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PRESS ROOM: Free Public Tours of the Tournament House

LOS ANGELES — Guided tours inside Tournament House, the iconic Southern California landmark, are open to the public.

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By Sentinel News Service

Our doors are open, and you’re invited! Guided tours inside Tournament House, the iconic Southern California landmark, are open to the public. Tours will be offered, at no cost, every Thursday at 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. beginning today, February 7. Tournament of Roses® volunteers from the Heritage Committee, knowledgeable of the organization’s history and details of the house, conduct the tours.

The Rose Bowl Game® room renovation at Tournament House is complete and open to the public for viewing. Highlights include: two new Hall of Fame touch screens, video playback of Rose Bowl Game history, depictions of Offensive and Defensive Player of the Game, a celebration of the 100-year anniversary of the 1919 Rose Bowl Game, the B-2 Flyover and more.

Tournament House serves as the official headquarters of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses, its staff and the 935 volunteer members who work year-round to organize the annual Rose Parade® presented by Honda and Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual.

Located in Pasadena, the house was once the home of chewing gum mogul William Wrigley Jr. and his wife, Ada.  After Ada’s death in 1958, the Wrigley family presented the property to the city of Pasadena, with the request that it become the base of operations for the Tournament of Roses. The Wrigley family enjoyed the Rose Parade as it unfolded just beyond their front yard.

Surrounding Tournament House are the Wrigley Gardens, which feature a floral display of roses, camellias and annuals. The gardens feature the All-America Rose Selections (AARS) award-winning Tournament of Roses rose developed especially for the Tournament of Roses Centennial in 1989.

Groups of 10 or more may call (626) 449-4100 for tour reservations.

This article originally appeared in the Los Angeles Sentinel

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Advice

Evangelical Technology: The New “E.T.”

In his book, “Branding Faith,” Phil Cooke wrote, “Whatever the purpose, the goal is to win the hearts and minds of the largest audience possible and imprint an indelible story around your church, ministry or mission.” In short Mr. Cooke is saying that how we tell our story and how our story looks, will determine the impact that we will have on a world in need of relevance.

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Curtis O. Robinson, Sr. is the senior pastor at the Faith Church in Oakland, CA. He is also managing director of Global Acquisitions at Nimbus Networks, LLC.
Curtis O. Robinson, Sr. is the senior pastor at the Faith Church in Oakland, CA. He is also managing director of Global Acquisitions at Nimbus Networks, LLC.

By Curtis O. Robinson, Sr., M.A., Resident fellow ’19 Harvard Divinity School

The year was 1982 and Steven Spielberg released the blockbuster movie of the century entitled, “E.T., The Extra Terrestrial.” The movie outgrossed Star Wars and in 1983 grossed more than $359 million in North America and $619 million worldwide. Spielberg was making an estimated $500,000 a day, and the rest was cinematic history.

With the onslaught of the COVID-19 virus, the strain and challenge of presenting a relevant Christ to a culture in need of spiritual balance has been demanding. For the most part, houses of worship have had to close their doors. However, a few have been strategic enough to weather the storm with minimal attendance for in-house worship. So, it is still a daunting task to continue to get the Word of God to a culture desperately in need of spiritual enrichment.

In his book, “Branding Faith,” Phil Cooke wrote, “Whatever the purpose, the goal is to win the hearts and minds of the largest audience possible and imprint an indelible story around your church, ministry or mission.” In short Mr. Cooke is saying that how we tell our story and how our story looks, will determine the impact that we will have on a world in need of relevance.

Enter Nimbus Networks, LLC. Nimbus Networks is a certified solutions provider that creates tailored communications plans for you in collaboration with the world’s leading telecom providers.

We work with over 220 vetted worldwide carriers as a full-service technology consultant, and we have engineers who can help you design, deploy, and maintain your environment. Because no two organizations are the same, we tailor our Cloud, Voice, IT, and other technology services to match your unique requirements.

This is the first in a series of articles that will talk about the importance of having a reliable and robust IT platform. And for churches, we must still engage the world for Christ. It is important that our ET platform is effective and inviting. Stay tuned.

