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Does Race Matter?

I want to pay homage to those who read my words – thank you very much for your support – and if this is your first-time WELCOME. I am looking forward to the comments and your thoughts with regard to the question. Since the assassination of Trayvon Martin and the recent incident in Oklahoma’s death-row, it begs the question or at least consideration of thought – “Does race matter?”

Race is a conversation that most Caucasians struggle with, at least in an open or honest way, and most are scared to talk about race, and we aren’t any different. Now, African Americans see matters of race from a completely different perspective. It’s like; if you’ve felt the brunt of this wretched ideal of supremacy you know it and see it.

The stories of oppression, racism, segregation and even slavery are very real and most African Americans have experienced it in one form or another and know it is real. Of course slavery was not physically visited upon us today by law but the elevated mental state and the prison industrial complex ensures it continues.

You cannot view the history of America and not see that race has and has always been the driver of its policies and laws. Naturally, the obvious differences in neighborhoods, employment, schools, and the legal system – causes one to ask why. If you just look at the presidents treatment, the Trayvon Martin story, Rodney King situation, or even the OJ case; all differed tremendously along political and racial lines. There are countless examples dating back to the first day black people was dragged onto the shores of this place they called “merica”.

More to the point, there was a time in my life where I saw police trample peaceful protesters, marchers beaten in the streets, and fire hoses turned on American citizens called Negro’s for asking and in most cases begging for the basic human right to live, which was simply a human right. Then a few years prior to that, in the first half of the last half century, black men were lynched by the hundreds for entertainment. Yet, most of white America believed it to be proper and sanctioned by law these so-called moral actions.

Was this colorblindness that dictated these policies that allowed justice which is blind to permit the wretchedness of racism to exist in the hearts and minds of people? You may realize that whenever the conversation of race comes up; there is the usual quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “we want to judge people, not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” If the issue of race was that simple – the world would be a better place, but it’s not. So let’s talk about it.

Look at it this way, there was an old man who was bent over. Someone told him to stand up. The old man had been bent over so long – he said, “I thought I was!” And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

http://johntwills.com


University Student Writes Malcolm X Is Valued Hero For Today’s Times

The social and cultural impact the late civil rights leader and human rights champion Malcolm X still maintains in today’s modern society is an amazing example of his valuable existence. While the former Nation of Islam minister’s criminal past and fiery vocal assaults against the White power structure at large often defined him, it was his later acceptance of humanity as a many-hued tapestry that broadened his global appeal.


To Serve

On this great day I want to simply share a profound message that if taken to heart – will change the world. Please listen to the video and make that change. I once heard it said that “I may not be the one to change the world but I can change the mind of the one who can”.

And that is my Thought Provoking Perspective…

http://johntwills.com


This Court!!!

 The Supreme Court is shaping up to be very significant in terms of issues involving race, at least the way I see this session. The justices are poised to decide some high-profile cases that could have long-term effects and certainly a huge impact on African and Hispanic Americans.

This is very serious because Ray Charles can see that the Roberts court is more conservative than any of its recent predecessor which surely does not bode well for minorities. Can I remind you that they do wear robes, which are more dangerous than the folks who wear the white ones.

Their decisions will have a huge impact on the president who suddenly finds himself running for reelection not only against Mitt Romney and the House Republicans, but now against the Court as well. The influence of the four conservative justices has already been witnessed in the January decision on Texas’ redistricting maps.

The big thing before them is the future of Healthcare, which is critical but there is another hot-button issue – anti-immigration laws. The top court will hear oral arguments April 25 on the Obama administration’s challenge to Arizona’s controversial law. The administration says such laws are irreconcilable with federal laws. Should the court uphold Arizona’s law, Latinos would feel the effects nationwide as other state will surely follow with more to do the same.

More serious, in my opinion, is the court’s ideological shift on affirmative action in an upcoming case that could undo the compromise reached in Grutter v. Bollinger. That 2003 ruling barred public colleges from using a point system to boost minority enrollment, but allowed race to be taken into account to achieve academic diversity. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, a key swing vote, wrote the majority opinion is not there this time and her replacement, Justice Samuel Alito, reflects the court’s extreme rightward turn.

Another indication is that Robert’s made this statement that should provide some insight to his thinking: “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race”. He wrote this regarding a 2007 decision striking down school desegregation programs in Seattle and Kentucky. If the issues of race and education or poverty were that simple!

