Tuesday, 13 March 2012 22:10
During The Journal's 20 plus years of publishing, we have hosted a number of sponsored events. There has been the Pasadena Black Expo which we founded in 1990 and continued until approximately 1994; The Marketplaces, including The Children's Marketplace which we held for vendors and children under the age of 18; and the Jesus Is the Reason For the Season Gospel/Jazz Concert at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, featuring Jazz/Gospel saxophonists Ron Brown and Kirk Whalen and guitarist Doc Powell. All of these events have been our way of giving back to the community we live in and serve. My wife puts it simply by saying, "The Journal and the things we do in its name for the past twenty-two years has been our ministry."
Watching the young people conduct business at the Youth Marketplace in Hopkins Village was very rewarding, and to see some of the young participants now in college or graduating is very special. Our Professional Career Institute began in March, 2007 and was designed to introduce young African Americans to career options. The Institute has published a book on requirements to enter various careers called, "Career Finder Handbook." The book is available at the Institute/Journal office. Participants in that event included Dr. Joyce Ritchie, an M.D. teaching at the University of Southern California; Charles Bryant, a Pasadena Architect; Dr. Rosie Milligan, author and founder of Milligan Book Publishing Company and "Black Writers on Tour"; Lorenzo Griffin, founder of LaRan Hair Care Products, one of the few remaining Black-owned hair care product companies in the United States, and Attorney Pam Decatur, a practicing attorney who is also a Real Estate Broker.
Tuesday, 06 March 2012 21:42
The Republicans are showing their true colors these days as they work overtime to try to make sure that the first Black President, President Barack Obama serves only one term. Actually, there is nothing new about their program. They have always profited by taking advantage of the poor and the have-nots. When there was a need for cheap labor in the new world called the United States they found Black Africans after the Chinese and European slaves didn't work out. The European slaves were given a nicer name, they were called Indentured Servants. After all, they were the cousins of the profiteers. But when you think about it, we're all cousins, thanks to rape and miscegenation. But let's not get hung up on labels.
Tuesday, 28 February 2012 23:40
In a recent interview regarding black colleges, a young white reporter asked me why I thought there were no black colleges or universities outside the south. I answered that I understood the reason for starting black colleges was because blacks were not allowed into public colleges in the segregated and Jim Crow-ruled south. The creation of the black colleges was to compensate for the absence of Black educational institutions and the need for a black educated population. The second part of the answer is that with integration becoming the law of the land, following the 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education and subsequent Civil Rights victories, there appeared to be no need. These victories gave the false impression and a false sense of security that Blacks could then go to any school they were qualified to attend. That sense of security has been shattered by the ongoing efforts of an unrelenting group of white supremacists and self-hating Blacks like Clarence Thomas and Ward Connerly.
In their book, I'll Find A Way Or Make One, Juan Williams and Dwayne Ashley make the point that the principal measure of Black progress over the generations is the growing number of educated Black people trained and positioned to produce better Black churches, businesses and colleges. During and following slavery, it was so important to educate the masses to the point that many risked their lives to even learn to read.
Tuesday, 21 February 2012 21:14
After all is said and done, Black History Month is an opportunity to emphasize the importance of education for, by, and of Black people, worldwide. It is not just about African Americans. It is about Black folks across the world and the Diaspora, if you please. Why Educate is a question that is addressed in a 2009 book by Mike Rose entitled, "WHY SCHOOL". It is also a question addressed by African Americans, ever since they arrived on the shores of the so-called United States of America. The reasons addressed by Rose and writers from the Black Diaspora are different. That should come as no surprise. Rose says education's primary purpose is to secure a place in the economy, whereas writers from the Black Diaspora also feel, in addition to the economic reason, education as also a method of passing on our culture and our traditions.
Tuesday, 14 February 2012 21:00
My wife and I attended a conference on marriage as participants and presenters, last week. The event was sponsored by Abundant Harvest Christian Center of Altadena where pastors Anthony and Michelene McFarland serve as leaders. The event is held annually, in conjunction with Valentine's Day and, therefore, is conducted in a romantic setting with dinner, speakers, workshops, games to magnify marriage and have some fun with music, dancing entertainment, along with ministry intertwined dealing with serious issues of marriage.
The romantic location this year was the Queen Mary ship (hotel) in Long Beach, California. The event provided an opportunity for my wife, Miss Ruthie, and I to share a few of the things we have learned over the fifty years we have been together with other couples and leaders who also served as presenters. Marriage is, after all, hard work and needs constant attention to make it work and keep it working. We say thanks to Abundant Harvest leaders for focusing on what is important to communities, i.e.; keeping families together. That is more important than anything for a church to focus on, including the offering, the pastor, or the building fund.
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