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The Domino Theory by Jeff Winbush

"Buy the ticket. Take the ride." ~ Hunter S. Thompson

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Hillary, Bernie and Jeb Don’t Get Why ‘Black Lives Matter.’ Sandra Bland Did and Now She’s Dead

Don’t Drive While Black.

It’s not possible to be angry enough over what happened to Sandra Bland when she was pulled over by Is it possible Sandra Bland killed herself?   It’s not only possible, it’s probable, but that isn’t the point.  What is the point is Bland should never have been put in the position  where dying was preferable to living.

The only thing more inept than the bungling by the Texas cops investigating themselves and is how the Democratic presidential candidates can’t seem to wrap their thick skulls around the notion that once you say  “All Lives Matter” you’ve missed the entire reason why it became necessary to  emphasize “Black Lives Matter” in the first place.

Hillary Clinton botched her moment at a Black church and then she  backtracked by calling Bland’s death, “heartbreaking,” adding, “And that’s why I think it is essential that we all stand up and say loudly and clearly, ‘Yes, black lives matter.’ And we all have a responsibility to face these hard truths of race and justice honestly and directly.”

Clinton’s rivals haven’t fared any better with Sen. Bernie Sanders, the darling of the progressive Left, totally fumbling his response to a protest by Black Lives Matters advocates at the NetRoots Nation conference where he grumped “Black lives, of course, matter. I spent 50 years of my life fighting for civil rights and for dignity,” he said. “But if you don’t want me to be here, that’s OK. I don’t want to outscream people.”

Sanders has declined to offer specific comment or remedies to the many cases of Blacks being assaulted by law enforcement (Dajerria Becton, Martez Johnson) or killed (Walter Scott, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd, Michael Brown, Akai Gurley, John Crawford II, Eric Garner…ad infinitum).

The 73 year-old socialist from Vermont still doesn’t seem to get it as he continues to cite his resume instead of directly addressing how a Sanders presidency would be proactive in getting a handle on police brutality.

“I’m not dismissive,” he said. “I’ve been involved in the civil rights movement all of my life, and I believe that we have to deal with this issue of institutional racism.”

Too young to die.  Too Black to live.
Too young to die. Too Black to live.

Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley got slapped around when he responded, “Black lives matter. White lives matter. All lives matter.” O’Malley, whose testy relationship with the residents of Baltimore has come under scrutiny later apologized, “That was a mistake on my part and I meant no disrespect. I did not mean to be insensitive in any way or communicate that I did not understand the tremendous passion, commitment and feeling and depth of feeling that all of us should be attaching to this issue.”

Jeb Bush, continuing to prove he isn’t the “Smart Bush” essentially called O’Malley a punk for apologizing.   “We’re so uptight and so politically correct now that we apologize for saying ‘lives matter?” an incredulous Bush wondered aloud at a gathering in overwhelmingly White New Hampshire.   “Life is precious. It’s a gift from God. I frankly think that it’s one of the most important values that we have. I know in the political context it’s a slogan, I guess. Should he have apologized? No. If he believes that white lives matter, which I hope he does, then he shouldn’t have apologized to a group that seemed to disagree with it.”

There’s nothing as useless as good White liberals who think they get it but they’re either too busy bragging about themselves or fumbling to say what they think will keep the natives from getting restless.   As for the Republican conservatives, they have to wait to see what Donald Trump will say first before knowing whether they should say anything at all.

What Hillary, Bernie and Jeb  do not get is they can say “all lives matter”and will be mostly right, but at they will be still be all wrong because they never had to give their children The Talk I’ve had to give my daughter and son on what to say, what to do and what not to do and say and how to conduct themselves so they don’t get killed during a routine traffic stop. There is no routine traffic stop when you are Black and a cop pulls you over.

Bernie is a Socialist,  Hillary is a moderate, and Jeb is a conservative but none of them understands why Black Lives Matter.  Sandra Bland could have told them but now its too late.   This is not about them.   There will be plenty of time for me to think about who the next president will be.    I don’t care about that now.   What I care  about is yet another Black body humiliated, stripped of its pride and humanity,  smashed to pieces and left to die in police custody and I VERY MUCH CARE ABOUT THAT.

The cell where Bland died. She allegedly hung herself with a trash bag tied to the toilet partition.

“how did switching lanes with no signal turn into all of this?”
~ Sandra Bland

Sandra Bland should not be dead. She may have killed herself but the State of Texas is complicit for her death.   The U.S. Justice Department MUST step in to answer the question “What Happened to Sandra Bland?”

There must be an independent investigation and an independent autopsy performed on Sandra Bland. The officials in Texas have proven themselves to be untrustworthy by any but the gullible and law enforcement groupies. There are too damn many unanswered questions with the first one being the one Sandra asked herself, “How did switching lanes with no signal turn into all of this?”

American citizens should not walk into jails and be carried out dead. We can not and should not trust the local cops will do a fair, open and complete investigation.   All lives do matter but not all lives matter equally.   Those lives seemingly don’t matter at all. There is a specific need to say “Black Lives Matter” as there have been too many times when it has been violently proven they don’t.

