National call for ‘Teach the Truth’

first_imgBy Nolan HackThey say our kids are our future. If that is the case then why are we setting so many children up for failure by teaching them to hate themselves because they are not white? Why are we teaching them partial histories and ignoring facts as inconvenient to the colonial narrative? I grew up thinking the murderers of our people and men who owned us as slaves were heroes because that’s what I was taught.People always say that the lack of funding in U.S. schools is the biggest problem in education; and while that is a major problem, it is not the largest issue that education in this country is facing. Subject matter is, and should be, a far larger concern than funding. The histories and lessons we choose to teach our children matter and until this country chooses to teach and impart its actual history, it will be doomed to continue its cycles of violence against people of color.The indoctrination of “American exceptionalism” continues to be pounded into the minds of our children. “America first.” People of color last. Children are told a fairytale about U.S. history that, in some parts of the country completely omits Native history, slavery, Jim Crow and the Ku Klux Klan. It is harmful to omit these very important historical occurrences as a denial of fact.If you’re a Black or Native child and you grow up without these facts, not only is your self-worth limited by the whitewashing of “American Exceptionalism” but you’re also likely to be left very confused the first time you’re stopped by a police officer because of your skin color or when you see a person of color murdered by the police for the same reason. It can be confusing because lacking any historical reasoning for the violence, it may look random or like something that isn’t a common occurrence.People and groups such as Protests for Native Rights in Michigan, the American Indian Movement (Virginia/Maryland chapter), the United American Indians of New England, the Wisconsin Indian Education Association, Black Lives Matter Arizona and Black Lives Matter Vermont among others are a part of a national project that is going after the whitewashed curriculum in U.S. textbooks as well as schools that have racist nicknames, racist mascots or that are named after racist people.A national day of action is being planned on Nov. 17, 2017, to initiate this project. This date has been chosen because “Thanksgiving” is one of the largest and most pervasive U.S. lies told to children. Genocide should not be celebrated, and yet this country has built a myth around genocide and perpetuates that myth annually.Truth protectors will be positioned at schools across the country with signs and posters that quote factual information about each school’s problematic mascot, nickname or school name. For example, at Andrew Jackson Middle School a sign might read, “Jackson killed double the people that Hitler killed in the Holocaust/He had over 100 slaves/He created the Trail of Tears,” etc.As the final bell rings and the children exit the schools, they can see the truth for themselves and begin to question what they have been taught. On this same day, we will begin putting pressure on textbook publishers by calling, tweeting, posting, writing and emailing; telling them to fix their guidelines for historical accuracy, their curriculum for all grade levels, and to TELL THE KIDS THE TRUTH!After the day of action, we will keep a dialogue going with all the schools that we protested at and their districts, staying on their behind so we can force as much change as possible. The day of action will also be used as a springboard to put a full-court press attack on the textbook publishers. We are logging all the different major publishers and which states their textbooks are used in so we can have a organized attack when we go after them.I’ve heard too many people of color say that “they haven’t experienced racism” and they may actually believe that. Because of