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Posted by Cynique on 30 July 2012 - 10:29 AM
Posted by Cynique on 10 June 2012 - 08:09 PM
I was curious about how Ms Morrison would portray the 1950s which have been referred to as not only a bland and innocent time populated by the “silent generation“, but also the decade that was ripe for the civil rights movement it spawned. I anticipated she would write about a passive race of people, done with being patient, spurred into protest by dynamic leaders like Martin Luther King, and inspirational ones like Rosa Parks, and martyrs like Emmet Till, all played out against a backdrop of doo-wop music and Amos ‘N Andy TV and Dorothy Dandridge celebrity. The ‘50s I knew. Silly me.
I should’ve realized that Toni Morrison would never stoop to such mundane predictability. With Toni it’s never easy. And “Home” is vintage Morrison. So, before long, through the vividness of her prose fraught with its extraordinary metaphors, and the wretched poignancy of her characters, I was beyond reading this book; I was experiencing it. In my imagination I was there, immersed in a version of life in the 50s that was diametrically opposed to the one I led back then as a young black woman residing in a small integrated suburb of Chicago.
Crouched in the unforgiving frozen terrain of Korea, killing to keep from being killed while dodging bullets, I was there with the book's protagonist, Frank Money, as he witnessed the horrible deaths of the homeboys with whom he had enlisted in the Army, hoping to escape the dead-end drudgery that was their fate as black youth bogged down in the dusty little rural town of Lotus, Georgia. There, following Frank through the post traumatic stress that plagues him as a shell-shocked war veteran, wandering the dangerous streets of northern cities, working his way through despair with whiskey and the fleeting love of Lilly, a comely, ambitious woman not content to be his ongoing caregiver. There, listening to the frenetic be-bop music in a smoky little night club, visited between trains on his way back to rescue his gullible younger sister, “Cee”, who has been victimized and sterilized by a mad professor of eugenics.
And, in the end, there, back in the confines of a hapless little town that modernization forgot, and slavery remembered. Yet a place that is also a welcoming haven not lacking in the homespun warmth and time-worn wisdom embodied by its black inhabitants, common folk of varying degrees of good and evil who, through the worst of conditions have endured, blissful in their ignorance, secure in their belief that “be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home”.
As the book draws to its close I was also there, witnessing a reappearing zoot-suited phantom who like the style he sported, comes and finally goes with a smile on his face, signalling that "all's well, that ends well".
At 145 pages, “Home” is a short intense novel, something which always earns points with me, and a satisfactory read for those who are up to the challenge of spinning straw into gold. Finally, because it is what it is, I have no choice but to give this good thing that came in a small package, 4 stars. * * * *
Posted by Cynique on 21 October 2012 - 11:24 AM
What I find compelling about the situation is the reaity of what is at the root of a lot of the violence. Poverty and lack of jobs and the breakdown of the family don’t tell the whole story. It’s assumed that the wanton slayings are all gang-related, all about turfs and drugs and retaliations . But a lot of the killings are actually personal vendettas by macho cowards, - nonentities who are so consumed with their need to feel important that they cannot deal with rejection.
Time and time again a familiar scenario is what triggers murder and mayhem. Someone is having a party with family and friends when an individual or a group crashes the affair and after stirring up trouble, are asked to leave. The second act of this drama plays out with the resentful offenders showing back up with a gun to shoot up the place. Other situations involve love triangles where one rival will gun down his cock-blocking competitor. Even making longer than necessary eye contact between adversaries can lead to drawn weapons. Any act of disrespect shown by one homie toward another, be it on a playground or at the club or on a FaceBook wall, or at a funeral for a murdered friend is grounds for pulled triggers. What used to be settled with fists is now finalized with guns in the hands of those who invaribly slaughter innocent bystanders, all in the ritual of proving one’s manhood by getting even.
Unfortunately, this need to beat one’s chest doesn’t restrict itself to the ghetto. A more cold-blooded version exists across the board on all levels of society and can even lead to war. When the collective ego of one country is insulted by the collective ego of another country, battle lines are drawn.
