From October 2010

Pastors Add Perata’s Name

By Paul Cobb


Rev. Frank Pinkard

A number of Oakland pastors have asked the Post newspapers to join them in recommending Don Perata for Mayor to its readers. “Perata is homegrown and knows the historical problems and needs of Oakland,” says Rev. Frank Pinkard.

“He’s our best hope,” says Rev. David Kiteley.

Pinkard said Perata’s stance on gun control, more police and his ability to access state and federal funds is what the city needs.

Even though many pastors have expressed their support of Perata, significant numbers are including the names of Rebecca Kaplan and Joe Tuman in their lists for the rank choice voting.

Other ministers include Rev. Lawrence VanHook, Bishop Bob Jackson, Rev. Jeremiah Captain, Rev. Joe L. Smith, Rev. J.L Jones, Rev. Flemon henry and Rev. Harvey Smith.

“We have enjoyed a 40-year partnership with the Post, and we want the paper to help us elect and hold our leaders accountable,” said Pinkard and Smith.

High School Students

Nearly 100 high school students and members of local youth-based leadership programs held a mock vote for the city’s mayor this week in the auditorium of the Fremont Federation of High Schools in East Oakland.

After listening to the candidates speak, the students’ number-one  choice was Rebecca Kaplan.

The Youth Vote 2010 forum, hosted by All City Council high school student leaders, was designed to give students experience with voting and an opportunity to talk face-to-face with the mayoral candidates.

The youth met three frontrunners—Rebecca Kaplan, Jean Quan and Joe Tuman. Candidate Don Perata was invited to participate but did not attend 

After the candidates spoke, the audience submitted questions, followed by a vote for the top candidates. Students had an opportunity to ask about Oakland’s high dropout rate, after-school programs and unfair practices in gang injunctions,

Though the students’ vote is symbolic the goal of the forum was to teach the importance of the political process, while also building connections between youth and the candidates.

When the votes were counted, Kaplan came in first, receiving 35 of the 87 votes for mayor.

Rosia Lee Ivey, 98


Rosia Lee Ivey

Rosia Lee Ivey, 98, died in Oakland, on Sunday, Oct. 24

She was born in Montrose, Arkansas and married Fred James Ivey on Feb. 21, 1931. They had 7 children: Fred Anderson, Ovella, Celia Valeria, James, Wheirmelda (Wo), Benetta Que (Beni) and John Arthur.  In addition, they raised their granddaughter and her namesake, Rosia Lana.  

Ivey leaves 17 grandchildren, 14 great-grand children, 1 great great grandchild and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. She was preceded in death by her husband Fred and her daughter Celia Valeria Brown.  

She was known for her joyous smile, hearty laugh and her love of cooking for family and friends.  There was always room for one more at her dinner table.  

A public viewing will be held Monday, Nov. 1, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Mc Nary-Morgan-Greene & Jackson Mortuary, 3630 Telegraph Ave. in Oakland. Private Viewing will be held at the mortuary on Monday, Nov. 1, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Entombment will be Tuesday, Nov 2, 9 a.m., at Oakmont Memorial Park and Mortuary, 2099 Reliez Valley Rd. in Lafayette. 

The memorial service will be held Tuesday, Nov. 2, 12 p.m. Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses, 5915 Racine St. in Oakland.

Tuman: “City Council Corrupted

By Joe Tuman

Joe Tuman says that the original purpose of parking meter fees has become corrupted. Photo by Gene Hazzard.


Parking meters exist not to generate revenue for the City but rather to ensure that potential customers of our merchants can find places to park their cars so that they can patronize our retail businesses. 

The original purpose of the parking fees, enacted in 1963, required that all parking revenues be deposited on behalf of the generating district into two funds. One-half of the fees would be deposited into an Off-street Parking Meter Fund, to be used for the maintenance and installation of parking meters in that district. The other half would go to the Traffic Control Fund intended to improve and preserve the flow of traffic through that particular district.

