All posts by Trib

Republicans Peddling Myths

Trump and his Republican supporters are losing their argument about Trump being the country’s economic savior as the economy tanks, mainly because of his non-handling of the pandemic.

They appeared to be winning the argument last May when 54 percent of registered voters said Trump would better handle the economy than 42 percent for Biden. Now, incredibly, Trump and Biden are tied at 49 percent apiece on who would manage the economy better. Continue reading Republicans Peddling Myths

Words

by Amy Johnson,
Minister for Sexuality Education

I’ve been thinking a lot about words lately, and language, encouraged by the indomitable Rev. Dr. Velda Love in the Sacred Conversations to End Racism Fall Institute.

I’ve been thinking about the characteristics of white supremacy culture, and how “worship of the written word” is included on the list. I’ve been thinking about who controls what can be published and who decides who can even learn to write. Continue reading Words

Millionaires and Billionaires Keep Winning and Poor Children Keep Losing

A recent Americans for Tax Fairness press release headline read: “BILLIONAIRE WEALTH GREW BY $845 BILLION, OR 29%, AS AMERICA STRUGGLED THROUGH FIRST SIX MONTHS OF PANDEMIC: While Millions Lost Jobs, Businesses, Health & Lives, Nation’s 643 Richest Saw Their Collective Fortune Leap Nearly 30%.” The report continued: “Needless to say, ordinary workers did not fare as well . . . In fact, this billionaires’ bonanza occurred against a general backdrop of working-class pain: 6.6 million Americans got coronavirus, and almost 200,000 died from it. Over 50 million Americans lost jobs, with nearly 14 million still unemployed. 30 million are collecting unemployment benefits (counting contract workers), up from 1.6 million a year earlier. Nearly 30 million Americans have gone hungry. 12 million Americans have lost employee-sponsored health insurance. Big swaths of business have shut down, including 100,000 restaurants.” Continue reading Millionaires and Billionaires Keep Winning and Poor Children Keep Losing

‘Made It Out’ Author Recalls Escape From Streets of New Orleans and Corporate America

Ross Williams made it out, and then he wrote a book about it.

Growing up in New Orleans’ 7th Ward can be rife with challenges. The horror stories far exceed the successful ones. Ross’s journey is an exception, and an exceptional one.

Surrounded by a solid family with community values, Williams attended Tulane University where he studied sociology. He has gone on to become the author of two best-sellers within an eight-month span.

“Made It Out” is testimony not only to his journey, but also to the similarities of surviving the streets and corporate America. His follow-up book, “Crabs In A Barrel: War On Racism,” gives a different perspective on the phrase that focuses more on the barrel than on the crab.

Author is just one of Williams’ many hats. He is also CEO of Williams Commerce Writing Services, which aims to empower job seekers, authors and entrepreneurs.

Photo courtesy of Ross Williams

Zenger News invited Williams for a Q&A session to learn more about his break-out book and journey of discovery.

Percy Crawford interviewed Ross Williams for Zenger News.


Percy Crawford interviewed Ross Williams for Zenger News (Photo courtesy of Percy Crawford)

Zenger: How did you break the cycle, so to speak, and make it out of the 7th Ward in New Orleans?

Williams: Really learned as much as possible. So, really learning what cursed prior generations and trying to avoid those same things. A lot of that came from learning from my parents who were born in the 1940s, so a lot of my family members are older. So, I have a lot of old-school values. I had the chance to learn about life before my era… I was able to accumulate all of that and just learn from every lesson or loss that I had in life and just never settled.

Zenger: What was it like growing up there and seeing some of the things you experienced?

Williams: I had a sense of pride about my community. My mother’s side of the family has been part of the St. Bernard, 7th Ward community since it was established back in the 1930s and 40s. A lot of people talk about the downfall of the neighborhood. Of course, I discuss that in my first book, “Made It Out,” some of the things I experienced. But one of the big things my neighborhood helped with was just building a confidence about myself and my abilities. At first it was basketball and then it became a swag with everything I do. I believe that I can be the best at whatever I put my mind to.

Zenger: What made you decide to even write a book?

Williams: Really to help other people to make it out of situations that they encountered. At first when I was writing my book, it was kind of like making it out of the inner city. I felt my lessons were applicable to any environment that you can grow up in. Like I said, learning from mistakes, gravitating towards positive energy, and learning from your losses. I really just wanted to give people the blueprint because halfway through the book it became about making it out of corporate America and becoming an entrepreneur. As of right now, even just picking up from there, I’m trying to show the world that I’ve made it out since then. Since the book, I’m still making it out.

Zenger: You actually make parallels in the book about the similarities of making it out of the street life and making it through corporate America. As crazy as it sounds, there’s not very much separation, is there?

Williams: I think in society with social engineering, a lot of us feel that if we are a different race or different religion, society has taught us that the next person is very different from us. And we can’t see eye-to-eye just because we come from different worlds or experiences. Gangstas and crooked people growing up in inner cities are no different than white collar gangstas. White collar gangstas are actually more cutthroat because at least in the neighborhood you know who to look out for. In corporate America, a lot of people have ulterior motives, but they project friendly energy. It’s not really necessary. It’s not these people need me to get by like in the neighborhood. It’s just out of malice. That’s why I feel like it’s grimier in corporate America because of how it’s presented to you.

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Zenger: It can be difficult to navigate that.

Williams: Right. And something that my neighborhood taught me, once I started communicating with people in higher level CEO positions or people that made in the upper six figures or north of that, just the intellect and growing the confidence once I interacted with these people, it’s like, “Oh, I can sit in these positions too.” A lot of times we are made to look at certain people as if they are superior to us, especially when we’re coming from inner cities. But we have the same abilities as those people. A lot of those people had easier routes to get there. That’s one thing of just gaining confidence along each step of your journey.

Zenger: Did you anticipate becoming a best-selling author and your books having the kind of impact that they have had?

Williams: Humbly speaking, my mom always told me, “Don’t step at all if you are going to half step.” So, I know the tears, the blood and sweat that I put into each project, or even a client’s book. I put that same energy towards everything. I’m very strategic and I move with a sense of urgency. I visualized the successes that I have had in my career so many times over and over, that all of the excitement is poured into the process each day. So, when it happens, I’m kind of militant about it, so I’m really not surprised. I really put my all into each thing and utilize my natural skillset. I haven’t been surprised so far.

(Edited by André Johnson and Judy Isacoff)



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Deltas present virtual Jabberwock 2020 winners

Jada V. – Miss Jabberwock

The Roanoke Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. has hosted Jabberwock for over three decades. Due to Covid-19, however the live show was postponed and eventually cancelled! However, Covid-19 didn’t stop the show. Under the leadership of Siclinda Canty-Elliott, Chair, and the Jabberwock Steering committee, the Roanoke Alumnae Chapter presented its’ very first Virtual Jabberwock on September 5, 2020. Continue reading Deltas present virtual Jabberwock 2020 winners