Monday, April 28, 2008

...growing pains...that might leave a mark!

week in review...

this has been a week of growing pains.

all i can say is...


i would love to have some deep tidbit of wisdom to share.

alas, such is not the case. really, all i have is...


the good news is---i am still standing! thank God there is always an upside...


Sunday, April 20, 2008

really, really, really...that's all folks!

"you can only be destroyed by believing that you really are what the white world calls a nigger"

James Baldwin

Saturday, April 19, 2008

enough already...d@#n!

i have said it for awhile; only to be reassured that it is good to have black skin in high places. black skin is changing things from the inside ya'll. not!

vehemently i have disagreed. it is better to go unrepresented than to integrate the wickedness perpetrated against humanity.

for awhile now, i have suggested that surely the countenance of this woman must make infants cry immediately upon laying eyes on her. it seems those with whom i shared these sentiments thought that i was joking or hating. often times i was accused of hating. sipping on haterade; so here it is for you folks...

proof that she must go. it will be interesting to see if her "husband" will save her. (she isn't married...she refers to the commander in chief this way...bananas!) i doubt it seriously, he'll save himself first and cheney second. that's my bet.

if anyone has this woman's number; will you please give her a ring and ask her to take a hike? she has contributed plenty...her services will no longer be needed. please?

btw...Impeach Bush and Cheney for Torture
On Friday, George Bush told ABC News he personally approved of the approval of torture - including waterboarding - by Dick Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell and George Tenet.

america is returning to her barbaric roots. i have signed on to impeach bush and cheney. i stand against this corruption and greed. i urge all that don't like the idea of being tortured to do the same. for those that think if they do nothing wrong they will be safe; may i urge you to pull your head out of the sand? there is no need for there to be proof of wrong-doing at this point.

please know that this isn't a witch hunt; though i do think rice an evil assimilated witch---with all due respect of course:-)


universal declaration of human rights

so...reading about darfur and the praises of the Eleanor Roosevelt and others led me in search of the "universal declaration of human rights". this declaration has long been accepted as international law, i understand.

as such, i have reached the conclusion that law makers care not at all for breaking the law. it seems there is no hesitation nor consideration given for human life; especially when the loss is african.

these rosey words were written in 1948. they have been pretty much violated before and after they were written so they really doesn't matter now do they? kind of like the constitution and bill of rights for black americans?

or maybe america still doesn't count us in the human circle?

that's my guess.

am i looking at this all wrong? what say you?



Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,

Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,

Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law,

Whereas it is essential to promote the development of friendly relations between nations,

Whereas the peoples of the United Nations have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,

Whereas Member States have pledged themselves to achieve, in co-operation with the United Nations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms,

Whereas a common understanding of these rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the full realization of this pledge,

Now, Therefore


proclaims THIS UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction.

Article 1.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

Article 2.
Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.

Article 3.
Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

Article 4.
No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.

Article 5.
No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Article 6.
Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.

Article 7.
All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

Article 8.
Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law.

Article 9.
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.

Article 10.
Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.

Article 11.
(1) Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence.
(2) No one shall be held guilty of any penal offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a penal offence, under national or international law, at the time when it was committed. Nor shall a heavier penalty be imposed than the one that was applicable at the time the penal offence was committed.

Article 12.
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Article 13.
(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state.
(2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.

Article 14.
(1) Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.
(2) This right may not be invoked in the case of prosecutions genuinely arising from non-political crimes or from acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.

Article 15.
(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.
(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.

Article 16.
(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
(3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

Article 17.
(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others.
(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

Article 18.
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

Article 19.
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Article 20.
(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association.
(2) No one may be compelled to belong to an association.

Article 21.
(1) Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.
(2) Everyone has the right of equal access to public service in his country.
(3) The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.

Article 22.
Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.

Article 23.
(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.
(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.
(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
(4) Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.

Article 24.
Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay.

Article 25.
(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

Article 26.
(1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.
(2) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.
(3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

Article 27.
(1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.
(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.

Article 28.
Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration can be fully realized.

Article 29.
(1) Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible.
(2) In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.
(3) These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.

Article 30.
Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.

is it possible to sue the chinese government for violations in darfur? america for her violations in america, congo, iraq, afghanistan and around the world? in this litigious society can you think of a better lawsuit?


in solidarity: bringing awareness to darfur...stop the genocide now!

this is a partial cross post from Black and Missing but not Forgotten. you may check out the entire original post by going to In Solidarity: Global Day for Darfur .

i stand in solidarity. i believe when faced with evil if we sit still and quiet; we give our consent. truly injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

each of us has a responsibility, as human beings, to do our part to make this better.

A History Lesson on Darfur:

The Darfur situation can be very confusing without a little extra information. This is what you would know if you were almost any Sudanese talking politics with your friends in an outdoor bar or at a university.

When the British left Sudan in 1956 they set it up with a small Arab minority government ruling over a mostly non-Arab African population.

The indigenous Africans had in fact already begun a revolt in 1955, the year before independence was final. The war, mostly in the south, lasted until 1972, when a peace agreement allowed limited self-government for the southern region of Sudan. A Southern Regional Assembly was established for that purpose, and it was to have control of much of the expected oil revenue from the fields just then discovered by Chevron Corporation in the south.

In 1983, after ten years of peace, Sudan’s president, Gaafar Nimeiri, nullified this agreement, disbanding the Southern Regional Assembly and imposing federal rule everywhere. New districts throughout Sudan would be ruled by military governors. The oil revenue, still unseen, would be controlled by the federal government in Khartoum.

Rebel groups quickly formed again. To make things worse, Nimeiri decreed that harsh Islamic sharia law would be imposed throughout Sudan, even over non-Muslim citizens in the south. These laws called for the amputation of hands for minor thefts, for the stoning of women, and many other cruelties. This angered the mass of people, who are quite moderate, and it angered the rebels, who now had three issues: a return to secular government, not sharia law; better representation for indigenous Africans, especially in the south; and a fair local share of the expected oil wealth, including oil jobs and more schools, roads, and clinics.

This political anger joined with the anger of hunger, as these were years of an intense African famine. An uprising in the spring of 1985 overthrew Nimeiri and caused the election of a parliamentary government led by moderate Sadiq al-Mahdi. He suspended sharia law, although it continued to be enforced by some local Arab administrators. Because of the lingering of sharia law, and because the other political issues of representation were still not fixed, the rebel groups didn’t disband.

