Trayvon Martin

Recent Articles

Youth-police relations subject of St. Paul gathering

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While officers voiced opinions of the lack of respect by young citizens of the Twin Cities, teens voiced similar frustration with their peers. Young men and women spoke up about being stereotyped and falsely profiled. Continue Reading →

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My Brother’s Keeper: Trauma must be part of conversation on helping Black males

Black History Month has come and gone once again. I hope that folks learned something useful and constructive during this period. Oftentimes, I believe as Black people we forget that everything we do today is making Black history. Sadly, we think about what would be in the history books 50 years from now based on current events — the major events would be the election of President Obama, the murder of Trayvon Martin, and maybe even the first openly gay professional athletes being Black as well. However, I do not think these things encompass what we know Black history is about today. Continue Reading →

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Is Black History Month still relevant?

 

 

By Charles Hallman
Staff writer

 

Is Black History Month still relevant? A mix of Black folk from the “young, and young at heart” assembled at Sirius XM’s Washington, D.C. headquarters and discussed this topic early February. USA Today columnist Dewayne Wickham, Association for the Study of African American Life Executive Director Sylvia Cyrus and social commentator Jeff Johnson were featured panelists on “Banneker, Barack and Beyond: The Meaning of Black History,” moderated by Sirius XM weekday morning host Joe Madison February 6. Sirius XM Urban Programming Vice President Dion Summers helped organized the event. “The question that we put out there — does Black History Month matter anymore — was aimed more at the group we call the ‘millennials’ (ages 18-34),” explained Summers in a phone interview with the MSR. “There always has been a certain understanding of Black History Month. Continue Reading →

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The MSR 2013 year in review

The local Black press continues to publish stories “from our own lens”
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

This year, 2013, was historic as well as a year-long full of highs and lows: Two MSR reporters were among the national and international press that covered America’s first Black president’s second inauguration in January. Said Atlanta Daily World reporter Kenya King, a member of the Black press who was covering the Obama inauguration for the second time, “I’m here to capture…the moment of this historic occasion [and] to make sure that the message that should get across, does get across.”

A ‘new Black agenda’ was discussed by the Council on Black Minnesotans and others during the organization’s Lobby Day at the State Capitol on March 19. The MSR asked several Blacks in attendance that day if they felt new voices and perhaps a new message is needed from Black Minnesotans. “I think it is time for new voices to be heard,” believed Greater Friendship Missionary

Baptist Church Pastor Rev. Billy Russell in our March 28 front-page story. The MSR also continued its coverage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and the introduction of MNsure, the state’s new health-insurance exchange program and how the new healthcare law will benefit Blacks. Continue Reading →

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Putting the ‘Black’ in Black Friday

By Ron Daniels

Guest Commentator

 

The Christmas season provides an excellent opportunity for Africans in America to engage in a season of resistance. The corporate retail establishment in this country is heavily dependent upon this season for consumers to participate in a frenzy of buying to buttress their bottom line. The unofficial kick-off of the “shop until you drop” season is the Friday after Thanksgiving, which is called Black Friday. This is the day corporate retail giants begin an all-out effort to induce, seduce, bribe and otherwise “persuade” consumers to buy enough goods to enable companies to “break into the black” — achieve profitability for the year. Unfortunately, the sons and daughters of formerly enslaved Africans in America, who complain about the oppressive conditions of stop-and-frisk, joblessness, the War on Drugs, crime, violence, fratricide, and the murder of unarmed Black men such as Trayvon Martin and Black women such as Renisha McBride are not immune to the seductive appeal of the Christmas season. 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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We need a change

 

 

By Marian Wright Edelman

Guest Commentator

 

“Dear President Obama . . . Guns are really easy to get and people think they need them to protect themselves, but most times they’re showing off and making more problems and adding to the violence… 7 people are too many to lose and I don’t want to see another one of my friends, or even myself gone. We need a change.”

In mid-July, students at Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools summer enrichment sites across the country participated in a National Day of Action. Continue Reading →

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Recent rulings an attempt to restore confidence in the system

 

 

 

The recent decision by a judge to limit New York City’s Stop and Frisk program, which targeted Black and Brown New Yorkers, and the decision to reduce crack sentences were neither coincidental nor accidental. The folks that are in charge, the real folks, the monied class, the ruling class, the real bosses recognize that the whole Trayvon Martin tragedy took some of the wind out of the sails of the system. Anyone paying attention had to recognize that the system just doesn’t work. Or that it does work, but only for the wealthy and sometimes White upper-class folks. In the case of Trayvon Martin the system worked. Continue Reading →

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Blacks need to realize the dream of unity

 

 

 

 

By Jessica Wright

Contributing Writer

 

Martin Luther King Jr., the Black Panther party, Emmett Till, Malcolm X, our very own Tycel Nelson and now Trayvon Martin. All of these African American men, along with women, have been racially profiled, beaten and or/shot and killed because of the color of their skin as well as the position they held in the African American community. They called us together for unity, racial equality and change. It is now 2013 and African Americans still have not found solace in America. African Americans are displaced and have no home to go “back” to. Continue Reading →

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County Attorney Freeman on Terrance Franklin case: ‘It’ll be up to a grand jury’ — MSR inquires into historical failures to prosecute police for misconduct

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

 

Historically, many local Blacks believe that no matter what evidence is presented, nothing happens to Minneapolis police officers for misconduct against people of color. The May 10 death of Terrance Franklin, reportedly at the hands of City police, has thus far done nothing to erase such beliefs. A common theme expressed during recent public demonstrations is that the city’s Black community has no confidence in the police department investigating Franklin’s death or in the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office that might or might not do anything to the responsible officer or officers for acts of misconduct. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman pledges that his office will do anything in its power to see that justice is done in the Franklin case. Freeman spoke one-on-one with the MSR last week for nearly an hour. Continue Reading →

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