Thursday, June 26, 2008
Independent presidential candidate Ralph “I’m Showing My True Colors” Nader, accused Obama of “trying to talk White” and of appealing to “White guilt.” Damn. But there was another racist statement that Nader offered that merits some additional scrutiny. Nader said Obama is “half African-American.” “HALF?” So here we are in 2008 and Black folks still can’t get away from one-drop rule measurements. “HALF?”
It used to be that people were automatically Blackened even if generations before there was thought to be an African American in the gene pool. Folks dug deep into family history, coming up with ridiculous metrics such as octoroon or quadroon. Up until Obama’s presidential run, he would have most certainly been considered Black—no question. More, Obama has self-identified as possessing an investment in Blackness—while celebrating his diverse racial and ethnic memberships.
But then certain people got it into their minds that powerful, voting Black folks should be told that Obama must be viewed from a different “one-drop” angle, that of White blood. Somehow, biologically, Obama is not Black (enough) and not worthy of Blacks’ attention to his campaign. The real implication is this: if Black folks are going to vote for a “White” man, why not vote for…well, Nader. Forget the issues—this is about skin color. Heck, even Charles Steele of the SCLC said Barack was “of the system,” while Michelle had “slave blood” running through her veins. Rush Limbaugh had a field day with this mess.
Folks don’t be fooled by this latest desperate tactic to shift attention away from what Obama seeks to do. But what a novel strategy of reversal this is—bigots alternately grabbing at drops of Black blood (for Whites) and White blood (for Blacks) to confuse and alienate. Now, that is truly desperate. Change can’t come soon enough.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
"But out of either ignorance — or indifference — many blacks persist in their efforts to make Juneteenth a national holiday." --DeWayne Wickham
Juneteenth became an official state holiday in Texas on January 1, 1980, through the efforts of Al Edwards, State Legislator. Representative Edwards actively sought to spread the observance of Juneteenth all across America. Today, 27 states recognize “Juneteenth” as an official state holiday. But what's up the holiday that purportedly commemorates the fact that some Blacks in Texas learned about their freedom nearly two years too late? Here is DeWayne Wickham's (USA Today, 3/12/07) view:
Real Black History Too Often Gathers Dust"Now that Black History Month is over, I have something to say about black history: Let's get it right.
For too many African-Americans, black history has become a twisted mix of urban legend and pop culture. And for more than a few whites, the truth of the treatment their racial ancestors meted out to blacks is buried beneath a mountain of denied history.
What am I talking about? To begin with, there's Juneteenth. For years it has been hawked by black advocates as a "commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States." It was on June 19, 1865, that blacks on Galveston Island, Texas, were told of the Emancipation Proclamation, which actually freed few slaves.
Abraham Lincoln's wartime proclamation, which took effect Jan. 1, 1863, freed slaves in parts of the South controlled by the Confederacy where the order could not be enforced, and left in bondage slaves in places under Union army control.
By the time blacks on Galveston Island were told of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Civil War was over, and that presidential act was widely believed to have no effect in states that had returned to the Union. So in January 1865, Congress passed a constitutional amendment that outlawed slavery.
The End of Slavery
Slavery in the USA officially ended Dec. 6, 1865, when the 13th Amendment was ratified. But out of either ignorance — or indifference — many blacks persist in their efforts to make Juneteenth a national holiday.
Then there is the issue of what caused the Civil War. More than a few whites now say the bloody conflict was fought over states' rights — and not slavery. I suspect this dodge has found supporters among a lot of people who have never bothered to read the constitution adopted by the 11 states that formed the Confederacy.
That document, adopted in March 1861, just one month before Confederate forces fired the first salvo in the Civil War, is irrefutable evidence of the South's motivation for seceding from the Union. It forbade the enactment of any law "denying or impairing the right of property in negro slaves." It also mandated that territories or states that might later join the Confederacy would allow slavery to exist within their borders.
