healing process.
In October, eight former Bay
County Boot Camp drill instructors
were found not guilty on charges of
aggravated manslaughter in the
death of Martin Lee Anderson
January 6, 2006, the day after he
entered the boot camp.
The verdict prompted protests all
over the country but organizers
want to get the attention of those
living in Bay County.
Protest and Empowerment Week
began Sunday November 25th and
concludes with a March for Justice
on December 1st, the same day
Rosa Parks refused to give up her
seat 52 years ago.
"We do want to invite all of those
who will come and stand with us
because we have said from day one
this is not as much about a black
and white as it is about right and
wrong. What happened to Martin
Lee Anderson was wrong and
shouldn't happen to any child
regardless of color." said Rev.
Woods says these events will not
only express their disappointment
in the Anderson verdicts but hopes
to encourage others in the commu-
nity to make positive social change.
"Dr. King said injustice anywhere
is a threat to justice everywhere. So
if you sit back and you are silent
and you don't break the silence and
speak out it will just be a matter of
time before it happens to a child in
November 29 December 5, 2007
World's Oldest and Largest African-American
Sorority to Celebrate Centennial in 2008
Barbara A. McKinzie
In January 2008, Alpha Kappa
Alpha Sorority, Inc. becomes the
first African-American sorority to
reach its 100-year milestone. In
commemoration, from January 12-
15, thousands of members will
make a solemn pilgrimage to their
founding Home of Howard
University in Washington, D.C.
There, in a series of joyous and
solemn tributes, they will salute
Alpha chapter on its Centennial and
reflect on the journey that took
them from nine founding members
of Alpha Chapter in 1908 on one
campus of Howard University, to
200,000 members in 975 chapters
Led by international president
Barbara A. McKinzie, members
will walk hallowed ground and
engage in a series of sentimental
rites of passage. They will also pay
tribute to the foremothers whose
brilliant vision gave life to Alpha
Kappa Alpha Sorority.
McKinzie said that the Sorority
has endured because it was built on
a bedrock of strength: "The convic-
tion of our founders to create an
organization dedicated to service
has enabled Alpha Kappa Alpha to
thrive through ten decades. In this
100-year span of time, we have ren-
dered an invaluable service to the
This nostalgic pilgrimage home
to Alpha chapter will feature A
Walk Through History where mem-
bers will follow the same sacred
paths as the founders. Members will
also rededicate themselves to the
powerful concept of service that
represents the sorority's core mis-
sion. Among those who will return
to their roots include five former
international presidents, and high-
profile members like Actress
Phylicia Rashad; The Honorable
Peggy Quince, Florida Supreme
Court Judge; and 102-year-old Mrs.
Hazel Hainsworth Young, one of
the Sorority's most senior members.
In keeping with the Sorority's
credo, "to provide service to all
mankind," members will participate
in a series of projects where they
will outreach to seniors, cancer
patients and respond to the needs of
the community. A climactic high
point of the weekend will be the
dedication of a library. Sorority
members will donate books to the
library and solicit donations of
reading material from area book-
The Alpha Birthday Celebration
is the first of two major celebrations
to take place during its Centennial
year. More than 20,000 members
will converge upon Washington,
D.C. for its Centennial International
Conference from July 12-18. At that
time, the sorority will engage in a
weeklong series of meetings, plena-
ries and "conversations" about how
to deal with today's pressing issues
while charting a course for the
Sorority as it enters its second mil-
lennium. The public will be invited
to some of the events.The confer-
ence is being chaired by Past
National Basilues and Jacksonville
resident Dr. Norma White. Alpha
Kappa Alpha Sorority is America's
first Greek-letter organization
founded in 1908 by, and for,
African-American college women.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois,
it is one of the world's leading serv-
ice organizations. The sorority's
members have made a commitment
"to serve all mankind" through a
nucleus of more than 200,000
women in over 975 chapters in the
United States, the Caribbean,
Canada, Germany, Korea, Japan
and in the continent of Africa.
African-Americans Looking to Clinton and Obama
Continued from front
But that's not necessarily to say
that Sen. Obama is missing out on
opportunities to get the black vote
in the upcoming primaries. Indeed,
the poll shows his favorability rat-
ing among African-Americans is
excellent though not quite as high
as Sen. Clinton's especially for
someone who is a relatively new
face on the political scene.
What's more, by a two-to-one
margin, respondents said that
"commitment to change" was a
more important attribute in a candi-
date than "experience in public
office" a view that could be seen
as helpful to Sen. Obama's candi-
Indeed, "change" could prove to
be an influential factor in the nom-
inating process. Only 11 percent of
African Americans surveyed
believe that President Bush is
doing a good or excellent job,
while a clear majority (57.9 per-
cent) gave him the lowest rating of
And when asked to name the single
most important problem facing the
country, the No. 1 answer was the
war in Iraq, which was cited by 28
percent of respondents, followed
by health care (20 percent), jobs
and the economy (15 percent) and
education (10 percent). None of the
black voters polled identified taxes
as the most important national
problem, less than one percent
named immigration and two per-
cent said terrorism.
Given that the lowest-ranked
concerns are among the signature
issues of the Republican Party, it is
not surprising that 87 percent of
those surveyed said they intend to
participate in the Democratic
Party's nominating process.
Additionally, it appears that the
term "conservative" has lost some
of its brand among blacks. In Joint
Center surveys of black adults con-
ducted in the late 1990s, between
35 and 40 percent described them-
selves as conservative in their
political orientation. In this latest
poll, that figure has dropped to 21
percent, with 41 percent describing
themselves as liberals and 36 per-
cent as moderates.
Older White Women Flocking to Africa for More Than a Safari
KENYA Bethan, 56, lives in
southern England on the same street
as best friend Allie, 64.
They are on their first holiday to
Kenya, a country they say is "just
full of big young boys who like us
Hard figures are difficult to come
by, but local people on the coast
estimate that as many as one in five
single women visiting from rich
countries are in search of sex.
Allie and Bethan -- who both
declined to give their full names --
said they planned to spend a whole
month touring Kenya's palm-
fringed beaches. They would do
well to avoid the country's tourism
"It's not evil," said Jake Grieves-
Cook, chairman of the Kenya
Tourist Board, when asked about
the practice of older rich women
traveling for sex with young
"But it's certainly something we
Also, the health risks are stark in
a country with an AIDS prevalence
of 6.9 percent. Although condom
use can only be guessed at, Julia
Davidson, an academic at
Nottingham University who writes
on sex tourism, said that in the
course of her research she had met
women who shunned condoms --
finding them too "businesslike" for
their exotic fantasies.
The white beaches of the Indian
Ocean coast stretched before the
friends as they both walked arm-in-
arm with young African men, Allie
resting her white haired-head on the
shoulder of her companion, a six-
foot-four 23-year-old from the
He wore new sunglasses he said
were a gift from her.
"We both get something we want
-- where's the negative?" Allie
asked in a bar later, nursing a
strong, golden cocktail.
She was still wearing her bikini
top, having just pulled on a pair of
jeans and a necklace of traditional
Bethan sipped the same local
drink: a powerful mix of honey,
fresh limes and vodka known local-
ly as "Dawa," or "medicine."
She kept one eye on her date -- a
20-year-old playing pool, a red ban-
dana tying back dreadlocks and
new-looking sports shoes on his
He looked up and came to join
her at the table, kissing her, then
collecting more coins for the pool
Grieves-Cook and many hotel
managers say they are doing all
they can to discourage the practice
of older women picking up local
boys, arguing it is far from the type
of tourism they want to encourage
in the east African nation.
"The head of a local hoteliers'
association told me they have
begun taking measures -- like refus-
ing guests who want to change from
a single to a double room," Grieves-
"It's about trying to make those
guests feel as uncomfortable as pos-
sible ... But it's a fine line. We are
100 percent against anything ille-
gal, such as prostitution. But it's dif-
ferent with something like this -- it's
These same beaches have long
been notorious for attracting anoth-
er type of sex tourists -- those who
As many as 15,000 girls in four
coastal districts -- about a third of
all 12-18 year-olds girls there -- are
involved in casual sex for cash, a
joint study by Kenya's government
and U.N. children's charity
UNICEF reported late last year.
Up to 3,000 more girls and boys
are in full-time sex work, it said,
some paid for the "most horrific and
"PREYING ON POVERTY?"
Emerging alongside this black
market trade -- and obvious in the
bars and on the sand once the sun
goes down -- are thousands of eld-
erly white women hoping for
romantic, and legal, encounters
with much younger Kenyan men.
They go dining at fine restau-
rants, then dancing, and back to
expensive hotel rooms overlooking
"One type of sex tourist attracted
the other," said one manager at a
shorefront bar on Mombasa's
"Old white guys have always
come for the younger girls and
boys, preying on their poverty ...
But these old women followed ...
they never push the legal age limits,
they seem happy just doing what is
sneered at in their countries."
Experts say some thrive on the
social status and financial power
that comes from taking much poor-
er, younger lovers.
"This is what is sold to
tourists by tourism com-
panies -- a kind of
return to a colonial
past, where white
ions," said ii.
are on the
lookout for men
Flashing a daz-
zling smile and built
like an Olympic basket-
ball star, the 22-year-old said
he has slept with more than 100
white women, most of them 30
years his senior.
"When I go into the clubs, those
are the only women I look for now,"
he told Reuters. "I get to live like
the rich mzungus (white people)
who come here from rich coun-
tries, staying in the best
hotels and just having
At one club, a
group of about
25 dancing men
.. \ -- most of
S. \ them Joseph
*: edge closer
and closer to
a crowd of
more than a
| t '. /autumn years.
/ "It's not
I didn't come
h/ here looking for a
/ husband," Bethan
.~ said over a pounding
beat from the speakers.
"It's a social arrangement. I
buy him a nice shirt and we go out
for dinner. For as long as he stays
with me he doesn't pay for any-
thing, and I get what I want -- a
good time. How is that different
from a man buying a young girl din-
JACKSONVILLE CITY COUNCIL
PUBLIC HEALTH & SAFETY COMMITTEE
Forum on Crime & Safety
Share your ideas for crime prevention and dealing with its aftermath
Monday December 10, 2007 at 6 p.m.
Spirit of Life Worship Center
1176 LaBelle Street
The City Council's Public Health & Safety Committee will hold a forum on crime and safety. The public
is requested to share ideas regarding crime prevention on any level (personal, group of neighbors, com-
munity, city wide, etc) of any type (public education, enforcement, environmental improvements, etc) and
dealing with the aftermath (such as physical, financial or emotional effects). Although locations were cho-
sen to make attendance convenient for communities experiencing a higher incidence of crime, all inter-
ested citizens are invited to attend.
Pag 4 Ms Pery' Fre PessNovmbe 2 -I Deeme 5..... 2007
Northside Still Headquarters for Much of Black Community
I always find it important to
look at the past to find answer to
the problems and issues that we
face today in America and particu-
larly in the black community.
I love reading old articles,
speeches and position papers
because they highlight the fact that
many of the issues that we are fac-
ing in the past are still relevant.
One of the aspects about being
black that I love the most is the
sense of togetherness we generally
have. Our communities used to
emulate the very essence of black
pride and community that I am
In fact, Stokely Carmichael said
it best, "The love we seek to
encourage is within the black com-
munity, the only American commu-
nity where men call each other
'brother' when they meet."
No matter if we are talking about
Chicago's Southside or
Jacksonville's Northside, each city
has an area where African
Americans predominately live.
Those neighborhoods are normally
rich in history, but many of them
are in transition.
As middle class blacks have
moved into more affluent areas of
town, lower income African
Americans have been left behind.
As the middle class base moves on,
so does the political and economic
stability of these neighborhoods.
So while cities are no longer seg-
regated legally or institutionally,
there is still economic and social
This year my family and I moved
to the Northside for the first time in
my life. I am a native son born
and raised in our fair city, but I
grew up in Westside neighborhoods
such as Brooklyn and Paxon.
So I wasn't "Northsider," but like
most blacks from my neck of the
woods we could identify with our
brothers and sisters on the
Northside because we dealt with
the same issues.
Unfortunately, many people have
a negative perception of the
Northside -primarily perpetuated
by the mainstream media, but their
perception is definitely not reality.
There are many great communities
located north and northwest of
While there are great new neigh-
borhoods on the Northside, there
are many neighborhoods in transi-
tion and disrepair as well. In fact,
the reason I started this column
talking about looking back at the
past is because I think that the
teachings of former leaders like
Marcus Garvey may be helpful
If we look at some of Garvey's
views about our community we can
understand that the crime and
hopelessness we are dealing with
today is not new.
Garvey said, "There is nothing
more dangerous than to build a
society with a large segment of the
people in that society who feel that
they have no stake in it, who feel
that they have nothing to lose."
"People who have a stake in their
society protect that society, but
when they don't have it, they
unconsciously want to destroy it,"
How profound are those words?
Think about what is happening
today in Jacksonville as it relates to
crime and the murder rate. We are
dealing with a number of young
black men who feel that they don't
have a stake in this community. So
as Garvey said, they aren't interest-
ed in protecting this society, but are
unconsciously trying to destroy it.
The most dangerous man walk-
ing the streets is the one who has
nothing to live for. And we have
too many young men walking the
streets with nothing to live for.
When I was in college I was
working on a paper on Langston
Hughes. I remember reading and
being very impressed with Hughes
view of the black community. In
fact, he said that he would never
live outside of the African
American community because it
was his life and his sustenance.
But today's black community is
different from the one Hughes
cherished or is it? How many peo-
ple feel the same way Hughes did?
Maybe philosopher Alain Locke
got it right. He wrote, "The position
of the Negro in American culture is
indeed a paradox. It almost passes
understanding how and why a
group of people can be socially
despised, yet at the same time artis-
tically esteemed and culturally
influential, can be both an
oppressed minority and a dominant
Is education the key? Maybe jobs
and economic development are the
answer? Maybe it is simply the
man in the mirror?
Hopefully through education we
can change the culture of hopeless-
ness that plagues our communities.
There's an old Creole Proverb
that says, "Tell me whom you love
and I'll tell you who you are."
Signing off from the comer of
Edgewood and Lem Turner,
AIDS: Nobody Should Have to Die Like This
b y R e v.
Until the gov-
ernment is willing
to spend as much
money on AIDS
and education as it
does on searching
for Osama bin Laden, then I'm
going to keep preaching what I'm
The United States has promised
money for the AIDS pandemic that
the United Nations has called the
world's worst health crisis. But the
United States won't deliver any
money unless the country, the pro-
gram, the people or the recipients
of the U.S. aid subscribe to the
insane policy of "abstinence only!"
We are still fixated on who is
sleeping with whom while people
are dying like flies! As soon as you
are willing to develop every child's
brain instead of destroying Saddam
Hussein, then I'm going to keep
preaching what I'm preaching.
"Herman," our first congregation
my mind on that day that no person
in our congregation who was living
with AIDS would ever die like that
The United Church of Christ has
been the "whipping boy" for the
conservative, right-wing press and
public when it decided to ordain
homosexuals into the Christian
ministry, so I was not concerned
about the stigma an AIDS Ministry
might bring on our congregation. I
don't do the ministry, however, to
what, the public thinks or the press
thinks. I do ministry, and we do
ministry as a congregation because
of what the Prince of Peace thinks!
The Black community was slow
to respond to the epidemic that has
swept across this country for over a
quarter of a century because the
epidemic was branded as a White-
male homosexual disease. And
because many Black Christian fam-
ilies believe in their heart of hearts
that AIDS is God's curse upon the
homosexual, those churches and
the larger community were slow to
needs to make that message loud
and clear across denominational
lines. The religious community
needs to stamp out ignorance
among its constituents and help the
public come to grips with how this
disease is transmitted. The religious
community also needs to hold
workshops and teach-ins with its
members of all ages, even its sen-
iors about sexually transmitted dis-
eases and how HIV/AIDS is
spread. One of the T-shirts that I
saw back in the 1980s says it all:
"HIV/AIDS is spread three ways:
By blood, by semen and by igno-
rance!" It also needs to teach pre-
ventive measures to cut down on
the incidence of persons becoming
infected. Further, congregations
need to form HIV/AIDS ministries
to serve families of people who are
infected. And finally, the religious
community needs to lobby the
political realm just as it did back in
the civil rights movement. It needs
to lobby politicians to get the laws
changed so that the poor and the
needy can have access to anti-retro-
viral drugs at generic prices. Not
everybody can afford the medica-
tions that Magic Johnson can
afford! Until the religious commu-
nity lobbies those senators who are
in bed with the pharmaceutical
companies to change those laws,
then it is not doing what it did back
in the civil rights days, when reli-
gious leaders lobbied the politi-
cians to change the laws that kept
people locked out of access to full
participation in society.
