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Hands Together, Heart To Art Camp

This July, the Auditorium Theater of Roosevelt University will be hosting its award-winning summer camp Hands Together, Heart To Art for children ages 7-14. This camp is designed for children who have lost a parent to death. The camp runs in 2 session July 5-16 (ages 7-11) and July 19-30 (ages 10-14) from the hours of 9am-4pm with optional 1 hour pre and post camp child care.

This unique camp uses the arts of theater, music, and dance to help children process and cope with their loss. It also gives them an opportunity to build a support group of peers who have been through the same experience. Campers will participate in singing, dance, drama, music, and group activities involving art to assist in the grieving process . The cost for this camp is just $50 per child. Applications can be downloaded from www.hthta.org.

Families with multiple children or extreme need can apply for financial assistance through the HTHTA. Scholarship deadline is June 28.

-Erik

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Los Problemas

On the Mexican American Holiday of Cinco de Mayo,  a symbolic Holiday representing liberation and freedom, the  Phoenix Suns will be wearing their Los Suns jerseys against the Spurs in protest of the new Arizona immigration bill SB 1070. The bill would allow authorities to question and search individuals who they suspect may be illegal immigrants and require them to have documents to be in the U.S. on them at all times. Many believe that this law encourages racial profiling of Hispanics and is at the center of  local and national political debate. The idea to wear the jerseys came from the team’s owner Robert Sarver who was born and raised in Arizona and is frustrated with the law. He stated

“However intended, the result of passing the law is that our basic principles of equal rights and protection under the law are being called into question,” he said, “and Arizona’s already struggling economy will suffer even further setbacks at a time when the state can ill-afford them.”

The Suns opposing second round rival the San Antonio Spurs also motioned to wear the Spanish version of their jerseys although it was already too late for league approval to occur. Suns guard Steve Nash has openly spoke about his views on the law and wearing the jersey saying

“I think it’s fantastic (the jerseys).I think the law is very misguided. I think it’s, unfortunately, to the detriment of our society and our civil liberties. I think it’s very important for us to stand up for things we believe in. As a team and as an organization, we have a lot of love and support for all of our fans. The league is very multicultural. We have players from all over the world, and our Latino community here is very strong and important to us.”

The NBA as a whole has denounced the passing of the law and many athlete’s across the professional sports world are of Hispanic descent and/or from foreign countries including Nash who is originally from Canada. Unless some detailed modification takes place on the bill we can expect the controversial law to continue to generate more opposition.

-Erik

Expungement Summit

SAVE THE DATE: Saturday, June 5th 2010

Dorothy Brown, the Clerk of the Circuit of Cook County and a host of others will be hosting a “Expungement Summit” on Saturday June 5, 2010.  This event is for adults & juveniles, and will have volunteer attorneys on site to help w/ expungement and sealing applications. Information on employment, job training, health care and other services for ex-offenders will be available.  The expungement process is when a “record of criminal conviction is destroyed or sealed from the state of Federal repository.” 

There’s a process one has to undergo and a fee but in the end it can make all the difference.  This summit will give you great information on this topic and available resources in your community.

Where:

Dwight D. Eisenhower High School

12700 Sacramento Ave., Blue Island, IL

When:

June 5, 2010

Registration begins at 8:30 am and the doors close at 6 pm.

Contact info:

For more information, you can call 312-603-5696 or visit www.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org

Also, please read up on the information provided in the expungement packet which can be found at the site above.  It will tell you what information to bring, the expungement process, and help you to find if you qualify for expungement.

-Ron

 

Ever remember going to the doctor and getting your reflexes checked? You know…when the doctor would tell you to relax, as he/she used their reflex hammer and hit your knee.  Then your knee would automatically jump or buckle!!!

Well that’s what’s happened in the latest update in the Ben Roethlisberger saga.  NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has suspended Big Ben for 6 games in this upcoming season, for what he calls  “conduct detrimental to the NFL” and saying it was “the best step for your personal and professional welfare.”  For those that don’t know, Big Ben was facing allegations of sexual assault after supposedly forcing his way onto a young lady at a local bar.  Some stated that his security guards did nothing after friends tried to pull the young lady away from being 1-on1 w/ Roethlisberger. 

Although he wasn’t charged w/ anything in the courts, this is the second time that these type of allegations have come about w/ his name in the mix.  NO MEANS NO. Let this be a lesson though, for every action, there’s a reaction.

-Ron

On April 19, 2010 Hip-Hop pioneer Guru joined Tupac, Biggie, Jam Master J and a host of others as fallen marters in Rap Music. At the age of 43 he passed away from complications due to cancer. Guru had been hospitalized several times in the past year for various health problems including a heart attack that left him restricted to Good Samaritan Hospital until his death.

