From January 2010

Anthony’s Cookies is Making Its Mark

By Lee Hubbard

As a struggling college student at San Francisco State University, Anthony Lucas looked for various ways to make money. One of the ways he did this was by baking and selling cookies at the urging of one of his friends.
“I started making cookies and selling them to people I knew and I started getting a response from them,” said Lucas.
The response to his cookies would grow early and he began selling cookies in barbershops, beauty shops and out of the trunk of his car. He would take orders from people about his cookies, becoming a traveling salesman.
“I was doing business and all over. From San Francisco, to Benicia to Walnut Creek,” continued Lucas. “I had people calling me for cookies all over.”
As the demand grew, he began making cookies for company parties and events. Ten years from when he started making cookies, he opened up a storefront in February of 2009 at 1417 Valencia Street in San Francisco. Since “Anthony’s Cookies” opening, his cookie eatery has taken off and it has become one of the hottest gourmet cookie places in San Francisco and the bay area.
The eatery has been featured in magazines such as San Francisco and 7×7 and it’s become the trendy place for a sweet snack. On most day’s lines stretching from the cash register to the door can be seen at “Anthony’s Cookies.” Patrons of all stripes and backgrounds jump on the 14 different types of cookies made at the shop.
The flavors of his cookies range from the traditional semi-sweet chocolate chip, walnut chocolate chip, cinnamon sugar, oatmeal with raisins, white chocolate, to untraditional flavors such as cookies and cream, banana, banana walnut, toffee chip and vegan cookies.
One of the keys to his early success is the quality control that goes into the cookies. Lucas uses organic ingredients, they are baked fresh every 30 minutes and the cookie prices are very affordable. Prices range from 95 cents a cookie, to $5 for a half dozen and $9 for a dozen. Sales at the store average around 2,000 cookies a day and Lucas’s store has grown from a one-man operation to employing 6 workers.
While Wallace “Wally” Amos was a pioneer in the cookie industry with his “Famous Amos” brand, which is in supermarkets markets nationally, Lucas says he found inspiration for his cookie business from two unlikely figures. Howard Schultz, the founder of the Starbucks coffee company and the rapper Jay Z, a hip hop entertainer and founder of Rockafella records.
“Schultz book, ‘Put your heart into it’ helped show the challenges of getting a business started. I saw myself going through some of this,” continued Lucas. “While Jay-Z is a guy who came from nothing, out of the Marci Projects in Brooklyn. He had confidence in himself. He knew he was going to make it in hip hop, when others said he couldn’t.”
“Ultimately, my goal is have ‘Anthony’s Cookies’ as the number 1 retail cookie outlet in San Francisco and the San Francisco bay area,” said Lucas.
The way people line up at his store, Lucas is very well on his way.
Anthony’s Cookies is located at 1417 Valencia Street, San Francisco. The store is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 pm. Sunday’s from 11 a.m. to 5 pm. For more information call 415-655-9834 or go http://www.anthonyscookies.com

Billups carry Nuggets for win over Warriors

Oakland, CA – It was another great performance from the Golden State Warriors!  Playing with only eight players, three pulled from the D-League and the continued All-Star performance from Monta Ellis.  The Warriors battled the Denver Nuggets throughout the game until All-Star Chauncey Billups decided to take over at the end of the fourth quarter.

“They don’t call him Mr. Big Shot for nothing,” Corey Maggette said.  “He definitely carried them tonight.”

The end of regulation ended with both teams tied 105-105.  But before that happened Golden State lead by as much as 5 points.  It was like a ping pong match mid-way through the fourth with both teams scoring back-to-back baskets.  Then the heroics of Billups emerged with almost 4 minutes remaining in the game.

One rebound led to an assist, then a layup and ended with a 3-point basket to put the Nuggets up by 5 points.  The Warriors responded quickly with every step of Billups and the Nuggets.  But in overtime the victory went to Denver winning the game 1123-118.  Another heart felt loss for Golden State.

The last time these two teams met, the Warriors were robbed by calls from referees in taking a sure win from them.  This second meeting, Billups simply made play after play, scoring 10 points in overtime and a season-high 37.  Carmelo  Anthony finished with 23 points, Kenyon Martin added 11 points and 14 rebounds.

“Billups got us the win tonight and I’m very pleased,” Anthony said.  “It’s tough when my shots aren’t falling and being double, tripled, having five guys on me.”  “Yeah!  It was hard to get into a good flow.”

The Warriors did a great job containing Anthony to a sub par game.  The additions for the injured Warriors have proved to be a huge success.  Anthony Tolliver, Cartier Martin and Chris Hunter have played stellar defense for Golden State.  They’re presence in the paint and rebounding in addition to the starting five has been incredible.

“They spread the floor for us,” Stephen Curry said.  “It’s a great asset to what we have and I’m proud of how well they’ve played.”  “They’re full strength on the court gives us time to rest and pick up full speed on the court.”

Corey Maggette has been playing great basketball, he finished with 33 points, giving him a 30-plus points in three straight games for the first time in his career.  Andris Beidrins led the Warriors with 13 rebounds and Ellis added 30 points and 10 assists.  Golden State played hard but was out rebounded in the end.

“We lost the game because we didn’t rebound,” coach Don Nelson said.  “Possession after possession, we got a stop, but our lack of rebounding gave them extra chances.”

Written by: Malaika Bobino

Read Bible in One Year – Take the 2010 Challenge!

By Angelina
Overall Archie

Your knowledge of God’s Word will grow as you progress through this year with your Bible reading. As you read through the Bible you will see that God is present even in the details of our lives.
Pray that God would give you the desire to grow in your relationship with Him. Read the Post newspaper. The list of scriptures will be printed so you can read Through the Bible in One Year.
If you fall behind in your reading, just start with the current date. Do not give up. Here are the readings for January 1 – February 7, 2010:
Jan. 1 – Genesis 1-3, Jan. 2 – Genesis 4-7, Jan. 3 – Jan. 4 – Genesis 12-15, Jan. 5 – Genesis 16-18, Jan. 6 – Genesis 19-21, Jan. 7 – Genesis 22-24, Jan. 8 – Genesis 25-26, Jan. 9 – Genesis 27-28, Jan. 10 – Genesis 29-30, Jan. 11 – Genesis 31-32, Jan. 12 – Jan. 13 – Genesis 37-39, Jan. 14 – Genesis 40-41, Jan. 15 – Genesis 42-44, Jan. 16 – Genesis 45-47, Jan. 17 – Genesis 48-50, Jan. 18 – Exodus 1-3, Jan. 19 – Exodus 4-6, Jan. 20 – Exodus 7-9, Jan. 21 – Exodus 10-12, Jan. 22 – Exodus 13-15, Jan. 23 – Exodus 16-18, Jan. 24 – Exodus 19-21, Jan. 25 – Exodus 22-24, Jan. 26 – Exodus 25-27, Jan. 27 – Exodus 28-29, Jan. 28 – Exodus 30-32, Jan. 29 – Exodus 33-35, Jan. 30 – Exodus 36-38, Jan. 31 – Exodus 39-40, Feb. 1 – Leviticus 1-4, Feb. 2 – Leviticus 5-7, Feb. 3 – Leviticus 8-10, Feb. 4 – Leviticus 11-13, Feb. 5 – Leviticus 14-15, Feb. 6 – Leviticus 16-18, Feb. 7 – Leviticus 19-21.

