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The power of the Black Press remains strong

Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. | 4/14/2014, 11:21 a.m.

For more than 40 years, many in the established media in the U.S. had published articles about the alleged “guilt” of the Wilmington 10. In fact, The New York Times published a story in the late 1970s under the headline: “The Case against the Wilmington Ten.” By the end of 2012, however, North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue agreed with the NNPA-led effort as she issued an unprecedented pardon of innocence to each member of the Wilmington 10. Perdue courageously stated, “This was a case of naked racism.” We are, therefore, grateful to Perdue for her historic act and for her candor. We are also very grateful to all of the Black newspaper publishers and writers throughout the United States who continue to uphold the proud banner of the Black Press.

Let us never underestimate the enduring value and respect of all our Black-owned businesses and institutions. Of course, we are always open to constructive criticism and recommendations concerning how to strengthen the economic status of the businesses that are vital to our forward progress. However, it would be a tragic error to assume that because we now have a Black American as president of the United States, there is no longer a need to sustain the very institutions, organizations and businesses that have contributed so much to our progress.

I thank God for the powerful Black Press in America. We all should be more supportive of the Black Press, Black Church, HBCUs, and our ongoing struggle for freedom, justice and equality not only for Black Americans, but also for all people across the nation and world.

Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. is president of Education Online Services Corporation and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network and can be reached through http://drbenjaminfchavisjr.wix.com/drbfc.