Thursday, February 28, 2008

40 on 40

This April will mark the 40th anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King Jr. It’s been forty years since that tragic day in Memphis of which I still recall very vividly.

Forty years, so what has happened since then? Let’s us see, well outside of more folk like me on television and in movies, albeit still in the roles of tricksters and clowns, fewer African American farmers, lower literacy rates and easier access to guns, credit cards, and strip malls (and clubs), I would suggest very little.

This strikes me as strange, for although I can see some movement toward his vision, it seems wit each step we progress forward, we are either kicked back or worse, kicking ourselves back three or four more steps. Yes, we have seen four or five Presidential candidacies from the likes of Jackson, Chisom and recently, Obama. But outside of that, I can’t place my hand on any one tangible accomplishment other than the vote (BTW which my granny said they didn’t die and bleed in the streets for – in her words it was justice and liberty). She as the men in my family always told me that if you have to ask for freedom, then one must question if they are actually free.

I mean, never was this so clear, the divisiveness when I accidentally ran across the forum annual held by Tavis Smiley last week. Dr. Cornel West and another member of the panel ripped him apart, for less than petty reasons, one being that he had the audacity to announce his candidacy on the same weekend of the forum. They even had a problem with him announcing his candidacy at the birthplace of Abraham Lincoln, Springfield, Illinois. Never mind that it makes good sense, being that Senator Obama is the U.S. Senator from the State of Illinois, in which the State Capitol is SPRINGFIELD.

I guess folks like West and Smiley and even BET founder Jones feel that Obama has to kiss and wipe their ass for permission, or worse, that he aint black enough to stand for or represent black folk in America. Especially given his perspective regarding where Obama’s loot is coming from. Talking about "white” folk and “Jewish” folk money and all.

To me it shows that he is able to gather support from all folk not to mention that the astute scholar, who I met personally while in Ethiopia during an AIDS conference, doesn’t seem to recall that legal and tender notes we call dollars are green and have no religious affiliation. He called him the “skinny guy with the funny name.”

West himself, when invited to Chicago by Rev. Michael Pfleger to speak at his St. Sabina mass said himself that “We have been living for 40 years in a political, moral and spiritual ice age.”

Like I said, its been 40 years since that day an assassin murdered one of my idols, one of the men, regardless of color that spawned my mind to think freely, and critically. And what has happened since then, I would suggest little, now we enslave ourselves. But it took Moses 40 years, maybe now is really the time.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

If they do nothing 4 u, u are worth nothing to them

1] Im over Memphis Lost to UT, 2] We Ball in TN u see Vandy get up in that UT ass, & 3] i just love these lyrics "like you'll never see me again" by Alicia Keys. And sorry no pictures today.

Now life has bestowed its share of hardships upon me. In the past and recently, but I still preserver, never get down or depresses, focus on problem solving and move on. But there are things that I have learned in these periods of time that stay with me forever. One of them is that if you do for others, either at any time, or more importantly in their times of need, and they do nothing for you, either at anytime, or in your time of need.

I wish I could say such folks are selfish, but I can’t, for objectively I think they know they take and never give. Maybe it is a personal insecurity, or maybe they just have no home training. Whatever the case, they have expectations when you perform and it just amazes me how they do not imagine or see that others may not have similar expectations.

In the long term actions show value and worth. Just as words do at times, but only when they are grounded with actions. I speak from experience and such folks take on different auras. The strange thing is that they claim and act as if they are self sufficient and independent and don’t need the help or assistance of others. I have one friend who is my age, he is always claiming how he enjoys being single and having no kids and that he is independent, yet he stays with his parents, pays no bills and drives their other auto. The there is the woman I know, who claims she is independent, yet she can’t take care of herself, can’t pay her own bills to keep a roof over her head and depends on a man that she obviously doesn’t love to maintain her. She is the type that thinks about her weed habit over her children’s need for diapers or daycare. I consider both of the aforementioned my friends, but yet the instability in their lives that hey fail to ignore, doesn’t allow for me to expect anything from them except to ask for favors.

So for me, it is more important to cherish and show value to those that assist me in my times of need. No mater who they are. I want them to know they can call on me when their car breaks down, because they know I a dependable and a man of my word. I learned such from my parents and grandparents. Such folks, albeit are good people at heart, cannot put themselves in the shoes of others. They are so focused o their own little myopic square of the world that they forget, and worse, don’t know or have any understanding of carrying, sacrifice, respect or giving. These are foreign concepts for al they see is themselves that they have a trip to go on, or need new shoes, or want to go to the Hawks game. No, they don’t understand, that some folks live day-to-day worrying about how they will feed their families, or whether or not some lunatic with a bomb across their chest will pick to blow up beside them. They even laugh off such as being unrealistic. They would even get upset if you stopped doing or being there for them.

I just question why folks as such ask me why don’t I call them or answer their calls anymore. I do not desire to be rude, but I would hope hat they could look in the mirror for such answers. Or else I would reply, “why call you, when I speak with you, you fuss and complain about what you want or need, and what you do not have, not to mention what do you do for me? Nothing, which means not even in gesture or action, I am worth nothing to you.

just a though on Iraq

Yo check this. Albeit my foreign policy experience has been limited to running child survival, maternal health and infectious disease risk reduction in prisons, and outside of the frequently penned essay on international affairs issues regarding politic and health, I am a novice. Maybe one reason why I would not be suitable for political office – add that my salacious selection of vocabulary and my predilection for women. That aside, I have reduced the political problems of Iraq into a workable solution. True I do not live there and like the US government, neither have I consulted or requested their approval of my executive order.

