Tag Archives: John T. Wills

The Godfather Of Rock and Roll

It is a great joy to share with you the glorious past of the ghost of the greats whose shoulders we stand that are dear to my heart. I am proud to share this article because I love the story of the crossroads. It is a story about the great Delta Blues-man Robert Johnson. The history of music is littered with tragic figures, and none was more tragic than Robert Johnson’s story.

This amazing, ultimate star-crossed musical genius laid the early framework of rock and roll decades before that term was even imagined. Robert Leroy Johnson is among the most famous of all the Delta Blues musicians whose landmark recordings from 1936-37 display a remarkable combination of singing, guitar skills, and tremendous songwriting talent that have influenced generations of musicians. Johnson’s shadowy, poorly documented life, and violent death at age 27 have given rise to much speculation adding to his legend.

He is considered by some to be the “Grandfather of Rock-and-Roll,” his vocal phrasing, original songs, and guitar style influenced a range of musicians, including Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, The Allman Brothers Band, The Rolling Stones, The White Stripes, The Black Keys, Peter Gabriel, Neil Young, and Warren Zevon. Eric Clapton called Johnson “the most important blues musician who ever lived.

Johnson was conceived in an extramarital affair and born in Hazelhurst, Miss., in 1911. Most of his biographical details have been lost to history, but what’s known is that he learned guitar in his teens, got married, and had a girl who died in childbirth. The death led Johnson to throw himself even deeper into his music. He fled to Robinsonville, Miss., where he was influenced by early blues legends Son House and Willie Brown.

By 1933, Johnson remarried and began playing the guitar professionally. He once related the tale of selling his soul to the devil at a crossroads in exchange for his talent. Johnson tells the story in his song “Crossroads Blues.” Playing for tips up and down the Delta, Johnson gained in popularity. But as he grew in fame, he became a noted philanderer. He would also walk off in the middle of performances and not be seen or heard from for weeks at a time.

In 1936, he was put in contact with Columbia Records talent scout Ernie Oertle, who took him to San Antonio, Tex., where Johnson recorded classics including “Sweet Home Chicago,” “There’s A Hell Hound On My Trail,” and his signature “Terraplane Blues.”

Johnson began to tour nationally and became known for his unique voice and halting guitar rifts. But in 1938, as the legend goes, the devil caught up with him. While playing at a juke joint, he flirted with a woman whose husband became jealous, and the man laced Johnson’s whiskey with strychnine. Although he became violently ill, Johnson played until he collapsed. He died four days later at age 27, although conflicting stories say he survived the poisoning and died later of pneumonia.

There are at least two Mississippi gravesites that bear his name leaving questions about his passing and burial. “The reason that it’s so powerful a story is because it is the outline of the tragic side of the music that followed,” said music journalist Alan Light. “Some knew him as a musician, others by legend, but his shadow touches everyone who came out of that time and place.” I will say that Robert Johnson is truly a legend whose legacy will last forever. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

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Snakes In The House

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I am humbled by those magnificent souls who’ve accomplished and sacrificed so much to remove obstacles placed before them, which have benefited our lives. Brother Malcolm said, back int the day; if we supported each other instead everyone else. There would be no shackles upon us. Maybe this post will get the village smoking.

I speak for me and not, as Malcolm put it, “as one of those chicken peckin so-called leaders”. Who oftentimes are SELF APPOINTED or appointed by those who oppress us to be spokesmen for us. Frankly, I don’t recall voting for anyone other than President Obama. With that said, these corporate sponsored representatives need to just sit down.

LET ME BE CLEAR; I am not chastising those who represent, speak truth, or are working for the greater good – and we know who they are. But there are some that remind me of my uncle whose name is Tom – and we know who they are too.

So let me start my commentary, as they often do with something Biblical: Their “harvest is plenty, but the labor is lost”. Some of these voices have been little more than co-conspirators, or at best, actively participating in the process of crucifying us. Let me explain; when you are crucified, you are stripped of your garments (in this case reason), put in a position to suffer, hung on a cross to die a horrible death degraded and humiliated. While you remain stationed in this place where they (the system) has put you and know where you will be.

History has demonstrated that any time a black leader comes along with a message or the power to resurrect the masses, they have to be been eliminated. So why would it be in their best interest to put them-selves in a position to be destroyed? Today’s messengers say what they are told to say, by their sponsors, and stay in the comfort zone of the establishment.

