April , 2019

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Archive for April 30th, 2012

Rush’s vow to stop METRA on its track: ‘I’m not playing’

Posted by Admin On April - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Rush’s vow to stop METRA on its track: ‘I’m not playing’

Says Congress willing to pull all of METRA’s projects

(This article was updated April 30, 2012 at 2:52 p.m.)


 By Chinta Strausberg

To some elected officials who do not know the civil rights history of Rep. Bobby L. Rush (D-1st) and the ends he will go to on behalf of his constituents including his vow to stop METRA on its tracks if there isn’t more African American participation, Saturday Rush simply said, “I am not playing.”

Referring to this particular phase of the $133 million Englewood Flyover METRA’s project and the current controversy over the $86 million construction bid, Rush said there is only one African American contractor who has received a $112,000 subcontract.

 “This project is funded mostly by federal dollars. I will work with members of Congress who are willing to pull all of METRA’s projects out of the Transportation bill.” The dispute between Rush and METRA involves a second phase of the multi-tiered project, which totals $133 million. Rush is upset over the second phase involving a $86 million bid which includes the African American subcontractor’s $112,000 contract to handle security, which Rush says is totally unfair.

While the mayor believes Rush is simply raising the alarm over the paucity of black contractors on this project, Rush said, “ I’m not playing around.” “I am grateful for whatever support the mayor will give” to get fairness from METRA, “but, we’re not depending on the mayor’s good graces or any other person’s good graces in order to make this happen.

“There is a resolve, a growing and very vocal resolve among people in the neighborhoods who are among the unemployed and are saying we are not going to tolerate these kinds of projects anymore in this city,” said Rush referring to citywide contracts that have either no or few African American workers and/or contractors.

“We get all the dirt, the dust and the delay, then we want some of the dough, also. Cut us in or cut it out,” said Rush.

Referring to Governor Pat Quinn, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Senator Dick Durbin’s promise to help resolve this dispute, Rush said, “We’re not going to turn down their support. We hope that it is sincere, and we hope they can do all that they can to help us to force METRA to rebid this contract.

“We also know that this is not going to be done in the backroom because we’re going to have community people in the boardroom,” said Rush who called for transparency in the bidding process. Rush said he is serious about getting a fair share of contracts for African Americans on these public works projects.

Back in 1987 when Rush was alderman of the 2nd Ward, the CTA turned a deaf ear to his pleas not to tear down the 40 and Indiana El stop; so Rush hauled the agency into court. Circuit Court Judge Thomas J. O’Brien ordered a halt to the demolition. With the court order in his hand, Rush and his supporters went down to that site and stopped the demolition. Today, the 40th and Indiana site has been renovated and remains open.

While METRA spokesperson Michael Gillis told the Chicago Suntimes the bidding on this job has not been completed and that METRA did all they could to urge minority bidders to be a part of the project including holding five events in Englewood, Rush said, “METRA completely reneged. They crossed us out. They walked away from the table. They are doing something that is totally unacceptable.

“I have been working with METRA for two-years to get them to commit to opening up the process to include minorities, and they have reneged on that.  We have to now use another strategy” said Rush. 

“They walked away from the table. “How can anyone be satisfied with one African American contractor getting 0.12 percent out of a $86 million project. That’s ridiculous. That’s laughable and that’s totally unacceptable. We will change the mind of METRA,” vowed Rush. 

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.

New book: “The Whirlwind or the Storm: LA Riots Perspectives”

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On April - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on New book: “The Whirlwind or the Storm: LA Riots Perspectives”

LA riots 20th Anniversary

Los Angeles, CA (BlackNews.com) — The Whirlwind or The Storm: LA Riots Perspectives by Darryl James has been completed for release on April 27, 2012 – the twentieth anniversary of infamous 1992 acquittal and rioting, unleashing a unique history of rioting in America accompanied by viewpoints on civil unrest.

The book includes essays by Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn, Public Enemy’s Chuck D. Comedian Paul Mooney, the late Bo Taylor (founder of Unity One and organizer of the LA gang truce), “Sweet” Alice Harris (the “mother” of Watts), Pat Moore (former Compton City councilwoman), and a host of activists, politicians and average citizens as well as Henry Keith “Kee Kee” Watson, one of a group now known as The L.A. Four, prosecuted for involvement in the beating of Reginald Denny.

