Welcome! This free speech community journal was created so the Maple Heights African American community could share videos, photos, events, articles, posts, ideas, thoughts, and information.  We're now exclusively on Facebook, so don't forget to also check out our Facebook page.  Have a fantastic day!

Saturday, September 29, 2012


No One At Home: How To Deal With Foreclosures In Your Community

To prevent homes from going into foreclosure, try to help neighbors in need.
Minority neighborhoods in America have been devastated by foreclosures, with banks taking over the homes that remain vacant indefinitely. Several banks, including most recently Bank of America , have been called to task by The National Fair Housing Alliance, which has filed official complaints to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development about the poor maintenance of these vacant homes.

Read the rest of this great article HERE
National Vacant Properties Campaign and Neighborhood Works America .
National Housing Institute

Friday, September 14, 2012


This is a newsletter that was emailed today from the National Museum of African American History and Culture:
Lonnie Bunch, museum director, historian, lecturer, and author, is proud to present A Page from Our American Story, a regular on-line series for Museum supporters. It will showcase individuals and events in the African American experience, placing these stories in the context of a larger story — our American story.
A Page From Our American Story
Side of church after bombing.
Side of the 16th Street Baptist Church after bombing. 1963. Alabama v. Chambliss Trial Transcript
(File # 85.1.9), Birmingham Public Library Archives.
Property of Birmingham Public Library.
On September 15, 1963, an explosion shattered the quiet of a Sunday morning, blowing apart the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. Four young girls who were getting ready for Sunday School were killed almost instantly.

Denise McNair, 11, Addie Mae Collins, 14, Carole Robertson, 14, and Cynthia Wesley, 14 died as a result of a bomb placed under the church by members of the Ku Klux Klan. Twenty-two others, including Collins' younger sister Sarah, were injured.
“I remember Denise asking Addie to tie her belt,” Sarah Collins Cox said in an interview. “And then it happened.”

Most Americans had little idea, or had paid little attention to the fact that Birmingham had been the scene of more than 50 bombings between 1947 and 1963. This bombing, however, would not go unnoticed. The murderous event awakened the nation and effectively galvanized the civil rights movement.

In the months leading up to the bombing, Birmingham had become the focal point of the civil rights front. The city was all too familiar with racial violence. Both African Americans and moderate whites had been long terrorized by the Klan.
Photograph of debris after bombing with firemen on site

Photograph of debris after bombingwith firemen on site. 1963. Alabama v.
Chambliss Trial Transcript (File # 85.1.22),
Birmingham Public Library Archives.
Property of Birmingham Public Library.

Years earlier, Birmingham minister Fred L. Shuttlesworth founded the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights (ACMHR) to directly confront racism and segregation in the city. In the spring of 1963, Shuttlesworth's group joined forces with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and his Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the largest and best known organization fighting for equal rights at the time. Together, the men formulated a plan that called for months-long protests to end segregation in Birmingham
In May of that year, after weeks of marches, sit-ins, boycotts, bus strikes, and prayer vigils, an agreement was reached. It had the input of local government leaders, white business owners, African American leaders and civil rights groups. The city would actively begin working toward integration. The agreement did not sit well with segregationists, among the most violent of which was the notorious KKK.

Riots erupted during the summer months, and nightly newscasts revealed to the rest of America the lengths to which Southern racists like Governor George Wallace and Birmingham's Commissioner of Public Safety Eugene “Bull” Conner would go in their fight to keep the South segregated.
Conner ran Birmingham's police and fire departments, and his ruthless tactics against the demonstrators shocked the country. With each evening's news, Americans watched as Conner's police used attack dogs, billy clubs, and tear gas on the peaceful protestors. He turned fire hoses on the crowd with water pressure so high it would “peel away skin,” according to press reports.

The four girls killed during the
16th Street Baptist Church bombing.
Clockwise from top left: Addie Mae
Collins (aged 14), Cynthia Wesley
(aged 14), Carole Robertson
(aged 14) and Denise McNair (aged 11)
Still, it was the 16th Street Baptist Church and the deaths of four innocent children that finally snapped the nation and the federal government into action. All over the country, citizens became angry and ready for change. In June 1963, President John Kennedy introduced a civil rights bill, now known as the 1964 Civil Rights Act, to widespread support.
The 16th Street Baptist Church bombing is cited by many historians as the turning point in the civil rights movement. An editorial in the Milwaukee Sentinel said the bombing should “serve to goad the conscience” of the country. “The deaths...in a sense are on the hands of each of us.”
We should always keep in mind that the four girls who died, while immortalized in history, were children with children's dreams. Carol Robertson was a straight A student who loved to dance. Cynthia Wesley excelled in math. Addie Mae Collins was quiet, athletic, and had a flare for art. Denise McNair wrote plays for the kids in her neighborhood.

