Thursday, December 29, 2005
Israel has been a hot sport for a while, and few weeks ago, right on the anniversary of the Yom Kippur war, it launched a major military attack on the inhabitants of the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. It was speculated that as a consequence of these violent attacks between 1200 and 1500 Palestinians were left homeless. The Yom Kippur war really started around 1972, and for what it is worth historically, it came about when then Egyptian President Anwar Sadat threatened war unless the United States forced Israel to accept his interpretation of UN Resolution 242, which required total Israeli withdrawal from territories taken in 1967 war.
Since then, nothing has really changed. Many people do not know that the U.S. government and military played a major role in Israel’s success of the Yom Kippur war. In fact US Navy forces sent both the USS Independence and USS Roosevelt in addition to an amphibious force in the Mediterranean and the Eastern Atlantic to assist the Israeli government. Also on that October 14, the US Air Force began Operation Nickel Grass, which supplied the Israeli military with more than 20,000 tons of military supplies.
Since the Jewish leader, David Ben Gurion, proclaimed the state of Israel on May 14, 1948, after British Mandatory rule had ended, Mesopotamia has not been the same. The League of Nations decided to make a country in a region where western conquest and Imperialism has been just as much a feature of the immediate environment as the sand dunes in this part of Asia. On November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly voted to partition Palestine into Jewish and Arab sectors and as one would have expected, fighting started immediately.
Maybe it’s me but I’m just not stupid enough to accept that these attacks on the people of Palestine are accidents nor are the responses to terror. I find it hard to believe that a nation suited to the bone with F-16 Tomcats and Apache Helicopter, courtesy of my tax dollars is afraid of people without an army, airplanes, tanks and/or war ships. The really threat to security in the region is Israel. They are the only government that has expressed they will use weapons of mass destruction if they feel threaten. If we truly want to go with the concept of regime change, then this government needs to be the first. Especially
Since these folks have continued to be at each other’s necks and will forever be if we fail to see that the problem started back in 1948. So the next time you see or read a bout a young woman strapping bombs to her person and blowing up a few civilians and military personnel, don’t sleep. Ask yourself if she has an army to join? While you at, the next time you want to know why these people have such revulsion and disgust for the United States, look at the Tanks and Airplanes and Helicopters used to drop the bombs.
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Given that the role of slaves in the western world was clearly demarcated by the master’s ability to successfully strip slaves of their active, collective, and individual personalities by treating and thinking of them as less than human, the punishment of slaves evolved into a significant part of the institution. The psychological benefits included the maintenance of the system as well as lucrative profits generated by fre labor. However, such psychological and physical oppression could neither be implemented or maintained without the use of brute force, mob violence, and punishment. The basic historical picture of the punishment of slaves has focused on the lash. The lash in the hands of white masters embodied the concept of slavery, for it was intended to represent a relationship that would deprive the slave owner of labor. Public floggings were used to degrade, discipline, and deter slaves from engaging in activities that masters perceived as disruptive to the public good of whites. The practice of punishing slaves seemed to have no relationship to the crime but more so he ability to maintain control and embed fear.
This was merely a reflection of the trail established at the start of the Transatlantic slave trade to the colonies. Extending the boundaries of an European world view through the slave trade lead to the conception of Africans as distinctly being an inferior creature. Because of this belief, Africans and other indigenous populations were treated like chattel. Workhouse irons and brands were common as were laws that reinforced the inferiority of slaves justified cruel and unusual punishment for minor offenses. For example, slaves were not allowed to leave their master’s property without slips of papers and could not meet in large groups, carry weapons, or hit a white person. At the same time, however, slave masters were free to impart punishment whenever and however it was deemed necessary without legal persecution. Where large numbers of slaves were concentrated, white men were required to form patrols. Slaves were also punished for playing with white children, running away, being disobedient, and committing crimes against the Sabbath, such as selling liquor on Sunday. 1 A common punishment for slaves who had attained reading or writing skills was amputation. Slave narratives indicate that the removal of a finger from the joint was considered a warning for stealing a book and that beheading was punishment for a repeat offense.2 Slaves could also be punished by death if they attempted to harm others. However, the basic punishment for most offenses was based on Hebraic law and required a whipping of approximately 39 lashes.
One case which occurred in 1640 in Virginia, saw 3 slaves (one white) punished for running away. The white man had the terms of his labor extended for 4 years while an African named John Punch, was endeared to work for his master for the remainder of his life. In Richmond, VA, a slave could receive nearly 40 lashes for stealing a pair of boots (1825). In the city, there are countless accounts of burning slaves on selected parts of the anatomy as well. Looking at the example of New York rebellions in 1741, we see that slaves were denied legal counsel and that the authorities expressed regret that nothing more extreme was available than hanging or burning Africans at the stake. Consequently, eighteen were hanged and thirteen burned alive the stake.3 After the Virginia slave conspiracy said to have been organized by Gabrielle Prosser, at least 25 slaves had been ordered to death by the courts of Virginia. Outside of particular punishment of slaves, history is ripe with accounts of random murder. Gilberto Freyre often reported rampant murders of African Slaves by colonialists in Brazil.4
The historical records are also replete with evidence regarding the psychological aspect of the punishment of slaves. As mentioned, fatherhood nor marriage was recognized by whites on the behalf of slaves since it would impinge upon the concept of property rights.5 Slave narratives are abundant with descriptive punishments for slaves. One woman recalled a slave boy who had killed his master had received a swift trail by 6 white men and, upon his confession, they took an ax and cut off his head. Another account regards a blacksmith who pu5t crooked nails in the shoes of white men’s horses so, if they belonged to the Ku Klux Klan, he could tell who the members were. After telling on the Klan members, the Klan killed him. Another tells of whites taking slaves to the Turk Creek bridge in South Carolina, lining the slaves up, and shooting them off of the bridge. Another reference to her mother being punished by fifty lashes when she refused to obey her white master.6
It is obvious that the punishment of slaves in the new world by their masters was brutal and inhuman in most respects. Punishment was a means by which slave owners and the institution of slavery was maintained in order to maximize the economic context singled out by Europeans as being the prevailing factor in determining the manner in which slaves were treated. Punishment was implemented for a range of so-called crimes that facilitated slave owners’ ability to hold other men and women in perpetual bondage.
