White Liberals Scold Obama… But Come Off Cynical & Hypocritical
By: Tolu Olorunda
Reprinted From Dissident Voice
In the wake of President-Elect Obama’s recent cabinet-appointments, many white liberals have taken it upon themselves to release pent-up aggression at a man they thought was the “progressive” candidate he had earlier claimed to be.. As they saw it, Obama had “betrayed” the loyalty that earned him victory. As a sort of catharsis, railing Obama’s reputation over the coals of indignation could make them feel better about their decision to elect a man who promised virtually nothing (of substance) in his bid for the presidency. White liberals, especially, have had to learn so much, in the last 1 month, about the man whose political dirty-laundry was never hidden from the public to begin with.
In a highly predictable move, they have sought to bash everything Obama, or Obama-like, and couch their frustration in the ‘eloquence,’ and ‘con-artistry’ of Obama. Spare me the misplaced aggravation. [...]
Whilst Black progressives sought to rip the mask off of Barack Obama, in an attempt to unveil his true identity, we were deemed ‘Obama-haters,’ whose egos sought to stifle the chances of a Black man making history. [...]
Full Article At Your Black Politics
Book Review of “Reggie Wakes Up”
By: Tolu Olorunda
Staff Writer – YourBlackWorld.com
“Under the FUBU is a guru, that’s untapped…”
-Hip-Hop artist, Common, The 6th Sense.
With the recent victory of President-Elect Obama, many have speculated a change of attitude in young black men, vis-à-vis the thirst for educational prowess. Whilst this prediction does seem, by all measures, accurately reflective of the lingering emotion within Black circles, some have suggested the need for a handbook of sorts, as necessary in guiding Black students, male and female, toward a more promising future. Of such is Zekita Tucker, a St. Louis author and publisher, whose advocacy for Black students builds on the legacies established by W.E.B. Du Bois, Carter G. Woodson, Janice Hale, etc. Zekita Tucker, of fame “Don’t Call Me Nigga ,” has a new book out titled, “Reggie Wakes Up .”
Reggie Wakes Up is a blueprint for teachers and students alike – with an emphasis on public schools. [...]
Meant for ages 8 and up, Reggie Wakes Up takes a hard look into the public school system, and its effects on the psyche of Black students [...]
More At Your Black Education
ON the same day, on the same steps where Martin Luther King Jr. would deliver his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963, Odetta—only 33 but already a folk-music force—sang “I’m on My Way.” And she was. [...]
Her final interview—which she gave 10 months before her death from heart failure on Dec. 2—was with PBS host Tavis Smiley. He spoke to NEWSWEEK’s Samantha Henig about his memories of a woman whose optimism brought him to tears:
After our interview, Odetta performed “Keep On Moving It On”—a song whose hopeful lyrics in the midst of a historic election brought tears to my eyes in January. [...]
Off camera, I asked Odetta why she remains hopeful, and she talked about the path that the country had traveled just in her life. She said she could not have imagined back in her heyday that she’d ever be on PBS talking to a black man who had his own show [...]
While many have remained shocked at the level of apathy directed at the 34-year old Jamaican native’s fragile soul, various anti-consumerism advocates have kindly outlined the inevitability of this tragic incident, following years of programming through relentless advertisements, by Wal-Mart and co. [...]
The actions of the Valley Stream shoppers are appalling, but also inevitable, in our television-controlled realm of existence. A TV-raised generation is illimitably susceptible to the felicities of temporary pleasure, and satisfaction [...]
More At Your Black News
Race Matters MORE in the ‘Age of Obama’
By: Tolu Olorunda
Staff Writer – YourBlackWorld.com
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be misled. Race still matters, even in the age of a bi-racial president. In fact, I submit that Race matters more at this transitional period in our multi-cultural society. The presidential campaign of President-Elect Obama sought to vehemently sweep Race-consciousness under the rug, but little did they know, that this stubborn, inextricable faction of our existence would not surrender without a fight. [...]
