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Serving Southeastern North Carolina since 1927 and an outgrowth of R.S. Jervay Printers established in 1901


Wilmington Police are

continuing their search for

30 year old Ebonee Spears of

Wilmington. The local

Crimestoppers organization has

joined with the Wilmington Police

Department in offering a reward

of up to $5,000 for

information on Ebonee's

whereabouts. If you know

where Spears may be, call

Wilmington Police

at (910) 343-3600

or use Text-a-Tip.

News from the African American perspective without fear or favor

VOLUME 95 JULY 1, 2023-JULY 31, 2023 $1.00

NNPA Wraps Convention in Nashville with Powerful Messages


Looking IN

“Concerns Mount

Among Democrats as

Black Voter Turnout

Drops, Impacting

Biden’s Reelection Bid”



Black News



Black History!




is a



Black History.

The theme of the conference and for this 196th anniversary of the Black Press is: The Black Press of America: Amplifying Progress,

Excellence, & Voices of Black America. Pictured is the NNPA Board.




President Joe Biden’s remarks in saluting the

Black Press of America during the NNPA’s annual

convention in Nashville, making it clear how

important African American-owned newspapers

remain, underscored the gathering’s theme.

Afterall, the theme of the conference and for

this 196th anniversary of the Black Press is: The

Black Press of America: Amplifying Progress,

Excellence, & Voices of Black America.

“Congratulations to the Black Press of America

for celebrating 196 years of serving communities

across our nation,” Biden stated in the address

which aired on July 1.

“Ida B. Wells once said, the way to right wrongs

is to turn the light of truth upon the wrong. That’s

the sacred charge of a free press. That’s the charge

African American publishers have pursued for

nearly two centuries,” Biden continued.

“With every story you publish, you make our

democracy stronger. Thank you for what you do to

turn the light of truth wherever your work leads

you. Thank you.”

Dr. Chavis and NNPA Chair Karen Carter

Richards praised the President for recognizing the

importance of the Black Press of America.

“The NNPA is especially honored to hear directly

from President Joe Biden for his continued support

and advocacy of the importance of the Black

Press of America,” Chavis stated.

“As we celebrate 196 years of the Black Press,

it’s always gratifying and encouraging to have the

support of the President of the United States. In

the wake of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions

on civil rights, the Black Press rededicates

our journalism to be a clarion voice for freedom,

justice, equality, and equity.”

Richards, who completed four years as NNPA

Chair, also thanked the President.

“To have the President of the United States take

the time out to be a part of our convention is of

course special,” Richards related.

“But it’s also a testament to just how vital the

Black Press remains. Collectively, as Black publishers

and Black business owners, we are

stronger than ever, and the President’s message

reinforces that.”

The week began with a chairman’s reception at

the National Museum of African American Music

sponsored by Nissan, with greetings and acknowledgments

from Richards; Chavis; and convention

planning committee chair Terry Jones, the publisher

of Data News Weekly in New Orleans.

The Wilmington Journal is now fully operating from a remote area.

Our building has much damage and some of our equipment is

still inoperable. Please continue to bear with us as we work to return to normalcy.

The Staff and Management of

The Wilmington Journal

Rosetta Miller-Perry, the publisher of the

Tennessee Tribune, served as host for the week.

A workshop on engaging the next generation

through culture and building pathways between

the Black Press and the next generation through

education included conversations with Houston

Forward Times Business Manager Chelsea

Lenora White, and Jarren Small, the CEO of

Educational Entertainment and Reading with a


The workshop stressed the importance of solving

the national literacy issue to reach the next

generation and provided publishers and attendees

with solutions to reach an untapped market:


Small and Dr. Chavis then discussed the “Black

Press State of Emergency Response through Hip

Hop, Education, and Literacy,” during a fireside


The Google News Initiative presented “3 Trends

to Grow Ad Revenues in 2023” with the global program

manager Tina Xiao.

Xiao briefed attendees on the top trends in ad

revenue and Google products aimed at helping

accelerate publishers’ digital transformation.

Longtime NNPA partner General Motors hosted

a lunch discussion on “Cultural Capital with

Diverse Consumers Through Storytelling,” moderated

by David Milledge, GM’s multicultural

marketing manager.

It included panelists Brandy Merriweather and

Tiffany Greene, both HBCU alums.

The Los Angeles Sentinel later presented

“Digital Transformation, Staying Accessible and

Relevant to Readers,” powered by Intuit, and featuring

Niele Anderson, the Sentinel’s Daily Brief


Tania Mercado, the senior manager of communications

at Intuit, and Derrick Plummer, the

company’s director of corporate communications,

served as panelists.

They discussed the challenges of transforming

print to digital and how to accelerate that transformation

and overcome some of those challenges.

The NNPA Fund handed out its Messenger

Awards, honoring the best of Black newspapers.

The Sacramento Observer won 16 awards, including

Publisher of the Year for Larry Lee.

Chavis also interviewed Jessie Wolley-Wilson,

the president, and CEO of DreamBox Learning,

on emphasizing mathematics in education.

Dr. Wilford T. Ussery then presented

“Mathematics and Education for Black America.”