I have written extensively on the current circumstance that have placed us at war, from the President, to Don Rumsfeld, Neo-cons (even though have found a neo neocon), Pakistan, Afghanistan and even other assorted variables. But truth be told, we as a country, no matter how long we stay, or how many troops we can deeply, can’t do nothing for the country, the people and the puppet government – I mean democracy we elevated in Iraq.

But If I were afforded the opportunity to use a Republic like a Monarchy this is what I would do. Given my previous failures at attempting to institute an artifact of imperialism, I would look toward the North and away from the green zone and other places I have made desolate with bombs and bullets. I would sit down with All of The Kurds, the Shiite and Sunni and talk about what was going on in that region. I would tell them that, “As a nation they now have to be self-determined. That no matter where enemies come from, this could be a start for a unified Iraq." I would advocate that they all join forces and go to war against Turkey. This would accomplish our goal. We could bring our troops home and unify the country.

In my rally cry I would add, “the North is where most of the love is, and if we can destroy your country under the guise of false stockpiles for oil, then you can unify your blood for oil and for our nation. I figure this will finally unify Iraq and start the rebuilding of a unified nation state, unfortunately like it was under their former leader.

But that why I am not a politician. I don’t know if the rest of my government would go for it, I mean giving them planes, as I did Turkey also. But it would work, and we could have all of our people home and watch out two allies in the region square off. This would be a job well done. LOL

Sunday, February 24, 2008

fck boy goes to college

Many of you know that I am an appreciative person and as so, often write about blessings and how people take their blessings for granted. As well, you know I have a vehement disdain for types of folks I have labeled to be Fck Boys. This past Monday, LSU head coach Les Miles suspended Quarterback Ryan Perrilloux for an indefinite period. Again using coach speak, it was for violating unspecified team rules. Perrilloux was a big reason why LSU went to the BCS championship game in January.

In the past, Perrilloux has missed mandatory team meetings. One, in which he was the only one not in attendance, was during the week after LSU won the national championship. Although there is nothing wrong to miss a few classes to attend ones father’s funeral, but being responsible suggest that you would inform your coach and teachers of such.

This is Perrilloux’s third team suspension. Last year he did not make the trip to Alabama after he was alleged to have been apart of a fight in a Baton Rouge bar. Then there was the time he attempted to use his older brother’s driving license to gain admittance to a Casino in Baton Rouge.

Add to this, that Perrilloux is being watched by federal authorities as being allegedly involved in a federal counterfeiting ring. Now this behavior is from a person that was looked at s being one of the nation’s top high school quarterback prospects in 2005.

It is hard for me to see how a person given so much, after earning such through athletic performance, could take his opportunity, to maybe even a future professional career worth tens of millions of dollars, not to mention the greatest reward of earning a college degree. It makes no sense how one can go to a solid university, not attend class, and worse not expect that he should attended class when he is own scholarship. Guess this is what thugging will get you. I aint know they had libraries in Casino’s.

Now I know it may be hard to be an African American Quarterback at LSU or in the state for that matter. But that is no excuse. Still he has squandered a major blessing.

In division 1 football, 50 percent of scholarship athletes are African American, but less than half of that number graduate or finish. Ryan, you were given a valuable opportunity and a blessing. Do you know how many folks are struggling to send their kids to school, or how many students have to take loans or work two jobs to pay for tuition? Does he know some folks dying in Iraq and other places just because they want money for college? You had a gift a blessing, and what do you do? You squander it like a fck boy as opposed to taking advantage of it as a man. Maybe you should have gone to Mississippi State, cause like Sylvester Croom said; “I will not send a young African American student athelete into the world unprepared, if they come here, they are going to class.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Like screaming fire in a theater

One thing about America, a racist or supremacist is not that far away. Maybe a keystroke away, or maybe a channel away. Bu they are always around. Over the past week, I was in dialogue with such a person. But that is all I will say to that extreme. However, I can deal with the aforementioned since his audience is not that Large.

On February 19, 2008, during his radio talk show, FOX news host Bill O'Reilly took a call from a program listener regarding the wife of Senator Barack Obama. The caller said that according to a close friend of Michelle Obama, that she was “a very angry,” and “militant woman."

The segment of the show of course was focused on her comments regarding being proud to be an American for the first time in her adult life. I wouldn’t expect Billy, or the average white band, i mean listener to understand what she meant. But I do and did; I mean folk here saw national guards on his street telling him he couldn’t play outside. I’m certain that it is out of left field for Billy or his caller to understand that some folks do remember segregation (albeit) I don’t, and taught it to their children. They may remember their parents having dogs set on them, or water hoses unleashed on them with there full fury, or how whites acted when the first school buses transported black kids to predominantly white Boston schools, or Bombing of the 16th street avenue church.