1 Belinda Hurmence, Before Freedom: When I Just Can Remember. (John Blair: Winstom-Salem), 1989, 121.
2 Janet Cornelius, We slipped and learned to read: slave accounts of the literacy process, 1830-1865, Phylon 44(3), 171-186, 1983.
3 Daniel Horsmanden, The New York Conspiracy, ed. Thomas Davis, (Boston, 1971)
4 Gilberto Freyre, The masters and the slaves, (New York, 1956)
5 Fredric Bancroft, Slave trading in the old South (Baltimore: J.H. Furet, 1931), 197.
6 Belinda Hurmence, Before Freedom: When I Just Can Remember. (John Blair: Winstom-Salem), 1989, 6-31.
It’s been more than three weeks, and I still have night mares reoccurring on the Memphis Versus Duke Game in the pre-season NIT. I can’t help it, I’m just crushed. It is nothing worse than knocking someone’s teeth out, making them cry and still having to return to the hood a looser because they got back first saying they won the fight.
The way the college basketball picture is shaping up; there is one word that I can use to adjectize it – exciting. The most exciting teams to me being Memphis, Kentucky, Florida and unfortunately Duke. I must be objective – they got the win over us. But being objective, I must also consider several other facts. Memphis is currently fifth in scoring offence behind my other home folk - Tennessee. Duke isn’t listed in the top five. Memphis is also third in rebounding with 45.4 boards per game and 17th over Duke, in 3-point shooting. Meaning, if it weren’t for the referees, the Blue Bloods would have not had a chance, especially running just seven folk against ten.
What is it about Duke and their plane blue uniforms that make the world ignore that they are truly like the Bad Seed. Not only do the men in black and white protect them, but the sports comentators do such also. When the end of the season approaches, you know the time of the conference tournaments, it will be on, for I know we gone meet them again. In the mean time, im just gonna savor the Gonzaga win and the joy of all my folk around the country calling me saying my boys ball.
Monday, December 26, 2005
The only regret is that this will be the last time I will ever see Monday Night football on ABC. After thirty five years, the show will end. I am a child of Monday night football. I was raised with Keith Jackson, Howard Cosell and O. J. Simpson. I even remember dandy Don and Frank Gifford. I had to be around 8 years old when it started on ABC. I couldn’t wait for the Monday night games, back then that was the only sporting even one could see on television during the week.
I still see those yellow suit coats in my mind and recant when I was pissed off when they changed the original theme music. Just hearing the old music got you excited and that was the era when during half time, they would show all the highlights from the previous Sunday.
For some of yall, its just a sporting event, just a football game, or it’s just a running play, but in these eyes, it’s a pick up of eleven yards and a first down, and for the record I despise the other team. Like I said, my daughter is going on seven months, and she likes football too. I guess we will cherish this last Monday Night Football game together.
Friday, December 23, 2005
If you have been sleeping under a rock, Dungy is the head coach of a team who just received their first lost and known for being the scape goat for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The year they fired him, his team, and not John Gruden’s, won the Super Bowl. Dungy is a man of stern character and always has the right things to say all the time. Albeit I never met the man, I sincerely suspect that he is a man in all since of the word, meaning his family (immediate and football team) come first.
The situation really puts things in perspective. After all, we are grown men who query at the extremes about a game and sport called football. We, in particular reporters - which am not, ask questions about the mundane and decisions on a 100 yard field that really don’t add much to the lexicon of daily life styles, choices and values.
According to ESPN, the medical examiner's office has not announced the exact cause of death which will be determined by an autopsy, scheduled for Friday morning. Like I said, I could not begin to fathom, how I would feel, being successful, and extremely involved in my son’s life, to hear that he was dead at such a tender age. Please , you men especially, grab your son’s, little brother’s, cousin’s and nephews and show them their value while they are still alive - all precious gifts leave our fold sooner or latter. Let’s just pray that it is latter.
Thursday, December 22, 2005
i want to feel loved
but i dont have hugs or kisses
to look foward to - no intamicy
no shower of unconditional affection
i went to sleep by myself
and will do so again tonight
i wish it was over already
or at least time for the first football game
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
The movie, called "Brokeback Mountain," has received seven Golden Globe nominations, significant reviews during its screening at the Toronto film festival and has won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. The movie is based on a story by author E. Annie Proulx. Starting the story in the early '60s, two young men are hired to tend sheep for a summer in Wyoming and find themselves lusting each other. They continue to meet with each other over the years forming what I suspect is supposed to represent an amorous relationship.
This is not to suggest that there is no such thing as a Gay cowboy or that something is wrong with a person being gay, it’s just awkward. What will be next, a story about Crip and Blood gang leaders having a love affair and holding hands inside the strip club? In some ways it reminds me of an older movie called the Midnight Cowboy, which was about a male prostitute and his sickly friend trying to get by on the streets of New York City. Then again, maybe it is a take off of the popular song by Glenn Cambell that ranked the charts in 1975 - 'Rhinestone Cowboy’. Maybe this is what he meant when he sang in the chorus, “Like a rhinestone cowboy - Riding out on a horse in a star-spangled rodeo.” Go figure.
Monday, December 19, 2005
In any event, they all recant presupposed positions outlined in prior news conferences, speeches and surprise visits. These visits are always in front of the military. Not the Iraq military opps – I forgot we destroyed them and disband them and did not include them in on our no planning for the future of Iraq. But rather the U.S. military. Not that I have Presidential or any political aspirations, but if I were in such a position, I’d be trying to address the Iraqi people. I wouldn’t be trying to motivate our troops; I’d focus on the people of the country I destroyed. The military nor the American public won’t have to live in Mosul, Baghdad, or Tiqrit.