History is not scripted. In the case of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing it was shaped out of racist hatred that ended four innocent lives, but changed America forever.
Lonnie Bunch, Director All the best,

Lonnie Bunch

Thursday, September 13, 2012


9:00 AM TO 12 NOON




CALL 216.443.3749 OR VISIT www.cuyahogaswd.org 

Monday, September 10, 2012


Obama, Yes. And Win the House Too. by Roger Hickey
"President Obama is enjoying a post-convention bump in job approval (Gallup says 7 percentage points - from 45 to 52 percent) after the negative and divisive Republican convention, followed by the energetic populism of the Democrats in Charlotte. With large leads among women and people of color, and the stark contrast on economic issues building movement toward Obama even among white males in key states, the prospects for Obama winning a second term are starting to look pretty good.
But what about the House? Prospects for Dems keeping the Senate are looking better, but if the House of Representatives stays in Republican hands, even if President Obama is re-elected his second term will be crippled. Obama can still name good Supreme Court justices, and he can veto terrible legislation - both good reasons to vote for him - but, in the face of Republican obstructionism, he will be virtually powerless to pass economic recovery laws aimed at creating jobs and getting the economy growing and not shrinking.
Continue reading ..............HERE

Thursday, September 6, 2012


(From Senator Brown's newsletter)
Fighting for Ohio Small Businesses and Ensuring a Healthy Financial Sector
With nearly two-thirds of all new jobs created by small businesses, a thriving small business sector is essential to getting our nation’s economy back on track. However, following the recent financial crisis, too many small businesses have not been able to access the credit required to hire new workers and expand their operations. To help overcome these obstacles, Senator Brown works with the private sector to develop policies that will help small businesses succeed and ensure that our financial sector is working to support American businesses. 
Helping Small Businesses Access Capital and Promoting Emerging Small Businesses
Sen. Brown speaks with small business owners at a small business workshop in Columbus, OH.
Passed legislation to provide small businesses with much-needed capital, making it easier for small businesses to access loan programs through the Small Business Administration (SBA). Thanks to these resources, SBA, in 2011, approved 3,228 loans worth a record of $760 million for Ohio small businesses – representing a 58 percent increase from 2010. 

Authored the Business Incubator Promotion Act to provide support to existing and start-up companies, helping them to grow and create jobs.

Supported legislation reauthorizing the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)  program, the largest federal research and development initiative for small businesses. 

Worked on a bipartisan basis to pass legislation reducing red tape for small businesses filing tax returns. 

Helping Ohio Small Businesses Access Federal Resources
Senator Brown’s office has organized more than 30 small business workshops throughout Ohio with information on federal resources that help business owners grow and expand their business. These seminars have primarily focused on:                            Loan guarantee programs to help small businesses access capital.

Federal resources to help businesses find export opportunities and increase their export sales. 

Resources to help Ohio small businesses sell to the government. 

Tax relief through The Small Business Healthcare Tax Credit for Small Employers. 

Tax incentives to help small businesses purchase new equipment and expand.

                            If you would like more information on these workshops or available resources for small businesses, please visit www.brown.senate.gov or contact Senator Brown’s Office at (888) 896-OHIO.           
As a member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, Sen. Brown has consistently promoted a practical, Midwestern vision for the proper role of the financial sector in the broader economy.
Standing up to Wall Street Banks
Sen. Brown and SBA Administrator Karen Mills celebrate the record year of lending in Ohio with Costas Mavromichalis, owner  of Constantino's Market.
Introduced the SAFE Banking Act, legislation that would put an end to bailouts and protect taxpayers by placing sensible size and leverage limits on Wall Street mega-banks to prevent any single financial institution from becoming “too big to fail”.

Urged regulators to take steps to ensure that our nation’s largest banks were not engaging in risky, speculative investments with FDIC insured money.

Fighting for ConsumersVoted to establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) which acts as a consumer advocate for all Americans and championed the nomination of Ohio’s Richard Cordray to serve as the CFPB’s first director.

Championed efforts to stop banks from charging excessive fees for ATM withdrawals and credit card purchases.

Supporting Ohio’s Banks and Credit UnionsCosponsored the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act, which raises the cap on the amount of loans credit unions can offer to small businesses that are hiring workers or expanding operations.

Advocated for the elimination of redundant banking regulations that are affecting ATMs. 

Quick Reference Guide
Small Business Administration www.SBA.gov 
Cleveland Phone: (216) 522-4180
Columbus Phone: (614) 469-6860
Cincinnati Phone: (513) 684-2814

Export Assistance with the U.S. Commercial Servicehttp://trade.gov/cs/states/oh.asp
Cleveland Office: (216) 522-4750
Cincinnati Office: (513) 684-2944
Columbus Office: (614) 365-9510

Minority Business Development Agencywww.mbda.gov
Cleveland Office: (216) 592-2253

Ohio Small Business Development Centers
Phone: (614) 466-2718
For a list of local centers, visit:

Ohio Procurement Technical Assistance Centershttps://development.ohio.gov/Minority/ptac.htm
Phone: (800) 848-1300

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB):http://www.consumerfinance.gov/

Federal Deposit Insurance Coporation (FDIC):http://www.fdic.gov/

FDIC – consumer protection:http://www.fdic.gov/consumers/