The Shero Of The Civil Rights Movement

12Fannie Lou Hamer was  a civil rights activist of the movement whose passionate depiction of her own suffering in a racist society helped focus attention on the plight of African Americans throughout the South. While working with the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1964; Hamer helped organize the 1964 Freedom Summer African American voter registration drive in her native Mississippi. Civil rights activist.

Born Fannie Lou Townsend on October 6, 1917 in Montgomery County, Mississippi the daughter of sharecroppers, Hamer began working the fields at an early age. Her family struggled financially, and often went hungry. In the summer of 1962, she made a life-changing decision to attend a protest meeting. She met civil rights activists there who were there to encourage African Americans to register to vote.

Hamer became active in helping with the voter registration efforts, which few in Mississippi were brave enough to do. Hamer dedicated her life to the fight for civil rights, working for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) after going involved with the struggle. This organization was comprised mostly of African American students who engaged in acts of civil disobedience to fight racial segregation and injustice in the South. These acts often were met with violent responses by angry whites.

At the Democratic National Convention later that year, she was part of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, an integrated group of activists who openly challenged the legality of Mississippi’s all-white, segregated delegation. For her devotion and commitment she paid a heavy price. She was beaten within an inch of her life. So brutally that it took months for her to recover but she never gave up the fight.

During the course of her activist career, Hamer was threatened, arrested, beaten, and shot at but none of these things deterred her from her work. In 1964, Hamer helped found the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, which was established in opposition to the state’s all-white delegation to that year’s Democratic convention. She brought the civil rights struggle in Mississippi to the attention of the entire nation during a televised session at the convention.

The next year, Hamer ran for Congress in Mississippi but was unsuccessful in her bid. Along with her political activism, Hamer worked to help the poor and families in need in her Mississippi community. She also set up organizations to increase business opportunities for minorities and to provide childcare and other family services.

Hamer died of cancer on March 14, 1977 from cancer. The encryption on her tombstone denotes her famous quote, “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.” I’ll ask, when will this statement impact your life, whereas you will affect change. Mrs. Hamer put her life on the line for freedom. The next time you look in the mirror, ask yourself – WOULD YOU? And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

Media Kit

Michael Dunn Guilty Of First-Degree Murder Of Jordan Davis

Thought Provoking Perspectives:

As the nation patiently awaited the verdict in the trial of Michael Dunn (pictured above) over the killing of Florida teen Jordan Davis (pictured), the verdict was handed down Wednesday after hours of deliberation. Dunn was found guilty of first-degree murder, bringing a measure of closure to the case that still has many unanswered questions.

Originally posted on News One:

Michael Dunn

UPDATED 10/1/14, 5:16 P.M.: The Rev. Al Sharpton has released the following statement on Michael Dunn’s guilty verdict:

“The conviction of Michael Dunn of first degree murder vindicates the committed work of the parents of Jordan Davis and all of us, who despite setbacks still tried to get the courts to deal with issues like this. Many say we cannot win cases in the courts and must resort to taking things in our own hands. Verdicts like this tell us even though the road is long and rough we cannot be deterred. It also says that loud music and wild claims cannot justify the taking of innocent unarmed lives.”


As the nation patiently awaited the verdict in the trial of Michael Dunn (pictured above) over the killing of Florida teen Jordan Davis (pictured), the verdict was handed down Wednesday after hours of deliberation. Dunn was found guilty of first-degree…

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Happy Birthday Donnie Hathaway

2I am one who believes anyone can be taught how to do anything but few are naturally given the rare gift of a unique and special talent like the great Donny Hathaway. A man who was one of a kind Donny Edward Hathaway was the best natural jazz, blues, soul, R&B, and gospel vocalist and musician the world has known. Adding to that, his collaborations with Reberta Flack are legendary as the scored high on the charts. The huge hit “where is the Love” won him a Grammy Award.  

At the height of his career Hathaway was diagnosed with a mental disorder and was known to not take his prescribed medication regularly enough to properly control his symptoms. On January 13, 1979, Hathaway’s body was found outside the luxury hotel Essex House in New York City that was ruled a suicide.

Donny Hathaway worked as songwriter, session musician and producer. Working first at Chicago’s Twinight Records, he later did the arrangements for hits by The Unifics on the song”Court of Love” and “The Beginning Of My End”. He also took part in projects by The Staple Singers, Jerry Butler, Aretha Franklin, The Impressions and Curtis Mayfield. He became a “house producer” for Mayfield’s label, Curtom Records recording there as a member of The Mayfield Singers. Donny recorded his first single under his own name in 1969 on a duet with singer June Conquest called “I Thank You Baby”.