Diageo produced the video “Introducing

Multicultural Consortium for Responsible

Drinking,” presented by Sheila Thorne.

Also, Zillow presented “Housing Trends in

Black America,” with Tyrone Law, the senior public

relations specialist delivering with a focus on

the current state of housing, including homeownership

rates, home values and other trends affecting

the Black community.

Keith Collins, the owner, and CEO of BlackOps

LLC, presented “Empowering Minority-Owned

Small Businesses to be Cyber Aware.”

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison

proved a crowd pleaser with his topic, “Ending the

Cycle of Police Violence in America.”

Google Tech Transformation Lab presented a

Q&A where publishers and attendees could learn

more about how they could become a part of

Transformation Tech, a new program helping

news publishers achieve digital transformation

through top-tier coaching and $20K in funding

from the Google News Initiative.

Reynolds hosted a lunch panel on “When Good

People Write Bad Public Policy: Stop the FDA

Menthol Ban,” a session that expounded on the

lived experiences and expertise of the nation’s

leading Black law enforcement professionals and

community leaders on the unintended consequences

of bans and prohibitions.

Bobby Henry, the publisher of the Westside

Gazette in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., won election as

NNPA Chairman, succeeding Richards, the publisher

of the Houston Forward Times.

During the NNPA’s Legacy Awards and Gala

Dinner, the organization honored Attorney

General Ellison along with Tennessee State

Representatives Justin Jones and Justin Pearson.

Grammy winner Keith Washington closed the

gala with a mini-concert.


CALL (910) 762-5502




Thursday, July 1-31,2023

ISSN 0049-7649


Dedicated to R.S. Jervay,

Founder of R.S. Jervay Printers,

1901 and T.C. Jervay, Sr.,

Founder of The Wilmington

Journal, An offspring of

the Cape Fear Journal, 1927

Published Weekly At

412 South Seventh Street,

Wilmington, NC 28401

By Wilmington Journal, Inc.

P.O. Box 1020,

Wilmington, NC 28402

Periodical Postage Paid At

Wilmington, NC 28402

(910) 762-5502,

Fax: (910) 343-1334,

Email: wilmjourn@aol.com



Single Copy $1.00

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Payable in Advance.(Taxes

Included )

Address all communications and

make all checks and

money orders payable to:

The Wilmington Journal,

P.O. Box 1020,

Wilmington, NC 28402

We accept

Shawn Jervay Thatch

Chief Operating Officer

Mary Alice Jervay Thatch


Johanna Thatch Briggs

Assistant Editor

Roshanna Thatch

Assistant Manager//Circulation

Cash Michaels

Reporter/Editorial Staff

John Davis


DeShon Briggs


Joshua Allen


Opinions expressed by

columnists in this

newspaper do not


represent the policy of this


The Wilmington Journal

cannot accept yard sale and

dinner sale announcements

as briefs.

These are considered

advertisements. Community

and religious briefs are

designated for public service

announcements, which are

free and open to the


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Fridays at 5 p.m.

There is no charge for

submitting briefs, news and

photos. All briefs will run for

a maximum of two weeks.

Please send news near the

event date. Briefs/news

cannot be taken over the

phone. Photos and stories

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necessary postage

accompanies the copy on a

self-addressed envelope.

Is Nc Listening To V.P. Harris’ Warning About Florida’s False Black Scheme?










No, she hasn’t excoriated

North Carolina yet, but last

week, when Vice President

Kamala Harris blasted the Florida

Board of Education for corrupting its

statewide Black History studies standards

to portray slavery as something

which “benefited” enslaved Africans,

she struck a nerve well beyond the

Sunshine State.

Harris’ powerful takedown of the

revisionist Florida Black History curriculum

was a dire warning to the rest

of the country, including North

Carolina, that the conservative culture

war campaign to literally change the

documented racial history of the

United States into something more

politically palatable for the expressed

purpose of gaining more power, is proceeding

at an alarming clip.

In March, North Carolina’s

Republican-controlled House passed a

previously vetoed measure restricting

what teachers can discuss about

America’s racial history. In June, the

legislature passed a law banning discussions

about race in the state government


Against that backdrop, here is an

abbreviated version of the vice president’s

remarks in Jacksonville, Fla.

from July 21, 2023:

“…[W]hen I think about what is happening

here in Florida, I am deeply

concerned. Because let’s be clear: I do

believe this is not only about the state

of Florida; there is a national agenda

afoot. And what is happening here in

Florida? Extremist so-called leaders

for months have dared to ban books.

Book bans in this year of our Lord


And now, on top of all of that, they

want to replace history with lies.

Middle school students in Florida to be

told that enslaved people benefited

from slavery. High schoolers may be

taught that victims of violence, of

massacres were also perpetrators.

They insult us in an attempt to

gaslight us — and we will not have it.

We teach our children not only to tell

the truth, but to seek knowledge and


Well, I think we should model what

we say. These extremist so-called leaders

should model what we know to be

the correct and right approach, if we

really are invested in the well-being of

our children.

