February , 2019

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Kicks Off National Child Passenger Safety Week September 19-25   Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will ...
From: Marc Mauer The Sentencing Project We applaud the bipartisan introduction of the ...
Hear Haidle discuss the play with Kauffman at the October 13 Artist Encounter ...
CHICAGO, IL – To share their sentiments on the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment ...
By Rev. Harold E. Bailey   Newt Gingrich, who is presently front-runner of Republican candidates for the ...
Los Angeles, CA (BlackNews.com) -- Rapper Snoop Dogg has announced that he is ...
Illinois State Representative Christian Mitchell (D-26th) will hold a Community Meeting to inform the public ...
Clergy deliver 50,000 petitions to Quinn on “Advocacy Day”   By Chinta Strausberg Saying they are tired ...

Archive for October 5th, 2012

Lawmakers demand action from former Village Voice Execs

Posted by Admin On October - 5 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS
Vow to hold successor of Village Voice Media accountable for deliberately avoiding the elimination of Backpage.com’s “adult entertainment” page
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John Cornyn (R-TX), Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Daniel Akaka (D-HI) today wrote to Scott Tobias, CEO of the newly formed Voice Media Group, Inc.  The Voice Media Group is set to acquire most assets currently owned by Village Voice Media Holdings, LLC, with the exception of Backpage.com. 
Investors and advertisers continue to disassociate from Village Voice Media assets upon the revelation its subsidiary Backpage is a major facilitator of child sex trafficking and the leading U.S. website for prostitution.  19 U.S. Senators, 51 Attorneys General, dozens of human rights organizations, clergy members and citizens have called for Village Voice Media to do the right thing and eliminate the “adult entertainment” section of Backpage. Instead, executives chose to avoid the public relations disaster Backpage rightly caused by opening other Village Voice Media holdings. 
Senators Kirk, Blumenthal, Rubio, Cornyn, Durbin and Akaka expressed their disappointment in the lack of action these executives took to end the sexual exploitation of minors on Backpage and insisted the executives “take the steps necessary to terminate the prostitution advertising on Backpage.”  The Senators affirmed they would “continue to hold any current or former Village Voice Media subsidiaries and related successor corporate structures accountable until such action has been achieved.”
Referencing a September Associated Press article, the Senators wrote: “You were recently quoted as saying ‘Backpage has been a distraction … to the core (editorial) properties.’  We are dismayed that you view child slavery as merely a ‘distraction’ from the publishing business.”   The full text of the letter can be found here.
In September 2011, 51 Attorneys General wrote to Backpage.com calling on it to follow the lead of Craigslist.com and shut down the “adult entertainment” section of its website.  
In March 2012, 19 U.S. Senators wrote to Jim Larkin, CEO of Village Voice Media Holdings to take down “adult entertainment” ads from backpage.com. 
On April 12, 2012, Senators Kirk, Blumenthal, Rubio and Cornyn wrote a letter to 40 organizations and companies that advertised on Village Voice asking them to use their economic influence to pressure Village Voice Media to take down Backpage’s “adult entertainment” section. Several companies responded to the letter, and decided to pull advertising and ensured no new advertising with Village Voice would occur.
On April 25, 2012, Senators Kirk and Blumenthal introduced Senate Resolution 439, which called on Village Voice Media to eliminate the “adult entertainment” section of Backpage.com. 
In May 2012, Senator Kirk released a video titled “Child Sex Trafficking: The role of backpage.com” to outline the details of how Backpage enables sex trafficking in the United States. 

Cook County Court employees charged with bribery

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Two Cook County courthouse employees experienced the courtroom from a new perspective yesterday when they appeared as criminal defendants following their arrest on corruption charges for accepting money to “take care of” a traffic case in the Cook County criminal courts system, according to the Office of Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Benjamin Maldonado, 50, and Jamie Baez, 59, both of Chicago’s North Side, were each charged with one count of Felony Bribery.  Maldonado is employed as a clerk with the Cook County Circuit Court Clerk’s Office.  Baez is a former Cook County Deputy Sheriff.  Both defendants worked at the Daley Center at the time of the alleged scheme which occurred in 2010. 

