February , 2019

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Archive for January 25th, 2017

Immigrant Communities Respond to Executive Actions Banning Refugees and Attacking Sanctuary Cities

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

From: Organized Communities Against Deportations

Chicago, IL – Donald Trump is expected to sign executive orders today targeting sanctuary cities and expanding the border wall; as well as others Thursday increasing surveillance on immigrant communities, blocking visas from being issued to seven Arab or Muslim countries (Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen), and halting the ability of refugees to come to the United States.  While these executive actions will be signed under the auspices of protecting the U.S. from violent threats, they are nothing more than the institutionalization of the xenophobia and Islamophobia that have brought Trump to power.

A press conference in response to possible executive actions by President Donald Trump banning refugees and immigrants and attacking cities that stand with immigrants will be held today, Wednesday, January 25, 1 p.m. at 525 W. Van Buren Street, Chicago.

In attendance will be families and individuals impacted by President Trump’s executive actions along with Chicago immigrant rights organizations, including the Arab American Action Network, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Chicago, Organized Communities Against Deportations, United African Organization, Korean Resource and Cultural Center, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and others.

“We are aware that these policies serve to demonize and target immigrant communities, as well as erode the hard fought-for protections that we have won over the years,” said Rosi Carrasco of Organized Communities Against Deportations. “We are worried that these executive orders also serve as a stepping-stone for more troubling policies that Trump has promised, including registries, raids, and deportations of Arab, Muslim, South Asian, African, and Latinx immigrants.”

In addition to policy consequences, these executive orders will also deepen what has been called the “Trump Effect”: the increase in racist hate crimes that have targeted immigrant, Black, Asian, and Arab and Muslim communities since Trump’s campaign gained prominence.  Immigrant rights organizations will address how hate crimes further marginalize our communities and embolden xenophobes and racists to take matters into their own hands.

Trump’s promise to attack sanctuary cities would punish Chicago for not forcing local law enforcement to adhere with federal immigration enforcement policies of racially profiling immigrants and breaking up immigrant families.  While it cannot stop ICE from carrying out raids, the sanctuary city policy in Chicago is an important protection for immigrant communities, and has been a cornerstone here since its introduction by Mayor Harold Washington in the 80s.


State Rep. Ford Banking Committee to Focus on Empowering Small Businesses and Rebuilding Communities

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS


CHICAGO, IL – Illinois State Representative La Shawn K. Ford, D-Chicago, has been named by Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan as Chairman of the Illinois House Financial Institutions Committee. The committee is the key Illinois panel to debate and discuss legislation dealing with the banking, savings and loan and mortgage industries in Illinois.


“Illinois is a leader in the financial services industry,” said Ford, now a six-term representative. “Illinois has more state-chartered banks than any other state in the United States and ranks in the top three states in the amount of total banking assets, total trust assets and number of foreign bank offices. A strong Illinois banking system promotes economic development, supports the growth of small businesses, encourages home ownership and provides for the financial security of Illinois residents,” said Ford.


“As Chairman of the Illinois House Financial Institutions Committee, one of my goals will be to fight for economic opportunity for every community so hardworking taxpayers can achieve financial independence,” Ford continues. “We will do our best to find ways to strengthen community banks, learning from the many banks that have failed in Illinois. We will help build up the non-profit credit union industry to provide more options for individuals who struggle to have banking relationships.”


A study released in 2015 by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) revealed stark disparities in the amount of wealth American households recovered after the last recession, with white-owned homes and assets recovering more fully than black-owned ones. The ACLU report, which covers the timeframe that includes the recession and the economic recovery, found that average black household wealth dropped 33%, while white household wealth declined by only 12% during that four-year period. An earlier study similarly found that white household wealth dropped 16% between 2005 and 2009, while black household wealth declined by 52%. In the meantime, this week the Attorney General of New York settled a major mortgage discrimination case against a major bank that does significant work in Illinois.


“I am looking forward to using this opportunity as Chair to work with Bryan A. Schneider, Secretary of the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, and the many banks and lenders doing business in Illinois, to better serve those seeking loans in Illinois,” said Ford. “Financial institutions are major factors in increasing the number of stronger businesses, families, and communities in Illinois. I will be setting up meetings with leaders in our financial industries to continue to learn the best ways these institutions can help the growth of Illinois, partnering with people of all colors and economic situations,” said Ford.


For more information, contact Ford’s constituent service office at 773-378-5902, email repford@lashawnford.com, or visit www.lashawnford.com.



