Monday, February 1, 2016



By Cash Michaels

NC MUSEUM OF HISTORY –  Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 7th, right after church from 2 to 5 p.m, the next screening of “Pardons of Innocence: The Wilmington Ten” will be at the NC Museum of History, and admission is free.
I am both excited and honored to finally have the film screen there, for that codifies it as solid piece of North Carolina history, the seal of approval as it were. As I said, it’s happening Feb. 7th, Super Bowl Sunday, but don’t worry, the film starts at 2  p.m., and that plus the panel discussion featuring Dr. Benjamin Chavis, defense attorney Irv Joyner and myself after the film will end at 5, which means there will still be plenty of time to get home for the big game which starts at 6:30 p.m.. So unless there’s another massive snowstorm (Oh GOD, please no), you have no excuse for missing this free screening Sunday, Feb. 7th at the NC Museum of History.
By the way the next screening after that will be at North Carolina State University on Wednesday, Feb. 10th, in the Witherspoon Theater on campus, starting at 7 p.m..
MORAL MARCH/HK ON J – On Saturday, Feb. 13th, the tenth Annual Moral March/HK on J People’s Assembly is scheduled to kick off once again. Presented by the NC NAACP and it’s coalition partners under the Forward Together Movement, tens of thousands of activists from across the state and nation come to Raleigh to speak out on the issues they feel need to be addressed. This year, the primary focus supposeds will be voting, and there will be workers there passing out pledge-to-vote cards, and registering people to vote in time for the March 15th primaries.
For more information or to sign up to volunteer, go to
PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARIES – I, for one, am so glad that the Iowa caucuses kicked off this week, with the New Hampshire primaries to follow. I was really tired of hearing all of the candidates talk, saying the same thing over and over again. Now that the voters are finally making their voices heard, we’re finally able to whittle down the field to only the strongest contenders. That’s what the process  is supposed to be about – the voters actually choosing who is the most convincing in terms of leadership and vision.
Needless to say, all three cable news stations are going wall-to-wall with their coverage. Just as we hold the candidates to account, let’s make sure we hold the media to account as well. In a democracy, it’s the only way to ensure that we are best and fully informed.
BLACK HISTORY – Recently I did an interviews with Min. Paul Scott of the Afrikan Messanic Movement in Durham.  Paul has always been out on the streets, talking to young people about gaining more knowledge of self, and giving back to their community.
Paul would like to see Black History become a permanent part of the Durham school curriculum for middle-schoolers, saying that waiting until high school to begin teaching it is too late. He’d also like to see Black History become mandatory for graduating high school in Durham County.
I think Min. Paul Scott is on to something. If young people can gain some sense of self and pride about their history and place it, maybe they could steer away from violent, self-destructive activities. That would be a good thing. We’re all looking for answers.
Make sure you tune in every Thursday afternoon at 4 p.m. for my talk radio show, ''Make It Happen'' on Power 750 WAUG-AM, or online at And read more about my thoughts and opinions exclusively at my blog, ‘The Cash Roc” (
           Cash in the Apple - honored as the Best Column Writing of 2006 by the National Newspaper Publishers Association. Columnist Cash Michaels was also honored by the NNPA for Best Feature Story Journalist of 2009, and was the recipient of the Raleigh-Apex NAACP’s President’s Award for Media Excellence in Sept. 2011.
          Until next week, keep a smile on your face, GOD in your heart, and The Carolinian in your life. Bye, bye.


PANTHERS VERSUS BRONCOS IN SUNDAY SUPER BOWL - Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton could add his name to the historic list of black quarterbacks who've won the Super Bowl when he goes up against Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos this Sunday.

By Cash Michaels

            For the past ten years, the annual Historic Thousands on Jones Street Moral March and People’s Assembly in Raleigh has not only always involved young people, but also empowered them as well.
            Every Moral reconstruction movement has had young people at the center of its development,” Rev. William Barber, president of the NCNAACP and convener of the upcoming Moral March/HK on J People’s Assembly on Feb. 13th, says. “In the 1960s during the civil rights movement, in the second reconstruction youth  - black, white and Jewish - were at the center. And so it must be as we build a modern day third reconstruction moral movement today.”
            This year, young people, known as the #JusticeSquad, will actually lead the Moral March through downtown Raleigh to the Fayetteville Street Mall side of the State Capitol, where the People’s Assembly will take place. It is there where young activists will then pass out pledge-to-vote cards and literature to attendees for both the March 15th primaries and the Nov. 8th general elections. There will also be tables for voter registration.
            Applicants can register online at on the home page by clicking the “sign up” link per the third choice under “#Become a MoralMarch Volunteer.”
            “Dr. Barber felt that it would be amazing if this year, we had 200 young people leading this march,” Ty Lawson, NCNAACP Field Secretary, said. “We’re getting the youth involved and saying, hey, it’s our time.”
            “Over fifty years ago there were young folks out in the streets registering people to vote, fighting for this cause. Now it’s time for us to answer the call of duty. It worked then; it’s going to work now. We’re going to make sure we get the job done.”
            Indeed, voter registration for the March 15th primary ends on Friday, February 19th, with early voting beginning on Thursday, March 3rd and ending Saturday March 12th at 1 p.m.
            Young people have always played a role in the Forward Together Movement, Lawson says, recalling how he took part several years ago. “We’ve built a movement that’s inclusive. This is an intergenerational movement, and everyone has their eyes on the prize – making sure that our right to vote is no longer being attacked. And our Youth Council and College Division is very strong…. doing great work and mobilizing or HK on J.”
            Lawson says the strong, principled leadership of NCNAACP Pres. Rev. William Barber inspires everyone across race, gender and generational lines, but he is particularly inspirational to young people.
            “He’s such a charismatic leader. Young people across the state see that leadership and wisdom. It’s not a movement that has young people on one side and older people on the other. It’s a movement that has all of our issues at the core.”
            Lawson says young people who take part in the Moral March should be proud.
            “This is our moment. This is the generation that this world has been looking for, and we need to answer to that call.”
            The Tenth Annual Moral March on Raleigh/HK on J People’s Assembly is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 13th. Marchers will gather across the street from Raleigh’s Memorial Auditorium at 8:30 a.m. for a pre-march rally. Then at 10 a.m., the march down the Fayetteville Street Mall to the State Capitol begins. For more information go to

By Cash Michaels

            If one wondered by state Attorney Gen. Roy Cooper has consistently ignored challenges by Durham attorney Ken Spaulding to debate prior to the March 15th Democratic gubernatorial primaries, their first, and so far only faceoff last Friday gave good reason.
            Both men sat next to each during the NC Democratic Party African-American and Hispanic  Caucuses Debate before a packed room at the Goodwin House, and Spaulding stayed in the hunt, accusing the state attorney general of everything from colluding with the Republicans in defending the controversial voter ID law in court, to not doing his duty in deciding not to retry a Charlotte – Mecklenburg police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black motorist in Sept. 2013.
            Cooper, for the most part, remained calm and stoic amid Spaulding’s blistering attacks, showing virtually no emotion at all. Spaulding, however, remained fiery, not only taking his opponent to task, but also assuring voters that he is a man of the people, not a career politician, and that North Carolinians would have a fair man as governor if he was nominated after the March primary to and defeated Republican incumbent Gov. Pat McCrory Nov. 8th.
            At stake during the debate, black and Hispanic Democratic voters, who comprise over 40 percent of North Carolina’s Democratic base.
            For Hispanic voters, both Spaulding and Cooper said they supported Pres. Obama’s immigration policies, despite Republican opposition in Congress. They also objected to Gov. McCrory joining a lawsuit against Obama’s Executive Action on immigration.
            Both Cooper and Spaulding vowed that if elected, they would strive to make their respective cabinets and administrations as diverse as possible.
            “That’s what we should be about, being inclusive, “ Atty. Gen. Cooper said, indicating that he already has a diverse office. “The first thing we have to admit is that racism does exist.”
            “I see nothing wrong with having an African-American being the governor of North Carolina,” atty Spaulding said to applause. “Those who serve in my administration are going to be African-American, going to be Latino, going to be within the white community. [They] will be very qualified people. Even unaffiliated.”
            When asked what they would do as governor to improve the economy of North Carolina without hurting low-income and middle-class families, Spaulding said he was already doing it by helping to attract an estimated $2 billion in investments to the state, bringing with them thousands of jobs.
            He added that he supported business incentives, including film industry incentives in Wilmington.
            Atty Gen. Cooper blasted Gov. McCrory for signing legislation that provided “…big tax giveaways to out-of-state corporations at the expense of the middle-class and our public schools.” Cooper accused McCrory of supporting a “…tax structure that makes it harder on everyday hard-working people.” Cooper said if elected, he would stop that, invest in North Carolina’s public schools, pay teachers more, and promoting economic development plans in “minority communities” and rural areas.
            The political fireworks began when both candidates were asked if they supported the reinstatement of the 1965 Voting Rights Act in Congress, and if elected governor, would they lead the fight to have the 2013 NC voter restrictions repealed if Democrats take back the NC General Assembly.
            Spaulding said that he would “absolutely” have the NC voter restrictions repealed, calling them “unconstitutional.” But then the Durham attorney and former state lawmaker lit into Cooper.
            “My opponent sitting with me today, he’s been in court with the Republicans, fighting on behalf of them, and against the NAACP, the League of Women Voters, the people of North Carolina, on a constitutional issue he did not have to represent the state on,” Spaulding charged.
            “So I want you to understand, there is a clear distinction here. My opponent has been on the wrong side of this issue.”
            Unfazed, the state attorney general told the audience not only does he “strongly” support efforts in Congress to reinstate the 1965 VRA, but that his office joined with the NCNAACP in filing an amicus brief in court supporting the VRA.
            “There is no question that I’m very much opposed to the voter restrictions that were put in place by Gov. McCrory and  the Republican leadership,” Cooper said, reminding all that he sent a letter to McCrory to veto the law.
            The state attorney general indicated that despite his personal opposition to voter ID, his office is obligated to defend the state anytime it is taken to court, as in the case of the federal trial in Winston-Salem where the voter ID case wrapped up Monday.
            “It is the duty of the office of attorney general to defend the state when it gets sued. One of the reasons why I am running for governor is I am sick and tired of the laws that are being passed by this governor, and this General Assembly. What I want to do is change it,” Cooper said.
            As to how, as governor, each man would address high unemployment rates among African-Americans and Latinos, Cooper said beyond investment in improving education, he would push for a living wage to help left people out of poverty, and better employment opportunities.
            Atty. Spaulding said he supports raising the minimum wage to $15.00/hr. “At the end of a Spaulding term, we will have that done,” he pledged.
            In his closing remarks, Cooper thanks people for coming out to “this spirited and very informative forum,” a clear reference to the attacks from his opponent, Ken Spaulding. Cooper did state categorically that “Gov. McCrory has the wrong priorities for North Carolina.”
            Spaulding, in his closing two-minute remarks, continued to put heat on Cooper. The Durham attorney denied being “an angry black man,” but did describe himself as “…having passion about these issue.”
            “I’m a fighter for the people. I’m a fighter for those who are voiceless. I don’t run away from my ethnicity. Black lives do matter. As an African-American or black man myself, my life does matter. And I disagree with an attorney general, who in Charlotte with the [Police Officer] Kerik [shooting unarmed black man] case, Where you had an opportunity to have  a second trial, when a young man who graduated from Florida A & M, was shot ten times and killed, And they couldn’t summon up enough energy, enough effort, to be able to have a second trial . That’s not right!”
            Spaulding went on to openly challenge Cooper  to “stand up strong, and make sure that our criminal justice is one for all North Carolinians.”
            Atty. Gen. Cooper was offered the opportunity to defend his decision not to pursue a second trial, but he declined.
            Currently, Cooper is leading  Spaulding substantially in the polls, and neck-and-neck with Gov. McCrory. Atty Spaulding has been campaigning for governor for the past two years.



