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Newtown Officials to Unveil New School

By Rose Mendes, Staff Writer

NEWTOWN — Newtown residents will honor those who died in the December 2012 mass school shooting with a memorial and will build a new school to replace the old.

That’s why First Selectman E. Patricia Llodra and Dr. Joseph V. Erardi, Jr., Superintendent of Newtown Schools on Friday will unveil its new Sandy Hook Elementary School built to honor the memory of the 20 children killed on Dec. 14, 2012.

The town’s legislative council decided to have a memorial and construction of  a new school on the same property where the elementary school stood. That building was demolished at the end of 2013.

The 86,800-square-foot school will welcome prekindergarten to fourth grade this fall, and the $50 million cost was covered by the state

Almost four winters ago, Adam Lanza opened fire on 26 people, including 20 elementary school children, killed his mother and then himself.

In a previous article in Newsweek, one resident said the property was “a constant reminder of the evil that resided there.”

Now, residents said, it’s time to move on.

“We are very grateful to the taxpayers of Connecticut for giving our town the funding to build this school,” said First Selectman Llodra. “Our goal was to create a place of community and learning, a place that would honor those we lost and allow those who were left behind the chance to move forward. I

Dr. Erardi states that “Sandy Hook will have a quiet, respectful, and appropriate opening” when teachers and students begin the new school year this fall.


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Blumenthal, Bronin Meet with Hartford Officials to Discuss Ways to Quiet Tensions, Police Brutality

SUBMITTED: Author wants Mayor Luke Bronin to Resign for 
Ignoring Media Suppression and Hate Crime in Hartford.

By L. Giles, Contributor

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, Mayor Luke A. Bronin, Chief James C. Rovella and Hartford’s State Attorney Gail P. Hardy met at City Hall on Tuesday to discuss ways to serve the Hartford community while ensuring that police officers have adequate resources to protect and serve  residents and business owners.

Blumenthal called on President Barack Obama’s office for additional resources to fight crime after Bronin said there’s a need to have good communication with city residents and business owners to avoid similar shootings and mass protest that gripped the nation when a gunman named Micah Johnson killed five police officers during a protest in Dallas, Texas.

Johnson’s and other retaliatory acts to police brutality since then is to be avoided, state officials said, hence another round of meetings that involved a trip to Barbershop on Main and Park streets.

All four public officials realized that the city is “still wrestling with the legacy of deeply flawed criminal justice policies.” That and the lack of public trust could trigger an eruption in Hartford, never seen since 1967.

The trust needed in the community was broken for one reporter after 15 police officers were dispatched to 167 Sisson Ave. on Friday, April 4, 2014. A Hartford Guardian reporter was awoken from her sleep and taken to John Dempsey Hospital, where they kept her, so that she could not cover the President of the United States. And she could not attend a Friday church service in East Hartford and a history conference on Saturday.

the-hartford-guardian-OpinionSince then, law enforcement officials in the state have been monitoring The Hartford Guardian’s website and disrupting her writing. The systematic dismantling of a competitive publication that has won several awards and is the blue print for other publications in the Greater Hartford area is akin to the kind of racism found in the 1920s. And to date, law enforcement officials have used covert techniques to silence all the witnesses by using electronic nodes and other fancy crime fighting tools to control law abiding citizens of color.

For example, these new devices were used to control a reporter’s thinking, reading and writing, according to a black law enforcement officers who want to remain anonymous. This, he said, is “slavery by another name.” And that is why everyone in the city should be concerned about Chief Rovella asking for more money for his department. Rovella must address the lawsuit against the city for detainment, invasion of privacy, attempted murder and failure to protect a citizen under the 14th amendment before others are forced to go the the United Nations to discuss why Connecticut want to enslaved black and Latino people “in secret.”

City cameras, electronic nodes other policing tools used 24 hours a day on one reporter is why the Hartford police–and other law enforcement agencies in this state, should instead shed those police officers who have violated a public trust.

