Saturday, January 31, 2009
Buy two 3 gallon gas cans.
Buy an inexpensive 1 litre bottle of ;
and three litres of sweet and sour.
Pour all contents into clean gas can and shake.
Long Island Tea
1-fill an ice filled glass with some contents of gas can
2-top with coke
3-and a wedge of lemon
1-Repeat step one above
2-top with slash of 7up
3-top with Midori
4-and add a wedge of lemon
follow directions for Tokyo Tea only substituting Peach Schnapps for the Midori
Strong Island Tea
follow directions for the Long Island Tea
Add a splash of Bacardi 151
Use the other gas can.
1 litre of inexpensive vodka
1 litre of triple sec
3 litres of cranberry juice
1 small bottle of Rose's lime juice.
Shake and serve.
Enjoy the game.
I'm not preaching to anyone.
That's why I'll "Allow" any comment that is not directed at any individual who has commented earlier.
It's a discussion - not a lecture.
It's a disagreement - not a fight.
It's the free exchange of ideas that is geared towards gaining a better understanding.
Since no one is smarter than everyone - we are all supposed to learn from each other.
But who is "Them"?
And who is "US"?
This is why I don't understand (the well intended) comments like;
"It not mattering you equates to being on the high road"
Is having a sense (and the ability to have such a sense) of a moral responsibility to treat each other with respect and dignity inherent only to whites?
Are Blacks only seen as victims and not equal allies in the fight between good and evil?
This is why I can't buy into the whole Tim Wise/ White Guilt malady.
White Guilt assumes a sense of superiority and condescension that feels the need to exercise itself by helping "those poor and uneducated - and thus helpless - non-whites"
Are whites solely capable of making a positive,meaningful and lasting change?
We can all make some type of positive change in our families, schools, neighborhoods and communities.
But does this mean that I am against any type of alliance with those (who may be of another race, nationality or ethnicity) who also wish to make such a change?
Forming alliances is the most efficacious way of bringing about these changes.
But working "with" someone is different than working "for" someone.
We need to bring more to the table besides complaints.
If we take the Steelers or a unit in the Marines as an example.
Past losses don't matter. (But the lessons from those losses do matter.)
Race doesn't matter.
Being competent is what matters.
Accomplishing a common goal is what matters.
So, if we put our differences aside and acknowledge that our fate may be in the hands of the men and women next to us - what are our common enemies or goals?
I'd say, yes.
But how do we ensure that everyone has a fair shot at attaining the highest levels?
Having a good education (the average high school diploma only ensures an eighth grade education) is usually the key to getting a better job and developing the skills needed to keep one.
But many of the problems associated with high health care costs could be eliminated by changes in lifestyle or environment
For many, having a better education would allow them to gain the tools necessary to make such changes.
Since the inability to read is the most common trait of those in prison - again, a good education is the key.
So how do we best educate our children?
Knowing facts is not as important as knowing how and when to apply these facts.
Understanding, and being able to properly interpret, these facts is what matters.
In short - Let's be The Shit.
If we become The Shit - we'll have the social, financial and mental facilities to solve these problems.
If we become The Shit - we'll ( and when I say "we" - I mean anyone who works for equal justice and equal opportunity) be in a better position to dictate terms instead of having to beg for concessions.
Do you mean with a Texas Twang?
Or a Southern drawl?
Or like you're from Jersey or New Yawk?
Like a Valley Girl (or Dude)?
Do you mean like your from a trailer park?
Or the Cajun pigeon of Southern Louisiana?
I used to watch King of the Hill.
Before moving to Texas, I thought Boomhower was just speaking gibberish.
But after being here for more than ten years - I understand every word the guy says.
It's just that I've become more familiar with the dialect.
There is no such thing as "Talking White".
It's just Standard American English.
We might be able to call it a media accent.
Or a corporate accent.
Actors and newscasters are often sent to speech coaches to scrub them of their regional accents when the move to the national market.
Because it's just easier to communicate.
It eliminates the distraction of the listener having to ask; "What?".
It's not the Queen's English either.
The Queen speaks British English.
The common practice of pretentious people, who over-articulate ev-er-y syllable, is just an affectation of intelligence.
No one naturally speaks that way.
A Northern California educator asked if I thought an ESL class to correct Ebonics was a viable option.
Another respected blogger told me that such a class would be seen as condescending.
But how do we eliminate the dialect from anything other than casual conversation?
Unless you're an athlete or entertainer - Ebonics seem to serve little purpose.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
but the maddest of all is to see life as it is
and not as it should be"
Of course I see one's color, race and/or ethnicity.
It's probably the first thing someone notices.
But it's rarely the only thing one notices.
These reductions to "race only" exclude many worthy partners (and include many who should have never been) in relationships of personal, professional and social matters.
But please remember. My opinions are just that - My opinions.
Not necessarily fact.
Sometimes in need or refinement or a new perspective.
Limited to my experiences.
If I see a group of white guys in a room - is my first response to fight, run or flex?
Nope, I just say "What's up?".
