Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bulletproof Part 6, Morals vs. Politics 4: Strange Fruit

all power to the People my brothas and sistahs.

America?  I just don't understand this country!  I don't even want to claim this country because it functions mainly on injustice rather than Democracy!  And to be honest, I don't believe that there is any place in this world where Democracy truly exists and I am sad to admit that I have officially lost faith in the American "justice system".  If there was any faith to have in it at all, but because of this whole Troy Davis ordeal, I believe that I have finally come to the conclusion that the death penalty is wrong, and needs to be abolished immediately!
       Onto Troy Davis, the first thing we have to remember is that the Troy Davis case is not JUST a Black problem, but moreover, it is an American problem!  It is a problem that we have to fix in America, and it is a problem that America swore they were to prevent, but then again you realize that capital punishment was carried over from British traditions, but weren't the so called "Forefathers" of this country trying to separate itself from Britain? Back to America though, it is immoral American ideology that made it all right for the government of this country to take someone's life, even if he's innocent!  It is immoral American ideology that makes it okay for the police of this country to put power before morality, and for the politicians, and I know that I say this over and over again, do the same thing by putting politics over morality!  Now what we have to realize is that this is not a Democracy!  Democracy is not supposed to allow injustice to prevail over justice, righteousness, and human rights!
      The next thing to remember, which is the most important, is that we are the People! You know, it's funny how many dignitaries forget that the People fought for this country, it was created by the People, and to serve the People; not to change the society created by the People into this immoral political machine!  These politicians seem to be too afraid to take a stand against injustice such as discrimination, poverty, and racism for fear of not getting re-elected!  What happened to those politicians that were not afraid to stand with and touch the People?  The fancy conventions and town hall meetings are all right, nothing new, but what about coming out into the streets where the American people are so that you can better understand our trials and tribulations, our struggles?  Oh, they don't do that that's for sure!  They think they know what's right for us when in reality that really don't know because they haven't taken time out of their days from enjoying all the money they make from being an elected official,  to see what the People see, to in a sense be the People because once you get elected into that office, you are no longer among the People because you start to forget about American citizens and about humane values!  And that is so crazy that we the People can't have our say because it's so rare that they listen to us!
      Now you have to remember that this here is a Black problem for it is a legal lynching!  And not too long ago, I stumbled upon two Malcolm X quotes that work great for this situation.  The first one that made me passionately nod my head was when he said "I live in a society for who's social system is based on the castration of the Black man, for who's political system is based on the castration of the Black man, and who's economic system is based on the castration of the Black man...No matter how many bills passed, Black people in that country where I'm from [AMERICA], still our lives aren't worth two cents..."  It's so sad how true that is!  Troy Davis had the misfortune of not only being accused of killing a white man, but a white cop!  Now when you have cases in which a white cop is either killed or injured, your chances of cruel and unusual punishment heighten!   Then you also need to consider the color and ethnicity of the alleged gunman, and if his skin is the same color of the white cop, then he will most likely get at the most life in prison without parole, but if your skin happens to be Black?...You A DEAD MAN!  Most of the time, Blacks accused of killing a white cop get convicted and in most cases, executed, and in the case of Troy Davis, there is also the situation in which the police have no idea who has done it for sure, but their way of "justice" is to find the first Black person they see so that they may give that white family their "justice" as soon as possible.  Oh my goodness, I've really had to stop myself from saying bad words about the McPhail family, but they really disgusted me on how adamant they were on this man dying!  Then the one woman in the McPhail family had the nerve to cry about how much they've been through, but what the hell do they think Troy has been through?!  Troy has been close to death so many times, it's a wonder how he never went insane!  But of course, they really didn't want to believe in the evidence that the police department used illegal tactics to get people to testify against Troy!  Wouldn't you at least be curious to know if the real killer is out there somewhere?  And most importantly, how is killing someone, let alone an innocent person, going to bring about "justice"?!  So thanks to the McPhail family, whom I can't bring myself to feel sympathy for, I hate the death penalty and I want it to be abolished! I will be working toward that goal for as long as I can, and I can't wait for the day when we prove to the McPhail family that Troy is innocent and make them look real stupid!  Shoot, we'll make America look real stupid!
      Lastly, America will have to look forward to a changed Blackness!  See, I've noticed in the past few days that I have become a little bit more radical, even though I still do love Dr. King but Malcolm X is kind of starting to sound a lot more appealing than usual!  Then when I learned that they were still going to go on with the execution of Troy Davis, I decided that it was about time that I not play the part of a Black Panther, but to in a way be a Black Panther!  So just like H. Rap Brown said, "we stand on the eve of a Black revolution brothas.  Masses of our People are in the streets...The rebellion that we see are merely rehearsals for the revolution that is to come..."  I woke up this morning seeing America through a different lens and I can't help but to feel so much resentment toward a country that I formally held so dear.  I knew things like this existed, but watching it first hand is a whole different thing.  I am very proud of my Howard University classmates for marching for Troy because we All are Troy Davis!  And this means that we all need to fight this system together, and I don't have any resentment toward all white people because there were some white people that marched with us yesterday but still, Black nationalism, depending on your definition of it, doesn't seem that bad to be honest.  Sad that I lost so much faith in this country that I've changed my political and social views, shoot, I don't even know what to say about Obama!  But what I will say to the American public is this final quote that I take from Malcolm X: "...Where anytime you live in a society supposedly based upon law and it doesn't support its own laws because the color of your skin happens to be 'wrong', then I say those people happen to be justified to resort to any means necessary to bring about justice where the government can't give them justice..."

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

"Injustice Anywhere Is A Threat To Justice Everywhere!"--MLK Part Two!

