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ThursHav. Tune 24,1993 - THE CHARLOTTE POST - Page7A
Increase Funding To Help Office
Of Minority Affairs Do Its Job
The writer is president of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg
League of Women Voters.
The Office of Minority Affairs is the most visible token
of Mecklenburg County's concern about racism. Neverthe
less, this year again that office is a temporary item in the
county's budget. The League of Women Voters of Charlotte-
Mecklenburg is urging the County Commission to stop its
yearly debate about the need for that office and put it into
the budget permanently with fuU funding.
Early this year, the League of Women Voters of North
Carolina askgd each of its local Leagues to identify its sin
gle most serious social problem. The board of our local
League named racism for Charlotte-Mecklenburg.
Last week Charlotte-Mecklenburg League members were
among leaders of 15 big city Leagues meeting in Washing
ton. That coalition identified racism as being at the core
of many of the nation's most serious problems.
I wonder if, in all of those other cities, the only office
dealing with racism is considered temporary.
They're Not Household Names, Just
Individuals Who Make A Difference
By James Stxoud
SPECIAL TO THE POST
We are bombarded dally with the trumpeting of public fig
ures and the good works they are doing for the poor and under
privileged. We see the mayor, council people, commissioners,
and all the rest, smiling into the camera as they go through
their "Photo Op" sessions throughout the city.
Rarely do we hear of "regular" ordinary people who carry the
real burden of letting the less fortunate know that there is
someone who cares.
Three of these "little" people who make a
positive difference in the lives of others:
• Claire Hurst:
A social worker with a private foundation
that services pregnant teenagers.
Claire, in private life, also serves as the
minister of Reeves Temple AME Zion
Church In Davidson.
One of the other many ways in which
Claire makes a big difference is through her
Neighborhood Ministry. It is nothing for
mal, but totally effective in that the children
of BlddlevUle love her.
Self-Help Beats The Media
A recent report by televi
sion's 60 Minutes called into
question - again - the main
stream media's ability to ob
jectively report on black
self-help success stories.
On the other hand, there is
little debate concerning the
media's ability to report the
failures, ineptness, chican
ery, incompetence and crim
inality of some black people.
But self-help success seems
to present problems of objec
I distinguish self-help (es
pecially economic) success
from athletic or performing
arts success which have out
comes which are objectively
observable. That is, they
have agreed upon rules
which eliminate cheating.
Therefore, the player who
scores 50 points is a better
scorer than the one who
scores 10 points.
But solving complex eco
nomic problems (where the
rules don't necessarily deter
mine the outcome - because
cheating cannot be ruled out)
and the subsequent social
and psychological manifes
tations of economic poverty
cannot be judged objectively.
It allows one to judge the
For example, how in the
world could a group of 300
rural, poorly educated Mis
sissippi blacks possibly go
from welfare checks to own
ership of a financial empire
worth $20 million without
any government help -
solving the problems of ra
cism emd poverty?
But as a result of doing just
that, 'The Company's" prop
erties today Include: three
restaurants; a steel fabricat
ing plant; three funeral
plants: 15 farms with 4,000
acres; and "one of the South's
most successful hog-ralslng
farms - all of which provide
meat for the Reach process
ing plant and, ultimately,
the enterprise's restaurants,"
the Post story explained.
Of course, the Post (as did
60 Minutes later on) ran
down the local "black leader"
(In this case, a NAACP
"leader" who detested black
and was hostile to Bishop
Luke Edwards personally.
Names like Jim Jones, Rev.
Sun Myung Moon along with
"mind control" and remin
ders of "Indentured servi
tude" were laced throughout
I don't accuse the Post or 60
Minutes of racism.
But It Is obvious from their
reporting that they don't rec
ognize that the real genius of
black people is not found In
leaders who work at being
leaders and believe in white
people rather than them
TONY BROWN is a nation
What she does Is bring them, both boys and girls. Into her
home for lessons of life. She teaches them the work ethic by
having them organize car washes, yard sales, and the like.
She teaches them discipline and courtesy, table manners and
deportment. When she scolds them. It Is firm, but rvlth love.
Her home Is open to them for any reason, any time. The at
mosphere is one of safety, confidence and trust. These are the
things often missing In their homes, and for the lucky few. It
is found at Claire's home.
• Betty Marlin, RN.:
Betty is a community health care provider. Her clinic, locat
ed in the Blddlevllle commuiUty, provides preliminary exam
inations, doctor/hospital referrals, weight control programs,
and at prices the people of that community can afford.
Here you can get a physical for $25, self care counseling for
$2, nursing care, (limited), $2 and a host of other health ser
vices for an average of $8 per procedure.
