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THE SHAPERS OF MALES

Saving males of color has become a cause across America. Even before President Obama put his imprimatur on the issue, touting his My Brother’s Keeper initiative, nonprofit organizations began researching the psyche and socioeconomic status of black and Hispanic males. They also had begun proposing various solutions. D.C. jumped into the game this year, when Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) and Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson announced a $20 million, three-year Empowering Males of Color initiative. It involves the creation of an “application only,” all-male college-preparatory high school, hundreds of mentorships and school-based grants.

Many initiatives ignore this indisputable fact: Women shape young men. According to the Census Bureau, 25 percent of all U.S. families are headed by single women. That percentage increases to 70 percent in the black community. How equipped are these women for the job of shaping responsible males?

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Eugene Kinlow for Ward 8 D.C. Council Rep.

THE race for a new Ward 8 council member is not about the past. It is about the future. The ward is at a critical place in its history. The right elected leadership can mean the difference between whether it is finally able to take advantage of the renaissance sweeping across the city, bringing important and long await jobs and amenities. The individual elected must have the skills, strength of character, integrity, determination, and collaborative acumen to implement that vision.

There is only one person, in my view, who meets that qualification: Eugene DeWitt Kinlow. He is The Barras Report’s choice for Ward 8 council representative.

WHAT’S YOUR STORY: A MINI WRITING INSTITUTE FOR YOUTH

This summer Jonetta Rose Barras will lead a four-week writing institute for youth ages 9 through 13. For more information, call Esther Productions, Inc. at 202-829-0591.

DISSING DC’S ONLY PUBLIC UNIVERSITY

If there was any indication of the low esteem in which Mayor Muriel Bowser holds the University of the District of Columbia, residents need only to look at how the state institution of higher learning has been treated in recent weeks. The executive has proposed in its fiscal 2016 budget cutting UDC’s meager subsidy by $5 million, according to government documents.

Instead of choosing UDC as the venue for a new technology hub, Bowser chose Howard University, which is struggling financially. She also decided to partner with that institution to launch a program that would allow select D.C. Public Schools students to register there for university-level courses even as they complete their high school studies.

I have nothing against Howard. But if the mayor feels like rescuing an institution of higher learning, shouldn’t she be obliged to give an assist to UDC?

Rescuing DC’s Attorney General, Maybe

“How many attorneys are there in the mayor’s office? Why do we need so many?” Those are the questions At-large D.C. Council member David Grosso (I) recently asked. District residents have made the same queries. They may get answers this week, when council Chairman Pro Tempore Kenyan McDuffie, holds a roundtable to discuss the continuing conflict between Mayor Muriel Bowser and the city’s first elected attorney general Karl Racine.

Some people have suggested that at the core of Bowser’s hostilities toward Racine is her fear he may challenge her in 2018. Would he be a serious threat? In last year’s election, Bowser won 103 precincts in her race. Racine, who had never run for political office, won 134.