Parlee Jones is on the Black Heritage Committee of Worcester County, which coordinates this fest!🎶🎶🌸
By Parlee Jones
Black Heritage Juneteenth Festival
Hosted by the Black Heritage Committee
Saturday, June 17 – Institute Park – 12 pm to 8 pm. FREE TO ALL!❤❤
This festival is near and dear to my heart, as I have had the pleasure of managing the children’s tent for the past 10 years. It’s gone through a few rebirths but has been a presence in Worcester for many years. And will continue to be!
I really want to shout out Carlos Anderson from Panama’s Photos for coming through each year with his camera to capture all the amazing moments we have on the third Saturday in June!!!
This is an annual festival where we celebrate the cultures of people in the African Diaspora. The event is coordinate by a volunteer committee, the Black Heritage Committee of Worcester County (Laurie Abernathy, Fabian Glenn, Gloria Hall, Parlee Jones, Kevin Odom, Anissa Pennyman, Fred Taylor and Doreen Samuels).
Join us as we celebrate family, community, freedom, and African American culture and history.
This event commemorates two seminal events on the timeline of America becoming a more perfect nation: Quock Walker’s Massachusetts Supreme Court Decision in 1783 and General Gordon Granger reading of the Emancipation Proclamation in Galveston, Texas, in 1865.
Juneteenth, also known as Juneteenth Independence Day or Freedom Day, is a holiday that commemorates the June 19, 1865, announcement of the abolition of slavery in Texas and, more generally, the emancipation of African-American slaves throughout the Confederate South.
Celebrated on June 19, the word is a combination of “June” and “nineteenth.” Juneteenth is recognized as a state holiday or special day of observance in most states.
The holiday is observed primarily in local celebrations. Traditions include public readings of the Emancipation Proclamation, singing traditional songs such as “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” and “Lift Every Voice and Sing”, and readings by noted African-American writers such as Ralph Ellison and Maya Angelou. Celebrations may include parades, rodeos, street fairs, cookouts, family reunions, park parties, historical reenactments, or Miss Juneteenth contests.
Quock Walker, also known as Kwaku or Quok Walker (b. 1753 – d. unknown), was an American slave who sued for and won his freedom in June 1781 in a case citing language in the new Massachusetts Constitution (1780) that declared all men to be born free and equal. The case is credited with helping abolish slavery in Massachusetts, although the 1780 constitution was never amended to explicitly prohibit the practice.
Massachusetts was the first state of the union to effectively and fully abolish slavery. By the 1790 federal census, no slaves were recorded in the state.
The Black Heritage Juneteenth Festival 2017 will celebrate with music, fireworks, and personal expressions of the “new dawn” and the “new day” in the lives of those enslaved who became freemen in Massachusetts and the nation June 1783 and June 1865 respectively.
“None of us are free until we are all free.” – MLK
What’s really battin’ around in old Margaret Melican’s heart? pic: R.T.
By Rosalie Tirella
Why would the City of Worcester appoint Margaret Melican to a City of Worcester board when she’s been such a big supporter of hater Aidan Kearney and his hate-spewing, fact-denying Turtle Boy blog? Turtle Boy – that putrid blog that has ushered in an era of political ugliness, divisiveness and racism in our city that can only be compared to the hate-filled, fact-denying Trump White House!! TB – a blog that has worked tirelessly from day #1 to ruin the lives of Worcester’s prominent people of color: Melinda Boone, Sarai Rivera, Brenda Jenkins…the list goes on. And TB’s supporters cheer Aidan on – “ride the turtle” in glee! They say and act on the racist thoughts in their hearts, the ones they used to keep a lid on. Turtle Boy/Aidan Kearney is all about freaking out over and hating a diverse, multi-cultural Worcester. Melican is in that camp. Besides being the “poet laureate” of Turtle Boy, she was Aidan Kearney’s lawyer, represented him in court where she poked fun at a visually impaired Black guy! Ha ha! She is NOT the meek lovely lady she pretends to be in the video below. What a phoney! She has called other lawyers screaming into the telephone – they have had to hang up on her. She is beyond Republican or Religious Right – she is vindictive-friggin’ nasty!
