Monday, June 25, 2012

Congratulations Black America, We’ve Made The KKK Very Proud – Letter From The KKK

In early 2011, the Ku Klux Klan released a letter applauding young black males for their efforts, and thanking them for their contribution to African American communities.
UPDATED June 25, 2012
Here’s the letter:
“The KU KLUX KLAN would like to take this time to salute and congratulate all gang bangers for the slaughter of over 4,000 Black people since 1975. You are doing a marvelous job. Keep killing each other for nothing. The streets are still not yours nigger…it is ours. You are killing each other for our property. You are killing what could be future black doctors, lawyers, and businessmen that we wont have to compete with. And the good thing about it is that you are killing the youth. So we won’t have to worry about niggers in generations to come. We would further like to thank all the judges who have over sentenced those niggers to prison. We are winning. Pretty soon, we will be able to go back to raping your women because all the men will be gone. So you gang bangers…Keep up the good work. We love to read about drive-by shootings. We love to hear how many niggers get killed over the weekends. We can tolerate the nigger’s jungle fever (for now)… because that further breaks down the race. To all gang bangers across the world: we don’t love you niggers, but we can appreciate you gang bangers. You are doing a wonderful job in eliminating the black race. Without the men…your women cannot reproduce…unless of course, we do it for them. Then we will have successfully eliminated a race thanks to your help and commitment to killing each other. If most of you nigger gang bangers cannot read this letter, it is ok. Go pull a trigger and kill a nigger.”
As shameful as this is to say, they are absolutely right.
In Chicago alone; 49 were shot over St. Patrick’s Day weekend, 53 were shot over Memorial Day weekend, and this past weekend, 43 were shot. That’s three times in the past SIX weeks that at least 40 plus people were shot over a weekend in Chicago alone.
We are destroying ourselves with guns more effectively then they ever could with a rope. Over the past 86 years, the Ku Klux Klan has murdered approximately 3,440 blacks. Blacks are killing about the same amount of blacks every six months.
The saddest part about those lives that have been lost is that every time someone is murdered, two lives are ended. The victim who lost the most precious gift that can be bestowed to anyone, and the shooter, who will likely spend the majority if not the rest of his/her life inside of a prison cell. They both had the potential to be the next Barack Obama, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr, or Russell Simmons.
Instead they were buried six feet beneath the dirt, or placed behind six inches of bulletproof glass as they watch their loved ones shed tears for a man who they will never be able to embrace again, unless of course they end up in the penitentiary as well.
While my Editor-In-Chief Michael Skolink is in Sanford consoling the family of Trayvon Martin, there are 43 grieving families in Chicago whose loved one’s names will appear on a tombstone – not trending topics, or international news headlines.
We have all expressed our outrage over the tragic death of Trayvon, and rightfully so. He could’ve easily been any one of us. He was killed in cold blood for no justifiable reason. Well, there are literally thousands of young brothers who look just like Trayvon, who just as well could be anyone of us being slaughtered on a daily basis. Not by men who look nothing like George Zimmerman, but men who look just like you and me.
If we were able to unite and rally for justice for Trayvon, but are unable to band together to end this intraracial genocide, the message being sent is clear. It’s okay to murder young black men for trivial reasons as long as blacks are the ones doing the killing.
That’s similar to the stance that some of us use in defense of the word nigger. While I find this to be asinine in defense of a word, it as an utterly unacceptable when it comes to the destruction of a race of people.
If we can voice our opposition to cops killing us, whites killing us, and dictators killing their citizens in different countries, we are obligated to do the same for our own self-destruction. Read more: 

HBCU “Equality Lawsuit” Far From Over

UPDATED June 25, 2012
Both sides locked in a battle over proper funding for Maryland’s historical black institutions (HBI) have retreated to their corners to regroup and prepare for the next phase of the case.
Lawyers for the Coalition for Equity and Excellence in Maryland Higher Education Inc., the plaintiff, and the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC), the defendant, submitted conclusions of law on June 6.
“The state is reviewing documents from the plaintiff’s side and the plaintiffs are reviewing documents from the defendant’s side,” said Dr. Earl S. Richardson, president of Morgan State University from 1984 to 2010.
“It appears that the case is continuing on schedule and we hope that the lawyers on the plaintiff’s side are persuasive enough in their arguments to convince the judge of the merit of this case.”
The legal representation for both the Coalition and MHEC will have until July 13 to respond to each other’s submissions. Final oral arguments will be heard Oct. 19 of this year.
“The submissions are the first thing we’ve done since the case ended in February,”
said Kenneth Thompson of Venable LLP, lawyers representing the Maryland Higher Education Commission. “We have to file what we call replies, or rebuttals, this summer and we have closing arguments scheduled for Oct. 19.”
The State’s defense opens summary of conclusion by stating “nothing in the Constitution or in federal law requires that the State provide HBIs with the enhanced funding plaintiffs seek.”
“Plaintiffs’ filing included testimony from the four HBCU presidents about the conditions at the HBCUs, including inadequate libraries, science labs, IT infrastructure, faculty salaries, financial aid and overall resources,” said Michael D. Jones, legal representative for the Coalition.
“The plaintiffs’ filing also focused on Maryland’s 2000 Agreement with the Office of Civil Rights where Maryland agreed to enhance the HBCUs to the point that they could compete with the Traditionally White Institutions.”
The State’s defense opens its summary of conclusion by stating “nothing in the Constitution or in federal law requires that the State provide HBIs with the enhanced funding plaintiffs seek.”
The document numbers 103 pages and gives numerous examples of students who graduated from alleged substandard conditions at historical black colleges and universities (HBCU) and later excelled.
The State’s submission also says that forced compensation for past unsavory classroom conditions heard in alumni testimony would be unjust because no “discrete personal injury” occurred.
“If merely showing past inequities were enough to trigger present-day remedies, there would have been no need for a trial in this case,” said the defense in its submission. “The question this court must answer in its threshold inquiry is whether current policies or practices are traceable to the de jure era.”
The document also argues the alumni testimonies heard throughout the trial about give no reason to award a judgment to schools today because students now learn in different settings unknown to alumni.
A decision in the landmark trial is expected from Judge Catherine C. Blake of the U.S. District Court after both sides give their rebuttal by July 13 and deliver oral arguments in October.
The case was originally filed in October of 2006, but took years to reach the trial phase that began on Jan. 3
Alumni and current students from Bowie State University (BSU), Coppin State University (CSU), Morgan State University (MSU) and University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES), the four HBCUs that filed the case, packed the court house for days to show support.
The institutions allege that by providing better funding and facilities to white schools and allowing the duplication of HBCUs specialty programs, the state of Maryland continued to perpetuate a system of de facto segregation, or segregation enforced by human behavior instead of law.
The HBCUs are asking the state for $2.1 billion in damages to help pay for upgrades and repairs to campuses. Referenced from AFRO