The federal government again is lunching. It is not important in the global picture to appease the American public. The Bush administration has already relegated the general public as incompetent when it fabricated justification for war.
The Vice President misses the point, the discussion should not be about whether or not the war is winnable, but rather laying out our course of action for a self sufficient Iraq without ANY U.S. military and intelligence presence. We are speaking to the wrong folk. Five speeches in less than three weeks, but none to the Iraqi people – humbug.
Saturday, December 17, 2005
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savagebeastmonsta/sameblakmuthafucas - eery morn -5.30.2000
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Friday, December 16, 2005
Now this is not an indictment on Mr. Hollowell. For the record, this man was the truth. He didn’t seek fame, but he handled what he believed in – equal rights for all Americans. In the 1950s and '60s, he was the main lawyer to argue Atlanta schools desegregation cases. With that said, it is difficult for me to call Bankhead anything else, even with the signs proclaiming otherwise. It just doesn’t appease the senses to ask someone from Atlanta to do the Hollowell Bounce in contrast to the Bankhead bounce. I can’t see T.I. singing the praises of Zone one with a punctuated Donald L. Hollowell Parkway.
I may be making an issue over nothing, but Bankhead has been good to me. I have numerous associates who live and own business over in that camp. From my boy Shorty Greg and his carwash to Mook-B and his D4L crew and their studio. No matter what the green street signs read, it will forever be Bankhead – read it in the headlines.
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
This is the age of the fuck boy. Now what exactly is one, I will attempt to describe. From my perspective, this is a person that is insecure yet brash at the same time. They talk a lot of smack and tend to brag as if they were the kings of the world. FBs have one main goal, to present an image of something that they are not. To me, by definition, a FB is one who believes that what they have is more important than who they are and they would be willing to do anything, even if it is harmful to the community, to make that loot and stand on their box proclaiming they are the greatest thing since the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Notwithstanding, the personal inclination to define themselves by what is in their pocket as opposed to what they can create with their minds and how they promote community betterment via the sponsorship of family values.
It is so bad now that you even have FBs calling other folks FBs, especially in the music industry. Now this is not in reference to all musicians who do such, for some have earned the privilege to call a spade a spade. But when the people doing the talking expound upon a lifestyle that they no longer are involved with, it makes ones question their sincerity. So you folks need to watch out because this is the age of the FB. Real men for lack of a better word are an endangered species. So those who know and see what I am talking about, protect your children because I would not want my son to grow up to be one or my daughter to marry one.
Monday, December 12, 2005
Over the weekend, we lost another great and genius mind from the hallowed halls of the African American community. Richard Pryor died at the age of 65 from a heart attack. I grew up looking at Mr. Pryor as being the funniest person ever. And I do mean ever. I can go back to the first time I saw him on Saturday Night Live in the Late 1970’s when he was seen choking a possessed women in a parody of the Exorcist. In the skit, he was scared until the possessed girl started to talk about his momma. I also remember when his comedy routine came on HBO. I had to see it at least a hundred times or more.
What made Mr. Pryor the best was that his comedy was based on the special and political environments of the 1960’s and 1970’s? He spoke about all that we as African American men felt as our world view. On his album “that Nigga’s crazy, he talks about two men who want to see who has the biggest penis. To conduct their contest they stand over a bridge. The first man says, man, this water is cold, the second said and it’s deep too. On his album “Is it something I said,” the two most memorable sections deal with race in America and drug use. In “There is a shortage of white people” he basically says that what people had stopped fuckin* and would move to the extreme of talking about how he set himself on fire smoking crack cocaine.
Richard was brilliant and I cannot say this enough. He also had a very successful movie career with box office hits including Toy, Stir Crazy, Harlem Nights, Jo-Jo Dancer, Which Way is Up, Silver Streak, Brewster Millions, and two of my all time favorite Greased Lighting and The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings from 1976.
Yes, he was the first t openly curse with specific accent on Nigga and fuck, but he was also the greatest comedic mind since Charlie Chaplin in my eyes. I wonder who will be next. See Richard maintained his comedic influence eve through his movie career. Now days, it seems as if current comedians who become actor don’t. I am going to miss this main dearly.
I was out for such an experience this past week. Just so happened I sat adjacent to three young women who were having drinks. I wasn’t attempting to ease drop but they were talking rather loud considering the spoke with food in the mouths and in between sips of some green concoction in martini glasses. I summated they were not martini’s for I had never seen one of the frozen variety. They talked because they were excited that they had met two young, popular and successful moguls in the music industry. They spoke of how they met them and where they met them – in a strip club. How one was with his woman and the other was not. They even discussed how one, which was a producer, had informed her that he was married and that he wanted to “kick it with her”. She indicated that he did not wear a wedding ring at all.
They were enamored with these men and their money, so much that one said they were perfect. Her friend agreed and said something to the extent that yes they were because they were stars, on television, in the music industry, had money and were married. She continued that they were the best men because she would not have to be with them all the time and that they would be able to buy them “things”. I though a good man didn’t cheat on his wife or family. Maybe I’m wrong or just too old school. But if this is the case, a brother like me would never get a woman today because it looms that responsible, respectful people with character are not consider perfect specimens for companionship.
Friday, December 02, 2005
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Almost a week has past since I saw my illustrious University of Memphis Tigers get robbed at New York’s Madison Square Garden when the played Duke. I don’t know if any of yall saw the game, but my boys put it down and were clearly the better team. Sure, the top-ranked Blue Devils came in not looking as if the were the best team in the country. Especially after their showing against Drexel.
