Friday, June 29, 2007

Democratic Forum - Talking loud an saying nothing PART II

Biden Clinton
Dodd Edwards
Gravel Kucinich
Obama Richardson

The political talking heads were all there. All the Democratic candidates, You know all the names. Tavis (prime time) Smiley moderated while Dewayne Wickham, Michelle Martin and Ruben Navarrette asked questions. It was the first time a panel of journalist of color got a chance to asks questions of the candidates.

The questions were loosely based on Tavis Smiley’s book The Covenant With Black America. The outgoing Howard University President welcomed the crowd, while syndicated talk show host and party man, Tom Joyner introduced newly elected Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. YES!

The first issue for discussion was Education and matters of race.

First up, the ever condescending Hillary Clinton who gave her bogus and insincere diatribe about today’s Extreme (Supreme) Court ruling, and her need to say “there is work to be done.”

AAPP - OK, as if Black America needed you to tell us this.

Next up, Joe (Obama is the first bright, clean and articulate man) Biden talks about what a great job he (himself) has done as a member of the Judiciary committee grilling Supreme Court Justice, John Roberts, and how it's the Roberts court that has turned the clock back. Hey and let's not forget Bill (I’m Latino-don’t get my last name twisted) Richardson who stressed, the next president needs to lead a dialogue on race. But provided nothing concrete other than the president needs to talk about race.

I was feeling John Edwards, who was one of the few "sincere" candidates at the forum. He at least admitted that there continues to be a dual public school system in America - one for the affluent, and ones for the poor.

Hello, Brown V. Education 2007.

Let’s not forget brother Barack Obama who received applause every time he smiled. Yes it was clearly an Obama crowd at this Forum. but maybe not Obama’s night.

Obama tried to say there should be mutual citizen and government action to get us where we are going as Nation regarding education.

OK, Obama sounds great, but, no strategy, no plan just smiles for the cameras. Oh yeah, there are other candidates like Dennis Kucinich who pointed out the need for universal kindergarten and day care. Hello!

Hey let us not forget about the blue eyed soul 2nd cousin, Mike Gravel.

What, you ask, "who is Mike Gravel," hey, this is the only guy who calls it the way it is, and talks about the real issues like the alleged War On Drugs, that caused the disproportionate number of black men and women to be behind bars.

Hey, what about the silver haired “certified” liberal, Chris Dodd. Dodd who has no chance of getting the nomination, sounded like he read the playbook from his look alike, Jack Kemp.

You get a sense of the discussion. Clinton with “It takes a village to raise a child..” which she stole. To clinton saying the village has failed its children. No Senator Clinton “America” destroyed its children. She makes me sick with that old school, “socioeconomically deprived” crap. But I have to wonder what type of drug Gov. Richardson and others were on when they responded to the HIV question.

Did you check out how Richardson continued to talk about “Needles.” Are black teenagers throughout America using needles to cause the high numbers of HIV? My understanding is it is un-protected sex. (education) not needles dude.

Hello this man is misinformed. Hey, Obama, was on point regarding HIV and homophobia issues in our community and the need for universal health care. Kucinich was on point regarding the need for sex education.Hello, Richardson, who ever your handlers are they did a bad job about coaching you about HIV and the black community. I like Chris Dodds approach regarding school-based clinics where children can get advice on sex education. But I’m not sure Chris Dodd is up on recent events. The Extreme Court has sent us back 50 plus years. We will be glad to have a toilet in the next 5 years. Here comes Hillary, If HIV/AIDS were the number one cause of death for white women a lot more would be done.

Hap hap, people are we!. The black women scream, yes, yes, she identifies with us! Yes, I’m voting for Hillary! YES, there is a God. Great one liner Hillary you got the black women vote. At least the one’s here who gave you the evenings only standing ovation. WHAT!

Oh, hell to the no, says Biden. You are not going to out do me Hillary!

Hey black guys, In my state I have gone into the black neighborhoods in Delaware talking to black men about wearing condoms. what! See Brotha’s I know whats going on in the hood. Biden even says, hey, I even got tested for HIV, hey, Barack Obama did too! Holy Shit! What the hell!

It went down hill from there.

That’s how it was for the rest of the night. Pointless.

Tavis Smiley attempted to have the Democrats come to the black community to have them address issues of importance to us. Unfortunately, the format sucked, and as usual the Democrats brought us a circus.

It was the Barnum and Bailey circus at it’s best. And black folks, lead on by aging black leaders watched the three ring circus and clapped, and watched, and clapped, and watched, and clapped.

We watched as Democrats gave us a dog and pony show, with an invisible dog and pony. I would have loved to enjoy the stupid pet tricks. No commitments just hollow words. The Covenant With Black America had no meaning at this forum. The little meaning available was Tavis Smiley (new school) and a bunch of old school black political opinion makers and civil rights icons having the opportunity to shake hands with a number of Democratic candidatess. WOW! If there is truly any meaning in that!

Hey, but guess what, we have a Latino and a African American running for the presidency of the United States. A clueless and confused group of people who proved last night, they have no idea how to truly address America’s issues that are Black, white, and gray.

The bottom line was, for me, the forum was truly just another Barnum and Bailey - Democratic Circus, with the best financed clowns money can buy. I only wish they had graduated from clown school and rehearsed their skit, so this African American Political Pundit could have at least enjoyed the show.

Tavis, maybe next time, with the Republican event you’ll ask the Universal Soul Circus to come to town. We can at least get a laugh when the bigoted Republican Circus comes to Baltimore.

Candidly, I can’t wait to see who they put in the front seats of that circus! Colin (WMD) Powell, or Clarence (you blacks stay in your poor schools) Thomas?

Democratic Presidential hopefuls “talk loud and say nothing” as aging black leaders look on

African American Political Pundit says: Last night reminded me of the old schoool lyrics of Kurtis Blow, as all the old school black leaders and opinion makers sat and clapped for every no substance comment made by the Democrats.

