Friday, December 31, 2010

Councilwoman Vera Ames-Garnes Will Remain In Office In Spite Of Guilty Verdict


HAWTHORNE — A 15-minute encounter on Nov. 18, 2007, nearly ended the 24-year public-service career of Paterson City Councilwoman Vera Ames-Garnes, but a judge late Thursday decided not to remove her from office.

Hawthorne Municipal Judge John Meola ruled that while hours earlier he had found her guilty of obstruction of justice and disorderly conduct, Ames-Garnes' conduct during those 15 minutes was not enough to strip her of official duties.

"This court, and this heart and its mind, cannot condone forfeiture of office for 15 minutes," Meola said. The councilwoman's actions were motivated by her suspicions of racial and geographical profiling against Patersonresidents generated from residents' complaints, he said.

Ames-Garnes was fined $350 for the obstruction charge. A fine for the disorderly conduct charge was waived by Meola.

"My slogan is, the work that got done has spoken," Ames-Garnes said following Meola's decision.

The councilwoman said after the hearing that she has not decided whether to seek a new term in May because of health issues.

When asked why she sought reelection so many times, Ames-Garnes said it was because of her constituents and that she couldn't find someone to replace her.

"But now I've found someone, and am training her," Ames-Garnes said. (Source)

Sidebar: I am extremely happy that Councilwoman Vera Ames-Garnes will maintain her council seat despite her disorderly persons conviction. Councilwoman Ames-Garnes has been on the frontline fighting for the rights and general welfare of Patersonians for decades; and she deserves nothing but praise for her dedication and service to the City of Paterson.

Shout to my buddy Attorney Frank Sciro, who represented Councilwoman Ames-Garnes during her trial.

Thursday, December 30, 2010



In honor of Chiquita Chiq Simms aka "Chiq Diva", owner of Divadend
Entertainment request that donations be made in Lieu of flowers.

Your love and support at this time of bereavement is highly appreciated.
Donations can be made at any Chase Bank Account #915797468.

LISTEN UP, WE NEED YOUR HELP. Contact Tamara Mitchum for more details at 404.488.4693

Follow Link:

Blogtalkradio Interview:



Related Articles:





Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Oprah Winfrey Tribute At The Kennedy Center Honors

Sidebar: Chris Rock is hilarious. Congrats to Oprah Winfrey. But I wish Cathy Hughes would receive the honors she deserves. She paved many roads for Black women in both radio and television.


I must admit. I did not watch one episode of The Game when it was on the CW network.

After it was cancelled by the CW despite the show's success, a public campaign began to bring the show back started.

Well, the campaign was successful and The Game has moved to BET. The new season will air on January 11, 2011.

In the videos below, caught up with the show's stars, Tia Mowry and Pooch Hall, to discuss the new season of The Game.

According to Hall, who plays Derwin Davis, the entire cast and the same writers are back.
“We’re going to pick up where we left off,” Hall vowed. “As far as what people may think about BET, BET has brought the whole cast of the game – – and just so you know we ain’t cheap!” (Source)
The Game has some of the best writers and actors on a sitcom that I have ever scene since I started watching television. I can't wait until the new season starts. I am now addicted. I love this show.

Hat tip to for posting this story.


Minnesota Vikings rookie quarterback Joe Webb said he believes he is half as good as Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick.

Asked on a scale of one to 10, with 10 being Michael Vick, where he would fall, Webb said, "A five. Michael Vick is playing great ball this year."

Vick has guided the Eagles' offense to the NFL's top ranking in an MVP-caliber season. Vick's 103.6 quarterback rating is the NFC's best and ranks only behind New England's Tom Brady (109.9) and San Diego's Philip Rivers (105.7) in the NFL.

Vick has passed for 2,755 yards and 20 touchdowns and run for 613 yards and a team-leading eight touchdowns.

"Michael Vick is an incredible athlete, a great player. I look up to him. I've been watching him since I was a little boy," Webb said.

Webb creates issues for defenses because of his ability to scramble and take off running. He scored on a 13-yard run in Monday night's loss to the Chicago Bears.

"Once I get that passing down, I'll be all right," Webb said.(Source)
Sidebar: The moral to the story: There ARE hidden treasures in the NFL third string team. Use them. Selah.