Four nervous years followed. The oil fields could not be put into production during these years because occasional rebel attacks sent Chevron away. Sudan, sagging under heavy debt from the Nimeiri years, could not pay its loans and was cut off from further help by the International Monetary Fund. Sudan wanted to become a big oil player, but was still a poor relation among the Arab governments. So Mahdi called a new peace agreement that was expected to further subdue sharia law and perhaps reestablish selfrule in the south. That would let the oil production go forward.

Just before the conference, Mahdi was overthrown and exiled by a military strongman, General Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir, who is still in power. He resumed the expansion of sharia law, shut down opposition newspapers and political parties, and imprisoned dissidents. This was a big shock to everyone. I was in high school at the time, and all of us wanted to fight it.

Under the sharia law of Bashir, a woman today cannot leave the country without the written permission of her father or husband. Men and women must sit in separate areas of public buses. The army has been purged of unbelievers. The government-attorney staffs and the courts have been cleansed of those who are not sufficiently loyal to the agenda of Bashir and his right-wing religious brotherhood. Elections have been corrupted. Men and women have been mercilessly brutalized for the most insignificant or unproved deeds. People disappear.

Bashir solved the oil field problem his own way, just as he would later solve his Darfur problem. Many Arab nomads throughout the south had been armed with automatic weapons during the two previous governments as an unsuccessful way of protecting the oil fields from rebel attacks. In the early 1990s, Bashir turned these nomads loose on the non-Arab villages, killing over two million people.

Boys who were out tending their animals far from their villages were the few survivors. They came back to find their fathers dead and their mothers and sisters raped and killed or missing into the slave trade. These boys, after incredibly difficult journeys, found their way to Ethiopia and then to other countries, including the United States, where they are still known as the Lost Boys of Sudan. So the Sudanese government is like this. Bashir is like this.

Communities in the United States, in Britain, and elsewhere in Europe accepted many thousands of these boys and helped them find new lives. This must not be forgotten by Muslims or by anyone.

Bashir built friendly relations with Osama bin Laden and other Islamic radicals, who then opened training camps in Sudan. He turned the oil fields over to the Chinese, who brought their own security people and guns into the now depopulated areas. Here was indeed a good model for economic development without sharing or resistance.

The famine must also be understood, for the weather changes seem permanent now. Beginning in the mid-1980s, nomadic Arabs and the more settled indigenous African tribesmen found themselves in greater than normal competition for the same few blades of grass for their animals, and the same few drops of water in the wells. Arabs drifted south into Zaghawa lands; some Zaghawa drifted farther south into Massalit and Fur tribal lands. This weather change has created a problem between tribes, and Bashir knows that one of his predecessors lost power because of famine. There are huge reserves of fresh water deep under Darfur. If the indigenous people can be removed, Arab farmers can be brought in and great farms can blossom. Sudan and Egypt have signed what is called “The Four Freedoms Agreement,” which effectively allows Egyptian Arabs to move into Darfur and other areas of Sudan. New farms might be a good idea if the water could be used wisely and not consumed all at once, but why not let these farms and farmers develop alongside the returned villages of my people? If the traditional people were allowed to pump this water, which they are not, these farms and this food for Sudan would result.

Throughout these recent years, the Arab government has been promoting Arab identity at the expense of Sudanese national identity. Arabs and indigenous Africans have gotten along for thousands of years in Sudan. Even in my own childhood, we feasted in one another’s tents and huts. Any disputes that couldn’t be settled through negotiations between the elders were settled in ritual battles held far from any village so that women and children and the elderly would not be harmed. In addition, there has always been so much intermarriage that it is hard to see the differences between the Arabs and the indigenous Africans. Almost every person, at least in the north half of Sudan and in most of Darfur, is Muslim, so there are no religious differences, either. But the drumbeat of Arab superiority began separating the hearts of the Arabs from their indigenous African neighbors. This should remind people of what happened in Rwanda.

Negotiations between elders to resolve tribal disputes were now harshly discouraged by the government. The Arabs were instead given weapons and military support to resolve them. While Arabs were being heavily armed by the government, non-Arab villages throughout Sudan were told to give up all their weapons or be destroyed. Darfur has been thick with automatic weapons ever since the 1980s, when Colonel Muammar Gaddafi of Libya used Darfur as a staging area for his attacks on Chad in an attempt to expand to the south. The Darfuris, both Arab and African, are good traders, and they found themselves with many of those guns. An estimated fifty thousand Kalashnikov AK-47s, RPG launchers, and M-14 rifles came into Darfur and stayed. The villagers, afraid of what was coming, would not give them up.

Darfur rebel groups bristling with this firepower started talking about Darfur independence after the latest purge of non-Arabs from government, and on April 25, 2003, thirty-three rebel Land Cruisers attacked a government military base to destroy the airplanes and helicopters that had been destroying their villages. In retaliation, President Bashir let loose the dogs of war: the green light was given to armed Arab Janjaweed militia groups. Supported by government tanks, machine-gun-mounted vehicles, additional helicopter gunships, and bombers of the Sudan Army, these Arab militias began attacking and burning indigenous villages not in a sporadic way, but in a systematic way calculated to destroy every village and kill every person. Men, women, and children were killed. Village leaders were burned alive or tortured to death in front of their friends and children. Children were tossed into fires. Wells were poisoned with the bodies of children. Everything had come into place, politically, environmentally, and culturally for a genocide in Darfur.

The non-Arab traditional Africans of Darfur are being systematically murdered and displaced by Bashir’s government of Sudan as a part of a program to remove political dissent, remove challenges to power, make way for unobstructed resource development, and turn an Arab minority into an Arab majority.

Can you do that in this century? Can you solve all your problems by killing everyone in your way? That is for the world to decide. Deciding if and when the traditional people of Darfur can go home will also decide if genocide works or not, and therefore whether it will happen elsewhere again in the world. It seems to me that this is a good place to stop it forever.

