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February 2015

January 2015

This Little Light of Mine: Shoutout Saturday to Tyrone Green

by Dr. Steve Gallon III

Tyrone Green

Shoes aren't the only things that shine at Green Dream Shoe Repairs. For over 50 years, this family establishment has provided shoe repairs, cleaning, and the selling of paraphernalia of local teams and organizations. It has also provided a "light" and legacy of hope, happiness, and hospitality to its patrons that have entered its doors. This legacy continues with Tyrone Green.

I have always been fond of fine attire. In being so, I've held true to my late father's sage advice when it came to haberdashery---keep your hands manicured, timepiece on point, and shoes tight. For the last 25 years (more than half of my life) I have kept my shoe game tight with the great, quality work of Green Shoe Repair. From cleanings to sole savers to heel taps, I remain a loyal customer at its new location which is still in the heart of Liberty City on 62nd Street between 7th and 8th.

During this time it has been a pleasure to not only remain loyal as a customer when it came to shoe repair, but to also be able to rely on Tyrone Green and the Green Family for words of encouragement, inspiration, and genuine appreciation.

A humble, happy, hardworking, and hospitable, God fearing brother, Tyrone embodies qualities that our young mean should learn to emulate. He is a loyal and dedicated son and father of six, and a husband of 30 years! For the community, he represents the critical legacy of small, minority businesses that continue to fight, survive, and thrive in the heart of Liberty City. From new shoes out of the box to those thought ready for retirement in the closet, I take them to Tyrone and I've never been disappointed.

Shoes aside, he always brings a word of encouragement and joy amidst the background of gospel music when you enter the door. No matter what may be going on in his life, he's always mustered up his little light and allowed it to shine on my life---often during times I may have needed it the most.

Ordinary people doing extraordinary things. What's more extraordinary than spreading a word of hope, happiness, and love to those with whom you come in contact? Imagine what would our world, nation, and community be if more of us did the same.

Shout out to you Tyrone Green and Green Dreams Shoe Repair! May your business continue to grow and prosper and your "light" shine amongst the men and women in this community for even more decades to come.



Chief Jimmie Brown Returns to Radio --- Same Time, Different Station

Chief Jimmie Brown

After a brief hiatus, the Rev. Dr. Jimmie Brown returns to radio with the debut of "The Chief Jimmie Brown Show" on the award-winning 1490 WMBM starting Sunday, February 1, 2015, 11:00PM -1:00AM EST. Chief Brown is a multi-talented host, author, pastor, retired law enforcement officer and war veteran.

After hosting "Hot Talk with Chief Jimmie Brown" for more than 25 years and posing a black history question to the listening audience of his weekly talk show, how appropriate that Chief returns on the first day of Black History Month. The Chief Jimmie Brown Show will offer listeners a fresh take on issues affecting the community – from politics, business, education, history, youth and community empowerment issues.

There are several ways to tune in to The Chief Jimmie Brown Show each Sunday night: listen on your radio at 1490 AM; streaming live by computer at; or via the WMBM mobile app which can be downloaded from iTunes and Google Play.

Call-in numbers for The Chief Jimmie Brown Show are:

305.953.9626 Dade
954.525.1490 Broward
1.888.599.9626 toll-free

Connect with Chief via his official website: and "Like" his Facebook page: Chief Jimmie L. Brown.

Welcome back, Chief Brown. Boom-Shacka-Lacka!


- vb


Reimagining Miami: Peace in the Hood Community Listening Session

An ethnically diverse group of about fifty people, mostly Black, gathered at the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center (AHCAC) on Saturday, January 24, 2015, for the first of many open forums to address solutions for healing Miami's Black community. Organized by James Mungin II of All Like Minds, Inc., representatives of PowerU (Hashim Benford), the Roots Collective and other groups, the session was a tremendous step towards making much needed connections and moving forward. Several community organizations were represented as were different age groups although I would have preferred seeing more young people in attendance.

I was most hopeful of potential progress when I saw a flip chart and a video camera in use. That might not seem like a big deal but at the local 'Stop the Violence' rallies and marches I've attended, it's been mostly talk without a definite call to action, development of an action plan and follow-up communication.

FAMUans at Peace in the Hood
Connecting with my FAMU Rattler family at the Peace in the Hood Community Listening Session. These young people made me so proud.

The next session is scheduled for 5PM, Saturday, February 28, 2015 at AHCAC. Stay alert for more information.