Since I want blog hits and Tucker wants some attention (a boost to his career), I am posting this story.

Tucker Carlson filled in for Sean Hannity Tuesday night on Fox News and made a shocking claim: Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick should be executed.

Carlson led a panel discussion pegged to President Obama's recent phone call with the Eagles owner, in which he applauded the Eagles for giving Vick a second chance following his time in jail over his dogfighting scandal.

But Carlson is not as forgiving as Obama or the Eagles.

"I'm a Christian, I've made mistakes myself, I believe fervently in second chances," Carlson said. "But Michael Vick killed dogs, and he did in a heartless and cruel way. And I think, personally, he should've been executed for that. He wasn't, but the idea that the President of the United States would be getting behind someone who murdered dogs? Kind of beyond the pale."
Sidebar: Tucker Carlson is not a Christian. He is a mediocre (downright lame) political news correspondent and conservative commentator, who should be fired for his extreme comments about Mike Vick.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

President Obama Thanks Eagle's Owner For Giving Mike Vick a Second Chance


Michael Vick(notes) has been getting support from all sides during his road to redemption. He's now getting it from the leader of the free world.

NBC's Peter King reports that Barack Obama called Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie earlier this week to congratulate him for giving Vick a second chance after his release from prison. According to King, the president said that released prisoners rarely receive a level playing field and that Vick's story could begin to change that.

Forget your political allegiances or feelings about Michael Vick and take a step back to think about this. The sitting president of the United States went out of his way to publicly praise a man who, 3 1/2 years ago, many thought would never play again in the NFL. Even the most ardent believers in Vick couldn't have fathomed a turn-around like this.(Source)

SIDEBAR: I am also proud of Mike Vick. I pray that his character will continue to develop so that he can maintain his redemptive success both on and off the football field.



DALLAS - A Texas pastor caught by police with a laptop and fur coats said she was protecting the valuables, not stealing them from the home of a parishioner.

Sandy McGriff, cofounder of the Church of the Living God, told The Dallas Morning News on Monday that she used poor judgment when she entered a church member's home through a broken window and removed valuable property.

McGriff faces charges of burglary of habitation and resisting arrest.

She posted a $26,000 bond Saturday and was released from
the Dallas County Jail.

McGriff says she saw two men on the side of the home and decided to check it out.

That's when she says she found the broken window.

A neighbor called police, who found McGriff carrying two fur coats out of the home. (Source)
SIDEBAR: Blank stare. I don't know where to begin with this story.

Monday, December 27, 2010


(CNN) -- Teena Marie, a celebrated R&B singer-songwriter, was found dead Sunday at her California home, her manager said.

Born Mary Christine Brockert in Santa Monica, California, the 54-year-old artist famously paired with late funk legend Rick James and was nominated four times for a Grammy Award, according to her official website.

Marie was found dead by her daughter after apparently dying in her sleep, manager Mike Gardner said.

"Teena was a black voice trapped in a white body," said Cathy Hughes, founder of Radio One, a broadcasting company that targets African-American and urban listeners. "I would always tell her that she was one of the greatest vocalists of our time."

While no cause of death has been released, the singer's publicist Lynn Jeter said that Marie suffered a grand mal seizure -- a neurological event, marked by loss of consciousness and violent muscle contractions, according to the Mayo Clinic -- a month ago.

"Luckily, someone was there," Jeter said of that seizure. "The ambulance took her to the hospital, and on the way she had another seizure."

The publicist said that she had a "great" conversation on Saturday with Marie, who told her that she was excited about heading to Atlanta to perform this week -- in what would have been her first performance since the seizure.

Marie sang under various record labels, including Motown, Epic, Stax Records and Cash Money Classics, since bursting on the scene as a 19-year-old, according to her website. Her last studio album, Congo Square, featured several collaborations.

"The enduring influence of Teena's inspirational, trailblazing career, could only have been made possible through her brilliant song-writing, showmanship and high energy passion which laid the ground work for the future generations of R&B, hip-hop, and soul," said Gene Rumsey, chief label officer with Concord Music Group. "We feel extremely fortunate to have worked with a visionary who changed music in indelible ways."(Source)

Saturday, December 25, 2010


"Today, I am clear. You will never be able to get to the top of the ladder of success carrying everyone else's baggage, or any baggage for that matter. Accept the fact, I have!" ~ ChiQ "Diva" Simms

It is being reported that my beloved New Orleans sister and PR Mogul, ChiQ Simms, passed away suddenly today from a brain aneurysm.