I am not going to blog about this injustice in the case of Troy Davis today, but I will post the letter from President Ben Jealous so that you have the instructions on the actions to take!  Please spread the word!  Send this post to your friends and family so that they may be able to help stop this man from being unjustly executed.  Also please click on the link on the bottom of the page to sign a petition to get him a new trial!  HURRY!  HIS LIFE IS ON THE LINE!
Dear That Black Pride Readers,

We've just received terrible news: The state of Georgia has set Troy Davis's execution date for midnight on September 21st, just two weeks from today.

This is our justice system at its very worst, and we are alive to witness it. There is just too much doubt.

Even though seven out of nine witnesses have recanted their statements, a judge labeled his own ruling as "not ironclad" and the original prosecutor has voiced reservations about Davis's guilt, the state of Georgia is set to execute Troy anyway.

Time is running out, and this is truly Troy's last chance for life.

But through the frustration and the tears, there is one thing to remain focused on: We are now Troy Davis's only hope. And I know we won't let him down.

There are three steps you can take to help Troy:

1. Send a message of support to Troy as he fights for justice on what may be the final days of his life:

http://action.naacp.org/LettersOfSupport

2. Sign the name wall, if you haven't already. And if you have, send it to your friends and family. Each name means a more united front for justice:

http://action.naacp.org/Name-Wall

3. Make sure everyone knows about this injustice. Spread the word on Facebook andTwitter (using the hashtag #TooMuchDoubt) so that Troy Davis's story can be heard. We still have a chance to save his life, but only if people are willing to speak out against injustice.

Today, the state of Georgia has declared their intention to execute a man even though the majority of the people who put him on the row now say he is innocent and many implicate one of the other witnesses as the actual killer. Now that a date has been set, we cannot relent. We must redouble our efforts.
Thank you. Please act quickly and forward this message to all who believe the justice system defeats itself when it allows a man to be executed amid so much doubt.
Ben
Benjamin Todd Jealous
President and CEO
NAACP
Sign The Petition Today!


Morals vs. Politics Part 3

In Yahoo, it was reported that President Obama's approval ratings have dropped to an "all time low" at 44%.  It is reported that most people don't approve of how he's handling the economy.  They also say that Congress has even lower approval ratings where 82% of people disapprove of how they are handling the economy, which happens to be the highest disapproval rating since the poll has been around.  So what does that say about how politics is coming into play before the People themselves.  Sad how American government is messed up like that, huh?
First off, not too long ago, I heard of a theory about the reason the economy is not doing so well, and to be honest, it's not as crazy as it may sound.  So I also want you all to consider some things along with the initial hypothesis.  All right.  By all means, I am not a scientist, a political expert, or some type of scholar with a doctoral degree, I'm just in my first year in college...at Howard University!  But I don't think it would be far fetched to say that the Republicans in the government, just as well as Tea Party leaders, and just straight out racists, are purposely not letting the economy prosper because they want to make President Obama look bad.  Even before the man took office, they said that they were going to make sure he was going to be a one-term president.  So how could it be so far fetched that the United States government would do some very systematic things to prevent this man from helping this country recover from its financial crisis?
Consider this:  Back during the Civil Rights Movement, with the reign of J Edgar Hoover over the FBI, the government was involved in doing some very crazy things to break up many civil rights organizations that not only include pitting the SCLC against the NAACP, but also turning Black people against themselves.  The Black Panther Party was very radical for its day, but this party was mainly about unifying Black People so they may take charge of their own communities and fight the injustice they faced from the oppressive government.  Almost immediately after they were formed, the government began to monitor them very closely, and they eventually named them Public Enemy Number One.  Is it just me, or is it kind of funny and ironic that the government felt that the greatest threat to democracy was Black people working together?
Once the Black Panther Party was crippled, they began sending letters to many of the head leaders of the organization to pit people against each other.  For example, while Eldridge Cleaver was in Africa, they would send him letters "supposedly" from Huey P. Newton talking bad about him to create animosity.  In Chicago, when Fred Hampton was actually working with Chicago gangs to help them be more productive in society, the FBI sent letters to the gang claiming untruths to make sure they were not on Fred Hampton's side.  The government also orchestrated the murders of many of the greatest civil rights leaders, including Martin Luther King Jr, and Black Panther leaders such as Fred Hampton.  The government even planted drugs in the Black community to keep Black people from doing something positive in their communities, and to keep them off of politics and social issues which could actually make some positive change!  The planting of these drugs was what destroyed the Black Panther Party, and even Huey P. Newton, and because of these drugs Black people were more about working against each other instead of working together to fight injustice, which is just what the government wanted, especially the FBI.
With this, I sincerely believe that the government we have today, even in the absence of J Edgar Hoover, is still as conniving and systematically oppressive as it has been in the past.  And people may not believe that race is a factor in almost everything, but when it comes to being the President of one of the most racist countries in the world, race is a huge factor.  There are some people that can look past race, but politics doesn't turn a blind eye to it one bit.  Politics is very evil and is what is destroying this country, not the President!  Even though most people can agree to the fact that they really did not care for Bush or his father, but they didn't give Bush as hard of a time that they are giving President Obama!  Haven't you noticed? Though Bush was a failure, they didn't treat him the way they are treating this BLACK man!  Many White news reporters won't call him "President", so many newspapers, and critics have called him some of the degrading names that they have called us Black folk for generations!  A man even hung an object named after him from a noose in his front yard, and was too afraid to come on camera and say something about it!  No one can deny that if Obama was "fully" White, he would not be facing the issues with Congress as he is today!  So it is time, America, that we see that race plays a larger role with politics than many people think.
On a different note though, why are these politicians trying to get back at this man at the expense of the People?  Their resentment is making the People suffer, and I would know because I and you are the People!  Even though I may not be entirely favorable of the Founding Fathers, whom I do honor, but they created these positions to serve the People.  Politicians, you are elected by the People and should serve to better the People!  I don't care if the president is democrat or republican, black, white, blue or orange, you have to compromise!  You have to at least try to reason, and if you don't agree with something, don't act like a kindergardener and hold out till the government almost goes in default because you have a deep dislike for the president, LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD!  Like in Ohio, we got over 10 times the signatures needed to put SB 5 on the ballot, and that's what can happen if the People, meaning you, come together to make positive change in this country!  Morals seem to never come over politics, just like when President Hayes removed the troops from the south during the last leg of Reconstruction, which enabled the Ku Klux Klan to reign over the South and kill many Blacks that were trying to exercise their newly found rights that they were guaranteed in the 15th Amendment.  So politicians, please just take a second to think about what it morally right for the People before you decide that you are going to do everything in you power to bring one man down at their expense.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