Many times these “self-appointed” leaders and their crusades are a lot like cancer, I think, in that there is no real agenda to find a cure or solve the problem, because there is no MONEY in the cure. Am I stopping short of calling some sellouts – I’ll leave that for you to interrupt, but the system is designed to protect the system.

There is, and has been a lot, too much, talk and very little action. We have talked, gathered, and marched enough, in my opinion; it’s time for action leading to solutions. Over the years, we have marched with a million men, a million women, and million youth, watched or attended the State of Black America events to include any number of similar events that were suppose to solve our problems – I’m still waiting. Oh, let’s not forget “The Covenant” that all of us bought that only benefited the author.

In many cases, these folks claimed to have received a “calling” to which I suppose is similar to that of someone standing in a pulpit might allege, when they say they’ve heard the voice of God calling him or her to preach the gospel. Maybe it’s just me, but I have yet to hear that voice – I am waiting though.

I said that to say this, if this is a true calling then passion is the motivator that drives one to obtain results for reasons other than self-serving agenda’s – money. I recently reread the “Mis Education of the Negro” and I have to say it was eerily similar to the condition our people face today. Actually, it could have been published last year and not in 1933.

Dr. Woodson said, and I believe, “if you control what a man (or woman) thinks you never have to worry about what they are thinking.” So I suggest that you be careful of false prophets and to judge them by the work they do. We have been hoodwinked, bamboozled; we’ve been took, had, and obviously still mis-educated to the point of sustaining this misery. Again, I say this is MY Thought Provoking Perspective; what will you do? Do you have any suggestions that could improve the State of Black America? Are you going to do anything that might require you to give of yourself for the benefit of others? I know many Church Folk say such things on Sunday but what about the other six days and 22 hours?

It seems to me that we are on “Calvary” with the nails ready to be placed. I for one, CRY OUT to these so called leaders and you; “why have thou forsaken thee?” The noble Harriett Tubman was asked by a reporter shortly before her death, if she knew how many slaves she saved while conducting the Underground Railroad? She pointedly said, “I could have saved a lot more, if they had only known they were slaves.” And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…


BREAKING NEWS: Maya Angelou Dead At 86

Two independent sources close to Angelou confirmed her death to WXII’s Wanda Starke Wednesday morning. She was 86.

A police car, an ambulance and a hearse were seen outside Angelou’s home on Bartram Road around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. Winston-Salem police said they are at the home to investigate a death but released no other information.

The area near Angelou’s home has been blocked off to try to keep people out of the area, as well as to give respect to the family, WXII’s Talitha Vickers reported.

Angelou had been the Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University since 1982. Wake Forest officials released the following statement:

“Today members of the Wake Forest University community mourn the loss of beloved poet, author, actress, civil rights activist and professor Dr. Maya Angelou. Dr. Angelou was a national treasure whose life and teachings inspired millions around the world, including countless students, faculty, and staff at Wake Forest….Our thoughts and prayers are with Dr. Angelou’s family and friends during this difficult time.”

Angelou was born April 4, 1928, in St. Louis. At 14, she became San Francisco’s first black female cable car conductor, and in the 1960s, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. asked Angelou to serve as northern coordinator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Angelou received many accolades, including dozens of honorary degrees, the Presidential Medal of Arts in 2000 and the Lincoln Medal in 2008.

Read more: http://www.wxii12.com/news/dr-maya-angelou-dead-at-86/26204272#ixzz331Ba3qVr

R.I.P.


Praise For All Queens

th (4)To all the women and mothers on the day we are celebrating women I want to show reverence to all of the beautiful women – all Queens. History tells us, and His-story agrees, that the oldest known human remains discovered is that of a black woman, whose name was “Lucy”, found in African over 4 million years ago. It is also a fact that Africa is the cradle of civilization, which means a black woman gave birth to mankind in a place called Pangaea.

These gorgeous creatures walk with the distinction of creating and continuing the species that first walked the earth and still they carry the world on her shoulders as being God’s greatest creation. Therefore, during this month that is dedicated to the “Celebration of Women” – I LOVE YOU. This post is not meant to exclude women, who are also of distinction, from other ethnicity’s or hues because I love you too. Rather to express my profound appreciation for the wonders and wonderful Black Woman.

