Sunday, September 30, 2012

Laborers, activists, politicians join Gardner on march for jobs - Chicago Sun-Times

Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell reported on the march along Western Ave this afternoon:
About 1,000 people joined Ed Gardner for his march for jobs Sunday afternoon, in a protest calling for more African Americans on construction jobs.

The march began on Western Avenue between 92nd and 95th streets. Marchers included laborers, politicians, Congressmen, civil rights leaders and community activists.

Gardner, 87, is the founder of the iconic Soft Sheen Hair Products, Inc. and the Black-on-Black Love Campaign. Last week, he was driving west of Halsted on 95th Street and noticed that the streets were being torn up.
And if you haven't already she also wrote about Gardner's new crusade in today's paper:
There is a big difference between agitating for jobs and a shakedown.

What Ed Gardner, the founder of the iconic Soft Sheen hair products, did when he stood in the path of a concrete truck on the South Side and shut down a construction site at 92nd and Western last week, is agitation.

But the intimidating tactics by a group of men at a construction site on the West Side, which allegedly involved threatening the crew and demanding cash to go away, is a shakedown.

If reputable leaders in the African-American community don’t stand up and support Gardner in his effort to do things the right way, then nothing will change in the fight for more black construction jobs.

“Every time we have mobilized and brought attention to this issue over the last 40 years, somehow the powers that be are able to pick off some black people,” said Conrad Worrill, director of the Jacob Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies at Northeastern Illinois University and an expert in black history.

‘We go back to sleep’

“A few contractors get some contracts and hire a few blacks and we go back to sleep.”
If you were a part of this rally, feel free to share your account of this event. Send a tweet @thesixthward, write on our FB page or send an email to blog @

OPEN BLOG: 2012 Presidential race

In the infancy of this blog, I posted frequently about the developments of the 2008 Presidential Race. Alas not much coverage of the race as it pertains to the 6th Ward. Just more coverage derived more from national sources than local sources.

But that was an historical year as it turned out as in November that year, Americans elected our nations first Black President. How many of you in the audience was in Grant Park that night when he clinched the election for the White House?

I'm sure the elderly were excited as had been seen the day of the inauguration. How many of us could've imagined the day that a Black person would be elected President of the United States?

That election was very exciting because of its historical implications more than anything. The youth came out to support our current President and turnout certainly made the different in many of the battleground states that Obama won that year.

Now that he has been President for three years pluse, I'm curious how many of you out there view his performance so far. Would you vote for his re-election? If he won, what would you expect him to do in his second term? What would you expect him to do differently in his second term from his first term? Finally, are you still excited about the President the second time around?

Chatham: Whats Happening in October

Concerned Citizens of Chatham provides us with a listing of events during the month of October. If you know of any additional events feel free to contact us. Write on our FB page wall, send us a tweet @thesixthward or e-mail us at blog @

Saturday, September 29, 2012

N'DIGO: Come Alive With Mr. Ed Gardner, Sunday at 3 on 95th and Western

On the various e-mail lists that I'm part of, many of you should already know about this. Earlier this week Soft Sheen and Black on Black Love founder Ed Gardner led a protest at construction projects in the Bevely neighborhood and in Evergreen Park. It was over how Blacks aren't getting the jobs at some of these construction projects here on the South Side. N'Digo gives us a heads up on another protest at 95th & Western tomorrow:
This is serious in Chicago. Mr. Gardner is now asking 10,000 to join him after church, this Sunday. He’s asking the who’s who in Chicago like Lerone Bennett, the historian and the former Chicago School Superintendent, Manford Byrd. On Sunday, Mr. Gardner has invited 10,000 people to join him at 95th and Western at 3p.m after church to march and demand equality for jobs. The old guard has taken the lead on a Sunday afternoon march.

This is an upset in Chicago for Mayor Emanuel and should not be taken lightly. The Black agenda has vanished. It’s a damn shame, Mr. Gardner at 87 on a cane, has taken to the streets.

But since he has reached his insult level, and the larger community didn’t, let’s join him. Perhaps, a movement has begun 2012 style. Is this the Black Occupy?
I'm very curious about YOUR thoughts once again. Do you agree with Mr. Gardner's protests? Do you think there is more we can do to insure that Blacks can get jobs on various construction projects throughout the south side? Will you attend the protest tomorrow afternoon?

Friday, September 28, 2012

Can the Black Middle Class Survive: Obama Is in the Oval Office but the Black Bourgeoisie is Foundering

The article published earlier this month is from a website, it seems relevant to our general community often advertised as a black middle class area. Would like to hear your thoughts on this. I urge you to read the entire article beyond the excerpt I will post below:
And yet, when the Obamas moved into the White House, the country's economy was already in free fall, and its fragile black middle class was, to put it simply, vanishing. Between 2005 and 2009, the year the Great Recession officially ended, the average black household's wealth fell by more than half, to $5,677, even as their white peers held about $113,000 in assets. Nearly one-quarter of African-Americans have no assets besides a car, and roughly the same share have lost their homes, or they're close. The African-American unemployment rate hovers around 14 percent, and according to a Pew report released in July, nearly 70 percent of blacks raised in families at the middle of the wealth ladder fall to the bottom two rungs as adults. The exodus of blacks from cities like Washington, Atlanta, New Orleans and even Detroit is driving a sense of eroding political power. Perhaps most depressingly, one in three black boys can expect to be incarcerated at some point in his life.