God loves everybody. God says
everyone who believes in God's
Son shall have everlasting life. That
includes people with HIV/AIDS,
heterosexuals and homosexuals;
therefore, our theological approach
comes straight from the Bible. Our
church has had an HIV/AIDS
Ministry since the beginning of the
epidemic. We train people who vol-
unteer to work with this ministry
before we turn them loose to work
with families and individuals who
are living with AIDS. Our training
includes classes led by an epidemi-
ologist, the Chicago Board of
Health, the Centers for Disease
Control in Atlanta, and chaplains
who work with people living with
HIV/AIDS. We run a halfway
house and we provide medications
and minister to families who are
affected and infected. And we help
people learn about and take advan-
tage of every social service that is
available to them. We also have
annual seminars and workshops on
safe sex. We have a Teenage
Sexuality Ministry in our church
and sex is a constant discussion
when it comes to the educational
ministry of the church. We talk
about it right from the pulpit.
Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. is senior
pastor of the Trinity United Church of
Christ in Chicago.
member to die of AIDS had me
over to his home to confide in me
about his condition. We sat in his
three-story home with nothing left
but the carpet on the floor. His wife
had packed up the children and all
of their belongings while he was at
work and left him with nothing in
the home but his carpet. She did not
want to be around him, nor did she
want their children around him
because he had AIDS. "Herman"
said to me: "Nobody should have to
die like this, Rev!" I knew in my
heart and mind from that day that
our church had to do something
about AIDS He was absolutely
right. He is still right! I made up in
respond. Homosexuals were seen
as "outside of the veil" of the Black
community. We are doing a little bit
better now. We are doing less than
one percent of what we could be
doing. But the response is much
better especially since the pandem-
ic has begun to affect heterosexual
African-American females. If
we're going to catch up, I think the
religious community needs to do
First, it needs to educate its pas-
tors and its congregations that the
reality of HIV/AIDS is a biological
problem, not a theological problem.
It is a medical issue, not a moral
issue. The religious community
Are You Making More
Than Your Parents
-A' re you financially better off than your parents?
The foundation of the American Dream is based on
... : a belief that our children's lives and lifestyles will be
i better than ours. The belief that all Americans can
rise up from humble beginnings and achieve comfortable middle-class liv-
ing, if not attain great wealth, transcends races.
But contemporary studies show that traditional American processes of
wealth-building is not occurring among the African American middle-class
and poses the question: Why is it that each generation of middle and upper
class white families generate wealth and African Americans that start out
on similar rungs on the social ladder don't?
Historically each generation of whites advances beyond their parents in
terms of family income. But, economic success in the parental generation
does not appear to protect black children from future economic ad\ ersit)
the same way it protects white children While incomes ha\e grown for
both white and black families since the earl\ I 9'0s. nearly\ half of African-
Americans born to middle-income parents in the late 1960s plunged into
po% erti or near-poverty as adults.
Middle class persons commonly ha-e a comfortable standard of living.
significant economic security, considerable work autonomy and rely on
their expertise to sustain themselves. Nliddle-class families constitute 40
percent of American households. It commonly consists of r\o sub-groups:
15 to 20 percent of these households are the upper or professional middle
class. The rest are lower middle class, consisting of semi-professionals,
skilled craftspeople, and lower level managers. In 2006. the medium annu-
al American household income was S48.201 19 percent had annual
incomes exceeding $100,000 and lower middle class had incomes ranged
between $36.000 and $60,000.
TodaN's typical two-income family earns nearly 75 percent more than
their one-income parents earned a generation ago. Fort, -fi\e percent of
black children whose parents were solidlN middle class in 1968 median
income of $55,600 grew up to be among the lowest fifth of the nation's
earners, with a median family income of S23.100. Onl 16 percent of
whites experienced similar downward mobilir. It appears that \%hen it
comes to generating and maintaining mone. and wealth whites know
something blacks don't. White families ha'e considerably higher incomes
than black families. Even within income groups, %t white children have better
economic outcomes than black children. White children have substantial-
ly more upward mobility than black children of comparable incomes.
Why is it that whites "keep going" and blacks stumble economically? A
significant contributor to the lack of. ealth-building among middle-class
blacks is irresponsible consumption fueled b* appetites for goods they
don't need, little consideration given to cost. and little or no sa ings.
Consumer irresponsibility among the black middle-class is evident b. their
conspicuous displays of suburban Mac-lansions. "designer" clothes, luxu-
ry automobiles, frequent restaurant meals, big and flat screen televisions.
and Michael Jordan's athletic shoes.
The reason the black middle class has not been building. maintaining and
leveraging wealth is a proclivity that exists among many of them: "I shop,
therefore I am". Black Baby Boomers are drowning in debt. But, as their
brand-name competition has intensified, blacks' support for public goods.
and for paying taxes, has eroded. The lack of support for "public goods" -
education, social services, public safety. recreation, and culture is the
base of the lack of financial growth and long\ ir. of this group.
Before the black middle class tripled in the 1970s and became the 1980s
an4dS0s "consumer,society", this group had been pillars of black econom-
ic growth since slavery. But, the sad testimony to contemporary, black mid-
dle class members is that while their numbers ha'e tripled since 1968. the
percentage of black children who live at or beloc\ the poverty) line has
remained the same as it was on the da> that Dr. King \%as killed.
"Public good" initiatives blacks may % ant to incorporate as "m middle class
values" include: collective economic pursuits, increasing race conscious-
ness in consumer and production activities: establishing a sound economic
base; maintaining "class solidarity"; acquiring academic skills (education)
to promote certain lucrative professions: and merging individual achieve-
ment with financial and mentoring assistance inside black communities.
%-TR C rrqcfss- )A.9.
iR ST COAST O %-I \ 1't 13tLLC K L f- IxL,
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BUTORS: Charles Griggs, Camilla Thompson, Reginald Fullwood,
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Burwell, Rhonda Silver,Vickie Brown, Rahman Johnson, Headshots
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"God loves everybody. God says everyone who
believes in God's Son shall have everlasting life.
That includes people with HIV/AIDS, heterosexu-
als and homosexuals.."
Page 4 Ms. Perry's Free Press
November 29 December 5, 2007
Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 5
Our new checking account
keeps us in the holiday
spirit all year round.
There's a great reason people are opening SunTrust checking accounts this holiday
season. When you open a new checking account, accept and make any purchase with
your new SunTrust Visa Check Card, and submit a completed redemption form, we'll
donate $100 in your name to the charity of your choice. Or you can get a $50 SunTrust
Gift Card to keep for your own cause.
And now SunTrust introduces SunPoints for Charity,sl an ongoing rewards program
that lets you keep supporting your favorite cause by turning everyday banking
into everyday giving.
This season open a new SunTrust checking account and you'll receive much more.
Come by your local SunTrust branch, call 800.485.8982,
or visit suntrust.com/mycause for my details.
Seeing beyond money
Open a new SunTrust personal or business checking account from August 6 through December 31, 2007, accept and make a purchase with your SunTrust Visa Check Card by February 15, 2008 and submit a completed redemption form by February 15, 2008, to be
eligible to either donate $100 to the charity of your choice or receive a $50 Visa Gift Card. Charity must be an IRS recognized 501 (c)(3). Charity listing provided at suntrust.com/mycause Account must be in good standing at the time incentive is paid. All incentives
will be mailed by March 31, 2008. Offer subject to withdrawal at any time.
The Visa Gift Card is accepted everywhere in the United States the Visa Debit Card is accepted.
SunTrjct Ban Memhbar FDIC rinf7 SiunTruct Banks |nr :unT3rust ?nd ?inm qbey,,n rnoneV are fajr ll", r nicterrd pr,,ir mkr-c nf iinTru t Iank Inr
10 a hi~')Q- l267
6 s erysFe resNvmer2 eeme ,20
St. Joseph UMC Observing Move Over Mega Church, Make Way for the
Church's 118th Anniversary
The Pastor, Rev. Neo N. Garvin; and members of St. Joseph United
Methodist Church, 925 Spearing Street; will observe the 118th Anniversary
of the church on Sunday, November 25, 2007.
Jacksonville native and Duval County Public Schools product, the Rev.
Leroy M. Mitchell III, of Lynchburg, Virginia, will deliver the sermon at the
10 a.m. Worship Service. Rev. Mitchell is the pastor of the Brookville
Baptist Church in Lynchburg. Church School begins at 9 a.m. Members
of the community are cordially invited.
Free Health Fair at Brentwood
The parishes of St Pius Holy Rosary and Church of the Crucifixion along
with the Diocese of St. Augustine will be holding a Health Fair on Saturday
December 8th at the Brentwood Community Center from 10 a.m. 2 p.m.
