What’s Going On – 8/19

New York, NY
Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who will be sworn in as NYS governor next week, confirmed that she is a contender for the 2022 NYS governor’s race. She vows to bury the extant toxic Cuomo energy pervasive in Albany’s executive branch for almost 12 years. New Yorkers eagerly await the announcement of her Lieutenant Governor choice. Former NYS Senator who became Governor David Paterson suggests that Hochul should select a woman making NY the only state to do so. She will only admit that her LG would be someone from downstate. Political pundits are betting on Ruben Diaz, Jr, term-limited Bronx Boro Prexy; Rodneyse Bichotte, Brooklyn Assemblywoman cum Democratic Boro Party chief; Harlem’s Brian Benjamin, NYS Senator; and Kathryn Garcia, former NYC Sanitation Commissioner. To be sure, the Kochul cabinet will be more inclusive. The aides, whose names made NYS Attorney General Tish James’ investigation report on Cuomo and sexual harassment, are persona non grata to team Hochul and should be job hunting.

Alphonso David


NYS Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie suspended the Cuomo impeachment probe unfolding with the judiciary committee which covered the Governor’s sex harassment episodes, the COVID nursing home death toll; and the Governor’s $5 million book deal American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID 19 Pandemic.
A job casualty is imminent. African American Attorney Alphonso David, a former Governor Cuomo legal adviser to Governor Cuomo, has been the President of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest pro LGBTQ political lobbying organization. The HRC is reviewing any role he played in Cuomo’s retaliation scheme about a woman whistle blower, which could cost David his coveted job. His name made the Tish James special investigation report about Cuomo and sexual harassment. It is hard to imagine that with David’s lifelong commitment to human and civil rights that he would compromise his reputation with a job action which was toxic towards women. Join the prestigious group who signed an Open letter to HRC to preserve David’s job. Some of the signatories include Philanthropist Reginald Van Lee; Lloyd Wiliams, GHCC; Geoffrey Eaton, Mid Manhattan NAACP; Melba Wilson, Restauranteur; Dwayne Ashley, Bridge Philanthropic; Michael Garner, OHBM; Raymond Lewis, RPL Consulting; Ernest Hopkins; Rev. Jacques de Graffe; Hazel Dukes, NAACP NY; and Attorney Paul T. Williams Jr.

HARLEM: The “NYC Vaccine for All,” a mobile vaccine clinic Initiative has hit the streets, presumably all over town. A cadre of health professionals are available to inject a shot-in- the arm of COVID vaccines, on demand. It is a great idea whose time has come. Wish that the NYC did a better job of forewarning residents. For more info, call 877 829 4692.

SUMMER IN AMERICA
THE NATION: The major American summer story is COVID Delta variant.
An equal opportunity offender, the Delta variant is most comfortable in states with low COVID vaccination rates and those who are averse to face masks. In many southern states, public school are open and a new COVID problem has developed….face masks! a simple Covid prevention protocol. Many young children, those too young for the vaccine, are vulnerable to the Delta variant.
Republican governors in Texas, Florida, Mississippi are opposed to face masks for students in classrooms and for businesses. Those governors have announced punitive action against those who mandate masks in classrooms and businesses. Those are among the states where the Delta variant is surging and running amok. Hospitals in many places are over capacity, closing their doors to new patients. Sick people in many states travel to neighboring states to be treated for the Covid Delta variant. Mississippi’s health system is in harm’s way. The governor has begged for FEMA assistance, including a ship like the one put into service for NY last year at the height of the COVID crisis. MASK mandates must be ordered by all American governors. By week’s end, the CDC will recommend the COVID19 booster vaccine, for all Americans, about 8 months after the first inoculation.