It's a fact life that an insatiable ego is an intrinsic part of all living creatures. It’s the nature of the beast to take offense at anything that constitutes a slight, and threatens one’s self esteem or, worse yet, exposes one’s insecurity.
All cooler heads advocate replacing false pride with peace and love, citing these virtues as being the source of true strength because they call for the restraint that saves lives. "Blessed be the peacemakers", but everybody didn’t get the memo. The ruthless ego will not be denied. It rules everywhere as lions fight to be king of the jungle, - and men fight to be king of the hill. Crushing a threat to your status gives the ego an erection.
That damned ego is at the root of all the problems of the world because it goes hand in hand with the quest for power. And power corrupts.
God, you sure screwed up when you created us - in your image...
Posted by Cynique on 11 October 2012 - 11:02 AM
The top 10 things that make my eyes roll upward
- The gloating eagerness of celebrity moms to reveal how quickly they’ve regained their slim figures after relieving themselves of the baby bumps they were equally anxious to show off to an indifferent world.
- So called “right-to-life" zealots who don’t realize that, by applying their warped standards, a female’s expelling of an unfertilized egg every month is the equivalent of an abortion. ( An example of what can be concluded when one group imposes its beliefs on another.)
- Black Americans who wear the synthetic Rasta dread locks that are exhibitionist rather than significant. At least weaves are indigenous of the ghetto-fabulous culture.
- The food nazis who take the joy out of living by telling you everything you like to eat is bad for you, hoping to turn you into a stomach-growling label reader. Or worst yet, a smug vegan.
- Making a big deal of coming out of the closet. Who cares how you prefer to “get it on”? It’s not as if straight couples can’t make-out in bed the same way as Gays do.
- The way public officials regularly embezzle huge amounts of taxpayer’s dollars, living lavish life styles until they are caught and given a slap on the wrist. Because they are perpetrators of white collar crimes they are apparently deemed less guilty than petty drug dealers doing 10 years in prison for selling weed.
- How boring wedding dresses all look. Brides nowadays seem to have no more imagination than to choose the same style of wedding dress as everyone else; a sleeveless, strapless gown designed to show a lot of skin while featuring the requisite heart-shaped bust-line that squashes your bulging boobs.
- Dufus comedian Steve Harvey’s limited range of common knowledge that is exposed every time he’s surprised when a contestant’s answer matches the survey on Family Feud.
- Angelina Jolie, who looks like a poster girl for anorexia, concerning herself with world hunger and needy children while dragging that rag-tag brigade of waifs around accompanied by a deer-in-the-head-lights-Brad Pitt.
- Politicians instructing God to “bless America”, the implication being that this be done while kicking the rest of the god-damned world to the curb.
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Posted by Anonymous on 22 September 2012 - 09:06 AM
Posted by Cynique on 16 November 2012 - 07:00 PM
Pass the hot sauce, please.
Posted by boitumelo on 05 November 2012 - 01:32 PM
Posted by boitumelo on 30 October 2012 - 06:52 PM
Posted by boitumelo on 26 October 2012 - 12:39 PM
Posted by Troy on 25 October 2012 - 01:24 PM
As some of you know, I've been on a prolonged rant about the state of the Black internet for the last year or so. It was interesting to read Cinque's article and see mach of what he predicted has actually happened.
The alarming thing is that so few people even notice. Of course, the reason is that there are not enough Black platforms to raise the issue or that are conscious enough to even care.
It is also interesting, at least to me, that I believe the author is the same "Cinque" that used to contribute article to AALBC.com in the 1990's (http://aalbc.com/reviews/cinque.htm).
Black Sites That Are White Owned
by Cinque B. Sengbe
The Internet is evolving so fast, everybody has a site. Every movie has a URL and nobody does any advertising without carving out a space in cyberspace. The Internet is so commonly used, that I predict that by 2005, 85% of the families living above the poverty level will have a presence in cyberspace. Family web pages will be commonplace. I can envision some sites headers now. "Coming in 2005, www.atterberry.com to a domain near you. Check the family tree and download relative's baby pictures.
