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Saturday, July 26, 2014

U.S. - Africa Leaders Summit convenes August 4-6, four counties not included





President Obama will welcome leaders from across the African continent to the U.S. Capital for a three-day U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, the first such event of its kind.

It has been reported by newspaper AllAfrica that leaders from Zimbabwe, Egypt, Sudan, and Madagascar have not been invited, all which have U.S. sanctions in place.

This Summit, the largest event any U.S. President has held with African heads of state and government, will build on the President’s trip to Africa in the summer of 2013 and it will strengthen ties between the United States and one of the world’s most dynamic and fastest growing regions.

The August 4-6 Summit will advance the Administration’s focus on trade and investment in Africa and highlight America’s commitment to Africa’s security, its democratic development, and its people.

The theme of the Summit is "Investing in the Next Generation." Focusing on the next generation is at the core of a government’s responsibility and work, and this Summit is an opportunity to discuss ways of stimulating growth, unlocking opportunities, and creating an enabling environment for the next generation.

Event topics will include:

            Faith Works: Honoring Contributions of Faith Community to Peace    and Prosperity in Africa

Civil Society Forum
Investing in Women, Peace, and Prosperity
Investing in Health: Investing in Africa's Future
Resilience and Food Security in a Changing Climate
Combating Wildlife Trafficking
AGOA Forum
 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Concern over unpeaceful world increases

As I watch news reports from around the world, I'm very concerned about the lack of compassion and hate rhetoric surrounding events.

HOLY WAR???

As a spiritual person and a believer in the teachings of Jesus Christ, I can't understand why Christians are backing Israel and spouting, "Death to the Palestinians... kill them all!"

I understand the Old Testament says that Jews should be protected, but "chosen people" rhetoric has been displaced by the belief that God is not a respecter of persons. Didn't Jesus teach that using the sword is not the way to end conflicts? Didn't he heal the soldier's ear which was cut off and tell his disciple's to refrain from fighting?

I don't understand why many Christians are espousing retaliation instead of reconciliation. Why are people who have killed a prisoner saying his two hour ordeal on the death gurney is what he deserved?

What message are we sending to our children?

I would like for the religious community to speak up and not remain silent during this time of chaos. We must ask ourselves, "What would Jesus do?"

Friday, July 18, 2014

Google's Nelson Mandela tribute is awesome!

Photo attribution: South Africa The Good News
Google has animated the words of Nelson Mandela on its website banner, and if you click on it you can read some of his inspiring words. Mandela would have celebrated his 96th birthday today, but he died last year.
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Check out the inspiring banner at: https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl


 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Lupita Nyong'o's Vogue cover shielded at Publix Supermarket

July issue of Vogue Magazine
While in the check out lane at my local Publix grocery store, I noticed that the July issue of Vogue Magazine featuring "12 Years A Slave" Oscar Winner Lupita Nyong'o on the cover was shielded with a white cover.

After unpacking my groceries, I decided to call the store manager and ask why the issue was shielded. He said it had nothing to do with having an African American female on the cover. I then called corporate headquarters in Atlanta and spoke to Brenda Reid, Community and Media Relations manager, who informed me that each store manager has the option of shielding magazines they feel customers may find offensive, and even though Vogue is not a tabloid, the cover has PUSSY RIOT listed on the cover which may be constructed as offensive.

Pussy Riot is a feminist punk rock protest group from Moscow, Russia featured in the magazine. I asked Ms. Reid if a magazine with "Pussycat" or "Pussy willow" would be considered offensive and shielded from public view, and she said, "I would not want to speculate on that."

Go figure...Publix Supermarket's motto is "Where shopping is a pleasure."  It is owned by Publix Super Markets, Inc., and operates over 1,000 stores in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina, and Tennessee. Glad I got my copy of Vogue in the mail!