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Black historical high school classes share reunion kick-off

Members of the 1965 graduating classes of Booker T. Washington, George Washington Carver, Miami Northwestern and North Dade Senior high schools are all anxiously awaiting their 50th class reunions in 2015. Representatives from historically Black high schools collaborated to plan and present a kick-off event prior to the individual school’s celebration. “Because we were born into segregation and graduated high school just after the civil rights acts were passed, we have always been on the cutting edge of civil rights developments,” said June S. Garvin, a graduate of Miami Northwestern. “Our cohorts have a unique perspective on race relations in this country.”

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Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce Gala

40th Anniversary

The M-DCC held its 40th anniversary gala at Jungle Island Dec. 6. The organization raised about $260,000 from the event. Garth Reeves,

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The Sports Brothers

Even in the world of sports, Blacks are viewed differently

An interesting thing happened last week that went unnoticed. In the midst of the many protests that were occurring around the nation in response to the grand jury decisions involving the shooting of Mike Brown in Missouri and the choking death Eric Garner in New York City, something happened in sports that further solidifies how Black men are looked upon and treated differently than white men in this country. And it happened in the world of sports.

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From universities to the streets, students at heart of protests

A thunder of voices resounded as protesters, like a dark cloud, shadowed the sunny Coral Gables campus at the University of Miami (UM). Michael Brown. Oscar Grant. Eric Garner. Joe Ferrell. Sean Bell. Rekia Boyd. John Crawford. Ezell Ford. Amadou Diallo. These were the names students blared over a megaphone -- names of unarmed Black people who were killed by police officers.

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Black officers: White culture impairs policing Blacks

The failed indictments of police officers who killed Eric Garner and Michael Brown have unleashed ideas that the Jim Crow era of racism is still disguised in U.S. society. Recent images of hostility displayed toward mourning protesters in Ferguson, Mo. rehashed parallels to violent police tactics during the civil rights movement. Those images ripped the Band-Aid off a sore that festered openly after a white police officer killed unarmed Brown. And while many police publicly defend the actions of cops, Black people across the country are angered by what many view as aggressive mistreatment.

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Nite Cap

On the morning of Dec. 4 at about 2:20 a.m. I could have lost my life for giving a homeless man a dollar. My would-be murderer wasn't the homeless man or his cohorts who asked me for help while parking my car near Northeast Sixth Ave and Northeast 11th Street ; it was a city of Miami police officer whose obvious racist-fueled rage clouded his oath to protect and serve. I wish the story I'm about to share with you wasn't true. I wish somehow it's some bad dream, the subconscious causality of seeing Eric Garner in a chokehold and Mike Brown cold and crumpled on the street.

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A Haitian leader’s fall from grace

Former North Miami Mayor Lucie Tondreau on trial for mortgage fraud

Her name is Kettley Alphonse. She bought a house in Miami Shores in 2007. She didn’t know the price of the house was $564,000 at the time of the closing. She just signed on the dotted line on numerous documents without asking any questions about the big purchase. That same day, Alphonse received a $5,000 check for her cooperation. The signature on check was that of Lucie Tondreau, the former mayor of North Miami who was also Alphonse's employer. After the purchase, Alphonse’s would eventually lose her job, the house and her credit.

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FIU surprises 100 students with bicycles, gifts

The holiday celebration provided children with a festive spectacle

The wait was over. It was time for the biggest gift of them all at Florida International University’s (FIU) children’s holiday celebration held on its main campus last Thursday. After receiving dozens of items ranging from toy cars to laptops, every elementary school student in attendance was given a number. The winner would receive a new mid-sized bicycle. About 800 educators, administrators and volunteers knew what was about to go down in the Graham Center ballroom on the Modesto Maidique campus. Suddenly, the number three flashed on the projection screen.

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MOCA celebrates Art Basel with hope

North Miami museum comes out of settlement talks with edgy exhibit, hundreds of works

Hundreds of prized art. An edgy exhibit. Nigerian royalty. A new book. It's life after a bitter breakup for North Miami's Museum of Contemporary of Art (MOCA). The museum on Monday kicked off Art Basel with an exclusive reception for its new exhibit, “Shifting the Paradigm” by George Edozie, a Nigerian artist whose works have been viewed around the world. The exhibit includes stunning, fiber-metal sculptures of humans doing various things.

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Police body cameras on hold in Dade

Commissioners want more research, answers on deploying new technology

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez is so confident about his police surveillance body cameras, he even tapped his chest in demonstration of how it would work. “The officers would just have to tap the camera and it would start to roll,” Gimenez said of the camera that could be attached to the lapel of an officer’s uniform. But it is that sort of start of the camera that concerns Public Safety & Animal Services Committee so much so that its members drafted a resolution to slow down its implementation.

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Lawsuit says Timothy Holmes not fit to sit

Residents believe city ignores voters

The process to remove one longtime public servant from office has turned to the courts as disagreements in Opa-locka continued last week. Attorney Benedict Kuehne filed a civil lawsuit on Nov. 24 on behalf of an Opa-locka organization called Citizens on a Mission for Change, requesting a judge to declare Timothy Holmes ineligible as a city commissioner. Kuehne attempted to file an injunction Nov. 6 to delay Holmes from being sworn in after Holmes garnered the majority of votes to win the seat. The city declined to remove Holmes.

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School choice emerging as a go-to issue for Black voters

Chavous

With each election, political experts can look at various voting patterns by certain groups to determine which issues are important to those groups. For instance, among African American voters, it is clear that issues such as jobs, quality housing, affordable health care and education consistently are the most significant. As it relates to education, more and more African American voters are embracing educational choice and are voting for candidates who identify themselves as school choice supporters.

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Trial underway for former mayor Tondreau

The trial has started for former North Miami Mayor Lucie Tondreau on charges of participating in an $11 million mortgage fraud scheme. Tondreau faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted of conspiracy and wire fraud. She has pleaded not guilty.

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Church celebrates love in Jesus Christ

Elder John Robinson III is the Centennial Coordinator for Florida’s East coast and the Pastor of the Week

The Florida East Coast District Superintendent (2012-present) of the Church of God By Faith Inc. (C.O.G.B.F.) is Elder John Robinson III. His wife is Lady Tammy Lynn Robinson. The East Coast District is a branch of the C.O.G.B.F., which consists of 16 churches that serve communities from Melbourne to Miami.

Read before quoting what 'thus says the Lord'

The Bible teaches us, “Remind your people of these great facts, and command them, in the name of the Lord, not to argue over unimportant things. Such arguments are confusing and useless and even harmful.” (II Timothy 2:14 LB). The Bible contains about 3.6 million letters, 773,693 words, 31,102 verses, 1,189 chapters and 66 books, depending on which version you are reading. These books contain information that is pertinent to any subject our minds are capable of thinking about. Sometimes when we ask a question, people are quick to give answers, but it will be their opinion.

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Opa-locka is home to ‘In Plain Sight’

Art and Opa-locka aren’t words that you may normally expect to go together in the same sentence — until now. Opa-locka’s entrée into the eclectic world of art launches with the “In Plain Sight” exhibition showing now until Dec. 14 at the Art and Recreation Center (The ARC), a new, bright art and recreation space in downtown Opa-locka. The ARC, located at 675 Ali Baba Ave., Opa-locka, itself has transformed into art with its top-to-bottom mural inspired by its residents and the city’s Moorish architecture.

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Nathaniel Thurston: Life after 31 years in prison

Former bank, jewelry store robber writes book, a changed man

Author Nathaniel Thurston Jr. signs his book “For You Woman: Spirit Jewels” simply “Me.” He said he signed the book that way because, “That’s who I am, Me.” Thurston is a man short in statute with a strong voice. He seems to be quite sure of who he was and who he has become after spending 31 consecutive years in prisons.

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Who cares about Black pain

It seems the rest of America just doesn't share in Black people's pain. I followed the news coming out of Ferguson closely, but this time my outrage over Trayvon Martin's death didn't carry over. Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson seemed so confident over his reasons for shooting Mike Brown that the interview with ABC's George Stephanopolous turned into a formality as opposed to a nail-biting one on one. So, I sat there staring at Wilson wondering why this guy, who many in America now consider public enemy No. 1, was so nonchalant over killing Brown.

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Chatter That Matters

Dominique Jackson, a sophomore at Bethune-Cookman University, is a member of the Marching Band Flag Corps. She is also great grand daughter of Helen Young, B-CU and a graduate of Miramar High School, class of 2013. Her grandparents are Donald and Gwen Jackson, loving aunt, Desiree Jackson.

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The Social Whirl

Hope that the Thanksgiving holiday was filled with the blessings of faith, family and friends. And for those brave enough to embrace the crowds and frenzy of Black Friday and the entire shopping weekend, hope you had happy trails. Warm get well wishes are sent to Priscilla Thompson, Fredericka Dean Wanza, Barbara Carnegie Harris, Helen Ward McCoy, Ivadell Bodie, Charles Stafford, Henry Mingo and others to just keep feeling better. Many others are thinking of you.

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