You remember the lyrics: Clap your hands everybody, if you got what it takes, 'cause I'm Kurtis Blow and I want you to know that these are the breaks....

Each time I watched these opinion makers and Congressional FOX Caucus Members clap and give those hankerchief head smiles for the cameras, I expected them to follow the rest of Curtis blows lyrics, and shout out to the rest of the audience, "Throw your hands up in the sky, and wave "em" 'round from side to side, and if you deserve a break tonight, somebody say alright! (all right) Say ho-oo! (ho-oo!) and you don't stop keep on, somebody Scream!"

More - later today at African American Political Pundit

Car Bomb Defused In Central London

Police have defused a large car bomb in the heart of London. Report Here.

From what I can tell... it appears that this may have been a situation where the device failed to explode for whatever reason or the driver was enroute to another destination and was unable to continue. This could have also been a suicide bombing where the device failed to detonate. However, unlike in Iraq & Israel, bomb attackers in the UK (even the jihadists) have, so far, not been of the suicide variety. Instead, they have preferred to plant their bombs and walk away. So the driver could have intended to place or stage the vehicle in Central London to be detonated later by cellular phone.

In any case, this incident shows that we are still under the gun. The war in Iraq and the failure of U.S. diplomacy in the Middle East and other parts of the world are continuing to fuel jihadism. This is unfortunately the new way of life for us, largely because of the foreign policy that the U.S. and the UK have pursued.

In the next few hours and days, U.S., British, and EU officials will be in an increased state of vigilance, looking for other possible explosives or suspicious behaviors. The good news is that this device was discovered before it was detonated. The bad news is- if this was the work of Al Qaeda or an Al Qaeda affiliated group, then there is a good chance that other devices exist that have not been detonated (or located) yet. Al Qaeda and other jihadi inspired terrorists typically engage in a swarm of attacks...not just a single event. So we could be in the midst of a terrorist attack still in progress. London has tons of surveillance cameras, and officials will surely be going over video footage.

In my opinion...Americans will also have to be extra vigilant over the July 4th Holiday as well.

SFC Greg Sutton

Security consultant and fellow blogger David Stephenson recalls an American soldier who was recently killed in Iraq. Read Here.

New Documentary - The End Game

View a new documentary from PBS Frontline entitled The End Game, which examines the quagmire in Iraq.

Personally I see no end game for the war in Iraq anytime soon. U.S. "leaders" also don't see an end in sight in Iraq anytime soon, despite their election year talk. Behind the scenes, they are planning for a long term presence in Iraq. Our politicians have dragged the nation into quicksand with this war.

View Documentary Online

Also see two previous documentaries entitled "The Insurgency", & "Gangs Of Iraq" both of which will help you to better understand The End Game and the current situation in Iraq.

Gordon Brown Takes Power In Britain

Gordon Brown has taken power in Britain as new Prime Minister. Observers will be interested in how his foreign policy develops.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Ireland Elects Its First Black Mayor

Ireland Elects Its First Black Mayor

Rotimi Adebari, a Nigerian who arrived in Ireland seven years ago as an asylum-seeker, was elected unopposed to lead the council of Portlaoise, a bustling commuter town west of Dublin.

I never thought of Africans in Ireland. I knew they were in England and France, but never thought of them in Ireland. I wish him success in the political system. You learn something new everyday, and it does seem that Africans are indeed, everywhere.

Immigration Bill Goes Down To Defeat

The 'Comprehensive' Immigration Bill that would have granted amnesty to 12-20 million illegal immigrants, has gone down to defeat.


WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Opponents effectively killed President Bush's long-fought and emotion-laden Senate immigration bill Thursday when members voted against advancing the controversial legislation.

The tally was 46 to 53, 14 votes shy of the 60 needed to end debate.

My answer: GOOD.

This legislation was a nightmare all the way around.
1. It didn't have anything close to what could be called Border Security.
2. Nothing about securing our Ports.
3. It would have hurt workers on the low end of the socio-economic spectrum.
4. And, it would have hurt workers, due to the High End Visa SCAM, on the higher end of the socio-economic spectrum.

The only ones this would help were the illegals and Corporations who wanted endless supply of cheap labor, all the way around.

Despite being called bigots, and other names (yeah, I've gotten the names thrown at me), we either are a nation of laws, or we are not. And since laws seem to always find their way when it comes to Black folk, I'll be frank - others should have to follow them too.

You want 'immigration reform'?

How about take away a HUGE lobbying point of the opposition:
1. Secure the Border
2. Fully fund the Border Patrol while you expand it.
3. Secure the Ports
4. Take care of the backlog of applicants already in the system. Do you know how ludicrous it was to watch folks talk about granting amnesty to 12 million folks in one hand, and in the next news report, having anchors tell us that the Government has suspended the passport requirements for Canada and Mexico, BECAUSE THEY SIMPLY COULDN'T FILL THE PASSPORT APPLICATIONS IN TIME? They can't fill PASSPORT APPLICATIONS in a timely fashion, and have a backlog of over 600,000 LEGAL immigrant applications that have been on hold -SOME FOR YEARS - but we're supposed to believe that this agency is ready for 12 million new applicants for citizenship? Come on!!

IF these 4 things are done, then guess what, you take away a huge platform of the opposition.

Related Articles:

Senate immigration bill suffers crushing defeat

46-53, Immigration Bill Goes Down in Defeat

The Media Bloggers Association & the PBS Debate

The following is a response to commenter Denise, regarding the credentialing of Bloggers for the PBS debate. Here is the list of Black bloggers invited or "allowed" in by MBA and PBS.

It looks like you had to be an award recipient in order to gain approval from the Media Bloggers Association. I had a pretty bad experience with this group (the "MBA") a couple of years ago. I attempted to join their little organization shortly after I entered the world of blogging, as a way to help me get started... but I was told at the time (in so many words) that I was not elite enough. I basically told them that they could go straight to Hell.