all the fallacies they’re taught as kids, they subconsciously think that white people are better than we are; therefore, when they experience racism they don’t qualify it as racism and just think that’s just the way things are supposed to be.Launching Nov. 17 national day of actionI grew up in a white neighborhood. I went to a rich, white school. Subconsciously, I wanted to be white and I’m a mixed brotha. I’m half white. So my confusion and delusion was an intrusion on my daily life. Most of my friends were white and had straight or spiky hair when I was a young kid.One day, I wet a comb to try to straighten my nappy hair and even though I tried, tried and tried, the curls would not straighten. I was very disappointed. I was about six or seven at the time. My psyche for most of my childhood made me believe white folks were better than us. Being told to believe in a fake deity (white Jesus) didn’t help. Long story short, like millions of other children I was brainwashed into believing Chris Rock’s famous comedy line: “If it’s all white, it’s all right.”It wasn’t until I was about 14 when I read “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” and watched Denzel [Washington] play him in the movie did I first feel proud of my Black self and my Blackness. Keep in mind that before doing so, I thought Malcolm was a no good thug because of what I was taught in school.Unless we change what is being taught to our children, they will continue to grow up to be very confused adults ashamed of their wonderful heritage and people. There is another side to this. White children are taught that genocidal and racist murderers of the past are heroes and their extremely dirty deeds are left out of the curriculum. White kids grow up with a sense of superiority. They end up believing that all these white leaders of the past and present are people who should be respected, while the true facts of how this country was formed and is maintained are left out of the textbooks.When you’re told that Black people willingly immigrated to the U.S. and all the Native people died out due to unfortunate diseases, while powerful white leaders “built this great country,” you’re going to feel pretty good about yourself and the race you’re a part of. White power/white supremacy = “American exceptionalism.” This is how people like Barry Goldwater, Lyndon Baines Johnson, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are created. They are created by conditioning and indoctrination by being taught a whitewashed version of U.S. history.We already have over 40 schools we’re going to protest at on Nov. 17. We want this stopped. We don’t want this to continue. We want to #TellTheKidsTheTruth. This genocidal system we are under needs to go, but that can’t happen unless the truth is told. If our kids really are our future we need to act like it. It doesn’t matter where you are in the United States. You can help this endeavor. If you would like to do so, email [email protected]’re trying to add as many cities as possible for the day of action. We need people to organize in their area. We have a list of thousands of schools named after racist people and having racist nicknames and mascots. You can choose from a school on the list in your area to organize at.​ We also need people to help with the other half of this project in going after the curriculum. We need folks who can add to our efforts of coordinating calculated pressure on the publishers, starting on the day of action and moving forward.  You can even help us fix the toxic curriculum from your own home.I’m 29 years old. I remember the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s words: “Free at last …” I want more than anything in this world for us to be free before I pass on, and I truly believe this project would be a giant step forward towards our freedom.Peace and Love. All Power to the People!FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Pa. prisoner tells WW: “We’re on death row lockdown”