For more information concerning your IT or ET needs, you can reach him at crobinson@nimbusnet.net. You can also visit our website at nimbus-networks.com or you can call 925-285-8357 for a free consultation.

Curtis O. Robinson, Sr. is the senior pastor at the Faith Church in Oakland, CA. He is also managing director of Global Acquisitions at Nimbus Networks, LLC.

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Activism

Beautiful Bus Tour of Atlanta Neighborhoods Ends at National Center for Civil and Human Rights

I got to experience what it would have been like sitting at a lunch counter as a Black person and enduring racial slurs just because I asked to be served a cup of coffee. Even though I knew what to expect by sitting at this faux diner counter with headphones on, it was dehumanizing and frightening, to say the least.

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Mural inside the entrance to the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. Photo by Navdeep K. Jassal.
Mural inside the entrance to the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. Photo by Navdeep K. Jassal.

By Navdeep K. Jassal, Post News Group Ambassador

In my first week in Atlanta, I took a city bus tour to get better acquainted with the city.

I really noticed how green it is with large trees growing abundantly everywhere.

Besides ‘Sweet Auburn’ Avenue, tour highlights included riding through the Buckhead neighborhood and to see Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp’s mansion. As many know, Kemp is a Republican who opposes mask mandates and getting vaccinated.

The beauty of this was seeing another mansion across the street with a gigantic mask in the yard, encouraging responsible mask-wearing to protect oneself and their fellow Americans noting it’s patriotic. It was a glorious sight for my eyes and gave me a good chuckle, too!

We drove around Centennial Olympic Park, a 22-acre greenspace that serves as Georgia’s legacy of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games. Next to the park is the incredible National Center for Civil and Human Rights which is a museum and cultural institution that connects the U.S. Civil Rights Movement to human rights challenges today.

The National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, Georgia.

The National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, Georgia.

There, I got to experience what it would have been like sitting at a lunch counter as a Black person and enduring racial slurs just because I asked to be served a cup of coffee. Even though I knew what to expect by sitting at this faux diner counter with headphones on, it was dehumanizing and frightening, to say the least.

My co-volunteer at the Food Ministry at First Presbyterian of Oakland and co-Publisher of the Oakland Post, Mrs. Gay Plair Cobb, had shared stories with me about travelling to Atlanta during that era in the 1960s and sitting at these counters, trying to get served and being completely ignored.

In one of the magnificent displays, I read personal stories from some of the original Freedom Riders. I imagined the bravery and courage these college-aged African Americans had to challenge segregation on bus terminals and buses that travelled interstate. This was such a powerful moment in history, that there were buses being set on fire to stop integration from happening!

I perused the personal papers and items of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This collection represents much of Morehouse alumnus Martin Luther King, Jr.’s life and work spanning from 1944 to 1968. There was a remarkable multi-media display on his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech made during a rally for Memphis sanitation workers who were striking for better pay. It was one of his most powerful speeches and alluded to the numerous threats on his life and eerily forecasting his death, which occurred the next day.

Prior to visiting Atlanta, I spoke with Mr. Paul Cobb, co-Publisher of the Oakland Post, and he told me about how close he had come to getting a ride from Mrs. Viola Liuzzo one night to get a hot shower and food.

Liuzzo, a white housewife and mother of five from Detroit, felt compelled to take action during these demonstrations and drove down to help in Selma. A few nights later, as she was driving with Leroy Moton, a Black teenager, she was murdered by members of the KKK. Astonishingly, Moton survived because he pretended to be dead when the Klansmen looked into the vehicle. There was a posterboard dedicated to her courage on the walls of the museum.

There was an outstanding temporary exhibit on the Rosenwald schools. Mr. Julius Rosenwald and Mr. Booker T. Washington forged one of the earliest collaborations between Jews and African Americans to create schools throughout the nation for Black children who had no access to publicly funded education.