The MBA is an elitist white-run group... which is reflected in how they choose people to "credential". Their aim is to gain favor with the big media (which is what they are doing here). That is a horrible group to have as a filter for these events. It's an especially bad filter for an event involving black bloggers... Black bloggers are excluded & marginalized enough as is.

Who in the hell are they to even know or decide who the good Black bloggers are? That organization knows little about Black bloggers... and I doubt if they even read "Black blogs"... (from the full spectrum of what is offered). Side note: "Black blog" is usually a term that I don't care for because it paints too small of a box. The term tends to suggest that a blog is limited to certain content, mostly centered on race. I never wanted my blog to be pigeonholed or placed in any one category, because I cover all kinds of issues; issues that transcend race, religion, national boundaries, cultures, and so forth....but for the sake of this commentary I am going with the term.

Is the MBA even familiar with the wide cross section of Black bloggers? Reading LaShawn Barber and Booker Rising does not make anyone an informed reader of Black blogs.
This is why I have called for a professional organization that could represent Black Bloggers, and work in their interests. I have a vision for a Black Bloggers Association...that would be supported by existing minority media groups, or at least an Independent or Progressive Bloggers Association that could do the same function and provide the support that we need. It does not necessarily have to be a race defined or race based group. But I don't have the money or the other resources needed to turn that vision into a reality. But if we could ever get that idea off the ground... we'd be able to tell the MBA to go to Hell. Why is a predominantly White group...that has little to do with the event, deciding which Black Bloggers are allowed in????

Unfortunately, due to the divisions among Black bloggers, I am not too confident that a Black Bloggers group (a professional bloggers organization) would be successful. Based on what I have seen in the Black Blogosphere, I have plenty of reason to doubt that it would be a workable proposition. But I will keep this vision in the back of my mind.

In the meantime, I have to take advantage of the tools I have just as an ordinary blogger. This David and Goliath nature of the media is why blogs are so important. Blogs help to level the playing least to some degree. I have the same opportunity to comment on the event as those who are "credentialed" and "allowed" to attend.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

NO BOND for Genarlow Wilson

NO BOND for Genarlow Wilson

Genarlow Wilson, the young man who was given 10 years for consensual oral sex in Georgia has been denied bond while awaiting appeal.

The law under which he was sentenced, has since been changed. A judge threw out his conviction, but the District Attorney filed an appeal, which means that Genarlow is still caught up in the legal system. And now, this judge has denied him bond during the appeal process.

He's served over 2 years for consensual oral sex. There are no words, because the only words I feel like using would get me banned.

Reference Articles:

If You're a Black Male Teen in Georgia, Think Twice About Having Sex

Genarlow Wilson Still Awaiting Justice

Genarlow Wilson and the Uncle Tom trying to keep him imprisoned

Girl's Mother Criticizes Prosecutor

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Republican Party Spokeswoman Ann Coulter Attacks Obama

Ann Coulter has once again attacked a Black politician, making racist, bigoted & downright ignorant comments about Obama's middle name- suggesting that he must be a terrorist. Can you guess what network provided a platform for this bigotry? The propaganda network Fox Noise of course...

When Obama first hinted that he would run for President, I warned that the racists would engage in this kind of sick behavior.

Story Also Covered At Think Progress.

This is the same woman who made fun of the Darfur Genocide.... expressing her disappointment that Africans were not dying fast enough. A story covered here a few months back. Of course, the Coulter/Darfur story was conveniently ignored by the same corporate networks that pimp Ann Coulter in order to boost their ratings.

How people like this are repeatedly offered a national platform is beyond me. It should be no surprise that American society is going down the tubes. This is a Country that prefers to give full media access (and wall to wall coverage) to the bottom feeders of the society, rather than to the best and brightest that the nation has to offer. We are bombarded by Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, Bill O'Reilly, Ann Coulter, Michael Savage and the list goes on and on. The kids simply emulate what they see. I'm actually surprised that the Country isn't going down the tubes even faster, considering the filth that is force fed to the masses through the media.

The All-American Presidential Forums With Tavis

Like some of my fellow bloggers, I have received the e-mail notification about the Debates hosted by Tavis on PBS this Thursday- The All-American Presidential Forums. This event won't be perfect, as Jill Tubman from Jack & Jill Politics has pointed out. I personally don't care much for the idea that African American bloggers will not be more involved in presenting the questions. I hate the kind of forums where all of the questions, as well as "who" gets to ask the questions, are pre-determined.

I admit, I didn't know about this event until recently (I have been busy with 10,000 other things). Perhaps we should have been afforded more time...and should have been allowed to register to participate in the actual questioning of these candidates. As it stands, it appears that Tavis and his colleagues will choose the questions (with his Covenant agenda in mind). Fare enough Tavis. I like Tavis a lot.... although I don't agree with his whole agenda. My message for Tavis and his co-hosts would be.... no Wiffle Ball questioning.

I'm already dissapointed with the whole setup... because I don't agree even with the concept of 2 Parties. Other Parties or candidates cannot emerge in the innately corrupt American system, because you have to be rich to be included. Now they are excluding us from the questioning of the candidates who have already been chosen for us. I don't see the "Democracy" in this system.
But despite all that... I hope that we can follow the event here. We can at least try to hold these folks who have been chosen for us accountable for what they say and for what they do. Although without viable third and fourth parties, it's awfully hard for us to establish any kind of leverage with these people (which is the heart of the matter... this is why the U.S. political system is going down the tubes).

Hopefully co-bloggers will follow the event....I will be working when the event airs.

Do we know which bloggers are going to attend?????

If video of the event is made available, I will post it here.

The Heart of Darkness: Dick Cheney

The Washington Post has done a series on Vice-President " I'm not part of the Executive Branch" Cheney.

Washington Post Series:Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency

Call it what you want, but here's the bottom line: IF you want to see the heart of darkness of the past six years, read these articles.

Vote No on Hans von Spakovsky

Hat tip: Jack and Jill Politics

The Jack and Jill Politics Blog has been following the case of Hans von Spakovsky and his Federal Election Commission nomination. This is a man who has ACTIVELY participated on MINORITY VOTER SUPPRESSION. You could say that it's his specialty.