48 Years of Celebrating the Dream (Part3)

Here is Part 3! Enjoy!
In the comments, please share why you believe this speech is so important, and where do you believe we stand today?!  THANK YOU!

48 Years of Celebrating the Dream (Part2)

Here is part 2 of the speech!

48 Years of Celebrating the Dream

Although I am disappointed in the fact that the ceremony had to be cancelled due to the weather, but I know that when they reschedule it, it will be a momentous occasion.  But one thing that I am really disappointed about is the fact that no one, meaning the television stations, are not doing much to commemorate the 48th anniversary of the March On Washington, and the "I Have A Dream" Speech, which is one of the greatest, if not the greatest speeches of all time!  Not even Nickelodeon is doing anything, which doesn't surprise me in the least.  We need to educate the youth about this man so they may continue the dream!  Actually, now that I've brought that up, the Disney Channel, or Nickelodeon channels don't do anything for Black history month!  I'm always so disappointed in that, and hope I can change that one day.  In the meantime, I have provided the video of the "I Have A Dream" speech in three parts for your convenience, appreciation and enjoyment!
Peace and Love,
Blackness

Friday, August 26, 2011

Here's to the State of Mississippi

"Here's to the state of Mississippi.  For underneath her borders the devil draws no lines.  If you drag her muddy rivers nameless bodies you will find, and the fat trees of the forest have hid a thousand crimes.  And the calendar is lying if it reads the present times! Oh, here's to the land you've torn out the heart of.  Mississippi find yourself another country to be part of!..."- Here's to the State of Mississippi by Phil Ochs.

It was only months ago when we had to confront the hanging of Frederick Jermaine Carter, and here we are facing another death, in which is so heinous that it just brings back the words of Phil Ochs, even though the song is over 40 years old; the phrase that comes to mind the most is, "the calendar is lying when it reads the present times", and that's because this is suppose to be 2011!  This is suppose to be the 21st century!  This is suppose to be over a hundred years after the many lynchings of Blacks back in the late 1800s to mid 1900s!  This is suppose to be the age where our government actually took action to protect us from hate crimes such as this!  And most importantly, this is the time where we are suppose to be over the race problem, right?  WRONG!
On June 26, which is not too long ago, two carloads of White teens drove to Jackson, Mississippi with the intent to do bodily harm, or even kill a Black person.  Actually, he said something to the effect of, "let's go fuck with some niggers."  They intentionally got off the freeway at a predominately Black side of Jackson, and the district attorney admits that the hotel in which James Craig Anderson was killed, is one of the first places you see when you get off the freeway.  Unfortunately, Mr. Anderson was at the right place at the wrong time.
James Craig Anderson was a 49-year-old homosexual Black man that lived Jackson, Mississippi with his partner James Bradfield, and 4-year-old daughter.  He worked in the Nissan plant just north of Jackson, and his family has recently admitted he was a skilled gardner, and a tenor in their church choir.
“If you met him, the first thing you were going to see was that grand piano smile,” Anderson’s sister Barbara Anderson Young also told the times.
"Here's to the people of Mississippi who say 'the folks up North, they just don't understand.'  And they tremble in the shadows at the thunder of the klan.  The sweating in their souls can't wash the blood from off their hands.  They smile and shrug their shoulders at the murder of a man!  Oh, here's to the land you've torn out the heart of, Mississippi find yourself another country to be part of..."
18 year old Derly Dedmon, along with 18 year old John Aaron Rice, and several others of Brandon, Mississippi drove to the edge of Jackson in Dedmon's green truck, while the others were in a white SUV.  And when they got off the freeway, they spotted Anderson whom was locked out of his car, which was parked in a hotel parking lot.  Then they closed in on him.  Dedmon and Rice jumped out of their vehicles and began to senselessly beat the 49 year old man, and while the beating was taking place, one of the teens yelled, "White power!" Then they left him on the ground to bleed and suffer.  For some reason though, Dedmon wanted to go back.  Meanwhile, Anderson was struggling to stay on his feet as he staggered down the curb, possibly trying to find help.  Next thing he knew, his vision was blinded by the headlights of Dedmon's truck, and that's when Derly Dedmon ran him over and left him for dead.
When the ordeal was over, Dedmon was laughing at the whole situation reportedly saying, "I ran over that Nigger!"
At first James Craig Anderson's murder was thought to be a hit and run, but the witness statements and surveillance video from the hotel made it clear that this was a heartless murder that occurred because of the color of this man's skin!  In the beginning, Derly Dedmon was going to be charged with murder, but that has since been upgraded to capital murder, and there is a strong possibility that he will face the death penalty.  John Rice is just facing simple assault, but there is a possibility that he could be charged with murder, and there is also a possibility that others can be charged with murder as well.
I am going to admit to you that I thought this happened this month because I just heard about it yesterday at the NAACP meeting at Howard University!  Why don't they cover these stories like this? It seems like a White person has gone missing every week, whom I hope are found, but they never report on hate crimes like this that happen too often in this country!  They don't talk about the injustice that we Black people face here in the so called United States of America!  So many young people have the misconception that things like this are only in the past, and they can't possibly happen anymore.  But things like this happen!  I am very sickened and enraged by this murder, and can't help but to feel sorrow every time I see James' smile in the picture, and I can't imagine how anyone can set eyes on this man, and kill him the way they did.  I am usually against the death penalty, but in this case, I hope these two will not be exempt from capital punishment.  Though one of them is facing the death penalty...it is Mississippi.  I would be deeply saddened and disappointed if these two racists get anything less, but at the same time, I wouldn't be at all surprised.  Man, there just are some heartless people out there.  Because of these racists, a family has to suffer...  Where is a Medgar Evers when you need him?  Where is a Bob Moses?  Where is a Diane Nash?!  Youth, whom cares at all about things like this, please speak out against it!  At least get educated, so that you may help educate!
"...And here's to the churches of Mississippi where the cross, once made with silver, now is caked with rust.  And the Sunday morning sermons panders to their lust.  The fallen face of Jesus is choking in the dust, and Heaven only knows in which God they can trust.  Oh, here's to the land you've torn out the heart of.  Mississippi find yourself another country to be part of!"
Below are links in which will give you more information on the case, and if you click on the CNN link, you'll be able to watch the surveillance video of the crime.
CNN
Huffington Post

