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Washington D.C. Afro-American Newspaper, January 16, 2010

Washington D.C. Afro-American Newspaper, January 16, 2010

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Published by: The AFRO-American Newspapers on May 11, 2011
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Volume 118 No. 23www.afro.com75 CENTS
Copyright © 2010 by the Afro-American Company
    a    f    r    o .    c    o    m
    Y    o    u    r    H    i    s    t    o    r    y   •    Y    o    u    r    C    o    m    m    u    n    i    t    y   •    Y    o    u    r    N    e    w    s
Join the
 AFRO 
onTwitter and Facebook 
Black Civil WarMuseum Expands
 
B3
• Home Depot
INSERTS
Chewing the Fat with ChiwetelEjiofor
 A2
Steele Book Raises GOP Eyebrows
7
47105 21847
2
1 0
 
 A8
Continued on A3Continued on A4
Listen to “First Edition”
Join host Sean YoesSunday @ 8 p.m. on88.9 WEAA FM, theVoice of the Community.
 JANUARY 16, 2010 - JANUARY 22, 2010
Continued on A4
 A6, A7
By Dorothy Rowley and George Barnette
 AFRO Staf Writers
In 1969 James Cheek ushered in whatis known as the “Golden Age” at HowardUniversity. Then 37, Cheek came to theNorthwest Washington campus after it hadbecome unsettled by years of demonstrationsand unrest among students. And over thenext 20 years, he saw the prestigious schoolthrough both of some of its best and mosttumultuous times.“It was the golden age at Howard becausethat’s when there was a lot of Black culture,a lot of Black history in development and alot of Black professors that were devoted tothe African-American experience,” said AmyBillingsley, a retiree and community workerin the District, whose former husband AndyBillingsley worked closely with the Cheekadministration.Many like Billingsley are sharing theirmemories of the leader after he died last weekat a hospital in Greensboro, N.C., at the age of 77. A cause of death is unknown.Former political science professor RonWalters said Cheek was one of the bestpresidents the university has ever had – despitea perceived heavy-handed, arrogant leadershipstyle.“I came to Howard in 1971 as a facultymember and he had been president for ayear. And he came in as someone who wassympathetic to the students’ quest for a strongsort of Black identity,” said Walters of Cheek,who was known for wearing dashikis. Of course, I appreciated that, which is one reasonwhy I left Brandeis University to come toHoward.”
By Dorothy Rowley
 AFRO Staf Writer 
Effective this week, therewill be no more “free onSaturdays” when it comesto the city’s parking meters.And, except for Sundays,everybody—includingdowntown Washingtonresidents —will have toante up the extra $1.25hourly fee in the city’spremium zones, whilerates for standard zoneswill remain at 75 cents anhour.According toKaryn LeBlanc,spokeswoman for theDistrict Department of Transportation (DDOT),the public’s response tothe changes, which goesinto effect Jan. 19, hasgenerally been positive.However, “the mainconcern is that peoplewill need to carry morequarters and this is aninconvenience which weanticipated,” LeBlancsaid in commentse-mailed this week to the
 AFRO
.LeBlanc said while theagency understands theanticipated frustration,ofcials are asking formotorists’ understanding andpatience as they attempt toimprove the parking metersystem. She added thatother changes will be made,including implementation of pilot programs which willfeature a pay-by-cell programand in-car meter systems.On the other hand, At-large City Councilman
By George Barnette
 AFRO Staf Writer 
Prince George’s County Police Chief Roberto L. Hylton helda press conference last week hailing the results the county hasmade in dropping its crime rate.
Prince George’s County Lauds Big Drop in Crime
2005–2009 Crime Statistics
6,0008,00010,00012,00014,00016,00018,00020,00022,000
   2   0   0   5   2   0   0   6   2   0   0    7   2   0   0   8   2   0   0   9
