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Archive for the ‘Cover Story’ Category

Media Mogul Oprah Winfrey right on target; gives an accurate assessment of President Barack Obama “victim of racism”

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On November - 25 - 2013 Comments Off on Media Mogul Oprah Winfrey right on target; gives an accurate assessment of President Barack Obama “victim of racism”

By Juanita Bratcher

Author, Editor & Publisher of CopyLine Magazine

It’s amazing how people are verbally attacked for telling the truth! Facts are facts, lies are lies, and spin is spin. So why is it a problem when one expresses a truthful opinion and is bombarded with contempt over their remarks or confronted by a large attack crew that questions the validity of what was said and try to wreck it? Is it because they don’t want to hear the truth or, they don’t want others to hear or know the truth? More often than not, it’s a combination of both.

Media Mogul and Talk Show Host Oprah Winfrey, in an interview last week with BBC while on a promotional tour for the film “The Butler”, a real life story of Cecil Gaines, an African American man who served as a White House butler for eight different presidents, said President Obama was a “victim of racism,” that there are ongoing issues of prejudice which is also a generational one.

“There is a level of disrespect for the office that occurs,” Winfrey said in the interview, “And that occurs in some cases and maybe even in many cases because he’s African American. There’s no question about that, and it’s the kind of thing that nobody ever says but everybody is thinking it.”

Commenting further on generational prejudice and at the same time noting that race relations have improved, Winfrey said: “Of course, the problem is not solved. As long as there are people who still, there’s a whole generation – I say this, you know, I said this, you know, for apartheid South Africa, I said this for my own, you know, community in the South – there are still generations of people, older people, who were born and bred and marinated in it, in that prejudice and racism, and they just have to die.”

No sooner than said, Oprah’s remarks were attacked by conservatives and conservative media. After stating the truth?

Multi-Billionaire Oprah Winfrey was recently a victim of racism when in August, 2013 a shop store clerk in Switzerland refused to show her a purse that cost $38,000. Winfrey made note of the incident while appearing on the Larry King Show.

Later on in this article, articles from CopyLine Magazine’s archives will show stark examples of tremendous ignorance and racism lodged against President Obama. But first I will post an excerpt from an article I wrote for CopyLine Magazine shortly after Obama was elected President of the United States of America in 2008. The article follows:

“Don’t Declare Racism Dead: That Tough Cookie Will Survive”

By Juanita Bratcher

Let’s face it, racism will always have a chilling, schism and debilitating effect on American society, no matter how many Americans would like to move ahead and leave it behind, handcuffed in the annals of time. And anyone who thinks differently or otherwise – that racism will end simply because America elected its first African-American president - is in for a rude awakening. You can’t change the hearts and minds of people overnight. Sometimes never.

The election of Barack Obama is indeed a historic moment, a historic time in American history; and a step forward in the right direction. But in just a few days, his election has set-off a backlash in the U.S.

According to an article in the Christian Science Monitor, “After Obama’s Win, White Backlash Festers in U.S.”, it noted that the Southern Poverty Law Center stated that more than 200 hate-related incidents have occurred since the election of America’s first black president.

On the flip side of the coin, however, there is enthusiasm and elation abound that America saw fit to elect its first African-American president in 2008 and, by an enthusiastically wide margin over his Republican opponent.

Yet, the article in the Christian Science Monitor is shrewd reality: There are those who are determined to put a damper on this celebratory, historic occasion.

In a November 28, 2012 article in CCN, “The Most Threatened President in History”, By Nathaniel Patterson, it stated that the “Secret service says the number of threats against the president is overwhelming. President Barack Obama is the target of more than 30 potential death threats a day and is being protected by an increasingly over-stretched Secret Service. He is the most threatened President in history.  Since the President took office in 2008, the rate of threats against the president has increased 400 percent. Some threats to the President have been publicized, including the well known alleged plot by white supremacists in Tennessee to rob a gun store, shoot 88 black people, decapitate another 14 and then assassinate the first black president in American history.”

That said, let’s deal with some of the nasty remarks said during Obama’s term in office. Believe me, there are many, many more. But these are some of the articles that are documented in CopyLine Magazine’s files that are absurd and racist.

1. Republican Congressman Joe Wilson calling President Barack Obama a “liar” during a 2009 speech the president was giving to Congress.

2. An ad at a DC Metro station which told Obama to “go to hell” over his health care legislation.

3. Kansas House Speaker Mike O’Neal asking his GOP colleagues in the House to pray for Obama’s death.

4. A racist, anti-Obama bumper sticker on the back of a vehicle that read: “Don’t Re-Nig in 2012.”

5. A veteran Republican senator, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, called President Obama “stupid” for his comments on the Supreme Court health care case.

Editor’s Note: Obviously the president is not stupid. He is a very smart and intelligent man. Saying harsh words don’t make it true or factual.

Responding to Grassley, Obama’s then campaign senior strategist David Axelrod, blasted the Iowa senator, stating, “Heads up, Sen. Grassley. I think a 6-year-old hijacked your (twitter) account and is sending out foolish Tweets just to embarrass you!”

6. In rallying support for Republican Mitt Romney, Ted Nugent said of the Obama administration: “We need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November.”

7. A Jacksonville police officer quit after admitting he told colleagues that he would volunteer to assassinate President Barack Obama.

8. In Richmond, Virginia two White Richmond police officers were fired for calling for the assassination of President Obama during his campaign visit to the city in May. One of the officers also made insulting remarks about First Lady Michelle Obama.

9. 2008 Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin in 2008 at a conservative conference called President Barack Obama a liar, and urged the Republican Party to stand by its conservative values.

10. Several conservatives made disparaging remarks against the President after his win to the presidency in 2012. Those conservatives were: Donald Trump, Karl Rove, Sean Hannity, Mary Matalin, Ron Johnson and Blogger Eric Dondero. They behaved like sore losers. In an angry tweet, Trump tweeted, “This election is a total sham and a travesty.” In another tweet after Obama was announced the projected winner, Trump tweeted: “Well, back to the drawing board!” “We can’t let this happen. We should march on Washington and stop this travesty. Our nation is totally divided!”

11. The commonwealth of Virginia NAACP called for the resignation of two Isle of Wight County officials who circulated racially charged emails about First Lady Michelle Obama to other county officials. Byron Bailey and county School Board member Herbert DeGroft forwarded the emails but reportedly didn’t create them.

12. Peter Morrison, a Texas GOP official called for an ‘amicable divorce’ from the U.S. and from ‘maggots’ who voted for Obama. Morrison, treasurer of the Hardin County Republican Party, wrote a column in the post-election edition of his Tea Party newsletter.

13. Joe Walsh Rips Michelle Obama for Attending Hadiya Pendleton Funeral

14. Speaking at the Values Voter Summit, an annual gathering of social conservatives, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann called Obama “dangerous” and accused the president of enforcing “Islamic speech codes” in the United States.

15. Accused of racism, The National Review fired columnist John Derbyshire over a web posting. Derbyshire declared that black people were hostile to whites and that white people should stay out of black neighborhoods and away from black crowds.

16. The Birther issue: There are a lot of conservatives that claim President Obama is not an American citizen and call his birth certificate a fake. J.D. Hayworth, a candidate for the U.S. Senate, was critical of a so-called “Birther Bill” that cleared the Arizona House of Representatives, saying it didn’t go far enough.

17. Conservative political pundit Pat Buchanan and former Nixon advisor, on the G. Gordon Liddy Show responding to Obama’s victory, said: “White America died last night. Obama’s reelection killed it. Our 200 plus year history as a Western nation is over. We’re a Socialist Latin American country now. Venezuela without the oil.”

Buchanan added, “Of course I agree with half of what he does. He’s half white! That’s not the half I’m worried about.”

18. David Lansford, former New Mexico mayor who won the office again, called President Barack Obama “the carnal manifestation of evil”.

19. A military panel recommended a ‘less than honorable’ discharge for Marine Sgt. Gary Stein who railed against President Obama on Face book, urging his defeat in the 2012 election and calling Obama “the economic and religious enemy”.

20. A Miami college student pled guilty in federal court to threatening President Barack Obama on Face book. 20-year-old Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr. reportedly threatened to put a bullet in the president’s head and asked if anyone wanted to help in a presidential assassination.

21. The Secret Service says it was investigating an effigy of President Barack Obama (a large black doll) found hanging from a building in Plains, Ga., hometown of former President Jimmy Carter. The doll was strung up with a noose in front of a red, white and blue sign.

22. Koch Industries, the Wichita, Kan.-based company run by the billionaire Koch brothers, sent a voter information packet to 45,000 employees of its Georgia Pacific subsidiary during the presidential campaign in 2012.

In it was a letter, dated Oct. 1, from Koch Industries president Dave Robertson implicitly warning that “many of our more than 50,000 U.S. employees and contractors may suffer the consequences” of voting for President Obama and other Democrats in the 2012 elections, a list of conservative candidates the company’s political action committee endorsed and a pair of editorials: one, by David Koch, supporting Mitt Romney, and the other by Charles Koch, condemning Obama.

23. “Let’s take our country back” as though they are the sole citizenry of this country. They didn’t vote for Obama; the majority did or he wouldn’t be in the Office of the President.

24. Washington Republicans in the U.S. House have obstructed his appointments and agenda for the country, and have repealed the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), Obama’s signature legislation, unsuccessfully about 43 times.

25. In an article by Rev. Jesse Jackson, “Challenge Campaign of Insults, Slurs vs. Obama’, Jackson pointed out many of the racial occurrences against the president. Said Jackson (an excerpt from the article): “American presidents have always been fair game for public criticism. But isn’t it past time that we challenge the campaign of insult, racial slur and utter disrespect that has been unleashed on Barack Obama?”

Some of phrases Jackson alluded to in his article are listed below:

· Newt Gingrich called Obama the “food stamp president”

· Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) said of Obama that he didn’t “even want to have to be associated with him. It’s like touching a tar baby and you get it, you’re stuck.”

· House Speaker John Boehner scorned Obama’s agenda in his State of the Union address as “un-American.”

· Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) was both blind and a cad when he suggested that Michelle Obama shouldn’t talk about eating healthily given her “posterior.”

· Rush Limbaugh scorned Obama as an “affirmative action candidate” and a “Halfrican-American.” “Obama’s entire economic program,” Limbaugh slurs, “is reparations.”

On another note, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. in a HuffPost interview with host Josh Zepps, said he believes that conservative media outlets such as Fox News are damaging the country, stating that “Fox News Has Divided Country In A Way Not Seen Since Civil War.”

Kennedy, an attorney and nephew of John F. Kennedy and Ted Kennedy said: “Twenty-two percent of Americans say their primary news source is Fox News,” Kennedy told HuffPost Live. “It’s divided our country in a way that we haven’t been divided probably since the Civil War, and its empowered large corporations to get certain kinds of politicians and ideologues who are in the United State Congress elected — the Tea Party ideologues who control the Republican Party.”

If these are not incidences of racism pointed out in this article, then what do you call it?

Editor’s Note: (Many of these instances of racism reported in this article were taken from a variety of articles reported in the media, on blogs and social networks in cities and states around the country).

Juanita Bratcher is an Award-Winning Journalist, the Publisher of www.copylinemagazine.com and the author of several books, songwriter and poet. She has been a Journalist for more than 37 years covering politics, education and a wide-range of other topics.

Former Businessman Ed Gardner spurs up activists to deal with racism in the construction industry

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On October - 4 - 2012 Comments Off on Former Businessman Ed Gardner spurs up activists to deal with racism in the construction industry

“…Gardner’s leadership in the construction saga is a continuation in the struggle to bring sanity to an insane matter in the Chicago area. His efforts to shed light on what is happening at the Beverly site are now highlighted throughout these United States and will prayerfully open the eyes of those who thought these injustices would not be exposed” – Rev. Harold E. Bailey, President of the Probation Challenge PCC Broadcast Network  


Gardner was a powerful force in electing the first black mayor of Chicago


By Juanita Bratcher

It was awesome! So many familiar faces at a construction site protest rally in Beverly at 95th & Western, called by former Businessman Edward Gardner.

