Joe Biden attacks freethinking black Americans while President Trump empowers them

A bigot is defined as “a person who is intolerant toward those holding different opinions.” By that definition, Former Vice President Joe Biden is a bigot.

At the end of a recent interview on the very popular radio show, “The Breakfast Club,” Joe Biden said, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.”

For a man who claims to have graduated with honors from so many elite schools, and is married to an educator, it is surprising that he would say “You ain’t black.” Maybe that is how he speaks on a regular basis, or maybe that is how he speaks when talking to black people.

The last thing that any freethinking, civically engaged black person needs in 2020, is a 77-year-old white man from Delaware “whitesplaining” blackness to us.

I was born black; still live the black experience as a black man in America every single day. My family comes from the South, and we have experienced discrimination, racism, bigotry, and survived Jim Crow. My Papa was a proud member of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, founded by Dr. King, and still knowing my history, I am a black man voting for Trump.

Try as they might, the one thing Joe Biden and his liberal friends can’t take away, define, or critique is my blackness because I am voting for Donald Trump.

In 2016, President Trump looked at the conditions and statistics of many predominantly black cities in America and saw that despite being led by Liberal lawmakers, our communities were faced with high crime, high unemployment, and poor public schools. Real estate values were down and there were not as many opportunities to advance, as there should have been. He asked us to trust him, listen to his plans and vote Donald J. Trump because at that point he said: “What do you have to lose?”

In response to Joe Biden’s bigoted comment, Charlemagne tha God said, “It don’t have nothing to do with Trump, it has to do with the fact I want something for my community.” At the end of the day, that is exactly what the black vote is about in 2020, our community. Identifying who has the record and resolve to get things done for the black Community. I have worked most of my adult life advocating, promoting, and defending my community inside the Republican Party at all levels and have seen many results. However, I have seen the most results for my community under the Trump Administration.

Joe Biden asked The Breakfast Club audience to look at his record. That was not a gaffe— he was serious. For 44 years Joe Biden has been either MIA or on the wrong side of history when it comes to fighting for the black community. Let’s start with his record on justice. We all know Joe Biden was the architect of the infamous 1994 Crime Bill that literally locked up thousands of men that look just like me. Biden was proud of his record on mass incarceration of black men that destroyed communities, dismantled families and stifled black wealth for generations.

How many strikes do we give Joe Biden until we say enough is enough, you are out? Out of touch; out of the mainstream; outside what black Americans need in leadership.

Thankfully, black people can look at the record of Donald Trump on the issue of Criminal Justice Reform and see the thousands of people who went home because of his bold advocacy of the First Step Act righting Biden’s wrongs in just under, four years.

In 2012, Joe Biden told a predominately black audience in Virginia, “They’re gonna put y’all back in chains,” referring to Republicans.

Joe Biden can’t accept that the Republican Party has historically been and currently is the party of freedom, and opportunities for everyone, especially the black community. We have a Republican President and candidate in Donald Trump, and an entire party that believes in school choice. We believe giving all parents the ability to place their children in better performing schools no matter your socio-economic background, color and zip code is the right thing to do. But Joe Biden only sees color and class saying, “poor kids are just as smart as white kids.”

The media needs to stop calling these statements gaffes because they are not. Call them dog whistles, call them bigoted, call them offensive and call them racist.

In 2020, there is a clear choice to be made for the black community. We should examine the records of both Joe Biden and Donald Trump and vote our interests. By all objective measures, President Trump remains the champion for the black community in this election. His record of support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, school choice, opportunity zones, criminal justice reform, minority businesses, kidney health, and direct aid and support to

underserved communities during this global pandemic makes him worthy of our vote in November. Black people are signing up for “Black Voices for Trump” because he has kept his promises to our community.

The bigoted statements and damaging policies of Joe Biden need to remain quarantined with him in his Delaware basement.

Paris Dennard, Senior Communications Advisor for Black Media Affairs at the Republican National Committee

Courtesy Photo/Paris Dennard

Paris Dennard, Senior Communications Advisor for Black Media Affairs at the Republican National Committee

Paris Dennard is a GOP political commentator, strategist, and Senior Communications Advisor for Black Media Affairs at the Republican National Committee. Follow him on Twitter at @PARISDENNARD.

