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Archive for November 8th, 2011

State Rep. LaShawn K. Ford files Resolution in Springfield about Occupy Movement

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on State Rep. LaShawn K. Ford files Resolution in Springfield about Occupy Movement


Chicago lawmaker says the State Movement for Economic Justice is free speech


Springfield, IL – Illinois State Rep. La Shawn K. Ford filed a Resolution in the Illinois
House of Representatives expressing support for “the peaceful exercise of First Amendment Rights” by people across the state engaged in the Occupy protests. The resolution reaffirms what the First Amendment of the United States Constitution explicitly protects:  “freedom of speech” and “the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

“This is a statewide movement from all walks of life,” Ford said, “there are young people and seniors, teachers and veterans, all protesting the economic crisis that has destroyed families and whole communities.”

Ford agrees with housing advocates who say that banks and brokerage firms have to be held accountable for putting in jeopardy the lives and fortunes of millions of Illinoisans. He said that legislators must take stronger measures to keep people in their homes.

“Lawmakers in D.C. and in Springfield must deliver relief to families in Illinois just as they did to Wall Street,” he told the Chicago protesters. “The Occupy movement will help legislators stay focused on helping families who are losing their homes. This is a new sit-in movement.”

First elected to his 8th district seat in 2006, Ford represents several West Side neighborhoods hit hard by the economic collapse, including Austin, Berwyn, Riverside, Forest Park, Oak Park, LaGrange and Brookfield. He said that he and his House colleagues have seen their communities decimated by a high number of foreclosures,
evictions and underwater mortgages.

The preamble to the Resolution speaks directly to these issues. The foreclosure rate in Illinois is the 9th worst in the country, and the rate in Cook County is worse still, at 1 of every 357 units. Nearly 45% of mortgages in Chicago are currently underwater.

“The Occupy protestors in Illinois have been peaceful, thoughtful and respectful,” Ford continued, “They deserve our recognition.”

“I live in a relatively affluent northern suburb,” said Stephen F. Eisenman, a professor at Northwestern University in Evanston, and a regular Occupy protester, “and even here the economic toll has been bad.  People can’t sell their houses and the banks won’t refinance
them — even people with jobs are afraid to spend and insecurity is growing.”

The resolution recognizes the hardships experienced by the people of Illinois and their right to protest.

On October 26, 2011, Ford asked the House assembly for a moment of silence to recognize the “march for justice” taking place by Occupy Chicago protestors. The request brought a rebuke from Representative Rosemary Mulligan (R) who stated that the Occupy people “are homeless people that have nowhere else to go” and “some of them are very strange people” and that they should not be honored.

Occupy Chicago was holding a march on October 26 on behalf of Scott Olsen, a Iraq war veteran seriously injured by police while peacefully protesting at Occupy Oakland.

A vote is expected this week. It will have to be voted on before the conclusion of the veto session on Thursday, November 10.


WHEREAS, The people of Illinois are suffering from an ongoing economic
crisis that threatens their health, wealth and security, and

WHEREAS, Occupy movements in Illinois are supported by people of all
trades and occupations, from school teachers to military veterans, who
are stirred to protest economic injustice by the examples of the
Occupy Wall Street movement in New York City and the numerous other
Occupy protests across the country; and

WHEREAS, In Illinois, the unemployment rate is 10% (numbering more
than 660,000 people), the poverty rate is more than 14% (1.8 million
people), and the rate of people living in extreme poverty (income less
than $11,000 for a family of four) is nearly 7% (680,000 people); and

WHEREAS, The average after-tax household income of the top 1% of the
United States population grew by 275% between 1979 and 2007, and the
average after-tax household income of the lowest 20% of the United
States population grew by just 18% in that same period; and

WHEREAS, The top 1% of income earners control 40% of the wealth in the
United States; and

WHEREAS, The foreclosure rate in Illinois last month was the ninth
worst in the country (1 of every 463 units), the rate in Cook County
was even worse (1 of 357 units), and nearly 45% of the mortgage loans
on Chicago homes are “underwater”, that is, the amount of the home
mortgage loan exceeds the value of the home; and