That will require the repatriation of the Darfur people who were expelled. The camps now in Chad can be moved to Darfur as new towns, bringing schools and clinics and opportunities for personal development to a number of areas that have never had them. From these new towns, village life and some new agriculture can blossom. A zone of protection can be created by the United Nations for this, just as they can be created for other people around the world who need protection in living balanced lives on the earth. In exchange for this protection, the full human rights of the men and women of these areas, the same rights so beautifully described by Eleanor Roosevelt and others in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, must be added to the ancient customs. The Universal Declaration has long been accepted as international law.

This can be done. What is more important for the world right now than preserving ways of living in balance with the earth?

Books You can Read on Darfur:

Darfur: A Short History of a Long War
by Julie Flint and Alex de Waal

Darfur Diaries: Stories of Survival
by Jen Marlowe, Aisha Bain, and Adam Shapiro

Darfur/Darfur: Life/War
featuring photographs by U.S. Marine Brian Steidle and photojournalists Lynsey Addario, Mark Brecke, Hélène Caux, Ron Haviv, Paolo Pellegrin, Ryan Spencer Reed, and Michal Ronnen Safdie.

Genocide in Darfur: Investigating the Atrocities in the Sudan
by Samuel Totten and Eric Markusen (eds.)

They Poured Fire on Us from the Sky: The True Story of Three Lost Boys from Sudan
by Alphonsion Deng, Benson Beng, Benjamin Ajak, and Judy A. Bernstein

Voices of Sudan
by David Johnson

Organizations Dedicated to ending Genocide:

Activate through petitions, open letters, letters to all our elected officials as well as U.N., Sudanese and Chinese officials, and speaking out to the corporate sponsors of the Beijing Olympics as China plays a key role. All actions sponsored by Dream for Darfur:

1. Write to the ambassadors of the US, the UK, Russia and France to the UN. Urge them to help China insist that Khartoum stop its obstruction. Take action! Email the ambassadors.

2. Email or call the Olympic Corporate Sponsors. Send a letter to companies sponsoring the 2008 Olympics, hosted by China. (Our email system will let you do this with the touch of a button.) Take action! Send emails.

3. Pledge to turn off the commercials of Olympic Sponsors during the Games. Olympic corporate sponsors have been silent about China’s financing of the Darfur genocide, even as the sponsors are spending billions to enhance China’s image as Olympic host. If sponsors continue to ignore China’s complicity in the Darfur genocide, we will ignore their million-dollar ad campaigns. Take action! Sign the pledge.

4. Write to the UN Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace. Mr. Adolf Ogi represents the UN Secretary-General in contacts with international sports bodies. Tell him you are concerned that the world will gather for the Olympics while the people of Darfur are being slaughtered. Take action! Send an email.

5. Petition the International Olympic Committee. Urge the IOC to work with the international community to ensure that China uses its leverage with the government of Sudan to help stop the genocide in Darfur, and avoids tarnishing the 2008 Games in Beijing. Take action! Sign the petition.

For more information on what you can do to help, visit any of the sites above and keep checking for more information on Darfur. Also, remember that it's never too late to participate. If you wrote something on your blog, leave a comment with your link so that others can visit your blog too. Leave any resources you have as well. Thanks for helping!


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

...argentina...a brief historical overview

i have been mentioning this post for awhile. despite there being so many other topics that i would like to blog on now...i must be obedient and pace myself. so here is an overview of the history of argentina. please go in search of additional information for yourself. seeking information for yourself is true education as far as i can see. study to show yourself approved... many similarities, if any, to the u.s. do you see?

i always welcome your thoughts.


By HISHAM AIDI First published: April 2, 2002

When songstress Josephine Baker visited Argentina in the 1950s she asked the biracial minister of public health Ramon Carillo, "Where are the Negroes?" to which Carillo responded laughing, "There are only two— you and I."

Scholars have long pondered the "disappearance" of people of African descent from Argentina, long considered South America's "whitest" nation. A 1973 article in Ebony asked, "what happened to Argentina's involuntary immigrants, those African slaves and their mulatto descendants who once outnumbered whites five to one, and who were for 250 years 'an important element' in the total population, which is now 97 percent white?"

One history book calls the country's lack of self-identifying black people "one of the most intriguing riddles in Argentine history," while another notes that "the disappearance of the Negro from the Argentine scene has puzzled demographers far more than the vanishing Indian." Was the Afro-Argentine community annihilated by disease and war, or absorbed into the larger white community?

Of course, whiteness itself is relative. Many Argentines who proudly consider themselves white come to America and are shocked to find that in American racial discourse they are considered "Latino,""Hispanic" or vaguely "Spanish," and not white. SaysPaula Brufman, an Argentine law student and researcher, "Argentines like to think of themselves as a white nation populated by Europeans. I was surprised when in the US, people — especially Latinos — told me I was not white but Spanish."

Today in Argentina, there is a growing interest in the country's African past and Afro community, "lacomunidad Afro," as it's called. The past decade has seen black clubhouses, religious institutions and dance clubs crop up in the capital, Buenos Aires. A group called Africa Vive (Africa Lives), made up of Afro-Argentines, has spearheaded the campaign to raise awareness of the country's Afro-culture and history. At the Durban UN Conference on Racism, Africa Vive presented a widely circulated study about the socio-economic situation of Afro-Argentines. The report documented the high unemployment and difficulties with naturalization that many blacks in Argentina encounter.

"Minorities in Argentina — indigenous, Afro, etcetera— suffer from a problem of invisibility and poor organization, " says Mercedes Boschi of the Buenos Aires City's Human Rights Commission, who worked with Africa Vive on the aforementioned report, as part of the municipal government's "Right to Identity" initiative.

So, how many people in Argentina today can claim African ancestry? The numbers are themselves difficult to calculate, says Alejandro Frigerio, an anthropologist at the Universidad Catolica de Buenos Aires. "People of mixed ancestry are often not considered black in Argentina, historically, because having black ancestry was not considered proper. Today the term 'negro' is used loosely on anyone with slightly darker skin, but they can be descendants of indigenous Indians, Middle Eastern immigrants. People in Africa Vive say there are a million 'afrodescendientes' in Argentina. Although many people are not aware that they may have had a blackgreat-grandmother or -father, I think that this is an overestimation. I would estimate that there are 2 or 3 thousand Afro-Argentines, descendants of slaves, 'negros criollos,' 8 to 10 thousand in the Cape Verdean community, most born in Argentina, and I'd add another 1,200 Brazilian, Uruguayan, Cuban and African communities. "

Created in 1996, Africa Vive has reached out to Afro-Argentine leaders with the aim of creating an organization that can battle poverty in Afro-Latino communities. It has single-handedly brought media and the mainstream's attention to the plight and legacy of Afro-Argentines.

