NO ROOM FOR
IN AMERICA ?
TVOne Opposes BET
Founder's Bob Johnson's
Planned New Network
California Mayor who sent racist
watermelon e-mail says he'll resign
LOS ALAMITOS, Calif. The mayor of a small Southern California
city says he will resign after being criticized for sharing an e-mail picture
depicting the White House lawn planted with watermelons under the title
"No Easter egg hunt this year."
Los Alamitos Mayor Dean Grose issued a statement saying he is sorry
and will step down as mayor atthe next City Council meeting.
Grose came under fire for sending the picture to what he called "a small
group of friends." One of the recipients, a local businesswoman and city
volunteer, publicly scolded the mayor for his actions.
Grose says he accepts that the e-mail was in poor taste and has affect-
ed his ability to lead the city. Grose said he didn't mean to offend anyone
and claimed he was unaware of the racial stereotype linking black peo-
ple with eating watermelons.
Located in Orange County, Los Alamitos is a 2 1/4-square-mile city of
around 12,000 people.
Columbia U. names first
black college female dean
NEW YORK Columbia University's new col-
lege dean is the first black and the first woman to
serve in the post.
The university announced it appointed Michelle
Moody-Adams as dean of Columbia College and
will begin duties on July 1.
Moody-Adams is the former vice provost for undergraduate education
at Comell Universir. in Ithaca She has also taught philosophy at Indiana
University, the Uni'ersity of Rochester and Wellesle) College.
The undergraduate college in Manhattan has 4,000 students. Its 9 per-
cent acceptance rate makes it one of the most competitive in the country.
Tyler Perry to buy an
island for his 40th Birthday
Tyler Perry can soon add yet another feat to his list of accomplishments:
When the movie mogul turns the big 4-0 this September, he plans to join
the ranks of David Copperfield and Mel Gibson with the purchase of the
"I'm a loner by nature, so when I'm out there on these islands, I just feel
like the only person in the world," says Perry, whose latest film, Madea
Goes to Jail, grossed a whopping $41 million its opening weekend.
After recently spending a week vacationing on a private island in the
Great Exumas in the Bahamas, he admits it's not all relaxation: "Renting
an island is the best place for me to work uninterrupted."
Perry said he'll wait until he's inspired by the exotic locale, which he
hasn't quite decided on yet. "It'll speak to me," he says. "I'll know what
to call it once I'm there."
But he will put one rule into full effect: "There will be no paparazzi on
my island!" he declares.
One in 11 Black adults
under penal supervision
NEW YORK The number of people on parole and probation across
the United States has surged past 5 million, according to a new report
which says financially struggling states can save money in the long run
by investing in better supervision of these offenders.
The recently released Pew Center report says the number of people on
probation or parole nearly doubled to more than 5 million between 1982
and 2007. Including jail and prison inmates, the population of the U.S.
corrections system now exceeds 7.3 million one of every 31 U.S. adults.
The report also noted huge discrepancies among the states in regard to
the total corrections population one of every 13 adults in Georgia at one
end of the scale, one of every 88 in New Hampshire at the other extreme.
The racial gap also was stark one of every 11 black adults is under cor-
rectional supervision, one of every 27 Hispanic adults, one of every 45
The report notes that construction of new prisons will be increasingly
rare as most states grapple with budget crises. It said improved commu-
nity-supervision strategies represent one of the most feasible ways for
states to limit corrections spending and reduce recidivism.
$50 million suit filed over passenger
shooting death by transit cop
OAKLAND, Ca. Family members of Oscar Grant, the unarmed BART
rider shot to death by a transit agency police officer early New Year's
Day, have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit that seeks $50 million from
the agency, its chief of police and three officers.
John Burris, an attorney for the family, had asked for $25 million in a
legal claim against BART after Officer Johannes Mehserle shot Grant on
the plat'6rm of the Fruitvale Station in Oakland.
Grant,2, of Hayward, and several other young men had been pulled
off a Dublin-Pleasanton train by police investigating reports of a fight.
He was face-down on the station platform when he was shot, an incident
that several passengers recorded on cell-phone cameras.
Mehserle, 27, quit the BART force Jan. 7 and was subsequently charged
with murder. His attorney said Mehserle had meant to fire his Taser when
he fired a single shot with his pistol into Grant who was handcuffed.
Volume 23 No. 23 Jacksonville, Florida March 5-11, 2009
Black Women Continue to Strive Against the Odds
National Women's History
Month's roots go back to March 8,
1857, when women from New York
Four African American women
made history this month when they
took an ASA flight from Atlanta to
Nashville. They weren't passengers.
They were the nation's first all black
all female flight crew.
City factories staged a protest over
working conditions. International
Women's Day was first observed in
1909. In 1981 Congress estab-
lished that National Women's
History Week would be commemo-
rated the second week of March. In
1987, Congress expanded the week
to a month.
There are 154.7 million females
and 150.6 million males in the
United States. In 2007, 59 percent,
or 71 million women, participated
in the work force. Thirty-eight per-
cent of females 16 or older worked
in management, professional and
related occupations. In 2007, 64
percent of African American
worked outside their
The median annual earn-
women 16 or older was
$34,278. However, women
earned 77.5 cents for every
$1 earned by men. African
American women earned 67
cents on that dollar
Women working in higher
occupational groups such as
in computer and mathemati-
cal jobs earned $61,957
annually. In the installation,
maintenance and repair occu-
service, semiskilled, and unskilled
occupations reported significantly
more institutional discrimination,
While some blacks have
achieved success, discrimination
remains a real issue for blacks and
women in the workplace. For
today's black women the key issues
are problems of reconciling the
demands of children and family
with those of the workplace.
pations and community and social but not more interpersonal preju-
services, women's earnings were 90 dice, than did women in profession-
percent, or higher, of men's earn- al, managerial, and technical occu-
ings. Black women who worked in Contiued on page 2
Is Steele a Front Man? Who is Really
Leading the Republican Party?
Chairman Steele is shown left, Limbaugh is right.
After last month's cause celebre
of the National Republican Party
naming their first Black Chairman,
heads are starting to turn. The
recent turn of events have
Americans wondering just who's
really leading the Republican Party
This past weekend, White House
Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel
insisted that Rush Limbaugh the
bombastic, liberal-baiting, Obama-
hating shock jock is the heart and
soul of the conservative movement
in America. Emanuel's comments
came a day after Limbaugh repeat-
ed to a GOP gathering that he hopes
Obama fails in his efforts to reform
the economy and transform
Strength of African-Americans and
women focus of FCCJ's WIE Luncheon
Shown above (L-R) are: Viola M. Walker, Linda Stewart, Charlotte Stewart, Robyn Cenizal, author Marsha
Dean Phelts, Teresa Bayot, Sharette Simpkins, Vanessa Boyer, Michelle Goolsby and Mildred Sapp. FMP Photo
Held in celebration of Black shared with attendees the historic the few predominantly Black
Hosted Month, FCCJ's February oceanfront community's rich cul- owned beach communities in
Women's Information Exchange tural legacy and the shared recipes America today.
Luncheon featured local author that binded the community. The In addition to a Q&A on the beach
Marsha Dean Phelts. beach, started by the Pension and its history, Phelts graciously
Phelt's a lifelong resident of Bureau of the Afro-American Life signed copies of her latest title,
Jacksonville and American Beach, ITsurance Company, remains one of "The American Beacl,,Cookbook".
But Michael Steele, the bona fide
leader of the Republican Party, isn't
feeling Limbaugh, or those respon-
sible for crowning the radio host
king of the right wing.
"I'm the de facto leader of the
Republican Party," Steele snapped
to CNN. "Rush Limbaugh is an
entertainer. Rush Limbaugh's
whole thing is entertainment. Yes, it
is incendiary. Yes, it is ugly."
Of course, the vociferous
Limbaugh didn't take the com-
ments in stride. Lashing back on his
radio show, he accused Steele of
being in cahoots with the honchos
of the opposition party President
Barack Obama and House Speaker
Nancy Pelosi. Steele seems like
he's "obsessed with seeing to it
President Obama succeeds,"
Limbaugh bellowed. "I frankly am
stunned that the chairman of the
Republican National Committee
endorses such an agenda. I have to
conclude that he does, because he
attacks me for wanting it to fail."
He apparently got to Steele, who
wasted no time extending an olive
branch to the mighty Limbaugh.
"My intent was not to go after
Rush I have enormous respect for
Rush Limbaugh," Steele told
Politico. "I was maybe a little bit
inarticulate. ... There was no
attempt on my part to diminish his
voice or his leadership. There are
those out there who want to look at
what he's saying as incendiary and
divisive and ugly. That's what I was
trying to say. It didn't come out that
way. I went back at that tape, and I
realized words that I said weren't
what I was thinking."
The infighting between a top
party official and a conservative
opinion leader who claims to have
an audience of 20 million devel-
oped into a distracting episode for a
party struggling to compete with a
popular president and find its voice
as the opposition party.
Continued on page 5
Descendants Keep History Alive at
Annual "Weave" Event in Springfield
Shown above is Gene Hollomon holding a photo and WWI silver
medals of his father Johnnie Hollomon. The noted historian and
story teller was one of over fifty sharing participants in the 10th
Annual Weaving the Web of Our History event in Springfield host-
ed in the home of Carlottra Guyton. For more, see page 5
Page 2 Ms. Perry's Free Press March 5 11, 2009
When the bottom falls out finan-
cially, people need help and they
need it fast. Being in such a vul-
nerable situation often makes you
susceptible to offers that on the sur-
face may seem good, but in the end
leave you worse off than when you
The airwaves are filled with ads
promising quick relief from debt,
and guarantees of happy endings.
But all too often, that relief comes
at a cost not only to your pocket-
book, but to your credit score.
"Debt settlement companies,
sometimes known as debt negotia-
tors or arbitrators, can make the
path to financial freedom sound
appealing," said Gail Cunningham,
spokesperson for the National
Foundation for Credit Counseling
(NFCC), "but the reality may be
very different from the rosy picture
painted by the commercials."