Melican is someone WHO DOESN’T SEE THE NEW WORCESTER. She can’t and won’t – like Turtle Boy – accept it!
So how can she represent it?
If Melican supports Aidan Kearney’s racist, classist, woman-hating Turtle Boy blog that is her American right.
But the City of Worcester does not have to appoint her to the ZBA.
The City of Worcester is looking for the right fit.
In 1950-Worcester, Melican may have been a good fit.
In 2017 Worcester, she is definitely NOT!
Why should Melican be given the chance to represent Worcester on any level – a city whose schools are majority-minority?, a city that grows more diverse by the day?, a city where 1 out of 4 of our kids goes to bed hungry? In other words: A COMPLEX CITY.
Why does Margaret Melican support Worcester City Councilor/Senator Joseph McCarthy act-alike MICHAEL GAFFNEY, a sneaky cynical Woo pol who is as nasty and divisive as his buddy, Turtle Boy?
Why would Margaret Melican expect the diverse people of this city to trust her judgement?
Watch the tape of the meeting/her interview…She is flaunting her old Woo Irish aristocracy roots and EXPECTS THEM TO GET HER THE ZBA GIG!
BUT IT IS 2017, Margaret! A NEW WORCESTER, ONE WHERE a member of THE OLD IRISH CATHOLIC WOO GUARD like you CAN NOT EXPECT TO BE HANDED THE KEYS TO POWER just because you feel entitled to them! And from your behavior, I think you’re a pretty shitty Catholic!
Watch Melican’s interview below! Click on the link and hit top-left box. … It’s at around 2 hr 8 min into the meeting.
And P.S. The Mayor of Bizarro Worcester is Brendon MELICAN!
Brendon, a guy who has been hating us from day #1. Another … Melican … a nasty guy who felt entitled (for 15+ years) to destroy ICT because it belonged to a poor working class Polish-Italian-American gal from Green Island and not someone … like him.
Are you concerned about animal welfare? Do you believe that “cage-free” eggs and “free-range” chicken are humane options? Then you’ll be interested in a recent Popular Science article revealing that up to 86 percent of hens on “free-range” egg farms incur broken breast bones – largely because “cage-free” birds are about as “free” as the inmates at the county jail.
It turns out that even so-called “cage-free” birds spend much of their time in crowded sheds with no access to the outdoors — they aren’t given the space they need to develop strong bones and muscles.
And farmers manipulate their food and the lighting in the warehouses to force their bodies to produce more eggs than they would naturally.
Eggshells require calcium, so the nutrient is leached from their bones, which become brittle as a result. Both of these factors lead to weak, fragile bones that break easily.
Scientists are looking for a solution to this problem, but I’ve already got one: Stop eating chicken eggs and flesh.
The market research firm Packaged Facts apparently agrees, saying that the food industry can’t ignore animal-welfare concerns and should invest in plant-based meats.
Memphis Meats comes to mind. The Bay Area startup recently unveiled the world’s first chicken strip that was grown in a laboratory. Laboratory-grown meat requires only 1 percent of the land and 4 percent of the water that conventional meat uses, and it produces up to 96 percent fewer greenhouse-gas emissions. Clean meat, as it’s sometimes called, is also expected to help stop the spread of bird flu and other animal-borne diseases, which flourish on filthy, crowded chicken and turkey farms.
This is promising news that will benefit us all — but especially the chickens who would otherwise be confined, killed and devoured.
Chickens aren’t even included in the Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act, the only federal law that offers any sort of protection to farmed animals.
They’re often scalded and dismembered while they’re still conscious. And that goes for “cage-free” birds as well as those raised on conventional factory farms.
But many people are beginning to understand that chickens need space and have interests and feelings that must be protected. Hopefully soon, everyone will realize that there’s no good reason to eat them at all.
Chickens are self-aware and have complex social structures, empathy for one another and distinct personalities, just as humans do. Male chickens often strut around trying to impress females and show other males who’s boss.
