Friday, June 27, 2008

The Last Straw!!!!!!

Hey folks,

I've had it UP TO HERE with Blogger. As much as it pains me to move on, I don't feel like I have a choice any more. This site isn't worth the headaches its been giving me lately. That said, I've decided to move on. My new blog can be found at: Until I figure out how to import my posts over to my new blog, I'll keep this one active for a grip in case you want to puruse the archives. But I'm not gonna post here anymore.

Also, in the event that I forgot to include your link to my new site please let me know. Feel free to contact me at

See ya at the new site!


Thursday, June 26, 2008

Where's my belt?!

"I'm punishing you because I love you..."

"This hurts me more than it hurts you..."

"One day when you're older, you'll appreciate what I'm doing here..."

For those of us who actually got whoopin's as children, we usually heard nonsensical psychobabble like this right before we got the beating of our lives. Incidentally, I'm inclined to deliver similar lines to Sen. Obama as I post this butt-whoopin' of a clip:

To be sure, I'm a huge fan of Sen. Obama. I don't think I need to qualify that any more than I already have on this blog. But sometimes, "tough love" is necessary to keep our elected officials honest. We have a duty to be critical of our leaders; even the ones for whom we have the strongest support.

That said; even though this may "hurt me more than it hurts you", what the HELL were you thinking; Senator; when you publicly said this?! If you don't want this ultimate in flip flopping to come back and bite you in your John Brown hindparts, you need to clarify your position on Iraq and explain what you meant when you said this. If not, you may cause me to reconsider how much of an advocate I'll be willing to be for you down the road. When I think of all the volunteers, bloggers, and donors that have worked tirelessly to get you in this position, I call on you to honor our commitments by setting the record straight with us. After all, it's not just your credibility that stands to take a hit (though you stand to lose the most), it's our credibility that suffers as well.

As I've said a thousand times before, I'm far more forgiving of flip floppers when they change their positions based on open-mindedness and enlightment. I'd rather see a person change their mind if they were wrong about something than to cling to false and unproven ideas solely based on stubborness, pride, or an unwillingness to see consider the other side. But if you're just playing a twisted game of fair weathered politics, you may have lost one supporter. I might just have to roll with Cynthia McKinney come November. If my saying that stings a bit, then my job of being the loving supporter was performed successfully.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Obama car ad

Uh, OK...


Monday, June 23, 2008

Random news

Hey party people,

It's been a while since I did a miscellaneous news post. So here are some of the stories currently hitting the airwaves:

Pioneer comic dead
I just found out that George Carlin; one of the more groundbreaking comics I've ever heard; has died of a heart failure. He was 71. While I admit that I negatively internalized some of his jokes about people who believe in God (being a Christian myself), he was one of the most entertaining, well polished and thought-provoking comedians to be found.

RIP Mr. Carlin.

David and Elizabeth Lawson, a Utah couple who created the "The Sock Obama", a hand puppet of a monkey dressed in a suit, have announced they will proceed in manufacturing the controversial toy. The couple maintains that since people have often caricaturized President Bush as a chimp, it's only fair that they should be able to do the same with Sen. Obama.

News flash to the Lawsons: Comparing black folks to monkeys was, is, and will FOREVER BE a racist gesture. Carry on.

Speaking of racist expressions, Don Imus, the infamous shock jock who was recently suspended for his "Nappy Headed Hoes" comments directed at the Rutgers' women's basketball team, is at it again. This time he made -- what some are calling -- inflammatory and racist remarks about newly acquired Dallas Cowboy Adam "Pacman" Jones. Jones, who himself has been no stranger to controversy because of off-the-field antics including a shooting a Vegas night club, was the subject of discussion as Imus and his co-host made a stereotypical comment associating blacks with violence.

Imus later offered an explanation; indicating that he meant to say that Jones was simply getting picked on because he was black. But we all know the score; the racist tone of Imus' remarks. For that matter, I'm not suprised. While others are outraged (again), I predicted this would happen a long time ago. I predicted that the punishment Imus received would not reform his behavior and -- if anything -- would cause him to come back stronger than ever. Now, I couldn't predict how Imus would come back, but I knew he would.

Pregnancy pact?
This story is a few days old, but is still worth mentioning only because of how ridiculous it is. A group of teenage girls at a school in a small Massachusetts town have reportedly made some sort of pact to all get pregnant and raise their children together. These girls are said to lack self-esteem and are relying on parenthood to give their lives purpose.