WHEREAS, The cost of the foreclosure crisis to Illinois taxpayers in
2012 is expected to reach $12 billion, blighting whole communities
with decreased police and fire protection, higher crime rates, less
access to health care, poorer schools, deteriorated infrastructure,
diminished recreation services, reduced library services, and park closures or reduced park hours; and

WHEREAS, People of all ages (from young adults to seniors) and
backgrounds, individuals from all Chicago neighborhoods, and persons
who live in the suburbs, downstate cities, and rural areas are
lawfully protesting the failures of Wall Street, the subsequent
economic crisis, and the failure to address the needs of 99% of the
population; therefore, be it

Resolved, by the House of Representatives of the Ninety-Seventh General Assembly of the State of Illinois, that we recognize the hardships experienced by the people of Illinois as a result of the economic injustices and we stand in support of the continued peaceful exercise of First Amendment rights by Occupy protesters.

Interfaith clergy gives support to Justice Joy Cunningham for Illinois Supreme Court race

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on Interfaith clergy gives support to Justice Joy Cunningham for Illinois Supreme Court race


By Chinta Strausberg


Scores of ministers and religious leaders recently gave their strong support to Illinois Supreme Court Justice candidate Joy Cunningham who they say will make history on March 20, 2012 when she becomes the first African American woman elected to the state’s High Court.

The Interfaith coalition was impressed with Cunningham’s party independence. Cunningham told the ministers when she first ran for the Illinois Appellate judgeship one of the Democratic ward committee told her “It’s not your time yet.”

That didn’t stop Cunningham who ran and won that election. She has the same passion, energy and drive to run for the Illinois Supreme Court and plans to once again make history.

In introducing Justice Cunningham, Marcus D. Jefferson, president/CEO of the SRB Financial Services, Inc., praised her ability to rise above challenges including gender barriers and achieve her goals.

In addressing the ministers, Cunningham explained, “the judicial branch is the safety net for the other two branches of government.”

She said the Supreme Court “is the third branch of government that provides a safety net for our population.

“That is why it is important to know who you are putting on the court,” she said. “It’s really important to have people on the court who reflect the make-up of your community. There has never been an African American woman on the Illinois Supreme Court. Never,” Justice Cunningham said not in 193 years.  She said the Supreme Court “is the ultimate safety net for the entire judicial system and therefore for the community….”

The Justice told the ministers that the term for an Illinois Supreme Court justice is 10-years and there are seven justices that sit on that High Court. Three justices are elected from the First District in Cook County and one each from the remaining four districts. Cunningham is running in the First District, which is entirely located in Cook County.

Currently of the seven Justices, only one, Charles E. Freeman, is African American. There are three women. Of the seven, there are four Democrats, Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride, Freeman, Mary Jane Theis and Anne M. Burke, the wife of Ald. Edward Burke (14th). There are three Republicans, Robert R. Thomas, Rita B. Garman and Lloyd A Karmeier.

“You have to have people on the court…who understand the common experience of our community,” said Cunningham. “This is not necessarily saying that you’re going to rule one way or another. I truly believe that if you come from a common experience you look at the cases with…a different set of eyes.” And, that she did.

Justice Cunningham earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the City University. Following in the footsteps of her older sister and her mother, Cunningham became a registered nurse. However, when she came to Chicago, she worked nights as a nurse and went to John Marshall Law School in the day. Cunningham earned her law degree from the John Marshall Law School in 1982.

After achieving that goal, she also served as an Assistant Illinois Attorney General and as a Judicial Clerk to the late Illinois Appellate Justice Glenn Johnson whom she said was one of her mentors.

 But, Cunningham didn’t stop there. She kept reaching for her stars including serving as Associate General Counsel for Loyola University of Chicago and Loyola University health System, a litigator with the law firm of French, Rogers, Kezelis & Kominiarek.

A high achiever, Cunningham was also elected President of the Chicago Bar Association from 2004-2005.  She was the first African American woman to lead the nation’s largest municipal Bar Association. She also served on the Board of Directors for the Chicago Bar Foundation, the Center for Conflict Resolution and the Center for Disability and Elder Law as well as the Chicago Legal Clinic.