Come on — adults know what slavery

really involved. It involved rape. It

involved torture. It involved taking a

baby from their mother. It involved

some of the worst examples of depriving

people of humanity in our world.

It involved subjecting to people the

requirement that they would think of

themselves and be thought of as less

than human.

So, in the context of that, how is it

that anyone could suggest that in the

midst of these atrocities, that there

was any benefit to being subjected to

this level of dehumanization? In the

midst of these atrocities, that there

was some benefit?

So, it is not only misleading; it is

false. And it is pushing propaganda.

People who walk around and want to

be praised as leaders, who want to be

talked about as American leaders,

pushing propaganda on our children.


Pushing propaganda on our children.

And that’s what’s so outrageous

about what is happening right now: an

abject and purposeful and intentional

policy to mislead our children. And so,

let us be clear: Teachers want to teach

the truth. Teachers want to teach

facts. And teachers dedicate themselves

to some of the most noble work

Please see


HUB/MWBE Certified by

State of North Carolina

Member of the National

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Association, Inc.

Member of North Carolina

Black Publishers Association


Thursday, July 1-31, 2023 STATE



Continued from Page 2

any human being could take

on: to teach other people’s children

— for the sake of the

future of our nation.

And so, they should not then

be told by politicians that they

should be teaching revisionist



North Carolina First

District Democrat

Congressman Don

Davis of Pitt County, an

African American, is making

no bones about where he

stands politically.

The Snow Hill native, minister

and former United States

Air Force commissioned officer

may have taken over former

Rep. G. K. Butterfield’s

congressional office when he

was elected in 2022, but Davis

is cutting a different path from

the politically progressive

Butterfield, and that was made

clear earlier this month when

Davis, a member of the House

Committee on Armed

Services, was one of a handful

of House Democrats voting

with conservative Republicans

in support of a new defense

budget that was loaded with

“culture war” amendments.

Davis’ Democrat colleagues

call the $880 billion NDAA



Authorization Act) for Fiscal

Year 2024 an “extreme bill”

because beyond providing

funding for the U.S. military, as

it is supposed to do, the ratified

measure bans funding of

diversity, equity and inclusion

(DEI) initiatives; reimbursing

travel costs for female service

history in order to keep their

jobs. Our teachers who fear

that if they teach the truth,

they may lose their job. As it

is, we don’t pay them enough.

And these are the people —

these extremist, so-called leaders

— who all the while are

also the ones suggesting that

teachers strap on a gun in the

classroom instead of what real

Black Centrist Democrat NC Congressman Votes With Republicans

members in need of an abortion;

and any display of the

LBGTQ Pride flags.

Those amendments were

sponsored by conservative

Congressman Chip Roy of

Texas, who has a well-known

record of opposing any issues

the right-wing describes as

“woke.” But even though

Republicans in the U.S. House

have a slim majority to pass

any measure they please, Rep.

Davis, a Democrat, joined

three other Democrats in supporting

Congressman Roy’s

anti-woke amendments, and

ultimately the final version of

the NDAA.

Why would the first-term

Rep. Davis, 51, come anywhere

near a right-wing political firebrand

like Roy? We asked his

congressional office in

Washington, D.C. by email last

week why Davis was one of

only four Democrats to support

the anti-DEI, antiwomen’s

choice, and anti-

LBGTQ amendments to the

NDAA, but got no response by

press time.

Rep. Roy has sponsored

some anti-critical race theory

bills in the recent past, as well.

Davis has opposed anti-CRT

measures while in the NC state

Senate, but that could change

given his recent vote against

DEI initiatives in the NDAA


But research into Rep.

leaders should be doing and be

engaged in reasonable gun

safety laws.

“…[T]here is a national

agenda afoot, understanding

that there are many aspects of

our history that some would

like to overlook, erase, or at

least deny — let us think about

then what this creates as a

moment for us to also then

Davis’ political background

shows that while he is one of

seven Democratic congresspeople

representing North

Carolina in the U.S. House, and

one of three African

American members of that

delegation, Davis is perhaps

the most moderate politically,

meaning it’s hard to be sure

where he stands on traditional

Democratic issues.

Having served in the North

Carolina Senate before running

for Butterfield’s First

District congressional seat in

2022, Davis had already established

a centrist track record,

voting against his party to

defund Planned Parenthood,

supporting several anti-abortion

measures, and even

obstructing some of Gov.

Cooper’s agenda.

In 2015, then state Sen. Davis

voted to support then

Republican Gov. Pat

McCrory’s anti-abortion agenda.

In 2017 and 2018, Davis

voted for budgets that allotted

at least $1 million for religious

anti-abortion crisis pregnancy

centers, later switching gears

to support Gov. Cooper’s veto

of those budgets.

In 2019, Davis was one of

two Democratic state senators

to vote for Republican “born

alive” legislation, making it a

felony “not to treat a baby

born in the course of a late

term abortion as a person.”

rededicate ourselves to the

coalition. Our responsibility

at moments like this to understand

nobody should be made

to fight alone. We are all in

this together.

We fought a war to end the

sin of slavery. A civil war.

People died by the untold numbers

in that war, many of

whom fought and died because

Gov. Cooper vetoed the measure

because existing law

already protected newborns.