It's tricky, explaining what it means to be black in America at this peculiar moment, mainly because the narrative's dominant theme is decline. "You're airing our dirty laundry," a black lawyer told me over brunch one recent Sunday, after I explained this story's theme. In the fall of 2009, shortly after I began a 14-month reporting assignment in Detroit for Time magazine, a black doctor threw a party at her sprawling home in the city's leafy Palmer Woods neighborhood, one of the last relatively affluent enclaves. Much of the region, particularly African-Americans, were outraged over the opening stories in our coverage, so the hostess, and her friends, wanted a word. The essential message: Inside Time's pages, pretend the black middle class is doing just fine.

It was delusional. Detroit is the country's most populous majority-black city. Historically, it's had one of America's highest black homeownership rates. But more than one-third of the city's black borrowers — including some of the martini-sipping doctors, lawyers, politicos and auto execs in the room that October night — have lost their homes, or they're on the brink. The truth is, many of us are on a cliff, watching this widening gulf of black poverty and dysfunction, fearful that we're just a heartbeat or two away.

Something is happening in the culture that conflicts with the dreamy image of black progress that Obama's presidency projects. In this supposedly post-racial moment, we no longer even have the license, or the language, to identify a fundamental source of the problems we see mounting in the offices in Chicago's Loop, and on the streets of suburban Orlando: the enduring effects of racism. That's no longer an acceptable explanation for society at large. Hardly anyone, it seems, wants to admit the truth: nearly a half-century of financial, political and social gains are being reversed, perhaps permanently, and the post-civil rights era may come to resemble Reconstruction's fleeting progress. "The whole premise of the civil rights movement was to give our children a better future than we had. But it's all going backwards," said Marian Wright Edelman, a veteran of that movement, adding: "We face the worst crisis since slavery."
Again read the whole thing and PLEASE share YOUR thoughts here!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Englewood voter's registration drive

Oct. 9th is the last day to register to vote and R.A.G.E. is providing you with an opportunity to register to vote if you haven't done so already. Englewood Votes, 6th Ward Democratic Organization, and 6th Ward Alderman/Democratic Committeeman Roderick Sawyer hosts this event
  • Englewood Voter’s Registration Drive
    Saturday September 29, 2012 from 1pm-4pm
    WBEZ South Side Bureau
    6957 S. Halsted!
A flyer is also posted below

October 6th Ward Neighborhood Meetings

Courtesy of Concerned Citizens of Chatham, but I added another scheduled neighborhood meeting to the listing here.
  • West Chesterfield Community Association
    Saturday, October 8, 2012 @ 10am
    West Chesterfield Community Fieldhouse
    9351 S Michigan 
  • Park Manor Neighbors Community Council
    Monday, October 1, 2012
    St. Columbanus (Glass House)
    317 E. 71st
    • Chatham Avalon Park Community Council
      Monday, October 8, 2012 @ 6:30 to 8:30 pm
      Chatham Avalon Church of Christ
      8601 S. State Street
    • Greater Chatham Alliance Community Organization
      Saturday, October 13, 2012 @ 11:00 am to 1:30 pm
      St. James Lutheran Church
      8001 S. Michigan
    • Roseland Heights Community Association
      Tuesday, October 23, 2012 @ 7:00 PM
      Temple of Glory
      311 E. 95th Street

    Wednesday, September 26, 2012

    Decades after helping elect Chicago’s first African-American mayor, Edward Gardner pushing for diversity on job sites - Chicago Sun-Times

    Mark Brown followed the protest from Ed Gardner  - who owned Soft Sheen Products and more recently House of Kicks in addition to a foundation he founded Black on Black Love - on Monday. Many of us should've know about it if you've received e-mail blast from your community based organization. Gardner himself resides in the West Chesterfield neighborhood.
    What do you if an 87-year-old African-American man in a dingy nylon windbreaker and pink ball cap hobbles onto your construction site with the aid of his cane, parks himself in the middle of traffic and declares he wants all the work stopped until more black workers are hired?

    If the man is named Edward Gardner and you’re trying to do business on the South Side, then you at least slow things down enough to figure out your next step.

    That’s what happened Monday when Gardner, the founder of Soft Sheen Products, led an impromptu protest at a job site at 92nd and Western in Evergreen Park, where new Meijer and Menards stores are being built on the site of the old Evergreen Country Club.

    Gardner’s name may not be quite as well-known as when he helped lead and finance the movement that made Harold Washington this city’s first black mayor in 1983 and later served as a key member of Washington’s kitchen cabinet.

    But Gardner’s place as a business and political icon in the Afri­can-American community is firmly enough established that his soft-spoken voice still carries a certain gravity when he chooses to raise it.

    That’s what made this more than your garden-variety demonstration when Gardner — rarely heard from in recent years — announced he would disrupt a city sidewalk construction project along 95th Street on Monday morning to express his disgust over seeing no African-American workers on the job when he drove past last week.

    Tuesday, September 25, 2012

    Interested in being an election judge?

