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Walk Bike Nashville hosts first 2019 Mayoral forum

NASHVILLE PRIDE — In preparation for the 2019 Mayoral Elections, Walk Bike Nashville held a forum featuring the top four candidates. On Wednesday morning, Mayor David Briley, Rep. John Ray Clemmons, Councilman John Cooper and Dr. Carol Swain were on the same stage for the first time. The focus of the forum was to find out the candidates vision for walking, bicycling, reducing traffic fatalities and ensuring our streets serve all Nashvillians.

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By Pride Newsdesk

In preparation for the 2019 Mayoral Elections, Walk Bike Nashville held a forum featuring the top four candidates. On Wednesday morning, Mayor David Briley, Rep. John Ray Clemmons, Councilman John Cooper and Dr. Carol Swain were on the same stage for the first time. The focus of the forum was to find out the candidates vision for walking, bicycling, reducing traffic fatalities and ensuring our streets serve all Nashvillians.

“Walking, biking and transportation really form the core of every other issue,” said Nora Kern, executive director of Walk Bike Nashville. “If our friends and families can’t walk to the best jobs, get to the best schools, be able to access the city—then a lot of the other issues that we’re fighting for in the city, they will have problems. It connects all of them.”

The moderator, Tony Gonzalez, reporter from Nashville Public Radio, asked the candidates questions as they discussed the future of getting around Nashville.

Briley, who is an avid biker, said that the quality of pedestrian and cycling environment is important to having “healthy city that is vibrant.”

Briley said that not only does it help the environment, but that it is also about equity. Thirty percent of Davidson County residents do not have a car.

“My family is just like that,” Mayor Briley said. “My wife has lost her sight and cannot drive, so every day she has to rely on pedestrian infrastructure to get to and from work. So it is very personal to me.”

Rep. John Ray Clemmons reminisced about his childhood memories biking through his childhood neighborhood with his friends.

“Right now I don’t’ feel safe doing [that],” he said. “Our sidewalks are not safe enough; our bike lanes are not safe enough. This is a quality of life issue that affects every Nashville family. We must do better to improve the connectivity of neighborhoods and the accessibility of public transportation.”

Clemmons also said that he feels that “too many neighborhoods across this county have been neglected too long.”

Each candidate had ways they would improve transportation thought the city. Councilman John Cooper would like to explore employer incentives to reduce traffic like in Seattle, Washington.

“We can learn from other cities like working with employers to incentivize and pay cash to workers not to use parking and to rideshare. It’s made a huge difference in Seattle.

Nashville is in an environment where that clearly is going to be a great tool.

Cooper also wants connected greenways and protected paths to downtown Nashville.

Dr. Carol Swain said that she would explore doing away with certain bike lanes, particularly in areas that see limited use—as well was instituting an Uber-like system to get around the city.

“Part of my plan as mayor would be to see if we can replace the big city buses that are mostly empty, with vans that people can use with an app-like system to get the rides to come to them. That would encourage more use of transportation.”

All candidates felt that the city needs to revisit the ‘scooter issue.’

“Scooters can really play a role in that last mile to half mile of transit,” said Mayor Briley. “We adopted a regulation some months ago to experiment with scooters, and that experiment has failed. We have got to look at it again to see how to improve on it. I had the opportunity to speak to the mother of the young man who died last week, and anytime we have that sense of loss in the community with something that we put out there, we have to go back and readdress the decision.”

Councilman Cooper agrees that changes need to be made such as mandating helmets.

“All of our hearts go out to the family and the young man who lost his life riding a scooter,” said Rep. Clemmons. “I’ve tried to like scooters. I just can’t. Its’ never going to be a last mile option until we build the necessary infrastructure to make it possible for it to be an option. We need to revisit this issue and be more thoughtful about how we regulate scooters.”

