General News

The Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women is launching a statewide awareness campaign to call attention to domestic violence in the state.
The effort is called “Live Violence Free,” and it uses a flag as a symbol of the effort to reduce violence in our communities.

Liz Richards is the Executive Director of the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women. She stopped by KFAI and talked with Yvette Howie, who asked how the flag campaign works.

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Sometimes what you planned as a one-time event becomes something much more.

Abdul “Duke” Fakir, Levi Stubbs, Lawrence Payton and Renaldo “Obie” Benson sang together at a friend’s birthday party for the first time in 1954. They enjoyed it so much that they decided that night to start a group, first named “The Four Aims” and later changed to the “Four Tops”.

The Four Tops helped shaped the sound of Motown and brought joy to the hearts of many with songs like “Sugar Pie Honey Bunch”, and “Reach Out I’ll Be There”.

On February 23rd, one of the group’s founding members, Abdul Fakir, was honored with the Living Legend award by St. Peter’s AME Church in South Minneapolis.

KFAI’s Jumondeh Tweh was there, and he talked with “Duke” Fakir about the group’s great history and classic songs.

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KFAI will present “For Pete’s Sake, a celebration of the life and work of musician and activist Pete Seeger, as a holiday-brightening opener on Labor Day morning from 6 to 8 am.   This re-broadcast is appropriately timed because Seeger was a lifelong supporter of organized labor and union causes. 

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The Ebola outbreak in Liberia, Sierre Leone, and other West African countries is causing a regional public health emergency as health-care workers, families, and others attempt to provide care and supplies.

Minnesota has the largest Liberian immigrant population in the United States, and last month members of Minnesota’s Liberian Immigrant and Refugee community held a meeting with representatives of Minnesota’s Department of Health to discuss some of their concerns.

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The Chicago office of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) has announced the launch of “My Jihad”.  It’s an educational initiative that seeks to share the proper meaning of jihad as it is believed and practiced by the majority of Muslims around the world.   

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Natalie Warren is part of an 11 person expedition paddling the length of the Mississippi River. We check in with her on Wednesday mornings on The Morning Blend. She and her crew expect to arrive in New Orleans in late November or early December.
You can follow the trip online at Paddle 4 ward dot com.

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Several weeks have passed since national headlines described a Minnesota journalism controversy dubbed “Pointergate”.  

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Poet and playwright Amiri Baraka died in early January.
He was revered as an unapologetic champion of the Black Power Movement.
Baraka’s influence on American culture has been profound, and to celebrate his contributions a group of Minnesota artists have planned a major event for this Saturday.
“Spirit Reach: A Twin Cities Tribute to Imamu Amiri Baraka” will happen at 3 in the afternoon this coming Saturday, April 12, at the Capri Theater on West Broadway in Minneapolis. The show will feature Douglas Ewart, Toki Wright, Shá Cage, E.G. Bailey and many others, including j. Otis powell, who appeared recently on the KFAI program “Conversations with Al McFarlane”.
Here’s some of what Powell said about the life and legacy of Amiri Baraka.

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Minnesota Politicians and their run for the White House
Produced by Ahndi Fridell

Forty-four men have served as President of the United States, though none hail from Minnesota. In this MinneCulture documentary, KFAI legacy producer Ahndi Fridell profiles six local politicians who left a mark on national history in their run for the White House: Ignatius Donnelly, Floyd Olson, Harold Stassen, Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarthy and Walter Mondale.

This summer the City of Minneapolis and partners from across the state have collectively hosted events to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

A closing ceremony is scheduled for the Minneapolis Convention Center on Thursday, July 31st at 5pm. Toni Newborn is assistant director of the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights and chair of the closing ceremony. She talked with KFAI’s Xan Holston, who asked why it’s important to remember the anniversary of the passage of a piece of legislation.

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