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The un-United States of America

Shortly after the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776 the Second Continental Congress struggled to develop a document that would provide the structure for the first government of the United States. On Nov. 15, 1777, the representatives of the 13 original colonies adopted the Articles of Confederation. It provided structure for a loose association of independent states, enabling them to co ...

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Big, but no punch: The Black consumer and economic development

With an increasing buying power of nearly $1 trillion annually — $1.3 trillion by 2017, if African Americans were a geographical-fiscal entity, they’d be the 16th largest country in the world, according to a recent Nielsen report. So then, why is it Black communities meet so many challenges when it comes to economic development? ...

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Weeklong protest claims M-1 RAIL is divisive

The North End Woodward Community Coalition (NEWCC), a coalition of bus riders and their supporters, are marching every day for a week to challenge ideas about the planned M-1 RAIL, a Woodward Avenue streetcar service. According to their Web site, “M-1 RAIL is a 501(c)3 organization managing the design, construction and operation of a circulating streetcar that will initially run 3.3 miles along Woodward Ave ...

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Council frowns on Belle Isle lease

During formal session on Oct. 1, council members expressed their disapproval of the state agreement with Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr to lease Belle Isle. “It’s unfathomable to me that anybody could come to the New York City Council and advise the council that Central Park has been leased away to the state of New York without a hearing. I can’t imagine that,” Councilwoman JoAnn Watson said. “Belle Isle is ou ...

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Oakman School trashed, documents strewn

Birth certificates, parent permission slips and other sensitive documents are among the papers strewn around the front door of the shuttered Oakman Orthopedic school on the city’s west side. Aliya Moore, parent advocate, has two garbage bags full of documents she rescued from the front lawn of the school after it was closed at the end of school in July. ...

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Detroit Raw by Sam Riddle

I listen a lot more than I speak these days, because I had to learn the hard way there is power in silence and listening. The streets speak loudly if one is willing to shut up and listen to the wisdom bouncing around the potholes of Detroit where degrees and bank accounts are not required. ...

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Blight in our community

Blight is the new word of the day. As federal officials left town in the wake of promises to free up money for Detroit, images of burned out houses and falling down structures dominated discussions of our city. In the selective reporting of mainstream media, we are told Detroit has an unknown number of abandoned houses with estimates ranging between 78,000 and 91,000 homes. The impression is that each of th ...

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‘Magic’ at State Fair

Lansing native Earvin “Magic” Johnson and business partners, Marvin Beatty and Joel Ferguson, could soon begin development on 157 acres of land at the old State Fair Grounds. Developers say the project includes more than retail, as they are considering single-family and senior residential housing. The site plan also includes a movie theater, entertainment venues and preservation of some historic buildings. ...

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Soul food gets healthy

Detroit Vegan Soul (DVS) celebrates the grand opening of their brick-and-mortar café Sept. 28 from 3-7 p.m. The event will feature live music, a ribbon cutting and a free tasting of some of DVS’ most popular dishes. DVS began in February 2012 as a meal delivery and catering company. Its founders say they started the business to “make good, healthy food accessible to everyone and break the cycle of diet-rela ...

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