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Poetry in Politics

The California adoption of the 13th Amendment has the signature of every member of the State Senate and Assembly in 1865. It had been the first change to the Constitution since 1804.  Even the California legislators who voted against the resolution knew it was the most important vote they would ever cast. In that same […]

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Angelou was a freedom conductor

“The first woman I ever saw wearing African garb was Maya Angelou,” said Rev. Cecil Williams, from the glass pulpit which he had shared with Angelou more than 100 times over the past 50 years. “She’s the reason I began wearing a dashiki and having the robes with kente cloth,” underscoring how fundamentally she had […]

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A call for social justice

Synod of Pacific will convey to attorneys general, federal and state banking regulators and banking leaders in California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Washington its wish that mortgage modifications be completed by October 2015, seven years after the financial crisis, referencing a scorecard completed by the Interfaith Council on Corporate Responsibility. Eighteen percent of mortgages are […]

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Raymond H. Boone

When I began working for Ray Boone as a reporter at the Richmond AFRO-AMERICAN and Richmond Planet in 1977, I quickly came to the conclusion that he intended to destroy every ounce of self-confidence I had. Cockiness defined me coming in the door. I had been the AFRO’s White House and Capitol Hill reporter, worked […]

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A Love Supreme

E.W. Wainwright, Fred Harris and Archbishop Franzo King in an extended rendition of A Love Supreme at St. John Coltrane African Orthodox Church in San Francisco. Wainwright sat in on drums to celebrate his 75th birthday with Harris, a collaborator for 20 years. During my brief remarks, I noted that Benjamin Franklin “Reb” Spikes made […]

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The fixes instead of the fixers

In my favorite TV show, Kerry Washington’s Olivia Pope breaks into hysterical laughter upon learning that practically everyone around her is a murderer, including her own mother and father. “What’s the point?” she exclaimed on ABC’s Scandal. In San Francisco’s real life version, yesterdays Chronicle asked how a former bank teller became president of the […]

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Auto Row 50 anniversary premieres documentary April 11

The premiere of the ReUNION: Education-Arts-Heritage documentary The African-American Freedom Trail marks the 50th anniversary of the Auto Row demonstrations which changed American industry for a generation by opening up the Big Three automakers to fair employment and dealership practices. it screens on Friday, April 11 at 4 p.m. in the Black Coalition on AIDS, […]

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Trail gives new sense of belonging

In an initiative to demonstrate the civic, economic and personal benefits of restoring a sense of belonging for African-Americans — 100,000 strong in San Francisco from the 1950s through the 1980s, ReUNION: Education-Arts-Heritage has reached a three year agreement to present the African-American Freedom Trail to the 16 million visitors to San Francisco through the […]

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Three generations of champions

I didn’t know that Earle Booker won the intercollegiate boxing title nationally as a student at the University of San Francisco and was headed to the Berlin Olympic Games in 1936 except for an untimely eye injury–until I met his son Ian Booker. It was just another example of the overlooked history we show in […]

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Brew and Que

Since 1973, Everett and Jones has been a Bay Area institution for its barbecue, but it also has.been a pioneer in craft brewing with its Saucy Sista Ale. Check it out on the last weekend of Black Food Month along with hundreds of other venues in Say Grace and Wipe Yo Hands: BlackRestaurant.Net’s Guide to […]

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