"Different groups have emerged, including Grupo Cultural Afro and SOS Racismo, but Africa Vive is probably the most important group that has rekindled interest in things African in Argentina," says Frigerio. "It is the main group composed of Afro-Argentines, descendants of the original Afro-Argentine population. Africa Vive has successfully drawn the media's attention — they organized a conference against discrimination at the University of Buenos Aires in 1999, and were written up in an eight-page article in the daily Clarin. The article was significant because for the first time in almost thirty years, the term 'Afro-Argentine community' was used, instead of 'black' community."

Frigerio continues: "Last September, these black groups, led by Africa Vive, convinced a national deputy to organize a ceremony in memory of black soldiers who died fighting for Argentina's independence. The event took place in one of the traditional halls of the National Congress and was attended by the commander-in- chief of the army and the head of state. The national deputy spoke in honor of the fallen black soldiers and then awarded honorary degrees to the heads of several black organizations. It was quite remarkable that such an event could take place in Argentina."

War heroism, in fact, is one reason Argentina lags so far behind in recognizing its people of African descent. Even after the official abolition of slavery, many blacks were still slaves and were granted manumission only by fighting in Argentina's wars, serving disproportionately in the war of independence against Spanish rule and border wars against Paraguay from 1865 to 1870. Blacks were also granted their freedom if they joined the army, but they were deliberately placed on the front line and used as cannon fodder. Historian Ysabelle Rennie notes that the government deliberately placed as many blacks as possible in "dangerous military service" and were sent into batte, "where they got killed off fighting Indians (another race Argentines were interested in exterminating. )"

Argentine sociologist Gino Germani chalks up the"disappearance" to racist immigration policies, saying that the nation's "primary and explicit objective" was to "modify substantially the composition of the population," to "Europeanize the Argentine population, produce a regeneration of races." Marvin A. Lewis, author of Afro-Argentine Discourse: Another Dimension of the Black Diaspora, concurs, saying that "there was an official, concerted effort to eliminate the blacks from Argentine society."

Many have argued that people of African descent simply "disappeared" by mingling into the waves of thousand of European immigrants. Argentine historian Mariano Bosch wrote in 1941 that Italian men had "perhaps anatavistic preference for black women: body odor led them to matrimony and the blacks accepted them as whites," or rather, "almost whites, because the Italian has much African in him, and his color is a dull pale."

"There is a silence about the participation of Afro-Argentines in the history and building of Argentina, a silence about the enslavement and poverty," adds Paula Brufman. "The denial and disdain for the Afro community shows the racism of an elite that sees Africans as undeveloped and uncivilized. ...The poverty in the Afro community was terrible. Although slavery was abolished in 1813, the death rate of freed blacks was always higher than that of white people and of slaves. Why is that? Because in Buenos Aires, slaves were very expensive, so the masters took real good care of them. Once a black got his freedom, his living standards collapsed even further."

The past few years, however, have seen a growing interest among young Argentines of all backgrounds in Afro-Argentine culture— in tango, the dance and music with such strong West African roots, and other dances such the milonga, the zamba and the malambo. For this, many thank immigrants from other parts of South America.

"Afro-Uruguayan and Afro-Brazilian migrants to Buenos Aires have been instrumental in expanding black culture — teaching Afro-Uruguayan candombe, Afro-Brazilian capoeira, orisha and secular dances to white Argentines," says Frigerio, who has written of various Afro-Argentine cultural movements, including dancing saloons owned by blacks, carnival societies and black newspapers. One such dancing saloon, "The Shimmy Club," was founded in 1922 and lasted until 1974.

Frigerio believes the newfound interest in Afro-Argentine culture is not only the result of immigration but also of a new state policy. In the 1970s and '80s, Argentina was ruled by a succession of military juntas who suppressed and almost eradicated black culture. "The military dictatorships from 1966 onwards prohibited or severely constrained the gathering of people in the street or in closed spaces— a practice which certainly negatively influenced carnivals, which almost disappeared; tango dancing,which died out until it was revitalized in the 1990s; and also black dance clubs such as The Shimmy Club. All genres of popular culture severely suffered during the dictatorships and many almost disappeared, but began resurfacing in the 1990s."

Still, he cautions against too much optimism regarding race in Argentina. "The new laws and institutes help celebrate ethnic diversity and help groups like Africa Vive emerge and operate," Frigerio says, "but they have not undermined the dominant national narrative of racial homogeneity and whiteness." While the racial situation is much better today than it was half a century ago — when a review of Josephine Baker's performance wrote of her "monkey rhythm" — Frigerio says that "today blacks are more exoticized than stigmatized. ... What scholar Livio Sansone said of Brazil, we can say of Argentina: there are hard and soft areas of racism, or areas in which it may be advantageous or disadvantageous to be black. In Buenos Aires, being black is advantageous in finding a girl/boyfriend, but less so for finding a job, unless the person is a musician or dance professor."

so let me get this straight...for lover or entertainment---it is advantageous for one to be black? well, alrighty then...


Friday, April 11, 2008

open letter 4/11/2008: the horizon and the bottom line

We sincerely hope that this post can be the last Open Letter that criticizes the involvement of the NAACP and Al Sharpton in the Dunbar Village case.

Although we are not satisfied with the official conduct of the NAACP in the past few weeks, we acknowledge that the finite goals that we originally set for this campaign have been completed.

We will continue to offer our support to the victims of this crime, and would like to thank the prosecutor in this case for exercising a high degree of discretion.


New readers: this post is the conclusion of a protest in which thousands of African Americans from various walks of life condemned the recent actions of both the NAACP and the National Action Network in a criminal case known as the Dunbar Village Atrocity. Read details of the crime here.


We are satisfied that the NAACP will cease to use it’s power of advocacy to demand that the suspects in the Dunbar Village Atrocity case be given the opportunity to be released on bail.

We are satisfied that a long overdue show of official support for the Dunbar Village victims has been made, or is under way.