Some may say that today’s black woman, particularly young women, have lost their way. This is a subjective statement, which may be true to a degree but each of you ladies have the power to change that perception by guiding these young girls into womanhood. You are the nurturer because you are the woman who understands her strength and uses her power positively as a gift to mankind.  Forget the mantra, so often used, “Strong Black Woman”. We know you are but consider that it is misguided because your strength is in unity, and I will leave that there as my prospective.

We can all remember; I hope, Big Mama, who was the backbone of the family,. She is the woman that I dedicate this article, and pay homage to those like her, for being the family’s greatest gift; a proud woman with wisdom, pride, and dedication with one purpose “family”. For all of those who use the mantra “Strong Black Woman” in a misguided way. Let me suggest that you use the First Lady, Michelle Obama our crowned queen, as an example for which to follow. As she portrays for the world to see what a black woman is – proud, graceful, supporting, dignified and charming. This is your strength.

Personally, my greatest heroine was Harriet Tubman because of her bravery and courage. It has been about 100 years since her death, and I continue to be haunted by a powerful statement she made shortly before that fateful day. She was asked by a reporter if she knew how many slave she saved while conducting the Underground Railroad? She said, “I could have freed a lot more if they had only known they were slaves?” POWERFUL!!! I respect and honor her because she risked her life for the benefit of others traveling back to rescue many captive souls, 13 or more times, after she had escaped herself during a time that we cannot imagine today.

There was a commercial a long time ago that said, “You’ve come a long way baby” or look at this way “from the outhouse to the White House”. These are just a few exceptional women that I am particularly proud of because of their integrity, pride, dignity, and fortitude, but there are so many more. So for those who came before you or those who walk amongst us; like Phyllis Wheatley, May Jemison, Mya Angelou, Oprah Winfrey, Madam CJ Walker, Sojourner Truth, the Queen of Sheba, Nefertiti, Big Mama, my Mom, you, and not to be left out the millions of heroines that the world have been blessed to share – you are loved. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


“Damned Dirty Ape!” Politico Blasts Black MSNBC News Anchor Via Twitter

And you say racism is dead…


8th Annual Northwest Regional Fair Housing and Civil Rights Commission 2014

6On April 10 – 11 I had the good fortune of attending the 8th Annual Northwest Regional Fair Housing and Civil Rights Commission 2014 at the Springfield Marriott in Springfield, MA.

Featured speakers included Jacqueline A. Berrian, Chair, U.S. Equal Employment opportunity Commission, Charles Ogletree, Harvard Law School Jesse Clemenko Professor of Law, Carmen M. Ortiz, U.S. Attorney District of Massachusetts, Dick Gregory Author, Civil Rights Activist and Comedian, Ridney G. Hood, M.D. Managing Partner, Care View Medical Group and Lawrence Watson Historian and Artist, Berklee School of Music and Save Our Should production.

Jamie Williamson, Chair, MCAD introduced the speakers, John Fisher (HAP Housing), Meris Bergquist (MFHC) and the Springfield Mayor, Dominic Sarno and mentioned the advances in policy regarding a “Unifying Theme” and the need for “No new ideas but more solutions as Civil Rights went into various silos.”

The Conference included (25) workshops on an array of critical topics: Fair Housing, Civil Rights, Prison to Pipeline, Understanding Disability Discrimination, Lenders and Cultural Competence and many more.

We learned that Normal Rockwell had received death threats for his painting of Ruby Bridges titled, The Problem We Live With from Charles Walker, former Chairman MCAD and proceeded to examine some of the defining moments in the development of the Civil Rights Movement, re-discovering that the doors did not “magically swing open” to remember that Blacks could not eat anywhere or work anywhere and we must continually “expect and demand the arc of mindfulness from one another” as we work toward an even greater movement toward racial equality.

Racism is based upon dehumanization and our efforts to develop a strategic enforcement plan regarding social and racial justice is an absolute necessity as a speaker has stated we,

“Bend the Arc Toward Justice.”

Charles Ogltree spoke of Black Cultural Expression/Trans African, 1913 when the Civil Rights struggle was still in its infancy. Dick Gregory, who had run for President in 1968, shared his experiences within the movement and asked that we examine people in the entertainment industry and in sports, to see if their interest in racial justice matches our interest in them! Each panelist agreed that voter registration should be accompanied by voter education.

