Saturday, June 4, 2011
I love Facebook. Via FB, I, like millions and millions of FBers, have reconnected with old classmates, friends, family, fraternity brothers etc. The updated status reports provides me real time shout-outs to birthdays, reunions and anniversaries.
Gossip, amusing comments, pictures, party announcement aside, I also hope that we can maximize FB as a tool for community empowerment and continue a substantive dialog that addresses issues that impact our community and society.
The template for this type of activism is the phenomenal uprising in the Middle-east and Northern Africa. There, young people networked and interfaced via Twitter and FB to demand more accountability from their respective governments.
In particular, I hope through FB we can organize and mobilize to counter the covert and diabolical war that the well finance far-right, Fix News, Koch brothers, Rupert Murdoch and others are waging against the middle-class.
The far right agenda is anti-union, anti-worker, anti-public education and anti-immigration and against Health Care Reform. In addition to be against a much needed energy policy (think five dollar gas), their policy position denies the link between carbon emissions and climate change. Needless to say, their agenda is 100% pro-business.
I am not saying FB should not be about socializing - no let's continue to have our fun - but let us this tool to the max. We can host voter registration drives, virtual rallies, government petition signings and so much more.
As historical election 2008 was, 2012 is going to be much more significant because the far-right is ginned up (by mid-term 2010 success) and they want to repel health care, dismantled medicare, give more tax cuts to the ultra rich and implement the Tea Party agenda.
Friday, June 3, 2011
The May Economy Report:
The May jobs report is a disaster -- the weakest reading since September. The recovery has stalled.
Many economists blame the slowdown on a witches brew of temporary woes that hit the economy in this quarter.
Higher gasoline prices have cut consumer spending, analysts said. A lack of key parts from Japan due to the earthquake has had a negative impact on output. At the same time, deadly storms have ripped though many regions of the country, especially the Southeastern states.
GOP response to obscenely high gas prices - continue the billions and billions of oil company tax subsidies dollars - yes, corporate welfare must continue.
GOP response to Job creation - Just say no to more stimulus and yes to more tax breaks for the wealthy 2%.
GOP response to a middle-class agenda - Just say no and call it a radical socialist agenda.
GOP reaction to Medicare - Just say no. The GOP congress voted affirmative for a medicare plan that even ultra-conservative Newt Gingrich called
GOP governors' state budgets: Cut school budgets but give the wealthty school voucher tax breaks, cut police department budgets, cut collective bargaining and more tax breaks for the wealthy top 2%.
And while making cuts, New Jersey's - balance the budget on the backs of the middle-class and poor while giving more money to the uber rich - Gov. Christie boarded a state police helicopter to get to his son’s high-school baseball game, leaving New Jersey with a $2,500 bill (he reimbursed the state after the outcry).
All in All:
The GOP's reponse to the poor and middle-class reminds me of another aristocratic and out of touch leader, French Queen Marie Antoinette. When responding to the needs of the poor, she is attributed the oblivious utterance:
Qu'ils mangent de la brioche
Well let them eat cake.
This is the only menu the GOP has intended for us.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Today marks the dubious anniversary of the race riot and aerial attack by thugs, KKK and various hatemongers that destroyed the Black Wall Street of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Never heard about the Greenwood Street district of Tulsa - well you are not alone because it has been all but erased from American history...
Greenwood was a district in Tulsa, Oklahoma. As one of the most successful and wealthiest African American communities in the United States during the early 20th Century, it was popularly known as America's "Black Wall Street" until the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. The riot was one of the most devastating race riots in history and it destroyed the once thriving Greenwood community.
The business district, beginning at the intersection of Greenwood Avenue and Archer Street, became so successful and vibrant that Booker T. Washington during his visit bestowed the moniker: "Negro Wall Street." By 1921, Tulsa’s African-American population of 11,000 had its own bus line, two high schools, one hospital, two newspapers, two theaters, three drug stores, four hotels, a public library, and thirteen churches. In addition, there were over 150 two and three story brick commercial buildings that housed clothing and grocery stores, cafes, rooming houses, nightclubs, and a large number of professional offices including doctors, lawyers, and dentists. (sources: Wikipedia and computerhealth.org)
While this day marks a tragic chapter in American history, it also should serve as a template on how much can be accomplished by Economic Community Building.
If with meager resources and in an overtly dangerous environment they can create a Black Wall Street, what can we build in our community today?
Sunday, May 29, 2011
Earlier this month, the popular magazine Psychology Today published an article by evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa titled “Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?" that was met, expectedly, with mass outrage.
The article used data based on another study to make several claims such as "black women are objectively less physically attractive than other women" yet "subjectively consider themselves to be far more physically attractive than others."
First, with a last name like Kanazawa - close to being Afrocentric - you'd think his perspective would not be so Eurocentric.
Second, here we go again with this silly racist ish that is masqueraded as objective science. Remember the Bell Curve that professed we were stupid?
If folks have to devote so much time and resources to promote their superiority, I think it's an attempt to over-compensate for their shortcomings.
To be clear - and continue another racial stereotype - perhaps my Japanese brother is struggling with a very small er ahem ego (thank you Kanye West).
Jokes aside, from Kenya to Trinidad to Brazil to USA, black women are the most beautiful, graceful, dynamic and intelligent females to walk the earth.
Don't hate because they got a self-confident swagger!