Sandra Bland was tired of seeing Black bodies laid to rest long before their time.   I’m tired of trying to explain this to ignorant pandering politicians.

Sandra_Bland_Instagram
Was Bland’s Instagram pic was an eerie harbinger of her own death?

Ta-Neshi Coates Gets Trolled by Cornel West

“Eat your heart out, Cornel.”

Ta-Neshi Coates is widely regarded as America’s best and brightest social critic (and I share the sentiment). If writers wield power through their employment and arrangement of words, Coates flexed his muscles in the 2014 essay in The Atlantic, “The Case For Reparations” which moved the debate in an entirely new direction. It certainly opened to the possibility of a legitimate claim for reparations which avoided the non-starter argument of slavery as the justification.

Coates is having his moment in the spotlight as he makes the rounds of television, magazine, web interviews to promote his new book, Between the World and Me. Already the book has been lauded by liberals, crapped on by critics and its author praised by one of America’s literary lions.

“I’ve been wondering who might fill the intellectual void that plagued me after James Baldwin died. Clearly it is Ta-Nehisi Coates.” Toni Morrison in a note to Ta-Neshi Coates’ agent.

That annoting did not sit well with one Cornel West who took to his Facebook page to retort:

In Defense of James Baldwin – Why Toni Morrison (a literary genius) is Wrong about Ta-Nehisi Coates. Baldwin was a great writer of profound courage who spoke truth to power. Coates is a clever wordsmith with journalistic talent who avoids any critique of the Black president in power. Baldwin’s painful self-examination led to collective action and a focus on social movements. He reveled in the examples of Medgar, Martin, Malcolm, Fannie Lou Hamer and Angela Davis. Coates’s fear-driven self-absorption leads to individual escape and flight to safety – he is cowardly silent on the marvelous new militancy in Ferguson, Baltimore, New York, Oakland, Cleveland and other places. Coates can grow and mature, but without an analysis of capitalist wealth inequality, gender domination, homophobic degradation, Imperial occupation (all concrete forms of plunder) and collective fightback (not just personal struggle) Coates will remain a mere darling of White and Black Neo-liberals, paralyzed by their Obama worship and hence a distraction from the necessary courage and vision we need in our catastrophic times. How I wish the prophetic work of serious intellectuals like Robin DG Kelley, Imani Perry, Gerald Horne, Eddie Glaude commanded the attention the corporate media gives Coates. But in our age of superficial spectacle, even the great Morrison is seduced by the linguistic glitz and political silences of Coates as we all hunger for the literary genius and political engagement of Baldwin. As in jazz, we must teach our youth that immature imitation is suicide and premature elevation is death. Brother Coates continue to lift your gifted voice to your precious son and all of us, just beware of the white noise and become connected to the people’s movements!


There are many ways to take that. I take that to mean Cornel West thinks Toni Morrison and Ta-Neshi Coates are full of shit.

But so is West if he (a) thinks James Baldwin needs defending and (b) he’s the guy to do the defending.

Michael Eric Dyson,  the former West ally turned bitter enemy went public with his break in a New Republic piece,  dumped derision on West’s kneecapping of Coates in an interview  “It shows the vast ineptitude of Professor West’s scholarship. The point I made in my piece is that he doesn’t keep up, he doesn’t read the freshest, newest, most insightful scholarship, nor does he write about it in any serious fashion or teach it in his curriculum, and it shows here.”

Dyson described Coates as a “greatly gifted writer” who forms “sentences and thoughts that sing on the page and stick to the mind.”

“Every charge he made against Ta-Nehisi is patently false,”  Dyson added. “Shall I introduce you to his essay on reparations? It has every bit of the analysis that West was hankering for,”

Dyson rallied to Morrison’s defense.  “And so now that makes her look like a dupe and a boob when she is a literary genius who possesses a Nobel Prize in literature,” he said. “I think her pedigree of assessment is far more convincing than Cornel West’s.”

Ta-Nehisi Coates_book

Coates may have incurred West’s undying wrath in 2011 in an essay entitled,    where he wrote:

In the matter at hand, there is no real difference between the tribalism offered by [Dinesh] D’Souza and his ilk, and the tribalism offered by West and his defenders. There is no real difference between Tea Partiers who insist that NAACP are the actual racists, and those who believe Obama is a “black mascot” damning the influence of identity politics. There is no real difference between those who push their agenda by implying that Obama isn’t really American, and those who push their agenda by implying that Obama isn’t really black.

Both are afflicted with a species of blindness, and intellectual sloth. Understanding and debating actual policy is hard. Enumerating perceived slights and name-calling, and dubbing it a black agenda, is not.

It may have taken him four years to return fire, but West never forgets an insult and never forgives the insulter.

West has become a small, petty, vulgar, envious and shriveled little man. His ego is second only to the equally vulgar Donald J. Trump. I now consider him a failed intellectual who has invalidated his earlier status as one of the leading voices in Black Thought.