However, they did win both games. The Memphis game was a bit different. Memphis dominated the Dukies and were clearly killing them on the boards. Making all of this worse was the incessant praise offered to Duke by one Dick Vitale. He never seemed to mention the tigers or point out the serious differences inn the manner in which fouls were called against Memphis in comparison to Duke. He even went as far to suggest that the Duke team was being beat up when in fact it was the other way around. The two most important plays were a messed up out of bounds call that gave Duke the ball that resulted in a 3 point shot hit by Dockery hit a from the corner to make it 67-63 1:07 to play. The next was a no call, which via replay showed Sheldon Williams tipping in a drive by Dockery in which the ball was still in the cylinder.
I hate Duke with a passion. However, I was impressed with the no quit attitude of my Tigers and the manner in which Rodney Carney held the all-American Teuton, J. J. Riddick to no points in the second half. WE out rebounded Duke on the offensive end 16 to 8 and but had two of our big men hampered with fouls before the 10 minute mark of the first half. Then there were the other small things, the tripping, or better yet rolling block thrown on Tiger guard Andre Allen – another no call, and the fouls not called against Duke when Shawne Williams took a lay up to the goal and resulted in him falling to the floor and having a foul called on him.
Hook, line and sinker, the media made this a story when it was not. Taking this a step farther they even made the future husband to be the main suspect without due process. In the mean time the woman was described as being a “poor soul” who through her own lips made the snowball larger when she said that she had been kidnapped and that one of the characters was a Hispanic male.
This was obviously premeditated, given it takes some thought to purchase several bus tickets as well as cut her hair to avoid detection. Couple this with the fact she lied to investigators suggesting that she had been abducted against her will from Georgia.
While all of this was occurring, I was unable to gather any news on Iraq or any other issues of substance. More importantly, there was no word of Constance Williams on the national radar. She was eventually found however there was no media urgency regarding her, nor was there any for Stacy-Ann Sappleton, whose beaten and bullet-riddled corpse was found eventually in queens in a garbage dump. Then there was Tamika Huston, who vanished about a year ago from her home in Spartanburg, S.C. Her car was found abandoned about a month after she was last seen. I really would like to know why there is no media urgency for these individuals. Oh I forgot, wrong complexion and they are only concerned with where the white women at.
Monday, November 21, 2005
The apprehension is that President Bush is trying to make this tax cut permanent at a time when he is attempting to figure out how he will pay for the war in Iraq – excuse me I mean terror. In addition, he will have to find a way to maintain troop strength in the region and pay for that as well. The current budget deficit is expected to be approximately 413 billion dollars at the end of this fiscal year. This in light of the fact that the President inherited a budget surplus from the man all conservatives loved to hate Bill Clinton.
Bush asked for and is anticipating 70 billion dollars from congress to making a grand total of $200 billion to pay for the current war effort. That’s equal to $20 billion a month spent so far on the war - a war that started about 20 months ago. I don’t see the cost of the war reducing anytime soon. We need to remind the president that he is not shopping at the Dollar store or Big Lot, if so, he would get more bang for his buck.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
For Deltas blessing, they know that they will be bailed out by tax payer and private welfare. It started four years after Congress bailed out the aviation industry, and it appears as if similar action by lawmakers are about to take place. I don’t know why the airlines industry is so important in comparison to the steel or television manufacturing industries - both of which are non existent.
Airline welfare comes from several places. First, there is the trade group, the Air Transport Association (ATA). This is the group of folk who go up on Capital Hill and ask for specialized welfare just for the airlines industry. They probably the real inspiration behind Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), to get version of his airline-specific pension bill passed. Then there is the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., who will have to find some way with its money obtained from corporations to help relive some of the pension burden; in this case for the airline that started off in 1928 as a Macon, Georgia crop dusting service.
Although I can’t say what will happen for the 60,000 employees or the approximately 300,000 people they fly daily, big high-fare high-cost airlines will always be inefficient. None the less, Delta the corporation will stand, accepting welfare that they likely condemn poor people for receiving, while the pensions of workers and the jobs of employees are taken away. They seem to need the lobbying group.
savagebeastmonsta-sameblak muthafucas -dont follow me(2000)
savagebeastmonsta-sameblak muthafucas -dicdownlilmomma(1999)
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Friday, November 18, 2005
Historically to be accurate, it was the Arabs and Africans who lead Europe out of the pestilence of the dark ages. It was about 800 years ago when the famous Arab philosopher Ibn Rushd first visited Europe to enlighten the population. Today many Arabs, living in Europe are disenchanted, mainly because of the manner in which they are perceived and treated politically by Europeans. There has been a large misrepresentation by Europe and the West on Islam and Arabs in general. This is namely the result of a small number of fanatics taking attention away from the major body of Arabs. Thus from this vantage point, it is not unusual for most of the Arabs to be touted and portrayed as terrorist. Although many are considered citizens in countries like France and Belgium, they maintain an unspoken second-class citizenship.
Arabs will never assimilate or integrate into European culture. There numbers will only increase and become more of a nuance from the perspective of Europeans since it is seeing an influx of new immigrants from the Middle East since the start of the war on Iraq. Meaning that what we see, in the change in attitudes directed at the US is related to the rapid increase in the number of Arabs living across Europe. So who knows, maybe by the middle of this century. Europe will be a Mulim/Arab continent.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
The heart of the insurgency is considered to come from this region, among other places outside of the country. However, unlike popularly believed, these fierce people are not foreign jihadists or former Baathists—they are staunch nationalists who believe that their country has been embarrassed and tend to view attacks on coalition forces as “acceptable” political action.
The U.S. military will continue to take heavy losses in this region if they continue to believe that 5,000 troops can defend and maintain control of an area with an expanse of some 24,000 square miles. Anbar residents are not as economically deprived as many describe the majority of the ranks of the insurgents, but they are taking the aftermath of the war somewhat harder than most Iraqi citizens.
