Tag Archives: story of jesus

A Message For Easter

7Easter is the most important day Christian observe the world over because it is a celebration of deliverance, with Easter Week providing powerful imagery of faith. I have always been moved by this presentation of Jesus from a Catholic Eucharistic prayer: “To the poor he proclaimed the good news of salvation to prisoners, freedom, and to those in sorrow, joy.”

Holy Thursday and the Last Supper have an ominous feel because they are in preparation of Good Friday and the story of Jesus’ crucifixion. Yet two days later, the tale ends in triumph and resurrection. Whatever questions Christians may have about the meaning of that empty tomb, most of us have experienced a sense of joy when we hear the words “He is risen!” The basis of Christianity is inextricably linked to and rooted in the idea of liberation.

I have long seen the Exodus and Easter as twin narratives involving a release from oppression and the victory of freedom. These promises have left a permanent mark on the culture outside the traditions from which they sprang. Yet even in the Easter season, it’s hard not to notice that most people of faith like it has been with Christmas, have lost much of its message. What I mean is that it has been hijacked by man in the commercial sense and Christianity’s, many, do not project the true meaning of this day or present their faith in the best light.

For example, with the assassination of Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Michael Brown, Eric Gardner, and other criminal acts that mankind seems to have lost the understanding of the symbolic subordination of a rich tradition of social justice. What is more concerning is that popular Christianity often seems to denigrate rather than celebrate intellectual life or critical inquiry into injustices within our society.

What I would like to suggest, as with the civil rights movement, is that the church or at least Christians must not be disengaged from politics. In fact, the early Christian movement was born in politics. If you can recall, Jesus died in opposition of injustice for the least of Thee. Rome in Jesus’ day was the state and had the power, which they used to kill him. We see today, the state killing people at will, forgetting that commandment that says “Thou shalt not kill”.

I know there is great debate over how to understand the relationship between Jesus’ spirituality and his approach to politics, but his preaching clearly challenged the powers-that-be. He was, after all, crucified by the state. Now, if we truly claim the life of Jesus Christ and if true. We should be among the most active, most serious and most open minded advocates for justice. So if Easter is about liberation, this liberation must include intellectual freedom and the right to fair and equal justice. And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspectives…

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IMAGINE

QU601ImagineJohnLennonI can recall a song written by John Lennon, who in my opinion had a depth that few men dared to explore. He caused me to “Imagine”. When you do open your mind you can realize possibilities. A wise man once told me that faith is believing what is unseen to be true. I have always imagined that people could live in peace and the world could live as one. No pain, no sorry, no racism, and above all “study war no more”.

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace

You, you may say
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world

You, you may say
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one

And that’s my message and Thought Provoking Perspective…

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Anyone Remember Bush

3

I read an article that said Obama was the worst president in modern times, according to a Quinnipiac University Poll. This caused me to recall the Bush years! Has everyone forgotten what it was like when Bush was president! I am sure most people understand that time is our most valuable commodity; 1440 minutes each day is all we get. Unfortunately, once spent it can never be returned, which means we have less time in front of us, than we have behind us. Another way of putting it is that we are dying slowly, and I mean that literally, from a life standpoint and from the standpoint of life, which is a combination of many yesterdays.

The new century began with few highlights although the nineties were prosperous under Clinton, which was a sign of the low-lights to come. As a precursor, the decade began with a huge scam called Y2K. Remember, the world was supposed to end when all of the computers shut down – it didn’t. We witnessed the nation’s capital paralyzed with fear because of two psychopaths known as the DC Snipers. At its resolution, we received a huge shock, when it was discovered that the terrorists were two black men. It was believed, particularly by black people, crimes such as this were committed by others.

Amazingly, a stolen election in 2000 gave the nation a Texas Governor best known for putting more people to death via the prison system than anyone else in America. He and his partner in crime, you know the guy that shot his hunting partner in the face, leaving the scene, and the wounded     apologized for catching the bullet. This ushered in an era of “Gangsta Politics.”

It was on his watch that the country was attacked, although some say it was a false flag operation, on the morning of September 11, 2001. The world changed as we knew it when the unthinkable happened. The culprits were nineteen guys with razor blades who high-jacked four commercial planes crashing them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and crashing another into a Pennsylvania field killing thousands – a horrible tragedy.

It worst attack upon America since WWII, while George was reading a kiddy’s book at the time. Let me pause to offer my condolences to the families of those lives lost. But something has always puzzled me; they were able to find bones, identify rings and watches of victims but never found any of the black boxes from any of the planes.

The United States under the direction of the new regime responded to the attacks by launching a “War on Terror” invading the “Graveyard of Empires” (Afghanistan) to depose the Taliban, who had harbored al-Qaeda terrorists. Our government enacted what became known as the Patriot Act giving them the power to do anything they wanted super-ceding all or most Constitutional rights, which made George – King. Then Bush and company invaded Iraq.

