MLK Youth Symposium Sun. Jan. 14, 2018

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PARENTS AND YOUTH GROUP ORGANIZERS: PLEASE BRING YOUR MIDDLE SCHOOL AGE AND HIGH SCHOOL AGE YOUTH TO THIS IMPORTANT COMMUNITY EVENT.

The WISH Foundation, Inc. (Women Involved in Service to Humanity) and Gamma Zeta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. present the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Youth Symposium - A Conversation on Race, Sunday, January 14, 2018, 2 pm - 5 pm, Universal Truth Center for Better Living, 21310 NW 37th Avenue, Miami Gardens, Florida 33056.

Featured Speakers are Miami-Dade County School Board Member Dr. Steve Gallon III who will engage in a Conversation with Parents and Bacardi Jackson of the Tucker Law Group who will deliver the closing challenge.

#MLKYS2018 #AKAGZO #AKA1908 #LNDS #SAR


Haiti Earthquake Anniversary and the Injustice Continues

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Today is the eighth anniversary of the devastating earthquake from which Haiti has yet to recover. Several people were pulled from the rubble of buildings by the sheer will of the Haitian people. Sadly, hundreds of thousands of lives were lost. Haitian people in the United States have been subjected to so much disdain, disrespect and discrimination by Donald Trump and his administration. Enough is enough.

As we remember the lives lost on January 12, 2010, and the survivors, let's continue to fight for human rights for Haitians and others caught up in the United States immigration debacle. Let's make this an issue in the upcoming 2018 elections. 

No justice. No peace. No justice. No vote.

 

 


The Flores-Braynon Apology: An Unforgettable Start of the 2018 Legislative Session

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Last Tuesday's opening of the 2018 Florida Legislative Session, the last for Gov. Rick Scott, was overshadowed by the joint public apology of Florida Senators Anitere Flores (R-Dist. 39) and Oscar Braynon (D-Dist. 35) for their extramarital affair. Their relationship had been the subject of rumors but was confirmed via an anonymous website which is now inaccessible. 

During last year's Legislative Session, Braynon discovered a hidden camera in the hallway of the sixth floor of the Tennyson condominium in downtown Tallahassee. The Tennyson is the temporary housing choice of many lawmakers during Legislative Session. Flores and Braynon each lived in a unit on the sixth floor. Their units were practically across the hall from each other. It was later determined that the camera had been placed by a private investigator. There is speculation that the surveillance is retribution by Sen. Frank Artiles who was forced to resign last year because of his use of racial slurs. 

While the Flores-Braynon affair is very different from the sexual harassment incidents that ensnared former Senators Jack Latvala and Jeff Clemens, Flores and Braynon have not indicated they would resign. 

 

Related Links:

Florida politicians become surveillance targets as political payback rumors swirl

Smile! Legislators Caught on Hidden Surveillance Cameras Secretly Placed in Condo Building

 

 


Opa-locka CDC offers workshops for first-time homebuyers

The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation (OLCDC) is offering workshops for first-time homebuyers. These sessions are designed to guide first-time homebuyers step by step through the home buying process. Homebuyers will be provided one-on-one counseling with an OLCDC certified Housing Counselor. Hear from industry professionals on the 7 steps to becoming a homeowner. 

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2018 WORKSHOP DATES
 
English
  • Jan 27
  • Feb 24
  • March 24
  • April 28
  • May 19
  • June 23
  • July 28
  • Aug 25
  • Sep 29
  • Oct 27
  • Nov 17
  • Dec 8
 
Spanish
  • Jan 13
  • Feb 10
  • March 10
  • April 14
  • May 12
  • June 9
  • July 14
  • Aug 11
  • Sep 15
  • Oct 13
  • Nov 3
  • Dec 1
 
Time: 9AM - 5PM
Location: Opa-locka Train Station
Address: 490 Ali Baba Avenue, Opa-locka, FL 33054

Click here to sign up!


Celebrate Kwanzaa in Miami Fri. 12/29/17

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"Kwanzaa: Celebration of Family, Community and Culture"

Join us for the 28th ANNUAL MARY WILLIAMS WOODARD LEGACY KWANZAA CELEBRATION in Miami, Florida. This joyous celebration of family, friends and community is the largest and longest-running local public celebration of the Nguzo Saba (Principles of Kwanzaa).