HBCU Buzz News from Students, Faculty, & Friends from the HBCU Community.


UPDATED June 25, 2012

By Greg Couch of


The basics of the typical inspirational comeback story go something like this: Athlete suffers, keeps faith, works hard, overcomes. And we fall for that every time.
It’s like the story of Tyson Gay, Olympic 100-meter sprinter. In March, following hip surgery, he still couldn’t even jog. On Sunday, he qualified for the Olympics. That would be so nice and neat, but for one thing: He finished second in the Olympic trials.
The winner was Justin Gatlin, who won gold at the Athens Olympics in 2004, then missed the Beijing Games. Now, at 30, he ran a 9.80, just ahead of Gay's 9.86, and is a serious threat to win a medal at the London Olympics.
But Gatlin is a new kind of comeback story for us: He has impressively returned this far after suffering from, a, uh, four-year steroid suspension.
“I’ve been tested multiple times since I’ve been back,’’ he said. “When I was away, I was still getting tests. It’s not about judging myself or whatever I’ve been through. I’m focused on what’s in front of me.’’
What he’s been through? Sure, he’s focused on the future, and the fans in Eugene were cheering for him when he was introduced. It’s unlikely he’ll get that reception in London, where he’s always going to be seen as a cheat.
This is a somewhat new thing for track and field. It went through its low points of Marion Jones and others, when steroid cheats disgraced the sport and went away. Then, replacements came in, and Gatlin was among the young athletes promising to clean up the game’s image.
Then he was gone. And now, in plenty of sports, actually, the suspensions are over for athletes, who are coming back to the games. In fact, just before Gatlin won his race, American LaShawn Merritt, back from his own 21-month doping suspension, won the 400 meters and a shot to defend his 2008 Olympic gold.
You’re going to have to decide for yourself how you feel about these guys. Alex Rodriguez seems to have been accepted back in baseball. But the mark is always there.
Gatlin says he never knowingly doped, and that a massage therapist must have rubbed the stuff into him. Whatever. He was out four years.
Contrast that to football doping cheats, who miss four games, or those banned in baseball, who miss one-third of one season.
Gatlin has served his time and also lost his big sponsors. He should be free to come back. But that doesn’t mean the slate is entirely clean. It can’t be.
“I’ve been through some dark paths,’’ Gatlin said. “What really has been able to help me keep my faith was the faith of my fans. Them believing in me, wanting me to come back, knowing I’m a true athlete, a legit athlete.
“I’ve been responding to emails, going to talk to kids, traveling, telling them the right and wrongs of life.’’
See? That just sounds a little off. Gatlin is talking to kids about right and wrong. He might well be doing everything right, everything he can to rehab his image. But that can go only so far.
With sports, the one thing that does tend to fix an image is success. Gatlin has a chance to compete again for the U.S. And it’s a sport dominated by Usain Bolt and the Jamaicans.
Gatlin already has started a bit of a feud with Bolt through the media. He said he thought that Bolt was beatable, and Bolt responded that Gatlin needed to get by a bunch of other runners before setting his sights so high.
Maybe so. And maybe Gatlin, in getting past Gay, has gotten to the top of the game again.
At least, the top of the game under Bolt.
“I don’t think I would come back to a sport where I would be OK with getting second or third,’’ he said. “We (the US sprinters) all have our eyes on the prize, wanting to get the gold. If that’s the Jamaicans in our way, the whole world in our way, that’s OK. Go around them and get the gold.’’
His comeback has been incredible, actually. The money stopped coming in, and he gained weight for a try at getting into the NFL. His confidence was shot. So was his technique.
He talks about some blog writing, when he started to come back, that he looked like a pro wrestler in a unitard. Some race officials didn’t want him in their meets.
Those were the hard times for Gatlin. He kept the faith, worked hard and overcame.
A modern day comeback story, I guess. It doesn’t feel quite the same.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Rodney King, motorist whose beating by Los Angeles police officers sparked deadly US race riots, dead at 47