Like us, chickens form strong family ties and mourn when they lose a loved one. When they’re not confined to filthy egg farms, hens will lovingly tend to their eggs and “talk” to their chicks, who chirp back, while they’re still in the shell.
A scientific review published earlier this year illustrates that chickens are a lot smarter than most people realize. They communicate constantly and have at least 24 distinct calls to convey information and warn one another of predators. Researchers have found that they can count, anticipate the future and demonstrate self-control. I can’t say that for some humans I know!
When undergraduates at the University of Adelaide were instructed to train chickens as a way to learn about psychology and cognition, one student commented, “Chickens are a lot smarter than I originally thought.”
So the next time someone calls you a “bird brain,” take it as a compliment. And when you’re grocery shopping, make the smart choice: Opt for healthy vegan foods. If you want something that “tastes like chicken,” try Beyond Meat’s vegan chicken strips or Gardein’s meat-free “chick’n.”
Because no one who believes that kindness is a virtue, as we all say we do, can argue that it’s acceptable to be cruel when we have the option to be kind.
Homeless kids under the Green Street bridge, Canal District … Kids are always there, resting, eating, asking for donations. Photos taken June 11, 2017: R.T.
By Imalay Guzman
There are things we as adults, parents or even siblings have to be aware of; we truly don’t realize what it is to lose someone. Once they are gone, we are left with so many unanswered questions.
Suicide is a mental health issue that people need to become more educated on. This topic should be discussed in any family setting, especially if anyone has a history of mental illness. Suicide is the third leading cause of death in young adults from ages as early as 10 years old to 24 years of age.
I remember being a teenager and feeling unaccepted, invisible and confused. Whether it’s your first day in a new job or attending any level of education, you have to admit it can be intimidating. Being the new person can go either way – good or bad – and that alone can be stressful. In today’s society you can either fit in or be completely isolated. Imagine being judged by rumors and ridiculed in front of other people, being harassed by someone or even feeling unaccepted. Feeling like there’s no way out or that people will not understand can result in an attempt of suicide.
We all know someone who has suffered because of bullying. Believe it or not, your child’s behavior reflects the type of parenting that is provided; everything starts at home. In any case of bullying, the aggressor and victim have similarities in backgrounds; their only differences are the personalities in each individual. Often children from abusive or broken homes are the ones who lash out because they don’t know how to express their emotions in a healthy manner.
It is always up to the parent or caregiver to educate the child on how to express or communicate their feelings the right way. I understand that as adults, we carry many responsibilities and forget that our children need attention, too. They also go through personal issues that can be hard to talk about.
In the Netflix series “13 Reasons Why,” the main character commits suicide because she had gone through a sequence of traumatic events. In the show, she reached out for help in her own way, and it seems like no one could see or hear what she was going through. In the series, she felt like suicide became the only option because she did not want to bother her parents with her problems. Her parents were already going through their own problems. In the character’s eyes, the decision to commit suicide was the best solution for everyone. She even thought her parents wouldn’t be bothered by her actions because, ultimately, she believed their marital problems were because of her.
In the end, every individual in this world matters. Every human being should be able to live a full, experienced life. No one should ever think that their existance doesn’t have purpose. Every man or woman in this world has a reason to live or a reason for living. My recommendation is that we teach our kids to communicate with us, to understand that they are our legacy. Let’s do this by actually attempting to put the electronics down and spending personal time with our families.
Yesterday, I took Jett and Lilac runnin’. I love taking my dogs runnin’ …
… an excuse to do all sorts of foolish things, like frittering away an hour amid the tough wild flowers during my walk (their run). … Wearing my sensible old lady shoes that I keep in the car trunk for our lovely daily jaunt, the black shoes with the thick soles and arch supports – really ugly mugs! But they do their job – keep this old broad on the road … so that I can listen to the young trees bend in the wind and smile at the leaves turning their cheeks when the wind hits them…
I should write something “flowery” like “caress,” but I live at 48 Ward Street in Worcester, so I’ll use the word “hit.”