The protest rally was reminiscent of the “Harold” days – as Chicago Blacks refer to it – that’s when many in the black community mobilized efforts to elect a black mayor of Chicago. Long before the 1983 Mayoral Election, they were readying themselves to retire the sitting Mayor Jane Byrne. They were fired up, fed up with the shenanigans of Chicago’s power structure, specifically Byrne, whom they had placed at the top of their list. There was a strong, overwhelming desire and sentiment to oust her from the City Hall post due to her administration’s policies, her appointments to the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) and the Chicago Board of Education, and prior to, had boycotted her annual ChicagoFest. In the end they prevailed; Harold Washington was elected Mayor of Chicago and Byrne was on her way into oblivion.


Juanita Bratcher gives a thorough assessment of grassroots’ efforts

 to elect a Black mayor of Chicago in her book, “Harold: The Making

of a Big City Mayor”, Copyright (R) 1993.


So it was somewhat de je vu, when Gardner, an 87-year-old Icon, a few days ago raised the eyebrows of the black community once again, asking 10,000 people to join  him at the construction site to protest the absence of black contractors working there.

The protest started after Gardner was outraged when on Friday, September 22, he saw concrete being laid and other construction going on at 2210 West 95th Street, and not a single Black worker in sight.

“Every worker was either Caucasian or Hispanic,” said Gardner, “except the foreman, he was (East) Indian.”  

Gardner stepped out of his car with the intention of “wallowing in the wet concrete” in spite of the foreman’s warnings. This quickly got the attention of the foreman, and before Gardner could make good his threat, two squad cars arrived. Shortly afterwards, Alderman Howard Brookins was at the scene. There were also four police officers. They begged Gardner not to do this. Finally, Gardner retreated, but not before promising to return Monday morning at 10:30 a.m. to stage a one-man protest by walking through the wet concrete.

When next he visited the construction site, Gardner stuck his cane in wet cement to protest the lack of African American workers.

But on Sunday, Gardner again was leading the pack.  Once again, he had fired up a somewhat dying Movement since the Harold days. It appeared that activists had hung up their activism caps and gone into oblivion.

 Gardner had beckoned them back to the cause and they resoundingly responded. Thousands rocked the area with picket signs in tow. Activists walked the construction area with great pride as in the Harold days when hundreds of volunteers gave freely of their time to the Movement to get Harold elected. And ironically enough, they were here this time to help Gardner in his efforts to get more black tradesmen employed at the Beverly site.

Gardner and thousands of participants called for jobs for black journeymen in the various trades. CopyLine Magazine interviewed some of those tradesmen and the renowned Attorney Sam Adam, one of the attorneys that represented former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagoevich in his first trial for trying to sell the Senate seat left vacant by Barack Obama. In the end, a federal jury convicted Blagoevich on one of 24 counts – lying to federal agents, but was deadlocked on 23 others.

All interviews are posted on Youtube.com. The interview with Attorney Sam Adam is also posted on the Cover Page of CopyLine Magazine’s web site, www.copylinemagazine.com.

Rev. Harold E. Bailey, President of the Probation Challenge PCC Broadcast Network and once served as Chairman for Gardner’s Black on Black Love “No Crime Day” in Washington Park, called Gardner a “Father figure” to thousands.

“My introduction to Mr. Ed Gardner extends back to his relationship with the late Justice R. Eugene Pincham with whom I worked as his personal Probation officer,” Bailey recalled. “These two men were giants that had so much to offer – not only to the African American community, but to the world.

“Mr. Gardner brought the first ‘No Crime Day’ to Chicago’s Washington Park which informed thousands of crime prevention…he led the prevention charge with dignity, but carried a big stick of justice. He, along with his Black on Black Love organization’s Executive Director, Frances Gutter-Wright, decided that I become the Chairman of the historical event. And everything was done under the guidelines of Mr. Gardner.