I started following ChiQ on twitter at @GoddessofPR and we finally met in person earlier this year as she kicked off her Navigation Foundation.

I also had the opportunity to interview her twice on Character Corner Radio on

Original Air Date: May 30, 2010

Original Air Date: November 03, 2010

I am distraught. I will truly miss ChiQ. I am totally shocked over her death. The world has lost a very talented you lady.

Condolences to ChiQ Simms' son, DeSean, mother, sister, extended family and colleagues.

In the video, ChiQ Simms moderates the panel on Bloggers vs. Journalists during Chiq Diva's PPR201 (Professional Public Relations) seminar in Atlanta.


I am privileged to be the Attorney for a multi-talented songwriter, vocalist, screenwriter, actress, broadcast journalist, voice artist and poet.

Her name is Christie Taylor, and she has an inspirational spoken word and relaxing music CD entitled, From My Heart: A Collection of Inspirational Thought, which was created to motivate us to live our lives in "full expression."

As we prepare to fulfill our destinies and express our greatness fully in 2011, let's add the "From My Heart" CD to our collection. I thank you in advance for your support.

Available on iTunes and

Sidebar: Click here to hear my interview with Christie Taylor on Character Corner Radio.

Friday, December 24, 2010

'Million Dollar Money Drop' Contestants Get Penalized for a 'Wrong' Answer That Turned out to Be Right


Now it seems the Million Dollar Money Drop contestants might be quite a bit brainier than its producers.

In the "Drop" premiere episode Monday night, contestants Gabe Okoye and Brittany May decided to try their luck in the category "Inventions." Host Kevin Pollak asked them which product was first sold: the Macintosh computer, the Sony Walkman, or 3M's Post-It Notes. Okoye was confident that the answer was Post-Its. But was it?

According to the answer supplied to Pollak, Okoye was wrong (as, by extension, was the much more hesitant May). But late yesterday afternoon, Richard Lawson of expressed his doubts. Post-Its first started trickling into the marketplace as early as 1977 — so, earlier than the Sony Walkman, which debuted in 1979 (and not, as Okoye guesses on the show, in "the '90s").

Lawson has updated his original post with comment from personnel attached to the show: An unnamed rep for Fox says that producers contacted 3M to fact-check the question, and were told that Post-Its date from 1980, when they were first sold nationally. The phrasing of the question did not make the distinction of how widely available the products were, and it's reasonable for the show's producers to write their questions based on information supplied by the Post-It manufacturer.

With regard to the controversy, Jeff Apploff, the executive producer of "Million Dollar Money Drop," is standing firm, issuing this statement to Gawker today: "The integrity of the questions and answers on our show are our No. 1 priority. In this case, our research team spoke directly with 3M, and they confirmed that although they had given out free samples in test markets in 1977 and 1978, it wasn't until 1980 that Post-Its were sold in stores. Million Dollar Money Drop stands behind the answer that was revealed on the show." Unfortunate news for Okoye and May — but, given the product in question, it's fitting that the show should stick to its original answer.

Sidebar: I will not play the race card on this one. But I am SMDH.

Thursday, December 23, 2010



Denver Nuggets player Carmelo Anthony has left the team to be with his family after the death of his sister and is expected to return after Christmas.

The team said Wednesday night that Michelle Anthony died of a pre-existing medical condition Tuesday (Dec. 21) in Baltimore. She had four children.

Masai Ujiri, the Nuggets executive vice president of basketball operations, says, “Our entire organization supports Carmelo during this difficult time for him and his family. It is heartbreaking news, particularly during the holiday season.”

Nuggets head coach George Karl says the news “brings us down to earth,” and reminded his organization that there are more important things than basketball.

Anthony missed the Nuggets’ game in San Antonio. Denver’s next game is Christmas Day at Oklahoma City.

Anthony, 26, has been the subject of trade rumors since he spurned the team’s offer of a three-year, $65 million contract extension last summer. He’s averaging 24 points and 8.3 rebounds this season.