Information on diabetes, heart health, blood pressure, vision and more will
be offered. Call 765-5284 for more information
Praise Power & Worship Extravaganza
The time has come for the 2nd Annual Praise Power & Worship
Extravaganza on Saturday, December 15th. Don't miss the Word from
Mother Mildred Eason, Florida Central Second Ecclesiastical Juridictional
Supervisor of Women. There will be songs ministered by Evangelist Mary
Moore, Brother Tanner Lane, as well as Ebony & Ashley Kelsey. The event
will be held at 7 p.m. at the Southside Church of God In Christ. For more
information, contact Ursula Gaines at (904) 589-1953
by Lillian Kwon
With the number of megachurch-
es in America growing at an increas-
ingly rapid rate, the largest of them
all now have a new label:
Topping this year's largest
churches in the country is
Lakewood Church in Houston, with
an attendance of 47,000, according
to Outreach Magazine's annual 100
list of America's largest and fastest-
growing churches. While Lakewood
remains on top, 36 of the top 100
draw 10,000-plus people each week
(gigachurches). The rest have a
weekly attendance of 6,000-plus.
(2,000-plus attendees) now number
an estimated 1,300. While that's
only 0.4 percent of all U.S.
Protestant churches, megachurches
are growing rapidly as they pioneer
new approaches largely to engage
the unchurched population.
Transformation: How to Become One in Marriage
"Do not con-
form any longer
to the pattern of
this world, but
f be transformed
by the renewing
S of your mind"
Have you ever had to change a
behavior? It is not fun, pretty, or
cute. It does not tickle the fancy, or
make you shout for joy, it makes
you want to cry.
Finding out that you are now
allergic to a favorite food, or that a
favorite supplier has gone out of
business, or maybe that you have
been downsized from a job can all
force you into an instant and
Marriage is a transformation
unique to any other. To go from
one to two to become one is con-
fusing on its own, but true and
achievable none the less. One key;
learn to use "unity phrases."
What is a unity phrase? The hap-
piest couples use them all the time.
It is sacrificial language eliminat-
ing separate ideas. It is defensive
language that bars outsiders from
intruding. "Unity phrases" give
advance warning to others that you
two are one.
What is a unity phrase? Here are
a few simple examples: "we are
going to look at some appliances
today, we are not sure about which
camp to choose, I'll check with my
wife/husband to see if we are avail-
able." These are unity phrases,
they give priority to your spouse,
and take power away from (no
offense intended) outsiders.
Marriage is a priority relationship.
It overrules everything else, but
God. Yes, I'll say it again, every-
thing else but God. That takes
some getting use to, some adjust-
ment, some real honest to goodness
work-are you ready to work?
5863 Moncrief Rd. Jacksonville, FL 32209 (904) 768-8800 FAX 764-3800
Pastor Ernie Murray
Join Us for One of Our Services
Early Worship 8:00 a.m.
Sunday School 9:15 a.m.
Morning Worship 10:45 a.m.
1st Sunday 3:45 p.m.
Lord's Supper & Baptism
3rd Sunday 7:00 p.m.
Bible Study 7:00 p.m.
Noon Day Worship
Youth Church 7:00 p.m.
ASSEMBLY OF GOD
(1-10 & Lane Avenue)
8:15 a.m. 10:45 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
"The Miracles of December"
With God All Things...
He can turn your mourning in dancing
Pastor Cecil & Pauline Wiggins
SOUTHWESTCAMPUS00 1LS O
Come hear special missionary guests, Nelson & Renee DeFreitas
from the Dominican Republic, share their hearts
5t. Marys Campus o01 Dilworth street (912) 882z-z09
December 2nd Come worship with us and know the reason for the season
Tuesday Frayer Mtg. 7:50 p.m. Wednesday service at 7:00 p.m. 5unda S5chool at 9:50 a.m. KID5 Church at 1 0+5 a.m.
5755 Ramona Blvd. Jacksonville, FL 32205 904-781-9393
Website: www.evangeltempleag.org Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
10:45 a.m. Service Interpreted for Deaf@ Central Campus
"At a time when an estimated 70
percent to 80 percent of U.S.
churches are either in plateau or
decline, I am encouraged to discov-
er a number of healthy congrega-
tions on the Outreach 100 lists that
are bucking the negative tendencies
prevalent in so many U.S. church-
es," said Dr. Ed Stetzer, director of
research and missiologist in resi-
dence for LifeWay Research.
Outreach partnered with Stetzer for
the first time for this year's top 100
which was based on new methodol-
ogy that factored in both numerical
and percentage growth in attendees..
The 100 churches on the fastest-
growing list grew four times faster
than churches on the largest list.
A key growth trend, or mega-
trend, is multi-site technology.
Currently, seven of the top 10
fastest-growing churches are multi-
site churches in which churches
have set up extension sites on multi-
ple campuses across the city, state or
country. In 1990, there were only 10
multi-site Protestant churches in the
United States. Today, 25 percent of
all megachurches have more than
one site and 16 percent of all
Protestant churches in the United
States are seriously considering
adding a site within the next two
years, according to LifeWay
And the multi-site phenomenon
continues to morph and transition as
churches find new forms of expres-
sion to run church activities in many
LifeChurch.tv (No. 40 Fastest-
Growing, No. 5 Largest), stationed
in Edmond, Okla., has launched
sites across borders to Arizona,
Texas, Florida and New York, as
well as on the Internet.
North Coast Church in Vista,
Calif., uses its multiple campuses to
engage different cultural segments
and reach different generations with
a range of worship experiences -
from traditional (hymns) to post-
modem (sub-woofers, candles).
Other multi-sites have chosen to
create smaller, more intimate faith
communities at their satellite loca-
tions, either offering services of
only 200 people or even smaller to a
Another type of megachurch
Stetzer noted includes churches
using their platform for political
action in new ways.
While Christian churches have
long been perceived as monolithi-
cally right wing, more megachurch-
es today are tackling issues not his-
Sunday Morning Worship
7:40 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.
The Word from the Sons
and Daughters of Bethel
3rd Sunday 3:30 p.m.
torically connected with those of the
Hispanic churches have risen to
the frontlines of the immigration
reform battle, black churches are
voicing themselves on social action,
and others are championing issues
such as eradicating global poverty
and creation care.
More megachurches today are
also returning to the foundational
ethic of multiplication through dis-
cipleship. That's a turn from the
emphasis on personal self-help and
growth methods that have been seen
in the megachurch phenomenon.
As experts have concluded,
Stetzer sees no slowing or halt to the
megachurch phenomenon as long as
pastors continue to seek new ways
to reach and transform their com-
munities for Christ.
Top 10 Largest U.S. Churches
1. Lakewood Church, Houston Texas Joel Osteen (47,000)
2. Willow Creek Community Church, South Barrington, Ill. Bill Hybels
3. Second Baptist Church, Houston Ed Young Sr. (23,198)
4. Saddleback Church, Lake Forest, Calif. Rick Warren (22,000)
5. LifeChurch.tv, Edmond, Okla. Craig Groeschel (19,907)
6. Southeast Christian Church, Louisville, Ky. Dave Stone (18,013)
7. North Point Church, Alpharetta, Ga. -Andy Stanley (17,700)
8. Thomas Road Baptist Church, Lynchburg, Va. Jonathan Falwell (17.445)
9. Calvary Chapel of Fort Lauderdale, FL Bob Coy (17,000)
10. The Potter's House, Dallas T.D. Jakes (17,000)
Top 10 Fastest-Growing U.S. Churches
1. Iglesia Cristiana Segadores de Vida, Hollywood, Fla. Ruddy and Maria
Gracia (3,050, 109 percent growth); 2. Calvary Community Church, Phoenix,
Ariz. Mark Martin (2,344, 26%); 3. Elevation Church, Charlotte, N.C., Steven
Furtick (1,965, 444%); 4. New Life Church, Conway, Ark. Rick Bezet (2,000,
108%); 5. Valley Bible Fellowship, Bakersfield, Calif. Ron Vietti (3,600,
52%); 6. Fellowship Church, Grapevine, Texas Ed Young Jr. (3,000, 30 %).
7. Thomas Road Baptist Church, Lynchburg, Va. Jonathan Falwell (4,750,
37%); 8. The ROC (Richmond Outreach Center), Richmond, Va. Geronimo
Aguilar (2,100, 100 percent growth); 9. Redemption World Outreach Center,
Greenville, S.C. Ron and Hope Carpenter (2,000, 31 %); 10. Champions
Centre, Tacoma, Wash. Kevin and Sheila Gerald (1,500, 30%)
Bethel Baptist Institutional Church
215 Bethel Baptist Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202 (904) 354-1464
WCGL 1360 AM Thursday 8:15 -8:45 a.m.
AM 1400 Thursday 7:00 8:00 p.m.
WTLV Channel 12 Sunday's at 6:30 a.m.