Cunningham became a Cook County Circuit Court judge where she enjoyed diverse assignments including jury trials. Cunningham was admitted to practice law before the Illinois, New York, Federal and the Federal Trial Bars.

She went on to be senior vice president, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for the Northwestern Memorial system, which includes the Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the Northwestern Memorial Foundation.

Justice Cunningham has authored professional publications and is a member of a number of professional and civic associations including the American Bar Association, the Chicago Bar Association, the Cook County Bar Association and the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois.

Having been recognized for her outstanding volunteer service to a number of community and civic organizations, Justice Cunningham has been praised by the Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, the Constitutional Rights Foundation, and the Chicago Association for the Education of Young Children and the March of Dimes.

She is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago and the Chicago network, and she is a professional marathon runner. Cunningham lives in Chicago with her son and husband.

“I am the most qualified” in the race, she told a cheering audience. Cunningham has been reviewed by every single bar association with the Chicago Bar Association finding “highly qualified.”

 “It’s very important for you to have not only your first female African American justice but the first one that is highly qualified. I think that puts us in a very strong position,” she said.

Asking for their support, Cunningham said, “I am running because it is important to have diversity on the court….” “It’s not just for me. This is bigger than me. This is for us. It’s for our children, for others…so we can have role models and we can go on to do what the Constitution says that we’re entitled to…. This is for our community, for our children and our grandchildren.”

She explained that when there is a vacancy on the high court, a judge will be appointed to that position and usually that person has no opposition because no one wants to take on the system.

Rev. Mitchell L. Johnson, assistant pastor of the Joy Fellowship Baptist Church in Lansing and husband of Cook County Judge Sharon Johnson, who quoted a saying from Bishop Claude Porter, who heads the Proviso-Leyden Council for Community Action, Inc. (PLCCA), said: “What God has for, it’s for you.” “If you run in a household of faith as my wife did, then that is who elects you,” said Johnson.

“We have given away County seats. Praise the Lord and tell the truth….” Johnson said when his wife ran for judgeship “she did not get the support of the machine because my wife was not a machine candidate. We didn’t get the support of the city because my wife was not a city candidate, but Bishop Porter took it to their clergy; so this (Cunningham) is our sister and a saint…

“At the end of the day, this is a new day,” said Johnson. “This is the day the Lord has made and we want to rejoice and be glad in it by working for our candidate not just showing up for breakfast but by working for our candidates because faith without works is dead” and challenged his peers to “stand behind this worthwhile candidate.”

Echoing Johnson’s sentiments, Bishop John Rodgers, pastor of the New Life in Christ, 740 E.91st Place, Chicago, IL, said the time has come for unity to prevail. He promised his full support in electing Justice Cunningham.

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

Be 'Spiritually Careful' Regarding President Barack Obama

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on Be 'Spiritually Careful' Regarding President Barack Obama

We should be careful not to conflict with the will of God

By Rev. Harold E. Bailey

It has been said more than a few times that whoever wishes to sit as President of the United States, must have ‘a calling’ or perhaps a problem in the head!

With all of the troubles resting on the president’s mind on a daily basis, it’s enough to throw him mentally going and coming, and with little or no rest to stabilize the thinking.

Surely, at present, President Obama probably ponders and wonders about the mind of the previous President Bush whose mess he inherited, in addition to other matters of importance that cross his desk daily. I pray that God will help our president to merely stand the test of time.

With racial slurs raising their ugly head, unlike the tenure of any other president – Republicans and the Tea Party fighting against him, Democrats splitting ranks and fighting among themselves, the rich fighting to remain exempt from paying taxes, and the poor becoming poorer and crying for help… what is an African-American President to do? Present circumstances are as never before in the history of this country and now rest on the back of this Black Man – A Black President!

There are those who itch for war simply because they have invested gains, while others just don’t care for the color of his skin!

