Recent Articles

178 days and counting

Ebola crisis: U.S aid late coming
The Ebola epidemic brings us folks in the U.S. face to face with some stark realities about what we value. Let’s be clear, it is an epidemic. According to the World Health Organization there have been 4,300 cases and 2,300 deaths since the first case was reported six months ago. According to Dr. Michael T. Osterholm of Minneapolis, “the Ebola epidemic has the potential to alter history as much as any plague has ever done.”

The former head of the U.S. Center for Disease Control said recently, “The level of [world] response to the disease has been totally inadequate.” This brings us face to face with one of our most stark and disconcerting realities: We really aren’t that concerned about folks in the rest of the world, especially the so-called developing world. This is even more so when applied to Black people, in this case Black Africans. Continue Reading →

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Black children are beloved and beaten

”Beloved and beaten” is a phrase that best depicts how many African American children — past and present — are disciplined. It is an authoritative type of African American parenting discipline style that is painfully revered. Yet, in too many incidents, it continues to be uncritically passed along generationally. When Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was indicted on allegation of child abuse, he admitted to using the disciplinary methods passed down by his father. ”I have always believed that the way my parents disciplined me has a great deal to do with the success I have enjoyed as a man,” Peterson said in a statement. Continue Reading →

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Palestinians also have the right to defend themselves

The “right to defend yourself” is a bit slippery, a little tricky, because most of the time those with the most lethal violence are the ones left standing, left alive, left with a voice, and they use their voice to write history books, claiming their right to defend themselves. Israel does not get the freedom to kill a hundred Palestinians for every five Israelis killed, from a “right to defend itself.” Evidence of this is what happened in 2003, when Iraqis had every right to defend themselves, just as Israel is said to have, but were unable to defend themselves, were defenseless against the U.S. and British militaries. Iraqis did not have the violent capacity to “defend themselves” the way Israel does, killing a hundred Americans or Brits for every five Iraqis killed. For Iraqis, the right to defend themselves meant nothing, and if they did exercise their right to defend themselves, it only brought more violence upon them. This is what blurs and makes the “right to defend yourself” suspect, because it is always those with the best violence who can use and take advantage of “the right to defend yourself.”

Obama and the Star Tribune do absolutely nothing to better the world when they say “Israel has a right to defend itself.” If Iraqis during the war were able to defend themselves using the same kill ratio that Israel uses, 100 Americans killed for every five Iraqis killed, would anyone in the U.S. say that Iraq had the right to defend itself this way? Continue Reading →

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We are the answer

By Lovell Oates

Contributing Commentator

Reading the article “Another Long Summer” (MSR, July 17, 2014) by Charles Hallman, it seems that everyone has an answer on how to solve the problem of violence in the community. What became very clear to me was the people (mainly the youth) whom the problem affects the most were missing from the meeting. Plus, the people (ex-prisoners) who can give the most insight on how to stop or help were missing from the meeting. Is this by design or accident? Being older and wiser, to me  it seems to be by design. Continue Reading →

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Ferguson and Homeland Security: Are they intertwined?

As we watch closely the events in Ferguson and greater St. Louis County, Missouri, we are disturbed to hear Democrats and Republicans say it is somehow related to the threat to America’s national security, as if Ferguson represents the beginning of an invasion from otherwise uninvolved Black communities. As threats are made by real terrorists to fly their flag over the White House, we appreciate the personal and nationalist threats but not the suggestion it represents Black Americans. The sense of foreboding from the realness of the threats is being used as an excuse to tighten security for greater control of neighborhoods of color unrelated to the national security issues, as Ferguson demonstrates regarding the new debate over the militarization of urban police. The Black community is keenly aware that not since the roundup of Japanese Americans during the Second World War, and the creation of internment camps, and the expression of fear during the urban riots of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, has the Negro population been as unfairly painted as a threat to our national security. Continue Reading →

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The political terrain of anti-Black policing


By Luke Tripp

Guest Commentator

Black bodies have been made to signify criminality, a threat and a menace to society by the American government at all levels. It logically follows that these bodies (male, female, young, and old) will be harshly and brutally assaulted by the law enforcement forces of public safety (police). The continuing and pervasive practice of the extremely aggressive policing of Black people is a manifestation of the fear and contempt that the White power structure and White American culture have of people of African ancestry. A militant, well-organized, and highly politicalized Black community is necessary to curb anti-Black policing. Recent mobilizations of the Black community in reaction to the shooting deaths of unarmed Black men demonstrate that we can have an impact on the course of actions by officials of the criminal justice system. Continue Reading →

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Vikings win — again

Wilfs save stadium — again

Did you cheer the Vikings paying $50 million more toward stadium costs? Jeer instead the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA), state legislature and city council that created this mess. The Minneapolis Star Tribune, August 22-25, 2014 ran stories suggesting this cheers-jeers difference. It is not the MSFSA saving the Vikings, but — drum roll, please — the Wilf Vikings ownership group. We can hear MSFA and others cheer under their breath, “Thank God for Zygi.”

Stadium cost have risen from $975 million to $1.023 billion (and will continue to climb as we predicted last year, estimating eventually at least $300 million). Continue Reading →

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Rev. Jesse Jackson deserves our respect

By Alvin Brown

Guest Commentator

I recently saw a video where an unseen person was heard telling Rev. Jackson that he wasn’t needed in St. Louis, and where had Jackson been before all this took place. Granted any person has a right to voice their opinion on any subject, but why all the frustration and distrust aimed at Mr. Jackson? Despite all the ”accusations” that Jackson and others ”sold out the Black community,” I ask where is the proof. Sure, he got caught cheating on his wife, but I also recall an ex-president having oral sex in the Oval Office and was received as a rock star in the last election. Continue Reading →

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