Dr. Claybon Lea Jr. Tells BMU To “Count It All Joy”

By Dion Evans,
Religion Editor

On Sunday, January 17th, one of America’s leaders, Rev. Dr. Claybon Lea Jr. – PRESIDENT of the California State Baptist Convention and Senior Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church of Fairfield and Suisun City, CA – was in Oakland, CA to officially install the leadership of the historic Baptist Minister’s Union of Oakland and Vicinity during its Installation Services held at Bible Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church (1520 8th Avenue) in Oakland. The hosting and Senior Pastor of Bible Fellowship– Pastor Timothy Hawkins serves as one of three Vice Presidents within the Baptist Minister’s Union.
Following the praise and worship period, the worshippers were electrified by the exuberance of Rev. Dr. Willie Anderson. Anderson, Senior Pastor of New Bethel Community Church in Hayward, CA (2889 Kelly Street) brought the worshippers to their feet as he reminded them of the goodness of Jesus Christ and shared with all how to participate in “overtime praise.” Moving without many preliminaries, President Lawrence VanHook, serving in his second term as President, quickly introduced the speaker for the hour: Dr. Claybon Lea Jr.
Dr. Claybon Lea Jr. preached from the Book of James and entitled the message – A STRANGE WAY TO COUNT. He shared the difference between “calculations and tabulations” as he exegetically taught verses two through four of the first chapter. Setting up the celebration portion of the sermon, he shared an experience while shopping at a local grocery store. The personal example more than resonated with those in attendance, as he juxtaposed his life experience alongside the Apostle James’ command of the New Testament believers to “Count it all joy…”
This year’s theme for the Baptist Minister’s Union is PROTECTING THE COMMUNITY WHERE WE LIVE, WORK AND WORSHIP. Each aspect of the theme is led by a Vice President whose responsibility is to gather local clergy together in order to effectively impact their communities by ensuring they are properly protected and provisions are being supplied.
Serving as Vice President of LIVE is Pastor David Bernstine of New St. James Community Church, 108 17th Street, Richmond, CA. Pastor Bernstine has been instrumental in ensuring peace in the wake of the Richmond High student who was publically and brutally raped following a homecoming dance.
Serving as Vice President of WORK is Rev. Dr. Willie Anderson and serving as Vice President of WORSHIP is Pastor Timothy Hawkins. Serving as lead Vice President, also known as Vice President At Large, is Rev. Dr. Robert McNight of Rock of Truth Baptist Church, 459 61st Street, Oakland.
The Baptist Minister’s Union requests all within the Faith Community to save the following dates: Saturday, March 27 at 6:00 pm at Evergreen Baptist Church in Oakland the BMU will host – YOUTH ORAMA – featuring a 100 Voice Youth Choir. Sunday, March 28th – Friday, April 2nd at North Oakland Missionary Baptist Church the BMU will host their Annual BAY AREA CITY WIDE REVIVAL.
For more information, contact President Lawrence VanHook – (510) 333-1735.

Rev. Dr. Claybon Lea Jr. – President of the California State Baptist Convention.

Rev. Dr. Claybon Lea Jr. – President of the California State Baptist Convention.

Baptist Minister’s Union Vice Presidents are from left to right are: Pastor David Bernstine (New St. James Community Church, Richmond), Rev. Dr. Willie Anderson (New Bethel Community Church, Hayward), Pastor Timothy Hawkins (Bible Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, Oakland), President Lawrence VanHook (Community Church, Oakland) and Rev. Dr. Robert McKnight (Rock of Truth, Oakland).

Baptist Minister’s Union Vice Presidents are from left to right are: Pastor David Bernstine (New St. James Community Church, Richmond), Rev. Dr. Willie Anderson (New Bethel Community Church, Hayward), Pastor Timothy Hawkins (Bible Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, Oakland), President Lawrence VanHook (Community Church, Oakland) and Rev. Dr. Robert McKnight (Rock of Truth, Oakland).

Otis Tyler “O.T.” Riley, 73 

Otis Tyler Riley, 73, a well-known musician passed away on Saturday, January 16. Riley, born on July 21,1936, affectionately known as O.T., formed the Jive Five Band and played in many clubs around the Bay Area during the 1950’s. He played with the Doctors of Rhythm during the 1960’s in and around the Bay Area. 
O.T. Riley, an accomplished musician and songwriter, wrote songs for Lou Rawls who recorded O.T.’s song “I Fell in Love.” 
When he was in the Air Force stationed in Honolulu, Hawaii, he formed a band that played in clubs there. 
He also played for the Bouncing Bill’s Talent Show as well as for B.B. King at the Fillmore. 
Arrangements are pending. Contact Fuller Funerals for further information, 4647 International Boulevard, Oakland, CA 94601. Phone: ( 510) 436-3181. 

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Before Earthquake Struck, Haiti was Hit Hard By HIV/AIDS

By Jesse
Brooks

Long before the devastation of the magnitude-7.0 earthquake that struck Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on January 12th, it had been hit hard by HIV/AIDS. The epidemic is generalized and has been fueled by poverty and high literacy rates. The prevalence among adults aged 15 to 49 was 3.8 percent as of 2003, but due to effective HIV/AIDS education programs, and increased standard medical treatment, the prevalence was on a decline, and in 2008, had dropped to 2.2 percent. This disaster poses a grave threat to HIV positive Haitians who will not have access to their vital medications. 
Haiti has the highest prevalence of HIV infections in Latin America and the Caribbean. It faces the worst AIDS epidemic outside Africa and bears the greatest burden of HIV in the Western Hemisphere. It is considered to be one of the poorest countries in the world.  UNAIDS report that approximately 120,000 Haitians are living with HIV.
Two main facilities of an AIDS treatment center called GHESKIO were heavily damaged during the quake. According to Cherie Barnette of Open Your Heart to Haiti, a local organization who had been working with Haitians to rebuild infrastructures, “medication is urgently needed, along with clothing including shoes, but water is desperately needed, because of threat of disease from contamination”. Open your Heart, has been working in Haiti for fourteen years, and has had limited contact with the people there, since the quake. ‘It has been heart wrenching to actually talk to a voice in the midst of this destruction, but I’m struck by their spiritual strength and tenacity’, says Barnett 
Now-impassible roads will make it difficult for people living with HIV or tuberculosis to get treatment.  Over 500 people with tuberculosis are treated at GHESKIO; most of them also have AIDS. Now they don’t have food or water; or access to TB or HIV medications.
New York based Housing Works, President and CEO Charles King, collected $30,000 worth of medications and first aid supplies in 24 hours, and with a convoy, flew to Haiti last Friday. On his second day there, he blogged of the devastation and challenges people with HIV face now.  He reports, “On the way to the airport, we passed CEPOZ, an HIV/AIDS clinic and psychosocial support center. The two-story building was completely flat. No explanations were needed; anyone who was there when the quake struck never had a chance. And, if the strong stench was any indication, the clinic had been fully occupied by both patients and staff. We later passed a second AIDS clinic. This one is still standing but clearly not for long. A Haitian coalition of PWA-led organizations, to provide desperately needed medical services and supplies to Haitians living with HIVAIDS (PHAP) desperately wants to open a temporary clinic for the surviving patients of these two clinics.
This earthquake threatens to erase all the progress Haitians have made in the fight against HIV. We must continue to give financially and in other ways. At this point, concern for mal-nutrition and disease from unclean water is a priority. Water, clothes, especially shoes, are desperately needed and can be dropped off at the Young Voice Mission at 7928 International Blvd, in Oakland. Unused, unopened HIV medications can be dropped off there as well or please contact me. We must know that our futures are entwined, and by helping Haitians, in this time of need, we help ourselves as well. 
To follow King’s blog go to: http://www.housingworks.org/activism
For questions and comments, email jessebrooksii@gmail.com or call 510-575-8245.