    While I want to keep the focus on Chicago and our general communities, Marathon Pundit is putting out a call for election judges in Chicago & Cook County. To be fair, Marathon Pundit is a Republican blog for the most part and certainly reflect a push in general by city Republicans to recruit new election judges. In fact many of you who voted Republican in this year's primary election should've gotten a letter from the Chicago Board of Elections encouraging you to consider being an election judge.

    The Marathon Pundit post offered a link to website that will provide more information for those who are interested in being an election judge on Election Day and for two years after that @ The deadline according to that website is now Sept. 27th to file an application. If you want more information about being an election judge in Chicago, you should check out this page from the Chicago Board of Elections website.

    In a post about election season activities I noted that the Republican Committeeman for the 6th Ward - Darnell Macklin -  is seeking election judges. You need not have pulled a Republican ballot in this year's primaries however. Perhaps you didn't vote at all this year, the call is for you as well. BTW, this information was posted on Concerned Citizen's of Chatham FB page recently.
    I'm seeking registered voters to serve as election judges on election day. The election judge appointment is for a two year period. I'm looking for Republican primary voters and or persons who didn't vote in the March 2012 primary.....the pay is $170.00.


    Darnell b. Macklin
    Chicago Republican Party
    6th Ward Republican Committeeman
    6thwardgop @
    So now you know the email of the 6th Ward Republican Committeeman and you have contact via with a phone number 312.242.1818 (the number contained on the website appears to be incorrect). So you have two ways to become a Republican election judge this year if you're interested.

    Freshmart Foods Petition: Let's Stay Focused

    Location: King Drive & 83rd Street, Chicago, IL 60619, USA

    First, I would like to thank all who have signed the online petition to stop the issuance of a liquor license at 8255 S King drive/400 E 83rd Chicago, IL 60619. We are a few signature shy of our goal. so please let your friends and neighbors know about the petition.

    I had a conversation today that a rumor was being circulated that Alderman Roderick Sawyer was in support of a liquor license. Let's set the rumor straight, the answer is NO and he has publicly stated that several times as well as my original post stated he was opposed to granting any liquor licenses along 83rd street.

    The reason for the petition is I can backup the noise I make and by starting an online petition is my way of showing it. Neighbors, lets not get sidetracked or "pimped". This situation is a result of some of our neighbors initial support of this store despite the noise of many who said it was a bad idea. Now that they are scared that they are going to be exposed they want to distract you from the issue.

    The fact is the owner of the store can still apply for a license from the City of Chicago liquor commission despite being told he has no support from Alderman Sawyer. The owner of the store has been circulating a petition of his own and alleges that his customers, who are residents, want a liquor store. If we allow non elected political pimps to divide us and he somehow gets in front of the liquor commission he can make a case. If we stand strong and work together, despite our differences, he doesn't have a snow ball chance to get a license.

    The bottom line is what do you want? A liquor store or a stable community? It's time to step up Chatham.

    Man shot dead on South Side - Chicago Sun-Times

    Man shot dead on South Side - Chicago Sun-Times
    The 29-year-old man was found shot in the head in the 8800 block of South Cottage Grove Avenue about 9 p.m., police News Affairs Officer Ron Gaines said.

    Gaines did not know whether he was found inside his home or outside.

    He was identified as Robert Munn and was pronounced dead at Advocate Christ Hospital at 9:55 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

    No one is in custody as Area South detectives continue to investigate.

    What West Chesterfield seeks with the redevelopment of the 95th Street terminal

    Recently, West Chesterfield Community Association President Michael LaFargue sent an e-mail to his neighbors about what the neighborhood wants with the reconstruction of the CTAs 95th Street terminal. Another piece of news noted is that property along the 9400 block of State Street could be purchased by CTA for this project. The lot to be developed is from 94th to the Alley just before the Mobil gas station on the corner of 95th and State.

    The e-mail included two documents one is two pages with an overview of the West Chesterfield Association and the other is a questionnaire that has a diagram of the lot on the 9400 block of State St. Below is West Chesterfield's requests for this project. The links are to the documents from West Chesterfield.

    Monday, September 24, 2012

    Capitol Fax: New twist in long J3 saga

    We learned last week that Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. was selling his Washington, DC home. Then today we find out Jackson has taken his home off of public listings. Rich Miller tracks the reaction of Chicago area journalists and it appears not many of them are very happy with him because of this back and forth. Feel free to share your take on the situation involving the Congressman!

    Petition to stop the Issuance of liquor license for Freshmart Foods

    You might have seen this on our FB page, on Concerned Citizens of Chatham and on EveryBlock. Worlee has started an online petition to defeat the issuance of a liquor license to Freshmart Foods. Worlee wrote about Freshmart Foods on the corner of 83rd & King Drive on Sept. 16th with regards to them possibly getting such a license.

    The main justification:
    The store is located at a busy intersection that is part of a safe school zone route. Elementary school students from several schools pass this store on a daily basis. The store has had numerous sanitation and criminal complaints filed against it and their customers. The store is within 250 feet of several education and religious institutions.

    Does fixing Red Line mean extension to 130th Street more likely? - Chicago Sun-Times

    This shouldn't be news, when the Dan Ryan portion of the Red Line is shut down for five months starting in May next year they're expected to work on the railroad from Cermak-Chinatown to 95th Street. One benefit to this project is that it will take one roadblock away from when it's time to start building that extension from 95th to 130th Street.
    The wheels are rolling in preparation for next year’s massive overhaul of the CTA’s Red Line on the South Side.

