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This Week’s Entertainment Spots

Sights, Sounds, and Soul:
Twin Cities through the Lens of Charles Chamblis

From family reunions to the nightclub scene, there is no one who documented the Twin Cities Black community like Charles Chamblis. Affectionately called “The Pictureman,” he had a passion for photography and a knack for being everywhere at the right time. Tue.-Sun., Through Jan. 4, 2015

Minnesota History Center, 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul

Go to or call 651-259-3000 for more information


Carnage the Executioner

Fri., May 2, 11:30 pm

Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant, 1010 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis

Call 612-332-1010 or go to


PACER Center Benefit

Featuring Diana Ross

Silent and live auctions

Sat., May 3, Silent auction, 6 pm; live auction, 8 pm; performance, 8 pm

Minneapolis Convention Center, 1301 2nd Ave. Continue Reading →

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‘Now is the time’ to diversify the MPD

 Veteran officers campaign to bring more women and people of color into the Mpls police force

By Isaac Peterson
Contributing Writer


It is no secret that historically the relationship between the Minneapolis Police Department and communities of color in Minneapolis has been tense, at best. Between brutality, shootings, racial profiling and other problems, the tension has led to the creation of a civilian review board, and even at one point, to federal mediation. Yet the tensions continue. Minneapolis police officer Eric Lukes, a 27-year veteran of the force, is attempting to put into place a long-term solution to improve relations: recruiting more people of color to be on the Minneapolis police force. To that end, with support from the Minneapolis NAACP, Minneapolis Urban League, and the Community Standards Initiative, the first of an undetermined number of events was held Saturday, April 19, at North High school to generate interest in the community to join the force. Continue Reading →

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What are electronic cigarettes and why should I care about them?


Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States, but the creators of a breakthrough device are hoping to change that by encouraging smokers to use an alternative method. Commonly referred to as “e-cigarettes,” these battery-powered devices come in a variety of shapes and models, including those that resemble standard tobacco cigarettes and those that mimic cigars and tobacco pipes. E-cigarettes work by giving smokers a nicotine hit without actually exposing them to tobacco smoke. This is made possible due to a special chamber (atomizer) with a heating element and a liquid. The actual nicotine is in the liquid, along with propylene glycol and flavorings. The atomizer chamber aerosolizes this liquid, turning it into a vapor that can be inhaled, while also creating a vapor cloud that realistically resembles cigarette smoke.  These vapors are essentially odorless unless the liquid is heavily flavored. Manufacturers claim that e-cigarettes are a safe alternative to the conventional use of tobacco in cigarettes, cigars or pipes. Continue Reading →

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Faith, mental illness, and the African American community


By Dr. Thomas Adams

CEO, African American 

Family Services


Faith and mental illness have been debated since B.C. (before Christ). As African Americans, we are a people who embody a tremendous amount of faith. A 2009 report found African Americans to be the most religious group of people in the U.S.

For the majority of African Americans, the object of our faith is rooted in our belief in God. As African Americans, there are three dynamics that are prevalent for us when we enter into a conversation about mental illness: faith, mental illness, and ethnic identity. Most believers in God believe that God can cure us of diseases, disabilities, and other afflictions through prayer. Continue Reading →

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Top WNBA teams hope to peak in playoffs


By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


The 2013 WNBA Playoffs begin this week: Washington-Atlanta and Indiana-Chicago in the East, and Minnesota-Seattle and Los Angeles-Phoenix in the West in the four best-of-three first-round matchups.  

“When we get into the playoffs, it’s our own destiny,” notes Indiana guard Shavonte Zellous, a member of the 2012 defending champions. The Fever, the only sub-.500 club among the eight playoff teams, has been injury-riddled all season. “We’ve gotten some good wins and some tough losses as well,” explains forward Tamika Catchings. “I think we’ve gotten better from the beginning of the season to now.”