PLEASE COMMENT!!!
(Lyrics in red is courtesy of the late Phil Ochs, a very talented folk singer from OHIO! He wrote the song, "Here's to the State of Mississippi" in response to the murder of the three missing civil rights workers, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Shwerner, in 1964.  Feel free to look him up if you are interested, and also please listen to the song and it's lyrics too!)

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Black On Black...Criticism

Recently, the great singer, actor, and civil rights activist, Harry Belafonte became one of the many Black people to openly express their disappointment in Barack Obama.  Now, though he has a right to do this, he must also understand many other things that come with being the first Black president of a country that has never faced the fact that it has failed to uphold the rights in it's constitution for ALL of it's citizens!
On Thursday, Mr. Harry Belafonte spoke with CNN to not only promote his up and coming documentary, but to criticize the president.  And here is his exact wording:

“There has never been such a void in moral truth as it now exists,” Belafonte said. “And what the expectation has been for many of us was that Barack Obama would bring to the table a great sense of moral fortitude. I think were he to apply that in the decisions that he would have to make, he would find that his presidency might touch on a level of greatness that he has not yet considered.”
He added, "He [Obama] has only listened to the voices that shout the loudest, and it’s all those reckless right-wing forces. It’s almost criminal.”
 President Barack Obama's election in 2008 seemed to be the medicine the nation had been looking for after eight years of dealing with the incompetent George W Bush.  Then as soon as he got into office many people had the mistaken idea that the economic crisis would disappear over night.  Now how can something so complex disappear over night when it took EIGHT years to create?!  And since President Obama is the first Black president, he has had to face many ordeals that most presidents haven't had to endure since the presidency of Abraham Lincoln.  Actually, it would be pretty accurate to say that Barack Obama is the modern version of Mr. Lincoln.  See, even though he has the fortune of not having to deal with a Civil War, at every turn and at every corner, there are brick walls.  Many of his fellow constituents have purposely disagreed with the president on everything!  They even made a fuss when he left the white house to go see a play!  There are tons and tons of videos of Bush golfing and uttering the most ridiculous things, and nobody made a huge deal about that!
All in all, the Republicans have been looking for President Obama to fail since day one, and they are making sure that he is not getting the job done.  So I don't think that it would be fair to say that you think that he is not doing the best he can when in fact, he is!  I've only been on this Earth for almost eighteen years, and I have not been able to see a lot of previous presidents, but what I do know is that I have never seen someone campaign so hard while they were still president!  President Obama travels around the country to promote his policies, and it's refreshing to see something like that.  He reminds me so much of the presidents from wayy back in the day!
Now what I don't understand is why these people don't want to work with him!  We are living in a very complex economical crisis and now isn't the time for us to be going against each other; now is the time for us to be working together so that we may get out of this crisis.  But that doesn't seem to be happening, and so many people are losing faith in him, when they should be losing faith in the people that are working against him!  I know it's hard to work together once in a while, but right now, WE NEED TO MORE THAN EVER!  And being the first Black president is harder than it looks.  (Many of the white television anchors won't even call him "President" Obama!)  So my Black brothas and sistahs, don't lose faith in him because he's no exception to the injustice that comes with being Black.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Fight The Power!


