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Archive for February 1st, 2016

Baltimore Pastor Jamal Bryant Heads to Flint to Lead Environmental Justice Water Rally

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Flint, MI – Dr. Jamal Bryant, Pastor of Empowerment Temple AME Church of Baltimore, Maryland has assembled faith leaders, civil rights leaders, attorneys and entertainers to assist the residents of Flint, Michigan as they call for justice. Attorney Benjamin Crump will join Dr. Bryant, along with Judge Joe Mathis, attorney Phaedra Parks, business mogul Russell Simmons, Rev. Jessie Jackson, and gospel artist Deitrick Hadden, just to name a few, will meet to lead in a mid-day rally called, “The Environmental Justice Rally.”

The assembled group has collected some 47,124 bottles of water. The collection of water will be distributed among six churches: First Trinity M.B. Church, 1226 Beach Street; Cathedral of Faith Church of God in Christ 6031 DuPont Street, Christopher Martin, Pastor; Quinn Chapel AME Church 2101 Lippincott Blvd, Rev. Gerald Cardwell, Pastor; United Outreach Ministries 1429 Roosevelt Ave., LeMarcus Keels, Pastor; and Kingdom of Heaven Ministries 2430 Dutcher Road.

The rally is open to the public and will began with Flint, MI Mayor, Karen Weaver giving remarks.

WHO: Rev. Jamal Bryant to leads the Environmental Justice Water For Flint Rally

WHERE: First Trinity Baptist Church, 1226 Beach St. Flint, MI 48501

WHEN: Monday, February 1, 2016, 12noon

WHAT: Environmental Justice Rally – Water Give Away for the residents of Flint

Dr. Jamal-Harrison Bryant: Minister of the New Millennium
Dr. Bryant is a pastor with a global mission. With more than 10,000 members at Empowerment Temple, located in Baltimore, Maryland, his mission is to “empower people spiritually, develop them educationally, expose them culturally, activate them politically, and strengthen them economically.” This new millennium minister is also an impassioned social activist, community developer, and cultural philanthropist.

Pastor Hunter to U.N.: “More Blacks in Slavery Today Thanks to 13th Amendment”

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Urges U.N. to fight for clause that retains slavery in U.S.

By Chinta Strausberg

Rev. Marvin G. Hunter, pastor of Grace Memorial Baptist Church, Monday asked the United Nation (U.N.) to revisit a clause in the 13th Amendment that says when a man commits a crime he reverts back to being a slave he blames on the 2 million mostly black people in prison today—more than in the height of the Civil War.

Hunter, who is also president of the Lawndale Black Chamber of Commerce and uncle of slain 17-year-old Laquan McDonald shot 16 times by Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke, told the U.N., “We have more people in slavery (prison) today than in the height of the Emancipation of Proclamation.

Hunter, who made his comments on the last of a two-day U.N. conference held at Chicago State University, said he believes one of the reasons McDonald today “is because a certain segment of the white population in this country feel they have no laws on the book for black men that a white man has to obey…which is the Dred Scott decision.”

He asked the U.N. to remove that clause claiming it would “reverse crime in America because it would reverse poverty in America. I do not believe that crime produces poverty. I believe that poverty produces crime. I believe that slavery is a direct result of the level of poverty that African American people are experiencing in this country.”

“America is the only country in the world where the poor takes care of the rich. This country was built off the backs of slaves,” Hunter reminder the U.N. members. “When slavery was so-called ended through the introduction of the Emancipation Proclamation…or Bill of Rights, the power structures of this country began to quickly come up to maintain their wealth which depended on African Americans.

“They came up with slave codes, and I believe that the words incarcerated, ex-offender, formerly incarcerated are slave codes for slaves. When an African American is in prison, he reverts back to being a slave….and considered as chattel just like in the days of slavery when slaves could be traded….

“They now trade the prison industrial complex system on the stock market, and it is so lucrative they have created schools to prison pipeline and other systems that guarantee they will fill the beds of the prison and ultimately fill the pockets of those people who are trading this system on the stock market,” Hunter said. “We are still being traded and used as slaves.”