Just last week my downstairs neighbors took their fire extinguisher and sprayed the white chemical foam all over a nest of chirping sparrows! Covered the singing, starlings in white poison. Mommy sparrow had the temerity to build their nest high up on my downstairs neighbor, Mary Paradise’s send-floor back porch! Well! That was it! She or her demented son sprayed the hell out of the chirping little guys. For days, when Section 8 Mary was away on vacation in Florida, I used to love hearing the little birds spunky, loud joyful, morning song – so freakin’ joyful! Like every day was BRAND NEW to them, as if LIFE HAD JUST BEEN CREATED that very instant! God’s song! But Mary killed the 6 baby birds.
One afternoon, walking downstairs from my apartment, not hearing the babes’ janglin’ jinglin’ song, I stopped short. I looked up, and I saw the birds frozen in mid-chirp! The chemical foam, like snow, covered their nest that their mom had built so ingeniously. Or so she thought. High, in a corner, half hidden from the elements, but facing the sky, too. It was a picture I will never forget, harrowing like the concentration camp survivor photos of WW II. The birds’ feathers had lost their life, their beaks looked skeletal, and I could see the outlines of their fine, hollow bones…
It is a strange ol’ world. Warped and broken in a million ways, by people, of course.
Yet the wild flowers open themselves to heaven every day! The little brown sparrows, as tough as the wild flowers, will build their nests in new, uncanny places! Again! To give praise to God!
On the road, after a run …
It was early evening, so most of the flowers were “closing up for the night,” their petals curled up tight …
There were, like people, a few reckless souls, the daisy or butter cup still smiling at the now-down sun.
I’ll run my dogs in soft and hard rain. Lilac likes running in the rain more than running in sweet weather like we had today. I’ll join her rainy day mayhem, too! Jett is a fussy old man who wants a warm spot by the fire.
Here is Lilac, a few days ago, before our walk, sitting, waiting by the car window like a little kid …
We went to see my friends at Greyhound Friends …
So wrong – what they’ve done to Louise. She and her volunteers work miracles with the greyhounds they get and adopt out!!! I’ve been at GF when the big long truck comes in from the racetrack. I’ve seen those dogs taken off the truck … They are afraid of sunlight! They don’t like walking on grass! They don’t want to play in the big meadow next to the GF kennel cuz they never played in their lives. Open an umbrella over your head and many quiver in fear. They are sad creatures. Most have to go the vet to get their teeth pulled because they are fed a horrible liquid diet when they race.
LOUISE AND HER STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS TAKE THESE DOGS AND HEAL THEM!!!! Physically, emotionally. In all the years – 16 – I have known and visited them I have never seen abuse, unkempt kennels. The dogs eat high quality top of the line! dog food, there is a fenced-in yard to the side of the building, an open field on the other side. Warm, caring volunteers – many high school and college kids! They have never run a bad shelter! And I “popped in” often enough!
I almost adopted a greyhound from Louse several years ago – all the dogs were so nice and sweet. I almost got this huge white greyhound – a dog at his physical peak but that the racetrack surrendered cuz it was just bored by the whole racing thing. Didn’t go around the track, didn’t want to chase a thing. Sometimes that happens. They called it their Velcrox dog cuz he literally stuck on to people he met. That dog LOVED PEOPLE.
editor’s note: I’ve made some sentences bold. – R.T.
I need one of you to help me. It might get dangerous. It may get us in trouble. But we’re running out of time. We must act. It’s our patriotic duty.
From the time you opened this letter to the time you get to the bottom of it, there’s a decent chance that our President will have violated the constitution, obstructed justice, lied to the American people, encouraged or supported acts of violence, or committed some horrible mistake that would’ve ended any other politician’s career (or sent you or I to jail). And just like all the times he’s done so in the past, he will get away with it.
Donald Trump thinks he’s above the law. He acts like he’s the above the law. He’s STATED that he’s above the law. And by firing Sally Yates, Preet Bharara and James Comey (3 federal officials with SOME authority to hold him accountable) he’s taken the first few steps to make it official.