 Rodney King, the black motorist whose videotaped beating by Los Angeles police officers in 1991 sparked some of the deadliest race riots in U.S. history, was found dead on Sunday, police said. He was 47.
Police in Rialto, Calif., found King's body in a swimming pool after getting a 911 call from his fiancee, Rialto Police Capt. Randy DeAnda told NBC News. Officers pulled King from the pool and began doing CPR but he was unresponsive.
King was transported to Arrowhead Hospital in Colton, where he was pronounced dead at 6:11 a.m. PDT, DeAnda said.
The San Bernadino County coroner will perform an autopsy.
"Right now we have no reason to believe there was foul play because of the circumstances," Rialto Police Sgt. Richard Royce told "The evidence is that it was a simple drowning."
Homicide detectives continued to investigate mid-Sunday morning, Royce said, although he called the investigation "a standard death investigation."
A file photo from the Los Angeles Times shows that the pool is oval-shaped, and that King had erected tarps around it to prevent neighbors from peering in. Two dates are inscribed along the pool wall: 3/3/91, the day King was beaten, and 4/29/92, the day a jury acquitted three of the four officers who beat him.
King was beaten by Los Angeles Police Department officers on a dark street on March 3, 1991, after he was stopped for speeding. Four officers hit him more than 50 times, kicked him and shot him with stun guns. A bystander videotaped much of the incident from a distance.
A year later, a California jury acquitted three of the four officers, three of whom were white and one Hispanic. The jury deadlocked on one of the charges for Officer Laurence Powell.
The riots that erupted on April 29, 1992, were among the most lethal in U.S. history. By the time order was restored, more than 50 people had died, nearly 3,000 were injured and thousands of businesses were damaged or destroyed.
In one of the most searing images from the riots, a 33-year-old white construction worker named Reginald Denny was pulled from his vehicle and beaten unconscious by four men at a Los Angeles intersection. Twenty years later, he has still not recovered from his injuries.
The violent reaction prompted King's famous plea on television: "Can we all get along?"
Nearly a year later, a federal jury convicted two of the police officers of a federal charge of violating King’s civil rights and sentenced them to 30 months in prison. Two other officers were acquitted. King eventually received a $3.8 million settlement from the city, and the case led to sweeping changes in LAPD.
The police chief, Daryl Gates, came under intense criticism from city officials who said officers were slow to respond to the riots. He was forced to retire. Gates died of cancer in 2010.
In the two decades after he became the central figure in the riots, King was arrested several times, mostly for alcohol-related crimes. He later became a record company executive and a reality TV star, appearing on shows such as "Celebrity Rehab."
In an interview earlier this year with The Associated Press, King said he was a happy man.
"America's been good to me after I paid the price and stayed alive through it all," he said. "This part of my life is the easy part now."
King had recently been promoting his just-published memoir, "The Riot Within: My Journey From Rebellion to Redemption." The book came out around the 20th anniversary of the L.A. riots.
King, who has three children, was engaged to marry Cynthia Kelley, a juror in the civil suit he brought against the city of Los Angeles, according to the biography that accompanied his book.
The Los Angeles Times published a quote that King gave the newspaper earlier this year: "I would change a few things, but not that much. Yes, I would go through that night, yes I would. I said once that I wouldn't, but that's not true. It changed things. It made the world a better place.''