Hunter asked the U.N. to “bring these injustices that America is hiding behind to the wall because while America is going to other countries taking presidents and kings out of power because they are calling them dictators and are abusive to their people, they are not taking care of their own people which they have a Constitutional responsibility to do.”

He said the U.S. Constitution not only includes the 13th Amendment it in but also says “we have a government that is for the people, by the people and of the people. If we can get rid of the clause that upholds slavery and is the key of maintaining slavery in this Western capitalistic system we live, I believe we can ultimately define who those people are when we say a government for the people, by the people and of the people.

“If it were really a government for the people, by the people and of the people, then the only African American president that we’ve ever had would have been able to do more for Black people,” Hunter said.

Asked about the Fraternal Order of Police contract that gives immunity to police involved shooting, Hunter said, “This is a national contract and the shootings are affecting predominately black people. “When is the last time you saw a policeman kill a white man? How many black police have you ever seen kill white people? There are disparities here.”

Hunter referred to his great-nephew, McDonald and how officer Van Dyke shot him 16 times in 15 seconds even though the youth was walking away from the police. Hunter referred to the autopsy report that clearly showed where those bullets pierced McDonald’s body.

“He didn’t get 16 shots just in the chest, in the back, the leg and the arm. One of the shots was in the top of his head. Someone stood over him and shot him in the top of his head execution style. What the media didn’t show you are that his body was run over by a car? We have the picture of his body where his torso and his hand had been run over by tire tracks.

“Did it take all of that to kill a 17-year-old kid who was walking away from you or do you feel there is not a human soul within this child and so you can treat him like you would treat him as a roach and les than you would treat a dog.

“If a dog received the same treatment that McDonald received, People for the ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) would be a over this? They haven’t said a word,” said Hunter.

Hunter said former police officer is due in court on January 29, 2016, and he believes he will plead not guilty. Hunter believes he will take a jury trial rather than a bench trial. “I will be there and will take as many people as we can. There is nothing more we can do more but show that we are vigilant and are in this America and it is not a sprint. This case can go on for two-years. We want them to know we are watching them and this was never about the money. It was about justice, and we intend to get justice,” Hunter said.

He is holding weekly Tuesday night meetings at his church, located at 1557 So. Kenneth, registering people. His goal is to raise 250,000 voters between now and March 15th, the primary.

His campaign is called “Vote Now,” and hopes to help change the political atmosphere in Chicago including retiring Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez who took 400-days to release the McDonald tape but only after a federal judge ordered its release.

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.

Metro Area Unemployment Rates Continue Rising; Job Growth Remains Slow

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL –Illinois jobs decreased in six metropolitan areas and unemployment rates increased in eleven regions, according to data released by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).  The unemployment rate remained the same in three areas and one metro area saw no change in non farm jobs.  The not seasonally adjusted data compares over-the-year change from December 2015 with December 2014.

Illinois businesses lost jobs in areas including the Quad Cities (-2.4 percent, -4,500), Decatur (-1.8 percent, -900), Carbondale-Marion (-1.3 percent, -700), and Lake-Kenosha (-1.3 percent, -5,100).  Illinois businesses added jobs in seven metros including Elgin (+1.6 percent, +4,100), Champaign-Urbana (+0.8 percent, +900), Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division (+0.7 percent or +26,800), and Danville (+0.7 percent, +200). Two industries recorded job growth: Education and Health Services (nine sectors) and Leisure and Hospitality (eight sectors).

“Illinois took another hit on jobs and many metro areas continue to absorb these hits,” said IDES Director Jeff Mays. “Since the previous jobs peak in 2007, only three out of fourteen metro areas have regained the jobs lost during the recession.”

The not seasonally adjusted Illinois rate was 5.9 percent in December 2015 and stood at 12.2 percent at its peak in this economic cycle in January 2010.  Nationally, the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.8 percent in December and 10.6 percent in January 2010 at its peak.  The unemployment rate identifies those who are out of work and looking for work, and is not tied to collecting unemployment insurance benefits.