The investigation began after authorities developed information about the payments, although there is no evidence that the defendants were able to unduly influence any official court action.  The investigation was conducted by the State’s Attorney’s Special Prosecutions Bureau with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 

 “Any public employee who believes that corruption is a part of their job description had better stand up and take notice,” Alvarez said.  “We will continue to actively investigate these cases and hold public employees responsible for this type of unacceptable and illegal activity.”

According to prosecutors, Maldonado and Baez engaged in a scheme in which they accepted $2,000 from a man who was seeking legal representation after being charged with driving without a license.   According to prosecutors, the victim and his wife had had previous dealings with Baez and they  contacted him for a legal referral in the case. 

According to prosecutors, Baez referred the couple to Maldonado and represented that he was an “excellent” attorney who could assist with the traffic court case.  The victim’s wife then contacted Maldonado, who is not a licensed attorney, and he agreed to help with the case in exchange for $2,000.  Maldonado met with the couple and indicated that he would appear in court on the man’s behalf and showed them court paperwork related to the traffic case. He boasted that they should consider the case “won” and told the couple he would also use his connections to “clear up” the man’s driving record.  The couple paid Maldonado $1,000 in cash at that first meeting.  According to prosecutors, Maldonado later met Baez and gave him a cash payment of $500.

When the next court date arrived, the couple met Maldonado in the basement of Daley Center where they paid the remaining $1,000. Maldonado then left and the man went to wait at the courtroom where his case was scheduled to be heard.  Maldonado never showed up in the courtroom and the man was told he would was going to be sentenced to jail for his offenses. The couple then contacted Maldonado again to express their concerns. 

Several days later when they spoke again, Maldonado claimed that he had “fixed everything” and that the man would not be required to show up on the next court date. 

Following Maldonado’s advice, the man did not attend his next court date. Five days later, a Chicago Police Officer came to the couple’s home with a warrant for the man’s arrest.  His wife told the officer that her husband wasn’t home but their attorney had told them he didn’t have to come to court.  The wife than went to Maldonado’s workplace to confront him and he filled out additional paperwork that he indicated would “take care” of the man’s arrest warrant. 

After returning home, the woman received an angry call from Baez telling her not to tell anyone that she had paid them to help with the traffic case. He also told her they were already doing her a favor by only charging her $2,000 and that her complaints would get them in trouble.

The next day, the couple returned to the Daley Center where they met Maldonado and went to a courtroom on the 4th floor. Before entering, Maldonado told the husband to refer to him as his translator and not his attorney.  He also told him to tell the judge he had missed court because he was visiting his sick mother.  During the appearance, the witness was granted a continuance date until the next month.

After court Maldonado informed the couple that the trial strategy was to stall the case until the summer when the Cook County Jail would be at full capacity and unable to accept the man for a traffic conviction.

Several weeks later the man was again arrested for driving without a license. When he appeared in bond court he learned that Maldonado had also not “fixed” his driving history as promised when his record still showed four prior convictions.

The public is reminded that charging documents contain allegations that are not evidence of guilt. The defendants are entitled to a fair trial at which the state has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Rainbow PUSH Coalition honors Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr. with 71st Birthday Star-Studded Celebration Broadcast

Posted by Admin On October - 5 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS
CHICAGO, IL – The Rainbow PUSH Coalition will honor its founder, the Rev. Jesse Louis Jackson, Sr., with  a 71st Birthday Star-Studded Celebration Broadcast on Saturday, October 6, 2012, 930 East 50th Street, Chicago.
Jackson will be honored by constituents from around the world during a birthday breakfast at 8 a.m. where his commitment to civil rights will be highlighted.
Immediately following at 9:30a.m., the Rainbow PUSH Coalition welcomes all to attend the star- studded Saturday morning broadcast featuring sitcom creators/stars Marlon and Shawn Wayans, of the comedic Wayans Family, special video tributes from the likes of legendary Stevie Wonderand many others, spirited remarks from television intellectual Judge Greg Mathis and clergy notable, Fr. Michael Pfleger and other surprise guests, an-awe-inspiring performance by renowned Jazz stylist Joan Collaso and emceed by NBC-5, former news anchor, Art Norman.