He and the shooter used this event to invade two nations under the guise of lies and manufactured “BS”, like “weapons of mass-destruction.” These endless wars caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands, and countless others were wounded with nothing close to a victory in sight. They then funneled all of the money authorized for the war to a company once headed by “Shooter.” They hired mercenaries and had the leader of Iraq hung, who had nothing to do with the 911 attack. When, in fact, the villain known as Osama Bin Laden, who was like the invisible man they never tried to find, while Osama put out more videos than Tupac. They have satellites that can tell the time on your watch from space, yet they can’t find this guy.

George and company went into this war with what they called the “Coalition of the Willing”, which was a group nation’s supporting the US so small and insignificant that no one knew they were on this planet. They introduced us to torture, rendition, secret prisons, and opened a place called GTMO (Guantanamo Bay).

However, the most reprehensible act of George’s reign, aside from refusing to attend any of the NAACP conventions, was his regime’s response to Hurricane Katrina. As it was happening, he was enjoying a birthday party and did not take an interest in New Orleans or the drowning the black people dying. Not to mention, everyone on earth watched the televised images of visibly shaken and frustrated political leaders, and of residents who remained stranded on rooftops because of flood waters, without food, water, and shelter. He sent his friend “Brownie” down to help and told us what a great job Brownie did.

Deaths from thirst, exhaustion and violence days after the storm had passed, fueled more criticism, as did the dilemma of the evacuees being called “refugees” at facilities such as the Louisiana Superdome (designed to handle 800, yet 30,000 arrived) and the New Orleans Civic Center (not designed as an evacuation center, yet 25,000 arrived). Of the 60,000 people stranded in New Orleans, the Coast Guard rescued more than 33,500 people of which most were black. Some alleged that race and class contributed to delays in the government’s response.

This caused many to agree with rapper Kanye West, who veered off script at a benefit concert for the victims to harshly criticize the government’s response to the crisis, saying “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.” I am sure you will never forget the images of how America abandoned its poor people. They can get aid anywhere in the world in a heartbeat, yet did not attempt to do so for its own citizens.

I’ll fast forward to the election season of 2008. The country was in disarray as we endured a presidential primary election campaign that seems too lasted forever. Actually, it was kinda like the Mod Squad – one Black, one woman, and an OLD guy. This is very significant because the Black guy beat a formidable opponent in the wife of who many black people thought was the closest we would get to a black president – Brother Bill. Now, during the campaign in support of his wife Bill digressed a few time letting us know that he was still a white man.

I have learned that there comes a time when time itself needs a change and after the brutal reign of “King George”. White people thought Bush was so bad; they elected a black man to replace him. Under Bush, the economic situation was a mess and compared to the Great Depression. Unemployment rocketed, home foreclosures skyrocketed as everyone struggled financially, and investment money seems dry up as Wall Street was bailed out with government funds.

Then the unimaginable happened – the election of a Black man as president of these United States; something no one living or dead ever thought would happen. I cannot think of a single event more significant in world history, or at least since the resurrection of Christ, to compare it too. Ironically, the thought of a scripture comes to mind, which tells us “the first will be last, and the last will be first.”

Since Obama’s election or in spite of – there has been talk of secession and the Tea Party was born instigated by the Drugster, the Alcoholic, Caribou Barbie, and of course Fox crowd comparing Obama to Hitler. Many prayed for his death, and that of his family using Bible verses to rally their faithful (Psalm 109:8). Yet, Obama lives and save the nation from the devastation caused by George and company. Today, two terms later, they say Obama is the worst president in modern times.

Comparing Obama to Bush is as different as black and white; night and day. So, in my view the perception is based on the color of his skin! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


A Practical Thought For Our Survival

1I am of the opinion that African Americans remain a nation of people living in a nation without a nationality. There are some who will say because America has a black president – how could that be?

Well, this speaks to the institutions within the context of society that dictates the continuation of systems that exist within the country designed to protect the system for what some call the real Americans. It is because of this system, which has been in existence from the founding of America that has caused the demise of people of color.

Dr. Carter G. Woodson wrote the powerful novel “The Mis-Education of the Negro” in 1933, or thereabout, and in it he challenged his readers to become empowered by doing for themselves. He said:

“Regardless of what we are taught history shows that it does not matter who is in power… those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they did in the beginning.” This speaks volumes!

Dr. Woodson also said, “If you can control a man is thinking you never have to worry about what he thinks.” I will speak for me, no matter how messed up the world is and the minds of man; I am glad God made me! We must take responsibility for ourselves because life demands the survival of the fittest, just like in all other parts of the animal kingdom.

