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Colin L. Powell, former Secretary of State, 84

Colin L. Powell, the first Black man to serve as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and first Black Secretary of State, died Monday of complications of COVID-19. The 84-year-old was also diagnosed with and being treated for a form of blood cancer and Parkinson’s disease. 

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United States Army General Colin Powell, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff/ Wiki Commons

Colin L. Powell, the first Black man to serve as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and first Black Secretary of State, died Monday of complications of COVID-19. The 84-year-old was also diagnosed with and being treated for a form of blood cancer and Parkinson’s disease.

A four-star general who also served on the National Security Council, Powell was born in Harlem, New York, to Jamaican immigrants in 1937. He attended public schools in the Bronx, where he grew up, and would graduate from City College of New York before joining the armed services in 1958 as a second lieutenant because of his participation in ROTC.

He was a professional soldier for 37 years, including two tours in Vietnam, rising steadily through the ranks until achieving 4-star general status in 1989 and, later that year, became the youngest and the first Afro-Caribbean to serve as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff, the highest military position in the Department of Defense.

Powell was an exceptional military leader.  He earned the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, and the Soldier’s Medal for heroism.

A moderate, the lifelong Republican was well liked by both political parties, but he ultimately decided against running for public office himself.

He was selected in 2000 to be Secretary of State, transforming General Powell from soldier to statesman.

He became known for persuading the American public and world leaders that Iraq was creating weapons of mass destruction when he ultimately agreed with President George Bush’s administration determination to remove Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. 

It would turn out that the allegations of weapons of mass destruction were not true and Powell would consider the war and loss of life a blot on his record the rest of his life. He returned to private life in 2005 and became an acclaimed speaker in high demand.

He broke rank with his fellow Republicans when he supported then-candidate Barack Obama’s bid for president in 2008. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom twice.

Powell earned the trust of U.S. presidents, foreign leaders, diplomats, and the American people.

“I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of General Colin Powell. I send my sincere condolences to General Powell’s wife, Alma, his family, his friends, and all of his loved ones” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee.

“General Powell was a trailblazer, serving as the first Black Secretary of State,” Lee continued. “I was fortunate enough to travel with General Powell during my early days in Congress to monitor elections in Nigeria and was moved by his kindness and expertise. I witnessed the close friendship between the late Congressman Ron Dellums, Chair of the House Armed Services Committee, and General Powell.

“Their relationship was a powerful example of a mutual admiration and respect between public officials despite their different opinions on policy. Despite our disagreements on some issues, General Powell was steadfast in his commitment to racial equity, diversity and our democracy. General Powell served this country with decency, integrity, and showed respect to everyone he encountered.

“May he rest in eternal peace and power,” Lee concluded.

Powell is survived by his wife, Alma, and three children.

Sources for this story include various news sites, Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s press office and Wikipedia.

The Oakland Post’s coverage of local news in Alameda County is supported by the Ethnic Media Sustainability Initiative, a program created by California Black Media and Ethnic Media Services to support community newspapers across California.

 

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California Black Media

Gov. Newsom and Gov. DeSantis Go Head-to-Head in Nationally Televised Debate

Conservative Fox News personality Sean Hannity moderated the duel, during which the TV pundit, more than once, injected his opinion, and appeared to be providing subtle assists to DeSantis. As the debate progressed, it was clear that opinions about each topic discussed was representative of the philosophical and political chasm that divides liberal and conservative America, and a preview of campaign mudslinging that is bound to intensify as the 2024 presidential campaign ensues.

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The debate between Gov. Gavin Newsom and Gov. Ron DeSantis was moderated by Fox News personality Sean Hannity. California Black Media image.
The debate between Gov. Gavin Newsom and Gov. Ron DeSantis was moderated by Fox News personality Sean Hannity. California Black Media image.

By California Black Media

In an intense, 95-minute-plus televised faceoff between California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Nov. 30, the men traded jabs and putdowns, defended their respective gubernatorial records, disagreed sharply on how to solve the country’s most pressing problems, and expressed clashing views on the performance of the Biden-Harris administration.

Conservative Fox News personality Sean Hannity moderated the duel, during which the TV pundit, more than once, injected his opinion, and appeared to be providing subtle assists to DeSantis.

As the debate progressed, it was clear that opinions about each topic discussed was representative of the philosophical and political chasm that divides liberal and conservative America, and a preview of campaign mudslinging that is bound to intensify as the 2024 presidential campaign ensues.

“I’ll tell you why I’m here,” Newsom said. “I’m here to tell the truth about the Biden-Harris record and also compare and contrast Ron DeSantis’ record and the Republican Party’s record” with that of California.