If they had that much time to have a chit-chat session with a single black woman on April 4, 2014 and almost every day since then, they do not need any extra resources.

Tuesday’s meeting came after another police office was killed in Orlando without discussion about the April 4 incident. Martin Luther King, Jr died on April 4. So many city activists say it was a symbolic move to silence them because city officials were sending a message–not just to the reporter–to anyone who wanted to start a civil rights movement in the city. There will be no civil rights movement in Hartford, they said. The mystery should be unveiled by all the officials at the meeting.

In the meanwhile, some residents are asking for Luke Bronin’s resignation because he has yet to address the police brutality directed at the only black reporter who writes for a daily publication. This clearly impacts the minority community in the telling of our stories.

L. Giles lives in New Britain.

Photo courtesy of the Associated Press.

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Latino Center Receives Bikes for BiCi Co

HARTFORD — The University of Connecticut recently donated 30 bikes to the Center for Latino Progress  for its BiCi Co. program.

UConn officials said the bikes had previously been abandoned by students at the Storrs campus during the Spring semester and will now be refurbished in classes and workshops, and ultimately given to Hartford teens through various programs to include, Summer Youth Employment activities, Earn-a-Bike, Bikes for Jobs Access, BIKE LIFE – Hartford!, and DIY projects for BiCi Co. members.

All of these programs put more bicycles into our community, encouraging healthy and sustainable transportation and increased mobility, officials said.

This is UConn’s second time donating bicycles to The Center and supporting Hartford’s youth.

BiCi Co. includes bicycle safety classes, teaches marketable skills, reinforces it through repetition, and provides members of the community with a cheap and reliable form of transportation.

To learn more about this impactful youth development program, to volunteer, or to donate, please visit or call (860) 247-3227.

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Dallas is the Fated Fruit of the Existing Order

By Nick Ford  | @nickfnord  | Support this author on Patreon.

On July 7th, 2016 a gunman named Micah Johnson  fired on police officers using a sniper rifle during a peaceful protest in Dallas, Texas, killing five officers. The protest was centered around the recent acts of police brutality involving Alton Sterling  in Louisiana and Philando Castile  in Minnesota.

An earlier version of a CNN article had this astonishing quote from an officer who downplayed Johnson’s explicitly stated motives, despite admitting Johnson was lucid at the time, “We can’t get into the head of a person that would do something like this. We negotiated with this person that seemed lucid during the negotiation. He wanted to kill officers, and he expressed killing white people, he expressed killing white officers, he expressed anger for Black Lives Matter. None of that makes sense,”

Notably the police were able to end this conflict by the use of a robot carrying a c4 explosive. CNN reports that it was a, “1-pound C4 plastic explosive plus “Det” cord”. This was not military grade equipment but rather similar to the, “…small explosive charges that they use for breaches…”.

Criticism for this maneuver came from all sides including Rick Nelson, a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a former counterterrorism official on the National Security Council remarking that ( , “The further we remove the officer from the use of force and the consequences that come with it, the easier it becomes to use that tactic,” “It’s what we have done with drones in warfare. … In warfare, your object is to kill … Law enforcement has a different mission.”

But given how many people police have killed in 2015 and 2016, is this really true?

In 2015 police fatally shot nearly 1,000 people (armed and unarmed), according to the Washington Post. More recently, multiple writers from the Washington Post reported that fatal shootings were up in the first six months of 2016  from last year. Those numbers were 465 to 491 with the Post also reporting that blacks are shot 2.5 times more than whites.

One of the heartening things is that these fatal encounters  are increasingly being recorded which has led to more prosecutions of police, more public protest and more education about white supremacy in this society. After all, this society was built on white supremacy and given the current discriminatory regime of law enforcement, interpretation and sentencing, it seems to continue.

And while more prosecution could be seen as a good thing, it’s still unlikely to strike at the root of these issues. Local courts and the police in those same locales are on friendly terms and other reformist ideas such as body cameras and mandatory reporting either seem to be ignored or conveniently worked around.