Still, Davis was the only

Democrat to vote to override

Cooper’s veto.

Ironically, given his NC legislative

track record, Davis’

congressional campaign

insisted that he supports the

“fundamental right” of a

woman to choose an abortion,

and would codify Roe v. Wade

while in Congress.

“In Congress, I will fight

tooth-and-nail to protect abortion

rights and women’s

healthcare,” Rep. Davis

declared on Twitter after the

U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v.

Wade decision had been leaked

last year.

Rep. Don Davis may also

have another reason for being

a Republican-light centrist

Democrat - his congressional


The First Congressional

District, as presently constituted,

consists of 19 counties

stretching from the northeast-

of their belief that slavery was

a sin against man — that it

was inhumane, that it was not

reflective of who we believe

ourselves to be as a country,

and certainly not reflective of

who we aspire to be.

Let us not be distracted by

what they’re trying to do,

which is to create unnecessary

debates to divide our country.

ern part of North Carolina

from the Virginia border,

through several counties of

the Inner Banks and the

Research Triangle.

Many of those counties, like

Bertie, Halifax and

Northhampton are primarily

rural with poor economies and

older populations, making the

district decidedly more conservative-leaning

thanks to the

legislature’s latest redistricting.

It’s one of the reasons why

the previous First District congressman,

Butterfield, decided

not to run for reelection.

Davis, also a member of the

House Committee on

Agriculture, is considered one

of four vulnerable Democrats

Republicans feel they can successfully

target in the 2024

elections thanks to a May N.C.

Let’s not fall in that trap.

And so, let us stand always

for what we know is right. Let

us fight for what is right. And

when we fight, we win.

Here in North Carolina,

conservative Republicans continue

to change laws governing

public education, intent on

changing the historical narrative

as they see it.


Supreme Court decision allowing

the GOP to draw partisan

gerrymanders, which may

explain why Davis is playing it

so safe in Congress.

Legislative Republicans

plan to redraw congressional

districts in a few weeks, meaning

that Democrat

Congressman Don Davis is

likely to remain as politically

moderate as possible to keep

his seat when he is challenged.

Visit Our Website



COMMUNITY Thursday, July 1-31, 2023

Concerns Mount Among Democrats as Black Voter Turnout Drops, Impacting Biden’s Reelection Bid





Democrats are increasingly

worried about a potential

drop in Black voter turnout

next year, particularly among

Black men, their most loyal

constituency, who played a

pivotal role in securing

President Biden’s victory in

2020 and are crucial to his bid

for reelection.

The Washington Post analyzed

the Census Bureau’s

turnout survey and found

that Black voter turnout saw a

significant ten percentagepoint

decline in last year’s

midterms compared to 2018, a

more substantial drop than

among any other racial or ethnic


While Democrats initially

downplayed these warning

signals due to other victories

in 2022, such as gaining a U.S.

Senate seat in Pennsylvania

and Senator Raphael G.

Warnock’s reelection in

Georgia, the decline in Black

turnout has become a significant

concern for the party as

they look ahead to the next

presidential contest in 2024.

States like Georgia, which

are crucial to Democrats’

strategy for mobilizing Black

voters in significant numbers,

saw lower turnout among

younger and male Black voters

in the midterms, according

to internal party analysis.

W. Mondale Robinson, the

founder of the Black Male

Voter Project, highlighted the

urgent turnout problem

among Black men, telling the

Post that many are “sporadic

or non-voters” registered but

haven’t voted in recent presidential


He expressed disappointment

that the Democratic

Party seems more focused on

converting conservative-leaning

white women in the suburbs,

considering Black men

as potential swing voters who

need targeted efforts to be


In response to the growing

concern, Biden’s political

team acknowledged the issue

and pledged to act, especially

among younger Black men.

Cedric L. Richmond, a former

Biden adviser now serving

as a senior adviser at the

Democratic National

Committee, emphasized to the

Post’s researchers the need to

connect with Black voters,

highlighting the benefits they

have received from Biden

administration policies.

The party aims to learn

from past shortcomings and

draw explicit connections

between its policies and the

well-being of Black communities.

The challenge is particularly

acute among Black men

who often feel alienated from

the political process due to

historical policies that

increased incarceration and

job losses in manufacturing


Many express disillusionment

after experiencing

upheaval from a global pandemic

and witnessing escalating

violence in urban areas.

To win their support,

Democrats must focus on

highlighting specific policy

benefits rather than solely

concentrating on criticism of

former President Trump and

Republican extremism, the

analysts found.

Despite Black women historically

showing more robust

voting enthusiasm, concerns

over Black voter turnout also

extend to this group.

Biden’s reelection garnered

a tepid reaction in a

Washington Post/Ipsos poll of

Black Americans, with only

17 percent expressing enthusiasm

about another term.