UMB makes mail-in voting fun with Election Day gift boxes By Stacy M. Brown

The University of Maryland, Baltimore Community Engagement Center and West Baltimore Community Organizations are encouraging mail-in voting on Election Day with “Party at the Mailbox” boxes.

UMB, officials say they are teaming up with Baltimore Votes and Black Girls Vote to provide West Baltimore neighbors with election resources during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Black Girls Vote is committed to engaging, educating and empowering our community about voting even during a pandemic. We don’t want Baltimoreans to choose between their health and democracy,” said Nykidra Robinson, founder and CEO of Black Girls Vote, Inc.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Baltimore residents are asked to mail in their ballots rather than congregating at polling locations.

To make the vote by mail experience more fun and engaging, Baltimore Votes and Black Girls Vote have decided to work with UMB to mail free “Party at the Mailbox” gift boxes to city residents.

The gift boxes include Election Day resources, a T-shirt, stickers that say, “I voted” and other election-themed giveaways.

“Black Girls Vote is known for our creativity, innovation, and non-traditional efforts,” Robinson said. “We’re elated to bring you ‘Party at the Mailbox’ with one of our most valuable partners, Baltimore Votes.”

Robinson added that Black Girls Vote is looking forward to seeing “so many Baltimoreans on election night for the biggest virtual election night party the city has ever seen.”

“We’re thrilled to see so many Baltimoreans and beyond excited about voting, and by voting by mail. We love the videos and social media posts- keep them coming,” she said.

UMB officials say to stay safe and maintain social distancing guidelines, and all Baltimore residents are encouraged to vote by mail. However, the UMB Community Engagement Center will be an actual polling location for anyone who decides not to vote by mail.

The polling location will be open for voters on Tuesday, June 2, 2020 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at 220 Arch St. Baltimore, MD 21201.

“Party at the Mailbox is so much fun,” said Sam Novey, the co-founder of Baltimore Votes. “The Baltimore Votes Coalition is dedicated to building an inclusive democracy in Baltimore, and we are so excited to be working with Black Girls Vote on this campaign. It is such a great way to celebrate our city and welcome everyone to be a part of our democracy.”

To register for a personal “Party at the Mailbox” gift box, Baltimore residents can follow this link:

Mental Health Break: What adjustments do you need to make?

The pandemic has completely modified our day-to-day lives like we never could have imagined. With well over two months since the virus first impacted the United States, it’s no surprise that the pandemic has completely reshaped modern life as we know it.

Our repetitive, almost instinctive schedules have been modified in ways that none of us were prepared for. We’ve had to adapt and modify our habits, schedules, and daily routines.

Some of us have even lost jobs and even loved ones during this period unsettling period. It’s no question that even a small combination of some of these factors can significantly influence your mental health. It’s imperative that we all stop and take time to ask ourselves how we are doing to determine what is supporting you or undermining your mental health needs.

If you haven’t had a chance yet, stop and ask yourself how you are feeling. Take time to sit down and consciously think about how the pandemic might’ve affected you. Have you adapted well? Is there room for improvement? What do you think is working for you or working against you? This is a chance to truly take time to think about the days you’ve enjoyed vs. the days that could have gone better. Remember our emotions about ourselves are the sum total of our experiences and memories. Although the pandemic may have changed our daily habits and schedules, humans are extremely adaptable if we take the time to reflect, recalibrate and focus on what our mind, body and soul needs on a continuing basis.

There are many contributing factors that can directly influence your emotional health and mental health. These can include your diet, regular physical exercise, and close connections with friends and family. Do a mental inventory and think about the things that put you in a good mood. If you find some habits that are not working for you— that’s ok, at least you’ve recognized them to make adjustments. For example, if you are a habitual snacker while working from home make and effort to snack on food that is healthy like trail mix or fruit. If you’ve noticed you are not exercising as much as you would like to, schedule some time for a walk, run or and indoor workout to get those feel-good brain chemicals going. Trust me it’s not easy to start but I bet you will feel amazing after it’s over.