So just who is using the web? EVERYBODY IS. Every ethnic group in America is utilizing the Internet. All the people who don't want to be left out of the loop are making the adjustment. Don't believe any of the hype saying African - Americans are not flocking to the Internet. Don't believe one iota of it.
I have observed the African American web presence more than double in a year. If you don't believe me just try to do a search under some of the Black or African American thematic topics that you used to. See how much more data comes up.
There is just one catch. Many of the sites that you think are controlled by African Americans are not Black owned, controlled and conceived. I have an acronym for this. I ask is it a BOCC= B(lack) O(wned) C(ontrolled) C(onceived) ?
Is this a problem? Heck yes. Herein lies another disappointing thing "happening" wherein we are not controlling our images and ideas. Yes, I know that there are those who think that "it is only important that the target audience be African American." Some say it is not relevant that popular African American sites be BOCC's. I just want to name some sites, which most people assume, are BOCC but have White ownership. Black Voices (www.blackvoices.com) is owned by the Tribune Media Corporation. Not Barry Cooper! Blackfamilies.com (www.blackfamilies.com) is owned by Cox Interactive Media. Not John Pembroke! Cybersoul (www.cybersoul.com) is owned by HBO. I have just one statement, to those who think that it is not important who owns the Black Image in cyberspace. "If it was not important to control the Black images in cyberspace White firms would not want to!"
I am not saying that Blackvoices, Blackfamilies and Cybersoul are bad sites, they provide great information, but I am saying that this trend is detrimental to the potential African Americans on the Internet, especially from an economic vantage point. I remember when Afronet gave space to a White columnist. There were so many people who told me what an ill-conceived move they felt this was. I agreed then, but I ask, Where are your voices now!!
These sites are well financed and whether they make money or not having that cushion allows the worker bees to not worry about if they are making money or not.
But how do the sites make money? ADVERTISING!! Procter and Gamble advertises on Black Voices, but do you think CEO Barry Cooper gets any of that money ? Is he or his staff rewarded with a bonus? NO!! Does he have any control over the way the money is spent on the site. NO! The money goes straight into the coffers of the Tribune Media Corporation. Advertising is the lifeblood of television, newspaper, radio and the Internet. Yes, those sites may look great and have all the fancy bells and whistles, but do you really think Cox Interactive, Tribune and Time Warner love the African American way of life that much? What say do you have in supporting BOCC ? Or the question should be. Are you BUYING BLACK!! The Internet may be the last place the African Americans can control the destiny of their portrayal in the media. If we don’t support these sites now, by buying books, music or other gift items THROUGH these site, they eventually will go out of business. Next time you decide to buy something on the Internet, take the time to pull up a BOCC site and then buy the item or recommend to the site owner that he or she should carry that item, its not as hard as you might think. Anything you can buy at Yahoo!, you can buy on any BOCC site.
My hypothesis is that in five years Whites will either own or become the significant contributors to the majority of the most popular "Black" web sites. These people realize that to be able to control access to data and what data people receive is critical to controlling them. Since the Internet is nothing more than a whole bunch of computers networked together, it has allowed Black folk to meet and express ideas without interference from Whites as you have with television, radio, and other media. During the days of chattel slavery it was a no-no for Blacks to meet up and discuss ideas. Even in Africa, colonial European efforts combined to prevent African People from communicating without their presence. Although many African countries have their independence now, the colonizing groups still exert a lot of influence over their radio and television programming. Nowadays Black people can legally congregate in most places on the globe. It is still discouraged like it is in my hometown of New York City, but it’s just more subtle.
