• Chef Ludlow offers tips for making famous tender BBQ Ribs

    CHEF DAVID LUDLOW HAS BEEN the go to cater for events ranging from corporate fundraisers to for celebrities including Lisa Raye and former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr.

    The Convent, La., na- tive has been in the catering business for more than a decade, offering his most famous dishes has been his ribs. “I learned how to cook from my grandmother, I never went to culinary school she instilled passion in me for cooking that has never left.”, he said Ludlow shared his tips for barbecuing ribs with The Drum.


    1. Clean your meat.

    Remove ribs from packag- ing and thoroughly wash ribs and lay them in a pan.

    2. Create a dry rub.

    Use black pepper, Zaterain seasoning, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, sage, chili powder, dry oregano, and brown sugar. Mix all ingredients well. Season

    both sides of ribs with dry rub. (Note: any seasoning of your choosing is okay)

    3. Prepare the grill.

    I prefer to smoke my ribs. Soak wood chips in bucket of water for 30 minutes be- fore putting on grill. Place coals and put all the way to one side of the grill – I don’t cook over direct heat. Light the coals. Before it’s time to put meat on the grill, put the soaked wood chips on top of the coals.

    4. Cooking the ribs.

    Lay the meat on the grill. Close top and open bot- tom vent slightly. Now, let them cook! The best cooking temperature is be- tween 250-300. Every 30- 40 minutes check to see if coals need to be added. Ribs should be done in 5 to 6 hours.

    Chef David Ludlow can be reached by visiting  ludlowstasteoflouisiana. com or calling (678) 914-2037

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  • Congressman wants reparations

    WASHINGTON—U.S. REP. John Conyers Jr. said he will re-introduce in the 113th Congress legislation that calls for a seven member commission to study reparations for Black people in the United States.

    “It is the most impor- tant piece of legislation I have ever in- troduced, and I will re-intro- duce HR40 in the 113th Congress,” Cony- ers (D., Mich.) told the 400 attendees at the “Revitalizing The Reparations Movement” conference ear- lier this month at Chicago State University. The 113th Congress first met Jan. 3, 2013.

    He made his comments in the wake of 14 Caribbean nations demanding reparations and apology from Britain and other Eu- ropean countries for the trans-Atlantic slave trade. If the countries fail to ne- gotiate with the Caribbean nations, they will sue them in the World Court, which is located in The Hague, The Netherlands. Thus far, Sweden is the only country that has indicated a will- ingness to negotiate reparations.

    Conyers said the ac- tions by the Caribbean nations will revitalize the reparations movement in the United States. “I think it is going to be a spring- board for reparations,”he said.

    Conyers first introduced the legislation, titled “Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African Americans Act,” in 1989 during the 101th Congress. The bill was referred to the House Judiciary Committee, where Conyers is the ranking member.

    The eight-page piece of legislation, which was co-introduced by U.S. Rep. Bobby Scott (D., Va.), said the 4 million Africans and their descendants were en- slaved in the United States and colonies that became the United States from 1619 to 1865. The government sanctioned slavery from 1789 through 1865, enabling it to flourish. At the same time, it deprived Africans of life, liberty, citizenship rights, and their cultural heritage. In addition, slavery denied them the fruits of their own labor.

    The Commission to Study Reparation Propos- als for African Americans Act would study the lin- gering negative effects of slavery and discrimination and recommend appropri- ate remedies in consider- ation of the Commission’s findings. In addition, the Commission would exam- ine defacto discrimination against freed slaves and their descendants from the end of the Civil War to the present, including economic, political, and social discrimination.

    The Commission will hold hearings and submit a written report.

    Conyers said he wants to hold hearings in Wash- ington, D.C., about repa- rations for African Americans.

    “If the Republican Congress blocks the hearings, I will hold them throughout the country,” he said.

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  • Best Kept Secret: Our Daily Bread

    OUR DAILY BREAD WHOLE Food Market and Bakery has been serving the Baton Rouge community with holistic medicines and healthy grocery options since 1989. Owners Alvin Himel and David Butt provide cus- tomers with health staples, vitamins, and organic pro- duce, while introducing shoppers to local products like Baton Rouge-made

    Sensation Salad Dressing. “Our most popular bread is our Farm House loaf, it is made of whole grain wheat and rye and the process to bake takes two days,” Himel said.

    The grocery doubles as a café offering daily spe- cials, and serving healthier versions of many Louisiana staples. “We serve gumbo and jambalaya. Except for our roux, we use fresh organic vegetables, and (meals include) brown rice instead of white,” Himel said.

    The café also serves fruit smoothies and juices from fresh fruits. “Many believe it costs more to eat healthier, but it could ac- tually cost less,” he said. A meal from Our Daily Bread that includes vegetarian lasagna, salad and a roll cost less than $8—a quick, healthy alternative to commercial fast food.

    Our Daily Bread is located at 9414 Florida Blvd in Baton Rouge. Above is a photo of organize produce sold by the local grocer.

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  • African Children’s choir sings in Hammond

    THE AFRICAN CHILDREN’S CHOIR ALONG with Hammond Westside Montessori Magnet School hosted a free concert in Hammond on Feb. 13.

    The choir is made up of African children between the ages of seven to ten, many of who have lost a parent through the atrocities of famine, disease and war.

    Children from across the continent of Africa participate in the group, leading by example, in that future generations of African children believe in their potential and becoming strong leaders for a better future in their homeland.

    For two decades, the African Children’s Choir has appeared in thousands of concerts across the world, including performances at the Pentagon, United Nations, the Royal Albert Hall in London and most recently at the Commonwealth Observance Day with Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey.


    Action 17 News

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    Dunn verdict exposes value we place on makes

     by Marc Morial , president and CEO of the National Urban League


    ANOTHER MOTHER’S anguish. Another unarmed Black teenager in Florida shot dead for no good reason.

    Another indefensible instance of Stand Your ground rearing its ugly head.  Eight months after the stunning acquittal of George Zimmerman for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, justice again has been compromised in the fatal shooting of 17-year- old Jordan Davis.

    On November 23, 2012, Michael Dunn, a 47-year- old white man, fi red ten rounds into a parked SUV after arguing over loud rap music coming from the vehicle with Jordan and three other unarmed African American teenagers inside.  Jordan Davis was killed at the scene.  Like George Zimmerman, Michael Dunn claimed self-defense and used Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law to bolster his justification of the killing, as his lawyer stated in his closing argument, “His honor will further tell you that if Michael Dunn was in a public place where he had a legal right to be, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force.” Dunn claims Jordan Davis brandished a gun so Dunn shot first.  But there is one big problem with his story. Jordan Davis had no gun and neither did anyone else in the SUV.

    On Saturday night, a jury found Dunn guilty of four counts, including three for the attempted murders of Jordan’s three friends.  But they deadlocked on the fifth count  first-degree murder in the killing of Jordan. Dunn may spend the rest of his life in prison for the four lesser counts. But the failure to convict him of murdering Jordan Davis raises critical questions about the devaluing of the lives of young Black males in America and confirms the need for a repeal of Florida’s repugnant Stand Your Ground law which sanctions the use of deadly force by anyone who merely thinks – or claims – they are in danger from a perceived assailant.

    Regardless of whether Dunn or Zimmerman chose to fully exercise Stand Your Ground provisions in their defense, this law was very clearly at the center of both cases.  It is even clearer that the “shoot fi rst” laws across the country are contributing to needless bloodshed and are ripe for unequal application based on race.

    A recent Urban Institute analysis found that in Stand Your Ground states, “When the shooter is white and the victim is Black, the justifiable homicidstates with “Stand Your Ground” laws, the justifi able homicide rate is 34 percent. When the situation is reversed and the shooter is Black and the victim is white, shootings are ruled to be justifiable in only slightly more than 3 percent of cases.”  Last September, the National Urban League, in collaboration with the bipartisan Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition and VoteVets, issued a report showing that in the 22 states with “Stand Your Ground” laws, the justifi able homicide rate has risen by an averagehas risen by an average of 53 percent in the fi ve years following their passage.   In Florida, justifi able homicides have increased by 200 percent since the law took effect in 2005.

    These statistics and their underlying racial disparities, tell us that expansive self-defense laws such as Stand Your Ground are doing more harm than good, and when coupled with implicit racial bias and unfounded preconceptions, young Black males are especially at risk.  Dunn’s own bigoted words in letters from jail clearly show his disregard for their lives, as he wrote: “The jail is full of Blacks and they all act like thugs. This may sound a bit radical but if more people would arm themselves and kill these (expletive) idiots when they’re threatening you, eventually they may take the hint and change their behavior.” and “The fear isthat we may get a predominantly Black jury and therefore, unlikely to get a favorable verdict. Sad, but that’s where this country is still at. The good news is that the surrounding counties are predominantly white and republican and supporters of gun rights!”  This view and those like it are why we must commit today to action against the devaluing of our young Black lives.

    Even as the Michael Dunn trial was getting underway, we learned that Trayvon Martin’s killer, George Zimmerman, had planned to capitalize on the death of a young Black male by participating in a “celebrity” boxing match – when his only claim to fame is killing an unarmed Black teenager – and getting off. Such a blatant disregard for the value of a Black male’s life should be a wake-up call to all Americans.  We must intensify our fi ght against Stand Your Ground laws – and the underlying mentality – that justify the killing of young Black men whose only “offense” is being Black .




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  • EBR School System announces plan to make up lost days

    The East Baton Rouge Parish School Board has approved changes to the school calendar that will make up the four days lost because of the weather earlier this year.

    Students will loose a day of Mardi Gras Break when they attend school Wednesday, March 5th. Students will also be required to attend school Friday, March 14, 2014.


    February 10 through March 18 an additional 30 minutes will be added on for students and February 10 through April 28 for staff along with the required make up days.


    School Board Officials said no additional days would be added to the school year. 


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  • Southern University Chancellor ousted by Board of Supervisors

    The Southern University Board of Supervisors  voted  today not to renew the contract of James Llorens, Southern University Baton Rouge Chancellor, which expires June 30, 2014.

    “The Board thanks Dr. Llorens for his service and wishes him well. We will soon make decisions on the leadership direction for our main campus and continue the efforts of making Southern University great,” said SU Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Bridget A. Dinvaut.

    Llorens was named chancellor of Southern University Baton Rouge in May 2011, the largest of the five-campus Southern University System, the only historically black university system in the U.S.

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  • Annual Roots Camp starts Saturday, Feb. 8

    No preselected speakers, no “expert” panels, and no inspiring power-points will set the scene for the Fourth Annual Roots Camp.

    Instead, participants and community activists in attendance will set the course of the two-day “unconference,” Feb. 8 – 9, at the Plumbers and Pipefitters Union Hall, 5888 Airline Highway, 9am-4pm, daily.

    “Each year we learn more about our state, our issues, and possible solutions to the many diverse problems that Louisiana has and how to find the possible solutions.” said Dawn Collins,Roots Camp coordinator

    Referred to as an “unconference” because like a typical conference people gather from various parts of the state to share information , but it is not done in the conventional format done in the typical fashion , i.e. pre selected speakers ,expert panels, preselected actives, of the conventional conference.

    At the beginning of the each day participants submit their session topics to the staff and the agenda, for the day, is built around the submissions.

    Topics can range from Bayou Corne to racial equality to education; anything can be a possible topic as long as it has the goal of creating a more equitable Louisiana.

    After topics are selected those who submitted them present their information in a session. Topics can be presented in any way , the only things discouraged at the “unconference” are power-points and panel discussions.

    The goal of the sessions, no matter the topic, is to encourage the people who attend to find solutions to problems they feel are plaguing Louisiana.

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  • ESPN Magazine features Grambling band

    ESPN, the world leader in sports and sports and sports entertainment, needed a band that would complete ESPN The Magazine’s music issue the editors reached out the Grambling State University’s marching band to make the issue complete. One week before December graduation, ESPN requested ten band members to travel to New Orleans on Dec. 23 for a turn around photo shoot at Tipitina’s. ESPN provided band members and two faculty with a tour bus for the trip. The issue hits the stands tomorrow, Feb. 3. ONLINE: insider.espn.go.com

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    Southern Inducts New Members to Sports Hall of Fame

    Southern University Alumni Gary Magee and Greg C. Martin were inducted into the Southern University Athletics Hall of Fame. Magee, a 1960 Southern graduate, was a running back for the Jaguars from 1955-1959.Magee is currently victim assistance coordinator for Washington Parish.Martin, who played basketball at Southern from 1997-2000 is the academic coordinator for football at the University of Missouri.

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    St. George Incorporation Public Meeting Scheduled for Thursday Dec.12th

    The Committee to Incorporate the City of St. George will hold an important public meeting / town Hall on Thursday, December 12th from 6:30pm – 7:30pm at Woodlawn Baptist Church.

    Guest Speaker: Shreveport native C. L. Bryant is an outspoken Baptist minister, radio host, television host, former president of the NAACP’s Garland, Texas Chapter and creator of the current hit documentary Runaway Slave.

    Senator Mac ‘Bodi’ White
    Norman Browning

    The purpose of this meeting is to:
    - Update the public with our progress to date
    - Inform the public of our plans for 2014.
    - Address inaccuracies/misconceptions in the media.
    - Answer current frequently asked questions.
    - Allow the public to sign the petition.

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  • A New White House Report Highlights the Need for a Food, Farm and Jobs Bill

    This week, the White House released a new report showing the critical need for Congressional passage of a new Food, Farm and Jobs Bill. This comprehensive report highlights how the thriving business of agriculture is a cornerstone of America’s economy, creating jobs and boosting opportunity.


    Agricultural production and its related sectors contributed $743 billion to U.S. GDP in 2011, accounting for nearly 5 percent of economic output. Today about one out of every 12 jobs in the United States are connected in some way to agriculture.


    Meanwhile, driven by the productivity of our farmers and ranchers, agricultural exports reached their highest mark ever in 2013 at more than $140 billion. Due in part to trade promotion programs in the Farm Bill, the five-year period from 2009-2013 is the strongest in history for agricultural exports. Compared to the previous five-year period, the U.S. is exporting an average of four million tons more bulk commodities each year. These exports alone support more than a million jobs.


    A new Farm Bill would give producers the tools they need to continue fueling agriculture to new heights, while promoting quality U.S. products abroad. Ultimately, as shown in this week’s report, those efforts have a positive impact across our entire economy.


    At the same time, the White House report notes continuing economic challenges in rural areas that would be addressed, in part, by investments in the new Farm Bill.  Eighty-five percent of persistent poverty counties in America—counties where poverty has been high for decades—are in rural areas. And between 2010 and 2012, rural America actually lost population.


    A new Farm Bill would provide needed investment in rural infrastructure that would create jobs and boost quality of life in rural America.  It would invest in the growing biobased economy that holds a promising future for our small towns – both through the creation of clean, renewable energy and the manufacture of advanced biobased products. It would strengthen conservation activities on America’s farms and ranches that expand opportunity for outdoor recreation and help to boost income in rural communities. All of these activities would help to revitalize rural areas.


    And a new Farm Bill would provide critical nutrition assistance for American families who are working hard but struggling to make ends meet.


    For more than two years, the Obama Administration has advocated for passage of a comprehensive, multiyear Food, Farm and Jobs Bill.  This week’s report is just another reminder: Americans can’t be left without a Farm Bill any longer. The stakes for our national economy, our agricultural production, and our rural communities are simply too high for inaction – and Congress should finish its work on the Farm Bill without delay.


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  • Understanding Your Calling

    Understanding Your Calling-Ginger London

    Baton Rouge minister Ginger London’s study manual, Understanding Your Calling, teaches Christians how to easily discern and understand the call of God on their lives through discovering, developing and delivering their greatest potential in ministry service. London shares with readers how to break through the self-imposed barriers that keeps them either running from the call or stuck at a certain point. They will learn how to increase their God confidence, set goals to fulfill their calling and how to reach the masses with their message. BuytheBook.

    Online: www.gingerlondon.com

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  • WXOK Celebrates 60th Anniversary

    WXOK has served South Louisiana’s Black community since February 3, 1953, with R&B, Blues and Gospel until 2000 when it went fully Gospel changing its name to WXOK Heaven. THis year the station celebrates their 60th anniversary, Monday, October 21, 6 p.m. at the Bell of Baton Rouge, with help of host Dudley DeBossier Law Firm.

    The celebration brings Va Shawn Mitchell, Earnest Pugh, Paul Porter, Wess Morgan, Anthony Brown &  Group Therapy, Jonathan Nelson, Lexi  and Tasha Cobbs.

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    Street renaming immortalizes Shiloh’s Rev. Charles Smith


    The four-block stretch of America Street from South 10th Street to Eddie Robinson Sr. Drive officially was renamed the Charles T. Smith Boulevard. The street was renamed in honor of the community leader and minister who had been praised for fighting for equality and fairness for those less fortunate prior to his death last year. His widow Eula Smith was joined by 200 people  for the sign unveiling, July 6, in front of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, 185 Eddie Robinson Sr. Drive, the church that he had led for 50 years.


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  • Johnson becomes First Black Female Chief Justice

    JUDGE BERNETTE JOHNSON was sworn in  as the first Black chief justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court, less than four months after a dispute over whether she was entitled to the position. Johnson took her official oath of office as Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court Feb. 2.

    She was sworn-in by her daughter, Rachael D. Johnson, in a brief ceremony, surrounded by her immediate family members, and the legal community. In 1994, Johnson was elected to serve on the Louisiana Supreme Court and was re-elected, without opposition, in 2000 and 2010.

    She represents the Seventh Supreme Court District, which encompasses Orleans and Jefferson Parishes. Her judicial career began in 1984 when she was elected to the Civil District Court of New Orleans, where she was the first female to hold that offi ce. She was re-elected without opposition, in 1990 and was elected Chief Judge by her colleagues in 1994.

    A public ceremony will take place on Thursday, February 28, at noon on the steps of the Louisiana Supreme Court, 400 Royal Street.

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    Consumers Access Preventative Services Under GOP

    LOUISIANA REPUBLICANS LIKE JOHN  Fleming and David Vitter are  sticking with their plan to repeal  the Affordable Care Act and take away health care benefits under

    the law, including a provision that 932,000 Louisianians with private health insurance have used to get preventive care services with no out-of-pocket cost. “Fleming,

    Vitter and Louisiana’s Republicans in Congress continue to stand in the way of im- proving health care for Louisiana families,” said Louisiana Demo- cratic Party executive

    director Stephen Handwerk. “The GOP’s plan is simple: repeal the Affordable Care Act, take away benefi ts that lower costs for Louisianians and return to a

    completely broken system. Under the Affordable Care Act, nearly one million Louisianians have received preventive care with no co-pay. That’s progress, and it’s

    why Democrats are committed to improving the Affordable Care Act and making it work. Republicans’ only plan is to make the system worse.” Approximately 105 million

    Americans–71 million with private insurance and 34 million on Medicare — have received at least one free preventive health care service, like a flu shot or cancer

    screening, because of the Affordable Care Act. For more on how the Afford- able Care Act is already improv- ing health care for Louisianians,

    visit:  http://louisianademocrats. org/2013/08/30/aca-in-la/


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  • SU Law Grads Become Area’s fi rst Black US Assistant Attorneys

    TWO MONROE ATTORNEYS HAVE MADE HISTORY as the first Black attorneys from Monroe to be named assistant attorneys for the United States Department of Justice Western District.

    Brandon Brown and Courtney Joiner graduated from Ouachita High Schools in 1999. Joiner attended the University of Louisiana in Monroe and Brown attended Louisiana Tech.

    They met up again at Southern University Law Center, studied together, and shared their dreams of rising in the legal profession. They graduated in 2007. B r o w n became an assisant prosecutor for the 4th District attorney’s office in Monroe, while Joiner was an attorney at Sidney Austin Law Firm in Chicago and Hammonds and Sills Law Firm in Monroe.

    Brandon Brown

    Brandon Brown

    As U.S. assistant attorney, Brown will prosecute immigration cases and white- collar, economic, and cyber crimes.  Joiner prosecutes civil litigation, employment law and workers compensation defense.


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