“And even today, Gardner’s leadership in the construction saga is a continuation in the struggle to bring sanity to an insane matter in the Chicago area. His efforts to shed light on what is happening at the Beverly site are now highlighted throughout these United States and will prayerfully open the eyes of those who thought these injustices would not be exposed.”

As reported in the Harold Book, authored by Juanita Bratcher, Edward Gardner, former owner and President of Soft Sheen Products, played a pivotal role in getting Harold elected mayor of the City of Chicago.

 “Gardner pumped thousands of dollars into a citywide voter registration drive – one of the most successful endeavors in voter registration history in the city of Chicago.

“At a V.O.T.E. Community Breakfast at Soft Sheen Products Corporate Office, 1000 East 87th St., Gardner emphasized the need to register new voters,” in 1983 when efforts were under way to elect a black mayor.

“The problems in Chicago are very, very deep,” Gardner said in the book, published in 1993. “But they are problems that can be resolved. You can have no effect on the way this city is run if you don’t vote.”

Gardner pledged support and financial backing of voter registration efforts. A V.O.T.E. committee member said $78,000 of the $80,000 spent toward the media campaign to register new voters in Phase I was contributed by Gardner.

Gardner, at the time, emphasized that Soft Sheen was involved in voter registration because “we’re interested in improving the quality of life for Black Americans, but specifically Black Chicagoans.”   

In the words of the Late Mayor Harold Washington discussing his 1983 primary election win:


              “People can speak when they want to speak, and they speak loudly and clearly.

              In doing what has to be done – after a hard fought battle – the people won this


Gardner is still speaking loudly – with back-up from thousands of admiring supporters – to bring justice to black journeymen that for years have been fighting discriminatory practices in the trades all across the country.

Juanita Bratcher is the Publisher of www.copylinemagazine.com, the author of several books, songwriter and poet. She has been a Journalist for more than 35 years covering politics, education and a wide-range of other topics.