The poll also revealed that

most Black Americans wouldn’t

consider voting for Trump,

but a significant portion is not

enthusiastic about Biden’s


Terrance Woodbury, chief

executive of HIT Strategies, a

polling firm focused on

young, non-white voters,

Also, as much as Biden has praised Black voters and the Black Press, the campaign has done little thus far

to utilize Black-owned newspapers and media companies to help reach African Americans.

warned liberal groups of the

urgency to convince Black

voters that they have benefited

from Biden’s time in


The messaging needs to

shift from attacking Trump

to emphasizing policy benefits

and addressing the belief

among Black Americans that

their votes don’t matter—a

significant barrier to voter


Brittany Smith, executive

director of the Philadelphiabased

Black Leadership PAC,

which mobilizes Black voters,

said she has noticed a

shift in how Black people

respond to get-out-the-vote


Also, as much as Biden has

praised Black voters and the

Black Press, the campaign

has done little thus far to utilize

Black-owned newspapers

and media companies to help

reach African Americans.

“Everybody knows that

there’s no path, whether it’s

President Biden or any other

Democrat, federal or state,

there’s no path to win that

does not involve massive

turnout from Black voters,”

Cliff Albright, co-founder

and executive director of

Black Votes Matter, told the


“But they can’t just think

that it’s just going to happen

on its own. They’ve got to

invest in making that happen.”

Thursday, July 1-31, 2023 HEALTH


New Recommendation Calls for Anxiety Disorder Screening in Adults





The US Preventive

Services Task Force (USP-

STF) has issued a new recommendation

stating that adults

aged 19 to 64 in the United

States should undergo

screening for anxiety disorders.

This marks the first final

recommendation from the

task force regarding anxiety

disorder screening in adults,

including pregnant and postpartum


However, the USPSTF

found insufficient evidence

to support screening for anxiety

in older adults.

The recommendation also

aligns with the task force’s

previous guidance from 2016,

which advised screening all

adults for major depressive

disorder, including pregnant

or postpartum individuals

and older adults.

The USPSTF is an independent

group of medical

experts whose recommendations

influence doctors’ decisions

and insurance plans.

In recent years, the prevalence

of clinical depression

has been steadily increasing

in the United States, but it

experienced a significant

surge during the COVID-19


According to the US

Centers for Disease Control

and Prevention (CDC),

approximately one in six

adults will experience


Although depression and

anxiety are distinct conditions,

they often coexist.

Consequently, screening

recommendations can help

clinicians identify patients

who may require treatment

for both conditions or either


The USPSTF researchers

emphasized the need for

more robust screening, as

most individuals with anxiety

disorders do not receive

treatment within the first

year of symptoms, or sometimes


Only 11% of US adults

with an anxiety disorder

sought treatment within the

first year of onset, according

to research by the USPSTF.

The median time to treatment

initiation was 23 years.

In a study involving 965

primary care patients, only

41% of those with an anxiety

disorder received treatment.

Medical professionals can

perform screening for anxiety

disorders using questionnaires

and scales that evaluate

symptoms like feeling on

edge, uncontrollable worrying,

and difficulty relaxing.

Similarly, screening for

depression includes questions

about feeling hopeless,

having trouble concentrating,

losing interest in daily

activities, or having thoughts

of self-harm.

Major depressive disorder

is diagnosed when an individual

experiences at least two

weeks of persistent sadness or

a lack of interest in everyday

This marks the first final recommendation from the task force regarding anxiety disorder screening in

adults, including pregnant and postpartum individuals.


If there’s a positive screening

result, it should be confirmed

through a diagnostic

assessment to determine

symptom severity and identify

any additional psychological


Subsequently, health

experts said appropriate care

should be provided to


The USPSTF said it

acknowledges that potential

harms of screening include

false positives, which may

lead to unnecessary appointments

or treatment.

However, for most adults,

screening and subsequent

care can alleviate symptoms

associated with anxiety disorders

and depression.

Effective treatments for

anxiety disorders encompass

psychotherapy (talk therapy)

with a therapist, medications

like antidepressants or beta

blockers, and relaxation or

stress management therapies.

Treatment options for

depression include antidepressant

medication, psychotherapy,

or a combination

of both.

The USPSTF’s recommendation

emphasizes that if left

untreated, major depressive

disorder can hinder daily

functioning and increase the

risk of cardiovascular events,

exacerbate comorbid conditions,

or lead to higher mortality


Only about half of individuals

with major depression

are correctly identified.

Research also indicates that

anxiety disorders and depression

may be associated with

suicidal thoughts, suicide

attempts, and other selfdestructive


However, the new USPSTF

recommendations state that

there is currently insufficient

evidence to recommend

screening specifically for suicide

risk in adults who are not

displaying signs or symptoms.

This stance aligns with the

task force’s previous recommendation

from 2014, and the

USPSTF has called for further

research to understand suicide

risks among asymptomatic

individuals better.

Geographic Disparities Revealed in US Depression Rates, New Study Shows





The US Centers for Disease

Control and Prevention (CDC)

conducted a thorough analysis

that revealed significant variations

in the prevalence of diagnosed

depression among

adults across various states.

The recently published

report unveils intriguing findings,

indicating that the proportion

of US adults who have

ever been diagnosed with

depression varies considerably

based on their geographical


According to the study,

which analyzed data from the

CDC’s Behavioral Risk Factor

Surveillance System in 2020,

approximately 18.4% of US

adults reported having been

diagnosed with depression at

some point.