I will say it again; we are in a protracted battle with people who are fiercely nationalistic. To date, it is estimated that about 15,000 insurgents are in jails and that thousands more have been killed. How can this be the case—when at the start of the war it was estimated that there were between 15-20 thousand insurgents in total? It is obvious that we are operating either in the dark, under the cloak of stupidity or we were unprepared in the initial phases of the war. And, things will only get worse, since these folks take a no-holds-barred approach. –torrance stephens
In this age of ballers and big shots, it’s kind of refreshing to be a plain ole country boy. After work yesterday I went to have a slice of pizza and a beer as I normally do after a late niter in the office on Wednesday. At the bar, I sat next to two associates of mine who write/work for the same urban weekly I submit and publish these opinion-editorials for. They were drinking. I ordered my usual – a PBR (Pabst Blue Ribbon) and a shot of Cuerveo. Looking down the bar and around the room, I noticed I was the only man drinking PBR. Everyone else was drinking expensive imports and other bottle beers. First I tried to figure what was so special about the beers they selected in comparison to my PBR. Other than glass and the bottle look, I could not think of nothing. It couldn’t have been taste nor temperature – since the 16 oz PBR was colder and more beer than the others. The only difference outside of that was the two bills it cost compared to the other five dollar beers.
The gentleman next to me finished their beverages. As a kind gesture, I offered to buy them what I was drinking. One said “if it is not Patron, I can’t drink it. I retorted, "well don’t get him a drink. The only reason he asking for it is because he hear the name in songs and on music videos”, speaking to the bartender. It made me realize that we are some fucked up folks, not amenable to accepting a free drink, unless it has status to it. The tequila I consume is based on taste, and I’d really prefer Sauza, but they didn’t offer it. He eventually accepted my drink and even commented “that’s real good”. It just makes me think and count my blessing to be a country boy instead of some big baller. When people ask me what kind of beer i want, I reply cold, especially if it is free.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
I would have never suspected that I would be writing about a song that I have so much disdain for in a supportive and comical sense. The line that caught my attention was “a trifling friend indeed.” That line brought one to query as to what type of woman this sort of person would be? I suspect if there was a woman, one who had a favorite author, then she may do anything to meet that author. This would even include having his child, unbeknown to him while she was supposedly engaged to another. Now this strikes me as being both sad and funny, funny because she even named the child after this person, who she had been meeting secretly while she was involved and deeply in love (on the surface) with her man.
One could presuppose that if one was engaged and truly loved another, there would be room for sacrifice and compromise, but she did neither. It was either her way or no way from they way the story has been told to me. There was not even any room for a relationship to grow since she could never accept doing anything for anyone other than herself, including be faithful and honor her family duty as a woman, mother and wife. But such would be out of the question, since she was a trifling friend indeed – what I consider no friend at all, since she named him Omare, and really appears as if she doesn't know who the child’s father is. But I told him he should be leary of any woman who has Kanye West Gold digger as the ringer for her telephone.
Monday, November 14, 2005
Just as the republicans, they consider us as second tier citizens who are only worth anything until it is time to vote. I feel that there is a natural love hate relationship with the African American community and the Democratic Party, this maybe due to our brainless allegiance to the party formulated as a consequence of the civil rights movement. It may also be the product of African Americans being out front and visible in the party as well as their overt display of African Americans running for political office.
For me, I consider myself to be a libertarian. I value more than anything else my personal freedom and do not desire or need to see government take care or protect me from myself. I consider myself to be a sovereign citizen as outlined in the 14th amendment which states “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
Therefore, if I do decide to vote, it will not be for Kerry or Bush, I will vote for constitutional scholar and computer expert Michael Badnarik. I believe as most Libertarians that there is too much government regulation and spending, which as an outcome, destroys jobs and increases unemployment. I also believe that the government as an institution does not grant rights it acknowledges them and is also servant to the people or voting populous. When will we learn that neither the republicans nor democrats have the interest of African Americans as a main feature of their platforms?
Friday, November 11, 2005
Somebody told me 50 cents wanted to show his softer side, that he was tired of being thought of as a gangsta who was shot 9 times. I wonder why? I really don’t by the act or give a fuck, but having a martini in hand and just hearing a radio station talk about it gave me something else to write about. I think he is full of shit, or what I like to call, George Bushing it. Trying to sell an image that I suspect, that he suspects will make him more money, via lucrative movie deals in Hollywood. He better be glad Sam Jackoson aint got a hold to his ass. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, paris is still on fire.
Other wise, he is gonnna start falling fast. People already boo him at his shows, has he ever heard of the word humble, maybe not. I know he don't wanna end up like that chick Jay-z smushed.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
The way folks acted before, I would have expected it to be all over the news, but it was not. I feel many white people are not outraged because the trial involved a white man and a white woman. If Blake was African American, I’m sure there would have been a more severe reaction. During the Blake trial, no eyewitnesses were presented or blood or DNA evidence to connect the actor to the crime; and the murder weapon could not be traced to Blake—although he had a small amount of gunshot residue on his hands. This was similar to findings that blood and skin under Nicole Simpson’s fingernails did not match either of the victims, or O. J. Simpson.
America is as divided as it was prior to and after the Civil War. It is a shame that such inconsistencies exist, but the truth of the matter is that such differences in beliefs will always be reflective of a society blinded by color.--torrance stephens
Now I am not against anyone’s sexual orientation or religious preferences, albeit I am neither a pagan nor insecure about my sexual orientation or preferences. As a matter of fact, I feel that it leaves more women for me—well, at least I used to think that when I was roaming the streets pinning all the eligible female volunteers to the mat when I could.
Earlier this year, I read in an esteemed conservative daily newspaper that actress-singer Jada Pinkett Smith, wife of Will Smith, had been in Cambridge, Mass. to receive an award from the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations. The award was aptly titled, Artist of the Year. In her comments upon accepting the award, she spoke of overcoming impediments in her childhood—namely being the child of teenage heroin abusers. In addition, she made a statement indicating that women can have a fulfilling life including “a loving man, devoted husband, loving children...”
