MILWAUKEE – Today, Mayor Tom Barrett will join representative from the City of Milwaukee’s Continuum of Care, City of Milwaukee Health Department, Milwaukee County Housing Division, Impact 211, and United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County to announce a renewed partnership that will expand warming shelters and increase outreach to individuals in need of shelter this winter. With low temperatures expected over the next few days and the possibility of a harsh winter ahead, it is important to connect individuals and families with warming rooms that will keep them safe.
The public can help connect individuals to their nearest warming shelters by calling 2-1-1. Organizations interested in becoming warming shelters can contact the City of Milwaukee’s Continuum of Care by calling 414-286-3647.
WHAT: Milwaukee and Atlanta, Georgia are the only cities to have celebrated Dr. King’s Birthday annually since 1984. The event is free admission and is open to the public. Parking is free and available at the Marcus Center Parking Structure on East State Street.
The Celebration will commence at 1:00 PM in Uihlein Hall and will include a multi-cultural performing arts salute to Dr. King. Representation from community organizations will include: Majestic Community Choir, Hmong American Friendship Association (HAFA) Girls, and The Milwaukee Flyers Tumbling Team. We will also include a Moment of Silence to honor former Writing Contest Winner, Sandra Parks.
Another highlight of our programming will include honoring those students who have interpreted Dr. King’s words through art, speech, and writing. This year, we are Celebrating the Legacy for 35 Years.
The event is sponsored by Forest County Potawatomi Foundation, Brewers Community Foundation, Inc., BMO Harris Bank, Islamic Society of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Bucks, Milwaukee Public Schools Foundation, Inc., Aurora Health Care, Landmark Credit Union, Educator’s Credit Union, and Hayat Pharmacy.
WHO: Speech, writing, and art contest winners
Student Groups in the Milwaukee Area
MLK Steering Committee
DATE: Sunday, January 20, 2019
TIME: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
WHERE: Uihlein Hall – Marcus Center for the Performing Arts
Saturday was Martin Delany’s birthday. No hoopla, speeches or commemorations. Next week is the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts downtown will be filled to the brim with a multi-ethnic audience of supposed supporters of the assassinated African American leader and his dream of a nation of equality and justice.
There will be poetry and children will recite passages from his speeches. As a federal holiday, government workers (those still receiving pay checks by a president who might give lip service to a commemoration) will get the day off.
Schools and some businesses will close in King’s honor (several others will exploit his name with a so-called “King Sale”). So, what is the difference between King and Delany beside the separation of a millennium?
Both were the preeminent African American leaders of their day. King led marches and helped strike down Jim Crow laws and helped African Americans gain the right to vote. King met with presidents, encouraged and lobbied for a new emancipation proclamation and was a catalyst for social change and moral righteousness. Delany also met with the president of his era, fought to end slavery (with a gun in one hand and a Bible in the other), and bring about equality, opportunity and justice.
A noted physician, author and speaker, Delany partnered with Frederick Douglass to publish the nation’s most powerful 19th century Black/abolitionist newspaper, the North Star, and was one of the single most important figures in providing the final straw that broke the back of the Confederacy—the African American freedom fighter.
Delany not only convinced President Abe Lincoln to “integrate” the union army with badly needed Black troops, but recruited thousands, and after being named the nation’s first Black Army major, led them into battle.
Many historians credit the 170,000 African American troops as key to the union’s eventual victory over the Confederacy. In other words, Martin Delany saved the union!
If you want still another similarity between King and Delaney, they were about the same stature (my height…short) and possessed superior intellect and vision (I’m probably short in that area). They were also dedicated to the cause and willing to sacrifice their lives for the betterment of their brethren.
So, why are we commemorating one during this cold and appropriate month of January and not the other? The answer may rest in the fact that King was an integrationist, seeking to heal the nation’s racist wounds, hoping to take Americans to a place of higher spiritual and moral consciousness.
King optimized non-violent protest to fight injustice. He used the Bible as a shield and threatened so-called White Christians with eternal damnation if they ignored the moral mandate of their religion (even if it condoned slavery). Delany was willing to use any means necessary to obtain freedom and justice and fought for “JUST-US.” He didn’t waste energy trying to convince bigots to atone, but instead with a revised edition of the Bible in his back pocket, he stood with truth in one hand and a gun in the other to demand justice.