However, the percentage of

adults reporting depression

varied substantially from state

to state, ranging from an estimated

12.7% in Hawaii to

27.5% in West Virginia.

Researchers from the CDC

and the Oak Ridge Institute for

Science and Education in

Tennessee noted in the report

that there was a considerable

geographic disparity in

depression prevalence, with

the highest rates observed

along the Appalachian and

southern Mississippi Valley


Medical experts said the

findings shed light on the

urgent need for targeted

resource allocation to areas

where the prevalence of

depression is most significant.

The research team utilized

survey responses from nearly

400,000 adults across all 50

states and Washington, DC,

focusing on answers related to

previous diagnoses of depressive

disorders received from

healthcare professionals.

The data highlighted the ten

states with the highest prevalence

of adults reporting a

depression diagnosis: West



Tennessee, Arkansas,



Louisiana, Washington,

Missouri, and Montana.

Further analysis at the

county level revealed an even

more comprehensive range of

prevalence, with depression

rates ranging from 10.7% in

Alaska’s Aleutians East

Borough County to 31.9% in

Logan County, West Virginia.

In addition to geographical

disparities, the study also

found notable variations in

depression prevalence based

on gender and age.

The overall prevalence

among women was 24%, compared

to 13.3% among men.

The recently published report unveils intriguing findings, indicating that the proportion of US adults who

have ever been diagnosed with depression varies considerably based on their geographical location.

Younger adults aged 18 to 24

experienced a higher prevalence

rate of 21.5%, while

older adults aged 65 and above

had a rate of 14.2%.

The study also highlighted

higher depression rates

among white adults and individuals

with less than a high

school education.

The most recent findings

support a different Gallup

report from May, which found

a comparable national prevalence

of depression among

adults in the United States.

The Gallup report indicated

that approximately 18% of

adults reported being

depressed or receiving treatment

for depression, representing

a significant increase

of over seven percentage

points since 2015.

The impact of the COVID-19

pandemic on mental health

cannot be overlooked, as it has

undeniably contributed to the

rise in clinical depression

rates, health officials said.

The Gallup data demonstrated

a notable escalation in

depression rates over recent

years, aligning with the overall

upward trend observed in

the US., officials stated.





BUSINESS Thursday, July 1-31, 2023

Carlos Watson, Tech Founder of Ozy, Says Prosecution is Racially Biased





Carlos Watson, the cofounder

of Ozy Media, is

loudly claiming on social

media and in a well-produced

video that he has

been targeted as a Black

entrepreneur in the mostly

white tech world.

Ozy collapsed after

Watson was indicted for

fraud in February 2023.

Federal prosecutors alleged

that Watson and his company

defrauded investors out

of “tens of millions.”

Prosecutors claim that

Watson ran a company that

was a fraudulent scheme to

fool financial supporters

based on false information

about Ozy.

But in the tech world,

over-inflating user data and





success is generally standard

practice. Watson is

arguing that his prosecution

is racially biassed and

that he was using often used

tactics by tech entrepreneurs.

“The U.S. legal system

criminalizes the actions of

black #entrepreneurs such

as OZY Media Founder

Carlos Watson while giving

their white counterparts a

pass. Black entrepreneurs

receive 1% of venture funding

and 51% of the prosecution,”

wrote Watson on

social media on June 21.

Watson’s legal defense

team is asking the

Department of Justice to

conduct a racial bias investigation

on the Brooklyn

prosecutors who are working

on his case. Watson

claims that the three white

prosecutors focused on him

have overwhelmingly prosecuted

Black people and

other people of color while

only ten percent of their

prosecutions are Black.

In February, federal prosecutors

accused Watson of

running Ozy “like a criminal


“There’s a not-so-secret

track record of double standards

in prosecution of

Black people for identical

allegations as our counterparts.

Acknowledging this

does not suggest indifference,

but of the reality we

face,” wrote Dr. Nehemiah

Mabry on twitter regarding

Watson’s prosecution.

Ozy recently released a

statement regarding ten one

thousand dollar grants that

have not been delivered to

their “genius award” recipients.

Kenneth Montgomery, an

attorney on Watson’s legal

team, said in a statement

that, “the unwarranted

criminal charges brought

the company to a complete

standstill and forced the cessation

of operations. The

Watson family firmly

believes in making higher

education accessible to all,

which is why they co-founded

Achieva College Prep

Service well before Mr.

Watson founded OZY.”

Carlos Watson, 53, is a

graduate of Harvard

University, Stanford

University and Stanford

Law School.

Lauren Victoria Burke is

an independent journalist

and the host of the podcast

BURKEFILE and publisher

of Black Virginia News. She

is a political analyst who

appears regularly on


She may be contacted at

LBurke007@gmail.com and

on twitter at @LVBurke

Federal Trade Commission Sues Amazon Over Deceptive Prime Subscription Practices





Amazon is facing legal

action from the Federal

Trade Commission (FTC) for

allegedly engaging in deceptive

practices to entice consumers

into signing up for its

Prime service and making it

difficult for them to cancel

their subscriptions.