West has nearly abrogated any claim to being a serious thinker to be taken seriously.   His pathological hatred of Barack Obama  coupled with his envy and spitefulness for anyone  like Coates who disagrees with or eclipses him is sad beyond words.   He’s become a really smart rapper with no flow  who enjoys playing the Dozens with big words.

West is a crank living off his rep and is clearly on the down escalator of his career  as Coates passes him on the way up.

“I repudiate Obama and I repudiate myself for supporting Obama.”

A Good Day In South Carolina

The rebel flag is finally a’comin’ down.

A bill taking down the flag and its flagpole from the Capitol’s front lawn passed the South Carolina House early Thursday after 13 hours of debate. It should get to Gov. Nikki Haley before the end of the day and she has promised to sign it quickly.

The bill requires the flag be taken down within 24 hours of her signing and shipped to the Confederate Relic Room.

There were hugs, tears and high fives in the House chamber after the vote. Members who waited decades to see this day snapped selfies and pumped their fists.

But even among the celebrations, there was more than a bit of sadness.

After the Civil War, the flag was first flown over the dome of South Carolina’s Capitol in 1961 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the war. It stayed as a protest to the Civil Rights movement that sought to end discrimination against blacks, only moving in 2000 from the dome to its current location.

The push to remove the flag only started after nine black churchgoers, including state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, were gunned down during Bible study at the historic Emanuel African Episcopal Church in Charleston on June 17. Police said the white gunman’s motivation was racial hatred. Then three days later, photos surfaced of the suspect, Dylann Roof, holding Confederate flags.

“I am 44 years old. I never thought I’d see this moment. I stand with people who never thought they would see this as well,” said House Minority Leader Todd Rutherford, who called the victims martyrs.

I’m glad the Confederate flag is coming down in South Carolina. I’m sad it took the deaths of nine innocents to do it.

Let those who want to be stirred up be stirred up. Let them whine, moan and cry like blubbering brats until they have the dry heaves. Let them hold their breaths until they turn blue and die. I am all out of shits to give. No more enabling of a detestable and contemptible symbol of failure, surrender, and bigotry.

The Racist Rabble of the Right are losing their minds. My heritage is under attack! My way of life is under siege! A symbol of pride is being stripped away from me! STFU with that noise!  Nobody’s banned the rebel flag. You can still buy it, fly it and wipe your ass with it. The  flag remains available if you  need  proof of how much you hate Black  people.    Dylann Roof will  appreciated your show of Southern  pride.

The Confederate flag is still available for anyone who wants one.  They can have it in the privacy of their homes,  put it on their license plates,  wear it on their t-shirts and wave it their Klan rallies. They can’t just have it flying over the South Carolina statehouse. That’s all over. If  some sore losers want to go beyond Civil War reenactments to trying to secede again, let ’em whistle “Dixie” and piss up a rope. Pandering to idiots only guarantees more idiocy.

The decision to remove the flag was arrived at through a democratic process where both sides had their opportunity to make their case and win the day. The pro-Confederate flag side lost. Sucks for them. Don’t like the result? Still sucks for them.

I could not care less if that rag becomes more of a rallying point for racists and for those sympathetic to racists.  LET THEM. It only makes them easier to identify as the bigots they truly are.

Racism LOST today and it was like Japan vs. the U.S in women’s soccer.   It wasn’t even close.

Today was a good day for South Carolina and a better one for America. It took a giant step away from ignorance and intolerance and a giant step toward enlightenment and equality.

South Carolina

Obama’s Amazingly Graceful Eulogy

The fallen, but not the forgotten.

Familiarity doesn’t only breed contempt. It creates expectations. Barack Obama has been president for just short of seven years. I read somewhere during his time in office he has made statements at  memorials and  mass shootings in America  19 times. He has to extremely tired of this part of the job.

Yet Obama does it anyway because while it’s a dirty job, somebody’s gotta do it. Somebody has to remind the rest of us America isn’t a great big unlocked insane asylum where the inmates are armed and running buck wild in the streets though it probably looks that way to the rest of the world.

The President isn’t only the Commander-In-Chief of the nation’s armed forces. He’s also the Counselor-In-Chief when yet another senseless act of violence occurs such as the killing of Susie Jackson, Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, Rev. Daniel L. Simmons Sr., Cynthia Hurd, Ethel Lee Lance, Tywanza Sanders, Myra Thompson, Rev. Sharonda Singleton, and Rev. Clementa Pinckney by a murderous White supremacist.

Obama led a bipartisan group from Washington for Pinckney’s memorial service, and he gave praise to the fallen pastor and those of the parishioners who fell with him.     The president used a country preacher’s cadence that while solemn was  full of hope, healing and grace and  grace particularly was on the president’s mind as he lauded Rev. Pinckney.

What a good man. Sometimes I think that’s the best thing to hope for when you’re eulogized — after all the words and recitations and resumes are read, to just say someone was a good man.