The way this court has rendered decisions harkened back to a time I thought was long past. Maybe you can remember the Dread Scott Decision during slavery or Plessey v Ferguson which ushered in what history has recorded as “Separate but Equal”. If that does not ring a bell how about calling it as it was –Apartheid American style. I am going to go out on a limb and say the fate of Obamacare is not as dire as it appears at this moment.

I think it is possible, even likely, that the Court will uphold part if not all of the legislation because the Court is keenly aware of public opinion and hopeful still has a bit of sanity. With the public’s trust of the judicial branch tying a historic low of 63 percent, down thirteen points from just two years ago, it’s doubtful that Roberts—who has wanted to be seen as an impartial “umpire”—would choose to imperil that trust even further with a ruling that would place the Court squarely in the election-season crossfire.

Overturning Obamacare would be a political decision but this is the court that thinks – corporations are people. With that said, the other two issues – all bets are off! And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

http://johntwills.com


Living Yesterday – Today!

Let me first say to all who follow THOUGHT PROVOKING PERSPECTIVES that I am indeed honored that you read my words. I try to provided and add a prospective to reality whereby you may be empowered and maybe, just maybe, see the world through new eyes. If you knew me personally, you would know that I rarely ask for anything, maybe that is a fault, but I am a benevolent spirit and this is my way of giving.

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I WILL HOWEVER, TODAY, ASK EACH OF YOU FOR SOMETHING. PLEASE SHARE SOMETHING ABOUT THIS MURDER, ASK FOR JUSTICE, AND RAISE YOUR VOICES IN PROTEST OF THIS INJUSTICE!!!

I have lived long enough to have witnessed many vial and unspeakable things done under the auspices of RACISM. I remember the first time I saw the brutally beaten corpse of little Emmitt Till, which was done because of a way of life. I can recall crying that day and I cry today for the murder of Trayvon Martin. As I see it, these two horrible events are strangely similar and equally frightening.

It shows that we, as African Americans, are still a nation of people living in a nation without a nationality. Translated – no justice!

Of course, we don’t yet know every detail of the encounter between Martin and the monster who murdered this unarmed 17-year-old high school student. But, we know enough to conclude that this is an old familiar story with the same tenets rooted in RACISM. Emmitt’s murderer got away with it and so far so has this guy.

Now let me ask, how many guys named George are out there cruising the streets? How many guys with chips on their shoulders and itchy triggers fingers with loaded handguns? How many self-imagined guardians or more aptly put vigilantes who say the words “black male” with a sneer? You do know that was the Klan’s mantra!

Whether Zimmerman can or should be prosecuted, given Florida’s “stand your ground” law providing broad latitude to claim self-defense, is an important question. But, the more important question is: “we should stand up to repeal these deadly laws designed to give license to “Kill Black People”. This often happens because this bull’s-eye that black men wear throughout their lives, and in many cases, just caught on the wrong street at the wrong time.

Protect, teach your children, and may this child’s soul rest in peace. I have lost a child through tragedy and I know this pain. My heart and prays go out to the Martin family.

If you never took a stand for anything – now is the time. And that is my Thought Provoking Prospective…

http://johntwills.com


The Peril’s Of Justice

We as African Americans understand, as Richard Pryor famously said, when it comes to justice what we find is JUST-US! This statement could not be more profound today as it relates to some of the news stories that involve African Americans, namely the recent murder of the young child Trayvon Martin.

Frankly, this case takes me back nearly sixty-years when another young black child was murdered where the culprits did not receive due justice. I wonder if the story would be different if the victim was white and the shooter was black. I think we know the answer to that!!!

But I read a piece today written by Mr. Jonathan Capehart and like him I had the same questions that he asked in this article. First, he asked, what was Zimmerman’s relationship with the Sanford, Fla., police department? Then he asked why was Zimmerman portrayed as a volunteer neighborhood watch captain when he was not part of a registered neighborhood watch program? Further he asked, did the Sanford Police Department ever warn him about his activities in this unofficial capacity?

When you consider that Zimmerman was known to have placed, as it was reported, 46 calls to that department between Jan. 1, 2011, and the Feb. 26 shooting; did the Sanford police have specific orders on how to deal with him? Did they have a file on him? Did they have him on any kind of special watch list?

To these questions, the Police Chief said, “we don’t have the grounds to arrest him.” Yet, Zimmerman’s claim of self-defense was sufficient justification to not arrest him. My next question was why did Chief Lee accept Zimmerman’s self-defense plea on its face? Did the police run a background check on Zimmerman? Did his previous arrest, for resisting arrest without violence, raise any red flags with police? Did Lee attempt to establish probable cause? How did he go about it? Was Zimmerman tested for drugs or alcohol? If not, why not? Was Zimmerman’s gun confiscated? Was it tested? Where is that gun now?