MARY WILLIAMS WOODARD LEGACY KWANZAA CELEBRATION

Friday, December 29, 2017

4:30pm - 8:00pm

African Heritage Cultural Arts Center

6161 NW 22 Avenue

Miami, FL 33142

This year, we are excited to have Javonté Anyabwelé and his family join us. They embody the Principles of Kwanzaa and have garnered a social media following as the deliberate in supporting Black-owned businesses and teaching Black culture. We will also be treated to the talents of musician, dancer and artist, Prince Emmanuel Abiodun Aderele and the OsunDara Dance Theater, Grammy-nominated spoken word artist Rebecca “Butterfly” Vaughns and the award-winning Next Generation Dance Academy.

Nickelodeon HALO Awards winner, culture influencer, philanthropist, speaker and mogul-in-the-making, Zoe Terry returns with her Zoe’s Great Doll Give-Away. Zoe’s Dolls collects and distributes little brown dolls for little brown girls.

Our unsung hero community salute goes to Valencia Gunder, James Mungin II BKA “Munch” and Konscious Kontractors for their incredible demonstration of the Principles of Kwanzaa in our community, especially during and after Hurricane Irma when many were without food and were faced with debris and damaged homes.

Hosted by the Miami-Dade Chapter of the FAMU National Alumni Association, the Dr. Arthur & Mary Woodard Foundation for Education and Culture and Osun's Village African Caribbean Arts Corridor.

The event is FREE but we do ask that you register at KwanzaaMiami28.eventbrite.com. Kwanzaa is a non-religious, non-political, family-friendly holiday. Enjoy the Soul Food Feast, music, dancing and celebrating with friends.

Donations of books and new, unwrapped educational toys are greatly appreciated.

If you have any questions, email Vanessa Byers at vanessawbyers@gmail.com or call (305) 343-9088. Thank you. HARAMBEE!

 

 The Kwanzaa Song:  Clinton Sockwell II

 

#Kwanzaa #KwanzaaMiami #LiveWoke365 #NguzoSaba #TheSevenPrinciples

 

 


Miamian favored by FAMU football team to be next permanent FAMU head football coach

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As a surprise to no one, Florida A&M University head football coach Alex Wood will not return to lead the football program next season. Wood resigned a couple of days after a loss to Bethune-Cookman in the Florida Classic. Although FAMU holds a tremendous lead in the series matchup, 49-22-1, this year would be the seventh consecutive loss to BCU.

It is understood that there are two games a FAMU football coach must win each year for job security — Homecoming and the Florida Classic. A FAMU coach could probably go 2-9 and get less grief from FAMU fans if those two wins are Homecoming and the Florida Classic. If the truth be told, considering the Homecoming and Florida Classic losses under Coach Wood’s tenure, the FAMU fans were much kinder to Wood than they were to some of his predecessors. I’m not justifying that position but it is what it is.

To those of us alums not directly involved with the FAMU football program, Coach Wood seemed to be a nice guy. He was close to winning several games this season but it didn’t happen for him and the team. When a new coach replaces all of the previous staff except one person, FAMU fans expect a winning season quickly. Wood might have accomplished that with the opportunity to coach the team another season but that was not to be.

FAMU offensive line coach Edwin Pata was named interim head coach by outgoing athletic director Milton Overton who has taken the athletic director position at Kennesaw State. Overton will be succeeded by interim athletic director John Eason.

Pata is that only person from the previous coaching staff that Wood did not replace. Pata has coached at FAMU for five years and earned his masters degree in sports management from FAMU. The FAMU football team has already let it be known that they want Coach Pata as the permanent head football coach. They’ve even started a hashtag on social media — #NoOneButCoachPata.

Edwin Pata is a graduate of North Miami High School where he earned honors on the gridiron as an All-State tight end. He earned his undergraduate degree at Florida State University and played football under Coach Bobby Bowden. Pata was very complimentary of Coach Wood’s progress with the program. Pata could be that person to make the program a winner again.

In the meantime, a nine-person search committee for the FAMU head football coach has been established. The committee members are: interim Athletic Director John Eason, former FAMU trustee Spurgeon McWilliams, FAMU National Alumni Association President Lt. Col. Gregory Clark, Rattler Boosters Treasurer Selvin Cobb, FAMU professor Ebenezer Oriaku, FAMU linebacker Elijah Richardson, 220 Quarterback Club President Eddie Jackson, SBI Dean Shawnta Friday-Stroud and FAMU’s director of track and field Darlene Moore. Although the need for a Committee is questionable, it would really be great if the search committee included FAMUans from South Florida who are not current FAMU employees. 