He has recently been hampered by a strained right elbow, sitting out the last two days of practice leading up to Wednesday night’s game against the Spurs.

Sidebar: My condolences and prayers are with Michelle Anthony's four children and the Anthony family.

Hat tip to for bringing this story to our attention.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Executives at [Hot 97] radio station's parent company Emmis Communications, have now decided on a three-part plan to address the fiasco. Cipha Sounds, [whose real name is Luis Diaz,] has been suspended indefinitely, and according to a press release, the former MTV VJ "will immediately undertake sensitivity training focused on the Haitian community and specifically, the challenges the Haitian community has faced in terms of the HIV epidemic."

Hot 97 will also partner with local community leaders to utilize the influence of HOT 97 and to increase awareness of HIV and community programs to address the HIV epidemic.

DJ Cipha Sounds' suspension comes after he made an offensive joke during an on-air conversation with his co-host in which he said, "The reason I'm HIV negative is because I don't mess with Haitian girls."




Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Rapper Magnolia Shorty Killed in Shooting

NEW ORLEANS -- Fans turned to the Internet Monday night to mourn the loss of the second female rapper to sign on with Cash Money Records, a national label that began in New Orleans.

Magnolia Shorty, born Renetta Lowe, got her stage name from the late rapper Magnolia Slim aka Soulja Slim, who was also from the Magnolia Housing Development. She was shot to death early Monday.

Lowe was known as the "Queen of Bounce." She was discovered by Brian "Birdman" Williams and came onto the music scene in the 1990s.

The 28-year-old's most recent project included a collaboration with New Orleans high school student Kourtney Heart, which helped the teenager land a record deal with Jive Records. (Source)

The shooting happened about 12:30 p.m. in the 6300 block of Bridgehampton Drive, police said. Officers found a man and a woman, 28, shot inside a car that had crashed into the gates of an apartment complex.

Additional details on the shooting were not immediately available. Both victims had been shot several times, according to police. They were dead at the scene, police said.
Click here to read an interview the late Rapper did with


Monday, December 20, 2010


As some of you may know, I was one of the winners of Blog Giveaway: Free Chic Boutique Tour Tickets, which was hosted by

The Chic Boutique Tour is a tour of premiere boutiques located in major cities throughout the United States.

On this past Saturday, we toured posh boutiques throughout metro Atlanta. Chic Boutique Tour's Founder and owner, Rosalynn, did a phenomenal job. She provided great hors d'oevre, food, drinks, coupons and prizes for her chic shoppers. The young people serving us were excellent. She also had a stylist on hand to provide us with styling tips. It was an amazing experience. And this is coming from someone who does not like shopping.

I would recommend that everyone experience at least one Chic Boutique Tour. The next one is scheduled for Charlotte, NC on April 23, 2001. For more information about the Chic Boutique Tours, visit or follow Chic Boutique Tours on Twitter @ChicBoutiqueTR.

Special thanks to Tami for choosing me as a winner. Make sure you check out for great giveaways and information on the latest fashions and social events.

Chic Boutique Tour Winners

Cooper Atlanta - A Global Chauffeured Transportation Company

Pampered Nail and Boday Spa

Plush Boutique ~ The Pretty Purple Boutique

Kaira Akita's A Clothes Encounter ~ Tour Stylist

Off Broadway Shoes

Fab'brik Atlanta

Wine Shoe

Sunday, December 19, 2010


If you are up on the latest Hip Hop News, then you have heard of the continued beef between Nicki Minaj and the Queen of Rap, Lil Kim.

Lil Kim feels that newcomer female MC Nicki Minaj is not showing her the proper respect that the Queen B clearly deserves since newcomer has clearly copied her image.

Hands down, I am Team Queen B all day.

1996 was a pivotal year for me both personally and professionally. I was admitted to practice law, opened my law firm and got engaged to my current husband and babies’ daddy. 1996 was also when Notorious Big’s protégé took over the rap game with her HARDCORE album debut.

From the first track to the last, Lil Kim proved that she would be (and still is) the Queen of Rap. Her hardcore lyrics redefined the sexual revolution for female MC(s). She proved that female MC(s) can both lyrically deliver raps “hard” like a dude and still maintain their femininity.

She taught us about rocking Prada while sipping Cristal and driving the E-Class with goggles. Tell ‘em how you roll: “Cruise Control.”