Some whites may not remember that their parents may have taught them that they couldn’t vote and had to ride in the back of buses for he same fair, or having to have separate waiting rooms, entering the back of establishments or drinking out of different water fountains. Maybe they think that folks of my persuasion ethnically should be proud of that as an American – nope, we are not. I mean, to my recollection, we never enslaved whites, or set dogs on them, or bombed their churches when maybe some felt that they needed to be bombed

In his response, O'Reilly opined: "I don't want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there's evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels. If that's how she really feels -- that America is a bad country or a flawed nation, whatever -- then that's legit. We'll track it down. "

I don’t know why I listen to him, but I think it is because I feel he is intrinsically divisive for America, and the enemy of mine, my folk and America. Last I heard it was illegal to lynch or assert that one would do such to a person in America. In fact, the House passed anti-lynching legislation three times in the first half of the 20th century. Dang, it wasn’t until 2005 that America manned up and apologized for the historic acts of lynching on its shores

I would like to suggest that if yawl can, please contact Bill O'Reilly, your congresspersons, senators and local law enforcements and hold him accountable for his words, I’m down for free speech, but saying lynching is ok with evidence, is like saying fire in a crowded movie theater to me. So why do you expect her to forget her lessons, God knows I don't and won't. All-Mi-T

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Will the real Lincoln – Douglass Debate please stand up

Well it would have been easy for me to talk about Wisconsin and Hawaii, and or to pontificate on the first week of March with the Upcoming Texas and Ohio primaries. Just as undemanding, would have been to talk about John McCain’s direct comments toward Barak Obama, or how Obama, is now pulling more voters from women, from whites and from the non college educated folks that Hillary Clinton, which once upon a time ago was suggested to me, was her base.

Instead I am going to take another stab at revising history. I’m certain my folk Badtux will chime in on this. It is well documented historically that Abraham Lincoln had seven debates across the state of Illinois in 1858. In fact the historical record has labeled these the “Lincoln-Douglas Debates.”

The debates were between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas. They were battling for one of Illinois' two United States Senate seats. History also tells us that Lincoln lost these debates since he lost the election.

Douglas, a Democrat, was the incumbent Senator was a strong advocate of Popular Sovereignty, and was responsible for the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854. Popular sovereignty suggested that settlers of federal territorial lands could decide the status under which they would join the Union – either free or slave.

Strange thing was that although he lost the Senate race to Douglas, he beat the same man for the 1860 race for the US Presidency. Although these debates framed the issue and difficulty of having a productive union in which some states were slave states, and others were free states, the real debate from my purview was not with the Senator from Illinois, but from another Douglass – Frederick Douglass.

Frederick Douglass was probably the biggest critic of President Lincoln. It was he who got Lincoln to practice what he preaches to move beyond his rhetoric on morality and freedom. Although most would think that these two men were on the same page politically and ideological, they were not. Lincoln believed the primary directive of the North was to preserve the Union and not to end slavery. Douglass was the first to suggest and urge Lincoln to use of black troops to fight the Confederacy. He positioned that by establishing colored regiments in the Union army. Dougless wrote “ every slave who escapes from the Rebel States is a loss to the Rebellion and a gain to the Loyal Cause I need not stop to argue…The negro is the stomach of the rebellion." He urged President Lincoln to urge equal pay for black soldiers.

Lincoln even said on the record that "If I could save the Union, without freeing the slaves, I would do it. If I could do it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would do that. What I do about slavery and the coloured race, I do because I believe it would help to save the Union."

Truth be told, the policy of the Lincoln administration was one of pro-slavery. Douglass unlike Lincoln, incessantly focused on the face of the war and stated "the mission of the war was the liberation of the slaves as well as the salvation of the Union. I reproached the North that they fought with one hand, while they might fight more effectively with two; that they fought with the soft white hand, while they kept the black iron hand chained and helpless behind them; that they fought the effect, while they protected the cause; and said that the Union cause would never prosper until the war assumed an anti-slavery attitude and the Negro was enlisted on the side of the Union."
Douglass was instrumental in getting Lincoln to see that the civil war was a struggle between freedom and slavery. For Lincoln was troubled by the view in the North that it was seen as a war for abolition of slavery singularly. This upset Douglass and in his meetings and dialogue with Lincln made sure he understood that could have never been designed, with its talk of forming “a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility,” could not have been made and at the same time promote and maintain “a system of rapine and murder like slavery, especially as not one word can be found in the Constitution to authorize such a belief.”

He had advised President Lincoln in 1862 to free the slaves in Washington, D.C., and understood that this fight was really versus a economic system directly in contradiction to the principles on which the country had been founded.

Now I know this doesn't make much sense, but all this week I have read and heard a lot regarding the celebration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of President Lincoln. In all of this, I have only heard Fred Douglass name mentioned briefly once, but the repeating mantra of the Lincoln-Douglass debates are batted around like the were the real debate of his time. No, the real debate was between he and Douglass, for it was Douglass, in his interaction and dialogue withe Linclon, that had the greatest impact in the long run. rdB

Monday, February 18, 2008


Jones, you know my granny Hazel died the prior week. And being such, folks seem to come out the wood works, in respect. A good thing, 99% of the time.

An additional disclaimer, I am a reformed Memphis mac, meaning that at one point in time, I ascribed to the “bone and disown” school of thought. Yes i was foul, but that was before I manned up to life and mutual respect for all, especially women. Check this, one of the past histories was a riend, female in gender. We said hello, that she said sorry about my granny’s death and said:

"You remember when I walked in on you and that BROAD in that Bar?"