I remember some years ago I was home from college for winter break and I was accosted by police for simply walking with too many other African American males at night. We were on the sidewalk and they were riding in the street. They blared their sirens and rode their vehicles on the sidewalk blocking our path. They got out of the car with hands on their guns and told us to get up against the wall. We were orderly, quiet and had committed no crime, but we were Black, all male and there was 20 of us. There was only two of them initially, but by the time it was all over, there was a 1 to 1 ratio of Black males to police officers. Nobody got arrested, although due to my outrage over being stopped, I came close. Their mission was to give us the "subtle" message, "this is what happens when we see too many of you people together." The sergeant who arrived on the scene said we were stopped because we were reported being disorderly by a 911 caller. Likely story. Twenty Black people were together doing nothing but "shooting the breeze," but for this white woman, it was a frightening scene. Just think about the fear that the Internet represents when you have millions of people who come together in web site chat rooms, post to message boards, read the ideas of other people who look like them. It gets even scarier if some of these people aim to do more than "shoot the breeze" but instead talk about legitimate social issues like the murder of unarmed African emigrant Ahmed Diallo at the hands of the New York City Cops. Eventually this sort of linkage could spill over into "activism." There has to be a medium to dilute or control the way people interpret national, global or local events. These types of questions posed by the site administrators on the message boards and the site survey questionnaire, which downplay race as a factor are examples of the little things which a White controlled site is more likely to do. To those who feel the need to monitor us, the Internet is no exception. The best way to do this is to use a "Black Face/person" as the visible site person. Another example might be in the case of a movie, or T.V. series that Blacks feel is worthy of boycott. The white site is not likely to endorse a boycott and takes the route of "let's all watch the show before we judge it prematurely, lets see how it represents "us," as one White owned Black series did with the short-lived television sitcom "The Secret Diary of Desmond Pfieffer," which burlesqued slavery and virtually made a joke of the horrible life that African people enslaved in the Western Hemisphere experienced.
You would never see that sort of nonsense done with other human tragedies like the Jewish Holocaust. Thank God we were smart enough to recognize that this show could not continue to air with our economic support. I could draw thousands of analogies of ways, in which these web sites are likely to subtly use subversive methods to control black frustration and rage, but I feel that portion of my conveyance should be left to your own imagination. I am sure that you have experiences which would allow you to recall or draw your own examples. Although there is a small upside. I think the phenomenon of Black web sites controlled by whites can actually wind up being very educational. There is a lot of information being circulated which passes itself off as legitimate data simply because it was done by a Black person without careful attention being paid to the actual content of that data. More so I believe that regardless of the race of the author, the work the individual does should be viewed on its scholastic merit. Scholarship can not be quantified simply by race; cyber-browsers should go further with information they receive on the web even when Blacks control the web site. If Black people realize that the data they are receiving may be an interpretation from a White controlled perspective (as are 95% of the other media and communication outlets) they may dig deeper and go further with the data and discover that the data they received is erroneous. If the ambiguity of web site ownership causes cyber-browsers to do a double take at the information they receive, then in my opinion it is a good thing. Many Black people too easily accept information on the basis that the author is Black or has a cultural or ethnic sounding name. I have seen information appear on BOCC sites which was more detrimental in its propaganda than stuff that normally receives a red flag on White media outlets.
Take for example the recently released "Encarta Africana" Encyclopedia released by Microsoft. This double CD package has been billed as the first comprehensive work on African culture and history throughout the Diaspora and Africa. The brain children behind this project are Henry Louis "Skip" Gates Jr., Chairman of Afro-American Studies and Kwame Anthony Appiah, professor of Afro-American Studies and Philosophy. Both of these men are Black and have a following among various groups in the Black community. I have read interviews with them and about them which makes me worry what they have done with the original efforts of W.E.B. Dubois to produce this Encyclopedia. Dubois moved to Ghana in 1961 to establish the Secretariat of the Encyclopedia Africana, but he died before it was completed. There is a lot of criticism from sources regarding the efforts by Gates and Appiah. I do know that the Secretariat in Ghana totally disassociated Dubois’ original project from their effort. The teacher in me forced me to go through the lesson plans for educators at www.encarta.msn.com/schoolhouse. In our efforts to learn more about other white sites we spoke to John Pembroke of Black Families.com which is owned by Cox Interactive. He was quite evasive about providing information about the staff, page views and amount of money Cox invested. John’s official position is Brand Manager (now what’s that) ? He is not the CEO, CFO, COO or even the founder. So you know he answers to someone else. Are all of these H.N.I.C. executives selling us out? Even the recent BET venture is still partially white owned. Why?
