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Miami Times Editorial Department

Stories by Miami Times

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Black History Month looks back, looks forward

South Florida is wrapping up another successful Black History Month. The history lessons, dedications and cultural events were a great display of ethnic pride and empowerment. Readers of The Miami Times enjoyed the paper’s special section, A New Generation of Dreamers, which profiled South Florida’s young, future leaders who are selfless in their devotion to Miami’s Black community. It also was refreshing to have events like Miami Gardens’

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Provider Profile: Richmond-Perrine Optimist Club of Miami

Richmond-Perrine Optimist Club Inc. of Miami

“We are truly grateful for all of our staff and volunteers who give so much time to helping our youth and their families become productive citizens in the South Miami-Dade community.” —Christy Berry-Wilson, director of Social Services. The Richmond-Perrine Optimist Club is a community-based nonprofit organization, which has served the youth, elderly, unemployed and disadvantaged in South Miami-Dade for more than 40 years. Since 1971, the agency has provided a multitude of social services

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Lipstick on a pig

Plans to raze and rebuild Liberty Square apartments have been received with mixed feelings from residents. Announced Feb. 2, Miami-Dade County Housing and Urban Development told the community a better Liberty City is on the way. While residents are ready for the change, some are worried they will be left without a home after the

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Lifestyle Happenings

BTW and Northwestern Classes of 1963 will have an oldie - goldie Valentine’s dance on February 14 at 8 p.m. at The Historical Elks Center. Call 305-613-5373 or 305-634-5657. Miami Northwestern Class of 1966 will have a Valentine’s dance on February 14, 8 p.m. at the Fire Fighters Hall. Call 786-554-2130 or 786-953-8076. Inner City Children’s Touring Dance will have free Introductory Classical Ballet Workshops for girls ages 6-8 and 9-12 on Monday and Wednesday evenings. Call 305-758-1577 or visit www.childrendance.net.

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Faith Calendar

True Love Praise and Worship Center announces Black History Legends preaching each Sunday during the month of February. All services will be held at the Omega Activity Center. Call 786-387-9491. New Providence Baptist Church will hold a workshop, The Bold and The Beautiful: Taking Care of our Girls, at 11 a.m. Saturday. Call 305-758-0922 Mt. Tabor Missionary Baptist Church will observe its 114th church anniversary at 10 a.m. Sunday with speaker Rev. Zachary Royal. Call 305-756-2583.

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News Briefs

Hip-hop dance classes coming to AHCAC The African Heritage Cultural Arts Center, in partnership with UP2US, is having an orientation for a free hip-hop dance class series at 10 a.m. Saturday at the center, 6161 NW 22nd Ave. Dance classes begin Feb. 14 and run through May 30. Classes for children ages 11-13 are from 10 a.m.-noon; children ages 14-17 are from noon-2 p.m. Space is limited. For registration information, call Anita Hope at 786-385-2353.

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Plaza under siege by homeless, mentally ill

Last Wednesday a mentally ill, homeless woman entered a business in the Brownsville Renaissance plaza at Northwest 54th Street and 27th Avenue. She panhandled the customers, verbally abused the cashier and grabbed a tip jar off the counter. When the cashier tried to intervene, the homeless woman hit her with a bag in her face. A red bruise immediately appeared. The homeless woman took off running.

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A time for tolerance

The last several weeks have reminded all of us that there are different ethnic cultures and religions in this world. We also have been made aware of how our beliefs can lead to disagreements and violence. It can be a challenge to find a common bond to unite of all us when there is disharmony and strife. While we are different in background and cultures, we are all human beings who share the same goals of experiencing happiness and freedom in this life. We also value and respect ideas and behaviors that are different or not familiar to us.