You don’t have to be of high station to be a good man. Preacher by 13. Pastor by 18. Public servant by 23. What a life Clementa Pinckney lived. What an example he set. What a model for his faith. And then to lose him at 41 — slain in his sanctuary with eight wonderful members of his flock, each at different stages in life but bound together by a common commitment to God.

Cynthia Hurd. Susie Jackson. Ethel Lance. DePayne Middleton-Doctor. Tywanza Sanders. Daniel L. Simmons. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton. Myra Thompson. Good people. Decent people. God-fearing people. People so full of life and so full of kindness. People who ran the race, who persevered. People of great faith.

To the families of the fallen, the nation shares in your grief. Our pain cuts that much deeper because it happened in a church. The church is and always has been the center of African-American life–a place to call our own in a too often hostile world, a sanctuary from so many hardships.

It was no surprise the president spoke plainly and forcefully on the unaddressed issues laid bare by the Charleston church shootings including the bloody rebel flag the killer wrapped himself in.

For too long, we were blind to the pain that the Confederate flag stirred in too many of our citizens. It’s true, a flag did not cause these murders. But as people from all walks of life, Republicans and Democrats, now acknowledge — including Governor Haley, whose recent eloquence on the subject is worthy of praise–as we all have to acknowledge, the flag has always represented more than just ancestral pride. For many, black and white, that flag was a reminder of systemic oppression and racial subjugation. We see that now.

Removing the flag from this state’s capitol would not be an act of political correctness; it would not be an insult to the valor of Confederate soldiers. It would simply be an acknowledgment that the cause for which they fought — the cause of slavery — was wrong — the imposition of Jim Crow after the Civil War, the resistance to civil rights for all people was wrong. It would be one step in an honest accounting of America’s history; a modest but meaningful balm for so many unhealed wounds. It would be an expression of the amazing changes that have transformed this state and this country for the better, because of the work of so many people of goodwill, people of all races striving to form a more perfect union. By taking down that flag, we express God’s grace.

Americans have a remarkable ability to focus on something with great intensity and then move on from it. Here today is Rachel Dolezal and tomorrow’s she’s a trivia question. But nobody paid attention when NYPD patrolman Peter Liang was indicted for shooting Akai Gurley That’s the sort of thing which matters while Dolezal’s subterfuge and family matters don’t. The President reminded us there’s still a lot of unfinished business.

But I don’t think God wants us to stop there. For too long, we’ve been blind to the way past injustices continue to shape the present. Perhaps we see that now. Perhaps this tragedy causes us to ask some tough questions about how we can permit so many of our children to languish in poverty, or attend dilapidated schools, or grow up without prospects for a job or for a career.

Perhaps it causes us to examine what we’re doing to cause some of our children to hate. Perhaps it softens hearts towards those lost young men, tens and tens of thousands caught up in the criminal justice system –and leads us to make sure that that system is not infected with bias; that we embrace changes in how we train and equip our police so that the bonds of trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve make us all safer and more secure.

Then Obama did something no president ever has done before and may never ever do again. He began to sing. The President of the United State sang “Amazing Grace.”

“Amazing grace —  how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me; I once was lost, but now I’m found; was blind but now I see. “

Clementa Pinckney found that grace.

Cynthia Hurd found that grace.

Susie Jackson found that grace.

Ethel Lance found that grace.

DePayne Middleton-Doctor found that grace.

Tywanza Sanders found that grace.

Daniel L. Simmons, Sr. found that grace.

Sharonda Coleman-Singleton found that grace.

Myra Thompson found that grace.

Through the example of their lives, they’ve now passed it on to us. May we find ourselves worthy of that precious and extraordinary gift, as long as our lives endure. May grace now lead them home. May God continue to shed His grace on the United States of America.

It’s been a long time since I was in church but Reverend President took me there.

I teared up AND got chills. This was the Obama I voted for. Every now and then my president makes me proud and he reminds me why. I could never imagine President McCain or President Romeny responding the way Obama did. Would Rand or Jeb or even Hillary preach and sing from the pulpit? Maybe they would, probably they wouldn’t but whatever they would do they could never do something so perfectly human.

We may not know it yet, but we’re  going to miss Obama when he’s gone.   He’s done some very good things, some very bad things, been exceptional, been ordinary, been inspiring and been infuriating.   Coming off a week where he had won fast- track trade authority in Congress (mostly with Republican support) and two monumentally important decisions by the Supreme Court making same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states and preserving Obamacare,  the president had enjoyed some significant wins.   We’ve seen many of Obama’s predecessors enjoy good weeks.

What Obama hasn’t been is anything like we’ve ever seen in any American President.    That’s a good thing and a uniquely Obama thing.

No Safety. No Sanctuary.

Emanuel AME Church: Peace was stilled with gunfire.

There is no sanctuary.  There is no safety.  There is no mercy.    We were once again reminded when nine members of the Emanuel  A.M.E. church in Charleston, S.C. had gathered in a place of worship and were slain by  a 21-year-old gunman with White supremacist ties who turned it into a gory slaughterhouse.