Photo Caption: By Clarence McMillan

Web Site Developer: Pamela McMillan 








MWRD Board of Commissioners honors Award-Winning Student Scientists

Posted by Admin On June - 26 - 2012 Comments Off on MWRD Board of Commissioners honors Award-Winning Student Scientists
youngscienceThe 62nd Chicago student science fair season has come to a close, and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) Board of Commissioners recently rewarded winning students with certificates and a Chicago River boat tour.
The award-winning student scientists  presented their project summaries and results to the MWRD Board of Commissioners in MWRD’s downtown Chicago board room. Many of the projects reflected several months of data collection and analysis on topics such as toilet paper durability in various water environments, mineral content in bottled water and the effect of acid on bacteria.
The road to the MWRD board room started earlier in the school year. Seventh through 12th grade private and public schools students had to win the top prize at their respective schools’ science fairs then win during the regional science fair held at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago in March.
Following the presentations, students and their families toured the Chicago River and Lake Michigan by boat.
“All of the students are to be commended for their hard work,” said Commissioner Kathleen Therese Meany, chairman of the MWRD’s Public Information and Education committee.  “It takes ingenuity to develop the concept, and it takes commitment and perseverance to follow through. I also applaud the parents and teachers for providing children with the guidance they need on these scientific endeavors.”
In the photo: MWRD Commissioner Kathleen Therese Meany presented an award to 7th grader Des­mond O’Keefe, from Christ the King School. Desmond’s project was titled “Which Bottled Waters Have the Most Mineral Content?”
List of award winners, schools and project title:
Grade 7
Patrick Burzec, St. Constance School, “Flood or No Flood”
Jennifer Buske, St. Robert Bellarmine School, “Do Different Types of Water Affect Plant Growth?”
Peter Cwik, St. Daniel the Prophet School, “Get the Lead Out!”
Julia Klages, St. Paul of the Cross School, “Spilling is Killing”
Christina Lopez, Science Academy of Chicago, “How to Disinfect Contaminated Water”
Gordon Maxwell, Beaubien School, “How Safe Is Chicagoland’s Drinking Water?”
Afreen Mohiuddin, College Preparatory School of America, “Sunlit Purification”
Desmond O’Keefe, Christ the King School, “Which Bottled Waters Have the Most Mineral Content?”
Maeve Roach, St. Bernadine School, “What’s in Your Bottle?”
Victor Rodriguez, Clark School, “Dark Soil Contaminated”
Kyra Sedovi, Queen of Angels School, “Grey Water: Can Plants Tolerate It?”
Ayesha Shafeeq, College Preparatory School of America, “The Effect of Pollution on the Buoyancy of Water Birds”
Jazmin Villanueva, St. Ferdinand School, “How Different Soils Affect the pH of Water”
Kim Vivekae, Edgebrook School, “A Comparison of Water Technologies”
Michael Wlazlo, Twain School, “Is Organic Fertilizer Better Than Synthetic?”
Grade 8
Jocelyn Bravo, Burroughs School, “Are Green Detergents Less Toxic?”
Casey Collins, St. Gabriel School, “Water Purification”
Jose Del Real, Charles J. Sahs School, “Oil Spills”
Mary Clare Enright, St. Walter School, “This Isn’t the Rain You Find in Spain”
Mathew Graziano, Sayre School, “Is Our Drinking Water Safe?”
Gabriela Gryc, St. Maria Goretti School, “H20 Pollution Revolution”
Kelly Sullivan, St. Gabriel School, “Water Purification”
Benjamin Weiss, Francis W. Parker School, “Directional Selection of Oxygen Production Capacity”
Katrina Wheelan, Alcott School, “Solar Car Efficiency as Affected by Gear Size”
Joseph Witek, Charles J. Sahs School, “Toilet Paper: Which Dissolves Fastest?”
Lucy Wolf, Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, “Water and Light”
Grade 9
Sebastian Augusthy, Kenwood Academy High School, Effect of Hydrocitric Acid on Bacteria”
Yadid Gutierrez, Curie High School, “Dandelion Roots vs. Bacteria”
Tyler Portis, Brooks High School, “Hiding in Plain Sight”
Fatima Qarmi, College Preparatory School of America, “Disinfecting Contaminated WaterWater”
Victoria Schwieger and Naomi Sopt, Taft High School, “pH’n Your Distillation”
Daniel Ziarko, Whitney Young High School, “Different Fertilizing Methods for Plants”
Grade 10
Priscilla Agbeo, University of Chicago-Woodlawn, “Medicated Plants”
Isa Alvarez, Westinghouse High School, “Killing Soil Microorganisms on Plant Growth”
Jaeda Branch, Morgan Park High School, “Catch the Sun”
Ibrahim Khaleel and Faraz Khan, College Preparatory School of America, “What’s in Your Water?”
Violette Montanez, Suarez High School, “Which Type of Water Is Hardest?”
Raafia Mulla and Eshwa Rashid, College Preparatory School of America, “Tap Water vs. Bottled Water”
Grade 11
Mary Kate Cahill, St. Scholastica High School, “You Stink: Pollution in the Chicago River”
Charles Herrera, Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, “Evaluation of a GPS Unit on Necks of Cattle”
Michael Nguyen, Air Force Academy, “Martian DO2me”
Deanna Pirpiris and Patrice Pirpiris, Taft High School, “Catching More Rays”
Christopher Smith, Dunbar High School, “Soil Type and Water Retention”
Deneb Zavala, Lane Technical High School, “Creating a Water Filter for Third World Countries”
Established in 1889, the MWRD is an award-winning, special purpose government agency responsible for wastewater treatment and stormwater management in Cook County, Illinois.

Trial date set in racially charged redistricting plan

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On July - 28 - 2009 Comments Off on Trial date set in racially charged redistricting plan


Ardmore, PA (BlackNews.com) – A federal judge has scheduled a trial on August 3 to consider a request for a preliminary injunction in the case of nine African American students who are suing the Lower Merion School District over a controversial, racially charged, redistricting plan which was adopted on January 12, 2009.

The South Ardmore neighborhood remains the only neighborhood in all of Lower Merion Township with any significant ethnic diversity, and no other area of the Township can claim more than 10% minority families. South Ardmore comprises 40%. Historically the children of South Ardmore walked to their public schools. One by one, the School District has closed the neighborhood schools, busing these children living within a one-mile area to different elementary schools across the township. Now, only one neighborhood school remains, Lower Merion High. Under the District’s plan, however, the students of South Ardmore will no longer be permitted to walk to and attend their neighborhood high school.