Without Obama’s permission, Race resurrected itself early on in the 2008 presidential campaign. It began when White journalists first took it upon themselves to question Obama’s blackness. [...] Shortly after, the “gotcha media” would find some legitimate dirt that could reduce Obama to a sheer spectacle. Unbeknownst to 60% of Black folks, they had, all their lives, committed a crime worthy of the death penalty: attended a Black church which advocated self-love, self-control, self-respect, and self-help [...]
More At Your Black Life
Odetta, the singer whose deep voice wove together the strongest songs of American folk music and the civil rights movement, died Tuesday. She was 77.
The cause was heart disease, said her manager, Doug Yeager.
He added that she had been hoping to sing at Barack Obama’s inauguration. [...]
[Odetta In 2005, "House of the Rising Sun"]:
Her voice was an accompaniment to the black-and-white images of the freedom marchers who walked the roads of Alabama and Mississippi and the boulevards of Washington in quest of an end to racial discrimination. [...]
Born in Birmingham on Dec. 31, 1930, Odetta Holmes spent her first six years in the depths of the Depression. The music of that time and place — in particular prison song and work songs recorded in the fields of the deep South — shaped her life [...]
Odetta Gordon, who is often called “The Voice of the Civil Rights Movement,” remains in a New York City hospital, suffering from kidney failure.
The legendary folk singer, who is 77 years old, entered the hospital last Saturday (11/8) for a check-up and IV nourishment. However, on Sunday (11/9) evening, she went into kidney failure, according to a statement by her manager.
Doctors are trying to stabilize her system and prevent the weakening of her other organs. She is on dialysis to rid her body of the toxic poisons that have built up due to her failing kidneys. Her doctors said the treatment seems to be slowly working.
Gordon is expected to remain in the ICU Unit for at least another week, according to the statement.
She is coherent and talking, and determined to perform at Barack Obama’s Inauguration in January, according to family members.
Her family encourages fans to send cards to Ms. Odetta Gordon; Room #719, 7th Floor ICU Unit; Lenox Hill Hospital; 100 East 77th Street; New York, NY, 10021.
From Live Daily
By: Tolu Olorunda
Staff Writer – YourBlackWorld.com
In light of Sen. Obama’s historic win on Tuesday night, certain perspectives must be taken into consideration in order to avoid being taken for a 4 year ride, which provides nothing, having promised NOTHING! In the long and winded 20-month battle for a seat at the table of presidency, Sen. Obama has often conducted himself with an unimpeachable level of dignity, grace and humility. Nevertheless, there have been times when the Good Senator has fallen short of those ranks. In fact, he has, throughout the course of his presidential bid, played the 90% hand that fed, clothed, nurtured and made him: The Black Community. Whilst many Black progressives seem quite comfortable with being snubbed – in exchange for a Black presidency – not every card-carrying member of the Black Community appreciates the Illinois Senator’s disposition on the issue of Race. They are fully aware of the tightrope which needs to be walked for a Black man to transport himself to the pedestal of history, but many see a tension between overt opportunism and the potential for a progressive Black president. In my humble judgment, there are ten issues of concern to the Black Community on which Sen. Obama has failed woefully in the course of his political career and this historic campaign:
More At Your Black Power
If Harriet Tubman Were President
By: Dr. Lenore Daniels
If Harriet Tubman were elected president of the United States, the Underground Railroad would become a modern-day institution in which the “wretched of the earth” here in the U.S. would be gathered together to rise from beneath the heels of their enslavers. These citizens would form local committees to review what is best in the U.S. Constitution as well as review the Iroquois Constitution and the Black Panther education and food distribution programs. Freedom would take on a new meaning and the word “reform” would be removed from the lexicon of all languages. “Economically poor,” “liberal,” democrat,” “republican,” “fundamental Christian,” and “conservative” would not represent anyone. And we would come up with a flag that would represent all the people and not be used to intimidate those of us who still do not feel welcomed.
If Martin Luther King were president, funding for wars would cease. Troops would return home. A new institution to train and/or re-educate negotiators and mediators would recognize the importance of a culturally/globally literate neighbor-consultant in the world [...]
WASHINGTON (AFP) – Despite Barack Obama’s message of change and hope, fears persist in the black community about what his election as president could mean for the legacy of racism in America.