The problem was that this was not received so well, in particularly by the bisexual, gay, lesbian, transgender and supporters alliance (BGLTSA). One of the executive members of the group, Jordan B. Woods, called Jada Pinkett-Smith’s comments “extremely hetero normative” (I laugh every time I say this phrase). I’m certain that what I have just penned will be perceived as offensive to somebody, some way and somehow. --torrance stephens
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
I am writing to you because I feel that you will read my letter first and understand how in such dire need of assistance I am. I am a man who is a single parent. I met a woman about 2 years ago, who claimed, as I did to here, that we were soul mates. I welcomed her into my home as is. She knew that I was a single parent, a man who was raising his son. She didn’t have any problems with that.
I proposed to her and gave her a two carat diamond ring. She meant the world to me. A few weeks later, we found out she was pregnant. That’s when it all started. I come to find out after the fact that she had a history of depression and some other psychological problems. In fact, she said she wanted to get an abortion, but wiser heads prevailed.
After the baby was born, she begins to flip out. Not only did she threaten to kill me, she also said she wanted to kill my son and gave me an ultimatum, either he goes or she goes. Of course, I suggested that she leave. But she didn’t, claiming that she loved me and didn’t want to leave or hurt us, but rather that she needed help.
This type of behavior continued on and off until the current state of things. She keyed my car and she also said she would burn down our hose and kill everyone, including our new born daughter. I can’t take this anymore. She even said that no one in my family, including my mother would see the baby ever; this was after we had planned three months prior to go to Memphis (my home) for my mother and grandmother to see the baby. What happened in Memphis was like a scene from a horror movie. Although two nights before we left for Memphis, she said that my mother would never see the child, the night before, she left, with the baby and got a hotel room. She said she didn’t want to go but that I could take the baby with me. She left instead, and I had to wait some four additional hours the following day before we could go – she came too although she said she didn’t want to. In the car the entire ride, she was screaming at the baby and even hit the car seat several times severely in an attempt to quite the baby down. I told her calmly, that that would only make the baby cry more. Meanwhile in the front seat, my son was furious and balling up his fist about to cry.
We made it to Memphis without any more grief. Bt we were not their in my mom’s house for two hours before she went on a triad and screamed that my mother would never see the baby again, and that she would never ever set foot in her house. Then she swung at my mother. My cousin, another female jumped and they started to fight a hotel and as much as I could, I tried to act like things were normal. But I couldn’t’ she even gave me my ring back and told my mother they she would never marry me and that it was over.
Back in Atlanta, things were as quiet as they could be. Outside of the ubiquitous I hate you, you are stupid, you are about shi*, I’m sorry, she had the never to ask me for her ring back as if she did not understand that such is a serious matter not to mention she had given it back twice before. I tried to be patient but I just continued to build up. Recently she took it to another level; she said that the child was not mine and that she had been meeting men in clubs and dating. She asked me to get her a permit to become a stripper and I refused, as a consequence she keyed my vehicle. The she said she wanted to be a prostitute at the bunny ranch, I said she had to do what she needed but I would not want her to do such and no man I figured would.
Now she says she hates me every day and that she is miserable being with me and that she will make my life and my son’s miserable. I ask her to leave and she wont and she said a man would put her out but that I was a punk because I wont put her and the baby in the streets with no where to go. I have also been trying to rebuild my house, it’s nice but it is old and not child proof. She wants it done right then but doesn’t understand that such takes time. She even got into it with my son, in which I told her that she was fussing about a 12 oz container of kool-aid. She told him that his mother hated him and that nobody loved him, I told him that was not the case and I also told her such. The next day, she accidentally burned her purse with her curling irons and asked me to get her another one, I said no, and she said she would get it anyway she could I said ok. The next day she lost her phone and blamed my son and me for it being missing. I don’t know what to do, as I type this I am at work with the child who I don’t know is mine but who I love so much. What can I do? I don’t know if she would come on your show about this topic but she would come for a make over or something, but she needs help and I can’t help here albeit I try every day. It is almost to the point where I may hit her. She slapped me yesterday and it took all I had to leave and go outside.
She only looks up to you and Star Jones (I think that’s her name).
Thanks just for listening
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
When one thinks of the Supreme Court it is easy to think
of words like landmark and controversial. For some of us,
their decisions have led to dramatic changes. I am particularly
fond of some decisions like Brown v. Board of Education and
have disdain for others like Dred Scott where they ruled that
African Americans were not citizens.
Historically, the courts were supposed to be the weakest branch
of our government. However, today they often implement their
power by usurping the electoral process. Thomas Jefferson wrote
that having judges as the supreme decision makers on
constitutional questions would result in “despotism of an
oligarchy.�? As it stands, the Supreme Court has become a
state instrument for class rule and has done so via the
process of judicial review.
The best example of this is how in one fatal motion, the
U.S. Supreme Court ended the U.S. Television manufacturing
industry. In August of 1986, the Supreme Court ruled in favor
of Japanese television makers saying that U.S. manufactures
had an unfair advantage over them. As a result of this ruling,
the court effectively ended U.S. television manufacturing. In fact,
people would be hard-pressed to find more than a handful of U.S.
companies that make televisions any more. Another example
occurred in December 2000 when, in a 5 to 4 decision, the
Supreme Court disenfranchised the American voters when
they stated that any state legislature has the power to revoke
the popular vote with respect to the decision made during the
Florida election fiasco.
a vehicle of change. I believe that this is the responsibility of
elected leaders. The members of the Supreme Court are neither
elected, nor leaders. Moreover, their views often reflect elitist
values and beliefs that are not reflected by the general population.
I thought America was a constitutional republic, but it appears to
be more of a repressive autocracy as defined by people in
little black robes. —torrance stephens
about our invasion and occupation of Iraq? The British
eventually learned it—that these folks will never quit.