Why target this particular neighborhood? The predominant reason: Racially balancing the two high schools. By busing these children, the district will increase Harrition High School’s African-American enrollment from 5% to 9%. Lower Merion High School’s ethnic enrollment is similarly decreased, so that both high schools will have nearly the same ethnic makeup. Lower Merion School District claims that this racial balancing happened just by coincidence — a coincidence that exactly half of the students are assigned at each high school? A coincidence that the only African-American neighborhood in the entire District is sliced in half along residential streets?

Consider that African Americans make up approximately 10% of all high school enrollments. Yet they make up 40% of the students whose high school changes under this plan, and are more than twice as likely as children of any other ethnicity to have their enrollment changed. This District is not nor has it ever been under any order to de-segregate; indeed, African American students are only 9% of the entire high school population. The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission are already investigating allegations of racial discrimination in the redistricting plan.

The District, already represented by the law firm of Wisler Pearlstine, retained a second firm, Morgan Lewis, to defend the case. Six high powered lawyers have now registered to defend the District in this case in an effort to outspend the plaintiffs. In contrast, the plaintiffs are represented by one attorney, a local sole practitioner, with a second attorney, also a sole practitioner, assisting during hearings.

Lower Merion Voices United for Equity in Education (LMVUE), a recently formed local grass roots organization, is advocating for equal educational opportunities for all children in the District regardless of race, background, religion, or any other factor. Although LMVUE is not a party to the law suit, the group supports the plaintiffs who are courageously fighting for restoration of their civil rights. LMVUE is composed of concerned residents from across the township, and encourages residents and others interested in fighting discrimination to visit their web site at www.lmvue.org



Prediction: The end of political office for Sarah Palin

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On July - 28 - 2009 Comments Off on Prediction: The end of political office for Sarah Palin

By Juanita Bratcher

What’s all the hoopla about Sarah Palin leaving office? What’s all the hoopla about Sarah Palin, period? The media have made her bigger than thou with all her basic shortcomings; one, that she is not the brightest bulb in the room (so forget about 2012), and two, an evaluation of all the sub-standard, unknowledgeable interviews she had with the media during the Presidential campaign. It was obvious that Palin does not have the basic talents, skills or insight to become President of the United States.

Although Alaska is a small place, considering, I often wonder how she made a case to the voters there to become governor of Alaska. But being President of the United States is nationally with a much bigger stage presence than Alaska.

On Sunday, July 26, 2009, Palin stepped down as governor of Alaska, leaving the Governor’s Office with one-and-half year left in her term. Many in the media are speculating as to what she will do next. My prediction: She will be active on the speech circuit; will write her autobiography, will shore-up her popularity within her conservative base, and become a talk show host. I see nothing in the political sphere and certainly not a presidential run in 2012 as some speculate.

For a governor many of us hardly knew until Senator John McCain introduced her to America as his Vice Presidential running mate;  my observation is that in all my years of watching and observing American politics, specifically presidential campaigns (which has been many), Palin brought out more “hate-mongers” in the 2008 Presidential campaign than any candidate in recent memory.

Jackson’s everlasting music: A great legacy to the world

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On July - 26 - 2009 Comments Off on Jackson’s everlasting music: A great legacy to the world


The Pop-Culture Icon’s Music Will Never Fade Into Oblivion 

By Juanita Bratcher

Michael the singer.

Michael the dancer.

Michael the performer.

Michael the entertainer.

The showmanship Michael.

Michael the whole package deal…and more.

His career was like magic, magnificent, magnetic. He was electrifying, energetic, spectacular…courting a barrage of flashy outfits/costumes that made his performances complete. 

Michael Jackson, pop-culture icon, was a phenomena, a brilliant singer, dancer, performer.

From “Thriller” to “Beat It” to “Billie Jean”And “Man in the Mirror”, Michael Jackson’s music will always be an electrifying presence in our lives. Jackson’s music is classic.