Namely, that it might mean nothing at all.
“America is still one of the most segregated countries by race and by class in the industrialized world,” said Dedrick Muhammad, research associate at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, a think tank for social justice.
Muhammad pointed to research showing that black Americans remain far behind the rest of the country economically, with median wealth one-tenth of that in white America, and one in three black children born into poverty.
Like most black Americans, Muhammad supports Obama’s historic bid to become America’s first black president.
However, he said the Illinois senator’s campaign tactic of largely avoiding discussion of race in his campaign has “driven me crazy.”
“What saddens me today is that we don’t talk about black-white inequality,” he said. “I see in Obama a winning strategy, but it is sad to me.”
For the 47-year-old son of a white American mother and black Kenyan father to gain the lead he currently holds over his Republican rival John McCain, Obama has had to tip-toe around any potential racial controversy, analysts say [...]
More At Your Black Politics
Lula Cooper expects the tears to flow if Barack Obama becomes the first black president. But she’s not breaking out the tissues just yet.
“I cried when I marked my ballot for him. We’ve had such an incredible journey to this point,” said the former civil rights activist, her voice quavering. “I think he’s going to win, but I really am very, very cautious.”
Like a Hollywood blockbuster whose conclusion feels assured but still sets the heart racing, the endgame of this election has gripped black America with a powerful mixture of emotions.
Obama’s potential victory represents a previously unimaginable triumph over centuries of racism. But beneath the hope and pride lies fear: of polling inaccuracy, voting chicanery, or the type of injustice and violence that have historically stymied African-American progress [...]
More At Your Black News
Race Has Affected the 2008 Presidential Election
By: Prof. Michael Eric Dyson
Educated white voters followed suit, though Obama has had a far more difficult time effectively wooing working class white voters.
That has to do in large part with the effective, if cynical, effort of conservative activists to falsely paint Obama as an unpatriotic figure who pals around with terrorists because he is secretly a Muslim. The manipulation of the public image of Obama as a subversive presence who hates the nation rests on racially coded inferences about unreliable blackness as it tinges the face of American politics. Few quarters in American life have been tolerant of the complex black identities that constitute African American communities.
As a result, a punishing and narrow range of stereotypes have obscured the fact that black struggle for social equality and racial justice was never antithetical to the best interests of the nation [...]
More At Your Black Scholar
Coretta Scott King kept the love letters beneath her bed, in a blue Samsonite suitcase.
The amorous writings of her husband, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., were among the most cherished possessions of a famously private person, said Lynn Cothren, Mrs. King’s special assistant for 23 years. “That’s why she kept them so close, in her room, underneath her bed.”
But Tuesday, those letters and other “intimate correspondence” between the Kings are expected to be in a far less private place: Fulton County Superior Court. The papers are caught in an increasingly bitter and public dispute among her three living children.
On one side is Dexter King, head of the corporation that handles the rights to his father’s works. In May, he negotiated a $1.4 million contract to publish a biography of his mother. It would be co-written by the Rev. Barbara Reynolds, a journalist-turned-minister who taped conversations with Mrs. King before she died in January 2006.
On the other side is Dexter King’s younger sister, Bernice King, who has refused to hand over the intimate correspondence between her parents for use in the biography. Bernice King says her mother didn’t want Reynolds to write the book and that the correspondence belongs to Mrs. King’s estate, which she controls [...]
Sen. Obama has responded to the McCain camp’s demand that he denounce the words of Civil Rights’ Icon, John Lewis, in which Lewis condemned the recent occurrences of invective-filled rants at McCain/Palin rallies, as reminiscent of the climate fostered by 60s’ Alabama Governor, George Wallace. Rep. John Lewis, earlier today, remarked that:
“George Wallace never threw a bomb. He never fired a gun, but he created the climate and the conditions that encouraged vicious attacks against innocent Americans who were simply trying to exercise their constitutional rights.” Lewis added that “because of this atmosphere of hate, four little girls were killed on Sunday morning when a church was bombed in Birmingham, Alabama.”
