Before combing through the issue, let’s start with a definition: when we use the word “crown,” it relates to our hair.
The regal metaphor isn’t coincidental. Hair has been symbolically connected to one’s strength or power since Biblical times. And for many Black people, it is also emblematic of self-love, consciousness, and respect for our ancestors — the original people.
In the words of former Essence magazine editor-in-chief Susan Taylor, “to dread loc one’s hair is a spiritual journey that many don’t change.” The same can be said about braiding one’s hair and or wearing it naturally without texture-altering chemicals.
Sadly, that proud history hasn’t stopped well-documented discrimination against natural Black hair — in corporate America, schools, and other settings. It has been particularly harmful to Black women and girls who wear styles such as dread locs, braids, twists, Bantu Knots, and afros.
That specific brand of bigotry is what motivated a proposed law known as The Crown Act, which would forbid discrimination based on hair texture and hair styles. The House of Representatives passed it last March, but Senate Republicans have thus far opted to block final passage in Congress.
That is unfortunate and troubling. The American establishment must respect the fullness of Black identity — and Las Vegas Black Image will always stand with those who fight for our right to bring our whole selves to the world.
BY DR. ELLEN BROWN
As always, we welcome a new year in the same way: “It’s a new dawn. It’s a new day. It’s a new life for me. And I’m feeling good!”
I love using the Nina Simone rendition of this song. The arrival of a new year somehow brings us hope, opportunity and power to move on — or start over — in our lives. Like the rainbow after the storm, the calm after the turmoil, the peace after the destruction. New Year’s resolutions — really? Look back on your past ones. How did those work out for you?
The reality is we are always looking for opportunities to start over. But why? Most everything we need is stockpiled in our lives.
A major power victory for 2023 in the Las Vegas Valley is the inauguration of Pamela Goynes Brown, elected mayor of North Las Vegas!
If you are a resident of NLV, you made the power work for us all! I commend each one of the candidates who stepped forward and put their hats in the ring. Do you realize how much power it takes to do that? A lot! In the final count, it was her time: Pamela Goynes Brown, a native of Las Vegas’ West Side, educated in LV Schools, a Bishop Gorman High School graduate, HBCU graduate of Prairie View. And let’s not forget: parents dedicated to educational opportunities for all. Specifically, those on the West Side of Las Vegas. The Village. She knows and understands the people of NLV. She works for you.
Consider yourself part of the Village if you are in a place and position to make this happen in the next generation — especially for someone whose life already seems destined to include their footprint on the next generation. Mayor Pamela Goynes Brown stepped into the ring with power already on her side. Her power is not for her benefit…it is for YOURS and for OURS!
Talk to her. Support her. Show your love for her. Even if you do not live in NLV your voice is important whether it finds its way to NLV constituents or our own community elected leaders, let it be heard. Mayor Goynes Brown is my sorority sister, and she exudes the belief that standing together with like-minded people will make a difference for the betterment of all. Your power is her power. Tell her what you need, and she will listen. Share your concerns, and she will act.
It’s a new day, a new dawn — and there is work to do!
Dr. Ellen Brown enjoys writing on political topics that encourage and invite discussion leading to action. As a retired university educator and Dean, she is enjoying her life in Color with POWER! Ellen welcomes you to contact her with your ideas and stories on how you use your power! firstname.lastname@example.org
BY CLAYTEE D. WHITE
We began sharing this timeline of the African-American experience and presence in the Las Vegas Valley with events that started in 1870. This month, in the third installment, we’ll trace an extraordinary 20-year period from WWII-era migration to 1960.
1941: WWII migration; Blacks worked at Basic Magnesium Incorporated (BMI) where manganese ore was processed. This ore would be used to build airplanes, rifles, bullets, and other implements of war. Many Blacks migrated from Fordyce, AK; Tallulah, LA; and several small towns in Mississippi for work in this essential wartime industry.
The Las Vegas Westside became a larger, more complex community with many shacks and tents among homes; population growth was too rapid to keep pace with housing needs.
1943: The U.S. government built Carver Park for Black BMI workers. The design was developed by Black architect Paul R. Williams. Lubertha Johnson was hired as the social director. Carver Park contained 64 units for single male workers, 104 one-bedroom units, 104 two-bedroom units, and 52 three-bedroom apartments. Carver Park opened in October 1943 with a school and recreational hall. By the time that this complex was complete, most Black migrants had found housing in the Westside.