Here are some ways to adjust and monitor your mental health:

Keep a daily routine— Our brain loves routines. In fact, our brain is filled with habits that we have instilled overtime. COVID-19 has influenced habits and schedules, which could throw you into confusion. Make sure you take time to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at the same time every day. Find a morning routine that makes sense that will give you the boost you need to conquer your day. Continuing monitoring your habits and correct the ones that may not support you. For example, mindlessly scrolling on social media may not be the best for you during this time. Instead pick up a book that feeds your energy and spirit.

Be proactive in reaching out to family and friends— Scientists have proven that our connection with others contributes to both our physical health and psychological well being. Moods and behaviors are contagious and in many ways our happiness is significantly, influenced by those we associate with.

Although we may not be able to see our friends and family face-to-face, we can make use of web conferencing apps such as Facetime, Google Duo or Zoom. Reach out to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while. After the call is over you might even feel a rush of feel-good chemicals in your brain.

Take breaks from social media— It’s easy to fall into the trap of mindlessly scrolling through social media with no apparent objective. Especially during this time it’s important to take breaks from social media and news outlets to give your mind a chance to rest. Set limits on your devices if you find yourself overwhelmed or unhappy after scrolling on your social media or news sites.

Positively Caviar, Inc. is a grassroots nonprofit organization focused on instilling mental resilience by way of positive thinking and optimism. Each month, a member of their Nucleus Team will feature a column focused on mental and physical health tips, scientific studies, nutrition facts and stories that are positive in nature to support a positive and healthy lifestyle. To learn more about how you can support, volunteer, or donate to Positively Caviar, Inc. please visit:

Parents: Do these five things before returning to child care

As stay-at-home orders are lifted, many working parents are returning to their jobs and many child care programs are reopening. Parents need to know how the COVID-19 crisis has impacted their child care programs. Here are five tips to help families with young children transition back to child care routines:

  1. Pay your bill— Parents, you were probably asked to pay at least a portion of your fees while your child care program was closed. While it may seem unfair to pay for care while your child is home with you, charging fees to reserve a child’s space is standard practice for child care centers and it is essential for keeping programs running. The center’s expenses continue even when children are not present. Facility costs like mortgage or rent payments must still be met. Most importantly, staff must be paid. Retaining skilled and experienced teachers and caregivers is one of the biggest challenges in the field of early childhood care and education. Paying your child care fees while your center is closed will help ensure that the staff will be there to welcome your child when they return.

If your family is not yet ready to return to child care and you have an opportunity to pay to hold your spot, do it. The current economic crisis means many child care centers are closing permanently, and it will likely only get harder for families to access early childhood care and education in the future. Do what you can now to retain your family’s relationship with a quality child care program. If your financial situation makes it difficult to pay your fees, contact the director of the program and explain your situation. They may be able to refer you to assistance programs in your community.

  1. Practice wearing masks at home—

Child care centers are now adapting their health and safety practices to pro

vide as much protection as possible against the spread of COVID-19. In most centers, the staff and parents will be required to wear masks, at least during drop off and pick up. In some centers, children over the age of two will also be required to wear masks. Seeing people in masks and wearing a mask may be difficult for many young children. You can help your child adjust to this new normal by practicing wearing masks at home.

First, offer your child a simple explanation for why people wear masks. For example, “A mask is something people wear that covers their nose and mouth. Wearing a mask helps keep people from getting sick.” Let your child touch and hold your mask before you put it on. Children learn through play, so include masks in silly “peek-a-boo” games or in pretend play. Make little paper masks for your child’s stuffed animals or dolls. Allow your child to pick out or decorate their own masks and let them practice putting them on and taking them off all by themselves.

Prep extra supplies— Most child care centers will now have stricter rules for keeping children’s supplies clean. This means that parents can anticipate the need to bring more items from home to the center each day, as well as the need to bring those items home and wash them more frequently. Check with your child care center to find out what new guidelines are in place, but keep in mind that you will likely need to prep individual meals and snacks, to provide more changes of clothing and extra diapers and wipes, and to more frequently swap out and wash blankets and nap items.

Thank your child care teachers and staff— Professionals working in early childhood care and education were already underpaid and overlooked before the COVID-19 pandemic. While some policy makers and leaders are now recognizing the importance of child care services in rebuilding our economy, your child’s teachers and caregivers have not received the recognition and appreciation they deserve. Be sure to take a moment to tell them how much they mean to your family and thank them every day for their commitment to your child.

