Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
- Jesse Jackson never rapped, "I rap divine, God, check the prognosis, is it real or showbiz/ My window faces shootouts, drug overdoses/... My intellect prevails from a hanging cross with nails/ I reinforce the frail, with lyrics that's real/ Word to Christ, a disciple of streets, trifle on beats/ I decipher prophecies through a mic and say peace" and then a few years later, make a song entitled "Oochie Wally," upon which he expressed some of the most misogynistic lyrics ever scripted.
- Jesse Jackson never reminisced on his childhood, by saying "When I was 12, I went to hell for snuffing Jesus."
- Jesse Jackson never once forgot his lines (or lyrics) at a live show, and claim that weed (ganja, licky licky, cannabis, hash, Mary Jane... whatever) was the operative factor in his amnesia.
- Jesse Jackson was never accused (true of falsified) of punching the mother of his baby, after an intense argument.
- Jesse Jackson never, ever, ever made a song with Lil' John.
- Jesse Jackson was, and is the first African-American to be a contender in a presidential election.
- Jesse Jackson is an accomplished and monumental civil-rights activist, who has fought aggressively for the recognition of Black suffering and pain.
- Jesse Jackson formulated the RainbowPUSH coalition, which has remained a staple in the quest for Social Change and Economic Justice for Black People.
- Jesse Jackson has been on the forefront of the fight against malicious co-oporations which preyed upon innocent Black and Brown families -- ergo facilitating the recent mortgage meltdown. In a Democracy Now! appearance before his march on Wall Street, he noted "what was a scheme became a scam."
- Finally - as Dave Chappelle once remarked with regard to his defiance in accepting the incrimination of Michael Jackson, saying "he made thriller;" - I cannot bypass the man, who, in 1984, gave a rousing "David and Goliath" speech, in which he equated the chances and choices of the innocent David, against the seemingly unconquerable Goliath, with the negro experience in America.
Lastly, while it must be said that the 'more experienced aisle of leadership' is in better shape to move Black America forward, any form of condescension toward the younger generation must also be unequivocally censured -- as the vigor, talent, fortitude and fecklessness of the youth has been an irreducible contribution in our collective struggle for taxation with representation.
Bill O’Reilly and the Fox Network continues to look terrible as they refuse to accept the petition to stop their racist ways, signed by over 600.000 people, and presented by rapper Nas. On Wednesday’s episode of “The O’Reilly Factor,” the host called MoveOn.org, which partnered with Color of Change for the march, “the new Klan” during his “Talking Points” segment.
“The Move On organization espouses a radical left agenda and attacks those who oppose that nonsense,” O’Reilly said. “The latest smear from Move On is telling their Kool-Aid-drinking zombie followers that Fox News is smearing Barack Obama and is a racist concern. Of course, that’s a lie. This broadcast and FNC in general have been exceedingly fair to Senator Obama. … But in order to intimidate anyone from criticizing Obama in any way, Move On is playing the race card.”
O’Reilly made the above statement during an interview with MTV News, while Nas told MTV that he does not plan to stop fighting yet. The rapper would like to have an open debate with O’Reilly face to face, stating that O’Reilly’s and FOX News’ statements about the Obamas and Black people are “worse than the worst rap lyrics I’ve ever heard.”
Interview with Silver-Medalist Olympian, Nia Abdallah, by Tolu Olorunda.
Nia Abdallah is the 2004 US Silver Medalist in Taekwondo. She is also the first woman from the United States to earn a medal in this sport since it became an official Olympic sport. She is the first African-American to win a medal in the sport and she also holds the record for the most points ever scored in a Taekwondo Olympic competition. Abdallah’s Olympic dream began at the age of five. She began Taekwondo at the age of 9 and has since become a third degree black belt. She earned her first major international win in 1997 at the 11th Annual U.S. Cup Taekwondo Championships, where she captured a gold medal in breaking. Abdallah has also won international events in Peru and Canada, as well as winning two senior National Championships. In 2004, she was named, "USA Taekwondo's 2004 Female Athlete of the Year." With such an accomplished history, nothing could be more insulting to the integrity and conscience of an athlete, than to be robbed of a justified and deserved victory. In early 2008, Nia Abdallah fought a well-known competitor, Diana Lopez, in a qualifying match for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The fight began like any other ordinary athletic exercise, but before long, certain elements of the Abdallah v. Lopez match would resonate as unsettling and disturbing. Onlookers, coaches and supporters took note of the fact that within the regular fighting rounds, no scoring points we're awarded to either player, regardless of the many head-shots and practical knockdowns. In the sudden-death round, Diana Lopez was shockingly pronounced the winner. To Nia Abdallah, her lawyer, her parents, supporters and friends, the fight was rigged, and the alleged victor was pre-determined before the actual fighting began. The family and friends of Nia are at the moment in a legal tug-of-war with the USOC. They are demanding amongst other things, a review of the fight, and a Judicial Report on it. I had the opportunity to speak to both Nia Abdallah and her parents, on the issues revolving around this historical battle against a system of injustice:
Thanks for joining us Nia. Can you inform us of your background, and the lead-up to the 2004 Olympic Silver victory?
