Friday, April 08, 2011
Dedication of Andrew Young Memorial to be Here in St. Augustine on June 11, 2011; Young & MLK, III Starting TV Network
The dedication of the Rev. Andrew Young Crossing monument here in St. Augustine will take place on June 11, 2011. That's the 47th anniversary of the arrest of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by corrupt racist St. Johns County Sheriff L.O. DAVIS. That's the 47th anniversary of Dr. King's letter to New Jersey Rabbi Israel "Sy" Dresner, stating St. Augustine was the "most lawless" City in America. One week later, there was the largest arrest of rabbis in American history, on the steps of the Monson Hotel Restaurant where Dr. King was arrested on June 11, 1964.
On another positive note, Rev. Young and Rev. Martin Luther King, III have teamed up to start a new TV network. See the Afro-American article, below:
Originally published April 08, 2011
MLK III & Andy Young Join Forces to Form New Black TV Network
BOUNCE TV Premiers This Fall
by AFRO Staff
By fall 2011, Black television viewers won’t need cable to watch a station dedicated to broadcasting images of people that look like them; they’ll have Bounce TV.
The network, which will target Black audiences between the ages of 25 and 54, will broadcast an array of programming, including movies, live sporting events, documentaries, faith-based programs and original series all available on the digital signals of local television stations, the network’s organizers told reporters April 6.
Instead of being conveyed through cable or over satellite signals, Bounce will arrive over the airwaves, like TV was delivered before the explosion of technological choices.
“We are basically targeting the rabbit-ear consumer,” Ryan Glover, a former Turner Broadcasting executive and a member of the Bounce organizers, said, referring to the households that are not equipped with cable or satellite hardware and still rely on over-the-air television signals
Bounce TV’s founders, which include Martin Luther King III and former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young, announced the venture during a news conference April 4.
"My father envisioned the day that African Americans would play major roles in entertainment within ownership, not just serve as entertainers on the stage or in front of the cameras,” King said in a statement. “That's what makes this even more exciting to me as we embark on this new endeavor of an independently owned and operated broadcast television network featuring African Americans.”
A promotional video on Bounce TV’s website contends that over 14 million African American households watch more TV than those in any other demographic, yet only two networks serve Black audiences. Latinos have over 80 channels.
“If African-Americans watch more TV than anyone else, why don’t we have more choices?” questioned Young, a businessman and minister who worked as a top aide to MLK Jr. during the civil rights movement, held elective office as mayor of Atlanta, Ga. and a member of the House of Representatives, and later served as U.N. ambassador during the administration of President Jimmy Carter. “Bounce will help meet that need.”
Young, King III and their partners have acquired television rights to nearly 400 prominent Black films, including Ray, Do The Right Thing, Car Wash, Boyz ‘n The Hood, Glory and A Raisin in the Sun. The deals--established separately with NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures, Codeblack Entertainment and Image Entertainment—will also allow the network to televise documentaries, stage plays and comedies featuring such figures as Jay-Z, Ruby Dee, Blair Underwood, Gabrielle Union, Katt Williams and Terry McMillan.
In a multi-year agreement with Urban Sports Entertainment Group, Bounce TV will also broadcast football and basketball games from the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) conference including select quarter- and semi- final basketball tournament games.
Although the network will be based in Atlanta, Georgia, half of its advertisements will be for local merchants, they said.
Longtime media executives from major networks and independent ventures will join Bounce’s team including Rob Hardy and Will Packer, co-founders of the Black production company Rainforest Films; Jeffrey Wolf, former EVP of U.S. Syndication Sales for Sony Pictures; Ryan Glover and Jonathan Katz, former Turner Broadcasting executives.
George Gardner's St. Augustine Report: Artist Brian Owens' Civil Rights Footsoldiers Monument to be Dedicated at Slave Mkt Sq. May 14, 2011 at 4:30 P
City of St. Augustine's Foot Soldiers monument unveiling May 14
Six years of community effort culminate May 14 with the dedication of a St. Augustine Foot Soldiers monument in the city's Plaza de la Constitución.
The unveiling will be at 4:30 p.m. in the southeast corner of the Plaza, adjacent to the Plaza's market building.
More than $70,000 was raised by the community-based non-profit St. Augustine Foot Soldiers Remembrance Project for the monument.