first_imgWorkers World reporter Ted Kelly interviewed Bryant Arroyo, a lifer at Pennsylvania State Correctional Institute Frackville in central Pennsylvania on April 1. Mumia Abu-Jamal has referred to him as “the world’s first jailhouse environmentalist.” Arroyo has been in prison for 27 years for a crime he did not commit.Ted Kelly and Bryant Arroyo, Feb. 28. Credit: Kenyatta WilliamsWorkers World: What are the threats that the COVID-19 pandemic poses to prisoners?Bryant Arroyo: It’s definitely a trying time. I’m just trying to maintain a positive outlook, even though I do believe this COVID-19 virus will spread, and it’s not something we’re going to be able to stop, per se. This is a new ordeal, not just here, but it’s something that’s unprecedented throughout the system. I also believe it presents a new excitement for the system to revamp its draconian laws and look at it with a new, fresh perspective.Change is inevitable. We all have to go through a process of change, regardless of whether we’re reluctant or reticent to do so. I think the system now confronts a new monster. It ain’t the COVID-19. It’s the injustices that have been done to prisoners like myself who are actually innocent and those who are deserving of a second chance.I have to tell you this because these are unusual and unprecedented circumstances. Instead of giving out more rations and better quality of food, they give out less rations and poor-ass quality of food. Thank God that I’m fortunate enough to have the little bit that I do have, coupled with my cellie, and we share with each other. But what if you don’t have that?WW: Can you describe what the rations have degenerated to?BA: For example, for breakfast, they give you a packet of coffee (which is the lowest quality), a shitload of salt and pepper, one cereal, one piece of cake and a milk. That’s your breakfast. Today, Wednesday, they gave us two eggs, a packet of coffee, a carton of juice, and a milk with cereal. If you cup your hand, that’s the amount of cereal they gave.WW: Are all meals taken directly in the cell right now?BA: Yes. There’s no walking down the main line to pick it up. Right now everyone is being punitively sanctioned to one hour of [recreation]. We’re really on death row lockdown. This is exactly what it is — death row lockdown. This is 23-and-1 [23 hours in the cell, 1 hour not locked in].You got two workout machines on the block. I don’t want to work out. I want to communicate. Aside from that, I’m not going to take my [one hour of] rec — that I have to take a shower in and try to get in the phone calls to communicate with my family — and take away 10 or 15 minutes [for rec]. It’s too precious to exercise right now. So the only exercise I can do right now is through my jaw and my voice box. [Laughs]WW: You have to do all that in one hour?BA: Yes! I haven’t even taken a shower. I got my hands right now wrapped in my underwear, soap dish and rag. My shampoo’s on the floor. So when I’m done with you, I’m going to see if I can call my daughter and then I’ll take it from there.I’m telling you right now that even with all the things that we do have — I’m talking about the little luxuries: my typewriter, I got that stationed; the tablet, if you got games on it or music you can utilize that.  If you got a TV, you’re temporarily getting free cable. Let’s just say you don’t have any of that.Can you imagine what the mental health aspects are? They’re going through the roof. Because even with the particular luxuries that I mentioned, that’s not enough. People are fearful. They’re concerned. They’re tired of being tired and left in the dark.The DOC [Department of Correction] is treating this like a natural lockdown. But this is literally a death row lockdown, which exacerbates mental health problems. To be truthful, the reason they’re doing this is that they don’t know how to adapt to the overall big picture. As they go, they are more reactionary.If they’d respond to the situation accordingly and listen to exactly what our needs are, that would protect them. When we as prisoners eat a good meal and we’re in our cells, guess what we’re doing? We’re laughing, joking, thinking about our families, discussing our families — and going to sleep. You can go to sleep in peace after breaking bread accordingly. They don’t get that.We don’t need any more problems. You don’t need people lashing out or going ballistic. You don’t