Award-winning author Darryl James, founder of Tenacious Books, has collected personal statements and essays on the ’92 LA Riots, culling powerful reflections on the conditions that gave birth to one of the most violent outbreaks of domestic civil unrest in recent history–The LA Riots of 1992. Those essays form the basis of the new book, The Whirlwind or The Storm: LA Riots Perspectives.

The riots affected men and women of all races, leaving citizens from every corner of the nation with a personal perspective. James brought in eyewitnesses to the events in Los Angeles in 1992, or in Watts twenty six years earlier, who have unique insight on those events.

“The LA Riots of ’92 were broadcast all over the nation and all over the world, and were felt at a feverish level,” said James. “Reading accounts of people who were there provides a sense of how a normal day unraveled as nervous tension evolved into chaos and disorder. These essays will nearly suffocate the reader with palpable authenticity.”

The Whirlwind or The Storm: LA Riots Perspectives also contains a dynamic retrospective on the 1992 Los Angeles Riots from Henry “Kee Kee” Watson, one of the group known as the LA Four, connected to the beating of Reginald Denny.

Twenty years after the LA Riots, “Kee Kee” Watson talks about beating Reginald Denny and gives an overview of the conditions that caused the two major riots of Los Angeles (1965 and 1992).

The book was published using the new eBook for Kindle technology, which is also available for personal computers. It will also be available for print on May 1. Both versions are available on Amazon.com.

The Whirlwind or The Storm: LA Riots Perspectives sells for $2.99 for the eBook and $14.99 for the physical book. For interviews or more information contact Tenacious Books at 888-501-4448 or email Darryl James at Darryl@darryljames.com.

Photo Caption: Bookcover

Fathers Incorporated announces Fred Hammond to serve as Co-National Chair and Spokesperson for “Ties Never Broken” campaign

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On April - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Fathers Incorporated announces Fred Hammond to serve as Co-National Chair and Spokesperson for “Ties Never Broken” campaign

Chris Broussard and Fred Hammond to lead the effort of the “Ties Never Broken” Blue Bow Tie Campaign

New York, NY (BlackNews.com) — Inspired by President Barack Obama’s 2010 Father’s Day address, Fathers Incorporated (FI) has launched its Ties Never Broken campaign. Fathers Incorporated, a not-for-profit organization in New York is committed to eliminating fatherlessness and increasing the commitment of men to become mentors. Over the last several months, the campaign has garnered international attention and is supported by The White House and several major urban cities. The Ties Never Broken campaign is symbolized by the social marketing icon of a “blue bow tie.”

New to the team in championing the mission of responsible fatherhood is Fred Hammond, Grammy Award and multiple award-winning performer, producer and writer. Hammond joins fellow co-spokesperson Chris Broussard, journalist and sports analyst for ESPN. “I am excited to serve in this honorable capacity of saving our children,” states Hammond. “I’ve spent my life striving to be a responsible father and man, and I find it unacceptable what’s happening to our children because of the disengagement of fathers and able bodied men.”

“For years, FI has been working in the field of responsible fatherhood, with the goal of creating effective service models to serve men,” says Kenneth Braswell, executive director of Fathers Incorporated. “Our biggest struggle in combating both father absence and the lack of viable mentors is our inability to raise the societal level of conciseness regarding the importance of responsible male involvement.”

“It is our hope to garner the support of other influential men in sports, entertainment, business and in our faith-based communities to champion our efforts. Particularly those who have played impactful fatherhood roles in television and screen, as well as those who have a passion for elevating the image of responsible fatherhood and family values,” adds co-spokesperson, Chris Broussard.

About Fred Hammond:

Fred Hammond is a multi-faceted Award-winning contemporary gospel artist, producer and musical arranger. For more than four decades, he has shared his musical gift to the world; an accolade few gospel artists can boast. As a solo artist and member of the pioneering urban group, Commissioned, he has sold more than 2 million albums. Hammond is a Grammy Award winner and multiple Stellar Award winner. He has also been nominated for every major award including the NAACP Image Award, BET Award and Dove Award. Hammond’s first love album, a double-CD set entitled, “God, Love, & Romance,” released earlier this year on January 31, 2012.