We are somewhat satisfied with the apology that was given for the public declaration that the Dunbar Village Atrocity and the Boca Raton rape case are comparable; however, it is not lost on us that the apology was done privately, and not delivered by the National office with the same level of conviction in which the original statement was made.

We condemn the NAACP’s failed attempt to obfuscate the truth concerning their participation in the press conference dated 03/11/2008.

The absurdity of their attempt to deny such easily verifiable facts caused real damage to the credibility of their establishment. Our community needs to be able to trust the integrity and veracity of any organization that purports to advocate for it, therefore, we challenge the NAACP to be honest enough to admit their mistakes in the future, even the big ones.


We have done our very best to be people of integrity concerning this matter, by thoroughly researching the facts before mounting this campaign.

Our wish is to be to be able to work together with justice organizations to right the wrongs inflicted on people of color, by not only enforcing standards of prosecution, but also by raising the standard of ethical conduct of all people involved.

While our demands have been met in this case, we are not convinced that either agency has taken the appropriate steps to ensure that tragic decisions like the press conference in support of the torture suspects will not be made again in the future.

We urge the NAACP and the National Action Network to interpret this protest as a golden opportunity for critical self reflection, as a new line of dialogue, and as a chance to move into better alignment with the will of the very people that they exist to serve.

The Dunbar Village Victim Assistance Fund

Individuals who would like to donate money to the victims can go to any Wachovia Bank and donate to the St. Ann’s Victim’s Assistance Fund. Donations will go directly to the mother and her son.

St. Ann’s Catholic Church will also accept donations. Checks can be made payable to the "Dunbar Village Victim Assistance Fund - St. Ann’s".

Donations can be mailed to: St. Ann’s Catholic Church, 310 N. Olive Avenue, West Palm Beach, FL 33401

For more information about this Dunbar Village Campaign, you can visit any of the following blogs:


Monday, April 7, 2008

eliminating our proof

i wasn't going to post today.

decided instead to work on packing, spending time with my family and taking it easy.

my favorite way to "take it easy" is to read. i find it really difficult not to share. so here it is...

we are in the process of eliminating our proof...

in my reading travels i came across items that felt like confirmation of my purpose.

recently i met a world traveller and african historian. he sent me today an over view of the history of argentina. he did this without knowing that the history of argentina has been on my mind for awhile. in the coming days i will share it with you. i want to make it easier for all to know the truth. there is so much that i would like to share. i am so aware that the lies (or "myths" as they are consistently called) are killing us. literally.

i can see clearly the road that the u.s. is on. i read a book once about "solutions to the negro problem" and am horrified to see our reproductive choices become the ultimate tool.

Kola Boof says this better than i could hope to; so i will let her tell you, if you will listen. in her article she says:

"America is a western society that completely fears, hates and seeks to erase black people and Africa. And I would say that most Black Americans (at least 70%)...also hate black people and Africa...but because they themselves are black, they don’t realize it.

They will curse the photos of a lynched black man hanging from a tree as white people sit around having a picnic...but they will not give birth to that black man again. Instead, they will marry the lynch rope and produce children who look more like the white lynchers at the picnic.
They will call out the words, “Mother Africa”...but the lowest, most despised, hated person in Black America is the authentic Black woman. And the reason is...her WOMB makes them black, therefore, she is the enemy. And they make all manner of excuse, create any and every bald-faced lie against her...their own order to place the White man’s mother above a savior; as a bridge out of blackness."

know that black men and black women are just as guilty of being used to eliminate ourselves. it is not about the blame game. it is about solutions. in the absence of honest dialogue solution is not a possibility.

visit for the entire piece and to get fed...the truth, for a change.

read it. think about it. share your thoughts if you feel so compelled.

we must save ourselves. it is in the best interest of no one else to save us...


Saturday, April 5, 2008

the eyes of the rainbow...

encouragement comes to me from a lot of different places. i am appreciative and grateful for my abundant blessings.

many thanks to Ensayn1 @ ensayn reality! i had time just now to follow your suggestion and had to laugh out loud at the timeliness of the message. God is so good to me:-)!

so, i thought i would pay it forward. may Queen's wisdom bless, encourage, and inspire others right now as well...

i will not hang my head in shame before my ancestors.

i will choose to be human, loving, kind, and respectful of all humanity.

i love black people---men, women and children. i will do my part to bring healing to our family...


Friday, April 4, 2008


i listened to the podcast with Gina from what about our daughters? & Shecodes from black women vote! last night.

i have a painful confession to make... i wish i hadn't.

since that spectacle i have felt so sad and wounded. to my very soul. it was my goal and plan to get up today and shake it off. i have not been able to do that, in truth...just yet. i will tell you why.

i like most black women have been conditioned to believe that black men had our backs. despite the bad ones that most of us encounter, as children, before we even leave our house. through it all, i have been able to still love black men. in fact, i have always been acutely aware of how black men must feel in their journeys with all of the pressures of excelling despite the white supremacy/racism, injustice, and odds. it has been my joy to show love, smile, and encourage them in their journeys; whether i knew them or not. in many ways it felt like my God given purpose, responsibility and pleasure.

i have long held the belief that there is nothing like a black man on the planet. i have always appreciated all black men. i have without apology always had a special affinity for those that were black, black, gloriously nappy, dominant, strong, beautiful black.

last night's call took something from me.

despite living in los angeles and seeing, first hand, that most men that look like me can't see me or those like me when blonde/brunette/redhead becky, lolita, ping, or what are you mixed with? enters the room; nevertheless, i have been able to hold the love i feel for black men. i have been able to have compassion for the white is right/non black women supreme message they are bombarded with all day every day. additionally, i think that love has allowed me to exercise options in the man arena. don't trip, i have had lonely nights, though. be clear, my lonely nights have been born of standards. for sure, having a man---all colors---has never been a problem for me. i just always loved black men more.

even as i write, know that i have been blessed to have a black man as my man, like the one that i just described for which i have a great affinity. i am no doubt blessed. even so, something inside of me has shifted. in all honesty it has been shifting for awhile. i fully understand that we are only as strong as our collective. my commitment to black women and children has been strengthened; even as the podcast last night accelerated the internal shift.

