Category Archives: Society

Defending Same Sex Marriage

The Supreme Court has finally heard the arguments on whether to uphold or strike down California’s Proposition 8, which bans gay & lesbian marriage in Californa. The repercussions will be felt across the nation come summer when the SCOTUS issues its ruling.

The opponents to same sex marriage are primarily the religious right; those self-styled chumps who use the Bible to dictate their thoughts on how not just they should live, but how you and I should live as well. The Bible has many a verse that decries and damns homosexual activity… And with good reason, because Religious fanatics believe that sex should only be about procreation, and sex for other means is deemed wicked in the eyes of not just God, but most specifically and acutely “His” church.

These people should all forced their women to undergo female circumcision. And Michelle Bachman needs to be first in line.

Anything that has a religious root to its argument pretty much has no business in shaping laws or social morays in the modern era. You base a legal argument on a verse of Scripture and you’re trying to skirt around the separation of church and state component to the Constitution. Think about it, the church is the one that has told you homosexuality is wrong and you’re being its undeclared proxy when arguing in accordance with a religious doctrine.

The Purpose of Marriage

One of the things that comes up all the time when same sex marriage is debated is the purpose of marriage, and it gets defined as a sacred union between a man and a woman. But that’s not the case. It can be for certain marriages, but its hardly true in a country with a higher than 50% divorce rate.

In days gone by, marriage was a covenant between a man and his father-in-law to determine the disposition of property when the father-in-law died. It was also a means to control women from having children with multiple partners, so the children could be provided for and raised by an identifiable father (and force upon him a sense of responsibility for his off-spring, which he could disregard or deny if he wasn’t married).

However, we all know that throughout history all the way up to the present day, far too many men treat their children like shit and don’t raise them right. There are a lot of deadbeat fathers, so marriage (and then divorce) doesn’t guarantee that the man will be a proper father. The courts have laid down rules and penalties about this – and this could be applied to divorced same sex parents as well, should they have children together and then split up.

The argument that marriage is deigned in part to ensure that children are raised by both the mother and father is foolish, because look at the number of divorced households that then result in single-parents raising the kid(s) with no help or help that is begrudgingly given through court order.

Another “purpose” of marriage is to be a legal contract to enable the woman to have rights to the man’s property and money. Ask any man who has been through a divorce how fair the courts are in terms of dividing up the so-called joint property. Unless you live in a no fault state and have a mutual agreement between the spouses, the man gets sodomized by the woman and her lawyer the vast majority of the time.

Marriage is a legal contract that also affords you certain rights under the Federal government, and these are nearly all financial in nature (e.g. filing joint tax returns or receiving. Social security benefits) and these can and should be extended to same sex couples as well.

The Civil Rights Aspect

The 1950s and 60s ushered in changes to Society that should have been in put in place by the Constitution, but the overhyped Founding Fathers refused to deal with core issues and kicked the can down the road (thus laying the groundwork for the Civil War when the Declaration of Independence was signed and the Constitution was ratified – thanks a heap, guys!).

The problem with race relations is core to the country, and Black people who helped build this country as slaves, were instrumental in redeeming it through the Civil Rights movement. The Women’s Movement and the advancement of all other protected class came about because Blacks took beatings, dog bitings and water cannons for US ALL.

It’s disingenuous to preclude homosexuals from getting their just due, as they get discriminated against the same way as women and disabled people do (nothing compares to the adverse treatment Blacks get though).

It’s going to be a few months until we know how all this shakes out, but if Prop 8 is upheld and same sex marriage is banned, then there’s another reason why the GOP have fucked this country no only over the past 40 years but over the coming 40 as well.

Trampling State’s Rights

There are something like 1100 rules and statutes that will be affected if same sex marriage is deemed legal in California, because of how it bleeds into federal law and benefits. Marriage, as a legal binding contract and status, is defined by the states, so if the SCOTUS strikes down Proposition 8, thus leading the pathway to same-sex marriage… it’s basically the Feds trampling on States’ Rights, and that’s something that the GOP, in particular, won’t like. What many people probably fear is that if the SCOTUS  overrules States’ Rights in this issue, it will set the precedence for more hobbling of States’ Rights. So this factor alone might be reason enough for the SCOTUS to punt on this case thus going back to the latest ruling, which was the California Court of Appeals ruling which I believe struck down Prop 8 (there is controversy, because the judge in that case revealed that he was gay and then didn’t recuse himself).