Four bronze figures, an older black man and woman, a white college student, and a black teenage girl, represent "the diversity of foot soldiers who took part in St. Augustine's Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s," Project President Barbara Vickers says. "None should be forgotten."
The sculpture's backdrop is a bas relief depicting marchers in the Plaza, flanked by the market building -scene of demonstrations, and former Woolworth building where sit-ins occurred.
Defeated Homophobic Ex-Senator to Speak to SJC Republican Party's Reagan-Lincoln Dinner on May 24, 2011 -- "Santorum is in the 2012 hunt to stay"
Santorum to Visit Florida
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum will address the St. Johns County Republican Party’s Reagan-Lincoln Day Dinner on May 24. That’s the kind of long-range planning that suggests Santorum is in the 2012 hunt to stay – and also yet another sign that the Republican field is taking Florida’s rule-breaking early primary very seriously.
From Rick Santorum's own website: http://www.ricksantorum.com/2011/04/05/santorum-to-visit-florida/
Wikipedia re: ex-Senator RICK SANTORUM's ANTI-GAY BIGOTRY (SANTORUM SPEAKING HERE NEXT MONTH TO LOCAL REPUBLICANS)
Santorum controversy regarding homosexuality
The Santorum controversy arose over Republican former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum's statements about homosexuality and the right to privacy in April 2003. In an interview with the Associated Press (AP) taped on April 7, 2003, and published April 20, 2003, Santorum stated that he believed consenting adults do not have a Constitutional right to privacy with respect to sexual acts. Santorum described the ability to regulate consensual homosexual acts as comparable to the states' ability to regulate other consensual and non-consensual sexual behaviors, such as adultery, polygamy, child molestation, incest, sodomy, and zoophilia (bestiality), whose decriminalization he believed would threaten society and the family, as they are not monogamous and heterosexual.
Many Democratic politicians, gay rights advocates, and progressive commentators condemned the statements as homophobic and bigoted, while some conservatives supported Santorum and called the condemnations unfair.
 The statement
In the interview by Associated Press reporter Lara Jakes Jordan, when asked for his position on the Roman Catholic Church sex abuse scandal, Santorum said that the scandal involved priests and post-pubescent men in "a basic homosexual relationship" (not child sexual abuse), which led the interviewer to ask if homosexuality should be outlawed.
- he did not have a problem with homosexuals, but "a problem with homosexual acts"
- the right to privacy "doesn't exist in my opinion in the United States Constitution"
- and that sodomy laws properly exist to prevent acts which "undermine the basic tenets of our society and the family"
When Jordan asked "Okay, without being too gory or graphic, so if somebody is homosexual, you would argue that they should not have sex?" Santorum's response concluded:
"In every society, the definition of marriage has not ever to my knowledge included homosexuality. That's not to pick on homosexuality. It's not, you know, man on child, man on dog, or whatever the case may be." (At this point, Jordan commented, "I'm sorry, I didn't think I was going to talk about 'man on dog' with a United States senator, it's sort of freaking me out," coining a phrase widely used in connection with this incident.)
In the original version of the AP story, Santorum was quoted as saying:
"If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything."
It also included additional remarks criticizing "homosexual acts":
"Whether it's polygamy, whether it's adultery, whether it's sodomy, all of those things, are antithetical to a healthy, stable, traditional family."
Jordan produced a recording of the interview, after allegations of bias were leveled against her because she is married to a Democratic strategist.
 Public reaction and criticism
Santorum's comments evoked responses ranging from George W. Bush's remark, relayed through spokesperson Ari Fleischer, that "the President believes that the senator is an inclusive man", to sharp criticism from Howard Dean that "gay-bashing is not a legitimate public policy discussion; it is immoral", to conservative groups such as the Family Research Council and Concerned Women for America who came to Santorum's defense.
Critics reacted to the attack the day after the AP story. Democrats and numerous gay rights groups (including the Pennsylvania Log Cabin Republicans) condemned Santorum's remarks and demanded an apology. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) called on Santorum to step down as chairman of the Senate Republican Conference.
The initial wave of critics were quick to denounce Santorum's apparent comparison of homosexuals to adulterers, polygamists, and people engaging in incest. Subsequently, others broadened the critique and argued that Santorum's position was also an affront to heterosexuals, for he had stated that he did not believe that the Constitution guaranteed a right to engage in private consensual sexual acts.