On the other hand, violence isn’t going to be how this fight for justice will be won either and it’s unlikely that Johnson’s moves will do anything but incite further violence on future protesters. But then it isn’t as if police would have committed no violence against protesters in the future had this shooter not enacted violence.

One thing is for sure, the more cops kill, the more they are going to be killed.

That isn’t a statement of personal preference or a statement to incite violence but rather a recognition of JFK’s quote that when you make peaceful revolution impossible, you make violent revolution inevitable.

Or, as the anarchist Voltairine de Cleyre put it in Our Present Attitude, which was a response to the assassination of President McKinley,” Now, in times like these, wild outbursts of desperation must be expected. It is not the business of Anarchists to preach wild and foolish acts, – acts of violence. For, truly, Anarchism has nothing in common with violence, and can never come about save through the conquest of men’s minds. But when some desperate and life-denied victim of the present system does strike back at it, by violence, it is not our business to heap infamies upon his name, but to explain him as we explain others, whether our enemies or our friends, as the fated fruit of the existing “order.”

Under a police state, the desperate act desperately and the more police kill, the truer they’ll discover this is.

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D.C. Catholic Church to Host World Youth Day

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Catholic Church in Washington will partner with Poland to host World Youth Day on July 30.

The Archdiocese of Washington has partnered with Washington-area Catholic entities and the regional archdioceses to host a state-side celebration of World Youth Day at Catholic University at 620 Michigan Avenue, N.E.

Young adults from across the region have been invited to gather in Washington, D.C. for “Kraków in the Capital.”

The day-long event in Washington will have opportunities for participants to come together and pray, and also hear talks from bishops and national speakers. Further, an exhibit hall will provide an opportunity for participants to learn more about religious vocations and local and national Catholic organizations.

To provide a taste of the cultural experience that is occurring abroad, the festival will include Polish dance, music and food.

Beginning at 7:30 p.m., there will be candlelight Stations of the Cross, presided over by Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington. Participants at the festival will do a small pilgrimage as they process from outside of the Saint John Paul II National Shrine, down Harewood Road and to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, led by a life size cross and the relics of Saint John Paul II.

Once they arrive at the National Shrine, Cardinal Wuerl will celebrate a vigil Mass, beginning at 8:30 p.m.

After the Mass, a late-night outdoor concert is planned on the Catholic University campus. Overnight camping for pilgrims will be available on the property of the Dominican House of Studies, across the street from the Catholic University campus.

For more information, please visit:


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Florida Police Arrest UConn Student Known for “Mac and Cheese” Video

By Fran Wilson, Staff Writer

HARTFORD — A former University of Connecticut student whose “mac and cheese” video went viral was arrested again in Florida.


Luke Gatti, 20, was charged on May 28 with battery of an officer and resisting an officer in Boca Raton, Fla.

Gatti who lives in Bayville, N.Y. was put on probation after Superior Court Judge B. Farley reviewed the obscenity-laced video about jalapeno macaroni and cheese and sentenced him to do community service.
The video showed Gatti engaged in an argument with the Student Union manager before another worker stepped in.

Gatti was also arrested at the University of Massachusetts for a similar incident.

A spokesperson said that Gatti, who was a student at Storrs when he taped the Oct. 4 video, was no longer a student at the university.



Gatti was given a $500,000 bond.

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HIV Testing Day Slated for June in CT Cities

NEW HAVEN — Planned Parenthood of Southern New England will offer free rapid HIV testing services at select health centers in Connecticut this June.

National HIV Testing Day is June 27.

In the United States, more than 1.2 million people are living with HIV. In Connecticut, there are more than 10,200 people living with HIV. Almost one in seven do not know they are infected.

“You cannot tell by looking at someone if they have HIV – the only way to know is to get tested. We invite all people who do not know their status to come for a free test,” said Judy Tabar President & CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southern New England. “National HIV Testing Day is a reminder that getting tested for HIV is an important step in stopping the spread of HIV and taking care of ourselves.”