#BlackLivesMatter #livingkwanzaa365 #umoja #kujichagulia #ujima #nia





Happy MLK Weekend: The Dream Continues

Repost from Vanessa: Unplugged!:


Today we honor the Life and Legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Shamefully, in this Year of 2015, his DREAM of FREEDOM, JUSTICE and EQUALITY remains unfulfilled. 

The masses of people in America are uneducated and undereducated, in most instances not due to lack of opportunity but due to intentional distractions and misdirection to keep them ill-prepared, hopeless, helpless, disengaged and confused. To keep Americans fearful of one another because race, religious practices and sexual orientation ensures a nation that will not reach its full potential.

On this day, we must truly reclaim the dream. Now is not the time to succumb to the brief dash of energy brought about through repeated clichés. Now is the time to do what is right, understanding, correction --- knowing, that we have the ability and responsibility to help each other and especially those in need. 

May Dr. King's Dream be fulfilled soon.


Telling Our Story in 2015! Negotiating Hope...Shout Out Saturday--Ramone Davis

Educator; school administrator; author and businessman 

Dr. Steve Gallon III

Dr. Steve Gallon III creates a weekly post on his Facebook profile he calls "Shout Out Saturday". Through his storytelling, an effective teaching method for all ages, he gives praise and recognition to young black men doing great things in the community. The contributions and hard work of these young men do not receive high-profile coverage from mainstream media but are worthy of such.

Here is Dr. Gallon's post from yesterday in its entirety. Thank you Dr. Gallon!


Negotiating Hope...Shout Out Saturday--Ramone Davis

It's "Shout Out Saturday." 

Shout back to you Ramone Davis. 

In this time of peril, profiling and unfair criminalization of young Black males (some thought it okay to use their images as target practice) I am proud to see unpublicized hope in Ramone Davis. 


Ramone Davis
Ramone Davis

This young brother is positive, humble, and hardworking in pursuing his business flow in the heart of Liberty City. He's also well educated--attended Miami Northwestern and Florida Memorial University. 

Growing up many of us were too often taught that college degrees mean jobs and not businesses--taught to only work for a business or bureaucracy and not own or control one. He's learned and applying lessons from both. 

In these days of young brothers gunning each other down in the streets of Miami its a blessing to see a young brother building his business up in these same streets---choosing business over bureaucracy. Being an entrepreneur requires special skills and qualities---discipline, focus, organization, and self-drive. These combined reflect character. There aren't any clocks to punch in and out of or a set schedule to follow other than the one you make. You're your own clock and as Dee Lancy says--you have to "go get it." 

Each morning Ramone does. He is in the heart of Liberty City not negotiating with his customers but negotiating "hope" that has been too often lost and hard to find in the area among small, minority business owners. Yet, still, he maintains his and barters it to move closer to his hopes and dreams. 

Let's support each other's goals, hopes, and dreams, and businesses large and small. 

Keep your head up, Ramone Davis. Stay the course. Finish your race. And keep dropping the best loaded conch balls---with shrimp, crab, and conch--in the country right on 54 street and 19th avenue. Call in advance to make sure they are piping hot and you don't have to wait--305-771-1147. The lemonade is great too. 


Loaded Conch Balls
Loaded Conch Balls


Maybe the media will do a story on this! Maybe not. 

Give your "Shout Out" this 
Saturday to someone you know who is quietly and without much fanfare or fame making a positive difference in the community, in your life or the lives of others.

Enjoy your MLK weekend! 



P.S.    Because of Dr. Gallon's ringing endorsement, I stopped by yesterday to try the loaded conch balls. Since seafood is expensive and the conch balls were reasonably priced, I was curious about this business's costs and profit margin. I didn't get a chance to talk to the owner because he wasn't in.

Here's what I can tell you though. The place is not fancy, the best description for it is probably a "hut" for take out orders only. It is just west of The Church of the Incarnation on NW 54th Street and 19th Avenue in Miami, on the same property as a gas station now used as a car wash. (I must post on the car wash at a later time.) 

One of the things that turns me off about a business is poor customer service. The product offered can be the bomb but if the service is lousy, I'm no longer a customer and I'll make sure my friends know about it also. Well, poor customer service is not an issue for this place. The young man who prepared the food was super friendly and accommodating.

The food was presented well. The ample portion size (it was enough for two people) and just right combination of seafood and batter let me know the business owner is on his game when it comes to the bottomline of dollars and cents. The food was tasty and the free drink with the special was a nice touch.

Ramone Davis has a great thing going and he's employing another young black male. That is commendable and impressive. As Dr. Gallon mentioned, too many of us, especially with college degrees, are conditioned to be workers and not employers. The only way to true equality will involve economic equality and we do have a lot to overcome in that arena. I do hope that folks in the black community will understand the requirement to support businesses in our community. Ramone's business can only improve if WE help him to do so.  

Ramone Davis, thank you for doing what you do and thank you, Dr. Steve Gallon III, for giving him a shout out. By the way, to my brother Dr. Gallon, it's 2015, YOU are the media --- there's nothing like citizen journalism.

Peace...Love...Prosperity in 2015 and beyond.





What's In A Name?


DC Clark - Photo - Donnalynn Anthony
DC Clark

My old man was a legend in Overtown. With a sweet left-handed jump shot in high school and college, he lead Booker T. Washington High School and Bethune-Cookman College to several victories. But as a youngster, he and his brother were sitting on a stairwell, an older boy walked by and said: "you two look like cartoon characters." He continued, "I'm going to name you (pointing to my uncle) Mickey after Mickey Mouse and you (pointing to my old man) Wimpy after the hamburger eater on Popeye." The names stuck and the rest was history. 

From that point on, my old man was forever known as Wimp. When I was born, I become little Wimp. I didn't mind it because my old man was well known and respected throughout town. But as I got older, I began to carve out my own niche. I was 6 ft 2" and 235 pounds and there was nothing Wimpy about me. Absolutely NOTHING. Therefore I made a conscious effort to change my name to DC. (One day I will explain the origin of that name). Not that I didn't mind my old peeps in the hood calling me by my old name, I just knew that as I progressed in politics, education and life, it would cause confusion. Besides, the name didn't fit. I was more man than most. 

The moral of the story is while many of us had nicknames given to us as kids, we often grow out of it. Names like Wimp, Shark head and Stink mouth (like one brother I knew) are not appropriate as adults. While we are at it, stop giving your children names that retard their chances of success before they can even get out of the gate. Give them names that would empower them. Also, we as a people have to stop letting others define us. Often times others will use terms when describing us that will paint us in a negative light. Therefore it's time to use one of the principles of Kwanzaa which is Kujichagulia (Koo-gee-cha-goo-lee-ah) which means Self-Determination. It's time to define or redefine yourself peeps or someone else will do it for you. Hello, my name is William DC Clark. Nice to meet you.



Photo:   Donnalynn Anthony



BGLOs and supporters unite to boot Sorority Sisters show from VH1


Sorority sisters bye felicia
VH1 has not officially announced the cancellation of their reality show Sorority Sisters but their actions and news reports indicate it has.

On December 15, 2014, VH1 premiered a new reality show called Sorority Sisters. A petition, that had gained over 40,000 signatures protesting the show was not enough to prevent the show’s airing. The backlash grew into a digital protest largely headed by Lawrence Ross, author of The Divine Nine: The History of African American Fraternities and Sororities and member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

Rather than direct the protest solely to VH1, the army of protestors targeted the show’s sponsors. Quickly, most of the sponsors pulled their advertising dollars. The first sign of defeat on the part of VH1 was the airing of a episode called “Sorority Sisters: The Dialogue” in which cast members shared their feelings about their participation on the show and the backlash. There were tearful moments and reports of death threats. Such episodes are typically reserved for reality show reunions.

Subsequent to the airing of The Dialogue episode, two of the cast members, my sorority sisters, April McRae and Rwanda “Joy” Hammond were suspended from Alpha Kappa Alpha until July 2016. Reasonably, one would expect other members of the cast to be suspended for violating their sorority’s policies.

Sorority Sisters continued to lose viewers and advertisers. VH1 surrendered by airing the final three episodes of the show during its graveyard hours last night and the show is history. Perhaps. Hulu, the online video will be offering episodes to its subscribers. Stay tuned for another boycott. 

Depending on one’s perspective, the backlash from Sorority Sisters was either very good or very bad. While the situation showed what folks can do when they galvanize, strategize and execute a plan of action, it also rehashed longstanding animosity between college-educated Blacks and non-college educated Blacks. There were also allegations of hypocrisy about targeting Sorority sisters and not other reality television shows. Rather than allowing the focus of the campaign to be shifted via distractions, the Boycott Sorority movement sisters has grown to The Conscious Movement and other shows such as Love & Hip Hop are in their crosshairs. 

One lesson learned from Sorority Sisters is that black folk can effect change. A celebrity is not needed to be the face of a movement. Mega dollars are not required to fund a media campaign. A protest march is not required. Everyday folks with knowledge and access to the internet can make things happen.  

Unfortunately, the women who chose to be a part of Sorority Sisters will inextricably tied to the show forever. They could be very nice people who tried to use the show to advance their careers who were used instead. People who are not members of BGLOs (Black Greek-letter organizations) cannot truly understand the outrage behind the protest of Sorority Sisters but you want to know what? If you think the backlash was only abgout the Deltas, AKAs, SGRhos and Zetas, then you so don’t get the point. That show was demeaning to Black women in general. The negative depictions of Black women in the media become the reality for some little black girls when they grow up. 

As a black woman, it was painful to hear a Sorority Sisters cast member refer to another as a bitch. The seemingly scripted tension between the women was just too much. Sorority Sisters is a horrible show and it needed to be buried. Amen. 


This is an actual picture from VH1 of cast member, Priyanka Banks, a member of Delta Sigma Theta. This is the actual caption: "Priyanka CRACKS US UP!!!! #SororitySisters" Really, VH1? Not cute. Not entertaining. Disrespectful.



AKAs Host MLK Youth Symposium January 18


Celebrate the legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Day of Remembrance and Youth Symposium presented by the Gamma Zeta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. Sunday, January 18, 2015, 4p-6p, New Way Fellowship Baptist Church, 16800 NW 22nd Avenue, Miami Gardens, FL 33056 Admission is free.


MLK Business Expo Today in Palmetto Bay


Miami-Dade Economic Advocacy Trust and West Perrine Community Development Corporation (CDC) will host the 3rd Annual MLK Business Expo Friday, January 16, 2015, at the Palmetto Bay Village Center, 18001 Old Cutler Road, Palmetto Bay, Florida 33157. 

This free community event will showcase nearly 100 businesses and provide attendees the opportunity to speak with experts on South Dade area products; government agencies and their respective services; real estate; personal finance; tax breaks; and much more.  Live music, raffles, giveaways, and refreshments will be available for event goers.

This event provides South Dade residents with an opportunity to become familiar with businesses in their area, and provide them with vital information on available services and products.

The expo is held in association with the West Perrine 34th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Celebration.

Event supporters are Miami-Dade County Commissioners Daniella Levine Cava, District 8, and Dennis C. Moss, District 9.  Event partners are Economic Development Council of South Miami-Dade; Neighbors and Neighbors Association; Partners for Self-Employment; and Unique Coalition of Minority Business of South Dade, Inc.

            WHO:             Miami-Dade Economic Advocacy Trust and West Perrine CDC 

            WHAT:           3rd Annual MLK Business Expo           

            WHEN:          Friday, January 16, 2015

                                    6 – 9 p.m. 

            WHERE:        Palmetto Bay Village Center

                                    18001 Old Cutler Road

                                    Palmetto Bay, FL  33157


For more information, visit or contact Maria Diaz de la Portilla at 305-375-5661 or [email protected].

Another day…another shooting?

Another young man is dead after a shooting in Miami yesterday. There was another shooting today. This is pure madness in so many ways but this problem can be solved. Perhaps those really in control feel certain people are expendable so just let them destroy themselves. Think about it.

It's really sad but the violence in our community is partly the result of budget cuts to programs that helped our children and families. Too many of us remained silent as the cuts were made. We didn't really advocate for those programs to our elected officials. We didn't really hold folks accountable who were responsible for administering academic, cultural and social programs in our community. We sat back and watched funding shifted to various projects and then quietly accepted our leaders excuse of inadequate funding when it comes to education and educational programs. So two or three generations later, we now co-exist with undereducated hopeless people with little respect for life ---- theirs or anyone else's. It's sad that many of the victims and perpetrators of violence don't understand their role as pawns in this game of greed and power.

Don't contribute to your own demise:

Stop the Violence

Increase the Peace

Know Your History

THINK for Yourself

DO for Yourself

Stand Up

"I never ever ran from the Ku Klux Klan and I shouldn't have to run from a black man." - Kool Moe Dee

(This video was released in 1989 by a coalition of East Coast rap stars. Twenty-six years later, the message is the same.)

Va-va sig 75x39


Photo: @godgazi Gazi Kodzo