New Partnership Establishes Confucius Institute At Texas Southern University

UPDATED June 18, 2012
By HBCU Buzz
Dr. John Rudley, President of Texas Southern University, is in Beijing China signing an agreement with the Chinese government to establish an international Confucius Institute at Texas Southern University. By establishing the only Confucius Institute in the greater Houston area, TSU will have the opportunity to develop academic and cultural programs related to Chinese language and cultures.
The Confucius Institute is a partnership between Texas Southern University and Beijing Jiaotong University, the premiere technology university in China.  TSU’s Confucius Institute is one only of 226 centers worldwide and one of 42 in the United States authorized through Hanban, the Chinese Language and Cultural Institute.
“Texas Southern students will be able to access and engage in many unique opportunities and activities provided by the Confucius Institute, and students will be able to access the international experience opportunities of its partner institution in China,” President Rudley explained.
Already one of the most diverse universities in the nation, TSU is proactively expanding efforts in Asian studies in a number of areas. “We are seeing an increased Asian enrollment at the university, and more importantly, there is an increased interest in all of our students for more academic opportunities in international programs,” the president expressed.
According to Dr. Rudley, TSU has created new partnerships with Chinese universities, including Bejing Jiaotong University, and has been working to expand relationships across China. Rudley further stressed, “This partnership is just one component of this multi-faceted endeavor, allowing us to build our Chinese Language Program and an Asian Cultural Study Center.”
The partnership between the Confucius Institute and Texas Southern has the full support of TSU’s Board of Regents; Dr. Danille Taylor, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Behavioral Sciences; who along with Wendy Adair, Vice President for University Advancement, traveled to China last summer to discuss the particulars of the Institute and partnership and the benefits of locating the Institute at TSU; as well as the support of Dr. Sunny E. Ohia, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research.
TSU offers many options for the study of Chinese culture in its College of Liberal Arts and Behavioral Sciences (COLABS), which houses the study of Chinese language and culture. The primary tasks for COLABS, in which the new Chinese program and Asian Studies are housed, is to equip TSU with multicultural and transnational experiences for students locally and abroad, thereby strengthening its language and culture programs.
TSU’s COLABS has been developing the following courses or course studies related to Chinese study: Asian/Chinese History, Chinese Literature in Translation, Study of Houstonian International Communities, The Chinese Community in Texas, and Chinese Language.
Dr. Taylor explains, “At the base of Chinese language study, are plans to establish courses on Chinese Civilization, to organize summer camps for local schools with Chinese themes, and allow students the opportunity to participate in local multi-cultural activities before visiting China.”
Taylor adds that,”the plan also calls for the promotion of short-term overseas study and student scholarship programs to provide better opportunities for our students to learn Chinese language and culture. Simultaneously, we will work in cooperation with the other colleges at TSU, such as the College of Science and Technology and the Jesse H. Jones School of Business. Both TSU schools have ongoing communication with programs and universities in China, Taylor stated”.
With the cooperation of departments and colleges of both TSU and BJTU, the Confucius Institute will greatly enhance Asian studies and enrich the humanities curriculum at TSU, thereby fostering a broader global perspective. Ultimately, the Confucius Institute will strengthen academic cooperation on a global level.
Through the Confucius Institute, COLABS will also conduct outreach activities into the global spectrum of the Houston communities in an effort to bolster and enhance the liberal arts in the entire university. By becoming a resource-rich cultural center for the Houston community, COLABS will further facilitate cooperation between Texas Southern University and Houston’s Asian community.  Ultimately, the Confucius Institute will provide a broad array of educational opportunities for elementary through college-age students as well as language and cultural continuing education courses, business preparation studies and general cultural awareness programs.
The Confucius Institute will be located in the Martin Luther King Jr., Center of Humanities, on its 3rd floor. The building is fully equipped with computer labs, language labs, multi-functional auditoriums, and classrooms that support teaching with new technologies in fields of liberal arts and communication.

Hampton council supports Harvey's downtown revitalization plan

UPDATED June 18, 2012
HAMPTON — City Council members will support a request by Hampton University President William Harvey to hire a consultant to create a plan to revitalize the downtown area.
Harvey outlined his proposal to the council on Wednesday night, his first public comments about the project since taking a lead role in the effort last fall.
"I don't just want to get a report about another part of our city," he said. "I thought the thing to do was to look at this in a holistic approach and that is what we'll do."
Harvey has spent about nine months assembling a 24-member board, Hampton First, that will lead the project. The board includes pastors, real estate developers, bankers, artists and small business owners.
HU's president said the group will take community input and use those ideas to help guide consultant Sasaki Associates. He's asking for $280,000 from the city to hire the Boston-based planner to create a new master plan for downtown.
City Council member were overwhelmingly in favor of Harvey's proposal.
"If we are going to be successful, then we need to hitch our wagon to the things he's doing," Councilman Donnie Tuck said.
Tuck said that even though he aims to closely watch the city's funds, he is excited about Harvey's proposal.
Harvey agreed last fall to lead the downtown redevelopment project after Steiner+Associates, of Columbus, Ohio, published a report outlining challenges Hampton will need to overcome and goals it will need to achieve to increase tourism and business development.
Harvey said he wanted to use the Steiner report as a springboard for the Hampton First board, whose members are participating as volunteers.
Sasaki is already creating a master plan for Fort Monroe, and has been hired by the city to update the Phoebus and Buckroe master plans. Revamping those neighborhood plans is expected to cost the city about $250,000 each. City Manager Mary Bunting said the money to hire Sasaki will come from money from an account originally earmarked for a private development that never materialized.
A report distributed by Harvey outlines Hampton First's vision for downtown that includes opening the waterfront to the public by relocating buildings, developing an aquatic theme and hosting more water-based events such as sailing regattas and boat shows.
Public transportation could also take downtown visitors to neighboring communities such as Coliseum Central, Phoebus, Fort Monroe and Buckroe.
"We would like for Hampton to be an urban waterfront destination with a particular interest in weekend and summer activities," wrote Harvey in a report.
The report calls for the downtown experience to include areas to walk along the waterfront, a central facility with indoor and outdoor seating and a grocery store offering organic foods. Other proposed attractions include an artist marketplace, clothing stores and a pirate museum. Hampton holds the Blackbeard Pirate Festival annually.
At the Wednesday evening meeting, Harvey emphasized that plans are preliminary, although there are short term goals that could be achieved within a year.
"Some people say I'm a pusher, and I want to push them to get started this summer," said Harvey of Sasaki.
The master planner will have a mound of past consultanting work to add to. Last fall, Peninsula Town Center developer Steiner+Associates created a report outlining the strengths and weaknesses of Hampton and the impediments to redeveloping downtown. The existing master plan for downtown was put together by Urban Design Associates, of Pittsburgh, Pa., in 2004.
"We're talking about making this one of the loveliest villages on the East Coast," Harvey said."We can't be all things to all people, but we sure can do good things here."
Consultants' ideas for downtown

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Howard Stays Home to Find New Provost, Wayne Frederick

UPDATED June 13, 2013
Howard University yesterday announced Dr. Wayne Frederick as its new provost and vice-president of academic affairs. Dr. Frederick is an alumnus of Howard three times over, and has received a number of professional accolades as a surgeon and professor.
As Professor in the Department of Surgery at Howard, Frederick is a master teacher who has received teaching awards every year since the beginning of his tenure.  As a member of the faculty, he fulfilled what he called “a career aspiration” of working with his mentor, LaSalle D. Leffall, Jr., M.D. – an opportunity that was expanded during this current academic year when Dr. Leffall asked Dr. Frederick to serve as Interim Deputy Provost for Health Sciences.
“We are indeed fortunate that Dr. Frederick has accepted President Ribeau’s request to serve alma mater,” Leffall said.  He is an accomplished surgeon, teacher, administrator, leader and public servant.”

