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Water rights

Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s plan to turn the water department into a regional asset has been smashed by the absolute refusal of Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson and Mark Hackel of Macomb County. In a politically motivated move to pander to racist views of the city, both men acted on what the Detroit Free Press called “old line biases and divisions.” In response, Orr is calling for bids from pr ...

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MC Lyte to DJ Barristers’ Ball

MC Lyte changed history when she became the first woman to release a full-length mainstream solo hip hop album, “Lyte as a Rock,” in 1988. Now she’s taking the same spirit that inspired a generation of women emcees to entertain another group of crusaders, the Wolverine Bar Association. ...

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Honoring a revolutionary healer

Elizabeth Marie Jones-Gidney El-Bey, M.D., was memorialized at the Shrine of the Black Madonna on April 5, celebrating the extraordinary life of a leading doctor of holistic health and medicine. She was born on Feb. 15, 1938, and joined the ancestors on Dec. 20, 2013. The gathering of family, friends, patients and peers honored the loving, gentle spirit of Dr. Gidney, who in her life became a pioneer of nat ...

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Acceptance by eight Ivies doesn’t remove race stigma

You would think news of a high school student from a family of African immigrants getting accepted into all eight Ivy League universities would be met with universal celebration. If you thought that, think again. First the news. USA Today reported: In the next month, Kwasi Enin must make a tough decision: Which of the eight Ivy League universities should he attend this fall? A first-generation American from ...

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Bring DIA artwork to your block!

In 2010 the Detroit Institute of Art commemorated its 125th anniversary by printing reproductions of the most famous pieces in its collection — one of the world’s largest — and hanging them outdoor in public places. The program, titled “Inside Out,” has been so popular the DIA has done it each spring and summer since; last year the DIA scattered eight reproductions across Detroit’s Belle Isle. ...

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Detroit poets celebrate Hayden, Randall

Detroit’s Poet Laureate Naomi Long Madgett joined some of the city’s renowned poets April 3 at Wayne State University for the Centennial Celebration of Robert Hayden and Dudley Randall, two of Detroit’s most recognized historical poets and cultural influences of African American culture. Robert Hayden (1913-1980) was the first African American named Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress, and was e ...

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‘Jane’ walks the talk

Jane Jacobs, author and urbanist, was never one run from a good debate. In her book, “The Death and Life of Great American Cities,” she wrote that urban renewal did not respect the needs of the people actually living in the cities. In 1968, she was arrested while protesting to stop a highway from being built through New York’s Washington Square Park. A dedicated activist, some, nonetheless, have accused her ...

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Detroit leads Michigan in stressed-related deaths, reports show

According to reports published by the Center for Disease Control, Detroit leads Michigan in the rate of unnecessary deaths caused by heart disease. These disturbing facts are no surprise to health officials, considering the chronic economic and political troubles besetting Detroit including high crime and unemployment rates, high car insurance premiums and unreliable city services. When compounded, these is ...

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Detroit Raw

While incarcerated in a federal prison, I watched them come through the prison gates — street swag intact — talking tough as they were led to newly assigned cells. I taught a number of them in G.E.D. prep classes handling the “I’m the baddest MF in here” attitudes. No, no, you’re not; I am. That’s how it worked when dealing with tough azz youngsters in prison many of whom will be old men when they are relea ...

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‘Black Shadow’: Laced heroin implicated in deaths

A recent spike in heroin-related deaths have caused city health officials to strongly advise heroin users call the Institute for Population Health (800.467.2452) immediately for admission to treatment. Experts suspect the recent increase of fatalities in Detroit and across the country can be attributed to using heroin laced with fentanyl analogues, substances found in strong prescription pain medications. U ...

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