I think the world has gone mad. We amuse ourselves with b.s. trivialities, pseudo-celebrities and media-manufactured “scandals” until something evil comes creeping out of the dark to rudely remind us nothing is sacred, nowhere is safe, and everyone is a target.

There’s a special place in hell for someone who would commit mass murder in a church.

Police say the suspect, pictured in the surveillance photograph above, sat in on a prayer group at the Emanuel AME Church for at least an hour before initiating the shooting.

At least nine people—six women and three men—were killed in the mayhem. That count reportedly includes State Sen. Clementa Pinckney, who also acted as the church’s pastor. According to an NAACP official interviewed by the Post and Courier, the shooter told one female survivor “he was letting her live so she could tell everyone else what happened.”

Pinckney’s cousin tells MSNBC witnesses say the gunman’s message was clear:

“He just said ‘I have to do it.’ He said, ‘You rape our women, and you’re taking over our country, and you have to go’.”

Dylan Roof: The wolf stalks the flock.

Those chilling words as well as the deed itself made it clear:  this was a hate crime and the congregation was deliberately targeted.

President Obama has made far too many remarks following mass shootings after the Gabby Giffords was critically wounded and two more were gunned down in Arizona, the Aurora movie theater massacre and the Sandy Hook school shootings and today he made another one.

At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency. And it is in our power to do something about it.

I say that recognizing the politics in this town foreclose a lot of those avenues right now. But it would be wrong for us not to acknowledge it. And at some point it’s going to be important for the American people to come to grips with it, and for us to be able to shift how we think about the issue of gun violence collectively.

Wherever there is blood spilled there’s America’s Most Trusted Name in Right-Wing News on the spot to offer  yet another Obama-bashing talking point and  Bill O’Reilly used his opening monologue to say sympathetic things about the nine slain parishioners, but not without calling the President “misguided”  for pointing out the frequency of shooting sprees in America.

O’Reilly is too egotistical to bother with a little thing like getting his facts straight.  He’d have to pull his head out of his ass first,  but even this swaggering braggart should be able to do the research Slate did and come up with 27 acts of racially-motivated slaughter and domestic terrorism since the Oklahoma City bombing  which killed 168 in 1995.

Rev. Clementa Pinckney: Pastor, Politician, Victim.

You might think…you would hope…in the midst of a still-developing story where critical facts and vitally important details are still forthcoming, a sober and responsible media would tread carefully and avoid superimposing their own agendas and biases to a tragedy.

Fox News is neither sober nor responsible.  There is nothing—literally NOTHING—that is bad which Fox News can’t make WORSE.

On “Fox & Friends” Thursday morning, co-host Steve Doocy said it was “extraordinary” that Police Chief Gregory Mullen referred to the massacre of nine black churchgoers by a young white male as a “hate crime.”

The segment began with Bishop E.W. Jackson, the senior pastor at Hope Christian Church, opining that he was concerned that this wasn’t a racially motivated crime, but a religiously motivated one. “There does seem to be a rising hostility against Christians in this country because of our biblical views,” he said.

“I would urge pastors in these churches to prepare to defend themselves,” Bishop Jackson added. “It’s sad, but I think that we have to arm ourselves.”

Pastors packing heat in the pulpit?    Anywhere else in the civilized word that would be considered an insane thing to say.   On  Fox it makes sense.    I bet Dylan Root spent a lot of time watching Fox News.

Doesn’t Fox have any decency?   No.  They really don’t.

So it’s not a race thing, okay, folks? Just another common, garden variety mass shooting spree and nothing to get hyped about by calling it a hate crime. I can’t wait for Fox  to explain how it’s all Obama’s fault.

A far more sensitive and thoughtful was provided by came  from Beyonce’s sister, Solange Knowles on Twitter.

Was already weary. Was already heavy-hearted. Was already tired.Where can we be safe? Where can we be free? Where can we be black?

Nowhere.   There is no sanctuary. There is no mercy.  Not even in  God’s House.

The meek will inherit nothing.    Only death from a racist’s gun.    Our pain is unrelenting.  Our prayers are with the grieving in Charleston and for the soul of a deeply sick America as well.

How many more times must the President try to console a traumatized nation?

Rachel Dolezal: Double Agent or Race Traitor?

(photo by Thomas Robinson)

If The Racial Draft really were a thing I’d want Rachel Dolezal on my team before Clarence Thomas.

I read this story elsewhere and when I finished I had one question and one question only.

Is  Dolezal doing a good job? If she is, then what’s the rumpus?

Oh sure, I can imagine there are many reasons why the head of a NAACP chapter should be Black instead of passing for Black, but the only question worth asking and answering is “Is she doing her job?” Not whether she’s really Black or should the NAACP have Whites in prominent leadership positions.   The organization has always been racially diverse and inclusive.  Dolezal took it to an extreme.

When Walter White became the organization’s first Executive Secretary in 1916, some wondered why a dude with blonde hair and blue eyes was running a civil rights organization for colored people. Turns out White wasn’t White, but Black. The NAACP has never been exclusively for Blacks only. The national office may have to address this matter to quell the controversy.