Slave vs. Free States
These two measures were an obvious response to the KansasNebraska Act, which the U.S. Congress enacted in 1854. That law sought to temper the competing demands of slavery supporters and opponents over how the two states would be admitted into the Union. The abolitionists wanted them to be admitted as free states, and the pro-slavery forces pushed for them to come in as slave states. Under the federal law, the people of those new states were allowed to decide whether slavery would be allowed within their borders. That move threatened the delicate balance between slave and free states and — combined with the election of Lincoln — pushed the South toward a breakaway war.
Finally, there is this: Democrats did create the Ku Klux Klan, Black Codes and Jim Crow laws. When the National Black Republican Party said as much last year in a radio commercial, the group came under a blistering attack. But the Klan was created by Southern Democrats. So, too, were the Black Codes and Jim Crow laws, which were used in the South to relegate blacks to a subservient social position, and restrict their political and legal rights.
The black GOP organization was historically correct in what it said. But in trying to link the bad acts of Southern Democrats of a bygone era with the Democratic Party of today, the group went too far.
Jesse Helms and Strom Thurmond were the linear successors of those mean-spirited Southern Democrats. They and others like them found a home in the Republican Party when they were frustrated in their opposition to black civil rights gains of the 1960s.
This is the history that isn't widely taught during Black History Month."
(Image by Benny Joseph. 1976 Juneteenth Parade, Houston.)
Sunday, June 15, 2008
By now we all know that R. Kelly walked. But how did he do it? Well, he did it by way of what I call the “Doppelganger Set Me Up Defense.” R. Kelly asserted that wasn’t him on the videotape; just somebody who possessed an uncanny resemblance to him. And, the alleged victim said, it wasn’t her on the tape; just somebody who also possessed an uncanny resemblance to her. Wow. What are the odds?
So, what we have here is proof positive that Doppelgangers exist. Doppelgangers are an IDENTICAL REPLICA of a person.
Kelly’s acquittal means that what REALLY happened is this totally plausible scenario:
The R. Kelly Doppelganger just so happened to set its sights, not on the real-life child protégé’ of Kelly’s, but on HER Doppelganger. So the Kelly Doppelganger and the Child Doppelganger hooked up for a pornographic romp in---just by coincidence--Kelly’s very own house. Totally innocent stuff, really. But, it sure did get the real Kelly and the real child sweating for a while. Of course, Kelly has no connection to pedophilia (no, don’t even think of Aliyah) or to kiddie porn (no, don’t even think about the photos confiscated from his house in Florida).
So, it turns out after six years of waiting for justice, we got instead the “Doppelganger Set Me Up Defense.” But here is the special thing about Doppelgangers: if a person and its Doppelganger should meet, then both will PERISH!…Perhaps someone can set up their introduction?
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Over at The Root.com, Joel Vacheron presents an interesting post on how some Swiss politicians used racist political ads to stoke the flames of xenophobia around immigration. Vacheron reports that a majority of the Swiss citizenry rejected such hateful tactics. Perhaps such ideological forthrightness will find its way to the U.S., South Africa, Germany, France, China....
One can only hope.
Barack Obama has secured the Democratic nomination!!!!
But, there is some talk that Miss Hillary (as John Lewis calls her) has some "demands." First, she wants Obama to help her pay off some $40 million of her campaign debt!
And she wants him to work some sort of magic so that her (super delegate) political supporters, who ignored their constituents' preferences for Obama, get re-elected. These traitors to the people in their districts are facing challenges from Obama supporters. Sisterdoc says if you came down on the wrong side of history and on the wrong side of "right," then you deserve to lose your post.
Sisterdoc isn't one to engage in gossip mongering, but... Is it true that Oprah (for Barack) and Maya Angelou's (for Hillary) friendship has been strained lately? C'mon now Sisters, don't fight.
Maya you could make it all up to us by revising the 1993 inaugural poem you wrote for he-who-will-go nameless here. Try this:
Here, on the pulse of this new day
President Obama, may you have the grace to look up and out
And into your Sisterdoc's eyes, into
Your Brotherdoc's face, YOUR country
And say simply
CHANGE IS COMING.
(Image: New York Times/T.C. Worley)