I'm sorry, but it this is true all these girls should be in jail and their children put up for adoption. Maybe I'm sounding a bit like a Republican in this case, but I get endlessly annoyed seeing dumb a** kids bringing other kids into this world without being able to adequately provide for them. If these kids are so desperate for a sense of belonging, give them something to do. Volunteer work. A summer job. Play softball. Reading a book. There are plenty of time-consuming, self-esteem building, and engaging activities outside of inadequately bringing another life into this world. Why haven't these boneheaded girls, their parents, or THE BABY DADDIES pick up on this?! Aaagh!

In and out of context
Dan Abrams and the folks over at MSNBC have gave the Dems a little bit of fire to match the fire toss at Michelle Obama for her comments about being proud of the country for the "first time in [her] adult life." Footage was uncovered showing Sen. John McCain stating that it wasn't until he was "deprived" of America as a POW that he truly loved it. Uh oh...!

Now, taking his comments into context, I know exactly what he meant. He certainly wasn't implying that he hated his country before becoming a POW. He was stating that it took that horrific experience for him to truly appreciate his country. It's no different that someone saying they didn't know how much they loved someone close to them until they died (a little extreme, but you get the point). I get him. I forgive him. Now, if he and his camp can extend the same courtesy to Michelle for her poorly contextualized comments. While we're at it, I'd challenge both the Obama and McCain camps to SAY WHAT THEY MEAN. As I've stated before, it's far too easy to get points lost in the way they are communicated.

Obama's presidential seal
Sigh. C'mon Senator. For real?

The Obama campaign has announced that the presidential seal it recently unveiled will be removed. The seal duplicating the seal of the President -- which included the words "Vero possumus (roughly translated as saying "Yes We Can") has been viewed by many as an indication of Obama being too overly confident during this heated political campaign. While I'm praying to God that Obama pulls this off and will eventually stand behind the actual presidential seal, WTF?!

Flip flopping politicians
Both John McCain and Barack Obama now have something in common with Sen. John Kerry during the 2004 presidential election: both now have the label of "flip flopper" on their names. This week, both candidates went on the record by changing their positions on issues critical to this year's election. Sen. Obama indicated that he would opt out of public financing for the general election while Sen. McCain stated that he now supports drilling off the coast if states give their consent. As we speak, both candidates are using their flip flops against each other.

I don't know about the rest of you, but I don't have a problem with politicians changing their positions. Rather than staying committed to their incorrect policies, it's refreshing to see policiticans see the error of their ways and make changes accordingly. But the secret is: they have to sell it as a learning experience. If McCain and Obama can 'fess up and admit how they came to change their positions, campaign damage can be alleviated in my opinion.

Heil ESPN!
Here's another old story but still worth mentioning. Last week, ESPN suspended one of its columnists for making a pretty crude and inappropriate reference to Adolf Hitler when writing about the NBA Champion Boston Celtics. In one of her columns, ESPN writer Jemele Hill said, “Rooting for the Celtics is like saying Hitler was a victim. It’s like hoping Gorbachev would get to the blinking red button before Reagan.”

One day, I'll figure out what the deal is with sports personalities and why they can't seem to leave the inappropriate hyperbolic statements at home. For one, the line made absolutely no sense whatsoever. Secondly, drudging up shameful reminders of the history's atrocities is no way to effectively come up with sports metaphors. If this lady got fired for her comments, there wouldn't be any tears shed from these hazel eyes.

I guess that's it for the time being. But I'm sure the news will provide much more to talk about soon. They never seem to disappoint.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Celebrating the Broken Chains

On a warm day in July of 1776, a document was signed that declared this nation's independence from the tyranny of the British government. Close to one hundred years later on another warm summer day, black Americans who had populated the same "free" nation for years prior as slaves were finally awarded the same freedom.

On this day in 1865 -- over two years after the Emancipation Proclaimation was signed, a general order was announced in Galveston, Texas indicating the end of the long and bloody civil war dividing the country. The order also called for the release of the close to 250,000 slaves in the state. This day of jubilee for those newly freed slaves became the day we know as Juneteeth.

Since that time, African Americans have used this time to commemorate the pain and triumph that came with years of captivity. While there is no doubt that American is deeply immersed in the shameful legacy of slavery (as much as people refuse to see that), there is much to celebrate. Now -- more than ever -- black Americans have considerable access to the same "American Dream" formerly reserved for whites. Even when only one state recognizes Juneteenth as a state holiday (Texas, for obvious reasons), the significance of the day will never be diminished.

