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2012: a year of decision, a year of danger

2012 for Black America could be one of the most decisive and dangerous years since the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 and the turbulent days of the Civil Rights Movement (1950s and 1960s), regardless of which party wins in November. The conservative wing of American politics, so obsessed with defeating Barack Obama, has thrown their normal political caution to the winds. Before, for over 40 years, the left was seen as compulsive, irrational and careless. Danger: Both parties are not cooperating, just as in the period leading up to the Civil War and the period just prior to the Great Depression of 1929. Danger: According to the largest hunger report, “Hunger in America,” nearly 49 million people, one in six of the U.S. population and more than one in five children, were hungry or faced food insecurity at some point during 2010. Continue Reading →

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2011: preparing for the election of 2012


If 2012 is an extension of 2011, there could be hell to pay as both political parties continue their Year of Preparation to obtain the prize each seeks: the presidency of the United States. Each will work hard to defeat the other; that is the American way. Don’t get mad at that. I’m just the messenger to remind all about this American genius. It is not devious. Continue Reading →

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Black wisdom: for our collective prosperity in 2012

Critical thinking in the Black Independence Movement

“We have a powerful potential in our youth, and we must have the courage to change old ideas and practices so that we may direct their power toward good ends,” a lesson from Mary McLeod Bethune. This year, we can work to broaden our own experiences and, when possible, to broaden the experiences of those around us. Our kids need to know that there is more to the world than Minneapolis and St. Paul. If our kids never see a play at the only Black theater in the Midwest, our very own Penumbra, how will our people help to shape and create the next August Wilson? Continue Reading →

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Congressional officers get paid by double dipping



Big cable is at it again. Comcast — the only cable company in town — slyly announced on its December billing statements that beginning January 1, a $1.99 “convenience fee” will be charged to customers who pay in person. I was outraged when I saw this. Ever since I’ve had cable three companies ago, when it was Rogers, then Paragon, then Time Warner and now the Philadelphia-based mega-company, I have handed over my hard-earned bucks to a customer service person each month. Comcast, the only cable game in town, has no competition, so we consumers have no leverage. Continue Reading →

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2011 top sports stories: mostly a year to forget

2011 will be best remembered from the sports scene locally as a year to forget, and indifferent at best. The Twins were just awful to watch, finishing 63-99 — dead last — in the American League. Mega-stars Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau both were far from normal previous MVP form. Health, injuries and uncertainty were just a huge part of the story. Bill Smith, general manager since 2007, paid the price and was fired. Continue Reading →

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Some in Mpls City Hall are hostile to Blacks – Chief Alex Jackson is a target again


My Minneapolis beat continually exposes me to the fact that Black folks are really not liked nor appreciated in some circles in Minneapolis. The latest focus of City leadership is on our Minneapolis Fire Department because of its successful leadership by a Black man. Some in city government are determined to portray Fire Chief Alex Jackson as a negative example. Yet in my estimation, he has been one of the finest leaders in the history of the Minneapolis Fire Department (MFD). I should know, as I served a decade as one of six citizens presiding over the fire department for the federal court when the MFD was as discriminatory as the police department. Continue Reading →

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What I want for Christmas


I want a moratorium on all foreclosures. Most folks have practically paid for their houses anyway when you take into account the enormous amount of interest that has been paid. And who said it’s fair to charge anyone more than two percent interest. Every homeowner should be given an opportunity to renegotiate their mortgages at a fair price. And no new Vikings stadium! Continue Reading →

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Ex-Lynx All-Star one of few Black female head coaches





By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


Not counting HBCUs, there might be 20 Black women head coaches today in collegiate basketball among over 300 NCAA schools. “It’s tough,” admits Tonya Edwards. “I think as African American coaches have more success, it will open [doors] for a lot more.”


She easily lists such Black females as Penn State’s Coquese Washington, one of four Black women head coaches in the Big Ten, and Nikki Caldwell, who is in her first season at LSU after several successful seasons at UCLA. “And [Rutgers’s C. Vivian] Stringer always has done well,” adds Edwards, who’s in her fourth season as head coach at Alcorn State, of the legendary coach. Stringer, a Basketball Hall of Famer, has been a longtime advocate of more former Black female basketball players making the transition into coaching once their playing days conclude. Continue Reading →

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The three unforgivable sins of Herman Cain


Herman Cain disappeared in the first week of December 2011 as a candidate for the Republican nomination for president. I was not surprised. A little over a month ago, in this column, I said Herman Cain had to stop stepping on the banana peels. There have clearly been more banana peels than Herman Cain could tap dance around. In the tradition of a classic Broadway musical, Herman Cain danced and sang, but it wasn’t enough. Continue Reading →

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NFL race to the playoffs takes shape



PHOENIX — It’s the haves and the have nots, those that are going or at worst are in the hunt with three weeks left for the 2012 NFL Super Bowl Tournament. The defending Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers have set the standard at 13-0, winning every game this year. The NFC North Champ Packers have won 19 straight games over a two-year period. That is the second longest winning streak in NFL history. Green Bay can clinch the home field advantage throughout the playoffs Sunday by winning at Kansas City. Continue Reading →

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