Contact your legislators— To ensure that quality care and education is available to all young children, make sure your legislators are making child care a top priority. Advocacy organizations like the National Association for the Education of Young Children and Zero to Three provide guidance for reaching out to legislators and speaking up about the importance of investing in child care and other early childhood services.

To learn more about “The COVID-19 Child Care Crisis: What Parents Need to Know,” visit

Ann Gadzikowski, Executive Editor of Britannica for Parents

Courtesy Photo

Ann Gadzikowski, Executive Editor of Britannica for Parents

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young Announces Modifications to City’s Stay at Home Order

Today, Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young and Health Commissioner Dr. Letitia Dzirasa announced plans to adjust Baltimore’s Stay at Home order to allow curbside pickup at retail stores.

Beginning Wednesday at 9:00 a.m., retail businesses, including shops, restaurants and other food establishments, along with business districts throughout the city, may request temporary pick up and drop off zones for use by customers and delivery drivers. These zones will enable residents to quickly and safely pick up purchases, while ensuring frequent parking turnover so the locations remain reliably available for use.

“We’ve been clear from the beginning of this state of emergency that keeping the public safe and healthy would be our top concern,” Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young said. “After consulting with our health professionals, we believe that this first-step of re-opening can be done carefully and safely. During this unprecedented time, it remains the city’s top priority to keep our residents healthy and safe, while exploring new ways to assist local businesses. Being flexible with our curb space and making it easier for residents to shop at local businesses is one way we can support our business community while working through this pandemic.”

“With the improvements we have seen in the positivity rates of tests being completed and an increase in the number of tests being completed, we can safely reopen curbside retail,” Dr. Letitia Dzirasa said.

Details of the reopening of curbside retail include:

Businesses or business districts can apply for a Temporary Retail Pick Up and Drop Off Zone by completing an application, which is available here.

Not every business can have their own zone. Businesses are encouraged to request one shared zone on a block, or over several blocks, or within a business district.

Current valet parking zones, passenger loading zones, or truck loading zones may be converted to Temporary Retail Pick Up and Drop Off Zones.

Applications for Temporary Retail Pick Up and Drop Off Zones will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis, and as City resources allow.

Temporary Retail Pick Up and Drop Off Zones may be removed at any time with little or no notice if circumstances dictate (i.e. the need for the zone is diminished; the need for more for parking outweighs the need for the curbside pickup zone; the zone is being abused; appropriate social distancing measures are not being practiced or the space is needed for multi-modal transportation purposes).

There will be no fees associated with the application for or installation of these Temporary Retail Pick Up and Drop Off Zones.

Applications are available on the Parking Authority website.

Mayor Young also announced an Outdoor Seating Relief Program that’s designed to prepare the City for the eventual resumption of seating at restaurants that have been limited to pick up and carry out only. Per the most recent Executive Order from Governor Larry Hogan, restaurants throughout the state remain closed to seating options and are limited to pick up and delivery options only. Once Governor Hogan moves to stage 2 of the State’s reopening plan, Mayor Young and City health officials will reassess Baltimore’s readiness.

“The Outdoor Seating Relief Program will help position local restaurants to be able to hit the ground running once Baltimore’s in a position to allow restaurants to offer seating options,” Mayor Young said.

The Outdoor Seating Relief Program shortens the permitting approval process for outdoor seating from an average of three months to less than a week for most restaurants. All fees associated with outdoor seating applications and licenses will either be waived or rebated, depending on the fee. This reduces additional financial burdens on restaurants that are just trying to survive.

Jamila Blake and MCRC helping seniors fight economic insecurity

Economic insecurity is a daily reality for thousands of older adults in Maryland living on fixed incomes and struggling to meet their obligations each month, according to The Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition (MCRC), a statewide coalition of individuals and organizations that advances economic rights and financial inclusion through research, education, advocacy, direct service, and community organizing.

Many of these older adults are eligible for assistance programs that would help them to age in place. Among the many helpful programs offered by MCRC is the Securing Older Adult Resources (SOAR) initiative where individuals provide financial coaching and counseling to meet the specific needs of seniors, including helping them to avoid financial hardship and access available benefits.

