May 9, 2016 Ald. Michael Murphy
Funding to be used to incorporate art into program’s playground reconstruction projects
The MKE Plays program has received a prestigious “Our Town” grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, said Alderman Michael J. Murphy, who helped launch MKE Plays last year.
The $50,000 NEA grant will be matched by MKE Plays funding for a total project value of $100,000. Alderman Murphy said community partner Artists Working in Education (A.W.E.) will be facilitating arts programming in conjunction with the MKE Plays design process at selected playgrounds. The MKE Plays program is helping to transform 12 of the city’s most deteriorated playgrounds into models of local collaboration and renovation.
The NEA grant award will be (was)the topic of a news conference hosted by Alderman Murphy at 3 p.m. tomorrow (Tuesday, May 10) at the offices of A.W.E., 4315 W. Vliet St. Mayor Tom Barrett and Beth Haskovec of A.W.E. will join Alderman Murphy for the news conference.
Alderman Murphy said he is humbled and grateful for the highly prestigious “Our Town” grant award from the NEA. “The MKE Plays initiative is based on the premise that equal access to resources leads to healthier communities and improved social outcomes,” Alderman Murphy said. “We envision a city with play areas whose condition is not determined by the ZIP code or district they are in, but rather are equally equipped to inspire a child’s imagination regardless of where they are located in the City of Milwaukee.”
“Playing outside is a vital part of childhood,” Mayor Barrett said. “And involving artists in the design of creative playgrounds is a great way to bring families together and build community.”
Ms. Haskovec said: “A.W.E. is proud to partner with MKE Plays to engage youth in actively shaping public spaces through public art. This initiative brings artists and youth into the planning process, and provides an outlet to express neighborhood identity through the arts.”
With the help of A.W.E., MKE Plays will pair a local artist with neighborhood youth to create public artwork and/or aesthetic enhancement at four playground sites throughout Milwaukee. Each artwork presents an opportunity for service-learning, and youth are actively engaged in the process of creating a public art installation for their neighborhood. The approach will also promote arts engagement in the park space by celebrating the project commencement and culmination.
The MKE Plays program was approved by the Common Council in March 2015 and incorporates both public and private funding sources to accelerate the pace of reconstruction and allow for more innovative designs. The cost for the twelve parks targeted by MKE Plays for reconstruction through 2017 is estimated at $1,585,408. This number represents a 25% increase over traditional reconstruction estimates to allow for creative, high-quality construction. With commitments from several local philanthropic organizations, MKE Plays has secured $1,742,500 in funding (private/public) – with another $125,000 yet to be announced – as well as an additional $90,000 for program expenses over the next three years, exceeding a minimum funding goal by more than $155,000.
For MKE Plays updates, please visit http://www.city.milwaukee.gov/mkeplays
By Tammie Lang Campbell –BlackDoctor.org
Dear President Obama,
My question to you is – when did you decide to be a ni**a?
Ignorance in the name of comedy is no excuse for proliferating racial disrespect no matter who the perpetrator is! While you, our first African American President, appreciate the sentiments in which comedian Larry Wilmore called you, “my ni**a”, I’m confident that the civil rights fighters and martyrs whose sacrifices paved the way for your position don’t. And I, Tammie Lang Campbell, an anti-n-word advocate for over 20 years and founder and executive director of the Honey Brown Hope Foundation who buried this racial slur on CNN in 2007, don’t appreciate it either.
In the Bible, Proverb 22:1 states, “A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches.” This racial slur slanders and assassinates blacks’ good name. It’s a long-lasting fingerprint, brand and tattoo still negatively affecting Blacks today.
By accepting the black comedian labeling you as “my ni**a,” you not only gave him and others the right to call your wife and children “my ni**a,” you also gave the world permission to devalue, demean and disrespect blacks’ and our efforts to be treated with dignity and respect.
I am appalled that you, Mr. President, have not only impeded my 20 plus years effort to promote racial respect among all, but you, Mr. President, also have dishonored our foreparents’ efforts to have their children treated with the same dignity and respect as all other citizens of humanity. Your lack of respect for your family, our race and your position as the Commander and Chief Officer of the United States sends an eerie message to the world that black people are second-class citizens.
