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The Celebration Of Single Motherhood Has Backfired

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Richard O. Jones
It seems to me that society has given a tarnished badge of honor to single moms. Many single mothers strut around accepting accolades and moral support from society as if they were survivors of widowhood or divorce while they slam the absent and/or non-supportive dads of their children as deadbeats. Several decades ago, when single moms were not fashionable, absent fatherhood was not the norm. I recall during the early 90s that Vice President Dan Quayle had the audacity to argue in a San Francisco speech that that the "poverty of values" in society included the acceptance of unwed motherhood, as celebrated in popular culture by the CBS comedy series Murphy Brown. The title character, a divorced news anchorwoman, got pregnant and chose to have the baby, who was delivered in an episode and watched by 38 million Americans.        

Nonetheless, I'm not harping on the statistics of single motherhood through divorce and/or widowhood.  The thing that disturbs me is that an increasing number of single women are choosing to become mothers or at the every least are nonchalant about the idea of raising their children alone. Most recently, it was revealed that Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin has a pregnant unmarried teenage daughter; which is not a moral issue by today's lowered standards. I believe this phase of society is fueled by the heroic reception by the general public coupled with availability of government grants and educational privileges especially afforded to single mothers. There are currently no less than two books entitled "Choosing Single Motherhood" by two different authors, Virginia Prescott, and Mikki Morrissette respectively and dozen of magazine articles written by different female writers enlightening women on the joy, benefits, and conquering the challenges of single motherhood.

In the past decade, I've witnessed on television and in churches dozens of unmarried females boasting about their proud single motherhood to the applause of church congregations and television audiences. Many of these young women express no desire to marry the man/boy that impregnated them. Very often the suspected fathers are in denial about paternity until the results of a pending DNA test proves or disproves their paternity.  Personally, I believe that whenever a DNA test has to be used to prove paternity and/or no marriage plans were involved, the proven father is not highly likely to demonstrate responsible fatherhood throughout the childhood of their casually begotten offspring.

Single females having unprotected sex without an engagement ring and not wishing to become a drum majorette for single parenthood should cease this practice. Females touting single motherhood are inadvertently promoting irresponsibility by sending the message that the love, desire, maturity, and/or ability to care for a child and/or family is not a prerequisite to sexual affairs. 

Email: richardojones1@verizon.net

Eyes & Ears of Moreno Valley

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Juanita Barnes
Bishop E. Earl Jenkins spoke on: "LEARNING TO BE STILL" Former C. B. S. anchor, Dan Rather found himself  unprepared for a television interview with "Mother Teresa." Ron Mehl described the encounter this way. All of Dan's standard approaches were inadequate and the little nun from Calcutta didn't seem inclined to make his task easier. "When you pray," asked Dan, "what do you say to God?" "I don't say anything," she replied. "I listen." Dan tried another task. "Well okay... when God speaks to you, then, what does he say?" He doesn't say anything." He listens. "Dan looked bewildered. For instant, He didn't know what to say. "And if you don't understand that," Mother Teresa added, "If you don't explain it to you." "Be Still, And Know That I Am God." Psalm 46: 10. As you learn to "Be Still" in God's presence, your greatest, problems will suddenly become more manageable. He will reveal Himself to you. He will calm your emotions and relieve your mind. You'll discover new directions. Freedom from worry, and a fresh sense of peace.


Where Dreams Soar

Moreno Valley it is very sad for me to report a long time resident and neighbor  Dorothy Sheeks has gone to be with the Lord Saturday morning 9/27/08, after a car accident in San Bernardino. Dorothy was 73 years old. We were  neighbors for over thirty years. Dorothy will really be missed not only by her family but by all of us here on this street.

Do you have "Faith" the size of a mustard seed? Cathedral of Praise International Ministries of Rialto, California,  1519 South Riverside Avenue, invites you come to the "Prayer Ministry" on the third Saturday of the month from 10:00  a.m. 11:00 a.m. and watch God change things here in the Inland Empire. For information call (909) 874-8676 or visit the website www.copim.org.

Do not miss your blessing on October 10th 2008 starting at 6:30 p.m. with intercessory prayer at 7:00 p.m. The Southern California Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship Rally at Cathedral of Praise International Ministries will have as guest speaker. Pastor Jamal Bryant of Empowerment Temple, Baltimore, Maryland. The dress is casual and there is no admission or registration required. Come early to insure you a seat. Tell your friends and families, pastors bring your church with you. When you leave you will say your worship was for real. For information (909) 874-8676 or website www.copim.org  

Evangelist Jerry Musgrove of  Decently And In Order Ministry and several other  men were truly blessed on September 19th 2008 at the Men's Conference titled Real Men  Stay In The Race --- No Excuses.  The keynote speaker was Bishop Charles E. Blake. Many men are looking  forward to next year's Men's Conference.

Moreno Valley and The Inland Empire let us read about all the issuses, but make sure you vote. Do not let another day pass without being ready to vote.  So many people died so that you and I can "VOTE."

Parents hug your children no matter how old they are and say "I LOVE YOU."

Be Blessed

Free Online Tutoring Can Prepare Our Students

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By Reverend Dr. Floyd Flake, Senior Pastor, Greater Allen Cathedral of New York, Former Member of Congress, President of Wilberfore University (retired)

Rev. Floyd Flake
Tough economic times like those confronting the nation and the world demand increased skills, heightened awareness of the importance of education, and a personal focus to work in unusual circumstances.  For many, the time to prepare for the economic downturn was several years ago.  It does you no good to look for fire insurance when the fire engines are in front of your house fighting a fire.  At that point, the fire is no longer a possibility; it is a reality.

But for our children, the time to prepare for the coming global economic challenges is right now.  Those who succeed in a competitive global marketplace are those that have shunned excuses, embraced change, and identified tools and resources at their disposal to give them a real educational advantage. 

Disproportionately, African American and Hispanic students languish in many of the nation's most troubled academic settings.  Amazingly, there are surprising opportunities for those students in America's toughest schools.  Tragically, much of the conversation around No Child Left Behind (NCLB) has been corrupted by the politics of personality and party.  So while talking heads have engaged in an academic debate about NCLB, one of its golden opportunities has been overlooked and underutilized by communities like ours that stand to gain the most, or lose the most depending upon your perspective. 

Educate Online, a company based in the nation's model Empowerment Zone in Baltimore, has been working with families, communities, and educators across the nation to provide free, online tutoring to students in some of America's toughest schools.  Their curriculum, support, and resources literally come to the home of every student they have helped.

How, you ask?   Educate has developed an online delivery system for good old-fashioned academic support for students.  This is a radical idea, but even more bold and daring is the fact that Educate Online puts a computer and an online connection in the home of every child it services.    Not only does the program close the achievement gap, but it also helps to bridge the infamous digital divide in communities where it is most gaping.  The computer is a necessary tool for parents and students to engage one of the world's most innovative programs.

I have been helping to spread the word about Educate Online because it utilizes tested means to improve academic performance.  Time-worn methods like assessment and personalized lesson plans from state certified teachers who have been screened and undergone rigorous background checks ensures that students are working with skilled teachers and instructors. 

Educate Online is specifically working with eligible students in San Bernardino who attend schools that qualify under NCLB. The sad news is that seats are limited and the deadline for the program is next Wednesday, October 1st. There will be people working in your community at schools, churches, community centers and the like to ensure that students are able to sign up with their parent's or guardian's approval.

Like those with fires in their homes, it is too late to buy insurance when the fire engines have pulled already up.  Similarly, it will be too late to talk about getting the help you need when your child is too far behind to catch up to global competition.

For more information or to register your child, please contact  951-823-0111.

Become a Champion for Change

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By Dr. Astrid Mickens-Williams

Summer vacation is winding down and it's time to get back to school and social activities. Busy schedules can make dinner time the only time for everyone to check-in and have a healthy meal. Celebrate National Fruit and Vegetable Month this September with healthy dinners and use the time to talk about ways to make healthy food choices a regular part of your lives. Gathering together at dinner has been an important tradition throughout African American history. These occasions were about more than just eating together, they were also a time for re-telling family history and celebrating milestones. Today, family dinners continue to play a vital role in sharing stories at the dinner table. However, juggling work, school and extracurricular activities, and making dinner happen every night can be a challenge. One solution is that quick, delicious recipes and nutritious meals allow you to spend more quality time with your family. 

The Network for a Healthy California-African American Campaign invites you to become a "Champion for Change" for your family.  A "Champion for Change" chooses healthy options for their kitchen and provides a healthy home environment for their family by preparing recipes with more fruits and vegetables. Becoming a "Champion for Change" offers your family invaluable lifestyle lessons on making healthy food choices to meet standard recommendations for good health while still enjoying the tradition of a down home meal.

Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables everyday may reduce the risk of diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, stroke and obesity, as well as heart disease for you and your family members. Here are a few tips for getting the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables for better health. 

  Don't forget to make physical activity a regular part of your family activities. Adults need at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity and children/teens need at least 60 minutes. After dinner, take a walk, dance or find another activity that everyone likes to do. Physical activity can make you look and feel great, give you more energy, and lower stress to help you relax.

The Network for a Healthy California-African American Campaign can help you become a "Champion for Change" in your kitchen, home, school and community. Join us for workshops offered on how to prepare healthy meals, reading food labels and tips for stretching your food budget dollars.

You can also visit www.mypyramid.gov  and click on MyPyramid Plan to learn about the amount of fruits, vegetables and physical activity you need for good health. The MyPyramid Plan offers you a personal eating plan with the foods and amounts that are right for you.

For more information on Network for a Healthy California-African American Campaign contact Astrid Mickens-Williams, Network for a Healthy California-African American Campaign Coordinator at (909) 387-0173 or email: amickens@dph.sbcounty.gov  at the County of San Bernardino Department of Public Health Nutrition Program.

Letter to the Publisher

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Help me to understand the crazy world of politics...

If you grow up in  Hawaii , raised by your grandparents, you're  "exotic, different."

Grow up in  Alaska eating mooseburgers, a quintessential American story.

If your name is Barack you're a radical, unpatriotic Muslim.

Name your kids  Willow, Trig and Track, you're a maverick.

Graduate from Harvard law School then you are unstable.

Attend 5 different small colleges before graduating, you're well grounded.

If you spend 3 years as a brilliant community organizer, become the first Black President of the Harvard Law Review, create a voter registration drive that registers 150,000 new voters, spend 12 years as a Constitutional Law professor, spend 8 years as a State Senator representing a district with over 750,000 people, become chairman of the state Senate's Health and Human Services committee, spend 4 years in the United States Senate representing a state of 13 million people while sponsoring 131 bills and serving on the Foreign Affairs, Environment and Public Works and Veteran's Affairs committees, you don't have any real leadership experience.

If your total resume is: local weather girl, 4 years on the city council and 6 years as the mayor of a town with less than 7,000 people, 20 months as the governor of a state with only 650,000 people, then you're qualified to become the country's second highest ranking executive.

If you have been married to the same woman for 19 years while raising 2 beautiful daughters, all within Protestant churches, you're not a real Christian.

If you cheated on your first wife with a rich heiress, and left your disfigured wife and married the heiress the next month, you're a Christian.

If you teach responsible, age appropriate sex education, including the proper use of birth control, you are eroding the fiber of society.

If, while governor, you staunchly advocate abstinence only, with no other option in sex education in your state's school system while your unwed teen daughter ends up pregnant, you're very responsible.

If your wife is a Harvard graduate lawyer who gave up a position in a prestigious law firm to work for the betterment of her inner city community, then gave that up to raise a family, your family's values don't represent  America 's.

If you're husband is nicknamed "First Dude", with at least one DWI conviction and no college education, who didn't register to vote until age 25 and once was a member of a group that advocated the secession of Alaska from the USA, your family is extremely admirable.

O.K., I think I've got it... 

Floyd Brown

Page 40 of 315

BVN National News Wire