Total Nonfarm Jobs (Not Seasonally Adjusted) – December 2015

Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Metropolitan Area

December 2015

December 2014

Over-the-Year Change













Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights








Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL
















Lake-Kenosha, IL-WI
















St. Louis (IL-Section)




Illinois Statewide




* Data subject to revision.


Metropolitan Area



Over-the-Year Change

Bloomington MSA




Carbondale-Marion MSA




Champaign-Urbana MSA




Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights Metro Division




Danville MSA




Davenport-Moline-Rock Island MSA




Decatur MSA




Elgin Metro Division




Kankakee MSA




Lake-County-Kenosha County Metro Division




Peoria MSA




Rockford MSA




Springfield MSA




Illinois Section of St. Louis MSA




Illinois Statewide




                  *Preliminary    **Revised

Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates
(percent) for Local Counties and Areas

Labor Market Area



Over-the-Year Change

Chicago-Naperville-Elgin IL-IN-WI MSA




Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, IL Metro Division
Cook County




DuPage County




Grundy County




Kendall County




McHenry County




Will County




Elgin, IL Metro Division
DeKalb County




Kane County




Lake & Kenosha Counties, IL-WI Metro Division
Lake County




Cities (with total population of at least 100,000) *
Aurora City




Chicago City




Elgin City




Joliet City




Naperville City




* Unemployment rates for cities with total population of 25,000 or more can be found at www.ides.illinois.gov/LMI/Pages/Current_Monthly_Unemployment_Rates.aspx

Lake & Kenosha Counties, IL-WI Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 5.8 percent in December 2015 from 5.7 percent in December 2014. For the month of December 2015, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 26,300.

Total nonfarm employment decreased -5,100 compared to December 2015. Educational and Health Services (+700), Financial Activities (+300), Transportation-Warehousing-Utilities (+200), Wholesale Trade (+200), and Manufacturing (+100) reported payroll gains. The Professional-Business Services (-4,000) and Government (-1,400) sectors recorded the largest employment decline compared to one year ago.

Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, IL Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in December 2015 was 5.6 percent, unchanged from December 2014.  For the month of December 2015, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 212,200.

Total nonfarm employment increased +26,800 compared to December 2014. Professional-Business Services (+10,800), Construction (+8,800), and Educational and Health Services (+5,600) reported the largest payroll gains. Manufacturing (-6,300) and Transportation, Warehousing, & Utilities (-3,000) recorded the largest employment declines compared to one year ago.

Elgin, IL Metro Division

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 6.2 percent in December 2015 from 6.0 percent in December 2014. For the month of December 2015, the estimated number of unemployed people in the labor force was 20,100.

Total nonfarm employment increased +4,100 compared to December 2014. Educational-Health Services (+1,400), Leisure-Hospitality (+1,300), Government (+900), and Professional-Business Services (+700) reported the largest payroll gains. The Manufacturing, Construction, Wholesale Trade, and Information sectors each recorded employment declines of -100 compared to one year ago.

Monthly 2014 unemployment rates and total non-farm jobs for Illinois metro areas were revised in February 2015, as required by the U.S. Dept. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Comments and tables distributed for prior metro area news releases should be discarded as any records or historical analysis previously cited may no longer be valid.

African-Americans are Not Bystanders to America’s Economy

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

By Dr. William Spriggs

As we reflect on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, we think about African-Americans as agents of history. Well-documented gaps in unemployment rates, earnings, poverty and wealth too often lead to viewing African-Americans as bystanders to America’s economy. At worse, there is a tendency to observe the gaps in economic success and blame African-Americans for being disengaged and not trying to respond to clear economic realities — a lack of investment in education, skills, training and personal saving.

But, a clear and fair understanding of Dr. King’s legacy, is that in fact, African-Americans have been fully aware of the barriers they face to success, and have been steadfast to struggle to remove them. Indeed, Dr. King was assassinated during a campaign by black sanitation workers in Memphis to exercise their right to organize, strike and demand fair wages; a key theme of American worker advancement during the first 80 years of the last century and one repeated this Dr. King Holiday by airport workers demanding a living wage.

The lack of wealth in the African-American community is well known. The median net wealth of White households is 12.2 times greater than that of Black households. The difference in wealth does not grow smaller when comparing white and black households headed by college graduates, or when controlling for differences in income. Because the easy answers like education and income differences don’t explain the wealth gap — which measures accumulated savings over multiple generations – the fall back is often to blame the savings’ behavior of Blacks. And, here, old stereotypes of African-Americans being profligate can easily substitute for documentation.

This is why those early years after emancipation are key in addressing the deep history of African-Americans as their own agents. During the Civil War, African-American leaders, most famously, Frederick Douglass, campaigned hard to have black soldiers officially sworn into the fight to end slavery. With issuing the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln also finally signed on that in 1863 not only would slaves in the rebellious states be free, but African-American men would join the United States Army and Navy in quelling the Southern revolt. Close to 180,000 black men signed-up as official members of America’s Armed Forces to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic. They became the largest paid workforce of African-American men to that point in America’s history.

The issue quickly arose as to where could they deposit their paychecks? A few fledgling efforts were made to start banks. And, that effort culminated with the establishment of the Freedmen’s Savings and Trust by Congressional act in March 1865; the Freedmen’s Bureau bank. Recently the U.S. Department of Treasury and Secretary Jack Lew dedicated an annex to honor the Freedmen’s Bureau Bank.

By 1870, the bank operated 37 branches throughout the South, with African-Americans trained as branch managers. In all, almost 70,000 African-Americans made deposits in the bank, reaching savings of about $57 million. Those facts stand to clearly demonstrate the efforts of a people, subject to slavery, freed with nothing from their previous labors to start anew having built wealth for others for free.

But, fate would intervene. The accumulation of those savings came during a period when the federal government still stood in the way of restoring the South’s old hegemony of white southern planters. And, it came when the nation’s banks were still conservative following the uncertainties of the Civil War. Southern banking laid prostrate, devastated by the collapse of the Confederacy and the meaningless holdings of Confederate dollars, and the long mystery of the disappearance of the gold reserves that backed that currency on its desperate journey south from Richmond, Virginia in April 1865 as Robert E. Lee surrendered the fighting cause at Appomattox Court House under the vigilant eyes of 2,000 black men in seven units of the United States Colored Troops.

By the start of the 1870s, the expansion west made possible by the Homestead Act and transcontinental railroad – both enacted during the Civil War – restored the nation’s prosperity and financial zeal. The result was over speculation in railroading. In Europe, financial pressures mounted from the Franco-Prussian War. Germany refused to continue issuing silver coins. This resulted in plummeting silver prices, and the eventual move by the United States to go from backing its currency in silver and gold, to use only the gold standard. This led to the collapse of investments in silver mines in the western United States. The result was a global financial collapse that swept Europe and the United States in 1873. With it came the collapse of the U.S. banking system.

Sound familiar? And, with that collapse came the collapse of the Freedmen’s Savings and Trust as well. At a time of general financial collapse and no Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation — a creation learned from the Great Depression — many depositors lost their savings. The millions in savings of the newly free went away, too. Not too different than the 240,000 homes that disappeared from the African American community after the financial collapse of 2007.

In 1876, a compromise to resolve the Presidential election resulted in the removal of federal protection of African-Americans in the South. The end of reconstruction meant the restoration of southern white hegemony and the evisceration of voting rights for African-Americans, the protection of the access to many occupations and the limiting of their equal access to education. This too sounds familiar.

To accurately measure history, it takes measuring all the hills and valleys right. Dedicating a building to the Freedmen’s Savings and Trust allows us to properly assess the toil and efforts of African-Americans. It shows the hard work and industrious nature of a determined people. It reminds us of the mountains of betrayal as well.

Dr. Bill Spriggs is Chief economist, AFL-CIO and professor of econonomics at Howard University. Follow Spriggs on Twitter: @WSpriggs. Contact: Amaya Smith-Tune Acting Director, Media Outreach AFL-CIO 202-637-5142.
Photo: Dr. Bill Spriggs


Sanders Singles Out Top-10 Corporate Tax Dodgers

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa – Taking aim at how corporate America has rigged the economy, Democrat Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders on Friday pledged to close tax loopholes like a law that lets profitable corporations exploit offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes.

