Tuesday, August 28, 2012

First Lady Depicted As A Partially Nude Slave

Althea Legal-Miller, Clutch Magazine wrote the following:
On newsstands across Spain, Michelle Obama can be seen gracing the August 2012 cover of Magazine Fuera de Serie, a lifestyle supplement to the newspaper Expansión. She is seated on a chair draped in the American flag, partially nude in slave attire, complete with one of Aunt Jemima’s chicer headscarves. Perhaps because it seems so obviously offensive, the mind attempts to rationalize; “Did this get lost in translation, or is this as racist as I think?"

Ku Klux Klan Monument to Hate in Selma, AL

Can you believe it?

In Selma, Alabama, a monument to the first leader of the Ku Klux Klan is under construction on public land.
The statue of Confederate General Nathan Forrest -- infamous as the first Grand Wizard of the Klan and for massacring black Union soldiers at the Civil War battle of Fort Pillow -- even has the blessing of the Selma City Council.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Fear of a Black President: Ta-Nehisi Coates

Art Work by Bill Sanderson

Ta-Nehisi Coates begins his recent Atlantic article "Fear of a Black President" as follows:
As a candidate, Barack Obama said we needed to reckon with race and with America’s original sin, slavery. But as our first black president, he has avoided mention of race almost entirely. In having to be “twice as good” and “half as black,” Obama reveals the false promise and double standard of integration.
Coates explores the plight of the first African-American President in dealing with the country's attitudes and beliefs about race. Follow the link above, read the article and share your thoughts with me.

Ta-Nehisi Coates talks with Atlantic magazine editor Scott Stossel about the anger behind this article. Watch the video.

Ta-Nehisi Coats Talks about Anger

VIDEO: Ta-Nehisi Coates talks with Atlantic magazine editor Scott Stossel about the anger behind his article, Fear of a Black President.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

A View From Another Side: A European Prespective on America

The video below has recently gone viral on You Tube and it fits right in with the issues Americans are discussing and mentions people who are making the nightly news.  It features a May 2010 exchange betwee Michael D. Harris (who was later elected President of Ireland) and Michael Graham, an American talk radio host, writer, and conservative political commentator. His daily talk show, The Natural Truth, airs on WTKK.
Although I know some Americans don't care at all how folks from other countries view America,  I found the video interesting on a number of different levels.  I'd love to hear your comments after you've viewed the video.
Michael D. Harris

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Newsweek: "Hit The Road, Barack" Gets Blasted

Here's where we separate the men from the boys.  Here's a roadmap to the article and its critics.

For those who haven't read the controversial Newsweek article "Hit the Road, Barack, Why We Need A New President". Use the link to read Niall Ferguson's article against the President's re-election  for yourself.

Criticism was swift from a diverse group. Read the media's response.

JoAnn Reed, the Grio poses "Five Questions to Newsweek" about the article.

Naturally, Ferguson defends himself against his critics in a follow-up article, telling "Stick It".

Dig into this controversy as deeply as you wish, then share your comments.

Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire:Romney-Ryan Campaign

The Daily Beast columnist Robert Shrum comments on  the Romney-Ryan Campaign, called by some "the lyingest campaign ever".

Reckless disregard for the truth is a habit at the heart of the Romney enterprise. From the beginning, the entire campaign has been a calculated exercise in deceit. Its central rationale was conceived in a falsehood, that Romney the financial manipulator at Bain was a prolific job creator. The suspiciously round number was 100,000 jobs. The evidence? Romney never did disclose any records to back up his boast, and he took credit for hiring at companies long after Bain was gone from them—and he was gone from Bain.
Then, when the Obama campaign’s Bain ads hit, similar to the ones that upended Romney in a Senate contest with Ted Kennedy in 1994, the former governor was still unprepared, presumably unable to disprove the criticism or prove his self-defining claim. He retreated first to bromides about free enterprise, and more recently to a cop-out plea for an “agreement between both campaigns” to declare that attacks on “business or family or taxes” are off-limits. What’s family got to do with job-crushing profiteering, offshore tax havens, or Swiss bank accounts? It was Romney who ran on his business experience. Suddenly it’s unfair to talk about it.