I know that I'm kinda late on this, but I just HAD to post this story because it is a true testimony to how powerful the People can be when they organize for something positive!  In the picture above, I parralled the March On Washington, as well as the 1968 strike in Memphis, Tennessee for sanitation workers with the 2011 struggle for collective bargaining rights--in Ohio particularly.
These Republicans kill me with their whole persona that involves bringing jobs to the People, and as soon as they get into office, they take jobs away to keep from "spending" too much money!  Now not only did they do that in 2011, but they also decided to take away our rights, specifically the right for union workers to go on strike when they feel that their employers are being unjust!
Isn't this why we founded the United States of America?  Isn't it true that Europeans came over from England because the English empire was being inhumane and immoral?  Isn't it true that the American Revolutionary War, which was fought by many Europeans and African Americans happened?  Wasn't  the Bill Of Rights written so that Americans could posses the rights that they were denied in Britain, which include "Freedom of Assembly" and "Freedom to Petition"?  
This nation that we all call the United State of America is a very hypocritcal nation that has yet to own up to it's mistakes!  The politicians may tell us that they think slavery is one of the biggest mistakes in American history; they may tell us that they are sorry about denying Black people, as well as other minorities, the right to vote; they may tell us that despite what a lot of racists said in the past, they believe that Martin Luther King Jr is one of the greatest leaders that this nation has ever seen; but what they are not saying is that what they are doing now is putting money and politics before morals!  There is so much money involved in politics that many politicians forget what they were put in office to do, and what this government was founded to do, and that is to SERVE THE PEOPLE!  But how can you serve the People when you can't empathize with the People?
During the last election for the governor of Ohio, there was so much more hype behind the Kasich campaign because people were so unhappy with President Obama that many democrats were losing support.  And even when they were airing those ridiculous commercials, I knew that a Republican governor would mean trouble and injustice.  Unfortunately, I wasn't and still am not of voting age so I couldn't of did very much seeing as though I didn't have the resources to help rally behind Governor Strickland.  Anyhow, when Kasich won the election he had this whole promise about eliminating the Ohio deficiet and bring jobs back to Ohio, which is a good start, but it gets bad when you take away the rights of the People in the process! 
Senate Bill 5 (SB 5) is a bill that the new governor proposed that would take away collective bargaining rights from many public workers, as well as their right to strike.  The only rights the bill didn't take away were the workers' right to bargain wages and certain working conditions.  When I first heard about this bill, I couldn't believe that Kasich had the nerve to propose something so ridiculous and immoral!  But I also found it humorous because I bet the people that voted for him felt real dumb, and I hope they feel as such.  I was disappointed at the low voter turn out that we had experienced last year, and I hoped that this event would prompt something in the morale of the People the next time around.
Anyhow, I wanted the governor to be impeached, and I would be the first one to sign if I could have had the chance!  Then not too long after the governor announced his evil plan, the People rallied and demonstrated all across the state!  There were so many teachers, policemen, firemen, among other workers in Columbus!  I just wished I could have been there to help in some way!  Then the bill had to go through a few stages to become ratified.  It had to receive a majority vote in the Ohio House, and the Senate.  The People were on end hoping and praying that this bill would be passed, and to our dismay, it was!  Many local governments would lose money, and Cleveland Mayor, Frank Jackson, was openly opposed and had to cut from the police force, among other things!  I was hopelessly dreading what the future would hold for Ohio, and that's when I realized that the People had the Power to get this bill on the ballot!  So there were petitions going around all over the place, and I had even gotten my mother to sign one from the NAACP!  Then about a month later I learn that the People have four times the signatures to get the bill on the ballot! 4 TIMES!  I can't explain how proud I was of the people in this generation!  So much so that I was instantly reminded of the words of Fred Hampton, as well as many other Black Panthers from the 60's, "Power to the People!"  We the People are what made this government, and for those who have forgotten, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, were ordinary men that just happened to do some very astonishing things and leaped over large walls to become the founding fathers of this country!  We the People are America and we have the Power to control our destiny and as long as we don't lose sight of that power, and as long as we mobilize together for a common and positive purpose, everything will work out. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Man Was Lynched Yesterday!

