“Since I was a young man, I always had an interest in writing and reporting and the spoken word,” Rojas, now 69, said from his home in Maryland.
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Visionary Freedom Fighter Don Rojas Recounts a Life of Service

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “Don Rojas has made major contributions to the struggle for freedom in Black communities across the globe. As the first communications director for the NAACP, he not only built the initial model of our communications department but created a vision for the way in which communications can be used as a resource to support social justice movements,” NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson told NNPA Newswire. […read more]

ESSA Houston Black Parents’ Town Hall participants – Larry McKinzie, Monica Riley, Lynette Monroe, Treyvon Waddy, Rhonda Skillern-Jones, Dr. Elizabeth Primas, Forward Times Publisher/CEO Karen Carter Richards, Chirelle Riley and Jeffrey L. Boney
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NNPA Hosts Black Parents’ Town Hall Meeting to Discuss the State of Education in Houston’s African American Community

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “Teachers should seek to build trust with the parents and seek to know the parents on a first name basis, so they can stay in the loop. I think that will go a long way and would open the door to discuss more personal things that may be affecting the child,” said Forward Times intern Treyvon Waddy. […read more]

Criminal justice reform for Black America is long overdue. Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr. is President and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) and can be reached at dr.bchavis@nnpa.org
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COMMENTARY: Criminal Justice Reform Long Overdue for Black America

NNPA NEWSWIRE — For 40 long years, until North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue signed “Pardons of Innocence” documents for each member of the Wilmington Ten (including myself), the issues of unjust and disproportionate mass incarceration, bail reform, racism in the judiciary, prosecutorial misconduct, and reentry challenges were not matters of partisanship, but were matters of fundamental civil and human rights. […read more]

Former President Barack Obama told the crowd, the only way to make a change is to vote. (Photo by Ana Martinez-Ortiz)
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Barack Obama Visited Milwaukee to Encourage People to Vote

THE MILWAUKEE COURIER — “Don’t boo. Vote,” Obama said. “If you vote things will get better, if you vote in this election it’ll start.”Voting is the key to changing the lawmakers and changing the policies. Obama endorsed Tammy Baldwin for senator and Tony Evers for governor. The power is in the hands of the voters, he said. It’s up to every eligible citizen to vote and to vote early. When people vote, hope happens, and change happens. […read more]

Members of the Majestic Knights football team asked to take a photo with Valerie Castile, center, mother of Philando Castile, her first born son who was killed in 2016 by police during a traffic stop. She gave them advice on ways to stay safe when confronted by the police. / Photo by DR Barnes.
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Mother of Philando Castile brings a hopeful message to D.C. students

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Castile’s firstborn son Philando worked in the Minnesota school system as a cook until he was killed by police during a traffic stop on July 6, 2016. The incident was highly controversial as the police alternately claimed that Castile had a broken taillight and also that he “fit the description” of a robbery suspect who had a wide-set nose. […read more]

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Art Films Dominate the 2018 New York Film Festival

If Beale Street Could Talk is a lushly created, gorgeously crafted work of art. At times the style outweighs the storyline, but most people looking for art films won’t care. The same can be said about a lot of the slate at the 56th annual New York Film Festival: Visually transporting but lacking in the consistently engaging storytelling that can add pep and momentum to what’s on view. […read more]

Derrick Johnson is the President and CEO of the NAACP. Follow him on Twitter at @DerrickNAACP or @NAACP. Pledge to vote by Texting NAACP to 40649.
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PRESSROOM: NAACP Monitoring Possible Voter Suppression Tactics in Georgia Gov. Race

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “It’s a stain on our system of democracy when less than a month before an election which could produce the first African-American female governor in our nation’s history, we are seeing this type of voter suppression scheme attempted by a state official whose candidacy for the governorship produces an irremediable conflict of interest,” said NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson. […read more]

President Barack Obama (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)
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Obama Issues Second Round of Midterm Endorsements

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “The Democratic Party has always made the biggest difference in the lives of the American people when we lead with conviction, principle, and bold, new ideas. Our incredible array of candidates up and down the ticket, all across the country, make up a movement of citizens who are younger, more diverse, more female than ever before,” said President Obama. […read more]

(Photo: iStockphoto / NNPA)
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A Five Hundred Year-Old Shared History

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “From the moment when Europeans took their slaves from a race different from their own, which many of them considered inferior to other human races, and assimilation with whom they all regarded with horror, they assumed that slavery would be eternal,” historian Winthrop D. Jordan wrote in his dissertation, “White Over Black: American Attitudes Toward the Negro.” […read more]

Official photo of United States Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA).
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Senator Kamala Harris Statement on Confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The Judge Kavanaugh the American people saw before the Judiciary Committee does not have the character, the temperament, or the judgment to sit on the highest court in our land. His own partisan, evasive, dishonest, and aggressive testimony demonstrates that we cannot trust him to be a fair and unbiased jurist. He is simply unfit. The Senate should have put partisanship aside and demanded better. […read more]

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‘We’re Here For Justice,’ Demands Protester At A Demonstration Against The Police Killing Of Patrick Kimmons

MICHIGAN CHRONICLE — Dozens of demonstrators marched through downtown Portland, Oregon on Saturday to demand justice in the police killing of Patrick Kimmons. The police version of the Sept. 30 shooting suggested that officers were justified in fatally shooting the 27-year-old Black man, but Kimmons’ family reportedly believed the police are covering up what really happened. […read more]

