Tag Archives: Carter G. Woodson

Black History Month Commentary

2Since the year of our Lord 1619, when those Africans were first dragged onto American shores of this place they called “merica”; our people have been chastised, raped, punished, beaten, robbed, and murdered. These atrocities were done while the culprits enjoyed wealth and prosperity as a result of our never ending allegiance and patriotism, often blindly to the people who kidnapped and brought us.

Even today, the system of white supremacy is still white America’s number one rule even as a black man has ascended to the White House! There are those, mostly white folk, who castigate this man because he is a uniquely qualified man of African heritage. I think, after all our suffering, just having a man who looks like us as the most powerful man in the “Free World” is an honor for all people of color. We should appreciate that which is something no one living or dead ever thought would happen.

We are a unique people, a forgiving people, a steadfast people, and a brave people unlike any known to the world. It was our labor that built this country. We are responsible for the great wealth America enjoys to this very today. When you look at America’s enormous wealth and the power derived from its tremendous control of resources, think about the sacrifices our forefathers made to make all of this possible. We have looked out for this country for hundreds of years and still doing so today, which is simply amazing.

Upon our backs, laden with the stripes of punishment for what they believed was for discipline and in spite of our loyalty, diligence and tenacity – we loved America. Even when America refused to allow us to walk in the shadows – we followed. Believing that someday we would come to be accepted and be treated like men and women. Our strength in the face of adversity is vastly understated.

Our history is one of unbelievable struggle. We’ve been brave on the battlefield despite being classified as three-fifths of a man. This was and is outstanding, and frankly beyond the call of duty considering that we have lived through slavery and under an Apartheid-like system through most of our time here. To be honest, we are still considered a race of people living in a nation without a nationality. We have raised America’s children, attended to its sick, and prepared their meals while those forefathers were occupied with the trappings of the good life.

Even during the times when they found pleasure in our women and took enjoyment in seeing our men lynched, maimed and burned. We continued to watch over America’s soul. We labored in the hot sun from can’t see to can’t see to assist in realizing the dream of wealth, good fortune, and made America a great world power. We were there when it all began, and we are still here today, protecting the system from those Black people who have the temerity to speak out against America’s past transgressions.

It was us who warned about Denmark-Vessey, told them about Gabriel Prosser’s plans, called their attention to Nat Turner, Malcolm, and yes Martin too. It was us who sounded the alarm when old John Brown came calling on Harper’s Ferry, and there are still some sounding warnings today. Black Nationalism has died and, as a result our community brings 95 percent of what it earns to other businesses while keeping little for itself in spite of the fact that other people controlled at least 90 percent of all the resources and wealth of this nation.

In today’s business environment, we sadly do not support each other and just keep doing business with the larger community; in fact any other community. Some say, as a people, we were very successful doing this after slavery ended and even as recently as 1960 but you know what happens when you began to build your own communities and do business with one another – you’re pitted against one another to destroy ourselves.

Oh, let’s not forget we pray a lot hoping that when we die you will find a place where there is a mansion waiting for you with streets paved with gold somewhere in the sky. We resisted the messages of trouble making Blacks like Washington, Delaney, Garvey, Bethune, Tubman, and Truth for fighting and dying on the battlefield for us. Yet, most have forgotten the names and take no reverence in their sacrifice due to a lack of reciprocity and equities.

Moreover, we went beyond the pale when we allowed our children to be turned over to the American educational system. With what is being taught to them, it’s likely they will continue in a mode similar to the one we have followed for the past 45 years. Remember, Mr. Lynch when he walked the banks of the James River in 1712, he prophetically said that his plan would make African’s slave for 300 years; little did he realize the truth in his prediction because his promise has come to fruition.

Lastly, with two generations of children going through this education system – must we look forward to another 50 years of despair. We can change that if we come to understand that education is the single most important ingredient necessary to neutralize those forces that breed poverty and despair. When you continue to do what you’ve always done; you will get what you always got!