    More than a dozen bus drivers out of a pool of 4,000 applicants have been hired and will begin training within weeks to eventually ferry riders while construction takes place on the line. A $220 million contract to do track work on a portion of the project was awarded last week to Kiewit Infrastructure Corporation. And the CTA will soon award a contract replace everything from lighting to floors and walls at stations on the line, and three stations — Garfield, 63rd and 87th Street — will get elevators.

    But with that project under way, does that mean the long-sought-after extension of the Red Line to 130th Street is closer to becoming a reality?

    The transit agency has long said the new track is necessary because crews can’t connect new track to existing track that has so badly deteriorated, officials said.

    “You can’t talk about extending the Red Line from 95th Street south until you have rebuilt the railroad from 95th to 22nd,” CTA President Forrest Claypool said in June.

    “These improvements are not only critical to providing a much better service for our South Side riders, but also will lay a foundation that makes possible the extension.”

    But there’s one big problem: how will CTA fund an extension’s $1.4 billion pricetag?
    Read the whole thing!

    Saturday, September 22, 2012

    Want to join a dog park committee?

    6th Ward Ald. Roderick Sawyer is looking for people interested in joining such a committee. Information provided in a recent GCA e-mail blast:
    Alderman Sawyer's office is looking for people interested in joining his "Dog Park" committee.

    Several area residents have expressed an interest in creating one for our area.

    If you would like to join the committee, please contact via email (include your name, phone number and address):
    • service @
    • Or call the Alderman's office at 773.635.0006 to volunteer.
    Here's more information from the Chicago Park District on "Dog friendly areas". Here's a page for creating dog friendly areas.

    Ride-along: No murders, one shooting makes it a ‘good day’ in Englewood - Chicago Sun-Times

    CPD District 7 - Englewood
    Ride-along: No murders, one shooting makes it a ‘good day’ in Englewood - Chicago Sun-Times
    Police work in one of Chicago’s most dangerous neighborhoods isn’t only about chasing the bad guys and locking them up.

    It’s also about connecting with the people you see every day — even the bad guys.

    It’s about being seen.

    It’s about doing the mundane things that police Supt. Garry McCarthy is counting on to keep shootings and other serious crimes from happening in the first place: Shooing loiterers off the street corners. Busting up sidewalk dice games. Clearing teenagers out of raucous house parties. ...
    When McCarthy came in with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the new superintendent disbanded the old specialized units of black-uniformed officers who used to be sent out en masse to hot spots of violence. Instead, McCarthy put his emphasis on beat cops and tactical officers like Clinton.

    He boosted their numbers in Englewood, and he is making sure they have up-to-the-minute information on the 100 well-armed gang factions in the district. The goal: to prevent retaliatory shootings.

    Englewood’s reputation for violence is well-deserved. This is where three members of Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson’s family were gunned down in 2008 and where Officer Alex Valadez was fatally shot while on duty a year later. More recently, teen rapper Joseph “JoJo” Coleman was killed earlier this month in a drive-by shooting possibly connected to an Internet feud with another rapper.

    This year, though, the number of murders in Englewood has plummeted by 30 percent, even as the number of killings citywide is up 27 percent.

    On a steamy late-summer weekend, Chicago Sun-Times reporters rode along with three shifts of officers to get an up-close look at what they are doing to try to keep a lid on violent crime in Englewood and to get a glimpse of what they’re up against.

    Friday, September 21, 2012

    Capitol Fax: Eventually, you gotta govern

    The teacher's strike is over and the Mayor is still taking on the teacher's union in some ads according to the Capitol Fax. Rich Miller believes Emanuel hasn't stopped campaigning and is continuing to campaign against the teacher's union. It makes me wonder how the electorate views either the teacher's or Emanuel in the aftermath of the recently concluded teacher's strike. What are your thoughts?

    Deputy registrar training at Whitney Young Library

    The Greater Chatham Alliance has shared information about this event to take place at the Whitney Young Library:
    • Who: World of Soul™ Motorcycle Community
    • What: Deputy Registrar Training Class
      Hosted by Whitney Young Library – Sponsored by World of Soul Motorcycle Community, Inc.
    • When: 6:00pm to 7:30pm
      Tuesday, September 25, 2012 - National Voter Registration Day
    • Where: Whitney M. Young, Jr. Branch Library
    • 7907 S. Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive Chicago, IL 60619
    • Why: An increase in qualified voter registrars is needed to reach into the depths of
      the Chicagoland population to engage unregistered voters. In Cook County,
      there are 337-thousand African Americans eligible to vote but unregistered.
      On the South Side of Chicago alone there are 127-thousand such persons
      eligible to vote but unregistered.
    For more information or to RSVP call 773.220.2602 and ask for Terry Hardy. Here's a flyer that should provide more details for this event. Also note that you have until October 9th to register to vote for the 2012 Presidential Election according to the Chicago Board of Elections.

    Wednesday, September 19, 2012

    CBS Chicago: CTA Picks Contract For Red Line Work; 30 Percent To Go To Minority, Women-Owned Firms

    This is certainly good news for this project in our general area, but how many of us will seek jobs on the reconstruction of the Dan Ryan Red Line:
    The Chicago Transit Authority has selected a contractor to handle the massive rehabilitation project for the South Red Line, and the firm will subcontract about 30 percent of the work to minority- and women-owned businesses.