If I see a group of white guys in a room who are wearing sheets and robes and carrying a noose - is my first response to fight, run or flex?
Is this being racist?
It's just judging people predicated on my limited knowledge or perspective.
When I walk into a room of Black guys - is my first response to fight, run or flex?
Nope. I just say "What's up?".
If I see this same group of guys with guns standing in front of a liquor store - is my first first response to fight, run, or flex?
Are they drunk?
Do I know the guys?
Are they finna' fight?
The familiarity enables me to ask more questions and judge based on more variables.
Is this racist?
It's just judging people based on my limited experience or perspective.
Race is only one of the many factors someone uses when assessing others.
Mannerisms, speech, dress and even physical attractiveness can, in many cases, play a bigger role.
Fiddy would be deemed "low-class" by many while Obama would be deemed "high-class' by those same people. Even though Fiddy's net worth is reported to be as much as one hundred times that of Obama's.
Does Fiddy care? Probably not. He has his Hustle down.
Does Obama care? Probably not. He also has his Hustle down.
So how would many justify being afraid of a multi-millionaire entertainer, who was a shooting victim, who lives in Beverly Hills (or Holmby Hills or Bellaire or whatever).
But not being afraid of a Black man who grew up moving from place to place, played on the high school basketball team, raised by a single mother and made his name on the streets of Chicago?
This is where mannerisms, speech, dress and physical attractiveness come into play.
Fiddy cultivated an image, mingled with his past, to create a marketable entity.
Obama did the same.
We all do the same.
Race is just one of the many factors we use in judging others (or when others judge us).
Even Oprah - the grand-slam of unfortunate situations (fat, ugly (c'mon, you saw the Color Purple), poor, molested, and Black) - made it.
I know that she's anomalous - but that's a whole lot going against somebody.
In many cases;
looks matter as much as race,
being able to conjugate the verb "to be" and/or apply an "N" before a vowel matters as much as one's race,
knowing what you're doing matters as much as race,
having game (superior social skills) matters as much as race.
RACE - is rarely the sole determining factor in any situation.
When I say that I'm sick of race - I don't mean that we should ignore it.
(It's something obvious, we can't ignore it.)
But can we at least put it somewhere on the list closer to where it belongs?
Maybe a little above having red hair but below having good manners or a good education.
Otherwise we're just fighting imaginary dragons that turn out to be windmills.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
What did we get?
It's kind of like the day after Christmas - all the gifts are now open and strewn across the living room floor.
Did we get a new PS3 with a Sony 62 inch flat screen?
Or socks and underwear?
Everyone would like the Sony package.
But most NEED the socks and underwear.
Alex Jones' new movie - examining the phenomenon that is Barack Obama - comes out in March.
For anyone who hated Bush, take a look at a film that gives the same treatment to Obama.
While it won't win any awards - it should be filled with tidbits that will have you questioning the reliance on Obama to ensure your future.
Monday, January 26, 2009
"Name me one black group or politician who is calling for an end to AA (Affirmative-Action)?
Name just one!"
A Houston Chronicle story entitled; Obama Opposes Reparations (no author credited) quotes Barack Obama as saying;
"I have said in the past - and I'll repeat it again - that the best reparations we can provide are good schools in the inner city and jobs for people who are unemployed."USA Today op/ed contributor Yolanda Young quotes Barack Obama stating the following in a late July Q&A entitled; Obama's Fumble On Affirmative Action.
"Affirmative action is not going to be the long-term solution to the problems of race in America because, frankly, if you've got 50% of African-American or Latino kids dropping out of high school, it doesn't really matter what you do in terms of affirmative action.
These kids are not getting into college."
@ Indra - Is this ONE big enough for you?
(Also read; When Affirmative Action Was White - Ira Katznelson or the piece on The Root http://www.theroot.com/views/reparations-bailout that compares reparations to a bailout of the Freedman's Savings Bank)
IMO - those apologies are as virga - having more affect than effect.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
"Success is the best revenge." - French Proverb
"Success covers a multitude of blunders." - Bernard Shaw
"Success is a ladder that cannot be climbed with your hands in your pockets." American Proverb
"Success is often the result of taking a misstep in the right direction." - Al Bernstein
In not asking for an apology - I'm just saying that it wouldn't be enough.
Racist people hate a successful minority more that a failing one.
The successful one weakens their argument of superiority.
The failing one can be seen as confirmation.
The success of one seen as being less than themselves just eats at them.
That success is like an incurable Cancer that takes away his strength a little at a time - until he is dead.
Maybe we should focus on the best revenge and let the convenient apology go.
Even the Almighty God grew tired and had to rest on the seventh day.
There's more to life than what's wrong with life.
Below are some of the iconic pieces of furniture that I'd like to own.
The Tizio lamp by Artemide.
Okay, I have a set in storage back in Cali.
But it's still my favorite lamp of all time.
First chair by Memphis (designed by Michele de Lucchi, 1983). When this chair first came out - it just screamed Miami Vice. Impractical, but nice to look at.
