Monday, June 24, 2019

Move 9 member Eddie Goodman Africa released from prison after 41 years

Two members of black radical group remain behind bars
Lawyer: ‘This is a significant victory and day of celebration’
Eddie Goodman Africa, middle in ochre shirt and blue trousers, is flanked by family members and supporters outside Mahanoy prison in Frackville, Pennsylvania. Photograph: Handout

Eddie Goodman Africa, middle in ochre shirt and blue trousers, is flanked by family members and supporters outside Mahanoy prison in Frackville, Pennsylvania. Photograph: Handout

One of the enduring wounds of the black liberation struggle of the 1970s has moved a step closer to being healed with the release of the seventh member of the so-called Move 9, almost 41 years after their arrest for the collective murder of a police officer.

Eddie Goodman Africa, 69, was released on Friday from Mahanoy prison in Frackville, Pennsylvania, more than a decade after he became eligible for parole. His return to the community reduces to two the number of Move members who remain behind bars, in a creeping resolution to some of the most bloody confrontations between police and black radicals of the 1970s and 1980s.

Eddie Africa’s decades in prison were the product of a running battle between Philadelphia’s notoriously brutal police force and the Move organization. Move was a hybrid group that combined black liberation radicalism with a form of early environmentalism, each of its members taking the last name Africa to denote that they regarded themselves as one family. Read more

Saturday, June 22, 2019

OPINION: 50 years after racial unrest in Harrisburg and York, the black-white divide persists - but it’s shrinking | PennLive Editorial

By PennLive Editorial Board
Updated Jun 21, 9:58 AM; Posted Jun 21, 8:26 AM

Not enough has changed since 1969 when racial tensions erupted into violence in Harrisburg, York and other cities in Central Pennsylvania. That was the consensus of 12 PennLive readers who came together to discuss the racial unrest of 1969, warning many of the inequities that existed then are still with us today. Fifty years ago, there were ample reasons for African Americans to take to the streets to protest:
  • Students in the Black Student Union accused teachers at John Harris and William Penn of discrimination and outright racism.
  • Black residents were denied equal access to jobs and quality, affordable housing.
  • An African American woman said she was beaten by police after she tried to enter a store that was closing to buy a pack of cigarettes.
  • Police shot 18-year-old Charles A. Scott in the back, killing the student in the 1300 block of Bailey Street.
And that was only a snippet of the problems pitting blacks against whites in Harrisburg.

1969 Associated Press photo

Pennsylvania National Guardsmen and state police patrol York on July 22, 1969, during the city's race riot. A white police officer, Henry Schaad, and a black woman, Lillie Belle Allen, were killed in the uprising. More than 30 years later, three people were convicted or pleaded guilty in Schaad's death, and nine people were convicted or reached plea agreements in Allen's death.

In York, the atmosphere was just as tense and even more violent. Police Officer Henry Schaad was killed, as was Lillie Belle Allen, a black woman shot on July 21 in the racial unrest. And Mayor Charlie Robertson, a former York police officer, was one of 10 people accused of her murder. He stood trial and was acquitted in 2001.

In Carlisle, Susquehanna Township and Lancaster, African American students protested, staged walkouts and demanded more black teachers be recruited and black history taught in their schools.

Central Pennsylvania is no exception to the national norm.

The story of Myneco Ojo, newly appointed Mayor of Hanover, provides one stark example. She couldn’t attend the PennLive reader panel discussion, but she sent her comments:

“Racism is alive and well in the core and soul of people,” she wrote. “It will take a major culture shift to eradicate it . . . and that is problematic because shifts only come when there is an embrace of diversity & inclusion."

Ojo was among a group of African American women who were asked to leave the Grandview Golf Course in York last year for golfing too slowly, an offense that was so egregious, managers called the police to confront the women, all in their 50s.  Read More here

Monday, June 17, 2019

Central Park Five Event at Arcadia, Thursday, June 20th - 6-9pm

Join the Black Male Development Symposium on Thursday, June 20 as we discuss Ava Duvernay's latest project "When They See Us" and how the circumstances of the Central Park Five are still very prevalent and relevant today.