There has to be a spiritual fiber here; for if in-fact President Obama was chosen by God for this United States Mission, the question ought to be, can God keep him in this position of power? Is there anything too hard for God? The answer is no: There is nothing too hard for God!

The scripture commands that we pray for those who have the rule over us, or was that page torn from the scriptures? I was taught that prayer can change the condition of a man’s heart, or is this to apply for racists?

Whatever President Obama does, there is going to be a challenge whether from the left or the right.

Be Careful: I warn the people-of-the-world, that if God has His hands on President Barack Obama, and if God is ordering his steps, we should be careful not to conflict with the will of God.

Careful: If God be for you, He becomes more than the entire world against you. Amen.

The Bible: Touch not my anointed and do him no harm.

Obey your leaders and act under their authority. They are watching over you, because they are responsible for your souls. Obey them so that they will do this work with joy, not sadness. It will not help you to make their work sad. Hebrews 13:17.

Rev. Harold E. Bailey is Founder & President of Probation Challenge, Inc. and the PCC Internet Broadcast Network. WWW.ProbationChallenge.Org – ‘The Truth Network’

G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program unites with the Confidence Coalition to promote self-esteem and confidence among girls and women

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program unites with the Confidence Coalition to promote self-esteem and confidence among girls and women


G.U.R.L.S. Rock expands nationally and announces U.S. cities to host 2012 Leadership Summits for Girls of Color


G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program is acting in unity with the Confidence Coalition to support girls and women in building positive experiences and confidence. “We are honored to join the Coalition, which includes such prestigious members as Geena Davis’ Institute on Gender in Media, Girl Scouts of the USA, The White House Project, CARE International, and others,” said Dr. Raye Mitchell, CEO of the G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program.

Oakland, CA (BlackNews.com) — The G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program, an initiative of The Making a New Reality Foundation, founded by Dr. Raye Mitchell, is pleased to announce that it is a proud new member of the Confidence Coalition – a conscientious movement established to mobilize the many organizations, companies and individuals that promote self-esteem and confidence among girls and women.

“We are excited to contribute to the mission and purpose of the Confidence Coalition by hosting a G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Summit for girls of color in at least nine new cities throughout the U.S. in 2012,” said Dr. Mitchell. “In addition to the summits to be held in Northern California/San Francisco Bay Area,” the new host cities will include Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New Orleans, New York City, and Washington, D.C.” (event dates and venues to be announced)

The Confidence Coalition is an international movement that enables women and girls to stand up to peer pressure and media stereotypes; say “no” to risky behaviors and abusive relationships; and put an end to relational aggression, such as bullying – on the playground and in the office.

“We are thrilled to be a part of such a forward thinking group that celebrates unity and sisterhood,” said Mitchell. “We look forward to working with the Coalition and members to deliver a bold and engaging program that empowers women and girls.”
As it expands to support the Confidence Coalition and its members throughout the U.S. and international community, G.U.R.L.S. Rock invites local and national organizations, companies and community leaders to join the movement to build confidence in women and girls, and support girls as future global leaders. To learn more about the Confidence Coalition, visit www.confidencecoalition.org. To learn more about G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program and how to become a community partner, corporate sponsor or individual faculty member or participant in one or more of the 2012 G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Summits across the country, visit www.GurlsRock.org.


Established in 2009, the Confidence Coalition is an alliance that brings together 50 organizations and companies and many individuals committed to building confidence in girls and women. The Confidence Coalition envisions a world of confident girls and women who embrace the belief that they can achieve anything, and consistently achieve their own expectations. The Confidence Coalition is possible through the generous support of the Kappa Delta Foundation, the funding arm of Kappa Delta Sorority. With nearly 230,000 members, Kappa Delta is a proven leader in promoting confidence in women and girls. Kappa Delta’s values, educational and leadership development programs, community-service efforts, and national partnerships are focused on promoting confidence in women and girls. www.confidencecoalition.org
Founded in 2010 by practicing attorney-turned-social entrepreneur Dr. Raye Mitchell, G.U.R.L.S. Rock Leadership Program is a global leadership-training initiative of The Making a New Reality Foundation, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. As a social entrepreneur program celebrating the importance of girls and girls of color as the next generation of global leaders, Oakland, California-based G.U.R.L.S. Rock has a different approach to supporting the growth and development of girls of color ages 8 to 18. “G.U.R.L.S.” stands for Growth, Unity, Respect, Leadership, Success. To learn more about G.U.R.L.S. Rock, please visit www.GurlsRock.org and www.fb.com/GurlsRockPower on Facebook.
“Dr. Raye” is the social entrepreneur-founder of The Making a New Reality Foundation. She is a recipient of a Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from Congresswoman Barbara Lee and a Certificate of Recognition from California Legislature Assembly for “Demonstrating Leadership in the Support of the Development of Girls.” Dr. Raye Mitchell is a Harvard Law School graduate; graduate of the USC Marshall School of Business and Consortium for Graduate Study in Management Fellow; recipient of the Jefferson Award for Public Service; and recently named Woman Entrepreneur of the Year by the Women’s Initiative. www.rayemitchell.com.

ISBE Chair visits Benito Juarez Community Academy receiving School Improvement Grant (SIG) funds

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on ISBE Chair visits Benito Juarez Community Academy receiving School Improvement Grant (SIG) funds

Federal Funds target lowest performing schools


Springfield, IL –Illinois State Board of Education Chairman Gery J. Chico and State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch will visit Benito Juarez Community Academy in City of Chicago Public Schools District 299 on Tuesday, Nov. 8. Juarez is among the 20 schools in 10 districts across the state that have been awarded a combined $108 million in federal School Improvement Grant (SIG) funds in Fiscal Year 2011 and 2012. The grants, awarded through a competitive application and review process, aim to help improve student achievement at some of the lowest performing schools in the state.

Chico will visit and tour the school from 1:30 to 3;30 p.m.  Benito Juarez Community Academy is located at  1450-1510 W. Cermak, Chicago, IL,

The Better Business Bureau offers tips for finding holiday jobs

Posted by Admin On November - 8 - 2011 Comments Off on The Better Business Bureau offers tips for finding holiday jobs

 The Better Business Bureau Offers Tips for Finding Holiday Jobs



Chicago, IL – Job hunters may get an early present this year as retailers look to increase the number of hires during the holiday season. Competition for these jobs will likely be fierce, and the Better Business Bureau (BBB) recommends applying early and taking steps to put your best self forward.


“The holiday season will create a much welcome bump in the number of job openings, particularly in the retail and restaurant industry,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and northern Illinois. “While the jobs are usually temporary, this is great opportunity for struggling families and people who have had trouble finding work.”


The BBB offers the following tips for job hunters this holiday season:


Start the job search earlier rather than later. The key to landing a seasonal job is to start searching early. Retail, shipping, restaurants and catering companies are common sources of seasonal employment. Now is the time for job hunters to determine which job suits them best, identify companies they’d like to work for and then begin submitting applications and resumes. 


Research the companies to which you submit job applications. Always check out the company’s BBB Business Review for free at www.bbb.org to see if the company has received a passing grade from the BBB.


Also, never give your credit card or checking account information to an individual or business that promises employment. Legitimate employers never charge fees to prospective employees. 


Work where you shop. Try to identify seasonal employment with businesses you actually shop at or frequent. You will already be familiar with the company and its products and, secondly, discounts available for employees may mean significant savings when shopping for Christmas gifts.  


Put your best foot forward. Even if you are just picking up an application at stores in the mall, dress your best and be prepared for an interview. This includes being familiar with the company’s brand and its products. Retail job hunters in particular need to focus on impressing potential employers with their customer service skills-which is a must when dealing with stressed-out shoppers, long check-out lines and day-after-Christmas returns.  


Be flexible. Full-time employees usually have first dibs on the preferred hours and shifts, so, as a seasonal employee, expect to work long, sometimes inconvenient hours including working on Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. If this is a second job in addition to your day job, be upfront and clear with your new employer about your available hours.  


For more holiday tips you can trust, visit www.bbb.org


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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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