When the U.S. first took on Fallujah, it was all over
the news. As of the start of December, there has been
barely a mention of the city on the news or in newspapers.
From what I can tell, based on the lack of news coverage
on Fallujah since the operation started, the U.S. is
having a rough time. It is obvious that the media is
intentionally misreporting and under reporting the
events occurring in Fallujah. I suspect that this is
for several reasons. Maybe reporting the killing of
innocent civilians will not go over well in the U.S.
Or maybe it’s the use of outlawed weapons, such as
napalm, on the residents of Fallujah that would
confuse American people who’re watching the news. Worse,
such reports will not go too far at winning the hearts
and minds of Iraqi citizens, as the government desires.
It does not surprise me that the U.S. military is having
a rough time. I mean anytime one is pushed to using chemical
weapons, it is an obvious sign of trouble. Just last August,
the U.S. admitted to using poison gas in Iraq. Now, there
are these reports of using napalm (which is banned) in Fallujah.
I don’t know why the U.S. feels that these individuals are
not citizens. Think about it, what we fail to understand
is that these folks are not going to let a high and mighty
military power stop them from exercising acts of
self-determination. I cannot see someone coming into my
neighborhood—College Park, for example—to take over a
block to sell weed without a struggle, let alone if they
were trying to take and occupy my home. We are in for a
fight, and we better be ready to accept defeat. After all,
defeat is possible. –torrance stephens
used to characterize questions associated with why
the Muslim world won’t embrace the West, especially
the United States and Israel. In particular, the
term has been bandied about since the war in Iraq
and the tsunamis wreaked havoc in the countries
bordering the Indian Ocean.
Frankly, Muslim countries are no more theocratic
than the United States. Theocracy comes from the
Greek words Theos- meaning “God�? and cratein -
meaning “to rule.�? This means that a theocracy
is a government operating under the belief that
government can only be accomplished by the divine
guidance of a higher power.
In all honesty, the U.S. government is a reflection
of traditional Christian conservative values. This
is why the Republican Party is so heavily-influenced
by the religious right and other groups like the
Christian Coalition. This is as close to theocratic
tyranny as anyone can get.
We should not be vilifying the Islamic world just
because they lean toward theocracy when the United
States does the same thing. In addition, we should
not be directing hateful rhetoric toward such
countries as displayed by writers like Lewis Fein.
So what if Sri Lanka and Indonesia rejected tsunami
relief assistance from Israel and the United States.
Other nations’ spiritual ideology is not the point;
mutual respect for each others’ beliefs is the
salient point. We say we don’t want fanatics running
the Arab world, but we removed a secular leader in
Saddam Hussein and now we have a greater chance of
producing what in theory we were trying to destroy –
a unified and theocratic Muslim world. –torrance stephens
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Man, church is a corporation. I know it is not politically correct
to say it,but things are not as sacrosanct in the house of the Lord as they seem. I have nothing against churches or religion really. I grew up in the church,and even loved singing in the choir. But I must call things the way I see them.Everywhere one looks, there are reminders of faith. Religious programming can be observed 24 hours a day on television. It seems more than obvious that religion has become big business for many. Sure, it has always proven to be a moneymaker in the African American community, but things are getting kind of ridiculous.
First, I may be a tad bit slow, but I don’t see why there is a need for the
big, castle like structures that appear to cost millions of dollars to construct.I was taught that church was the people; not a building. Secondly, I don’t or cannot comprehend why a minister needs to wear $1,000 plus suits and/or drive European sports cars panoplied with bullet proof glass. Now I can see this being the appropriate carriage of choice for drug dealers, but not men and women of the cloth.
I just wish the entertainment that we call church in the current form,
redirects attention to the people they serve. We need to re-evaluate
the necessity of passing collection plates around three or four times
during a service and try to figure out how to rebuild and strengthen
our community. If we don’t, then I will rest assured in my conviction
that the church I used to know is nothing more than a capitalistic machine that takes from the poor and gives to the rich. Call me what you like, but I have God in my life and do not need any touchdowns, chess pieces or dollar keepers to show me how to get on my knees and pray.
most talented people in our community tend to do more harm
than good. A few months ago, it was Bill Cosby and his wretched
vilification of the African American poor (which now includes the
middle-class thanks to Mr. President). Now we have the incessant
bombardment of hip-hop MCs attacking each other. It’s cool, I
guess, to mix it up a little, but how many times can you rap about
a diamond worth 200 stacks in one ear alone?
Women are part of the problem because most of these men seem
to feel the only way they can attract you all is by showing how much
money they have and can spend. Their egos are already larger than
life. I have heard Killa Ca dis Ma$e, and the Lil Flip and T.I nonsense.
I have even heard about the beef between Luda and T.I.; my
information comes directly from underground mixtapes.
I’m really trying to understand this, I mean so what if Dem Franchise
boys hate D4L or that Lil Scrappy used to have blond hair and was
robbed in Carver Homes; or that Dem Franchise Boys went to college;
or that Jeezy has placed a 10-stackbounty on Gucci Mane’s chain?
It’s all ridiculous. These are relatively astute folks, but don’t they
know they make others think that this is how things SHOULD be?
I mean don’t they know that in the ATL for example, we have a few
problems with young’uns—even from so-called good neighborhoods—
shooting at each other? Don’t they know that they just give folks in
Congress permission to pass new legislation that will impose 10-year
minimum sentences on people convicted of gang violence and allow
the death penalty for gang murders? More specifically, it lets them
treat more juvenile gang members as adults. But I guess that
doesn’t matter. --torrance stephens
Tom Delay may need to just be quiet. Whenever he does something,
there is always a cloud of controversy associated with his actions.