We will be joined by a variety of community voices of influence for a robust discussion, including:

Keir Bradford -Grey, Chief Defender, Defender Association of Philadelphia
G. Lamar Stewart - Former Philadelphia Police Officer, Director of Community Engagement, Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office
David Miller, Author and founder Dare to Be King Project
Connie Grier, Re-entry Family Advocate
Michael Coard, Esq., Activist and Host TV Courtroom & Radio Courtroom (WURD Radio)
Troy H. Wilson, Esq., Wilson & Wilson Law Office
Leslie Faith Jones, Esq., Policy & Advocacy Director, Montgomery County Office of the Public Defender
Dean Beer, Esq., Chief Public Defender of Montgomery County

Co-sponsored by The Calm Society, The Black Alumni Association of Arcadia University, & the Arcadia University Pan African Studies Program.

Arcadia University  Commons Great Room Thursday, June 20, 2019  6:00-9:00p

Contact number: 215-572-8510   Email:

MCCLV to Present Rev. Dr. Greg Edwards on “Christian White Supremacy”Monday, June 17, at 7 p.m.

What is Christian white supremacy? Does it inform public policy, criminal justice and political ideology? How can Christians stop it from harming generations within and outside of the church?

Reverend Dr. Gregory Edwards, founder and senior pastor of the Resurrected Life Community Church (RLCC) and president and CEO of the Resurrected Community Development Corporation (RCDC) in Allentown, will speak at Metropolitan Community Church of the Lehigh Valley (MCCLV) on Monday, June 17, at 7 p.m. on the topic of “Christian White Supremacy.” Dr. Edwards has spent a great deal of his pastoral ministry helping people of all races deconstruct the inherent American construct of Christianity which is deeply embedded in white supremacy.

This event is free, open to the public, and will also be livestreamed via MCCLV’s Facebook page: MCCLV is located at 1404 Greenview Drive, Bethlehem, PA, 18018.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Juneteenth holiday designation awaits governor's signature

John N. Mitchell Tribune Staff Writer Jun 12, 2019

Ron Brown is excited that Gov. Tom Wolf’s pen is expected to work its magic on June 19, making Juneteenth an official state holiday.

“That would be perfect,” said Brown, who has been coordinating a Juneteenth celebration in the Germantown neighborhood for the last 20 years. “Things are moving quickly.”

House Bill 619 would designate June 19 in Pennsylvania as Juneteenth National Freedom Day. Observed by 45 other states and widely celebrated across Pennsylvania, Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 when enslaved people in Galveston, Texas — the last Black slaves in the U.S. — learned they were finally freed after the Civil War ended on April 9, 1865.

The occasion occurred more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in which he freed the slaves in the “rebellious states” and technically ended 244 years of slavery in America. Read more here

Black female attorney brings racial discrimination claims against White and Williams; Firm defends its practices

Black female attorney brings racial discrimination claims against White and Williams; Firm defends its practices

PHILADELPHIA – A trial attorney alleges in a federal lawsuit that local law firm White and Williams LLP harassed and discriminated against her because she is an African-American woman.

In the 27-page suit filed on May 28 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Linda Perkins asserted that “she has been marginalized, mocked, deprived of opportunities to develop her career and otherwise treated as a second-class attorney not deserving of the same opportunities as her white counterparts.”

Perkins is reportedly among the few African-Americans employed by White and Williams, which the plaintiff labeled “a homogenous, almost exclusively white, male-dominated law firm.”

The plaintiff - whom the defendant hired two years ago to its Commercial Litigation Department and the General Commercial Litigation, Cyber Law and Data Protection Practice groups - claimed that she “was not being assigned enough work to allow her to meet her annual billable hours requirement, to meet expectations of a lawyer of her capabilities, or to permit her to cultivate a book of business and develop professionally,” the suit states.

According to Perkins, the firm was not adhering to its parts of a written employment agreement it entered with her on Dec. 28, 2016.

“As a result of White and Williams’ refusal to assign Ms. Perkins any significant amount of work despite her stellar qualifications, she was forced to seek out any work that was available and essentially beg to be assigned work in order to attempt to meet her billable hours requirement,” the original petition said.

Perkins further alleged that the defendant “routinely” promoted white male attorneys and touted them “as subject matter experts, being introduced to important client contacts, invited to attend or speak on panels, and otherwise assisted in their professional development at the firm.”  read more here

Friday, June 14, 2019

School choice town hall debates Black control of charter schools

JUN 12, 2019 - 10:42:04 AM

PHILADELPHIA—Mastery Charter School-Shoemaker Campus in Philadelphia recently hosted a wide-ranging conversation about Black school choice led by noted journalist Roland S. Martin and included a stellar panel of Black educators. The discussion in a town hall format included the politics of school choice, Philadelphia’s Black-White achievement gap, and parent empowerment among other topics.