Grace and Peace
Seeking the lost for Christ
Matthew 28:19 20
Pastor Landon Williams
Th dos of Mcedona arealwas ope toyouandyou fml. If w.maybe, f-anassstac
join us for our Weekly Services
Wednesday Noon Service
"Miracle at Midday"
12 noon-1 p.m.
Dinner and Bible Study
at 5:00 p.m. 6:30 p.m.
Come share in Holy Communion on 1st Sunday at 4:50 .m.
Pastor Garry & Kim Wiggins
8:00 A.M. Early Morning Worship
9:30 a.m. Sunday School
11:00 a.m. Morning Worship
Tuesday Evening 7 p.m. Prayer Service
Wednesday Bible Study 6:30 7 p.m.
Mid-Week Worship 7 p.m.
Radio Weekly Broadcast WCGL 1360 AM
Sunday 2 PM 3 PM
**FREE TUTORING FOR YOUTH IN ENGLISH, SCIENCE,
HISTORY AND MATH EVERY TUESDAY 6:30 8 P.M.
November 29 December 5, 2007
PaLoe 6 Ms. Perry's Free Press
November 29- December 5, 2007 Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 7
Weeks Holds Thanksgiving Eve Press Conference
Bishop Thomas Weeks
Thomas Weeks, III held a press
conference on Thanksgiving Eve to
reiterate his innocence in the
alleged August beating of his wife,
Prophetess Juanita Bynum.
Pursuant to an exclusive "one-
sided" Essence magazine article
that he feels painted him as a vil-
lain, he is still attempting to clear
his name. In his version of the story,
his estranged wife hit him. He also
implies that the bruises on Bynum
may have been self-inflicted.
"I know what happened that
night. I was there ... and those
marks are not from me," Weeks
Appearing on WDEF-TV (CBS-
Chatanooga) Weeks' attorney said
his client initially was interested in
reconciliation "but at this point he
understands that doesn't seem pos-
sible." "In Georgia," he explained,
"you don't have to have grounds for
a divorce other than one party say-
ing 'to me, the marriage is over."
Although the Prophetess has
repeatedly professed her undying
love for her husband of 5 years, she
told Essence (Dec. 2007), "I'm not
sure, not 150 percent sure that the
person I saw in the parking lot that
night won't ever show up again."
Despite being indicted by a
Fulton County (GA) grand jury for
simple battery among other
charges, the Bishop denies claims
that he was ever violent toward his
soon-to-be ex-wife and insists that
she was physically aggressive
toward him that night and previous-
ly in New York. (see video clip
Bynum retorted with the follow-
"Bishop Weeks is doing exact-
ly what he promised he would do
and that is, "TRY" to destroy my
name with lies, fabrications and
exaggerations. His behavior is to
be expected! Yet, the facts and pho-
tos that were taken by the district
attorney's office of me two days
later and the doctor's report from
two different hospitals could not be
forged nor entered into the court
system as legal documents for evi-
dence, otherwise the District
Attorney's office would not have
been able to pass down an indict-
ment. When it comes to facts the
courts are different from the media.
In court you have to present real
facts and witnesses run the risk of
perjuring themselves, therefore I
cordially invite all of Bishop Week's
witnesses to the stand.
I am not the one on trial, there-
fore I have nothing to defend. How
can I choke myself until the blood
comes to the surface of my skin and
then kick myself in five other places,
one of which could not be pho-
tographed because it was in a pri-
vate area [?] At this stage of my
ministry/career with major projects
pending, I would not have had any
motive to stage my own attack and
bring worldwide negative press to
myself Having been in ministry for
20 years and reaching world wide
status prior to me meeting Bishop
Weeks I am confident in the power
of truth! I was Juanita Bynum when
I walked into this marriage and I
will continue to be Juanita Bynum
as I exit from this marriage in spite
of all false allegations that have
come against my name. As I have
stated from the beginning, this too
Bishop Weeks continues to
expand his ministry, while Juanita
Bynum has just released an "un-
cut" DVD and is working on a new
ministry for victims of domestic
Florida Delta's Partner With American Cancer Society
"' .-:. .. : I-' .' .
Left to right are: Kelley Bailey, North Florida Sate Coordinator; Heddie M.
Sumpter, Southern Regional Social Action Coordinator; Chelsea N. Hall,
Director of Diversity Initiatives, ACS FL Division; Christine M. Nixon, 22nd
Regional Director; Susan Rabel, R.N., Vice President for Cancer Control;
Nailah Tillman, 19th Southern Regional Representative and Andrea Pelt-
Thornton, South Florida State Coordinator.
The Florida Chapters of Delta
Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. have
entered a statewide partnership with
the American Cancer Society's
Florida Divyision to help eliminate
cancer disparities in the black com-
munity through research, education,
advocacy and service.
"The Florida chapters of Delta
Sigma Theta are excited and hon-
ored to have this opportunity to
partner with the American Cancer
Society in such a positive role of
community service," said Christine
M. Nixon, Southern Regional
Director of Delta Sigma Theta
Sorority, Inc. "There is no better
time than the present to join forces
to educate and motivate citizens all
over the state of Florida to help us
improve the health of those who are
diagnosed with the disease and to
take preventative measures for
those who are not."
Black men and women in the
United States and in Florida have
the highest cancer mortality rate of
any racial or ethnic group. Each
year, 7,000 black men and women
in Florida are diagnosed with can-
cer and 3,000 die from the disease,
according to the American Cancer
"Decreasing cancer incidence
and mortality rates in the black
community is critical to our mission
to eliminate cancer as a major
health problem," said Mario A.
Mendez, M.D., Chairman of the
Board and President of the
American Cancer Society, Florida
Division. "To do this, we must
eliminate disparities in the preven-
tion, detection and treatment of can-
cer, as well as in quality of life. This
is where the Delta Sigma Theta
Sorority will help us have a signifi-
Delta Sigma Theta chapters will
participate in American Cancer
Society community programs and
services. Chapters will host breast
cancer awareness sessions for black
women and members will provide
free rides for cancer patients to and
from life-saving cancer treatments.
Chapters will also partner with
the American Cancer Society to
work with lawmakers at the state
and federal levels to influence pub-
lic policies that have a significant
impact on reducing cancer dispari-
OBSTETRICAL & GYNECOLOGICAL
B. Vereen Chithriki, M.D.
William L. Cody, M.D.
":, :- : i
"I am pleased to see these great
organizations joining forces and I
will work in the
Florida Legislature to ensure
their success," said Delta Sigma
Theta Sorority member and State
Senator Arthenia L. Joyner, District
59. "This partnership will serve as
the catalyst that will help reduce
cancer disparities among blacks and
people of color in Florida."
Chapters will raise awareness and
funds through the American Cancer
Society's Relay For Life and
Making Strides Against Breast
Cancer. Funds raised through these
events will support education and
service programs, as well as state
and national advocacy and research
The partnership will also offer
members of the sorority the oppor-
tunity to hold leadership positions
on local operating boards, network
with community leaders and apply
for staff opportunities with the
American Cancer Society.
is the right
time to start my little girl on her
first relaxer. This is a question
that black mothers have been
grappling with for decades and
before you answer there are sever-
al things that you should consider.
First and foremost, ask yourself;
is my child mature enough and
socially ready for the responsibil-
ity that comes with having a
relaxer? Mothers, I know you are
working hard and you think by
putting a relaxer in your child's
hair this will make it more man-
ageable for all. But, take a
moment to think about the long
term effects. I've seen young
girls with beautiful natural hair
only to have a premature perm
strip all those long locks away.
When I suggest that you evaluate
your daughter's maturity level I
want you to take an honest look at
how fast or slow she is develop-
ing. Is she still outside the major-
ity of the time running, swim-
ming, and playing hard? Or is she
now settling into the types of
activities teenage girls associate
with; such as primping and talk-
ing on the phone. If your daugh-
ter enjoys active sports encourage
this and natural hair as long as
possible. By putting harsh chem-
icals in her hair too soon, damage
can be done to the hair that will
last a long time. And a quick
word about "kiddy perms"- they
are still perms. Ladies, please
Food and Clothes Give-A-Way
The Jacksonville Local Organizing Committee Inc.,for the Millions More
Movement will serve food and give out clothes on Saturday ,December 8,
2007 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.The location is 916 N. Myrtle Ave.
between Kings Road. and Beaver Street. If you have any questions or just
want to learn more about the Millions More Movement visit our website
www.jaxloc.com ,or call 904-240-9133. It is free and open to the public.
har and sklevl tLps for today wo.manUL of color
How to Know When It's
Time for the First Relaxer
Disciples of Christ
* * A Full Gospel Baptist Church * *
Every 3rd & 4th
4 :00 p.m. Pastor Robert Lecount, Jr
A church that's on the move in
worship with prayer, praise and power!