HAITI IN CRISIS
An 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti, 80 miles south of Port Au Prince, on August 14. It was more powerful than the 2010 quake. More than 2,000 deaths have been reported as of yesterday. The earthquake comes on the heels of the 7/7 assassination of the Haitian President Jovenel Moise and on the eve of the arrival of two tropical storms Fred and Grace, which are winding their way up the Caribbean Sea en route to Southern US. Haiti needs Everything, cash, food, clothing.   Humanitarian aid is sluggish. Its crisis has been totally obscured by Afghanistan crisis and the US humiliating US withdrawal Two  trusted organizations  doing work on the ground in Haiti are: Partners In Health pih.org/donate and Ayiti Community Trust:   development@ayiticommunitytrust.org

Camille A. Brown

ARTS/CULTURE
THEATER: Camille A. Brown will direct the 2022 Broadway bound production of Natozake Shange’s choreopoem “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow is Enuf.” Brown will also serve as play’s choreographer. Her stellar choreography credits include Broadway plays, “Once On This Island” and Choir Boy; ” Film, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, and The Met’s production of “Porgy and Bess.”
MEDIA: NY newspaper Haiti Observateur celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year. Founded by brothers Leo and Raymond Joseph, former Haiti Ambassador to the Washington Observateur is published weekly in Haitian Creole and English. Read Raymond Joseph’s Washingtondiplomat.com op-ed, “Assassination is Only Latest Chapter in Haiti’s Tortured History,” a good historical analysis.

Raymond Joseph


TELEVISION: Charlamagne tha God, co-host of popular radio show “The Breakfast Club takes” his unique brand of humor and social commentary to late night tv at Comedy Central. Show’s title, “Tha Honest Truth with Leonard Charlamagne McKelvey” will debut on September 17. Charlamagne and Steven Colbert will executive produce the show

PEOPLE
Birthday greetings to Virgoans: Dr. Thelma Adair, Eric Adams, NYC Mayor hopeful; Linda Armstrong, theater critic; Geoffrey Atkins; Saniyya Brannon; Bishop William Barba II; Dr. Janet Ebert Bell; Beyonce; Deanene Blackmon, Harlem doyenne; Carlton Brown, developer; Ursula Burns, former Xerox CEO/Chair; Misty Copeland; Geoffrey Eaton, NAACP MID MANHATTAN; Idris Elba; John Haggins, travel journalist; Tamron Hall; Linda Haynes, Ruth Hunt, genealogist; Debi Jackson, former WBLS-FM radio co-host with hubby Hal Jackson; Fern Khan, Dean Emerita, Bank Street College; Justin Khan; Errol Louis, NY1; Attorney John Lynch; Congressman Gregory Meeks; Photog Gerald Peart; Fashionista Elsie Rodriguez; Kanya McGhee, Tree of Life bookstore founder ; actress/entrepreneur Jill Marie Nelson; Ashley Sharpton; Shirley Scott; Alisha Sidberry; John Dion Springfield, oenophile/author; Torie Stewart; Twins David and Skylar Torruella; Otis Von Blasingeme; Cohann Wilshire, real estate broker.

Sir Lester Bird


RIP: Sir Lester Bird, 83, Prime Minister of the twin island nation of Antigua Barbuda from 1994 to 2004 and National Hero, passed away on August 9. He was the son of Sir Vere Bird, Antigua’s first Prime Minister. Lester Bird headed was Minister of Tourism and Economic Development and headed the Antigua Labour Party. A state funeral is being planned.
RIP: Arrangements are finalized for Jordan Nieves, beloved son of Harlem community leader Cordell Cleare. Viewing: Harlem, Monday, August 23, 4-8 pm at Mt. Neboh Baptist Church, 1883 Adam Claton Powell Blvd, 114 Street: Bronx Final Viewing: Tuesday August 24, 9-10 am. Funeral service, 10 am at Covenant Christian Church, 1175 Boston Road, East 169 Street. Bronx. Burial follows at Rosedale Cemetery, Linden, New Jersey.

A Harlem-based media/branding consultant, Victoria can be reached at victoria.horsford@gmail.com

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