Intelligence is the ability to know things and knowledge is the things you know. We have not woke up, stood up more forcefully, nor did we learned the lessons taught by our ancestors

And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…


Reparations?

th (1)As long as I can remember, there’s been talk of reparations for the atrocities black people have endured in America – the country we so dearly love. Yes, we love America and in most case’s more than we love ourselves! Black people have fought and died in every war. The fact of the matter, not one had anything to do with us or that we got any benefit from its result. In return, black soldiers came home to dreadful conditions and up to the war in Vietnam – could not eat in public places or drink from the same water fountains as other citizens.

America watched as we endured suffering created by her that has placed African America’s number one in almost every negative category from healthcare, unemployment, housing, and justice that has created turmoil in the black community. Yet, America helps everyone in need around the world and has money for wars but can’t feed the poor or needed here at home.

People of African descent made this nation prosperous. It was on the backs of black people that America became wealthy and great. This group of disenfranchised people have waited and begged for equality for four hundred years, and still they don’t have equality. For those who say we should receive reparations, like that of other cultures wronged by America – get real – the world will end first. It will never happen because no matter what our contributions are – we get the same as we always got – very little to nothing.

It is said, African Americans spend nearly a trillion dollars a year with almost all of it going to others. During segregation, a dollar circulated in the black community for nearly a year. Today, it leaves the community in fifteen minutes going to others. We will support anyone who comes into our community to set up shop but not our own people. This begs the question; if we don’t support each other – why should we expect the people who have oppressed us for so long to give us anything.

We’ve had leaders who have tried to empower us to be self-reliant and do for ourselves. Malcolm X, Elijah Muhammad, Dr. King, Carter G. Woodson, WEB Dubois, and others but the man that said this more succinctly was Marcus Garvey who offered a message that would have “raised up you might people”. But we did not listen!

Here’s a thought:

There about forty-two million African Americans in America. If each person contributed one-dollar each week to a fund for our benefit, it would amount to $42,000,000 a week. Now, multiply $42,000,000 times 52 weeks = $2,184,000,000. Then multiply that times five years; $2,184,000,000 X 5 = $10,920,000,000 plus interest will give us the resources need to buy our freedom. This is how we get out of bondage by creating an economic base. It is just this simple!

For those who might question such an idea. I would ask that you just think about how much you give to your religion each week and get nothing in return; except in most cases a pretty good brainwashing and a performance. We are told and often reminded “all we need to do is pray” and we shall overcome! Well black people, we have been praying since we were dragged onto the shores of this place the slaves called “merica” and truth be told – we have not overcome nor any closer to being equal or free than we were then! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


Hillary Clinton Addressed Ferguson

SHE HAS SPOKEN!!! Is it enough?


Body Found May Be Teleka Patrick

122Police have not yet officially identified the body pulled Sunday morning from Lake Charles near the town of Porter, according to a release from the Indiana State Police. However, Patrick’s mother told 24 Hour News 8 over the phone on Sunday afternoon that it was Patrick’s body.

After Patrick’s mother’s call, another family member called back and said they were waiting for confirmation of the body’s identity, which they had not yet received. They then sent this statement:

“Our family was informed that a body was found that may be our daughter Teleka Patrick. We are waiting for official confirmation from the Kalamazoo Sheriff’s Department and have no comment at this time. Thank you for your continued prayers-we ask that you respect our privacy at this difficult time.”

Chuck Harris, the Porter County coroner, told 24 Hour News 8 Sunday that no positive identity had been made on the body, which he confirmed was that of an African-American female. Harris said he’s not certain how long the body has been in the lake. Due to its decomposition, he said, fingerprints or dental records will have to be used to confirm an identity. He said there were not any obvious signs of trauma to the body. An autopsy is scheduled for the beginning of the week, he said, possibly on Tuesday.

A man fishing on Lake Charles noticed something suspicious floating in the water around 7:10 a.m. Sunday, the release from Indiana State Police says. He called police. Area residents said they woke Sunday morning to find a fleet of emergency vehicles around the lake. The Indiana State police SCUBA team and Porter Fire and Rescue responded to the scene and pulled the body of a female dressed in dark clothing from the water, the release said.