    The CTA selected Chicago-based Kiewit Infrastructure Corporation for the project, which will force the agency to shut down the Red Line below the Cermak-Chinatown stop for five months complete track restoration and other upgrades. The firm submitted the lowest bid of $220.1 million, and is considered the most qualified.

    The firm slightly exceeded the CTA’s target of 28 percent of the work being subcontracted to minority- and women-owned firms, or “disadvantaged business enterprises.” Kiewit will subcontract 29.3 percent of the work to outside firms – a portion of the work worth $66.5 million.

    A total of 60.6 percent of the work is going to African-American firms, 23.8 percent to Hispanic firms, 3.5 percent to Asian firms, and 12. 1 percent to women-owned firms, the CTA said.

    Congressman Jackson sells his DC area home...

    In this posting over at the Capitol Fax, Rich Miller looks at brief blurbs over Jesse Jackson Jr's sale of his DC area home. Of course this only fueled speculation that the congressman could leave his seat in the near future and possibly have his wife Ald Sandi Jackson succeed him. Although for now we have to read the Congressman's explanation of his DC home sale which was to mainly defray their healthcare costs.

    Either way, I wish Congressman Jackson the best since he had left the Mayo Clinic earlier this month.

    Sunday, September 16, 2012

    Pimps: That What the 83rd Street Merchants Believe They Are

    Location: King Drive & 83rd Street, Chicago, IL 60619, USA

    Several months ago I posted a report from a reliable source on Facebook, I was informed that the owners in Freshmart Foods at 400 E. 83rd were attempting to persuade the Alderman to support a liquor license for the location. A number of readers dismissed my report as a rant.

    The rant is reality as it has been confirmed that the current owners have approached the Alderman about obtaining a liquor license at that location and the 83rd State street location. Per a conversation with Alderman Roderick T. Sawyer he represented that he has told the owners he opposes liquor at either site. Currently, there are a number of retail liquor establishments in and near Chatham

    1. Walmart- 83rd Stewart
    2. Rothchilds- 87th Evans
    3. Happy Liquors- 79th Cottage Grove
    4. Walgreens-87th Cottage Grove
    5. A&S Liquors- 75th Prairie
    6. Jewel's- 87th Lafayette
    7. Buddy's -87th Lafayette
    8. D&J- 79th Eberhart
    9. Aldi's 83rd Stewart 
    There are also the superstores Kenwood and Binny's in nearby neighborhoods, so what could you want that can't be found at these stores?

    The answer is nothing but the "$2 Holla" that causes loitering,panhandling and public drinking, etc. Some residents are under the impression that 83rd Street is dry and that is untrue. Several years ago, a notice was mailed to residents from King Drive to Eberhart stating that the areas zoning would be down zoned from mix use to residential. Unfortunately, residents were not informed that the zoning proposal was rescinded based on technical issues.

    This type of disrespect has been running rampant on 83rd Street and the new business owners think they can pimp the residents of the community. While they have a few under their belt most of us can't be pimped. The owners of Honey Beauty Supply at 452 E. 83rd learned that it hard out there on a pimp when they attempted to convert their failing beauty supply into a variety store and ended up with a failing beauty supply and variety store. After they learned that people in this community do not buy from stores that hide their merchandise and most shop at grocery stores he packed up and moved on. Next 83rd street food mart 448 E. 83rd saw no problem selling outdated merchandise,loose cigarettes and tobacco products to minors. The owner was bold enough to tell Chicago Police personnel he was doing it and thought this was ok because the neighborhood where he came from allowed this. Now after paying numerous fines and almost getting his head blown off in a botched robbery he is slowly learning. He still thinks he will not get caught selling loose cigarettes and tobacco to minors.

    Freshmart Foods has been the most arrogant of the bunch, the original owners thought they could stay open all night sell outdated products and disrespect customers, especially senior citizens, with accusations of shoplifting. They found a group of Chatham residents to buy into their nonsense. This group of residents were had, hoodwinked, and their imagination ran a muck believing that this store would hire individuals from the community. How these individuals bought this is unimaginable seeing that the building was build with non-union labor and no African american contractors. Other than offering a few individuals a lifetime supply of grape pop and hot chips they reneged on everything they said.  After they and their group of residents attempted to steam roll former Alderman Fredrenna Lyle into supporting a liquor license and failing miserably the store was sold.

    Now, the new owners after investing money into a restaurant that only has business from the 1st-10th of the month,  and seeing competition eat at their convenience store business got the pimping bug and attempted to back door their way into a liquor license. They have been promising their customers that they would get one and now have the audacity to circulate a petition within their store seeking support.

    The mayor has made a lot of noise about liquor stores but I'm not waiting on any support from City Hall. The zoning on that corner leaves a lot of questions and it is uncertain as to where the two churches and elementary school that are within 250 feet of this location stand on the issue.

    I have been opposed to the store,restaurant and definitely a liquor license and will continue my silent boycott against the store. I refuse to spend my money at any store where I'm tolerated and not not appreciated and celebrated as a customer. I cannot and will not be pimped by Freshmart or any other store.

    Where do you stand?