To be clear, nobody, including you, Mr. President, have the authority to give citizens of the world permission to use this racial slur as a term of endearment to label dark-skinned people as a ni**er.
For the record, I went to Washington, DC to confront and object to Congressman Doug Lamborn referring to you as a tar baby. I have worked with members of Hawaii State Legislature, members of Texas State Legislature and a New York City Councilmember to denounce use of the n-word. In addition, I objected to the educational system not respecting you as the President of the United States, when some schools made the racially driven decision to not allow students to hear your back-to-school message at the time that you delivered it.
Mr. President, if we are to succeed as a nation, we must all bear some responsibility for healing the wounds of racism and promoting unification among Americans by denouncing the divisive tactics of those who are not serving in the best interest of America’s diversity. You, Mr. President, have the greatest responsibility to promote racial respect as the first black President of the United States. When you accepted Wilmore calling you “my ni**a” at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, you failed America and all its diversity. Being black does not give Wilmore the right to insult all those who have fought and are still fighting for dignity, respect and equality for all. Nor does being a black president give you the authority to disrespect our race by accepting this racial slur as a term of endearment.
On behalf of humanity, I’m requesting you to please meet with me to address this very distressing matter and discuss why you owe an apology to Americans who feel violated and unprotected by your acceptance of this racial slur. Thanks for your consideration.
Tammie Lang Campbell is the Founder and Executive Director of the Honey Brown Hope Foundation. She has been an anti-n-word advocate for over 20 years, and she buried this racial slur on CNN in 2007. For more details, visit www.honeybrownhope.org
It is midweek, hump day! How is your week going? I am sure there have been things that could be hardening your heart. How are you handling them? Are you turning to God? Even if you feel God is the not taking care of you? Don’t harden your heart, be patient and trust!
Daniel Marans -HUFF POST BLACKS VOICES
The United States Military Academy at West Point is looking into whether 16 black female cadets violated rules against political expression by taking a photo in uniform with their fists in the air, an academy official told the Army Times.
The photo features the women, all of whom are on the verge of completing their final year, posing in front of the campus’s oldest barracks building in dress uniforms. Photos like this are apparently common at West Point as an homage to old-fashioned military portraits.
They chose to raise their fists, however, which angry commenters on social media interpreted as support for the Black Lives Matter movement and an inappropriate gesture for cadets.
Click here for full post.
In John 8
To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
This is another example of God reaching out to our hearts.
Reuters Tom Miles Huff Post World Post
GENEVA (Reuters) – Up to 5.3 million people in South Sudan may face a severe food shortages during this year’s lean season, the U.N. World Food Programme said on Monday, nearly double the number in the first three months of the year.
From January to March, 2.8 million people were classed as being in “crisis“ or “emergency” food situations, with about 40,000 thought to be suffering an outright famine.
The rising hunger comes despite attempts to end more than two years of war, which started in December 2013 when President Salva Kiir sacked his first vice president Riek Machar, triggering ethnically charged violence.
Some fighting continues, but Kiir was able to name a new cabinet in late April, including former rebels and members of the opposition, after Machar returned to Juba and got back his old job.
“Internal food security analysis shows that South Sudan will face the most severe lean season in 2016 since its independence, driven by insecurity, poor harvests, and displacement in some areas of the country,” said a WFP report published on Monday.
“As many as 5.3 million people may face severe food insecurity, with particular areas of concern in the non-conflict affected states of Northern Bahr el Ghazal and Eastern Equatoria.”
During the 2015 lean season, which runs from March to September, about 4.6 million people were classed as severely “food insecure”, WFP said previously.
The most severe conditions are in Unity State, where a team of food security experts found a risk of “widespread catastrophe” during a visit late last year.
The United Nations says 1.69 million South Sudanese are displaced within the country and another 712,000 have fled into neighbouring countries. The U.N. humanitarian plan for South Sudan has received only 27 percent of the $1.29 billion needed.