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District staff help improve CPS students’ reading skills

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Participation in Working in the School program enters 10th year


For the past nine years, staff from the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) have descended upon Peabody School, 1444 West Augusta, Chicago, to read, provide one-on-one tutoring and mentor second and third grade students for an hour every Wednesday. The 10th year is now underway, and about two dozen MWRD staff have once again volunteered to forego their lunch breaks to help out students in need.

The Working in the School (WITS) Power Lunch Program promotes literacy and receives strong support from the MWRD Board of Commissioners.

“We feel that this is a very worthwhile endeavor,” said Commissioner Cynthia M. Santos, Chairman of the Committee on Pension, Human Resources and Civil Service. “Our staff have a very positive experience, they build strong relationships with their students, and they enjoy watching the progression of improvement in the students’ reading abilities.”

The WITS bus picks up volunteers at the MWRD’s main office complex in downtown Chicago on Wednesdays, takes them to the school, and returns them to the office by 1 p.m. Two District employees are assigned to one student; the staff member rotates every other week.

“The MWRD volunteers are an invaluable resource to the students of Peabody Elementary,” said Morgan O’Neil, WITS organizer. “The one-on-one reading support they provide cannot be duplicated in the classroom where the ratio of students to teachers is sometimes 30 to one.”

More information about the WITS program can be found at www.witschicago.org.


Illinois Tollway to host a free Construction Careers Expo

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The Illinois Tollway is hosting a free 2012 Roadwork Ahead: Construction Careers Expo to help promote diversity in skilled and construction trades. Construction trade unions, local training partners and other community organizations will be available to answer questions and provide information on how to get started in a roadway construction career.

The 2012 Roadwork Ahead: Construction Careers Expo will be held Thursday, October 18, 2012, at Prairie State College – Business and Community Education Center, 202 South Halsted Street, in Chicago Heights, IL.

The 2012 Roadwork Ahead: Construction Careers Expo will link people interested in construction careers with trade unions, training partners and community organizations and provide information on skills needed to work for unions and companies participating in upcoming Illinois Tollway projects.  The Expo will begin with a presentation from the Chicago and Cook County Building Trades Council on skills needed to qualify for membership in various construction unions. Workshops on construction career education options, women in construction and the Tollway’s Earned Credit Program and Training Partners also will be available. For more information or to register, please visit the “Doing Business” section on the Illinois Tollway’s website www.illinoistollway.com.  Pre-registration closes at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, October 16.

The Illinois Tollway’s $12 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future, will improve mobility, relieve congestion, reduce pollution, create as many as 120,000 jobs and link economies across the Midwest region.  Move Illinois will address the remaining needs of the existing Tollway system; rebuild and widen the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) as a state-of-the-art 21st century corridor; construct a new interchange to connect the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) to I-57; build a new, all-electronic Elgin O’Hare Western Access and fund planning studies for the Illinois Route 53/120 Extension and the Illiana Expressway.

About the Illinois Tollway

The Illinois Tollway is a user-fee system that receives no state or federal funds for maintenance and operations. The agency maintains and operates 286 miles of interstate tollways in 12 counties in Northern Illinois, including the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88), the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355), the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) and the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80).

Prominent entrepreneurs share business tips at Women’s Business Development Center’s Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference

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CHICAGO, IL – “You can never know too many smart people.”  “Go with your gut, and don’t be afraid to ignore advice you don’t agree with.”  “How you deal with failure determines how you deal with success.”

Those pearls of wisdom were among scores of business tips delivered by Christie Hefner, Laura Ricketts, Sue Bhatia and Richelle Shaw at the Women’s Business Development Center’s (WBDC) 26th Annual Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference held September 20 at Chicago’s McCormick Place-West.