School of Ministry Tuesday at 7:00 p.m.
Thursday High Praise Worship 7:00 p.m.
2061 Edgewood Avenue West
Jacksonville, Florida 32208
(904) 765-5683 Email:email@example.com
& Gynecological Care
Comprehensive Pregnancy Care
Board Certified Laser Surgery
Family Planning Vaginal Surgery
Osteoporosis Menopausal Disorder
Laparoscopy Menstrual Disorder
St. Vincent's Division IV
1820 Barrs Street, Suite 521
Jacksonville, FL 32204
November 29- December 5, 2007
Ms. Perry's Free Press Pag~e 7
don't be fooled into thinking that
because you've picked up a box
with a little girls face instead of a
grown woman, it's going to be
safer for your daughter. While a
"kiddy perm" might say no lye
relaxer and offer a lower PH bal-
ance than the ones you use, the
chemicals are still the same and
can do the same type of damage.
Now that you've reflected on
these two questions, most
research says a child can start get-
ting relaxers between the ages of
5 to 8 years old, though my per-
sonal opinion is that you should
wait as long as possible.
Remember our hair is beautiful,
and we should not influence or
shame children into believing
they need a relaxer. In the morn-
ing while doing her hair, take your
time and have fun with your
daughter; this is your special time
together, give her found memories
of it. During this time you should
be sharing and getting to know
her better, use this time to build
her self-esteem not tear it down
with "you have bad hair" and
"this is too nappy for me to do".
As we all know your hair texture
is something you cannot control
so why not embrace what you
have been given.
If you would like Dyrinda to
answer your questions about hair,
please send your questions to
DS Spa and Salon is located at
9810 Baymeadows Rd Suite #2.
She can be reached at 645-9044.
What to do from social, volunteer, political and sports activities to self enrichment and the civic scene
Mike Epps and Rickie
Smiley in Concert
Nationally known comedians
Rickey Smiley and Mike Epps will
be in concert for one night only on
Friday, November 30th at 8 p.m.
The concert will be held in the
Moran Theater of the Times union
Center. For tickets or more informa-
tion, call 353-3309.
St. Augustine Art
& Craft Festival
There will be a St. Augustine Art
& Craft Festival on December 1st
and 2nd from 9 5 on Saturday and
10-4 on Sunday. Featured will be
fine art, crafts, and great food.
Admission and parking is free. The
Festival will be held at the
St.Augustine Amphitheater, 1340-C
A1A South of Lighthouse.
For more information call 352-
The Ladies of Essence Chapter
#655 invites the public to attend
their Annual Christmas Dance. It
will be held at 29 W. 6th Street (on
the corner of 6th & Main) on
Saturday, December 1st starting at
9 p.m. Come enjoy lots of fun and
dancing in the holiday spirit. Door
prizes will be given away. For more
information call (904) 881-0097.
N. Florida's Largest
Gainesville's O'Connell Center
will host North Florida's largest
indoor Craft Festival on Saturday
and Sunday, December 1 and 2nd
(10 a.m. 5 p.m. daily). This year's
show will consist of over 250
crafters and artisans. Vendors will
be selling a variety of items includ-
ing Gator paraphernalia, glass, hand
carved wood, clothes, personalized
items, gifts, soaps, candles jewelry,
handbags, pet gifts and much more.
Holiday Support Group
Haven Hospice offers a two-week
grief support group focusing on
helping individuals during the holi-
days, as it can be a difficult time for
those who have lost someone they
love. Members can express their
feelings and thoughts and gain an
understanding of grief and how it
impacts their lives.
The group will meet at Haven
Hospice, 8301 Cypress Plaza Dr.,
Suite 119. They will meet on
Tuesday, Dec. 4 & 11 from 5:30 -
7:00 p.m. For more information or
to register, contact Kathryn
Alpahando at 904-733-9818.
Rabbi to Discuss
Rabbi Jonathan Lubliner will dis-
cuss interfaith families and how to
handle Jewish holidays and the
diversity of our society at 10:30
a.m. on Dec. 5 as part of the JCA's
"Conversations with ..." program.
Registration is requested by Dec. 2.
"Conversations with... a group for
women" brings a monthly dialogue
to the JCA regarding issues
designed to be thought-provoking
and current. The program will be
held at the Jewish Community
Alliance, 8505 San Jose Blvd. For
more information, call 730-2100
Holiday Fashion Show
The Atlantic Beach Women's
Connection will have their Holiday
Fashion Show on Wednesday
December 5th from 9:30 -11:00
a.m. at the Selva Marina Country
Club, 1600 Selva Marina Drive in
Atlantic Beach. The speaker will be
Julie Mariner of Ponte Vedra
Beach, FL whose topic will be
"Pack Up and Hit the Road".
Complimentary child care is avail-
able with your reservation.
For more information, contact
Carolyn at 221-0670 or
D.A. Art Opening
The Douglas Anderson School of
the Arts Visual Arts Program invites
the community to experience "Take
Two" an Exhibition of Student Art
at the DA Gallery. The exhibit fea-
Do you know someone who is constantly doing for oth-
ers or putting someone else's needs before their own? A
friend that goes beyond the norm? A tireless volunteer?
Nominate him or her for the Unsung Hero spotlight and
they could win a $50.00 Gift Certificate from Publix
Supermarkets and share their courageous and selfless sto-
ries with Jacksonville Free Press readers.
SEND INFORMATION TO: (904) 765-3803 Fax
UNSUNG HERO, C/O Jacksonville Free Press
P.O.Box 43580, Jacksonville, FL 32203
Brought to you by
The Jacksonville Free Press
tures recent examples of sculpture,
photography, drawing and painting.
The Opening Reception will be
held on December 6, 2007 from
6:00 8:00 p.m. Refreshments will
be served and it is free and open to
the public. Works will remain on
display through January 30, 2008.
The School of the Arts is located at
2445 San Diego Road. For more
information, contact Jane Pope,
President at 904 or via email at
Duval County Retired
The Duval County Retired
Teachers Association will hold its
December meeting at the Piccadilly
Cafeteria, 5950 Ramona Blvd. on
December 6, 2007 at 10:15 AM.
The speaker will be Ms. Genie
Cooke of the Duval Ecumenical
Service Council. Members are
asked to bring gifts to be presented
such as disposable razors, deodor-
ant, sanitary supplies, and under-
wear and socks for all ages.
Lunch will follow the meeting.
Night at the Ritz
Amateur Night at the Ritz Finals
will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Friday,
December 7th. Like the Apollo's
show in Harlem, contestants com-
pete for cash prizes and the cheers
or jeers of the audience decide who
goes home with the cash. Tickets
are available at the Ritz Theatre &
LaVilla Museum and Ticketmaster
outlets. Call 632-5555.
P.R.I.D.E. Book Club, the City's
oldest and most well known
African-American book club has
announced its upcoming selections
for December and January. The
book for discussion for the
December 7th meeting will be
QUIET STRENGTH:THE PRIN-
CIPLES, PRACTICES AND PRI-
ORITIES OF A WINNING LIFE
by Tony Dungy. The meeting will
be hosted by Romona Baker.
The book for discussion for the
January 4th meeting will be
BABYLON SISTERS: A NOVEL
by Pearl Cleage. The meeting will
be hosted by Debra Lewis. For
more information, please email
The 27th Annual Holiday Regatta
of Lights, a spectacular and colorful
parade of boats will be held in St.
Augustine on the bay just north of
the Bridge of Lions. The event will
be held on Saturday, December 8th
at 6 p.m. Sailboats, sport-fisher-
men, trawlers, shrimp boats and
many other vessels take part in the
festive lights of the Christmas sea-
son. For more information or to par-
ticipate, call 824-9725.
Breakfast with Santa
The public is invited to join Stage
Aurora for their "1st Annual
Breakfast with Santa".Kids and
family will have the opportunity to
spend Breakfast with Santa, a true
holiday memory. Don't forget your
cameras for a complimentary photo
because throughout the morning,
your child can sit with Santa and
share their Christmas wishes. The
event will be held from 8:00 a.m. -
12:00 noon on Saturday, December
8 & 22, 2007 at the Gateway Mall.
For tickets or more information,
call 765-7372 or visit the Stage
Aurora Office at 5164-A Norwood
Ave., Mon.-Fri., 9AM 3PM.