Monday, August 20, 2012

2012 Presidential Debate Moderators Cause Stir

Candy Crowley and Martha Raddatz
The Commission of Presidential Debates’ announced its selection of moderators for the 2012 debates: Jim Lehrer, Bob Schieffer, Candy Crowley and Martha Raddatz. 
Critics are dissatisfied with the decision not to include a single journalist of color. This announcement was slammed by the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.  Representatives of the Spanish language network Univision have also expressed displeasure with the lack of debate moderator diversity.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Federal Court Restores Some Early Voting in Florida

The Associated Press reports that a federal court on Thursday gave five Florida counties four extra days of early voting in this fall’s elections.

The Republican-controlled Florida legislature last year cut the state’s number of early-voting days to 8 from 12. But the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia said the changes won’t happen in Collier, Hardee, Hendry, Hillsborough and Monroe counties, which are covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

That section requires election changes to be cleared by federal officials or federal judges. The states covered under Section 5 are mostly in the South and all have a history of discriminating against blacks, American Indians, Asian-Americans, Alaskan Natives or Hispanics.

The three-judge panel said Thursday that the reduction in early voting days in those counties “would make it materially more difficult for some minority voters to cast a ballot.” But the 119-page ruling did say there were ways Florida could change its early voting practices that would not adversely impact minority voting rights.

A spokesman for Gov. Rick Scott, who signed the changes into law last year, called that part of the decision “encouraging.”

My message to Gov. Scott: "Beware. Wise men are watching."

Hey You! Register and Vote

While Republican legislators and Governors are disenfranchising many registered voters, don't you fall prey to their tactics.

People died so that we could vote. This year is critical, more than ever.  Here's a link to voter identification laws in every state.  Get the information and make sure you can vote! Then, check on your family and friends. They might need your help.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The G.O.P.: Seeds of Dysfunction and Obstruction

Republicans deserve the "credit" for sowing the seeds of obstruction and dysfunction that are apparent in the nation's political climate today. Washington's calm right now because the 112th Congress left town and went home, leaving the country stalled until a few weeks before the election.

If you review the record of their actions over the period since Ronald Reagan became president, you'll see the G.O.P.'s hand at work creating disharmony and stalling any opportunities for progress:

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Shame of the Unproductive 112th Congress

Rep. Eric Cantor and Speaker John Boehner

I can't tell you how surprised I was to hear that the 112th Congress was going home without addressing the important work that stands before them.This is what I heard on NPR:
Lawmakers are heading for the exits on Capitol Hill today. They're leaving Washington on a summer recess that stretches until mid-September. They're also leaving behind a big stack of unpaid bills. As a result, there may be no disaster relief for drought-stricken farmers and moves to shore up the nation's cyber security remain in limbo.
If House Speaker John Boehner had any misgivings today about the work Congress is leaving undone, he did not share them at his weekly news conference.
Boehner said "You know, as we head into the district work period, I want to say how proud I am of our members and the work that they've accomplished."

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

1968 Olympics in Mexico: A Political Protest That Rocked the World

Many are watching the XXX Olympiad Games which are being held in London. The Olympics have a rich history and many unforgettable moments of athletic performances. Some of these moments are non-controversial highlights are retold quite often, but some are seldom mentioned, as if they are shameful and unworthy of note. As the generations move farther and farther from a specific event, great moments may be lost due to the silence that surrounds them. We must be vigilant to recognize and appreciate the stories of great heroes and leaders who made their marks on the world during the Olympic games.

Revisit the 1968 Olympics and medal winners Tommie Smith and John Carlos. Here's their story reported in detail on Wikipedia: