By Victoria Horsford
THE 2020 PRESIDENCY.
Alas, the Democrats have lost their incredible diverse team of candidates in pursuit of the presidency. Democratic U.S Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker the two African- American contenders for the Presidency have suspended their campaign operations. Perhaps, it was not meant to be. After reading a few analyses, this was not their time. Harvard Professor Skip Gates, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and others imply that the Obama Presidency and whites perceptions about Black progress during the Obama era paved the way for the Trump 2016 victory.
Perhaps, Toni Morrison nailed the source of the POTUS 45 victory. The Nigel Robert’s essay, “Fear of Crumbling White Privilege Led To Trump Victory,” begins with the following… “ In New Yorker essay “Mourning for Whiteness,” Toni Morrison states that scores of educated and poorly- educated white votes embraced the shame and fear sowed by Donald Trump because they’re terrified of losing their diminishing White privilege in an increasingly diverse America. These people are not angry. They are terrified.” Morrison was spot on. And Deval Patrick, former Massachusetts Governor, needs to withdraw from the Presidential race soonest. The time is not now!
NEW YORK, NY POLITICS
The 30th Anniversary: David Dinkins was sworn in as the 106th Mayor of New York City on January1, 1990, by Judge Fritz Alexander. David Dinkins was first African American elected to the second hardest job in America.
The NYS Legislature convenes this week and the 2020 session will be contentious as it broaches a budget deficit and laws. Headlining the list of woes is the unsettling NYS 2019 Law about Bail Elimination , which prohibits bail and detention for misdemeanors and non violent felonies. Law was conceived to circumvent the politicization of the bail systems which affected nonwhites and economically challenged people disproportionately. That Law into effect January 1. The law specifies which acts fall within its jurisdiction. Detainees would be bail- exempt for second degree burglary of a residence, second degree robbery aided by another person; using a child to commit a controlled substance crime, vehicular assault, multiple times, to name a few.
The Bail Elimination law is accessible digitally.
Law must be revised. How was it initially researched? Since 2020 began, a bank robber detained for two acts in one day, was released without bail. The robber was shocked that he could walk. The law’s naysayers as well as the the Brennan Center for Justice conclude that 90% of these arrested in NYS will not pay bail. The Bail Elimination law must be revisited. Democratic Senate Leader Andrea Stewart –Cousins and Governor Andrew Cuomo are on board to review Bail Elimination; Assembly House Speaker Carl Heastie is not.
HOLD THE DATE: Assembly member Inez Dickens presents the Second Annual Honorable Charles B. Rangel Leadership Awards at Mist Harlem, on Thursday, February 6 at 6 pm.
HARLEM: Dorrance Brooks Square was ablaze with gunfire on Saturday, January 11 at 11:30 pm. This quiet 4-5 block community, along lower Edgecombe Avenue, was awakened by gun shots exchanged between two warring groups, one ensconced in the Dorrance Brooks corridor and the rival was sheltered in St Nicholas Park.
Read the 12/10 NY Times Business expose “This is What Racism Sounds Like in the Banking Industry,” a look at business practices at the JP Morgan Chase bank in Phoenix, Arizona last year. A JPMC Black financial advisor and a Black retired NFL player recorded talks with banks white managers about the branch’s culture vis-à-vis Blacks, which was offensive. Is Jim Crow still alive and well? A day after story ran, Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase Chair /CEO, says that he’s disgusted with racism practices at his company. Well, Mr Dimon so are African Americans.
TELEVISION: THE LAST DAYS OF RICHARD PRYOR, a two hour ABC-TV News Special, airs Thursday, January 16 . Actor, director, writer, Pryor was among THE American Kings of Comedy from the 60s to 80s. When will his memoir be published..
FINE ART: The June Kelly Gallery’s new exhibit, Carl E, Hazelwood Drawings & Collages, Recent Works, runs from January 17 to March 3. A Brooklyn- based artist, the Guyana-born Hazelwood, holds degrees from Hunter College and Pratt Institute. France, Guyana and the USA are some of the countries where his works were solo exhibited. Co-founder of Aljira, a Center for Contemporary Art in Newark, NJ Hazelwood says that he is “basically a painter who approaches abstraction. The June Kelly Gallery is located at 166 Mercer Street, Manhattan, 212.226.1660. Visit junekellygallery.com
The Skoto Art Gallery’s new exhibit The World Gives Life, which is recent mixed media works by Liberia-born Trokon Nagbe, runs from January 16 to February 29. Nagbe’s works draw on the themes of memory, migration, history and the passage of time through the filter of personal experience. Skoto Gallery is located at 529 West 20 Street, Manhattan. Visit skotogallery.com.
OSCAR SO WHITE 2020 Cynthia Erivo portrays HarrietTubman, in the film HARRIET about the runaway enslaved African, who evolved into abolitionist/ heroine, who leads enslaved Africans to freedom by way of the Underground Railroad. Erivo got two Oscar nods for HARRIET, one for the best actress and for best song.
Sheena Wright, President/CEO of United Way NY President/CEO and former CEO of Abyssinian Development Corporation celebrated her 50th birthday anniversary in grand style at Mist Harlem on Saturday where she hosted an gala with all the “golden year” party trappings, which was attended by about 200, including three generations of her family, her parents and children, friends and colleagues. Food, libations and a non-stop DJ made the night electric.
Arthur Mitchell’s Dance Theatre of Harlem celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year. Public is invited to a free open rehearsal of Odaliques Variations from Le Corsaire, on January 16 at 6:30 pm. at the Everett Center for Performing Arts, located at 466 West 152 Street, Harlem.
The Dr Martin Luther King Jr National holiday will be observed on January 20.
On that date, note the following 1) the Brooklyn Academy of Music hosts its 34th marathon celebration of free arts, culture and conversations, in honor of Dr. King. Nikole Hannah-Jones, creator of the NY Times Magazine single issue, “The 1619 Project,” will be keynoter . The Brooklyn Interdenominational Choir performs. Visit BAM events page and The
The African Burial Ground Monument commemorates Dr. King on 1/20 with assorted programs, including the screening of 3-hour film, KING. A FILMED RECORD FROM MONTGOMERY TO MEMPHIS, unspooled in two parts.
RESTARANT WEEK NYC 2020 dates are January 21 to February 9. During that time participating restaurants offer reduced dining options, which include a two-course lunch at $26 and a three- course dinner at $42. Visit nycgo.com/restaurant week
A Harlem-based brand and media consultant, Victoria can be reached at Victoria.email@example.com