Harris, the coroner, said he was called to the scene at 9:21 a.m. He also said the woman was wearing dark pants and a dark top. Patrick, 30, was last seen the evening of Dec. 5, 2013 in the parking lot of Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo. Her car was found later that night off I-94 near Porter, less than a mile away from Lake Charles. Lake Charles is separated from the highway by a waist-high barbed wire fence.

Authorities searched Lake Charles in January when it was still frozen over, but that search did not reveal anything related to Patrick’s case. Last week, authorities also conducted a land search near where Patrick’s car was found. That search was also fruitless. Besides those searches, Harris said, there is nothing at this time to link the body to Patrick.

In a Sunday release, the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Department said it would not immediately have any comment.

Western Michigan University’s medical school released this statement Sunday evening:

“Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine was notified earlier today that a body matching the description of Dr. Teleka Patrick, a first year resident in our psychiatry residency program, has been found.  We are awaiting the results of an official confirmation from authorities and offer our sincerest condolences and prayers to Teleka’s family during this difficult time.”


Time After Time: Same Old Story

13798_lgAs I look back over the passage of time from the era of the 1960s to now. Things are worse and more devastating than ever in every category of life. I often wonder “what happened to the protest and the rage”. Poverty is worse, social vices have exploded, crime, police brutality, healthcare, education, and unemployment is more prevalent today. During the 60s, people took to the streets to make a statement that there is something very wrong. The cry of the day was power to the people.

Lost is the concept of “I am my brother’s keeper” or “it takes a village” and the sense of community, rather what exists today is “I and me”. A common theory for this is complacency and the belief that everything is all right in this land of milk and honey. There is no recollection of the voices real leadership as it was of that era. What we see today is corporate faces out front; bought and paid for to give us a message that says “don’t worry, just pray, and you will get your just due in the next life.

I don’t need to name names because you know who they are!!! There is always a false prophet espousing the same old message that one day “we will overcome”. They are forced upon us in every aspect of our lives. These folks come in many forms and have usually been given a position of authority over you by someone other than us. There job is like the overseer or the selected preacher from the days of slavery. You see them on television and in case you didn’t know this tool is amply named. The idiot box is designed to “tell you a vision” and that vision is usually not based, in fact, which is a view that those in control want you to believe and know.

During the 1960s, the mantra was “the revolution will not be televised”! It spoke to the ideology of that which is in your mind where you can see through the lies and have the courage to address the wrongs of society that are imposed on the people through a system of capitalism. Where are those voice like Brother Malcolm, Dr. King, the Panthers, SNCC, and others of the era which believed “I am willing to die for what is right.

I had a conversation with a conservative person recently, who claimed to have answers to all the problems of the least of thee. What was amazing, no crazy? This fool said, “All I know about ‘you people’ is what I see on television. These people should just get a job and stop having children”. Of course that was enough for me to know how deranged this fool was but what this fool does not understand, it is bigger than that. It is done by designed, as it has been from day one. There has to be a permanent underclass in order for the so-called real Americans, the rich and white, to survive or more aptly put “laws that allow the rich to continue to rape and pillage”.

No one knows what to fight for because no one knows what to say. Then there is the longstanding notion by those who remind me of an uncle of mine – whose name was Thomas, but we call him “Tom” for short. So to the Judas’ among us maybe that old country preacher I knew was right! Money will make you change your God and like Judas betray your people. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


Money and Speech are not the Same

This is a reblogged article Posted on  by Joshua Schwitzerlett

11Yesterday, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in McCutcheon v. Federal Elections Commission (McCutcheon) and decided to strike down the aggregate limits on campaign finance contributions. The reasoning, according to Justice John Roberts, who delivered the Court’s opinion along with Justices Scalia, Kennedy, and Alito, is that the right to spend money on elections is the same as the freedom to speak.

Justice Roberts is either naive or misguided and neither option is becoming of the nation’s highest legal authority.

