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Associated Press

Stories by Associated Press

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‘Becoming Kareem’ coming to a city near you

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has been a best-selling author, civil rights activist, actor, historian and one of the greatest basketball players who ever lived.

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Director Ava DuVernay wins top award at NAACP Image Awards

A jubilant Ava DuVernay was named Entertainer of the Year at Monday night’s NAACP Image Awards ceremony that focused on the black community’s power to create change.

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Pope Francis: Don’t make money, career your whole life

Pope Francis advised against making the pursuit of money, a career or success the basis for one’s whole life, urging in his Epiphany remarks to also resist “inclinations toward arrogance, the thirst for power and for riches.”

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New fund set up to preserve African-American historical sites

A new $25 million fund is being set up through the National Trust for Historic Preservation to help ensure that historical sites important to African-American history are no longer endangered.

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Thanksgiving food, fellowship at area meal programs

A new $25 million fund is being set up through the National Trust for Historic Preservation to help ensure that historical sites important to African-American history are no longer endangered.

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Trump changing complexion of federal courts

President Trump is nominating white men to America’s federal courts at a rate not seen in nearly 30 years, threatening to reverse a slow transformation toward a judiciary that reflects the nation’s diversity.

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African-American officers described as heroes in ballpark shooting

One of the U.S. Capitol Police officers injured while defending members of Congress during a shooting last week at an Alexandria baseball field is a gregarious gym-goer and hard worker who adores his mother, his friends said. The other is a high-achieving former college athlete who a former boss said “exudes confidence and dedication.”

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School choice to be expanded by feds

The Trump administration is proposing “the most ambitious expansion” of school choice in American history, U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced Monday while giving few details on how the program would work.

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Plans unveiled for Obama Presidential Center

Former President Obama unveiled plans for his future presidential center, painting a picture of a buzzing hub for youth and community programs on the South Side of Chicago where he raised his family and launched his political career. The former chief executive fielded questions from residents at a May 3 forum near the site on the shores of Lake Michigan, delving into nitty-gritty details of traffic patterns, green space and job creation, while avoiding any mention of his successor in the White House.

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Florida legislature apologizes for decades of racial injustice

It has taken decades, but Florida is now apologizing for two of its darker misdeeds of its past. The Florida House unanimously passed two resolutions Tuesday. The first acknowledged decades of abuse at a Florida reform school and the second apologized to the families of four young black men known as the “Groveland Four.” They were accused of raping a white girl 68 years ago in what is now seen as a case of racial injustice.

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Joni Sledge of hit musical group Sister Sledge remembered at 60

Joni Sledge, who with her sisters recorded the enduring dance anthem “We Are Family,” has died, the band’s representative said last Saturday.

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Trump’s leaked 2005 taxes show $153M in earnings

President Trump earned $153 million and paid $36.5 million in income taxes in 2005, paying a roughly 25 percent effective tax rate thanks to a tax he has since sought to eliminate, according to newly disclosed tax documents.

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Rihanna named Harvard University Humanitarian of the Year

Rihanna has been named the 2017 Harvard University Humanitarian of the Year. The Grammy Award-winning singer received the Harvard Foundation’s Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at a ceremony on Tuesday, Feb. 28.

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Woman at center of landmark Roe v. Wade abortion rights case dies at 69

Norma McCorvey, whose legal challenge under the pseudonym “Jane Roe” led to the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision that legalized abortion but who later became an outspoken opponent of the procedure, died Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. She was 69.

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Trump vows to end political limits on churches

Declaring that religious freedom is “under threat,” President Trump vowed to repeal a rarely enforced IRS rule that says pastors who endorse candidates from the pulpit risk losing their tax-exempt status. “I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution,” President Trump said at the National Prayer Breakfast, a high-profile event earlier this month that brought together faith leaders, politicians and dignitaries. President Trump’s pledge was a nod to his evangelical Christian supporters, who helped power his White House win. So far, he has not detailed his plans for doing away with the rule, which he previously promised to rescind.

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Virginia judge grants injunction against Trump travel ban

A federal judge on Monday granted a preliminary injunction barring the Trump administration from implementing its travel ban in Virginia, adding another judicial ruling to those already in place challenging the ban’s constitutionality.

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Obama names 3 national monuments honoring civil rights

The Obama administration has designated three new national monuments honoring civil rights history. The designations were announced Thursday, Jan. 12, just eight days before the nation’s first African-American president leaves office.

