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Tuesday night’s Democratic National Convention in Philly was packed with passion and speeches but one thing that especially caught our eye, was the moment that young men of the Eagle Academy recited “Invictus” on stage.

The Eagle Academy is a collection of all-male secondary schools that began in the Bronx and now has spread to has five locations in the New York City and Newark, New Jersey. It is a public school and most of the its students are black and come from families living on the poverty line.

The graduation rate is 83 percent and each morning, the young men recite “Invictus,” a poem by William Ernest Henley before starting class.


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election

Sigma Gamma Rho Just Released This Statement About The 2016 Elections

Sigma Gamma Rho just released the following statement about the presidential election and sent it to WatchTheYard.com to share with the public.

Cary, N.C. November 9, 2016 – Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. congratulates the 2016 United States election winners and trusts that the new era in politics will serve those often left out of the public discourse. We ask that our political leaders view our sorority as a partner to achieve greater progress in the areas of civic and social action, education, healthcare and leadership development. These matters of public concern are at the heart of our mission and essential to our 94-year history.

“We are gratified by the activism of our membership who worked countless hours throughout the campaign season to get out the vote; provided voter education; supported candidates at the local, regional, state and federal levels; worked the election polls and engaged in other activities to uphold our democracy,” said Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority International President Deborah Catchings-Smith.

As we all prepare for the new administrations taking office around the country, our sorority leaders and members remain vigilant about holding our elected officials accountable for the issues that impact our communities and insist that they deliver on the promise of our United States Constitution. We stand ready to serve.

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This 29-Year-Old Brother Of Alpha Phi Alpha Is Running For Mayor Of Baltimore On The Green Party Ticket

“No Red, No Blue, I’m in it for you!” – Josh Harris

Joshua grew up in poverty and his family struggled to make ends meet but through access and opportunity his family was able to overcome those struggles and now the 29-year-old member of Alpha Phi Alpha is running for mayor of Baltimore with the goal to spread that opportunity to others.

Harris is a 2006 initiate of the Mu Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. at the University of Minnesota and before he started his campaign worked at the Black fraternity’s headquarters in Baltimore.

“He has also served as a legislative aide for Delegate Charles E. Sydnor and assisted with the passing of police body camera legislation. Joshua believes that it is necessary to rebuild the trust between our neighborhoods and the police department. Outside of Baltimore, Joshua has worked with Black and Brown People Vote, aimed at increasing voter education and turnout in African­ American and Latino communities.”

We at WatchTheYard.com are highlighting this brother as part of our series on black greeks who are running for political offices. Check out his videos below as well as his website HarrisForBaltimore.com.

It is amazing to see young brothers like this engaging and taking up roles in politics.

Click here to learn more about where he stands on the issues.

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Prominent Donald Trump Surrogate Confronted By CNN For Falsely Claiming Membership In A Black Fraternity

This story was originally posted on September 4th 2016.

Have you ever thought about lying and telling people that you are a member of a Black fraternity or sorority when you are not in order to impress them, the people around you, or beef up your resume? Well guess what? That is probably a bad idea. In the particular case of Pastor Mark Burns, a prominent surrogate for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, it turned out to be a REALLY REALLY bad idea.

Believe it or not, there are grown adults who lie about being members of black fraternities and sororities. In Black greek culture, these people are referred to as “perps,” a shortened form of the word “perpetrators.” And while there are people out there “perping,” there are also members of Black fraternities and sororities who have established networks to catch these perpetrators.

Pastor Mark Burns, a televangelist from South Carolina, caught the notice of one of these perp-catching networks after giving a speech at the Republican National Convention. Burns is a prominent surrogate for Donald Trump and has been used by the Trump campaign to speak on behalf of Trump and introduce him on the campaign trail.

Here is a video of him leading an “All Lives Matter” chant at the GOP convention:

Here is a controversial image of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in blackface that he tweeted, before taking it down and apologizing for it after it hit the press. Needless to say, Burns is already a controversial mouthpiece.

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Inthe bio section of his personal website, Burns had claimed that he was a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., and this came to the attention of the network of Black greeks who specialize in catching people who claim to be greek but are not. The group did a background check and things went downhill from there.

Word got out to CNN who flew Damon Davis, a member of the Kappa Alpha Psi, Fraternity, Inc., who prides himself in catching these perpetrators to their CNN Headquarters in Atlanta for an interview. It turns out that after realizing that Burns had lied about his membership with the fraternity, other aspects of his bio also turned out to be false including the fact that he had a bachelor’s degree from North Greenville University and that he was a member of the Army Reserve for six years.

Watch the video of the CNN interview below:

We at WatchTheYard.com reached out to Damon Davis and he told us that perping like this from high-profile people is not uncommon:

“This is the second big political guy caught up in a [perping] situation like this and this is about the 6th celebrity,” he stated in a message to us. “There is no need to misrepresent yourself as a member of these organizations in life and/or on social media. We will find you, we will put the entirety of your life and any other lies out there for public consumption no matter the irreparable damage it may cause to your personal life, finances, or work. Be yourself.”

If anything, this story about Mark Burns is proof that perping is a bad idea.

Don’t perp.

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