The women were panelists at the 26th Annual Women’s Forum Breakfast, moderated by Chicago Sun-Times syndicated financial columnist and best-selling author Terry Savage. Hefner is executive chairman, Canyon Ranch Enterprises and former CEO, Playboy Enterprises; Ricketts serves as director of Chicago Cubs Major League Baseball and chairman of the board, Chicago Cubs; Bhatia, CEO of Rose International, Inc., is one of the largest certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) companies in the country; and Shaw is CEO, RTS Publishing, LLC and, at one time, the only female African American public utility owner in the nation.

Lisa Price, founder of the multi-million-dollar company Carol’s Daughter (lovingly named after her mother), headquartered in New York, NY, delivered an inspirational address at the 26th Annual Hall of Fame Awards Luncheon, where the WBDC honored successful female entrepreneurs as well as supporters of women’s economic development, including: Cassandra Sanford, CEO, KellyMitchell Group, 26th Annual Entrepreneurial Woman of the Year; Heather Sanderson, president, Overture Premiums & Promotions LLC, 26th Annual Entrepreneurial Woman of the Year – WBE Success; Danielle Hrzic, president and co-founder, Gourmet Gorilla; 26th Annual Entrepreneurial Woman of the Year – Rising Star; Joset B. Wright, president, National Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc. (NMSDC), and Pamela Prince-Eason, president & CEO, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), 26th Annual Advocacy Awards; and Allstate Insurance Company, 26th Annual Corporate Support Award.

The Conference also featured the Women’s Business & Buyers Mart, the oldest business opportunities fair for WBEs in the country; Contract Connections, pre-arranged, one-on-one meetings between certified WBEs and corporate and government purchasing decision-makers; and several workshops and roundtable discussions with practical advice from business experts. The event concluded with a Get Down to Business Networking Reception.

For more information about the WBDC, please visit www.WBDC.org or call (312) 853-3477.

Urban Soul Singer John Butler announces Tribute to America

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When I See America, I See Love – Urban Soul Singer John Butler announces Tribute to America


Proving that America is all about love, John Butler announces a new chapter in his music career, with a special focus on ‘Cause Music’.


Chantilly, VA – For over twenty five years, Urban Soul Music has been dominated by the name John Butler. Following a multi-award winning career, the acclaimed singer/songwriter is today announcing the reinvention of himself, with a stronger focus on the concept of ‘Cause Music’.

To kick-off this new chapter, Butler has recently announced his own special tribute to America, titled ‘When I See America, I See Love’.

“My new composition reminds us all of what America is really about – Love,” says Butler, whose new song conveys the rich urban texture and styling of Stevie Wonder and the late Donnie Hathaway.

He continues, “It has been composed and arranged with choir harmonies and musical inflections that intend to touch the heart and soul of every listener.”

The original composition was composed and produced as a partnership between John Butler and Antonio Girley.

“Being a citizen of America is an honor. My new song implies that America is a place with flowers on the trees, beauty, peace and love. It doesn’t matter how we differ in our beliefs; we still come together as one to love one another,” Butler adds.

Those looking to see Butler perform live can catch him on one of the following dates:

  • October 6th, Spirit of Washington, 10:30AM cruise
  • October 20th, Spirit of Washington, 10:30Am cruise

For more information, please visit Butler’s official website: http://www.johnbutler.us

He can also be found on social media.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/JohnButlerofUS/453693804682954

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/johnbutlerofus

About John Butler

Born with the name of John Alvin Butler in the United States of America. A native of New Orleans, LA. A multi-award winning international recording artist.

John Butler has built a worldwide fan base thanks to phenomenal live performances, national television exposure, loyal enthusiastic fans and aggressive marketing and merchandising campaigns.

His masterful vocal work has been the driving forces behind his successful career. He has won numerous industry awards.

Dr. John Butler actively tours the US and abroad speaking on topics to enhance the mindsets of millions on winning in life.


