21 February 2004

Black History Question:
Police killed 67 Blacks and wounded another 186 in apartheid South Africa of 1960. What was the name of the town that is now forever linked to this massacre?

Black History Question Answer from February 17:
In 1972 16 Blacks were elected to congress, among them were .:Andrew Young:. (Georgia) and .:Barbara Jordan:. (Texas).

20 February 2004

A Rhetorical Question Expressing My Incredulity!

Why the hell is drunk ass .:Christoper Hitchens:. still appearing on news shows as an expert on anything except for the erratic behavior of alcoholics?
One Question & A Few Concerns

Where's the hypocrisy in John Kerry being anti-war? He fought in one, honorably by the way. He's a decorated war veteran. He's probably one of the few people who've actually read the .:Pentagon Papers:. He, and all other combat veterans, understand the consequences of war are only romantic when viewed on a movie screen. If anyone has an informed perspective about war it is John Kerry, not those who never fought in one.

That being said, I should also make it clear that he wasn't my pick. I know he'll have a tough row to hoe in explaining the large amount of corporate donations to his campaign. (There is never a reasonable explanation for that.) He'll also have to answer for his unquestioning support of Smirky's civil-liberties-trampling moves after September 11, 2001, which includes the Patriot Act and the invasion of Iraq. A true leader should have made more analytical and deliberate decisions, as opposed to the emotional and myopic reactions of John Kerry.
Overheard On the Web ...

My two favorite candidates (both of them longshots at this point) received rave reviews from a woman on .:Salon:.
I love Kucinich's courage -- his willingness to, passionately, say the unpopular truth, to take the boldest, most morally uncompromising stand, to remind the party, and the community at large, of its, and their, deepest values and comittments. And, most important, his willingness, ...in his long ago fight as Mayor, that saved his city's public utility, to bear the sometimes terrible personal consequences of standing in the right, and winning, against a wrong but powerful, tide.

I love Sharpton's wit and puncture-any-foolishness-gladly intelligence. His long career of advocacy for the outsider, the unpopular, the "uncool." His insistence and persistence in putting himself forward, in making himself -- and the dispossessed he represents -- heard in the public arena. His stubborn refusal to be dissuaded by ridicule, or silenced by derision.
If only she and I ruled the world!

19 February 2004

The Ricin That Wasn't?

A couple of weeks ago Senator Frist was alleged to have been the target of a ricin attack, via undistributed mail in the mailroom. Recent .:news reports:., however, now say that the postive test results may have been due to "non-toxic byproducts of the castor bean plant — the raw material for ricin" which is sometimes used to make paper.

I suspect there was some GOP jubiliation over a botched attack against one of their own, because the very real anthrax attacks against Democrats three years ago was never explained, and the culprit was never caught. They didn't want to be left out, so they rushed to call it a terrorist attack before all proper testing of the substance was completed.

18 February 2004

No, Thanks. I'll Have the Chicken!

Since Mad Cow disease has finally made its way to these shores, I'm thankful for having developed a preference for chicken (boneless & skinless only) and turkey years ago. Though many voracious beef-eaters think the scare is over, it certainly is not! Reuters reports that the House Government Reform Committee is .:urging:. The Agricultural Department to test all adult cattle.

Few people realize that Mad Cow is more of a man-made disease than anything else. It is spread because beef cattle are being fed .:ground up parts:. of other cattle! Cows are herbivores; it's only logical that being fed animal parts, especially that of their own species, would cause severe reactions and unimaginable consequences. But, because of the love of money commerical cattle farmers decided a little cannibalism wouldn't do any harm.

The practice has been banned in the U.S. since 1997, but a .:report from 2001:. found that nearly a quarter of 180 large companies were lackadasical in following the regulations put in place by the FDA. With a republican administration that abhors any interference with a company's profit margin, even when people's lives are at stake, the FDA doesn't have the necessary manpower to keep an eye on violators of the feed ban.

Enjoy your steak tartar . . . .
Ha ha!

No comments required.
Does He Realize What He Said?

There's a story in the .:Palm Beach Post:. about Rush "I'm a Big Fat Hillbilly-Heroin-Addicted Idiot" Limbaugh's legal quagmire. His attorney, Roy Black, said:
"If it hadn't hit the Enquirer, I don't think (the state attorney's office) would have done anything about it. But when the story hit the Enquirer, they were stuck with it and felt that they had to do something."

*ahem* So, Palm Beach authorities aren't interested in money laundering and drug abuse, unless the press reports it?
Worth Remembering

If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. —James Madison
Any News Yet?

Despite the numerous jeremiads by political pundits on the left (and the right), no one has yet to .:step forward:. and explain just what the rethuglican operatives working on Reverend Sharpton's campaign are getting for their money. Hmmm...

17 February 2004

Black History Question:
In November of what year were 16 Blacks elected to Congress? Name two of them.

Hint—One of them was the first person of African descent from the deep south to be sent to Washington since Reconstruction.

Black History Question Answer from February 13:
.:Chester Himes:. "The first of his detective stories, The Five-Cornered Square, introduced his two most famous characters, Coffin Ed Johnson and Grave Digger Jones ..."

The quote comes from the book If He Hollers Let Him Go.

What Was She Thinking?