Well, basically I started my Olympic dreams when I was about 4 years old. My grandfather introduced me to the Olympic movement and its significance, and I told my mom that I wanted to win the Olympics. And then she made an effort to help me get into sporting activities. At the time, I didn't know what sport I would play, but I knew I wanted to win the Olympics. When I became 9 yrs. old, I convinced my mom to permit me to get involved in Taekwondo -- by telling her that it would help me with discipline, self-defense and other great things. When I started, I won most of my tournaments; but when I first lost, I understood that you have to lose to win. When I graduated from High School, I had the choice of going to the military, the Olympic Training Center, or college, so I decided to pursue my Olympic dreams and go to the Olympic Training Center. When I went up there, I won the National Tournament, and it gave me the opportunity to go to the Olympics. After a couple of bouts with Diana Lopez, which I won, I then went to Athens in 2004, and won the Silver Medal.
Can you speak on the background of Diana Lopez and the influence of the Lopez family in general?
Well, a lot of people don't know this, but in 2000, the Lopez family was in the media saying that they we're going to be the "first family of Taekwondo" -- meaning that they would all compete in the 2008 Beijing Olympics together. One of the Lopez brothers is an AAC board member -- the board that makes the rules for the selection process. So, the family was in play with that much power, and they already had AT&T and The Jay Leno Show in the works before the Olympic trial, in order to promote their dynasty.
Can you give us a landscape view of the 2008 Qualifying Match with Diana Lopez -- for those who haven't seen it?
Basically, we went up to 3 or 4 rounds without any score points. And, seeing that we we're both world competitors, I could not understand why there were no points accrued initially in the span of the match. When I kicked her and she fell, there were no deductions, and it is definitely worth seeing the fight, because the tape proves itself. I urge everyone to go to my BlogSpot and MySpace page to view it, because she won by illegitimacy.
What are you advocating for, and why?
We are fighting for these injustices to stop, and most people look over it because it has become a staple in professional sports, but slaves could have said the same thing about their condition. We want everybody to know that together, we can change the system.
Are you asking for reinstatement or a rematch?
Well, with the time frame, it is not probable that I would be going to Beijing. So, it's a small chance that I would still be present at the Olympics, but I'm fighting so that no one else has to go through the same experience I went through...
In light of this, are you going to keep on fighting?
Yes. I'm going to fight until I can't fight no more.
So far, what strides have been made in this battle, and can you speak on the resistance of Mainstream Media to document your story?
Well, we now have a coalition that supports us and we've made several radio appearances. But I also think the media is not covering the story because they don't want people to know about this.
What is your advice for any aspiring young black female athletes, who might be discouraged, giving the context of what you just experienced?
I tell people - who tell me I worked hard for nothing - that because of my hard-work, I am where I am today. I also believe that everything happens for a reason, and God's plan is always the most important factor. I've also come to the realization that maybe it wasn't intended for me to win this fight. If I had won, everything would have continued uninterrupted, and people would still be experiencing the kind of mistreatment that I went through; so, I advice young athletes to never get discouraged. My life motto is "If what you did yesterday seems big, you haven't done anything today." It is a motivation to push me to work harder.
How does it feel to have been in the audience and watched your daughter cheated out of her due?
Mr. Duhart: Well, that wasn't the first time. When Nia fought Diana Lopez in August last year, and beat her twice, I could see what they we're trying to do to her. Nia had dominated those fights, and I had never seen her fight that good before. After seeing the injustice of Nia not getting any points for her head-shots, her coach got up and protested, but the referee told him to sit back down. In the fights she had with Diana Lopez, they had the same referee for both fights, and I was upset about that. I believe that she is the best female Martial Arts fighter in the country, and they are denying her the rights to fight and represent her country in the Olympics; it's pretty sad.