“We are going to make a good run,” predicts Zellous. Continue Reading →

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White professionals already cashing in on ‘People’s Stadium’ — But promises that construction will benefit communities of color remain unkept as deadlines approach




By Mel Reeves

Contributing Writer


While there is much talk about possible delays in the construction of the “People’s Stadium,” it appears that the Vikings and MSFA are still confident it will be built. And according to a recent Associated Press (AP) article entitled, “Many already cashing in on Vikings stadium,” lots of white collar professionals have already profited from the proposed stadium. Incidentally, it appears at this point that the only people who may be left out of the benefits are people of color. Despite lots of compelling testimony last Friday at the Minnesota Sports Facility Authority (MSFA) meeting by several prominent African Americans and Somali leaders, it was all but ignored. Practically all of the media outlets in the Twin Cities were in attendance, but none reported [as of yet] or followed up with the testimony of the Black folks who were complaining that it appears that Blacks may yet again be left out of a major development project. MSFA Board Chair Michelle Kelm-Helgen, who seemed a bit annoyed by the testimony, did respond. Continue Reading →

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Locals joined bus ride to D.C. for 1963 March commemoration



By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


A small but very enthusiastic group of Minneapolis-area residents returned from last Saturday’s commemorative march in Washington, D.C. pledging to work together for change. As the oratory at the 1963 March on Washington, which featured Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s historic “I Have a Dream” speech, was important then, so was last weekend’s march, believes Hattie Bonds. She and her two young sons — her “change babies” as she proudly calls them — were among the nearly 30 people who left Sabathani Community Center last Friday for a two-day bus trip to the Nation’s Capitol. They joined thousands from around the nation to mark the 50th anniversary of the original August 28 March on Washington

Last weekend’s event was “spearheaded” by National Action Network (NAN) along with other legacy Civil Rights organizations and various unions that sponsored it, explained Bonds, a member of NAN’s Minneapolis chapter. She told the MSR prior to leaving for D.C. that she hoped that those who attended the march last weekend would be moved to action. Continue Reading →

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Mpls. Board of Education Director Hussein Samatar dies at age 45




On Sunday, August 25, influential Somali business leader and groundbreaking Minneapolis Board of Education Director Hussein Samatar died of complications from leukemia. He was 45. In 2010, Samatar became the first Somali-American ever elected to public office in Minnesota when he won a seat on the Minneapolis Board of Education. Samatar served on the audit, finance and teaching and learning committees. A native of Somalia, Samatar provided a strong voice for all MPS students, especially immigrant students and children of immigrant parents. Continue Reading →

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Northsiders mingle with cops, firefighters at People’s BBQ



By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


If only for a few hours, the city’s North Side and Minneapolis police recently worked together and had fun doing so. At least on that day, August 17, police officers walked among the mostly Black crowd and peacefully coexisted. Minneapolis police, along with Minneapolis firefighters and the Park Board members, held the “Battle of the Badges — The People’s BBQ,” a free food and entertainment event at North Commons Park. One officer later told the MSR that they ran out of food, but it appeared that everyone had fun. In light of recent tensions between the Black community and police, “I thought it was a great idea,” said KMOJ Morning Personality Shedrick Garrett, better known as Shed G. The station was among several local businesses and organizations that helped sponsor the four-hour outdoor event. Continue Reading →

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U of M loses ground in athletics racial hiring — Already near the bottom, under Teague it’s getting worse



Diversity in the University of Minnesota’s athletics administration is still a four-letter word: None. After Richard Lapchick’s annual “College Sport Racial and Gender Report Card” came out in July, we asked Gopher AD Norwood Teague to grade his department’s diversity, since Lapchick overall gave college sport a B. Teague couldn’t bring himself to do so. You really can’t blame him, though, especially since after he took over last July he hasn’t hired any Blacks in any key decision-making roles. Lapchick pointed out that college sport has a lower racial hiring grade than pro sports. “The greatest number of career prospects are in college sport rather than professional sport because of the number of jobs available,” he said. Continue Reading →

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