The majority leader’s daughter and some of his aids have even been
included in probe of allegations stemming from his spending of millions
of corporate dollars to assist in a 2002 Republican takeover of the
Texas House of Representatives. Investigators suggest that the
money was used to gerrymander congressional districts in Texas
when current laws suggest that using corporate money is illegal
to use in political campaigns conducted in Texas. As a result, Texas
congressional districts were redrawn to help send more Republican
lawmakers from the state to Washington. DeLay has many financial
ties to a number of House Republicans which will make it rather
difficult for them to actually determine the extent to which he broke
laws related to ethical transgressions within Washington.
With all of this, not to mention other issues related to unethical
conduct, Delay made ill-advised comments on the day Terri Schiavo
died after a court ordered her feeding tube removed at the request
of her husband. He suggested that courts should have intervened
to save her, calling their actions “arrogant, out-of-control, and
Delay needs to remember his manners and think about what
he is asking for—given the recent events regarding the judicial system
including the murder of the mother and husband of federal Judge Joan
Lefkow in Chicago and the March 11 murder of a judge, court reporter
and deputy sheriff in the Atlanta courthouse. I would suspect that he
would have more important things to do than passing judgment on the
courts and on television shows like “Law & Order.” Who knows, maybe
we should be placing all-points bulletins on folks who wear a
Tom DeLay T-shirt.--torrance stephens
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
referendum? This is supposedly what just occurred in Iraq. I
suggest supposedly because such a push toward democratic
centralism as proffered by the Bush Administration realy isn't democratic at all.
The overall process is even more complicated when one evaluates
the US assertion that they are attempting to bring Sunnis into
the political process while at the same time they continue to
target and arrests Sunnis and their major community leaders.
Second, reports indicate that a large number of Iraqi citizens
did not get a majority of the five million copies of the constitution
from the UN as indicated by the Bush Administration. So the
question still remains, how can you have a , constitutional
referendum if most of the folks have not read or do not
know what is contained in the constitution?
Add to the soup the observation that the claims of the Defense
department regarding preparing the Iraqi military to take over
the role of the United States, and we definitely have a quandary.
The President on the one hand, during the first week of October,
said in a speech to the National Endowment for Democracy
that “more than 80 Iraqi army battalions” were ready and
prepared for this task. However, this was in contradiction to
what US Army General George Casey told the Senate Armed
Services Committee on September 29th; when he reported that
there was just a single (one) Iraqi battalion ready and capable of
operating independent of US support.
There is obvious some consternation on behalf of the administration,
who constantly weave thick tails of make-believe as a penumbra
for Iraqi foreign policy and the Iraqi people, who have yet to accept
and promote freedom and democracy American Style.
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Hurricane Katrina made visible for American that the social
and racial divide were one in the same. From all perspectives
it was visible that what is considered the American dream for
many selected folks is more of a nightmare to others. It
doesn’t seem as if things will change the way the reconstruction
effort has been imitated.
In September 2005, the Wall Street Journal reported, that
FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers awarded six contracts
for as much as $100 million, for recovery and rebuilding work
in the Gulf area. The Shaw Group landed two of these $100
million deals and other lucky folk included Bechtel, Fluor, and
CH2M Hill. Halliburton in the immediate aftermath of the
hurricane recived $29.8 million in Pentagon contracts to
rebuild Navy bases along the Louisiana and Mississippi coast.
Halliburton hits it big also in Iraq, grossing more than $10
billion in Iraq-war related income
The lessons learned abroad by big corporations are being
transferred here state side. Just as in Iraq, no-bid reconstruction
contracts have been given to corporations. This has been
common since the White House created the Office of the
Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization in August
2004. Headed by former US Ambassador to Ukraine Carlos Pascual,
since then, it appears as if the Defense Department and FEMA have
been able to successfully drop mega loot in the laps of the rich while
at the same time encourage and foster an atmosphere supportive
privatization. Most of which involve situations of rebuilding
communities after major disaters in which only big corporations
seem to benefit.
This strict focus on reconstruction, and using the private sector
to rebuild areas after wars and disasters, has been labeled by
some as disaster capitalism while a Bangalore-based
researcher named Shalmali Guttal, has described this as
“sophisticated colonialism.” For the government it make sense,
given in many respects, it was difficult to discern what we saw in
the gulf as being any different from Iraq and Africa. Clocking dough
is cool, but not ifnone of the folks indigenous to the problem areas
cannot make any of that money. It just lets me know to be leery of government
in general; maybe that’s their plan afterall.
Thursday, October 27, 2005
I just like to think and presuppose and offer the conditionals,
could, should and what if? The Bush administration has announced
that starting in October 2006; all U.S. passports will be implanted
with remotely-readable computer chips.
That’s Machine Readable Passports that make use of radio
frequency ID (RFID) chips that can transmit personal
information. About one-third of a millimeter across, these
chips act as transponders (transmitters/responders), that
search for radio signals sent by transceivers or RFID readers.
They transmit data by bringing it into range of a receiver.
Invented in 1969 and patented in 1973, they require no battery
meaning they are much smaller and can be placed, even permanently
in difficult locations. They can be found in everything from
credit cards, clothes and even pets. Hitachi's has developed
a new chip, which carries its own built-in antenna, that is
smaller a flake of pepper.
To me, as I indicated earlier (REF), it’s just some more martial law police
state shit proffered by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
It will allow them to identify people in crowds and be able to
hold information including name, date of birth, place of birth,
digitized photographs, medical records and/or iris scans.
This just means cheaper (about 5 cents each) and smaller
surveillance. No matter what ones does the chip can't be
demagnetize. Maybe one could remove the chip, but they
would have to be able to locate it given its microscopic size.
Hitachi is talking with the European Central Bank on a project
to embed RFID chips in euro bank notes. While it is evident
that the government, under the guise of homeland security in
these United States of America, keep chipping away literally,
at our civil liberties. Another concern is that identity thieves
could snatch personal information out of the air easy by
directing an antenna at a person or a vehicle carrying a
passport or any other RFID containing item. Maybe the
Congress should require that all people be notified about
products with embedded RFID tags. But such is doubtful,
they don’t work anyway.