These are all valid questions that demand answers.

Now, here are a few questions that come to mind with respect to the crime scene. What did police do with Trayvon’s body at the scene? What did police do with Trayvon’s body once taken from the scene? Why was it tested for drugs and alcohol? What did police do with Trayvon’s personal effects? Where is his cell phone? Did police try to contact Trayvon’s 16-year-old girlfriend, who was talking to him during the initial moments of the confrontation with Zimmerman and who tried several times to call him back? Hmmmm!

So as you can see there are many more questions than answers and frankly a thorough investigation would have answered these questions. Thankfully, the Department of Justice has decided to review the case to ensure that some of these questions are answered – maybe. There is such a thing as right and wrong; some things are right and some things are wrong. When you look at the aforementioned questions in this case that are unanswered – it stinks of wrong. Oh, and for sure racism!!!

There are so many more questions than answers and I pray we get them answered, and justice is served. With that said, I would suggest that you compare this to little Emmitt Till and recall the Peril’s Of Justice.

And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640

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What’s So Super About Tuesday


For starters, it is a Tuesday and this Tuesday is one with the biggest payout of the Republican presidential primaries or for one of the contenders. This time Super Tuesday had been slimmed down to half its 2008 size but still doling out one-third of the delegates needed to win and frankly at the end of the day; it probably won’t settle much.

It might nudge the two long shots – Newt Gingrich out of the race or Ron Paul into a position of more credibility. Nor, in my opinion, will it give either Romney or Santorum a decisive advantage, because delegates are handed out by share. A close second in a state can pay off almost as well as first place. Romney might cement the front-runner status that keeps slipping through his fingers. Santorum could prove he’s the real thing. To which I doubt either will be the case.
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Delegates for grabs Tuesday: 419.
Delegates already won: 353; Romney, 203; Santorum, 92; Gingrich, 33; Paul, 25.
Delegates needed for the nomination: 1,144.
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Let’s consider the expense involved. The heavy advertising in all 10 states would cost a candidate about $5 million. That’s a lot even for Romney’s well-financed campaign, prompting him to make a plea for donations amid his Michigan victory speech. Gingrich is getting another multimillion-dollar boost from Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who donated the money to a special type of political action committee, known as a super PAC that will run advertising in key states.

But my friends Ohio is the race to watch. Why I don’t know – maybe it’s like the Mississippi of the north. Nonetheless political junkies get all misty-eyed over this Rust Belt swing state, and not just because of the 63 delegates. No Republican nominee has ever become president without winning the state. That makes it a powerful proving ground for the men trying to show they can take on President Barack Obama.

It could well be Newt’s last stand or Gingrich rises again. Either way – what a frightening thought! But for sure you can call the Sand Man with his hook Newt loses in Georgia, the state he represented in the U.S. House for two decades. Lest not forget, his is not on the ballad in Virginia! Newt hopes to win decisively here and pick up enough other delegates to relaunch his up-and-down campaign, which has been mostly down-and-out. There is a bright side or dark cloud – Herman Cain, a fellow Georgian, endorsed him. Oh, and he’s got a new pitch, claiming he can bring the cost of gas down to $2.50 per gallon.

Then there’s grandpa, Ron Paul, the anti-war, libertarian-leaning, unorthodox Republican who hasn’t won a single state. Super Tuesday could change that meaning he might win ONE! Let’s say – Alaska! Even if he doesn’t score a win, he’s likely to pick up delegates to help power him into this summer’s Republican convention with enough clout to promote his ideas.

There’s little drama in the Northeastern races. Romney’s virtually unopposed in his power base of Massachusetts, where he was governor just over five years ago. Delegates: 38. He’s expected to win neighboring Vermont handily, too, although Santorum seeks to peel away some of its 17 delegates.

Next up:

Caucuses and primaries in Kansas, Wyoming, Alabama, Hawaii, Mississippi, Missouri, Illinois and Louisiana fill out the busiest month of the nomination season. Three territories; American Samoa, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico also get their say in March.

Well folks, as exciting as that may sound it seem to me I’d rather be clipping my toenails or picking nose hairs because that will be much more fun. We’ve all been taught to say, God Bless America; with this cast of characters I think that’s an understatement and we should say God Help Us.

And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

“Just a Season”
Visit: http://johntwills.com/
Legacy – A New Season is Coming!
Listen to the author’s interview!

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