Individuals like Jamila Blake provide financial counseling and coaching to help improve the economic well being of older adults, including finding solutions to fill the gaps in the services offered to them. She also helps individuals access essential tax credits that could mean the difference between foreclosure and eviction.

Few are taking advantage of existing benefits, such as the Maryland Homeowners’ Property Tax Credit and Maryland Renters’ Tax Credit. Older adults often need ongoing financial guidance and support, beyond what is being offered by other service providers, according to Blake.

“I enjoy working with the older population and coordinating services for them to keep them safe in their homes,” said Blake, the mother of two. “Through serving older adults I have learned so much about what their needs are and how aging in place looks so different for individuals when income, gender, race, ethnicity, regional and disability are factored in.”

Blake was born in Cameroon and raised in Baltimore. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology/Human Services from Simmons College in Boston and an MSW in Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh. Blake has worked at MCRC since last year.

In addressing the needs of seniors as a financial counselor in the SOAR program, Blake provides screening and application assistance for the RTC and Homeowners’ Property Tax Credit (HOTC) to older adults.

“I am passionate about older adults, and I believe in MCRC’s mission— advocating and empowering consumers,” Blake said.

To date, it is estimated that the SOAR program of the MCRC has reached more than 35,000 individuals through outreach.

“Counselors have directly assisted more than 600 people through application assistance and consumer education training,” Blake said. “The MCRC wants low-income Baltimore homeowners and renters to ‘Take the Credit.’

“These are ‘forgotten’ tax credits that thousands of folks can access but do not. They can put up to $1,000 back into your pockets every year. These yearly tax credits can be the difference between foreclosure or eviction, so don’t wait to take the credit.”

Renters must be over 60 to qualify and have a gross annual income of under $60,000. People under age 60 may be eligible but they must either be permanently disabled or have dependents under 18 living with them.

Homeowners must also be over 60 and must live in the home they own. A homeowners’ net worth must be less than $200,000, and their gross combined household income should be less than $60,000 to qualify.

To find out if you are eligible for the Maryland Homeowners’ Property Tax Credit or Maryland Renter’s Tax Credit, call the Maryland Tax Credit Hotline at 443-961-6220 or visit: for help to fill out the forms. The deadline to apply is August 31, 2020. Everyone is encouraged to get immediate help to be able to take advantage of the yearly tax credits.

The American Legion pays tribute to America’s fallen veterans

Every crisis has new heroes. During the 9/11 attacks, they were the first responders running into burning and crumbling buildings as others ran out. Now, during the Coronavirus pandemic, the most visible heroes are the health care professionals, who are saving others and risking their own lives while doing so.

These heroes have much in common with the people that we honor today – America’s fallen veterans. They are men and women who have sacrificed their own lives so others could live. They are both elite and ordinary. They are elite in the sense of character. Giving your life so others could live is the ultimate definition of selfless.

They are ordinary in the fact that they represent the diverse fabric of our country. They are rich and poor, black and white, male and female. They come from every ethnicity and background. In short, they looked like anyone of us.

As we celebrate the selfless and untiring performances of the healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, it brings to mind the military medics, doctors and nurses who sacrificed their lives while treating others on the battlefield.

One such hero was Pharmacist Mate Third Class Jack Williams. The Navy Reserve corpsman was only 20 years old when he landed on Iwo Jima 75 years ago.

On March 3, 1945, James Naughton, a Marine in Williams’ unit, was wounded by a grenade. While under intense enemy fire, Williams dragged Naughton to a shallow depression and treated his wounds. Williams used his own body as a screen and was shot four times. Yet he continued.

After he treated Naughton, Williams dressed his own wounds. He then proceeded to treat another Marine, despite his own immense pain. While heading to the rear, he was hit by a sniper’s bullet and killed. For his actions, Petty Officer Williams was awarded the Medal of Honor.

We also remember Army veterans like Lieutenant Sharon Lane.

According to her biographer, Philip Bigler, Lt. Lane threw herself into her work as a nurse. While serving in Colorado, she requested a transfer to Vietnam.

“There, at least, you are busy 12 hours a day, six or seven days a week,” she said in a 1968 letter to her parents.

Her dedication was obvious, even as she treated enemy Viet Cong soldiers who would return the favor by kicking, cursing and spitting at their American captors.

