Rev. Al Sharpton Highlights MLK Gala This Saturday at Harris Stowe

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According to our records, it's been some time since the Rev. Al Sharpton has visited our fair city.

Yes, sadly for us, Sharpton never took up the Riverfront Times' suggestion that he move to St. Louis and run in last year's mayoral race. (Though just last October Sharpton did weigh in on a local issue when he spoke up against Rush Limbaugh buying the St. Louis Rams.)

Now, we're happy to report that Sharpton is returning to St. Louis this Saturday to serve as the keynote speaker for the 24th Annual "Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration" at Harris Stowe State University.

The program kicks off at 6:30 p.m. at the school's main auditorium and is free and open to the public.

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ANNIEGRIFFIN
ANNIEGRIFFIN

nOW rEV. aL sHARPTON, THIS SHOULD BE A GALA EVENT, RED CARPET EVENT IN sT. lOUIS , mO.  bLACKS AND MINORITIES AND OTHERS FROM ALL STATES SHOULD BE THERE.  i ACCIDENTLY WAS PULLING UP rEV. aUNDRE cHIERS AND THE SONG bIRDS AND sT. pAUL cHURCH IN bYHALIA AND IT DIDN'T COME UP AND POPS UP WAS rEV. aL sHARPTON.    tHE MOVEMENT FOR IMPROVEMENTS IN HOUSING JOBS AND PROMOTIONAL OPPORTUNITES OFFERED TO BLACKS IS A MAJOR EMPROVEMNT FOR BLACKS.  wHEN I WAS A YOUNG GIRL, THERE WASEN'T MANY BLACK ACTORS, WE WOULD LOOK AT bO jANGLES TAP DANCING DOWN AND UP THE STAIR WAYS IN RICH PEOPLE AND OTHER ACTORS HOMES.  i CAN REMEMBER SEEING BLACK WOMEN AND MEN PLAYING THE PARTS OF MAIDES AND BUTLERS IN PLANTATION HOMES, RANCHES AND MANSIONS ON OUR BLACK AND WHITE TELEVISION ON THE PLANTATION NEAR JONESTOWN, MISSISSIPPI.    i CAN REMEMBER HEARING mAHALIA jACKSON SING AND A FEW OTHER BLACK ACTORS.  aS WE GOT OLDER THINGS BEGIN TO CHANGE IN mISSISSIPPI.  oUR PUBLIC SCHOOLS BEGAN TO IMPROVE AND THEY SEGREGATED BLACK PUBLIC SCHOOLS,CLOSING THOSE THAT WERE SUBSTANDARED, WHICH WERE WOODEN, RAINING IN THEM, COLD IN THE WINTER AND HOT IN THE SUMMER , WHICH I CAN ONLY REMEMBER THE PLANTATION CHILDREN,ME AND OTHES ATTENDING.  mY SISTER BECAME THE 1ST BLACK TELEPHONE OPERATOR IN CLARKSDALE, MISSISSIPPI FOR i BELIEVE sOUTH cENTERAL bELL, WHICH LATE BECAME BELL SOUTH.  tHERE WERE MOSTLY BLACK TEACHERS IN OUR PUBLIC RURAL SCHOOLS IN THE mISSISSIPPI DELTA IN MISSISSIPPI.  hOWEVER COAHOMA  COUNTY HIGH SCHOOLS THERE WERE THE HIGH CLASS WHTE STUDENTS MOSTLY THERE AND A FEW BLACKS THAT LIVED ON THE PLANTATIONS OF WHITES IN RURAL TOWNS.  i CAN REMEMBER HAVING 1 WHTE TEACHER WHICH WAS COMING TO THE SCHOOLS WITH tITLE i FOR STUDENTS THAT LEARNED AT A SLOWER PACE.  wHEN i WAS A LITTLE GIRL AN 8TH GRADE EDUCATION WAS THE MOST THAT PARENTS LIKE MINE AND OTHERS WERE GETTING, MANY OF THE UPPER CLASS BLACKS BECAME EDUCATORS, THERE WERE A FEW THAT OWNED THERE OWN BUSINESS , BUT THEY WERE MOSTLY LITE SKINDED THEMSELVES.  MY EXPERIENCE WAS THAT IN ORDER TO HAVE A BETTER LIFE FOR MANY THEY HAD TO ESCAPE TO STATES LIKE ST. LOUIS , MO.,, MANY TO CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, ALABAMA, AND SO MANY TO THE ARM FORCES, AIR FORCES , NAVY, MARINES, BUT MOST BLACKS WENT INTO THE ARMY DUE TO GET IN THE TEST SCORES WERE ACCEPTABLE LOWER.  THE SMARTER BLACK WENT MARINE, NAVY AND AIR FORCE.  WE AS KIDS THEN, MOST OF US ON THE PLANTATION HAD LITTLE AND HAD TO GO TO THE FIELDS AFTER SCHOOL AND FOR US, HAD TO WORK SATURDAYS AND SUNDAYS AND HOLIDAYS AT OUR GRANDMA'S LAND IN COAHOMA , MS.  WE GOT LITTLE REST, AND IT WAS ALWAYS CHURCH ON SUNDAYS, AND BY IT BEING A PLATATION, THERE WAS NOT A DEVELOPED SUNDAY SCHOOL..  AND LATER YEARS , WHEN WE HAD SUNDAY SCHOOL, IT WAS NOT EVERY SUNDAY AND ONLY THE TEACHERS HAD SUNDAY SCHOOL BOOKS AND MOSTLY TAUGHT DIRECTLY FROM THE BIBLE.  LIFE WAS HARD FOR US, COLD BURING AND WOOD BURNING HEATER/  WE HAD TO PICK UP AND CUT OUR OWN WOOD , WE HOPE OUR MOTHER AND OTHERS PROCESS THE MEAT WHEN HOGS WERE KILLED BY OUR DAD AND OTHERS THAT HOPE HIM, OUR BROTHERS AND A FEW PLANTATION MEN.  WE HAD A CHANCE TO CUT UP THE SAUSAGE MEAT AND MEAT TO FRY THE SKINS AND CLEAN THE CHITTLINGS AND HANG THE HAM IN THE BARN AND SALTED THE SALT MEAT DOWN FOR SMOKE HOUSES.  WE HAD TO PLANT AND PROCESS OUR GARDEN VEGESTABLE THAT WE RAISED WITH OUR MOTHER AND DADDDY.  BASICALLY WE KEPT IT CLEAN.  LIFE WAS HAD, WE HAD 2 PAIR SHOES, 1 FOR CHURCH AND 1 FOR SCHOOL AND 3 DRESSES FOR SCHOOL EACH OF US, UNTIL MY GRANDMAOTHER TOOK A JOB AS A LIVE IN MAID IN NEW YORK CITY ON A REFERENCE MADE BY HER FRIEND LADY IN COAHOMA , MS THAT ALSO LIVED AND WORKED IN NEW YORK.  WE DIDN'T EXPERIENCE THE MARCHES, THE BOMBING, BUT WAS TOLD STORIES AND EXPERIENCE LOW WAGES FOR LONG HOURS, SOCIAL SECURITY AND WITHHOLDING NOT REPORTED AND NO RETIREMENT BENEFITS .  THERE WERE KNOW WHITE KIDS AT OUR JONESTOWN , MS  SCHOOL  AND NO MIGRANT STUDENTS  OF HISPANIC S IN THE JONESTOWN AREA, HOWEVER IN AUGUST OF 1981 MOVING TO FRIARS POINT AND ATTENDING THE 8TH GRADE, ALL BLACKS WENT TO THIS SCHOOL WITH A  ONE OR TWO POOR WHITE KIDS AND 1 OR TWO HISPANIC FAMILIES .  WE HAD 2 BLACK TEACHERS , MS WANNA SIMMIONS THAT WAS THE WIFE OF A FRIARS POINT , MS LIQUOR STORE OWNER, AND TEACHER AND ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL WHO CAME FROM THE WHITE PRIVATE FRIARS POINT WHITE SCHOOL AFTER IT CLOSED TO BE THE ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL TO RETIRED PRINCIPAL L.C. SCOTT AND JAMES E. SHELBY , SR. WHICH WERE BOTH BLACK EDUCATORS.  MRS ARENZ WAS THE WIFE OF THE MAYOR OF FRIARS POINT, MS  TAKING HIS PLACE AS MAYOR WAS JAMES WASHINGTON WHO WAS ELECTED FRIARS POINT, MS 1ST BLACK MAYOR.  CHANGE CAME SLOWLY WITH THE ASSISTANT SUPERINTENDENT AUDREY BALL WORKING UNDE 2 WHITE SUPERINTENDENTS IN COAHOMA COUNTY, PAUL M. HUNTE AND MR. SHERARD SHAW, HE ;, AUDREY BALL WAS FINALLY ELECTED SUPERINTENDENT.   THE 1ST BLACK SHEIFF WAS ANDREW THOMPSON OF COAHOMA COUNTY REPLACED JESSIE BONNER, AND HENRY ESPY, SR. WAS I BELIEVE THE 1ST BLACK MAYOR OF CLARKDALE, MS.  SINCE THAT TIME THERE HAS BEEN TWO COAHOMA COUNTY SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENTS FROM WHERE I WAS FROM, DR. ANN HARLAND WEBSTER THE WIFE OF JUDGE JOE WEBSTER OF CHILDSUPPORT ENFORCEMENT AND NOW PAULINE JOHNSON RHODES THE 1DT BLACK FEMALE ELECTED.    THE CITY OF CLARKDALE 'S SCHOOL DISTRICT HAS EXPERIENCED  2 BLACK APPOINTED SCHOOL DISTRICT SUPERINTENDENTS DR. WILMA WADE AND SUPT. HARRELL AND NOW SUPERINTENDENT DUPREE FROM  JACKSON, MS.    CLARKSDALE HAS ITS 1S T BLACK TAX ASSESSOR COLLECTOR, IT S 2ND ELECTED BLACK SHERIFF, ITS 1ST APPOINTED ROAD SUPERINTENDENT.  COAHOMA COMMUNITY COLLEGE HAS HAD THAT I CAN REMEMBER SERVERAL BLACK PRESIDENTS , I CAN REMEMBER DR. MCKINLEY MARTIN AND NOW DR. VIVIAN PRESLEY.  THERE WAS A BLACK PRESIDENT BEFORE THEN I BELIEVE, MR. GAMBRELL, BUT AM NOT SURE.    HEADSTART HAS HAD IN MY REMEMBERANCE TO EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS, MR. CATCHINGS, MS. HARO AND NOW THEE 3RD MR. EDWARD SEALS.   mOST UNIVERSITIES ARE HEADED BY BLACK PRESIDENTS, ALCORN, JACKSON STATE UNIVERSITY, MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE.    MAYOR OF HATTIESBURG WAS THE FRONT RUNNER, BLACK CANDIDTE FOR GOVERNOR OF MISSISSIPPI WHICH SEAT IS NOW HELD BY GOV. PHIL BRYANT.  THE 2ND SISTRICT HAVE HAD IN MY REMEMBERANCE 2 CONGRESSMAN  : MIKE ESPY AND BENNIE THOMPSON, NOW THERE ARE BLACK ELECTED TO SENATE SEATS AND REPRESENTATIVE SEATS AND  CONGRESS AL ACROSS MISSISSIPPI.  DESOTO COUNTYS LEADERSHIP IS BASICALLY WHITE, IT S  MAYOR  AND SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT.  THE MAYOR OF MEMPHIS, TENN IS BLACK THAT WAS  SHELBY COUNTY.  EVERY ONE IN MISSISSIPPI IS NOW LIVING BETTER LIVES , MANYDRIVING NICE CARS , SUV'S, TRUCKS AND OTHERS.  THERE ARE NOW MANY APARTMENT BUILDING, WHERE MANY WHEN I WAS GROWING UP LIVED AGRICULTURAL LIVES  AND MOST IN SUBSTANDARD HOUSING, POOR PLUMING, OUT HOUSES, HUG CLOTHS ON LINES WITH LITTLE OR KNOW WASHERS AND DRYERS.   CHANGE TOOK PLACE  WITH MORE OFFICE, MANUFACTURING , BUSINESSS OPENING AND FOR PROFIT AND NON PROFIT JOBS AND OTHER.  MORE PEOPLE BEGAN OPENING THERE OWN BUSINESS.  CRIME INCREASED AS THE LIFE STYLES OF PEOPLE EMPROVED AND CONDITIONS EMPROVED.  I CAN REMEMBER COMMODITIES OF BENS, RICE, CANS OF LUNCH MEAT  ISSUED TO FAMILIES , AND US WHEN I WAS IN  ELEMENTARY AND HIGH SCHOOL NOW ITS GOVERNMENT FOOD STAMPS ON A EBT CARD IN MISSISSIPPI WHICH WE USE TO BE ISSUED BOOKS OF COUPONS- AND HAD TO STAND IN LONG LINES TO BE ISSUED THEM.  CHURCHES WAS BASICALLY THE MEETING  PLACE TO SOLVE COMMUNITY PROBLEMS AND ISSUES  FOR IMPROVEMENTS . ROADS AND BRIDGES BEGAN TO IMPROVE AS PEOPLES LIVES IMPROVED, HOUSING, SCHOOLS AND THERE WE MORE PROGRAMS TO HELP THE POOR AND PROGRAMS.  EVEN THOUGH LIFE IS STILL A STRUGGLE FOR  MANY OF US, CONDITIONS ARE IMPROVING.  THERE ARE STILL REMAINING INJUSTICES THAT MANY ARE FORCED UPON US FROM BLACKS THAT RUN PROGRAMS, BUSINESSES AND ARE IN LEADRSHIP.  WOMEN HAVE SOME OF THE SAME RIGHTS AS MEN TO JOS, HOUSING , PROMOTIONS  IN ALL RAISES, HOWEVER , MEN ARE OVERLOOKED FOR PROMOTIONS FASTER THAN WOMEN.    CHANGE MUST COME AND PEOPLE MUST STICK TO THEIR PROMISES OF IMPROVING THE LIVES OF PEOPLE AND PROGRAMS. 

Cynthia Willis
Cynthia Willis

Rev. Al Sharpton. I wrote to President Obama, asking for help in getting 20% insurance I am disable I get medicare, not medicade, an I only get a small income each month. I have call AARP, they gave me several low company to call an they said the cheepies is 378.00 a month. I can't afford that, an the last one I talk with told me to go back to AARP. Witch I did an they said I had to be 65 of age to get medicade. I need help an I am asking you would you have someone to check on a lower price of insurance. I also need help with my sister she went to the EEOC for sexural harrasiament. She live in Columbia Mississippi. would you please contact me are let someone call are e-mail her an she can give you all the detail basicbrownsg@yahoo.com,she only have 1 more month to get a laywer an no one will take the case, do to who the person is. my E-mail address is mrscwillis2u@yahoo.com.

God always be with us all.

Elliott
Elliott

It's too bad that Sharpton, in really no common way, shares MLK Jr's visions.

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