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Rollback views of 7th Avenue

North Miami residents made their concerns known Monday during a town hall meeting about a proposed Walmart Neighborhood Market in their neighborhood. Residents in District 3 urged their Councilman Phillipe Bien-Aime to oppose opening a new Walmart in their neighborhood. Homeowners who for years worked in building a tranquil community with their well-maintained homes had a right to question the intentions of a

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Gay marriage is a civil right

It was more than time that Tallahassee stopped playing judge when it comes to how people want to live their lives. On Jan. 5, Florida administered its first gay marriage. The waste of taxpayers money on this issue was embarrassing and irresponsible. The United States Constitution allows for everyone to be treated fairly and

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Crime problem needs solutions

Gun violence has plagued Miami’s Black community all year. But in the past month, senseless shootings have erupted in Liberty City and Overtown at alarming levels. Some 19 people have been injured in drive-by shootings since Dec. 14. Parents and relatives have shed many tears as their way of coping with a problem that continues to plague their community. In addition to funerals, there have been marches, speeches and campaigns to stop the violence. But crime is still spiraling out of control. Solutions are needed

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Time to speak up on Alzheimer’s

Thousands of relatives who serve as caregivers make tremendous sacrifices daily to help their loved ones live with this debilitating disease. It steals loved ones minute by minute and day by day. But in addition to suffering stress and financial hardships, caregivers also suffer, too. Many experience isolation and loneliness because of this simple fact: Alzheimer’s disease is a stigma in the Black community. Misconceptions and

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A bad lesson from Tondreau

The short political career of Lucie Tondreau is over. North Miami ’s first Haitian-American female mayor had an opportunity to represent her city and race with pride. But the vices of power and greed became her downfall as she was convicted on five counts of wire fraud on Tuesday before a

Candlelight vigil scheduled for slain Miami resident

Candlelight vigil scheduled for slain Miami resident

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Body cameras prevent mistreatment

The massive public reaction to the tragic deaths of three Black teens at the hand of white police officers has led to a national call for use of body cameras to record and prevent any future mistreatment of suspects. There is ample precedent. Animal protection activists have used body cameras to document egregious atrocities and safety violations by workers in the meat, dairy, and egg industries. The resulting videos have led to a number of co

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Legal fight one way to solve Opa-locka problem

city of Opa-locka commissioner Timothy Holmes resolution term limits retroactively

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Lifestyle Happenings

Liberty Square Project Family and Friends Inc. will have their first banquet on Fri. Dec. 5 at the Church of the Incarnation. Call 305-333-8539 or 305-696-1819. The Egelloc Club, MEN OF TOMORROW Program invites 10th grade young men to their Dec. 7 workshop with various Professionals. If interested email nadinebaxter-atkins@keyes.com. Place “MOT” in the subject line.

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Monestime rises on Miami-Dade commission

Monday was a special day for District 2 Commissioner Jean Monestime. By a unanimous vote, Monestime made history by becoming the first Haitian-American to serve as chairman of the Miami-Dade County Commission. The role caps a success story of a Haitian-American who has managed to avoid scandals and gain the respect of his constituents. Monestime was overwhelming elected during the Nov. 4 general election. After serving as a

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Prosecutor responsible for Ferguson unrest

Monday night, after months reviewing evidence and hearing from witnesses, the decision came on whether to charge white police officer Darren Wilson in connection with the shooting death of Michael Brown. The grand jury said no. Soon after, Ferguson erupted into a sea of flames, tear gas and despair. New York, Detroit, Philadelphia, Tempe, Oakland and San Francisco marched in solidarity. People lay in streets in Seattle. In Miami, the silence about the plight of Brown’s family and the citizens of Ferguson was so loud, it could be heard over high-volume TV sets.

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Beware of SkyRise tapping into our pockets

SkyRise last Thursday told minority and women business owners that it has $10 million worth of contracts available for them to participate in its project. That sounds like good news on the surface. But SkyRise’s project is estimated to cost about $400 million when all is said and done. Already the private project is asking to dip into our pockets. It wants $9 million from Miami-Dade county taxpayers. Who knows if SkyRise will ask for more? In this scenario, if SkyRise gives $10 million in contracts and asks for $9 million in county funding, it seems we net $1 million.