1943: Many vibrant Westside businesses were located on Jackson Avenue along with D, E, and F Streets. Most nightclubs with gaming did business on the Westside from the 1940s through the 1980s. First was Smokey Joe’s Club Alabama founded in May 1943 at 1400-02 F St. The Town Tavern was the final gaming establishment to close in the 2000s.
1952: Marble Manor, federal housing complex opened.
1952: Street paving began on the Westside. Prior to this, there were no paved streets, city sewage service, sidewalks, or street lights.
1954-1955: Moulin Rouge, the first integrated hotel casino, was constructed and opened. Its elegance rivaled properties on the Strip, but the Rouge was located on Bonanza at H Street, in the Westside community.
1954-1955: Berkley Square, the city’s first black middle class housing development, was constructed by architect Paul R. Williams. Financiers included Thomas Berkley, black businessman and attorney from the Bay area. Berkley Square was nominated for a listing on the National Register of Historic Places in 2012. It is currently being researched to determine if Highland Square and Cadillac Arms, also built at this time, were possibly the work of Paul R. Williams.
1960: The Moulin Rouge Agreement was reached on March 26 — a verbal pact establishing integration of public accommodations in Las Vegas.
Bonus: Who is Paul R. Williams? He was the first Black architect allowed to join the American Institute of Architects (AIA). His glamorous homes were sought after by the Hollywood elite. His designs were located in neighborhoods where, in the 1920s–1950s, he could not live because of systemic racism. Williams excelled at his craft by using his genius and his understanding of the era to learn to draft a building upside down. The elegant buildings would come alive as he sat across the desk from his white clientele. Jim Crow did not allow Williams to sit beside them.
Claytee D. White can be reached at (702) 895-2222.
Happy New Year! January is Folic Acid Awareness Month. The CDC urges all women of reproductive age to take 400 micrograms of folic acid each day, in addition to consuming food with folate from a varied diet, to help prevent some major birth defects of the baby’s brain (anencephaly) and spine (spina bifida).
Folic acid is a B vitamin. Our bodies use it to make new cells. As we think about the skin, hair, and nails, these and other parts of the body make new cells each day. Folic acid is the synthetic form of folate used in supplements and in fortified foods such as rice, pasta, bread, and some breakfast cereals.
Folic acid is important before and during pregnancy because when the baby is developing early during pregnancy, folic acid helps form the neural tube. Folic acid is very important because it can help prevent some major birth defects of the baby’s brain and spine. The neural tube forms the early brain and spine.
When taking folic acid, a higher than 400 mcg of folic acid each day is not necessarily better to prevent neural tube defects, unless a doctor recommends taking more due to other health conditions.
When planning to become pregnant, women who have already had a pregnancy affected by a neural tube defect should consult with their healthcare provider.
Every woman of reproductive age needs to get folic acid every day — whether she is planning to get pregnant or not — to help make new cells.
Food fortification is a way to add vitamins or minerals, or both, to foods. Some rice, pasta, bread, and breakfast cereals are fortified with folic acid. These foods are labeled, “enriched.” Folic acid is a specific type of folate that does not generally occur naturally.
For more information, call Las Vegas All Women’s Care at (702) 522-9640. Or visit us at 700 Shadow Lane #165 in Las Vegas.
We are so excited about the “NEW-NOW” year of 2023. Las Vegas Black Image Magazine will continue to bring you — our loyal readers — a positive showcase of Black life in Southern Nevada.
This issue is very special — spotlighting many of you within the community who wear your crowns beautifully, with pride and excellence.
Many offered insightful words on economic upheaval in Southern Nevada’s Black community — and what you think 2023 will bring — in this month’s “Community Speaks” feature.
Our “Photos of the Month” represent many within the community — and speaks to the values of family, friends and community unification. We thank you for all of your contributions.
All of our contributing writers: Louis Overstreet; Dr. Ellen Brown; Claytee White; Dr. Annette Mayes; Las Vegas Clark County Library District; and Metro Police Department continue to bring key information that is geared to enhance our lives. They are all the lifeblood of Black Image. bringing light to all.
Las Vegas Black Image Magazine’s executive staff is so appreciated and honored for keeping us on the cutting edge of publishing.
We look forward to hearing your ideas and any contributions you would like to make to Las Vegas Black Image. Please don’t hesitate to email us at email@example.com.
God bless you and thanks once again,
Charles Tureaud & Kimberly Bailey Tureaud
BY LOUIE OVERSTREET
My prediction is based on three conditions: an increasingly chaotic world order; economic uncertainty; and a tumultuous political climate.