need people losing their minds because they’re frustrated, because they’re starving. So the guys are going off. They went off last night.They’re probably going to go off again today because [the prison staff] were trying to deprive them of showers. They’re frustrated. They’re locked in. They haven’t had their rec. So they all kicked in unison until [the staff] turned around and said, okay, we’re going to shower you.WW: So it worked.BA: Absolutely.WW: But the fact that they had to all kick their cell doors in unison just to get a shower and their meal time and their rec.BA: Correct. At that point ain’t no [guard] could go to the door and tell them to stop because they said: Fuck you! Give me my shit that I deserve and that I have a right to. I have a right to a shower! I have a right to work. You’re here to work. You come in here thinking that you got an attitude. What do you think I have? More than an attitude. [Laughs] That’s why I’m kicking the door instead of kicking you. [Laughs]WW: Workers World says that prisons are concentration camps for the poor. Do you agree?BA: Yes. You always have to look at [prisoners] as destitute. They have absolutely nothing except for the fact that they’re in prison. If you jump off of that premise — which is that most of us are in the most extreme position — you can make the best decisions. This situation presents us with challenges that we have to reckon with, that we may not have previously fathomed or entertained. That’s part of life.Now COVID-19 is part of all our lives. Hope that a lot of us don’t get it, and that if we do get it, that we don’t die from it. That is my sincere hope for all my loved ones, family members, friends around the world. For real!  At the end of the day, this pandemic is taking lives. So it is serious. It is a matter of life and death. And when we’re presented with a situation of this magnitude, the leaders at the top need to come to the floor and see for themselves and speak to us.It goes against the very same thing that the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] states and the federal jurisdiction has stated: that we have to downsize and have space. As we all know, prisons are a cesspool. And there is no space, and there’s overcrowding.We’re packed in here like sardines. Being locked in 23-and-1 doesn’t even give us access to fresh air other than what comes in through your window. It sucks. Granted [staff] have more liquids to clean with, and this, that, and the third, but aside from sterilization, you need fresh air!This is going to really present a new challenge. Aside from the misery that this COVID-19 has brought upon the people — the traumas, devastation, tragedies, lives being taken — I think this presents an unprecedented and indelible mark in history. Because you still have the time to do what is right. You can come up with many great ideas.I believe now is the time not to just get dug in, but to come up with very creative, conscionable, reasonable and firm ideas so that we cannot just develop, but we can grow. Look at a means of justice informed by all the families who live in this misery for years, supporting their loved ones who are innocent or deserving of a second chance. Now is the time.We have to give [the public] insight. A lot of people don’t know what’s going on. You know? Think about it. They only got four ventilators on behalf of the whole Pennsylvania DOC. All four of them are being utilized. So imagine if there’s a widespread COVID-19 outbreak in here. They only got four ventilators.Ted: You need to put that out there. You need to say this is a shame! They need to have thousands of those in the storehouse just in case.WW: And [prisons] need to be releasing people now!BA: There you go. If you’re gonna look at the economic feasibility of it, what is “the lesser of two evils,” so to speak? Release on parole! If they don’t report, then you can take other measures. But in the meantime, between-time? It’s never too late to do what is right — and that’s to quote from King.Listen: Speak up and speak out. Remember that you are vicariously our voice from within. Know that no matter what it looks like, this right now is the scariest and most fearful position that any human being can be in. Make sure you state that.But let ‘em know: We shall rise up! Fists up!FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Two Cases of COVID-19 Reported in Town of Palm Beach