In the early morning of June 8, 1969, Sharon’s tour of duty ended. A Soviet-built rocket struck the hospital. Lieutenant Sharon A. Lane was killed in action at age 25.

If she were still here, her skills as a nurse might still be benefiting us during the current crisis. But not all of the heroes working during the COVID-19 pandemic are in the healthcare industry. Grocers, first responders, delivery workers and drive-through restaurant employees are just a few of the many people that we rely on to provide vital services for society while risking their own safety.

The military also has heroes in every occupational field. Truck drivers, cooks and administrative clerks have all paid the ultimate price. At sea, on land or in the air – military service requires great risk.

Roy Knight, Jr. was a pilot in the U.S. Air Force. On May 19, 1967, he was shot down while attacking a target on the Ho Chi Minh trail in Laos. He was posthumously promoted to colonel. Last year, a joint team from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency discovered and later identified Col. Knight’s remains.

When his remains arrived at Dallas’s Love Field, a crowd had gathered to witness the dignified transfer of the flag-draped casket from the Southwest Airlines jet into the receptive arms of the military honor guard. One observer reported that the entire crowd fell silent.

The Southwest flight was piloted by another Air Force veteran, Col. Knight’s son, Bryan. Bryan Knight was only five-years-old when he said goodbye to his father as the elder Knight left for Vietnam.

This is yet another legacy that these heroes leave behind. A legacy that includes their sons, daughters, grieving parents, grandparents and friends.

Their heroic acts are sometimes performed to protect those with whom they serve. Corporal Jason Dunham was a squad leader with the Third Battalion, 7th Marines in Iraq.

On April 14, 2004, his squad approached a Toyota Land Cruiser. After his squad discovered AK-47s in the vehicle, the enemy insurgent exited and engaged in hand-to-hand fighting with the unit. The driver dropped a grenade.

To save his fellow Marines, Corporal Dunham made the ultimate sacrifice. He threw himself on the grenade and tried to use his helmet to shield the blast. Severely wounded by the grenade’s fragments, Cpl. Dunham was taken off life-support eight days later.

Corporal Dunham died so other Marines could live. He, too, was awarded the Medal of Honor for his gallantry.

Approximately one million men and women of the U.S. military have lost their lives in defense of our nation since the founding of this great Republic.

Not all have died from enemy fire. Some have died from diseases that have too often festered around war zones. Often times, deaths from disease and accidents outnumbered casualties caused by enemy weapons.

During the Spanish American War, 60 soldiers of the all-black 24th Infantry Regiment volunteered to serve as nurses. Thirty-six of them would later die of yellow fever or malaria.

A generation later, the flu would kill nearly 16,000 U.S. soldiers in France during World War I. Another 30,000 American servicemembers died in stateside camps. These men and women could have isolated safely in their homes. But they knew they had an important job to do. A mission to accomplish. They were all on a mission to serve.

Even when the enemy is an invisible virus or a microscopic germ, the sacrifices made are just as meaningful. The U.S. military has already lost servicemembers to COVID-19.

This Memorial Day as we continue to honor those who fell for us in battle, let’s also pause to remember those who have also sacrificed their lives while serving others.

May God bless them and may God bless you for remembering them here today.

Thank you.

Source: The American Legion

Covid-19 has Ayesha Gallion dreaming of hiking, picking fruit on farms, visiting museums

While the novel coronavirus pandemic has been a nightmare for just about everyone, it hasn’t yet spoiled the summer dreams of Morgan State University alum, Ayesha Gallion. “I don’t know if or when New Jersey, Philadelphia and New York museums will be open anytime soon,” said Ayesha Gallion, who works as a senior communications editor for a firm in New Jersey. “I have always taken my children to experience culture— picking fruit on farms, exhibits, performances.

“It’s all virtual now, thus my strong desire to take a drive to Maine. But who knows— a lot of other people may have the same idea.”

A divorced mom, Gallion’s struggle coping is real not just for her, but for her 16-year-old daughter Imaara who is going into her senior year of high school; and her 11-year-old son, Adam, who will enter middle school in September.

“My son had a camping trip as part of his send-off with the school— a tradition where we live,” Gallion said. “Of course, this was canceled, and to go along with that, my daughter really went through a difficult time of missing her friends.”