She wouldn’t be the first White person to long for an identity other than the one she was born with to get lost in a romance with Black culture.    Deceitful? Probably.  Deceptive?  Certainly.  Harmful?  Illegal?  If so, no one has made the case.

Is my hair Black enough for you?

The most troubling thing about Dolezal are the misrepresentations and lies she came up with to mask her passing for Black. This seems to me to be more of an ugly family matter than a willful attempt to deceive, but unless she has broken the law, I fail to see why Dolezal should be faulted for being a White woman concerned about fighting discrimination against People of Color.

The takeaway is I’m getting is transgender is okay for White men but transethnic is not okay for White women. Race is an “artificial concept” that doesn’t matter is what the Right wingers love to say.   Or at least it is right up until the time you try to transcend it. Assimilate! That is what Blacks are told they need to do. Assimilate into a White culture that doesn’t want you, resent you, and says you only got there through an affirmative action program. Woe betide anyone who forgets assimilation is strictly an “on” ramp into the White world and never an “off” ramp.

Where was all this offense and indignity about cultural appropriation when Iggy Azalea got off the boat became the latest non-Black star to get rich and die tryin’ by Outblacking the Black Folk (hello, Nikki Minaj. Little Richard would like to talk to you about Pat Boone). It wasn’t too long everyone seemed to think Miley Cyrus invented a new dance move in twerking? Is it okay if White people bite from Black culture and cash in on it as long as they don’t go too far and start thinking they ARE Black?

No. You can’t.

It may be delusional when a White woman working for the NAACP begins to identifies with Blacks so much she starts passing herself off as Black, but since she seems to be helping and not hurting I say “thanks” for the help. That’s the part that seems hardest for some both White and Black to wrap their heads around. Why would anyone go to such lengths to “be” Black? Of course Dolezal built a house of cards on sand in the middle of a hurricane and now that it’s coming down around her ears (in no small part due to the malicious actions of her family), there’s a lot of pleasure being taken by outsiders as her lies and fabrications are exposed.

It there is no evidence Dolezal broke any laws, what’s the controversy. Perhaps when she speaks publicly on Tuesday an admission may be forthcoming, but if fudging an employment application is a crime, there’s gonna be a lot of liars doing time in the slammer.

Something Dr. King said about the content of our character mattering more than the color of our skin seems relevant right about now.

If it worked for Caitlyn it can work for Rachel.

We’re Gonna Have A Racial Profiling Pool Party!

YOU! You’re not Black! Please stop filming and have a nice day, sir.”

Corporal Eric Casebolt, formerly of the McKinney, Texas Police Force and The Biggest Thug in America,  resigned this week when the world reeled back in disgust from the video of his bestial and merciless of Dajerria Becton, 15, clothed only in a bikini.    Dishonored and disgraced by his savage attack, Casebolt left an indelible mark as the face of the callous and cold-blooded Warrior Cop who sees law enforcement as a call to battle .

Casebolt wouldn’t be the first goon to say “My bad” after proving how  much of a pitiless monster he could be,  but this may have been the WORST public apology ever!

Let us count the ways.

1. The lawyer for a McKinney, Texas, police officer who has become the country’s latest exemplification of bad cop behavior on Wednesday blamed her client’s aggressive actions on emotional stress. “He never intended to mistreat anyone,” his attorney, Jane Bishkin, said at a Wednesday afternoon news conference. “He apologizes to all who were offended.”

Casebolt didn’t attend the press conference. Why wasn’t Casebolt present for his own apology? Why not offer a personal apology to Becton? His attorney “apologized,” not Casebolt himself. Which is like sending your mom to apologize to the neighbor for the window you broke. It’s insincere, it’s cowardly and it’s gutless.

Any “apology” that isn’t delivered BY the person who has harmed someone TO the person harmed by their actions is worthless.  

What Casebolt did to Becton was  far beyond which would leave her “offended.” She was physically manhandled, verbally demeaned, assaulted, and humiliated.   Casebolt treated Becton like  Patsy in 12 Years A Slave.  He pulled his gun and pointed it at two boys. He cursed and threatened every Black kid he could and nearly turned a neighborhood squabble into a full-blown race riot.

Dajerria Becton: Threat or Menace?

That goes way beyond being “offensive.” Belching at the dinner table or picking your nose is offensive. This was savage brutishness.

2.Bishkin said Casebolt had worked one suicide and one attempted suicide in the hour prior to being dispatched to the pool party that reportedly involved teens fighting. “The nature of these two suicide calls took an emotional toll on Eric Casebolt,” Bishkin said at a Wednesday afternoon news conference.

That’s rough. That’s tough. That’s the JOB and if you’re not prepared to do the job, take the rest of the day off. Go home sick. Tap out. Don’t take your aggressions out on a 15-year-old and inflict an emotional toll on her because you can’t hang.

3.Daniel Malenfant, president of the McKinney Fraternal Order of Police, said Casebolt has been receiving daily telephone and email death threats. “He’s worried for his family,” Bishkin said. “He’s worried that he may be followed.”