And yet, we keep hearing the same reaction to President Trump that we heard with candidate Trump after every new revelation or screw up – “He’s toast!” “He can’t survive this!” “He’s finished!”
Make no mistake – Donald J. Trump has NO intention of leaving the White House until January 20, 2025. How old will you be in 2025? That’s how long he plans to be your president. How much damage will have been done to the country and the world by then?
And that is why we must act.
As I’ve said since the election, we need a four-front strategy to end this carnage: 1. Mass Citizen Action 2. Take Him To Court Nonstop 3. YOU Run for Office 4. An Army of Satire
I’m doing everything that I can, publicly and privately, to aid this effort and I know that you are, too. And while quietly working on my new movie, I came across an old video that inspired me to write you today to ask for help.
In this video, a former congressman is passionately testifying about the importance of whistleblowers and need to protect the First Amendment.
Enshrined in the First Amendment of the Constitution, we all know, are these words: Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press. The freedom of speech and the press form the bedrock of our democracy by ensuring the free flow of information to the public. Although Thomas Jefferson warned that, “Our liberty cannot be guarded but by the freedom of the press, nor that limited without danger of losing it,” today this freedom is under attack.
The young congressman went on to decry the harassment, legal threats and even jailing of American journalists. He continued:
Compelling reporters to testify, and in particular, compelling reporters to reveal the identity of confidential sources, intrudes on the newsgathering process and hurts the public. Without the assurance of confidentiality, many whistleblowers will simply refuse to come forward, and reporters will be unable to provide the American public with the information they need to make decisions as an informed electorate. But with all this focus on newsgathering, it is important that we state clearly: Protecting a journalist’s right to keep a news source confidential is not about protecting reporters; it is about protecting the public’s right to know.
Indeed, the power and the importance of whistleblowing is part of the American tradition and as old as the republic itself. On July 30, 1778, the Continental Congress voted unanimously for the first whistleblower legislation in the U.S: “Resolved, That it is the duty of all persons in the service of the United States, as well as all other the inhabitants thereof, to give the earliest information to Congress or other proper authority of any misconduct, frauds or misdemeanors committed by any officers or persons in the service of these states, which may come to their knowledge.”
This legislation came in response to the first known act of whistleblowing in our country’s history, when in 1777, 10 revolutionary sailors decided to blow the whistle on a powerful naval officer who participated in the torture of captured British soldiers.
The sailors paid a price. They were sued and jailed for their courageous actions. But in the end, our Founding Fathers agreed that the sailors were doing their patriotic duty by reporting this crime. They made sure their legal fees were covered, protected them from retaliation and unanimously passed the 1778 whistleblower protection law.
Since then, courageous American men and women have put their careers, their freedom and even their lives on the line to report government and corporate wrongdoing. From Karen Silkwood (nuclear safety), Sherron Watkins (Enron) and Jeffrey Wigand (tobacco) in corporate America to Daniel Ellsberg, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden revealing government lies, the American whistleblowing tradition remains strong, despite constant attempts to intimidate and stifle these truth tellers.
And this is where I need one of you to help me.
Today, I’m launching TrumpiLeaks – https://michaelmoore.com/TrumpiLeaks – a site that will enable courageous whistleblowers to privately communicate with me and my team. Patriotic Americans in government, law enforcement or the private sector with knowledge of crimes, breaches of public trust and misconduct committed by Donald J. Trump and his associates are needed to blow the whistle in the name of protecting the United States of America from tyranny.
We’ve put together several tools you can use to securely send information and documents as well as photographs, video and/or audio recordings. While no form of digital communication is 100% secure, the tools we’re using at TrumpiLeaks provide the most secure technology possible to protect your anonymity (and if you don’t require anonymity, you can just email me at email@example.com)
I know this is risky. I knew we may get in trouble. But too much is at stake to play it safe. And along with the Founding Fathers, I’ve got your back.
As for the former congressman quoted above, he’s moved on to bigger and better things. His name is Michael Richard Pence, the Vice President of the United States. Who knows, he might even back you up on this, too …