I have a couple of later models, but this one (original version - not a re-issue) is my all-time favorite.
Ray and Charles Eames' plywood chairs of the 1950's inspired a whole new direction in design. Arguably the most photographed and/or filmed piece of furniture...ever.
George Nelson designed the Marshmallow couch for Herman Miller in 1956.
A nice couch that I could never use.
A local dealer has one, but it's way over priced (and has ugly cushions).
Maybe I'll work out a trade for some built-in kitchen appliances that I have here in storage.
And he now says that he would like to be Black.
I'm not kidding.
He said there's a lot of advantages.
Black is in.
Is this a turning of the tide?"
Larry King has been berated for uttering the above quote.
But it makes sense for an eight year old white kid from an affluent family to think this way.
His Black friends are probably pretty much the same as he.
Same tastes, economic status and experiences.
His favorite music is probably any of the latest songs by a Black artist.
His favorite athlete is probably Black.
His favorite actor is probably Will Smith.
Now the eight year old is seeing a Black POTUS.
It's the same as the results of those studies where young Black children are asked to pick a doll based on color and personality traits.
The good traits are usually associated with the white doll - the bad with the Black.
The images with which the child is inculcated determines their perspective.
To him (Cannon King),
Black is in.
Friday, January 23, 2009
From the smallest germs and bacteria to the largest solar systems and galaxies (and some would say universes) - the segregation of matter takes place (sometimes) without each entity having any idea that the action is occurring.
Fish have schools,
Birds have flocks (or gaggles of geese, when not in flight),
Lions have prides,
Many animals have herds,
Predatory animals have packs (but so do predatory humans, as in; a pack of thieves).
Plants are indigenous to certain areas.
Even when transplanted - they thrive in some areas but struggle in others.
As with most beings, their segregation tends toward survival.
The gasses and solids of the universe cluster to form planets, moons, asteroids and stars.
These cluster to form solar systems, galaxies, etc. .
Humans segregate into families, tribes and nations.
Even more segregation takes place when we segregate by;
religion (and denominations), economic status , social status and race.
Of these, only race (or one's perceived race) is the only trait one has no control over.
But even with "Race' - they're are divisions based upon color, weight and appearance.
It seems that we are always inventing a new type of Caste System whenever someone makes the leap from from one group to the next (or is able to Code-Switch at will).
Even on the Internet, we segregate into cliques who share the same views or interests as ourselves.
But if we're not teaching or learning, what's the good in that?
I never intended to blog about race (or the problems between races).
But since moving to the South - it's been something that I've been inundated with on a daily basis.
Maybe it's the residual resentment from the recent (and in some cases... current) scars of Segregation.
But what got me thinking about one's desire to segregate was a recent conversation with a dope-boy in the 'hood.
"You don't belong hurr (here)" was his remark, upon seeing me talking to some acquaintances on the block.
"Nobody does", I replied.
"I do! I'm from hurr!", he replied.
"Maybe YOU do", I said.
At this time, one of the kings of the block stepped in to give me a pound (Obama-type fist pound - not a pound of any illegal substance).
That signaled an end to any discord.
If I was cool with him, I was cool with all.
"Big Blue" (an almost reformed felon) asked why I keep trying with some people.
Sometimes I ask myself the same question.
But maybe some of these people just need a guide to help them out of their chosen lifestyles.
At least the kids would be better served by better examples of what it takes to get ahead in life.
I'm no saint. I may even be reprobate.
But I don't want anyone to go where I deserve to be.
The thing is; one's limitations are usually self-imposed.
External conditions have less of an impact on any given outcome than do our choices and our preparation.
Earlier, I postulated that being mixed-race may offer a better opportunity to see the world as more than the world's definition of what is expected of each of us.
But this theory was quickly proven to be ignorant- just by looking at my own siblings.
They're (roughly) the same racial background as me, but with different outcomes.
Maybe it was money or access to resources.
Nah.... there are too many people who waste their families resources trying to emulate a lifestyle that most would hope to avoid.
Maybe it was the parents.
Maybe..., but I had the same upbringing as my brothers.
Or family dynamics (or birth order).
Maybe..., I was given more responsibility than my brothers.
Maybe..., it could be genetic.
Maybe even racial differences cause many to react to the same situation in different ways.
But then are those who break these norms to be considered as anomalous?
Do they have some sort of ailment that causes them to act in a way that is different from their pre-supposed way of acting (or being)?
Is their being different contrary to a natural desire or need to fit in with the herd?
Does their being different offer less safety and less of a chance to reproduce?
Segregating by race may cause us to have lower standards.
Being the best White, Black, Asian or Hispanic person doesn't necessarily make us the best person for any given task, job or position.
All great cultures thrived by learning from the best of the other cultures and assimilating those traits (or knowledge or skill) into their own.
If America issued a formal apology - would we accept it?
Would we forgive them and then have everything be alright?
Why do many of us need someone else to say "it's alright" for us to do well?
So to the people stuck on a "Race-Only" criteria.