Check out their article on him, and how COLOR OF CHANGE is now involved in a campaign against him. Please check out WHY this man needs to be stopped.

Conversations about Black Rage

Black Rage is not a theory.

I’m not sure that it makes so much sense to explain it in any other terms than malcolm x’s. ‘whatever you will do to me, just know that i will do the same to you’. considering what happens to black americans ever day *not in theory* but in reality, it’s a mutha to face. most white folks who have lookedmask.jpg (22395 bytes) closely at the situations many blacks find themselves often recoiled in shock. to a person, in my experience, it comes out like ‘man if they did shit like that to me…’. in the end, there is a profound respect for the many black stragegies used to displace or redirect that rage.

coming from that perspective, i respect that many folks are likely to respect the words and deeds of mlk. but that is rarely the case. there is often a sense of resignation americans feel in confronting the facts that justice is so often an impossibility - that oj will be virtually barbecued forever, yet the korean shopkeeper videotaped shooting a black teenaged girl in cold blood received a suspended sentence and is forgotten by the nation. white folks and blacks alike come to agree that black rage, given american society, is inevitable. that is why white people live in white neighborhoods, stay away from downtown at night, understand the fear of bernard goetz, get the message of willie horton and respond in all sorts of ways in every aspect of american society in a predictable fashion to the images of danger associated with black rage.

black rage becomes not only a self-fulfilling prophesy but a necessary component of american politics. white folks accept their guilt and fear, as they realize their collective historical incompetence as the political majority in addressing the injustices faced by blacks. they bow out. they accept the destruction of cities and the perpetuation of tragedy. black folks do the same thing in their relationships to each other. we abandon our brothers at the first sign of trouble despite what we know, better than anyone, about the content of their individual characters, and we use our own successes and absence of (external) rage, as a justification of our own evasions of responsibility. thus the enraged black man or woman has become a staple symbol in everyone’s rhetoric. but few of us are serious or busy addressing the fundamental injustice. Read the full post HERE come back and talk about what you think.

Are we in need of therapy?


The publisher of African American Opinion ask that you take a stand against demeaning and violent music. We plan to place 5 strategic billboards like the ones in Chicago into 5 urban areas of America, including Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Detroit, Baltimore , and Los Angeles.

We have now partnered with to raise funds to place the billboards in those cities. All funds raised will go directly to the advertising effort. We are urging other bloggers to place one of our widgets on your website or blog to assist in the effort. To obtain a widget to place on your blog or website, just go to the widget on the left sidebar of African American Opinion blog and click copy. Then copy and paste the information onto your sidebar.

Also visit our ChipIn website at:

Monday, June 25, 2007

anti-gangsta rap organizing

Anti Gangster Rap Music Billboards Planned Nationally.

Had enough of the Negative Rap Music!


There is more. Check out how true leadership happens locally. Newspaper and community stakeholders in Rochester, NY leading by example.

Leaders in Rochester, N.Y are taking action against negative rap music. They have been waging a campaign against the violence and misogyny in gangsta rap for more than two years now.

For the third straight year, the Democrat and Chronicle Editorial Board is continuing its campaign to rescue hip-hop from its gangsta rap hijackers.

James F. Lawrence
Editor, Editorial Page, at the Democrat and Chronicle newspaper in Rochester, N.Y. says; “Let’s be clear: We’re not against hip hop, the uniquely urban America musical genre that has gained worldwide popularity. We deplore the way that entertainment executives have thrust gangsta rap and its vileness on pop culture and impressionable young minds.”

Copyright © 2007 Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
By Gaynelle Wethers, director, Multicultural Affairs, Nazareth College.
By George Moses, project director, North East Area Development’s Freedom School in Rochester.

By Pastor George F. Nicholas of Grace United Methodist Church
By Dennis Moriarty of Honeoye Falls, member, board of trustees, Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester.

Record firms continue to push offensive gangsta rap, and this practice is all about corporate and individual wealth.

The music that’s being celebrated this week at the Rochester International Jazz Festival has much in common with hip-hop.
Freedom School participants take negative lyrics of rap songs and rework them to send positive messages.

Teen listeners share their thoughts about the influence of negative gangsta rap lyrics on kids their age.

Cultivate in young people the intelligence and desire to turn away from the negative imagery and ideas the media so willingly dispenses.

Why Hillary Scares Me, by Sen. Mike Gravel

During one of the debates I mentioned that my fellow Democratic candidates scare me. Hillary's speech last week to the Take Back America conference gives me yet another reason to be afraid.

In an indignant voice she decried the Bush administration's ''stunning record of secrecy and corruption, of cronyism run amok. . . It is everything our founders were afraid of, everything our Constitution was designed to prevent.'' Actually, our Constitution grants Congress the power to prevent these ills but Hillary and her colleagues weren't up to the task.

Our founders' legacy did not stop Hillary from voting for the Patriot Act and then supporting its renewal in 2006 despite revelations that the government was using it to infringe on the very liberties that our founders held sacred. Where was her commitment to our founders when she voted to gut our habeas corpus protections?

As for cronyism -- Hillary has repeatedly authorized billions that the Pentagon gave in no-bid contracts to Halliburton. Even though the Democrats have been in control of Congress for months, they still haven't summoned Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld and the other usual suspects to account for the missing millions in reconstruction funding.

When I think about how Congress enabled Bush's corruption and cronyism, I'm reminded of the lines from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar:

And why should Caesar be a tyrant then?
Poor man! I know he would not be a wolf,
But that he sees the Romans are but sheep:
He were no lion, were not Romans hinds.

In the same frightening speech, Hillary went on the blame the Iraqis for the mess in their country: "The American military has succeeded. It is the Iraqi government which has failed to make the tough decisions that are important for their own people."

