Tuesday, August 28, 2007

I guess Billie Holiday said it best …

“Southern trees bear strange fruit, blood on the leaves, blood on the root ...”
The song, recorded in 1939, was written and sang to raise awareness about the lynch-mob killings of mostly black men that occurred in the early days of Jim Crow. Sadly, the song still rings true 68 years later.
For those folks who haven’t heard, there is a major violation of civil rights going on in Jena, La. Six black (or African American, which ever you prefer) high school students were charged with attempted second degree murder that stemmed from several racially motivated altercations.
To bring you up to speed, a black student asked a school official if he could sit under the “white tree.” The school official told the student that he could sit anywhere he wanted. The following day, three nooses, painted in the school colors mind you, hung from that very tree.
The responsible students were identified and expelled by the school principal. The school board overturned the expulsion calling it a prank. Students staged a sit in under the tree that was attended by the district attorney who allegedly informed the students that he could take away their lives “with the stroke of a pen.”
To give you the abbreviated version of this story, a main building at the school burned, a black student was beaten at a “white party” by what should be considered a mob of white people.
The assaulted student, who was with friends, ran into one of his assailants at a convenience store. An altercation broke out and the assailant pulled out a gun, the students took it from him and turned it in to police. They were arrested for theft of a firearm.
Two days later, one white kid taunted a group of black kids with racial slurs. I’m sure we all know what they were - they lost their cool and promptly beat him down.
Fast forward to now, six students were charged with attempted second degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
One of the students, Mychal (pronounced Michael) Bell has already been tried convicted of the lesser charge of second degree battery. He faces a maximum sentence of 22 years.
First off – WOW!!! Secondly, since when is a school fight a second degree murder attempt? How come nobody was arrested for attempted second degree murder when the black kid was beaten up?
This is beyond ridiculous. It is high time that legal lynching is stopped in the South. I love the South, I always have but we have a soiled history that seems to be repeating itself in Louisiana.
A march on the courthouse is being planned for Sept. 20. I urge each and every person who can get there to do so. Those who have any sort of power, be it political or of the pen, to do your part in helping thwart this injustice.
George Santayana wrote in 1905, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
I am pleading with you, let’s not only remember our past, let’s be proactive in securing our future. Let's march, let's write letters, sign petitions, whatever we have to do to right this wrong.
For more information on how to help, visit: http://www.colorofchange.org/jena/

Monday, August 27, 2007

Well Hallelujah …

Mike Vick has found Jesus!
This is so funny for so many different reasons. I’m not laughing because Jesus found him, because He was never lost. I’m not laughing because he copped a plea that will have him out of jail in no time.
I’m laughing because in this whole situation, everybody has made him out to be this monster and now, he’s leaning on Jesus. Now I am in no position to question anyone’s spirituality – that’s between them and the God they serve – but I am in a position to question the morals of all these people who are hanging Vick out to dry.
Click here: http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/law/08/27/michael.vick/index.html
I don’t recall seeing these people picketing and protesting when Tank Johnson and Pacman Jones got into trouble. I don’t even recall seeing them when Ray Lewis got in trouble or when they found Rae Carruth hiding in the trunk of that car in Tennessee.
Shoot, these animal rights activists have all but said, ‘we care about animals more than we do black folks.’
Of course I have no way of proving that but actions do speak louder than words and the way these folks are acting, they care about animals more than they do us.
I went to see Erykah Badu live on Saturday and she made a very valid point. She said that we live in a country where people can go and get a license to go out, shoot and kill an animal and put his head on a wall for display. But they persecute Vick for killing dogs. She said all that to say they need to make up their minds – and I agree.
Rights for all animals or rights for none of ‘em. They’re no more like people than they were before they were domesticated.
I think all of this was a witch hunt to take out another one of our brothers who was on top. I tell you what, Donovan McNabb, LeBron and ‘nem had not better get any pets. Or better yet, from now on, the favorite pet of the “Brotherman” should be fish.
Then again, if they get too big, somebody will be trying to fry ‘em up.
Oh never mind.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

For those of you who do pray ...

... let's send up a few on behalf of Evangelist Juanita Bynum. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, she is going through some things and as her Christian brethren and sistern, we need to intercede on her behalf.
Spousal abuse is a serious matter and I am glad that she has decided to press charges. If you are still totally in the dark about what has happened, visit the following site to read about what allegedly happened last night. http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/atlanta/stories/2007/08/22/bynum_0823.html?cxntlid=homepage_tab_newstab
Now of course I have to say allegedly because I have no proof and I was not there so I can only pass along what has been reported.
With that said, the story stated that they are unsure if this is a first time incident between Bynum and her estranged husband. I have not ever been a victim of domestic violence but I know a few women who have been and I don't think a first time incident would have been this severe.
I hope that this incident will serve as a wake up call to women who have been battered or are currently being battered. I want them to see that it is OK to get out.
GOD DID NOT PUT YOU ON THIS EARTH TO BE UNHAPPY!!! You were not put her to be in pain - physically or emotionally. Love SHOULD NOT hurt. In spite of popular belief and what popular music tells us, love is not about pain.
In fact, if you read the book (The Bible) I Corinthians 13:4-7 will tell you everything that love is and isn't.
"4 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud
5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.
6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.
7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance."
Why am I getting all biblical today? I'm glad you asked!
A lot of folks who are "of the cloth" love to quote scripture and talk about how getting divorced and remarried is against God and how they need to try to stay in marriages that God can't fix because it's "the right thing to do."
So I figured, why not quote scripture to inform a few folks about what love is and how they should be loved.
I don't claim to be any kind of biblical scholar, but I do know this life is nothing but a test. Now, we get an advantage because it is an open book test. So why do we keep failing?
I'll tell you why, because we're human. And humans make mistakes.
So here's your Bible study/moral/thought for today - in this life, you will either test or retest. Take advantage of your resources and use the book!