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Ferguson, a ticking time bomb

Michael Brown is dead. It’s been more than 100 days since Officer Darren Wilson killed him. Gov. Jay Nixon recently declared a state of emergency in Missouri. These are facts. When this paper hits the press, 103 days would have passed without an indictment for the death of Brown. And, yes, we’ve been counting. Things might change given an expected decision from the grand jury, but Gov. Nixon has issued this declaration of a state emergency in the event that it doesn’t.

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Liberty Square needs change now

There was a time when the Liberty Square housing project was the ideal community for aspiring Black professionals seeking to become part of America’s middle class. Prominent Blacks such as the late Miami Commissioner and Funeral Home owner Athalie Range once called Liberty Square home. Last Thursday, residents of this 77-year-old complex were promised a return to the old days at a town hall meeting. Miami-Dade’s new Housing and Urban Development Director Michael Liu’s vow to sweep out

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Sesame Street: 45 years of transcending race

The hit children’s show, “Sesame Street,” is a mainstay on public television today. But when it debut on public television some 45 years ago on Nov. 10, 1969, “Sesame Street” was groundbreaking. The cast was diverse group of puppets of all colors and people of different colors, too. And “Sesame Street” broke the mold of kids’ TV with extensive research before its commercially-inspired segments aired jingles about letters and numbers.

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Faith Calendar

Mt. Olive Missionary Baptist Church in South Miami will be having a Prayer Breakfast on Nov. 8 at 10:15 after service. Call 305-667-7791. New Way Fellowship Praise and Worship Church will have an evening of praise Sat. Nov. 15. Call 305-625-7246. Second Canaan MB Church invites you to attend their Pastor’s Care Brunch 10:30 a.m. Sat. Nov. 15. in the Fellowship Hall. Call 305-620-1276. New Day N Christ Deliverance Ministry invites the community to free Mind, Body, and Soul Enhancements; self-improvement class and Zumba Fitness. Call 305-691-0018.

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Seventh Avenue: The county is watching you

When the county calls a predominantly Black area a “regional priority,” it gets in the paper. But our readers have to know how to read between the lines. Miami-Dade County is paying attention to Seventh Avenue and so should you. Instead of overlooking the area and its large Black population or disregarding it because of its crime rate, the county is lauding Seventh Avenue as a “strategic location.” Of course, Seventh Avenue is optimally located. It’s near Interstate 95 and within reasonable reach

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Calls for new downtown school smacks of de jure segregation

The undertone concerning talks for a new school for downtown is essentially racist and separatist. That Miami-Dade school board member Raquel Regalado didn’t recommend the many public schools — including Booker T. Washington Senior High School — to her constituents when they approached her about a school to serve their needs was dereliction of duty. If the affluent foreigners living in her district want special programs for their children then they should send them to private school.

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Breast cancer month a success

Breast Cancer Awareness Month was a tremendous success. The rallies, pink ribbons, balloons and decorations brought a refreshing effort to generate awareness in Miami’s Black communities. The media should be congratulated for highlighting the importance of this killer disease. And the marathon walks and special events galvanized Breast cancer survivors to rally around patients in desperate need of support. In the Black community, the attention was highly needed and much

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Finally, some good news for Overtown

Last week Big Bus Tours Miami expanded its routes to pass through the city’s urban core. The Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau sent the bus off on Oct. 16. The tour passed through historic Overtown, Wynwood, Midtown, the Design District and downtown Miami. What a wonderful way for visitors to see and appreciate our city.

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Bright futures needed

On Nov. 5, Florida’s Board of Governors will hear the concerns of many Black and Hispanic parents, whose children no longer qualify for the state’s Bright Futures college scholarship. That’s because the 7-year-old program that has awarded some $4.3 billion to deserving students raised its academic standards as part of an effort to meet its budget. The fact that two-thirds of Black students do not qualify under the new rules should be alarming, especially for a program that has given so many poor, college-bound seniors new hope of achieving the American dream.