i am deeply hurt which turns to outrage to know that for centuries white men have called us whores, bitches, wenches and mocked the very humanity of black women for the whole world to see and ignorantly & lustfully join in. while simultaneously emasculating (literally in quite a few instances) black men. the realization that now, with options and more rights & freedoms than black men in this country have ever known---black men now delight (it seems) in calling us bitches, hos, jump offs, baby mamas (we are good for sex and carrying babies just not wives), pshots, and every other type of denigrating, degrading, debasing, dehumanizing name black men can come up with. it seems becoming indignant at the lack of impunity is the only stance that can be taken. before you ask who is raising these men let me answer---in most instances women that have no idea what the love of a man should feel like! black men are not just abandoning their sons! additionally, black women, too, are getting the same white is right and non black supreme messages all day every day! those that don't agree with this consistent public/private practice of denigrating, debasing and disrespecting black women disagree, for the most part---very privately and quietly!

the naacp trotted out a black woman and a black man to defend their indefensible position on the support of the armed rapists/torturers of a black woman and her manchild. the naacp black woman played the role of the good cop--- she readily admitted she was not making excuses for the media event/position that took place. the naacp black man, who in his right mind would most definitely understand the importance of protecting black women and children; had no problem being abrasive, condescending, dismissive, and overall offensive with the well behaved women that engaged him. black women have been so socialized/conditioned that we actually apologize! for feeling angry with being rendered less than human.

i am most saddened by the fact that i have lived to see the day when the greatest enemy against black women is---black men. this truth has pricked me to my soul. it has rendered me non-productive today. i am conscious of the black women that have stood on the frontlines with black men to secure rights and freedoms only to be rewarded with this treason, disrespect, and in more cases than hits the news---bodily harm and murder. as black women, collectively, we sustain all of this while watching black men worship at the altar of white feminity in their quest to be like white men. as white men switch their worship to the asian woman where do you think the white-like black man stands? try in agreement.

the reality has been pricking my soul for awhile. last night penetrated and made it impossible to ignore that black men have joined (in large, highly visible, very vocal numbers) with white men in declaring black women and children as the throw aways of society. the same black men that will shred a black woman that dares to stand and speak out will not use their voice to adjust black men that are functioning as the enemy to the black collective.

if you destroy the hearts, souls, and minds of the women and children of a society---you have destroyed in fact that people. wise, men of God, know this. for this reason, self respecting men die to protect their women and children. in doing so they also garner...respect. it really is all related!

i have to be silent until i can speak/write with clarity. i understand that words are powerful and i hold myself responsible to build up not tear down.

all black folks would do well, in the interim to study the history of argentina. we are well on our way folks...


Dunbar Village Update: Reversing the Advancement of the Black Community

Thursday evening the Black Women's Roundtable, in conjunction with What About Our Daughters?, interviewed NAACP Florida State Conference President Adora Obi Nweze and NAACP National Director of Communication, Richard McIntire.

During the podcast, just as it has before the email campaign, the NAACP displayed its profound disrespect for the intelligence of Black people everywhere.

Though we are content with the NAACP's decision to discontinue advocating for the Dunbar Village rapists, we are not content with their attempt to contradict themselves and obfuscate the facts regarding the e-mail campaign.


The email campaign launched against the NAACP has been a very tactical one. Contrary to their assertions, the NAACP has not been criticized for the sum total of their mission, but rather their defense of the indefensible.

During the interview, the NAACP mentioned school suspension disparities and hurricane relief efforts as an attempt to shift attention from the sole issue that raised ire in right-thinking Black Americans with a grasp of the concepts of right and wrong.

Though there may be differences in opinion on the most pressing issues, the only criticism levied against the NAACP was its egregious decisions to find injustice where no one can show there has been thus far.


The NAACP has made the decision to not take a public and definitive stand on not only Dunbar Village but what the tragedy epitomizes. To refresh all of our memories the NAACP stands for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The word that undoubtedly stands out in that name is 'advancement'. When the mothers and daughters of an entire community are prey for domestic terrorists, when rape is utilized as a tool of revenge and hate for a community's women how is that NOT an issue that hinders the advancement of our people? Lets be clear, the NAACP has decided to speak out on DunbarVillage, they were simply on the wrong side of the fight.


The NAACP is an organization rife with contradictions. Obviously, if there are two contradictory statements, then one of them simply is not true. Mr. McIntire stated the NAACP does not concern itself with individual cases, however Jena 6, Michael Vick, and Genarlow Wilson implies the opposite.

The NAACP felt compelled to inject its name and time into these cases often times by doing nothing more than making a statement. Why do these cases deserve a public statement but support of the Dunbar Village victims (before missteps and chiding) did not deserve public support?


Several times Mr. McIntire stated the suspects have a right to bail. Bail can be denied thus it is not automatic. In the state of Florida, men have been denied bail for child pornography. With the DNA evidence and statements by at least two of the defendants expressing guilt, the community (the people) are best served by the detention of the suspects. Innocent until proven guilty does not inherently mean bond is given. The NAACP stated they wanted to ensure the process moved forward. However, they did not (and presumably can not) express how the process had been stalled nor who was preventing due process.


During the podcast the NAACP leaders attempted to apologize privately for something that was done in public. The West Palm Beach NAACP branch is not some rogue element of the NAACP. There is an established environment within the organization that gave a sense of comfort that allowed the local branch to speak for the rape suspects.

The NAACP leaders subtly and gently put the onus on the local branch but they are an agent for the national NAACP and they spoke on their behalf. Initially, the National NAACP stated in a widely-circulated press release that its position was misrepresented in the email campaign. Not only does this show the dichotomy of how they have handled the situation (publicly defending and privately admonishing), it also highlights their strategy to publicly attack the bloggers who rightly decried their actions.


During the interview they stated the NAACP performs numerous acts, supposedly ones that support victims and not criminals, that simply don't receive the attention. The NAACP is complicit in this one-sided media and public attention. They didn't hold the press conference at their local branch, they created an image sure to send a statement, because every move is a calculated one meant to send a message. They stood with the families of the suspects before the State Attorney's office. When they want attention, they know how to get it.

In this case the NAACP walked blindly and did not analyze the situation for what it was, a heinous crime. They saw Black males in the justice system and went on auto pilot. When will the NAACP not speak on behalf of a Black criminal? How does continuously and exclusively advocating for the criminal faction of a community advance the community?


The NAACP needs to do publicly what it did privately last night --state they were wrong and apologize. Particularly since they stated bloggers were wrong. They can't have it both ways - we were not both wrong.