WE have bigger things to do.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
"i am so over all this color shit..."
Truth be told - me too.
Been over it.
It was never (well... in recent years) more of a problem than we made it.
Obama won because his issues were bigger than race.
Race was a problem for the simps to fight over.
Are we talking genotypes or phenotypes?
Medically, race may have some merit.
Socially, race is largely obsolete (or should be).
We still can't even seem to agree on a universal definition of race.
But just when you think that America has a chance to become post-racial.
Blogs like this (http://whyblackssuck.blogspot.com/) crop up.
It makes as much sense as attributing all of the traits of white people to the headlines in the morning papers.
If we keep looking for racism - we'll find it.
If we keep looking for the good in people - we'll find that too.
The rest of Ms Paisley's comments are more important.
Eff the pageantry, she wants to know about policy, issues and answers - not a minor (in most cases) distraction like race.
Like the Steeler's expectation of Mike Tomlin - it's about results.
I've read people stating that Obama won because he is half-white.
But this is getting a little beyond my desire for comprehension.
Add to all of this the whole Bloodline mythology of the Carolingians and Merovingians (seen as both (or either) Christ and Anti-Christ connections) and we have a whole bunch of misinformation mingled with disinformation.
It seems that Rev. Joseph Lowery wasn't given the memo that the Obama campaign was about putting the issue of Race behind us.
"...and when white will embrace what is right."
(Going by a per-person measure - didn't more whites vote for Obama than Blacks?)
The old school preacher seemed to revert to an old mantra that has failed the progressive movement in it's earlier attempts to assert it's power.
Book-ended by the controversial Rev. Rick Warren, it seemed that Obama was intent on pleasing many but offending more.
On the whole, the benedictions went fine.
But c'mon Joe, let it go.
Race isn't the issue of the new era.
Fighting oppression, is.
Making racist remarks at the end of a hard fought victory is so 2008.
But what got me thinking about the place of religion in modern society was the spate of prayers before, during and after sporting events.
(Does anyone remember the guy in the variegated afro wig who would always hold up a "John 3:16" sign?
How did he always get such good seats?)
Former Philadelphia Eagle Herb Lusk is generally credited with the first on-field prayer.
But a more etiological reference point is Slate's;
I'm pretty sure that God isn't concerned that the Steelers will beat the Cardinals by 13 points in a couple of weeks.
But didn't Christ defeat sin in a sudden-death overtime?
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Usually not ugly, but far from beautiful.
Most rate anywhere between a five and a seven.
It seems that we're inundated with prose written about Michelle Obama's beauty.
Or what she'll wear at the next ball, party or television appearance.
Was her dress "Lime-Green" or "Chartreuse"?
But I don't see it.
Maybe it's her protruding mandible that makes her mouth look like P. Diddy's. or Rosario Dawson's or the Geico cave men's.
But there is no shame in that.
I'd put her at about the same level as most other first ladies, in regards to her looks.
Maybe she'll more closely resemble Eleanor Roosevelt (I didn't have room to go as low as a two (2) on the above graph.) in terms of her policy.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Much of conservatism is rooted in ignorance which often shows itself as fear
When my mother divorced my step-father, my mother and we children had to move back to the 'hood.
My mother was worried about us being able to adapt to a hostile environment - so she said a prayer on our move-in day to ask for our safety.
My older sister took the isolationist approach - only going into the complex for brief moments.
But she was safe.
Since I was going to be blessed with safety, everything was opened to me.
I met and learned from many people who most others would run from, lock their doors or cross the street if approached by them.
So... were the facts that I was competent and confident in the ways of the street the reasons that I could afford to be more liberal in my relationships with these people?
Doesn't it require less courage to be fearful?
Doesn't it require a certain strength to have hope?
Many Conservatives call Liberals "emotional" and "ignorant".
But I ask; Isn't the emotion of an irrational fear the motivation behind your conservatism?
And isn't it ignorant to work in theories while having little understanding of other facets of our society?
So in prejudging everyone else - aren't you showing yourselves as emotional and ignorant?
So... I'll be a Liberal (yes capital "L") while you stay the scared Sissie little girl.
A brotha' in a pimped out Caddy?
What else is new?
According to a Northeastern University study, Houston is at the top of the list of the 28 U.S. cities with the most homicides by and of young Blacks from 2000-2007.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Women say: "That's okay, it happens to a lot of guys".
That's the feeling that many will be left with after the Inauguration.
The euphoria was meant to be be ephemeral.
We weren't meant to be in a state of denial or dismissal for the next four to eight years.
We were supposed to enjoy one small victory and then begin the arduous task of tearing down old institutions and beliefs, and then replacing them with a philosophy or practice that would encourage and sustain the maturity of our culture.
I have a dumb-ass cousin who never pays her bills on time.
Each of her parents work at a petro-chemical plant and earns 100k+ yearly.
This girl is close to thirty and has still never lived on her own.
Her credit card bills, late car payment charges, cell phone bills and other bills grow every month.