Last year, the City Council voted unanimously to change the rules to allow the parking funds generated by each district to be placed into the General Fund to be used for other purposes

I do not believe that parking fees should be relied upon as a revenue source for the City. That was never the intended purpose. I believe that such reliance encourages aggressive, unyielding parking enforcement that damages, rather than promoting business. Read more

Judge Set to Sentence


Oscar Grant


Prosecutors told a judge Tuesday a prison sentence would be the only appropriate punishment for a former BART policeman convicted of the 2009 shooting death of Oscar Grant on the platform at the Fruitvale BART station.

The severity of the crime committed by defendant Johannes Mehserle would make probation a disservice, Alameda County Deputy District Attorney David Stein said in his 20-page legal filing.

Stein did not specify the amount of prison time he was seeking when Mehserle is sentenced Nov. 5.

Post Publisher Paul Cobb said, “It is shocking that District Attorney Nancy O’Malley did not instruct her department to ask for the maximum 14 year sentence, especially since her predecessor Tom Orloff  had charged Mehserle with first degree murder. She promised  that she would vigorously prosecute this case.” Read more

Would Perata Step Up to the

Decision to Move Not Solely Up to Team’s Owners



Lew Wolff




Jane Brunner




Mayor Ron Dellums


Local sports fans are shaking their heads at news that Don Perata has conceded the inevitability of the A’s leaving Oakland, at the same time as a political committee connected to his campaign for mayor has received $25,000 in donations from the baseball team’s owners Lew Wolff and John Fisher.

Some even wondered if the contribution is connected to Perata’s recent statement quoted in the Oakland Tribune that the A’s move couldn’t be stopped and are saying he is the only one of the major contenders who has said he wouldn’t use public funds to keep the team in town with a new stadium.   Read more

Vote for Candidates Who Support AIDS/HIV Treatment

By Jesse

With AIDS/HIV infections on the rise and the California budget perpetually facing massive cuts, the state needs effective leaders who will continue the fight for AIDS/HIV education and resources.
With fewer than two weeks to go before the Nov. 2 election, choosing candidates and navigating through the measures remains a dilemma for many voters. Your individual vote can help ensure that policy makers in City Hall, Sacramento and Washington, D.C. are responsive to the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS in our community.
• In regions where HIV among Black Americans is heavily concentrated – Oakland, Detroit, Newark, New York, Washington, D.C. and the Deep South –infections levels among African Americans approach those reported in the most heavily affected countries in Africa.
Representing about one in eight Americans, Blacks account for one in every two people living with HIV. Despite extraordinary improvements in HIV treatment, AIDS remains the leading cause of death among Black women between the ages of 25-34 and the second leading cause of death in Black men between the ages of 35-44. Read more

Captain Jerry Varnado Wants to Give Back to His Community

By Tasion

Captain Jerry Varnado

For young African American men, incarceration or death is statistically a more probable outcome than a college education.  Only 8 percent graduate from college while they are 40 percent of the prison population.
Born in San Francisco but raised in Oakland his entire life, Captain Jerry Varnado knew the obstacles he was up against when he made a commitment to himself that he would not become another statistic.
Graduating from Skyline High School in 2003 he believed he was going on to attend a regular college or university. He never had interest in the military. While at a college fair, however, he learned about the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and decided this was where he could develop his leadership potential.
Ultimately, Varnado was accepted at West Point, becoming was the first African American in over 25 years to be accepted in the academy from the Oakland Unified School District.
“I could not understand why I got so much praise when I was accepted, but after taking a look around, I realized it was because every other day a young male, ages 18-25, was being shot and killed in Oakland,” said Varnado. “People expect this from us, and when we live up to those expectations it sets us back.” Read more

The World Series Comes Back to Bay Area

San Francisco, CA – It’s been eight years since the San Francisco Giants made their last appearance in the World Series. The wait is over, the Giants shocked the world win they beat the Philadelphia Phillies 3-2, game six of the National League Championship Series. Now, the biggest show in baseball returns to San Francisco.

