Vote Nov. 8 like your life depends on it, because it does!

voteIn this presidential election on Tuesday, November 8, I intend to cast my vote, confident that my action will be instrumental in making a difference. I will vote because not too long ago women did not have that very important right. I will vote because too many of my African-American ancestors were demeaned, disenfranchised, brutalized and murdered because they wanted to exercise a right that is as basic as eating, breathing and sleeping. I an unconcerned with polls or rhetoric, I am more interested in encouraging each registered voter to cast their vote as a true reflection of democracy, free will and choice.

Peaceful marchers were left beaten, bloody and killed on March 7, 1965 as they tried to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge in their quest to gain the right to vote.

Peaceful marchers were left beaten, bloody and killed on March 7, 1965 as they tried to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge in their quest to gain the right to vote.

Regardless of the party you choose to support, know this: unless you vote you do not have a voice. In the African-American community, it is especially common to hear the admonition “Our people bled and died to give us the right to vote.” That is a stark yet accurate assessment. It is impossible for you to influence the direction of the country, your state, city and judiciary if you sit on the sidelines complaining about what is dysfunctional, while choosing to refrain from participating to effect change.

vote1

Whether your issue of interest is the economy, immigration, education, police brutality or the impasse created and cemented by a ‘combative, do nothing Congress’ make your voice heard, exercise your franchise and vote. The quality of life of the nation, which President Barack Obama has championed during his time in office, is at stake.

The polls are open on Tuesday, November 8, from 6:00 a..m. until 9:00 p.m. For those who took advantage of the chance to vote early:congratulations!.–OnPointPress.net–

Mayor’s CUNY application fee waiver aids low-income students

Proud CUNY graduates.

Proud CUNY graduates joyously celebrate the culmination of years of hard work and grit.

The decision by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to waive the $65 fee for low-income students applying to the City University of New York (CUNY) is a good first step in the right direction.

When CUNY was first established, it was free and the institution has produced many scholars, Nobel Peace Prize winners, entrepreneurs, politicians and graduates who have excelled in every field imaginable. Over the years, CUNY’s fee structure has priced out the very population it was designed to help—low-income, immigrant, ambitious students who lack financial support.

CUNY-students-purposefully-stride-to-class-while-others-mill-around-to-socialize

While some CUNY students-purposefully stride to class, others mill around to socialize.

Flanked by CUNY representatives on Monday, September 26, Mayor de Blasio announced that low-income students, who come from a family of three, earning $37,000 or less per year, are eligible for the fee waiver.

“$65 matters,” to these families, the mayor said, adding, “This is something that we think is going to make a big difference.”

CUNY has produced notable graduates spanning every profession.

CUNY has produced notable graduates spanning every profession.

He is correct. Low-income students, including those who are homeless, products of the foster care system, or otherwise deemed to be at risk of falling through the cracks, should not be priced out of public colleges.

CUNY, the largest public university system in the country, enrolls a significant number of graduating high school students each year. By making it possible for low-income students to apply to CUNY, free of charge, the mayor is giving vulnerable students a chance to participate in higher education, which is a good first step towards a sold future.–OnPointPress.net— 

 

Happy 54th Independence Day Jamaica!

Jamaican track stars Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.

Jamaican track stars Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce are currently in Rio, Brazil, representing the island in the summer olympics.

Jamaica, the tiny, enchanting island in the West Indies that beckons to visitors and nationals every day, celebrates 54 years of independence today.

The Jamaican Flag.

The Jamaican Flag.

Thank you Jamaica, for emphasizing faith, family, education and one love. Yes, out of many, we are one. Happy birthday Jamaica!—OnPointPress.net–

Is trauma the USA’s Black legacy?

 

What life expectancy does a Black child in the USA have, when all the different variables are considered?

What life expectancy does a Black child in the USA have, when all the different variables are considered?

From the days of slavery to the Jim Crow and civil rights eras, the Black experience in the USA has been one seeped in profound trauma. The unrelenting spate of police-involved murders of Black men and women, coupled with out-of-control inner-city violence, deaths due to illnesses and accidents demonstrate, quite clearly, that the legacy of trauma will not disappear anytime soon.

Instead, more Black residents are prone to become victims themselves, even as they mourn the deaths of other members of the community.

black mental health

The protests that have erupted across the nation in response to the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, followed by the brutal massacre of police officers in Dallas, Texas by a deranged army reserve, have emerged due to a palpable sense of fear, rage and despair from many residents within the Black community who are tormented by one question: Will I be next? Will my loved ones be next?

As the ministry of foreign affairs in the Bahamas issued a travel alert designed to keep its natives safe when traveling to the USA, it will come as no surprise if other Caribbean nations decide to follow suit, in a bid to keep its citizens vigilant in their USA travels, as the novelty of the American experience for Blacks loses its shine and the painful, raw reality hits forcefully.

A Black male mourns at the site of yet another tragedy where lives are lost.

Gone are the days when naive visitors and arriving immigrants felt that the USA was a welcoming nation, a haven of sorts for the ambitious. Now the veil has been lifted and the ugly scourge of racism and a longstanding reign of terror against Blacks, who are gunned down while walking, driving, marching, jogging or in their homes.

So, rightly, Blacks of all stripes need to be on the alert and proactive in seeking counseling to address the sustained trauma that has weakened the psyche, tortured the soul, sapped the spirit and damaged the sense of dignity and safety that all citizens should feel in their homeland. The Black reality in the USA seems unchanged, in many respects, from the days in our past that we hoped were long gone–OnPointPress.net–

 

Thanks for the feedback!!!

thankyou

Thanks to all our readers and colleagues for providing feedback and well wishes as OnPointPress.net celebrates three years of providing insightful and timely news, opinions, and career guidance. We look forward to growth in the future and hope to always have a place among your daily reading schedule. Many Thanks–OnPointPress.net–

Happy Independence Day 2016!

happy-independence-day-4th-of-july-banner_1514013

Independence Day is a wonderful time to celebrate America’s freedom from Great Britain, and it is even more poignant with England deciding to leave the European Union (EU) via the Brexit vote.

But for many Americans, Independence Jay, July 4, will be marked with food, fun and family activities, in the form of barbecues in backyards and at parks, going to the movies or just relaxing at home with friends and family. Whatever form your celebration takes, be safe. Happy Independence Day–OnPointPress.net–

Timely, bold sit-in for gun reforms

Rep John Lewis, civil rights icon, staged a sit-in on the House floor on Thursday, June 22, to demand a vote on gun control. The sit-in continues despite House Speaker Paul Ryan's decision to adjourn the session until after July 4 holiday, which is a week and a half away.

Rep John Lewis, civil rights icon, staged a sit-in on the House floor on Thursday, June 22, to demand a vote on gun control. The sit-in continues despite House Speaker Paul Ryan’s decision to adjourn the session until after July 4 holiday, which is a week and a half away.

When Democrats in the House of Representatives decided on Thursday, June 22, to invoke the tenets of the civil rights movement and launch a sit-in on floor of the House until a vote is made regarding gun control, House Speaker Paul Ryan dismissed their action as “a publicity stunt.” Ryan was wrong. Inordinately wrong.

Rep. John Lewis, an icon of the civil rights movement, led the sit-in with a very precise and clear message: “We want a vote! We came here to do our jobs!” Ryan responded by turning off the microphones and cameras that ensure the feed by C-SPAN and eventually deciding to go on break until after the July 4th holiday, which is a week and a half away.

Breaking out into a rousing rendition of “We Shall Overcome,” and chanting “No Bill, No Break!” and shouting “Shame! Shame! Shame!” at Ryan, the Democratic House caucus members made it clear that they were steadfast in their agenda to demand and ensure a vote on gun control as citizens needlessly continue to lose their lives due to lax gun laws.

As we witness the carnage wrought by assault weapons landing in the wrong hands, it is inspiring to see the Democrats take a bold stand. They read Martin Luther King Jr’s powerful Letter From a Birmingham Jail, they sustained themselves with pizza, they used their smartphones to record the speeches that they delivered from the floor. And they remained stoic and deliberate. This is the type of action that true leaders take, making their voices heard and acting within the realm of their limited powers.

The spate of gun violence cannot continue despite the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) stronghold on the Republican Party. The time to act is now. The House Democratic caucus members have taken a bold step and they should be supported and lauded–OnPointPress.net–