Guru is most known for being 1/2 of the group Gang Starr founded in the late 80’s, including himself and the World renowned Producer DJ Premiere aka “Premo”. But the group had many shaky times leading to its eventual public split in 2004. Controversy began to emerge as fans and family became suspicious of new-found ally DJ Solar, suspecting him of controlling Guru’s visitations preceding his death. The drama peeked after Solar released a statement claiming that Guru wanted nothing to do with DJ Premier even after his death. The letter, supposedly in the words of Guru read…

“I do not wish my ex-DJ [DJ Premier] to have anything to do with my name likeness, events, tributes etc. Connected in any way to my situation including any use of my name or circumstance for any reason and I have instructed my lawyers to enforce this. I had nothing to do with him in life for over 7 years and want nothing to do with him in death. Solar has my life story and is well-informed on my family situation, as well as the real reason for separating from my ex-DJ.”

Whether or not Guru was actually behind the letter or not it definitely will leave a bad taste in the mouths of many Gang Starr fans in a genre where beefs and grudges thrive many times until death. Nevertheless Guru is a Rap pioneer often pushing the limits of social awareness and history. Guru’s solo career produced a Hip-Hop and Jazz fusion series entitled “Jazzmatazz” collaborating with legends such as Roy Ayers and Donald Byrd. Guru’s impact and legacy will live on for generations, inspiring and strong, he will be remembered as a legend.

"Guru" 1967-2010

-Erik

When Sex Ed Goes Illegal

The District Attorney of Juneau County Wisconsin,  signed a new law that could hand out jail time for teaching comprehensive sex education in schools. This specifically includes teaching about how to properly use a condom and/or birth control. Teachers caught in violation of teaching on this subject could face 9 months in jail and up to $10,000 in fines. Can we all say WOW!?! I guess its safe to say stories about storks, birds, and bees may become a whole lot more common in High Schools in that area.

District Attorney Scott Southworth is said to be a devout Evangelical Republican. Wisconsin itself is very conservative and even has laws that can land teens under 17 in jail for having sex. Apparently the D.A. was offended when the Democratic Governor, Jim Doyle signed a state law requiring schools that teach sex education to include comprehensive teachings about contraceptives. He states that such teaching are encouraging minors to have sex and therefore assisting in illegal activity.

I imagine some people are in agreement with the new practice but there are many parents, teachers, and teens harshly speaking out against it. But there is a catch. Southworth can’t really override what is already state law. So in all likely hood even if he tries to prosecute someone in his district of Mauston Wisconsin,  for teaching comprehensive sex ed , the case probably wont hold up in court because its legal in state law to do so. Which makes Southworth a true Cheesehead!

Like This guy

-Erik

On March 22nd a guy named Franklin Page used Verizon’s  Samsung Omnia II to break the Guinness Book Of World Records for texting on a touch screen phone. In 35.54 seconds he texted   “The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human,” (the official phrase made by Guinness).

The video shows the phone using revolutionary new software called Swype which allows the user to input text in one continuous motion across the screen much like a stylus. This technology allows you to enter text at over 40 words per minute so you will be able to text whole sentences before your friends can respond back with acronyms like LOL and TTYL.

Even though it has super fast potential I can’t imagine that learning how to text on this phone will be easy. I mean think how hard it was going from texting on a regular number pad to learning how to text with two thumbs on a full keyboard. Now you don’t even actually have to press the buttons? SMH 😦

-Erik

The Black Star Project has created a mentor program called “The Warrior, Scholar, & Healer” and are looking for 50 young males ages 13-18 years old.  If you’re looking to give back to your community, get service hours for school, or volunteer opportunities to place on your resume, this is something for you.

I currently mentor youth on a daily basis and let me be the first to say there’s great reward in helping others.  Not only do you get to meet a wide range of people, but you can also have a lasting impact on someone’s life.  Here’s a little bit about the opportunity:

 The Warrior, Scholar, Healer Mentor Program meets four times a month; has a one mentor to 4 youth ratio; works on the issues of respecting elders; teaches youth to value education; teaches youth to honoring parents, young women and girls; teaches youth to be leaders and not followers; connects youth to positive male role models; travels to other parts of the city on field trips; brings in guest speakers; practices self-discipline; and more.

Youth must live between 2200 South and 5500 South in Chicago to participate in this program.

Here’s the contact info: Call Comella or Chris at 773.285.9600.  The Black Star Warrior, Scholar, Healer Mentor Program will be based at 3509 South King Drive, Suite 2B in Chicago, Illinois.

-Ron