The past three trips to the World Series were unsuccessful as the Giants lost to the New York Yankees in 1962, the Oakland A’s in 1989 and the Anaheim Angels in 2002. This time it’s a different ball club, this young team lacks superstars and marquee players. A strong chemistry, great pitching staff and the will to win best describes the 2010 Giants team. Read more

Giants Headed Back to Philly for Game 6

San Francisco, CA – The celebration will have to wait!  The city of San Francisco and the sold out crowd at AT&T Park had hoped for a victory tonight.  But now the Giants will have to head back to Philadelphia for game 6 of the National League Championship Series.

A tough loss to the Phillies 4-2 in game 5 was not something that they had wanted however, they’ve been in tough situations before and feel confident they’ll win it on the road. Read more

Giants 1 Win Away From World Series

San Francisco, CA-  It was probably one of the best games played in the postseason, a tied game going into the final inning.  Juan Uribe who was scratched from the starting lineup with a sore wrist entered the game bottom of the ninth.

Uribe hit a walk-off sacrifice fly to left field driving in the game-winning run.  A remarkable performance from the San Francisco Giants as they took game 4 of the National League Championship Series defeating the Philadelphia Phillies 6-5. Read more

Ross Shines Again in NLCS Win

San Francisco, CA – It’s safe to say the Cody Ross show is here at AT&T Park, get your tickets now!  Another unbelievable performance by Ross in the Giants 3-0 win over the Phillies.

Driving in a crucial run on a pitch that he wouldn’t normally swing at.  Ross continues to stay “hot” in the National League Championship Series.  He’s been baseball hottest hitters this postseason, batting .350 (7-for-20) with 4 home runs and 6 RBI’s in six games. Read more

Eleven Leno Bills Will Become Law in New Year

By Senator Mark Leno

I am pleased to report that the Governor signed a majority of the legislation that we put on his desk this year.  Eleven of the bills I authored will become law on January 1, 2011. One of the most important measures saves the state millions of dollars by allowing medical parole for severely incapacitated inmates.
Hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars are currently being wasted by incarcerating inmates who lie comatose or in a permanent vegetative state. These inmates are often so severely ill that they do not even recognize they are in prison. With medical parole, we can stop throwing away scarce public dollars on guarding these individuals who clearly do not threaten our safety. Instead, we can use the money to keep our school teachers employed and our children’s class sizes smaller.
In addition to medical parole, the governor signed legislation that increases accountability for health plans wanting to raise premiums and another bill that takes the common sense step of making the possession of under an ounce of marijuana a civil infraction, which reflects the penalties that already exist under state law. Read more

Manzanita Center Hosts Amateur Boxing Event

By Godfrey Lee

From top to bottom, left to right: Steven Si and Marcos Escobado; Michael Gordon and Alfredo Toro, who was still suffering from his nose injury; Ulises Soriano and John Abella; Julio Vargas and Grant Hartwia; Rebecca Roth and Oldhina Alatriste. Photos by Godfrey Lee

The Marin City Manzanita Recreation Center hosted an amateur boxing event last Sunday afternoon, presenting eight bouts that showcased local youth.
Boxer Paul Nave was the ring announcer and gave a familiar voice to the event, which attracted a medium-sized crowd.
Jozette Justice and her daughter Danielle Smith served the hotdogs. Justice, who operates a weight-loss business, says that the amateur boxing, even with its risks, is still a good sport that gives young people something athletic to do beyond watching television and playing videos.
Isaac Garcia, 8 years old and weighing 70 pounds, represented Double Punches, defeating Cain Sandoval, 8 years and 72 pounds, from the Sacramento Boxing Club.
Andre Conway, 10 years old and 73 pounds, from Ring of Fire, defeated Johnathon Rubio, 10 years old and 68 pounds, from Double Punches.
Charlie Sheehy, 12 years old and 90 pounds, from Ring of Fire, defeated Isai Sandoval, 11 years old and 87 pounds, from Sacramento Boxing Club.
Marcos Escobado, 18 years old and148 pounds,  from Caballero’s Boxing Club, fought well and defeated Steven Si, 21 years old and 149 pounds from Santa Clara PAL.
Michael Gordan, 13 years old and 104 pounds, from Ring of Fire, defeated Alfredo Toro, 15 years old and 99 pounds, from the Sacramento Boxing Club. Toro suffered a nose injury 25 seconds into the third round.
John Abella, 20 years old and 132 pounds, from Caballero’s, defeated Ulises Soriano, 18 years old and 133 pounds, from DF Boxing Club. Both are fast fighters with good reflexes.
Julio Vargas, 21 years old and 142 pounds, from Double Punches, defeated Grant Hartwia, 18 years old and147 pounds, from Marin City Boxing Club. Grant’s father Jeff said his son fought well and is encouraging him to continue as an amateur boxer.
Oldhina Alatriste, 16 years old and at 144 pounds, outclassed and defeated Rebecca Roth, 16 years old and 142 pounds. The referee stopped the contest 53 seconds into the first round. Both are from Marin City.