In an effort to promote early detection and a healthy community, PPSNE will be offering free rapid HIV tests at select health centers during normal business hours on Monday, June 27.

Appointments are not necessary, but encouraged. Everyone who gets tested on June 27 will receive a free information bag that includes fun giveaways, educational brochures and safe sex supplies. The following health centers in Connecticut will be providing free rapid tests:

Bridgeport Health Center

211 State Street

Bridgeport, CT 06604

8 AM – 3:30 PM

Hartford Health Center

1229 Albany Avenue

Hartford, CT 06112

11 AM – 6:45 PM

New Haven Health Center

345 Whitney Avenue

New Haven, CT 06511

9 AM – 6:30 PM

“Our health centers are open to everyone and we are here to answer any questions or concerns anyone may have. Once you know your status, there is a lot you can do to protect your health, including practicing safer sex,” said Tabar. “The sooner you know your status, the sooner you can get any treatment and information you might need. Early treatment can help prevent serious health problems in the future.”

To make an appointment or for more information, call 1 (800) 230-PLAN (7526) or visit

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Yale Voted Best College in Connecticut

NEW HAVEN — Yale is number one in Connecticut.

That’s according to SmartAsset’s second annual Best Value College study.

The college leads after the result of their performance in categories including scholarships provided, starting slary, tuiton, living costs and retention rate.

Yale received an overall education value index of 80.64, according ti SmartAsset, which gave 25 percent weighting to starting  SmartAsset, which weigh things such as starting salary, tuition, and living costs; and 12.5 percent to scholarships and grants and student retention rate.

UConn had a score of 64.67. The remaining top five schools in Connecticut and their scores were: Trinity College, 54.21; Fairfield University, 51:28; Wesleyan University.

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Hilary Clinton to Visit Hartford’s YMCA Thursday

By Fran Wilson, Staff Writer

HARTFORD – One week before the Connecticut primary, Hillary Clinton is expected to meet Thursday with Hartford residents affected by gun violence.

Clinton’s visit comes after her eighth democratic debate in Brooklyn, New York and after  Republican Donald Truhilary+clintonmp visited the state, pulling in about 6 million supporters.

The Clinton event will be a small gathering of victims of violence from several cities, including the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown. The small rally will be held at at the Wilson-Gray YMCA Youth and Family Center, 444 Albany Avenue, is open to the public.

In the most recent polls, Clinton is ahead of her challenger Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by six points.

Sanders has not announced a Connecticut visit, but Trump is expected to return before the April 26 primary vote.

Republican Presidential candidate John Kasich is expected to appear at Glastonbury High School on Friday.

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Heroes for Hire Job and Career Fair Set for April

WETHERSFIELD —  The Connecticut Department of Labor’s Heroes 4 Hire Job and Career Fair – the largest and best-attended of its kind in New England – returns to the Rentschler Field Ballroom in East Hartford on April 27.


Sponsored by the Connecticut Department of Labor, the Connecticut Department of Veterans’ Affairs, Travelers, CBS Radio, and the local chamber of commerce. The veteran-focused event will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.


”More than 75 exhibitors are participating in this year’s Heroes 4 Hire career fair, including employers, service providers and educational institutions,” notes Terry Brennan, Director of the Connecticut Department of Labor’s Office of Veterans’ Workforce Development. “Certified Professional Résumé Writers from the Labor Department will also be on-site, offering advice on best ways to showcase résumés to prospective employers. DOL staff will also be available to talk to attendees and employers about employment services and related programs.”


“Veterans bring a strong sense of teamwork, organization and leadership skills to the workplace,” notes Brennan. “An accelerated learning curve allows veterans to enter the workforce with an advantage, plus they offer transferable skills that have been proven in real-life situations. Veterans have also demonstrated efficient performance under pressure and understand the demands of tight schedules and limited resources – providing a valuable perspective to potential employers.“


Additional details, including directions to the event, the list of participating companies and organizations, and an online registration form for employers wishing to participate can be found on the Connecticut Department of Labor’s career fair website at


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