I instantly went back in my head and said "yes."

What had happened was that we were dating. I think we were even informing one another of out love for each other. I had spoken with her earlier and informed her that I would call her back after I finished using the bathroom, but I did not. Truth was that I had spoken to another women before her and had planned to meet her at the bar. While there with her, the other young lady called twice and I intentionally did not take her calls.

Lord behold, if she did not walk into the bar a few minutes latter to pick up some food. Ironic thing is that the bar was a place that she had introduced me too in the first place. The woman I was with introduced herself to her. She was humble and did not make a scene and proceeded to take a seat at a booth in the corner as she waited for her food. I left the bar and with and set with her for a few. We spoke briefly but she didn't say much, except for to ask me to by her a drink. I made up some excuse, walking off and didn't honor her request.

After my date, I attempted to call her, but she didn't return my calls. I could not blame her, I mean before that time she trusted me. Although I understood then, now I really do understand. I did not apologize then and selected to blame her instead for coming by a lace she always stopped by.

I could not have meant what I said if I would do such a thing. I felt bad and I was busted. I tried to blame it on her, but the truth was i was the wrong one. Saying I was in a relationship with her, and meeting another woman, even if she was my friend, at a bar, and ignoring her calls. As a man, I should have just answered her call out of respect, and told her what I was doing, but I was a coward, a liar, and just tried to hide it from her. No matter what I said then she responded, "the eyes don't lie" and that "if it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, and talks like a duck, chance are it is a duck."

So now Im looking in her eyes and I say, "you were right, I was wrong and it was disrespectful."

So ladies and gents, tell me how bad was what I did, albet plus some 10 years ago, and was she right to not to call me anymore and did I get what I deserve. I guess I am asking, what whould u have done if u walked in on your partner, mate, girlfriend, boyfriend, man, woman, or lover, having drinks with another, when they intentiojnally ignored your calls, and how would you perceive such a person. In hindsight, she was a great person, and would have done anything for me.

But she obviously never forgot, should she have?


Sunday, February 17, 2008

5 million can go a long way

I guess Hillary Clinton used the 5 million she loaned her campaign a few weeks ago well. Seems that reports have come out now that suggest Barak Obama did not get a single vote in some 80 voting districts throughout the state of New York. Not a single one.

These districts included Harlem of all places. According to an article in Saturday's New York Times Metro Section headlined: "Unofficial Tallies in City Understated Obama Vote." A segment of the article read:

"Black voters are heavily represented in the 94th Election District in Harlem's 70th Assembly District. Yet according to the unofficial results from the New York Democratic primary last week, not a single vote in the district was cast for Senator Barack Obama.

That anomaly was not unique. In fact, a review by The New York Times of the unofficial results reported on primary night found about 80 election districts among the city's 6,106 where Mr. Obama supposedly did not receive even one vote, including cases where he ran a respectable race in a nearby district.

City election officials this week said that their formal review of the results, which will not be completed for weeks, had confirmed some major discrepancies between the vote totals reported publicly -- and unofficially -- on primary night and the actual tally on hundreds of voting machines across the city.:

The Times adds this relevant information: "The 94th Election District in Harlem, for instance, sits within the Congressional district represented by Charles B. Rangel, an original supporter of Mrs. Clinton."

I just wonder who she paid from her campaign coffers? Not saying she a cheat, but if they do it in baseball, or the New England Patriots do it, why not her? I mean, where she get her HGH from?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

aint that a bomber or an iceberg?

To the honorable Mr. Henry Waxman and Tom Davis:

Why in the fuck are you wasting my tax money to hold Reform Committee hearings of Human Growth Hormone? I mean, it’s nice for me to perceive that you are concerned, but forgive me if I find it hard to fathom that you actually care. I would like to say you both do have top-shelf tie game, but you are no doubt wasting my money.

Honorable Mr. Waxman, forgive me, but I prefer to get my information on science from scientist, of which I consider myself to be, and academic and scientific journals, of which I am certain you don’t read, from the manner in which you stumbled over words and concepts you orated during the segment of CSPAN called Health Effects of Human Growth Hormones.

Of all folks Mr. Waxman, you need to consider HGH given your age, but that is another story. For some reason or another, I feel that the time and money (of which your salary is paid) would be better spent on dealing with education or the issue of the homeless or prison. I mean, more folks are actually affected by the aforementioned than those that inject or consume HGH. Not to mention, your concern for B12 injections appears on the surface to be disingenuous and more prone for a discussion of fans of Roger Clemens.

As I looked at the lot of you listening to the scientific experts, I could not help but feel that they were talking over your heads, and that you all actually felt like sleeping. I say this for you all offered the penumbra that you were the kind of folks who slept through science class. I bet if I gave you a test on what the experts presented, you all would fail (without it being open book, or open note, or a take home).

If I were a gambling man, I would extend the prior assertion to spelling (albeit I can't talk) and or grammar, for I am willing to bet that you do not know what PERNICIOUS means. In either case, I would most likely have to give yawl a make up test to pass.

So Honorable gentleman, please spend my money on important stuff, and don’t even think about giving yourself a raise because you did this shit - conducted a study session on HGH.