U.S. District Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz had created a Civil Rights Enforcement Team in criminal civil cases adding that MS gives harsher discipline/consequences to black students than white and there are disproportionate sentences, ie: 20 % larger Black male population serving longer time sin prison than white people who committed the same crime” adding that it is “disgraceful “asking us to, “Take stock of your challenges and move forward.”

For two days the attendees were deeply moved by the presenters and the workshops combined. The information, testimonials and conversations about the work that is taking place right in these times was reassuring. The renewed commitment to the work we were returning to in our communities was stirring. One could not help but believe that while the struggle continues we are indeed able to develop a unifying theme to do what must be done to reduce the unacceptable racial disparities, knowing that poverty has a racial caste to it.

I left the conference with a fresh sense of camaraderie, a reminder of my respect for all activists, an appreciation for the sense of community that remained a part of the conference from beginning to end, and, a clearer vision of the work I was returning to.

~ Kaolin, author Talking About Race: A Workbook About White People Fostering Racial Equality in Their Lives and Member of NOW National Task Force to Combat Racism and co-author with Mr. Henry White of Protocol: Welcome To Paradise, Watch Your Step to be launched in the Fall ’14.


Ushering Out Distractions!

2Have you ever been so distracted that you can’t seem to focus on what’s important to you, right here, right now? Well, I must say that lately I’ve been distracted by quite a few things: traffic – distracted by the stress it causes, commitments – being over-committed at times, work – looming deadlines, household chores, and the list goes on. But what I fail to realize is that if I can’t pull myself away from these distractions the main focus of being an author can get lost and my projects will never get completed.

So, it doesn’t matter how many times my fellow author friends try to check up on me to see what I’ve written, I won’t do anything until and unless I hold myself accountable. Yes, I said it! So, starting right here and right now, I’m ushering out distractions. It’s time to RE-ENGERGIZE and REFOCUS. I’m setting myself a schedule something that I can reasonably stick to without making excuses, making myself excited to complete a chapter or two and rewarding myself for a job well done. I know my readers will be glad I did!

Well, readers have you been distracted lately? Tell me via my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/thewritepen or via email at dlawmba@gmail.com. I’d love to hear from you!

Now here’s this month’s news:

On Tuesday, April 8, 2014, I attended a Mystery Writers of America dinner at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Washington, DC. Guest speaker, Scott Sroka, AUSA, talked about The Untouchables. It was very informative!

On Saturday, April 12, 2014, I along with the other members of the Book Divas On Tour (B. Swangin Webster and K.R. Raye) exhibited at the CityLit Festival at the Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore. We had a ball!

On Tuesday, April 15, 2014, B. Swangin Webster represented BDOT on the Forward Motion Cable TV. She was awesome!

On Friday, April 25, 2014, BDOT had a blogtalk radio interview with Urban Fiction News. We had a blast!

You can check out pictures from the Cable TV show and CityLit Festival at: http://www.thewritepen.webs.com,  https://www.facebook.com/thewritepen  or https://www.facebook.com/BookDivasOnTour

BDOT’s ON THE MOVE:

BDOT’s ready to go and would love your support by “liking” our page at  https://www.facebook.com/BookDivasOnTour

To learn more about us, please visit our individual websites: http://bswanginwebster.webs.com/, http://www.krraye.com/ and http://www.thewritepen.webs.com

We’d be happy to stop by and chat with your book clubs and discuss the writing, marketing and publishing industries. If you’re interested in hosting us, please let me now. Look below in the “Upcoming Events Section” to see if we’ll be in your area soon!

Well, that’s about it for the news. If you enjoy reading this newsletter, please share it with your friends.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Saturday, May 3, 2014 – Book Divas On Tour appearing at the MGH Clubhouse, 9244 East Hampton Dr., Ste 621, Capitol Heights, MD 20743 – 4 pm – 6 pm

We’ll be discussing our writing journey and how to navigate the marketing and publishing industries. Saturday, May 17, 2014 – Gaithersburg Book Festival, 31 South Summit Avenue, Gaithersburg, MD 20877 – 10 am – 6 pm

I’ll be exhibiting at the Gaithersburg Book Festival. This book festival is a celebration of the written word and its power to enrich the human experience. Looking forward to seeing you there! For more information, please visit http /gaithersburgbookfestival.org/

Sunday, May 18, 2014 – Book Divas On Tour appearing at “The Just Want to Get Away Retreat” at the Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa, 4165 Mears Avenue, Chesapeake Beach, MD 20732 – 1 pm – 2 pm

We’ll be appearing at this women’s retreat to discuss our writing journey and how to navigate the marketing and publishing industries.