“Three major profitable corporations not only pay nothing in federal income taxes, they actually got a rebate from the IRS,” Sanders told a town meeting in a student center at Iowa Wesleyan University.Overall, General Electric, Boeing and Verizon paid no federal income taxes during the combined 2008 through 2013 tax years. During that period, those three corporate giants racked up combined profits totaling more than $102 billion. In fact, they received income tax rebates from the Internal Revenue Service totaling more than $4.1 billion, according to a report from Citizens for Tax Justice.

“In America today we are losing $100 billion in revenue every single year because large corporations are stashing their profits in the Cayman Islands and other offshore tax havens,” Sanders said.

Sanders’ tax plan would close loopholes those and other corporations have exploited and use the revenue to create and maintain at least 13 million good-paying jobs by rebuilding our crumbling roads, bridges, water systems, railways, airports and more.

Sanders singled out GE, Boeing, Verizon and others on his Top 10 list of corporate tax dodgers during a swing through eastern Iowa three days before Iowa’s precinct caucuses. The senator from Vermont also has detailed a plan to reform the tax system.

To crack down on corporate tax avoiders, Sanders would:

  • End a rule allowing American corporations to defer paying federal income taxes on profits of offshore subsidiaries. Under current law, U.S. corporations are allowed to defer or delay U.S. income taxes on overseas profits until the money is brought back into the United States.
  • Prevent corporations from avoiding U.S. taxes by claiming to be a foreign company through the establishment of a post office box in a tax-haven country.
  • Eliminate tax breaks for big oil, gas, and coal companies.
  • Stop American companies from avoiding U.S. taxes through corporate inversions.
  • Close loopholes that allow U.S. corporations to artificially inflate or accelerate foreign tax credits.

To see the list of the Top-10 corporate tax avoiders, click here.
To read more about Sanders’ plan to reform the corporate tax code, click here.

Illinois State Board of Education Seeks Sponsors/Sites for Summer Food Programs

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

 Programs ensure low-income students are well fed when school is out

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Though there is a chill in the air now, summer is on its way and the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) wants to make sure every child enjoys access to nutritious meals during the summer break. School districts, local government entities, and nonprofits are encouraged to become a summer food site sponsor and/or site to provide free, healthy meals and snacks to low-income children.

Sponsor applications can be found at: http://www.isbe.net/nutrition/htmls/summer.htm.Sponsors may submit their online applications to ISBE beginning March 2. Potential sites should contact ISBE at (800) 545-7892 to receive a list of area sponsors. “Schools are the heart of healthy communities and often are the only source of steady, nutritious meals for students from low-income households,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “Summer meal programs help ensure students receive the proper nutrition they need to stay healthy and thrive after the school year ends. I urge school administrators to spread the word about these valuable programs and encourage their local families to participate.”

Participation in summer meal programs continues to increase, but still falls short of the meals served during the school year. During the summer of 2014, Illinois program sites served meals to a little over 107,000 children, or 14.8 percent of the almost 726,000 children who received free or reduced-priced meals during the 2013-14 school year. Nationally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that nearly 3.2 million children received summer meals on an average day during the summer. The total number of children participating in summer nutrition programs nationally saw an increase of 215,000 children, or 7.3 percent, from 2013.  However, only 16 out of every 100 eligible children in 2014 received a meal in the summertime.

“USDA’s Summer Food Service Program helps bridge the nutrition gap and reduce the risk of hunger for millions of children and teens who receive free or reduced-price school meals during the school year,” said Tim English, Midwest regional administrator for USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service. “We know that poor nutrition can affect children’s health and well-being, as well as academic performance. When children receive nutritious meals throughout the summer, they are better prepared to start the next school year healthy and ready to learn.”

The Summer Food Service Program provides free meals and snacks to low-income children through age 18 when schools are on break. Individuals age 18 through 21 who are enrolled in school programs for persons with disabilities and have an Individualized Education Program (IEP) on file may also participate. Summer food programs typically operate when schools close for summer during June, July, and August, but can start as early as May and may go into September. Sites must be located in areas where at least 50 percent of the children are eligible for free and reduced-price meals from the National School Lunch Program or family income is 185 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

ISBE administers the USDA’s ”Summer Food Service Program” (also known as ”Summer Meals”). School districts, local governments, and nonprofits can all sponsor summer food sites, housing the sites at schools, parks, recreation centers, housing projects, migrant centers, churches, summer camps, and other locations.

Most summer food program sites open doors to all children in the community without any enrollment or entrance requirements. Other sites only serve meals to those children enrolled in a specific summer program. More than 1,700 summer food service program sites offered free meals last summer through more than 168 Illinois sponsors. 

Training is required to participate as a sponsor. Upcoming new sponsor workshop dates and cities are listed below.  To register for the workshops, please visit www.isbe.net/nutrition/htmls/sfsp_training.htm.






3/8– 3/9


1900 S. First


12:30 p.m.


Holiday Inn

222 Potomac

Mt. Vernon

8:00 a.m.

3/29 – 3/30

Double Tree

5000 W. 127th


12:30 p.m.

4/6 – 4/7

Greater Chicago Food Depository

4100 W. 42nd Pl.

(Ann Lurie Place)


8:00 a.m.

4/12 – 4/13

Four Points Sheraton

319 Fountains Pkwy.

Fairview Heights

12:30 p.m.


Peoria Civic Center

201 S.W. Jefferson Ave.


8:00 a.m.


McHenry County Gov’t Center Complex

667 Ware Rd.


8:00 a.m.


Springfield IEA Professional Dev. Center

3440 Liberty Dr.


8:00 a.m.

Institutions may also participate as a meal site through an existing or a new sponsor.

School administrators are encouraged to help sponsors to educate students, their families, and the community about available programs in their area.

For information on becoming a sponsor or meal site, call the Summer Meals program at (800) 545-7892. To find a summer meals site close to you, contact the Illinois Hunger Coalition’s Hunger Hotline at (800) 359-2163 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The hotline is available in both English and Spanish. Summer meal sites can also be found by texting FoodIL to 877877 or visit SummerMealsIllinois.org.

Suburban Substitute Teacher Charged With Abusing 10-Year-Old Student

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

A 56-year-old man who was working as a substitute teacher at a west suburban elementary school has been charged with the criminal sexual assault of a 10-year-old child who was a student in his classroom, according to the Office of Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Joseph Gurzejk, of Westchester, has been charged with Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault of a Child and Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse in connection with an incident that occurred on Jan. 25 at the school where Gurzejk was a frequent substitute teacher.

According to prosecutors, Gurzejk was teaching the victim’s class when he hugged the child and asked the victim to stay after class. After the other students left the room, Gurzejk hugged the child again and then began fondling the victim under the child’s clothing. The victim left the classroom and went to lunch and disclosed to a fellow student what had happened. After school, the victim reported the incident to school officials. Gurzejk had worked as a substitute teacher at the school since 2004.

Gurzejk was arrested by Cook County Sheriff’s Police the following day. He appeared in bond court today at the Cook County Courthouse in Bridgeview where Judge Peter Felice set bond at $750,000. Gurzejk’s next court date is Feb. 24.

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

2666, Robert Falls’ and Seth Bockley’s Stage Adaptation of Roberto Bolano’s Literary Masterpiece, Begins its Limited Run at Goodman Theatre February 6th

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

A free “Evening of Poetry of Bolano, Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Eduardo Galeano” to be presented at the Poetry Foundation on February 29, in conjunction with 2666


CHICAGO, IL – An epic global portrait of the modern world and the artist’s role within it, 2666 by the late Chilean author/poet Roberto Bolaño appears in a world premiere stage adaptation at Goodman Theatre, by its Tony Award-winning Artistic Director Robert Falls and Playwright-in-Residence Seth Bockley. 2666, for which Bolaño was posthumously awarded the 2008 National Book Critics Circle Award, is “as bravura a display of novelistic mastery, and as devastating a reading experience, as you are likely ever to encounter” (Time). Falls, a recent Theater Hall of Fame inductee, and Bockley, a Chicago-based director and playwright whose work is rooted in collaborative creation and inventive visual style (Basetrack Live, Jon) co-adapt and co-direct the internationally-celebrated novel in five parts, each performed on its own distinct set by Walt Spangler. With an ensemble all-Chicago cast of 15 actors portraying nearly 80 roles and approximately 120 costumes by Costume Designer Ana Kuzmanic, 2666 features multi-media production—including video and projections by Shawn Sagady with underscoring and original music by Sound Designers Richard Woodbury and Mikhail Fiksel. 2666 is made possible by a generous grant from The Roy Cockrum Foundation.


“For the past 29 years, I have watched as my producer partner Robert Falls, a theater artist of unparalleled range and talent, has consistently and fearlessly pushed into new creative horizons. As extraordinary an undertaking as a stage adaptation of 2666 is, it is not surprising to me that Bob was attracted to the challenge in collaboration with the talented Seth Bockley,” said Goodman Theatre Executive Director Roche Schulfer. “This production exemplifies the Goodman’s devotion to new works large in scale and provocative in storytelling, and it would not be possible without The Roy Cockrum Foundation. We are extremely grateful for the Foundation’s innate understanding and support of big artistic dreams.”


With an anticipated running time of five hours (including three intermissions), 2666 is a limited-run, off-subscription event in the Goodman’s Owen Theatre, February 6 – March 13, 2016 (opening night is February 16). One performance appears per day at 6:30pm (Tuesday – Saturday) and 1pm on Sunday. Please note: 2666 contains adult language, descriptions of extreme sexual violence and is recommended for mature audiences only. Tickets are $20-$45, and special $10 tickets are available for students with valid ID; visit GoodmanTheatre.org, call 312.443.3800 or purchase in person at the Box Office at 170 N. Dearborn. In conjunction with the play, a FREE “Evening of Poetry of Roberto Bolaño, Gabriel Garcia Márquez and Eduardo Galeano” will be presented at The Poetry Foundation (61 W. Superior) on February 29 at 7:30pm. Reservations are not required.


Falls first encountered 2666 during a 2006 visit to Barcelona, where he became fascinated by the novel’s promotional posters featuring pink crosses in the desert. Upon reading its 2008 English language translation, he marveled at the novel’s scope, audacity and five-part structure, which shifts in tone from comedy to film noir to hyper-realism, finishing with a “fairy tale” tour of the 20th century.

“Few other contemporary novels have ever involved me so completely; I was convinced (and still am) that 2666 will be regarded as one of the great books of the 21st century,” said Robert Falls. “I have never previously wanted to adapt a novel for the stage, let alone one of this complexity. Aside from its epic length and breadth, Bolaño’s writing is primarily thematic and discursive, and not presented in a narrative format. But I found myself so thoroughly engaged with the novel after reading it—and, if for no other reason than to figure out exactly why it had such a hold on me—I embarked on a very personal journey to explore this work in theatrical terms, together with Seth, a strikingly imaginative writer and director. The process has been amongst the most challenging work of my life.”


Several years into the work, Falls found a kindred creative partner in Seth Bockley, who was also fascinated by Bolaño’s writings and fluent in Spanish.


2666 is the culmination of a deep collaboration between myself and Bob and between us and the novel. Bolaño asks everything of his readers, and this collaboration has asked a great deal of us,” said Seth Bockley. “This is an immense and ambitious book—by turns tragic, comic, horrific and transformative—in which Bolaño describes the contours of the universe of human experience. We are attempting to bring his novel’s singular vision to the stage, using all the tools we have. I am continually inspired by this opportunity to collaborate with Bob Falls, one of the great theater artists of our time. The vagabond anarchist spirit of Bolaño is alive and well in the world; we are trying to honor it with a big, wild, faithful but free adaptation.”


