By Arlene Jones
Wow, it's that time of year — time to do a review of the old in anticipation of the new.
I started off this year talking about Raybon's Auto Repair at Roosevelt and Kostner. I would suggest everyone get their business card and place it where you can find it when your car breaks down and you're wondering who to call. I also commented on Praise Dancing — a talent-less inclusion in many churches that has me wondering: is it really about the dancing or the slinky outfits?
I wished the movie Roll Bounce had been done in a style that would have revived roller skating and the fun involved in doing it. I wrote about starting to work on my family history and the joy of learning about people I never knew existed.
Next I wrote about the loss to the blues community with the passing of Clarence "Little Scotty" Scott. I followed that with a column wondering why at funerals are they no longer opening the casket for a final good-bye?
Driving a school bus is still an industry that needs workers and is hiring every day. I verbalized the plight of a two-flat owner who had the "tenant from hell."
If you haven't signed up to be a Bone Marrow Donor, shame on you! And because this community is so apathetic and because many like the fact that news about this community is suppressed, there wasn't any protest as the former Harris Bank at 5454 W. North Ave. was demolished to give us another dollar store and auto supply shop.
I, too, wrote about Trayvon Martin. I will never understand how all those people who responded to the StreetBeat question in this paper could admit that they wouldn't turn in a killer 'cause it was a family member or friend. That led to a column on Kimberly Harris who was murdered by someone because she did speak out.
We had a wonderful Green Festival at Navy Pier with parking costs that were through the roof while the city has bargain-basement rates at O'Hare. I am still very upset about the "left turn on arrow only" sign at I-290 and Laramie, which I started an online petition against it. You can visit this paper's website for more info.
Blue Ivy has become a household word and a reminder that her parents dated, married and then planned for her. Four young women lost their lives drag racing on Lake Street when they should've been at home with their kids.
I still don't believe the black community is intolerant of gay people just because some don't support the issue of gay marriage. Some of us also need to do better with the amount of profanity they spew as well as demonstrating better child-rearing skills. And when I saw the video of the behavior of some of our young people during a funeral procession, I had to write that Bill Cosby was right.
I don't think the Obamas will return here when he leaves office. Nonetheless, I strongly urge that the old Brach candy site be in the running as the location of his presidential library. Also, the success the Obamas have had in raising two beautiful daughters really shows.
And if the president can push for the legalization of those here illegally, we need to make sure ex-offenders can be forgiven for some of their illegal activities too. We have a generation of young people who are, by their actions, making themselves candidates to be incarcerated by the criminal justice system.
We voted — many voted early — and re-elected Obama. Let's spend the next four years not letting Obama forget who helped put him there.
I wrote about Raymond Ivy and his fight to find out what happened with his young daughters. I will do a follow-up next year because there is even more to his story.
State Rep. LaShawn Ford still needs to be supported next year as he fights the scurrilous charges against him. He, too, has a story that, when told in its simplest form, should anger all of us.
Lastly, I did bake those cookies for my son.
Happy New Year and remember to celebrate Kwanzaa.