In the end, it is unfortunate that as we celebrate the life, work and legacy of a great American, Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., we must see yet another step toward decline for an organization meant to advance Black Americans. King believed that "in the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."

It leaves a lasting impression when Black organizations are reticent to speak and act on behalf of true voiceless and vulnerable victims, and instead speak loudly for those focused on the destruction of our community.

For more information about this Dunbar Village Campaign, you can visit any of the following blogs:

get involved in the interest of...


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

happy belated birthday, Queen Assata

i love and honor Queen Assata Shakur. her example both inspires and guides me. her letter needs no introduction. there is nothing at this leg in my journey that i can hope to add to her wisdom...

happy birthday Queen.

Letter from Assata Shakur

Apr 1, 2008, 11:24

First of all, let me say thank you, to the many people who have helped me to celebrate my 60th birthday. Thank you for your beautiful birthday cards and for your warm and eloquent messages. Thank you for your activism, your radiant energy and most of all for your love. I am sincerely grateful for your support and for your commitment to social justice, truth and freedom.

It is somehow surprising for me to realize that I have lived on this planet for 60 years. I never imagined that I would live this long. Some of those years were very hard years, other years were happier, but I have never forgotten who I am or where I came from. For as long as I can remember, I was acutely aware of my oppression and of the oppression of my people.

In some ways it was easier for my generation. Racism was blatant and obvious. The "Whites Only" signs let us know clearly, what we were up against. Not much has changed, but the system of lies and tricknology is much more sophisticated. Today young people have to be highly informed and acutely analytical, or they will be swept up into a whirlpool of lies and deception.

Freedom, justice and liberty are words that are thrown around a lot in the United States, but for most of us, it is empty rhetoric. With each and every passing day the country becomes more repressive, the police more viciously aggressive and the so-called constitutional guarantees obliterated by scare tactics. The so-called 'Conservatives' are only interested in conserving their privileges and power and helping their rich friends to become richer. Black 'Conservatives' serve their "masters" and are basically interested in grinning, shuffling and 'Uncle Tomming' all the way to the bank. This is the most corrupt administration that has ever existed. They have blatantly stolen not millions, but billions of dollars. They are actively seeking to preserve the old colonial order with a new face, where the oppressed people of Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East are expected to suffer happily, and sing praises to imperialism to the tune of the star spangled banner.

It is extreme arrogance to attack and occupy a country and expect its people to rejoice and lick your feet. Not even Roman Emperors were involved in such misguided conceit. The U.S. government has no right whatsoever, to force its undemocratic "democracy" on the rest of the world. I am 60 years old and I cannot remember a time when my people ever experienced true democracy. It is still the active policy of the U.S. government to use a wide variety of tactics to prevent poor people and people of color from voting. And when we do get to vote, our votes usually do not count. For the most part, there are no decent candidates to vote for, because the U.S, government is a "dollarocracy" where candidates have to beg and pander to the corporate rich in order to be elected.

I am 60 years old, and I have never in my life seen such widespread violence and cruelty. The U.S. government has more people in prison than any other country in the world, and it is now actively involved in creating prisons all over the world. Abu Ghraib is only the tip of the iceberg. People all over the world are being imprisoned in secret prisons, with no formal charges being made against them. They are imprisoned under the most inhumane conditions, and detained for indeterminate periods of time, with no rights, no trials, and no justice whatsoever. In short, the leaders of this country are war criminals. All the U.S. government has to do is call them terrorists or extremists, enemy combatants or whatever and they can do anything they want to these people. I live in Cuba, and the Cuban people watch horrified, as the U.S. Army illegally occupies their land in Guantanamo and commits unspeakable acts of torture on their soil, in the name of "freedom." The U.S. government not only destroys the lives of people around the world, many mothers have cried because many of our young people have had their lives destroyed as well. I believe that this earth was meant for tenderness and not terror. The imperialist countries not only implement terrorist policies in the Third World, their actions also provoke terrorist activities and internal disputes between people. I believe that when Western governments learn to respect the sovereignty of Third world governments, and to offer solidarity and support rather that imperialist policies and exploitation, most of the world's problems will be close to being solved.

Inside the belly of the beast, conditions are also disastrous. Most of the victims of Katrina are still waiting for decent housing and public services. Schools and hospitals around the country are either deteriorating or closing down. Around the country social programs to help poor and working people are mostly a thing of the past. Our young people are being marginalized, criminalized and brutalized. It is often an act of courage to go to school, or simply drive down the street. The U.S. government's occupation of Afghanistan has produced a record increase of heroin production, and the "war on drugs" continues to be a war on poor people and people of color. The police brutality in our communities is not a simple matter of randomly "bad" cops. This government is more repressive than ever and more and more of a police state. When you have a trigger happy president, a trigger happy vice-president, a trigger happy office of homeland security, you are bound to have an increase of trigger happy police and many of our young people are bound to end up dead or imprisoned. The social policies of the United States have deteriorated from so-called benign neglect to malignant hostility or indifference.

The role the press and the media have played in all this has been increasingly malignant. There is no such thing as a free press in the United States. Journalists receive big salaries for telling "official" lies. The media both knowingly and naively became the vehicle for misinforming the people of the United States and convincing the people that it was "necessary" to go to war. Their "reporting" was based on outright lies. Now they "embedded" in the military, continuing to misinform the people, and distort the truth.

I am 60 years old and I am proud to be one of those people who stood up against the ruthless, evil, imperialist policies of the U.S. government. In my lifetime I have opposed the war against the Vietnamese people, the illegal contras – war in Nicaragua, the illegal coup in Chile, the invasion of Haiti and of Grenada, and every other illegal, immoral and genocidal war the U.S. government has ever waged. I have never been a criminal and I never will be one. I am 60 years old and in spite of government repression, in spite of the media's lies and distortions, in spite of the U.S, government's COINTELPRO Program to criminalize and demonize political opponents, I feel proud to count myself as someone who believes in peace and believes in freedom. I am proud to have been a member of the Black Panther Party although the U.S. government continues try to distort history and continues to persecute ex-members of the Black Panther Party. Just recently, the U.S. government has indicted and arrested 8 ex-Black Panthers in a case that was dismissed 30 years ago. The case was dismissed some 30 years ago when it became obvious that the most vicious forms of extreme torture were used to extract false confessions from some of the so-called defendants.