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Ebola hits home

Ebola is here. Nina Pham is the first person in America to contract Ebola outside of the African continent. The Dallas nurse contracted the deadly virus while treating Thomas Eric Duncan, who died last week after entering the United States from West Africa. There is no need to panic but Ebola is real and medicine is scarce. The World Health Organization (WHO) said the death rate for Ebola is 70 percent, not 50 percent as previously reported. So that means for every 10 persons infected, seven will die.

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Hold developers accountable in Overtown

Overtown is getting a wave of attention again from developers and Miami city officials. Within the last week Worldcenter got the go-ahead it needed to start its behemoth $2 billion project. The Southeast Overtown Park West Community Redevelopment Agency (SEOPW CRA) has received funding that will allow six projects to get off the ground soon. All this sounds familiar.

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Save our young generation

Another mass shooting in Liberty City, this time at a party held at The Spot where children as young as 12 years old experienced one of the most frightening moments of their lives. The shooting is one of many that have rocked this community. It was also a disturbing scene where young people have taken justice into their own hands by firing bullets into the crowd. While details have emerged about The Spot, the focus should turn toward the parents, who allowed their children to go to such a seedy and

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Job well done, Eric Holder

Eric Holder, America’s first Black Attorney General, resigned last week. For six years, America had someone who revived and could affect civil rights issues. As America’s lawyer he held accountable those who trampled on the rights of those who couldn’t defend themselves.

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Medical marijuana: Stirring the pot

Everyone knows someone who experiences debilitating pain or suffers as the disease ravages their body. That you cannot relieve their condition brings a feeling of helplessness and hopelessness. Doctors have an arsenal of highly addictive drugs that they dispense for pain, some with severe side effects. Pill bottles are marked with labels telling people to be cautious when using these drugs.

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Black churches fighting more than just crime

In the past several months there have been rallies and marches against crime throughout Liberty City, a community that has seen numerous incidences of gun violence. Many lives have been cut short, leaving parents to face the loss of a child or children to lose a parent. Black churches are an integral part of the community and have always served as meeting places for rallies as warriors in the

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Integrity needed at North Miami City Hall

When she ran for mayor of North Miami in the city’s election last year, Lucille Tondreau’s campaign slogan was “I Love Lucie”. It was a catchy phrase that caught on to voters who elected her as the city’s first Haitian-American female mayor. It’s too bad her term was rocked by scandal last month after she was suspended from office for allegedly running an $8 million mortgage scheme.

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Goodbye Miami Edison Middle School

The transformation of Edison Middle School into a technical school in the fall will be the start of an initiative to help students in low-income areas excel in science, mathematics and technology. After years of struggling with mediocre and low grades on the state’s accountability tests, educators hope iTech Thomas A. Edison School’s curriculum will usher in a new era of academic achievement.

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Now we know why Maya Angelou sings

Amidst the physical prowess of today’s star athletes and glamour of Black entertainers, Maya Angelou was a unique celebrity who lived in the limelight as America’s poet laureate. From presidential inaugurations to commencement addresses, Angelou graced this nation with her intellectual prose and insight on the human condition. As America plans to return this humanitarian back to her ancestors, one wonders, who will be the next poet laureate to inspire others to think beyond themselves and the physical.

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Booker T. Washington ahead of the class

Booker T. Washington in Overtown has been the Florida’s Class 4A Football Champions for the past two years. It has been a triumphant year of parades and celebrations for the Tornadoes, the alma mater of many of the Black community’s most prominent professionals and businessmen.