In an attempt to ‘play safe,’ while acknowledging the verity of Lewis’ sentiments, the Obama campaign released a statement this evening. It is clear that the Obama camp is nether in direct repudiation, nor embracement, of Rep. John Lewis’ comparison:
“Senator Obama does not believe that John McCain or his policy criticism is in any way comparable to George Wallace or his segregationist policies. But John Lewis was right to condemn some of the hateful rhetoric that John McCain himself personally rebuked just last night, as well as the baseless and profoundly irresponsible charges from his own running mate that the Democratic nominee for President of the United States ‘pals around with terrorists.’ As Barack Obama has said himself, the last thing we need from either party is the kind of angry, divisive rhetoric that tears us apart at a time of crisis when we desperately need to come together.”
In addition to acknowledged rants of “terrorist,” “traitor,” “off with his head,” “kill him,” and “bomb obama,” at McCain/Palin rallies, News Blaze is reproting that, at a Sarah Pallin rally today, an ‘Obama Monkey Doll’ was proudly showcased by an audience member. From the report:
As the crowd cheered at a Sarah Palin rally this morning in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, a man in the audience grinned as he held up a stuffed monkey doll with a Barack Obama bumper sticker wrapped across its forehead.
I Pledge Allegiance to Truth
By: Yorri Berry
Once upon a time I pledged allegiance
I pledged allegiance to the flag of the United States of America
And to the republic for which it stands
One nation, under God, indivisible
With liberty and justice for all
Today I pledge allegiance to truth
I pledge allegiance to truth
Thus forcing the regurgitation of lies digested for years
So today I stick my revolutionary finger down my throat like a struggling bulimic
Refusing to keep toxic deceit in my purified spirit any longer
And I give you back the lies in the garbage can it should have remained in to begin with
All for justice and liberty with
Indivisible, God under, nation one
Stands it which for republic the to and
America of States United
The of flag
The to allegiance pledge I
Allegiance pledge I
Time a upon once
Upon a time
A little caramel mocha girl in my catholic school uniform
I stood there
Watching the American flag blowing with the wind
Hand across my heart [...]
Even then, my petite twelve year-old frame knew that something wasn’t right about me reciting those words authentically…
Click To Read Full Poem At Your Black Life
Your Black Scholar: Dr. Christopher J. Metzler Interview On Diversity, Obama & “Post-Racial” America
Interview with Georgetown University dean and author, Dr. Christopher J. Metzler, by Tolu Olorunda.
Dr. Chris Metzler is associate dean at Georgetown University and the author of The Construction and Rearticulation of Race in a Post-Racial America. In his new book, Dr. Metzler makes the case that Sen. Barack Obama’s meteoric rise to political stardom is an inclination of racial progress, however, not an indictment on racism in the U.S. and beyond. Dr. Metzler is also a political analyst and a full time advocate for diversity at higher institutions and global organizations. I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Metzler on issues including diversity, the role of a disproportionately white media in the 2008 presidential election, Sen. Obama, and the concept of “post-racialism.” Dr. Metzler was poignant in dissecting the politics of “racial-exceptionalism,” which has aided Sen. Obama immensely in his historic bid for the White House:
Thanks for joining us, Dr. Metzler. Can you describe what your educational background entails of?
Well, I have a Masters degree in Human Rights from Columbia University, and a PhD in Law from University of Aberdeen. I am also a member of Oxford University and Kellogg College.
What preceded your deanship at Georgetown?
I was on the faculty at Cornell University for 8 years, and at Cornell, I headed the equal opportunity and diversity program. There, I did a fair amount of reach into issues of Human Rights, diversity and equal employment opportunity. At Cornell, I created the nation’s first certification program for diversity management professionals. In addition to academic, I also do a fair amount of work in the private sector.
Based upon your lengthy work in the field of diversity, do you sense a substantive improvement in diversity vis-à-vis College, Universities and the academic world at large?