The bottom line is that you should know which sites are created by Black efforts or White efforts. You should check it out for yourself. You might be surprised by what you will find. Just remember when you spend your money, are you handing it over to the white man or are you buying black? With the Internet, believe me folks, WE HAVE A CHOICE!!
Black Web Sites That Are Not 100% Black Owned
www.blackfamilies.com - Owner: Cox Interactive
www.blackvoices.com - Owner: Tribune Media
www.cybersoul.com - Owner: HBO
www.blackplanet.com - Owner: Asian Avenue
www.peeps.com - Owner: BMG
www.defjam.com - Owner: Polygram
www.netnoir.com - Owner: AOL (20%)
www.bet.com - Owner: Microsoft/USA Network (50%)
Permission granted by afronet.com
Posted by Troy on 02 October 2012 - 09:24 PM
KW: Richie the intern asks: What did you think of how the cartoon The Boondocks depicted you?
AC: I’ve at least heard of The Boondocks. But again, I have no idea how that was done. I wouldn’t know all that I do about history, if I spent my time watching cartoons and other TV shows. [Chuckles]
Posted by boitumelo on 21 August 2012 - 12:25 PM
Posted by Cynique on 26 November 2012 - 03:12 PM
I ponder about the brain perk that makes long-ago occurrences seem like they just happened yesterday, how the weeks fly by and how memories can be triggered by a song, or a fragrance or a familiar sight.
Lately I keep thinking about my freshmen year at college, as reports of the deaths of so many of my school mates keep reaching me. And when Illinois completed its football season this year without winning one single game, I keep recalling how different things were 60 years ago when the U. of I. dominated the Big10, making history by taking first place in every major sport from football to fencing, a feat still touted by alumni from that era. Better scenarios cheer me as my old high school has maintained its winning tradition while turning out NBA stars like Doc Rivers and Michael Finley and Shannon Brown, players I remember as little boys in grade school.
Family get-togethers are always an occasion to fondly recall loved ones who have passed on as in, yet another mystery, they seem to be present in spirit as though their essences are able to shift between parallel dimensions.
What captivates me most, however, is how vivid the imagination can be, how easily the past can become a movie scene played on the screen of my mind’s eye. But what a downer it is when I am constantly reminded that although I am the same person I’ve always been, my body didn’t get the memo, a reality that calls up the relationship between time and change. Does time really exist or is it an illusion abetted by change? Is the past still there or does it disappear as soon as the present defers to the future. What is truth? Is it contained in the words of Edgar Allen Poe who declared “all that we see or seem is just a dream within a dream…” or in the musing of Langston Hughes who opines that “It is wise to suffer illusion…Delusion…Even dreams…To believe that in this life…What is real…May also be what it seems. What is not true…May be…For you…
Language in its inadequacy can only attempt to explain what is what it is.
And so it goes.
Posted by boitumelo on 16 November 2012 - 01:41 PM
Posted by Cynique on 10 November 2012 - 03:46 PM
"While Romney lost, the Republicans outperformed in the Congressional elections. One would have expected many more losses with a victorious Democratic President, but there were basically no "coat tails" to Obama's victory...the Congressional Republicans are, if anything, more "conservative" than Romney tried to be. This seems to imply that it is not the policies that were rejected, but that Romney was rejected personally, or that people personally like Obama, even as they disagree with some of his policies and, thus, elect a Congress designed to thwart him. This election, in my view, does little to tell us about policy, as it was, essentially, a draw."
A thought-provoking article that appeared in the Daily Currant on November 7th.
"Conservative political pundit Pat Buchanan stoked controversy today by claiming that Barack Obama's reelection has 'killed White America'.
The paleoconservative nativist is no stranger to racial controversy, having previously been accused of writing books with racist and anti-semitic undertones.
But the former Nixon advisor was more explicit on the G. Gordon Liddy Show this morning. When asked for his reaction to Obama's victory, Buchanan replied brazenly:
"White America died last night. Obama's reelection killed it. Our 200 plus year history as a Western nation is over. We're a Socialist Latin American country now. Venezuela without the oil."