Jail affecting Mayweather's health?

UPDATED June 13, 2012


Lawyers for Floyd Mayweather Jr. say the undefeated champion is getting out of shape in solitary confinement and may never fight again if he's not released from the cramped Las Vegas jail cell where he began serving a three-month sentence earlier this month.
In an emergency motion filed Monday, lawyers asked the court to move him into the general jail population — something that jail officials had avoided out of fear for the celebrity's safety — or put him in house arrest for the rest of his sentence.
The jail's ''conduct may cause, not just huge financial harm to Mr. Mayweather, but also huge emotional harm if he is no longer able to pursue his boxing career because of the deconditioning he has suffered,'' lawyers wrote.
Justice of the Peace Melissa Saragosa said she'll decide later this week whether to ease jail conditions for Mayweather.
Las Vegas police Officer Bill Cassell declined to comment on the specific claims in the motion, but said jail administrators were keeping Mayweather in isolation to prevent fights.
Mayweather lawyer Richard Wright said he'd be willing to have the boxer serve the sentence in an apartment or somewhere less luxurious than Mayweather's posh Las Vegas-area home.
''I'm not looking for special treatment for Floyd Mayweather,'' Wright said. ''I'm looking for fair treatment.''
But prosecutor Lisa Luzaich said softening the sentence would be just another accommodation, similar to when Mayweather's jail surrender date was postponed for months after sentencing so he could fight Miguel Cotto in May.
''They keep chipping away, chipping away, chipping away,'' Luzaich said.
Mayweather pleaded guilty in December to misdemeanor domestic battery and no contest to two harassment charges that stemmed from an attack on his ex-girlfriend while two of their children watched. He was sentenced to three months and entered the jail June 1.
Mayweather's jail stay will be capped at 87 days because the judge gave him credit for three days previously served. It could be reduced by several weeks for good behavior.
In the motion, which was first reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal, lawyers say Mayweather's personal physician, Dr. Robert Voy, visited the jail Friday and was concerned the 35-year-old fighter appeared to have lost muscle tone.
Voy estimated the boxer was consuming fewer than 800 calories a day — a drop from his usual 3,000 or 4,000 calories — and wasn't drinking enough because he isn't allowed bottled water and doesn't usually drink tap water.
Mayweather has been getting a little more than 30 minutes twice a day in a couple of barren recreation areas in the administrative segregation unit, Cassell said. His cell, no larger than 7-by-12 feet, has barely enough floor space for pushups and situps.
But prosecutors argued he's ''deconditioning'' by choice, and declining much of his food.
''He has the ability to exercise, he just chooses not to,'' Luzaich said. ''It's jail. Where did he think he was going? The Four Seasons?''
Voy and Wright also pointed to Mayweather's declining emotional state.
''I am concerned about Floyd withdrawing, developing anger he cannot dissipate through the usual means of dedicated exercise and training,'' Voy wrote in an affidavit. ''Boxing has been Mr. Mayweather's life since he was a young man and we need champions of this type to continue to their natural retirement and hopefully their contributions to society thereafter.''

FAMU Brings Chinese Art Exhibit To Tallahassee

UPDATED June 13, 2012
News One today reports on a first for arts culture in the city of Tallahassee courtesy of Florida A&M University; a full exhibit of Chinese art. The exhibit is on display in FAMU’s Foster-Tanner Fine Arts Gallery.
“In Tallahassee, it’s hard to get this kind of art show,” said (FAMU assistant professor of art Dr. Liu) Nan. “In New York City you can see this at the Metropolitan Museum and visit Asian and Latin American cultures, but in Tallahassee I think this will be a good cultural event.”
In two weeks, Liu selected 29 pieces —including paintings from his students and his own son, Ethan.