Congressional Black Caucus poised for tougher action under new administration

For almost eight years, the members of the Congressional Black Caucus existed in the shadow of the first African-American president. They praised President Obama’s achievements while at the same time pushing him to do more for their constituents who overwhelmingly supported his history-making campaign and administration.

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Race central issue in Virginia-Maryland redistricting arguments before high court

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy appears to hold the decisive vote in two cases involving challenges from African-American voters to electoral districts in Virginia and North Carolina.

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No charges for officer who killed Charlotte man

A prosecutor on Wednesday cleared a Charlotte police officer in the killing of a black man whose death touched off civil unrest, and he presented detailed evidence to rebut assertions that the slain man was unarmed.

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‘I can no longer stay silent’

Michael Jordan donates $2M to build police-community trust

Michael Jordan is trying to help ease tensions between African-Americans and the law enforcement community. The NBA great and Charlotte Hornets owner said Monday he is giving $1 million to the Institute for Community-Police Relations and $1 million to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. The aim is to help build trust following shootings around the country.

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BET Awards honors Prince, Muhammad Ali

The BET Awards delivered an exciting night of tributes for Prince and Muhammad Ali between calls for action over gun violence, civil rights and presidential politics. These are the top moments from Sunday’s awards show held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

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First Lady promotes girls education in Africa

First Lady Michelle Obama visited a leadership camp for girls Monday in Liberia to launch her latest visit to Africa, urging the teens in one of the world’s poorest countries to keep fighting to stay in school.

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First African-American named head of largest Presbyterian denomination

PORTLAND, Ore. The largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States has elected its first African-American top executive. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson II won an overwhelming majority of votes last Friday during the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in Portland, Ore.

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Case closed on 1964 murder of 3 civil rights workers

JACKSON, MISS. One day short of the 52nd anniversary of the disappearance of three civil rights workers’ during Mississippi’s “Freedom Summer,” state and federal prosecutors said that the investigation into the slayings is over. The decision, announced June 20, “closes a chapter” in the state’s divisive civil rights history, Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood said.

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Cosby due in court in July

PHILADELPHIA Bill Cosby will return to a Pennsylvania courtroom next month as he tries again to question his accuser in a sexual assault case before it is sent to trial.

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Madonna, Stevie Wonder pay homage to Prince at Billboard Music Awards

Madonna paid homage to Prince by wearing his signature color and bringing another icon, Stevie Wonder, onstage to sing the classic “Purple Rain” at Sunday’s Billboard Music Awards. Sitting atop a purple throne, Madonna kicked off the tribute with a version of “Nothing Compares 2 U,” which Prince wrote and Sinead O’Connor recorded. She was teary-eyed as she sang the song, videos and photos of Prince projected behind her.

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World’s oldest person dies at 116 in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Susannah Mushatt Jones, the world’s oldest person, has died in New York at age 116. Ms. Jones, who was affectionately known by family and neighbors as Miss Susie, died Thursday, May 12, 2016, at a public housing facility for seniors in Brooklyn, N.Y., where she had lived for more than three decades, according to Robert Young, a senior consultant for the Los Angeles-based Gerontology Research Group.

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Afeni Shakur, mother of rapper Tupac, dies at 69

Afeni Shakur, the former Black Panther who inspired the work of her son, rap icon Tupac Shakur, and fostered his legacy for decades after he was slain, has died of an apparent heart attack, authorities said Tuesday. She was 69.

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‘Me and Mrs. Jones’ singer Billy Paul dies at 80

Billy Paul, a jazz and soul singer best known for the No. 1 hit ballad and “Philadelphia Soul” classic “Me and Mrs. Jones,” died Sunday, April 24, 2016.

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Criminal charges filed in Michigan water crisis

The Flint water crisis became a criminal case Wednesday when two state regulators and a city employee were charged with official misconduct, evidence tampering and other offenses over the lead contamination that alarmed the country and brought cries of racism.

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60 years late

Richmond woman honored by college after being denied admission in 1956

As a young black girl in Stafford County, Va., in the 1950s, Gladys White Jordan saw up close how privilege was largely determined by skin color.

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Serena upset in fourth round of Miami Open

Serena Williams had been out of the tournament for less than 20 minutes when she climbed into her white Mini Cooper with the checkerboard top and pulled away from the players’ parking lot, fastening her seat belt as she drove.