As a people, African Americans have waited far too long and become much too dependent on those who are in charge of this system that was not created in our best interest. Therefore, I say it is time to remove the shackles of bondage that mentally restrain many communities and the minds of our people. Malcolm X once said, “We spend too much time singing and not enough time swinging.”

Let me be clear, I did not repeat this statement to advocate violence. Rather to suggest that we have spent centuries believing, following, and listening to the messages communicated to us by those who control our destiny making us believe that there is a better place for us when we’re dead. I say we have the right to live NOW!

I want to propose an idea that could be the answer to our salvation. There are about 42 million African Americans living in America. If each African American were to contribute just one dollar each week that would add up to forty-million dollars each week. Multiply that time’s fifty-two weeks and that’s over two-trillion dollars annually. We have people who run some of the world’s largest corporations who could manage that kind of money – invest it and make more money and as such many of the problems we face would go away.

If you find a problem with that – just think about how much most give to some pimp in the pulpit each Sunday and merely get a show and nothing else in return. Hmmm!!!

Overtime we’ve won many civil rights battles, which should never have had to be fought. Yet, we still don’t have the necessities we need to survive. So I say, as tenacious beings, it is time for survival and the time is now – if for no other reason than for our children. Happy Birthday Dr. Woodson – I wish we had listened! And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…


Our Continued Existence

11

I have written thousands of articles and a few books with the intent to empower minds with the hope of enlightening the consciousness of mankind. For those who follow my words you know I firmly believe education is the single most important ingredient necessary to neutralize those forces that breed poverty and despair. It is the opposition to the system of survival that has been intent on making sure education is limited and poverty in considerable.

 It was the Englishman Francis Beacon, who is credited with being the first to record the phase “knowledge is power”. I am probably not as intelligent as he but I say “knowing what to do with that knowledge is where the power of your strength rest”.

I recently had what you might call an epiphany. I was being interviewed on a radio show for a segment called “For Women Only”. As the conversation progressed, we talked about Big Mamma, the community, the children, and African American issues. For clarity, most refer to their community as a “Hood”. What is a hood? A hood is something you “hide”. So, if “it takes a village”, we must empower the community, that have become non-existent or at least hidden, to rise from its designed despair.

After making that remark the host asked, “what happened to us and John, what can we do to make it right”. If I recall I responded with an answer, something like, it was televisions fault. While in my mind I was feeling the power of the question, which really gave me a chill thinking about the question. “What Happened?”

I will start with the first question, which is sure to be a Cosby moment for many. What happened was us? After the scam called integration, we began to believe we were accepted as equal citizens of these United States. For many African Americans, we forgot about one another partaking in the false reality of assimilation and followed white flight running from our communities. We allowed anyone to come into our community, setup shops, we stopped supporting our own businesses, and let our dollars, some say is nearly a trillion annually, go elsewhere. But the biggest problem was we STOPPED PARENTING!

The institutional aspects are systemic. The unemployment rate is double for blacks than for whites, we’ve lost more homes to foreclosure than whites and we’ve lost more wealth than whites”. To any reasonable person this is not equal! If we had listen to the great minds like Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. Dubois told us how to build our community. Marcus Garvey told us how to be self-sufficient and to take care of our own needs. Elijah Muhammad taught us how to carry ourselves with dignity and respect. Dr. King gave us faith and Brother Malcolm told us to do it by “Any Means Necessary!

With that said, I have been troubled, as I am sure many of you as well and struggled with the second question, which was what do we do. We are the most religious people on earth; we marched, prayed, and wait for Jesus to come to our rescue.  I hope you feel my passion here, as tears flow, and it hurts to say this but the problem rests with the person you look at each day in the mirror.

People we are still in slavery, mentally, slaves to our debt, and in slaved within the jails and prisons systems. Now, Ray Charles can see – through death and imprisonment we are becoming extinct! Add to that black women have forgotten and in many cases have no desire for black men as the image of her man has been destroyed. The reality is this: if there are no black men to procreate – we all die!

Maybe the answer to the second question is to be the people we were created to be and when you look in the mirror each day; ask yourself what have you done to benefit someone or the world. You have a choice to live or die, yet more important to continue the species. If not now “when”? If not “YOU”, then who! Well I’ll tell you – “us”! Why, because we are the keepers of the faith.

Therefore, we can change the world but first we must change ourselves! And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

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Young Gun Down

11The most amazing thing happened Tuesday night that marked the first time since 1899 that the House majority leader was defeated in a primary election; and badly I might add. The prevailing wisdom, at least according to the winner, Cantor was too liberal. Fact of the matter, Cantor should be ashamed of his twelve year tenure because he did nothing and was part of the worst congress in the country’s history, commonly known as “the Do Nothing Congress”.