Thank you sir, and I would like to reserve the remainder of my remarks, but I would like to add, that it is B-12, and not B-15 Mr. Waxman (u keep saying B-15 sir). B-15 is Pangamic acid and used for folks with high cholesterol, it is also an Ice Berg as well as a form of Military aircraft. I’m sure you have been in the House long enough to may have signed funding for it.

I thank you for your time and the chance to testify before your committee.

Friday, February 15, 2008

running into a brick wall

Now back to our regular scheduled programming. I had a homeboy that used to play defensive back with the Washington Redskins and Eagles. When he finished playing football in college, right before the draft, he came home. At one of my infamous party’s, we exchanged dap and talked. He spoke about the interviews he had with several NFL teams prior to the draft. He said he told them all “if you pay me enough, I will run into Brick wall." Now my Boy Barry hit hard, was Memphis Buck, and fast – all 6’2”, 220 pounds of him. He led the NFL in interceptions as a rookie and had 2 interceptions during the Skins Super Bowl win over Denver when Doug Williams was the MVP. I say this as a metaphor regarding the future as it may come to fruition in November.

Most of you all know that Dr. Ron Paul was my first choice for the Presidency, followed closely by Senator Obama. But since it seemed as if folks didn’t ascribe to my position, I’m going with Obama in the title game. However, many folks are s caught up on the primaries and his nemeses that we seem to be missing the bigger picture. A few weeks ago I asked why Black folk seem to vote hook, line and sinker for the democrats. Now, I feel that if things don’t go as most expect, there maybe a form of whiplash from African American voters.

The cynicism will rise extremely quickly if the democratic primary allows for the race between HilBill and Barak Obama to be decided by a bunch of elites Super delegates. As it stands now, with this inclusive of what has happened with the democratic primaries in Florida and Michigan, shit may really hit the fan. I mean, it wouldn’t surprise me if all this sit ends up in court. Not to mention that the three co-chairs of the DNC Credentials Committee: Alexis Herman, James Roosevelt, Jr. and Aliseo Roques-Arroyo, all served in the Clinton Administration. I just wonder how serving and working for her husband for 8 years may influence how they cast their super delegate votes.

On the other side of the aisle, Obama is already talking about November – a November where he most likely will be in the title game against John McCain. Although both democratic candidates say they are the best to face McCain, the truth is Obama has the best chance. Hillary says she can, but it would be easy for her to get beat down if she did face him in the general election. First, there are zillions in the GOP who hate her husband and her as well. Most folks would use the Clinton’s as a rallying cry to motivate a stagnant party, even if many conservatives feel that McCain isn’t conservative enough for them. Add to the fire that pundits like Rush Limbaugh recently said he would help raise money for Senator Hillary Clinton in order to unify the GOP.

Obama to me would be a stiff challenge for the GOP although some, like the ultra conservative New York Post, owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corps. Empire endorsed Obama in the New York primary, feel that it will be easier to defeat him. Why, well it brings us back to the feeling that hard liners hope that the race card, and the assumption that many still would not select an African American to be the President of the United States, as their player card.

Truth is he will be a visible difference versus McCain. First he will represent a strong generational difference, which McCain cannot challenge. Second, he will be a strong contradiction to McCain stance on the war in comparison to Clinton, who voted to support the war effort. Not to mention McCain sees us being in Iraq for another 100 years.

So what’s next? Well Hillary is already sending her daughter around to meet with the younger super delegates. For example, she recently had breakfast with Jason Rae who is a super delegate since he is a member of the Democratic National Committee from Wisconsin.

But the aforementioned is not the issue, it is the super delegates, who will the side with and what them three big wig Democratic Credential Committee folks will do. This has been a break out years for the democrats. It seems that they have been able to motivate young voters as well as pick up independent voters who have historically voted republican. However, if Obama has a slim lead nationally, but ends up loosing via the super delegates, it may end up back firing on them. Especially among African American and young voters, who may be so disappointed, that the party that says it stands for unity may loose a major segment of its membership. Its ok for my boy Barry to say he will run into a brick wall if they pay him enough, but I don’t think the democrats can survive running into a brick wall that may turn folks off from the voting and election process.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

a diamond treated like glass

Now for me, i'm down to 3 generations. For my son and daughter, they still have four. But not me, my granny died and may have left me, but she will always be in my heart, maybe that is why the sporadic crying existed. But yawl don’t feel me though. I remember, at least from age nine, going down either via plane or bus, to Macon, to kick it with my grand mother. My momma, although she and my birth father divorced before I was two, made sure that I spent quality time with my grandma on his side of the family. I can still remember the old house, on the Eastside of Macon, on 1109 Boone Street. Every time I was on that dirt road her house was on, I got excited. She would always take me in the kitchen and my Aunt, her daughter would give me her room for the summer and she would sleep with my grandma in that two-bedroom edifice. Instantly, she would start making me one of her citywide and well know pound cakes. And as I waited, she would always slice me up fresh cucumbers out of her garden and put them in a bowl with vinegar, salt and pepper.