The NFCC encourages con-
sumers to thoroughly investigate
and understand any debt resolution
option, including debt settlement,
before selecting it as a way out of
their financial distress, and pro-
vides the following information to
assist consumers specifically when
evaluating debt settlement:
Debt settlement is a process
through which your creditor agrees
to accept less than the full amount
owed, yet considers the balance as
paid. Settlement companies often
advertise that they can negotiate
reductions of 50 percent or more of
the debt you owe. They then set up
a repayment plan that typically
takes between two and four years.
Settlement companies charge
significant fees. Different settle-
ment companies have different fee
structures, but there are two basic
approaches. In one model, the set-
tlement company's fee will be a per-
centage of your total debt. The
fees in that model typically range
from 13-20 percent. Another
option the settlement company may
offer is to base their fee on the
amount of debt reduction they can
negotiate. Fees under this model
can be as high as 35 percent. In
addition, many settlement compa-
nies also charge a monthly fee that
can range from about $19 $89 a
Continued from front
-pations or those in sales and cler-
Nearly 7 million women-owned
businesses generated almost $1 tril-
lion in revenue in 2002. More than
7.1 million people were employed
by women-owned businesses.
Over 7,000 women-owned busi-
nesses employed 100 people or
more. In 2002, over 400,000
African-American women owned
businesses that generated $25 bil-
lion in sales and 261,000 jobs.
Nearly one in three women-owned
businesses operated in health care
and social assistance, and other
areas such as personal services,
repair and maintenance. Women
owned 72 percent of social assis-
tance businesses and just over half
of nursing and residential care
facilities. Wholesale and retail
trade accounted for 38 percent of
women-owned business revenue.
Blacks 'are far less likely than
whites to succeed in business.
Blacks make up 12 percent of the
population but own 4 percent of
new businesses as compared whites
who are 75 percent of the popula-
tion and 85 percent of business
owners. Black households on aver-
age have just one-tenth of the
wealth of whites and lack financial
support for new ventures. House-
hold wealth is the most important
thing in black's empowerment. In
2007, the median annual household
income was $50,233. The real
median earnings of women was
$35,102. The 2007 median earn-
ings of black men was $36,068 and
$31,009 for black women.
There were 8.5 million black fam-
ily households. Among African
Americans, 45 percent of women
are the heads of households. It
makes sense that many seek mar-
riage. Married people not only
make more money, they manage
money better and build more
wealth. The married-with-children
demographic is an especially
advantaged group financially they
are disproportionately represented
in the top economic tiers and their
income has grown faster than that
of average households. African-
Americans are the most unpart-
nered group in America. Fifty-four
percent of African Americans have
For black women March celebra-
tions of the successes enjoined by
women is in sharp contrast to the
dismal experience of the race.
While some blacks have achieved
success, discrimination remains a
real issue for blacks and women in
the workplace. For today's black
women the key issues are problems
of reconciling the demands of chil-
dren and family with those of the
workplace. For both sexes of
blacks racism remains a key factor
in their economic woes. The per-
sistent and growing poverty among
African Americans is attributable to
racist policies over past genera-
tions. It is good to chronicle evolv-
ing progress of black women, but
we should not ignore the overall
economic state of blacks. The
importance of family values is the
issue black women have to get
males in their lives to understand.
Blacks need family cohesion.
Children growing up in one-parent
families are four times as likely to
be poor than those in two-parent
households. Forty-five percent of
black children live in poverty and
62 percent are born out of wedlock.
And still, they rise.
month for the entire program.
Either way, it is not uncommon for
settlement fees to total thousands of
Some debt settlement compa-
nies front load their fees. In other
words, they collect a large part of
their fee before you receive any
benefit. Much of the money you
initially deposit goes to pay the set-
tlement company to satisfy its fees.
It can be months after you start the
settlement program before your
creditor receives any payment.
A settlement company may sug-
gest that you stop paying your cred-
itors and instead begin making
deposits into a special third-party
account. The settlement company
will attempt to negotiate a settle-
ment offer with your creditor once
enough money relative to the debt
is on deposit. This may take six
months or more, although the exact
length of time will vary with cir-
cumstances. During this time, the
balance on your debt can continue
to grow if interest and various
penalty fees continue to be charged
by your creditor. As a result, you
may owe more than when you start-
ed and your credit may suffer
because of your failure to make any
payments on your debt. Even
worse, legal actions such as wage
garnishment or a judgment may be
filed against you during this time.
Debts paid off through settle-
ment will generally show "Paid by
Settlement" on a consumer's credit
report. If you later apply for new
loans or credit, when reviewing
your credit report the prospective
lenders) will see that a previous
debt was paid by settlement, indi-
cating that your repayment did not
cover the total debt that you owed,
but that your creditor accepted a
The credit score is based on
information contained in the credit
report, with the highest considera-
tion given to how you repay your
debts. If you're not repaying the
creditor or have missed payments, it
will show on your credit report and
potentially lower your credit score
The consumer may be responsi-
ble for taxes on the forgiven debt.
If the forgiven debt totals $600 or
more, you will generally owe
income taxes on the amount forgiv-
en, substantially reducing the total
savings from debt settlement.
"The debt settlement industry is
largely unregulated," Cunningham
continued, "thus consumers should
exercise extreme caution if they
decide to work with a settlement
company. Many of these compa-
nies are very new and inexperi-
enced. During a time when every
penny counts, experience does
The NFCC Member Agencies
stand ready to assist consumers
with any debt situation. Their
trained and certified counselors
often have decades of experience
dealing with consumers who see no
way out of their debt situation.
Reach out to the agency nearest you
by calling (800) 388-2227.
Consumer Alert: Debt settlement
offers just may be to good to be true
to Slash Your
If You Don't Itemize ... tion again,
If you don't itemize deductions in future y
on your income tax return, you'll year. We k
want to pay attention to this one: actually mz
It's brand new for 2008! Until now, ket, but at
if you wanted to deduct your blow.
home's property taxes from your If You'l
income, you had to itemize (using This one i
Schedule A) to do it. As a result, if deduction.
you didn't itemize, you couldn't reduces yo
take the deduction. There's a new lar.) If y
law that lets you increase your including
standard deduction by the amount es, you car
of real property tax you could have $3K for a
claimed if you did itemize -- up to for two or
$500 ($1,000 on a joint return). age of 13.
Special Tax Deduction for it ranges f
Refinancers If you refinanced child care
your home last year, you can gross incoi
deduct your "old' unamortized income is
points from your previous (now claim a 20
paid off) loan. Just how does this care costs.
work? Suppose you bought a house and you sp
in August 2007 and you secured a care costs,
30-year loan for $300,000 that cost the first $3
2 points (2% of the loan amount). certain "ru
That's $6,000 in points for that If Your
year. Then in August of 2008 -- one you have a
year later -- you refinanced and bought hir
paid new points for the new loan. present, yc
Your old loan only amortized credit thr
1/30th of those points, or $200, so Lifetime L
you now have unamortized points There are s
from the original 2007 loan for (Aren't the
$5,800. changed a
If You're an Investor If you income c
sold any stocks at a loss in 2008 ($116,000
(and with the market down over Second, yc
33% in 2008, who didn't?) the tax on you
good news is that you'll get a the credit d
deduction for it. You have to use how much
the loss to first offset any capital and fees, a
gains that you might have enjoyed, arships and
but after that you can take a deduc- tuition.
Living happily ever after begins with making the right decisions today. If you use tobacco, quitting is your best bet for good health now and in the future, as well as pushing
"till death do us part" off as long as possible. Contact the Quitline today for free counseling, information and tips to help you succeed. BE HEALTHY. BE HAPPY. BE FREE.
Call 1-877-U-CAN-NOW or visit FloridaQuitline.com.
Florida Department of Heaith
st your ordinary income
ears -- up to $3,000 per
now, it's not as good as
making money in the mar-
least it'll help soften the
re a Working Parent -
s a tax CREDIT, not a
(A tax credit actually
ur tax bill dollar for dol-
ou pay for childcare,
daycare or nanny servic-
a reduce your taxes up to
single child or up to $6K
more children under the
The amount of the cred-
rfom 20 to 35% of your
costs, depending on your
me. For example, if your
$43K or more, you can
D% credit on your child-
So if you have one child
end $8K a year in child-
you can save 20% off
K -- or $600. As always,
Child Is in College If
child in college and you
a a new computer as a
'u can get a sizeable tax
oughh the Hope and
earning Credit program.
some provisions, though.
re always?) And they've
bit for 2008. First, your
:an't exceed $58,000
for joint returns).
ou must actually OWE
r return. The amount of
depends on your income,
you've paid in tuition
nd the amount of schol-
d other deductions from
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
Page 2 Ms. Perry's Free Press
March 5 11, 2009
MvMars. Perr-s Fere
kw7 dBlack Caucus Presses Obama on Priorities
Flagler NAACP Celebrates with Dr. Calvin Butts
The Rev. Dr. Calvin 0. Butts, III (third right), appears with members of
the Flagler NAACP Executive Board at a NAACP private VIP reception at
the Flagler Auditorium. The evening evolved into an event of celebration,
culture and knowledge by the renowned activist and minister that was free
and open to the public. The activity was a part of the 100th birthday cele-
bration of the NAACP that is being celebrated throughout the year by
chapters around the country.
President Barack Obama reas-
sured members of the
Congressional Black Caucus that
he's on their side and will do what
he can to support the group's left-
leaning agenda, lawmakers said
Thursday after an hour-long session
at the White House.
Nearly all the group's 42 mem-
bers attended. Noticeably absent
was Illinois Sen. Roland Burris,
Obama's replacement who is fend-
ing off calls to resign.
The lawmakers all Democrats
- said the reception was a wel-
come change from the tenure of
former President George W. Bush,
who held several cordial meetings
with black lawmakers but rarely
agreed with them on substance.
