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DPS board pushes early ed alternative for Stark school

Dismayed that emergency managers have refused to apply for over $200 million in U.S. Department of Education funding for infant education, elected members of the Detroit Public School Board voted to move ahead with a plan developed by board member Juvette Hawkins-Williams to educate Detroit children from birth through five years. Meeting at DPS offices in the Fisher Building, June 3, elected board members u ...

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Mackinac: Detroit key to Michigan’s prosperity

Detroit is not only critical to Michigan’s growth, but also its prosperity. Policy changes and Detroit’s impending emergence from bankruptcy have positioned the city to lead Michigan forward, according to several speakers at this year’s annual Mackinac Policy Conference hosted by the Detroit Regional Chamber. “We have one Michigan and one Detroit,” said City Council President Brenda Jones who echoed the opt ...

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Beyond pensions

The dictatorial running of our city distorts our ability to think and discuss the kind of future we want for ourselves and our children. Currently, we engage in an outrageously brutal, sham process of public decision-making. Across the country, more than 32,000 individuals are receiving ballots to vote on the future of their retirement plans. This vote is complicated, misleading, unclear and mismanaged. ...

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From Black Wall Street to the Black Dollar Project

Despite historically high unemployment rates, African Americans have shown resiliency in their ability to persevere as consumers. In 2013, the National Newspaper Publishers Association collaborated with Nielsen to create a report and compile Nielsen’s third installment called, “The African American Consumer Report,” which showed the spending habits of the African American consumer. Most importantly, the rep ...

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Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def postpones tour, rumors abound

Popular hip hop recording artist, stage and film actor Yasiin Bey, formerly known to the world as Mos Def, recently made headlines with reports that his upcoming U.S. tour had been postponed for reasons unknown. Promoters of the Boston show, where Bey’s tour was to kick off, caused controversy when they announced, last week, the postponement was due to Bey having been denied entry into the country by U.S. I ...

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Benefit or betrayal?

Who benefits? If we answer this question by looking at the lives of our children, it is obvious the policies of our nation, states and cities are failing miserably. As the policy elite gather this week in Mackinac, they should look beyond Grand Bargains, political posturing, bankruptcy and bond ratings to the state of our children. Nothing more starkly reveals the failure of the reigning economic and politi ...

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Media blackout on banks’ role in Detroit’s financial crisis

Mayor Mike Duggan and Gov. Rick Snyder had nothing but praise last week when banking giant JPMorgan Chase and Co. announced plans to invest, through a combination of loans and grants, $100 million in Detroit over the next five years. “I want to thank and applaud JPMorgan Chase and Co. for their generous investment and long-term commitment to the reinvention of Detroit,” said Snyder. “This multi-year initiat ...

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Backlash: No rap, no Hennessy allowed

Recently, I read social media threads about an incident involving a well-known local musician, who appeared — through his words, attitude and stance — to make remarks and possibly take actions that would exclude or discourage African Americans from gathering at a particular public place. The incident reminded me of how personal bias manifests into discriminatory action and can become the foundation for stru ...

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‘No rap, no Hennessey allowed’

There were about 15 or 20 people dancing, playing pool, chatting and having drinks the night of May 15 at the Painted Lady, a dimly-lit Hamtramck dive bar, frequented by metro Detroit rock musicians. Andrew Miller, who was DJing that night, says a few people had even begun singing along to, “Other thing” by Detroit hip hop group The Anonymous featuring Kresge Arts fellows Passalacqua. The crowd’s warm respo ...

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Detroit can’t afford expensive consultants who risk racial conflict

One year ago, Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr signed a $621,578 contract on behalf of the city of Detroit with the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research (TMI) to consult with Detroit police about community policing, traffic control, command accountability and other matters. After the contract expired, the ACLU of Michigan heard TMI had suggested to residents of certain Detroit neighborhoods that the r ...

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