A few months after the release of Hardcore, Lil Kim’s love and mentor was killed. The next few years would be extremely challenging for Lil Kim both personally and professionally.

For the past five years, there has clearly been a void of music coming from female MC(s). This void was examined in BET’s “My Mic Sounds Nice: A Truth about Women and Hip-Hop” documentary.

Fast forward to 2010 and the female MC buzz is starting again. But this time, the buzz is being generated by a bipolar- swag jacking female Ninja Turtle. That’s right, I am talking about Rapper Nicki Minaj.

Why do I have an attitude with Miss Minaj? Because I do not like people with bad attitudes and overly inflated egos. It is clear that Nicki is a cross between Lil Kim and Missy Misdemeanor Elliot and has JUST recently released one album. Yet, this clown on meds has an ego that is larger than the circumference of the earth. Blank stare.

I know that imitation is the highest form of flattery. But when you couple imitation with “shade throwing,” then the flattery turns to disrespect.

From Roman’s Revenge to a recent interview with Hot 97’s Angie Martinez, Nicki Minaj has declared war with the Queen B and right now, the Queen B has her foot on Minaj’s neck. And I do not think that Lil Kim is lifting her foot anytime soon.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


"Men are in a restless pursuit after satisfaction in earthly things. They will exhaust themselves in the deceitful delights of sin, and, finding them all to be vanity and emptiness, they will become very perplexed and disappointed. But they will continue their fruitless search. Though wearied, they still stagger forward under the influence of spiritual madness, and though there is no result to be reached except that of everlasting disappointment, yet they press forward. They have no forethought for their eternal state; the present hour absorbs them. They turn to another and another of earth's broken cisterns, hoping to find water where not a drop was ever discovered yet." ~ Charles Spurgeon



ATLANTA -- CBS Atlanta News has found Bishop Eddie Long and another local megachurch leader, Gary Hawkins, are linked to a questionable mortgage venture that is being investigated by the feds.

CBS Atlanta was the first to report on Matrix Capital's long list of victims. The company promised to lower people's mortgages for $1,500 upfront. Police say thousands of homeowners paid Matrix money, but according to investigators, most of them ended up in bankruptcy and losing their homes.

So many people trusted Matrix Capital front man Fred Lee because he made promises of lowering people's mortgages in the sanctity of their local church. (Source)

Aretha Franklin tells JET magazine: "I feel great"


DETROIT (Reuters) – Soul legend Aretha Franklin says she feels "great" and is "piddling around the house" as she follows doctors orders to rest at home after surgery two weeks ago.

"I feel great," Franklin told JET magazine in her first interview since being discharged from a Detroit area hospital earlier this week.

"The doctors say I can do whatever I feel like I am up to do. Of course, that doesn't mean any concerts or anything like that. But I can do things around the house, and today I am just piddling around the house," she said.

Franklin, 68, underwent surgery about two weeks ago that she has called "highly successful."

Both the Detroit News and the city's Fox TV station said this month that Franklin was battling pancreatic cancer, the disease that claimed actor Patrick Swayze last year.

She has not commented on her specific illness, but she did tell JET she would have more to say on her diagnosis shortly.

"I am putting Aretha together first. We will put Ree Ree together first. This is Aretha time to do whatever it is that I need to do. But I will talk more later," Franklin said.(SOURCE)
**Thanks to my longtime supporter, Sister Pamela for the tip about this story.



DETROIT (AP) - The family of a 7-year-old girl killed in a Detroit police raid has sued A&E Television Networks over the videotaping of the raid.

The lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit says the network and a production crew filming for "The First 48" cable television series were responsible for the May 16 death of Aiyana Stanley-Jones, who was shot in the head during the raid.

The Detroit Free Press says the lawsuit claims that A&E and the production company encouraged Detroit police "to conduct an illegal, overly aggressive, and unnecessary raid" on the home.

Aiyana was killed by an officer's bullet when police stormed her house searching for a homicide suspect. State police have been investigating.


Thursday, December 16, 2010


The Real Housewives of Atlanta's Kim Zolciak has taken to Bravo's blog to express her disdain for her new castmates Attorney Phaedra Parks and Cynthia Bailey.