Oh, so now I’m supposed to feel sorry for Casebolt? Tough noogies, dude. Actions have consequences and yours put you and your family in the glare of the white hot spotlight. Casebolt made himself the poster boy for racist, vicious and bad policing. He can find the cause of his troubles in the mirror.

4. Casebolt, the city’s patrolman of the year in 2008, was reluctant to even go to the pool disturbance, but “felt it was his duty to respond” once the call escalated to reports of violence.

“He believed that those who fled were possible suspects,” Bishkin said. “He was not targeting minorities. In fact, he also detained a white female.”

How colorblind of Casebolt. Maybe this until now unidentified detained White female will step forward or star in a You Tube video on some right-wing website. For now this sounds like a lawyer trying to do her job and apply some lipstick to a pig of a case.

Bishkin says Casebolt was going to tap out of the run at first but “felt it was his duty to respond” and boy, did he! Like Rambo on PCP.

5. His first call of the night was to a suicide where a father had shot and killed himself poolside at an apartment complex in front of his family and others, Bishkin said. “Eric assisted them in securing the scene, photographing the body and collecting statements,” said Bishkin, noting that the deceased was black.

Oh, so your client wasn’t targeting Blacks at the pool party, but where a father offs himself poolside in front of his family, you emphasize the deceased was Black. So when your client is engaged in some heavy-duty racial profiling race doesn’t matter, but you don’t want your client to look like a raving bigot so race does matter. That about right, mouthpiece?

Maybe he should stay away from pools?

6. “Eric also spent a considerable amount of time consoling the man’s grieving widow.”

Plus, LeBron James is Eric’s favorite basketball player, he loves the new Kendrick Lamar album and some of his best friends are Black too!

Protecting and Serving your ass to death.

7. On his next call, Bishkin said Casebolt helped successfully talk a suicidal teenage girl down from her parents’ roof. “Eric’s compassion during these two incidents are a testament to his character,” Bishkin said. “While police work is often dangerous, it is fraught with emotions and family tragedy.”

Once he talked the girl down from the roof, did he body slam her to the ground, pin her down pressing his full weight into her back, handcuff her, and generally treat her like dogshit under his shoes?

Bishkin is right about police work being fraught with emotions and family tragedy. Casebolt almost caused a tragedy for several families when he lost control of his emotions.

8. Asked by a reporter if any other officers had been on the suicide calls and at the pool melee like Casebolt, Bishkin declined to answer. “Because there’s still an active investigation by the McKinney Police Department, we think it’s inappropriate to comment as much as we’d like to,” she said.

Then why comment about the active investigation by the McKinney Police Department in the first place? How’s that not inappropriate?

9. Bishkin said Casebolt has received little information about the investigation.

Why should the subject of an investigation be receiving information about the investigation? It’s not as though he’s still a cop.

10. “It is his hope that by his resignation the community may start to heal,” Bishkin said.

From the wounds he inflicted in the first place.

The “apology” was a  toxic waste spill  from start to finish. Any attorney worth their law degree should know the best way to help Eric Casebolt is to engage in some serious damage control. Bring him out before the cameras in a suit and tie with the wife and kids standing by their man. Have him read his own apology and make it clear because the investigation is ongoing, Casebolt isn’t taking any questions.

Talking about the stresses Casebolt was under before making the pool party run would and showing the world he is a caring and thoughtful police officer and not a raving Loony Tune would go a long ways in humanizing Casebolt. Instead he just comes off as a 14 carat phony.

I could have humanized and made Casebolt a more sympathetic figure than Miss Bishkin did and I don’t have any sympathy for him. For his sake, should charges be filed, Bishkin had better be a better attorney than she is p.r. agent.

Time and again, we’ve seen this same story play out with depressing frequency and time and again, it keeps  circling back to the same old scenario of angry/frightened armed White cop versus an angry/frightened/unarmed Black suspect.

The targeting of Black people  is not  the misdeeds of a few “loose cannons” or  due  to  a handful of  “bad cops.”   That was a tired cliché  and now it’s a bald-faced lie.  Casebolt  was named Officer of the Year in 2008, and his duties included neighborhood patrol and  community policing.

Casebolt was held up as the model of a good cop. What he lost control this was Casebolt the REAL cop.

Nobody Was Going to Save Toya Graham’s Son Except Toya Graham.

Toya Graham and her son, Michael

Toya Graham, the mother who publicly disciplined her son has been praised by everyone from the Baltimore chief of police to Oprah for doing so.

The flip side of the praise for Graham is out comes the critics putting her on blast for laying hands on her unruly son.

Michael Cohen/Baltimore Sun:

Many have dubbed Graham “Mom Of The Year.” She was even praised by the Baltimore Police commissioner, who said, “I wish I had more parents that took charge of their kids out there tonight.”

Since this story broke, however, I’ve been trying to think of another situation in which publicly whaling on a child would be met with such praise. Would we say the same if the child being hit was a girl or if Graham were white? It’s a reminder that, seemingly, one of the last acceptable forms of violence in America is when a parent hits a child.