To help compensate for the letdown, Gallion says she allows her daughter to phone and Facetime a lot later than usual. She sometimes takes both her children’s grocery shopping, but following the state’s best practices; she usually shops alone.

“I take them so that they can see what the shelves looked like when the pandemic really hit hard— so empty,” Gallion said. “They are now seeing toilet paper return to the shelves, slowly by surely.”

At Morgan State, Gallion says she found an alumni page that reminds her of a playground. “We share photos and even our comments on the [Instagram] “Verzuz” battles.”

However, as the situation continues, Gallion says she sees the need to take a break from social media and focus on her physical well being which, like millions of others, was interrupted because of quarantine.

“For a while, our circadian rhythms were really wacky. To a degree, it has not normalized,” Gallion said. “I do try to get to bed whenever I can at a decent hour. I’ve also ordered several great books to keep my mind stimulated like Toni Morrison’s ‘Source of Self Regard,’ and NAACP-award nominated book of my fellow Morgan State friend, Dr. Damaris Hill’s, ‘A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing.'”

Gallion has even started writing letters and sending them via the postal service, a practice that mostly disappeared since the advent of email and social media. She also hosts a podcast about communication, which she records from home.

Gallion says her children are coming through the pandemic healthy, but it hasn’t been easy.

“At first I was very strict with my daughter about the amount of time she was spending on the phone in group chats. It would be 1:30 a.m., and she would have ‘virtual school’ in the morning. I would give her a lecture about being more responsible,” Gallion said. “After a while, I did ease up and allow some flexibility as long as she was getting her work done. My son refuses to let me try cutting his hair. His fade is now some kind of beautiful black cloud just growing out of this purple baseball cap that he wears all the time now— even inside.

“I let the kids relax when they need to. But they do have chores. I find that we are still trying to catch up with housework. This is my daughter’s last summer to just really be a kid – next summer, and she will have graduated from high school.

“I am trying to figure out how to make this summer special. I was thinking of maybe taking her and her brother to hike Mt. Katahdin in Maine. We would drive.”

Covid-19: Now What America?

America is now opening back up. People are starting to venture back to church. Places of work are reopening. Restaurants are reopening. State parks are reopening. The beaches are opening in many places. Most Americans are breathing a sigh of relief. Americans are sick and tired of Covid-19. We’re tired of hearing about it and we’re tired of the repercussions from it.

Today, more Americans are unemployed since The Great Depression and more unemployment claims have been filed than ever before. Many Americans filed for unemployment weeks ago and still haven’t received a penny. I continue to hear from people who haven’t received a stimulus check.

We are tired of the news and the latest countdown of every county’s death stats from Covid-19. If you want to increase our risk of mental illness just keep watching television eight hours a day, as many Americans have been doing. In my town we have to hear about how many have died from every county in three states. Our hearts break and grieve for these families. It’s just tough hearing the stats every day about so many counties in so many different states.

What must be next? We must find a vaccine for Covid-19. We must develop it in our country if at all possible, and we must not enrich China with billions of dollars with anything that comes out of that country. China has done and given us enough. We don’t need more from China of anything. By the way, quit buying anything made from China.

Use commonsense! Be safe, be smart. Don’t go to church if you don’t want to! If you have health or age issues stay home or go walk the park. People in church are going to be in close proximity. It cannot be avoided totally. Hallways are narrow and restrooms are small at church. You are going to be close to somebody. You can go to church later. Pray at home, read your Bible at home and if you have any income you can mail your church a check. However, if you want to go to church then go but respect other people. Wear your mask for now and be distant. Be courteous.

Go back to work if you still have a job. Your employer doesn’t want you to be sick. Your employer is financially struggling now too. He wants to keep the factory or the business safe and healthy. They can’t make it if everybody gets sick. Go to work and be a part of the solution— don’t be the problem.

Go somewhere if you can. America and actually the entire planet are stir crazy. Keep your mask handy and wash your hands a lot. Carry your disinfectants with you. Clean everything often. Respect social distancing. Be safe.

Next, start thinking about how you are going to vote this fall. If you don’t like how your elected leaders are leading then you can change it by voting.

Dr. Glenn Mollette is an author and syndicated columnist. To contact him, email: or visit his website:href=”