         1         1  ,         3         1         5         9  ,         9         4         3         8  ,         1         7         4         6  ,         1         0         6         2         1  ,         3         5         4         1         9  ,         7         4         5         2         0  ,         0         4         6         1         7  ,         9         6         2
24,000
         1         5  ,         1         8         8         2         4  ,         0         0         1
Auto TheftTheft
Overall Differencein 5-Year Period 
25%60%
2,0003,0004,0005,0006,0007,000
   2   0   0   5   2   0   0   6   2   0   0    7   2   0   0   8   2   0   0   9
         3  ,         1         7         9         3  ,         3         4         1         2  ,         6         9         3         3  ,         0         9         2         2  ,         6         9         5         2  ,         9         5         4         2  ,         3         8         8         6  ,         3         7         2         5  ,         7         2         9         5  ,         9         4         0         6  ,         6         3         6         6  ,         5         0         4         3  ,         3         6         5         4  ,         4         4         6         2  ,         6         8         0
BurglaryAggravated AssaultRobbery
Overall Differencein 5-Year Period 
29%40%2%
2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 OverallTotal Violent Crime
8,228 6,894 6,135 5,981 5,341 35%
Total Property Crime
45,561 38,398 35,628 34,856 30,572 33%
Total Crime
53,789 45,292 41,763 40,837 35,913 33%
Note - All homicide numbers represent those criminal homicides investigated by PGPD; All carjacking numbers - Provided by Criminal Investigations Division; All 2005 - 2008 crimenumbers, except homicides and carjackings, are UCR reported crimes; All 2009 crimenumbers, except homicides and carjackings, are projected numbers based on the percentagechange in calls for service statistics in 2009 applied to 2008 UCR numbers
90100200300400500600700800
   2   0   0   5   2   0   0   6   2   0   0    7   2   0   0   8   2   0   0   9
         1         6         1         2         6         6         7         6         8         1         2         6         2         5         5         4         7         7         1         3         8         2         2         6         3         3         8         1         1         7         2         1         5         3         1         6         9         2         1         8         1         2         0         9
Criminal HomicideRapeCarjacking
Overall Differencein 5-Year Period 
43%32%73%
Taxi Drivers, Lawmakers VentFrustrations at Hearing
Njah Andi , seen feeding a parking meter in downtownWashington, thought the slow economy might have preventedthe city from forging ahead with increased rates.
Parking, Surcharges Increasein District
By Dorothy Rowley
 AFRO Staf Writer 
WASHINGTON, D.C. —Last year’s licensing scandalcoupled with the conversionfrom zoned to meteredfares has left many of theDistrict’s taxi drivers miredin a quagmire of uncertaintyregarding their futures. Notonly have some driverslost much-needed revenuesto help keep them aoat,some have inadvertentlyfallen under scrutiny of anFBI investigation involvingincidents of illegal licensing.But according to CityCouncil members MarionBarry (D-Ward 8) andMichael Brown (D-At-large),what has most troubledthe drivers is the sensethat Mayor Adrian Fenty’sadministration—whichthey blame for the fareconversion—has turned adeaf ear to their concerns.“I’ve been a strongsupporter of the industry[and] Councilman Brownhas been a friend to theD.C. taxi community,”Barry said during a lengthyJan. 7 public hearing thatattracted more than 100 iratedrivers. “We have 22 millionpeople visiting D.C. eachyear and we need [the local]government to support theindustry.”In voicing his sentiments,Barry alluded to several issuesthat continue to plague thecity’s 8,000 licensed drivers,including their distrust of the District of ColumbiaTaxi Commission (DCTC)and Fenty’s alleged lack of attention.“There’s been someinequities there,” Barry said.
Photo by Dorothy Rowley 
Continued on A4
 Martin Luther King Jr.
In His Words
 