October’s Dangerous for Teen Crashes

Laurette Stiles

Newly analyzed State Farm claims data shows the trend continues – October remains the most dangerous month of the year for teen driver crashes nationally. In California, the numbers aren’t much different; February tops the list as the most accident-prone month for teens, followed closely by October.
According to claims data spanning the last seven years, the highest number of injury or collision claims filed by 16- and 17-year old drivers continues to hit a high point in October, spiking by about 15 percent when compared to other months of the year. State Farm evaluated its extensive claims database from 2003 – 2009, and in every year, October continues to register the most claims across the United States and portions of Canada. About 70 percent of states show October as being among its top three months for teen accident claims.
“Car crashes remain the number one killer of teens and October continues to be our single biggest battleground month,” said Laurette Stiles, Vice President of Strategic Resources at State Farm. “While promoting teen driver safety requires a year-round commitment, the fall time frame is critically important. As teens return to school, attend homecoming, and begin managing very busy schedules, we want them to keep safe driving practices at the top of their minds because our data shows this is one of the most dangerous times of the year for teens to be on the road.” Read more

World Renown Pianist Jeanne Stark Performs Berkeley

By Barbara Fluhrer

A Berkeley resident for over 30 years, Jeanne Stark has been a master piano instructor locally and a performing pianist throughout the world.
On Saturday, Nov. 6, she is appearing at 3 p.m. at St. John’s Presbyterian Church,  2727 College Ave. in Berkeley. Tickets may be purchased through Brown Paper Tickets ( or by calling the Presenter, Four Seasons Arts, 510-845-4444. (
“The beauty and daring of the playing electrified the audience.  Her lazar-like focus is on the essential musical intention.  The result of hearing her in concert is the shock that such a ‘youthful’ energy and exuberant force of feeling can meet with timeless clarity, the simplicity of wisdom”, says Renate Stendhal in Publication C4 Magazine following Stark’s recent recital at Herbst Theatre in San Francisco.
Stark was born in Belgium and trained at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, the first student in 20 years to graduate with the coveted Prix de Virtuosite` avec Grande Distinction and gold medal from the Belgian government.  A scholarship from the International Queen Elisabeth Competition brought her to the United States and allowed her to study with any teacher. She chose Mieczsyslaw Horszowsky in Philadelphia and later  Edwine Behre in New York and Vermont. Read more

Last Words of a Black Soldier Killed in Vietnam War

Lieutenant Vu Dinh Luu (Center in white uniform) and his military unit in Nam Dinh. (Courtesy Huong T. Tran, Hanoi, Vietnam).

Vietnamese Lt. Luu and his comrades, under dangerous fighting conditions, had made every effort to treat the fatal wounds hoping to save the  Black American soldier’s life.
Luu kept the articles given to him by the unknown soldier in his backpack, promising to himself to help fulfill the last wish of the deceased enemy when peace would return to Vietnam.
It turned out to be a very difficult task, and until today he is still searching for the “love” or family of the young Black American soldier killed in action.  In 1978 Luu, who by then had already left the PAVN (The People’s Army of Vietnam), visited the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Hanoi inquiring about this American KIA but could not get any useful information.  The government later sent him to study in the former Soviet Union where he was awarded a doctoral degree. In his late 60s Luu had retired from a successful business venture.
In retirement, Vu Dinh Luu, returned to Nam Dinh City, his home province some 100 km south of Hanoi. He still owns and operates a War Relics Museum next to his home, featuring articles collected during the French-Vietnamese War 1946-54 and the U.S.-Vietnam Conflict 1963-75. He kept the dog tag, the sunglasses and the Zippo lighter of the American KIA, in one of the glass cases in this museum.  During a recent interview in June of this year, at his home in Nam Dinh, he recalled  what had happened on that fateful day in 1971. Read more

