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Need builds for youth violence prevention

Need builds for youth violence prevention

Recent events made for an all-too-real backdrop as a National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention unfolded at the Board of Education on Tuesday (Sept. 9).
 
Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell Jr. hosted the forum along with District Attorney General Amy Weirich and Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong. Also in attendance were representatives from the U.S. Department of Justice, standing in solidarity with Memphis’ efforts to prevent youth violence.

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Mike Tyson Goes Mike Tyson on a Reporter After ‘Convicted Rapist’ Remark

Mike Tyson Goes Mike Tyson on a Reporter After ‘Convicted Rapist’ Remark

There’s a harrowing moment in Mike Tyson’s one-man stage play, MikeTyson: Undisputed Truth, where he describes how he was accused, tried and eventually convicted of raping 18-year-old Desiree Washington in 1992. He talks—sensitively—about how he wasn’t the first person Washington had accused of rape and how his agent at the time, Don King, hired a tax attorney to defend him instead of an experienced criminal defense attorney.

At the end of his fast-paced soliloquy, Tyson’s high-pitched voice cuts to a halting stop, he plants himself in the center of the stage, looks solemnly into the audience, and says: “I did not rape Desiree Washington and that’s all I have to say about this.”

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It’s Time for a Recall Election in Ferguson

It’s Time for a Recall Election in Ferguson

There’s no shortage of calls for racial healing or proposals for community initiatives in slowly back-to-normal Ferguson, Mo. But as the dust settles and the tear gas cannisters pile up in recycle bins, a malignant return to that special brand of Ferguson status quo may be what’s really happening.

After everything that’s happened over the last month—despite management malfeasance on an epic scale—the same city-government officials who were around when Michael Brown was shot on Aug. 9 show no plans of going anywhere anytime soon. They lay comfortably low: a very solid and nearly all-white (save one) political power bloc running a city that’s just under 70 percent African American.

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Haiti seeks teacher permits amid education reform

Haiti seeks teacher permits amid education reform
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haitian children lined up in immaculate uniforms for a new school year on Monday, as the country's government promised to make sure they get a better chance to learn.
 
The Caribbean nation's education department is starting to require all teachers to pass a test and become certified if they want to remain in the classroom, one of several efforts to improve education in a country with dire rates of illiteracy and drop outs.

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A Lame Civil Rights Record

A Lame Civil Rights Record

(Politico) – Civil rights leaders and community activists cheered when Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. announced on Thursday that the Justice Department would be investigating the Ferguson Police Department for possible civil rights violations—a move prompted by the August 9 shooting death of an African-American teen at the hands of one of the St. Louis suburb’s white police officers.

The reaction is understandable. The Justice Department’s civil rights division—which is investigating whether Ferguson’s police force engaged in a pattern and practice of abuses—has for decades been instrumental in pursuing justice in matters and places where local action would have been unlikely. Think voting rights and desegregation in the Deep South of the 1960s.

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Juvenile jail escape latest for troubled facility

Juvenile jail escape latest for troubled facility
 
NASHVILLE – The juvenile detention center where 30 teens escaped under a fence has a long history of violence, allegations of sexual abuse and previous efforts to break out.
All but seven of the teens from the Woodland Hills Youth Development Center were taken back into custody by Tuesday, a day after they escaped. Officials said they had kicked out metal panels under the windows in common areas of their dorms to reach the courtyard and slipped out under a weak spot in the perimeter fence late Monday night.

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Obama’s African legacy already being debated

Obama’s African legacy already being debated
WASHINGTON – President Obama showed a deeply personal side of him rarely seen in public as he toasted African leaders at a State Dinner at the White House at the recently-concluded U.S.-Africa Summit in Washington. 
 
“Tonight we are making history, and it’s an honor to have all of you here,” he said on Aug. 5. “And I stand before you as the president of the United States and a proud American. I also stand before you as the son of a man from Africa. The blood of Africa runs through our family. And so for us, the bonds between our countries, our continents, are deeply personal.”
It was precisely because of those special bonds that Africans and African Americans had such high – some say unrealistic – expectations of what Obama would do for Africa when he was first elected president in 2008. 
Now those expectations have faded with the passage of time.

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