Monthly Archives: September 2013

History can move in two directions at once







By Benjamin Todd Jealous

Contributing Writer


In my time as an organizer, I have been guided by the words of many people, activists and authors, colleagues and friends. But the most powerful lesson I ever received about the struggle for civil and human rights came in 1993, when my grandmother taught me that history could move in two directions at once. I was in college, celebrating a friend’s 21st birthday. A round of toasts went up. One friend raised his glass to honor the memory of all those we knew who had been killed or sent to prison before they reached the age of 21. Continue Reading →

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Phyllis Wheatley Center nears 90 years

Director says strength comes through community support 

By Charles Hallman Staff Writer   Phyllis Wheatley Community Center (PWCC) annually serves on average nearly 500 individuals and families on Minneapolis’ North side. The legacy nonprofit community organization, which this year celebrates 89 years of service, last year completed renovation of classrooms for its early childhood development program, one of several family services programs Phyllis Wheatley operates. “Phyllis Wheatley has a value and a principle to serve the community,” says PWCC Executive Director Barbara Milon in a recent MSR interview. She admits that a slowly recovering economy, where cutbacks have become more commonplace, has affected her organization as it has other nonprofits. “It is definitely a challenge when you are serving the population we are serving,” she says. Continue Reading →

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Minnesota ‘the team to beat’ in 2013 WNBA playoffs








The cast of The Mary Tyler Moore Show in the closing scene of the series finale together sang, “It’s a long, long way to Tipperary.” To initially begin our WNBA playoffs discussion, we note that it’s simply a long, long way to seven wins, the required number needed to capture a championship trophy next month. Winning the first in a best-of-three series generally puts additional pressure on the other team that now must win the next two contests to advance. Several “insiders” recently shared their thoughts and prognostications with the MSR on the 2013 WNBA eight-team playoffs that begin Thursday. “I think it will be a battle between those two [on] who will come out of the West,” says Indiana Coach Lin Dunn on Minnesota and Los Angeles, seeded one and two respectively in the West. Asked about her club’s

post-season chances, Dunn says, “Right now we’re not a great team, but we got a chance.”

“It doesn’t matter where you are going into the playoffs as long as you get in,” adds Indiana forward Tamika Catchings on the Fever’s 4th-seed position in the East. Continue Reading →

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Flu Fighter Clinics begin Sept. 19

Flu vaccinations offered at all Minnesota Lunds & Byerly’s stores

Flu season is returning to the Northern Hemisphere. It won’t be long before the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) start issuing weekly influenza bulletins. Don’t get caught off guard this flu season. A flu vaccination is the best defense against the respiratory virus, and now is the time to get vaccinated. Health Fair 11 and the Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency (MVNA) are once again joining forces to offer Flu Fighter Clinics across the Twin Cities region. Continue Reading →

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Justice demands action — not cowardice excuse making








I am amazed at the amount of cowardice that exists in our community. No doubt we are cowardly! I’m not being too hard. Does anyone really believe that the system that continues to allow injustice and inequality is just going to sit back and let people oppose it without fighting back? And they don’t have to come after you with their uniformed minions. Continue Reading →

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Sandwich Man serves food 363 days per year

Retired teacher gives 1,600 sandwiches nightly to inner-city homeless 

By Dwight Hobbes

Contributing Writer


The power of caring commitment is amazing. For instance it saw, in 2012 alone, 500,000 sandwiches donated to the hungry homeless principally through the tireless energies of Allan “The Sandwich Man” Law, who has bent his back to this labor since 1967. Those sandwiches, it bears pointing out, are given out at an important time in the day — rather the night — of the disenfranchised. Shelters and soup kitchens shut down in the early evening, and if you have nowhere to go and missed that last night meal, you are out of luck. That is why Law starts his deliveries nine at night and continues until the next morning, driving throughout Minneapolis, hitting spots that include bridge underpasses and other places the homeless habitually hole up. Continue Reading →

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A father’s investment pays off

Recruitment for college volleyball does not come cheap
All four volleyball teams at the September 6-7 early season tournament at the Sports Pavilion each had exactly one player of color: Daly Santana (Minnesota), Marquita Marshall (Ball State), Melanie Miller (Western Illinois) and Jeme Obeime (Duke). When asked why college volleyball — at least the teams that play the Gophers or, for that matter, the Gophers themselves — still lacks diversity, U of M Coach Hugh McCutcheon

responded, “I really can’t answer that. I do know that USA Volleyball is committed to trying to grow the game.”

My best estimate over my years covering Minnesota volleyball is that I probably can use at least four hands to accurately count the number of Black female volleyball players in Minnesota uniforms. “We are recruiting the best players we can, and that’s it,” stated McCutcheon. “More diversity is a real important part of our development. There’s no question that some of the best athletes are people of color.”

Unfortunately, in this second decade of the 21st Century, volleyball, instead of attracting more Blacks, seems to be repellent when it comes to urban females: It seemingly still reeks with country club residue. Continue Reading →

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Ravi Coltrane performing at the Dakota



By Robin James

Contributing Writer


If you want to go hear some good music, Thursday night, Sept 19 is the night to do it. Saxophonist, composer, and bandleader Ravi Coltrane returns to the Dakota to perform with his quartet. More than likely, the music he will draw from will be from his excellent and most recent album, Spirit Fiction from the Blue Note label. His group recently played at the Detroit Jazz Festival and received raved reviews. How do you describe the sound of unpredictability? Continue Reading →

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