Wells Fargo Sponsors State NAACP Convention in Oakland

Brenda Wright

Wells Fargo announced this week that it is a major sponsor of the NAACP 23rd Annual Convention of the California State Conference in Oakland that takes place Thursday through Sunday at the Oakland Marriott City Center Hotel, 1001 Broadway.
Nearly 700 community leaders, experts, and national and state elected dignitaries are expected to attend. Wells Fargo’s $50,000 donation will help support the organization’s programs and services that serve the local community.
“Wells Fargo’s support of the NAACP California State Conference is another example of the California-based company’s commitment to the African American community,” said Brenda Wright, SVP/ Wells Fargo’s California Community Development Manager.  “The vision of Wells Fargo and the NAACP, together, create a powerful voice that makes a difference in our communities.”
Wells Fargo will honor NAACP President Alice Huffman at the Youth Focus convention dinner sponsored by the bank. Huffman is being recognized for her leadership and advocacy in ensuring political, educational, social and economic equality.

Literary Icons Speak at Marcus Book Store

Marcus Book Stores will host star-studded events during the rest of October, featuring poet Nikki Giovanni, author J. California Cooper, and author and spiritualist Rev. Dr. Iyanla Vanzant.
The Saturday, Oct. 23 event features bestselling author J. California Cooper (“Life is Short But Wide,” “Homemade Love”) in conversation with poet, educator and writer Nikki Giovanni (“Bicycles: Love Poems,” “Hip Hop Speaks to Children”).  This is an historic and highly anticipated discussion between these two African American literary icons.
On Saturday, Oct. 30, Marcus Book Stores presents a lecture by world-renowned author, speaker and spiritualist Rev.Dr. Iyanla Vanzant, who wrote “Tapping the Power Within” (20th Anniversary Edition), as well as several other award-winning self-help books.
Both events will be held at the Black Repertory Theater, 3201 Adeline St. in Berkeley, and each costs $25 in advance and $30 at the door. Tickets are on sale at Marcus Book Store in San Francisco, 1712 Fillmore St. (415-346-4222), Marcus Book Store in Oakland, 3900 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way (510-652-2344) and online at  Phone sales at (510) 652-2344.  As seating is limited, advanced ticket purchase is recommended.  Those who unable to attend an event can buy books in advance, and Marcus Books will have them autographed.

California Offers Telephones for the Hearing Impaired

By Lee Hubbard

When California passed a law in 1979 requiring the California Public Utilities Commission to implement a program to distribute telephone devices to the hearing impaired, the telephone became a form of communication that could be embraced by all.
Now 31 years later, the California Telephone Access Program (CTAP) still helps many people communicate. But the program is not as widely used as it could be.
“There are still people who don’t know that there is access to phones that will help them communicate,” said Sharif Frink, an outreach specialist with CTAP.   Read more

Schools Celebrate National “Lights On After-School” Day

Oakland students at schools across the city this week celebrated after-school programs that promote academic achievement, healthy living, cultural awareness and positive social and emotional development.
Lights On After School is commemorated every October in communities nationwide to call attention to the importance of after-school programs for America’s children, families and communities. Oakland has more than 83 school-based programs and scores of community-based programs after school hours that serve more than 20,000 children and youth every year, about a third of 5-18 year-olds in the city. Read more