“Soul Food, Moon Shine and Blues”

By Tanya
Dennis
 
Floyd Pellom’s father, Henry Pellom, loved jazz and he loved his son, so most of the time when he went to the Monterey Jazz Festival, Floyd was in tow. By age twelve Floyd was in love, and the result of that love is the 57th Street Fine Art Gallery.
Pellom fell in love with Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, Dizzie Gillespie and Sonny Rollins. He fell in love with the stories his father told about Bop City (now Marcus Books) on Fillmore, and the people his father saw there. In 1992, while at the Monterey Jazz Festival, Floyd bought his first painting. In 1996, after seeing works by Rich Sigberman at the Festival, he bought three paintings and that’s how his collection of fine jazz art began. Works by LaVirielle Aber, Donna Wayman and Valeriy Kagounkin expanded his collection to the extent that he started selling original art at the Farmer’s Market at Lakeshore three years ago. Then he graduated to the Art Show Convention in Sacramento. Last year he opened his gallery on the corner of 57th and Telegraph.
“At first I was buying everything; jazz, blues, still life and horses, then I found my niche and got back to jazz, blues and music “says Pellom. “I began relating to art through music.”
“Soul Food, Moon Shine and Blues” is currently on display and will be running through the month of January. On Feb 6th, “Counter Culture: A Celebration of Protest History through Art, Word and Song.” will be on display, and beginning March 6th, “Diva’s: Art Work of Women by Women.”
Local artist, Milton Bowens, is involved with the Gallery and will soon be teaching art to inner city children in the Gallery’s annex. Children from 1st grade to high school age will be taught classes in oil, pencil, acrylic and mixed media.
Pellom has been drawing and painting since he was a kid, “So I have an eye and I give the artists ideas and themes to work with.”
Pellom has art available for rent and his Gallery is also available for parties, events and fundraisers. The best thing about Pellom’s Gallery is the art is affordable. Art work ranges from $150 to $5,000, and his Gallery represents over twenty different artists.
“We are the specialty Gallery for jazz and blues art for the world, “says Pellom. “We have displays in Enrico’s and Bruno’s Restaurants in San Francisco and the Artist Alley at 5th and Mission. We also work in partnership with Peter Fitzsimmons at the San Francisco Jazz Heritage Museum and have provided the gallery with many fine pieces.”
The Gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm. First Fridays the Gallery is open from 6:00pm to 10:00 pm and Pellom will be hosting “Jazz Nights” on Friday and Saturday nights beginning next month. The Gallery is located at 5701 Telegraph Avenue.
For more information:  www.57thStreetGallery.com  (510) 654-6974 or Contact@57thStreetGallery.com

Floyd Pellom  stands  infront of a  Quincy Jones picture  painted by Valeriy Kagounkin.

Floyd Pellom stands infront of a Quincy Jones picture painted by Valeriy Kagounkin.

Teddy Pendergrass Remembered

By Lee
Hildebrand

Soul singer Theodore “Teddy” Pendergrass, who lost a battle with colon cancer in Philadelphia on January 13 at age 59, grew up wanting to be a preacher but wound up a drummer, playing for a period with the Cadillacs of “Speedoo” renown, then with Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes. He joined Melvin’s group, a cabaret act that had been performing and recording for 16 years with limited success, in 1970. Before the year was out, he had become the Blue Notes’ lead singer and would help transform them into one of the world’s hottest soul vocal groups.

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Singing in a husky baritone, heavily influenced by Marvin Junior of the Dells, Pendergrass led the Blue Notes on such R&B chart-topping hits as “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” “The Love I Lost” and the socially conscious “Wake Up Everybody,” all produced by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. The singer remained with the producers’ Philadelphia International Records after going solo in 1977 and continued scoring big with hits like “I Don’t Love You Anymore,” “Close the Door” and “Love T.K.O.”
With Al Green having turned away from secular music and Marvin Gaye in seclusion in Hawaii, England and then Belgium, Pendergrass reigned as the soul music heartthrob of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. In concert, he played his macho “come here, woman” role to the hilt, posturing like a bodybuilder, rolling his hips and singing blatantly sensual songs like “Close the Door” (“Let me give you what you’ve been waiting for”) and “Turn Off the Lights” (“Let’s take a shower together/I’ll wash your body and you’ll wash mine”).
His adoring female fans ate it up, screaming continuously, cheering his every move and phrase and singing along on nearly every song. Admiration for Pendergrass wasn’t limited to women, however. Audiences included many Teddy clones, wearing buckskin jackets and cowboy hats — a trend in African American fashion that the singer helped popularize.

On March 18, 1982, his Silver Spirit Rolls-Royce hit a guardrail and crashed into two trees near his home in Philadelphia. He suffered a spinal cord injury that left him partially paralyzed from the waist down and with limited use of his arms. News that his relatively uninjured passenger was a transsexual nightclub performer also shocked many fans. Singing from a wheelchair, Pendergrass reemerged two years later on the Asylum label and resumed having Top 10 R&B hits through 1991. They included “Hold Me” (a 1984 duet with then-little-known Whitney Houston), “Love 4/2,” “Joy” (for which he received his only Grammy Award), and “It Should Have Been You.”
Pendergrass is survived by his mother, Ida Pendergrass, his wife Joan, son Teddy II and daughters Trisha, La Donna, Sherilla and Jessica. His funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday, January 23, at Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church in Philadelphia. The family asks that, in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to the Joan and Teddy Pendergrass Memorial, P.O. Box 382, Gladwyne, PA 19035.
Send comments and story ideas to Lee Hildebrand at LeeHilde@aol.com.