It has been stated that there is no timeline for selecting the head coach but that interim status does impact recruiting. Dr. Larry Robinson was named permanent president of FAMU today. The selections to fill the interim athletic director and head football coach positions should not be rushed but should be filled as quickly as possible for the sake of program stability.

Let’s Go, Rattlers! 

 

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 @vanessawbyers

 

Related Link: Watch it: Edwin Pata introduced as FAMU's interim head football coach

 

 

 


Thankful Everyday

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Prayerfully you enjoyed today with family and friends doing exactly what you desired to do. Watching parades and football games. Or just chilling. I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving the same as many people. I do recall the indigenous people who settled here before the land was discovered. I do recall how those people were murdered and their land stolen so I don’t feel the way many marketers and PR folks want us to feel about today.

i do celebrate being with family and friends. I do celebrate and am grateful for all of the blessings bestowed upon me. Just miss me with the pilgrim and Native American accoutrements. Please and Thank You.

Happy Thanksgiving everyday.

 

 

 


Tuesday Nov. 7th is Election Day

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If you live in the City of Miami, Miami Beach, Homestead or Hialeah, and you haven’t voted early or by mail, get out and vote TODAY, Tuesday, November 7, 2017. There are races for mayor, councilman, charter amendments and and questions on bonds that are to be decided. Every election is important. Your vote matters.

The polls are open from 7am until 7pm. Visit the Miami-Dade County Department of Elections online if you have any questions.

Run-off elections are scheduled for November 21, 2017 for the cities of Miami, Miami Beach and Hialeah. 

 

 


Obamacare the Hot Topic at Pumps, Pearls & Politics Forum Nov. 5

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Miami, FL – October 30, 2017 – The Fifth Annual Pumps, Pearls & Politics presented by the Connection Committee of the Gamma Zeta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority switches its signature event to a community conversation format with the hot topic of Obamacare taking center stage.

In an increasingly polarized political environment, health care reform has been caught in the cross fire of the partisan struggle, making it difficult to separate fact from fiction. Special guest, health-care attorney and author Daniel E. Dawes, will present the truth on the secret backstory of the Affordable Care Act, shedding light on the creation and implementation of the greatest and most sweeping equalizer in the history of American health care. His eye-opening and authoritative narrative written from an insider’s perspective, 150 Years of ObamaCare, debunks contemporary understandings of health care reform. It also provides a comprehensive and unprecedented review of the health equity movement and the little-known leadership efforts that were crucial to passing public policies and laws reforming mental health, minority health, and universal health.

If You Go:
What: Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2017: The Truth About the Affordable Care Act
When: Sunday, November 5, 2017, 4:00 PM
Where: Allen Chapel AME Church, 1201 NW 111 Street, Miami, Florida 33167
Admission: FREE (Register at http://pumpspearlspolitics2017.eventbrite.com.)

For more information email Natasha Hines, Connection Chair at pumpspearlspolitics@gmail.com.


Topdog/Underdog begins Nov. 2 at the Arsht Center

 

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Zoetic Stage and
the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County
present

TOPDOG/UNDERDOG
By Suzan-Lori Parks

A Pulitzer Prize-winning dark comedy about brotherhood and family identity


Opens the 2017-2018 season for Zoetic Stage and
the Arsht Center’s Theater Up Close Series

Zoetic Stage and the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County are proud to present TOPDOG/UNDERDOG, a Pulitzer Prize-winning dark comedy by Suzan-Lori Parks. Playing November 2 – November 19, 2017 in the intimate Carnival Studio Theater (Ziff Ballet Opera House), TOPDOG/UNDERDOG launches Zoetic Stage’s 2017-2018 season at the Arsht Center as part of the Center’s highly-acclaimed Theater Up Close Series.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG is a darkly comic tale of brotherhood and family identity. The play tells the story of Lincoln (Eddie Brown) and Booth (Marckenson Charles), two African-American brothers (whose names were given to them as a joke) coping with women, work, poverty, gambling, racism, and their troubled upbringings. Haunted by the past, the brothers are forced to confront the shattering reality of their future.