Madigan Intervenes in Department Case to Protect Higher Education Students

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Attorney General Madigan Intervenes in ACICS Case Over its Accreditation of For-profit Schools


CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan moved to intervene in a lawsuit to assure that federal recognition of a national accreditor of many of the worst schools in the for-profit industry remains revoked.


The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) filed the lawsuit after the Department of Education terminated ACICS’s recognition as a national accreditor based on the organization’s failure to comply with a host of criteria, including failing to develop and implement student achievement standards that measure students’ success in their chosen field.


ACICS accredited many for-profit schools that engaged in fraudulent activity by churning out worthless degrees that left students without jobs in their field but saddled with mountains of debt. Among the for-profit schools that ACICS accredited were many Illinois schools, including Everest Colleges, Westwood College and ITT Technical Institute. ACICS continued to accredit these schools even as ample evidence of student harm piled up from multiple state and federal investigations. ACICS’s accreditation provided for-profit schools with access to federal student loans, helping fuel the schools’ expansive growth across the country and luring students to take out billions of dollars in student loans. ACICS currently accredits 16 schools in Illinois, encompassing 20 campuses across the state.


“ACICS gave legitimacy to for-profit schools that have left millions of students with useless degrees, astronomical levels of debt and poor job prospects,” Madigan said. “ACICS should not be allowed to accredit schools and give students the false impression that a school will credential them for a career.”


Attorney General Madigan is a national leader in investigating and enforcing consumer protection violations in the higher education field. Just last week, Madigan filed a lawsuit against Navient and its predecessor Sallie Mae for the companies’ mistreatment of student loan borrowers from start to finish – from originating student loans to servicing those loans and collecting on defaulted student loans. Madigan also has testified before Congress and urged the U.S. Department of Education to crack down on the many abuses and scams facing student borrowers.


In addition to today’s action, Madigan has repeatedly called on the U.S. Department of Education to immediately forgive federal loans of students who attended fraudulent for-profit schools. Madigan reached a $15 million settlement with Westwood College in 2015 that forgave private debt owed by students of Westwood’s criminal justice program. After resolving Madigan’s lawsuit, the college announced its closure. More than 3,600 former Westwood College students in Illinois received an average of more than $4,200 in relief under the settlement, in addition to the potential federal loan relief called for by Madigan.


Madigan’s investigation into Everest College, which was operated by Corinthian Colleges Inc., revealed widespread misrepresentations made to prospective students, supporting the Department of Education’s own findings of fraud. Madigan’s office has found that at least 3,300 and as many as 6,700 Illinois students are eligible for federal student loan relief under the Department’s findings. Madigan also reached a settlement with Education Management Corporation (EDMC), which operates five Illinois Institute of Art and Argosy University campuses in Illinois.


Madigan was also the first attorney general in the country to take action against a new industry of student loan debt relief scams, which seek out student loan borrowers who are desperate for help to avoid their loans and scam them into paying money to help with their debt. In reality, once these scams take upfront fees from borrowers, they do little work to help them with their payments.


Madigan created a free Student Loan Helpline to provide student borrowers with free resources about repayment options, avoiding default or to file a complaint about loan servicing at (800) 455-2456 (TTY: 1-800-964-3013). More information can also be found on her website.



IDOC and PRB Partner to Improve Parole Revocation Process

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Settlement represents Rauner Administration’s commitment to reforming Illinois’ criminal justice system

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) and the Illinois Prisoner Review Board (PRB) today announced that a Settlement Agreement in the case of Moises Morales v. Craig Findley has been approved.  The Settlement Agreement reflects Governor Bruce Rauner’s commitment to increasing public safety and improving outcomes for all men and women who are released from IDOC custody. The Rauner Administration worked with the IDOC and PRB legal teams to reach a suitable agreement, therefore avoiding costly litigation and the perpetual judicial oversight that would have resulted had the parties entered into a consent decree.

US District Judge Amy J. St. Eve accepted the agreement on Wednesday, January 25th, 2017, noting it offers fair and reasonable due process for men and women accused of violating the terms of their parole or Mandatory Supervised Release (MSR). Morales v. Findley was originally filed in 2013 by IDOC offenders who claimed they did not have a proper hearing or the ability to provide adequate testimony before being returned to prison on a parole or MSR revocation.

“We are working very closely with Governor Rauner to bring real reform to our criminal justice system in Illinois,” said IDOC Director John Baldwin. “This agreement restores integrity to the parole revocation process and ensures potential violators have fair representation and a voice in the process.”

“We are committed to making sure all potential parole and MSR violators get a fair hearing before decisions about revocation are made,” said PRB Chairman Craig Findley. “The PRB looks forward to working with the IDOC to implement the procedures set forth in the Morales Settlement Agreement as we continue to set and enforce conditions of release for all Illinois offenders.”

The IDOC will continue to handle parole and MSR operations in the field, including the identification and arrest of alleged violators, and provide evidence of violations to the PRB. Hearings will be conducted in IDOC facilities, PRB offices, and county jails throughout every region in the State.

Under the terms of the Agreement:

·        The PRB will appoint an attorney, at no cost, to alleged violators who cannot afford representation but request an attorney, in cases where: a timely and colorable claim exists that the violation did not occur; a violation is admitted to have occurred, but complex and substantial reasons exist to argue against revocation; or the alleged violator appears incapable of speaking effectively for him or herself.

·        The attorney will represent the alleged violator for the duration of the revocation process and will have an opportunity to present evidence, call witnesses, and cross-examine witnesses.

·        Alleged parole/MSR violators will be informed of their right to remain silent, without obligation to answer questions about the alleged violation, if the violation relates to potential criminal charges.

·        The IDOC will provide the alleged violator with a Notice of Rights and a copy of his or her violation report, outlining the underlying charges for possible revocation, within 5 days of a warrant being served.

·        The IDOC and PRB must make reasonable efforts to ensure the alleged violator receives a preliminary hearing within 10 business days of the warrant being served and a final hearing within 90 days of service.

The Bag Trick Bandit Hits Again

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Help Identify This Serial Bank Robber

The FBI Violent Crimes Task Force and San Diego Police Department are seeking the public’s assistance to identify the individual responsible for five bank robberies in the San Diego area.

This serial robber started before Christmas last year when attempting to rob the Bank of America on December 21, 2016. That same day, the unidentified male then robbed the U.S. Bank. In the second and third robberies, the robber gestured with his hand, which was concealed inside a bag, as if he had a weapon. Hence, this individual was dubbed the Bag Trick Bandit.

During the Sunday, January 22, 2017 robbery and during the January 8, 2017 robbery, the unidentified male displayed a semi-automatic handgun. This robber should be considered armed and dangerous.

In an attempt to disguise himself, the robber wears a dark-colored sweatshirt with the hood covering his head and/or a hat and sunglasses covering his face.


  • January 22, 2017: U.S. Bank Branch at 3645 Midway Drive in San Diego, California
  • January 8, 2017: U.S. Bank branch at 3645 Midway Drive in San Diego, California
  • January 5, 2017: Wells Fargo branch at 4725 Clairemont Drive in San Diego, California (attempted robbery)
  • December 21, 2016: U.S. Bank branch at 4195 Genesee Avenue in San Diego, California
  • December 21, 2016: Bank of America branch at 2341 Ulric Street in San Diego, California (attempted robbery)

Description of Robber:

  • Sex: Male
  • Race: White
  • Age: Approximately 30 years old
  • Height: 6’0” tall
  • Build: Thin
  • Hair: Dirty blonde
  • Clothing: Hoodie sweatshirt, hat, sunglasses

Apollo Chorus of Chicago 145th Season Continues With Bach’s Beloved and Profound Mass In B Minor

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS


Stephen Alltop, Music Director & Conductor and

David Bachmann, Assistant Conductor


CHICAGO, IL — One of the most legendary musical organizations in the nation, known for its masterful performances of some of the most beloved repertoire in choral music, The Apollo Chorus, continues its milestone season with Choral Classics- Bach’s Mass in B minor. Celebrating the power of live musical performance in collaboration with the Renovo String Orchestra, The Apollo Chorus performs Bach’s masterpiece on Saturday, February 25, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. at the Wentz Concert Hall, 171 E Chicago Ave, Naperville.


Bach’s Mass in B minor is considered his most profound and beautiful musical piece. The legendary composer spent the last years of his life undertaking what he knew would be his final great achievement, leaving performers and audiences with an awe-inspiring work.  This special performance will feature returning Apollo artists Scherazade Panthaki (soprano) and Richard Ollarsaba (bass-baritone), in addition to Kate Tombaugh (mezzo-soprano) and Charles Blandy (tenor), making their Apollo debuts.


The Apollo Chorus, founded in the aftermath of the Great Chicago Fire, is one of the most recognizable volunteer choral organizations in the United States. Its approximately 130 auditioned members include men and women of all ages, races, and backgrounds brought together by their love of music. The chorus has performed the master works of the choral repertoire, as well as new masterpieces from contemporary composers. The Apollo Chorus has performed at notable historic events, such as the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, the Century of Progress International Exposition, the opening of Medinah Temple, the opening of Orchestra Hall (Apollo was considered the official chorus of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra prior to the formation of the Symphony Chorus), the opening of Navy Pier, and the “Oprah Surprise Spectacular.”


The Apollo Chorus continually strives to advance musically and to share the power, beauty and majesty of choral music by presenting concerts and educational programs for diverse communities throughout Chicago and beyond.


Tickets are $20-$40 when purchased in advance at www.brownpapertickets.com. For more information visit www.apollochorus.org.


Protest Over Trump’s Approval of Dakota Access Pipeline and Keystone Pipeline

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS


Trump signed an executive order yesterday to force through the rest of the construction of the Dakota Access (DAPL) and Keystone pipelines.


According to RefuseFascism.org, The DAPL oil pipeline violates the treaty rights of the Standing Rock people and threatens the water of millions more people.  The Standing Rock people fought heroically to stop this, and thousands of supporters joined them, and won a victory in December to stop construction. Trump’s views, policies, and appointments on the environment are seriously and qualitatively exacerbate a situation that is already heading to disaster.


RefuseFascism said yesterday (1/23/17) when announcing that they would  protest later in the day that everybody who stands with Standing Rock and opposes the destruction of the environment of the planet join together. “We will head to Trump Tower If there are other protests for today being called we can join with them.”


The declaration, “NO! In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America” warns that Trump is “assembling a regime of grave danger” whose fascist character “renders it illegitimate and an immoral peril to the future of humanity and the earth itself.”


For more information, go to RefuseFascism.org for Initiators, Call to Action, Plan to STOP Trump / Pence, schedule of Protests and Events @refusefascism Facebook: RefuseFascism #NoFascist2017



Playwright of Marcus Garvey Drama Produces List of Accused who were Pardoned Posthumously

Posted by Admin On January - 25 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Garvey Lives

Silver Spring, MD (BlackNews.com) – The author of the first play ever written about Marcus Garvey found that pardoning convicted citizens posthumously is not so uncommon a practice.

Writer Barry Beckham discovered the practice after he researched the situation of the black activist whose family has asked President Obama to pardon Garvey for the conviction of mail fraud he faced in 1922. Garvey died in 1940. Beckham wrote Garvey Lives!, which had its premier production at Brown University in 1972. This month he plans to release through his publishing company an eBook version of the play script that includes original program material.

He found a paper written by University of Colorado Professor Stephen Greenspan that describes 20 cases from as early as 1893 which illustrate why restoring the good name of a dead person is often a desirable, indeed necessary, policy. And often relief is especially needed when the person died as the direct result of a miscarriage of justice.

I couldnt escape the connection between my play about Garvey and the now reasonable request of a presidential pardon, says Beckham. So, he put together a list of five examples drawn from Greenspans paper of how felons were pardoned posthumously.

His list:

  1. In 2011, Governor Bill Ritter granted a posthumous pardon to mentally deficient Joe Arridy, who was executed in 1939 at the age of 23 for rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl.
  2. In 2010, Governor Charlie Christ recommended, and the Florida Clemency Board granted, a pardon to Jim Morrison, of the rock band The Doors for two 1969 misdemeanor convictions.
  3. In 2009, the South Carolina Parole and Pardons Board unanimously granted a posthumous pardon to Thomas and Meeks Griffin, two African-American brothers who were executed in 1915 for a crime of which they are now believed to be innocent.
  4. In 2008, President George W. Bush granted a posthumous pardon to Charles Winters, a Florida resident who died in 1984 and had served 18 months in prison for violating the Neutrality Act of 1939 by smuggling bombers to the new state of Israel.
  5. In 2003 Governor George Pataki granted a posthumous pardon to comedian Lenny Bruce for an obscenity conviction in 1964. Bruce died of a drug overdose in 1966 before he could appeal.

About Beckham Publications Group
Beckham Publications Group, Inc. (www.beckhamhouse.com) is a major Internet publisher founded by Barry Beckham and specializing in cutting edge and multicultural titles.
About Barry Beckham
Barry Beckham is an innovative prose writer who has published novels and educational titles and written for major publications like The New York Times, Black Enterprise, and Esquire. Visit him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/barry.beckham. He was director of the graduate writing program at Brown University where he taught for 17 years.


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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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