March 6, 2015
IF HE was alive today, William Shakespeare could conceivably be an in-demand writer of action movies. After all, so many of his most-famous works include a heaping helping of violence, much of it in the form of sword fights. For instance, there's "Macbeth," which was scheduled to open last night at Old City's Arden Theatre Co. (it runs through April 19). "The Scottish Play," as generations of superstitious thespians have referred to it, is one of Shakespeare's monumental works - a timeless tale of maternal manipulation and back-stairs skullduggery.
February 21, 2015 |
Mayor Nutter said Thursday that his successor must understand the importance of preventing youth violence if Philadelphia is to thrive. "You know what year it is," he told a room crowded with educators, politicians, and youth outreach groups on Temple University's campus. "I will go. But the work, the effort, and the impact, must continue. Whoever comes next must understand how critically important, how critically vital, how impactful this work is. " The city has made some important progress, he noted: homicides are down, employment is up, and development is booming.
February 20, 2015 |
YOUTH VIOLENCE is a disease and it spreads like a virus, Mayor Nutter told about 75 people at a Temple University conference yesterday. Attendees included activists, educators and members of the mayor's Youth Violence Prevention Collaborative. "Violence is a public-health crisis," Nutter said. "It is a disease. We know how to treat disease. " Nutter cited a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to the city and Temple to set up Ceasefire Philly, an offshoot of a Chicago-based group that uses methods and strategies similar to disease control to stop violence in communities.
January 27, 2015
ON JAN. 16, as I was riding down Market Street, I witnessed a boy lying in the street with a bike close to his body. I thought he was maybe riding the bike and had just been hit by a car. I was just speculating about what happened because I didn't see a car anywhere in sight. SEPTA and Philadelphia police were just then arriving at the scene. He appeared to not be breathing. I could see them performing CPR on him. The incident started to draw a crowd, and I said a prayer and continued on my journey.
January 20, 2015 |
EVERY TIME she closes her eyes, Jamellia O'Neal sees the face of her 14-year-old nephew, Nafis O'Neal - his wide, handsome smile that could light up a room, caught somewhere between boyhood and manhood. And because of a spat among high schoolers and a 16-year-old boy who couldn't let it go without resorting to violence, that's the way Jamellia O'Neal and the rest of Nafis' family will remember the West Philadelphia High School freshman. Nafis, a standout football and basketball player who loved to ride his bike and spend time with his little brother, was murdered after school Friday when a schoolmate allegedly plunged a knife through his young heart during an argument at 46th and Market streets, police say. Monday night, O'Neal joined about 200 people on the sidewalk where Nafis took his last breaths to say prayers, light candles and release blue and white balloons in memory of the teen, who O'Neal said strove to emulate his father, an Ironworker, and was the middle child of five siblings in a tight-knit family.
January 19, 2015
T. MILTON STREET SR.'S fighting spirit has not died, and neither has his desire to be mayor. The former state senator, 75, says he's poised to announce another run at the city's top job. Street garnered 36,000 votes in the 2011 Democratic primary. That's a not-too-shabby tally for a guy who served time in federal prison in 2008 for three misdemeanor counts of tax evasion. Street, the brother of former Mayor John Street, says he'll once again run on a platform to fight violence and empower the city's poor and downtrodden - those disregarded as "throw-aways.
December 31, 2014 |
"YOU COULD get hurt being out here, because there are a lot of weirdos out there. " Robert Palen allegedly gave that warning to a woman he approached on a late-summer night in 2010. Not long after Palen offered that advice, the woman later told police, he allegedly raped her on a park bench in a secluded area. Judging by his criminal record, Palen knows a lot about hurting women. Palen, 38, was hauled back to Philly on Dec. 26 after rotting in a Wisconsin prison for more than a year, police sources told the Daily News last night.
December 17, 2014 |
WHATEVER REASON we eventually settle on for the latest deadly shooting spree, this time in Montgomery County yesterday - mental illness, easy access to guns, a world gone mad - we know one thing for sure: A gun shattered families, a community and our sense of safety. A gun. Again. Just hours after the second anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Conn., that left 26 people dead, including 20 children, and in the midst of a siege in Sydney, Australia, that eventually ended with three dead, including the assailant, another shooting spree unfolded closer to home.
November 27, 2014 |
The predicted violent reaction to a grand jury's decision not to charge a Missouri police officer in the Aug. 9 fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager must be seen in its broader context. While many of the rioters Monday in Ferguson, Mo., used the grand jury decision as an excuse to loot and burn, others wrongly chose violence to vent their frustration not only with the exoneration of Officer Darren Wilson, but with a justice system they believe treats African Americans unfairly.
November 26, 2014 |
I UNDERSTAND, and support, the thousands of people across the nation who are showing their solidarity with Ferguson after a grand jury decided not to indict the police officer who killed Michael Brown. What I don't understand is why we don't show the same kind of sorrow and support to people in Philadelphia whose lives are also being torn apart by violence. Why we don't take to the streets for children being terrorized and traumatized by a daily dose of fear and chaos right in our own back yards.