Saturday, May 31, 2014 – Interview with Marc Medley, host of the Reading Circle: 6 am – 7 am

Join me at this early morning interview with Marc Medley. The interview will air live on http://wpsc.wpunj.edu/home/talk-shows.dot and WP88.7. Just bring your coffee with you!

UPCOMING PROJECT:

Don’t forget to sign up for the Creatures, Crimes and Creativity conference which is scheduled for October 10 – 12, 2014 at the Hunt Valley Inn in Baltimore, MD. This is a conference for fans and writers of mystery, suspense, thriller, horror, sci-fi, fantasy, and steam punk. I’ll be in charge of scheduling the authors for various panels over this 3 day event.

So, what are you waiting for? Sign up today at http://creaturescrimesandcreativity.com/. You can also follow the blog at http://creaturescrimesandcreativity13.blogspot.com/

Until next time, happy reading!

Dee


Does This Change The Game

2I will give the NBA, one of the most progressive of all the sports entities, huge prop’s but we must not lose sight of the fact that it is not for you and I. It is about money! The reason they reacted so quickly is for that very reason. The Fat Cat owners are probably wondering, if and when, some form of media will get the next one. Let’s face it; you cannot get rich in America being decent and honest! Capitalizes demands ruthlessness and cold-heartedness!

Now when we think about Donald Sterling, the longtime owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, being barred from the N.B.A. for life and may be forced to sell the team for making racist remarks. Ask yourself, if it wasn’t for the enormous lose of money – do you really think this action would have occurred. Probably not! I certainly think it was the right thing to do; let me be clear about that. But we know he is not the tip of the iceberg – there are many like people like him out there.

Let me also be clear about this – the exodus of sponsorship was the driver behind the decision. The actions of this one guy would surely have an impact on all of the other owners in the league. When sponsors leave on-mass the landscape must change. Its about the money! But what I really think, if it were not for social media this would just be another unknown and we should be glad that this technology removed the veil because it was the catalyst for the changing the landscape in this situation.

Some think this incident is the first – hardly! It happens more often than you think. It happened in Washington with George Preston Marshall owner of the Redskins. He ran the Redskins like it was the old confederate. In fact, instead of the “Hail to the Redskins” song Marshall played “Dixie” – you know the song that says “I wish I was in the land of cotton”!

Then there was Marge, the dog lover, owner of the Cincinnati Reds who is famous for calling her players “Million Dollar Niggers”! Remember “Jimmy the Greek”, “Don Imus”, and worst of all “Rush Limbaugh”! All were viewed as bigots in the sports world. Of course there are more, but you get the point. Now, let’s look at the college sports system, which in my view is the breed ground of the “Plantation” mentality. This is prevalent across the board at every level and by that I mean the slaves play and Master gets the money.

What most have lost sight of is that it is present at the same place you work. Honestly, do you really think your boss care about you? No!!! He or she smiles at you because you make money for him/her. If these people cared there would not be any unemployment. You and I may not be millionaires, but we are slaves not the less! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


Happy Birthday Dorothy Irene Height

Dorothy Irene Height, (March 24, 1912 – April 20, 2010), the Matriarch of the civil rights movement passed away early Tuesday of natural causes in a Washington hospital. Dr. Height established a national reputation as a graceful insistent voice for civil rights and women’s rights. She was regarded as the “Godmother of the Civil Rights Movement” and a tireless crusader for racial justice and gender equality spanned more than six decades.

Dr. Height was born in Richmond, Virginia. She moved with her family to Rankin, Pennsylvania near Pittsburgh early in her life where she attended racially integrated schools. She was admitted to Barnard College in 1929, but upon her arrival she was denied entrance because the school had an unwritten policy of admitting only two black students. She pursued studies instead at New York University earning a degree in 1932 and a master’s degree in educational psychology the following year.

Dr. Height served on the advisory council of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities and the National Advisory Council on Aging. Her awards included 36 honorary doctorates from colleges and universities, including Harvard and Princeton. In addition, Dr. Height was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and on her 92nd birthday, she received the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest decoration Congress can bestow.