 AFRO GraphPhoto Courtesy of Howard University 
Dr. James Cheek, president emeritus of Howard University, succumbed recentlyin a North Carolina hospital at age 77.
 James Cheek, FormerHU President, Dies
 
Courtesy Photo
Last year’s licensing scandal coupled withthe conversion from zoned to meteredfares has left many of the District’staxi drivers mired in a quagmire of uncertainty regarding their futures.
Continued on A4
See Ways to Donateto Haiti on afro.com
 
A2
 
The Washington Afro-American, January 16, 2010 - January 22, 2010
Steele Book Raises GOPEyebrows — Again
Republican NationalCommittee Chairman MichaelSteele released a book duringthe week of Jan. 4 without theinput of the party’s leaders,a move that may be the mostrecent in a series of misstepsfor Steele.Steele’s book,
 Right  Now: A 12-Step Program for Defeating the Obama Agenda,
 came as a surprise to manyGOP leaders, who didn’t learnof its existence until they sawSteele promoting the book intelevision interviews.According to
TheWashington Post,
acongressional aide speakingon the condition of anonymitysaid, “The book came out andeverybody went, ‘Whoa, whathappened?’ No one in theHouse or Senate leadershipknew he had a book contract.”The book’s release cameon the heels of commentsSteele made this week to a St.Louis radio station decryinghis critics within the party.Steele, the formerlieutenant governor of Maryland, told McGrawMilhaven of KTRS Radio thathe “is in this [RNC] chair. If they want it, take it from me.Until then, shut up, step backand get in the game and helpus win.”He continued later inthe program, “Get with theprogram. I’m the chairman.Deal with it.”
Use of Term ‘Negro’ in 2010Census Causes Debate
The 2010 census created afuror during the week of Jan.4 when Black news Web siteGrio.com reported that theword “Negro” appears on thecensus form as part of a racial
identication section.
The report sparked avariety of comments centeredon concerns that Blacks
may nd the term “Negro”
offensive, and should beremoved. On the form, theterm “Negro” appears on oneline along with “Black” and“African-American” as termsto describe members of asingle ethnicity.In a statement, the U.S.Census Bureau’s Public
Information Ofce said that
in the 2000 census, 56,175people “wrote in the term‘Negro’ in response to thequestion on race, even thoughthe term was included inthe category label for acheckbox.”A Census Bureauspokesperson said theorganization uses the U.S.
Ofce of Management and
Budget categories, unlessother input provides a betterchoice of categories. TheBureau urged concernedindividuals to participatein the census process, evenif they have a dispute withterminology, because anaccurate count is criticalto school funding, thedevelopment of legislativedistricts and for the properallocation of federal funds tolocal jurisdictions.
 African Immigrants Revoltin Italy
According to a
 New York Times
report, more than 1,000African workers in Calabria, asouthern Italian region, wereshipped away to detentioncenters for immigrants after aseries of riots.The uproar began lastweek in Rosarno, Italy, afteran immigrant from Togowas slightly injured duringa pellet gun attack in aneighboring town. The reportsaid police were unsure whoshot the man, but authoritiesare investigating whetheran organized crime unit hadinitiated the anarchy.Those involved in theriots, however, pointed toracism as the impetus for theattacks. Cars were burned,windows were shattered andlocal residents were barragedin a hail of rocks, leavingmore than 50 immigrants and
police ofcers wounded.
By Jan. 9, Italianauthorities began deployingthe immigrants to detentioncenters in various parts of southern Italy.According to the
Times,
 race relations in Italy havegotten progressively worseas the European country’seconomy has taken anosedive. The report also saidmany Italians are strugglingto accept foreigners in theircountry.“This event pulled thelid off something that wewho work in the sectorknow well but no one talksabout: That many Italianeconomic realities are basedon the exploitation of low-cost foreign labor, living insubhuman conditions, withouthuman rights,” Flavio DiGiacomo, spokesman fortheInternational Organization forMigration in Italy, told the
Times.
 The workers live in“semi-slavery,” he added.“It’s shameful that this ishappening in the heart of Italy.”
Republicans Slam Senatorfor ‘Racist’ ObamaComment
Nevada Democratic Sen.Harry Reid is at the center of a contentious debate amongRepublicans for callingPresident Barack Obamaa “light-skinned AfricanAmerican with no Negrodialect” during a privateconversation,
The Associated Press
reported.Republican NationalCommittee ChairmanMichael Steele told “FOXNews Sunday,” “There is thisstandard where Democratsfeel they can say these thingsand they can apologize whenit…comes from the mouthsof their own. But if it comesfrom anyone else, it’s racism.It’s either racist or it’s not.And it’s inappropriate,absolutely.”Reid’s comments weremade public in the recentlyreleased book,
Game Change
 written by authors MarkHalperin and John Heilemann.Reid apologized for whathe called a “poor choice of words,” according to
 AP
andthe president accepted hisapology.In an interview with
 AP
, Reid’s spokesman JonSummers said the senator
was “one of the rst people
to encourage Obama to runfor president” and that he willremain majority leader.
This is not the rst time
Reid has drawn criticismfrom his peers and the public.In the past he’s referred toAlan Greenspan as a “hack,”Washington, D.C. tourists as“smelly” and former PresidentGeorge W. Bush as a “liar,”according to the report.
NAACP Defends Ousted USAirways Employees
The NAACP has led a
lawsuit against US Airwaysaccusing the airline of creating a hostile workenvironment for African-American employees.According to BET.com,the nation’s oldest civilrights organization steppedup in defense of threeformer female workersin Philadelphia, whoseallegations against the airlineinclude the use of racist “codewords.”“It’s against the lawto have a hostile workingenvironment for a particularminority,” NAACP attorneyBrian Mildenberg told
ThePhiladelphia Inquirer.
The Tempe, Ariz.-basedairline employs 6,000workers in Philadelphia,but the percentage of Black employees was notimmediately clear.The lawsuit alleges thatUS Airways assigned African-American employees to
smaller terminals or ights
with more Black passengers.The suit also claims thethree workers had beenreferred to as “ghetto” or“hood” and were assignedto less desirable posts withracially charged nicknameslike “Compton,” “Camden”and “The Ghetto.”The NAACP has requestedthat the airline abolish use of all racial code words and thatit reinstate employees whowere unfairly terminated.The organization also wantsa civil rights monitor in placeat the airline to oversee itsPhiladelphia operations.The airline said it iscommitted to diversity andnondiscrimination and isinvestigating the complaints.
L -
 
