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19 February 2015

Repost of Previous Black History Article: Is There A Need for Black History Month?

Preface:  Please note that I've re-published three of my previous articles on the much debated topic of celebrating Black History Month.  My viewpoints haven't changed, however, the acceleration of historical revisionism in school textbooks to the outright exclusion or denial of more immediate contributions and accomplishments by people of color influenced my decision to do so.  In recognition of the month, on the sidebar, I've featured historical and current tributes as well.  Enlightenment is one of the keys to enhancing the more noble aspects of humankind and diminishing {somewhat} the growing destructive and oppressive forces at hand.  Your indulgence is appreciated.

Repost of Previous Black History Article: Lest We Forget: Martin Delany

Lest We Forget: Martin Delany, An Unknown But Extraordinary 19th Century Black Man

Repost of Previous Black History Article: The Emerging Body Of African Scholarship

Black History Month: An Ongoing Catalyst For The Emerging Body Of African Diasporic Scholarship

11 February 2015

'Loretta Lynch is Condoleeza Rice With A Law Degree': The BAR

 The Bar Report's Managing Editor, Bruce Nixon wrote an interesting exposé on Loretta Lynch that deserves our attention and analysis. I must confess I was trying to ascertain if this particular nominee would be one we could trust given that she received kudos from conservatives and those invested in the status quo. In fact, I was struck by the hearings in which congressional leaders who've opposed Eric Holder since appointed by President Obama hammered her with discerning questions as to whether or not she'll continue with his policies.  I wanted to know what she believed the Attorney General's objectives and goals should be especially in the areas of police brutality, voting violations, corporate fraud, immigration, unfair practices of the criminal justice/penal systems, drug enforcement and white collar crime in general. This article has provided some insight regarding my concerns. 

Bruce Nixon, detailed how she's operated in the past on those issues that I've so noted and with the exception of  prosecuting the rogue cops responsible for the torture of Abner Louima; she's been very conservative and protective of those practices that lend to many of the injustices/deaths currently exposed.  The latter has given rise to the "Black Lives Matter" movement. The fact that she is a black woman and a first, symbolically will garner a lot of support in the black community, however, I must warn that we've been betrayed or ignored in the past and currently by those who may look like us but are very much a part of the conservative agenda. When one really ponders what these nominations mean; those who are more progressive and focus on making life fair and equitable for ALL realize that they don't get nominated or selected for these powerful positions unless they are willing to protect and uphold those institutions that camouflage inequities. It's interesting, that Mr. Nixon isn't impressed with Eric Holder's fight for fairness although moderates and conservatives view him as too pushy and militant when it comes to civil rights and liberties. Again, "many things are true at once."

I will continue to research this woman's record mainly because I don't want to garner false hopes that she will make a difference in resolving or making an earnest effort to solve those problems that the justice department must address. The Black Agenda Report as follows.

Loretta Lynch is Condoleeza Rice With A Law Degree

03 February 2015 Jan 29, 2015 - Issue 591 Cover Story: Boehner and Netanyahu Wouldn't Treat a White President Like This - Color of Law By David A. Love, JD, BC Executive Editor

The above article written in the 'Black Commentator' really struck a chord and I immediately clicked the share button. It was gratifying to see that there are some of us who aren't fearful of being labeled as 'race pimps' when there is evidence to support the racist behaviors of those who've opposed any policy changes or recommendations proposed by this administration.  I've not been pleased with some of the nominations and policies the President has compromised on in an exceptional manner, however, I bristle at the disrespect and hostile racial animus directed towards the President and the inability of the opposition to honor the OFFICE of the Presidency.

There are many who've indicated that they've never seen a member of congress shout "you lie" to any President during the State of the Union as well as other overt and very public denunciations towards him.  His numbers were impressive as the American people voted on his vision and goals for two terms. The members of Congress, many political pundits, politicians across the nation and average citizens have been so blinded by their prejudice and incredulity that a man of color could occupy the highest office in the nation; that they've relied less on 'dog whistle' issues.  Mitch and other conservatives  made it clear from the onset of this administration that they were going to do all that they could to ruin it and make sure that he wouldn't be a two term President.  Well...that didn't happen as the President reminded them during the State of the Union 2015 when they rudely responded to his statement "I have no more campaigns to run".  His retort was clever and witty..."I know because I won both of them". The next day the Republicans  whined and fretted over his rather mild retort to their usual rudeness and disrespect of him and the office.