    Chicago’s violence hits home for some aldermen; ‘I’m afraid of dying,’ says Austin - Chicago Sun-Times

    Student artwork from Harlan
    Chicago’s violence hits home for some aldermen; ‘I’m afraid of dying,’ says Austin - Chicago Sun-Times

    Well, this is certainly a sad state of affairs. The violence that takes place in a number of city neighborhoods are taking their toll on the city's aldermen.

    What does Roseland Heights expect from the redevelopment of 95th terminal

    Clevan Tucker sent this e-mail to the residents of Roseland Heights. He attended the September 11th meeting at Harlan High School (located at 9652 S. Michigan) about CTA's plan to redevelop the 95th terminal next year. What you read next is the text of his e-mail below. If you attended this meeting and the other meeting Wednesday night at Palmer Park (located at 201 E. 111th Street) feel free to share you thoughts about the project and those CTA meetings.

    Send an e-mail to blog @, write on our FB page, or send us a tweet @thesixthward.

    The words below are Mr. Tucker's, the main message offered is we need to make some noise if we are to expect anything from this project.

    Sun-Times: Lynwood woman charged in hit-and-run crash that hurt cop

    Martha Parker - Police Photo
    An update to the story JP Paulus posted on Thursday:
    Bail was set at $75,000 for a south suburban Lynwood woman who turned herself in to police for allegedly injuring a Chicago Police officer in a South Side hit-and-run crash.

    Martha Parker, 33, was charged with failing to report an injury accident and leaving the scene of an accident involving injury or death, both felonies, according to Chicago Police. She turned herself in to police late Thursday.

    She is accused of speeding away after hitting a Gresham District police officer as he interviewed someone outside his squad car at 12:30 a.m. Thursday in the 0 to 100 block of West 79th Street, authorities said.

    Authorities later found a car matching the description of the one that hit the officer near the intersection of 79th Street and Prairie, police spokesman John Mirabelli said.

    Thursday, September 13, 2012

    Tribune Breaking news: Cop hurt in hit-and-run crash in Chatham neighborhood

    Location: 7900 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL 60619, USA
    Chicago police at the scene of a hit-and-run accident that left an officer injured. (WGN-TV / September 13, 2012)

    A police officer was injured just past midnight this morning.

    Here's the story from Chicago Breaking News

    Please be careful out there -- and be very watchful.

    Tuesday, September 11, 2012


    UPDATE: You can also read this statement over at Progress Illinois, a major statewide website! - Levois

    From Rod Sawyer's office, on  the 6th Ward Alderman's website (which is NOT this blog):
    Alderman Roderick T. Sawyer of the Sixth (6th) Ward released a statement on the CPS Strike. Alderman Sawyer believes that the two sides must focus on the wrap around services and helping our poorest children get a world class education. Read Alderman Sawyer’s below:

    There is currently a lot of confusion about the state of Chicago Public Schools and what is going on for our students. Recent reports state that both sides are close on the questions of compensation, but we must take this time to work towards and actual solution that helps our children. I want to make clear that I support the teachers union, but I believe that both CTU and CPS should acknowledge that there are serious issues we need to address if we are going to do what is best for our children. Budgetary realities are real and accountability is necessary, but we cannot ignore the challenges that face some of our neighborhoods. I just cannot understand any education plan that acts like violence, poverty and other societal ills have no effect on the ability of a student to learn.

    It seems to me that before you are going to evaluate teachers based on the performance of students, we must at least create a plan that would allow for a fair starting place. A school without internet service, air-conditioning or where students deal with multiple acts of deadly violence and lost classmates would never perform at the same level as a student for whom those issues did not exist. A teacher that has to feed children, wash children and dress children as well as counsel children all before they begin to teach will never match the academic results of a teacher that did not face those challenges. I believe that some acknowledgement of this as a reality is a necessary starting point to this discussion.

    I have poured over the results of the different school models, and at best all that I can say is that the results are mixed. As the Mayor said himself as he released his school honor roll, there are Selective Enrollment, Charter, Turnaround and yes traditional neighborhood schools that have become successful. High standards are a good thing and many dedicated and hard working professionals and students have met the challenge. Yet some successful schools have become so despite the odds, and I do not believe it is a plan to simply require principals and teachers to create annual miracles. We need a system that can be diverse and offer many different options, but at its core does not create an underclass that we are abandoning in difficult circumstances.

    In my time in this office I have seen many hardworking and dedicated teachers and I have met many hardworking members of CPS administration. Both sides would do better if we toned down the rhetoric. However, I must acknowledge that the teachers union has a history of being burned, as with the rescinded pay increase, and I do not understand how the city did not engage the teachers as soon as there was a 90% strike authorization vote. As this becomes more of a debate about whether teachers are greedy or whether the Mayor wants to privatize schools, the children are the ones who lose. It is unacceptable to say we are going to ignore the emotional well-being of our most at risk children because of the budget. I refuse to accept that the city and CPS budget are filled with so many issues of more importance than our children.

    Rest assured that I will do all I can to help parents through this process and to put our children first.


    Monday, September 10, 2012

    CPS Strike update -- good news?

    I was briefly at Burnside Scholastic Academy today. There are no photos, because there was really nothing to see.

    From what I could see, there were only a handful of children at the school, and seemingly an equal number of CPS staff there (approximately 20).