While King envisioned Black and White children playing, schooling and praying together, Delany is considered the nation’s first Black Nationalist. That means he told his followers to build their own playgrounds, schools and churches. He didn’t oppose “integration,” but felt it was more important to stand as equals.
As such, he led a national crusade to instill ethnic pride in African Americans— those chained and those who falsely believed they were unshackled. He introduced to many of them their true African heritage. Contrary to what they had been taught and tortured into believing, they didn’t leave Africa as slaves, and in fact were the descendants of greatness, the inventors of math, science and medicine. He championed the cause for reparations and encouraged African Americans to build their own communities and to control the institutions that impacted their lives.
Eventually, however, he came to the realization that Africans would never be treated justly in America and that bigotry was in the American DNA.
As a physician, he probably surmised there was no cure for bigotry and we should seek another recourse. Thus, a half century before Marcus Garvey, Delany led a “B(l)ack to Africa” movement. His slogan was “Africa for Africans,” and he went so far as to purchase a ship and make arrangements with government officials in Liberia (the native home of his grandparents) to carve out a settlement there. (Totally by coincidence, I recently learned that my family had roots in Liberia as well.)
Few in Black History—American His-story for that matter—can equal Delany’s achievements and contributions. So, why, you’re probably asking…again!—even if you’re among the majority of African Americans who five minutes ago had no idea who Delany was—why isn’t there a commemoration for him, if not by America, then by us?
Let me answer that question with a question. Aside from his obvious contributions, why is King so revered? Why has America—the Man—given us King, ignored the contributions of other historic Black civil rights leaders including Delany, and Douglass and Robert Smalls (another history maker you probably haven’t heard of, huh), whose contributions equal that of King.
Actually, the answer was given in the previous paragraph. It is not about contributions, be instead about process and philosophy. Delany is not spoken of in detail or beyond superficiality in government schools for the same reason little is taught about Marcus Garvey or Denmark Vesey, or Nat Turner. Hell, for that matter, include John Brown as a hero to Black America. He jump-started the Civil War and challenged the Western church and their theology.
Simply put, the structure—the Man, the establishment, the Illuminati—has sought over the past 50 years to sanitize and rewrite American His-story and to use it to placate and separate. Central to this scheme (yeah, you can call it another Kwaku conspiracy theory) it is essential to keep people of color politically, culturally and educationally impotent.
Cloud their judgment with false perceptions and reality and limit their means for redress to a moral philosophy they can control through hyperbole and deceit. Moreover, but equally important, give them leaders of “their” choosing, and tell them the election of one of their own, Barack Obama, signaled the end of racism and injustice. Any perceived injustice or hurdle after the election is your own fault.
In other words, do any and everything necessary to ensure the civil rights lion has no teeth and remains without vision. Allowing him to step from under the shadow of slavery and to learn of other options to achieve justice and opportunity has the potential to not just upset the Poltical and cultural apple cart, but overturn it.
Black Nationalism, in particular, is dangerous. Lord Nyame, (that’s God’s name to the uninformed) what would happen if Black folks prioritized supporting our own institutions, demanded controlling our schools and other institutions in our community?
That’s the option Delany offered, and why he is excluded from His-story books. Chances are had he lived today, he would have questioned the sincerity of those who will praise King and his works, pay heed to the intellect and oratory skills of area children, and maybe even sing the Black National Anthem, and then go home to their segregated suburbs.
Delany deserves to be more than a trivia question during Black History Month. I don’t foresee him being given a national holiday, but that doesn’t stop us from demanding a chapter about him and Frederick Douglass in their His-story books, propaganda we pay for through our tax dollars and silence.
And more importantly, we should make it a priority to discuss the methodology and philosophy, not just the contributions, of Black leaders in our households. It is our responsibility to explain to our children that there were others who fought for justice besides King, that there was a Civil Rights Movement before and after Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat (and would have been even if she had taken a cab).
Unfortunately, there are few households like mine, where Kwanzaa is more than a notation on my Black oriented calendar, and Black and American history is taught to my children from a different perceptive.
Fortunately, three of my children attended Harambee and sat at the feet of the late educator, historian and teacher of African antiquity Taki Raton and others of like mind. But that’s not the case in most Black households today, where the Black heroes and role models are not Delany and Douglass, but instead Snoop Doggy Dud and Cony’all West.