Monday, June 11, 2012

3 killed, 3 wounded in shooting at apartment complex near Auburn University

 Three people were killed and three others wounded in a shooting during a party at an apartment complex near Auburn University, Alabama authorities said Sunday. Among the dead were two Auburn students who had been on the football team.   
A manhunt was underway Sunday for suspected gunman, identified by police as Desmonte Leonard, 22, of  Montgomery, Ala.
The dead were Edward Christian, 20, a football player who was out this season due to injuries; Ladarious Phillips, 20, a former football player; and Demario Pitts, 20, of Auburn.
The shooting happened late Saturday night at the University Heights apartments, a large complex near campus where many of Auburn University's students and athletes live. Leonard is suspected of pulling a gun after a fight broke out, shooting six before fleeing, Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson said at a news conference on Sunday.
When police arrived, Christian was found dead on the sidewalk. Phillips and Pitts were transported to the hospital, where they later died.
Among the three wounded is John Robertson, 20, who is fighting for his life after being shot in the head, Dawson said at a news conference on Sunday afternoon. Xavier Moss, 19, was released from the hospital and Eric Mack, 20, was being treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
Police believe Leonard drove away from the scene in a white Chevrolet Caprice, which was later found abandoned.
"I don't believe it was targeted. It was a fight and someone got carried away," Dawson said of the shooting. "I don't like the word random when it comes to shootings, but it was a fight that obviously got out of hand."
Asked about connections to the football team, Dawson said, "The only connection to the football team is that they are the victims of a brutal shooting. Sometimes the young men get a bad rap, I feel, but they're the victims today."
"This is a sad, sad day for everyone associated with the entire Auburn family. I am devastated by the passing of three young men, including two that I personally knew in Ed Christian and Ladarious Phillips and my heart goes out to their families," Auburn coach Coach Gene Chizik said in a statement. "My thoughts and prayers are with their families and all of the victims involved in this tragic incident. Nobody should ever have to endure such unimaginable grief, and we will love and support the victims' families during this terribly difficult time. We have a lot of people on our football team that are hurting right now and we're going to do everything we can to help them get through this."
AP Photo/Auburn Police Division
This undated photo provided by the Auburn Police Division shows Desmonte Leonard, 22, of Montgomery, Ala., the suspect wanted for fatally shooting three people, including two former Auburn University football players, and wounding another three people during a party at an apartment complex near the school.
Turquorius Vines, 23, told The Associated Press he was at the pool party Saturday evening with one of his friends, Pitts. He said he and Pitts were approached by two other men who started arguing with them over a woman.
Vines said he punched one of the men, while Pitts hit both of the men over the head with a bottle. Either one or both of the two men then started shooting, he said. He said his friend was shot and killed, while two others also were hit by gunfire. Vines said he had never before seen the men who he had been arguing with.
"It's like I lost a lung," Vines said. "I don't know how I'm going to survive this."
Mack, the wounded player, is a junior offensive lineman from St. Matthews, S.C. He played in five games last season. Chizik said Mack was expected to make a full recovery.
Christian was an offensive lineman who was out last season while dealing with a back injury. Phillips was a backup fullback. Chizik said in April that Phillips had decided to give up football.
"We're deeply saddened about last night's tragic events that impacted the Auburn community and the Auburn family. Our heart-felt condolences go out to the victims and their families," Auburn University President Jay Gogue said in a statement. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers. We're in constant contact with area authorities and will continue to assist in any way possible. Our attention is now focused on providing care and support to those touched by this tragedy."

Pacquiao loses to Bradley by decision

UPDATE June 11, 2012

By Associated Press


Timothy Bradley promised to shock, though the biggest shock in his fight with Manny Pacquiao came from the judges' scorecards.
In a fight Pacquiao seemed to have in hand, two judges decided otherwise, giving Bradley a split decision Saturday night and ending the Filipino fighter's remarkable seven-year unbeaten run.
Promoter Bob Arum fumed, the crowd at the MGM Grand arena booed, and Pacquiao seemed stunned when the decision was announced. Arum said there would be a November rematch, though he blasted the way the decision went down.
''I've never been as ashamed of the sport of boxing as I am tonight,'' said Arum, who handles both fighters.
Bradley came on strong in the later rounds, winning five of the last six rounds on two scorecards and four on the third. He won 115-113 on two scorecards, while losing on the third by the same margin. The Associated Press had Pacquiao winning 117-111.
''I did my best,'' Pacquiao said. ''I guess my best wasn't good enough.''
Pacquiao tried to turn the fight into a brawl, using his power to hurt Bradley in the early rounds. But Bradley changed tactics in the middle rounds and used his boxing skills to win enough rounds to take the narrow decision for the welterweight title.
It ended a 15-fight winning streak by Pacquiao dating to 2005 that turned him into a boxing superstar and made him a national hero in the Philippines.
''I thought I won the fight,'' Bradley said. ''I didn't think he was as good as everyone says he was. I didn't feel his power.''
Ringside punching statistics showed Pacquiao landing 253 punches to 159 for Bradley, who vowed before the fight to take the 147-pound title from Pacquiao. The Compubox statistics showed Pacquiao landing more punches in 10 of the 12 rounds.
Bradley was so confident that he had oversized tickets printed up for a Nov. 10 rematch that will now likely happen.
Bradley seemed hurt in the fourth and fifth rounds, but Pacquiao had trouble landing big punches after that. Still, he seemed in control of the fight everywhere but on the judge's scorecards.
''Can you believe that? Unbelievable,'' Arum said. ''I went over to Bradley before the decision and he said, `I tried hard but I couldn't beat the guy.'''
Bradley said he hurt his ankle in the second round, and that trainer Joel Diaz said he could either quit or try to take the fight to Pacquiao.
''I got my second wind in the sixth round,'' Bradley said. ''I worked the angles, sticking and moving.''
Pacquiao said he studied Bradley on tape before the fight and wasn't surprised by anything he did. He said he thought he was in control of the fight and was shocked when the decision went against him.
''He never hurt me with his punches, most of them landed on my arms,'' Pacquiao said.
Pacquiao tried to brawl with Bradley and seemed to hurt him in both the fourth and fifth rounds. But Bradley started moving and counter punching, though he never seemed to land any shots that hurt Pacquiao.
Pacquiao had vowed to look impressive against Bradley after struggling in his last outing with Juan Manuel Marquez, a fight many thought he lost. And he did early, landing good long left hands while beating Bradley to the punch on most exchanges.
''He hurt me a couple of times with his left,'' Bradley said. ''He's a beast.''
Trainer Freddie Roach told Pacquiao after the 10th round that he had control of the fight, and urged him to fight hard the final two rounds.
''You have six minutes to go, son,'' Roach said. ''It's your fight.''
But it wasn't Pacquiao's fight, with Bradley getting credit for winning some of the close middle and later rounds. After the 11th round Bradley went back to his corner and trainer Joel Diaz told him he needed to win the final round.
''I listened to my corner,'' Bradley said. ''I got to give him a rematch now.''
Arum said there will be one on Nov. 10, though he thought Pacquiao won easily, as did most writers at ringside.
''I'll make a lot of money off the rematch, but this was outrageous,'' Arum said.
It was the biggest fight of Bradley's career and it came with a minimum $5 million payday. The rematch will be even richer, though Pacquiao's loss could damage any plans for a fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Mayweather did not see the fight because he is serving a sentence on a domestic abuse charge at a jail a few miles from the MGM Grand.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