Monday, August 20, 2007

They finally got 'em ...

Mike Vick is going to prison for dogfighting. Now I wonder what effect this will have on his career. Personally, I am empathetic toward Mikey but at the same time, I am kind of glad they got him.
Anyone whose purpose for owning animals for the sole purpose of harming them should be in jail. But on the other hand, if he had harmed a person or if there would have been any sort of altercation that resulted in a fight, where would the protesters have been then? What about picket signs, would there have been any picket signs? And would they have had Mike Vick shooting targets printed up as opposed to Mike Vick chew toys?
We don't know do we? We also don't know if he did anything. All we have is the statements from his other co-defendants who are playing a very effective game of C.Y.A (cover your a--).
According to the developing story on CNN, Vick has accepted a plea deal that will send him to prison for 18 to 36 months. Not that he doesn't deserve any prison time, but he will also suffer the consequences financially.
He has already lost a significant amount of endorsement revenue, not to mention the unpaid suspension he is currently serving and the head guys for the Falcons are turning on him.
Even if he wasn't suspended, he should have been about ready to take a year off.
Either way, I just wish the brother the best because the next few years are going to be kinda "ruff."
I know it's corny, but I couldn't resist!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I - am in love!

No need to strike up the band or send any inquiries. I am in love with Newark, NJ mayor Corey Booker.
It's not that he looks like Reggie and Cheryl Miller's long, lost little brother. It's not because he's a black man doing big things and featured on Oprah. And it's not even the fact that he's a man of his word doing his best to clean up one of the most crime-ridden cities in America.
It is because this man gave a bilingual press conference this afternoon concerning progress in the case of three black college students being shot to death in a Newark school yard.
Ya'll I was watching CNN before I left my house earlier and this man was standing in front of a podium with microphones galore, one from Univision, and a question came from the audience from a reporter who was speaking English with a Hispanic accent.
The man proceeded to speak in Spanish to give out information on the two suspects that they have in custody. At that moment, my admiration for him got all inappropriate and now - I'm in love!
Booker understands the importance of getting out information be it in English or in Spanish. By exercising his bilingual skills, the man has shown that his focus is to put out information in such a way that people will understand.
~starry eyed with my head cocked to the side~ Isn't he great?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Celebrities and their relationships ...

... are once again dominating the news.
Apparently Usher has another confession. He married his knocked-up fiance today in his lawyers office. ~starry eyed~ "How romantical!"
The May-December couple were set to get married last weekend but cancelled their nuptials without any explanation to their guests or the press.
There were a lot of rumors surrounding the reason the couple decided to call off the wedding. One was that his mother was against it, another was that she'd had some complications with the baby and the other was that the two couldn't agree on a ceremony.
Any or all of those things could be true, but honestly, I really don't care either way. Usher is one of those stars that I just don't really care what he does when he's not performing. You know those "celeb-reality" shows that show how the stars live and how their houses are decorated and all that? If he were the subject, I really wouldn't watch it. In fact, I'd break my neck to avoid it. He's just not on my list of "interesting people."
But someone who is on my list is Eddie Murphy. I don't know why that dude was fresh out of a marriage and was not using protection when he was with Ginger Spice. Murphy finally admitted that he is her "babydaddy."
Murphy is engaged to Tracie Edmonds, Babyface's ex, and said in an interview that he will continue to take care of that child like he does his others. He already has five other children from his previous marriage and Edmonds has two of her own.
Talk about "Daddy Day Care," that's a lot of kids. You just don't see families that big anymore. If they keep on, they're going to have a baseball team, shoot, if they like basketball, they already have a starting five and three riding the pine.
Hey, Eddie thinks he can sing, he should put instruments in their hands and be the chocolate-dipped Partridge Family. Instead of singing an R&B version of "I Think I Love You," they can sing "Party All the Time," they might even have a leg up since they'll have Babyface's kids in the group.
OK, I'm done with them. Onto other relationships that could possibly affect me, and some of you, CNN posted a story earlier today about interracial relationships. Click here when you get a minute, http://www.cnn.com/2007/LIVING/personal/08/06/interracial.dating.ap/index.html.
For those of you who won't, read it, the spin on this story the fact that more and more black women are dating and in some cases marrying outside of their races.
For those of you who know me, you know I have no problem with dating outside my race, in fact I am happy that more of my sistern are being more open minded about dating men outside of our race.
I think it is high time that we let go of this fantasy of having the perfect black knight in shinning armor to sweep us off our feet. I say we come on back to reality and recognize that men are men, regardless of race or color.
Instead of color being the first thing we look for in a man we should be looking to make sure that he is a good man. I don't give a crap if the dude is black, white, Hispanic, Asian or plaid with white polka dots, if he is good to me then I am cool with it!
I would much rather have a white man treat me like the queen I am than to have a black man treat me like dirt.
Oh yea, and here's a little more food for thought, why is it that folks have a problem with interracial dating, but only when it involves black and brown folks?
Think about it.