After the remarks were made, Dan Savage, a widely syndicated sex columnist who was offended by Santorum's remarks, retaliated by hosting a contest in his Savage Love column for his readers to create an alternate definition for "santorum" to be disseminated into common usage. The definition that won associated the senator's last name with anal sex: "santorum" was defined as "the frothy mix of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the byproduct of anal sex."
 Defense of the remarks
Santorum defended his remarks, declaring that his comments were not intended to equate homosexuality with incest and adultery, but rather to challenge the specific legal position that the right to privacy prevents the government from regulating consensual acts among adults, a position he disputes, because he does not believe that there is a general constitutional right to privacy.
The dissenting opinion in Lawrence v. Texas (2003) took a similar view—that, as the Texas homosexuality law had been ruled unconstitutional, because states have no right to interfere with an individual's choice of sexual partners, then the same ruling seems to imply that states have no right to legislate against incest, bigamy, adultery, polygamy, or any other mutually consensual sexual act not involving minors. Some commentators dispute the comparison. In the case of polygamy and bigamy, they note that those are not sex acts, but legal issues regarding marriage, and thus not comparable to gay sex.
 See also
- ^ a b c Loughlin, Sean (2003-04-22). "Santorum under fire for comments on homosexuality". CNN. http://www.cnn.com/2003/ALLPOLITICS/04/22/santorum.gays/. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ a b c "Santorum defends comments on homosexuality". CNN. 2003-04-23. http://www.cnn.com/2003/ALLPOLITICS/04/23/santorum.gays/index.html. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ Farah, Joseph (2003-04-28). "Santorum is right". World Net Daily. http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=32268. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ a b c d e "Excerpt from Santorum interview". USA Today (Associated Press). 2003-04-23. http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2003-04-23-santorum-excerpt_x.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ George, Robert P. (2003-05-27). "Rick Santorum Is Right". The National Review. http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/comment-george052703.asp. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ "News From The Right 2003-2004". People for the American Way. 2004. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. http://web.archive.org/web/20070927210746/http://www.pfaw.org/pfaw/general/default.aspx?oid=9664. Retrieved 2007-10-02.
- ^ "Santorum and gays". Salon.com. 2003-04-26. http://dir.salon.com/story/news/feature/2003/04/26/santorum_quotes/. Retrieved 2008-03-13.
- ^ "Gas Huffer". Savage Love. 2003-06-12. http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/SavageLove?oid=14566. Retrieved 2007-10-02.
- ^ The Other Reason Rick Santorum Is Wrong
Commission on Law Enforcement Accreditation (CALEA): CALEA Examining St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, Public Hearing on April 11, 2011 at FCTC
The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office is scheduled for an on-site assessment as part of a program to achieve reaccreditation by verifying the Agency meets professional standards.
Administered by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), the accreditation program requires agencies to comply with state-of-the-art standards in four (4) basic areas: policy and procedures, administration, operations, and support services.
As part of the on-site assessment, agency personnel and members of the community are invited to offer comments at a public information session Monday, 11 April 2011 beginning at 7:00 pm. The session will be conducted at the First Coast Technical College, 3640 Gaines Road, St. Augustine, Florida.
Agency personnel and the public are also invited to offer comments by calling (904) 209-1155 on Sunday, 10 April 2011 between the hours of 2:00-4:00 pm. Comments will be taken by the Assessment Team.
Telephone comments as well as appearances at the public information session are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA’s standards. A copy of the Standards is available for review at the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, Administration building, (904) 824-8304 contact Captain Mary Fagan or SGT Carol Newmans.
Persons wishing to submit written comments about the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and its ability to comply with the standards for reaccreditation, may send them to the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), 13575 Heathcote Boulevard, Suite 320, Gainesville, Virginia 20155.
Letter to Commission on Law Accreditation re: SJCSO's lack of transparency threatens integrity of accreditation evaluation of SJCSO--
DAVID SHOAR (right) and political operative MICHAEL GOLD (left)
Letter to Commission on Law Accreditation re: SJCSO's lack of transparency threatens integrity of accreditation evaluation of SJCSO-- will you please reschedule public meeting after CALEA's standards and self-study are disclosed?
Dear Commanding Officer Baker, Dr. Bowman, Professor Cordner, Mayor DeBenedittis, Chief Dekmar, Commissioner Farrow, Director Greenlaw, City Manager Holt, Sheriff Hunter, Chief Johnson, Chief Margolis, Director Moore, Chief Myers, Chief Parkinson, Chief Polisar, Senator Robley, Sheriff Robinson, Justice Voigt, Mr. Warren, Sheriff Weber and Chief Womack:
2. There is no transparency. There is no respect for our Right to Know.
Riberia Street Project a Great Victory for Civil Rights and Environmental Activists and Open, Accountable Government
Riberia Street Project a Great Victory for Civil Rights and Environmental Activists and Open, Accountable Government
Lincolnville residents have overcome enormous obstacles, again.
Rabid racists ruled this town and our City government was not worthy of the name.
The dirty little secret of our Nation’s Oldest City is that the very worst street in St. Johns County is Riberia Street, one of two main north-south roads serving the historic African-American community of Lincolnville.
Riberia Street NEVER had proper paving, drainage, bulkheads or sidewalks – it is as dangerous a place to walk or drive as I have ever seen in this Nation. Check it out if you've never seen it before.
It was quite intentional – like FDOT’s failure to build an I-95 interchange serving the African-American community of West Augustine and Lincolnville.
Bitter partisan segregationists, including St. Johns County then-Sheriff L.O. Davis, continued to perturb and pester African-Americans here after 1964. Employment blacklisting and denial of equal services was a backdoor way of encouraging African-Americans to leave town. Many did. There were 41 African-American owned businesses in Lincolnville in 1964 -- none survive.
The National Park Service states on its website (see below): “The end of segregation in St. Augustine demonstrated that even the most closed communities could not uphold segregation in the face of determined resistance.”
However, de facto segregation continued here for more than four decades, including denial of equal city services and denial of equal employment opportunities in City and state owned historic properties. We shall overcome.
Since 1964, our City of St. Augustine had several City Managers who were (at best) limited individuals, who were (at best) deeply insensitive to issues of equality.
One unreconstructed City Manager said of West Augustine in 1998, “They don’t vote” in response to efforts to fix infrastructure there. His predecessor City Manager joked that same year to a then- Commissioner (who told me the story) that he wanted to have twelve bulldozers tear down Lincolnville, a National Historic District. How's that for unadulterated racism, emitted by the City Manager of our Nation's Oldest European-founded City.
Under the tender mercies of unreconstructed racists and their enablers, Riberia Street remained unconstructed, a mess of patchy asphalt hot mix and perennial lakes that formed in the lightest rainfall, damaging cars and risking pedestrians’ lives (there are no sidewalks).
Local activists organized and energized our community over Environmental Justice issues, including our prior City Manager’s illegal dumping of solid waste and illegal emissions of sewage and semi-treated sewage effluents. Our City was fined, and rightfully so (although the prior City Manager should have paid those fines).Last year, community activist Judith Seraphin had buttons stating “Riberia Street – Fix It ALL OR NONE.”
Judith Seraphin, now the chair of the Lincolnville Neighborhood Association, other community residents and I told City officials that it would violate the Fourteentth Amendment (Equal Protection) to stop Riberia Street construction at Bridge Street (a/k/a “Division Street America,” to borrow Studs Terkel’s words), with the idea of waiting until money could be found, in the sweet-bye-and-bye. One City official once asked me "What's the Fourteenth Amendment." I told him. Our City now "gets it."
People of Lincolnville, help is on the way!
At last we have a City Manager, Mayor and City Commissioners who respect Lincolnville.
That is why I have publicly thanked City Manager John Regan, Mayor Joseph Boles, Vice Mayor Leanna Freeman, and Commissioners Errol Jones, Nancy Sikes-Kline and William Leary. Six cheers for them.
Our leaders are listening to the people of Lincolnville, at last. As ex-Mayor Gardner wrote in our City’s newsletter (excerpt below): “Responding [to] the pleas from Lincolnville residents, the city has set aside bond money to complete the entire length of Riberia Street, rather than seeking funds for a series of phases."
Justice is being done.
This construction project is a prime example of healing. Our City has floated a bond issue, about half of which will go for Riberia Street construction.
Riberia Street Construction starts on April 18th.
In the words of the monument to the Japanese internment camp victims, “Here we right a wrong.”
Today, we have a fair-minded City Manager, (John Regan) who proposes to "Lift Up Lincolnville."
Activists rejected the City’s notion of fixing Riberia Street in five segments, as funding allowed, in the sweet-bye-and-bye.
We told the City that the Fourteenth Amendment requires equal government services and that ALL of Riberia Street must be fixed (or else the City could face a civil rights lawsuit in federal court).
I am proud of the growth that I have seen in our City government since April 2005, when I attended my first City Commission meeting. In playwright Tony Kushner’s words, in Angels in America, “only in politics does the miraculous occur.”
I am prouder than ever to live in St. Augustine, Florida today.
Riberia Street construction evidences the continuing vitality of our American Founders vision. In the words of Alexander Hamilton, "Here sir, the people govern." ALEXANDER HAMILTON, remarks at the New York convention on the adoption of the federal Constitution, Poughkeepsie, New York, June 27, 1788.—Jonathan Elliot, The Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution…, vol. 2, p. 348 (1836, reprinted 1937).
Next stop – Congress and DOT need to order an Interstate 95 (I-95) interchange serving West Augustine, West King Street and downtown St. Augustine, thereby relieving traffic congestion. There we will right another wrong. That can be done as part of the St. Augustine National Historical Park, National Seashore and Scenic Coastal Parkway Act, an earlier draft of which may be read here: www.staugustgreen.com.
We shall overcome.
Environmental Racism Being Remedied Thanks to your Help --- RIBERIA STREET CONSTRUCTION TO BEGIN -- ALL OF RIBERIA!
Riberia Street construction to begin
Riberia Street will close to through traffic between King and Bridge streets starting April 18.
Riberia Street will close to through traffic between King and Bridge streets starting April 18.
City of St. Augustine contractor Masci Corp. of Port Orange will work on the Florida Department of Transportation's drainage improvement project.
Local traffic can use the route, but other traffic will be detoured to Martin Luther King Avenue.
City staff recommends alternate routes be sought through the end of this year.
The scheduled completion date is Jan. 27
In the meantime, the project at King Street between the San Sebastian Bridge and Malaga Street is nearing completion.
FDOT expects east-bound detours on King Street between U.S. 1 and just east of Malaga Street as construction on King Street to continue through the end of April.
Riberia Street and San Sebastian Harbor will remain open for local traffic until King Street is fully opened.
For information, call the City of St. Augustine Public Works Department at 825-1040.
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
Journal of Commerce: Rep. JOHN MICA proving to be a consensus-builder as Chair of House Transporation and Infrastructure Committee
Consensus-Building Approach Marks Rep. John Mica's Leadership of House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
NEWARK, N.J., April 5, 2011
NEWARK, N.J., April 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In this week's Journal of Commerce, Washington editor John D. Boyd profiles Rep. John Mica and his challenges ahead to lead a suddenly thrifty Congress toward a sweeping infrastructure-improvement spending bill.
The first three months of Rep. Mica's chairmanship of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee have been marked by a definitive and forthright approach to communication, initiating dialogue and increasing awareness of the issues. Capitol Hill's latest transportation leader is asking shippers to step back for a reality check of available options but pleading with them to "stick with me," acknowledging their fundamental role in pushing his plan forward. He is also working earnestly to bridge partisan divides within the House and bring a responsibility for transportation planning back to Congress. For this, he will have to find consensus among Congressional members that include 19 fellow Republicans who were elected in last year's anti-spending wave, Tea Party freshmen resisting compromise and Democrats pushing back against his "do more with less" agenda.
"Nothing like a challenge, to stimulate," Rep. Mica said. "You just have to be more creative ... And I think sometimes when you do things under hard times, and you succeed, you have a greater sense of satisfaction."
Job creation benefits, overall support of the Obama administration and an exceptionally strong working relationship with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood bode well for his success. But his plans for a multimodal, long-term bill will require a fresh look at funding options, such as the exploration of little-used loan pools, forgotten earmarks and subsidy dollars currently stockpiled in modal trust funds. The JOC Cover Story highlights Rep. Mica's new approach to problem solving and consensus building, as he opts to guide a committee bill-writing process rather than presenting his own plan and goes to great lengths to get objections on the record.
To view daily news visit www.joc.com. For all media enquires, including article reprints, please contact Editorial Director Paul Page.
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