The suit marks the most

aggressive action taken

against the e-commerce giant

by FTC Chair Lina Khan,

who has been vocal in her

criticism of big tech companies.

The lawsuit, filed in the

U.S. District Court for the

Western District of

Washington, accuses Amazon

of utilizing “dark patterns,”

manipulative design tactics

on its website, to steer users

towards subscribing to


Once consumers decided to

cancel, they encountered a

convoluted and confusing


According to a statement

by Khan, “Amazon tricked

and trapped people into

recurring subscriptions

without their consent, not

only frustrating users but

also costing them significant


The lawsuit counts as the

first time the FTC has taken

Amazon to court under

Khan’s leadership as she

seeks to intensify regulatory

scrutiny over the company.

Given their influence in

online commerce, she has

been a vocal advocate for

more decisive action against

big tech firms.

While the FTC has been

investigating Amazon’s practices

for several years,

observers reportedly are

closely watching to see how

Khan will proceed.

Although the lawsuit falls

short of the extensive

antitrust case that Amazon’s

detractors demanded, it does

reflect a more considerable

effort by regulators to limit

the influence of tech giants

like Amazon, Apple, Google,

Microsoft, and Meta (formerly


The legal action comes

after Amazon settled previous

FTC cases that predate

Khan’s tenure.

Last month, the company

agreed to a $25 million settlement

over allegations that its

Alexa home assistant devices

had illegally collected children’s


The FTC also resolved

another privacy case involving

Amazon’s Ring home

security subsidiary.

Amazon Prime has attracted

subscribers for years with

Photo: Ozy Media / Wikimedia Commons

OZY Co-Founder Carlos Watson sat down with President

Clinton on Nov. 9th 2013 to get his opinion on a number

of topics.

SCOTUS Strikes Down Student Loan Forgiveness Plan

The Supreme Court has

blocked President Joe

Biden’s ambitious student

loan forgiveness program,

which aimed to provide up to

$20,000 in relief to millions of


The decision comes as a

blow to the Biden administration’s

efforts to alleviate the

burden of student debt on

struggling individuals.

President Biden, determined

to support student

loan borrowers, plans to

announce new actions during

his upcoming address later


The source reveals that

while the White House

strongly disagrees with the

Supreme Court’s ruling, they

had been preparing for such

an outcome.

Considering the decision,

the administration intends to

emphasize to borrowers and

their families that

Republicans are responsible

for denying them the muchneeded

relief that President

Biden has been fighting to


The White House said it

remains committed to its

mission of easing the financial

strain on Americans burdened

by student loans.

Democrats for Education

Reform DC (DFER DC), an

organization dedicated to

improving education policies,

issued a statement

expressing disappointment

in the Supreme Court’s ruling.

Jessica Giles, Executive

Director of DFER DC, condemned

the conservative justices

for what she perceived

as their alignment with

Republican political interests.

Giles argued that the decision

has not only disrupted

the lives of over 40 million

student loan borrowers but

has also dealt a particularly

devastating blow to Black


She asserts that the ruling

will exacerbate the racial

wealth gap, push numerous

borrowers into financial

hardship, and erode public

trust in the Supreme Court.

In response to this setback,

DFER DC urged Mayor

Bowser and the D.C. Council

to take proactive measures to

expand existing programs

aimed at reducing student

loan debt and fixing the flaws

within the higher education


The organization said it

believes that local initiatives

The decision comes as a blow to the Biden administration’s efforts to alleviate the burden of student debt

on struggling individuals.

can help mitigate the negative

impact of the Supreme

Court’s decision and provide

much-needed support to borrowers

in the absence of federal


President Biden’s student

loan forgiveness program,

with an estimated cost of

$400 billion, was designed to

offer significant relief to borrowers

burdened by the

weight of their student loans.

However, with the program

now blocked by the Supreme

Court, the administration

will need to explore alternative

avenues to address the

pressing issue of student

debt in the United States.

“This Court clearly has a

self-imposed mandate to legislate

from the bench. They

have waged war on women,

unions, Black and Brown

Americans, the LGBTQ+

community, religious freedom,

and democracy,” the

Rev. Al Sharpton said in a


“In the last two days, they

have set their sights on college

students to either block

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, accuses Amazon of utilizing

“dark patterns,” manipulative design tactics on its website, to steer users towards subscribing to


enticing promises of expedited

shipping, access to a

streaming video library, and

other benefits.

As of 2021, the program

boasted over 200 million

members, generating $35 billion

in subscription revenue.

However, the FTC claims

that Amazon made it exceedingly

challenging for customers

to purchase on its

platform without subscribing

to Prime during checkout.

Furthermore, the agency

argues that the company

made it arduous for users to

them from getting into elite

institutions or put a financial

albatross around their neck

so they can’t succeed.

“We applaud President

Biden’s commitment to following

through on this campaign

pledge, because millions

of Black and Brown

Americans are counting on


locate the page allowing them

to cancel the service, bombarding

them with offers

intended to dissuade cancellation.

The lawsuit comes after

years of media attention and

advocacy groups highlighting

the difficulties consumers

face when attempting

to cancel their Prime subscriptions.