    One of the non-Burnside staff gathered the staff members who walked the children out, and saying they were to gather in a few minutes with some potential good news. He didn't share the details, so we shall see what the news brings.

    The police officer on duty said there were approximately 50 teachers gathered outside Burnside from about 6:30am to 10:30am.  They protesters were loud (as most protetsing usually is), but peaceful.  From what he observed the teachers' plan was to picket during that time period every day.

    As of 1:15 pm, there was no deal announced yet.

    What were your experiences with the school strike today?

    EVENT: Don't Vote, Don't Complain: A presentation

    Pay a visit to this presentation by author and activist Jahmal Cole on October 4th at 6 PM at the Whitney Young Library 7901 S. King Dr.

    Sunday, September 9, 2012

    CPS alternatives during the Strike

    Location: Chicago, IL 60619, USA
    Here are the schools, and then non-profits in 60619, 60620 and 60636. Click here for locations in other zip codes, and general information from  CPS

    We apologize for the poor formatting, but we want to get this info to you ASAP

    School Children First Sites By Zip Code

    SchoolName Network SPED Cluster? School Type Address Zip Code

    GILLESPIE Rock Island No Elementary 9301 S State St 60619

    BURNSIDE Skyway No Elementary 650 E 91st Pl 60619

    NEIL Skyway Yes Elementary 8555 S Michigan Ave 60619

    RUGGLES Skyway No Elementary 7831 S Prairie Ave 60619

    CUFFE Englewood-Gresham No Elementary 8324 S Racine Ave 60620

    JOPLIN Englewood-Gresham No Elementary 7931 S Honore St 60620

    FORT DEARBORN Rock Island No Elementary 9025 S Throop St 60620

    ALTGELD Englewood-Gresham No Elementary 1340 W 71st St 60636

    SIMEON South Side No High School 8147 S Vincennes Ave 60620

    SOUTHSIDE OCC HS Southwest Side Yes High School 7342 S Hoyne Ave 60636

    Non-CPS Children First Locations by Zip Code: Chicago Public Library, Chicago Park District, Safe Haven and Community Based Organizations

    Type Name Address Zip Phone Mon Hours Tue Hours Wed Hours Thur Hours Fri Hours

    Library Greater Grand Crossing 1000 E. 73rd Street 60619 (312) 745-1608 12-8 10-6 12-8 10-6 9-5

    Library Whitney M. Young, Jr. 7901 S. King Drive 60619 (312) 747-0039 10-6 12-8 10-6 12-8 9-5

    Park Avalon 1215 E. 83rd St 60619 60619 773.646.3180 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30

    Park Tuley 501 E. 90th PL 60619 60619 312-747-6763 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30

    Church Assembly Of Faith 1222 W. 108th St. 60619 (773)-407-1736 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    Church Bethlehem Star M.B. Church 9231 S. Cottage Grove 60619 (773) 487-8441 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    Church True Light Baptist Church 7302 S. Maryland 60619 (773) 789-7237 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    CBO True Star Foundation 1130 S. Wabash 60619 312 588 0100 11am-2pm 11am-2pm 11am-2pm 11am-2pm 11am-2pm

    Library Brainerd 1350 W. 89th Street 60620 (312) 747-6291 10-6 12-8 10-6 12-8 9-5

    Library Thurgood Marshall 7506 S. Racine Avenue 60620 (312) 747-5927 12-8 10-6 12-8 10-6 9-5

    Park Brainerd 1246 W. 92nd St. 60620 60620 312-747-6576 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30

    Park Foster 1440 W. 84th St. 60620 60620 312-747-6135 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30

    CBO Catholic Bishop-St. Sabina 7800 S. Racine 60620 773-351-5573 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm

    CBO KLEO 119 E. 55th St. 60620 773-527-9960 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm 3-6:30pm

    Library West Englewood 1745 W. 63rd Street 60636 (312) 747-3481 12-8 10-6 12-8 10-6 9-5

    Park Ogden 6500 S. Racine 60636 60636 312-747-6572 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30 8:30-3:30

    Church Faith Temple 6201 S. Wolcott 60636 (773) 776-2984 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    Church Hope Presbyterian 1354 W. 61st Street 60636 (773) 737-8394 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    Church Liberations Christian Center 6801 S. Ashland 60636 773 436-7940 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00 8:30-2:00

    CBO Family Focus: Englewood 6727 S Western Ave 60636 773-962-0366

    In addition to all of the CPS sponsored alternatives, other organizations have alternatives as well.

    For example  Greater Institutional AME Church's daycare is offering daycare for just $25 a day, with no long term commitment or application fee. Greater Institutional AME Church is at 7800 S. Indiana Ave.,
    Chicago, IL 60617  phone - 773-873-0880  Disclaimer: JP's daughter Mia, is at Greater Institutional.

    Please add your alternatives in the comments section (as well as general thoughts)

    Saturday, September 8, 2012

    Congressman Jackson is back at home

    You might have missed the news from yesterday as posted on the CapFax via the Tribune:
    Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill., has left the Mayo Clinic and is at home in the nation's capital with his family, an aide said today.

    "He's home with his wife and children and he's convalescing," Rick Bryant, his chief of staff in suburban Chicago, told the Chicago Tribune.

    Jackson, 47, was treated for bipolar depression at the clinic this summer.  He began a medical leave of absence June 10.