MMM Food and
The Jacksonville Local Organizing
Committee Inc., for the Millions
More Movement will serve food
and give away clothes on Saturday,
December 8th from 11:00 a.m. 5
p.m. The location is 916 N.Myrtle
Ave., between Kings Road and
Beaver Street. If you have any
questions,or just want to learn more
about the Millions More Movement
visit www.jaxloc.com, or call 904-
The James Weldon Johnson
YMCA at 5700 Cleveland Road
(between Edgewood Ave. and 45th
Streets) is sponsoring a Big Garage
Sale on Saturday, December 8,
2007 from 9:00 am 2:00 pm.
There will be a variety of clothing
for all ages, Christmas items,
household items, books, games, gift
certificates and refreshments. For
more information, call the Front
Desk at Johnson YMCA at (904)
Historic Church Tour
Seven historic churches and the
Main Library in Downtown
Jacksonville will be a part of a
church tour on Saturday, December
8, 2007 from 1 p.m. 5 p.m. The
historic churches were all built
prior to 1925. A guide at each
church will highlight the architec-
tural and historical significance of
the building. Visitors can walk the
tour route, and trolley service will
be provided. The tour begins and
ends at the Main Library. Presented
by Downtown Jacksonville, please
call 451-3344 for more information.
The Christmas social for The
Southern Genealogist's Exchange
Society will be held Saturday,
December 8th, 2007 at 11:00 AM-
1:00 PM. A Christmas program,
installation of 2008 officers and
covered dish luncheon is planned at
the Mandarin Library, 3330 Kori
Road, Jacksonville. Sign up at
(904) 778-1000 or email publici-
firstname.lastname@example.org for more informa-
The Regency Public Library will
be the site of spiritual renewal for
Black men on Saturday, December
8th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. 3V
Magazine invites all men to renew
their minds and spirits in prepara-
tion for the New Year. Participants
will be able to connect with like
minded men as they pursue purpose
and break free of spiritual hin-
drances. Guests Speakers will focus
on topics including, "Godly
Character At Home", Live Right
Don't Die Trying", "Walk in
Wholeness". The Library is located
at 9900 Regency Square Blvd.
The Jacksonville Children's
Chorus is holding spring semester
auditions for children grades 2-5 on
Monday, December 10 and
Tuesday, December 11 from 4-6
p.m. at the Jacksonville Children's
Chorus offices, 3947 Boulevard
Center Drive, Suite 108. To sched-
ule an audition, call (904) 346-
Workshop on Creating
The Duval County Extension
Office will present a workshop on
Creating Holiday Arrangements
and other Horticulture Gift Ideas. It
will be held on Wednesday,
December 12th 10- 1:00 PM at the
Extension Office, 1010 N. McDuff
Ave. Workshop Topic include:
Making Herb Vinegars, Plant and
Book Gift Items, Create
Arrangements Using Landscape
Plants, Florida-Friendly Gift Ideas
for the Gardener and Herb Dish
Gardens. You will make a bottle of
herb vinegar and an herb dish gar-
den to take home. Deadline to reg-
ister is Dec. 10. Please call 904-
387-8850 to pre-register.
The annual holiday social of the
NHAA, Jacksonville Chapter will
be held on December 14th from 7 -
10 p.m. For more information, con-
tact Kenneth Reddick at 764-8795.
100 Black Men
Black Tie Affair
100 Black Men of Jacksonville
will present an All Black Attire
Affair featuring the comedy of
Jonathan Slocumb. The event will
be held on Saturday December
15th starting at 8:30 p.m. at the
Hyatt Regency Jacksonville.
For more information or to pur-
chase your tickets call 1-800-409-
3764 or visit www.100blackmenjax.org.
Auditions at the JCA
Auditions for the JCA's Theatre of
Youth presentation of "The Little
Mermaid" will be held at 1 p.m. on
Sunday, Dec. 16th, in the JCA audi-
torium. Young performers in grades
1- 10 are eligible to audition.
Rehearsals will be held in January
and February with performance
dates of March 1, 2, 8 and 9.The
audition will be held at the Jewish
Community Alliance, 8505 San
Jose Blvd. For more information,
call 730-2100 ext. 223.
for the United Way
The City of Jacksonville's
Planning & Development
Department will sponsor An
Evening of Dancers United to bene-
fit the United Way of Northeast
Florida. The benefit will be held on
December 21, 2007 at the Times-
Union Center for the Performing
Arts, 300 Water Street at 6 p.m.
Dancers from all over Jacksonville
will perform. For more information
or to purchase tickets, call 690-
1900 or email@example.com.
-. ,, i~*~:~*'*
Keep Your Memories for a Lifetime
-Class reunions .Church functions
-Birthdays Specal events
-Family Reunion Progrwams
Do Youi Hvao n En6 P Arond Tom?
The Jacksonville Free Press is please to print your public service
announcements and coming events free of charge. news deadline is Monday
at 6 p.m. by the week you would like your information to be printed.
Information can be sent via email, fax, brought into our office or mailed in.
Please be sure to include the 5W's who, what, when, where, why and you
must include a contact number.
Email JFreePress@aol.com Fax (904) 765-3803
C all "TIhe Picture Lady" 874-0591
November 29-December 5, 2007
Pag-e 8 Ms. Perry's Free Press
Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 9
Nnvmher 29- Deppmher 5. 2007
Jilted at the Altar, Former NFL Girfriend
Gets Revenge with Tell All Book
Has anyone ever told you,
"Because of all you've been
through, you should write a book
about your journey?" This is what
Staci Robinson's close friend said
to her upon observing Staci's
heartrending breakup with her NFL
fiancee, who left her at the altar.
When Staci penned her novel
Interceptions, a book she refers to
as semi autobiographical, this is
exactly what she did. Full of twists,
Interceptions is a coming of age
story about one girl's awakening
after being left at the altar. It enter-
tainingly examines and chronicles
the lives of protagonists Stefanie
Pointer and Ricky Powers. While in
college, Stefanie, a smart, ambi-
tious college student and aspiring
attorney, meets Ricky Powers, a
star athlete on his way to the NFL.
After a marriage proposal and a
promise to take care of her for the
rest of her life, Ricky and Stefanie
plan a hundred thousand dollar
dream wedding and Stefanie trades
in her law school aspirations for the
title of an NFL wife.
Interceptions is a drama about
love, loss and heartbreak. The story
is one about the ramifications of
choosing love over career ambition.
It captures the essence of a young
woman learning about love, loss
and redemption, as well as a young
man reaching his dreams of becom-
ing a pro football player. Along the
way, the reader learns important
lessons about staying true to oneself
versus losing yourself and the con-
sequences that may result from
abandoning your dreams. The mes-
sage becomes clear: Everything that
glitters isn't gold. Interceptions is a
book about family, soul searching,
dreams, lessons and growth.
Although labeled a work of fic-
tion, the author asserts that, barring
a few fictionalized parts,
Interceptions is 90% true. "My
editors suggested that I publish
Interceptions as a non-fiction type
memoir or a novel based on true
events rather than calling it fiction,
but because this story is about liv-
ing and breathing human beings
with families and lives, I wanted to
protect their privacy," Staci main-
tains. Regarding how she and her
fiance met, she continues, "We
met our junior year at UCLA. We
graduated together in 1991, taking
our graduation pictures together
and everything. I had dreams of
going to law school after gradua-
tion; he had dreams of going to the
NFL and did. He was my first love.
He proposed to me on my twenty-
first birthday, we became engaged.
We had literally planned our entire
wedding, and over three hundred
people had RSVP'd, when he
decided to call it quits. Next thing I
know, he has a baby with another
woman and they get married. With
this said, it was from a personal life
experience that the concept of
Interceptions was derived.
"This Christmas" A Movie All Can Identify With
Interracial marriages, family
cooking traditions, black owned
businesses, lack of good black men,
family bonds and more are just
some of the themes audiences will
connect to in "This Christmas".
Kicking off the holiday movie
season, "This Christmas" is having
a great showing at the box office.
The film, which opened
Thanksgiving week, came in at a
strong #2 at theaters and exceeded
expectations bringing in $27.1 mil-
lion, having a better per-theater
average than the #1 flick
"This Christmas" chronicles the
season with the Whitfield family
who haven't all gotten together for
the holiday in four years. With the
reunion and revelry comes drama,
quite like the happenings in homes
across the world.
The film was written and direct-
ed by Preston Whitmore who basi-
cally brings his own family to life
on the screen. Acclaimed British
import Idris Elba takes on Preston's
counterpart in the film as Quentin
"I listened to Preston's story, and
it was a very interesting story. He
wanted to bring that to life, so I lis-
tened to it, but I didn't mimic him,"
Elba said. "Preston's an interesting
character. And he's a good writer;
he's written this very refreshing
new film we felt like family. I
think that comes across in the film."
Idris Elba in 'This Christmas'
The rest of the cast also agreed
that the camaraderie on the set was
very family-like and it only
enhanced the relationships on
"Everybody was just in the
moment and then they said action,"
co-star Columbus Short added.