Amid jury deliberations Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke listens while attorneys step before Judge Vincent Gaughan bench, as the jury has sent another question to Judge Gaughan, who read it aloud from the bench, at the Leighton Criminal Court Building Friday, Oct. 5, 2018. (Antonio Perez/pool/Chicago Tribune)
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Jason Van Dyke Trial Photos

CHICAGO CRUSADER — Amid jury deliberations Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke listens while attorneys step before Judge Vincent Gaughan bench, as the jury has sent another question to Judge Gaughan, who read it aloud from the bench, at the Leighton Criminal Court Building Friday, Oct. 5, 2018. […read more]

Jason Van Dyke convicted of second-degree murder and all 16 counts of aggravated battery and one count of police misconduct. (Photo by Nancy Stone/Pool/Chicago Tribune)
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GUILTY!

CHICAGO CRUSADER — Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke was found guilty of second-degree murder Friday, October 5, by a jury at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse, ending decades of frustration in Chicago’s Black community and marking a significant turning point involving police misconduct in the police department’s notorious history. […read more]

Dr. Queen Shamala Sykes
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Blackbutterfly Soul Songs—Explores the Long and Winding Path of Soul Exploration

BLACK VOICE NEWS — Sometimes it is not the big things that guide us in our quest for answers to these timeless questions, but instead, can be one of the 10,000 little things that can occur in our daily lives—incidents that to others, might go unnoticed, ignored and/or are quickly forgotten. For Queen Shamala it was indeed one of those 10,000 little things that for her, has lingered as inspiration for a lifetime. […read more]

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Howard U. Cancer Center Expands Blacks’ Access to Clinical Trials

WASHINGTON INFORMER — “Howard University’s Cancer Center serves a population that is around 90 percent African American,” said Carla D. Williams, Howard University associate professor of medicine and public health and interim director of the Howard University Cancer Center. “For many of the cancers that we commonly treat, this group has some of the highest mortality rates of any racial or ethnic group…” […read more]

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Government-sponsored race discrimination has suppressed Black homeownership and generational wealth

JACKSONVILLE FREE PRESS — An example of “de facto” segregation would be white concentration in a particular school district, simply because the surrounding neighborhood is predominately white. “It’s a myth that  unlike all the other segregations I’ve described, segregation in housing wasn’t created by government. And we tell ourselves that residential segregation will happen by accident; unlike the other kinds of segregations I’ve described.” […read more]

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Candidates and Officials Brace for Verdict in Jason Van Dyke Trial

CHICAGO DEFENDER — Several community leaders have made statements regarding responses to the verdict in the Jason Van Dyke trial. Van Dyke is on trial for first degree murder for shooting Laquan McDonald 16 times in 2014. Leaders are speaking about possible protests and unrest if Van Dyke is found not guilty of the charges. The Chicago Defender will update our site regularly with statements from political candidates, officials and community leaders. […read more]

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COMMENTARY: The deafening drumbeat of the unfree

CALIFORNIA VOICE — Dehumanized by the labels “prisoner,” “inmate” and “convict,” even reduced to serial numbers like Victor Hugo’s Jean Valjean in “Les Misérables,” these men and women are, just like you and me, or any mortal – irrespective of flaws, frailties, even felonious acts and misdemeanors – endowed with the right to be treated with dignity, decency and respect. […read more]

Photo Credit: IBWPPI Website
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Premiere Black Women’s Organization Spearheads International Change

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “Our mission is to convene hearings and conversations that evaluate the impact of current public policy and initiate new policies that address major threats to the well-being of Black women, their families and communities. We are a membership driven organization with a seat at the table for all those who believe as we do, that it is our duty to help make life better for others.” […read more]

Marker in Front of Tutwiler Funeral Home, Photo: Thomas R Machnitzki (thomas@machnitzki.com)/Wikimedia Commons
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COMMENTARY: Emmett Till, Violence, Voting Rights and Education Policy

NNPA NEWSWIRE — ESSA represents an opportunity to establish a more equitable playing field but the Trump administration’s 2019 federal budget proposes cutting $3 billion from the Education Department while investing over a billion dollars in school choice programs. More than 90 percent of students in the United States attend public schools, and, as of 2014, attendance in America’s public schools is majority-minority. […read more]

Anyone can be a dad for a day, but being a real father is a completely different challenge.
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COMMENTARY: When a Father…

NNPA NEWSWIRE — We sons observe our fathers in awe at first, because of the size differential. But as the luster of the bluster wears off, sons see exactly what kind of man their fathers are by the way they treat and care for the women in their lives – their wives, their sons’ mothers, other relatives. […read more]

Photo Credit: San Antonio Current
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Betsy DeVos Slammed for Wanting to Use ESSA Funds to Purchase Guns in School

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights… we write to share our significant concern regarding the Department’s reported contemplation of the use of Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants provided to states under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) for purchasing firearms and firearms training for school staff…” […read more]

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NNPA Awards Dr. Wally Smith for Outstanding Leadership

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Dr. Wally Smith’s tireless efforts are among the many reasons the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) awarded the physician with a 2018 National Leadership Award for outstanding contributions in addressing the issues concerning SCD, which predominately affects those of African ancestry. […read more]