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Despite its success, AfroPoP series still faces challenges



By Charles Hallman
Staff Writer


AfroPoP, the successful public television program that shows independent films and documentaries “on contemporary life, art and pop culture across the African Diaspora” is now in its sixth season. “If you would have told me that we were going to have six seasons, I probably would’ve said, ‘I need to get through this first one, I can’t think that far ahead,” jokes Co-Executive Producer Leslie Fields-Cruz.  She also is National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC) vice president of operations and director of programming. The NBPC was founded in 1979. AfroPoP is produced by NBPC and co-presented by American Public Television (APT), and shown on the PBS World channel.  Beginning in February, however APT will distribute AfroPoP to additional public television

stations. As a result, TPT Life Channel 2.3 now airs the program on Saturday nights (check local listings for times). Continue Reading →

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Concussions require immediate medical attention

What is a concussion? A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury. Concussions are the most common type of traumatic brain injury.  

Why should I care about concussions? Concussions are becoming more and more common in contact physical athletics involving all ages, children to adult professionals. A recent government report estimates that over four million sports-related concussions occur in the United States annually. Concussions are also the most common type of traumatic brain injury seen in persons over the age of 65 secondary to falls. Continue Reading →

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The ghost of Neville Chamberlain

President Barack Obama stands in that shadow
Neville Chamberlain, Prime Minister of 1930s Great Britain, went to Munich, Germany to seek peace with Hitler. The “ghost” of Chamberlain refers to his miscalculating achieving “peace in our time” (a phrase used by President Obama in his second inaugural). Chamberlain’s miscalculation enabled World War II. As this column is written, the president has not yet addressed the nation or the congress. Was he persuasive? Continue Reading →

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Mother of autistic child fights for equal care

Proposed laws could disadvantage Black and  low-income people


By Michelle Lawrence

Contributing Writer


“State legislators want to create two different healthcare policies for kids with autism: one that generously covers the privately insured, and the other that gives minimal coverage to the poor and publicly insured, but both using state funds,” says Idil Abdull of Burnsville and mother of a 10-year-old son with autism. At age 11, when Abdull came to the United States from her native country of Somalia, she knew very little English and very little about American politics. “The only thing I knew about America was Superman and Rocky [the movie], she says.”

Some 20 years plus since arriving on North American shores, Abdull is now very fluent in both English and the parlance of American politics. “If nothing else, I know how to be loud,” she says. Like many other families, Abdull says she went through a period of denial about autism. Continue Reading →

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Lincoln, the movie: What’s missing?

By Gary L. Flowers

Guest Commentator


“‘Negro History’ is the missing segment of world history.” — Carter G. Woodson

Carter G. Woodson was right when he essentially said that Black history is the missing pages of world history. Never was such so true than in the movie Lincoln. While I, as a “weekend historian,” was impressed by Daniel Day Lewis’ portrayal of the 16th president of the United States, my knowledge of history begged questions: “Why were Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, and Harriet Tubman not portrayed or mentioned?” or “Why was the ancient Egyptian mathematical formula attributed to the Greek mathematician Euclid?”

The movie Lincoln is politically presidential, yet porous on people who influenced the end of the American Civil War. The holes in the Steven Spielberg’s epic film are rooted in Hollywood’s tendency to omit key historical personalities and events from biopics. History reminds us that Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman, and Sojourner Truth all played significant roles in the American Civil War, and thus in the decisions of President Lincoln. Continue Reading →

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