DeSantis blasted Newsom’s management of the COVID-19 crisis and criticized Newsom for prevalent crime, homelessness and deteriorating social conditions in California cities.

“You have the freedom to defecate in public in California,” DeSantis said. “You have the freedom to pitch a tent on Sunset Boulevard. You have the freedom to create a homeless encampment under a freeway and even light it on fire. They’re not the freedoms our founding fathers envisioned.”

Newsom took a jab at DeSantis’ presidential candidacy, predicting that the Florida Governor would be endorsing GOP frontrunner Donald Trump soon.

“There’s one thing we have in common,” Newsom said. “Neither of us will be the nominee for our party in 2024.

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BayCityNews

FDA Updates Approval of Pfizer Booster Vaccine for Children Under 5

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration updated its approval Tuesday of the Pfizer-BioNTech booster vaccine, making it available to some children under age 5. Before this update, children under 5 were not eligible for COVID-19 booster shots. Instead, they received three doses of the regular vaccine.

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As of December 2022, children age 4 and younger who have not been vaccinated receive the omicron variant-specific booster vaccine as the third dose in their primary vaccine series, following two doses of the original Pfizer vaccine.
As of December 2022, children age 4 and younger who have not been vaccinated receive the omicron variant-specific booster vaccine as the third dose in their primary vaccine series, following two doses of the original Pfizer vaccine.

By Eli Walsh
Bay City News

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration updated its approval Tuesday of the Pfizer-BioNTech booster vaccine, making it available to some children under age 5.

Before this update, children under 5 were not eligible for COVID-19 booster shots. Instead, they received three doses of the regular vaccine.

As of December 2022, children age 4 and younger who have not been vaccinated receive the omicron variant-specific booster vaccine as the third dose in their primary vaccine series, following two doses of the original Pfizer vaccine.

However, children in that age range who completed their initial vaccination series before December 2022 only received three doses of the original Pfizer vaccine, and are less protected against more infectious variants of the virus as a result.

FDA officials updated the vaccine’s emergency use authorization Tuesday to allow those children who only received the original Pfizer COVID vaccine to receive one dose of the bivalent booster if it has been at least two months since they completed their initial series.

Other children under age 5 are not eligible for the booster, although everyone age 5 and up is eligible for a booster.

“Currently available data show that vaccination remains the best defense against severe disease, hospitalization and death caused by COVID-19 across all age groups, and we encourage all eligible individuals to make sure that their vaccinations are up to date with a bivalent COVID-19 vaccine,” said Dr. Peter Marks, the director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.

Clinical data has found that both the original Pfizer vaccine and the booster vaccine that targets the omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 are safe for everyone aged 6 months and up and effective at preventing the worst outcomes of COVID infection, including serious illness and death.

COVID vaccines are available at primary care providers, retail pharmacies and some facilities operated by local health departments.

Copyright © 2023 Bay City News, Inc.  All rights reserved.  Republication, rebroadcast or redistribution without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited. Bay City News is a 24/7 news service covering the greater Bay Area.

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Bay Area

COVID-19 Response Grant Program

The City of Union City will be issuing another round of its COVID-19 Response Grant Program. The program has distributed approximately $620,000 in grant funds and forgivable loans to the community to respond to the impacts of COVID-19 and will distribute another $322,000 through this latest round of funding. The City will utilize federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and CARES Act funds.

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The City will be holding two informational/technical assistance meetings to support residents and businesses with their applications and respond to any questions. These meetings will be streamed via Zoom. See below for meeting information and Zoom meeting links.
The City will be holding two informational/technical assistance meetings to support residents and businesses with their applications and respond to any questions. These meetings will be streamed via Zoom. See below for meeting information and Zoom meeting links.

The City of Union City will be issuing another round of its COVID-19 Response Grant Program. The program has distributed approximately $620,000 in grant funds and forgivable loans to the community to respond to the impacts of COVID-19 and will distribute another $322,000 through this latest round of funding. The City will utilize federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and CARES Act funds.

Grants are available through the City’s Road to Recovery Small Business Assistance Program and the Residential Rental Assistance Program. The City began accepting applications on March 6, 2023, at 9 a.m. and will begin reviewing applications (up to 50 applications for each grant opportunity) submitted on or before March 30, 2023, at 5 p.m. The program information and the online application are available on the City’s website:

https://www.unioncity.org/548/COVID-19-Response-Grant-Program

The City will be holding two informational/technical assistance meetings to support residents and businesses with their applications and respond to any questions. These meetings will be streamed via Zoom. See below for meeting information and Zoom meeting links.

Tuesday, March 14, 2023: 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

https://unioncity-org.zoom.us/j/89061570160

Wednesday, March 15, 2023: 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.

https://unioncity-org.zoom.us/j/81868680531

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