            [SAN JOSE, CALIF] Cam Newton, the black quarterback of the Carolina Panthers leading his team against the Denver Broncos in Sunday’s Super Bowl, is tired of being pigeonholed by the press as just a “black quarterback” because, he says the game is bigger than that. “When I go places and I talk to kids and I talk to parents and I talk to athletes all over, they look at my story and they see a person — African-American or not — they see something that they can relate to. They see a guy who went a different route than just going to a major Division I school and flourishing there.” Newton follows in the footsteps of Doug Wiilaims, Steve McNair, Donavan McNabb, Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson as black quarterbacks who’ve played in the Super Bowl.

            [CHARLOTTE] With the March 15th primaries fast approaching, there are key dates that voters need to remember. Absentee voting is now available per your county board of election office. Friday, February 19 is when voter registration for the March 15th primary ends. Thursday, March 3 begins the early voting period for the primaries. Tuesday, March 8 is the deadline for absentee ballots to be received for the March 15th primaries. Saturday, March 15 at 1 p.m. I the deadline for early voting to end for the primaries. Tuesday, March 15th is the Primary Election Day statewide. Tuesday, March 22 is when all valid provisional and absentee ballots are counted.

            [DURHAM] The NCNAACP and Forward Together Movement kicks off it’s Issues Forum series with “Our Voting Rights at Risk: The High Stakes of the 2016 Election Cycle” this Saturday, Feb. 6th, starting at 9:30 a.m. at the NCCU School of Law, 640 Nelson Street, Durham. Panelists include state lawmakers Dan Blue, Floyd McKissick, Jr., Larry Hall and Mickey Michaux, along with North Carolina congressmen G. K. Butterfield and David Price. The event is free and open to the public.



            The YMCA of the Triangle has purchased the 32-acre site of the former Watson’s Flea Market off Rock Quarry Road near I-40 for construction of a future facility, published reports say.  Y leaders say the new facility will be designed to fit the needs of Southeast Raleigh residents, and surveys are being conducted to determine those needs. Beyond the Y, affordable housing, a school, a health care center, and even a grocery is envisioned for the new site. A $15 million campaign to develop the site so far as raised some $3 million.

            After black students made clear during a town hall last November that they did not feel they were part of the overall student community because of racial bias, UNC – Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt has now announced several initiatives to address those concerns. There will be a survey to determine campus climate; black students will now have a designated space to gather; student orientation programs will now have an emphasis on diversity, and all campus administrators will undergo training on structural racism.

            It’s taken a while, but revitalization plans for the 4-acre Moore Square Park in downtown Raleigh have been approved by state officials. The master plan has been on the table since 2011, but has taken five years to fine-tune the details. Plans include a water feature, natural play are for kids, a cafĂ© and restroom area, along with a plaza for concerts. The park, which is owned by the state but managed by the city of Raleigh, is expected to be closed soon for renovations, but will reopen by 2017.


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