"What the film should be doing
for us is evoking that type of emo-
tion, where we can recognize our-
selves in these films," Elba contin-
ued. That's really the point.. It's a
family film and we want to rein-
force the strength of the family."
Both actors discussed how recent
box office hits like Tyler Perry's
"Why Did I Get Married" have
done and are doing so well in the-
aters. Short credits Perry with pop-
ularizing universally themed
movies that showcase African-
"He's opened up the door all the
way," Short declared. "You can't
deny Tyler. Even if you wanted to
deny Tyler, you can't. He's knock-
ing the door down with themes that
matter in our culture. The themes in
this film are real. Each person can
identify with something. That's
why I make movies to make peo-
ple feel something."
Short, who is also an aspiring
filmmaker in addition to being an
actor, believes that Perry and other
black filmmakers and producers
will start to create a marketplace
where black films make as much
money as white films, and he said
that he can imagine a day when
Hollywood drops the categorizing
"They're called black films, but I
want to erase that verbiage. They're
films," he said.
Short is currently writing and
producing his own projects. He just
finished up a TV pilot and directed
his first short film called "Strange
Fruit" inspired by the song of the
same title by Nina Simone.
Elba is finding an outlet in DJ-
ing and producing.
"DJ-ing has been a part of my life
for some 14 years. It's one of the
things I love to do. It's kept me
grounded. (Also) I produced Angie
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Stone's second single (on her cur-
rent album) called 'My People' and
Jay-Z's intro on his new album
With his talent showcased on US
television, film and music,
American immersion has worked
well for Elba, who hit the US radar
for his role on HBO's "The Wire."
He added that being emotionally
and culturally connected to this film
in particular is a testament to the
progress of black filmmaking.
"I identify with this [American]
culture, and your culture has been
identifying with my culture. The
truth of the matter is, it's universal,"
he said. "In England, we have a
huge respect for African American
filmmakers and the African
American film industry as a whole.
There's an audience out there wait-
ing for these films."
"This Christmas," also starring
Delroy Lindo, Loretta Divine,
Mekhi Phifer, Regina King, and
Chris Brown, is in theaters now.
Terrence Howard on Broadway?
The New York Daily News' Gatecrasher column
is reporting that Academy Award nominee
Terrence Howard will make his Broadway debut
in Debbie Allen's all-black version of "Cat on a -
Hot Tin Roof."
"It's confirmed. We're there," the column quot-
ed of show producer, Stephen Byrd.
Howard is reportedly set to play Brick in the '
classic Tennessee Williams play. Others tipped to
join the African-American production include
Phylicia Rashad, Giancarlo Esposito and James Earl Jones as Big Daddy,
according to Gatecrasher.
The column also cites sources who say the role of Maggie the Cat -
immortalized by Elizabeth Taylor in the 1958 film- is coming down to
either Anika Noni Rose or Kerry Washington.
The play will open March 6 at the Broadhurst Theatre following three
weeks of previews.
wv s Kimora Wants a Baby for Xmas
H. Kimora Lee Simmons, currently dating
actor Djimon Hounsou, has made it known
That she wants to have another baby. While
,.< spreading holiday cheer to children at New
York's St. Vincent Hospital, the fashion diva
-. and mother of two (daughters Ming Lee and
.' ... iAoki Lee) spoke with a camera crew on
.- hand to film the visit. "They brought gifts
and read stories and played," a witness told the New York Post. "When she
was asked what's on her Christmas list, Lee responded, 'A baby!'"
Two James Brown Trustees Step Down
Two members of the team overseeing a portion of James Brown's estate,
including longtime Brown adviser Buddy Dallas, quit their posts last week
in the wake of questions over the late entertainer's finances, reports the
Associated Press. Administrators investigating the handling of Brown's
estate told a judge last month that Cannon, who stepped down as a trustee
the month before, may have misappropriated up to $7 million.
He was held in contempt Tuesday for failing to pay $373,000 to the
estate. He also did not provide adequate financial records and failed to
comply with an order to stop being a trustee by filing amendments to tax
returns after stepping down, Judge Jack Early said.
Dennis Rodman Sued for Support
: Dennis Rodman, 46, has been sued yet again by a
worker in Las Vegas claiming some sort of assault.
S Sara Robinson, a former beverage manager at the
FHard Rock Hotel, filed a lawsuit in federal court last
week claiming the former NBA star assaulted her last
year by rubbing against her body and slapping her on
S the buttocks, reports the Associated Press.
Robinson also accuses her former employer of retaliating against her after
In 2001, a Nevada jury awarded former Mirage craps dealer James
Brasich $80,000 in a case against Rodman after claiming the ex-athlete
humiliated him by rubbing dice on his head, chest, stomach and genitals
during an October 1997 craps game. Rodman appealed the verdict, and
both sides, later reached a confidential 6ettlemient. '
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Pae1 r.PrysFe rssNvme 9-Dcme ,20
From the cranberry relish to the pumpkin pie,
each dish on your holiday table deserves
special treatment whethere r your holiday
recipes hate been passed down through the
generations, clipped from magazines or
newspapers., or downloaded from the Internet, the
llaors need to shine
This holiday., ake up the fla-or in all of our recipes
with a "secret ingredient" chefs have been using for
years And it's easy A Ilnie spnnkle of Ac cent enhances
the natural tfla ors in N our food and makes a big impact.
Tr\ blending sweet potatoes v. ith rich molasses and
crunch\ pecans, then sprinMing on Accent To com-
plement the holiday% bird. offer a stuffing rnade with
apples. raisins, sausage and Ac cent and marx el at how
\wonderful such a simple combination can taste. Brine
the rurke,, in a mixture of Ac cent. brown sugar and
spices. hours before you plan to roast it Your bird will
be more moist and flavorful than any you'
- meats, poultry. sauces, fish. vegetables. soups,
potatoes and nee Also. Accent has 60'"., less sodium
than salt and is a terrific salt altemati\ e for people
watching their sodium mistake This season share the
blessings and bounty of delicious traditional holiday
favorites b. putting the accent on flavor
For more information and other great holiday
recipes,. iSit v.i \ acccntspices corn
Roasted Turkey With
Serves 10 to 12
Cook Time: 2 1/2 hours
1 (14- to 16-pound) frozen young
1 cup Ac'cent Flavor Enhancer
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 gallon vegetable stock
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1/2 tablespoon allspice berries
1/2 tablespoon candied ginger
1 gallon iced water
Combine all brine ingredients, except iced
water, in stockpot, and bring to a boil. Stir to
dissolve solids; then remove from heat, cool
to room temperature and refrigerate until
Early on day of cooking, (or late the night
before) combine brine and iced water in
clean 5-gallon bucket. Place thawed turkey,
breast side down, in brine; cover and refrig-
erate. Turn turkey over once, halfway through
Preheat oven to 500F. Remove turkey
from brine and rinse inside and out with cold
water. Discard brine. Place turkey on roasting
rack inside wide, low pan and pat dry with
paper towels. Place stuffing (see Sausage-
Apple Stuffing recipe) into cavity of turkey.
Tuck back wings and coat whole bird liber-
ally with canola (or other neutral) oil and
shake on additional Ac'cent as desired.
Roast on lowest level of oven at 5000F 30
minutes. Remove from oven and cover breast
with double layer of aluminum foil, insert
probe thermometer into thickest part of
breast and return to oven, reducing tempera-
ture to 3500F. Set thermometer alarm (if
available) to 161F. A 14- to 16-pound bird
should require 2 to 2 1/2 hours total roasting
time. Let turkey rest, loosely covered 15 min-
utes before carving.
Makes 7 cups
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 to 50 minutes
1/4 pound bulk pork sausage
1/3 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup chopped celery
6 cups dry bread crumbs
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh
1 teaspoon Ac'cent Flavor Enhancer
1 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
1/8 teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons margarine or butter,
1/3 cup water
1 1/2 cups peeled, cored and chopped
1/2 cup raisins
In small skillet, brown sausage with onion
and celery. Do not drain. In large bowl,
combine bread crumbs, parsley, Ac cent,
poultry seasoning, pepper and margarine;
mix well. Stir in water, apples, raisins and
sausage mixture including drippings. Just
before roasting turkey, spoon stuffing into
turkey; do not pack tightly.
Boil sweet potatoes w hole. in water to co\er. until tender
Remove skins and mash with molasses, butter and
Ac cent. Spoon into serx ing bow 1, sprinkle with pecans
and drizzle with additional molasses, if desired
Page 10 Mrs. Perry's Free Press
November 29 December 5, 2007