    Congress returns Monday after a five-week summer recess. Bryant, asked whether Jackson would be in attendance, said: "I am hopeful that he'll be back on the job on Monday."

    Bryant said he did not know the date Jackson checked out of Mayo. He said the congressman had planned to drive from Minnesota to his home in Washington.
    Here's hoping that he's been treated and a speedy recovery.

    Friday, September 7, 2012

    Did you forget there was an election coming up?

    Now that the conventions for both the Republicans and the Democrats are now over we can talk about some events to take place regarding this November's Presidential Election. Ways you can get involved in the political process in this election year.

    When a news crew and an Alderman visits the site of a homicide...

    [VIDEO] I was quite slow to post this story that Worlee linked to on our FB page. On August 24, 2012, there was a shooting on the 7800 block of Champlain and it cost the life of 19 year old Jamal Clayton. That next Monday, Alderman Sawyer arrived on that block with CBS Chicago cameras to offer assistance and was rebuked by the other young men on this block. One of those young men who spoke - off camera - claimed to be the brother of the victim and claimed this violent act was no one's business.

    Anyway you should check out the comments over at 2nd City Cop in a post about the CBS Chicago story regarding Ald. Sawyer. Also recognize that the comments there can be quite ugly and they certainly have a bias against elected officials in Chicago. Eric Zorn also took on this subject on his Chicago Tribune blog. The comments there are also very interesting.

    Another angle was mentioned by Zack Isaacs on the FB page noting that he's complained about how the community was portrayed in this story.

    BTW, I'm sure there are many who are growling about the fact that Ald. Sawyer may have just been looking for publicity by bringing the media with him on that day. I will err on the side of caution and say that he was looking to help and bring attention to this area and the need to provide help to stop the violence.

    All that can be said on this subject is that, if it had been me or anyone else who isn't a politician they would be as rejecting to us as they were to him. In fact, I'm sure this story isn't the only example where the youth turns away from the cameras in any attempt to seek answers or solutions regarding the violence.

    Still, what can be done here?

    Thursday, September 6, 2012

    Do we make enough noise?

    Basically I started writing this post around the time of the conclusion of the ward remap. Now it's time to bring back this idea.

    Why was this about the ward remap? Well amongst the many people of this community there was a definite concern about what Alderman will represent the various neighborhoods of the 6th Ward. Would it be Alderman Sawyer, Ald. Michelle Harris or even Ald. Anthony Beale. That answer was given earlier this year and well we have an answer just unsure when it comes into effect.

    Now we have other issues of concern especially crime and violence. This is certainly where we need to make some noise and insure not only more police patrols, but also keep the criminals from causing trouble in our neighborhood. The noise is to show how not to tolerate these incidents in our community.

    Believe it or not, when I started this blog my goal had been to avoid the issues of crime in our community. It was never my intention to make our area out to be unsafe and sometimes Black neighborhoods get an unfortunate rap for that. In starting this blog the goal was to show that our communities aren't much different than those safer neighborhoods that are populated by different ethnicities. ;) ;)

    Anyway, what can be do to make some noise? Ald. Sawyer stated during all the meetings for the ward remap is that he wanted to rebuild the Sixth Ward's Democratic organization. Certainly that's one way to make some noise, usage of the ballot box.

    And certainly that's not the only way. Some communities have rallies and prayer vigils at the scenes of crime. Those are certainly ways to make some noise and show how we're not going to tolerate these incidents in our neighborhoods.

    Of course after we make our noise, we need to talk solutions. In another post, I plan to show why we need to show solutions. Making noise does little good if we can't get a handle on the problem.

    What say you?

    Wednesday, September 5, 2012

    The Sixth Ward one of the top neighborhood blogs

    Over at YoChicago, Joe Zekas listed The Sixth Ward as one of the top 5 most read neighborhood blogs in the city. We were alerted to this via an e-mail and a tweet. Thanks to all for making this possible!

    We're up there with Uptown Update, Sloopin, and Roscoe View Journal. Again thank you!

    EDIT: I also noted in comments at YoChicago that Worlee's Concerned Citizen's of Chatham should be on the list as well. Be sure to check him out although he also posts here at this blog! He's not only on Blogger but also at Chicago Now as well.

    South Side corridor a hot spot for pedestrian crashes - Chicago Sun-Times

    South Side corridor a hot spot for pedestrian crashes - Chicago Sun-Times

    Why is the area of 79th/Cottage Grove such a dangerous intersection? What do you think?
    Antonio Barnes has a strategy whenever he’s near one of Chicago’s most-dangerous areas for pedestrians: a four-lane stretch of Cottage Grove Avenue between 79th and 80th streets on the South Side.

    “I stand like two squares away from the curb,” said Barnes, 30. “It’s scary just standing on the corner, just waiting on the bus.”

    That’s because drivers don’t seem to notice the people streaming in and out of clothing, grocery and liquor stores at both intersections — or other pedestrians who are waiting for buses.

    “Drivers here, they’re talking on the phone. They’re not paying attention, and they’re running lights,” said Samella Parker, 61, a bus commuter. “Everybody’s in a hurry. You get the right of way but you gotta run across the street if you don’t want to get hit.”

    Barnes and Parker are smart to be cautious around there.
    Hat-tip Concerned Citizens of Chatham! Read the whole thing!