In Episode 10, Mr. Dwight Eubanks updated Phaedra Parks-Nida on events that had taken place with the Atlanta Real Housewives while she was giving birth to her beautiful baby boy. True to a messy Divo's form, he told Attorney Parks-Nida that Kim Zolciak and Cynthia Bailey made some negative comments about her and her baby. The two then proceeded to poke fun of Kim and Cynthia.

Well, Kim was pissed and the following is her response to Phaedra, Dwight and Cynthia:

In response to Phaedra's and Dwight's comments that wearing a stripper nurse outfit does not make Kim a Nurse:
Phaedra, I was NEVER a stripper. I WAS a nurse. But maybe if you were more concerned with your own job, man, and baby, what I have or haven't done wouldn't make a difference to you. I'm not going to begin to express my feelings about your calling me a ho! SEE YOU AT THE REUNION FAKE-DRA!

I find it absolutely flattering that these woman have nothing to do but say things behind my back. I DIDN'T say Fake-dra's baby is an alien. I said, "She must be having an alien or a damn school bus if she's going to have it at seven months and it's full term!" AND WHY THE HELL IS DWIGHT PLAYING MESSENGER? Buddy, worry about your salon that's going under and that nose! NOT KIM! I don't see Dwight other then a few run ins here and there. THANK GOODNESS! And Dwight, My bills are paid. THANK YOU!!
In response to Cynthia's bizarre friendship contract and odd attachment to NeNe Leaks:
Cynthia gave NeNe a friendship contract while she was at my house? I would appreciate if she didn't do crazy things at my house. I don't want her crazy to rub off into the atmosphere of my home. Thank you. Considering Cynthia has only known NeNe for two months at that time, I found her behavior very odd.
Sidebar: It appears that Kim is actual a Nurse. Thanks to my blog sista ATLien for posting copies of Kim's licenses on to clear up any confusion about Kim's professional credentials.


A Dayon, Ohio Police Officer is blessed to be alive thanks to the assistance of a good Samaritan.

Officer Jonathan Seiter was making a routine traffic stop when driver turned violent. The suspect overpowered the officer and began reaching for the Officer's gun when Angela Pierce came to the officer's rescue.

With the help of Angela, the officer was able to gain control of the situation until backup arrived.

“I was blessed. I was not lucky ... My parents made sure the angels were there to help,” Officer Jonathan Seiter said, referring to his father and mother who are deceased. (Source)

Bravo to Miss Angela Pierce for saving the officer's life. She is certainly one tough and brave young lady.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Heidi Jones, NY Weather Anchor, Arrested for Lying About Being Raped

Heidi Jones, a weather anchor for ABC's New York City affiliate and an occasional forecaster on "Good Morning America," was suspended today after being arrested for allegedly lying to police about being sexually assaulted.

The WABC-TV weather anchor told police last month that a Hispanic man tried to rape her while she was jogging in Central Park on Sept. 24. But Jones has since admitted making the whole thing up, police told AOL News today. WABC-TV announced the suspension today during a noon broadcast.

The New York Post said the claims of assault became hazy when investigators found inconsistencies in her story and could find no witnesses or suspects. They said officers also questioned why Jones had waited two months before reporting the attempted rape. According to the Post, Jones may have spun the tale as a "plea for sympathy" because of trouble in her personal life.

Some said Jones' decision to describe her supposed attacker as Latino was disturbing. "Most people will never create a hoax but this story reflects the mindset of many more people who also think that if you want to make up a story and you want people to believe it, you should blame an African American man or a Latino," Lisa Navarrete, a spokeswoman for La Raza, a national Latino advocacy group, told AOL News today in a phone interview. (Source)



Florida school board members became the targets of a gun-wielding Floria man. The entire incident was caught on tape.

56-year-old Clay Duke, who was angered by his wife's firing, opened fired on several male board members. The suspect was eventually maimed by Mike Jones, a school security guard, before turning the gun on himself.

The suspect first spray-painted a "V" in a circle on the wall, and then ordered the women in the room to leave. Ginger Littleton, one of the female board members ordered to leave, unsuccessfully attempted to knock the gun from the gunman with her purse. Blank stare.

School board members said they were fortunate to be alive after seeing the bullet holes in the room where the shooting took place. The victims credited Jones with saving their lives.