I am 60 years and it is doubtful that I will ever live to see my people free of oppression and repression. But I am totally convinced that our collective dream of freedom will some day be realized. I sincerely implore young people to develop their minds, to develop their skills, to expand their states of consciousness, and sharpen their abilities to analyze reality. Those Africans who conspired with the European slave trade to sell us into slavery were seduced by trinkets. I hope and pray that our young people will not continue to fall into the same traps. I have always loved my people and always loved our culture. The culture of my people has always been rich and always been filled with the seeds of resistance. I hope that young people hold fast to that tradition. I sincerely hope that all young people will have the courage and the wisdom to hold on tight to their humanity and their historical mission. Most people in the Americas, were either indigenous people whose ancestors were victims of genocide, or brought to this hemisphere as slaves, or came to this continent seeking freedom. I believe that it is our collective duty to make freedom a reality. I truly believe that it is possible to end oppression and repression on this planet. If we all see ourselves as citizens of this planet, and citizens of the world, it will be easier for us to save this planet and recognize the human rights of human beings around the world.

Much love, Much Solidarity,

May we all make freedom a reality,

Assata Shakur

thanks to Bill W. & for sharing this great wisdom with me. it is my pleasure and duty to pay it forward.


Marvin Gaye...happy birthday!

the really great ones tend to leave too soon it seems.

i would rather remember your birthday so, happy birthday...

...thank you for all of the joy your music continues to give me. i feel blessed that i can always hear your beautiful voice. i love this song, the message, and the beautiful images of black people. together.

most of us still haven't figured out what's going on... the game is still the same... i think we will figure it out. i am hopeful.

may your rest be peaceful.


Tuesday, April 1, 2008

build alliances based on truth… i have had my say on the topic(s)---white men /white women and obama. it troubles me not in the least to acknowledge that for the most part i am not impressed by any of them. however, i agree wholeheartedly with the wisdom that we must build alliances based on truth.

far be it from me not to point out how ridiculously hypocritical and indignant white americans have no problem being; generation after generation. to be angry that blacks would vote for blacks...please sit down and shut up white people. i have no patience. the notion that blacks cannot be fair is a devilish lie unsupported by historical facts. the only people black folks can not seem to treat consistently well are, frankly, other black folks. we consistently give white folks too much love, forgetfulness, forgiveness, excuses and opportunity to make the same flagrant fouls (like wage war against us flagrant) century after century as far as i can see. until we realize that history informs the future---we will not see any significant changes. anyhoo, take a peek at what the esteemed Alice Walker has to say...

Lest We Forget: An open letter to my sisters who are brave.

By Alice Walker

The author argues that we must build alliances not on ethnicity or gender, but on truth.

I HAVE COME home from a long stay in Mexico to find – because of the presidential campaign, and especially because of the Obama/Clinton race for the Democratic nomination - a new country existing alongside the old. On any given day we, collectively, become the Goddess of the Three Directions and can look back into the past, look at ourselves just where we are, and take a glance, as well, into the future. It is a space with which I am familiar.

When I was born in 1944 my parents lived on a middle Georgia plantation that was owned by a white distant relative, Miss May Montgomery. (During my childhood it was necessary to address all white girls as "Miss" when they reached the age of twelve.) She would never admit to this relationship, of course, except to mock it. Told by my parents that several of their children would not eat chicken skin she responded that of course they would not. No Montgomerys would.

My parents and older siblings did everything imaginable for Miss May. They planted and raised her cotton and corn, fed and killed and processed her cattle and hogs, painted her house, patched her roof, ran her dairy, and, among countless other duties and responsibilities my father was her chauffeur, taking her anywhere she wanted to go at any hour of the day or night. She lived in a large white house with green shutters and a green, luxuriant lawn: not quite as large as Tara of Gone With the Wind fame, but in the same style.

We lived in a shack without electricity or running water, under a rusty tin roof that let in wind and rain. Miss May went to school as a girl. The school my parents and their neighbors built for us was burned to the ground by local racists who wanted to keep ignorant their competitors in tenant farming. During the Depression, desperate to feed his hardworking family, my father asked for a raise from ten dollars a month to twelve. Miss May responded that she would not pay that amount to a white man and she certainly wouldn't pay it to a nigger. That before she'd pay a nigger that much money she'd milk the dairy cows herself.

When I look back, this is part of what I see. I see the school bus carrying white children, boys and girls, right past me, and my brothers, as we trudge on foot five miles to school. Later, I see my parents struggling to build a school out of discarded army barracks while white students, girls and boys, enjoy a building made of brick. We had no books; we inherited the cast off books that "Jane" and "Dick" had previously used in the all-white school that we were not, as black children, permitted to enter.

The year I turned fifty, one of my relatives told me she had started reading my books for children in the library in my home town. I had had no idea – so kept from black people it had been – that such a place existed. To this day knowing my presence was not wanted in the public library when I was a child I am highly uncomfortable in libraries and will rarely, unless I am there to help build, repair, refurbish or raise money to keep them open, enter their doors.
When I joined the freedom movement in Mississippi in my early twenties it was to come to the aid of sharecroppers, like my parents, who had been thrown off the land they'd always known, the plantations, because they attempted to exercise their "democratic" right to vote. I wish I could say white women treated me and other black people a lot better than the men did, but I cannot. It seemed to me then and it seems to me now that white women have copied, all too often, the behavior of their fathers and their brothers, and in the South, especially in Mississippi, and before that, when I worked to register voters in Georgia, the broken bottles thrown at my head were gender free.

I made my first white women friends in college; they were women who loved me and were loyal to our friendship, but I understood, as they did, that they were white women and that whiteness mattered. That, for instance, at Sarah Lawrence, where I was speedily inducted into the Board of Trustees practically as soon as I graduated, I made my way to the campus for meetings by train, subway and foot, while the other trustees, women and men, all white, made their way by limo. Because, in our country, with its painful history of unspeakable inequality, this is part of what whiteness means. I loved my school for trying to make me feel I mattered to it, but because of my relative poverty I knew I could not...

to read in its entirety go to:

silent denial does not lead to healing. lies have gotten us where we are. simple truth.
thanks E for the link sis:-)