It was not until he signed with Atco Records after being spotted for the label by producer/musician King Curtis at a trade convention that his prominence became evident. He released his first groundbreaking single The Ghetto, Pt. 1″, which he co-wrote with former Howard roommate Leroy Hutson, who became a performer, writer and producer with Curtom. The track appeared the following year on his critically acclaimed debut LP, “Everything is Everything”, which he co-produced with Ric Powell while also arranging all the cuts.

Donny’s star really shined when he released his second LP titled “Donny Hathaway that consisted mostly of covers of contemporary pop, soul, and gospel songs. His third album “Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway was an album of duets with former Howard University classmate and label mate Roberta Flack that established him, especially on the pop charts. The album was both a critical and commercial success that included the Ralph MacDonald track “Where is the Love”, which proved to be not only an R&B success, but also scored Top Five on the pop Hot 100.

In my view his most influential recording is his 1972 album, “Live”, which has been termed “one of the best live albums ever recorded” by Daryl Easlea of the BBC. However, the song that cemented Donny’s legacy was “This Christmas. To this very day, it does not seem like Christmas until you hear this song. The song, released in 1970, has become a holiday staple and is often used in movies, television and advertising. “This Christmas” has been covered by numerous artists across diverse musical genres, including The Whispers, Dianna Ross, , Aretha Franklin, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Stevie Wonder, Christina Aguilera, Chicago, Harry Connick, Jr., Dru Hill, *NSYNC, Gloria Estefan, Boney James, The Cheetah Girls, Chris Brown, and Patti LaBelle.

During this month dedicated to black history, I am compelled to bring the ghosts of the greats into remembrance. Therefore, I would be remised if I did not pay homage to the musical master Donny Hathaway for his spirit lives in the souls of all of us because his music uplifted, empowered, and made us proud! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

Insane By Any Measure Of Thought


Voter Suppression Update

Thought Provoking Perspectives:

More than at anytime in history – YOU NEED TO VOTE!!!

Originally posted on News One:

Ohio State Rep. Alicia Reece joined Roland Martin and the “NewsOne Now” Straight Talk panel (Lauren Victoria Burke, Kevin Martin and Michelle Hudgins) to discuss the Supreme Court’s decision to delay early voting in Ohio.

On Monday, the high court granted an emergency plea to delay the start of early voting one day before it was supposed to begin. Polls in Ohio will now open one week later. The court’s decision may have ramifications in  North Carolina, Arkansas and Texas. Listen to Martin and the panel’s entire conversation about the most recent attempt to suppress the African American vote.

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Be sure to listen to “NewsOne Now” with Roland Martin, weekdays at 7 a.m. EST and watch at 9 a.m. EST on TV One. 

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Terror In The Homeland

Let our thoughts and prayer be with the souls and families of the victims of government sanctioned terror under cover of law. It has become common-place and accepted, the many incidents of misconduct at the hands of the “law” resulting in nothing short of murder. The government furnishes combat grade weapons to rage war on the poor and people of color with no action taken to address the terror waged upon its own people.

What is despicable is that in the blink of an eye “billions” are sent over night anywhere in the world at the mere mention of terror, created or real. Look closely at the faces below and remember that they died from the twenty first century lynching. America stop the terror at home!!! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


Michael Brown’s Parents Unmoved By Police Chief’s Apology

Thought Provoking Perspectives:

Michael Brown’s mother and father said,“An apology would be when Darren Wilson has handcuffs, processed and charged with murder”. “All of our eyes see the same thing, that it was wrong, an injustice… Why wouldn’t they come back with an indictment?”

Originally posted on News One:

Lesley McSpadden, Michael Brown, Sr.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The parents of Michael Brown told The Associated Press on Saturday they were unmoved by the apology given by the Ferguson, Missouri, police chief weeks after their unarmed 18-year-old son was killed by a police officer.


Ferguson Police Chief Apologizes To Michael Brown’s Family [VIDEO]

After Apology, Police Chief’s Attempts To Join Ferguson Protestors Backfires

Brown’s mother, Lesley McSpadden, said, “yes,” when asked if Chief Tom Jackson should be fired, and his father, Michael Brown Sr., said rather than an apology, they would rather see the officer who shot their son arrested for his Aug. 9 death.

“An apology would be when Darren Wilson has handcuffs, processed and charged with murder,” Brown Sr. said.

Wilson is white; the young man, black. The shooting sparked days of violent protests and racial unrest in the predominantly black community. Some residents and civil rights activists have said responding police…

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