David Love, the author of this article poignantly listed in substantiated detail with names and events as to why he believes Boehner and Netanyahu would have agreed on a back door address to Congress by the latter with the goal of publicly humiliating the President.  That is also unprecedented and as some pundits have indicated that it may have 'backfired' .  I've posted an excerpt below and would encourage this good read.    

'The decision by House Speaker John Boehner to invite Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before a joint session of Congress before the Israeli elections is both outrageous and offensive.'
'Some have even suggested that for American lawmakers to effectively do an end run around President Obama and side with a foreign head of state - and allow that leader to speak before Congress for the sole purpose of embarrassing the president and undermining his policy regarding Iran’s nuclear program - amounts to treason.  However, Boehner’s move is by no means surprising.  Nevertheless, all of this should leave you wondering if they are treating the president in such a manner because he is black.  And you need not wonder for too long.'

Boehner and Netanyahu Wouldn't Treat a White President Like This ~ David A. Love, JD, BC

01 January 2015


 Here I am again with feelings of gratitude, hopefulness, frustration, righteous anger and sadness permeating my life as we begin 2015. The latter two have become more intense given the unjust killing of people of color by rogue police without consequences for their actions. These conflicting, yet, common emotions have also dogged me for the past 3 years as we've embarked on previous New Year celebrations and I had hoped for some reprieve from the most disparaging ones.  That doesn't seem to be the case with all the tumult in America and worldwide. As one of my favorite passages in the Tale of Two Cities cites:

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way.

I've created a page for Black Lives Matter: A Movement for Justice and Reform to keep up with the freedom movements for justice and true equality and showcasing the great thinkers in the blogosphere/internet regarding politics, economics and social commentary and what we must do to maintain this momentum. A dominant Republican Congress is rather daunting given that when they were in the minority in the Senate and as of 2010 the majority in the House; there was an appalling record of do nothingness and oppositional stances towards the Obama Administration.  It's short of a miracle that he got anything done. I suspect the forecast is far dismal for the working and middle class of this country.  Environmental concerns, escalation of conflicts on a global scale and regressive policies on women's issues can be overwhelming for many of us. That adage hope springs eternal is sorely needed now.

There are sites like 'Good Black News"and others featured on this blog that I frequent to ascertain some balance.  Human beings are doing great things; technological discoveries are startling, medical breakthroughs are turning lethal diseases into chronic and less distressing maladies or actual cures. The stories of people going to extraordinary lengths to help others and promote their own growth abound.  A magnificent accompaniment to all of this is the creative nature of the Arts and for some the  participation in faith-related organizations that continue to sustain and nourish the soul for which I'm grateful.   Indeed!

16 December 2014


A Family 'breaking bread' in Celebration of Christmas
I wrote the following piece 12/2011 in response to a debate over the meaning of Christmas and how commercialized it had become with a few colleagues. The debate continues to this day about how those who are believers view the customs and the rites that have become a mainstay leading up to the designated date of Jesus' birth.  Again, I can't emphasize enough that the spirit of how he lived his life and treated others while on this earthly plane should serve as the blueprint for humanity.  For if we treat each other with grace, love,compassion and assistance; that would be a true celebration of his missionJesus didn't marginalized those seen as the outcasts of his day and I wonder how he would respond to the harsh line some "Christians" maintain towards those whom by happenstance and choices have been forsaken and lead poverty stricken and desperate lives. 

{12/20/2011 Post}
I was reading an article by Veritas Curat in the Daily Kos on The Real Meaning of Christmas.  It was lengthy and provided a wealth of information.  Some of it I didn't know (did some research) and some of it I had read from other sources and frankly forgot about over the years.