Fathers Incorporated will be engaged in several projects within the coming months including the kick-off of Fatherhood Buzz, an initiative with the National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse (NRFC) and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services in support of President Obama’s Responsible Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative. The NRFC Fatherhood Buzz is an effort to promote responsible fatherhood and disseminate parenting information to fathers, families, and the community at-large via one of the most trusted community resources for men – Barbershops. In honor of Father’s Day, seven targeted cities across the country (Atlanta, GA; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; Milwaukee, WI; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; and Washington, DC) will participate in the inaugural Fatherhood Buzz event on Saturday, June 16, 2012. FI has also teamed with the McDonald’s Gospel Fest to promote the organization’s weMentor campaign in three cities: Newark, NJ; Chicago, IL; and Philadelphia, PA.

Additional FI partnerships and initiatives include: “Power Down,” a campaign to encourage parents to acknowledge their children’s technology habits and “Rumble Young Man Rumble,” mentorship development strategies at the Muhammad Ali Center and several other activities to highlight the importance of father involvement. FI is working in partnership with ICF International, Ad Council and BLH Technologies.

For additional information and updates on the campaign, please visit www.fathersincorporated.com.

Free concert of Mexican and Polish music

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On April - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Free concert of Mexican and Polish music

The well-known Lira Singers and Cuerdas Clasicas String Ensemble will perform a concert of Mexican and Polish music on Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 4pm at St. Bruno Church, 4751 South Harding in Chicago .  Admission is free; a free-will collection will be taken.

The concert celebrates two important ethnic holidays  — Cinco de Mayo and May 3rd/Polish Constitution Day.                                                                          

The concert features the Lira Singers, the core group of the Lira Ensemble which specializes in Polish music and dance, and the Cuerdas Clasicas String Ensemble of men and women who play traditional Mexican stringed instruments as well as sing. The program includes Mexican, Polish and American folk and patriotic songs as well as Marian hymns performed by the two companies.


Reverend Antoni Bury, pastor, invites all to this concert which honors the Polish immigrants who created and built St. Bruno Church as well as the many Mexican Americans who now are parishioners.


The event is produced by the Lira Ensemble, artist-in-residence at Loyola University Chicago, and  is part of a series of Mexican/Polish performances presented by Lira since 1990. The series has been praised by audiences, community leaders, as well as critics. A reviewer in the Chicago Tribune described these joint concerts as “a joyous explosion of song and ethnic traditions” which “proves the power of music.”  The Lira Ensemble won the City of Chicago 2001 Human Relations Award for its inter-ethnic concerts with Mexican Americans, African Americans, and its outreach to American Jews – many of whom have roots in Poland . 


Mexican Americans celebrate Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May) to commemorate the Mexican victory at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862 against the French.  This was part of the Mexican fight against Napoleon’s invading armies. Polish Americans celebrate May 3rd as Polish Constitution Day to remember the signing of the Polish Constitution of May 3, 1791.  This was the second written constitution in world history, second only to the United States Constitution, on which it was partially based.


The May 3rd concert will be narrated in English by Lucyna Migala of WCEV Radio/1450am, who is co-founder, artistic director, and general manager of the Lira Ensemble.  In 2007, she received the Sor Juana Award of the National Museum of Mexican Art in recognition of her cross-cultural initiatives. The Cuerdas Clasicas String Ensemble will perform under the direction of Rodolfo Hernandez, founder of the group.  The concert will be conducted by Mina Zikri, resident conductor of the Lira Ensemble.

Admission to this Mexican-Polish concert is free, but the audience is asked to make a contribution when the free-will collection is taken. Free parking is available adjacent to the church.

The concert is funded in part by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency and the CityArts Program of the Chicago Department of Tourism and Culture.

For more information, call the Lira Ensemble at 773-508-7040.

Black author advocates business etiquette in new book

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On April - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Black author advocates business etiquette in new book

New book advocates ‘Lost Art’ of business etiquette

Sony Point, NY (BlackNews.com) — The economic downturn is sculpting a new way of doing business. The old business models revolving solely around profits margin riding on line items has run its course. There’s a new way of thinking.

In his new book, A Lost Art: Business Etiquette with Exceptional Service, New York author James E. Alston says it’s impossible to achieve business goals if one doesn’t have a satisfied, engaged workforce.

It’s such a basic concept, yet employers fly by the concept. Alston shows that if they take care of their employees, their employees will take care of their clients and guests. Businesses that accept this philosophy will prosper; the market conspires to help businesses that help people.

Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, from the publisher at www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore, or by visiting barnesandnoble.com or amazon.com.

Alston resides in Stony Point, New York. For more information, please contact Chris Coffey, marketing representative, at (888) 361-9473 or send an email to ccoffey@tatepublishing.com.

Photo Caption: Author James E. Alston and bookcover

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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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