In her excitement for Barack Obama's election, she's booked a trip to Washington D.C. to join in our county's celebration.
She's worked overtime for a month to finance her trip.
Now, don't get me wrong - I'm just as excited as the next man in having Barack Obama as our next POTUS.
But I pay my bills.
My dumb cousin feels that being a part of a situation, that doesn't seem to have encouraged a positive change on her part, is more important than actually making a change (like paying her bills).
She's like the girl in the above picture, hitch-hiking to a fictitious ideal.
How many others of those in D.C., this coming week, could have better spent their time, effort and money on something that would have brought about the change in their lives that many are seeking in Obama's coronation?
Run Jessie Run
Progress is like a relay - each leg being run by individuals and organizations until their purpose is fulfilled.
to the Civil Rights Movement,
to Obama (And MANY others in between).
People, like Jessie Jackson, picked up the baton from the cold dead hands of Martin Luther King Jr. .
Those same people tried to hold on to the baton too long and run the next leg of the relay themselves.
Obama had to snatch the baton from Jessie and others, in order for him to cross the finish line and win the race.
But the elections were just a preliminary heat.
There are still more races to be run (won).
We Are Still A Young Culture
Think about it.
We have only had a modicum of real freedom for a little over one generation.
Slavery? Nope, not free.
Segregation? Nope, still not completely free.
The Civil Rights Movement? Nope, we were still fighting for basic human rights.
So maybe the Eighties is when we were finally able to enjoy any sense of true freedom.
Why the Eighties?
-The Cosby Show and A Different World showed most of America a part of Black culture that had little to do with the Good Times mold.
-MTV finally showed a once Black artist (Michael Jackson).
-Public Enemy, BDP, NWA, and a lot of others in hip-hop rapped about more than being dancing and jiving coons.
-HBCU's and their Afro-centric influence were more visible to those outside of the South (Did you have Cross-Colours and a leather Africa medallion?).
-BET founded (Okay...a plus and a minus).
So our culture of real freedom is still aspirational.
We're still trying to figure out what it means to be truly free and the expectations and responsibilities that go along it.
Our culture of real freedom still in it's teen years - still pompous, pretentious and un-knowledgeable.
We're still trying to prove to our predecessors that we are worthy of being considered mature.
What changes do you make?
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Zimbabwe, suffering from hyper-inflation, has plans to issue a $50,000,000,000 (five BILLION dollar) note.
Sarah was close to an hundred years old when Abraham tried to pass her off as his sister in order to save his life from a hostile king.
Maybe Tina Turner proves that women can still be sexy at close to SEVENTY years old.
IT"S THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT
Keeping with the Biblical theme;
The world could end with a bang or a whimper.
Cosmos gives five ways the world could end
The obfuscation of the masses has always been influenced by the media.
Schools, churches and institutions cannot educate enough to compensate for this.
Parents are too busy trying to keep up with the Joneses to notice that their children are missing the basic needs of guidance, discipline and responsibility - not the need for more useless stuff.
Ask any parent who is home all day to list the characters of the Young and the Restless.
Now ask them to name their children's classes and schedule ... and their teachers.
Hmmm... ten or twelve fictitious characters but no answers on school?
What's wrong with this?
It seems that for many, their priorities are not in order.
But where can a single parent (70% of African-American households, according to most sources) look for answers?
These poverty pimps are more interested in the size of their church rather than the effectiveness of their message.
How many times have you seem a pastor in a Benz while most parishioners were riding (or getting a ride) in a whoopty?
How many pristine churches have you seen in a broken down neighborhood?
If the message was to love thy neighbor, shouldn't the church start with it's neighbors?
It seems that many preachers have forsaken their call to serve man and instead fallen into the trap of being serviced by women.
When was the last time you saw a preacher getting dirty.
Don't get me wrong - there are some good people leading good churches.
But for many - it's just a good hustle.
The Urban League, NAACP and others groups care more about being invited to the Inauguration than they do about serving the people they were established to serve.
Is your local branch of these groups in the 'hood or in some pristine office next to the establishments they were set up to reform?
This makes as much sense as former Wall Street execs overseeing the reformation of Wall Street.
When these groups became "credible", they lost their drive for reforming the same group of which they were now a part.
These dinosaurs need to become extinct.
Too bad too many followed the lead of W.E.B. Du Bois instead of Marcus Garvey or Booker T.Washington.
(I'm not a racist. In truth... I'll work with a just white before an unjust Black.)
If the philosophies of one of the latter had won out - maybe we would be operating from a position of power instead of one of dependence.
The "Talented Tenth"?
That's just more segregation during the height of Segregation.
Even if we assume that the bottom tenth will always be the bottom tenth.
What about the "Average Eighty"?
IMO - These groups are like John McCain - fighting old battles with old weapons.
Our vision? Okay.
But what direction?
Obama will not solve our problems (although his election seems to have helped many to speak about racial issues in a more candid way).
The riots in Watts and Detroit produced the same results as the riots in Tulsa and Rosewood.
Different only in their motivations.
