Commentary Feed

Call (202) 224-3121, Ask your senator to vote NO on Graham-Cassidy

8903FC67-A22F-44D1-9726-DF61FB16A7E7

It’s sinful, shameful and un-American how our Republican-controlled government is trying to force the Graham-Cassidy health care repeal bill on the American people. Without proper vetting and analysis, the Senate will soon vote on this bill. Do they know what they are voting on or are they just toeing the Party line?

Graham-Cassidy is described as more egregious than any of the other previous attempts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) also known as Obamacare. Graham-Cassidy removes protections for people with pre-existing health conditions; ends protections against lifetime and annual limits on insurance coverage; eliminates tax credits that help working people afford health coverage; and takes away health insurance for 32 million Americans.

Congress could just tweak ACA but no they are hell-bent on destroying the legacy of President Barack Obama because he is black. Donald Trump campaigned on repealing Obamacare on the first day he was in Office. The first day. Obviously that didn’t happen. Reasonable voters knew that was a lie. Republicans continue to lie, this time, about the Graham-Cassidy Bill. 

Call (202) 224-3121. Ask the operator to connect you with your senator. Ask your senator to VOTE NO on Graham-Cassidy. Time is of the essence. This is important. Our lives depend on it.

 


In my Hurricane feelings…

IMG_0308

 

It had been almost twelve years since I'd waited in line for gasoline. I don't remember if it was late night or early morning but I do recall a man knocking on my car window because I'd fallen asleep and I was holding up the line. Hurricane Wilma had my family without electricity for 14 days. What a horrible time.

Many people in the Miami area remember the devastation of Hurricane Andrew but Wilma was the worst to me. Andrew impacted more people that lived and had businesses on the southern end of Miami-Dade County. I did have family on the southern end that had to escape their home because of Andrew but my immediate family lived in the north so we were not inconvenienced as much. After a few days businesses on the north end came back online so we could get a hot meal and purchase necessities.

Fast forward to 2017. Mother Nature has been showing out. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have been quite deadly, disruptive and destructive closely followed by Maria who is battering Puerto Rico as I write this.

After about nine days of no electricity, still no landline for the phone, it's hard to explain how not in control one feels. Our lives will not be completely back to normal for quite some time.

I most grateful that Irma was a Category 1 by the time her winds came howling through South Florida. She stayed far too long but the death, damage and devastation could have been much worse. Infrastructure. Climate change. We must do better.

IMG_3895

 

 

 

 


Donald Trump and White Shame

Shutterstock_550863091

Every American-born and reared Black person over the age of 55 was very likely admonished, as a child, to not embarrass the race. The admonition was usually delivered prior to participating in an activity in which white people would be present. It could have been something as simple as going shopping in a store or going to the bank or going for a doctor's visit.

First of all, it was a requirement that we were appropriately dressed. No casual attire or "play clothes" permitted. We were usually told to behave. Don't talk. Don't touch anything. Don't even sit until you were told. The admonishment usually concluded with "don't embarrass the family and don't embarrass our race." Yes, such was the indoctrination, socialization and "training" of black children. 

So, what, do tell, does that have to do with Donald Trump? Well, quite frankly, I wonder how white people really feel about Donald Trump in his role as POTUS. More specifically, are white people embarrassed by Trump's crude behavior, penchant for tweeting when he should be governing and rambling, nonsensical responses to questions? Trump claims to have attended the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania. Are their alumni embarrassed he's one of them? Inquiring minds want to know. 

When questioned recently about the rise in Anti-Semitism, this was Trump's answer:

 

Here is the transcript of that question and answer:

Reporter: Mr. President, since your election campaign and even after your victory, we’ve seen a sharp rise in anti-Semitic incidents across the United States. And I wonder what you say to those among the Jewish community in the States and in Israel and maybe around the world, who believe and feel that your administration is playing with xenophobia and maybe racist tones?

Trump: Well, I just want to say that we are, you know, very honored by the victory that we had. Three hundred and six Electoral College votes. We were not supposed to crack 220. You know that, right? There was no way to 221 but then they said there’s no way to 270. And there’s tremendous enthusiasm out there. I will say that we are going to have peace in this country. We are going to stop crime in this country. We are going to do everything within our power to stop long simmering racism and every other thing that’s going on. Because a lot of bad things have been taking place over a long period of time. I think one of the reasons I won the election is because we have a very, very divided nation. Very divided and hopefully, I’ll be able to do something about that. And I — you know, something that was very important to me.

As far as people, Jewish people — so many friends, a daughter who happens to be here right now. A son-in-law, and three beautiful grandchildren. I think that you’re going to see a lot of different United States of America over the next three, four, or eight years. I think a lot of good things are happening and you’re going to see a lot of love. You’re going to see a lot of love. Okay? Thank you.

Yes, that was the actual response from the man who has access to the nuclear codes. God help America. 

 

 

 


Thank You, President Obama!

Thank you obama

So, here we are. It’s Saturday, January 21, 2017. The day after Barack Obama’s last day as President of the United States. As much hatred as that man endured. The disrespect from American elected leaders. The persistent obstruction by Republican members of Congress. It was not a good look for our nation, but it was our reality. We will miss the tremendous dignity, grace, and intelligence of President Barack Hussein Obama. We will miss the Obama family. Eight years of “No Drama”. Thank you, Mr. President. 

 


Trump's First Press Conference Since Election Win [VIDEO]

 

So this was yestersay's news conference with Donald Trump. The first conference since he won the presidential election. It was all that Americans expected. It's troubling to fathom four years of this sideshow. This guy seems like a snake oil salesman. The United States of America is transitioning from an intelligent, classy leader such as President Barack Obama to this. Narcissistic. Not trustworthy. Untruthful. Unpresidented. God help us.  

 


Thank you, Gwen Ifill!

Gwen ifill

Reading the headline announcing the death of iconic, trailblazing journalist Gwen Ifill made me nauseous. Although I’ve never met her, I felt as though I’d lost another family member. I loved watching her on television. Whether she was delivering the news, on moderating a debate or commenting as a panelist, Gwen Ifill was the consummate professional. Ifill was the journalist I wish other journalists modeled nowadays. I would be less than honest if I didn’t share that I was proud when I saw her on television. She was a rarity as black and female in nationally televised news dominated by white males. Cool. Calm. Collected. Prepared. Thank you, Gwen Ifill. Job well done.

 

Related Links:


American Political Leadership: Jesus, Take the Wheel

Jesustakethewheel

It’s still very disturbing and shameful that it is reported that election polls predict the presidential race is too close to call and in some battleground states, including my home state Florida, Donald Trump is winning. Jesus, take the wheel.

Donald Trump is dangerous for America. He lies way more than what he has accused Hillary Clinton of doing and, if elected, he will continue the Republican Party’s practice of obstructionism and anarchy.

Regardless the presidential election result on the evening of Tuesday, November 8, 2016, the racism, sexism and class warfare will not go away. Jesus, take the wheel. 

 

 

Even after such a disdainful, hyperbolically nasty election season, I want to think America is better than the actions we have witnessed but is it? Jesus, take the wheel.

 


If you are surprised Bobby Bowden is on the Trump Train you haven't been paying attention

BobbyBowdenFSU.png
Retired FSU football coach Bobby Bowden endorses Donald Trump for President of the United States.

So, at a rally in Tampa, Florida last Monday evening, legendary Florida State University football coach Bobby Bowden formally endorsed Donald J. Trump for President of the United States of America. Greeted by the crowd with the FSU tomahawk chop, it was both sad and disappointing but not at all surprising. It was a surprise that so many people, particularly Blacks, are surprised that Bowden endorsed a narcissistic, racist, misogynistic, xenophobic, emotionally unstable, sexual predator to lead this nation.

Just add Bowden's name to the list of famous athletic coaches that are on the Trump train including Bobby Knight, Mike Ditka, Rex Ryan, Mike Leach, and Lou Holtz. These coaches can be pleasant, even charming when recruiting young black men to play sports for them. They sometimes refer to young black men as "son," but the athletes are never seen as more than tools to win championships. Thus, the low prioritization of academic achievement and personal development of the athletes beyond the football field. The athletic championships can translate to obscene amounts of money for everyone else except the athlete unless he manages to make it to the professional level.

Rumors of Bowden being racist have persisted for years. His endorsement of Donald Trump, even under the guise of religiosity appears to confirm those rumors and gives rise to more concerns about how he views women also. One would be shortsighted not to wonder about the current culture at Florida State and its football program. These negative perceptions didn't develop overnight and won't change quickly either.

Florida's capital city, Tallahassee, is also the home of Florida State. It would also be prudent to believe that elected and business leaders in Florida who endorse Trump share his perspectives on ethnic minorities, women, and immigrants. It is what it is, let's not kid ourselves.

Sadly, at the end of the day, for the love of money and dreams of fame and fortune, many Black parents will still entrust (pimp out) their young sons to the likes of Bowden and other coaches who share his white supremacist and misogynistic perspectives. Are the majority of American voters with Bowden on the Trump Train? I don't think so. We will find out November 8.

14681578_1142808049146140_5764632977479663961_n

 

 


Dash cam video proves Keith Lamont Scott was murdered [VIDEO]

Keith Lamont Scott with wife and son
Keith Lamont Scott with wife and son.
Source: GoFundMe

 

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department finally released video of the CMPD confrontation with Keith Lamont Scott. The gut-wrenching video of a portion of the incident filmed by Scott’s wife, Rakeyia, was released by the family two days ago. Rakeyia Scott warned police her husband had a TBI (traumatic brain injury). 

In the police dash cam video, Keith Lamont Scott can be seen exiting his vehicle and walking backwards following police commands. A few seconds later, as Scott is walking backwards, he is shot multiple times. Why? He was not threatening anyone. He was not reaching for anything. Keith Lamont Scott was compliant. That was cold-blooded murder by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police. 

The officer(s) who fired shots at Scott need to be fired and arrested. Whoever fires them needs to fire the Police Chief Kerr Putney also. There needs to be an investigation of how a weapon Scott was supposed to have, was introduced into this situation. It’s now crystal clear why Chief Putney didn’t want to release that damning video earlier. 

May peaceful protests continue in Charlotte-Mecklenburg and grow throughout the United States until the family of Keith Lamont Sott gets justice for his death.

 

 

 

 


Ryan Lochte's Non-Apology and What Really Happened in Rio?

Ryan lochte shutterstock_470290199-2

  

The Ryan Lochte Rio Olympics scandal continues to be prominently featured in the media with the latest news of two of his major sponsors, Speedo and Ralph Lauren, severing ties with the athlete because of his shenanigans in Rio.

Gunnar Bent Jack Conger Rio
US swimmers Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger leave Rio.

For sure Lochte, his teammates - Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, Jimmy Feigen and the local people involved know what really happened during the athletes' night out in Rio even if the rest of the world can only speculate. What we do know for sure is that Ryan Lochte’s recounting of what happened changed a few times. We also know that the guys out on the town with Lochte disputed key elements of Lochte’s story. Yet there was also agreement that guns were drawn on them during the encounter with men who may or may not have been security guards who were also robbers. 

So, it is entirely possible that Lochte and Rio locals both embellished…over-exaggerated…lied about what actually happened. That $11,000 donation to charity that Feigen had to make before he was allowed to leave Brazil, seems an awful lot like a shakedown. I’m just saying. 

Jimmy Feigen
US swimmer Jimmy Feigen leaves court after his passport was returned. He had to pay a fine of almost $11,000.

Even if it is proven that Ryan Lochte is not the only person that lied regarding this incident, he will be remembered for not owning up to his lies and other mistakes. He will be remembered for his apology that was actually a non-apology. He will be remembered for leaving his teammates in Rio while he hurriedly returned to the United States. He is already the brunt of jokes and subject of social media memes. 

 

Lochte apology
US swimmer Ryan Lochte's non-apology apology.

Many in the mainstream media will be remembered for providing cover for Lochte by trying to convince the world that the incident was just a juvenile act. I see you Billy Bush. Many in the mainstream media seem to have forgotten that Ryan Lochte is 32-years-old. Far too old for the foolishness and lies about what happened in Rio.

 

As far as the end of his endorsement deals with Speedo and Ralph Lauren, it is not likely the deals would have been renewed anyway. Lochte performed admirably during the games but his individual performance was not spectacular.  The endorsement deals would likely go to other athletes a la Michael Phelps….Simone Biles…Katie Ledecky…etcetera. 

I don’t know Ryan Lochte personally but I'm willing to bet that the worse part of this horrible situation is the fact that he lied to his mother. Sure, he was the center of an international incident but disappointing and embarrassing his mom is a probably a much bigger deal. 

While the incident in Rio overshadowed the magnificent athletic accomplishments of Team USA at this year's Summer Olympics, as time passes and Ryan Lochte completes his punishment and attempts to redeem himself with gold medal winning individual performances in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, America will salute his story of perseverance and redemption. 

 

Related Links:

Sports investigation raises questions about Rio cops, Lochte incident

U.S. swimmer Gunnar Bentz apologizes for gas station incident, says video footage missing

Lochte’s Teammates Say This Is What Actually Happened That Night In Rio

#LochteGate: Best Ryan Lochte Robbery in Rio Memes & Tweets