HBCU Students Must Drive National Black Media Agenda

UPDATED June 7, 2012


There’s plenty wrong with Black America’s media agenda. Our most prominent figure in cinema and television rose to prominence through cross-dressing, Bible-thumping and gun-toting. The only thing shrinking faster than newsrooms across the nation are the number of African-Americans working within them.

Of the media outlets owned and operated by black people, a disparate percentage of them are dedicated to themes and images that largely degrade and devalue the African-American lifestyle and experience.
But in the midst of these issues that required immediate attention 25 years ago, the greatest threat to the black media agenda is the depiction of the HBCU student. Sex tapes, cafeteria brawls, drug use and hazing are the dominant, inaccurate themes representing black scholars from historically black colleges in new media and quickly creeping into mainstream themes.

It’s unreasonable to expect young adults to lead a new age of media literacy and creation in the face of so many celebrities, so much sex and stereotype programming over so many years, but our reality demands their creativity and commitment to change the future of media for all minorities.
One story, one quote, one headline can change the course of how African-Americans view ourselves and are viewed by others. When WorldStarHipHop profiles criminality, sexuality or general ignorance, it’s a blow to the culture. But when those same elements are on display by HBCU students, the best and brightest hope of the culture, it sharpens the attack on black culture and perceptions of how the culture will conquer generational stereotypes.

Commonly, when black students and their white counterparts at PWIs engage in the same activity, they are commonly regarded as “that crazy student” or “that ignorant dude/chick.”
When HBCU students do it, it’s labeled as “HBCU students are at it again.”
It is a skewed and painful reality of how an entire student body on any given HBCU campus can be unfairly and unreasonably represented by the extreme immaturity of one or a handful of students. Illicit videos produced and uploaded by HBCU students feed the racialized depiction of their classmates, and all black folks as oversexualized, under-educated citizens, and advance the stereotype of HBCUs as factories producing mediocrity at double the rate of greatness.And the conversation doesn't stop with media production, but with media consumption habits as well.

The more HBCU students lend their large, vibrant social media presence to commentary on sports, entertainment and controversy, the harder it will be for all of Black America to rise to new leverage in media control and representation. As sites like Necole Bitchie, the YBF, Media TakeOut, TMZ and WorldStar can claim the invaluable 18-24 African-American audience demographic, corporations seeking to capture this audience will continue to invest millions in the outlets feeding the stereotype of black celebrity worship and controversy-lust.And a group of educated, politically nuanced, socially conscious Americans will go unaccounted for and will remain on the outside looking in of having its interests, perspectives and values covered in media.

It’s up to HBCU students to become new media producers and consumers across politics, sports, culture and entertainment. Young people at historically black colleges have to expand existing media dialogue on the political process and ways to have their values accounted for in local and national media. They have to become the new, more aggressive generation of bloggers and commenters on news media sites, and dominant voices in talk radio programs that set the voice and agenda on topics that matter most to them.
No objective depiction of African-Americans in mainstream media can happen unless the students at the institutions built to sustain African-American culture create the outlets and lead the audiences that demand it.

Watch What You Eat A Lesson On Ingestion

UPDATED June 7, 2012

By Brian S. Yeldell

            OK, I don’t do this often, because I genuinely like to let things play out before I weigh in. I guess you can say that I don’t like to “jump the gun.” However, recently, some occurrences have come to be and I HAVE to say something about it, offer a spin, and try to develop something sensible and positive about even a pretty terrible situation. WHAT IN THE HECK IS WRONG WITH THESE FOLK WHO ARE EATING OTHER FOLKS?!?!  I saw, in the news, where two guys had eaten other human beings – straight up, cannibalism! Are you kidding me? Maybe I missed the memo on what one should and should not consider ingesting.  Well, it got me to thinking about what it means to see something, take in something, ingest something, eat something. And, what I came up with is that we all better watch what we eat!