When you witnessed these incidents in her fights with Diana Lopez, did you report those irregularities to the committee?
Mr. Duhart: Yes, I went to my Congress people, wrote letters in arbitration and wrote articles in the newspaper, but nobody was willing to listen. We got fed up after a while, because we went to court and regardless of what we did, their mind was made up, because they wanted the story of three siblings in the Beijing Olympics, and the coach as their brother.
Mrs. Duhart, can you respond to the same question of being in the audience and watching the injustice rendered to your daughter?
Mrs. Duhart: It was like watching your child being raped in public. Like my husband said, we went to federal court, and they sent us to arbitration court. They also let us know that even if we won, they would hold us up in court for years; they have that kind of power. They put everything under the field of play, and the committee's Lawyer said that whatever goes on in the field of play is final. And so, even if we witnessed some wrongdoing, we couldn't complain, unless we saw bribery taking place or a broken machine.
What has been the response of the US Olympic Committee since the incident?
Mr. Duhart: Their response has been to pull down the fights from YouTube, in the hope that it would go away.
Mr. Duhart, what was the driving force behind introducing Nia to the sport of Taekwondo, at the age of 9?
Mr. Duhart: Well, at the age of 9, Nia reminded me of my big sister, who was a very skinny kid. She would go to school, and other kids picked on her because of her size. But Nia has always had the heart of a lion, and she would face anybody at anytime. I wanted to make sure that she had the skills to protect herself, so she didn't have to fight. With regard to the case of Diana Lopez, this story needs to be told. She is a record-breaking young lady, and the best that this sport has to offer. She is the first woman from the U.S. to win a medal since it became an official Olympic Sport. She is also the youngest to win a match, and the first African-American to go to the Olympics for this sport. She has broken a lot of records, and some people are trying to hide these facts. When she fought in the Olympics, she fought with a fractured foot and a lot of pain. When she won the Silver Medal in 2004, she was unhappy, and she fought better to get better, and so, to be treated in this manner after her hard-work is a disgrace.
In light of that, do you share some of the sentiments expressed by Richard Williams - father of Tennis Champions, Serena and Venus Williams - with regard to impartiality against Black Women in the world of professional sports?
Mr. Duhart: Of course; I guarantee you that if Nia was white; she would get all the publicity and accolade that should come with her skill level.
What are your hopes for the future, and how can the general public contribute in this struggle for Nia Abdallah?
Mrs. Duhart: First of all, I want to add to what my husband said. In August 2005, Nia delivered a baby, and two weeks after the child, she was back in training, and afterward qualified for the tournament. As a mother and a woman, that is a big accomplishment. With regard to public contribution, supporters should go to http://wesupportnia.blogspot.com/ and http://www.myspace.com/wesupportnia. With the MySpace website, we have a fund to assist Nia, and with the BlogSpot website, we urge readers to comment; but most importantly, we need supporters to write to their Congress people and press for a Judicial Report on Nia's story.
Mr. Duhart: The question should also be posed to the USOC (United States Olympic Committee), about their refusal to air this fight on public airwaves. This was a history-making event, and they haven't shown it on TV yet. They air the Olympic trial for other sports, but they have refused to air this fight, and I think that's very important.
Nia Abdallah and her family can be contacted at:
Watch the infamous fight, and make your decision:
Nia Abdallah vs Diana Lopez - Olympic Qualifying Match
This interview was conducted by Tolu Olorunda, Staff Writer for YourBlackWorld.com
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Black in America: CNN, and the Art of Opportunism
By: Tolu Olorunda
By now, most are familiar with the much publicized CNN Documentary "Black in America." A truckload of anticipation has been rallied up, in preparation for its premier on Wednesday, July 23, 2008. CNN - with as much hubris as a mega network can muster - has openly bragged of their award-winning history, and probably feel entitled to a Nobel peace prize at the launch of this - as described - "Special Report." To some, what CNN is doing is magnanimous and worthy of adulation, while to others, this 'experiment' might be a sheer opportunistic stunt, glamorized as an investigation into the "disturbing statistics" of Black Life in America. Whether one is supportive or oppositive of the motion, one thing can be amicably agreed upon: CNN is at best, ill-equipped to tender a truthful, un-embedded and solution-rendering report that exposes the malicious forms of surveillance, subjugation and devaluation that have contributed greatly to the moral decrepitude of the Black community, family and individual. CNN promises to - with the help of this expose - enlighten "all of America" to know what it fully means to be "Black in America." Unfortunately, I'm not buying it. It is with this understanding that I hope to outline why CNN is engaging in quid pro quo.