My aunt ran a record shop and some days, I would spend the day with her and would always find myself playing in the back room where she had all of the black light posters. I remember it like yesterday. My mom flew down for her funeral. That is what type of woman she is. In fact that’s the kind of woman I want. Even if remarried, to respect me as such. My son’s mother is like that. Maybe that’s why the first scripture was Proverb 31 – that was indeed my granny. She made sure I had checks coming all the time, and she knew and often said about my father “That N***** aint shit.”

I mean, If my other granny died, I don’t think my birth father would be ma enough or respectful enough to do the same. You see, I never really met him until I was Junior in college. He never called, nor did he write or provide for me in all of my years. He was not at my high school graduation, nor my undergraduate or my graduations for my Master’s or PhD. He wasn’t around when my son, nor my daughter were born. He didn’t care. And now I find it strange, that he even refers to or attempts to call my son and daughter his grand children. I don’t have any bad blood, I just do not see him as that which he claims to be: my father or their grand father.

At the funeral, my mother, children and I road in the first limo with he, his wife, and daughter, and my Aunt. Now I do consider her my sister, because she loves me and shows it, and also loves my kids. They know more about her, my granny and her daughter – my aunt than they do of him. I have no more tears for my granny, for in all of her life I only saw and felt love and compassion and as a person, I never heard her complain at all. She was that humble.

In the church, she laid there, in her pink coffin, with her pink dress on, looking like the queen she was. My sister held on to me. I had to whisper in her ear not to cry, for granny was lucky to have had the greatest grand children in the world, for we made her proud. All she could do was smile, wipe her eyes and squeeze my hand tighter. While I was sitting on the front pew, I couldn’t help but remember how big the church was when I was a child. But looking at it now, it wasn’t so big at all. In fact the opposite. But it had style. On the left hand side were I was sitting, were women all in white. The minister, as my mom called him was old school. He would hum after every sentence and if it got good to him, he would extend his words in chord form, and kneel down to the ground and rise. The organ player would embellish his chants with staccato-riffed chords that seem to make his kneels to the ground longer.
But to make a long story short, it has been a long week. My granny is gone, but she lived 89 long and wonderful years. Now I have one left, and she is 87. Both of them are diamonds. They were as such, even when people treated them like glass. The first scripture they read described my grandma to a tee – Proverbs 31. However, her favorite scripture was Psalms 37. And we all know how the first lines read:

“Fret not yourself because of the wicked,
Be not envious of wrongdoers!
For they will soon fade like the grass
And wither like the green herb.”

Yep, grandma Hazel, like my grandma Virgie are diamonds, and remained diamonds, even when other treated them like glass.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The father of Jim Crow

Now I consider myself an amateur historian. Although my preference is ancient African history, I consider myself astute in the history of America and the West Indies. I may have a limited knowledge of music videos, movies and entertainers, but I do feel I have a descent and particular grasp regarding information pertaining to the early colonies, presidential history, and slavery (inclusive of reconstruction and Jim Crow).

I have been thinking about what I am about to assert for a while. I know that it is rare when all of the aforementioned areas decussate such to pronounce a concise conclusion. Especially as it relates to the actual start of Jim Crow policies in the South (up south too). And being that this is the single month that is allocated to black folks, and the single month when black folks see to care about knowledge about themselves, I want to take this time to propose a new postulate on history relating to folks like me. Nope, I aint going to state no fact I can copy and past from wikapedia or some book about some person. That to me aint history.

Historians tend to define Jim Crow and/or the period of Jim Crow as a systematic practice of discriminating against and segregating Black people in the America from the end of Reconstruction to the mid-20th century. More specifically, they tend to focus on the South when it was nationwide.

Most or many historians like to start the period in the late 1890’s and like to over dramatize the importance of one man purchasing a single train ticket. In 1892, Homer Plessy bought a first-class railroad ticket. They say by doing such he broke the law since we were only allowed to ride only third class in his home state of Louisiana. You know, ye old separate railway accommodations for the races. To make a long story short, the Supreme Court heard, and rejected, Plessy’s challenge. This validated segregation in public facilities and engendered an atmosphere that promulgated even more restrictive Jim Crow laws.

I can get with this, but it is not where I start Jim Crow, I start it with the 19th President of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes. Like George W. Bush, he was involved in a very contested election. The popular vote was 4,300,000 for Samuel J. Tilden to 4,036,000 for Hayes. Hayes's won via the electoral votes in Louisiana, South Carolina, and Florida. So close was the election that some historians suggest that it created a constitutional crisis and almost began another civil war.

Upon this, although Hayes pledged protection of the rights of blacks in the South, he also said he wanted to restore the south to the local governments of the region. So to do this, he did the main act in my eyes to start the distasteful legacy of Jim Crow; he withdrew all of the Union Troops in the South. He really wanted to provide some motivation for rich white businessmen in the South to join the Republican Party.

This single act ended the period of Reconstruction and abrogated the only protection that would preserve the rights of freed African-Americans. Historians have also suggested that Hayes made a deal to remove the Union troops to gather the votes from the electoral college (from South Carolina and Louisiana).

So In honor of Black history month, I just wanted to assert the aforementioned proposition: that it was not Plessy’s case in the Supreme Court that started the turmoil and savagery that many of our ancestors who were raised in the south experienced, but rather the act of removing the Union Troops as implemented by President Hayes, that started the “strange Career of Jim Crow” as C. Vann Woodward put it in his 1955 tractate with the same title.