This article originally appeared in the Nashville Pride

#NNPA BlackPress

Expressions of Faith: When things fall apart

NASHVILLE PRIDE — “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you,” Deuteronomy 31:6. When we stay humble and thankful unto God for just who He is in our lives, He will provide for us; He will take care of us, because He loves us. “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your worries on Him, because He cares for you,” I Peter 5:6-7. Sometimes God is working on a plan for us that we may not be able to see nor even understand. When we trust and believe that He will never leave us nor forsake us, He can and He will make a blessing out of the broken.

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Minister Patti NIcole Wheeler, The Celebration Christian Center, Inc. is located at 1215 9th Ave. N., Nashville, Tenn. 37208. For more information, visit their website at www.celebrationchristian.online.

By Minister Patti Nicole Wheeler, Guest columnist, Nashville Pride Newspaper

Often in our lives we feel hurt or broken for a variety of reasons: People pass away. People walk away. We are laid-off. We’re fired, or we quit. Maybe we dropped out of school or we’re kicked out—or we didn’t have the money nor the grades to even start an education past the high school level. We currently have a job, but the money just isn’t enough. I could go on and on listing the innumerable things that could bring us down in our lives, but consider this:

1) Sometimes when things are falling apart, God may be planning something better for us.

I’m sure that we all remember the story of Joseph, the favorite son of Jacob. Because of jealousy, Joseph was sold to a band of traveling Ishmaelites by his own brothers. God was with Joseph and enabled him to flourish in that situation so much that he was able to save his family during a time of great famine (Genesis 37).

Joseph didn’t know why he was in that circumstance, but he trusted God. He listened to His voice and he was blessed in the mist of what seemed to be a broken situation. “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you,” Deuteronomy 31:6. When we stay humble and thankful unto God for just who He is in our lives, He will provide for us; He will take care of us, because He loves us. “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your worries on Him, because He cares for you,” I Peter 5:6-7. Sometimes God is working on a plan for us that we may not be able to see nor even understand. When we trust and believe that He will never leave us nor forsake us, He can and He will make a blessing out of the broken.

2) Sometimes when things are falling apart, God may be trying to remove elements from our lives.

“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed,” John 8:36. There are so many things that could hold us down or hold us back, preventing us from blossoming and growing, that we need Jesus Christ to help us break free from low self-esteem, addictions, jealousy, anger, envy, casual drugs-use, casual alcohol-use, casual sex and absorbing negativity. It is very difficult to be hopeful and positive when we constantly play video games, watch shows, listen to music, read literature and socialize with individuals that demonstrate violence, display negativity and pour conflict into us. Those are not nurturing energies. Those are not caring/loving spirits.

Not all friendships and relationships are “till death do us part.” Some people were only meant to be in our lives for a period of time. Some folks we were meant to help; some folks were meant to help us. Some folks are meant for the duration. We need to learn the difference between who is to stay, how long they should stay and then (if need be) find the strength to let them go. If a relationship is falling apart, maybe God is tearing down some old walls, and some old habits just to build something fresh and wonderful and new. Not all broken relationships were made to be pieced back together. Some relationships are like glass and are best left broken because we would only continue to hurt ourselves by trying to put them back together.

3) Sometimes when things are falling apart, God may want us to change our hearts so He does not change our situations.

Sometimes we need to carry the cross that we are bearing. If we try to lighten our load, we may lose some valuable tools that we may need for our journey. God knows what we need and how much we can carry, so we just need to trust Him. He will not give us more that we can bear, so we just need to trust Him. When we cannot see our way, God is guiding our every footstep, so we just need to trust Him. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths,” Proverbs 3:5-6.

We can’t grow up or move forward if we remain in the same space. So remember: sometimes when things are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place.

(The Celebration Christian Center, Inc. is located at 1215 9th Ave. N., Nashville, Tenn. 37208. For more information, visit their website at www.celebrationchristian.online.)