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A salute to the best and brightest

Miami Carol City and American Senior High Schools kicked off the graduation season for many of Miami-Dade’s graduates. In separate ceremonies, seniors proudly hurled their caps at the Bank United Center on the University of Miami campus Tuesday. Other schools will hold festive sendoffs for seniors in the coming days to the delight and pride of many parents, teachers and friends. With top

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Help return Nigerian girls back to their parents

Activists held demonstrations all over the U.S. and the world to express their outrage over the kidnapping of some 276 girls in Nigeria who are still being held hostage by the Boko Haram, a radical group of Islamic extremists. The teenage girls were snatched from their boarding school during a violent raid in the small town of Chibok.

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Time for change at Civilian Investigative Panel

It’s a reality you will find in many of America’s organizations: hardworking individuals clashing with one another over decisions that would best serve the interest of their organization. In one corner are hard-driving leaders who are responsible for making tough decisions. On the other side are dedicated workers who can sometimes challenge the upper echelon of organizations with or without good intentions.

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Donald Sterling fouls out over racist comments

Basketball fans in Miami and across the nation are going wild this week but not because LeBron James and the Heat swept the Charlotte Bobcats in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Emotions are running high over a flagrant foul committed by Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, who ignited a firestorm after an audio tape

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Support Miami Gardens’ $60 million Bond

Miami Gardens is a young city faced with many challenges. Creating safe neighborhoods is one of them and protecting millions of dollars in tax revenue from Sun Life Stadium is another. Both realities are growing pains for Miami-Dade’s second largest city that’s struggling to establish itself as the preeminent community for South Florida’s Black middle-class.

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Lifestyle Happenings

The Miami Children’s Chorus Presents “All Together Now,” a series of free community sing-alongs 11:30 a.m. Sat. April 12 at the North Shore Park and Youth Center. Call 305-662-7494. Booker T. Washington Alumni Association, Inc. presents the 2014 living legends Gala Ball Sat. April 12 at the Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay Hotel. Tickets are $60. Call 305-213-0188.

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Governor Scott losing ground in the Black community

It’s election year in the race for governor. Incumbent Rick Scott is hot on the campaign trail as recent polls show he’s trailing his likely opponent and Democrat candidate Charlie Crist, who will be a tough politician to beat in November if Scott doesn’t do something about it. He has. The trouble is, Scott may have made things worse for his political ambitions. Desperate for votes, the governor in recent months has made critical mistakes that have insulted the Black community. For one, Scott sidestepped an issue concerning hundreds of thousands of Haitians who have been stripped of their citizens on the Dominican Republican and ordered out of the country without nowhere to go. The governor instead joined South Florida’s large Venezuelan community of registered voters and protest President Nicolas Madura’s crackdown on demonstrators protesting food shortages, inflation, and high crime in their native country. They are fed up.

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Final diagnosis on affordable healthcare

It’s the final stretch for millions of American citizens in need of President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Plan. With five days to go before the deadline, politicians, community leaders and scores of volunteers are working long hours at enrollment drives across Miami-Dade county and the nation where residents are packing churches, parks and health centers to sign up to avoid paying a penalty fee.

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Faith Calendar

Bethel Temple/Bethel Community Development Corporation invites the public to their Ultimate Yard Sale Sat., March 22nd from 8 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Vendor spaces are available. Call 305-688-1612 Mt. Hermon AME Church invites the public, particularly those in need, to their furniture “Give Away Bazaar on March 22 starting at 9 a.m. Some items are new and some are used but all are in good condition. Call 954-614-0282.

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Mop City’s final cut with Transit Village

Derek Alderman, a cultural geographer at East Carolina University, conducted a recent survey found over 730 streets in the U.S. are named after Dr. Martin Luther King. It was also discovered that most of those streets are in run-down, inner-city neighborhoods with boarded-up businesses and high crime rates. One of them is in Liberty City.

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Pottinger settlement for the affluent?

Things are not what they used to be. Back in the day Some 16 years ago, a homeless person on Miami’s heavily patrolled streets enjoyed cooked meal before finding somehow, a good night’s sleep on the limiting comforts of a piece of cardboard on hard pavement.

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