Sidebar: This video only confirms that miracles still happen.

Monday, December 13, 2010


New York Times critic, Alastair Macaulay, recently came under fire for harsh and cruel comments written about the weight of a ballerina, who has publicly struggled with an eating disorder.

In his review of "George Balanchine's The Nutcracker," Macaulay writes:
This didn't feel, however, like an opening night. Jenifer Ringer, as the Sugar Plum Fairy, looked as if she'd eaten one sugar plum too many; and Jared Angle, as the Cavalier, seems to have been sampling half the Sweet realm.
Jenifer Ringer, 37, who portrays the Sugar Plum Fairy in New York City Ballet’s production, has gained online support as a result of Macaulay’s insensitive comments about her weight.

Ringer tells NBC’s “Today” show that “As a dancer, I do put myself out there to be criticized, and my body is part of my art form. At the same time, I'm not overweight. I do have, I guess a more womanly body type than the stereotypical ballerina."

Ringer admitted that the review made her feel bad.

The extreme pressure for ballerinas to be thin was highlighted in the current movie “Black Swan.”

According to, Actress Natalie Portman, who lost 20 pounds to play a struggling ballerina the movie, came to Ringer's defense, saying in an interview last month, "In what other field is it acceptable to judge artists by how big they are? It was just amazing all of the pressure on dancers to starve themselves."

The unapologetic Macaulay, responding to the criticism his remark generated, wrote in a follow-up article that a dancer's body is relevant. "If you want to make your appearance irrelevant to criticism, do not choose ballet as a career."

Sidebar: I am adding Mr. Alastair Macaulay to the “Sit Your Azz Down/Blank Stare” list. Just because he is a critic does not mean that he has to check his humanity and compassion at the door to the marketplace of expression. Selah.


The premiere episode of Season 2 of Basketball Wives aired last night on VH1 and we were reintroduced to Tami Roman, the Queen of Reality TV.

Sidebar: She and Heather B. Gardner (aka "Heather B") were the first Black females to be cast in a Reality series with their appearances on MTV's Real World.

After viewing the premiere episode, it is clear that Roman will save Basketball Wives this season. Her storyline is much more real and relatable than the storylines of the original Basketball Wives cast members. Tami is not as guarded about her personal hardships as the other women seem to be with their lives. In fact, it is Tami's openness that will draw or maintain the viewership for Season 2 of Basketball Wives.

I truly see a spinoff show for Tami and her beautiful daughters.

For more information about Tami, visit or follow her on Twitter @TAMIROMAN.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


SIDEBAR: Let the Cam Newton Hoochie/Jumpoff/BabyMama Super Bowl begin. Hide ya quarterback, hide ya wallet and hide ya pee-pee, homeboy.

Cam Newton, the quarterback for Auburn University, has won the 2010 Heisman Trophy.

Newton beat out worthy adversaries -- LaMichael James of Oregon, Andrew Luck of Stanford and Kellen Moore of Boise State -- in landslide fashion. He ended with 2,263 points. Luck was the runner-up with 1,079 points and James finished third with 916. Moore amassed 635.

Broken down regionally, Newton won each and every one, including the Far West.

There were 105 ballots that completely omitted Newton's name, but he was the first place vote on 93 percent of the ballots.

Newton has led Auburn to a 13-0 record and a berth in the BCS Championship game, which will be played Jan. 10 in Glendale, Ariz.

The 6-foot-6 junior from College Park, Ga., led the nation in passer efficiency rating (188.2) and was second in rushing touchdowns (20). He completed 165 of his 246 passes for 2,589 yards and 28 touchdowns against just six interceptions. He ran the ball 242 times for 1,409 yards and the aforementioned 20 scores. He amassed six 100-yard rushing games and two 300-yard passing games.

Newton becomes the third player in Auburn history to win the coveted award, joining Bo Jackson (1985) and Pat Sullivan (1971). Jackson was on-hand for his Silver Anniversary to see Newton crowned. With three, Auburn now only trails Notre Dame (seven), Ohio State (seven), USC (six) and Oklahoma (five) in Heisman Trophy winners. (Source)

Friday, December 10, 2010


Sidebar: Ms. Estocia Berry is my cousin Monica's grandmother. RIP.