Leading the way to brighter tomorrows
© 2010 Wachovia Bank,N.A.Wachovia Bank of Delaware,N.A.All rights reserved.Members FDIC.
We all have what it takes to be a leader — in our amilies, communities and our fnances. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. showed us how the power o service strengthens communities and turns dreams into reality. That’s why we’re committed to working with you and your community throughnational partnerships, grants or nonproft organizations and fnancial education programs. We join Dr. King in his belie that it’s not enough to wanta brighter uture — it’s up to all o us to lead the way.
Wachovia honors and supports the national King Day of Service on January 18, 2010.
wachovia.com
AFRO National Briefs
Courtesy photo
Michael Steele
 AP Photo
A group of immigrant workers march holding signs thatread, “Stop Killing Blacks” and “We are persons like you,”in Rosarno, Italy, Jan. 8.
 AP Photo
President Barack Obamaand Sen. Harry Reid,D-Ariz.
 
 
  
Identification Statements
 Baltimore Afro-American
(USPS 040-800)is published weekly by The
 Afro-American Newspapers
,2519 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4602.
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Baltimore - 1 Year - $30.00 (Price includes tax.) Checks for subscriptions should be madepayable to: The
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 Afro-American Newspaper Company,
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 Afro-American Newspapers at 1917 Benning Road, N.E., Washington, D.C.20002-4723.
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January 16, 2010 - January 22, 2010, The Washington Afro-American
A3
Continued from A1
By George Barnette
 AFRO Staf Writer 
After months of relative silence, the issue of violence in Darfur, Sudan, rose to the fore Jan.9 when thousands of individuals in 15 countriesacross the world gathered for Sudan365: A Beat forPeace, a series of coordinated ceremonies aimed aturging governments of the world to halt violence inthe region.“Urgency is what [we] would like to get acrossto the U.S. government,” said Jerry Fowler,president of the Save Darfur Coalition. “We needthem to act because we’ve seen the type of violencethat takes place if we turn our backs.”There has been a civil war raging for 20 yearsin Sudan, but the conict in Darfur began in 2003when Black African rebel groups led a revolt againstSudan’s Arab-centered government because theyfelt they were being persecuted and marginalized.In turn, the Sudanese government respondedby arming the Janjaweed, an Arab militia from thenorthern region of the country, who began to raidand burn down villages. By September 2004, it wasestimated that over 70,000 people had been killed inthe conict.The brief but poignant ceremonies marked theve-year anniversary of the Comprehensive PeaceAgreement (CPA) which ended the war betweennorthern and southern Sudan, as well as the one-year period before a referendum that may decide thefuture of the war-torn country.The CPA, which was signed Jan. 9, 2005,between the Sudanese government and the SudanPeople’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), wasmeant to halt violence in the ravaged country. Alsoincluded in the agreement was a referendum thatstates in 2011, the people of southern Sudan would be eligibleto vote on becoming an independent nation or remaining a partof Sudan.However, despite the agreement, violence has raged on inDarfur, despite pressure from the U.N., the U.S., and othercountries around the world.“The harm to civilians in Darfur cannot be resolved withoutaddressing the issues of Sudan as a whole and …the issues of Sudan as a whole cannot be resolved without addressing theissues of Darfur,” Fowler said.As recently as this week, the U.S. special envoy to Sudanreiterated the need to curb Sudan’s violence, especially in thesouthern part of the nation.“Violence in the south is too high,” said Scott Gration toreporters. “What we need to do is get out in front and preventthese problems.”All of these issues led to a grassroots effort to generateawareness around the globe.The Washington, D.C. ceremony was held at New YorkPresbyterian Church, and began with rally-goers using variouspercussion instruments. A televised display of drummingoccurring at the other ceremonies around the world was alsoshown.Jimmy Mulla, a native of southern Sudan and the executivedirector of Voices for Sudan, and Niemat Ahmadi, a Sudannative and activist, both spoke of the conditions in the countrywhen they lived there and the conditions that exist today.