On the one hand, it’s uncomfortable and unfair to judge a woman with six kids, living in a poor community, wracked by violence and police brutality, who is rightly worried about her child’s safety.

But that doesn’t make her actions right, and it doesn’t excuse those who are bizarrely holding her up as a parenting model.

Yet, violence as discipline is spectacularly counterproductive. Spanking a child — no less the head slaps delivered by Ms. Graham — increases aggression. It leads to anti-social behavior, causes anxiety, increases susceptibility to mental illness, and may have long-term cognitive effects.

Oh, bullshit!  Fuck you, Michael Cohen!

Stacey Patton/Washington Post:

It’s not surprising that a black mother in Baltimore who chased down, cursed and beat her 16-year-old son in the middle of a riot has been called a hero. In this country, when black mothers fulfill stereotypes of mammies, angry and thwarting resistance to a system designed to kill their children, they get praised.

“He gave me eye contact,” Toya Graham told CBS News. “And at that point, you know, not even thinking about cameras or anything like that — that’s my only son and at the end of the day, I don’t want him to be a Freddie Gray. Is he the perfect boy? No he’s not, but he’s mine.”

Mama and Mike: “There’s a riot goin’ on, but YOUR ass ain’t gonna be part of it!”

In other words, Graham’s message to America is: I will teach my black son not to resist white supremacy so he can live.

This celebration of Graham reflects a belief that black youths are inherently problematic, criminal and out of control. The video also supports the idea that black fathers are absent, suggesting that all we need is an angry black mom to beat the “thug” out of an angry young man – and everything will be fine.

And remember Black kids, you too can resist White Supremacy by throwing a rock against a heavily armed cop!  It’s easy and fun!  Unless you get shot, then maybe not so much.

Salon’s Joan Walsh, their in-house expert on White Liberal Guilt, didn’t scorch Graham as personally as Cohen and Patton, but smacked around other Whites for applauding Graham’s actions:

The hypocrisy of the white mainstream applauding Graham is sickening. Let’s be honest: many white folks are reflexive critics of the greater frequency of corporal punishment in the black community. Witness the media horror at Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson beating his young son. If Graham beat her child like that in the aisles of CVS, you can be sure somebody would call CPS.

I don’t fault CBS for interviewing Graham. She’s a “newsmaker,” and I’d talk to her in a heartbeat. But the way the network hyped its “get” falls into the category of white media applauding a black woman for beating up her son. As though that’s the only way to discipline a black child.

As someone who has raised (and disciplined) two Black children, I can reassure Walsh, striking them is not the only way.  Every method White parents use to discipline and correct the behavior of their children, Black parents use those methods too,  including making physical contact with a misbehaving child.   The difference being White kids get away with stuff that gets Black kids buried.

I wasn’t surprised by Professor Patton’s completely condescending column.  A little disgusted, but not surprised when the “We Are Respectable Negroes” types come out to look down their noses at those lower class colored folks they consider poor representatives of the race.  Patton throws some vicious shade at Patton for upbraiding her son as telling him to genuflect to the throne of White supremacy  but what do you call an educated, articulate and accomplished Black woman publicly talking trash about another Black woman who isn’t as accomplished, articulate or educated in a White publication like the Post? Isn’t that bowing down and kissing the ass of White supremacy?

I find pretentious, bourgeois intellectualism among the Black elite every bit as off-putting as crass, buffoonish ignorance from the Black masses and both are equally embarrassing. However, there was nothing the least bit embarrassing about Mama Graham going upside her son’s head. I don’t want to hear Graham was violent toward her son. If that’s what it takes to keep him in school, out of jail or the morgue, more power to her.

Children are supposed to bury their parents, not the other way around the way like it is for too many Black families. Families like Freddie Gray’s and if  that’s problematic to Mr. Cohen, Miss Patton and Miss Walsh, I don’t care.  If Michael ended up on a slab with a toe tag because he got shot for throwing rocks at the cops, or looting a store, or burning down an old folks home and got arrested, Cohen, Patton and Walsh aren’t going to be the ones coming up with his bail or bury him for screwing around where he had no business being.

These academic and journalistic nosy-ass busy bodies should mind their own damn business. Not one of them is offering to help Graham raise her kids. Would any of the fine folks who find Graham’s actions so detestable and “hard to watch” would be willing to bail her son out of jail after he was arrested for looting or throwing rocks at a cop or bury him if he was shot by one?   Would those willing to condemn how Toya disciplined Michael be equally willing to contribute to his funeral?

Maybe she embarrassed Michael because she fronted on him in public, but that’s fair since he fronted on her first. If more parents paid attention to what their kids were and were not doing, maybe we wouldn’t be talking (or rather not talking) about how our kids are at risk.

Toya Graham deserves respect, not scorn,  for trying to save her son.   It’s not as if anybody else White OR Black is lining up to do the job.

(Cartoon by David Horsey/Los Angeles Times)

 

 

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