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Michael Jordan, Melania Trump, push back after Trump attacks LeBron James, Don Lemon

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It all started on a quiet Friday night, when CNN re-aired Don Lemon’s interview with LeBron James.

The interview focused on James’ contributions to his hometown of Akron, Ohio, including a new public school for at-risk third- and fourth-graders there. But the two men also discussed politics. James told Lemon that President Donald Trump has used athletics and athletes to divide the country.
“I can’t sit back and say nothing,” James said.
The President was watching. Shortly before midnight, he tweeted: “Lebron James was just interviewed by the dumbest man on television, Don Lemon. He made Lebron look smart, which isn’t easy to do.”
“I like Mike!” the President added in what appeared to be a reference to the ongoing debate on who’s the greatest NBA player of all time, James or Jordan.
Now Lemon and Jordan have both responded, while James has shrugged off the insult. And most curious of all, first lady Melania Trump weighed in, siding with James over her husband.
It seems Trump’s late-night tweet has led to another disagreement between the President and his wife.
How? Well, in their responses to the President’s tweet, CNN and Lemon both invoked the first lady’s #BeBest initiative, which aims to support kindness and respect.
“Who’s the real dummy? A man who puts kids in classrooms or one who puts kids in cages? #BeBest,” Lemon tweeted Saturday morning.
The first lady’s office was asked by news organizations for comment. Instead of ignoring the requests or mirroring the President’s attack against the NBA star, the first lady’s spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, praised James and his charitable work in a statement provided to CNN.
“It looks like LeBron James is working to do good things on behalf of our next generation and just as she always has, the First Lady encourages everyone to have an open dialogue about issues facing children today,” Grisham said. “As you know, Mrs. Trump has traveled the country and world talking to children about their well-being, healthy living, and the importance of responsible online behavior with her Be Best initiative.”
Grisham added that the first lady would be open to visiting James’ “I Promise” school.
Wow! Read more by Brian Stelter and Nicole Chavez HERE

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Mayor Bowser Releases 15 Year City Progress Report

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Washington, DC – District of Columbia Mayor Bowser today released “Resurgence of the Anacostia Waterfront: 15 Years of Progress Along the Anacostia River,” a report (PDF) of the efforts of District government, community and other partners in achieving the vision of the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative. In 2017, the DC Council passed a Sense of the Council resolution to declare 2018 as the “Year of the Anacostia”.

“Washington, DC is growing at an incredibly fast pace, and the Anacostia waterfront is a prime example of the positive changes we have seen throughout the District,” said Mayor Bowser. “From new housing and public waterfront access for our longstanding residents, to regional attractions such as The Wharf, Nationals Park, and Audi Field, the Anacostia waterfront is becoming a place for residents across all eight wards to enjoy, making Washington, DC a true waterfront city!”

Part of the District’s rapid population growth has taken place along the Anacostia waterfront, which includes Capitol Riverfront/Navy Yard, one of DC’s fastest growing neighborhoods. Between 2010 and 2025, the District of Columbia is expected to add an estimated 35,000 new residents in Anacostia waterfront neighborhoods.

In 2003, the Anacostia Waterfront Framework Plan set a visionary and ambitious agenda for the revitalization of the Anacostia River waterfront as a world-class destination and center of 21st century Washington, DC. The Anacostia waterfront stretches along diverse neighborhoods in Wards 5, 6, 7, and 8. This progress report lays out the impacts of public, private, and community investment over the 15-year period since the development of the plan, illustrated with maps, photos, and data on key areas of progress along the Anacostia waterfront.

In 2016, the Bowser Administration established the Anacostia Waterfront Interagency Working Group, led by the DC Office of Planning (OP), to formalize collaboration across District agencies and with non-profit, federal, and regional partners to maximize the potential of the Anacostia Waterfront for economic development, revitalization, recreation, and environmental value, while promoting resilience and equity. This Progress Report is an outcome of the working group, summarizing accomplishments of the Anacostia waterfront and providing a look-ahead to what comes next.

Read more by Marty Smith HERE 

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Black Lives Matter activists crash wedding of cop accused of fatally shooting Stephon Clark

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Charlottesville’s first black female mayor: ‘We’re not a post-racial nation’

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A year ago, white supremacist groups marched with torches through the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia. The city reacted by electing its first black female mayor, Nikuyah Walker, 38, a fierce critic of how city officials had handled last year’s far-right protests.

An independent, Walker ran under the campaign slogan “Unmasking the illusion”. She argued that Charlottesville’s Democratic politicians had failed to do enough to tackle systemic racism and economic inequality, and that it was time for a deeper change.

Walker spoke to the Guardian about her policy agenda, what it was like growing up black in Charlottesville, and why she believes Democratic politicians “don’t know how to reform systems”. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.

How much did witnessing neo-Nazis marching in the streets change the city’s willingness to tackle systemic racism?

I had someone tell me in a recent conversation that “I think it’s important for the city to just make sure that the streets are paved and the bushes are trimmed and trash picked up on time”. Well, if that’s all you have to worry about … I’ve never had that luxury, and many others have never had that luxury.

What changed was that people were faced with the fact that we’re not a post-racial nation.

What was it like growing up as a black woman in Charlottesville?

Growing up here was tough. There’s a Michelle Alexander quote from The New Jim Crow: “The current system of control depends on black exceptionalism; it is not disproved or undermined by it.”

I was a teen mother. I raised three kids. My youngest kid is 15. I don’t know a black native person [in Charlottesville] who does not have a significant percentage of their family who’s either been incarcerated or is still incarcerated. There is poverty all around, and all the trauma that goes with poverty, you see it on a day-to-day basis. I was fortunate enough, I came from a long line of women – the matriarchs in my family are absolutely amazing. What they had in terms of wealth was tons of love and care.

When you started your campaign early last year, did you expect to win?

I thought I would spend a year at least making the debates interesting, but I did not think that people would vote. I came out with my campaign slogan, “Unmasking the illusion”, in March 2017. My campaign colors were red, black, and green. I ran my entire campaign myself until August.

Read more by Lois Beckett HERE

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