From By Lindsay Suchow

The community is mourning the loss of Estocia Berry, long-time president of the Columbia County chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), who died Wednesday morning.

Berry, of Columbia Street, died at the Pines at Catskill Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation. She was 85 years old.

Berry’s niece, Rae Banks, said Berry suffered from congestive heart failure and lung cancer.

Friends and family of Berry described her as a strong leader who worked tirelessly to localize national issues. Alan Skeritt, who took over leadership of the Columbia County NAACP when Berry resigned in the early 2000s, said everyone who worked with Berry stood by her side and dedicated themselves to helping her.

“When Estocia was NAACP president, she had officers that worked with her and they were very loyal to her — they were at every meeting, and did things with her,” said Skeritt. “When I was NAACP president, I couldn’t get someone to stay on as a treasurer for more than a couple of weeks ... I never had officers who were willing to be accountable and responsible, but she had people who worked with her for many years.”

Skeritt has since “put the chapter into inactive status.”

“(Berry) had been very supportive to me and my efforts to keep it going, but she also realized it was kind of short-lived,” said Skeritt. “People liked her, and I don’t have that kind of energy we had 30 years ago, especially when nobody is joining in the fight with you.”

Rae Banks said before she came to Hudson, Berry served in various state government positions in Albany, including providing administrative support for four different governors. She then went on to help organize the office of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and also worked as the secretary to the chancellor of the state Board of Education.

Berry also served as chairperson of the Mayors’ Advisory Board during Richard Scalera’s first two terms and sat on Columbia-Greene Community College’s Multicultural Committee.

“Estocia Berry was a longtime upstanding citizen in the city of Hudson,” said Scalera. “She was a great community activist and a great friend — somebody that helped the city enormously with taking on the responsibility of that position (NAACP president).”

Scalera said Berry was equally revered and treasured among both blacks and whites.

“She was a very outspoken woman, and fun to deal with,” said Scalera.

Berry’s long-time friend and ally Mary Lou Groll called Berry “a great person, a great organizer.”

“She was so active,” said Groll. “She was determined ... We need more people like her in the community, because she was certainly a go-getter.”

Groll said one of Berry’s proudest accomplishments during her time as NAACP president was her organization of yearly awards dinners for young people who did well in school. “That was a big thing,” said Groll.

“Just her whole personality ... You knew exactly how she felt about things,” said Groll. “It was an honor to know her, work with her and be a friend of hers.”

Alderwoman Sheila Ramsey, D-Hudson4, remembered Berry as “a dedicated worker and president of the NAACP for a long time.”

“She worked very hard and was very conscientious,” said Ramsey. “She was willing to listen and take on any issues she thought needed to be addressed.”

Darryl Banks, Berry’s nephew, said while Berry’s commitment to the community was plentiful — “She used the community itself as a microcosm of what the organization represents,” he said — she viewed everyone as her family, first and foremost.

“Family is the word for Sto — there’s no question about that,” said Darryl Banks. “That extended beyond relatives. Humankind was her family. She was that kind of person — very globally oriented with people. She could warm up to them right away, and vice versa.”

Funeral services, being handled by Bates and Anderson Funeral Home of Hudson, will be held Monday at Shiloh Baptist Church at 14 Warren St., according to the funeral home. Visiting hours are from 10:30 a.m. to noon, with services being held at noon. Interment will take place at Cedar Park Cemetery in Hudson. (SOURCE)


Earlier this week, we learned that Aretha Franklin, known as the Queen of Soul, may be suffering from pancreatic cancer.

Twitter was abuzz yesterday when it was learned through AOL Black Voices that R&B crooner Keith Washington, who hosts a Detroit radio show "Kisses After Dark" on WDMK/105Kiss FM, broadcast a private conversation with Ms. Franklin on the radio and internet without her consent.

Celebrities from Star Jones to Roland Martin took to Twitter to express their disapproval of Washington's actions.

The video was subsequently made private but I was able to find another copy after doing my due diligence.

Personally, I do not see anything wrong with video. Ms. Franklin is an icon and adored by many people, including myself. We wanted to and needed to hear from her after receiving such devastating news about her health.

The Queen of Soul is in my prayers. I pray for total healing of body and blood stream in Jesus' name.

View My Stats