From 1912 to 1937, the Rosenwald schools program built 4,978 schools for African American children across 15 Southern and border states. Hundreds of thousands of students walked through these doorways. I am one of the many interfaith lay people who believe in the inherent worth and dignity for all. This exhibit made my eyes well up with how great humanity that collaborates for what is right can look.

The museum also covers contemporary issues such as white supremacy, international human trafficking, and LGBTQI policies.

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Activism

The State of California Forced or Coerced Sterilization. Victims Can Be Compensated.

Last year, Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles) wrote and introduced Assembly Bill (AB) 1007 that proposed the program and served as the basis for funding the policy, which was included in the state budget after negotiations with legislative leaders.

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Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles) wrote and introduced the bill to compensate victims. Facebook photo.
Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles) wrote and introduced the bill to compensate victims. Facebook photo.

By Tanu Henry, California Black Media

People who the State of California had a hand in forcing or coercing to undergo vasectomies or get their tubes tied are now eligible for compensation. The payments will come from a $7.5 million state fund.

Some of those victims, both men and women, were sterilized without their consent or knowledge.

“California is committed to confronting this dark chapter in the state’s past and addressing the impacts of this shameful history still being felt by Californians today,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom last week when he announced the program which began Jan. 1 and is included as a line item in the state’s 2021-22 budget.

The governor’s office estimates that there are about 600 survivors, eligible and alive, who underwent the now-illegal method of birth control either at state medical facilities or in prison.

The survivors have until Dec. 31, 2023, to apply for compensation. About $4.5 million of the fund will be used for payments evenly divided among people who apply and are approved. Each will receive a check for an amount up to $25,000 dollars.

Another $2 million will be used for public information campaigns promoting the program. About $1 million will be used to create and install commemorative plaques at locations where “the wrongful sterilization of thousands of vulnerable people” happened, according to the governor’s office.

Last year, Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles) wrote and introduced Assembly Bill (AB) 1007 that proposed the program and served as the basis for funding the policy, which was included in the state budget after negotiations with legislative leaders.

Carillo said the launch of the program represents a victory that “comes to fruition after decades of advocacy.” She also highlighted the fact that most of the victims were low-income, living with disabilities, or were people of color.

“We often discuss a woman’s right to choose, which includes the choice of becoming a mother, to become a parent. California’s eugenics laws have taken that away from many people,” said Carillo. “This is only the first step in addressing this wrong.”

She was referring to the practice, legal in California, that authorized state-run healthcare facilities to sterilize people that they considered “unfit for reproduction.”

“The compensation finally admits that California was in violation of human rights and reproductive justice. As a state, we must and can do more to recognize the horrific impact of eugenic sterilization programs on California families, and the devastating consequences of this failed attempt to eradicate populations.”

California’s sterilization law remained in effect from 1909, when the Assembly approved it, until 1979 when it was overturned. During that period, an estimated 20,000 people were sterilized.

In 2003, Gov. Gray Davis issued an apology to survivors.

“California led the way in eugenics as legislation was copied across the United States and used as a model for Adolf Hitler throughout World War II,” according to a statement Carillo’s office released.

State-sponsored sterilizations, however, continued in California prisons at least until 2010, according to the State Auditor’s office. That policy was banned in 2014.

Survivors can apply for payments through California’s Forced or Involuntary Sterilization Compensation Program, according to Gov Newsom’s office. The California Victim Compensation Board is responsible for administering the program.

The board says the identities of applicants will be kept confidential and payments will not impact a claimant’s trust, or Medicaid or Social Security status or benefits. The state will also not consider compensation survivors receive as income for state tax or child support purposes.

Newsom said the program is part of a broader state initiative to redress historical injustices. “While we can never fully make amends for what they’ve endured, the state will do all it can to ensure survivors of wrongful sterilization receive compensation,” the governor said.

To apply, survivors should visit www.victims.ca.gov/fiscp, reach out to CalVCB at 800-777-9229, or send an e-mail to fiscp@victims.ca.gov to obtain an application. They can also send a letter to P.O. Box 591, Sacramento, CA 95812-0591.

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