            I try my best to stay on topic when I write anything, but in this essay, stick with me, because I may be all over the place because the subject matter is so vile, so pernicious, so heinous, so egregious, so filled with impossibility and of an unbelievable nature.  Eating is what we do to nourish ourselves. We also have to take in other things in order to survive, such as water (which makes up over 50% of our body), exercise (or we suffer from atrophy), books (or we suffer from dementia) and love and affection (or we shrivel up from lack of love) amongst other things that we need to survive. When we eat something, there are customs and norms and practices and acceptable behaviors, so we are taught that we should eat fruits, vegetables, maybe some starch, maybe some meat or fish or poultry, but not each other. This screams of some other things that MUST be going on or have been going on with these two recent incidents, as well as the guys who committed the acts.  I don’t think any restaurants will soon put humans on the menu, but given this latest incident, we all better watch what we eat.

            Even though we are becoming more health-conscious, as a society, people do eat some interesting things. I am as close to a mea, potatoes and veggies kind of guy as they come. These days, it is less meat and more chicken and turkey, but the point is that I am not very experimental when it comes to the things that I eat. I am probably in the minority in this instance. With the melding of society and people from different cultures, certain things have become more common and acceptable as far as what is editable. As far as the more “exotic” things that are eaten, there is a bug eating festival that takes place in North Carolina every year. In San Francisco, people eat salmon candy. When I checked out crazy things that people eat on the internet, I saw in China where people eat lizards, fried scorpions, and some other “unmentionables.” Well, many people say “don’t knock it, ‘til you try it,” but there are some things I can look at and KNOW that it would turn my stomach. So, I, for sure, will be watching what I eat.

            I have encountered a lot of things, a lot of people, thus a lot of sayings. Both of my parents were quote machines. I won’t list them here in this essay, as I have in the past, but as I was writing this essay, one quote came to my mind that my mother repeated fairly often. I have heard variations on this theme, but my mother often said, “everything good to you ain’t good for you.” This could be applied to a lot of areas of life, but none more poignant and applicable than eating. The tastes of various foods are part look, smell, words and descriptions that others have spoken about the food and in the end, how it hits your taste buds. Some things go down REAL nice and easy and seemingly good and tasty. However, some of those same food items and seemingly good tasting stuff can have an after taste, linger in your mouth, cause a stomach ache or make you sick as a dog in the ensuing days. My mother was generally referring to when I would come home after meeting a lovely young lady, thinking that I had found the woman of my dreams and think that I was in love (or, as some would say, lust). That can also be the case when you think that you have found a great opportunity with a business or career choice, only to be a sham of a product or company. Many other such situations exist like buying some clothes, only to have a defective fabric. All of these represent something that seems to be good TO you, but not necessarily the case, as in being not good FOR you.

            Who judges the good and the bad things to take in any way? Who are the eating or ingestion cops? What are their sensitivities?  Each generation stretches the bounds of decency and decorum. I don’t know what to attribute it to, other than the often held opinion that we are “going to hell in a hand-basket.” I have a friend that swears that things like this mean the world is coming to an end. I was quick to point a couple of incidents that were previously, sort of unprecedented, such as Charles Manson murder spree, the inability sometimes to distinguish the difference between summer and winter, the killing of a President (Lincoln and Kennedy),  various hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. What I also told her is that if one’s mind can conceive it, then you can achieve it, meaning that people’s thoughts can be as varied as the people themselves. I pointed out people like Stephen King and Tom Clancy and that the bounds just keep on spreading and expanding, so you just have to be careful how you conduct yourself, watch your back and implicitly, watch what you ingest or take in

            This same friend alluded to the fact that she may have had a rather sheltered background and upbringing. She was not exposed to some things because her mother wanted to shield and shelter her from some of the bad that is in this world. I can feel (or understand) that, but that is a double edged sword, because when you finally are confronted with different situations, the later you encounter them, the more shocked and traumatized you may be.  In short, it’s tricky. People, particular children, need to ingest good stuff in order to be good big people. I have a copy of a poem that I keep in full view for my daughters. It’s called “Children Learn What They Live” by Dorothy Law Nolte, PhD. In the poem, she notes several actions and reactions, which in effect suggest that you “are what you eat.” Some of the nuggets include the following:

            If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.

            If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.

            If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.

            If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.

            If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
            If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.

            One of the reasons why people do things like the recent incident of cannibalism is that people are tired, frustrated, and at wits’ end. I know they are. They are prepared to do unthinkable things. They are desperate and probably don’t care what the outcome of their actions are, because they are not desirous of going on, or living from one day to the next. Couple the immediate aforementioned with the FCC (Federal Communications Committee) letting more and more things come across our airwaves. And, maybe the FCC can’t stop it because it comes from everywhere and at break neck speeds. There are so many ways for content to be produced and put out. It’s almost like when a leak springs and you fill one leak and another one springs.  Everything gets wet. Well, with everything that comes out, gets eaten or ingested and people are prepared and will do anything.  If you have all this stuff around you, it’s almost impossible to watch what you eat. And, as mentioned, you are what you eat and you do what you take in, EVENTUALLY!

            It is almost impossible to watch everything you take in. We have all run into situations where we are startled and surprised by something that seems to appear out of nowhere.  You ever had a deer run across the street while you’re driving? You ever left the  room while a nice wholesome program was on the television, only to come back and have some lewd and unsuitable show come on? How about going somewhere and having someone put something in your food or drink when you walk away? Or, you look at a menu and you think that you are ordering one thing that was prepared another way at another restaurant and this particular restaurant prepares it different and you eat something that you either don’t like or that doesn’t like you, as in being allergic. Well, what I am asking and suggesting is that we all try to control what we can and do as much digging as possible, because people can and will try to feed you just about anything, so you better watch what you eat!


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