Let me get this straight. The Iraq disaster is not the fault of the delusional neo-cons, the greedy oil companies, or the gullible and cowardly Congressional warhawks. (Most senators including Clinton didn't even bother to read the 90-page National Intelligence Estimate). According to Hillary, the real culprit is the Iraqi government that we created virtually overnight and left to govern a fractured, impoverished society. Talk about blaming the victim!

Hillary, as an active supporter of the war, you are one of many Americans who are guilty. And now all Americans are left responsible, regardless of whether we supported or opposed he war. When we pull out, our hands will drip with the blood of the tens of thousands of American casualties and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi dead. The Iraqi government didn't start this, we did.

Of course we can continue to compartmentalize ourselves from the truth, remove the troops and blame the rubble on the Iraqis. We can feed the collective fantasy that our good intentions and heroic efforts were thwarted by the cowardice and incompetence of others. But if that's what we take from our experience in Iraq, we will never learn the true lessons and we will be condemned to repeat the same mistakes.

The inability to admit a mistake and assume responsibility is not just a morally bankrupt way to walk through life; it is a dangerous and deadly way to lead a nation. When I am president, I will open up all secret files relating to the Iraq war and expose all officials who lied to the public in promoting it. (That's right, Dick, your files too.) My Justice Department will prosecute everyone who lied under oath or ripped off the American taxpayer by exploiting the Iraq reconstruction effort. And I will pardon to no one.

Black Women's Roundtable Discussion

Here is another great discussion from The Black Women's Roundtable, the podcast for the blog What About Our The podcast is geared towards combating negative images of Black women in popular culture....

The title for this show is: "From the Screens to the Streets" - panelists discuss the efforts of the National Congress of Black women and the impact of the D.L. Hughley protest in Ft. Worth Texas; a protest that I mentioned here a week ago. Activist Eddie Griffin discusses the Ft. Worth protest. Dr. E. Faye Williams- Chair of the National Congress of Black Women, is also on the show.

Black People Just Don’t Get It

It is too bad some black people just don’t get it. Hat Tip Brother Peace Maker for highlighting some of the same issues about New Orleans which I also recently attempted to point out on the afrospear blog. Candidly, I'm starting to wonder about the black middle class bloggers, who talk "big game" about poverty, crime, health crisis, teen pregnancy, dropouts, AIDS, voting rights, and other issues impacting African American communities. I seriously wonder if some of these elitist (black middle class bloggers) actually work, volunteer or mentor with the people they talk about. As someone who has been involved with community development programs for over 30 years, I know that community change does not only happen with talking (blogging), it happens through smart work with residents and other community stakeholders in local communities. Candidly, it's been my experience that the black middle class (generally) have for generations just given lip service to the poor, just like the rest of America. I'm reminded that the black middle class moved out of core urban areas in the late 60's, 70's and 80's, allowing the black poor to fetch for themselves, creating a brain drain. Now, black middle class bloggers, who many times are children of the baby boomer generation, sit high and mighty, perched in their suburban and or gentrified communities, intellectualizing about how to help the poor. Go figure! I guess that is why I agree with Brother Peace, yet I have to place a qualified some "elitist" middle class bloggers don’t get it. But hey, on this issue I could be damn right. Am I wrong?


by Brother Peace Maker

Black People Just Don’t Get It

Like the average black Joe I read what happened to Shaquanda Cotton with disgust and appall. A 15 year old African girl gets sentenced to serve a maximum of seven years in juvenile prison for shoving a 58 year old hall monitor at her high school in Paris, Texas. It should be obvious to anyone with a fraction of a brain that the injustice of the United States judicial system against its citizens of African descent knows no shame or boundary. However, this is the tip of an iceberg that runs throughout America.

Blacks are regularly made examples of injustice, prejudice, exclusion, incompetence, omission, exception, deception, rejection, condemnation, revulsion, abhorrence, stereotypes, subjugation, etc. The list never stops. Every goddamn day that passes we find more examples of America’s detest for blacks. If we listed each and every injustice we as a people have suffered on post-it notes and stacked them all together the resulting column would reach beyond the sun and back. There isn’t time to address each and every transgression The list is simply way too long.

If hurricane Katrina taught the African American community anything it is that our collective voice isn’t strong enough to stop the injustice. Days prior to the hurricane hitting New Orleans the weather forecasts had predicted the potential strike. Yet the federal government claimed they knew nothing about it. We stood by as our federal government did nothing to prepare for the cataclysm. Everyone was outraged. There were calls for investigations. There were rallies to help the victims. New Orleans was the focus of the whole world’s attention. And nothing happened.

The mother of the president of the United States pays a visit to the Houston Astrodome to draw attention and support to the people victimized by the storm. What did she have to say about the plight of the people? “What I’m hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them.”

Shortly thereafter Robert Davis, a 64 year old black man who was in New Orleans to check on his family’s property, was assaulted by police officers in an altercation initiated by his request for information. The man was beaten unmercifully by a number of local cops and federal agent. The police tried to hide their gaffe by alleging that Mr. Davis, a school teacher, was drunk and disorderly. As days passed attention on the fate of Mr. Davis’ case was swept under the AP News rug. And the black community did nothing. More HERE

Sunday, June 24, 2007

30 more U.S. servicemen die in Iraq - Fewer blacks are joining the military.

The first phase of major Iraq campaign almost over with the U.S. toll this month to 78.

BAGHDAD, June 23 -- Eight U.S. soldiers died Saturday in Iraq, including seven killed in roadside bombings, the U.S. military said, bringing to 30 the number of U.S. servicemen whose deaths were announced in the past six days.Meanwhile it was judgment day in Iraq as Iraq's 'Chemical Ali' has been sentenced to hang while roadside bombs in Iraq Killed 7 more Troops.

Here is more unfortunate news, our government is struggling regarding treating war wounded GIs.

Wapo reports, America's war wounded, has received less attention than the 3500 troops killed in Iraq. I guess this could be a real reason why fewer blacks are joining the military.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Bobby Cutts is he a baby killer?