The two-part report is purported to cover every breadth and depth of the Black experience in America. The first airing is expected to focus squarely on "The Black Woman & Family." While this might seem conventional, the inquiring mind is left to wonder why CNN would engage in such risky and reprehensible conduct, as to divide a family - as was done in the age of legal enslavement - and insinuate a division between Black Male and Black Female. It is widely recorded and noted, that two-thirds of the children born into Black Homes today, are single parented. Nevertheless, it does appeal to one's sense of apprehension that "the most trusted name in news," saw no wrongdoing in assuming - through its untamable ego - that it could forego the Rebekah Levine Coley study, in which the Boston Univ. Professor points out how - more than any other ethnicity or race - Black Fathers without residency in the home, are more likely to sustain regular contact with their kids. In addition to its coded symbolism of Black disunity, "the best political team on television" was also unabashed in propagating the supremely-refuted lie (Katrina helped out), that the burdens of the Black community are "not just a black problem" but an "American problem." This facade of idiocy has, in the past, been subjected to interrogation and unveiled to be nothing other than a neo-liberal fantasy. As the Texas Cowboy once remarked, "we've heard this foolish delusion before."
While my aforementioned complaints will be perceived, by some, as a mixture of ideological differences fused with paranoia, it is noteworthy to recall that not only is CNN unreliable in matters of truth-telling, but it's reputation as a liberal enterprise has never been invalidated. When in 2000, the Dutch periodical, Trouw, reported of CIA Agents stationed in the CNN Newsroom, it was a surprise only to those who we're oblivious to the long-held belief systems of Media watchdogs. The report confirmed the appalling, stating how CNN had "employed military specialists in 'psychological operations' (psyops)." A general with the U.S. Army Information Service corroborated the account saying, "they worked as regular employees of CNN. Conceivably, they would have worked on stories during the Kosovo war. They helped in the production of news.'' The general elaborated, mentioning that the operatives had worked in close contact with CNN for at least a couple of weeks in favor of getting "to know the company and to broaden their horizons." With such a record, how ensured are we, that the international news network will be unadulterated in telling our story in its entirety -- without distortion or misrepresentation? Indeed, there is no guarantee.
In my judgment, CNN is not only a station rife with mendacity, but a corporation that has dug deeper into the well of hypocrisy than any other News network. CNN has preached sanctity and piety while simultaneously employing and endorsing - in the past and present - known misogynists and bigots. Political contributors for CNN include Alex Castellanos, who once complimented Sen. Hillary Clinton as a "White bitch" - later apologized but noted that "some women, by the way, are named that and it's accurate" and William Bennett who - following the Iowa Caucus on January 3 - pontificated that Barack Obama is acceptable to white voters because "he has taught the black community you don't have to act like Jesse Jackson; you don't have to act like Al Sharpton." Sadly enough, CNN's political contributors are only the tip of the ice berg compared to its well-paid talk show hosts, pundits and anchors.
A well known talking head on "CNN Headline News," is conservative talk/radio show host, Glenn Beck. Beck built a successful career for himself, through the traditional route of bemoaning the very thought of a world with the existence of leftists and liberals. In recent times, he has made headlines for his not only controversial view-points, but his often, vitriolic remarks. In November 2006, while interviewing the Muslim Congressman, Keith Ellison, Beck in a self-amusing tone, questioned Ellison's patriotism, and hinted at Islam being a license for terroristic sensibilities. Beck as usual, felt undaunted when he said "sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies. And I know you're not. I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way." Following the 'pat on the hand' remediation from CNN, Beck was of course giving a get-out-of-jail-free-card to resume his mission of lending support to fellow shock-jocks who had openly expressed their disdain for black womanhood. On May 14, 2007, at a CNN's American Morning appearance, Beck defended disgraced radio host, Don Imus and decried the "leftist witch hunt" that attempted to hold Imus's feet to the fire -- following his unremarkable comments about the beautiful Rutgers female basketball team.