Now, like I said, I have no formal training in History, but I can think. And as I said, history involves connecting the dots and is more than remembering some absurd fact like who made the firs traffic light. So please do le me know what you think, and remind your kids, the next time they mention Jones, I mean President Hayes name in class, tell them to say they know who he is, that he is the father of Jim Crow. Now back to our regular scheduled programming (what ever is on my mind and my granny's funeral).

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Return to sender

I know in my heart that I worry about the sons and daughters and husbands and wives of those engaged in military combat. And I sincerely will never wish for such an experience for my son or daughter for I believe it is like Michelle Obama said, that they are the only ones really making a sacrifice for our country. I just wish that the government and military appreciated and understood such.

My work in prisons and with the homeless shows me too much. That for example, I get tiered and hurt at the same time that at least a third that I have come across were veterans of Dessert Storm and of recent wars. In fact it turns my stomach. But I try not to show it working with them. I wished that, and believed that my government is me, and that it would make all the considerations possible to make the return of these individuals admirable. Unfortunately, it appears, as under the surface this is not the case.

I have just come to find out that the Army Surgeon General Eric B. Schoomaker doesn’t have firm control of his administration. A few weeks ago, NPR ran a story reporting on a memo that advocated that the Army had told the Veterans Affairs Department not to assist soldiers with completing paper work that would challenge their disability ratings. Such paperwork can decide if a veteran will receive annual disability payments and health care after they're discharged from active duty.

Initially Schoomaker denied the allegations but latter recanted saying that at the time he did not have nor saw the memorandum. It just amazes me how the top dog of all Army medical affairs had no knowledge of the aforementioned. Either he is inept or ha a bum staff or worse, doesn’t read the material that comes cross his desk.

The memo was Dated March 31 and concerned the meeting held the day prior on March 30 at Fort Drum Army base in upstate New York. Last year around this time, Lt. Gen. Kevin C. Kiley, Army Surgeon General and Commanding General of Army Medical Command, Lt. Gen. Kevin C. Kiley, was forced to resign over similar concerns regarding providing services to veterans.

Some have suggested that the issue is completely economic, pointing to he notion that the more the Army has to shell out for veteran disability, the less money they have in their budget for other activities - humbug. In fact the current situation in trying to reduce benefits for Veterans started back when Caspar Weinberger served as Secretary of Defense. A March 25, 1985, memo from the DoD office of general counsel, provided the Defense health officials the legal ground to "restrain military disability ratings without a change in law."

Now I know that with the multiple battlefronts we have opened around the globe, that it is hard to deal with the number of soldiers wounded in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition, as a health professional, I know that the people under the big brass are competent, and only have in their heart to provide the best service possible for them and are working assiduously to do such. I just think it is ridiculous that the administration cannot meet the level of their zeal at servicing. Not having enough wheel chairs for example is not their fault, but that of those in command, for they should also know that such in itself for example is a violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act.

I know my voice is limited, but I would like to say for the record, that treating anyone who serves in our military like an envelope without a stamp is foul. As if they (the DOD) just use up folks, and return them to sender as if their address is unknown. I figure if we have the resources to fight several wars, the we should, up front, have the resources avaliable to take care of veterans when they return, without question. Moreover, the resources in leadership to make sure this happens.

If this could be implemented, the we wouldnt have folks coming back not getting the help they require; folks like Louis Bressler, Kenneth Eastridge, and Bruce Bastien, who are charged with the murder of a fellow soldier, Army Spc. Kevin Shields - who had served two tours of duty in Iraq. Bressler, the trigger man, was reported to have been discharged for medical reasons with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. But that's another story. All i am saying is that it don't (im country) make no sense to live in a country where inmates get better medical treatment than our service personnel. This is America, no matter what your status is, we should get the best medical care, especially veterans.


Thursday, February 07, 2008

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

y yawl hang up on me jones

Yo, after the post I wrote on Mike Savage, I made a pledge to myself to tackle injustice where it rose. No, I aint the super friends but I made such a commitment to myself. Being that I live in Atlanta, I was provided such an opportunity today. We got a radio station in the ATL and such an opportunity came to my attention. So me, being the proactive, albeit I have no bumps, person as I am, I went for it and called in.


“Yea, I want to speak to Webbie.”

“OK, what would u like to say.”

“Well I wanted to ask him why was he such a fuckboy.”

“Excuse me?”

“Well, I wanted to say he was a fuckboy.”

“We don’t take calls from hatters.”

“I aint hating Jones, I jus wanna know why he don’t he talk about academic performance, staying out of jail and being a man.”

“Well, we don’t take them type of calls.”

“What type of calls, aint yawl representing the community? I’m the community?”


“Why you hang up on me Jones?”

I did not get on the air, but I suspect that personal acumen tells me why, because I was not trying to get on the air and suck his dick by saying I liked his music. True, I did, but I wanted Jones to hear what a BT nigga had to say about his message. I figured he would take it from me. After all, if he were in Memphis, he’d probably be looking up at idolizing me as a ruthless savagebeastmonsta. He would have likely been one of the 800 folks jumping to Jones here finger snap. But they wouldn’t le me on the air.

And sad thing is my folk work for that same radio station, and he a DJ and bonafied Trill (BT). I guess its cool to position oneself as caring about our community but when folk like me call up, it is an affront to their cosmetic dignity for holding fools and idiots to a higher level of respect and personal responsibility. Like I’m posed to be scared of his self proclaimed thugin and being trill.

So all I am saying is that, they should have let me talk to Jones. I can tell that he smart and a hard worker, and that he probably would have listened to me but they got telephone screeners. So to Hot XXX.X, yawl need to represent folks like me, cause if he trill, he can take critisism, and folk here would have told Jones where he could find me.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

What dressing u want

2 points of order before I post this. 1] No super tuesday stuff (nor will i speak on service sector index drop-recession) and 2[ shouts out to V. Anthony Rivers and his Black History month post. chk it out.

Man, your folk here has lost complete respect for Lou Dobbs tonight. I used to listen to him and his drive towards dealing with illegal immigration in America. But tonight, folks got his panties pulled up his booty crack and got defensive.

I mean Janet Murguia put it down. She is the current La Raza President and CEO. I mean she made me see that Lou did not ever, really distinguish from Illegal and legal immigrants, He even tried to refute FBI and department of justice statistics showing an increase in hate crimes against immigrants, Hispanics, Latinos.

What upset me was when he made it into an attack on him, when the entire time she said Networks, all networks, not CNN alone. It was as if he was upset when she documented Dobbs paraded on television, people that belonged to white supremacy groups. I figure if they did, they did. Then he tried to say that since she could only go back to 2006, that it was not important, when he himself use info over the years (with immigration and te Iraq war) to buttress his positions.

She said Glen Beck, Pat Buchanan and others did the same. That he had used the individuals 18 times on TV and CNN 48 times for having folks own who parody hate speech. I don’t think. He tried to make it an issue of the 2007 Comprehensive Immigration Bill (S.1348). Dobbs was so caught on his high horse, that he ignored the issue. Hers was hate speech. All slim wanted to talk about was hate speech, and how he and his network put representatives of hate speech, on at primetime and that we should hold networks accountable for putting them on the air. And what made me mad, was that he considered the Southern Poverty Law Center as unreputable when I know they have documented more lynchings and hate groups than the FBI. That lost a big point from me, since I am sure he would be the least likely person to be dragged from a car that I can think of.

But that was cool, I mean I seen dogs running with he tails between their legs. But during the next segment, that bitch nigga (Lou Dobbs) had the nerve to query, is that where we have come to in politics, pandering to individuals groups as opposed to the populous? I mean, I am a member of the NRA, but I hope he don’t think we represent the America Collective. Dang, I mean he study media, he should at least know as a politrixter, you cant talk to Jews and African Americans and high school college students at the same time. I mean, what history has he studied, it has always been about white identity politics. The never cared before, and i'm still waiting to see u Dobbs or CNN or FOX, or MSNBC ask a white candidate about carrying the white vote. Mr. Dobbs, I just want to say, America is like any reasturant we go to, thank goodness they ask us, what dressing we want before they just dump anything on our salad. Dang Lou, you sounded like Billyboy from FOX.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

I can’t fight so I talk shit

This will be a first. I will attempt to present subject matter without conjecture or invective. So here goes. Talk radio is a regular and if not, daily experience for me. Although being down here in Atlanta, my preference is limited to Sports Talk 790 the zone, Neal Boortz and NPR on WABE, I do read transcripts and occasionally listen to the broadcast I can receive without registering online.

I have noticed outside of NPR, and inclusive or Sports Talk, most of these folks just be talking shit (a mile a minute to quote George Clinton) out the sides of their necks. Take said example of Syndicated Talk Radio host Michael Savage. I have read that it is heard across approximately 350 or more stations and is preceded in listeners only By Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.

After the I’m smarter than a fifth grader speech, I mean state of the union address by President George W. Bush, one of the topics covered was the Presidents proposal for 30 billion US $ in emergency AIDS relief for Africa. During the discussion, he engaged a caller.

From the transcript, the shows airdate was January 29, 2008. During his rant, Savage also stated, "See, we don't live in Africa where people settle arguments with machetes. We live in a country where we settle it with arguments. Something you apparently don't know anything about. What's the matter, cat got your tongue, my friend, Kojo?" After the call ended, Savage added:

"See, there you go. Couldn't use the machete so his mind went blank. There, that's what we got. There's multiculturalism for you. There's immigration for you. There's the new America for you. Bring them in by the millions. Bring in 10 million more from Africa. Bring them in with AIDS. Show how multicultural you are. They can't reason, but bring them in with a machete in their head. Go ahead. Bring them in with machetes in their mind.”

Michael Savage in my understanding is part of what is wrong with America. This is why other countries around the globe consider us arrogant and self-righteous. This is why we are perceived as being a bully as opposed to being humble. Mr. Savage doesn’t represent the Americans I know. His work isn’t hard, and for all I know, he may be a recovering drug addict as one of his talk radio colleagues.

I wish someone would give me a talk radio show, because I can talk shit as well as the next person, but I can also fight - meaning I would respect all callers as if they could fight as well. Too bad Kojo wasn't waitin for him a his car - but he probably has body guards.

NOTE: Wanted to thank COMMENTS FROM LEFTFIELD 4 the strong Shout out. CHK this blog when can.