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The City of Atlanta Says Goodbye

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By Friday, July 18, 2020 Blacks and the Nation had lost two civil rights icons. Representative John Lewis lost his battle with pancreatic cancer and died at age 80, and the day before Cordey Tindell Vivian (a.k.a. C. T. Vivian) minister, author, and close friend and lieutenant of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the Civil Rights Movement died of natural causes in his home at age 95. Vivian resided in Atlanta and founded the C.T. Vivian Leadership, Inc. He was also a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated.

Rep. Lewis represented the city of Atlanta for more than 30 years in Congress.  He had recently won the June primary for the 5th Congressional District seat in his bid for an 18th term. Under state law, the Georgia Democratic Party was required to choose a replacement nominee by the end of the day Monday, the first business day since Lewis’s death. Today, the Georgia Democrats chose Nikema Williams, a state senator and chairwoman of the state party, to replace the late congressman John Lewis (D) on the November ballot.

Rep. Lewis has been called many things to include “one of the most courageous persons the Civil Rights Movement ever produced” and “the conscience of the U.S. Congress.”  Rep. Lewis’s biography speaks volumes about the life he lived and the work and advocacy he dedicated his life to.  For more information about Rep. Lewis visit https://johnlewis.house.gov/john-lewis/biography.

Flags were ordered to fly at half-staff at the White House and all federal public buildings and grounds, including embassies abroad and all military posts and naval stations, throughout the day Saturday.

Funeral arrangements for Rep. Lewis most likely will be held in Atlanta, but there weren’t any immediate announcement on plans, which could be affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Funeral services for Vivian are currently scheduled to be livestreamed broadcast on Thursday.

(Video from CNN)

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Politics

Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain died from COVID-19.

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Herman Cain, 74 died Monday, July 30, 2020 after loosing his battle with COVID-19. He is most remembered as the Republican presidential candidate who was thought to be a real contender during his 2012 run with a focus on his 9/9/9 tax plan. The former CEO of the restaurant chain Godfather’s Pizza, Cain initially became a player in Republican politics as an economic advisor to Bob Dole’s 1996 presidential campaign before briefly launching his own bid in 2000.

Cain is said to have been hospitalized on July 1st after reportedly traveling extensively throughout the month of June including a rally he attended for President Trump in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 20th. In a recent interview Trump praised Herman Cain and said he doesn’t believe Cain got the coronavirus at his June 20th rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Before starting his political career, Cain was a very successful entrepreneur. In the 1980s, he managed hundreds of profitable Burger King restaurants in the Philadelphia area. He later was appointed as chairman and CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, which has more than 570 restaurants across the country. He held that position for about 10 years.

Cain died Thursday, July 30, 2020

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First Black Mayor of Ferguson, MS

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Nationwide — Meet Ella M. Jones, who has been elected as the first African American mayor of the city of Ferguson, Missouri. She is also the city’s first female mayor. Ferguson was thrown into the national spotlight back in 2014 following the fatal police shooting of 18-year old Michael Brown and has been credited for sparking the national Black Lives Matter movement.

Jones, who was previously a councilwoman for the city, has been a Ferguson resident for more than 40 years. She graduated from the University of Missouri at St. Louis with a B.A. Degree in Chemistry. She was certified by the American Chemical Society as a high-pressure liquid chromatographer and completed training as a pharmacy technician.

Previously, Jones has worked for Washington University’s School of Medicine in the Biochemistry Molecular Biophysics Department, and KV Pharmaceutical Company as an Analytical Chemist. Before being elected to the Council, Ella completed training in municipal leadership from the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life at the University of Missouri at St. Louis. After being elected to the Council, Jones pursued additional education from the Municipal Governance Institute sponsored by the Missouri Municipal League and earned a certificate as a Municipal Official, and serving her second term on the Environmental, Energy And Sustainable Development Committee.

She is a member of the Boards of the Emerson Family YMCA and of the St. Louis MetroMarket, a decommissioned bus that was retrofitted as a mobile farmers market to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to underserved communities.

Jones is also the founder and Chairperson of Community Forward, Inc., a nonprofit community development organization. As a Council Member, she served as a council representative on the following commissions and boards: Human Rights, Traffic, Landmarks, Senior Citizens, Parks, and West Florissant Business Association.

She reportedly enjoys traveling, trout fishing, preparing New Orleans style cuisine, dancing, and power-shopping with her girlfriends.

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Congresswoman Beatty Gets Pepper Sprayed During George Floyd Protest

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Nationwide — Democratic Rep. Joyce Beatty, a congresswoman from Ohio, was reportedly pepper-sprayed while trying to mediate between police officers and protesters in Columbus. The protest was one of many across the nation after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

“I was there because I wanted the young protesters to know that in solidarity, that I stand with them,” Beatty told NBC 4. “You know, I’m a grandmother, I’m an elected official, but I’m a Black woman first and I felt the pain.”

Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin confirmed in a post on Twitter that he and the congresswoman were “sprayed with mace or pepper spray” but are now fine.

Beatty said she came to the protest to “support them.” In a video posted on Hardin’s Twitter page, she said, “It was just something in my heart thinking about George Floyd, thinking about all of the injustices, that I needed to be out there, thinking I was protecting them and it probably was not safe.”

Beatty was apparently trying to come between a police officer and a protester before an altercation between both groups happened and she was sprayed.

“One young black female took a step off (the curb) and the cop kind of took that, I guess, ‘sideways.’ Instantly, a white man kind of came to her defense and then was instantly body-slammed to the ground. The congresswoman runs out into the street to hold back the cop and the protesters. Another cop comes up with his bike and pushes the congresswoman out of the way … and then it’s naturally getting heated … that one cop pulls, I don’t know why he does it, he pulls out his Mace and does what he does,” Dominic Manecke, a spokesman for Beatty, told CNN about the incident.

Moreover, Beatty condemned how the police are handling the escalating tension during protests. In the Twitter video, she said that “too much force is not the answer to this.”

Even though she said she is proud of the protesters, she said it is important for them to remain calm. She added, “We must continue to protest, but it must be peaceful and that does not mean we aren’t standing up for justice.”

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