What happens next does have everyone sitting on pins and needles…

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Controversy? What Controversy?

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Advance Movie Poster

After a half dozen seasons of Fox’s “24″, I’m a little immune to so-called advanced interrogation techniques that get approved by Hollywood censors. So when I saw Kathryn Bigelow‘s latest film ZERO DARK THIRTY, I wasn’t too terribly shocked by the various torture scenes scattered throughout the film.

I’ve seen and/or read worse accounts when the Abu Gharib scandal broke about five years ago, and in other first-hand accounts of how convicts are treated in American prisons, let alone other prisoners of war. After all, ZERO DARK THIRTY is a Hollywood film with “awards consideration” written all over it (because once a director hits that highwater mark, as Bigelow did with her previous film THE HURT LOCKER, it’s a given that the next two or three films will get lumped into the awards consideration bracket on GP). This is not some little indie labor of love where the filmmakers had to fight tooth and nail to a) get it made, b) shock the audience with the graphic and gross physicality inflicted on one human being by another (e.g. IRREVERSIBLE) and c) avoid getting bitch-slapped with an out of date and bete noir NC-17 rating.

However, there’s been a good amount of chatter about how the film’s wanton use of torture clearly shows that torture was justified because it provided the answers which the CIA needed to gather the actionable intelligence that was needed to send in SEAL Team 6 and execute Osbama bin Laden like the dog that he is/was.

I sort of disagree with that narrow take-away from the film, because IN THE FILM (who knows if this is true in real life) the torturing of al-Qaeda operatives and associates didn’t exactly lead the CIA very far. In fact, there’s a specific scene in which Jessica Chastain’s character pleads for direction on how to prove her theory about who lives in the Abbotabad compound WITHOUT access to the torture teams and that it would be futile in any event, because the detainees — particularly the ones in Gitmo — would lawyer up and get a message UBL that the CIA was on to the compound.

Granted Maya and the CIA did learned the name of bin Laden’s courier through torture, but they were using the wrong photograph to ID the man, and it was only by sheer dumb luck that after half a dozen years some fresh-to-Pakistan CIA analyst discovers an overlooked file that the Jordanians sent over in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.

In real life, you can’t tell me with a straight face that some actionable information wasn’t obtained through waterboarding and the like, you can’t. The CIA did learn a lot of shit and probably stopped the wholesale slaughter on many US soldiers and probably civilians throughout the western world.

But then the more pertinent question remains, is it morally right to employ these advanced interrogation techniques on enemy combatants to gain information?

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Sick ‘em, Sick ‘em

The humanists will say, that it’s absolutely and categorically wrong to abuse another human in such a manner.

The pragmatist will say it depends on the context.

The realist will say say use it to see what it yields.

Director Bigelow is a politicized filmmaker, but tends to not answer questions that her films ask, and this by no means says that she advocates physical violence and advanced interrogation techniques… at least not publicly (and who would outside of the nutjobs on Fox News?)…

Would any director take the public stance that torture is good? Of course not, because any artist worth their salt doesn’t give answers to the meaning of their work, but coyly says, “you saw the [film, painting, documentary, etc.], you tell me?”

We can’t hold artists accountable for the content of their work or the words and deeds expressed/carried out by characters within their work (if that happens to be the case) — artists, when they’re on their game, hold up a mirror to society and say, “don’t flinch when you look.”

 

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2nd Amendment Revisions Requested/Required

English: AR-15 rifle with a Stag lower receive...

English: AR-15 rifle with a Stag lower receiver California legal (only with fixed 10-round magazine) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the last six months, America has witnessed the shameless killing spree in Colorado during the Dark Knight Rises screening, the shopping mall shooting in Oregon just the other day and now this senseless killing in Newtown, CT where innocent children weren’t just gunned down, but chopped to pieces by a Sig Sauer. In 1994, California Diane Feinstein introduced a comprehensive Assault Weapons Ban law that actually passed, but it had a 10-year renewal loophole thrown in, and when George Dubya Bush was the Commander-in-Chief, he refused to renew the law… hence, more assault weapons in the hands of everyone. Weapons that have no basis, except to inflict maximum damage on people or animals.

CHANGING THE DEBATE KILLS ANY PROGRESS

The NRA and the Gun Lobby have effectively twisted the debate about “gun control” to mean “gun ban” in the hearts & minds of far too many Americans. Like W.E.B. du Bois said, “Either ignorance will destroy America or America will destroy America”, and at the moment Ignorance is winning most of the battles. Think abou the loophole that the NRA has been able to keep in effect, if you want to buy a gun (like an AR-15) at gun shop or store like Wal-Mart, then  you must submit to a Federal Background Check. However, if go to a gun show then you don’t have to submit to the Background Check — which would mean, why would anyone with evil on the mind buy their death dealer from a gun shop? They wouldn’t. People who support gun laws hoot and holler, “guns don’t kill, people do!” Okay, so let’s go with that; there are thousands of automobile related deaths every year, and we can analogously say that “cars don’t kill, people behind the wheel do”, and yet with cars you have to pass a test to get a driver’s license and show that you have an insurance policy to even drive a car of the lot (in most states). Why can’t the same be done for guns? Where part of the gun-totting test is a psychological evaluation and the Federal Background Check; also you gotta have a $1m liability insurance policy — in you accidentally kill someone or kill someone in a manner that is deemed to be manslaughter (or worse) when you thought you were acting within your “rights” (like George Zimmerman thought when he snuffed out Travon Martin in Florida earlier this year).

MY DEFINITION, MY RULES

The biggest definition-twisting that the Gun Lobby perpetrates is how they “interpret” the 2nd Amendment, which states at a militia has the right to bear arms. My question then is: who the fuq is in a militia? I know that militia groups in rural areas claim to be militias, and therefore, probably have the best claim on the right to bear arms. But the history and tradition of the country had afford any the opportunity to have a gun whenever they hell they want one; so taking the 300+ million firearms that are in circulation is practically impossible, but we’ve been so accustomed to ruthless and merciless gun violence People who the support gun rights claim that if guns are banned, er controlled, then criminals will have them anyway and be able to terrorize law-abiding citizens. Criminals have illegal guns NOW and they’re not terrorizing regular folk any more than usual, and they usually do it with pistols and shotguns. Outside of drug dealers, is the random home invader using a legally obtained assault rifle to tie up your family, rape your women and steal all your shit? Or are they pistol-whipping you with Glocks and Sig Sauers that they stole or bought off the street or traded for drugs with the Mexican cartels?

ARMING EDUCATORS

The recent chatter from Gun Freedom Advocates that classroom teachers should be strapped has been making the rounds over the last week. This not only smacks of ignorance, but fails to take into account several things; skip the fact that it’s a vain attempt to protect kids — can you imagine Mr. Welty the 5th Grade Teacher trading shots with a disgruntled, deranged and hell-bent on killing all rampager? What about stray bullets? Who is to blame when stray bullets from the strapped teacher kill students and/or other teachers? What’s the insurance premium and liability for that? How does a teacher live with him or her self if friendly fire kills a student? The old Star Trek: Wrath of Khan adage: the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few (or one)?

A week after the Newtown Killings, the NRA spokesman gave a speech that NPR covered and the douche was talking about how we post armed guards at banks, airports, sports stadiums and office buildings, but somehow we’re supposed feel okay about increasing the level of on-display firearms in the public space?

