port of harlem magazine

June 23 - July 13, 2011


amar group

Killer of Unarmed Youth Out of Prison

johannes mehserle and oscar grantCalifornia freed Johannes Mehserle (left), a former transit police officer convicted last year in the shooting death of 22-year-old Oscar Grant (right) on New Year's Day 2009. Grant was unarmed on an Oakland, California, train platform when the trained transit police said he intended to draw and fire his taser rather than his gun when he killed Grant.

From Our Files

The Value of Black Male Life - FEDS Investigates Transit Killing

Dr. Gates, Edwards, Moats, Grant, Louima, White, Diallo


port of harlem gambian education partnership

Presidential Candidate Has Intolerant Words for Muslims

herman cainPresident Obama made his mark in the sand on inclusion and tolerance during his January 20, 2009 inaugural address. During that historic address, he declared: “For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers.”

Meanwhile 2012 GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain stood firm, according to CNN, on his promise to make Muslims prove loyalty to the U.S. Constitution before appointing them to his administration - a test, he claims, that would not apply to people of other faiths.


Obama Busts Diversity and Inclusion Records

President Obama is setting records for the number of women and non-Whites nominated to serve as judges, which are lifetime appointments. Nearly 50 percent of the 73 candidates he has tapped for the bench have been women. By contrast, 22 percent of the judges named by President George W. Bush were women, as were 28 percent of those named by President Bill Clinton. About 25% of Obama’s appointees have been African Americans, 10% Hispanics and 11% Asian Americans.

Beyond those impressive figures, there are 14 Asia-Pacific Americans on the federal bench, and Obama named half of them, including the first Vietnamese American, the first Chinese American and the first Korean American.

Obama has also appointed the highest-ranking gay official ever when he named John Berry as director of the Office of Personnel Management, which oversees the nation's 1.9 million federal workers. He also named Amanda Simpson, the first openly transgender appointee, as a senior technical adviser in the Commerce Department.

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St. Michael’s Celebrates Juneteenth

Unlike other American subgroups, it was not until the 1960s (during the Cold War) that the African-American population has seen a steady stream of new blood since the end of the Act Prohibiting Importation of Slaves (1807)ended the arrival of enslaved Africans in the United States.

emmanuel  grantsonThe Reverend Emmanuel Grantson, a native of Ghana and pastor of St. Michael’s Truth Evangelical Lutheran Church in Mitchellville, MD, a Washington suburb, is one of those newly arrived African Americans. He told stories of Anansi the Spider during the church’s Juneteenth Celebration, which celebrates the legal end of American slavery. “I also tell these stories intertwined with Biblical stories in my sermons,” he says.

Anansi means spider in Akan, a language spoken in Ghana. The stories survived the horrific Middle Passage and is a part of the folklore of many Africans in the diaspora including African-American folklore. “I am trying to make a bridge between my congregation and the Africans back home,” he continued.


Things to Do

Discussion: Prison-The Real Cost
NY State taxpayers pay about $50,000 a year to house each prisoner. Harlem and other inner-city communities to which they return home become poorer and poorer each year. A discussion, cosponsored by Think Outside the Cell, on the real cost of prison includes:
  • How can the $50,000 per prisoner be better spent
  • How does the community make sure that the funds are better spent
  • How does incarceration impact prisoners’ families and their future
Jun 23, 6p
HueMan Bookstore
2319 Frederick Douglass Blvd.
Harlem, free

T. Michael Colbert, Port of Harlem contributor, writes from prison in “The Other Side.”

Douglas Center for Environmental Education 25th Anniversary
Lake Street
Gary, IN
Sat Jun 25, 10a-4p

Howard Hewett

Anacostia Art Gallery & Boutique
2806 Bruce Place Street, SE
Washington, DC 20020

Sat Jul 9, 7:30p

$25 -$35


The Akwa Ibom State Association (USA) Convention
Hyatt Regency Hotel
Miami, FL
Th-Mo Aug 11-15

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ivan brown realty

Robert Reich Explains the Economic State in 2 Minutes

robert reich

Robert Reich explains what went wrong with America's economy in just 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Reich is a political economist, professor, author, and political commentator. He served in Presidents Ford, Carter, and Clinton administrations. He served as the Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton.

The Washington Post provides a more detailed story and statistics that one can use to arrive at the same conclusions as Reich.

Cuban Mother Brings Son’s Ashes to U.S.

Reina Luisa Tamayo, the mother of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, the Cuban dissident who orlando zapata tamayo died while in the midst of a hunger strike last year, arrived in Miami carrying her son's ashes in a box covered by a Cuban flag and vowing to carry on her son’s fight for liberty for the Cuban people.

Zapata was 42 when he died in February of 2008 after an 85-day hunger strike. He was serving a long jail sentence for what the Cuban government said were crimes, such as disobedience and contempt, when he launched his hunger strike for improved prison conditions.

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