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Rapper Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest dies at 45

Phife Dawg, a masterful lyricist whose witty wordplay was a linchpin of the groundbreaking hip-hop group A Tribe Called Quest, died Tuesday from complications resulting from diabetes, his family said in a statement on Wednesday. He was 45. Born Malik Isaac Taylor, he was known as the “Five Foot Assassin” because he was 5 feet 3 inches tall.

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Obama promotes democracy during historic visit to Cuba

Capping his remarkable visit to Cuba, President Obama on Tuesday declared an end to the “last remnant of the Cold War in the Americas” and openly urged the Cuban people to pursue a more democratic future for this communist nation 90 miles from the Florida coast.

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Painter, sculptor Thornton Dial dies

McCALLA, Ala. Self-taught artist Thornton Dial, who transformed discarded junk into sculpture and painted in bright colors and bold lines, has died at his home in Alabama. He was 87.

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Tiger at 40

Ten days after Tiger Woods turned 24, he picked up his 16th career PGA Tour victory by beating Ernie Els in an epic battle at Kapalua.

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NAACP vows to continue marches in Richmond man’s death

Black leaders marched in Virginia last Saturday to protest the death of an 46-year-old Richmond man who died in police custody after officers shocked him repeatedly with stun guns, and they vowed to continue marching until they believe that justice has been served.

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Two faces of Ben

Ayauna King-Baker loved Ben Carson’s “Gifted Hands” memoir so much that she made her daughter, Shaliya, read it. So when Dr. Carson showed up in town to sign copies of his new book, Mrs. King-Baker dragged the giggly 13-year-old along to the bookstore so they could both meet him.

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Bishop Curry is first African-American leader of U.S. Episcopal Church

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, installed Sunday as the first African-American leader of the U.S. Episcopal Church, urged Episcopalians to evangelize by crossing divides of race, education and wealth.

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Rev. Jesse Jackson’s mother dies at 92

Helen Burns Jackson, mother of civil rights leader Jesse Jackson, has died. She was 92.

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Pope Francis a stranger to the U.S. in many ways

New York When Pope Francis sets foot on the tarmac at Andrews Air Force Base near Washington on Sept. 22, it won’t just be his first time in the United States as pontiff. It will be his first time in the country — ever in his life.

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Maya Angelou’s art collection up for auction

The art collection of celebrated writer and civil rights activist Maya Angelou is heading to auction this month. Among the highlights of the Sept. 15 Swann Galleries sale is a painted story quilt that hung in Dr. Angelou’s home. It’s a work by African-American artist Faith Ringgold titled “Maya’s Quilt of Life” that was commissioned by Oprah Winfrey for Dr. Angelou’s 69th birthday in 1989. It depicts Dr. Angelou surrounded by flowers, along with excerpts from some of her writings. It’s an acrylic on canvas with pieced fabric border that could bring $150,000 to $250,000.

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LeBron James making college possible for city kids

LeBron James is giving kids from Akron — ones with challenging backgrounds like his — the chance to go to college for free.

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Simone Biles rolls to third straight gymnastics title

Simone Biles’ friends are running out of words to describe her almost as quickly as Biles is running out of competition. At the moment, there is none.

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Michael Sam makes Canadian football league debut

Michael Sam became the first openly gay player to appear in a Canadian Football League game Friday night, playing sparingly for the Montreal Alouettes in a 26-23 loss to the Ottawa Redblacks.

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Bland family files lawsuit against Texas officials

The family of an African-American woman found dead in a Texas jail three days after a confrontation with a white state trooper filed a wrongful death lawsuit Tuesday against the officer and other officials, saying it was a last resort after being unable to get enough information about the case.

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Gov. appoints Fairfax judge to state’s high court

The Northern Virginia judge who presided over one of the D.C. sniper trials was appointed Monday to the Virginia Supreme Court.

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50 Cent out of dollars?

Rapper and actor 50 Cent filed for federal bankruptcy protection Monday, days after a jury ordered him to pay $5 million in an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit.

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Eddie Murphy to receive top humor prize

Eddie Murphy, famous for his standup routines, films and his early breakout on television’s “Saturday Night Live,” will be awarded the top U.S. prize for humor this year by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, officials announced last week.

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