You proclaimed himself one of the “Young Guns” of the Republican Party, which is nothing more than a code-word for the “New Jim Crow”. This guy was in line to be the next Speaker of the House when John Boehner decided he was tired of herding the opposition. The majority leader was the number two man in congress and the third most powerful republican in Washington. He was also an Arden voice against the president, yet he called himself a patriot.

His loss was devastating and a humiliating defeat. It was sweet vindication that the Republican strategy of stoking up faux-populism of just saying no and never proposing a solution to any problem has blown up spectacularly. Because in their gorgeously gerrymandered districts, their own voters felt things like shouting down the government didn’t go far enough. They said; government is the problem to which I would agree because it was Cantor and folks like that is the problem.

Moving on; the problem as I see it, if Cantor was too liberal – what do you think the guy who beat him to take his place will be like. The endpoint of this insane ideology is the election of a Tea Partiers that if like the rest are not interested in governing at all. Rather dismantling government. It is the mission of the institutional Republicans to gamble that obstructionism alone would give them power are seeing their fortunes turn, and their majority become meaningless.

They simple don’t want any government action on any issue. They want the current trend to continue to allow states rights to be the objective where individual municipalities push forward minimum wage laws because the federal government is paralyzed. Meanwhile, the gap between the rich and the poor widens every day, and Republicans have convinced many rural Americans that the problem is the tax rate on the wealthy. He also voted all of the fifty plus times to take healthcare away from American citizens.

We should be very skepticism of anything changing for the better. Cantor’s replacement will bring more of the same – nothing. But if college professor Dave Brat’s upset victory over the House majority leader indeed spells doom will certainly bring more of the same.

Here’s the irony. Cantor’s defeat had nothing to do with immigration, amnesty, or the border. It had everything to do with arrogance and the fact that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely – they realized like his cohorts simply did nothing, but leverage their positions to benefit themselves.

In an even more satisfying irony because Cantor was one of the greatest proponent of not cooperating with the administration on every piece of legislation proposed by the president. He, along with his compatriot Paul Ryan, instead has championed “broadening the tax base,” otherwise known as taxing the poor.

So overnight, he became a political dead man walking within hours of his defeat and resigned from his leadership position. So forgive me for having little joy in my heart, even if it means we get another Tea Partier in the House. For a bit, it feels as though there is some sense of justice for the left. No matter how much power you accumulate, your own monstrous sentiments can come back to bite you. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


A Created People

2These stolen people, the so-called Negro, was created to be a people without hope, submissive, and robbed mentally of his heritage to be used to for the purpose of building a nation. While all these people have ever desired since being removed from Africa was to be treated as human being and to obtain the basic human right – equality –  simply put for America to honor the promise of freedom that it claims comes with liberty. I’ll quote Dr. King who said, “We were given a blank check” and we would like to cash it – paid in full.

Let’s be very clear, people of African descent are the only immigrates to come to this country against their will – then to be forced into a life of bondage was then and is now amoral. It is also worth mentioning, for the record, that “A Negro” was created by the wretched souls who arrived in America to lay claim to land that wasn’t even theirs. When I say, created I mean there was no such culture or nationality anywhere on earth before Europeans took the captives from Africa and brought them to America. The result was creating a nation of people placed in a strange land to live without a nationality. This was done specifically through the constitution and legislative laws sanctioned by the government.

From the very beginning, the Africans resisted their captivity and bondage which was to include during the ungodly trip across the Atlantic that history calls the Mid-Passage. Once the captives arrived on land, be it in America or the Caribbean, there was rebellion. There were many movements to obtain the promise of freedom like the Abolitionist Movement and Civil Rights Movements in varying forms. Not to mention, the many-many great leaders born to affect change but killed by the wretched system of slavery and/or during the period of segregation. I won’t say they all failed, but I will say they did not succeed because equal treatment, particularly under the law, and freedom is still absent today.

Many African Americans continue to suffer from the untreated wounds of America’s forefathers and their asymptomatic behaviors. These behaviors were never unlearned and have been passed down from generation to generation. Over my relatively short lifetime, I have been referred to as Colored, Negro, Afro-American, Black, and an African American, which were all polite terms assigned to make known that people of African descent were not American citizens.

This legacy of dependency, apathy, and entrenchment of the American social order from the beginning provides clear evidence of those with a diabolical intent to bankrupt the souls of a people based on an ideology of supremacy. These stolen souls that exist today are people who bear the burden of a system that perpetrated, in the name of God, the greatest crime known to man.

The concept of African Americans being slaves, physically or mentally, is as old as the nation itself, designed to deprive a people of its culture and knowledge through sustained policies of control. To overcome these indignities we must realize that education is the single most important ingredient necessary to neutralize the forces that breed poverty and despair.

Regardless of how much we are held down, it is our responsibility to find a way to get up, even if the system is designed to protect the system. The great Bob Marley reminded us to “Stand-up – Stand-up for your rights”. And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…


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