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Showing posts from June, 2014

Based on Atlantic City, Philly Does Not Need Another Casino!

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An article in the Philadelphia Inquirer this week revealed that the Showboat Casino will close in approximately 60 days.  On August 31st, almost 2,100 people will be out of work.  Last week it was also reported that the Revel had filed for bankruptcy for the second time in two years.  The same article revealed that revenues in Atlantic City have taken a nose dive from a high of $5.2 billion in 2006 down to $2.9 billion last year.  The proliferation of casinos in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware have all impacted the fate of the gaming business in A.C.  Those people bidding for another casino in Philadelphia, including high powered attorney Richard Sprague, seem to be in this for a quick fix.

The Revel was the biggest gamble that the decision makers in AC took recently.  It was the most expensive casino ever built in the town.  It took $2.4 billion to complete this effort to lure high end travelers.  The emphasis was supposed to be less on gambling and more on amenities.  It boaste…

United States versus Germany in the FIFA World Cup: Exhilirating

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The World Cup has grown on me.  I have not been this interested in soccer since the United States women won the title in 1999.  The iconic image of Brandi Chastain taking off her shirt after the win will forever remain in American lore.  I almost passed out at the time because a woman had never done that.  There is a first time for everything.  The U.S. men have not fared as well.  We were dispatched by Ghana in the last two World Cups.  It was an ominous sign that we had to face Ghana to open up these games.

Many people say that you have to face a bully to get to where you want to go.  Peacefully walking down the street is a blessing in many areas.  In the soccer world, no country has lost to another in three consecutive World Cups.  Clint Dempsey started us off on the right foot (no pun intended) with a goal within the first minute against Ghana.  The rest of the game was a tense chess match.  We were dropping like flies.  Clint Dempsey got his nose broken by a high kick from a Gha…

Address to the 8th Grade Class at Nebinger Elementary School in Philadelphia

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I am absolutely honored to be here today.  Graduations at any stage in your life present a challenge and an opportunity.  Because of the growth of Social Media I am about to meet with some classmates from Saint Rita’s Elementary School that I graduated 8th grade with in 1977.  I know a few of you were at least one year’s old then.  I look forward to catching up with some individuals that I have not seen in person since I was thirteen.
The world has changed in many ways since then.  There are innovations in technology which I could only dream of when I was growing up.  There was a show called the Jetson’s on when I was younger.  It was one of my favorites.  It featured the interactive application now called Skype.  A person could call another person on the phone and see them live.  It wasn’t available back then.  I can imagine what the future will bring for you.  They already have Google glass which allows you to read your computer while walking down the street.  I think that this is pa…

Prison Does Not Really Rehabilitate Its Residents

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There was a horrific story on the news the other day.  A six year old boy was stabbed to death and a seven year old girl was critically wounded in the same incident.  The suspect who was captured is a twenty-seven year old man who had served prison stints over the previous years.  Daniel St. Hubert was released from jail nine days before he allegedly killed Prince Joshua Avitto and injured Mikayla Capers.  Many prisoners are denied bail for a number of reasons.  This man was released and should have been trying to get his life together.  I can imagine the shock of the parents and relatives of these young people trying to enjoy themselves in a sometimes cruel world.

He had to have been abused as a child or something.  What other motive would he have for attacking the most innocent of victims.  It was recounted that these two friends were on their way to Prince's house for ice cream.  It was a beautiful day and one that I am glad I lived through safely at that age.  I guess this in…

Julius J. Bell, Sr.: You Did a Great Job!

Sunday was my Father's birthday.  If he was not among the Ancestors, he would have been 86 years old.  He was born on June 1st, 1928 in South Carolina.  He was one of 23 children born to John A. Bell.  He was the Father of nine children with his wife Mary H. Bell.  My mother was a student at Howard University when JB Sr. came by and they started their life together.  It was a life of triumph and some tragedy.  I never got a chance to meet my Brother Jonathan who died in a car crash in 1962.  I have a Sister Virginia who is also in heaven.

He left the bucolic state of South Carolina for the hard scrabble streets of South Philadelphia.  My Father was a Jack of All trades.  When we were growing up, he worked a full time job at the Navy Yard in addition to being able to fix up houses.  He could run electrical wires, fix leaky pipes, complete cement jobs and repair asphalt roofs.  I understand now the energy that it took to do that.  He also opened and closed a Laundromat on the corn…