Bobby Cutts charged with murder

Killer Cop? Baby Killer? DAMN!

This will be in the news for a long time. Race, Angry Black man, mixed relationship, cop, white women, black man, police cover-up, holy Shit! There is a lot that we don’t know.

Source CNN

Bobby Cutts, a Canton police officer and the father of Jessie Davis’ 2-year-old son, has been charged with two counts of murder.

Cutts had fathered Davis’ 2-year-old son, Blake, and was also the likely father of her unborn child, a girl she planned to call Chloe. Davis was nearly nine months pregnant when she was last heard from June 13. She was due July 3. More HERE

Had Enough of Negative Rap Music?

The publisher of African American Opinion has decided to take a stand against demeaning and violent music. He says he is taking a stand against gangster and other forms of negative rap music.

Inspired by a recent post by fellow AfroSphere Blogger, Gem at What About Our Daughters and her report on the efforts of faith based leader, Rev. Micheal Pfleger in Chicago, he has decided to reach out to the larger community to say enough is enough.

He plans to place 5 strategic billboards like the ones in Chicago into 5 urban areas of America, including Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Detroit, Baltimore , and Los Angeles.

His blog has now partnered with to raise funds to place the billboards in those cities. All funds raised will go directly to the advertising effort. He is urging other bloggers to place one of his widgets on there website or blog to assist in the effort.

The African American Opinion blog publisher says, "If all goes as expected we plan to make it a national effort, to have billboards in every urban area throughout America urging our youth to boycott rappers who degrade our young girls and women, excite violence and disgrace our communities."It's time to "Do the WRITE thing." Rev. Micheal Pfleger a respected Chicago faith leader has stepped to the plate, African American bloggers need to follow his lead.

To obtain a widget to place on your blog or website, just go to the widget on African American Opinion blog and click copy. Then copy and paste the information onto your sidebar.

You can contact African American Opinion publisher via email at: for more information or visit our ChipIn website at:

Friday, June 22, 2007

Have Black bloggers Forgotten New Orleans?

The picture in New Orleans is bad. John McQuaid and the USA Today are reporting on the need for more than a Band-Aid for New Orleans. Now we learn that New Orleans deaths are up 47% Story HERE. As John McQuaid notes "The big picture here is still, well, scary." More HERE
My question is, Where's the Outrage? why are so many black bloggers not reporting about New Orleans? Are the majority of black bloggers becoming just like the main stream media regarding New Orleans? With Black Gossip Blogs Replacing Mainstream Media why are black bloggers not talking about New Orleans and placing maximum attention on the fact that American Politicans (including House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn) would rather spend billions on Bush's WAR rather than rebuild an American city?
It seems that we as black bloggers have the power of communications and would rather Gossip than engage in a conversation about how to save our people, our American city. The plight of New Orleans is an American disgrace.
As USA Today reports "Hurricane Katrina's tragic aftermath lingered for at least a year after the storm abated, boosting New Orleans' death rate last year by 47% compared with two years before the levees broke, researchers reported Thursday. Doctors say the dramatic surge in deaths comes as no surprise in a city of 250,000 mostly poor and middle-class people who lost seven of 22 hospitals and half of the city's hospital beds. More than 4,486 doctors were displaced from three New Orleans parishes, creating a shortage that still hampers many hospitals, says a companion study released Thursday. The indigent suffered the brunt of the health toll from the 2005 storm. The Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans, two hospitals that made up the city's safety net for the uninsured, were severely damaged. Charity Hospital, oldest and best known of the two, remains closed. More HERE
There are things that are going on in America that are an Assault on Black Sanity. Black bloggers need to stop Acting White regarding New Orleans. We need our AfroSpear Think Tank to address Katrina and make it part of our Black Agenda. The brothers and sisters of New Orleans need and deserve black bloggers unfied help. Yes it's going to take the Field Negro, Jack and Jill' Politics, The Free Slave, people from The Electronic Village, BygBaby's, brothers and sisters from Cananda, Bronze Trinity, and so many other black bloggers from around the AfroSphere to bring more attention to the plight of our people, who have been displaced, dislocated and disoriented by a system of local, state and federal governments who seem not to care. Black bloggers such as AfroNetizen, Black Agenda Report, Black Agenda Blog, Black Commentator, Booker Rising,Dogon Village, Dell Gines, Jack and Jill Politics, Mirror On America, Republic of T, Field Negro, Acting White, Skeptical Brotha, Native Son, Where's the Outrage?, reid report, Prometheus 6 and a number of black bloggers have been covering New Orleans on a regular basis.

Don't you think it's time we as black bloggers become more Active and make a collective effort to keep New Orleans on the front page of Black America's thinking and action, if not all America's mind?
Do you think black bloggers need to keep talking about New Orleans, the Good, the Bad and Ugly?

Should we hold politicans accountable in the 2008 election for not truly helping to rebuild the families of Katrina victims? Should we be blogging more about our New Orleans brothers and sisters?

Thursday, June 21, 2007

20 Loopholes in the Senate Amnesty Bill

About the so-called Comprehensive Immigration Bill.

It still lives, from those who want to grant amnesty to 12-20 million illegal aliens.

From Senator Sessions (Alabama):

20 Loopholes in the Senate Immigration Bill

Loophole 1 – Legal Status Before Enforcement

Loophole 2 – U.S. VISIT Exit Not In Trigger

Loophole 3 – Trigger Requires No More Agents, Beds, or Fencing Than Current Law

Loophole 4 -- Three Additional Years Worth of Illegal Aliens Granted Status, Treated Preferentially To Legal Filers

Loophole 5 – Completion of Background Checks Not Required For Probationary Legal Status

Loophole 6 – Some Child Molesters Are Still Eligible

Loophole 7 – Terrorism Connections Allowed, Good Moral Character Not Required

Loophole 8 – Gang Members Are Eligible

Loophole 9 – Absconders Are Eligible

Loophole 10 – Learning English Not Required For A Decade

Loophole 11 – Earned Income Tax Credit Will Cost Taxpayers Billions In Just 10 Years

Loophole 12 – Affidavits From Friends Accepted As Evidence

Loophole 13 – Taxpayer Funded Legal Counsel and Arbitration

Loophole 14 – In-State Tuition and Student Loans

Loophole 15 – Inadequacy of the Merit System

Loophole 16 – Visas For Individuals That Plan To Overstay

Loophole 17 – Chain Migration Tripled Before Being Eliminated

Loophole 18 – Back Taxes Not Required

Loophole 19 – Social Security Credits Allowed For Some Illegal Work Histories

Loophole 20 – Criminal Fines Not Proportional To Conduct:

There is no way that anyone is going to convince me that this bill is good for the Black Community. No way.

I'm still waiting for anyone to answer my simple question:

What are the benefits FOR the Black Community FROM illegal immigration?

It's a simple question. Just name me 3 positive things that come to the community from illegal immigration.

The Vice-President's Office is NOT part of the Executive Branch

So says Vice-President Dick Cheney.

I kid you not.

In an article entitled, Cheney Power Grab: Says White House Rules Don't Apply to Him, the Vice-President has said that the rules about secrecy don't apply to his office.

As per the article:

Vice President Dick Cheney has asserted his office is not a part of the executive branch of the U.S. government, and therefore not bound by a presidential order governing the protection of classified information by government agencies, according to a new letter from Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., to Cheney.

Bill Leonard, head of the government's Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO), told Waxman's staff that Cheney's office has refused to provide his staff with details regarding classified documents or submit to a routine inspection as required by presidential order, according to Waxman.

Now, do you see why these hearings aren't tedious at all, but very necessary. We have this power hungry mad man blatantly flaunting that he doesn't have to defer to the laws of this country. Began when they let him get away with that Energy Policy Meetings in secret, and has only gotten progressively worse.

I don't care if he's sent a subpoena everyday until the day they leave, it has to be done, because someone has to remind him that he was elected (in theory) and not crowned. That the CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES DOES APPLY TO HIM!

Justice Department Firings Probed - Finally

Today's Washington Post discusses -Political Hiring in Justice Division Probed. This article probes some of the findings of the hirings and firings in the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department, and how it seems that there was a PURGE of all minority women from this Division, and how, at the center of this PURGE is a man named Bradley Schlozman.

I know that all these hearings might sound tedious to some, and worthless to others, but don't let anyone talk you into believing that. These hearings are worth having because they are about trying to get at THE TRUTH. The truth that was hidden since Dubya got into office.

It's about the systematic dismantling of the PROFESSIONAL class of the Justice Department. The PROFESSIONAL class of lawyers that stays, no matter who is President, and does a lot of the grunt work. It is this PROFESSIONAL class that was supposed to have a ' hands off' by the political appointments. Yes, they might not like the policies of the President, but they were PROFESSIONALS and did their jobs.

It is the POLITICIZATION of these employees in the Justice Department and elsewhere that should be of concern to us. And, we especially should find out the truth about how bad it has gotten under Ashcroft, then Gonzales, because we have a right to know. And, it is THIS right that the GOP has been wanting to deny the American people since 2000.

So, I welcome the hearings. I welcome the probes. I welcome anything that gets their LIES out into the open.

Another Jefferson involved in 'alleged' bribery scandal

Dollar Bill's brother, Mose Jefferson, is suspected in a bribery scandal involving the Orleans Parish School Board. According to the article, the former president of the school board is accused of taking bribes, among them, some $140,000 from Mose Jefferson.

My first comment is:

What a family...LOL

The fruit doesn't hang far on this tree.

My next comment is:

140k for a school board president?

What was the bribe for?

According to the paper:

a bribe to ensure an educational software company received a lucrative contract from the Orleans Parish School Board.

I know I shouldn't be surprised, and on one level, I'm not. But, it's just a part of the discouraging corrupt ' system'. I'm not going to make it only about New Orleans, but for now, let's just go a collective ' Damn! - Is EVERYTHING corrupt in New Orleans?' I mean, I had heard how corruption is as natural as gumbo down there, but still. And then, I also think about the students there. How, this is but one contract. What about all the other contracts that are given out- how valid are those contracts, and what kinds of materials are they getting for the students? But, I digress.

Bottom line is that Dollar Bill doesn't seem to be the only one in need of a Defense Fund.

Some Colleges Withdraw from U.S.News & World Report Rankings

As reported in the New York Times

The presidents of dozens of liberal arts colleges have decided to stop participating in the annual college rankings by U.S. News and World Report.

I don't think this is a bad thing. When it first came out, I thought it was possibly a good guide for parents to use with their children for selection, but now, I have my doubts, and I have little faith in the rankings. I'm sure it's a big money making issue for U.S. News & World Report, but not a lot of postive information there.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Bloomberg Quits Republican Party

Well, well, well.

Politics gets more interesting by the day.

First, there was the new Rasmussen Poll that has Fred Thompson, who's not even an announced candidate, leading Rudy Guiliani.

Then late today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City, announced that he has changed his party affiliation from Republican to Independent. This news furthers speculation that Bloomberg intends to run for President.

As a political junkie, this is absolutely fascinating stuff. Bloomberg, as Chris Matthews describes - a sane Ross Perot, is a billionaire politician who has run the City of New York well, from most accounts. The questions are now, will he run? Who would be his running mate? Which party would he take most of the votes from? I don't know if he will run, but he's adding more spice into an already interesting Presidential race.

Open question: IF he runs, do you think that the SINGLE Bloomberg will be subjected to a ' Call Me' Ad?


Monday, June 18, 2007

Fellow Blogger Protests Comedian D.L. Hughley

Activist, fellow blogger, & member of the Black blogosphere group Afrosphere, Eddie Griffin, protested comedian D.L. Hughley during a recent performance in Fort Worth, Texas. Griffin was removed from the event by police. See his story here.