I use social media to educate our folks on America’s true history and our place in the universe. I tag it as Wisdom Wednesday and Wisdom Weekend and you can check it out on my Facebook and Twitter accounts (@Mikelholt and @Signifyinh).
Obviously, that not enough. But it’s a start, and I’m imploring y’all to join me by doing likewise, or something, anything to advance us.
Refer to each other as brother and sister, instead of nigger (n-word) and bitch (b-word). Demand accountability of the school system through a five-word text. Tell a Black child they were Nyame’s true chosen.
When we finally understand why Delany should receive the accolades, we—and they—bestow on King, we will be one step closer to the dream both shared.
Running Rebels Community Organization in collabo- ration with Pipeline 2 Promise, will host a Community Health & Wellness Fair (Blood Drive) with the Blood Center of Wisconsin on January 19th from 9:00am to 11:00am at Running Rebels East – 225 West Capitol Drive.
“Running Rebels Community Organization is committed to strengthening our community and helping meet hospital and patient needs through blood donations,” said Victor Barnett, Founder and Executive Director of Running Rebels, “This blood drive is our way of giving staff, colleagues and neighbors an opportunity to help save lives.”
Blood is a perishable product that can only come from volunteer blood donors. With some- one in the U.S. needing blood every two seconds, blood products must be constantly re- plenished, according to the Red Cross.
The Community Health & Wellness Fair is free and open to the public and will provide education on common chronic illnesses such as: diabetes, cardiovascular disease, balance disorders, COPD, depression, dementia, and breast cancer. Free blood pressure testing will be available. Two workshops that will be featured during the Community Health & Well- ness Fair are: QPR Suicide Prevention: Suicide Prevention Training (Adults Only) and Growing Minds Mindfulness Workshop (Ages 12-17).
There are so many resources available to help us improve our lifestyle and be healthy. The Community Health & Wellness Fair (Blood Drive) offers the opportunity to see so much in one place and at one location! If you are interested in improving your health and well-being, then the Community Health & Wellness Fair (Blood Drive) will be the place to be on January 19th, 2019.
For more information or to make an appointment to donate, please call 414-264-8222 or sign up online at bit.ly/running119.
Running Rebels EPIC Mission Statement: Running Rebels Community OrganizationEngages the community, youth, and families, Prevents involvement in gangs, drugs, vio- lence, and the juvenile justice system, Intervenes and guides youth to make positive choices, and Coaches youth through the transition to adulthood.
More than 100 law enforcement officers, gun-safety developers, investors and public officials gathered at the Oak Creek campus of the Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC) Wednesday for a Firearm Safety Expo to see what the future of firearms looks like. Hosted by Common Ground, the expo innovators presented technology incorporating gun safety features such as biometric locks, user authentication, and theft-tracking technology, all of which has the potential to reduce the number of people killed by guns every year in America.
Each year in the United States, nearly 1,300 children die and almost 6,000 more are injured from gunshot wounds. Thousands more people kill themselves using someone else’s gun. Moreover, nearly a quarter of a million guns are reported stolen from homes, stores and vehicles annually in America. These guns become the supply of weapons used for everyday crimes in the streets. At the expo, eight product developers from across the country and Switzerland, showcased emerging technology that will help reduce theft and unauthorized or accidental use of guns.
Presentations by the developers were preceded by remarks from Mayor Tom Barrett, District Attorney John Chisholm, County Executive Chris Abele and Wauwatosa Chief of Police Barry Weber, all supporters of Common Ground’s work in this area. After the presentations, officers and police science students from MATC had a chance to inspect prototypes, perhaps overcoming fears that a given safety device would impede use of a gun in a genuine emergency.
“Today is a great day because we will have a chance to hear from developers who are trailblazers in user-authenticated technology for firearms,” said Chief Weber, as proceedings got under way.
Fifteen percent of U.S. gun purchases annually are made by local and state law enforcement agencies, a share large enough to move the gun industry to place a higher priority on research and development of safety technology, if law enforcement begins asking for it.
Such is the assumption made by Common Ground and its parent organization, the Metro Industrial Areas Foundation, in developing their market-based approach called Do Not Stand Idly By (DNSIB). Now six years old, DNSIB has received support from over 130 jurisdictions nationwide, including the City of Milwaukee, but also those further afield such as Seattle, Boston, Los Angeles and Miami-Dade.
“I like the approach that Common Ground has taken to encourage products that actually save lives,” said Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm. “I’ve taken these ideas to community safety meetings and even national prosecutors’ meetings – it’s amazing to see peoples’ eyes light up when they see the obvious potential of these products.”
Health care officials, investors and others with an interest also attended. Dr. Stephen Hargarten, director of the Comprehensive Injury Center and associate dean of the Medical College of Wisconsin was one of the sponsors of the event.
It has long been argued by Hargarten and other healthcare professionals that a public health approach is necessary in examining the reasons behind America’s high gun death rate. Doctors and healthcare systems can play a large role in addressing this vexing issue by educating families about their safety habits at home. Just as they implore the use of infant car seats and seat belts, they can encourage firearm security with the use of gun safety products.
“Addressing the safety features of cars has had independent benefits in reducing car crash deaths,” said Hargarten. “The same can be applied to safety designs for guns. These design features are intended to reduce unauthorized access to this product – in my opinion a common sense approach that all sectors of civil society can support.”
Among the attendees were several Wisconsin State Representatives, and officials from US Senators Baldwin’s and Durbin’s offices. Also on hand were some large institutional investors, such as the California State Teachers’ Retirement System and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, as well as locally-based investment firms such as Riverwater Partners.
But the focus was on law enforcement and their reaction to these products. “When this technology becomes available on the market,” said Chief Weber, “I hope we all will look back to today and see it as one of the pivotal moments that helped America’s law enforcement become open to the idea of smart firearm products.”
The forum was presented by Do Not Stand Idly By, a campaign of Southeastern Wisconsin Common Ground and the Metro Industrial Areas Foundation.
ABOUT COMMON GROUND: Southeastern Wisconsin Common Ground (CG) is a 501(c)3 organization of congregations, religious groups, small businesses, non-profits, schools, unions and neighborhood associations whose mission is to address critical social issues in creative, non- partisan ways. CG’s 40+ member organizations live and work in Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington and Waukesha Counties. Common Ground is part of a national network affiliated with the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF), the oldest and largest institution for professional community organizing in the United States.
For more information on Common Ground, please visit: www.commongroundwi.org
MADISON – The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) is reminding state residents who received Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits last year that they must report UI benefits as taxable income on their 2018 tax returns, and that their 1099-G income tax statements for the year are easily accessible through UI’s secure and confidential online system.
UI benefits are considered taxable income for both federal and state income taxes, and the 1099-G form shows the amount of UI benefits a claimant received during the previous year.
To access 1099-G tax statements, claimants can go to https://dwd.wisconsin.gov/uiben/1099.htm and then follow a few easy steps to obtain an electronic copy of their 2018 benefit payment records. Claimants can also sign up to receive an email alert when future 1099-G forms are available online.
In response to customer service trends toward the convenience of online self-service, claimants who have logged onto UI’s online benefits services system since October 1, 2015 are being notified their 1099-G statements for 2018 will be accessible online and that they should not expect to be mailed paper copies. Claimants who have been granted a long-term exception to using online services will receive their 1099-G statements by mail. DWD will continue to mail paper copies upon request.
By accessing UI’s secure, confidential online benefit system and obtaining 1099-G forms electronically, claimants will have immediate access to their tax information for UI. Additionally, the transition from paper mailings to e-copies of 1099-G forms will save the public tens of thousands of dollars in annual processing, printing and mailing costs. For example, the UI Division saved taxpayers approximately $150,000 in printing and mailing costs in 2016 and 2017.
DWD securely stores 1099-G forms online for all claimants to access and print for their records. Claimants’ statements are available online for the past six years, which is helpful if claimants have to file amended tax returns. The UI Division is required to send 1099-G information to the Internal Revenue Service and the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.
It is a disturbing trend in Hollywood in the music industry for older men to date and “groom” teenaged girls. Some notable names date back to 1960, when the late Elvis Presley started dating the then 14 years old Priscilla. 1994 R Kelly married the late singer Aaliyah at just 15 years old, before having the marriage annulled. Still, to date we have seen some of the music industry’s biggest stars entangled in similar behavior, despite the uproar it causes. The problem in itself is big enough, but the truth of the matter is that it too closely relates to a bigger issue in human trafficking. January is human trafficking awareness month and here in Milwaukee, there are brilliant originations working heavily for prevention.