Sadly, the United Nations is all pomp and no circumstance — so it is utterly useless in impacting crises in Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Israel. The United Nations stands idly by as Russia creates daily crimes against humanity in Ukraine. North Korea is rapidly developing the ability to place nuclear warheads on ICBMs. Iran is oppressing its people — especially women — and supplying Russia with drones that are used to attack civilian targets in Ukrainian cities. Also, not helping world peace matters, Israel is returning to power, for a third time, the zealot Benjamin Netanyahu — who tries to embarrass America every chance he gets.
Our nation has rarely seen, at the same time, economic indicators of low employment, job vacancies, rising annual deficits and national debt, the wage gap, all topped with a good helping of inflation. That means predicting the near future of economic prosperity, a soft or hard recession, is about as certain as winning the Powerball — which has a probability of 1 in 292,201,338.
While it is far from a certain proposition to predict what is in store for our economy, predicting that America will experience political turmoil, as we say in Vegas, is a sure thing.
As a kid, I saw every “Three Stooges” movie ever made — but I am willing to give odds that none will be as funny as the debate and division that will occur on the House side of the Capitol building. There will no longer exist a need to change the filibuster rule, now that the Repugs will be in control of the House. No significant bills will be passed. Also, expect the Biden/Trump (also known as the Octogenarian v. Septuagenarian) potential rematch to remain the best circus act in town, until mid-summer.
The biggest casualties of this calamitous climate will be world peace, economic certainty and political stability. Ain’t it a damn shame?
Every time we conceptualize “new,” it may represent a change that arrives with little certainty. Let’s resolve this year to approach the concept with a mind toward positive movement — stepping into any situation prepared to make magic happen.
We understand that it might take time to accomplish certain tasks that involve others — but those things that uplift your mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing are dictated by your own momentum. How are you going to bring balance and peace into your life?
The universe demands organization for perspective and clarity. Nevertheless, we often neglect plans that can nourish and grow our own four-leaf clover. What are those things that give you mental nourishment — that spark motivation, innovation, and hunger for education? Seek that which stimulates you to embrace the reality of your personal freedom, to do and be what your passion SCREAMS.
What are those things that help you slip into that good sleep at night that replenishes your soul to smile even when the rain comes? What is your physical motion that is automatic — making heart and mind move with perfect rhythm and giving rise to circulation for a healthier you?
Release the stress that stagnates your ultimate growth. GET UP! Go where no man or woman has gone before. You are obliged to absorb the light that surrounds you, because a closed mind and heart may never experience the warmth that the world has to offer.
Understanding what fuels you will direct your spirit of intention. Graciousness will bring Him forth when you are in need of understanding in your solitude.
Emotions are so underrated and misunderstood. They lift the veils of confusion. Tapping into feelings can bring about the REAL as it relates to selecting your treasures or the trash you must let go. Get to know your emotional gifts that can be controlled by your own guidance. But always remember: He gave us these gifts of emotions that speak truths to our souls.
No one in this world is like YOU. What a gift!
As we enter the fifteenth year of Las Vegas Black Image, we want to express what an honor it is to serve the Southern Nevada community with positive stories and images that celebrate Black people in our state. So many people in the community have contributed to our success — allowing us to tell your stories, share your photos, and have space on your coffee tables.
The year 2022 brought its share of challenges — including the ongoing pandemic, and a loss of jobs and revenue for many Black-owned businesses.
But we made it! And some very historic things happened that Las Vegas Black Image had the pleasure to showcase: the appointment of the first Black woman on the Supreme Court, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson; North Las Vegas Mayor Pamela Goynes-Brown became the first Black woman elected to that post in Nevada; and our very own Aces brought home the WNBA championship.
We also spotlighted many Black-owned businesses at our annual Taste & Sounds of Soul Banquet, along with our very special LV Black Image Magazine 2022 Honors.
Las Vegas Black Image also sought to expose health disparities that affect the Black community. The call-to-action slogan “Go to the Doctor” was welcomed by many in our effort to save lives. By providing a platform for local medical professionals to interact with the community, Black Image Magazine will continue to be a trusted conduit for information, education and motivation to advance the good health of our people.
The celebration of our local seniors is also a continuing feature, as we show appreciation for those who have paved the way for all of Nevada’s upward mobility.
Las Vegas Black Image has complete appreciation for all of the advertising partners who support every issue. This is real unification for diversity, inclusion, and equity in our state.
Las Vegas Black Image Magazine’s executive publishing team thanks you, the readers, for picking up its issues every month and for visiting us online at: lasvegasblackimage.com.
Have a fantastic 2023!