$300 Million for Critical Water Projects

Lisa P. Jackson

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced nearly $300 million in federal funding to improve aging water and wastewater infrastructure and protect human health and the environment for people in California.
This new infusion of money through infrastructure capitalization grants will help state and local governments finance many of the overdue improvements to water projects that are essential to protecting public health and the environment throughout California.
“Today our water infrastructure is working harder than ever to address growing populations, new and old pollution challenges and tightening budgets,” EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said. “With nearly $300 million in EPA support, California will be able to put people to work and ensure clean, healthy water in their environment and safe drinking water in their homes.” Read more

Meet Rev. Dr. Martin Peters, Victory Baptist Church

From left to right: Nerita Peters (wife, 7 months pregnant), Nakaya (daughter by marriage), Marissa (daughter by birth), Rev. Dr. Martin Peters, Rev. Dr. Jewel Peters (father) and Lady E. Dolores Peters (mother).

From left to right: Nerita Peters (wife, 7 months pregnant), Nakaya (daughter by marriage), Marissa (daughter by birth), Rev. Dr. Martin Peters, Rev. Dr. Jewel Peters (father) and Lady E. Dolores Peters (mother).

By Dion Evans,
Religion Editor

Dr. Martin Peters, now Senior Pastor of the Victory Baptist Church in Oakland, is serving as successor to Dr. Jewel Peters, the church’s founder.
Peters is a graduate of Morris Brown College in Atlanta and a proud member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
“It is with great joy that I declare that your name shall no longer be known as Martin Ray Peters, but from this day – according to the affixed signatures of the academic dean and myself, the campus president, I declare that you shall be known as Dr. Martin Peters,” stated Dr. Zemekio Jackson, President of St. Thomas Christian College of Jacksonville, FL.
Local well-wishers who commented on this historic occasion in the life of Dr. Peters included Pastor Elliott Ivey, Pleasant New Beginnings in Oakland.  “I want to say congratulations to my friend and brother Pastor Marty Peters,” he said. “Congrats on being conferred this honorary degree and on two years of ministry at the Victory Church! God bless you and your family!” Read more

Regional Parks Receive $10.2 Million Green Transportation Initiative Grant

Pat O’Brien

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced this week that the East Bay Regional Park District’s Green Transportation Initiative has been awarded $10.2 million as part of its Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER II) grant program.
TIGER II grants were awarded nationwide with over 1000 applications totaling $20 billion competing for $600 million in available funding.  DOT officials congratulated the Park District for being one of the agencies – the only in Northern California — to receive the funds. The Park District’s application focused on completing critical gaps in its expansive nearly 200-mile paved regional trail system that connects communities, schools, employment centers and transportation hubs.
“We’re very pleased with this important award,” said Park District General Manager Pat O’Brien. “The Park District began developing this integrated network of paved trails in the 1970s, and we’ve seen the use of these trails just explode with the population growth over the past several decades for both commuting and recreational purposes. With this grant, we will be able to expedite closing critical gaps in the Green Transportation network, providing a real boon to those who live and work in the East Bay.” Read more

Gala Celebration Honors Founders of Lorraine Hansberry Theater

By Tanya Dennis

Left to right: Ted Lange, Valerie Coleman, Jerri Lange, Michael Lange and John Wesley.

Quentin Easter, Executive Director, and Stanley E. Williams, Artistic Director, were co-founders of the Lorraine Hansberry Theater, which for the past 30 years were the bright lights of African-American drama in San Francisco.
Easter died after a short illness in April, and  Williams, his partner, followed a scant three months later.  The two lights that had lit the Lorraine Hansberry stage were extinguished.  On Saturday, Oct. 16, their lights merged into one at the St Francis Westin, “BRAVO, Thirty-Years” fund-raising gala, hosted to keep their beloved and beleaguered theater open.
Former KRON reporter and anchor at KGO and CNN Valerie Coleman Morris, author of a new book “Mind Over Money Matters,” emceed the gala affair. Attendees were treated to a step-show by Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity – CSU East Bay and Les Bantu, an African Dance company.  Actors Glen Turman and John Wesley shared their experiences and involvement with African American theater and how it created an intricate thread forever woven into the American theater experience. Read more