“A Pact With the Devil?” What the…

By Dion Evans,
Religion Editor

Pat Robertson, founder of the Christian Broadcast Network (CBN) and host of one of America’s longest running religious broadcasts – the 700 Club – has recently made comments regarding the devastation of the Republic of Haiti; a 7.0 earthquake that has, to recent date, claimed the lives of over 50,000 and is threatening to claim, as predicted by the President of Haiti, more than 200,000 lives.
None of this mattered when the microphone was set before the mouth of a man who claims to be a representative of Christ. Pat Robertson has stated that the devastating earthquake which has hit Haiti was the result of God’s judgment upon the country due to a “pact with the devil” made by its Haitian slaves in the 1700’s. What!? The founder of a 50 year old “Christian Broadcasting” organization pointed down and wagged his finger as if to shame a people – who are, at the present, enduring the most devastating natural disaster in human history.
Desiring to wrap my mind around these comments, I sought out Bay Area pastors to lend their voices to respond to the comments made by Pat Robertson. Here are some of their responses:
Bishop Frank Pinkard – EVERGREEN BAPTIST CHURCH, Oakland – “He is a false prophet and an ungodly man. He is a Conservative Christian racist.”
Rev. Dr. Walter Humphrey, MORIAH CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP, Oakland – “If that be the case then God have mercy on England for the Middle Passage. The blood of those Africans like the blood of Abel cries for vengeance.”
Pastor Gary Golden, FOOTHILL MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH, Oakland – “Pat Robertson’s statement is offensive, ill-timed and racially charged. It is sad that this kind of backward thinking is still tolerated in these days.”
Rev. Dr. MT Thompson, BERKELEY MT. ZION BAPTIST CHURCH, Pastor Emeritus – “I am disturbed in my spirit beyond measure. To live in an age where religious leaders, publically, present our God – Jehovah, my God – as an average character of revenge. Any religious leader that stoops to the level of presenting God with the concept of a revengeful character and acting in the law of retribution, even if people have sinned, needs to be dismissed from any power of public communication. How dare any man seek to reduce my God to a level of being just a man who holds accounts to get even – even if sin has been committed.”
Pastor Tim Royal, HALCYON BAPTIST CHURCH, San Leandro – “Unbelievable that a Christian world share an urban legend as if it were fact. I am very disturbed by the fact that Christian organizations like Samaritan’s Purse are risking life and limb to glorify Christ and this man has smeared HIS name.
Pastor Jerry Blackmon, FIRST NEW JERUSALEM MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH, Oakland, “No one can assume God’s judgment because no one knows the mind of God. All we can do is pray and give aid in support of the Haitians. Show love and not judgment.”

City of Hayward Honors Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Dion Evans,
Religion Editor

If any city in America needed a tutorial on how to properly celebrate the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr – the City of Hayward would be well suited for the task. This celebration was Co-sponsored by the Hayward South Alameda County NAACP, Hayward Unified School District, Chabot College, City of Hayward and California State University East Bay – the campus auditorium at Chabot College was filled to capacity with a myriad of cultures, age groups, social classes, and diversities of Faith.
The Master of Ceremony was none other than Mayor Michael Sweeney who acknowledged the list of “who’s who” in attendance. Celebration attendees included state senators, local clergy, college presidents, social organization and other civic group leaders.
There were several notable highlights. A group of students – Eden Garden and Ochoa School Choirs, grades 5th to 8th, under the directorship of Victoria Schmidt – caused applause for over 5 minutes as the more than 90 person choir entered the theatre. Once the last child marched into the awaiting auditorium the capacity filled room erupted in applause. The students sang Stevie Wonder’s rendition of Happy Birthday. The rendition was concluded with students reciting speeches indicative of the life of Dr. King Jr.
Mt. Eden High School Chamber Singers, under the direction of Ken Rawdon, impressed attendees with their rendition of NO MIRRORS IN MY NANA’S HOUSE. Then an additional group of young male singers joined in and sang a prayer for Africa entitled, N’KOSI SIKELE I AFRIKA in a native African tongue.
Local Minister and member of the New Bethel Community Church (Dr. Willie Anderson, Senior Pastor) – Darrel “Blu” Sanders recited an original poetic piece that brought the house to their feet. He shared, “It was two score and seven years ago freedom rung its bell on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC. It was Martin Luther King Jr who struck that bell in the end of August in 1963. Hoping to describe what was longed for, what our ancestors fought for, what the under ground railroad was created for…a liberating word known as freedom.”
In an amazing moment, the California State University East Bay Gospel Choir sang unto the LORD and requested the entire auditorium to sing along with them. They were met with the cheers of school groups as well as the faith community. Unashamedly, they called on Christ as Savior and made it pleasant for others to join in on the celebration.
The event was climaxed by all choirs joining the Palma Ceia Baptist Church Mass Choir on stage as they sang, LIFT EVERY VOICE AND SING.

Elder Darrel “Blu” Sanders, from New Bethel Community Church, recites an original poem - LET FREEDOM RING - as a special tribute to the City of Hayward’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration held at Chabot College.

Elder Darrel “Blu” Sanders, from New Bethel Community Church, recites an original poem - LET FREEDOM RING - as a special tribute to the City of Hayward’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration held at Chabot College.

Students March for Peace

Over 400 children from Lincoln, Nystrom, Leadership, and Richmond College Prep Schools will march down Harbour Way, in the heart of Richmond, CA, and meet at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Park to promote peace in their neighborhood and to celebrate the birthday of Dr. King. This march is the third annual Peace March the children have developed in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The children will begin marching at Harbour Way and Florida Street. Along the route they will be joined by Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin, West Contra Costa Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Bruce Harter, parents and community residents. Once they arrive at the park, the children will present inspirational speeches, hear tributes and sing songs in honor of Dr. King’s memory.
Lincoln School Principal Mimi Melodia feels strongly about her students’ participation in the Annual March. “We are excited to participate in the march again this year. It is important to our students and school community because it demonstrates to kids the importance of working together for a common good, no matter how old you are. The March and celebration unites students at different schools within the same community to celebrate the life and accomplishments of Dr. King who believed in uniting all people.”
Over the three years, the march has grown from 100 students to 400 students. Each year, more and more community residents and parents have joined the students. This year, an essay contest “United We Build Peace” has been added to the program and the winners from each school will be presented at the event.

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Venezuelan Flutist Marco Granados Impresses Students at Berkeley’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School

Internationally acclaimed flutist, Marco Granados stopped by Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley last week, while in town for his bay area appearance.
Granados met with all of the flutists (about 25) and gave a masterclass to attentive students. Granados started out with a lively Venezuelan piece on his flute afterwhich he told the students, he had a few secrets to share.
The first was an explanation of the importance of how much they open their mouths while playing the flute and the second had to do with the importance of the jaw movement. He had the children illustrate the differences. “The most important thing when playing the flute is to relax your body,” Granados explained. He told the students, “The flute is fragile like a flower and if you blow too hard, you’ll get a shrill sound, but if you blow correctly you’ll get it’s most beautiful sound.
After the class, the children expressed their admiration and gratitude as they left.