He was global. He was a legend. His music transcended race. And although the pop-culture/music icon died June 25, it would be hard-pressed for those who attended his many concerts or purchased his albums and videos, to forget that awesome energy he exhibited onstage, his musical brilliance, his stage dominance, and the incredible showmanship he exhibited at concerts here and around the world.

The images are tantalizing. Fans couldn’t get enough of him, and at times cried out in awe and admiration. He sang the kind of music that made its marks in our minds, souls and spirit. It’s the kind of music that will always be around, and will never fade into oblivion. Many of the songs are classics already.

 Jackson was a music genius, super-talented, a kindred spirit, and in a musical class all by himself. During his career, more than 750 million albums were sold worldwide. Once the king of pop put his mark on a song and released it out into the domain, it had staying power and it would be there forever. No matter how old the song or the music, it kept that magic and emotional touch in your heart and mind. There was just something about Jackson’s music; it was soothing, electrifying and played on your emotions.

Michael Jackson, by far, was the greatest entertainer ever. Other songs that were sheer delight were: “I Want You Back”, “Never Can Say Goodbye”, “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”, “I’ll Be There”, “Off The Wall”, “We Are The World”, which he co-wrote with Singer Lionel Ritchie; “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ “, and many many more.

The iconic star grew up right before our eyes.  He came onto the stage at the age of six, and remained there for more than four decades, until his death. We couldn’t get enough of the man and his music. And we always wanted more.

He was a born entertainer debonaire. He owned the stage. He made an indelible impact on the music industry. His famous “Moonwalk”, and his enduring music matched his enduring energy and spirit. He was driven. He was king.

Not only do we grieve the loss of Jackson, but one wonders what kind of music might have come from this talented music giant if he hadn’t left us so quickly. He had an incredible life and career.

Jackson was a legend, a musical genius. He made a profound impact musically in the lives of so many. He left a great legacy. And that legacy he left will always be a part of the music world culture. It will never fade into oblivion.


John Herman Stroger’s “Authorized” biography released

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On July - 25 - 2009 Comments Off on John Herman Stroger’s “Authorized” biography released


John Herman Stroger

“Beyond The Boardroom”, the long awaited biography of former Cook County Board President John Herman Stroger, Jr., has been officially released.

Stroger, former Cook County Board President, and an icon in Illinois politics, served 38 years as a public elected official – 36 continuous years as a sitting Commissioner and 12 as Commissioner and President, at the Cook County Board.

Stroger retired from the Board after suffering a debilitating stroke a week before the Primary Election. Although he won in the 2006 election, he resigned from the post before the November 7th general election, and Democratic committeemen – 50 from Chicago and 30 from Downstate – slated his son, Todd, a Chicago alderman at the time to replace him on the ballot.

As President of the Cook County Board, Stroger was the overseer of a more than $3.4-billion budget, 27,000 county employees, and several County agencies and healthcare facilities. He also served as a spokesman, Vice President and President of NACo (National Association of Counties), an organization with a membership total of more than 2,000 counties from across the country. He was the first African-American elected president of NACo. He was appointed by President William “Bill” Clinton to serve on the President’s Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, and selected by Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean to serve as a member of a DNC Committee.

“Beyond The Boardroom” captures and capsules Stroger’s almost four decades in public office.

The book is written by author Juanita Bratcher, a former news reporter and journalist for 31 years. Bratcher is the published author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor”, a book that traces the grassroots’ efforts that successfully propelled Mayor Harold Washington into the 5th Floor of City Hall. He was the first African-American elected to the post.

Bratcher served as a “Personal Assistant” to Stroger in Cook County government, served as a Press Aide in his 1994 run for President of the Cook County Board, and Press Secretary to his 2006 re-election campaign.

For more information about “Beyond The Boardroom”, or to purchase a book, call (773) 375-8127. The cost of the book is $22.95.

Welcome to CopyLine Magazine News…

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On June - 10 - 2009 Comments Off on Welcome to CopyLine Magazine News…

Welcome to CopyLine Magazine News…

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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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