Dr. Height was among a coalition of African American leaders who pushed civil rights to the forefront of the American political stage after World War II. She was instrumental, and a key figure, in the struggles for school desegregation, voting rights, employment opportunities and public accommodations in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Dr Height was president of the National Council of Negro Women for 40 years, relinquishing the title at the age of 95.

National Council of Negro Women is a four million member advocacy group consisting of 34 national and 250 community based organizations. It was founded in 1935 by educator Mary McLeod Bethune, who was one of Height’s mentors. Dr. Height was a civil rights activist who participated in protests in Harlem during the 1930’s. In the 1940’s, she lobbied first lady Eleanor Roosevelt on behalf of civil rights causes and in the 1950’s she prodded President Dwight D. Eisenhower to move more aggressively on school desegregation issues.

President Obama issued an official statement White House that reads as follows: Dr. Height was “a hero to so many Americans… Dr. Height devoted her life to those struggling for equality . . . witnessing every march and milestone along the way… And even in the final weeks of her life — a time when anyone else would have enjoyed their well-earned rest Dr. Height continued her fight to make our nation a more open and inclusive place for people of every race, gender, background and faith.”

As a young woman, Dr. Height made money through jobs such as ironing entertainer Eddie Cantor’s shirts and proofreading Marcus Garvey’s newspaper, the Negro World. She went nightclubbing in Harlem with composer W.C. Handy. Dr Height began her professional career as a caseworker for the New York City welfare department. She got her start as a civil rights activist through the Rev. Adam Clayton Powell Sr., pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, and from the pastor’s son, the Rev. Adam Clayton Powell Jr., who later represented Harlem in the U.S. House of Representatives.

In the 1940’s, Dr. Height came to Washington as chief of the Phyllis Wheatley YWCA branch. She joined the staff of the national YWCA board in 1944 through 1975. She remained on that staff with a variety of responsibilities, including leadership training and interracial and ecumenical education. In 1965, she organized and became the director of the YWCA’s Center for Racial Justice, and she held that position until retiring from the YWCA board in 1975.

Dr. Height became national president of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority in 1947holding that position until 1957 when she became the fourth president of the National Council of Negro Women. She was a visiting professor at the Delhi School of Social Work in India, and she directed studies around the world on issues involving human rights.

During the turmoil of the civil rights struggles in the 1960’s, Dr. Height helped orchestrate strategies with major civil rights leaders including the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Roy Wilkins, A. Philip Randolph, Whitney Young, James Farmer, Bayard Rustin and John Lewis, who later served as a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Georgia. Congressman John Lewis said when Dr. Height announced her retirement as president of the National Council of Negro Women – “At every major effort for social progressive change, Dorothy Height has been there.” She was also energetic in her efforts to overcome gender bias, and much of that work predated the women’s rights movement.

Dr. Height was the most influential woman at the top levels of civil rights leadership, but she never drew the major media attention that conferred celebrity and instant recognition on some of the other civil rights leaders of her time. In August 1963, Dr. Height was on the platform with King when he delivered his “I have a dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial. Less than a month later, at King’s request, she went to Birmingham, Ala. to minister to the families of four black girls who had died in a church bombing linked to the racial strife that had engulfed the city.

In 1995, Dr. Height was among the few women to speak at the Million Man March on the Mall, which was led by Louis Farrakhan, the chief minister of the Nation of Islam. “I am here because you are here,” she declared. Two years later, at 85, she sat at the podium all day in the whipping wind and chill rain at the Million Woman March in Philadelphia.

She would often remark, “Stop worrying about whose name gets in the paper and start doing something about rats, and day care and low wages. . . . We must try to take our task more seriously and ourselves more lightly.” She also famously said, “If the times aren’t ripe, you have to ripen the times”. It was important to dress well she said, “I came up at a time when young women wore hats, and they wore gloves. Too many people in my generation fought for the right for us to be dressed up and not put down.”

“She was a dynamic woman with a resilient spirit, who was a role model for women and men of all faiths, races and perspectives. For her, it wasn’t about the many years of her life, but what she did with them,” said former U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexis M. Herman. Dr. Height is a national treasure who lived life abundantly and for the abundance of others. She will be greatly missed, not only by those of us who knew her well, but by the countless beneficiaries of her enduring legacy.