From Spain to England, Mexico and Germany—and back in time, from the 1990s to World War II—the stage adaptation of 2666 spans nearly 80 years and unfolds across the globe in five linked parts, each distinct in style and tone. It begins with four European academics in pursuit of an enigmatic German author, Benno Von Archimboldi, and continues overseas into Santa Teresa—a Mexican border city where hundreds of women have been inexplicably murdered. The fictitious Santa Teresa is inspired by Ciudad Juárez, a real Mexican city Bolaño once referred to as “our curse and our mirror, the unquiet mirror of our frustrations and of our vile interpretation of freedom and of our desires” (Playboy). 2666 is widely considered to be the culmination of themes that run throughout Bolaño’s body of work, which includes nine novels, two story collections and five books of poetry.


As previously announced, the 15-member ensemble cast, appearing in dozens of roles throughout the production, includes Charin Alvarez, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Yadira Correa, Sandra Delgado, Alejandra Escalante, Sean Fortunato, Henry Godinez, Larry Grimm, Eric Lynch, Mark L. Montgomery, Adam Poss, Demetrios Troy, Juan Francisco Villa, Jonathan Weir and Nicole Wiesner. The creative team includes designers Walt Spangler (sets), Ana Kuzmanic (costumes), Aaron Spivey (lights), Richard Woodbury and Mikhail Fiksel (sound and original music), and Shawn Sagady (projections and video).



Andrew McCabe Named Deputy Director of the FBI

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
FBI Director James B. Comey has named Andrew McCabe as the Bureau’s new deputy director. Mr. McCabe most recently served as the FBI’s associate deputy director. As deputy director, Mr. McCabe will oversee all FBI domestic and international investigative and intelligence activities and will serve as acting director in the director’s absence.

Mr. McCabe joined the FBI in 1996. He began his career in the New York Field Office, where he focused on organized crime. Throughout his career, Mr. McCabe has held leadership positions in the Counterterrorism Division, the National Security Branch, and the Washington Field Office.

“Andy’s 19 years of experience, combined with his vision, judgment, and ability to communicate make him a perfect fit for this job,” announced Director Comey.

Mr. McCabe will assume this new role on February 1, 2016, when current Deputy Director Mark Giuliano retires from the FBI after 28 years of service.

“Mark’s wide range of operational and leadership experiences have helped us grow as an organization, and his thoughtfulness and ability to connect to people has become a benchmark for our future leaders,” said Director Comey. “I will miss his counsel and his candor very much.”

Washington, D.C. January 29, 2016
  • FBI National Press Office (202) 324-3691

State Senator Collins Votes to Support College Students as New Plan Passes Senate

Posted by Admin On February - 1 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16th) voted yesterday, for the third time, to fund Monetary Assistance Program grants that allow low-income students to attend college this year. More than 1,000 Illinois students were unable to return to school after winter break because the lack of a state budget meant they did not receive the financial assistance they had been promised.

“One of the worst things we can do for economic growth in the state of Illinois is to deprive our people of the opportunity to get an education, train for a better job or acquire the skills they need to go into business for themselves,” Collins said. “My Senate Democratic colleagues and I have consistently voted to meet our obligations and pay out the grants these students were promised, and we will not give up.”

Senate Bill 2043 includes $397 million for MAP grants, $260 million to keep community colleges open and nearly $50 million for career and technical education. Last May, the General Assembly sent the governor a budget that included these vital expenditures, but Gov. Rauner vetoed it, sending the state into a months-long budgetary impasse that has forced some of Illinois’ most effective social service providers to cut back or shut down, in addition to barring college students from their classes. In the fall, the Senate again voted to fund MAP grants, and then – as now – the governor threatened to veto the legislation.

“Gov. Rauner has a decision to make, and I urge and implore him to make the right one,” Collins said. “Will he continue to treat low-income students as collateral damage in the personal and ideological battle he has launched, or will he help these hardworking men and women improve their lives and make Illinois more competitive in the process?”

SB 2043 has received both House and Senate approval. The governor has 60 days after it arrives on his desk to decide whether or not to veto it.

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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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