Journalist Roland Martin (left) and educator Dr. Steve Perry discuss charter school education for Black children at a May 29 town hall, “Is School Choice the Black Choice?” held at the Mastery Charter School in Philadelphia. It was the third stop on a nationwide tour. Photos: Michael Z. Muhammad

The tone for the May 29 discussion was set when Hilary Beard, writer, and researcher in her introduction challenged the audience to “be brave enough to try something new.” The “new” turned out to be self-determination.

The two hours plus event marked the third education town hall in a national series meant to engage Black families on issues of student achievement, parent involvement, and classroom equity, according to organizers. The town hall was sponsored by Mr. Martin and The 74 and started in Indianapolis in December 2018 and will take place in various cities across the country through 2020. The 74 is a nonprofit digital news site covering education in America. Read more here:

School choice town hall debates Black control of charter schools

Sunday, June 9, 2019

An Essential Presence: The Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African-American Art June 2 through September 1, 2019

Scheller and Fowler Galleries

This exhibition presents sixty-five pieces from the esteemed Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African-American Art, including more than forty works new to the collection and on view for the first time. Spanning the late nineteenth century to the current decade, the show features work by such celebrated artists as Henry Ossawa Tanner, Charles White, and Elizabeth Catlett. Simultaneously, it heralds groundbreaking contemporary artists like Vanessa German, William Villalongo, and Syd Carpenter. With paintings, sculpture, drawings, prints, and photographs, this selection gives a sense of the broad range of powerful and sensitive artwork made by artists of the African diaspora over more than a century. From realism to abstraction, with humor, grace, and pathos, the works in this exhibition sample this important private collection built in the last six years under the direction of curator Berrisford Boothe.

Founded in 2006, the Petrucci Family Foundation (PFF) actively responds to the needs of the communities it serves, with the mission of supporting education and creating opportunity for Americans at every stage of and station of life. The PFF Collection of African-American Art is a targeted initiative to bring focus to the full range of African-American visual creativity and its essential place in the history and discourse of American art. This important collection, the result of a partnership between Lehigh University professor Berrisford Boothe and regional real-estate developer Jim Petrucci, has received national attention following its exhibition at the Portland Museum of Art in 2017.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Allentown NAACP 73rd Freedom Fund Award Banquet Sat June 8th 2019

My Story Wednesday June 5th 6pm-8pm @ Ms. Tootsie's Restaurant


The ODUNDE FESTIVAL is the LARGEST street festival in the country. The ODUNDE FESTIVAL offers a great day of friendly family fun. Come and join us starting June 3rd to June 8th for a week of cultural events leading up to the ODUNDE FESTIVAL. Enjoy delicious food, great music, clothes, jewelry, exotic arts and LIVE performances. This event is for everyone. So come and join us on June 9th starting at 10am to 8pm.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Meek Mill plans to sue 'racist as hell' Cosmopolitan hotel after it turned him away in Las Vegas

Alex Horton, The Washington Post Published 12:48 pm CDT, Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Photo: Photo For The Washington Post By Kyle Gustafson

The men in suits had a message for rapper Meek Mill: He was not allowed to enter the Cosmopolitan hotel in Las Vegas.

"We are private property, at this time. With the information we have, we're refusing to do business with you. We have the right to do that," a hotel security staffer said during the incident Saturday. Earlier, another staffer said Mill would be arrested for "trespassing" if he were to enter.

"You're telling me I will be arrested if I don't leave. If I walk upstairs and I get something to eat, I'll be arrested. For what? For being a rapper?" Mill shot back in a tense video recorded by his associate.

In the video, posted to Twitter and Instagram on Saturday and paired with Mill's accusation that the incident was because he is a black rapper, the hotel staff do not offer a reason Mill was blocked from entry. The hotel later said it was because of overcrowding in a hotel club.

"I'm not accusing you of doing anything, man," a hotel staffer said. "I wasn't there, I don't know. This is way bigger than me. Obvious you're somebody."  Read more here: