Monthly Archives: December 2015

Welcome 2016


As We have said before, Writing on the last day of the year obviously opens up choices. One can either look back to the year just ending, or look forward to the agenda ahead. Many thanks to God almighty for all he has done.

Writing about education is interesting, but it can also be depressing. Sometimes it feels like being a hamster on one of those wheels. So as we close out 2015, We must remember that, the present and future are always informed by the past; therefore priorities one may wish to set for 2016 will be shaped largely by the events and experiences of the preceding period.

Our biggest wish for the coming year is that we will do away with impunity. The year 2016 presents us with the best chance to face our challenges as one people—the people of Prince Georges County, state of Maryland and the world. This is because the challenges have never been clearer to a majority of our people. Insecurity, runaway corruption, decaying institutions, a wanting legal infrastructure, economy whose growth is seen in the stock market and corporate profits but not in the lives of our people and safeguarding the constitution are some of the most immediate challenges we will have to address. There is good news in the growing number of citizens who believe that the Prince George’s  county is heading in the wrong direction and the chosen few are milking the system to the detriment of many. It means we have no option but to change course in 2016.

Here we are not talking just about the impunity that places those in positions of leadership above the law and gives them licence to rob, loot, rape and plunder our national and county coffers.

We have in mind a more insidious culture of impunity that afflicts not just the political leaders, but the general citizenry as well.

We are all guilty of impunity, or aiding and abetting impunity by remaining silent about the crimes all around us.

As motorists, we speed, jump traffic lights, and overtake dangerously.

We accept that motorbike, taxis, Buses etc can operate in violation of all traffic laws.

We turn a blind eye to drunk-driving and make noise when police try to enforce the law.

And we buy immunity for our silent when we allow a culture of impunity to continue, pillaging leaders on the mere basis that we elected them.

As we move towards unto the future, let us give diplomacy, strategy and dialogue priority over rhetoric and tough talk that has defined our relationship with our traditional friends in recent years. Its our hope that in 2016, we can operate on an understanding that we all mean well for the county, State, country and the world, that we can disagree without being disagreeable, that we can listen to each other and talk to each other rather than at each other. Let us be vigilant for our counties, states, countries and the world, stand up for our rights and defend the Constitution. Let’s exercise care, protect and save lives over this New Year period. Happy New Year, everyone.

Welcome 2016!

Empty Road To Upcoming 2016 At Sunset

Driving on an empty road towards the setting sun to upcoming 2016 and leaving behind old 2015.


Happy Kwanzaa

happy-kwanzzaWe would like to take the opportunity to wish those of you celebrating Kwanzaa a very happy holiday.

Kwanzaa which is being celebrated to honor the African heritage of African-American culture in the United States. For one week, many African-Americans across the country and around the world will enjoy the holiday by decorating their houses with colorful art, enjoying communal meals, and playing music that celebrate family ties, community bonds, and African-American culture with Africa.

Kwanzaa is rooted in the African principles of unity, self-determination, collective work, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith. The  words emanate from Swahili language of East, central and Southern Africa as shown here;

  • Umoja (Unity): To strive for and to maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race.
  • Kujichagulia (Self-Determination): To define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves.
  • Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility): To build and maintain our community together and make our brothers’ and sisters’ problems our problems, and to solve them together.
  • Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics): To build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses and to profit from them together.
  • Nia (Purpose): To make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.
  • Kuumba (Creativity): To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.
  • Imani (Faith): To believe with all our hearts in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.

We believe that all Americans can relate to these traditions not only during this week, but every day throughout the year.

The identity of our county, state and our nation has been shaped by this pan-African culture.

When Kwanzaa was established in the US in 1966, in the midst of the Civil Rights Movement, a celebration of this crucial aspect of our American culture was particularly important. It is just as important to rejoice in these traditions today as it was in 1966.

Happy Kwanzaa to you all!

Reform Sasscer Movement Secretariat for prince George’s County.

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Inside the Billion-Dollar Battle for Puerto Rico’s Future


The money poured in by the millions, then by the hundreds of millions, and finally by the billions. Over weak coffee in a conference room in Midtown Manhattan last year, a half-dozen Puerto Rican officials exhaled: Their cash-starved island had persuaded some of the country’s biggest hedge funds to lend them more than $3 billion to keep the government afloat.

There were plenty of reasons for the hedge funds to like the deal: They would be earning, in effect, a 20 percent return. And under the island’s Constitution, Puerto Rico was required to pay back its debt before almost any other bills, whether for retirees’ health care or teachers’ salaries.

But within months, Puerto Rico was saying it had run out of money, and the relationship between the impoverished United States territory and its unlikely saviors fell apart, setting up an extraordinary political and financial fight over Puerto Rico’s future.

On the surface, it is a battle over whether Puerto Rico should be granted bankruptcy protections, putting at risk tens of billions of dollars from investors around the country. But it is also testing the power of an ascendant class of ultrarich Americans to steer the fate of a territory that is home to more than three million fellow citizens.

The investors with a stake in the outcome are some of the wealthiest people in America. Many of them have also taken on an outsize role in financing political campaigns in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision. They have put millions of dollars behind candidates of both parties, including Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush. Some belong to a small circle of 158 families that provided half of the early money for the 2016 presidential race.

To block proposals that would put their investments at risk, a coalition of hedge funds and financial firms has hired dozens of lobbyists, forged alliances with Tea Party activists and recruited so-called AstroTurf groups on the island to make their case. This approach — aggressive legal maneuvering, lobbying and the deployment of prodigious wealth — has proved successful overseas, in countries like Argentina and Greece, yielding billions in profit amid economic collapse.

The pressure has been widely felt. Senator Marco Rubio, whose state, Florida, has a large Puerto Rican population, expressed interest this year in sponsoring bankruptcy legislation for the island, says Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut. Mr. Rubio’s staff even joined in drafting the bill. But this summer, three weeks after a fund-raiser hosted by a hedge-fund founder, Mr. Rubio broke with those backing the measure. Bankruptcy, he said, should be considered only as a “last resort.”

And this past week, House Republican leaders said any financial rescue for Puerto Rico may not come until the end of March.

The fight over the island’s future is stretching from the oceanside neighborhoods of San Juan, where a growing number of wealthy investors and financial professionals have migrated in recent years to exploit generous tax breaks, to Capitol Hill. Their efforts are being closely watched by financial institutions, labor unions and policy makers on the mainland, where many ordinary investors own Puerto Rican bonds through mutual funds.


Some warn that Puerto Rico could be a test case for the rest of the country, paving the way for troubled states like Illinois to escape unsustainable debts.

>>>Read more on The New York Timeso-FIG-900

industrial paint and residential rooftops in La Perla, Old San Juan. San Juan, Puerto Rico

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Bert Kaempfert “Toy Parade”

This is fun for today or any day.

Watch and listen to “Toy parade” – The Christmas Wonderland is an instrumental Christmas album by Bert Kaempfert and his orchestra from 1963. Originally released as Christmastide with Kaempfert, it is his only album of Christmas music.



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christmas-decorations-fkndt2ioMERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL:

Reform Sasscer Movement for Prince George’s County is very happy to send our warmest greetings and best wishes to all those who are celebrating Christmas. We join with World citizens everywhere in recognizing the sense of renewed hope and comfort this joyous season brings to our county and the world.

It is our prayer that Christmas becomes a state of mind throughout the coming year that enables faith to overcome doubt, hope to conquer despair, and love to triumph over hate. To Christians confessing the Catholic faith, this Christmas is special coming as it does after an uplifting and challenging historic visit to the United States by Holy Father Pope Francis. It is our hope and prayer that we use this season to reflect deeply on the words of the Pope while he visited.

We take this opportunity to wish our friend and brother County Executive Rushern Baker III, his CEO Kevin Maxwell, Chairman Dr. Segun C. Eubanks and their families a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We must remind them that (HB1107) was supposed to make PGCPS BETTER! However, Since 2014, when the law was enacted, politicians who are well connected took advantage of the situation. How much improvement have we seen? The SAT Scores have declined, corruption is at all time high and now students are not doing too well on the PARCC tests. This year, the county schools were last in the whole state of Maryland in almost everything despite staff with high level connections making high salaries whileas  first year teachers suffer. Are we supposed to take the negative situation lying down and close our eyes forever without discussions? Of course not!

As a family, we join the U.S President Barack Obama, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and our citizens in prayers that prudence, wisdom, and understanding might descend on our state, nation and on our neighbours, particularly the illegal immigrants, people of Burundi etc, so that during the year ahead, we may realize an ancient and wondrous dream of “peace on earth and goodwill to humanity.”

A very Merry Christmas to all our followers!

Reform Sasscer Movement for Prince George’s County.

DECEMBER 25, 2015.



Faith Hill – Where Are You Christmas –


Faith Hill (born Audrey Faith Perry; September 21, 1967) is an American country pop singer and occasional actress. She is one of the most successful country artists of all time, having sold more than 40 million records worldwide. Hill is married to country singer Tim McGraw, with whom she has recorded several successful duets. Among her best is “Where are you Christmas”

“Where Are You Christmas”

Where are you Christmas
Why can’t I find you
Why have you gone away
Where is the laughter
You used to bring me
Why can’t I hear music play

My world is changing
I’m rearranging
Does that mean Christmas changes too

Where are you Christmas
Do you remember
The one you used to know
I’m not the same one
See what the time’s done
Is that why you have let me go

Christmas is here
Everywhere, oh
Christmas is here
If you care, oh

If there is love in your heart and your mind
You will feel like Christmas all the time

I feel you Christmas
I know I’ve found you
You never fade away
The joy of Christmas
Stays here inside us
Fills each and every heart with love

Where are you Christmas
Fill your heart with love

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MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OUR FOLLOWERS. GOD BLESSchristmas-ornaments-transparenttransparent-christmas-decoration-png-clipart--m-1382988669-images-fkazpawt

Boney M. is a vocal group created by German record producer Frank Farian. Originally based in Germany, the four original members of the group’s official line-up were Jamaican-born singers Liz Mitchell and Marcia Barrett, Maizie Williams from Montserrat and Bobby Farrell from Aruba. The group was formed in 1976 and achieved popularity during the disco era of the late 1970s. Since the 1980s, various line-ups of the band have performed with different personnel.

They (Boney M) are remembered most for their hit song “Mary’s boy child, Jesus Christ”. which was the 1978 Christmas number one single in the United Kingdom and became another of the biggest selling singles of all time there and around the world.



Mary’s boy child, Jesus Christ

Long time ago in Bethlehem
So the Holy Bible say
Mary’s boy child, Jesus Christ
Was born on Christmas Day.

Hark now hear the angels sing
A king was born today
And man will live for evermore
Because of Christmas Day.

While shepherds watched their flock by
They saw a bright new shining star
they hear a choir sing song
The music seemed to come from afar.

Hark, now hear the angels sing,
A king was born today,
And man will live for evermore,
Because of Christmas Day.

Joseph and his wife, Mary,
Came to Bethlehem that night,
They found no place to bear her child,
Not a single room was in sight.

Hark now hear the angels sing,
A king was born today,
And man will live for evermore
Because of Christmas Day

By and by they find a little nook
In a stable all forlorn,
And in a manger cold and dark,
Mary’s little boy was born.

Hark, now hear the angels sing,
A king was born today,
And man will live for evermore,
Because of Christmas Day.




20 years after unsolved killing of PGCPS student,

…many still hope for answers

20151218_ChuckyWhen 17-year-old Charles Marsh Jr. was killed by a stray bullet in December of 1995 outside Oxon Hill High School, no witnesses came forward to police. Twenty years later, authorities are hoping those people may finally speak out. (WUSA9)

By Perry Stein

The final bell of the day rang just after 4 p.m. at Oxon Hill High School, and Jeremy Bull, a senior, drove home to Fort Washington as he always did. He flipped on the evening news that icy December evening in 1995 and discovered that minutes after he had pulled out of the school parking lot, one of his classmates was shot dead waiting for the bus home.

It didn’t take many phone calls for Bull to learn that the victim was Charles Marsh Jr. — the small and reserved 17-year-old in his gifted classes whose voice had just started to crack and was so proud that he’d finally topped 5 feet tall.

Prince George’s County police suspect that he was hit by a masked gunman trying to steal a popular Eddie Bauer jacket from a teen standing near Marsh.

According to police, Marsh was an unintended victim — a kid about to board a bus that would deliver him back to the mother who awaited his arrival every day.

Twenty years later, who shot Marsh remains unknown, and the unsolved case haunts Bull, now a county police sergeant.

When 17-year-old Charles Marsh Jr. was killed by a stray bullet in December of 1995 outside Oxon Hill High School, no witnesses came forward to police. Twenty years later, authorities are hoping those people may finally speak out. (WUSA9)

Marsh’s killing spurred Bull’s interest in law enforcement, and the fear that some other family might face the same lifetime of unanswered questions pushes him during every homicide investigation.

“Every case that I work on, this is my motivation — to bring closure to the families, especially in murders, because those victims can’t speak for themselves,” Bull said.

“This was the first time that someone I knew was murdered, even died. It hit the class as a whole. It brought us together.”

As Marsh’s former high school classmates prepare for their 20-year reunion, they want to give the cold case another airing and encourage anyone who might have witnessed the shooting to come forward.

The Marshes, too, want to know who killed their son but at this point say they’ve long moved past expecting that answer.

After the death of Chuckie — the son they still call by the name he never had a chance to outgrow — they established the Charles Marsh Jr. Fund to reward anyone who could identify the person who pulled the trigger. After about three years, they dissolved the fund and put the $4,500 they had raised toward family expenses.

They’ve carried on as best they can. Charles Marsh retired six years ago from Metro, where he was a bus driver and former train operator, and purchased a new Audi to celebrate. Chuckie’s mother, Thomasene, retired in 2007 from her job as a deli worker at the nearby Safeway.

They spend time with their two daughters, who were in college when Chuckie was killed, and celebrate the professional accomplishments of Chuckie’s friends.

Charles Marsh Sr., 69, still has his impish humor, joking about how he flirted with Thomasene and her twin sister while they all were high school students in North Carolina — and what a boost it was when, after two daughters, he found out he and his wife were having a boy. He had promised his family he would quit smoking if he had a son, and he hasn’t touched a cigarette since Chuckie’s birth 37 years ago.

And Thomasene Marsh can still laugh with her husband.

“I raised three kids, and now I have to raise him,” she said, nudging her chuckling husband in a living room decorated for Christmas.

They bought the suburban home in 1993 so Chuckie could go to high school in a safe neighborhood, and the Fort Washington house still holds subtle hints of the tragedy that changed them.

The main living area where the couple spend most of their time is bare of any photos because, they said, it’s too hard, to constantly see their son’s full-faced smile that mirrors his father’s resilient grin.

Instead, photos rest in neatly organized scrapbooks that can be pulled out when they please.

The basketball hoop in the dirt courtyard where Chuckie and his father played for hours in the evenings remains there. But grass has grown over the court, and no one has played on it since the teen’s death.

After all of the milestones that Chuckie has missed, the 20-year anniversary of his death seems not to carry special weight for them.

“Chuckie is an everyday thought, an every-minute thought, an every-second thought,” said Thomasene Marsh.

It is rare for a case like this to still have no resolution 20 years later, according to Bernard Nelson, a cold-case investigator with Prince George’s police who was one of the first homicide detectives to get to Oxon Hill High School two decades ago. The killing occurred during the day in front of many witnesses and was part of a high-profile pattern of jacket robberies at the time.

There had been a string of robberies of students on or around campuses at county schools over the $300 Eddie Bauer coats, and security personnel were on the lookout. Witnesses to the teen’s shooting say they saw at least two masked men robbing students of jackets, according to police. After a struggle with one student, a gun went off, the bullet tearing through a teen’s jacket and striking Chuckie in the chest.

Nelson said the department came close to solving the case several times and had promising leads, but none so solid that they could make an arrest.

“That’s the most disappointing part. Not just losing a man to a senseless crime, but we felt we were on the brink of bringing justice to this family, but we just couldn’t prove it. . . . It’s not what you know, it’s what you can prove,” Nelson said. “We know there are people out there who can put together the last pieces of this puzzle, and we need them to come forward.”

President Bill Clinton referred to the Marsh shooting in his 1996 State of the Union address as he made his case for why public schools should have uniforms, a White House spokesperson confirmed to The Washington Post at the time.

“If it means that teenagers will stop killing each other over designer jackets, then our public schools should be able to require the students to wear school uniforms,” Clinton said in his Jan. 23, 1996, address.

The wrenching irony is that Chuckie liked chess, computers and sports, never fashion. And his parents said they never would have bought him an Eddie Bauer coat and risk making him a target.

It had been years since the Marshes heard from a detective about the case, they said.

But on Monday, Bull — the officer who attended school with Chuckie — visited the family’s home to mark the 20th anniversary. Bull hadn’t been friends with Chuckie outside of school, and the Marshes knew nothing about him.

They didn’t know that Bull pulled out the case file every so often to see whether someone had missed any clues. They didn’t know that their son’s homicide had helped inspire his career in public service. And they didn’t know that Chuckie’s former classmates — who knew him as Chuck — were posting pictures and remembering their son on their high school reunion’s Facebook page, trying to figure out if there was any way they could help bring closure to the family.

“You’re my hero,” the mother gushed to Bull.

Via Washington Post and WUSA 9

Marsh011450140790Sgt. Jeremy Bull knew homicide victim Charles Marsh Jr. as a teenager. At right is Thomasene Marsh, the mother of the victim, who was 17 when he was killed. The case remains unsolved. (Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post)



We wish you a Merry Christmas


We wish you a Merry Christmas;
We wish you a Merry Christmas;
We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Good tidings we bring to you and your kin;
Good tidings for Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Oh, bring us a figgy pudding;
Oh, bring us a figgy pudding;
Oh, bring us a figgy pudding and a cup of good cheer
We won’t go until we get some;
We won’t go until we get some;
We won’t go until we get some, so bring some out here

We wish you a Merry Christmas;
We wish you a Merry Christmas;
We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.





Joy To The World


Home for Christmas: Live from Dublin

Joy to the world! The Lord has come
Let earth receive her King!
Let every heart prepare Him room

And heaven and nature sing
And heaven and nature sing
And heaven, and heaven and nature sing

Joy to the world! the Savior reigns
Let men their songs employ
While fields and floods
Rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat, repeat the sounding joy

No more let sins and sorrows grow
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found.
As the curse is found.

 He rules the world with truth and grace
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness
And wonders of His love
And wonders of His love
And wonders and wonders of His love




We wish you a Merry Christmas