Marco Granados speaks to flutists at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley.

Marco Granados speaks to flutists at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley.

Dr. Musilee Adams Davis Releases New Book About Natural Health For The Body

Dr. Musilee Adams Davis has just released her book, “Naturopathis, Holistic, Alternative”, about Natural Health For The Body.
Davis says, “It is very important to take care of your health. You should eat right, get a normal amount of sleep, and drink plenty of water. Exercise is important too. Taking herbal medicing daily will help you with a better healthy life for tomorrow.”
Davis is in her nineties and quick to tell you she is healthy and has helped others be healthy by taking daily regimens of herbs. Her book is full of recipies.
It is dedicated to her three sons: Donald, Norris and Sammy Davis. To order a copy of the book, call (510)525-1183.

Dr. Musilee Adams Davis

Dr. Musilee Adams Davis

Remembering Marjorie Nell Jacobs-Allen

“Every year on January 23 we will remember and celebrate the life of Marjorie Jacobs-Allen for her contributions to her family, church and community,” said Walter Davis, her uncle.
She was born October 1, 1946 in Oakland and died January 23, 2009.
Marjorie attended Mt. Zion Baptist and Pleasant Grove Baptist churches. She graduated from McClymonds High School in 1964. She worked for Crocker Bank and Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory.
Davis said she was a gifted pianist and singer who proudly proclaimed her membership in the Mack Band. Her obituary was delivered by Alze Roberts.
She leaves her mother, Juanita Jackson, brother, Gregory Allen and Walter Davis.

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LDS Sends Doctors, Medical Supplies and Aid to Haiti

A delegation from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints(LDS) responded to the Post’s inquiry about LDS involvement in the Haitian relief effort. The LDS church is known for its ability to respond to global disasters. Their members and supporters regularly contribute and volunteer in a year-round activity of preparing for disaster aid.
“Disaster assistance is part of our mission and faith”, said McClain. “Our church is equally interested in rekindling the spirit and hope in the Haitians as we are in their survival needs.”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is sending a team of doctors and medical supplies to Haiti to care for those injured by the earthquake. The doctors will set up a temporary medical center in a Church meetinghouse in Port-au-Prince. The meetinghouse is largely undamaged by the quake.
The Church has also shipped humanitarian relief, including personal hygiene kits and supplies for newborns. Efforts are underway to determine further humanitarian response in coordination with government and disaster relief organizations. Donations for relief efforts can be made at http://give.lds.org/emergencyresponse. For additional information :www.newsroom.lds.org To donate visit: http://give.lds.org/emergencyresponse.

Ronald McClain, Community Relations Specialist Bay Area Public Affairs.

Ronald McClain, Community Relations Specialist Bay Area Public Affairs.

David Wade President of the California/Oakland/San Francisco Mission.

David Wade President of the California/Oakland/San Francisco Mission.

Richard G. Hinckley, Member, First Quorum of the Seventy, Son of Late Prophet Gordon Hinckley.

Richard G. Hinckley, Member, First Quorum of the Seventy, Son of Late Prophet Gordon Hinckley.

Farrell M. Smith Director of the Oakland Visitors Center.

Farrell M. Smith Director of the Oakland Visitors Center.

Black History Month Celebration on Temple Hill

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ annual celebration of Black History Month will feature local choirs. “We are very excited about our program this year which will emphasize the Negro Spiritual,” said Church spokesperson, Ronald McClain. The events will be held at the Church’s Temple Hill complex at 4710 Lincoln Avenue in Oakland. They are free and the public is invited.
“For our first event which will be on Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 7:00 PM in our auditorium, we are privileged to present an evening of Negro Spirituals performed by the 50-voice Oakland Community Choir directed by noted choral arranger and director, Professor Bill Bell,” McClain added. Professor Bell, who recently retired from his position as chairman of the music department at the College of Alameda, will also speak on the history of the Negro Spiritual and its development as an art form.  
On Saturday, February 13, 2010, at 7:00 PM, the Evergreen Baptist Church Choir will perform in the Visitors’ Center.
On Saturday, February 20, 2010, at 5:00 PM, in the auditorium, former NBA star Thurl Bailey will sing and talk about his conversion to the Church and life in the NBA.
The month’s activities will conclude with the heralded Oakland Interfaith Gospel Youth Choir, under the Direction of Terrance Kelly, on Saturday, February 27, 2010 at 7:00 PM in Visitors’ Center.
Last, the Church’s Visitors’ Center will have on display posters of prominent African-Americans and artwork throughout February.

Negro Spirituals will be performed by the 50-voice Oakland Community Choir.

Negro Spirituals will be performed by the 50-voice Oakland Community Choir.

Marcus Garvey’s Son Speaks

Dr. Julius Garvey urges support for Haiti and Marcus Books

A people without knowledge of their history, beliefs and culture are a people without a foundation.
We need to know, without distortion, our story as told to us by those who lived it.
The tragedy of our communities at the present time is that so many voices that would speak truth to power have been silenced.  Marcus, Martin, Malcolm.
The Marcus Bookstore is one place where the light of truth, justice, freedom and self-empowerment has been kept burning.  If that light goes out we will be left deeper in darkness and may not be able to find our way out.  Like the people of Sumer, we will disappear, because we don’t know who we are.Our ancestors brought us this far.
It is up to us to complete the journey, true freedom, democracy and social justice for all.Keep truth alive! Keep the Marcus Bookstore alive!
The ongoing humanitarian crisis in Haiti precipitated by a devastating earthquake is the end result of oppressive policies by European powers and America, initiated after former slaves defeated the French and established the free nation of Haiti in 1804.  The Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese joined in to isolate Haiti and in time Franceforced the country to pay 150 million gold francs as reparation for its loss.  The  U.S. invasion in the early part of the 20th century was in part to force Haiti to continue paying reparations to France.
So Haiti went from being the richest colony to being the poorest country in the western hemisphere.
France needs to be forced to payback what is now $21 billion dollars if it believes in liberty, equality and fraternity.
U.S. foreign policy must change if it believes that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is for all regardless of color, gender or religion.
We can draw a straight line from Haiti, through New Orleans and Katrina, to Africa and HIV…. all natural disasters superimposed on centuries of oppression, dehumanization and extractive capitalism.
To end this and have an African Renaissance world-wide we must unite, all 1.2 billion of us, around the humanitarian principles of human rights, social justice and democracy and freedom.
Up you mighty people, we can accomplish what we will!