“The regime in Khartoum who seized the power by force,enabled themselves to establish the ever-existing dictatorshiprule in our lives today,” Ahmadi said. “They kill peoplebecause of their race, religion, or only for speaking out fortheir rights. Obstruction and manipulation by the regime inKhartoum continues today as the government is planning torelocate people.”Leonard Leo, chairperson of the U.S. Commission onInternational Religious Freedom spoke of what he witnessedon a recent trip. Among the incidents he saw was the Sudanesegovernment’s prevention of a peaceful rally.“Our commission delegation witnessed Sudanesesecurity forces, police, national security and army beingdriven into Khartoum in unmarked vehicles to suppress thedemonstration,” said Leo. “We saw streets blocked to preventordinary citizens from assembling peacefully.”Fowler, the last speaker, urged rally goers to raise theirvoices and pressure the U.S. government to become moreinvolved in Darfur’s plight.“If we shine a light, raise our voice, push our governmentsto pay attention then there is the prospect of peace,” Fowlersaid. “What we can push for is a space for Sudanese to resolvethe issues of Sudan without the use of violence.”
‘Beating’ the Conict in Darfur
 AFRO Photos/Mikhail Hardy 
On Jan. 9, activists gathered in Washington, D.C., for Sudan365: A Beat for Peace, a series of coordinated ceremonies aimed aturging governments of the world to halt violence in Sudan.Alphonso Coles of The Rhythm Workers
In the four-year periodfrom 2005-2009, the countysaw double-gure reductionsin every major categoryexcept burglary, whichsaw a 2 percent increase.While many things playeda part in the area’s drasticdrop in crime, Hyltonbelieves it was the county’scommunity policing strategywhich turned the tide. “Ourcommunity policing strategyencompasses and embracesevery single thing that weare trying to accomplish,”Hylton said. “Our communitypolicing strategy and just ourpersonnel are what made adifference in the county.”However, the turnaroundwas not that simple, PrinceGeorge’s State’s AttorneyGlenn Ivey pointed out. Iveysaid it was a combination of adding more police, usingnew technology, dealing withviolent crime quickly, and abetter coordination betweenpolice and prosecutors.He especially highlightedthe team of detectives andprosecutors.“It’s a team effort,” saidIvey. “We get good detectivework from the police and ithelps us present strong casesto the juries and get moreconvictions. We’ve hadsome judges, too, who startedgiving different sentencesfor violent crimes and I thinkall of those have made animpact.”The county isn’t restingon this news however;they’ll soon unveil aplan, in conjunction withMontgomery County, tocombat gang violence in thetwo jurisdictions. “We’regoing to roll out a strategyto address the propagationof gangs here in the county,”said Hylton. “We’ll be settinga zero tolerance policy ongangs and their ability tonance themselves. We’regoing to be looking at howwe‘re going to be weakeningthe infrastructure for some of these organized gangs here inPrince George’s County.”Despite the improvements,ofcials are concernedthe county’s budget crisismay be an impediment tothe department’s success.Ivey says the recession haspresented many challenges,forcing local governmentto impose furloughs onemployees, cut back onstafng the police department.“[But] we have to keep doingthe best we can to moveforward with the policing andprosecution function, ” hesaid.According to Hylton, thefeedback he’s received fromthe county’s residents hasbeen positive.“People are running upto me and saying ‘Chief, thisis the safest we’ve felt inPrince George’s County,’”said Hylton. “People aretelling me that they can see adifference.”But the some residents arenot ready to give the policedepartment all the credit. “I’mnot going to complain aboutcrime being down, but thefact of the matter is it seemsto be down everywhere,”said Gregory Graham of Mitchellville, Md. “It seemslike more of a national trendthan a something the countyis doing in particular.”However, Hylton believesthe county is sending a clearmessage to criminals andthey’re taking heed to thewarning. “Our departmentmade over 20,000 thousandarrests in 2009,” said Hylton.“I think the message beingsent in the Washingtonmetropolitan area [is] it’szero tolerance; you dothe wrong thing in Prince
Prince George’s County
“People are running up to me and saying, ‘Chief, this is the safest we’ve felt in Prince George’s County.’” 

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