Avoiding Identity Theft

Life & Community
“Forewarned, forearmed; to be prepared is half the victory” -Miguel de Cervantes Imagine my utter surprise recently when I discovered that I own a business, a 2011 BMW, a condominium in downtown Detroit, and have a 715 credit score!  The reality is that I rent a home, my credit score is not in the seven hundreds, and don’t own a vehicle.  I catch the bus. In an instant I learned that I had become a victim of one of the fastest-growing crimes in the United States: identity theft. The Back Story: Less than a year ago my tax preparer contacted me to say that it was urgent for me to call this 1-800 number regarding my tax refund. The phone number was to the department of social security. The representative…
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Sexual Health and You: A brief overview

Sexual Health and You: A brief overview

Health and Wellness, Life & Community
Sexual health involves physical, emotional, mental and social well-being in relation to sexuality.  Sexuality is the experience and/or expression of a person as a sexual being. It is different for each individual and can change over the course of one’s lifetime. Someone who is sexually healthy understands and accepts his/her sexuality and chooses to engage in sexual relationships that are safe, respectful and consistent with his/her values.  In addition, a sexually healthy person is knowledgeable and aware of the potential risks of sexual activity (such as unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections) and takes precautions to minimize negative consequences. [caption id="attachment_368" align="alignnone" width="300"] Key to sexual health[/caption] Why is Sexual Health important? Sexual health is an essential component of overall well-being. In addition to being vital for reproduction, sex can…
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Are You a Bully?

Life & Community
Bullying is a big problem.  It can make you feel lonely, sad, angry, and hurt.  Being bullied isn’t fair and bullies can hurt you in many ways. There are 3 types of bullies: 1) The ones who threaten you and make you afraid. 2) The ones who tease you and make you feel ashamed and embarrassed. 3) The ones who hit you and force you to either fight them or run.   When we stand by and watch kids bullying others it says a lot about us. Maybe you are worried about being teased for being a tattler if you tell a grown-up about it. You may be thinking that others will find out if the grown-up doesn’t keep it a secret.  But even if the adult doesn't keep it a secret,…
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Give me Literacy!

Give me Literacy!

Life & Community
  Where is our modern day Patrick Henry? Where is our advocate for upward linguistic mobility that recognizes the liberty in literacy? It is true that if you want to lead, you must read! The saying goes, if you want to hide something from a black person, put it in a book.  I remember being told this in school and experiencing an unsettling feeling in my heart, when I heard such a message. In my six years as a teacher, I have witnessed the continued decline and lack of interest towards reading books by our young black men. Many of our youth in Detroit are dressed in the finest apparel, yet facing educational peril. A report from Education Week, a weekly educational newspaper, reports that Detroit’s high school dropout rate…
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Lack of Values at Heart of Illiteracy Problem

Events, Life & Community
At the age of 13, Yusef  Shakoor was  part of a gang.  At 15, his mother made him a ward of the state and at age 19, he was imprisoned for a crime he says he didn’t commit. The son of a single parent with limited support, Shakoor never imagined pursuing higher education. When confronted with the opportunity to go to college, Shakoor said the idea scared him so much he wanted to kill himself. It was a book given to him when he met his father in prison that changed his life. Shakoor is now an author and owner of Urban Network Bookstore and CEO of Urban Gorilla Entertainment. He was one of seven educated and well-established African American men discussing illiteracy and its impact on society during a…
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My friend Quinn had to move today!

Life & Community
I’m very sad today, because my classmate and friend Quinn told me he was moving. I walked him to his locker and helped him clean it out. We laugh and joked about all the good times we had in class and the teachers we liked and the ones we wish we could do magic and turn into funny things like clowns and animals. The bell rang for the last time for my friend no more running down the hall to get to class for him. As we left out the door, he took a long glance back at the school. I thought I saw a tear in his eyes when he said goodbye. A couple of weeks had passed by when Quinn’s mom brought him to visit. Something has changed.…
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