The political landslide that has been won in the Court started with Citizens United, a case that, in the view of the nation, was horribly unpopular. This decision put the nation on a crash-course with the devastation that awaits unbridled and unchecked spending by corporations and private interests in our national discussions and elections.

In the words of the dissenting opinion in McCutcheon, delivered by Justice Breyer, along with Justices Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan, “Taken together with Citizens United…, today’s decision eviscerates our Nation’s campaign finance laws, leaving a remnant incapable of dealing with the grave problems of democratic legitimacy that those laws were intended to resolve.”

But what does a world in which money is equitable with speech look like? It looks like billionaires being able to squelch out public opinion by flooding debates and elections in a never-ending escalation of rhetorical arms. It looks like a society where the right of the lowest and poorest to speak must be earned by hard labor, as are their meager wages. That’s the world Justice Roberts has set us on track to meet.

To get us there, he is also ignoring a history of corruption that led to the need for these campaign finance laws in the first place. Roberts seems to be persuaded that we live in a world where the corruption that is likely to occur involves massive transactions to single candidates in return for political favors and that the possibility of something more pervasive and sinister is improbable.

The problem, which Dahlia Lithwick hits on the head, is that the removal of aggregate limits may now make it where billionaires and corporations are capable of making every politician beholden to them, leaving no room for the common man to speak.

All credit to Joshua a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire.


America Is No Longer For Sale: It’s Been Sold

11It used to be thought that America was for sale. Well, as a result of the Supreme Court ruling last week; what we see is that America has been sold. The “Citizens United” decision was one of the worst court decision rendered by any Supreme Court since the Dread Scott Decision. Make no mistake, when the ruling allows the richest people in America and in fact the world to spend unlimited amounts of money to fund a political candidate means – they can buy the government!

The Citizens United Supreme ruling says that corporations are viewed as people and have the right to contribute like a person. This ruling was unconscionable because it is a fact that corporations have far more resources to fund a candidate to support their interests than an individual. Oh, what they are saying is that a corporation is an individual! This was surely a huge gift for the Republicans because their souls rest with big business and their interests. Whereas, the fact is most people and individuals of the country cannot and are frozen out of the system and virtually silenced.

The recent McCutien court’s decision accomplishes exactly what the chief justice claims to abhor: it enhances the free speech rights of the wealthy and restricts the free speech rights of the many who cannot afford to donate millions. It gives clearance by law for a single person to give as much money as the want to anyone and how many candidates they want. For example, in the 2012 election cycle just about 600 people were able to give more money to candidates than 4.4 million of the rest of Americans.

This takes America back to the days of the Robber Barons of the beginning of the twentieth century when the richest people in America owned America. Laws were passed then to correct the inequities.  Accepting for the sake of argument that money is a form of free speech, the court ignored that our political representatives have only a finite amount of time and resources to respond to those of us who require their attention. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. was wrong when he characterized the purpose of campaign finance laws as “to restrict the political participation of some in order to enhance the relative influence of others.”

Roberts’ view of the laws was enacted not to enhance the influence of some but to maintain the ability of the many to have their voices heard. What he is saying here is that a few can in influence the many with the power of the money in this age of media.

I’ll just say now we know what they mean when they say, “We the people” the people are talking about is the rich, and they create the means for them to get richer! The effects of what this court is doing will be devastating!!! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


The Urban Leagues State Of Black America 2014 Report

11WASHINGTON (AP) this article was taken from Huffpost speaking to the state of African-Americans and Latinos saying they are losing economic ground when compared with whites in the areas of employment and income as the United States pulls itself out of the Great Recession, the latest State of Black America report from the National Urban League says.

The annual report, called “One Nation Underemployed: Jobs Rebuild America,” noted that the underemployment rate for African-American workers was 20.5 percent, compared with 18.4 percent for Hispanic workers and 11.8 percent for white workers. Underemployment is defined as those who are jobless or working part-time jobs but desiring full-time work.

The report also said African-Americans are twice as likely as whites to be unemployed. The unemployment rate for blacks was 12 percent in February, compared with 5.8 percent for whites.