This post originally appeared in The Nashville Pride

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Film

At the Movies: Spider-Man: Far from Home; Yesterday; andThe Fall of the American Empire

NASHVILLE PRIDE — Families going to the cinema with members who don’t particularly care for superheroes and haven’t kept up with the amazing Marvel Cinematic Universe do have films that will tickle their fancy, though, and two are real gems: Yesterday and The Fall of the American Empire.

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By Cass Teague

This first weekend of July, movie-goers have many choices. Chief among them, of course, is the Marvel Studios spectacular Spider-Man: Far from Home. Families going to the cinema with members who don’t particularly care for superheroes and haven’t kept up with the amazing Marvel Cinematic Universe do have films that will tickle their fancy, though, and two are real gems: Yesterday and The Fall of the American Empire.

First, though, Spider-Man: Far from Home is a rollicking adventure that will keep you thoroughly entertained at a high level of special effects (taking a dozen visual effects houses to render), with a few surprises along the way that will have you gasping, and leave you completely mind-blown at the end. Speaking of the end, you have to stay through the end of the credits, and I mean all the way through to the very end of the credits and they shut off the projector.

Samuel L. Jackson is awesome once again as Nick Fury, and along with Cobie Smulders’ Maria Hill, the S.H.I.E.L.D. duo intervenes when Peter Parker, our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, embarks on a class science trip to Europe. All the teenager wants to do is profess his love for MJ, but ya know, superhero stuff gets in the way. Tom Holland and Zendaya are heartwarmingly loveable as the two star-crossed potential lovers, and their story highlights the quandary that plagues Marvel superheroes – how to balance saving the world with trying to have a normal life.

Without massive spoilers, and there is plenty to spoil here, trust me, as you will see, just buckle up for the ride and enjoy this continuation of the MCU that honors all that we went through in the Avengers Infinity War and Endgame films. I suggest that you may want to try 3D, IMAX 3D, or dare I say, the incredible 4DX that puts you in the action, for this one.

So, if superheroes aren’t your thing, and you tag along to the multiplex with a group or family, try a musical fantasy or a French-language crime thriller.

Yesterday is hilarious, laugh out loud British romantic comedy film directed by Danny Boyle and written by Richard Curtis. The film stars Himesh Patel as a musician who, after an accident, finds himself as the only person who remembers the Beatles, and becomes famous taking credit for writing and performing their songs. Lily James, Ed Sheeran, and Kate McKinnon also star.

The Fall of the American Empire is a Quebec crime thriller film starring Alexandre Landry, Maxim Roy, Yan England and Rémy Girard. It is about a man (Landry) who, after an armed robbery in Montreal, discovers two bags with millions of dollars cash and is on a journey after he takes them. Based on a real 2010 Old Montreal shooting, this film is at times shocking and suspenseful, as it takes you places you may not want to go, but brings you back in one piece. Be prepared to read the English subtitles throughout.

This article originally appeared in the Nashville Pride

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Nashville Pride

Metro Council candidate Andre Southall suspends campaign, endorses Councilman DeCosta Hastings

NASHVILLE PRIDE — Andre Southall called Councilman DeCosta Hastings on Tuesday and told him he wanted to suspend his campaign and endorse DeCosta for re-election. According to sources, Southall said that he has observed all that Councilman Hastings has done for District 2, has seen his vision, and wants to help him “finish up what has been started.”

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By Pride Newsdesk

Andre Southall called Councilman DeCosta Hastings on Tuesday and told him he wanted to suspend his campaign and endorse DeCosta for re-election.

According to sources, Southall said that he has observed all that Councilman Hastings has done for District 2, has seen his vision, and wants to help him “finish up what has been started.”

Southall recognized some of the achievements that Hastings has brought to the district including the expansion of Clarksville Highway, affordable housing, and economic development.

Hastings said that he appreciates Southall’s support and that he looks forward to working with him during his second term.

“I am very glad to have his support to help win this election,” said Hastings. “District 2 has a lot of challenges to overcome and with his and the community’s support we will get there together.”

This article originally appeared in the Nashville Pride

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