"There is no comparison," said
Rep. Elijah Cummings of
Maryland. "(Obama) basically
assured us that having been a mem-
ber of the Congressional Black
Caucus ... that he gets the issues and
will do everything he can to work
Lawmakers said they presented
Obama with a wish-list covering a
broad range of topics, many of them
economic issues affecting their dis-
They pressed Obama to focus on
hiring more minorities to federal
jobs and helping small and minori-
ty-owned businesses get govern-
ment contracts. They also discussed
creating a health-care safety net and
addressing medical disparities
Lawmakers expressed continued
concerns about the wars in Iraq and
Afghanistan, and proposed forming
a national task force for improving
education in low-income communi-
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas
said the caucus made its priorities
clear but is "not unrealistic about
what a president can do."
Cummings said some
of the proposals don't
involve more money. For
example, he said Obama
talked about using the
bully pulpit to encourage
minorities to get more
Although Obama was a
member of the caucus CBC chair Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., at
during his Senate tenure microphone, talks to reporters outside the White
from 2004-2008, he has House in Washington last week, following a meet-
never had a particularly ing with President Obama.
close relationship with the
group. Accommodating its full
agenda could cause problems for
the president's effort to build a
moderate political coalition.
But caucus members said it's
their job to make sure he remains
focused on the hardships facing
their districts, many of which are
poor urban areas with high unem-
"Everybody's pulling together,"
said Rep. David Scott of Georgia.
"We've got a huge problem, a
momentous crisis here with this
economy ... we're all on the same
Burris' spokesman said the sena-
tor did not attend the White House
meeting because he needed to vote
on a bill giving the District of
Columbia a vote in the House.
HBCU's Feeling Economic Strain
ATLANTA Historically black
colleges and universities, which for
decades have been educating stu-
dents who can't afford to go or
can't imagine going elsewhere,
have been particularly challenged
by the nation's economic meltdown.
Enrollments at the schools have
declined while endowments have
dropped and fund-raising sources
have dried up. The same is true at
most universities, but often students
at black colleges need more aid to
stay on course.
"What's most difficult for our
institutions is that they are tuition-
driven," said Michael Lomax, pres-
ident of the United Negro College
Fund. "They don't have large
endowments, and even the ones
who do have seen a large reduction
in the value of those endowments."
Most colleges are dealing with
economic problems. One survey on
791 American public and private
colleges reported that endowments
fell 3 percent in the fiscal year that
ended June 30, and a smaller group
estimated a 23 percent drop in the
first five months of fiscal 2009.
The decline is nearly double that
of any full-year return since such
figures were first tracked in 1974.
Only three black colleges -
Howard University in Washington,
Spelman College in Atlanta, and
Hampton University in Virginia -
had endowments among the top 300
included in the survey. Most lack
the resources and strength in alum-
ni giving of their mainstream coun-
Most students at the colleges
combine grants and loans to fund
their educations, Lomax said. A
small percentage get help from their
parents, and others work retail or
fast-food jobs to make tuition.
An analysis showed that 62 per-
cent of students at 83 four-year his-
torically black colleges receive Pell
Grants. More than 90 percent of
those recipients come from families
earning less than $40,000 a year.
Lomax expects the colleges to
survive, but they may have to make
some painful choices to do it.
"These are institutions that have
made it through the Great
Depression and other cyclical
Clark Atlanta University is teaming with Spelman and Morehouse
Colleges for a shared program on teacher certification.
downturns," he said. "What we're Baltimore, reconsidering the strate-
doing is counseling schools to tight- gy for her studies.
en their belts as much as possible." Spelman recently announced it
That has Adrianna Ebron, a was phasing out its department of
Spelman sophomore from education in favor of a shared
based at Clark
Only three black colleges Howard
University in Washington, Spelman
College in Atlanta, and Hampton
University had endowments...
will also include Morehouse
College. All three are part of the
Atlanta University Center, which
recently announced cost-cutting
measures that will include sacrific-
ing people and programs.
Ebron is majoring in history but
was attracted to Spelman's educa-
tion department, which has long
been a part of its legacy. Her minor
was secondary education, with a
goal to teach history. But she now
plans to postpone her teacher certi-
fication until graduate school
because for her, taking classes at
Clark Atlanta isn't an option. "It just
messes up my whole plan for my
education here," she said.
Other cost-cutting measures at
Spelman include eliminating 35
positions and closing campus for
the week after graduation in May.
Clark Atlanta cut 100 workers and
canceled its physical education
classes. 'At Morehouse, 25 adjunct
professors, a third of the school's
part-time instructors, were released.
Morehouse enrollment is down 8
percent from last year and the
school's endowment is down to
about $110 million from a high of
$150 million. And fund-raising has
been tough, especially from corpo-
rate and high-profile donors,
Morehouse president Robert
A bright spot has emerged at
Morehouse, however: An increase
in alumni donors, especially first-
time givers. "They feel a greater
responsibility for the health of the
college," said Franklin.
Similarly, Spelman has seen
1,000 more donors, a 67 percent
increase in alumnae giving and a
250 percent increase in giving from
parents. But in both cases, the gifts
have been smaller, and Spelman
faces a budget deficit of $4.8 mil-
If you are over 65 and enrolled in Medicare, you
should know that you have already paid for care
from Community Hospice of Northeast Florida.
When facing the challenges of
advanced illness, you and your family
should be able to focus on comfort
and quality of life without worrying
about paying for end-of-life care. For
the majority of Community Hospice
patients, the cost of their hospice
care is fully covered by the Medicare
Hospice Benefit, with no out-of-
pocket expenses for the patient or
What services are included?
* Physician and nursing care
* Medications for pain relief and
* Medical equipment and supplies
* Certified nursing assistants to
help with personal care
* Physical, occupational and speech
therapy, as well as dietary
* Emotional and spiritual support
* Bereavement support for loved
Contact us today for a free
information packet fully explaining
our services and coverage under the
Medicare Hospice Benefit by mailing
or by calling 904.407.6500. We
want to help you understand your
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want to help you live better with
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Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 3
h 5 11 2009
March 5-11, 2009
Pavea 4 v- 1Perm'sTFree PressO~.-.- 0
You ever have a great idea and
you either convince yourself that it
couldn't work or someone else may
have even discouraged you or burst
your bubble before it had time to
form? Most of us have, but how
many of us go beyond the word no?
How many of us go beyond the
letter Z? Not many of us have the
courage to say so what no other
black man has run for President and
won I'll be the first. How many of
us have looked at major issues like
high minority infant mortality rates
or crime or failing public schools
and wanted to do something, but
didn't know what to do?
That was the dilemma facing two
young educators in Houston, Texas.
Dave Levin and Mike Feinberg,
were two Teach for America teach-
ers who after working in the public
school system and personally wit-
nessing the various challenges fac-
ing students in traditional public
school systems decided to do some-
In fact, Levin and Feinberg
decided to go beyond the letter Z.
You may be asking what I mean
by going beyond the letter Z? I was
at a reception at The Bridge last
weekend and listened to an
overview from frustrated educator
Feinberg was in town to give an
overview on the KIPP school con-
cept. Instead of sitting around the
teachers lounge complaining about
the ills of the Houston school dis-
trict Feinberg and Levin put their
heads together and came up with
the Knowledge is Power Program
or KIPP for short.
KIPP schools are designed
New KIPP School will Attempt to Make
a Difference in Jacksonville Education
specifically for low-income minor-
ity students who are underachiev-
ing in traditional public schools.
At Saturday's event, Feinberg
read a passage from the Dr. Seuss
book, On Beyond Zebra. The pas-
sage basically explains how a Dr.
Seuss character explains to another
character that his alphabet goes
beyond the letter Z.
So as they associate an animal
with every letter of the alphabet,
the Seuss character refuses to stop
at Z and makes up his own new let-
ters and unheard of animals.
Feinberg's point was that we
have to think "outside the box" or
beyond the boundaries that are
either self imposed or institutional-
ly imposed especially when it
comes to education.
That's exactly what Feinberg and
Levin did. They created a highly
regimented curriculum and pro-
posed a new way of teaching to the
Houston school system and after
some aggressive lobbying they
were given an opportunity to test
So in 1994 KIPP began with
approximately 50 students. While
only half of the students passed
their fourth grade tests before
enrolling in KIPP, more than 90
percent passed the Texas fifth grade
exams in English and mathematics
after one year at KIPP.
The curriculum at KIPP schools
may be unique, but that's not the
most notable aspect of the program.
Students attend school from 7 a.m.
to 5 p.m. and have 3 hours of
homework every night and four
hours of school every Saturday. In
addition, they have mandatory
summer school for a month during
In fact, KIPP students spend 70
percent more time in school than
kids in traditional public schools.
While it may seem a bit extreme to
some, one could argue that the
challenges facing many of our pub-
lic school systems around the coun-
try are extreme and call for these
types of intense measures.
Feinberg was in Jacksonville
because Duval County is the next
location that the KIPP Foundation
will test their program.
The program started with one
inner-city school in Houston then
Levin opened a school in the
Bronx, NY and the rest is history.
Today KIPP is a national network
of 66 college preparatory charter
schools for underprivileged stu-
dents in 19 states.
KIPP is operating schools in
some of the toughest, most under-
privileged school districts in the
nation New Orleans, Washington
DC and Newark just to name a few.
In October of last year,
Jacksonville organizers and KIPP
announced that Duval County
would be home to the only KIPP
School that will open in 2010.
KIPP has worked so far, but one
of the key ingredients to the organi-
zation's success is leadership. In
every city that KIPP opens its doors
the organization begins with a well-
trained, educator leader that sets
the tone for the school's success.
The Jacksonville KIPP group has
not found that leader yet, but is
focused on hiring the right person
to make the initiative a success.
The fact that Jacksonville will be
the first and only location in
Florida for a while will certainly
bring a lot of attention to the pro-
KIPP is also unique because stu-
dents, parents and teachers sign a
decree that basically outlines the
type of commitment that is expect-
ed to ensure the success of the
school. Because the hours are
longer, teachers receive about 20
percent more pay than teachers in
typical public schools.
Did I also mention that all teach-
ers are required to carry a mobile
phone so that parents and students
can call them at any time?
It will definitely take a unique
leader and some extremely pas-
sionate teachers to make KIPP
Jacksonville a success, but isn't this
the era for taking bold steps? Hats
off to the group of Jacksonville cit-
izens and philanthropists who are
driving this initiatives.
It is so easy to sit around and
point fingers and talk about how
things should be, at least someone
is going beyond the letter Z.
