Monthly Archives: January 2013

Penumbra exceeds fundraising goal: Programming resumes this spring

 

January 7, 2013, St. Paul, MN — Over 1,400 individuals, corporations and foundations donated $359,000 by December 30, 2012 to Penumbra Theatre Company. The Penumbra Summer Institute, a nationally recognized three-year arts education and leadership training program, was not impacted by the fall suspension and continues as scheduled. Due to an income shortfall in August, Penumbra made the critical decisions to suspend its fall programming; to reduce its fiscal year 2013 budget by $800,000 including eliminating six full-time staff positions; and to set a goal to raise $340,000 by calendar year end. Penumbra’s 2013 Spring season includes Spunk, adapted by George C. Wolfe from Three Tales by Zora Neale Hurston, featuring T. Mychael Rambo, Dennis W. Spears, Jevetta Steele, and Austene Van, March 14 — April 7, 2013. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Black History Month Calendar of Events

Black History Month Calendar of Events
Through Wed., Feb. 6
 

Thursday, January 31
 

6:30-7:30 pm — My Soul Looks Back, Sumner Library, 611 Van White Mem. Blvd., Minneapolis

Celebrate Black History Month with songs, poetry and stories that give voice to the journeys and contributions of African Americans in American history. All ages welcome. This event is free; registration is requested. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation

 

This January 1 marked the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. The original purpose for the document core to President Abraham Lincoln’s presidency may have been to free slaves, or it may have been solely a strategic move to decimate the Confederate troops’ stronghold in the South and win the Civil War. Its purpose was probably a little bit of both. Regardless of Lincoln’s intent, my ancestors named the day of Lincoln’s signing of this historic document Jubilee Day. Many African Americans continue to celebrate Jubilee Day with a New Year’s Eve church service called “Watch Night Service.”

I grew up in the tradition. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Obama presidency gives African Americans hope for ‘a more perfect union’

 

By Vickie Evans-Nash

Editor-in-Chief

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Over 800,000 people were in attendance on the National Mall for the 2013 presidential inauguration. Though the crowd may not have equaled the size of the 2009 gathering, this second presidential inauguration of Barack Hussein Obama demonstrated Americans’ enthusiasm for his presidency. What was a significant event for many Americans was even more so for those of African descent. “It’s good to see an African American in the White House, especially somebody I voted for,” said Damola Ogundipe, former Minnesota Gophers football player, while touring the Martin Luther King, Jr. monument in the nation’s capital the day before the inauguration. Ogundipe, born in Nigeria and raised in the Twin Cities, moved to Los Angeles just over a year ago after finishing college. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Inaugural evoked spirit of ‘We the people’ joined in common cause

 

 

 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Barack Obama, who became the third consecutive U.S. president to deliver a second Inauguration Address, told the nation Monday that it is up to all of us to “act in our time” to move this country forward. “We cannot afford delay and substitute spectacle for politics, and use name calling as reasonable debate,” he said during his nearly 15-minute “mini” address. America must be the leader for a peaceful world “from Africa to Asia…and in the Middle East,” pledged the president. After paying homage to “the forbearers, and all those men and women, sung and unsung,” President Obama declared, “It is now our generation’s task to carry on where those pioneers began.”

Obama, who was officially sworn in January 20 as constitutionally required, strongly urged that equality — especially in income, employment, and acceptance of all people regardless of race, gender and sexual orientation — should exist in all facets of American life. He warned against voter suppression and briefly touched upon immigration reform and climate change. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

MLK Day march covered broad spectrum of human-rights issues

 

 

By Jerry Freeman

MSR Senior Editor

 

Over 100 people braved below-zero temperatures Monday, Jan. 21, to march in the Second Annual MLK, Jr. March for Jobs, Justice and Housing organized by Occupy the Hood MN. The march’s aim was to honor the human rights legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Participants took to the skyways after marching for five blocks in the freezing cold down Hennepin Avenue in downtown Minneapolis. Marchers included activists fighting for welfare rights, housing rights, immigrant rights and labor rights. Advocates for better quality public education for all joined the march with Native Americans from the Idle No More movement. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

‘Fierce urgency’ stressed at MLK Breakfast

Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund, told nearly 2,000 people attending the 23rd annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Breakfast January 21, “We need to wake up.” 

Specifically, she urged the sold-out audience at the Minneapolis Convention Center and the live TV audience watching on TPT (Twin Cities Public Television) to wake up to the consequences of failing to improve the educational disparities that pose dangerous implications for the future of our country: “Will the United States be a beacon or a blip in history? “We need to recognize that we have to invest now,” Edelman said, “and invest with urgency and with persistence so that we can give every child a chance to be able to function, work and contribute in this very complex, changing world and economy.”

A graduate of Spelman College and Yale Law School, Edelman began her career in the mid-1960s when, as the first African American woman admitted to the Mississippi Bar, she directed the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund office in Jackson, Miss. In 1968, she moved to Washington, D.C. as counsel for the Poor People’s Campaign that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. began organizing before his death. In 1973 she founded the Children’s Defense Fund. Under her leadership, it has become one of the United States’ strongest advocates for children and families. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Second Chance advocates ‘make some noise’ on the Hill

 

 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

When Sarah Walker first lobbied the Minnesota Legislature on behalf of former offenders, she didn’t see it going over very well. “The first time I organized this, I was concerned that this would be received very poorly,” recalls Walker, the COO of 180 Degrees, Inc. 

But as a result, over 50 organizations formed the Minnesota Second Chance Coalition and started Second Chance Day on the Hill. “Since then we have gotten more legislative leaders interested in this issue. I think we really fundamentally changed the dialogue about the issue at the Capitol. We passed three bills in 2009, and we’re hopeful again this year for another good year,” continued Walker. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Ten steps to setting an example for 2013: Modeling is the key!

 

Welcome to 2013 — the holidays have come to a close. Congratulations for making it to another new year. Many of you have set New Year’s resolutions. Some of you want to lose weight.  Some of you want to drink less alcohol. Some of you want to stop smoking. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,