This is the Black Christian News Network Podcast for Thursday, February 16, 2017.
1. According to the Christian Post, Islamic terror group Boko Haram has now reportedly killed close to 100,000 people, both Muslims and Christians, and displaced over two million citizens in its ongoing quest to eradicate Christianity from Nigeria. Premium Times Nigeria reported that the statistics were shared by Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno state earlier this week, as part of a paper titled “Managing the Boko Haram Crisis in Borno State, Experiences and Lessons for a Multiparty, Multiethnic and Multireligious Nigeria.” Boko Haram has been carrying out an insurgency in Nigeria since 2009, attacking government buildings, churches, and entire towns and communities, in a quest to drive out from the country all Christians, who make up roughly half the population. President Muhammadu Buhari claimed that the Nigerian military made significant gains against Boko Haram in 2016, but the Islamic radical group continues to carry out terror attacks.
2. According to WORLD News, nearly 300 Caribbean ministers and church leaders have urged President Donald Trump to end U.S. efforts to export the LGBT agenda. The Jan. 31 letter contains signatures of pastors from the Bahamas, Guyana, St. Maarten, St. Vincent, and Trinidad and Tobago. The church leaders claim the Obama administration’s State Department deployed coercive measures to normalize same-sex marriage and elevate LGBT issues at the expense of human rights. The ministers cited concerns over the influence of the State Department’s special envoy for the human rights of LGBT persons, a position the Obama administration created in early 2015.
3. According to the Associated Press, a 19-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in the killing of an 11-year-old Chicago girl who was shot in the head over the weekend. Chicago Police suspect Antwan C. Jones in the shooting of Takiya Holmes. She died Tuesday. Takiya was among at least three children shot in Chicago in recent days. Police say 2-year-old Lavontay White was fatally shot Tuesday when someone opened fire on a vehicle he was in with two adults. Police suspect the man in the vehicle who also died was the target of a gang hit. And authorities said Tuesday that a 12-year-old girl also shot over the weekend remains in critical condition. Jones doesn’t have a listed number to pursue comment.
4. According to the New York Times, three children shot in four days: That is the latest grim toll in Chicago, which has been reeling from a wave of gun violence. The latest spasms of gunfire came as Mayor Rahm Emanuel met with the United States attorney general, Jeff Sessions, in Washington on Monday to seek more federal aid to help curb the violence. The Department of Justice said in a statement that they had discussed what could be done to “bring back proactive community policing.” And this month, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said it planned to send more agents to the city, where violence claimed more than 750 lives out of the more than 35,000 shootings last year.
5. According to Black America Web, a University of Kansas professor is spearheading a project to memorialize the vicious lynching of Emmett Till in Mississippi at the courthouse where his murder trial took place. HBCU Buzz reports that David Tell, an associate professor of communication studies at Kansas, helped to create the “Emmett Till Memory Project,” an interactive site that depicts 51-geographical sites related to the Till case. The outlet reports that this research will be the foundation of the exhibits at the Tallahatchie County Courthouse, where Roy Bryant and J.W. Milam were tried and acquitted in Till’s death in 1955.
6. According to the Commercial Appeal, Dr. Altha Stewart, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, is the first African American slated to become president of the American Psychiatric Association, which traces its roots to 1844. Congratulations poured in Tuesday as news spread that the national association’s membership, which includes more than 37,000 physicians, had elected Stewart to become the next president-elect, beginning in May. Her year as president begins in May 2018.
7. According to the Associated Press, the CEO of Baltimore-based sports apparel company Under Armour responded Wednesday to criticism he received after calling President Donald Trump “an asset to the country.” In an open letter to Baltimore published as a full-page advertisement in The Baltimore Sun, Kevin Plank wrote that he wanted to clarify what values he and his company stand for. Three celebrities the company sponsors — NBA star Stephen Curry, actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and ballerina Misty Copeland — were among those voicing concerns about his praise of Trump.