The NRA EVP compared a strapped Secret Service agent protecting the President to putting AR-15s in the hands of School Hall Monitors. Some angry man at the NRA Press Conference shouted out, “NRA, stop killing our children, stop the killing… they are the perpetrators…” Some woman, obviously in pain and perhaps related to a victim, shouted: “Ban assault weapons now… stop the behavior of the NRA…”

Why is the NRA taking a more aggressive stance that only more guns in  the hands of “good guys” can stop the “bad guys”? How does LaPierre define “good”? It might not be my definition,

LOOK BACK AT THE PAST

See, here’s the funny thing about Wayne LaPierre’s (and I guess the whole NRA) proclamation that we should post Wehrmacht-style guards at the entrance of every school. When Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold went buck wild at Columbine High School back in the late ’90s, THERE WAS AN ARMED GUARD on-duty that day. And guess what? He was basically fucking useless in stopping the rampage killing. That security guard didn’t even shoot Klebold or Harris, they killed themselves with self-inflicted suicide GSWs.

Also, these rampage killings aren’t spur of the moment fits of insanity… they are PLANNED, and with any assault plan there is a scout that goes on, in which the “enemy’s” defenses are judged… so a soon-to-be rampage killer would scope out a school, see where the guards were, see what their rotation patterns are and then strike at the weak point — perhaps that only means a surprise attack (with a flash suppressor/silencer fitted on the gun) and the Armed Guard is taken down. Also, if School Guard Bob doesn’t have his AR-15 locked & loaded and in combat-ready position, how quick do you think he’s going to be able to return fire before he’s mowed the fuq down?

CONCEALED CARRY… SO I CAN BUST A CAP IN YOUR ASS WITHOUT YOU KNOWING IT

I learned today that in Floria, which has that oh-so-fuqed-up Stand Your Ground Law, over 400,000 Concealed Carry Gun Permits have been issued SINCE 2009. And get this, its Department of Agriculture does the supervision and regulation, which conveniently doesn’t cross-reference ANY Federal database of potential or known fuq-ups.

I’M NOT CALLING YOU CRAZY, I’M CALLING YOU AN ASS!

On the weekend news talkshows, NRA Chief LaPierre was saying that we should call him crazy for suggesting that we put weapons of limited destruction in the arms of kids, teens, school hall monitors and the like.

FUQ CALLING HIM CRAZY, he’s irrelevant with his idiot comments. The so-called Left Leaning Media needs to shut him up, not give him any kind of forum to vomit out his wack-job views, because right now he’s just a MAJOR parat of the problem.

Will we see President Obama actually sign new legislation to address this mess? Probably not, those NRA types know how to scare Congressmen and women like no other lobby group.

I wonder if Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 has the lead being a high school hall monitor who’s packing a H&K MP-5 to defend his turf from an anti-social, psychologically deranged former student?

 

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Shrouded History, Part One of Many – A Negro Federal Reserve Board Economist

This is wholly excerpted from Bloomberg News.

Andrew Brimmer, an economist who became the first black member of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board when President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed him in 1966, has died. He was 86.

He died on Oct. 7 at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, said his daughter, Esther Brimmer. Though ill for the past few years, he had continued working until a month ago, she said. He was a resident of Washington since 1965.

The son of a Louisiana sharecropper, Brimmer moved north to pursue higher education and didn’t stop until he had a Ph.D. from Harvard Business School in Boston. He worked as a staff economist in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and as an assistant professor of economics before becoming a deputy assistant secretary of commerce under President John F. Kennedy.

In nominating Brimmer as a Fed governor on Feb. 26, 1966, Johnson said, “He is a man of wide professional experience and great personal integrity, a man of moderation whose brilliance is combined with a sense of fair play that I believe will enable him to serve with distinction.”

The lead story in the next day’s New York Times carried the headline, “Johnson Appoints Negro Economist to Reserve Board.”

The Senate Banking Committee endorsed the nomination without dissent, and 11 days after his name was proposed, in the East Room of the White House with Johnson looking on, Brimmer was sworn in by Fed Chairman William McChesney Martin Jr. With the addition of Brimmer, the seven-member Fed board had, for the first time, a majority of professional economists, according to the Times.

Fighting Inflation

During more than eight years on the Fed, Brimmer became known as an expert on international monetary policy. Early on, he supported the board’s effort to combat inflation by gradually raising interest rates. After Congress and Johnson raised taxes and trimmed spending in 1968, Brimmer was one of the first Fed governors to call for easing the rates.

In his later years on the board, he drew attention for blunt observations on the economic conditions of black Americans.