We shouldn't eviscerate a house in which we also live and that we helped build.
Schools won't teach.
Well that's not entirely correct.
Maybe I should say that schools won't teach what needs to be learned.
They'll teach to pass a test, but then what?
If children don't learn in the home - they won't practice at school.
If they fail to adapt to school - they'll fail to adapt on a job.
If they fail to produce a necessary good or service - they'll end up on the corner or in prison.
It all starts at home.
What we teach (or fail to teach) the next generation will have a more lasting impact than any external force.
So the answer to the question "What Next" seems to be up to us.
The choice was always ours.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Maybe a little better than average in some things.
I was often thought to be one of those people who knew everybody.
But in truth, I didn't have the time - I just knew everybody who knew everybody.
But for some reason, I'm often cast into a position of leadership.
The summer after my freshman year in college, one of my friends recommended that I watch the movie Rumble Fish.
Micky Rourke's character Motorcycle Boy in particular.
Motorcycle Boy compared himself to Jessie James, The Pied Piper and Robin Hood.
I'm pretty sure that most charismatic leaders could use similar comparisons.
But the question that got me was MB asking; "...but where am I supposed to lead them?".
This question can also be phrased as; "What next?", "What now?" or "Now What?".
Assuredly, there is no "Universal Answer".
No Silver Bullet.
We can find no commonality in any other discipline - how do we expect to find one common answer to a problem as complex as "Race"?
Or the perception of race.
Or even agree on a definition of race?
With all of the wisdom and knowledge available from the millions on the Internet - why is the problem of identifying the most effective answers to the most common problems so hard to solve?
Racism isn't a problem.
Who cares whether someone likes you?
Who cares what someone thinks of you?
Who cares if someone ... ?
Racism isn't the problem - oppression is.
But after we get over the need for approval... what problems do we solve first.
What's most important and efficacious?
Do those we are trying to help even need to know that they're doing what is in their best interest?
Should everyone even be equal - or just given the opportunity?
Adding longevity or sustainability to the equation, what are the ten (or so) issues that would give us the most bang for the buck? (i.e. - More Black males are killed by Black males per year than by police officers in a decade. Where should our real focus be?)
What I'm asking is;
Are we focusing on the right issues but from the wrong perspective?
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
How does the Racial Threat Chart look?
Black - Severe
Brown - High
Yellow - Low
White - A - O.K. .
Some people just like to put everything in an easily read format.
I had some cousins over for the Holidays.
One group went a couple of blocks past my house and got their SUV stuck in the mud.
In a panic, they called for me to help them.
In their minds, they could just hear the banjos from Deliverance.
(The Racial Treat Chart can be inverted for your personal perspective.)
Many in today's world will say that "Bad Guys" are white and "Good Guys" are Black. (Or vice-versa)
But the recent rash of police shootings of unarmed Black males is more rooted in the Fear of a Black Man than in just being a racist.
Do you really run from the police for fear of being shot?
Nope... me neither.
These shootings were also class issues.
Or perception issues.
Race is only part of the equation (Okay...a large part. Factors like unfamiliarity and under-training being others.) in these shootings.
Black has always been a harbinger of bad tidings.
Even in the simplest of nursery rhymes - black is bad.
Even Deuces affect a stilo (estilo) similar to Black gang members, in their efforts to obtain a level of Street Cred.
(I am assuming that everyone can remember the rantings of Martin Lawrence's character in Boomerang or the first teachings of Malcolm X while in prison - Blackball, Blackmail, etc...)
To tell the truth... I'm more in fear of a Black cop trying to prove that he treats all perpetrators equally by being tougher on another Black person.
Police misconduct is nothing new. (Just Google "Police Misconduct" - there are too many links to list here.)
In fact, it's fairly common.
But add to these under trained and fearful officers the image of a Black male,
and what do you get?
A police shooting of an unarmed Black male.
But how much of this negative perception is brought on by a certain segment of our population being infatuated with portraying the "Gangsta" image?
Do many cause the Fear of a Black Man to become heightened by their inability (or lack of desire) to acculturate to their new environment?
What I'm saying is; Race wasn't the sole motivation in these shootings.
The battery company's arrival in the auto business has produced a car that will sell for thousands less (about $22,000), arrive sooner (around 2011) and out-perform it's American rivals.
The company (Warren Buffet owns 10%) seeks to make a splash during the current Detroit Auto Show.
Just combine these vehicles with the solar powered parking garages and we'd have a good answer to some of our problems.
(Maybe Detroit could produce the same vehicles for less if they did away with the unions and treated their employees like slaves)
Not Tony Robbins, but many like him.
From the late 1800's and The Church of Christ, Scientist
To L. Ron Hubbard and Dianetics and later Scientology
To Werner Ernhard and est (or EST).
To books like The Secret.
Many New Age thinkers have sought to a way to combine God and science.
As recent events with John Travolta's son have shown, the two don't mix.
I believe in medicine.
If I have a headache, give me an aspirin.
But even medicine has it's limits.