There is an improvement, but I wouldn’t call it substantive. There is an improvement with regard to the number of students of color being recruited into Ivy League Universities. However, in some respects, a number of faculties still don’t know how to work effectively with students of color…
Iconic activist and child advocate, Marian Wright Edelman, speaks to Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! In this discussion, Edelman expresses deep concern over the level of indifference directed at the plight of young children of every color. Eldeman worries that the dream Dr. King had, has never been granted a chance at fruition; and the ” triple evils” of racism, economic exploitation and militarism, which he warned of, have become part and parcel of our humanity. She also admonishes, in a prophetic tone, that its time to “begin to get our heads screwed on straight and to begin to invest in the future and in our young people today.” If not, Marian Edelman, who is founder and president of Children’s Defense Fund, is certain that such inaction would “topple America’s leadership in the world in the future.” Marian Wright Edelman furthermore urges the world to pay more close attention to tomorrow’s inhabitants:
From Your Black Education
Stock prices are continuing to fall sharply across the globe today, following the collapse of Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch, two of the world’s largest investment banks. On Monday, the Dow Jones index fell 504 points. It was the Dow’s sixth-largest point drop ever. We speak with the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who heads up the Wall Street Project, about the crisis, as well as about Barack Obama’s historic Democratic presidential nomination and his pledge to escalate the war in Afghanistan:
Watch Part 2 & 3 At Your Black Scholars
The Express Path to Racial Equality
By Dr. Boyce Watkins
“The Express” is a new film featuring the great Ernie Davis, one of the most amazing college athletes in American History and the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy. He was also a football player for Syracuse University, the campus on which I teach.
I watched the trailer for the film with pride, feeling good about this man and what he accomplished. I saw all the ads, the banners around campus, the website pictures and other excitement as the city prepared for the film’s premiere. I then had a couple of thoughts.
First, I thought about the residual impact of historical racism. Most of the time, when liberal universities talk about racism, the context is one in which racism is something that happened “back then”, and “we are all better now”. The conversation is one of (relatively justifiable) celebration for just how far our nation has come in the fight for social justice.
What is most ironic about this analysis is that it forgets one important fact: the past is not something that existed once and then disappeared. The past is all around us. The present and past CANNOT be disconnected because the present is created by the past, and the past consistently manifests itself in the social infrastructure of our institutions. For example, in the days of Ernie Davis (not that long ago), African Americans were rarely allowed onto my campus (along with many others) and were certainly not allowed to be part of the decision-making bodies of these campuses. This led to a skewed inter-generational transfer of power that reflects itself in the vast degree of (in Georgetown University scholar Christopher Metzler’s words) “academic imperialism” that we see today. If you take a tour of most campuses, you see that there are few Black faces on the faculty, almost none of them tenured…
By: Tolu Olorunda
Staff Writer – YourBlackWorld.com
“Before I became governor of the great state of Alaska, I was mayor of my hometown. And since our opponents in this presidential election seem to look down on that experience, let me explain to them what the job involves. I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a “community organizer,” except that you have actual responsibilities.”
- Republican V.P. Nominee, Sarah Palin, in her acceptance speech at the RNC.
“On the other hand, you have a resume from a gifted man with an Ivy League education. He worked as a community organizer. What? He worked – I said – I said, OK, OK, maybe this is the first problem on the resume. He worked as a community organizer.“
- Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani giving Keynote Address at the RNC.
When the enemy of the state is community organizing, it is sufficient to acknowledge that the world as we know it is, indeed, coming to an end. To arrive at such a conclusion, one would have to deliberately skip over the Public Enemies of the 21st century – corrupt government, predatory mortgage lenders, failing schools, poverty, imperialism, neo-colonialism, drug-trafficking, inequality – and claim that the oppositional forces of good are the Taliban equivalent in the war against “domestic terrorism.” Terrorism, described as “the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp. for political purposes,” is clearly more in sync with the two big-name political parties’ attempt to cage dissent (at their pricy conventions), than the very factors which try to make the world safer for the most vulnerable. The unadulterated buffoonery of the GOP was unmasked last week, as their effort to give community-organizing a bad rep fell flat on its face – just as their lame attempt to be re-branded as the party of “change…”
- 50th Anniversary of Medgar Evers' Assassination Reminds Us of Civil Rights Work That Remains p.ost.im/dgPwLmYOUR BLACK WORLD 47 minutes ago