From left to right: 1925, 2010
In December 2010, according to The Crisis, Frederick Jermaine Carter was painting a building with his stepfather in Greenwood, Mississippi.  After a while, his stepfather briefly left to retrieve some tools, and once he returned he discovered that Fred was gone.  Then two days later, his body was found hanging from a tree like strange fruit!
Before I go into the case a little bit deeper, I want to know, how come I'm just hearing about this now?!  I watch the news just about everyday because as an aspiring journalist, I feel it is my duty to know what is going on in the world, but I don't remember anyone at our local news stations mentioning this!  How come when a Black person is a victim, you rarely hear about it on the news?  I mean I pray that all the people that go missing are found safely, but you never hear Black people going missing!  They act like Black people just get shot or get beat to death, but they don't go missing like the White people.  In this country, we have the power of freedom of the press!  How come it's only the Black newspapers and magazines talking about the problems in the Black community?
Anyhow, it is reported that as soon as the Sheriff arrived on the seen, he ruled it a suicide, and the coroner followed suit.  Now what I have learned by reading different articles on the case, is that the coroners are elected into the office and don't necessarily have to have a degree.  So it would be very easy for the racist White establishment to interject their peers into that particular position, as to others.  So, it would be fair to say that due to the color of the victim's skin, they could have been very bias.
"If you look at the height of the tree limb", says Wendol Lee, president of the Memphis-based Operation Help Civil Rights Group, "there's no way Mr. Carter could have hung himself up there - even if he supposedly used a table frame." (Stephen, 47)
Most Black people in that community do not believe that Carter committed suicide, even though the family did confess that Carter did have a mental illness and a history of occasionally drifting away from home.  On the other hand, a friend and mayor of Sunflower, Mississippi, Michael Pembleton Jr. adds, "...He had a lot of plans and a lot to live for." (Stephen, 47)
Carter was originally from Worcester, Massachusetts, but he moved to Sunflower, Miss to live with his mother and two sisters.  His family highly doubts that he would wander off miles away from home to a place that has been known to be hostile with Blacks.  In fact, it was only twelve miles away where the body of Emmet Till was found in Money, Miss back in 1954!
This lynching has proven to America that we are not yet rid of the race problem!  Actually, we still are dealing with the same happenings in which many Black civil rights organizations have been formed such as the NAACP, The Urban League, and the SCLC.  This is why these organizations are here!  Too many Black people are too comfortable with these newly received rights that have come to us after the toils of our ancestors in the Civil Rights Movement and beyond; people are so comfortable that they forget that even the rights we supposedly have now, we still HAVE to fight for!  Too many of us are not aware at the daily injustices that keep the NAACP alive and well.  Not too long ago, a white teacher in Columbus, OH had a fake slave auction where he, or she, auctioned off a young Black student--the only Black student in the class!  Too many of us don't realize that many people that move into predominately White communities are terrorized, probably not to the extent of Ossian Sweet, but terrorized at that.   Too many Black people don't realize that Black people are being murdered for exercising the rights we should have had as soon as we stepped foot on American soil!  And who knows, Frederick could have been exercising his rights when he died.  Most importantly, too many Black people don't realize that our government is still not protecting us as they said they would with the 15th amendment, 14th amendment, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, etc!  There are so many systematic things that this country does to weaken the minority, especially Black people and even after we got a Black president, whom has astonishingly, but not surprisingly received more threats than Abraham Lincoln himself, there still is a lot more fighting to do!  It is now 2011, and we have not come close to unifying to advance our people, and it's about time that we did because we will keep growing weaker and weaker because of the injustice we face with the government and I know that this is hard to believe, but WE ARE STILL NOT YET FREE!  And the lynching of Frederick Jermaine Carter proves this!  Why would a man hang himself from a tree like that?  Usually, and I'm no psychologist by all means, people that are about to commit suicide are in an unstable state and a lot of them don't kill themselves out in the open like that.  And to assume that this was suicide right on the scene?  If you look at the picture of his body, you'd agree that this was not Carter's doing!  Actually, there was a second autopsy done that proved that this was indeed a hanging!  What to do now? Find out who did this!  I am a proud member of the NAACP and I hope that we have another Medgar Evers out there that will pursue this case!  To check out a pick of the body, and to get FACTUAL details about the case, click the following link:
Frederick Jermaine Carter Hanging Death
Meanwhile, please join any local organization, such as a local NAACP chapter,  that is passionate about civil rights because for some reason, membership is still low.  But how are any of us going to complain about injustice when we are not even involved and making ourselves aware of the problems we face as Black people today in this new millennium?!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Blasting of John Kasich

Evil! Evil! Evil!  The Republicans have done it again!  I haven't been following that bill as I should of been, but even the naked eye can see that it WILL hurt the middle and lower classes!  What I want to know is, do you think that you're god?!  What in your right mind made you think that you could take away our rights?!
See, there is one thing that I hate/dislike about many politcians, Republicans like John Kasich, they do not empathize with the people!  They can never sit down and say, "how could this affect me if I was in their situation?"
In Ohio, Kasich is probably more hated than LeBron ever was, and that is sad becaue he just got here.  Actually, his approval rating is 37%, and is getting lower by the second.  Now, here is the problem I have with this guy.
All right, I understand that Ohio is in a 8 million, or billion dollar deficiet, and that is something that needs to be dealt with, no doubt about it.  But, it is very unrealistic to try to come up with a plan that will make that money disappear over night, and it is immoral to take away the rights of the people to get there!  I am merely a high school senior and I already know that Kasich is going to mean destruction to Ohioans.  He doesn't care about what the citizens voted for, and he doesn't care about our situation and he needs to be outta here!
The one thing that I find the most disturbing is the fact that he is taking away a lot of state funding to the public school system, if not all of it, and that is really going to have a negative impact on the Black community of Cleveland.  Without money, they will not be able to apply the proper education needed to keep the children of the ghettos from falling prey to poverty, and violence.  American society wants to weaken the Black community, and without a proper education, they cannot see that they are being weakened on a daily basis in many ways.  The Cleveland school system is already one of the worst in the nation, and now that they are going to lay a lot of teachers off, they are going to cut a lot of activities that would normally keep a lot of students off the street by doing something productive with their lives!  I despise John Kasich, and I foreseen his meaningless destruction the first time I saw his corney election commercials.
Now, if I met this man, I would just want to sit him down and ask him this question.  Now, I won't be ignorant about it because I'm dead serious, especially when it comes to the welfare of my people.  I would ask him:
"Mr. Kasich, I bet your children, if you have any, go to one of the best schools, don't they?  And I bet that you would never want to send them to an inner city public school.  If you haven't noticed, inner city public schools barely have the means to provide a decent education for their students, and that's why the dropout rate is so high.  Now, here is some serious questions that I want you to answer with complete honesty.  All right, how would you feel if your children were going to a school, someplace like an inner city public school, and all of a sudden, you are being told that a lot of money would be cut, and your children would not have enough after school activities to give them that outlet they need for their creativity?  How would you feel if that school did not have enough money to provide them with enough educational opportunities to get into college? How would you feel if you didn't have a car and your children had to walk to school in a neighborhood riddled with drug dealers and gang bangers because the school didn't have the money to provide school buses?  How would you feel if that school didn't have enough money to provide books, laboratory equipment, and basic supplies?  Most importantly, how would you feel if your children came home crying to you every week because one their classmates were killed due to a meaningless act of violence? Well, if you can't answer these questions, you must know that youth living in the urban cities go through this everyday!  So, taking money from the already crappy school system would only make matters worse, well, unless you want it to happen that way..." Then I would walk out the room and let him sit and think about that!  I apologize if it seems that I am not thinking about the public schools in the suburbs, but there is something that I have to say: I don't live in the suburbs, never have, and I can't speak about what those students go through and how the budget cuts would affect them.  What I do know is that cutting money from  education is a universally immoral law!
So PEACE!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Bulletproof! Part Five

Before I put governor kasiach (don't care how you spell it to be honest) on blast, let me just say this.  I AM TIRED!  I AM VERY TIRED! Why can't we live without being shot?!  PLEASE TELL ME WHY!
The young girl above is Brianna Hines.  Here in Cleveland, while she was on her couch on her laptop, she was shot in the head when four guns shots were shot into her home.  Right now, she is in critical condition at the hospital.  Not only was this thirteen year old girl shot in the head, but she was shot by a twenty-four year old man, and possibly his girlfriend, whom are now in custody.  With all my heart, I hope that this girl survives because she probably isn't in high school yet, and she's got a lot of life to live.  There is so much that this young sistah can be and it will be just a total loss if she doesn't get to fulfill her dreams because of the growing violence in the Black community.
There is something that I would like to point out here: isn't it sad that where many Black people live, gunshots are as common as day turns to night?  I hear gunshots from my house almost every night, and sometimes I can't even sit at the computer because I'm afraid that something might come in through my window, and I can't stand living like this!  I can't stand, with all my heart, my fellow brothas and sistahs living like this, and there is something that needs to be done!  It is time to take back the streets of Cleveland!  Actually, while the world is worrying about what Charlie Sheen is doing next, all of us living in the ghettos are worried about whether or not we're going to get shot like many others.
Another sad thing is, the young brothas and sistahs that commit crimes of this magnitude could of been something great to this nation.  They could of grown to be inspirational leaders that are adding something positive to the community rather than adding to the problem!  But I am just tired!  Things like this consume me to the inner most core of my soul, and I can't deny the pain that I feel when another one of my young Black folk are taken down by violence.  I never met this girl, but I know that she is a fellow human, a fellow American, and a fellow Black American; all of these are enough to make me feel some sort of compassion.  I hate it when things like this happen, and I feel as if I did nothing to help with its prevention.  I try to tell myself that there is really nothing I can do, but I know there IS something that I can do to help prevent things like this, but I have to take little steps at a time to get there.  So again, we need to talk to our mayors, Frank Jackson in Cleveland, the governor, as if he would care, and the President of the United States!  It is sad how so many inner city youth don't know who represents them, and the other public officials that can help them make change happen, and it is time that we educate!  Everyone reading this, please educate as many people as you can! because KNOWLEDGE is power, and education is one of the key ingredients to prevent us from living like we're bulletproof because too many of our youth are falling pray to violence each and every day.  I try to educate through my writing, but I am not yet a published author, so my empowerment to my community is very little.  This blog is my only outlet to the community, and I'm hoping that as many people read this as possible so that we all can have a hand at lowering the rising violence rates in the Black community.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Bulletproof: Part 4

The picture is kind of blurry, but  the actions of this young man speaks louder than the clarity of the picture.  Sadly, Black History Month has begun with the death of a young person that was only out to do the right thing.  This death hits close to home because this happened in my home state at a college that is pretty well known in Cleveland and across Ohio.
Jamail Johnson was attending a party at a Frat house, and two other guys were causing trouble and were kicked out so they decided to go load some guns and return to the party.  When they arrived they began shooting into the crowd, and Jamail ran for them, which left him open to being shot in the chest.  His bravery may have cost his young life, but he saved countless others. 
Jamail was the only one to die in the shooting, and the gunmen were detained.  Still, this Youngstown State senior had his whole life ahead of him, and he was just about to recieve his degree and become something great when that was all taken away by some ignorant brothas that were mad that they were kicked out of a party.
Events such as this are things that break my heart because these college students were doing things that too many Black students don't do, and even the young brothas and sistahs are trying to get their lives together are not bulletproof from these types of attrocious crimes.  I believe it was last year when a young woman attending Seton Hall University  was shot and killed, and not too long ago, a young man also attending Seton Hall was shot while visiting his mother.  Thankfully, this young basketball player survived his injuries to graduate, but he will definitely be out for the season because he had another injury he was recovering from before he got shot. . .god bless him.
There are probably many more that I'm missing, but this is all too common!  Violence only leads to more violence,  and if our college students aren't save, how are we?  I will be attending college in the fall because I want to make a huge impact in this world because I KNOW that I am capable of doing great things, and it pains me that there are college students who don't see the light.  For example, I visited Clark Atlanta University during spring break last year and that school was horrible!  Booty short paradise for the guys, and ignorant n-words roam that campus not knowing why they went to college in the first place!  I was so disappointed to learn that HBCUs aren't what they use to be.  It was also sad because great people walked those very grounds and it seems as if this new generation of college students don't know or care to appreciate that history!  This is why Black History Month will forever have importance in our society, and no matter how you think you're too old to be learning about your culture, the relevance of our history will never go away!  Those two misguided young men that shot Jamil could of saw the light if they cared to learn or if they were properly educated.  From what I hear about Jamil, I believe that he saw the light.
Don't get me wrong, there are young Black people that understand the importance of Black History Month, and those young people are going to be something great in life unlike those who are clueless and ignorant.  Now, if you don't have access to information about your culture like so many other urban city youth, that's a whole different argument, but if you have all the materials there and you just choose not to learn about them because you are ignorant, then I feel really sorry for you.  We can only bring about unity with a better self-education.  So PEACE!  I really don't want to write another bulletproof post, but I will when something else comes up.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Bulletproof: Part Three