On January 12 2019, Grateful Girls Nonprofit organization held an event called Stay Out the Game 101Youth Summit. The summit was prevention tool created by Chandra Cooper, the founder of Grateful Girls an organization devoted to well being of women starting at the age of 12. Young women and even young men were able to hear from city officials such as, Senator Lena Taylor who gave a powerful speech before the children went into breakout sessions.
“You live a community that is the hub for human trafficking; it is the pimp school of America is what they have called us for years.” Said by Taylor who then went on to encourage and compliment the young women as well as the young men.
Her words our unfortunately true as it was reported just last year that over 300 women. Of that number, 65% were African American teen girls. The break out sessions taught the young ladies how to literally stay out the game of trafficking, and what to do if approached.
Summits like these are well needed in the city, and should be a monthly occurrence as training sessions. Blessed are those like Chandra Cooper who fight against it every day.
With a population of 600,000 plus, Milwaukee is ranked at number 31 amongst biggest cities in the U.S. Despite that rank we are said to be the 5thmost impoverished city in the nation. With more than 40,000 of Milwaukee residents relying on government programs like social security, it is important that we have functional programming and funding for them. With so many ways to become poor, it is important that we have decision makers in charge of such programs to understand their importance.
In 1989 the oldest government committee was established, The Ways and Means Committee. As the chief tax writing committee in the House of Representatives, it has power of revenue aspects of the Social Security system and social services programs. The committee is highly respected one, where its members have direct impact of the lives of each American and business. Congresswoman Gwen Moore was nominated by the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee to be part of the prestigious group.
A champion and advocate for the people Moore had this to say, “I am so grateful for everyone who helped me get here, and I am so ready to get to work.” Moore goes to say “I will continue to be a steadfast foil to Trumps efforts to destroy Medicare and social security, to champion poor woman and children.” Those were powerful words from Moore who will be the 2ndDemocrat from Wisconsin joining the group. In the face of normal situations, living on social security and other programs is tough, but as we go through Governmental shutdowns, it is comforting knowing we have people like the incomparable Moore on the committee with a heart for “ little guys,”
“We’re excited to be partnering with the Marcus Center as presenting sponsor of the upcoming Broadway Series,” said Johnson Financial Group CEO, Jim Popp. “There are so many cool things happening in Milwaukee right now. Having a great performing arts scene is incredibly important to the vibrancy of the city, so we’re really happy to have the opportunity to stay connected in this way.”
As a non-profit organization, who does not receive direct support from the United Performing Arts Fund, the Marcus Center’s earned income is critical to maintaining the facility for the Center’s resident partners and for enabling the Marcus Center to continue its extensive audience engagement efforts with veterans, families and the greater Milwaukee community including the over 150,000 students that visit the Marcus Center each year to attend various cultural and educational programs.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Johnson Financial Group,” said Marcus Center President & CEO, Paul Mathews. “Their support of the arts and our venue is an important part of keeping the Marcus Center, and our resident partners, financially strong as we work together to welcome the entire community into our building and on to our grounds.”
Nearly 800,000 people attend various events each year at the Marcus Center, including performing arts, children’s & education programs, community events, commercial presentations, business meetings, social gatherings, fundraisers and other special events. The Marcus Center continues to work on creating an open and welcoming place where all of the community can gather while adding significant economic impact to downtown Milwaukee. Touring Broadway events alone bring in up to 150,000 patrons to the Marcus Center each season. Johnson Financial Group’s partnership as the Broadway Title sponsor will help the Marcus Center to underwrite operating and capital costs for this key community asset plus allows us to keep rental costs for the Florentine Opera, Milwaukee Youth Orchestra, First Stage, Black Arts MKE, Milwaukee Symphony, Optimist Theater, SueMo Dance Company and Milwaukee Ballet at an affordable level.
About Johnson Financial Group
Johnson Financial Group is a premier, privately owned financial services company offering banking, wealth and insurance solutions. As trusted partners, Johnson Financial Group associates work together to build thriving futures for business, individuals and communities. The nearly $5 billion financial services company operates in Wisconsin, Arizona and Minnesota. Principal owners of Johnson Financial Group are members of the Samuel C. Johnson family. Helen Johnson-Leipold is Chairman of Johnson Financial Group. For more information visit www.johnsonfinancialgroup.com.