Though I'll never be able to fully comprehend the anguish that came with bondage, I try to at least imagine the sheer joy that must have been the slaves as the document proclaiming their emancipation was finally enacted. Though it was long overdue and only truly recognized after the Civil Rights movement another 100 years later, the day was ours. We were officially declared a free people. That freedom has never been more apparent than it is today. The road for us to travel has been paved by the worn, calloused, and bloodied hands of those who came before us. We have hitched a ride to the new 'land of opportunity' on the whipped backs of our ancestors. For this reason, we owe it to those overworked and enslaved dreamers to not only remember their struggle, but to also seize every opportunity they have provided for us.

Today we have Juneteenth. But I'm also looking forward to the time where I can thank each and every one of them when we all meet in Glory.


Getting paid to drive a billboard...?

Where do I sign up?


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Beyond mere punishment

File this under "Things We Can't Blame on Racism."

I just read one of the most unbelievable stories ever:

A 5-year-old Los Angeles boy was fighting for his life today after suffering what police called one of the worst cases of child abuse they have seen, allegedly at the hands of his mother and her live-in girlfriend.

Police said the boy had countless cigarette burns all over his body, including his genitals, was unable to open his hands because he had been forced to put them flat on a hot stove, and was repeatedly beaten and forced to sit in his own urine.

What's worse is that these women deliberately tried to cover their tracks:

[They] brought a healthy child of a mutual friend to the appointment and tried to pass him off as [her] son, officials said. While [the women] were at DCS, a stranger found the boy abandoned and notified authorities, police said.

I was completely floored when I read this story. Obviously there is the element of torture to consider. I don't care what kind of behavioral issues this child may have had, no child deserves to be tortured; especially like this. Being a person who got his tail smacked on more than one occasion as a child, I'm not at all opposed to the occasional whoopin'. But the horrific punishment inflicted on this poor child does not constitute a whoopin' or anything comparable to one. Then I think of how these women tried to conceal the evidence of abuse by using another child to deceive child services. That to me is a clear indication that they were not out of their minds. They were well aware of their wrongdoing. Finally, I think of all the people who can't conceive children but would provide a far more loving environment; while these low lives are able to/allowed to pop out babies.

H/T to Avery from Stereo Describes My Scenario for the story.

**This Just In...**

No sooner than I could finish entering this post, Gina from What About Our Daughters just dropped a heart-wrenching post about a woman and her child being brutally slain in Minnesota. The assailants, two black teenagers (sigh...) beat their victims, stabbed them over 100 times and finished off the woman by smashing her head with a television.

Two teenage boys have been charged in the murders of a Minneapolis mother and her 10-year-old son.

The criminal charges detail a grisly scene. Police found three knives, a golf club and a television at the scene of the crime, all of which they believed were used as murder weapons. Court documents say blood was splattered all over the house and a toddler who was in the home at the time of the brutal murder was also splattered with blood. Police say Daniels was stabbed more than 100 times, Shepard died after being smashed in the head with the television.

I tell you: as more of these stories begin to surface, the less of an opponent I am of strapping people to The Chair. Of course, I won't presume to play God and determine who deserves what. But I can't say that I'd shed any tears for any of these monsters should they get their just desserts.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Obama in Michigan; The Morning After

Last night I had the opportunity to see Senator Barack Obama for the first time. Let me just say that it was an absolute treat!

For starters, I admit: it was a little disheartening at first. Though we arrived over two hours before the doors were expected to open, we still found ourselves in a seemingly mile-long line that wrapped all the way around the arena. We later discovered that the pile up was due to a limited number of entrances being used. Though the wait was long -- almost convincing us to turn around and go home -- we were nonetheless content in knowing that we're standing in a line of history. We were in line waiting to see the first black person in our nation's history to be a legitimate nominee for POTUS. That -- and being entertained by the hoards of vendors selling Obama merchandise and petitioners passing out fliers -- made the long wait manageable.

As we finally entered the building, you could feel a strong security presence. At the entrance, we were immediately met by armed U.S. Secret Service agents who thoroughly examined each person entering the premises. Of course this was to be expected, so I traveled as lightly as possible. Other people weren't so lucky. People were forced to discard all sorts of items that -- I'll admit -- seemed pretty inconsequential. But I guess you never can be too safe...