Hughley was the target of the protest for his offensive remarks about the Rutgers University Women's basketball team..., which were (at the least) just as bad as Don Imus's remarks. Yet, due to a double standard, the major corporate news media did not cover Hughley's ugly remarks. But the Black Blogosphere picked it up.

The war to challenge & maybe change the negative images of African Americans (most often perpetrated by other African Americans) has only just begun. And the Black blogosphere will probably be in the lead in this fight. I mentioned here that it would be a long war.

Although I am not a huge fan of protests, Griffin's act was inspiring. These are the kinds of Lions we need- people who put principle first and who don't waver and won't cower.

It was Black Bloggers who made this issue a wider much so that Hughley was forced to respond. He, and others, have been put on notice.

Going Out Of Town

I'll be going out of town this week on a quick trip and will be posting again sporadically....probably by next week. I am supposed to be in hiatus mode.

Lewis Hamilton Wins Again

Lewis Hamilton is in the news again this week.

Last week, he won the Canadian Grand Prix.

Sunday, he won the U.S. Grand Prix in Indianapolis.

This rookie is now #1 in the Formula One Standings.

Congratulations again to Mr. Hamilton, and much continued success. If he keeps this up, I might actually have to take a look and see at Formula One racing.

Related Article:

Lewis Hamilton Statistics

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Happy Father's Day, Daddy

The Black man is the most reviled, disrespected, dehumanized person on the planet. But, not today, and not in this column.

Since today is Father's Day, I would like to dedicate this post to my Daddy.

Yes, I am a Daddy's Girl.

Proud of it.

There are very few things more powerful than a Black man who has his stuff together and is taking care of business. There is a sense of security and serenity in a home in which a together Black man resides.

I was fortunate to live in one of those homes.

My father wasn't famous. He didn't go to work in a suit everyday. He never made close to six figures.

But, he was one of the best human beings I've ever known. And, I didn't know how special he was until I got older.

My father was born in a time when his options were severely limited. If he had been a Baby Boomer, I have no doubt that he would have been a partner in a major accounting firm. But, he was born when he was, which meant that society determined his 'options'. Yet, my father did what so many others did, he went out, found a way to feed his family- legally - and didn't let others define him for what happened outside of his job.

My father wasn't an educated man - degree wise, yet there was rarely a time when I didn't see him with something in his hands to read. We had all sorts of books and magazines in our home that I didn't see unless I was in a library. He was always educating himself, and passed that down to me and my sisters.

My father wasn't a 'feminist', yet he understood that a marriage was a partnership, and so was a home. So, he did what he could to eliminate some of the burden from my mother. My father was the cook in our home. If 100 meals were cooked in our house, Daddy cooked 98 of them, and did the shopping. Now, don't ask him to wash, iron or run the vacuum cleaner. But, he took the burden of family meal time off of my mother's plate.

My father wasn't a fan of organized religion. I can count on two hands the number of times that I saw him inside of a church that didn't include a wedding or funeral. Yet, there are few people who lived their lives more according to the ' Good Book' than him.

What did my father teach me?

1. He taught me about respecting myself. What I should accept and expect for myself as a woman. He did directly, making it clear that no man had a right to put his hands on me, and indirectly, by me being able to observe him respect my mother and not call her out her name at any time in my presence during their entire marriage.

2. He taught me about the passion for education and lifelong learning. That you can always learn something new, and to be aware of the world is a personal responsbility. Don't let others think for you; think for yourself.

3. He taught me how to cook..

4. He taught me to appreciate the beauty in sports. He had three daughters, but I was the only one who shared his love of sports. Long before there was a Tiger Woods, or Venus and Serena Williams, Daddy would have me watching golf and tennis in person. We would truly be specks of pepper in a sea of salt at those events, but he wanted me to appreciate different things. He loved me so much that he actually took me to ice skating events - yes, a Black man sitting at an ice skating show.

5. He taught me to love travel. Every summer we would take out the atlas and it was my job to map out where we would go on our car travels. I got to see a lot of this country that way, and he encouraged me to see the world. Daddy fought in France during WWII. He used to tell me stories of his time in the Army and how he much he enjoyed France. I told him that I wanted him to take me where he went while stationed in Europe. He worked a second job so that he, Mama and I could celebrate my 16th Birthday in Europe, traveling to the places that he did when he was a soldier. Daddy didn't live to see me graduate from college, which makes this trip one of my most precious memories.

Today, I want to thank Daddy for everything he gave me. He's gone from us now, physically, but his lessons, I find a new use for them nearly everyday.

To all the Black men out there who are taking care of business; who love their children, and guide them in the right direction - thank you.

Happy Father's Day.

Suggested Reading:

Pops: A Celebration of Black Fatherhood

The Ditchdigger's Daughters

The Pursuit of Happyness

Becoming Dad: Black Men and the Journey to Fatherhood

Black Fatherhood: Reconnecting With Our Legacy

Whatever Happened to Daddy's Little Girl?: The Impact of Fatherlessness on Black Women

A Typical Day At The Justice Department

Click Image To Enlarge

Amy Winehouse - The New Queen of Soul?

The folks at Spin magazine might be on some serious mind altering drugs.

Now I have heard a few of her songs.... and...she's a pretty talented Pop Singer, and she has a good voice. But that's it. She is not the Queen of anything.... certainly not Soul. Give her a chance to make a few more albums before putting her that high up.

I don't read Spin... they publish quite a bit of nonsense, especially things that just aren't credible. As an amateur musicologist.... my bull---t alarm sounded immediately when I heard about this.
A few years ago I recall Spin magazine putting out a list of the 50 Greatest Bands of all-time... and there were some obvious omissions and oversights... Groups like NWA (a gangster rap group...and not even a "band") made the list, but Earth Wind & Fire, for example, was left off. Earth Wind & Fire is a Hall of Fame Band. That list blew my mind. And that was one of several problems with the list...several other major Rock bands were left off as well. So I don't pay much attention to these music mags.... But I thought their Queen of Soul Proclamation was amusing.