I do feel that the economic plight of blacks is a serious matter,” the Times quoted him in a 1973 article. “So I bring the same economist’s tool kit to that subject as other economists bring to examine other national economic problems.”

Brimmer researched income and wage disparities between white and black Americans. His public comments on black America, according to the Times, included references to black-owned banks as “ornaments” and to the “fallacy of black capitalism.”

Black-Owned Banks

He said that black-owned banks seemed focused on investing deposits in U.S. securities, not in their own neighborhoods, the Times reported. “Perhaps inadvertently,” he said, the banks “may be diverting resources from the black community into the financing of the national debt.”

Brimmer served 8 1/2 years of his 14-year term, stepping down in 1974 to join the faculty of Harvard Business School.

The Fed has had two black governors since Brimmer: Emmett Rice, nominated by President Jimmy Carter in 1979, and Roger Ferguson, nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1997.

Ferguson said in a 2002 speech to college students that, as a teenager growing up in Washington in 1966, he followed newspaper accounts of Brimmer’s barrier-breaking appointment and, in the process, “became absolutely fascinated with economics and with this institution, the Federal Reserve.”

‘Role Model’

Now the chief executive officer of TIAA-CREF, Ferguson said today in an e-mail:

Andy Brimmer was a trailblazer and a role model for a generation of African-Americans who aspired to be economic policy makers. Only in America could the son of a sharecropper rise to become a national leader. Andy’s passing will be mourned deeply.”

After his Fed tenure, Brimmer formed Brimmer & Co., an economic consulting firm, and wrote an economics column for Black Enterprise magazine. From 1995 to 1998, he served as the first chairman of the District of Columbia Financial Control Board, created by Congress to oversee the finances of the nation’s capital.

Since 1999, he served as principal economic policy adviser to Bermuda’s Ministry of Finance, and he was recently appointed chairman of a newly created Bermuda Deposit Insurance Corp., according to a statement by Premier Paula Cox.

Tuskegee Ties

He was a board member for more than 40 years at Tuskegee University in Alabama, which named its business school building for him.

He was always looking for opportunities to learn more and teach more,” his daughter, who is U.S. assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs, said today in an interview. “He had a thirst for knowledge.”

Brimmer is also survived by his wife, the former Doris Scott.

Andrew Felton Brimmer Jr. was born on Sept. 13, 1926, in Newellton, a rural village of 800 in northeastern Louisiana. His father, Andrew Sr., was a sharecropper and warehouse worker, according to a 1995 Times profile.

After high school, Brimmer left the South for Seattle. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II, then attended the University of Washington, where he earned an undergraduate degree in economics in 1950 and a master’s degree in 1951. He studied in India at the Delhi School of Economics and the University of Bombay as a Fulbright scholar. He earned his Ph.D. from Harvard Business School in 1957.

Mass Migration

In an interview with the Harvard Crimson in 1974, Brimmer described his journey from the South in the context of U.S. history.

I was part of the same outward-bound stream of people — literally thousands of them — that had migrated out of the area since World War I, although interrupted by the Depression, of course,” he said. “It was Steinbeck’s dust bowl of ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ — Oklahoma, Arkansas, northern Louisiana. There were very few opportunities.”

Following his studies at Harvard and work at the New York Fed, Brimmer taught at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan, and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Finance and Commerce in Philadelphia. Kennedy made him deputy assistant secretary of commerce for economic affairs, and Johnson elevated him to assistant secretary in January 1965.

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The Cycle Never Stops

Throughout the reign of human societies, the so-called 99-1 Rule has governed technological achievement… Although the ratio itself may vary from culture to culture, the essential validity of the theorem cannot be disputed… Whether applied to ancient Sumer, the Holy Roman Empire, 19th century European and American smokestack civilizations or the present geo-political nations states of 2012, 99-1 remains timelessly true…

Simply stated, in order to support one percent of a population in advanced technological status, the other ninety-nine percent of that world must exist in relative poverty… Just how relative depends upon the degree of wealth concentrated within the society’s uppermost classes…

– Christopher Hinz (1996)

It’s been a social status quo construct throughout history, but the question is how is The Fall going to happen and when?

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New Urban Cautions, Part 1 of a series

If you white males dressed in all black, you need to get the fuck out of where ever you are.

SHIT IS ABOUT TO GO DOWN!

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The Value of a Black Youth’s Life

The Hooded Trayvon Martin

The Trayvon Martin assassination outside of Orlando, Fl that occurred back in late February brings up not only charges are racism, cover-up, and failure to adjudicate a White Man for killing a Black boy, but it also picks up that tired baton — what is the value of a Black life in America, compared to a White life?

You can read the various reports about how the investigation has been slipshod and basically dismissive of the true events that unfolded that fateful night. What is clear from the recently release 911 recordings is that Zimmerman ignored orders from the 911 operator not to follow the “suspicious looking youth” and that while an officer had attempted to “correct” a witness’s statement who clearly heard a boy scream for help, there has been no arrest as the police are taking Zimmerman’s self-defense claim at face value. What is clear from the Police Station Video is that Zimmerman is showing the physical effects of a life-threatening battle with a smaller, younger teenager.

It’s been loudly stated, claimed speculated that if the boy who was shot and murdered was white, and the gun-totting zealot was Black, the Black shooter/executioner would be in jail with a $1m bail hanging over his head.

Investigation of the justice system over the past 100 years clearly demonstrates that White life is more valuable and precious than Black life, as evidenced by the fact that Black killers of white are more likely to face the death penalty and/or lengthier sentencing than when a White person kills a Black; Blacks also get less time for killing other Blacks.

Although the US Department of Justice opening an investigation in the assassination of Trayvon Martin, this is a last-ditch effort to bring some shred of justice to what just might be killing that carries no consequence for the killer. The DOJ can’t go after a citizen for murder/assassination, so it will have to settle for a hate crime type of civil rights violation; George Zimmerman might only get a half dozen years (those won’t be an easy six years, but there’s an innocent slain teen who will never experience the joys of life).

Currently gun-rights groups are raising money for George Zimmerman’s legal defense, and conservative/rightwing/racist groups are digging up information to discredit Martin’s “innocent child” media persona (that he had tattoos and was suspended from school for having a plastic bag with marijuana residue inside — all things that White Boys do just as much, if not more than Blacks). These attempts to uncover the so-called “truth” of Trayvon Martin are highly disingenuous, ugly and tell-tale that slavery and America’s Original Sin never leaves.

What kind of rubs me the wrong fucking way though is that just a couple weeks ago there was a lot of outrage, tongue-wagging and solidarity by WHITE KIDS and WHITE CELEBRITIES over that Ugandan asshole Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army as sparked by that viral video Kony2012… but it’s curious that not too many White celebrities are leading the charge in the fight for justice. This opens up a can of worms that I see all that time, White celebrities and the white wealthy elite will extend a helping hand to Africans, but systematically turn their back (and raise their nose in scorn) on Black Americans. Why is that? Rich white celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Sandra Bullock and others adopt Black babies from Africa, but do they ever consider adopting Black babies from the ghettos of Chicago, Miami, NYC, LA or Houston?

It’s almost a given that most urban whites have had some uncomfortably, irrationally angry experience with an African-American, and that makes them subconsciously wary. Plus the media in America paints American Blacks a culprits of crime and their own sad-sack circumstances, whereas in Africa the plight of Blacks is either the results of corrupt governments that Western nations supports or inability to cope with natural disasters (which can be argued is the result of Western aid and backing of dictators). But these things don’t excuse the fact that people like George Clooney and Matt Damon and Ben Affleck aren’t on the front lines of the quest from justice in the Trayvon Martin tragedy.

Back in 1995 when O.J. Simpson was acquitted of double murder, an overwhelming number of Blacks rejoiced that the justice system delivered this verdict, and this outraged many white people, because in their eyes Simpson was clearly guilty. And Simpson probably was guilty, but the justice system DID NOT PROVE IT. Something that is exceedingly rare for that set of circumstances (I’m sure that one did an exhaustive study one would find that at least 95% of the time since the founding of this nation, and most acutely post-Reconstruction, when a Black man was accused of and tried for killing (or raping) a blonde white woman he was sent to jail for life, got the maximum allowable sentence or got the death penalty regardless of circumstances.)

But I don’t think that white people recognize and accept that the justice system and law enforcement have historically done Blacks wrong (i.e. served up unequal treatment and verdicts). So what Blacks want to see is Equal Protection Under The Law, and that doesn’t seem to be the case in the Martin Assassination. There is no reason why Zimmerman hasn’t yet been charged of at least manslaughter. Being charged does NOT mean being convicted or having to serve anytime in prison (although his bail might be very steep). Being charged does NOT preclude Zimmerman from using the “Stand My Ground” defense in court. But the fact that Zimmerman was allowed to walk by just stating, “I pulled the trigger [in self-defense]” is shocking. What is demonstrates is that the police just took him at his word; that wouldn’t happen if it was a Black man who pulled the trigger. Even if the outcome was reversed, and Trayvon Martin SOMEHOW wrestled Zimmerman’s gun away from him then shot and killed him, Martin would still be in jail right now awaiting trial (as the bail would be more than his family could afford) or would have spent maybe a couple days in jail before being released on his own recognizance.

This is value of Black life in America… it’s held in great, great debt when it afflicts harm on whites, but is considered nearly worthless when whites afflict harm against it.

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It is Happening Again

In an episode of David Lynch’s TWIN PEAKS, there was an odd dream sequence in which a giant repeats: “it is happening again, it is happening again” and that what’s transpiring in Syria under the regime of legacy despot Bashar Assad. An Arab strongman who is out to crush the enemies to his illegitimate rule by any means necessary; and he’s pulling out all the stops.

Wholesale cities are being bombed and shelled into submission. It’s no a civil war by any means, just a ruler hellbent on putting down the opposition on a level that would have Stalin and Hitler gleefully dancing a jig; Assad is making them proud.

And the rest of the world is struggling exactly what the fuck they should be doing to help the opposition forces. Tsk, Tsk, Tsk is all I can say.

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Shakedown, Breakdown — Yer Busted

The other day the International Criminal Court handed out its first “guilty” verdict to African warlord Thomas Lubanga Dylio, who victimized children, conscripted them to be drugged-up child soldiers, used mass rape as weapon of war, and a whole host other pernicious crimes.

This comes right on the heels of the release of the viral video KONY 2012, which has raised awareness among Western Youth about the evil that exists in south-central Africa.

Back in October the Obama Administration put 100 troops/military advisors on the ground in Uganda to help take down (or least defend against) Kony and his vicious Lord’s Resistance Army, which has plagued not just Uganda, but nearby Congo for the last 15 years or so.

What bugs me is that the ICC doesn’t have a self-sustaining and sovereign police force that can go out and arrest the base villains on its World’s Most Wanted List. In the eyes of many Americans this is probably a good thing, because George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfield would be on that list. And guess who would be volunteering to bring those murderers to justice?

The United Nations should be doing the actionable efforts on behalf of the ICC, although its too bogged down by politics these days. In the past, right after WWII, the UN operated with more gusto and authorized the use of force (the United Nations Emergency Force) to stop dangerous, deadly and despicable events from happening around the globe.

The UN was founded after WWII to use diplomacy such despots wouldn’t wreak havoc upon their own citizens and people of other nations. The rallying cry “Never Again” was a major reason why the UN and NATO were formed (Hitler and Stalin demonstrated that sovereign rulers who were psychopaths needed to be stopped by the might of the rest of world).

However, when it comes to African nations the “Never Again” rallying cry is just a lofty concept, and the same is true when it comes to Arab/Middle Eastern nations (for the most part). Case in point, what the fuq is going on in Syria is definitely war crimes, and Bashir Assad needs to be swept from power (with the strategic assistance of the West), as he’s committing war crimes each and every day that he remains president and the opposition force is rebelling against him. Syria’s military has pulled out all the stops to bust up the rebels, and if the West isn’t careful Syria will end up like North Korea; a complete pariah state where the populace is cowed into submission and it will thumb its nose at the rest of the world community.

The fate of war criminals and general scourges of humanity like Kony and Assad are not the sole problem of the country where they originated, they are world problems because they bring such misery to so many.

Actor-writer-director Ben Affleck recently wrote a piece in the Huffington Post claiming that no Westerner can save Africa from the likes of Kony, but at the same time he’s shilling for an aid organization that he supports; so he’s a Westerner trying to better the life condition of Africans, therefore he’s debasing his own argument. It is true that the West has a checked history of “helping” Africa (and other 3rd World nations), but those efforts have usually had an agenda behind them.

The one time the West had a chance to back rebels in overthrowing a monster was in 1990 during the first Gulf War; and they failed to help the Iraqis roust Saddam Hussein. It was a perfect time, too, Saddam had been beaten back from Kuwait, and his armies weren’t quite healed from the Iran-Iraq War of the late ’80s. He would have fallen much easier when the US invade over a decade later, and the quagmire that ensued probably would have happened anyway, but the US wouldn’t have been so caught up in it.

The West failed to act when there was genocide in Rwanda at the early part of the 1990s, just like they’re failing to act in Syria today. (under the pretense that it won’t be easy as it was to foist from Gaddafi from power in Libya because the air defense is stronger… the blood shed is more than vicious in Syria).

If China and Russian were rational actors, they would help enact the UNEF and put a stop to Assad’s brutal campaign of killing. Only the Chinese and the Russians have an agenda to oppose what the West wants on G.P. They’re are bunch of bitches, if you ask me.

Maybe NATO will act, but probably not. And we’ll see another dozen years of repression in Syria as the West will continue to keep the economic sanctions in place. When have economic sanctions ever forced a despot to change his tune?

Never, right?

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Over Dressed – Trickle-Down Slave Culture, Part 4 of a series

I was in the Department of Social Services the other day for some 1st person research, and I couldn’t get over the number of African-Americans who were there and looking to get Food Stamps, General Relief or some other piece of the under-attack Social Safety Net and yet were wearing disproptionately expensive and flashy clothing with fresh kicks on.

It’s excessively difficult to appear visually attractive (for sex and coolness) in a subculture that embraces immediate flash over substance. And so like too many Blacks in America, these fools are still embracing the Trickle-Down Slave mentality by spending a sarce resource (namely money, ’cause Black people have a HARD time making their labor turn into wealth) on a disposable product that effectively has no extended value. Except for the emotional uplifting factor that perceived “fly” gear gives you when appealing to the opposite sex, uplifting your self-esteem because little else in your life and your family’s life bares rejoicing.

The Selig Center on Economic Developed has reported numerous times that blacks routinely and rejoicingly spend a disgustingly disproportionate amount of their lesser disposable income on bullshit and pay higher rates on my consumer goods (the “black tax”, see Wells Fargo’s targeting of high-credit Blacks with subprime mortgages and higher credit card APRs).

Tom Burrell has pointed out in his book BRAINWASHED that Blacks are so short-term oriented because they’ve been conditioned to believe that ‘tomorrow isn’t promised’, as a result of slavery, and therefore satisfy the need to feel like they’ve “made it now” by buying shit that has no value or dismissing nearly every attempt to establish a savings rate, increase their financial literacy and trusting that they will have more tomorrows ahead of them.

For the lower-class Black man, his fly-fresh gear is what a woman will judge him on regarding his ability to mack on her (to flirt), skip the fact he’s on food stamps and therefor has no job and little prospects in his future (like too many Blacks for many reasons that are beyond their control), but he still wants to fuck. So he has to spend his very-hard earned money of the latest article of hip-hop approved brand-name clothing.

However, if he was more judicious with his money, over the long run, he’d have more stability and control of his life – which would bolster his self-esteem, thus elevate his confidence and therefore increase his ability to attract the woman of his choice. But Long-Run Thinking isn’t part of the programming for most Blacks, and its most acute with lower class Blacks. So he’s spending what little money he has on what we uplift his sexual appeal, and not on uplifting his economic situation.

The bleakness of this mindstate and behavior HAS no doubt trickled down from the Slave era and Jim Crow. It’s also a vicious circle in how it hamstrings wealth growth among Blacks.

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