“Many Americans are being left behind, and that includes African-Americans and Latinos who are being disproportionately left behind by the job creation that we see,” National Urban League President Marc Morial said.

Despite the dismal numbers, an analysis by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found African-Americans significantly more optimistic about their future standard of living than whites, regardless of income level, education or partisanship. Overall, 71 percent of blacks surveyed in the 2012 General Social Survey agreed that they have a good chance of improving their standard of living, outpacing the share among whites by 25 percentage points.

The survey found high optimism even among blacks who say racism is a cause for economic inequality.

Such findings illustrate “a level of optimism in the African-American community and it’s important to lift that up,” said La June Montgomery Tabron, president and CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, which released similar findings this week in separate research.

The National Urban League is pushing for several economic measures, including an increase in the minimum wage, an issue being debated in Congress. Democrats backed by President Barack Obama want to force election-year votes on gradually increasing today’s minimum to $10.10 by 2016, an effort that seems likely to fail in Congress. Republicans generally oppose the proposal, saying it would cost too many jobs.

“More must be done in post-recession America to try to help people and help communities close these gaps,” Morial said.

The National Urban League derives its numbers from an “equality index” that is based on nationally collected data from federal agencies including the Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the National Center for Education Statistics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

With full equality with whites in economics, health, education, social justice and civic engagement set at 100 percent, the National Urban League said this year’s equality index for blacks stands at 71.2 percent, a slight improvement over last year’s index of 71.0 percent. However, the economic portion of the index dropped from 56.3 percent to 55.5 percent.

The equality index for Hispanics improved to 75.8 percent, compared with 74.6 percent last year, while the Hispanic economics index declined from 60.8 percent to 60.6 percent.

The report for the first time ranked large American cities from most equal to least equal when it comes to income equality and unemployment equality.

Memphis, Tenn., ranked the most equal for Hispanics when it came to unemployment equality, because in that city the Latino unemployment rate was only 3.8 percent, compared with a 6.5 percent unemployment rate for whites. For blacks, the Augusta-Richmond County, Ga., metropolitan area was most equal, with a 13.3 percent unemployment rate for blacks and an 8.5 percent unemployment rate for whites.

When it came to income, the most equal city for blacks was Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif., where the median black household income was $44,572, while the median white household brought in $57,252. For Hispanics, Lakeland-Winter Haven, Fla., was most equal, with median Hispanic income of $39,434 and median white income of $44,014.

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Follow Jesse J. Holland on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/jessejholland

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AP-NORC Center report on the public mood:http://www.apnorc.org/projects/Pages/the-public-mood-white-malaise-but-optimism-among-blacks-hispanics.aspx

National Urban League: http://www.nul.org


What Would Jesus Say?

22

Let me offer a few thoughts concerning the current political discourse revolving around the health care bill. I wonder, how can the conservatives claim to be Christian and love God who they cannot see, but cannot love the people who they work for and can see?

The Affordable Health Act is something that all moral people of other nations provide their citizens with the ability to afford medical treatment when they are sick. We know that we are being poisoned by the food we eat, air we breathe and probably everything else we encounter in our environment that many think is by design; it allows the cartels to profit. However, we have a great president who has won the Nobel Peace Prize and have accomplished something that no administration has done since the idea of health care reform was first introduced over a hundred years ago.

I’ve watched the outrageous antics displayed during town hall meetings where the opponents of something as morally correct as helping the sick be able to afford the cost of staying alive – “act a fool”. Many of these folks are Republicans, and it’s safe to assume they call themselves compassionate conservatives or Christian Conservatives. Yet, they display such outrage and bigotry over an issue that would greatly benefit the lives so many human beings.

These same folks are all for bringing democracy to countries around the world to care about those people, but they apparently are not willing to accept it here unless it is financially beneficial to them. At a town hall event, a news report covering the issue asked someone attending the rally; what are your concerns? She said, “We want our country back”. As if the country was overthrown. The elderly woman went on to say “she wanted to restore the country back to what the founding fathers wanted in the Constitution”.