I caught a little bit of Donald Trump's reality show, .:The Apprentice:. I usually try to see the whole thing, but some days I just don't have time. I was unlucky enough to catch even that little bit today ...the sister on the show, Omarosa, embarassed herself. Somehow, I know she doesn't even realize it.

One of Donald's lackeys described her as having a sharp edge, and he couldn't have been more kind in his description. She gives these backhanded compliments, and then tries to justify it by saying she and the recipient of the compliment have always been frank with each other. *uhhhhnnnnnnnnnnnn* Wrong answer! A real leader isn't demeaning to her underlings.

Tactlessness is just tactlessness, it is never the same as being frank. It is the same as mischaracterizing crass or obscene language as keeping it real. Come on Omarosa, get your head in the damn game, or should I say get some heavy duty sandpaper for those sharp edges of yours!

Sista' girl is going to get her ass fired if she doesn't figure it out soon.

16 February 2004

Lopsided Journalism Served to a Short-Term-Memory-Deficient Public

Try as I might, I cannot avoid news coverage of the rising opposition to Haiti's democratically-elected leader, Jean Bertrand Aristide. Each time a talking head opens their mouth, out comes inaccuracy after misleading statement after unsubstantiated claim.

When referring to the May 2000 election in Haiti, they call it controversial while, through omission, denying the controversial 2000 presidential election in the U.S. Describing the bicentennial celebration of Haiti's independence from .:foreign colonizers:., the wire services and mainstream media .:under-reported:. the number of celebrants. The press reports the opposition has declared the environment too insecure to allow elections to take place —security was nebulously mandated by the .:OAS resolution 822:. They do not report that Aristide has .:agreed:. to every reform possible to erase the real and perceived flaws of the elections of May 2000.

When Jean-Claude 'Baby Doc' Duvalier was forced out of power in 1986 a U.S. military aircraft flew him to France. That is a sure sign of who was supporting his rule. Who is supporting the opposition to Jean Bertrand? It is common knowledge that fat cat Haitians of the lighter caste are behind the insurrection on the island, but they are not alone. To find the deep-pocketed puppeteers, all one has to do is follow the money!

Some may be inclined to question the importance of Haiti's problems, considering the tumult we are currently experiencing in our own country. It is important because our government is, again, trying to affect regime change in another country, and creating conditions that are harmful to the masses of people there. It isn't enough that the next U.S. presidential election change the letter behind the president's name from "R" to "D", we must insist on real change in America and its dealings with other countries.
I Got Mine, I'll be Damned if You Get Yours

Jason Mattera, a student at Roger Williams University, is a recipient of scholarship money for minorities. He is of Puerto Rican descent and also president of the College Republicans (otherwise known as Future Thugs of America) who have launched what they describe as a .:parody:. of minority scholarships. It's a $50 reward for whites who write the best essay describing their white pride.

Jason thinks financial need should be the only requirement for scholarships, but none of the articles reported that he was willing to return the monies he received. Last I checked, most 18 year olds aren't able to earn enough to money to pay for community college, forget about a 4-year university. That allows just about all recent high school graduates to apply for financial aid, even if they qualify for some kind of scholarship.

Applications for financial aid from self-supporting students are evaluated based on how much they earn. A student living at home is not self-supporting, and what their parents make is taken into consideration.

So what's his gripe? Does he feel marginalized because he accepted a scholarship based on his bloodline ...and kept it? Why would a budding thug, errr, rethuglican want to inject government regulations into the process of scholarship selection, many of which are offered by private organizations? Aren't those people supposed to be for less government, not more?

Way to go Jason, your Puerto Rican ancestors would be proud of you taking such a cowardly stand without thinking it through! Tu sabe?!

There is a .:Gloria and Joseph Mattera:. National Scholarship Fund for Migrant Children. Surely this young rethuglican is no relation to these fine people.
Again, I Say Nothing Has Changed

Black Elk was a native of the Ogala Sioux who joined Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. In 1931 he told his .:life story:. to John Neihardt.
I was in despair, and I even thought that if the Wasichus (white people) had a better way, then maybe my people should live that way. I know now that this was foolish, but I was young and in despair. . . .

I felt dead and my people seemed lost and I thought I might never find them again. I did not see anything to help my people. I could see that the Wasichus did not care for each other the way our people did before the nation's hoop was broken. They would take everything from each other if they could, and so there were some who had more of everything than they could use, while crowds of people had nothing at all and maybe were starving. They had forgotten that the earth was their mother. This could not be better than the old ways of my people.
Throughout history untold numbers of non-whites have provided exact diagnoses of .:white pathology:. Black Elk is one of them.

15 February 2004

Prove Yourself and All Will Be Right with the World

There is a common theme that runs through the inspirational movies with people of African descent as the central characters: put up with all the dehumanizing, hostile and violent behavior we can dish out, then you will have proven you are worthy of respect. Remember the Titans —the Black players on the team, and the coach, had to run the gauntlet of bigotry. Men of Honor —Carl Brashear's story. He had to eat boatloads of shit and act like he enjoyed it.

It seems to be a message some have taken to heart. It is also a message that perpetuates the mindset of powerlessness. The time must soon come when people decide that accepting the unacceptable is not necessary to prove oneself worthy of being treated with dignity.