In my novel “Just a Season”, I talked about a “Dash” that will be place on our final marker between the years of one’s birth and death that will represent the whole of a person’s life. I said that to say, this tiny little dash on Dr. Height’s marker will not adequately give enough credit for her outstanding life’s work. It should have an inscription that says – “Servant of God, Well Done.” And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

“Just a Season”
Legacy – A New Season is Coming!
http://www.facebook.com/v/2130334299266
Listen to the author’s interview!

Change Is Not Always Change

thI’ll start this “Thought Provoking Perspective” with God Bless America. Everyone knows the party of “No” wants to take over the government to use that power to turn back the hands of time. The characters that have emerged in this movement are scary enough for us to ask for help from someone greater than ourselves. Of course, some of these people are justifying their position, as was done with slavery, in the name of God, which is frightening. These are the same folks who claim they are now being discriminated against.

Back in the day, there were the George Wallace’s, Bull Connor’s, Strom Thurman’s and today we have a new breed; Glenn Beck, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh – to name a few. Their rage, from sea to shining sea, infects their followers who create conspiracies and spread false narratives regarding everything to quite neatly put the country into a place of perceived fear. This place they envision or want back was not all great, I know, can remember it; elitism, white privilege, and America’s racial codes were the foundation for segregation, cruelty, and amoral agenda’s. So I suppose the new complexion of America is freighting to those who stole the country in the first place.

Let’s face it; it had been a pretty good run, about 400 years, with little sign of any serious trouble challenging their supremacy. The system was working and humming along as they came up with new forms of government so people of their hue, particularly men, benefited. They controlled or occupied every branch of government for more than two centuries and had sole possession and leadership of its executive branch, where the symbol of power is the White House.

Today that streak has been broken when a non-white president accepted the oath of office six years ago, and they went crazy or at least the right-wing faction. Hatred and bigotry came forth immediately! First they said, the president was not born in the United States; therefore, ineligible to be president. His father was Kenyan and he was born in Hawaii, which they seemed not to realize it was part of the United States. His mother was white, and the man who looks black was brought up largely by his white grandparents, which is really the root of their problem. He’s not black; he’s not white… …is he even human? Tea baggers and many Republicans believe in their hearts that the president is the antichrist. Pure psychodrama!

They believe the devil has taken over the country and for the first time in American history, those who controlled every endeavor for so long [government, finance, politics, business, education, the arts, etc.] are devastated. The man that was voted in office has somehow stolen something from them. The fear of losing their power or being replaced by young brown and black kids is neither the America they know nor the way it is suppose to be. Facing the fact that 40 percent of the nation’s population under 18 is already non-white, with that number significantly higher in the Southwest. By 2023, that number of young non-whites will be an outright national majority.

Its “Like tectonic plates, these slow-moving but irreversible forces may generate enormous turbulence as they grind against each other … At some point, when tectonic plates build up enough tension that destructive energy gets unleashed in a major earthquake.” Actually, this is a pretty good metaphor for what happened the day a black man got elected president. The conservative movement thought the world ended.

Law and Order Theme:

These people don’t seem to remember Bush and are not thinking about how distressed the economy was when Mr. Obama took office or the two wars of which neither was implemented properly or being fought with clear goals. This is to include the housing markets that resembled a war zone; a health system crippled with costs, and an auto industry in the tank. This, one would think should be reason enough to be strong Americans and pull together to fix this mess, right? No….

They lie and distort the information. Let’s add a few more bogeymen to the mix like immigration. They have made Hispanics and others from sweltering southern destinations enemies of the American Dream. Yet, their slave labor is acceptable. As a result, they took extreme measures by passing what amounts to Arizona’s slave laws that would force its residents to carry identity papers with them at all times. Now, jurisdictions around the nation are salivating to follow suit.

You do remember Laura “N-word” Schlesinger and the great white outpouring of support following the bizarre flameout of her radio show. There was a time when even a bigot thought before calling an African American the N-word. Schlesinger used the word to a black woman on air, like twenty times in a minute. Then she implied that she did not want to be NAACP-ed, whatever that means.

The reason Stand your Ground, outrageous open carry gun laws, and the blocking of voting rights were designed; as a not so subtle attempt to ensure that no person of color reside in the White House again. I am just pointing out what appears to be a tone that is not in anyone’s best interest.

Frankly, if these self-professed patriots, who I call terrorists, should obtain all three branches of government – expect an attempt to pass a law to bring slavery back. Listen carefully to the words being used by those of the extreme. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


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