I looked at her wondering if she was aware that the Constitution was signed in 1787 by all white men excluding everybody but them. The founding fathers she referred to lived in a time when they owned human beings as chattel and women had no rights whatsoever. Nonetheless, she was correct in that the Constitution affords us the right to free speech no matter how ridiculous it might be. I suppose this is the hypocrisy of democracy.

In her rage, she also said she does not want the government in her life making medical decisions for her. Hmmm – but it is ok when it’s the insurance company’s and HMO’s. The woman claims “Obama wants the government to kill old people, socialize medicine, and take away our Medicare”. The lady who looked to be in her seventies and was wearing a t-shirt that said support the troops obviously did not understand that both entities are government systems providing medical services that are socialized. I’ll bet receives and takes advantage of Social Security.

The most disrespectful was a sign that had the president looking like Hitler, arguably the worst man to every live. This might just be the reason for the all the Nazi remarks that could very well be a codeword for N- — (n word), just like they throw around words like communist or socialist, when referring to our president. Let’s be clear, the real issue is the face of what America looks like; a black President, Department of Justice head – black, a Latin Supreme Court Justice the new faces of ultimate power that are no longer all white men.

I don’t have to go back thirty or forty years because these people are the same ones we saw last summer attending rallies held by President Obama’s campaign opponent. However, I am old enough to remember the Jim Crow era when bigotry was a way of life and segregation was the law of the land. The problem is, I think, most African Americans have forgotten what it was like to be “Colored” and in spite of wanting to forget it, I believe we are witnessing a “Columbus Experience”. By that I mean, we are discovering America or at least that segment of the “Real America” the now former Governor decried during the presidential campaign. Because, the actions of these people are eerily similar to the racism of a time I’d hoped to never see again.

If we were to witness the Second Coming of Jesus, another question would be; what would he say about you? Believing and knowing that his life was lived in service of the least of thee and also died to save us – I wonder if he would react much in the way he did with the thieves in the temple. I am certain he will not be happy! Frankly, if he does those people who pretend to love him will quickly find out that he is not going to be happy. He is not going to be happy! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

 


KKK Leader: ‘We’re A Christian Organization’

22Let me share this ridiculous article I read today in the Huffington Post. Since they don’t have a way of sharing, I want to give them their just due and re-blogging it to my audience. These clowns are saying what they’ve been saying since the first day they hide behind the sheet. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

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The leader of the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan is tired of “a few rogue Klansmen” ruining the group’s reputation, and argues that the group is a non-violent Christian organization.

“We don’t hate people because of their race, I mean, we’re a Christian organization,” Frank Ancona, the group’s Imperial Wizard, told Virginia’s NBC 12 on Thursday. “Because of the acts of a few rogue Klansmen, all Klansmen are supposed to be murderers, and wanting to lynch black people, and we’re supposed to be terrorists. That’s a complete falsehood.”

Ancona’s group has come under fire from residents of Chesterfield County, Va., about 20 miles south of Richmond, for distributing KKK recruitment fliers in people’s yards since January.

“We picked ours up out of our driveway and threw it in the trash,” Sarah Peachee told NBC 12. “We weren’t interested in even reading about it.”

Ancona defended the strategy, however, citing a boom in KKK membership across the country since 2008.

“In the last six years that I’ve been president of this organization I’ve seen the numbers probably triple,” Ancona told NBC 12. “The funny thing is the same neighborhoods where you’re saying there are people who don’t want the flier are neighborhoods where our members live, and neighborhoods where people are sympathetic to our cause and are glad to hear from us.”

Although Ancona insisted that the KKK is not a hate group, he added that “We just want to keep our race the white race.”

“We want to stay white,” Ancona said. “It’s not a hateful thing to want to maintain white supremacy.”

Similar activity by the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan was reported in Tinley Park, a suburb of Chicago, in December, after promotional fliers were found in several driveways throughout the town.

“You can sleep tonight knowing the Klan is awake!” the fliers said, according to the Chicago Tribune.


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