In a 2021 complaint to the

District of Columbia attorney

general, the Electronic

Privacy Information Center,

an advocacy group, accused

Amazon of employing

manipulative design tactics

to frustrate users’ cancellation


In a 2022 report, the FTC

pledged to crack down on

design practices aimed at

deceiving or obstructing consumers’

efforts to cancel a service,

emphasizing that they are

closely monitoring dark patterns.

With the lawsuit, the FTC

said it intends to send a strong

message that such practices

will not go unnoticed or


Advertise in The Wilmington Journal

Support your community newspaper!

Thursday, July 1-31, 2023 NATIONAL


Man Arrested with Weapons in Obama’s Neighborhood Streamed Live After Sharing Trump’s Post





Federal prosecutors

revealed alarming details in

a detention memo filed on

Wednesday, July 5, regarding

the arrest of Taylor Taranto,

a man apprehended last week

in former President Barack

Obama’s Washington, D.C.,


According to the memo,

Taranto began live-streaming

in the area shortly after

resharing a social media post

from Donald Trump, the

Republican presidential candidate

claimed to share

Obama’s address.

The prosecutors urged a

federal magistrate judge in

the D.C. District Court to

keep Taranto detained pending

his trial for charges related

to the January 6, 2021, U.S.

Capitol attack.

In the filing, prosecutors

noted that Taranto not only

possessed weapons but also

made threats against House

Speaker Kevin McCarthy and

Maryland Democratic Rep.

Jamie Raskin.

In June, Taranto and several

others entered an elementary

school near Raskin’s


The disturbing incident

was live streamed by

Taranto, who documented

the group’s actions, such as

wandering around the

school, entering the gymnasium,

and projecting a film

related to the events of

January 6.

The court filing revealed

Taranto’s motive behind targeting

the elementary school,

stating that its proximity to

Raskin’s residence influenced

his choice.

Taranto expressed his

intention to send a “shockwave”

to Raskin, whom he

perceived as harboring animosity

towards supporters of

former President Trump.

The memo quoted Taranto,

who stated, “he’s one of the

guys that hates January 6

people, or more like Trump

supporters, and it’s kind of

like sending a shockwave

through him because I did

nothing wrong, and he’s

probably freaking out and

saying s*** like, ‘Well he’s

stalking me.’”

Moreover, Taranto explicitly

mentioned the location of

the school, Piney Branch

Elementary School in

Maryland, which is adjacent

to Raskin’s residence.

Prosecutors emphasized

the immediate and severe

threat Taranto posed to the


They argued that his words

and actions demonstrated his

potential danger to multiple

political figures and the general


Further, they urged the

judge to consider the highrisk

Taranto would pose if

released, warning of potentially

catastrophic consequences.

Taranto, already subject to

an open warrant related to

the January 6 riot charges,

was apprehended last week

in Obama’s neighborhood

while possessing firearms.

The day before his arrest,

Taranto claimed on a

livestream that he possessed

a detonator.

On June 28, prosecutors

stated that Taranto made

“ominous comments” on

video targeting McCarthy,

proclaiming, “Coming at you,

McCarthy. Can’t stop what’s

coming. Nothing can stop

what’s coming.”

After witnessing these

threatening remarks, law

enforcement authorities

attempted to locate Taranto

but were unsuccessful.

The following day, on June

29, Trump allegedly shared

According to the memo, Taranto began live-streaming in the area shortly after resharing a social media

post from Donald Trump, the Republican presidential candidate claimed to share Obama’s address.

what he claimed to be

Obama’s address on the

social media platform Truth


Taranto, using his own

Truth Social account, reposted

the address.

Taranto further declared,

“We got these losers surrounded!

See you in hell,

Podesta’s and Obama’s.”

Shortly after, Taranto

resumed live streaming from

his YouTube channel while

driving through Washington

D.C.’s Kalorama neighborhood.

According to the government’s

filing, Taranto parked

his van and walked around

the residential area.

Due to the restricted

nature of the neighborhood,

United States Secret Service

officers began monitoring

Taranto almost immediately

upon his arrival and initiation

of filming.

Prosecutors highlighted

Taranto’s repeated claims

that his actions were protected

by free speech as if uttering

the words “First

Amendment” absolved him

of trespassing.

The detention memo quoted

Taranto’s remarks captured

in his recording: “So

yeah, more than likely, these

guys also all hang for treason.

See how I said that? You

gotta be very safe and careful.

Someone warned me.”

As Secret Service agents

approached Taranto while

veering off the street into a

wooded area, he attempted to

flee but was swiftly apprehended

and arrested.

In their filing, prosecutors

disclosed that two firearms, a

“Smith and Wesson M&P

Shield” and a “Ceska 9mm

C.Z. Scorpion E3,” were discovered

in Taranto’s van during

his arrest.

Additionally, they found

numerous rounds of ninemillimeter

ammunition, a

steering wheel lock, a

machete, signs, a mattress,

and other items indicating

that Taranto had been residing

in the van.

While over a dozen other

firearms are registered to

Taranto, authorities said they

have yet to locate them.

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