Earth Day turns 50 on April 24. The golden anniversary will be remembered for the plague – coronavirus – as the planet battles for the life of its inhabitants. In four months the virus has ravaged the planet with 2,472,259 cases reported worldwide, with 169,986 deaths. In the United States, there have been 42,000 deaths, including 14,347 New Yorkers.
Coronavirus has changed the society in ways large and small, and this is only the beginning of what the new normal will be. The big business today is the business of battling the coronavirus so that American businesses can be resuscitated. On Monday, April 20, President Trump announced that via executive order he would temporarily suspend all immigration to the United States, the result of coronavirus. Too little, too late. Is this supposed to interrupt infections? He has suspended travel to the USA by Europeans and by Africans, by way of a ban of about 12 nations. The mayhem plot twists and turns so often with POTUS 45, it is hard to document or process. Last week, he threatened to suspend both chambers of Congress, which he argued he is empowered to do. He is not! Then he set a date for America to be open for business again, around early May, also not his jurisdiction. Alas, his business taskforce and American CEOs are not quite ready for that May Day recipe for disaster. Then he says that Governors could decide when their state was ready to return to a normal business routine. That was followed by GOP orchestrated demonstrations in states run by Democratic governors, unready to lift lockdown policies until the COVID19 threat recedes. POTUS45 and the GOP seem to be nervous about the November elections.
Why would Trump withdraw US funds from WHO, the World Health Organization, in the midst of a horrific pandemic? It does not help that WHO leader is Ethiopian Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. We know how Trump feels about Africans. On Tuesday, America’s two caesars, NYS Governor Andrew Cuomo and Donald Trump re scheduled to meet at the White House. Oh, to be a fly on the wall!
The US Chamber of Commerce Foundation opened applications for its $5000 Small Business (3 to 20 Employees) Grants for employers severely harmed by the COVID-19 Pandemic…. Shea Moisturizer has three programs totaling $1million – for businesses supporting communities through COVID-19, for Black-owned businesses facing COVID- related hardships and a program targeted to Black women entrepreneurs. Visit. Sheamoisture.com and go to COVID-19 Small Business Report or instagram@sheamoisture…. The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce partnered with the borough president’s office “to get businesses the relief they deserve.” Join the Small Business Hotline via the Brooklyn App for more info.
R.I.P.: Dr Julia Butler, veterinarian founder of the 145 Street Animal Hospital, died two weeks ago. A Harlem fixture for more than 26 years, the Hospital is located at 454 West 145 Street. She earned her Doctorate at the Cornell Veterinary School and was founder/Co Vice President of NY Save Animals In Veterinary Emergency.
R.I.P.: Fine artist, art historian, curator David Driskell 88, died in a hospital near Hyattsville, Maryland, on April 1. He started Howard University as a history major until the art department appropriated him in his freshman year. Later he taught at Talledega, Howard, and Fisk – the latter at which he had oversight of the Georgia O’Keefe art donation. Raconteur extraordinaire, he was cultured a renaissance man. He spent most of his life advocating for African American art. A prolific fine artist, he curated art shows and has an impressive bibliography. Art world cognoscenti called him the Dean of African American art. ArtNews perhaps captured his essence, in a remembrance saying, “He not only contributed to the development and expansion of Black art and culture within the American art canon, but also insisted on the importance of conveying the truths of Blackness and its complicated discontents.”
R.I.P.: Dr, Norma Jean Goodwin, MD, 82, died on April 13, at Brooklyn Downstate Hospital. Founder of two Brooklyn-based national health organizations, Health Watch and Health Power for Minorities, which advocated for improved health outcomes for the nation’s minority populations. R.I.P.: Dr. Roy Hastick, 69, died on April 9. Grenada-Born Hastick migrated to the US in 1972, settled in Brooklyn and worked as a community advocate, entrepreneur and newspaper publisher until he founded the highly successful Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce in 1985, which boasts a membership of upwards of 1800 businesses. His latest ambition, a Caribbean American Trade and Culture Center, will be merged into the Flatbush Caton Flats, a project under construction.
FOOD SHOPPING GUIDE
Food shopping made easy during the quarantine. Check out wholesalers who normally sell to restaurants selling and delivering food to NYC residents. Visit shop.chefswarehouse.com and/or visit ny.eater.com/21203557/nyc-restaurant grocery. Other food delivery services include Amazon Fresh & Amazon Pantry; FreshDirect.com; Peopod; Instacart.com; Foodkick.com and Shipt.com. Bon Appetit!
NY Primary will be held on June 23 for congressional and state legislators races. Absentee ballots will be sent to all registered voters. Many congressional representatives will face challengers. COVID-19 is trumping so many distractions. The plague willy-nilly will probably help incumbents. Tiffany Caban, who came this close to a recent Queens County District Attorney’s office victory, is endorsing progressive candidates to Congress and the Albany chambers. Wall Street is investing big dollars on candidates who want to oppose Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, (AOC). The newbie progressive challengers may have to pin their hopes on the 2022 election.
Happy Birthday Taureans: Diahnne Abbott; Tony Barboza, fine arts photog; Ghanaian Andrea Barnieh; Davies Burton; fine artist Ramona Candy; fine artist Sadikisha Collier; Rosario Dawson; Patricia Pates Eaton, opera diva: Richard Habersham, candidate for 13th Congressional district; Bernice Green, Our Time Press; Roy Paul, Cents Ability; Jeanne Parnell WHCR-FM host: Toni Fay; Rolando Horsford, realtor; Janet Jackson; Grace Jones; Ed Lewis, The Man From Essence; Chrispin Roy Miller, Jamerica: Dr. Khalil Muhammad, Harvard University; Philanthropist Brenda Neal; Harriette Mandeville, Lotus Hawk Prayers and Meditations; flautist Bobbi Humphrey; Kenan Thompson, The Kenan Show and SNL; Margaret Porter Troupe: Harlem Arts Salon; George Williams, DDS; and Stevie Wonder