Zoetic Stage was founded in 2010 to create fresh, bold interpretations of contemporary plays and musicals, and is dedicated to enhancing South Florida’s national artistic profile by producing regional premieres and developing new works to become part of the American stage repertoire. The company will co-present three more exciting productions with the Arsht Center in the 2017-2018 season. Zoetic Stage’s 7th anniversary season will continue with the world premiere of Wrongful Death and Other Circus Acts (January 18 – February 4, 2018), the latest work by Christopher Demos-Brown, award-winning writer of Stripped, American Son and Fear Up Harsh; the South Florida premiere of Dancing Lessons (March 8 – March 25, 2018), Mark St. Germain’s poignant and hilarious romantic comedy; and the South Florida premiere of the five-time Tony Award-winning musical, Fun Home (April 12 – May 13, 2018).

Tickets to TOPDOG/UNDERDOG may be purchased through the Adrienne Arsht Center Box Office by calling (305) 949-6722, or online at www.arshtcenter.org.

 


Derrick Johnson Elected President and CEO of NAACP

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The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), America's largest and original legacy civil rights organization, unanimously elected Derrick Johnson president and CEO. He has a three-year term. Johnson, 49, has served as interim president and CEO since July of this year.

A Detroit native now residing in Jackson, Mississippi, Mr. Johnson, who was also elected vice-chairman of the Board of Directors in February of this year, is a longtime member, leader and a respected veteran activist who will be tasked with guiding the NAACP through a period of tremendous challenge and opportunity at a key point in its 108-year history. The NAACP has undergone transitions in leadership this year as it re-envisions itself to take on a tumultuous and contentious social and political climate.

Mr. Johnson has an extensive history and career legacy of civil rights activism. He formerly served as state president of the Mississippi State Conference of the NAACP, where he successfully spearheaded campaigns for voting rights, worker's rights and equitable education, and he additionally is the founder and executive director of One Voice, Inc., a Jackson-based non-profit organization conceived in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to enhance the quality of life for African Americans through civic engagement training and initiatives.

Additionally, as a past regional organizer with Southern Echo, Inc., another local non-profit organization, Mr. Johnson provided legal, technical and training support to communities spanning the south. He was appointed to the Mississippi Access to Justice Commission by the chief justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court, owing to his years of committed service to the people of the state.

Having earned a solid educational foundation, Mr. Johnson attended historically black Tougaloo College of Mississippi, before going on to earn his Juris Doctorate degree from the South Texas College of Law in Houston. He was later awarded fellowships from the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, the George Washington University School of Political Management and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He proudly serves on the board of directors of both the Congressional Black Caucus Institute and the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation.

 


Florida to Launch Online Voter Registration October 1

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The Florida Department of State is scheduled to launch its new online voter registration website on Sunday, October 1, 2017. According to state officials, RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov, offers Florida residents another way to register to vote or update an existing registration. The website is touted as convenient, secure and easy-to-use. The website will go live as directed by the Florida Legislature in Section 97.0525 Florida Statutes.

In 2015, Governor Rick Scott signed into law a bill directing the department to implement online voter registration on October 1, 2017. Florida joins 35 other states and the District of Columbia that have online voter registration available to their residents.

Any Florida resident who is eligible to vote or is already registered to vote in Florida can use RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov to submit an application, update an existing registration or prefill an application form to print and deliver to a Supervisor of Elections office.

Contrary to current voter registration procedure, users will need a Florida driver license or state identification (ID) card and the last four digits of their social security number to register online. Currently, only one of the three is required to register to vote. Once an individual’s identity is verified and the application is deemed complete, a voter information card is issued by the local Supervisor of Elections office.

Investigations confirming Russian attempts to hack America’s elections have heightened concerns regarding potential manipulation of registration and voting data.
RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov proclaims multiple safeguards in place to verify and protect a person’s identity and personal information, including a state-of-the-art firewall, data encryption, captcha boxes, session time-out after inactivity and the use of multi-screens. The website requires information that only the person seeking to register or change an existing registration should know, such as the issue date of their Florida driver license or state ID card, their Florida driver license or state ID card number and the last four digits of their social security number. All of this information is verified in real-time in order for a person to complete the application process online. If the information cannot be verified, a person is not able to move forward with submitting the application electronically. Additionally, there is no retention of data within the RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov website because it is securely transmitted to an internal system.

RegisterToVoteFlorida.gov will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is offered in English and Spanish, is accessible for persons with disabilities and is mobile-friendly.

If you choose to use this new system, feel free to share your experience at vbyers@bloggingblackmiami.com. What’s most important is that you get out and vote. 

 

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@vanessawbyers