My youngest brother was (is) a Blood. Years ago, he was in a fight with a group of Crips.
He was in a coma and the doctors said that he wouldn't make it through the night.
I went home and prayed for him to either die that night or let him recover fully.
The next morning, my mom called me to tell me that he was still in a coma and that I shouldn't expect him to live another day.
I went to the hospital to check on him - he was still alive.
So in my faith - he would be fine.
Two weeks later, he awoke.
The doctors and my family warned me that he would be a vegetable for the rest of his life.
"Says who?", I asked.
The nurses said that it was "nice" that I could still have hope.
Only I didn't have hope, I knew.
As my brother progressed through each stage of his surprising (to them) recovery, the doctors and my family warned me of my brother's inabilities.
"No, he's fine", I would reply.
I hated them all.
I hated those weak and doubting people.
They were making him weak and doubtful.
He recovered fully and went back to the life that got him in that mess to begin with.
So when I read about Jet Travolta, I understand.
Sometimes faith matters more than knowledge.
Monday, January 12, 2009
-So the hurricane Katrina wasn't his fault.
-There hasn't been another attack on the U.S. since 9/11.
-The "War On Terror" is justified?
-He didn't cause the economy to collapse.
-He did a lot of work with A.I.D.S. in Africa.
But many who wax poetic about "W" in his last days in office are much the same as those who reminisce at a funeral about a bad person - only remembering the good stuff.
On the other hand;
-The poor federal response ("Good job, Brownie") was in the hands of the Dub.
-There wasn't an attack on the contiguous U.S. for what... a couple hundred years before 9/11.
-Afghanistan yes. Iraq, why?
-A 350 Billion dollar blank check? And NO receipts?
-According to the CDC, there were 56,300 new A.I.D.S. cases reported in the US in 2006 (the most recent data) with African-Americans having a rate that is seven times that of whites in America.
So...would you agree with the Dub about his "good, strong record"?
Maybe we just "Misunderestimated" him.
(I guess the Dub forgot to use Spell-Check.)
I spent the holidays with the families of my cousins who aren't doing as well as they could (or should).
I've never seen so many young males so concerned with things that used to be thought of as the traits belonging to little girls.
I'm not saying that boys need to grow up to be thugs - but they should not grow up acting like prima donna bitches either.
I thought the women on Sex In The City were silly for obsessing over shoes, the right hair-cuts, talking on the phone, and being more concerned with looking good than being good. Many of today's young men put those women to shame in their desire for the superfluous.
I asked one of my cousins (13 yr. old male) about the appropriate ages for different household chores.
Clean own bedroom - 3 years old.
Take out the trash - 4 years old.
Cook own meals - 5 years old.
Mow the lawn. - 6 years old.
Do own laundry - 7 years old.
Wash dishes - 7 years old.
Okay... the ages seemed a bit young to me too, but the fact that he understood that chores are a part of one's childhood responsibilities is what's important.
Over the holidays, I saw many young adults treating their parent's homes as though they were guests at a resort.
I saw single moms who still treated their almost grown sons as "babies".
(He'll always be their "baby" - but he stopped being "a baby" a long time ago.)
These mother's inability to say "No" has caused many in this generation to have unrealistic expectations based on limited abilities or the appropriate social skills.
Without the needed adjustments - we're in for a generation that is expecting a certain lifestyle but lacking the preparation needed to ensure their goals.
I'm asking mothers;
At what age do you stop treating your sons like little girls - instead of men in training?
Thursday, January 8, 2009
When there is a shrinking market or where a market doesn't exist - they create a market.
Want a gun that can shoot around corners?
According to the New America Foundation - US-made weapons have been used in 20 of the worlds last 27 major wars.
Since 9/11, the dollar amount spent by foreign governments for these weapons has grown by almost 250%.
It seems that many in Corporate-America were smart enough to invest in an industry that is not only recession-proof - but that may well be recession-induced.
With Pakistan being the largest buyer of our weapons - the smart money would seem to be on some sort of Pakistan/Iran war over the next few years.
Monday, January 5, 2009
During a recent stop at the home of one of my cousins - I watched the little movie parts that come between the fight sequences.
Hitman - Drive (ride, walk or run) around and kill people.
GTA - About the same.
Madden - Run, throw and catch.
On an older game called Death By Degrees - the premise was to stop some mad scientist before he could heat the Earth's icy floors to the point of releasing the CO2 or NO2 that is trapped in the world's ice at the bottom of our oceans.
The thing is; these gasses actually exist.
Resident Evil deals with genetic engineering gone wrong.
One of the Final Fantasy games deals with people forgoing their racial differences in defeating an entity called Sin and the hypocritical religious dogma.
One of my friends bought a game system for me, back in the day (in an effort to get me to stop gambling so much - it didn't stop me). But these new games are incredible.
One of my adult neighbors calls himself a "gamer" much in the same way that other people may call themselves athletes, artists or any other title.
Damn... who knew that playing on a PS3 or xbox360 could take the place of actually doing something.
It seems that CERN is set to restart it's Big Bang project in June.
The project is set to roughly replicate the Beginning, in the world's largest atom smasher.
If all it took was for God to say; "I Am" - isn't this cheating?
Did time start like this;
(In both directions - simultaniously creating a past and a future - with no beginning or end?)
Or like this;
(In one direction where time has a beginning?)
But doesn't proving a Big Bang prove the existence of God more than disprove it?
Doesn't this add credibility to the theory of the "Speed of Thought" being faster than the speed of light.
(Maybe - But there is no way to accurately plot an equation that diagrams the speed of thought. I know... it's "Fuzzy Math".)
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Friday, January 2, 2009
Some would say that I don't know anything.
But the whole point of the Internet is the free exchange of ideas and information.
While I still couldn't vote for gay marriage - I have a better understanding of other's views.
While I still think that "White-Guilt" is useless - I can understand the efforts some make in gaining a better understanding of us.
While I still don't think that Michelle Obama is pretty - I can see how some might say that she is attractive.
While I still think that our country is best served in being a Christian nation - I can see the danger of the oppressors using this religion as a means to subjugate many.
While I still think that illegal immigration is ILLEGAL - I can see how agreements (such as the Gadsden treaty) ensure the right of inhabitants to maintain their culture, language and religion.
While I still think that we CAN have a positive influence on our environment - I'm not sure of
the best way to go about it.
While I still think that we are given all of the answers and tools to solve all of our problems - I'm still not sure what those answers are.
While I still think that the problem of poverty is unsolvable - I still believe that it is something we need to try to solve.
While I am still in a constant state of learning - I realize that so are ALL of us.
But this Internet thing is different.
If we live in an area that is stuck in the past or conversely, that is moving too fast - we miss the opportunity in our day-to-day lives to interact with people who can view our same problems with a fresh perspective.
So in getting my third web-award for doing the deed while being unprotected and open - I gotta' spread it to others.
Nah.. not like those times when I had to go to the clinic for a shot - but in a good way.
More like paying it forward.
These bloggers help me understand issues with which I may have trouble understanding.
It was a toss-up between this spot and her Admissible Banter. Sagacious stays more current than The National Enquirer.
Invisible Black Woman
Nah... not just Black movies - but from a Black perspective.
Pages From My Notebook
Dalyn seems like a man searching for a greater understanding of cultures other than his own. Check out his links to his ethnic art. (Go Utes!)
The Assault On Black Folks Sanity
My first web argument was with TAOBFS over the evolution of Blacks.
Slant Eye For The Round Eye
Think we have it bad? Even when some other cultures excel - they're still marginalized.
I hate when EVERYTHING Black people have to say is about being Black. Just Like I hate when everything someone gay has to say has to be about being gay. Derrick speaks on many issues.
From (almost) soft porn posts to politics and social issues.
Raw Dawg Buffalo
RDB has more awards than he can fit on a blog.
("Baroque Period" still cracks me up)
The Intersection Of Madness And Reality
Rippa is comedy...
Sometimes I can't even comment on his posts - I just shake my head and say; "Damn...".
I still say that most Blacks are conservative - they're just not Republican. It's funny to read the back-and-forth between the FOC and FON. The smart counterpoint to subrealism.
So thank you to all who help me to learn.
Thank you to SjP ( http://sojournersplace.blogspot.com/ )for this award.
Everyone should check out the rules to the award and do accordingly.
(FOC - Friends Of Cobb)
(FON - Friends Of Nulan)
*No.15 Oregon 42
No.13 Oklahoma St. 31
*No.24 Oregon St. 3
No.18 Pittsburgh 0
Las Vegas Bowl
No. 16 BYU 21
Miami (Fla.) 17
*No.5 USC 38
No.6 Penn St. 24
That's right, the "over-rated" and "weak" Pac-10 went 5-0 in the recent bowl season, defeating traditional powers from those "superior" conferences.
(Please... don't bring up Vince Young and Texas from three or four years ago. USC is Tyson - Texas is Buster Douglas. The 'Horns got in a lucky shot - that's all.)
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Kind of sounds like problems that are common in the hood.
If these dopamine receptors are in a constant search for the feeling of pleasure - maybe the real cause of crime and violence should be addressed from a chemical dependence stand point.
No, not illegal drugs, but the "drugs" that our own bodies produce.
Maybe these random acts of violence can be traced back to one's addiction to drama and excitement.
How many people do you know who always return to their old ways or their old neighborhood? Maybe they're addicted.
Maybe one's childhood adrenaline addiction (caused by always feeling a threat of danger) are more to blame than one's circumstance.
Maybe this is why so many children (who are from this type of environment) who participate in a structured athletics program seem to do better than those without. Could it be that their need for the rush of adrenaline is satiated by these activities?
If not sports - what?
What would fill the void left in the receptors of those who are conditioned to always feel a rush?
Maybe the adrenalin (or Dopamine) rush is the unconscious reward many are seeking in carrying out these acts?
(Hat tip ; cnulan)