Another staple at CNN is Lou Dobbs -- most famous for his invective-laden rants about Mexican immigrants and the Mexican community at large. He has built a hall of fame career, from his unique brand of cursing the ground that Mexicans walk on. His endless list of acidic commentary on Mexican immigration has garnered him the 'golden boy' status over at CNN. As the second most watched show on CNN, nothing he says can ever be deemed 'crossing the line.' Dobbs has claimed numerous "facts" that correspond with his anti-immigration stance, but many of those very facts have been dispelled and often times unraveled as fabrications. He once claimed that an "invasion of illegal aliens" was bringing "highly contagious diseases" to America, "decades after those diseases had been eradicated" here; stating that more than 7,000 new cases of leprosy had been reported in the previous three years. His made-up myth was debunked when the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that new cases of leprosy, which totaled only 398 from 2002 to 2004, had been declining in the United States since 1988. On December 4, 2007, at an appearance on Democracy Now! - the brilliant and incisive daily show - Lou Dobbs was confronted by the hosts, Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez, and questioned as to the regular feature of white supremacist hate groups - and its members - on "Lou Dobbs Tonight." An issue of concern was a U.S. map highlighting the seven Southwestern states that Mexico supposedly covets and calls Aztlan. The map, on May 23, 2006, was used as a prop-up on his nightly CNN show. The map's source was listed as "Council of Conservative Citizens;" a group which has in the past, described blacks as "a retrograde species of humanity." Not to be outdone by a White Supremacist group, Lou Dobbs in a discussion with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, in March 2008, responded to Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice's assessment, that America has a "birth defect" on race. His perspective was that America is the most diverse nation in the world, and so therefore, racial prejudice is a thing of the past. He remarked, "We’ve got to be able to talk about it (race) and I can guarantee you this, not a single one of these cotton pic-." Upon a moment's notice of his near-utterance of the word "cotton picking," he refrained himself, and instead suggested that "ridiculous politicians" should not be the moderators "on the issue of race" but "we have to have a far better discussion than that." CNN, subsequently, in a cowardly fashion, eliminated the cotton picking element from the published transcript. CNN neither released an apology nor a statement on the issue.
It is also imperative to remind CNN that it once provided a platform, between 1982 and 1999 to a man - described by Journalist, Tavis Smiley as a "Racial Arsonist" - named Pat Buchanan. Pat Buchanan's long history of anti-Black and anti-civil rights rhetoric is long and winded. In a radio interview in 2000, Buchanan claimed baselessly that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King was "one of the most divisive men." Buchanan, who once called Sen. Obama "exotic," in 2007, opined that the Illinois Senator is "not what you would expect from a black guy from the South Side of Chicago." Buchanan was also one of the staunchest defenders of fired shock jock, Don Imus. In a debate with Georgetown Professor, Michael Eric Dyson, Buchanan inferred that Imus was "more a victim of hatred than a perpetrator of hatred." In Buchanan's mind, the Rutgers Basketball teammates weren't victims because they got to appear on Oprah and have simultaneously become the "most famous basketball team in history." Buchanan is also widely known for antagonizing Sen. Obama's March 18, 2008 "race speech." In a column entitled, "A Brief for Whitey," Buchanan, with the authority of a fool, suggested that "no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans." To hear Buchanan tell it, the funnels of "Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs" have done more than enough to "bring the African-American community into the mainstream;" Buchanan ended, "we hear the grievances. Where is the gratitude?" Pat Buchanan is also credited for making the assertion that only white males died in the battles of Gettysburg and Normandy; with nearly 2000 African Americans accounted to have fought at the June 6, 1944, invasion of Normandy, it is inconceivable that none was made a casualty. Pat Buchanan in his latest gaffe, appeared on a political radio show to promote his latest book. With the show's slogans being, a need to "represent a philosophy that is pro-White" and "revive the White birthrate above replacement level fertility and beyond to grow the percentage of Whites in the world relative to other races,” one is prompted to wonder what CNN was thinking in the hiring of this fellow. Alas! The magic word appears: RATINGS! In light of this, the question must be raised: Is CNN attempting to cash in on the present unrest of the Black Community, or do they have a sincere interest in being harbingers of solutions to the many problems that inflict terror upon Black folks?
In the course of this article, I have attempted to cast my burden upon the waters of suspicion. In the fight for administering the vaccination that deracinates those ailments which have incessantly plagued the Black Community, I'm not convinced that CNN is a contender. If at all any News Network is replete with such competence, PBS would most assuredly lead the pack. Taking that into consideration, I humbly suggest that the politics of sheer-opportunism must be radically denounced and furthermore repudiated. CNN cannot - and is not prepared to - save Black America.