Signing off from The Bridge,
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The Jacksonville Free Press has its
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Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 5
March 5-11. 2009
Rep. Dwight Bullard, Sen. Hill, Cong. Kendrick Meek and Rep. Alan
Williams. V Wilson photo
Meek backed by State
Legislators in Senate bid
Congressman Kendrick Meek is
off in running in his bid to becom-
ing the state's first Black senator to
go to the nation's capital. Already
securing the nod of the Florida
Black Caucus, in which he was
once a member,
In 2008, Meek was elected to his
fourth term in Congress, where he
represents parts of Miami-Dade and
Broward counties. Meek is a mem-
ber of the powerful House Ways
and Means Committee and the
Democratic Steering and Policy
Committee, which sets the policy
agenda for the House Democratic
Caucus. He also is chairman of the
Congressional Black Caucus
Foundation. His senate campaign
platform is to create jobs, extend
health care, find a compassionate
solution to immigration and being a
voice of fiscal responsibility.
"I can't and won't sit on the side-
lines waiting for a better future to
arrive. That's why I'm running,"
Meek is now raising the coveted
funds necessary for a high caliber
campaign. None other than former
President Bill Clinton will be in
Jacksonville Friday, March 6 to
assist. For more information, call
(305) 655-3213 .
Author and historian Rodney
Hurst has won the Bronze Medal
for Nonfiction. from the Florida
Book Awards for her personal
memoir, "It was never about a hot
dog and a Coke", chronicling his
role in the Jacksonville civil rights
movement. It was selected out of
more than 135 entries.
The Florida Book Awards is an
annual awards program that recog-
nizes, honors, and celebrates the
best Florida literature published in
the previous year. Winning books
and their authors are featured in the
Summer issue of FORUM, the
statewide magazine of the Florida
He will receive the award in
Orlando on May 7th at the Florida
Book Awards Banquet.
Above are some of the evening's participants. The host of the event, Carlottra Guyton, is shown far left.
Weaving the Web of History Celebrates 10 Years
For the past ten years, on the last Saturday of the
month of February, Carlottra Guyton and friends have
hosted Weaving the Web of Our History. The unique
event features invited guests and their selection of fam-
ily mementos and memories shared with others in an
intimate roundtable followed by a potluck feast.
This year's theme, "We've come this far by faith a
celebration of the village", asked guests to recollect not
only their own family members, but those around them
that contributed to their growth.
The diverse stories shared throughout the evening
varied from first hand accounts by civil rights demon-
station participants Rodney Hurst, Rita Perry, Alton
Yates and Gloria Walker, to life as one of the few fam-
ilies of color in Seattle Washington by Ruby Brown.
Commemorating the ten years celebration were spe-
cial picture frames presented by first year participant
Vanessa Boyer to Sylvia Perry and Carlottra Guyton for
creating the event and persevering to keep it going.
"It is a lot of work", said Guyton, "but to see the
exchange that is so welcomed among attendees is
worth it This year two people discovered they were
cousins and that's what this is all about, reflecting and
connecting ion the spirit of our ancestors."
Who is really leading the Republican party? ed Limbaugh's
Continued from front
"I respect Rush Limbaugh, he is a
national conservative leader, and in
no way do I want to diminish his
voice," Steele said in a statement
late Monday. "I'm sure that he and I
will agree most of the time, but will
probably disagree some as well,
which is fine.
"The Democrats are doing every-
thing they can to find ways to take
people's attention off of their mas-
sive 36-billion-dollar-a-day spend-
ing spree that Nancy Pelosi and
Harry Reid have embarked on. To
the extent that my remarks helped
the Democrats in Washington to
take the focus, even for one minute,
off of their irresponsible expansion
of government, I truly apologize."
Democrats, who have been trying
to handcuff Republicans to
Limbaugh, reacted gleefully to
Steele's apology, saying it illustrat-
"Chairman Steele's reversal this
evening and his apology to
Limbaugh proves the unfortunate
point that Limbaugh is the leading
force behind the Republican Party,
its politics and its obstruction of
President Obama's agenda in
Washington," said Virginia Gov.
Tim Kaine, the chairman of the
Democratic National Committee.
Over the past several days, the
White House and its Democratic
allies have launched a concerted
effort to draw attention to
Limbaugh in a belief that his sup-
port exists only among the most
Democrats have used Limbaugh
as their foil instead of Republican
congressional leaders, recognizing
that part of Obama's appeal is his
outreach to Republicans, even if it's
not intended to bear fruit.
"Rush Limbaugh is the leader of
the Republican Party he says
jump and they say how high," said
Brad Woodhouse, president of
Americans United for Change, the
liberal advocacy group that is spon-
soring the ads with the American
Federation of State, County and
Limbaugh has refused to back
down. Speaking Saturday to a con-
servative convention in
Washington, he said: "What is so
strange about being honest and say-
ing, 'I want Barack Obama to fail if
his mission is to restructure and
reform this country so that capital-
ism and individual liberty are not
its foundation?' Why would I want
that to succeed?"
The words made some
Republicans besides Steele flinch.
Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the
No. 2 Republican leader in the
House, seemed eager to change the
subject. "Nobody no Republican,
no Democrat wants this president
to fail, nor do they want this coun-
try to fail or the economy to fail,"
he said on ABC's "This Week."
Coming To Your
If you live in a Project New Ground area, have questions and would like to
learn more about the cleanup effort to improve areas where incinerator ash
may have been deposited many years ago, you're invited to come to one of
our Project New Ground information fairs located in your neighborhood.
PROJECT NEW GROUND INFORMATION FAIRS SCHEDULE:
Tuesday, March 3
4:00 7:00 p.m.
Dept. of Transportation Auditorium
2198 Edison Ave.
Jacksonville, FL 32204
Wednesday, March 4
4:00 7:00 p.m.
A. Philip Randolph Academies
2100 W 45th St.
Jacksonville, FL 32209
Thursday, March 5
4:00 7:00 p.m.
Ribault High School
3701 Winton Dr.
Jacksonville, FL 32208
5TH AND CLEVELAND
Friday, March 6
4:00 7:00 p.m.
Emmett Reed Center
1093 W 6th St.
Jacksonville, FL 32209
For more information, call 630-CITY
or visit www.ProjectNewGround.org.
March 5-11, 2009
Page 6 Ms. err'Free Press
Southside COGIC issues AIDS Northside Church of Christ
Ministry challenge to local churches Annual Revivial March 7-12
The Balm in Gilead along with the Duval County Health Department and
other local faith-based communities are requesting your prayer participa-
tion March 1-7, 2009. The Southside Church of God in Christ is request-
ing that you include prayer for HIV/AIDS in your Morning service, Bible
Study, or Prayer time at your local church.
They are also challenging all Pastors to pledge and include HIV/AIDS as
an integral part of your local church ministry. HIV/AIDS has affected our
community and it is time to educate, and bring healing to our community.
For more information please contact Tabitha Robinson (904) 253-0071.
St. Andrew M.B. Celebrating
Church and Pastor Anniversaries
The St Andrew Missionary Baptist Church is having their Church and
Pastor's Anniversary on March 8th and March 15th. They are celebrating
the Church 31st anniversary and the Pastor's 3rd anniversary. The celebra-
tion will take place at 2600 West 45th Street at 4:00 p.m. The Theme will
be "Tried and True" The Scripture is from Psalms 3:8.
For further information please contact Dominique Mann at 904-302-2075.
Woodlawn Women's Day
Woodlawn Presbyterian Church will present their much awaited Women's
Day Program at 11 a.m. on Sunday, March 15th. The church, under the
guidance of Rev. R.W. Rigsby is located at the corner of Woodlawn and
Church and Pastor's Anniversary
Set for St. John M.B.
St John's Missionary Baptist Church, located at 135 Brickyard Rd. in
Middleburg, Fla., will celebrate the church's 128th and Pastor's 19th
anniversaries. The church promises a a dynamic evening for everyone to
enjoy March 8th, 15th and 22nd at 4PM. Everyone is welcome!
Faust Temple Church of God in Christ
Planning Special March Events
The public is invited to an old fashioned spirit filled Song Service on
Sunday March 8th at 4:30 p.m. Planned on Sunday March 15, 2009, at 4:30
p. m will be The Colors of Spring". The church is located at 3328 Moncrief
Road on the northside. Bishop R.L. Dixon is Pastor and admission is free
for all events. For additional information, call the church at 353-1418.
NOTICE: Church news is published free of charge. Information must
be received in the Free Press offices no later than Monday, at 5 p.m. of
the week you want it to run. Information received prior to the event
date will be printed on a space available basis until the date. Fax e-mail
to 765-3803 or e-mail to JFreePress@aol.com.
The Northside Church of Christ
located at 4736 Avenue B, will pres-
ent their Annual Spring
Gospel/Revival meeting March 7-
The theme is "Back to the
future... God is Able." Activities
will kick-off with a free concert
Saturday March 7th featuring the
Northside Acappella Mass Chorus
(Total Praise) at 7:00 p.m.
Sunday March 8th is Family &
Friends Day it includes Bible
School at 9:15 a.m. Mass Worship
Service at 10:30 a.m. followed by a
free dinner for all will follow the
Mass Worship Service.
Monday-Thursday, March 9-12 are
the dates of the gospel revival start-
ing at 7:30 p.m. each evening.
There is free local transportation to
available to all events, and nursery
service will be provided.
If you have questions; please call
Brother Charlie McLendon,
Pretty in Pink Presented
by Souls in the Kingdom
Souls For The Kingdom Outreach Ministry (Formerly Deliverance Center
For All People), located at 2039 Thomas Court, will be presenting "Pretty
In Pink" on Sunday March 22, 2009 at 4:00 P.M. The church is requesting
all women to come and fellowship in their pink attire men are welcome
also. Minister L. Bennett is Chairperson .
Services Set for Rev. Samuel Washington
The annals of Jacksonville histo-
ry lost one of it's trailblazers this
week with the recent passing of
Rev. Samuel Washington.