first_imgFlorida currently has 390 cases of COVID-19, with about half of those in South Florida. Palm Beach County currently has 29 confirmed cases. Two cases of coronavirus were confirmed Thursday afternoon in the Town of Palm Beach.According to Town Manager Kirk Blouin, one of the residents was taken by paramedics and tested positive, while the other person is the daughter of a town resident who public safety personnel encountered on a call. It is unclear whether she is a resident of the island.last_img

Gateway overcomes Allderdice’s ‘Hawk D’ to advance

first_imgCROWD PLEASER—High flying 6-5 sophomore Ben Mickens of Allderdice slams two in front of Gateway’s Barnett Harris. GREAT SCOTT— Gateway’s super sophomore Tyler Scott is fouled by Eric Maninger of Allderdice. Scott scored 15 points and hit two free throws in the final seconds to seal the win. “All year we were taking shots—we don’t play hard, we don’t play defense, we don’t do this or don’t do that. But, hey, where were all these people Saturday afternoon?” asked Gateway coach Mitch Adams. “I get into my players faces because I want the kids to have my intensity.”The Dragons entered the game with four starters averaging in double figures: point guard Branden Johnson (10 ppg), Brandon McLester (14.5 ppg), Ishmael Swain (16.3 ppg) and Ben Mickens (13 ppg). But, it was 6-2 sophomore Justin “Happy” Dobbs that led Allderdice to a 10-2 lead by nailing three 3-pointers from deep in the right corner. The Dragons ended the first quarter leading 13-8. Gateway’s super sophomore Tyler Scott began to take over in the second quarter. Scott, a talented 6-6 sophomore point guard, scored 15 points. He electrified the crowd and broke the Dragons “Hawk D” defense with his “Magic Johnson” no look pass to senior reserve Matt Miles, who scored the easiest two points of his career. The Gators held a 31-24 halftime lead.In the third quarter, the 2010 City League champs fought their way back into the game. With Allderdice trailing only 34-33, high flying 6-5 sophomore Ben Mickens went to the hoop and came away with an acrobatic dunk over 6-10 division I prospect Barnett Harris that caused Gateway to call a timeout and fans to erupt with boisterous chants of “Hawk D,” “Hawk D,” “Hawk D.”Allderdice came out of the timeout holding onto a 35-34 lead but sophomore Mickens, a Pittsburgh Central Catholic transfer who is familiar to Gateway fans from a pair of battles in Section 2 last season, knew the game was far from over.“We knew that this would be a hard fought game,” said Mickens. “It was a close game. Not many teams can hold Gateway to 46 points”“That was just like a heavyweight fight where two guys got in the middle of the ring and slugged it out. It’s the way old basketball was played. They had no fear of us, and we had no fear of them, said Adams. “We knew that Allderdice was a solid team. We played them over the summer and got a good look at their “Hawk D” defense.”With the Gators carrying as many as five Division I prospects on their roster, the sky is truly the limit for this bunch.The kind of talent in general, let alone on one team, hasn’t been seen in these parts too often, if ever, in recent years. Schenley’s run with DeJuan and Greg Blair, D. J. Kennedy, Deandre Kane and Jamaal Bryant a couple years back was the rare exception.In his fifth year as head coach, Adams has slowly turned around the basketball program at a school that has a well-earned reputation as a football powerhouse, having dominated Class AAAA for most of the past several decades.Gateway will play District 6 champion Hollidaysburg March 17. Looking even further down the road, Gateway would earn a rematch with Mt. Lebanon in the state quarterfinals March 20.“This team is young, but the game isn’t too big for them,” said assistant coach Marvin Wright. “We have the talent to win the whole thing.”Catapulted by its lopsided City League championship victory over Oliver, the Dragons won the City championship for the first time since 1988, a team led by Jason White and Bill Herndon.Herndon went on to play for John Calipari at UMass. Coach Calipari is now coaching the University of Kentucky. With a sophomore class that features Mickens, Dobbs, Barnett, and Scott, look for Calipari to return to Pittsburgh to get some of the country’s top basketball recruits.A wet weekend caused flooding problems in the area and had the fans at Peabody High School’s gymnasium looking to the skies as the Chartiers Valley Lady Colts were raining 3s. The sharp shooting Colts led 55-18 over Perry behind 11 first half 3-point baskets and cruised to a 65-22 victory over the City champs in the first round of the PIAA Class AAA.Perry got off to a slow start, because many of their star players took the SAT exams before the game. The contest was delayed while 6-2 center Maritta Gillcrease changed into her uniform.With Perry holding a decided size advantage, the Colts strategy of shooting from the outside paid off for them. Freshman Alex Coyne scored all of her game-high 15 points in the first half on five 3-pointers.Perry held Chartiers Valley to only 10 second half points, but it was too little too late.“The team won the City but was disappointed in their performance. They really wanted to come out today and play well. I’m very proud of them. They played good defense in the second half and played well all season,” said athletic director Dana Knapp.Maritta Gillcrease who did well on her SAT exam was noticeably disappointed after the game.“I can’t believe what just happened,” said Gillcrease. “But I’ll be back. I’ll be back.”With Gillcrease and her twin sister Marissa coming back next year, the Perry Lady Commodores have a good chance of returning to the state playoffs in 2011. by Smokin’ Jim FrazierFor New Pittsburgh Courier Allderdice coach Andre McDonald and his top assistant, Jason Rivers, came up with a defense they named “Hawk-D,” while coaching summer league teams. Not many teams have shown more hustle than Allderdice, a program that prides itself on work ethic, desire and suffocating defense. However, Gateway used some late game defensive plays to hold on for a 46-43 victory over Allderdice March 13, in front of a near capacity crowd at Peabody High School in East Liberty.last_img read more