An Akron, Ohio woman, Kelley Williams-Bolar, was arrested for changing the address on her daughters' information so that they can go to a better school.  In turn, she was arrested and charged with 2 counts of tampering with court records, which are felonies, and were sentenced to 10 days in jail.  Now this woman will have this blemish on her record that will never be able to be removed unless we can get justice for her.
Like a lot of African Americans, she lives in a very impoverished neighborhood where the school system is terrible, and to make it worse, her house had been broken into 12 times!  Her father, Edward L Williams, lived in the suburbs and her two daughters stayed with him a lot because he was fearful for their safety, and he declared that they practically lived there.   So she was trying to get them a good education at any means necessary.
You don't have to be Black to want your kids to get a good education, and you definitely don't have to be Black to struggle.  Still, one thing unique about the Black experience is that there are many things that hold us back, which do include race, and there definitely are more of us that are poor and that's a fact!  Most inner-city public schools do not provide the same quality education as public schools in the suburbs, and the crazy thing is, they are the same types of schools!  So what else do we have?  A lot of Black people can't afford to live in the suburbs where the grass is green, the parks and neighborhoods are relatively safe, and the opportunities are endless.  And so many people wonder why our Black twelfth graders are reading at the level of a white eighth grader.  We don't have the man power to speak out against all of the things that are holding our inner city neighborhoods back, and that is a key factor to why they look the way they do.  We need more people to speak up about what's going on because if you haven't noticed, our neighborhoods are more polluted than others, why? Because they know we won't say anything about it!  The white people in the suburbs have a means to speak their minds about whatever comes into their neighborhoods, why can't we?!
Also, we NEED help from politicians, which takes us back into the politics vs. morals discussion.  I was watching Washington Watch this morning, and Roland Martin had a panel of four educated Blacks that knew their politics, and it was interesting to hear their point of views.  There was a woman on the panel that helped me to be able to elaborate on the politics vs. morals discussion because what she said helped me to get a better idea on that perspective.  Now, she said that many politicians are so worried that they won't be re-elected that they are afraid to take a stand on what they think is morally right.  She also discussed the idea that we should give our politicians two years to prove themselves, or they will not be re-elected.
There are 100 voting members in the House, so I can't keep up with all of them, but a good percent of them are not worthy of their seat.  How can you swear to vote by the American people when you are afraid to do something about the school systems?  Then you're presence in the House and your political career is just a waste of time!  We need tougher politicians that is willing to risk politics in order to satisfy what is morally right because unless we do so, no matter how many times you get elected, there is still going to be a struggle.  There is still going to be Black on Black violence, there is still going to be Tucson, Arizona shootings, there is still going to be poverty, there is still going to be horrible inner-city education systems, and there is still going to be desperate people like Ms. Williams who are willing to risk everything to provide the best for their children, and that takes a lot more courage than many politicians do not posses.
Sign A Petition To Help Her Get Pardoned! Click Here

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Morals Vs. Politics

All right, I apologize for my long absence, but I've been so busy with college stuff, but I will make it my business to make as much time as possible to post things to my blog.
Now, it is a new year! 2011!  Which means that there is a new "administration" per say.  Sadly, the Republicans took over the House, but Democrats somehow clung on to the Senate.  Then here in Ohio, we have a Republican governor.
The Speaker of the house is now John Boehner, and he and those Republicans are getting on my nerves.  I think it's healthy to not fully agree with the president, but I think he's taking a lot of heat for the things that Bush caused.  Actually, it took Bush 8 years to put us in this mess, who in their right mind would think that it can only take 4 years to get us out of this?!  Barack Obama is doing the best that he can to correct the problem, but he told us before his election that the economy couldn't be fixed over night, and that it would take a while.  I mean, if the guy gets elected to a second term and things don't get better, then you can talk. Now, from the start, the Republicans have been very stubborn and has opposed many of his policies because they WANT him to FAIL!   Well, newsflash, Obama is the president of your country.  If you can't work with the leader of your country, what kind of politician are you?  Actually, what good are you?  It's all right not to agree with him on things, but tell him how to make it better, which is called COMPROMISING.  A word that if a Republican is reading this, this will be the first time that they've heard it.  They just shoot down everything Obama says if it has to do with money.  Money-Money-Money.
Well let me just declare, politics and morals are two very different things.  When you are so concerned about money that you don't want to give American citizens free healthcare, what does that say about you're morals?  When you say that you want to stop welfare, what does that say about your morals?  You can't always confuse politics with what it morally right, and you can't be stubborn to change.  I am being completely honest when I say that I do have a love and respect for our first president because as an American, no matter what color you are, you have to admire the leadership and bravery of George Washington.  This man was a war hero who wanted what was morally right for the colonies, and that was to break away from Britain, whom were treating them unjust.  So he helped us win a fight for our freedom as Americans, but he never lead a fight for our freedoms as African Americans.  He knew that it was morally wrong to enslave human peoples, but he knew it would be a political disaster to publicly fight against it, as Abraham Lincoln would soon find out.  So he did nothing about it.  The way this parallels with what we are going through today is, there is no physical slavery, but I know that there has got to be one or more Republicans out there that know there are a lot of people out here that struggle, and they are not able to afford healthcare.  So, who are you to say that you are not willing to spend the money on the people who you swore to fight for?  There is no reason why you can't help these people.  No reason why you can't help us, but what I want people to take from this is. . .
YOU CAN'T PUT A PRICE ON MORALS so let us all work together to support the president and if you don't agree with something, speak up and help him understand your concerns so we can COMPROMISE (there's that word again)