Dr. Julius Garvey

Dr. Julius Garvey

A Day in the Life of Marcus Books

Mayor Dellums, Writers and Community Rally to Help

By Post Staff

It’s 10:00 a.m. on Friday, January 15th at the Oakland Marcus Book Store on Martin Luther King, Jr. Way. The owner, Dr. Raye Richardson is not in the store today, but the three generations of the Richardson family are all there and working.
The first three customers of the day include Dr. Jeanne Revoire and her husband. She’s a well-known Bay Area psychologist. They say they began to patronize Marcus as children and now they regularly bring their own children to the bookstore. Another customer of 60 years, a retired parole officer, also asks if he too could help Marcus stay alive.
Dr. Richardson’s granddaughter, Cherysse Calhoun assures them that the stores are not closing. She asks them to help spread the word and to provide financial help for the upcoming 50th anniversary celebrations. Each of the customers buys books and leaves their contact information.
After hearing of Mayor Ron Dellums’ pledge of support for the bookstore, another customer said he would contribute to the Marcus Legal Defense Fund.
Dellums sent representatives to meet with Dr. Richardson’s daughter, Blanche to discuss how the City could be of assistance.
Blanche is delighted to find that Mayor Dellums has sent an attentive contingent from his office: Kitty Epstein, PhD, Director of Education, Theotis Oliphant, and Executive Director of Public Private Partnerships, Isaac Taggert, Re-entry Coordinator, and his Chief of Staff, Marisol Lopez. Marcus Books is represented by Blanche, Paul Cobb, Publisher of The Post newspapers, Post Staffer, Barbara Fluhrer, and a mortgage broker friend, Sylvester Brooks. The meeting goes very well with an enthusiastic volley of ideas from each of the participants. Each representative from the Mayor’s staff buys at least one book in support of the bookstore.
As the meeting winds down, Dr. Richardson’s great grandson visits the store. Henry “Hank” Oliver is an academic scholarship student at Columbia University in New York. Accepted to over 15 prestigious universities after graduating summa cum laude from St. Mary’s High School in Berkeley, he has come by to see his mother, Cherysse and his grandmother, Blanche. Highly influenced by Drs. Raye and Julian Richardson as he grew up, Hank is a 20-year-old junior who has maintained a 4.0 GPA and a place on the Dean’s List since his freshman year. At Blanche’s urging, Hank speaks to Paul Cobb in Chinese, one of three languages he speaks. Cobb responds in Japanese. Hank has also taught himself to play 8 different musical instruments, has formed a performing hip-hop group at Columbia, and is a member of a capella singing group that performs on and off campus.
Meanwhile, outside the store – on the 39th street alley – Dr. Richardson’s son, Billy Richardson who runs the family’s printing business, and his son Billy, Jr. are revamping the often-tagged side of the building. They’re painting the boarded-up lower windows, nailing trellises over them, and constructing planter boxes to hold climbing ivy. Billy, Sr. is a master stained-glass artist and is known for his unique graphic artistry on customer’s business cards and stationery. Billy, Jr. is a college sophomore at CCSF, volunteering to help his father with refurbishing the building. The father-son team frequently stops to talk with concerned and pleased customers and neighbors about the work they’re doing.
For the rest of the day, the phone rings off the hook and more customers come in to express their concern and support of the bookstore and make purchases.
For further information on ways you can help the on-going financial struggle at Marcus Books, please contact Barbara Fluhrer at The Post, (510-287-8200) or Blanche Richardson on Mondays at Marcus Book’s Oakland store (510-652-2344)

From left to right: Kitty Epstein, Isaac Taggart,  Marisol Lopez and Blanche Richardson.

From left to right: Kitty Epstein, Isaac Taggart, Marisol Lopez and Blanche Richardson.

From left to right: Blanche Richardson, Henry Oliver, Cherysse Calhoun,and Molly Roark.

From left to right: Blanche Richardson, Henry Oliver, Cherysse Calhoun,and Molly Roark.

Cornel West and Blanche Richardson at Marcus’ book -  signing

Cornel West and Blanche Richardson at Marcus’ book - signing

Love Haiti Relationship

By Post Staff

Hattie Carwell

Hattie Carwell

Post Science and Technology Editor Hattie Carwell will be leaving Oakland to assist in the Haiti relief effort.
In the wake of another massive after-shock suffered by the beleaguered country, many bay area residents (pictured at right) participated in a vigil and prayer presentation at the Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building and joined Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Supervisor Keith Carson and many community and faith-based participants.
Many have responded to Mayor Dellum’s plea for donations, volunteers and medical supplies for Haitians:
Businessman and Philanthropist Geoffrey Pete and political activist Alona Clifton are seeking Creole interpreters to answer the White House call for help.
“Open Your Heart to Haiti” Director Constantino Donatien and OCCUR Director David Glover are gathering medical supplies and clothing.
Rev. Dion Evans, Religious broadcaster for “Issues after Dark” is calling on his national audience to send money and medical supplies. He is also helping the Post to organize a Faith-Based Relief Effort.
Oakland Private Industry Council Director Gay Plair Cobb is calling for donations to be sent to support Nurses. She is also urging architects, builders and contractors to contact government officials to include indigenous Haitians in future efforts to rebuild Haiti.
Oakland Black Caucus activist Gene Hazzard is networking donors to support the California Nurses Association to send their members. Donors can also visit www.sendanurse.org and www.nationalnursesunited.com.
For those who want to seek review and verification of their donations, a new website has been launched by GuideStar:  http://www.greatnonprofits.org/haiti . The site lists some of the non-governmental, non-profit organizations operating in Haiti.
Post publisher Paul Cobb, who organized the CERT (Citizens Emergency Relief Team) in response to the Loma Prieta, recalled how his group challenged the Red Cross to leave more of the funds they raised in Oakland and Alameda County. That monitoring effort led to Red Cross funds being returned to assist residencies for homeless and needy shelters. “That same degree of vigilance and monitoring should be applied on Haiti’s behalf,” he said.
Movie Mogul, Tyler Perry has pledged $250,000.  Perry is encouraging people to make donations to the Tyler Perry Foundation and assures everyone that every dime, 100% of what is given, will get to an organization that will use it to help the Haitian people.
The East Bay Sanctuary Covenant at 2362 Bancroft Way, in Berkeley is accepting tax deductible donations.
When Hattie Carwell arrives in Haiti she will send reports to the Post on any of the organizations she encounters.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced a resolution expressing condolences and solidarity with the people of Haiti in the aftermath of the earthquake. The resolution commends the efforts of the both the U.S. and international community in the relief efforts and calls for a long-teaarm sustainable recovery effort and urges debt forgiveness for Haiti.

Left to Right: Yolanda Bellot, Ifonia Gelin and Shirley Bellot.

Left to Right: Yolanda Bellot, Ifonia Gelin and Shirley Bellot.