Alaffia Spearheading Campaign for Olympia’s Designation as a Fair Trade Town

first_imgSubmitted by AlaffiaRose Hyde and Olowo-n’djo Tchala are the founders of Alaffia. They are spearheading a campaign to get Olympia recognized as a Fair Trade Town. Photo credit: Ben MoonOlympia has the opportunity to become the first city in Washington State to be named a Fair Trade City by the Fair Trade Towns USA Campaign.The campaign is being spearheaded by Alaffia, a fair trade skincare organization, working to empower communities, increase awareness of the benefits of fair trade, and highlight Olympia’s commitment to being a leader in the global fight on inequality.Alaffia currently employs more than 80 full-time employees in the Olympia-Tumwater area and 500 women at their cooperatives in Togo, West Africa, where the raw ingredients of their products are handcrafted. Alaffia is Fair for Life Certified by the Institute for Marketecology both in Togo and Olympia, which confirms Alaffia meets standards concerning fair working conditions, fair prices and wages, environmental performance, and community relations.The Fair Trade Towns USA campaign raises consumer awareness, increases the availability of fair trade products, and drives sales in order to help lift more than 1.2 million families out of poverty.To become an official Fair Trade Town, applicants must build retail availability and show that Fair Trade products are available in local stores, as well as in institutions, such as places of worship, schools, and offices. The City Council must also pass an official resolution in support of fair trade, stating it is an issue important to its government and residents and including plans to implement that support in concrete ways.Olowo-n’djo Tchala and Rose Hyde stand in their Alaffia home office. The company employs more than 80 people in the greater Olympia area. Photo credit: Ben MoonOlympia would join over 20 other municipalities already recognized as Fair Trade Towns, including Montclair, Red Bank, and Highland Park, NJ; Boston, Amherst, and Northampton, MA; Brattleboro and Burlington, VT; San Francisco and Chico, CA; Milwaukee, WI; Media, PA; Bluffton, OH; Ballston Spa, NY; and Taos, NM. Furthermore, active campaigns are taking place in over 30 additional towns and cities, including New York, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Chicago, and Seattle.To join the campaign visit www.fairtradecampaigns.org/campaign/olympia. For more information about Alaffia please visit www.alaffia.com. Facebook186Tweet0Pin0last_img read more

Oakland A’s welcome back one catcher, DFA another

first_imgOAKLAND — The A’s reinstated catcher Josh Phegley from the 10-day injured list Friday and designated catcher Dustin Garneau for assignment.Phegley was placed on the IL July 31, retroactive to July 29, with a left thumb contusion on his catching hand. He was batting .243 with a career-high 10 home runs and a career-high 47 RBI in 82 games.Phegley went 1 for 6 on a two-game rehab assignment with Triple-A Las Vegas on Aug. 11 and 12. He was 2 for 5 Thursday night at Single-A Stockton in a third …last_img

Forest Practices Board calls on BC Government to adopt a tactical forest

first_imgVICTORIA, B.C. – In a new report, the Forest Practices Board is recommending that the B.C. Government adopts a tactical forest planning process to direct forestry operations on Crown land.According to  Kevin Kriese, Chair of the Forest Practices Board, the Board has been calling for improved planning for over 20 years and that the plan does not address the need for planning for multiple forest values.“For more than 20 years, the board has called for improved planning and objectives at the landscape and watershed scales. Recent board work has confirmed that forest stewardship plans, despite considerable energy and effort to develop and approve, do not address the need for planning for multiple forest values across the landscape.” The Board’s report recommends that the process must:be inclusive of Indigenous peoples, stakeholders and the public;integrate all forest values;be place-based and forward-looking;be embedded in the forest management system; andinclude monitoring and continuous improvement over timeCurrently, the Government is consulting with the public on potential amendments to the Forest and Range Practices Act.The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government.More information on the Board can be found at bcfpb.ca.last_img read more

President to confer Padma Awards on March 11 15

first_imgNew Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind will confer the Padma Awards on March 11 and 15 in two investiture ceremonies at the Rashtrapati Bhavan as the Modi government has claimed to have transformed the national honours into “people’s choice” trophies by involving the general public in sending entries. For the awards announced on the eve of Republic Day, the government received a record 50,000 nominations, 20 times more than the 2,200 entries in 2014. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! The awardees include 12 farmers from nine states, 14 doctors from 11 states, nine sportspersons, 16 social workers and others representing various fields. Of the 112 named for the awards, 56 will receive the honour on March 11. Among those to be awarded on March 11 include Balasaheb alias Balwant Moreshwar Purandare from Maharashtra who will be honoured with the Padma Vibhushan. There will be eight Padma Bhushan honours to be given to John Chambers, Sardar Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Pravin Jamnadas Gordhan, Vishwanathan Mohanlal, Budhaditya Mukherjee, Karia Munda, Kuldip Nayar (posthumous) and Hukumdev Narayan Yadav. The Padma award winners will interact with the winners of Padma Quiz organised by the government last week which saw participation by 35,499 people.last_img read more