John Butler



Foundation honors Tyler Perry, Dwight Howard, Usher, Kristie Alley, Romeo Miller & Nick Cannon for inspiring the next generation

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The Annual Let The Kids Grow Foundation Black Tie Celebrity Dinner celebrates the Inspiring of the Next Generation with 2012 Honorees

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — The Let The Kids Grow Foundation will honor several honorees for their hard work, struggle and success at its Annual Let The Kids Grow Foundation Black Tie Celebrity Dinner.

The Let The Kids Grow Foundationis is a non-profit organization whose mission is to develop youth and their families through out-of-school time and family strengthening programs in their communities. Founder Percy Miller has discovered a way to help keep inner city youth off the streets away from drugs and gang violence by providing a safe haven for kids to express themselves with positive energy through music, film and dance. The foundation also offers an after-school program where the kids have access to academic support and guidance counseling.

2012 honorees (including Tyler Perry, Dwight Howard, Usher, Kirstie Alley, Romeo Miller and Nick Cannon), will be honored for their hard work, struggle and success, which inspires the next generation.

The organization promotes healthy relationships, provide valuable life experiences through performing arts, film, photography, field trips and strengthen families through activities that encourage family education and togetherness. Their goal is to help kids and their families break negative cycles, have the power of vision and to follow their dreams, giving youth a safe haven and the opportunity to grow and develop a positive future.

For more information, visit www.LetTheKidsGrow.org


Chicagoans protest the 11th Anniversary of the War in Afghanistan

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On the 11th Anniversary of the War in Afghanistan, Chicagoans will protest at a rally Sunday, October 7th, 2012, 3:00 p.m., at the Tribune Tower/Pioneer Court, 435 N. Michigan Ave., in Chicago.

Peace activists will gather at Tribune Towers for a march to the Obama Campaign Headquarters and Boeing Corporation offices to raise their demands: 

End the War in Afghanistan!

No New Wars!

Stop FBI Repression of Anti-War Activists!

Money for Jobs, Education and Health Care, NOT FOR WAR!

Speakers to include:

Buddy Bell, Voices for Creative Non Violence & Gay Liberation Network

Hatem Abudayyeh, Committee Against Political Repression & U.S. Palestinian Community Network

Malik Mujahid, Muslim Peace Coalition

Sarah Chambers, Chicago Teachers Union

Kait McIntyre, Students for a Democratic Society


8th Day Center for Justice, American Friends Service Committee, American Muslim Alliance Mid-West, American Muslim Task Force on Civil Rights and Elections Illinois, Chicago Area Peace Action, Committee Against Political Repression, Gay Liberation Network, Oak Park Coalition for Truth & Justice, and US Palestinian Community Network.

In explaining why this march is taking place, Pat Hunt of Chicago Area Peace Action stated, “68,000 US Soldiers are still in Afghanistan.  We want them home now.”

The cost to US taxpayers of the War in Afghanistan is estimated at more than $550 billion dollars. Sarah Chambers, a leader in the Chicago Teachers Union, will march with the peace movement because, “War dollars are being taken from our communities, bleeding the country economically at a time where there are severe budget cuts, schools are threatened with closing, and vital social services are being shut down.”

Hatem Abudayyeh, a leader in the Palestinian community in Chicago and a target of the FBI and US Attorney’s office in Chicago, explained he will be marching because, “I and 22 other activists have had our lives turned upside down for almost two years by a grand jury investigation aimed at our constitutional right to criticize our government’s actions.”

Buddy Bell of Voices for Creative Non Violence, “The war in Afghanistan has become an afterthought with our current presidential candidates.  Meanwhile, two thousand Americans have died, and thousands of innocent Afghans continue to be killed.  In addition, thousands of Pakistanis have died from drone strikes and the war continues to rage on.”  Bell visited Afghanistan this past year and is preparing for another trip.

The protest will also oppose the threats of new wars, highlighted by recent threats by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to attack Iran, which have received backing from the US; and Turkey’s shelling of Syrian positions this week.

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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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