Numerous sources as well as the writer of this article addressed how some aspects of paganism became a part of the celebration with in-depth clarity.  No one knows for sure when Jesus was born but as a political move and a means of converting others to Christianity , the Romans decided to celebrate the "True Nativity" on December 25th. The latter date was actually close to the timeline when the "heathens" would glorify the birthday of the Sun (Winter Solstice). The decorated tree, holly, festivals of lights, gift giving as well as other pagan rites became a part of what we celebrate now as Christmas. The middle and upper classes were responsible for the commercialization  of the "holy-day" and it's been an ongoing struggle between the religious community and the capitalists  over the "true meaning" of the holiday.

There was a time when I questioned trimming a tree, decorating the house and buying gifts, however, I've come to realize that they aren't distractions for many of us.  The true meaning of Christmas reigns and it's manifested in outreach activities that entail providing food, lodging, clothing and a myriad of services for the"least of these" and those who have encountered unforeseen hardships. As one who leans more towards spirituality and ecumenical beliefs; I see no contradiction in celebrating centuries of love and goodwill to others with or without the 'trappings'.

With all that said; I believe that this "holy-day" represents the best of humanity and  families who draw strength and purpose from celebrating love, tolerance,goodwill and caring for others. For Christian believers, it's foremost the celebration of the birth of a baby who became to many a savior destined to redeem humankind with grace and salvation.  His name is Jesus Christ.

08 December 2014

Justice Seekers are Protesting the 'Unjust Exoneration' of Rogue Cops!

These articles are self-explanatory and don't require further elaboration by this website author!

Re-posts from Common Dreams Website By Lauren McCauley & Fania Davis {Yes Magazine} & Police Killing of Tamir Rice, Age 12 by Rev. Dan Vojir {OpEdNews}

25 November 2014


 This is a re-posting of my Thanksgiving messages of 2013.  We are, again, at the crossroads of human suffering with a lot of recent trauma related to the killings of unarmed black youth, pathological hatred,  justice denied, overall escalation of human misery, global wars, persecution, genocide and the unremitting and daunting effects of poverty. The latter is just to name a few.  In the midst of all this...we continue to  publicly celebrate the rite of Thanksgiving.  Acts of kindness still abound, many people are doing well despite the hardships expressed which is usually the case.  "Many things are true at once" , however, we must not forget or fail to continue to advocate and diligently work for changes that enhance humanity and lend to making subsequent Thanksgivings more meaningful.
"Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received.  Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse." ~ Henry Van Dyke ~

'Together We Give Thanks' ~ Kathrerine Roundtree
It's that time of the year again and I find myself still trying to reconcile the concepts of being thankful or grateful for what we have and frankly what we hope that we'll keep and certainly relieved that things aren't as bad as they are for much of humanity. "Fearing to lose what you have is not the same as appreciation" ~ Terry Guillemets ~
I've written several posts on this holiday from different perspectives including that of some Native Americans.{ See link 'National Day of Mourning.'} There are the exasperated  sighs  from  folks who find some form of gratitude or thankfulness in the most dire circumstances when they encounter people like me. Their perceptions are that we are the ones hardwired to focus more on the maladies of humankind instead of being thankful for those blessings that others share or for those who are doing relatively well despite their problems.  The consideration of societal and individual limitations coupled with solution building can enhance one's ability to be truly grateful in the face of dreaded happenstances.  As a collective we should give thanks.  I do believe that.
There is, however, a passage from one of Dr. King's sermons that reinforces my perception that we should always shine a light on and work towards the resolution of the suffering and injustice that much of humanity endures on a daily basis. The celebrated day of Thanksgiving is no exception.  The passage reads: "The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me? But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?"

With that said; I  enjoy reading articles and collecting quotes on thankfulness and gratitude. Many of them made a distinction between being thankful and having gratitude.

"Being thankful is to acknowledge the contributions of others. While, thankfulness represents an understanding of such contributions, it does not necessarily represent a deep, heartfelt embrace of the contributions."
"Having gratitude is to really feel and embrace the contributions of others and the power of the universe in your life.  Gratitude moves the intellectual acknowledgement of being thankful to a deep feeling representing the intersection of intellect and soul."  ~ Wecare ~

This policy for the uninsured under constant fire!

Gratitude is a real, palpable feeling, like pleasure or pain, and thankfulness is the most natural response to it. Two distinctly different things, joined at the hip." ~ Alan Roettinger ~