With nursing salaries being in the starting range of the upper
$20s (thousands), I asked her why she would come to such a
poor neighborhood to practice her craft. Her answer was to the
effect of "This Is where I'm needed."
To see and talk with Betty Is to witness a person who has
found their work. She extends the services of her clinic to
anyone needing health care or counseling, without the slight
est regard for whether or not she will be paid.
In leaving her, I could not help but ask her to express her one
wish for all mankind. As was typical of her, she stated "My
one wish for mankind is for us all to be well, whole, and
• Richard McCullough:
Richard ("Richie" to me) is a contract worker for the Char
lotte/Mecklenburg School system. He works as a general as
sistant at Carmel Junior High. His work brings him Into con
tact with the children in the In School Suspension Program,
that is, children who have been determined as problems In the
Richard uses his ability to identify with those "problem"
kids to get across a very important message. That message is:
"You are here to get an education as a means of survival in to
Global Networking For Profit
By William Reed
With the second Afiican-Afrlcan American
Summit in Gabon just over, the major ques
tion confronting blacks here, and there. Is
"where do we go from here?" While the major
ity of participants In the Gabon Summit were
civil right leaders, or clvd rights leaders
who've crossed that thin line and are now
politicians, the actual feat of bringing blacks
into the New World Order will be on the backs
of those of us engaged in trade and commerce.
While Rev. Leon Sullivan's Gabon summit
provided headlines about "blacks bonding,"
the bottom-line results for blacks' economic
development will be drawn by those people
among us who are really about the business
of doing business.
For those blacks who derive more pleasure
from cashing checks than taking pictures
with so-called "leaders," there are two active
economic groups that they may wish to use
toward International networking for profit.
The Washington D.C.-based International
Exchemge Network (lEN) and the Internation
al Black Network Elxchange (IBNE), based in
Addison, Texas, are African American-
headed groups whose focus is to promote the
professional and financial networking of
blacks toward aiding in the expansion of Af
ricans and Caribbeans into the global mar
ketplace. Rather than petitioning the White
House and Congress to "please do something
for us and our kin," these groups have direct
ed their attention toward; matching business
Interests of blacks; coordinating joint ven
tures and promoting the products and servic
es of African American-owned businesses
and those of black manufacturers, world
According to Malcolm Beech, president of
the International Elxchange Network, "It's not
often that a large group of African American
businesspeople have an opportunity to partic
ipate in the birth of a new wave of economic
development activity." Beech's group is host
ing a Southern African Trade and Investment
Conference in Washington, July 16 and 17, to
allow blacks in this country to see the broad
range of economic opportunities emerging in
Sub-Sahara Africa. Former U.N. Ambassador
Edward Perkins' comments shows the poten
tial of the conference, "I think that coopera
tion with African nations or with African in
dividuals engaged in various kinds of projects
in Africa vriil help Improve the economic de
velopment of Africa and the economy of this
Beech, who is a former president of the D.C.
Chamber of Commerce, says that, "If you
missed the chance to get In the gravy train
that drove America's economy In the '50s and
'60s, the next train is now pulling out, and we
don't need to wait for the government this
time. Sub-Sahara Africa Is a huge market
place with a combined GNP (gross national
product) of $248 bUllon. The potential value
of exports into African countries is over $55
billion." The 47 Sub-Saharan countries,
which includes industrialized South Africa,
have a potential consumer population of over
535 million people.
The "Made in USA" Trade Mission Is sup
ported by both the lEN and the IBNE, and is
scheduled for Sept. 7-16. The preparatory
trade and investment conference sponsored
by INE, in partnership with Howard Univer
sity's Small Business Center, wUl be held in
July at the Howard University Inn. People in
terested in international trade opportunities
should call the lEN at (202) 722-2465.
WILLIAM REED writes about urban issues
for the National Newspaper Publishers Asso-
Freedom Equals Responsibility
By Dr. Paula Newsome
SPECIAL TO THE POST
only place in Charlotte that
Where are the responsible
leaders? Where are the re
sponsible people In Char
lotte? A 5-year-old is out In a
van at 12:30 at night and the
van is fired on. Where are the
responsible leaders In Char
lotte? A 34-year-old larger-
than-life professional foot
ball player dies of a heart at
tack related to cocahie abuse.
Where are the responsible
people In Charlotte?
Our leaders host a sympo
sium to talk about cruising
in Freedom Park, which
really was a non-issue.
Where is the symposium to
talk about taking our neigh
borhoods back from the drug
Where Is the planning ses
sion for self esteem for our
youth and adults? Where are
the rites of passage classes
for our males and females?
Where are the real truth
classes about our heritage? Is
Walls AME Zion Church the
from a spir
Is Rev. Casey
sion of Jesus the Christ as a
blue-eyed, blond savior?