From there, it took us a few minutes to find a seat. The floor seats were reserved for media, public officials, and randomly selected audience members (I suspect this was to represent the diversity of the attendees). Admittedly, it was pretty hard to find a good seat in the jam-packed Joe. But we finally did. By the time we were seated, the rally was just getting started. A couple of local grassroots organizers (one of whom, a solider returning from his third tour in Iraq) kicked things off. But some early audio problems (which prompted the crowd to chant "We can't hear!") made it hard to process everything they were saying. I caught bits and pieces of their shpeel, which focused mainly on the importance of organizing and contributing. But most of their talk was lost in bad audio. Shortly after that, a local Detroit singer did her rendition of the National Anthem. While the woman could definitely blow, I was getting a little restless with her gettin' her Bleeding Gums on.

Immediately after the National Anthem, the official rally began with Detroit Pistons' All-Star Chauncey Billups. The crowd erupted. Honestly, I don't think they were cheering as much for the fact that it was Chauncey Billups. I mean, the dude is crazy famous in Detroit and everything, but I don't think that was necessarily it. I think it was that he's crazy famous and an Obama supporter that got people excited. He's even gone on the record numerous times-- along with several other affluent personalities -- vocalizing his support for Obama. So when he walked through the curtains, the crowd understandably went nuts. Billups went on to talk about the importance of registering to vote and actually getting out to vote. And you know that celebrities are somehow more effective at delivering a message than you or I ever could be...

The cheers that Billups generated quickly turned into boos as the next speaker --Govenor Jennifer Granholm -- took the stage. It's no secret that many Michiganders (including Democrats) have not been particularly pleased with Granholm's performance lately. The lukewarm reception she received was a clear indication of that. It got a little better for her as she began to work the crowd more; mentioning the 2008 Stanley Cup Champion Detroit Red Wings and of course Sen. Obama. She seemed to be doing well until she threw in a plug for Sen. Clinton whom she previously supported. From there, the boos were even stronger than when Granholm first took the stage. I mean, you would've seriously thought that the Colorado Avalance were in the building. Once she finished getting jeered by the audience, she called to stage the main event: Senator Obama and his latest endorser Al Gore.

(As a side note: it was no accident that Kwame wasn't anywhere to be found.)

As Gore stepped to the podium, you would've thought that he was the one running for President. His speech was full of the passion that I maintain was missing-in-action during his run in 2000. Though his endorsement came waaaaay too late in the game (which in itself drew some criticism with folks I spoke to), his speech still generated all sorts of electricity from the crowd. Even when he acknowledged the campaign of Sen. Hill Spawn (albeit, a pretty crappy campaign in my opinion), the crowd wasn't as ready to barrage him with boos as they did with Gov. Granholm. Overall, I'd say he did a pretty good job working the crowd. He was engaging, on point, articulate, and -- yes -- even funny. For a moment there, I almost forgot who I listening to.

From there, Senator Obama took center stage. At that point, the noise was deafening. I recorded the ovation on my PDA. During playback, my phone actually vibrated (if you can believe that).

Obama's message wasn't all that dissimilar to any other speeches he has delivered up to this point. Perhaps the only unique difference this time around was with his inclusion of Michigan-specific references. When citing John Mc(Ins)ane's proposed tax cuts for instance, he jokingly suggested that the only person in the building who would benefit was Chauncey Billups. He mentioned a few colleges and universities in Michigan which could pave the way for education in the state. He referred to Flint as the birthplace of GM (the pop we heard at that point gave us an indication of how many "Flintstones" were in the building). And of course, the Red Wings were given another shout-out.

From there, the remainder of his speech was pretty uniform with others he's made before. Like Gore, he praised Senator Clinton -- which was received by scattered boos. But as he chastised those hecklers, he called for the crowd to join him in acknowledging her for making him a better candidate. The crowd gave in to his request and clapped in reverence (this proves to me that rift may be resolved amongst the candidates, but has a loooong way to go with the supporters). He tossed in a few recycled jokes like how he never expected the the primaries to go as long as they did and how children who were born when the primaries started are now walking and talking. He ended his speech by stating his policies on health care, jobs, the economy, education, and the war in Iraq.

I've been to a few rallies before but this one was the most powerful and impactful. It was a pretty important event to have in a city like Detroit. Given how places like Detroit and Flint have been embattled by questionable political leadership, economic hardship, and identity seeking, people are growing restless with the way things are headed. They have an insatiable thrist for change. Obama's message last night left them (I think) with a sense of hope that such change actually is in the foreseeable future.

Yes we can!