Oakland Post attorney and Haitian legal activist Walter Riley and his family returned safely from the recent earthquake. His report and activities On HERF (Haitian Emergency Relief Fund) included:
Sustainable Agriculture: HERF has contributed much-needed funds to peasant
Cooperatives. HERF provided irrigation pumps, funds for seeds and tools, and other needed resources to support local agricultural development and the growth of a cooperative movement as part of a long-term solution to the food crisis.
Victims Assistance-HERF funds supported grassroots activists who had to flee their homes and live as internal refugees.  HERF also contributed to the families of political prisoners. In a recent case, a family could not locate their son who had been held as a prisoner in Port-au-Prince. After weeks of pressuring the authorities, they found his body at the morgue.  No explanation was given for his death.
Independent Human Rights Monitoring – HERF has given support to human rights workers and attorneys who continue, to document human rights violations and defend victims of repression. HERF has also given support to the efforts to insure the safe return of Lovinsky Pierre-Antoine, a central figure in Haiti’s popular movement, who disappeared on August 12, 2007 and has not been heard from since.
Woman’s Organizing – Women’s organizations are leading education campaigns, supporting market women, helping women from cooperatives, sustaining the victims of rape and other forms of sexual and physical abuse.
Defending Trade Union Organizers – HERF has assisted trade unionists and labor activists forced from their homes and jobs due to repression.
Education/Literacy – Since the coup, government subsidies for school children have been cut and literacy projects have been terminated.  HERF has provided funding for educational projects, such as a school for poor children in Port-au-Prince, educational projects in the rural areas of northern Haiti and literacy programs.

(Left) Pierre LA Bossiere and (Right) Rev. Phil Lawson

(Left) Pierre LA Bossiere and (Right) Rev. Phil Lawson

Haiti Emergency Relief Fund is administered by a board of Haiti solidarity activists and is connected to grassroots movements in Haiti, In a country in which many people live on less than a dollar a day, every dollar goes a long way.
The following individuals have joined Walter Riley for a fund appeal for HERF: Sister Maureen Duignan, O.S.F., Co-Chair, Haiti Emergency Relief Fund, Pierre Labossiere, Board Member, Haiti Emergency Relief Fund, Co-Founder of Haiti Action Committee, Randall White, Deacon, Allen Temple Baptist Church, Board Member HERF, Robert Roth, Educator, Co-Founder Haiti Action Committee,
Marilyn Langlois, Boards, HERF, community advocate for Mayor’s office in Richmond, CA.
For additional information, Please visit : http://www. haitiaction.net/About/HERF/HERF.html.

Warriors big three dominate Bulls for win

Oakland, CA – It’s been a tough road for the Golden State Warriors.  Multiple injuries, countless loses and frustration from not having all the pieces to the puzzle.  Yet, all of those concerns are behind them now, the Warriors exploded in dominating the Chicago Bulls for 114-97 win to end their three game losing streak.

Down to only eight players the Warriors created shots all over the court in dismantling the Bulls defense.  They controlled the tempo from the start which allowed them to maintain their composure throughout the game and seal their victory.

Andris Biedrins played his best game this season.  After missing 35 games, he complained about not feeling like his old self.  That changed today as he finished with 19 rebounds and 8 blocked shots.  One of those blocked shots was on center Joakim Noah that created a fast break for Monta Ellis’s layup in the fourth quarter and Golden State never looked back.

“We could not control them off the dribble,” coach Vinny Del Negro said.  “Our defense was not there and we did not control their penetration.”  “Ellis, Maggette and Curry were on fire!”  “We can’t win games by outscoring opponents, especially Golden State.”

Chicago had no answer for the Warriors big three tonight!  Ellis took 39 shots and led all scores with 36 points.  He is the first Warrior to take that many shots since Rick Barry in 1975.  Corey Maggette had 32 points and rookie Stephen Curry added 26 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists.  All three players combined almost outscored the entire Bulls team.

“We needed this win and made big plays at the end,” said Ellis.  “Biedrins is the reason we won this game, his presence-rebounding, blocking shots, everything-we needed that and he gave it up.”

The Bulls ended their four game winning streak and will embark on a seven-game road trip.  They stayed close throughout most of the game but fell flat in the fourth.  John Salmons who replaced Kirk Hinrich in the starting line-up had 25 points.  Luol Deng added 20 points and point guard Derrick Rose finished with 19 points.

Note – The NBA and the Golden State Warriors honored Dr. Martin Luther King during the game.  A video presentation was displayed throughout all four quarters with players and coaches remembering how Dr. King’s speech impacted their lives.

“Everything he fought for became true especially with Obama being president of the United States,” C.J. Watson said.  “It’s a great day!”

“I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for Dr. King,” Ellis said.  “He grew up in a time where my father has many fond memories.”  “He paved the way for myself and others to succeed.”  “It’s a great honor to play on this holiday!”

“He was a leader for the black community and he got us through many tough obstacles,” Rose said.  “I appreciate what he’s done and will always remember him.”

Written by: Malaika Bobino

NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous Reflects on Dr. Martin Luther King Day

Dr. Martin Luther King was a moral giant and cherished hero of the world. He was a tireless champion of the poor and oppressed against the powerful. He understood the inescapable mutability of our fates and entreated the nation to embrace peace, justice and equality. He called on us to love humanity and one another and to fight for a just society. He was a man of vision and prescience. Sadly, many of his speeches are just as relevant today as they were over 40 years ago.
Dr. King courageously raised his voice against war. He spoke of the destructive impact of the Vietnam war draining resources from the fight against poverty and exhorted people to see the war as “an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such.” He spoke on behalf of the Vietnamese people that we were fighting, “They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one Vietcong-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them, mostly children. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers. It is clear to them that we are on the side of the wealthy, and the secure, while we create a hell for the poor.”
Today, we are at war in two nations.
Much of Dr. King’s work was to end the scourge of poverty and he began to question the essence of our prevailing economic system. “We must ask the question why there are forty million poor people in America; and when you begin to ask that question, you are raising questions about the economic system, about a broader distribution of wealth. When you ask that question, you begin to question the capitalistic economy.”
Today the forty million of poor Dr. King spoke of has barely decreased with 39.2 million Americans living in poverty. The greed and excesses of our system has led to one of the worst recessions in history.
Dr. King championed labor describing the labor movement as the “principal force that transformed misery and despair into hope and progress. When in the thirties the wave of union organization crested over our nation, it carried to secure shores not only itself but the whole society,” he said.
Today, the laws on union organizing have been weakened and the percentage of unionized workers has fallen from 36 percent in 1945 to 12.4 percent of American workers, only 7.6 percent in the private sector.
And Dr. King asked us all to give of our time and our voice to change the injustice around us. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter,” he said.
Dr. King would be deeply satisfied at the progress we have made. The historic election of our nation’s first African American president, the rise of many prominent Black Americans to the pinnacle of politics and business. But Dr. King was a man of the poor and he would remind us that the struggle is not over. The dream has not yet been achieved. That the disparities in the criminal justice system, in poverty, in health and in employment that still plague our communities means that we have a long way to go.
Dr. King won a Nobel Peace Prize, and the hearts and minds of millions of people around the world. He changed our country and our world for the better. He offered us a shining paragon that we can strive for and ideals that we should endeavor to live up to. Today we can best honor Dr. King’s life and commemorate his death by continuing his noble work for a just society with equal opportunity for all, humankind, peace, economic democracy and a political system within which the rights of all are enshrined.
“In the end”, said Dr. King, “we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends…..Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

 Dr. Martin Luther King was a moral

Dr. Martin Luther King was a moral

President Benjamin Todd Jealous

President Benjamin Todd Jealous

Embrace King’s Dream Celebration at Star Bethel

Coretta Scott King’s words are the theme for a community gathering planned to encourage people to break the silence on HIV/AIDS. She said “It is time for all of us to take action to protect ourselves and our young people against HIV/AIDS. Like injustice and inequality, it cannot be eliminated by remaining silent.”
On Monday, January 18, ‘Embracing The Dream’, an organization that produces events to enhance the lives of those afflicted with HIV/AIDS, kidney failure and discrimination due to race, color or sexual orientation, will present a free health fair and entertainment.
Participants are asked to donate un-opened multi-vitamins, new socks, t-shirts and underwear for the local homeless, and victims of HIV/AIDS in Africa.
Gospel artists Tramaine Hawkins, La Shaun Pace and Maurette Brown-Clark are slated to perform. Pastor Jerome Belt, of Washington D.C., will emcee the event.
Three community members whose contributions embody the legacy of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. will be honored. They include the late Dr. Diane Howell, the founder of The Back Expo which featured wellness booths and the late Dr. Robert Scott, who worked tirelessly treating patients with HIV/AIDS locally and globally.
The Martin Luther King Peace award will be presented to Wanda Johnson, the mother of Oscar Grant who was killed by a BART police officer, January 1, 2009.
Johnson was selected because of her demonstration of non-violence in response to her son’s death.
Cseneca Parker will be honored for founding “Embracing the Dream” in 2000 after Alameda County declared a state of emergency over high rate of HIV/AIDS transmission in communities of color.
This year Celeste Germaine will be named to succeed Parker.
Donations can be dropped off, even if not attending the event. The health fair will be from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.; the concert will begin at 7 p.m. at Star Bethel Church, 5800 San Pablo Avenue in Oakland.
Advance tickets available at Tammy’s Bible & Bookstore, 3008 MacArthur Boulevard; Nu Revelation, 10700 MacArthur, #3A; Love Center, 10400 International Blvd.; and the Western Christian Bookstore, 1618 Franklin St. ($10.00 off suggested $20.00 ticket price with donations).
Embracing the Dream (510) 978-6470 or (707) 704-954

Celeste Germaine (left) and Cseneca Parker.

Celeste Germaine (left) and Cseneca Parker.

New Voices

New Voices, administered by J-Lab and supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, is a pioneering program to seed innovative community news ventures in the United States.
Projects can produce news and information for a geographic area such as a small town, city, county, state, or region, or they can serve a community of interest.
Funding is available for print or electronic news initiatives, including online, cable, broadcast, narrowcast, satellite, and mobile efforts. Grantees will receive $17,000 the first year and may apply for $8,000 in matching funds in the second year.
Nonprofit organizations and education institutions, including public broadcasters, independent media, and colleges and universities, are eligible to apply. Of the eight projects to be funded in 2010, at least three grants are targeted for news initiatives in Knight Foundation communities.
Applications must be submitted online by March 1, 2010. Visit the New Voices website to review the 2010 Request for Proposals.http://www.j-newvoices.org/site/story/2010rfp/

East Bay Regional Park’s Pat O’Brien Receives East Bay Vision Award

On January 8, the East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) honored Pat O’Brien, general manager of the East Bay Regional Park District, with a 2009 East Bay Vision Award.
The East Bay EDA, a public/private partnership dedicated to establishing the East Bay as a world-recognized location to grow business and create jobs, presents Vision Awards to exceptional individuals or organizations that have greatly advanced the economic vitality and quality of life in the Bay Area.
O’Brien, who has served as the Park District’s general manager for the past 21 years, was honored for his leadership and management skills. He was cited for being adept at forging relationships with various local, state, county, city and non-profit and educational agencies to expand the District, all while minimizing the financial, and maximizing the positive, impact upon taxpayers.
During O’Brien’s tenure, the East Bay Regional Park District has grown by 30 percent, doubling the size of 12 parks and increasing the number of parks from 48 to 65 plus adding 100 miles of new trails, as well as achieving and surpassing the 100,000 acre milestone.
The East Bay EDA stated that the East Bay Regional Parks are one of the defining assets of the East Bay, making this region one of the most attractive areas throughout the nation in which to live and do business. The East Bay EDA also honored the Park District for celebrating its 75th anniversary this year.
O’Brien received his award on January 8, 2010 at the East Bay EDA Annual Legislative Reception at California State University East Bay. Joe Callahan, president of Callahan Property Company also was honored with a Vision Award.

Pat O’Brien

Pat O’Brien

AHF Blasts Merck on AIDS Drug Pricing

On Tuesday, January 12, at 10:30am AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) hosted a protest targeting Merck and Co. Pharmaceuticals over the steep price for its key HIV/AIDS drug, Isentress, during the 28th Annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco.
Isentress was originally approved in October 2007 by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a salvage therapy for patients who are resistant to other AIDS drugs. In July, 2009, the FDA expanded its approval of the drug for use as a first line course of treatment of HIV/AIDS, a move which both greatly expands the US market for the drug and makes Merck’s Isentress the most expensive first line treatment.
Initial FDA approval in 2007 required use of Isentress only for patients for whom other drug regimens had failed; the expansion of FDA approval of Isentress for first line use, allows the drug to now be used for newly diagnosed HIV positive individuals who have never been on any antiretroviral treatment.
“Now that it has been approved for first-line treatment, there is no justification for Merck to price Isentress three times higher than other first-line AIDS drugs. It is pure greed,” said Michael Weinstein, AIDS Healthcare Foundation President. “The unwarranted price of this drug is putting an unbearable strain on taxpayer funded State AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (ADAP) and the thousands of people who rely on them. The limited funding available for these programs is being exhausted by the high cost of Isentress and other newer AIDS drugs. Several states are now unable to provide treatment to additional people who need it, and existing ADAP clients are at risk for losing access to their meds.”
Jessie Gruttadauria, AHF Director of Public Affairs, stated that “People are feeling the impact right now and lives are being put at risk. Hundreds of people have been denied access to their treatment because their state ADAP can no longer afford to provide it. These individuals now face a potentially fatal interruption in their treatment. This cannot continue. Merck needs to lower the price of Isentress immediately.”
The AHF protest is part of an ongoing campaign over Merck’s pricing for Isentress. This action comes on the heels of an inquiry into Merck’s pricing strategy for Isentress by the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS), the nation’s largest public pension fund. Advocates from AHF testified before members of the CalPERS Investment Committee about the impact of the high price of the drug on people with AIDS in California and across the country. In response to AHF’s testimony, the committee agreed to make an inquiry.
AIDS Health Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and services to more than 125,000 individuals in 23 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean the Asia/Pacific region and Eastern Europe.