Funeral services for Rev. Samuel
Washington, Pastor Emeritus of
West Union Missionary Baptist
Church, will be held on Saturday,
March 7th at 10 a.m. at West Union
Missionary Baptist Church, 1605
West Beaver St. Rev. Washington
was a faithful servant of West
Union for 65 years, serving as a
choir member, Sunday School
teacher, Associate Pastor, and
Assistant Pastor before being
named Pastor in 1985.
Though born in Albany, Ga., Mr.
Washington was a lifelong resident
of Jacksonville. Among his contri-
butions to society, he was among
the first Black US Marines and
among first Blacks to graduate
from the Police Academy He also
developed and taught the first law
enforcement course at Raines H.S.
Samuel is survived by his daugh-
Mr. Samuel Washington
ter Linda Sue (David) Holmes;
grandchildren, David and Shayla;
three great grandchildren, Deja,
Kaliah, and Oshea; nieces Rosetta
(Al) Chambliss, and Annie Mae
nephews Sherman and Lloyd
Washington; sisters-in-law Corine
J. Flemming and Frankye Joyner
Haynes; one God-daughter Marsha
Gardner Oliver, and a host of other
family members and friends.
Your Spirituality Just May Make You Healthier
Religion has always been a major
aspect of African-American life.
Religion instills morals, discipline
and optimism in its practitioners.
We often credit our faith in God
with our ability to overcome major
life issues. Many people feel that
their spirituality has greatly influ-
enced their health and many doctors
are in agreement, according to a
study performed by researchers
from the University of Chicago.
"The majority of U.S. doctors -- 56
percent -- believes that religion and
spirituality influence patient's
health," said lead author Dr. Farr A.
Curlin, an assistant professor of
medicine. "The influence mostly
helps patients cope with illness and
gives them a positive state of mind."
Most doctors feel, the more positive
a patient's attitude is towards beat-
ing a health problem, the easier it is
for them to bring the patient back to
Even though most doctors feel
that religion plays a positive roll in
patients' health, "A minority of doc-
tors -- 7 percent -- believes that reli-
gion and spirituality can have a neg-
ative influence," Curlin said.
"Sometimes, these beliefs can lead
patients to refuse or not go along
with medical therapies," he said.
The patient plays a major role in
regaining their health. The doctor
can only prescribe medicine and
provide instructions. It is up to
patient to act on these recommenda-
tions. Patients who maintain a
strong belief in God often maintain
a "God helps those who help them-
selves" attitude and are more likely
to follow instructions and live with-
What it all boils down to is trust
and faith. A patient must have trust
in the knowledge and skills of their
doctors and they must have faith in
their ability to overcome -or live
with their health condition. A posi-
tive altitude and optimism are key to
overcoming life's obstacles -- health
related or not.
' Pastor Ernie Murray
S: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.
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.
TheChuch hatReahesUp o.Gd ad Ot t Ma
Bethel Baptist Institutional Church
215 Bethel Baptist Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202 (904) 354-1464
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.
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 p.m.
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
* *A Full Gospel Baptist Church *
Every 3rd & 4th
4 :00 p.m.
that's on the
Pastor Robert Lecount, Jr
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:firstname.lastname@example.org
Seeking the lost for Christ
Matthew 28:19 20
Pastor Landon Williams
5863 Moncrief Rd. Jacksonville, FL 32209 (904) 768-8800 FAX 764-3800
I agt; u IVA3. A ul I.Y a A, I uv A I %,aa
I/1!I IStory of King David basis for new primetime series
Greg Dollar and his new book
Mega-Church Pastor's son
tells his own true story
well-known Pastor's son has
decided that it is time tell his story.
Good versus evil, dark versus light,
this uncommon, yet timely tale, has
already awed, intrigued and
inspired everyone that has come in
contact with it.
Gregory Dollar: a white boy,
unusually abused, out of control,
and hurting, was rescued by a black
man; but he's not just any ordinary
black man. He is Dr. Creflo A.
Dollar Jr., Senior Pastor of world-
wide Mega-Church, World
Changers Church International.
The tell-all tale keeps you poised
on the edge of your seat as you are
entwined in the terror and child-
hood abuse that creates the teen's
nightmare of family institutions,
sex, drugs, and ultimately prison,
kicking and screaming into salva-
tion all the while.
The purpose for telling his story,
has become more than a way to sat-
isfy a need to let go of the past, but
to share what happens when the
genuine desire to change the life of
a delinquent child, could indeed
change a life forever. He feels that
his account needs to be shared with
those who are wounded and bleed-
ing, not only on the inside, but the
outside, too. He owes his life to
God and an extraordinary man who
believed in him more than anyone
"I've struggled for twenty-two
years in the shadow of this great
man who raised me as his own. My
feelings of inadequacy kept me
Dr. Creflo Dollar
believing I would never be good
enough," said Gregory. "Because
dad stood by me, I now have my
own voice. Like Joel Osteen step-
ping into his father's shoes, I'm
inspired to speak today."
His heart's desire is get the oppor-
tunity to share his story with as
many people as possible. There's no
other story that can compare to the
real test of undying and uncondi-
tional love as two individuals from
different worlds, Gregory and
Creflo face challenges not only in
their personal lives, but in the life
of Ministry. It is a scenario that
crosses all traditional boundaries,
virtually a "Prodigal Son" for
Creflo Dollar leads College Park,
Ga.-based.World Changers Church
International among many other
A contemporary retelling of the
biblical story of King David will
premiere on NBC this month as
Created by Michael Green
("Heroes," "Everwood"), it centers
on the drama surrounding David
Shepherd, a young soldier in the
war-torn country of Gilboa, who
will rise to fame after inspiring the
nation through his fearless rescue of
the king's son.
Amid Shepherd's thrust toward
destiny and peace for the kingdom,
however, the country's power play-
ers will go to great lengths to see
him fall, blurring the line between
his allies and enemies.
The series is expected to draw the
religious and the non-religious the
latter because of epic style and dra-
matic feel, and the former because
it is expected to stick closely to the
Old Testament, which Green says
provides enough material to shape
at least several seasons.
The story of King David itself, as
Green points out, is one that has
transcended religion and has
become a part of several different
Still, the show is expected to
strike a chord among the nation's
religious TV audience and with
those familiar with the story of
David, which has been of immense
Over 200 people participated in
The 15th Annual AIDS Summit:
Sisters R.I.S.E. (Resisting
Influence with Support and
Education), held at Edward Waters
The goal of the event was to
enhance outreach and HIV/AIDS
and substance abuse prevention
services for women in Jacksonville.
Dr. Dawn Emerick, Executive
Director of The Health Planning
Council of Northeast Florida, gave
the opening speech. "The commu-
nity needs to be part of the planning
process to ensure that the services
provided will fit the needs of the
clients we're trying to reach. It's
not enough to provide interven-
tion," she said. "We need to make
sure that we're changing behavior."
Derya Williams, President and,
CEO of River Region Human
Services, said, "This is a communi-
importance to Jewish and Christian
culture. The biblical King David,
the second king of the united
Kingdom of Israel, was an
acclaimed warrior, musician and
poet who is traditionally credited
with the authorship of many of the
psalms included in the Book of
Among Jews, David's three-
decade reign represents the forma-
tion of a coherent Jewish kingdom
centered in Jerusalem. To Muslims,
David is a prophet of Islam to
whom the Zabur, or Psalms, were
revealed by Allah. For Christians,
the life of the Old Testament king
was a prelude to that of Jesus
Christ, whose earthly father,
Joseph, was a direct descendent of
he show will not likely be any-
thing like NBC's earlier attempt at a
religiously-rooted series the
short-lived "Book of Daniel," a
show that featured a troubled
Episcopal priest, his 23-year-old
gay Republican son, his womaniz-
ing adopted Chinese son, and a
rather unconventional Jesus, among
other colorful characters. Nor will
it censor the Bible, according to
Could the recession become a depression?
A Depression doesn't have to be
Great -- bread lines, rampant unem-
ployment, a wipeout in the stock
market. The economy can sink into
a milder depression, the kind
spelled with a lowercase "d."
And it may be happening now.
The trouble is, unlike recessions,
which are easy to define, there are
no firm rules for what makes a
depression. Everyone at least seems
to agree there hasn't been one since
the epic hardship of the 1930s.
But with each new hard-times
headline, most recently an alarming
economic contraction of 6.2 percent
in the fourth quarter, it seems more
likely that the next depression is on
"We're probably in a depression
now. But it's not going to be
acknowledged until years go by.
Because you have
to see it behind '/ .'
you," said Peter .
Morici, a business .,
professor at the
No one disputes
that the current
turn qualifies as a
recession. Recessions have two
handy definitions, both in effect
now -- two straight quarters of eco-
nomic contraction, or when the
National Bureau of Economic
Research makes the call.
Declaring a depression is much
By one definition, it's a downturn
of three years or more with a 10
percent drop in economic output
Summit 'Keeps it Real'
'" " .- !
From left, Geno Hampton, Lolita Hill, and Patricia Smith opened a
workshop called Keepin' it Real with a skit.
ty partnership, and we need the EWC, FAMU College of Pharmacy,
community's response." The event and the Minority AIDS Coalition of
was sponsored by River Region, Jacksonville.
and unemployment above 10 per-
cent. The current downturn doesn't
qualify yet: 15 months old and 7.6
percent unemployment. But both
unemployment and the 6.2 percent
contraction for late last year could
Another definition says a depres-
sion is a sustained recession during
which the populace has to dispose
of tangible assets to pay for every-
day living. For some families, that's
Morici says a depression is a
recession that "does not self-cor-
rect" because of fundamental struc-
tural problems in the economy,
such as broken banks or a huge
Or maybe a depression is whatev-
er corporate America says it is.
Tony James, president of private
equity firm Blackstone, called this
downturn a depression during an
earnings conference call last week.
The Great Depression retains the
Unemployment peaked at more
than 25 percent. From 1929 to
1933, the economy shrank 27 per-
cent. The stock market lost 90 per-
cent of its value from boom to bust.
And while last year in the stock
market was the worst since 1931,
the Dow Jones industrials would
have to fall about 5,000 more points
to approach what happened in the
The Jacksonville Free Press
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Call 634-1993 for more information!
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Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 7
March 5-11, 2009
March 5-11, 2009
Pav 1M/1. Perrv's FreePress
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I often hear horror stories about
women (black women) getting bad
dye jobs. I would love to get color
but I'm a dark-skinned African-
American woman. I would like to
know the best color for my hair. My natural hair color
is (jet) black. I want something that will stand out, but
not be overwhelming. Color confused-Westside
To my color confused sista, not to sound as though
I'm not taking you seriously because I am the BEST
color for your hair is your natural color. Hair color
processes can be hard on the hair, especially for
African-Americans whose hair is usually coarse and
more porus than the hair of other ethnicities. The haz-
ards of serious damage increases if the hair is relaxed
frequently and heat processed often.
But it is not only unrealistic to expect an entire eth-
nic group to forego taking advantage of the variety of
hair colors available to other groups, it is unfair.
Because of this, I always urge caution and moderation,
especially when it comes to haircolor.
Most African-Americans have the darkest possible
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shade of haircolor naturally, and most hairdressers
agree that it is unhealthy to attempt to lighten the hair
more than 4 to 5 levels or shades. Fortunately, given
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colors for skin that has more indigo-tones).
The only time I can see attempting super-light hair
colors (like blondes), is if you wear your hair very,
very short. I have seen very attractive looks achieved
for dark-skinned women by lightening the hair to pale
blonde shades and using finger-wave styling tech-
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Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 9
ivMarcI :) Jii, zu
U.S. to Boycott Racism Conference
WASHINGTON The Obama
administration said Friday that the
United States will boycott an
upcoming U.N. conference on
racism unless its final document is
changed to drop all references to
Israel and the defamation of reli-
At the same time, it said the U.S.
would participate as an observer in
meetings of the U.N. Human Rights
Council, a body that was shunned
by the Bush administration for anti-
Israel statements and failing to act
on abuses in Sudan and other states.
The racism conference is a fol-
low-up to the contentious 2001
meeting in the South African city of
Durban that was dominated by
clashes over the Middle East and
the legacy of slavery.
The U.S. and Israel walked out
midway through that meeting over
a draft resolution that singled out
Israel for criticism and likened
Zionism the movement to estab-
lish and maintain a Jewish state -
Israel and Canada had already
announced they would will boycott
the next World Conference Against
Racism in Geneva from April 20-
25, known as Durban II, but the
Obama administration decided it
wanted to assess the negotiations
before making a decision on U.S.
Last week, the State Department
sent a team to Geneva to attend
preparatory meetings for the con-
ference but on Friday it said the
closing statement under considera-
tion mirrored the 2001 draft and
was was unacceptable.
"Sadly ... the document being
negotiated has gone from bad to
worse, and the current text of the
draft outcome document is not sal-
vageable," spokesman Robert
Wood said in a statement.
"As a result, the United States
will not engage in further negotia-
tions on this text, nor will we par-
ticipate in a conference based on
this text," he said.
United States will not take part in
the conference unless its final state-
ment does not single out any one
country or conflict for criticism nor
embrace the draft's stance on the
Chicago Man Arrested for Targeting
Obama With HIV-Infected Blood
A man from President Obama's
hometown of Chicago has been
arrested for allegedly sending
Obama and his staff envelopes
containing HIV-infected blood, in
the hopes of killing or harming.
In the weeks leading up to
Obama's inauguration, Saad
Hussein, an Ethiopian refugee in
his late 20s, sent an envelope
addressed to "Barack Obama" to
offices of the Illinois government
in Springfield, Ill., according to
The envelope contained a series
of curious items, including a letter
with reddish stains and an admis-
sion ticket for Obama's election-
night celebration in Chicago's
Grant Park. Court documents, said
Over 4,000 individuals streamed
into the O'Connell Center last
weekend to see nine of the nation's
best step teams face off in the 20th
Annual Florida Invitational Step
Show. Hosted by the University of
Florida's Black Student Union,
each fraternity and sorority per-
forming were invited by the UF
chapter of their organization. No
UF teams performed at the event.
The show was judged by UF alum-
ni and hosted by Columbus Short,
who has appeared in such movies as
"Stomp the Yard" and "Save the
Last Dance 2." Between perform-
ances, audience members shouted
fraternity and sorority chants and
danced in unison to the various rap
and hip hop songs filling the arena.
Awards were given to first, second
and third place teams in both the
fraternity and sorority divisions.
The Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity
chapter from Clark University in
Atlanta, Ga., earned first place for
their rendition of a graduation cere-
mony from "Alpha University."
"It was the first time stepping for
three of our members," said team
member Cameron Fulford, to the
Second place went to the Under
Pressure step team of Phi Beta
Hussein, who takes drugs to treat a
mental illness, later told FBI
agents he is "very sick with HIV"
and cut his fingers with a razor so
he could bleed on the letter.
Hazmat teams were called in
after the envelope was opened, and
offices of the Illinois Department
on Aging and the Department of
Revenue were locked down for
nearly two hours, locking 300
staffers in their offices.
Days after sending the letter to
Obama, Hussein allegedly placed
two more letters in the mail, one
addressed to "Emanuel," an appar-
ent reference to Obama's current
Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel.
The two letters contained what
appeared to be dried blood, the
court documents said.
Hussein, who has never held a job
in the three years he's been in the
United States, was arrested last
month. He was charged with
"knowingly" mailing letters "con-
taining HIV-infected blood, with
the intent to kill or injure another,"
in violation of federal law.
The charging documents do not
address whether the letters could
have actually killed or injured any-
one. According to the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention,
HIV is spread only through sexual
contact with an infected person,
through sharing needles with an
infected person, or through blood
transfusions of infected blood.
condemnation or take up the issue
of reparations for slavery, Wood
"We would be prepared to re-
engage if a document that meets
these criteria becomes the basis for
deliberations," he said.
Israel, which was deeply con-
cerned when the administration sent
a delegation to the preparatory
meeting, lobbied hard for the U.S.
to stay away from the conference
and pro-Israel groups hailed the
"Its a clear signal to the interna-
tional community that this adminis-
tration refuses to validate the
hijacking of human rights by
regimes led by Libya and Iran,"
said the Simon Wiesenthal Center,
referring to countries that are sup-
porting the draft statement.
U.S. officials said they are press-
ing European nations to boycott the
conference unless there are revi-
sions to the final statement. The
Netherlands and France have
already expressed concern about
Howard Berman, chairman of the
House Foreign Affairs Committee,
said he hoped the U.S, position
"will galvanize like-minded coun-
tries and those who have been sit-
ting on the sidelines to end this
mindless march toward an outcome
that serves none of the victims of
racism and intolerance."
Although it announced the boy-
cott of the Durban II conference,
the State Department also said it
would attend, as an observer, meet-
ings of the U.N. Human Rights
Council that the U.S. had previous-
ly stayed away from of criticism of
Israel it said was one-sided.
The Obama administration had
declined to speak during the coun-
cil's review earlier this month of the
human rights records of China,
Russia and other countries the
United States has previously criti-
cized for abuses.
Rapper Snoop Dogg, left, greets Minister Louis Farrakhan at the
Saviours' Day Convention in Rosemont, Ill., Sunday, March 1, 2009.
Saviours' Day is the Nation of Islam's annual commemoration of the
birth of Master Fard Muhammad, the Founder of the Nation of Islam.
Snoop Participates in Savior's Day
Rapper Snoop Dogg made an
appearance Sunday at the Nation of
Islam's annual Saviours Day con-
vention, praising Minister Louis
Farrakhan and revealing that he is a
member of the movement.
Snoop, whose real name is Calvin
Broadus, gave a $1,000 donation to
the Nation and said he will always
seek the minister out.
The rapper called himself the
"leader of the hip-hop community"
and said it was his first Saviours
Day event. He told followers that
he would share the information he
gathered with other musicians.
"When you get a speech from
Minister Farrakhan it's about a mir-
ror, it's about looking at yourself,"
the rapper later told The Associated
Press. "It's about seeing yourself
and what you can do to better the
situation ... We're doing a lot of
wrongs among ourselves that need
When asked if he planned to con-
vert and become a member of the
Chicago-based Nation of Islam,
Snoop said he already is.
"I'm already in the Nation, that's
why I'm here," he said. "I'm an
advocate for peace. I've been in the
peace movement ever since I've
been making music. My whole
thing is not about really trying to
push my thing on you. It's just
about the way I live, and I live how
I'm supposed to live as far as doing
what's right and representing what's
right. That's why I was here today."
During the speech Sunday, Snoop
sat on stage behind Farrakhan clap-
ping and nodding.
Min. Farrakhan has long held
relationships with famous rappers
and hip-hop artists. He has hosted
and spoken at hip-hop conven-
tions, encouraging peace between
Rapper Doug E. Fresh also attend-
ed the convention but didn't speak
publicly. Rapper T.I., whose real
name is Clifford Harris, appeared
via recorded video. He told follow-
ers that education is the key to suc-
For Good Earth-Watch Your Mailbox.
Project New Ground will soon begin to clean
up ash deposited in several locations at or
near incinerator sites.
If you live in the Project New Ground area, watch
your mailbox for important information about your
property and the cleanup.
P RO J E C T
For more information, call 630-CITY
or visit www.ProjectNewGround.org
Sigma Fraternity from New Jersey,
while third place was given to the
Chi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi from
Edward Waters College.
In the sorority division, the Kappa
Epsilon Chapter of Delta Sigma
Theta Sorority from Florida State
University took the top spot, after
performing as hotel clerks dressed
in red and gold in their "Be Our
Guest" routine. The routine also
included popular hits such as "Lean
Wit It, Rock Wit It" by Dem
Franchize Boyz and "Diva" by
Beyoncd. The Kappa Nu Chapter of
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority from
University of Washington in Seattle
earned second place.
Like many of the teams at the
event, the sorority had to fundraise
to afford the trip to Gainesville."We
held social events and car washes to
raise money," said Danielle Wilson,
member of Zeta Phi Beta and a
University of Washington senior.
Third place was awarded to the St.
Louis All-Star Team of Sigma
Gamma Rho Sorority. "The show
was a huge success, and the teams
were great," said Shanae Staples,
director of the event.
BSU began planning for the event
Members of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity's Kappa Chi chapter, from
American University in Washington, D.C., perform their step dance
routine during the 20th Annual Florida Invitational Step Show in the
O'Connell Center. .H. Diamond
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What to do fom social, volunteer, political and sports activities to self enrichment and the civic scene
What to do from social, volunteer, political and sports activities to self enrichment and the civic scene
"' i' 2- ,-"-' ,.'
The world famous Harlem
Globetrotters will visit the
Jacksonville Veterans Memorial
Arena on Thursday, March 5th at
7:00 p.m. Call 353-3309 for tickets.
PRIDE Book Club
PRIDE Book Club will hold their
next meeting on Friday March 6th
at 7:00 p.m. The book for discus-
sion will be "Holy Lockdown: Does
the Church Limit Black Progress by
Jeremiah Camara. For directions or
more information, call 886-2071.
The April meeting will be held on
Friday, April 6th at 7:00 p.m. host-
ed by Gloria & Hezron Omawali
discussing Like Trees Walking By
Johnson YMCA 5KRun
The Johnson Family YMCA will
hold their 4th Annual Celebrate
Life 5K Run/Fitness Walk on
Saturday, March 7th, 2009 at
5700 Cleveland Road. The purpose
is to promote health awareness
within the community. For more
information, call Chelsea Reeves at
Zoo Garden Tour
Now is the time for spring cleaning
your garden! The Jacksonville Zoo
and Gardens' Garden Tour will take
place March 7th, from 9:00- 11:00
a.m. Learn how they beautify the
gardens by pruning, cutting back,
cleaning and fertilizing.
Participants should pre-register
online at www.jacksonvillezoo.org,
and meet outside the Zoo's ticket
booths at 8:45 a.m.For more infor-
mation, call Mercede New 904-
757-4463, ext. 211.
Frat House the Play
Frat House, the original play by
Stage Aurora's Darryl Reuben Hall,
centers around Thomas, the son of a
pastor, leaves home to attend col-
lege and joins a fraternity against
his father's advice. The play will be
performed on stage in March at the
Theater's Main Stage located at
inside Gateway Mall. For tickets,
showtimes or more information,
Parents seeking Information
regarding the Children First Florida
program should attend their upcom-
ing meeting at the Highland Branch
Library from 6 7:30 p.m on
Wednesday March 11th. For more
information contact Stephanie Hall
at 904-247-6033 Ext.1000.
Bill Bellamy in Concert
Actor and comedian Bill Bellamy
will be in concert at the Comedy
Zone March 12-14th. The Last
Comic Standing host will bring his
stand up act to the main stage of the
Comedy Club located in the
Ramada Inn in Mandarin. For tick-
ets, call 292-HAHA.
A Day of Gardening
The Duval Extension Service will
offer A Day of Gardening on
March 14th from 9a.m. to 3 p.m. at
the Duval County Extension Office.
Spend the day learning about grow-
ing orchids, square foot gardening,
hydroponic gardening, irrigation,
tomatoes, citrus, green landscapes,
micro-greens, rain gardens, native
plants, and more. The Extension
Service is located at 1010 N.
McDuff Ave. Reserve your space
by calling 904-387-8850.
Jack & Jill Beautillion
The Jacksonville Chapter of Jack
and Jill will host their llth Les
Beautillion Militaire at the
University of North Florida
Ballroom on March 14th. The
biennial event recognizes the cul-
tural, social and educational accom-
plishments of young Black men in
their junior and senior high school
year. For more information call
May in Concert
The comic larger than life,
Ralphie May, will be in concert at
the Comedy Zone March 19-22nd.
The Last Comic Standing winner
will bring his stand up act to the
main stage of the Comedy Club
located in the Ramada Inn in
Mandarin. For tickets or more
information, call 292-HAHA.
... .ss FAMILY
" %'1t* ''r .' h'- "
.~ -.'' t^ :'
AI AD RECEIVE
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__$36 One year in Jacksonvillle _$65 Two years
AT E S
$40.50 Outside of City
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Please send check or money order to: Jacksonville Free Press
P.O. Box 43580, Jacksonville, FL 32203
If you would like to pay by Visa or Mastercard, give us a call at 634-1993
ung Your News and oming Em
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be sure to include the 5W's who, what, when, where, why
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903 W. Edgewood Ave. Jacksonville, FL 32208
Pil ninumLg YourTUT
Special v nT?
Commemorate your special event with
professional affordable photos by the Picture Lady!
Sinbad in Concert
Clean cut family comedian Sinbad
will be returning to Jacksonville for
one performance only on Friday
March 20th at 8 p.m. at the Florida
Theatre. Call 355-2787 for more
Doo Wop Reunion
The Times Union Center for
Performing Arts Moran Theater
will present the Doo Wop Reunion
featuring Little Anthony & the
Imperials, the Duke of Earl himself,
Gene Chandler, the Flamingos, the
Marcels and Kathy Young. on
Saturday, March 21st at 8:00 p.m.
For more info, call 353-3309.
Girls Inc. Daddy
Girls Inc. will present it's second
annual Daddy Daughter Dance -
affectionately called the Daddy
Daughter Golf Ball. It will be held
from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on March
21st at the Hyatt Regency
Riverfront. The evening will
include a full dinner and dancing.
Cost to attend the event is $75 per
couple and $25 per additional
daughter. Dressy attire is suggested
and space is limited.
To make reservations, go to
www.girlsincjax.org. For more
information, call (904) 731-9933.
Kappa Alpha Psi Foundation
Jacksonville and the Jacksonville
Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha
Psi Fraternity, will be hosting their
15th Annual Charity Golf
Tournament on March 21, 2009 at
the Golf Club at South Hampton in
St. Augustine. The Golf
Tournament has a 1:45pm Shotgun
Start with Check in at 11:00 am.
There will be prizes awarded for the
Longest Drive, Closest to the Pin
and Hole-in-One Prizes for all Par
3's. For more information or to reg-
ister for the tournament forms can
be downloaded at www.jack-
Art After Dark
The Florida Theatre will host Art
After Dark on Friday, March 27,
2009 from 7-10 PM. Tickets are
priced at $25 for an evening show-
casing the community's most
exceptional visual artists. It also
includes a silent auction, live music
and food. For tickets or perform-
ance information please call the
Florida Theatre Box Office at (904)
Legal Art Walk Show
On Wednesday, April 1st from
5:30 8:30 p.m., there will be a
Legal Art Walk Show at the Zodiac
Grill. (corner of Adams & Hogan).
Original artwork created lawyers,
judges and other members of the
legal community will be on display
and for sale. The event is free and
open to the public. For more infor-
mation, please contact Deborah R.
Reid, Esquire at 904-996-1100 or
by e-mail at Reid@rumrelllaw.com.
Crawford in Concert
Comedian Lavell Crawford will be
in concert at the Comedy Zone
April 2 4th. The former BET
Comic View host will bring his
stand up act to the main stage of the
Comedy Club located in the
Ramada Inn in Mandarin. For more
information, call 292-HAHA.
Bring the entire family to cele-
brate blues music and the arts at
George's Music Springing the
Blues, April 3-5. The three-day
oceanfront event is free and fea-
tures a number of renowned blues
performers as well as numerous dis-
plays and activities geared for the
entire family. The annual event is
held at the Sea Walk Pavilion in
Jacksonville Beach. www.spring-
March 5 11, 2009
Page 10 Ms. Perrv's Free Press
----------- ---------------- .1
Iorph 2009Ms. Prry'XFre Pres Pge 1
Russell Simmons agrees to $40K a month child support
Court records show Russell Simmons has agreed to pay $40,000 a month
in child support.
The agreement gives Kimora Lee Simmons (currently pregnant with actor
Djimon Hunsou's baby) sole custody of the couple's two daughters, 9-
year-old Ming and 6-year-old Aoki. The couple's divorce was finalized in
January. Kimora Lee Simmons filed for divorce in March 2008, citing
Russell Simmons, the 51-year-old hip-hop mogul, was granted visitation
rights and must pay child support until each daughter reaches 19 and a half
years of age.
The 33-year-old Kimora Lee Simmons has final say on whether her
daughters appear on her reality TV show "Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane."
Vick OK'd for home confinement
A government official says imprisoned NFL star
Michael Vick has been approved for release to home
Vick's lawyers have said they expected him to be
moved any day into a halfway house in Newport
News, Va. But the official says there's no bed space,
so Vick could be released to his Hampton, Va. home
as soon as May 21st.
The official has knowledge of the case but request-
ed anonymity because the individual was not authorized to discuss the
matter publicly. The official says Vick will be on electronic monitoring and
will only be allowed to leave home for activities approved by his proba-
The former Atlanta Falcons quarterback is serving a 23-month sentence
at a Kansas federal penitentiary for a dogfighting conspiracy charge.
Atl Housewife Kim Sued by Publicist
Atlanta housewife Kim Zolciak has been sued by
her publicist Jonathan Jaxson for breach of contract.
/ f Simultaneously, Zolciak has requested a protective
order against Jaxson after accusing him of using the
A,, i Web site KimZolciakOnline.com to sabotage her.
According to E! Online, Kim claims Jaxson
changed the password and security settings so she
couldn't access the site and then proceeded to post
lies about her.
Meanwhile, "Jaxson is in fear for his safety and has filed a police report
with the Atlanta Police Department after threats were made concerning his
well-being by Ms. Zolciak," a rep for the flack tells E! News.
Jaxson filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit against the wannabe country
singer Feb. 23 for $15,000 in back fees, claiming she had stopped paying
his monthly retainer fee, thereby immediately voiding their contract,
reports E! And furthermore, Jaxson's rep says, he owns the Web site
Zolciak has accused him of hijacking.
President Honors Stevie Wonder President
Obama presented Stevie Wonder with the Gershwin Award for Lifetime
Achievement in a celebration in the East Room of the White House.
Obama, who said Wonder provided the soundtrack of his youth, honored
Wonder with will.i.am, india.arie, Tony Bennett and Martina McBride on
hand to perform his greatest hits. The president joked that the group was
"the most accomplished Stevie Wonder cover band in history."
Eddie Murphy set to play Richard Pryor in new biopic
Murphy said to be willing to Pryor in Murphy's only director
aive his usual fee to play his idol effort, 1989's Harlem Nights.
new film from Oscar-winning Pryor's battles with alcohol a
writer Bill Condon, who co-pro- drug addiction are expected to fe
iced Sunday night's revamped ture heavily in the biopic. In 19
academy Awards show he doused himself with rum and
Funny men... Eddie Murphy and .. himself on fire following a cocai
chard Pryor. Photograph: Kevin and alcohol binge. Pryor later inc
inter/Getty and Everett porated the tale into his stand
ollection/Rex Features routine, poking fun at those w
Eddie Murphy looks set to play told jokes about the event by wa
s idol Richard Pryor in a new ing a lit match and saying: "Wha
opic of the legendary comic's life. this? It's Richard Pryor runni
Richard Pryor: Is It Something I v down the street."
Said? is being put together by Bill
Condon, the Oscar-winning writer
who co-produced Sunday night's
revamped Academy Awards show
and directed Murphy in the 2006
Hitfix and Entertainment Weekly
have separate reports confirming
Murphy's involvement. The
Beverley Hills Cop star, whose
early standup routines featured an
Berry to Release
Actress and mother Halle Berry
is set to release her first fragrance
"Halle by Halle Berry" which is set
to hit sh
The advertising (pictured right)
was shot on a beach in Oahu,
Hawaii by photographer and direc-
tor Cliff Watts.
The scent, which she collaborat-
ed on with Coty, reportedly "fea-
tures mimosa and fig essences that
is meant to evoke 'the spirit of a
woman who is effortlessly sexy,
stylish, and elegant.'"
Halle isn't new to creating her
own signature fragrance. The Oscar
winner confesses she likes to blend
her own oils, much like Sarah
Jessica Parker, calling it "a wonder-
ful form of self-expression."
"For years I have created my own
personal scents by mixing and lay-
ering fragrances, trying to come up
with something unique and differ-
ent. It's a wonderful form of self-
expression and I am thrilled to be
working with Coty on my debut
Funny men ... Eddie Murphy and Richard Pryor.
impersonation of Pryor, is said to be Hitfix reports that Pryor's four
enthusiastic about taking the role. wives will all be depicted in the
He is waiving his usual fees for the film, along with the pioneering
project, which has a relatively low African-American comedian Red
budget of $25m. Foxx, who appeared alongside
Pryor battled multiple sclerosis
for many years and suffered a fatal
heart attack in 2005 at the age of 65.
The movie would not mark the
first time the comic has been por-
trayed on the big screen. In 1986
Pryor himself directed and starred
in the semi-autobiographical tale,
Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling.
TV One Opposes Bob
Johnson's New Network
TV One, the joint cable venture
between Comcast and Radio One
that targets African American
adults, is opposing a proposal for a
new network by Robert L. Johnson,
founder of Black Entertainment
TV One told the Federal
Communications Commission that
the method that Johnson is using to
get his channel on the air could
force cable systems to drop TV
In response, Johnson sent a letter
to TV One's CEO, Alfred Liggins
III, saying that "your argument that
Urban Television would 'have a
devastating impact' on TV One is
totally without merit and absolutely
Johnson also took issue with TV
One's recitation of what it called its
recent "public-service program-
ming from an African American
perspective," such as its coverage
of President Obama's election and
"I can recall vividly when you
launched TV One you made a stren-
uous argument that TV One should
get mandatory carriage on any
cable system that served urban mar-
kets," Johnson said. "I further recall
when you said BET was not
enough. You felt then that BET
should not be the only voice. Now,
in an amazing turn-about of self
interest or motivated by Comcast,
the largest cable company which
owns a significant stake in TV One,
you argue that TV One should be
the only voice."
Johnson's new company is to be
called Urban Television LLC.
Johnson is seeking permission to
share time on 42 stations owned by
Ion Media Networks Inc., a succes-
sor to Pax TV, a family-oriented
broadcast network that operated on
several UHF channels.
Ion Media owns 49 percent of the
venture; Johnson's RLJ Companies,
Sharing time on the Ion stations is
possible with the advent of digital
channels. The stations share differ-
ent audio channels on the same fre-
quency, so that a second network
could broadcast 24 hours a day.
It is this method of transmission
that is at the root of the dispute. The
venture is opposed by the National
Cable & Telecommunications
Association, which represents the
cable industry. "The problem for
cable operators is that Johnson
wants the Federal Communications
Commission to force cable to carry
Urban's programming," as it must
all over-the-air stations, as Ted
Hearn wrote in December for
"Networks like TV One would
potentially be knocked off because
they can't carry everything," TV
One spokeswoman Lynn
McReynolds told Journal-isms,
speaking of cable systems. "It sim-
ply would substitute a government-
favored programmer (Urban) for
another, such as TV One, that does
not receive the government's
favored dispensation," TV One told
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Ms. Perry's Free Press Page 11
I March 5 -11. 2009
Smiley's Annual State of the Black
-Union Convenes in Los Angeles
First Lady Michelle Obama
First Lady adds signature style to official portrait
With the once slave owning
President Thomas Jefferson in the
background, First Lady Michelle
Obama chose the Blue Room of the
White House for her official por-
Obama wears a sleeveless dress,
which has become something of a
signature style. The black dress was
designed by Michael Kors.
Already controversial for her
decision to go sleeveless, many
have appreciated her fashion sense
of style and fitness regimen exhibit-
ed in the photo. Obama is also fea-
tured on the March cover of Vogue.
She's the second first lady -- after
Hillary Clinton -- to appear on the
front of the magazine.
In the interview with Andre Leon
Talley, she opens up about helping
Sasha, 7, and Malia, 10, adjust to
life in Washington, D.C.
"I'm going to try to take them to
school every morning -- as much as
I can," she says. "But there's also a
measure of independence. And
obviously there will be times I
won't be able to drop them off at all.
I like to be a presence in my kids'
school. I want to know the teacher;
I want to know the other parents."
by S. Perry
For the past ten years, some of
the most influential thinkers, enter-
tainers, and political leaders of our
time gather annually to discuss the
State of the Black Union during
Black History Month.
The event, presented and hosted
by author, activist, and advocate
Tavis Smiley, returned to Los
Angeles this year the place of its
birth, Saturday, February 28, 2009
at the L.A. Convention Center.
"Every year where we bring
together Black America's thought
leaders, opinion makers, influ-
encers to talk about the issues that
trouble and travail Black America,"
Smiley described, adding that when
the symposium launched in LA ten
years ago, he had no idea it would
be thriving ten years later.
"For ten consecutive years we've
been able to bring these conversa-
tions live, via CSPAN, and free to
an international audience, he said.
"It's important and I am delighted
that we now have a black face, rep-
resenting the American empire in
our new president, Barack Obama,
but imagine that for those ten years
the only time that people around the
world got a chance to see black
faces engaged in serious dialog all
day on television, was courtesy of
this State of the Black Union
Symposium. We've been the pro-
gram of record every year, bringing
these black thinkers to talk about
how we make Black America better
and, consequently, all of America
With an African American presi-
dent in the White House during a
tough recession, the convention
offered forums for both enthusiasm
and worry about the future.
About 6,000 people attended the
meeting and heard prominent black
political and cultural figures discuss
African American issues in the era
of Barack Obama. The topics
included foreclosures, gang vio-
lence, education and U.S. diploma-
cy in Africa.
Smiley said the changes in
Host Smiley at the event.
Washington and the economic crisis
provided "the most interesting
background" for the gathering,
which he started in 2000 in Los
Angeles and staged in other cities in
eight intervening years. "It's a won-
derful time to come together.
There's a lot of hope and energy in
the air, but clearly this is a difficult
time, too, the worst since the Great
Depression," the author and broad-
cast personality said.
Among the speakers were civil
rights leaders and pastors Jesse
Jackson Sr. and Al Sharpton, Rep.
Maxine Waters writers Michael
Eric Dyson and Cornel West,
Republican National Committee
Chairman Michael Steele, financial
commentator Michelle Singletary
and National Urban League
President Marc Morial.
Dyson, a Georgetown University
sociology professor who is an
expert on hip-hop music, dismissed
the notion that Obama's election
means that the United States is a
post-racial society. Having a black
president is a rebuke to white
supremacists but racism continues,
he said, citing "Third World condi-
tions in post-industrial cities;"
where many blacks live, and the
Jan. 1 death in Oakland of Oscar
Grant, a black man who was
unarmed when allegedly shot in the
back by a white transit officer. The
officer has been charged with mur-
Besides, Dyson added in a
humorous aside, a post-racial socie-
ty would lose black icons. "You
want to give up Stevie Wonder?
That would make Stevie Wonder
In assessing the first month of
Obama's Presidency, Smiley found
that the word accountability was in
the forefront of the new administra-
tion and the new president.
Last year, then-candidate Obama
declined Smiley's invitation to
appear at the event; this year he sent
a video of prepared remarks. His
speech instead zeroed in on the cur-
rent budget crisis.
Mr. Obama did not address the
historic nature of his election, nor
other racial dialogue he called for in
his landmark address in March.
Rather, he used the opportunity to
tout his budget by talking about
how it would ease issues affecting
Americans generally, but particu-
larly the black community.
At the end, Obama concluded his
remarks with a nod to the event
host's new book, which features the
President on the cover.
"The President has said 'I want
you to hold me accountable.'
Almost every time he appears in
public, he uses the word 'account-
able,' Smiley observed. "That's
why this new book, 'Accountable:
Making America as Good as its
Promise' does two things. It lays
out the ten issues in the covenant
and lays out what Mr. Obama said
on the ten issues. Now you have an
accountability checklist to hold him
accountable to what he said he
wants to be held accountable to.
The other part of the book is how
we can help him accomplish what
he said he wants to be held account-
able to. It's not just about the enthu-
siasm, the excitement and the
euphoria of getting him elected. As
hard as that was to get a black man
elected, that was really the easy
pub IA ix. CoU ac
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