Where are the responsible
church communities who are
willing to go out into the
neighborhoods, pick up chil
dren, take them to their
sanctuaries, design pro
grams for them and feed
them for the summer?
Where are the retired teach
ers who used to make us
learn In their classrooms?
We need you to tutor our chil
dren who are lagging behind
In every type of skill, espe
cially reading. Where are the
summer reading and math
His manner of communicating with them is through his
"rap." He speaks in rhythmic sentences that the kids listen to
without losing the Intent of the message. Teachers often ap
proach him with questions on how he does it, and he has no
answers except to say, "I love 'em."
He calls them his kids, and to see the positive results of his
work and influence Is to see love at work through discipline.
I take the privilege here to thank Claire, Richie, and Betty
for all of Charlotte who do not know of your works, and share
with you the certainty that God has appointed the three of you
to serve him in your own Individual kind, loving ways. Thank
you for the privilege of knowing you.
Save Allen University
JAMES STROUD is a Charlotte writer.
Graduates from Allen University in Colum
bia, S.C. will reunite in Charlotte for the
"Save Our School" reunion this weekend,
June 25-27, at the Adam's Mark Hotel.
Allen, a struggling black college, has sur
vived many hurdles over a period of 123
years. Through it all, graduates have con
stantly pooled resources to maintain this In
stitution. Allen has graduated thousands of
teachers, doctors, lawyers, musicians and
other professionals who continue to work in
WHAT'S ON YOUR
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important to The Post and
Charlotte. What are your
feelings about Issues like
health care, education or
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Violence In U.S.
programs? Our kids can not
afford to take breaks!
Where are the responsible
citizens who are saying we
are sick and tired of our
neighborhoods being de
stroyed by hoodlums, thugs,
Where are the retired nurs
es and doctors and even the
practicing ones? Why aren't
we out one Saturday a month
sponsoring "a come as you
If we all took some respon
sibility, we could clean up
our community both literal
ly and figuratively. This ac
tion would truly lead to Im
Freedom Is not free but cer
tainly carries with it a big
price tag - responsibility. In
order for us to be free, we as a
community have got to ac
cept the responsibility for
our children, our education,
our religious Institutions,
our families, our extended
families and most Impor
DR. PAULA NEWSOME Is a
support of their beloved alma mater, and to
keep it open for other students, especially
those who have had difficulty being accepted
in other colleges.
This weekend, Allen alumni come together
again to present some of these alumni to help
raise funds for the school.
On behalf of the students, administrators
and alumni of Allen University, we Invite all
of Charlotte to come and help us "Save Our
School." Please call 392-9475 for informa
Every four hours in Ameri
ca, a black child Is murdered,
a young black adult Is mur
dered and a white child dies
Every six hours In Ameri
ca, a black child dies from
firearms, a white child is
murdered and a young white
adult Is murdered.
In 1990, two out of five
black male high school stu
dents reported carrying a
weapon - more than half of
them firearms - in the previ
Guns and violence obvious
ly aren't just "a black thang,"
but our community Is suffer
ing so greatly that we need to
stop whatever we're doing
and pay attention. We're In
danger of becoming our own
worst enemy; more young
black then die from homi
cide each year than we lost In
all the horrible decades of
When It comes to the harm
that guns are causing our
children, our youths, our
families and our communi
ties, the alarms are sounding
loud and clear. Something
has got to change.
A new survey by Louis Har
ris of LH Research shows
that more Americans are
supporting measures to limit
gun violence. Interviews
with a cross-section of
Americans revealed that
77% of adults believe young
people's safety Is endangered
by all the guns that are
around and only 29% feel
that most children are safe
from violence in the schools.
When asked how much the
availability of guns have
contributed to the epidemic
of violence that is engulfing
all of America, 61% nation
wide say "a great deal" and
20% say "somewhat." The
strongest feelings about the
relationship of guns and vio
lence came from women,
blacks. Latinos, and parents
of children under 18 years of
age. However, even 41% of all
National Rifle Association
(NRA) members say they be
lieve guns have contributed
to the violence in our world
How bad is it? The Harris
survey tells us that:
• 18% of all adults, 20% of
all parents and 30% of
blacks report having had or
knowing someone who had
"a child who was wounded or
killed by another child who
had a gun."
• 15% of all adults, 19% of
all parents, 22% of Latinos
and 33% of blacks report
"knowing a child who was so
worried that he or she got a
gun for self-protection."
•Fully 91% of all adults and
92% of all parents feel that
there is "more violence in the
schools than when they were
These numbers are just the
tip of the iceberg: the situa
tion Is growing worse by the
day. The good news is that at
titudes about guns and vio
lence are changing.
MARIAN EDELMAN ts
president of the Children's