Spike Moss

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Gang summit in Mpls

Preparing for summer 2014

The “invitation only” “North Side Safety Summit” (“Gang Summit”) was held April 18, 2014, in North Minneapolis at the School District’s West Broadway headquarters. The Star Tribune reported “why” April 19, 2014: “The city’s North Side has seen one-third of the city’s violent crime and half of the city’s shootings over the past 14 years… Violent crime rose 24 percent…due to more assaults and robberies…centered around the Folwell, Jordan and Hawthorne neighborhoods.”

The purpose of the summit was to find solutions for summer 2014’s anticipated gang violence. Star Tribune: “Some 70 public officials…gathered…to talk about pervasive crime numbers and how to lower them.” The “containment” until winter hibernation returns is not a solution. The real solution, as I wrote about in my April 3, 2014 column, is to end the city political culture that results in providing little for the least among us in education, job opportunities, housing, health care, and further decline in families and community. It should have been called the Summit of Denial. Continue Reading →

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Wilder Foundation hosts unFRAMED conversations

Blacks discuss Zimmerman verdict’s effects on youth
By Jamal Denman

Online Editor



On Wednesday, August 28, 2013, the Wilder Foundation’s Wilder Center for Communities played host to what was referred to as a “community conversation,” where members of the Twin Cities community were invited to listen to and partake in a discussion about what impact the aftermath of the death of Trayvon Martin and the subsequent verdict in the Andrew Zimmerman trial will have on how young people — particularly young people of color and specifically African American boys — are taught and raised by those who care about them. The event, billed as unFRAMED: The Lessons of the Zimmerman Trial, was organized by Barbara “Bob-e” Epps and Dave Ellis of the Black Men’s Early Childhood Project (BMECP). Epps is a consultant to the Science Museum of Minnesota, which had started hosting an exhibit called The Wonder Years, an exhibit that “looks at early childhood development from prenatal to age five,” Epps explains. The Science Museum also started hosting a series of conversations, which they called “citizen’s conferences,” where “up to 100 people from a cross section of populations come together, look at the exhibit, and then have a discussion about what [the exhibit] means to them, what their thoughts are about children, and what do they want to invest [in them].”

In early 2012, Epps was asked by the Science Museum to help facilitate similar types of community conversations throughout the state, and she gladly said yes. “I suggested that they bring African American men together and have a dialogue with them,” says Epps. Continue Reading →

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Detroit is going under and we need to prepare

As we move closer to the warm part of the year, six human beings have died or have been murdered here in the great city of Minneapolis as we are just four months into the year 2013. Once again, we have to plead to our young people to not engage in assault and murder. That means that it might not be on the preachers’ agenda, but please talk about it on Sundays. It may not be on the social service agenda, but they need to talk about it weekly. Those of you who think you can help out, step up and help out. Continue Reading →

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Hold government, business accountable for keeping our youth from street madness

In Minneapolis and St. Paul, it’s time to build opportunity for the African American children. It’s clear that all the recreational things other communities have make a difference in a youth’s life. To begin with, we’ve got to have some real drop-in centers for these children where they can have dances and other social activities to help teach how to interact in a social environment. Maybe it’s time to bring back a teen nightclub like “Mr. Lucky.”

We must find ways to create consciousness, like it was when we adults grew up. Continue Reading →

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Parents, step up! Take charge!



In this madness of crime and murder, are you in charge of your household? Some households have a mother and father, some just a mother or just a father… Either way, are you in charge? From the birth of your child to 18 years of age, you need to be in charge of your child in your home. A child shouldn’t make any decisions under your roof for themselves. Continue Reading →

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Blacks have a different agenda from Whites on gun control

Let me state what’s important to African Americans on the gun issue. White Americans who have invented the Black boogieman will never give up their guns that they feel will protect them from the American Black uprising, which has always been a myth, because all we have tried to do is stay alive in America. I will say yes, it’s true, our people have always stood up against injustice. We’ve always fought for freedom, justice and equality. But White Americans are trying to change the issue to mental health. Continue Reading →

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No More Excuses

Too many have sacrificed for us to give up now
Most of the excuses we make up make it hard for our life on this earth. Everything that really matters we make excuses for: excuses why we won’t go to school, why we don’t listen to our parents, why we don’t stay out of trouble, why we end up in jail, why we have a criminal record, why we have felonies. More excuses: I don’t have a job because I won’t work for less than $10 an hour. I don’t have a job because no one will give me a chance. If you don’t listen to your parents and drop out of school, your chances of being successful are slim to none without education. Continue Reading →

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The 252 lost to violence in just five years

It’s 2013, and we are still working on this issue of crime and violence across the country. However, I did get some feedback on my last article, so let me try to give some clarity again…

The savage murders of 20 children is still outrageous and insane; the murder of eight adults in the same city is still insane. However, I personally will continue to recognize the thousands upon thousands of our deaths ever since the 1960s. I recently was invited to New Salem Missionary Baptist Church for a memorial service entitled, “Stop the Killing, Start the Healing” dedicated to the people who lost loved ones and headed up by Rev. Jerry McAfee, the president of the Minnesota State Baptist Convention. So I decided to say very little today and allow this article to speak for itself. Continue Reading →

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This culture of violence is tearing us apart

Once again the African American is being told he is not human…during the recent acts of murder of 20 innocent children and eight adults in the state of Connecticut. All of a sudden the White majority is outraged because they see themselves as the only human beings. However, we have lost lives across this nation in record numbers — in the city of Chicago, 584 to date this year, with over 1,800 shootings. Over the years in that same city they’ve murdered thousands of human beings. I’ve personally learned through my travels going back and forth across this country that we’ve lost thousands in every major city. Continue Reading →

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