Stunned by his clear racisim, Liddy tried to walk his guest back from the ledge:
"With what you just said right there...You seem to imply that white people are better than other people. That's not really what you're saying is it?"
"Of course that's what I'm saying," Buchanan replied "Isn't it obvious? Anything worth doing on this Earth was done first by white people."
"Who landed on the moon? White people. Who climbed Mount Everest? White people. Who invented the transistor? White people. Who invented paper? White people. Who discovered algebra? White people."
"And don't give me all this nonsense about Martin Luther King and civil rights and all that. Who do you think freed the slaves? Abraham Lincoln. A white guy!"
"But we're not led by Lincoln anymore, we're led by an affirmative-action mulatto who can't physically understand how great America once was."
"I cried last night G. I cried for hours. It's over for all of us. The great White nation will never survive another 4 years of Obama's leadership"
Liddy tried to reason with Buchanan, reminding him that he shares similar positions with the President on Afghanistan, Iraq, and relations with Russia:
"Of course I agree with half of what he does," Buchanan answered, "He's half white! That's not the half I'm worried about."
Buchanan served as a speechwriter in the Nixon White House. He was fired as an MSNBC analyst this year following the publication of a book many considered to be racist."
A side bar of the presidential election.
The resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, a four-star general who led U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq and was thought to be a potential candidate for president has once again raised the question as to why men disgrace themselves, sacrificing everything, career, reputation, family, future just to sample a different brand of nookie... Power and prestige cannot stifle the primitive urge of the male of the species to lust after a female. Some can resist consummating their desire. Others can't. So long, Dave. Hope our esteemed President Obama fares better than you and can declare that he has "99 problems, but a bitch ain't one of 'em."
Posted by Troy on 08 November 2012 - 10:20 AM
I could not understand, from day one, how the Twin Towers simply imploded in on themselves. The collapse of build 7 simply dd not make any sense. I already knew many of the well known stories from the Bible are at the same as much older stories, and religions. I don;t even want to get started on the financial system...
I appreciate that I've shared a lot of information below. If it is too much you can always visit Facebook
Zeitgeist: The Movie (2007)
Full version also available on Youtube (I suggest skipping the first 5 minutes if you watch from the beginning you'll understand -- I almost bailed on the movie before it got going because of the unusual intro)
Zeitgeist: The Movie, by Peter Joseph. Originally released in 2007 as a non-commercial performance work - only later to evolve into an unprecedented internet sensation - Zeitgeist: The Movie is a aesthetically driven documentary film divided into three sections - each a commentary on what the director calls angles of "Social Mythology".
The first section, entitled "The Greatest Story Ever Told", explores the topic of comparative religion, specifically the controversial relationship between early pagan religions and their influence on the Judeo-Christian system of belief as it is practiced and defined today.
The second section, entitled "All the World's a Stage" explores the events of September 11th 2001 from the stand point of inconsistencies, inaccuracies and improbabilities with regard to the official account put forward by the United States Government.
The third section, entitled "Don't Mind the Men Behind the Curtain" explores a series of monetary related and power issues, including central banking, money creation, wars for profit and their pretexts, terrorism, the consequence of excessive security, government corruption and much more. Zeitgeist: The Movie has undergone a series of Updates overtime and the DVD provided here is current, including the 2010 Update.
Please also note that a free 220 page Companion Source Guide which sources virtually everything in the film can be found online. (Simply search for "Zeitgeist Companion Source Guide") Zeitgeist: The Movie was followed in 2008 by a sequel entitled Zeitgeist: Addendum.
Posted by FinanceFree on 07 November 2012 - 09:46 AM
Will President Obama be able to lead our nation into economic prosperity? Will congress come together to help improve this nation, instead of playing politics? I believe the answers to these questions are not as important as many people may think. Why? The answer is simple; government does not dictate the direction of the economy. That charge remains firmly in the grasp of all American citizens.
We must make the important decisions that will dictate the direction of the U.S. economy. We will have to decide if we will continue to support companies that ship jobs American jobs overseas. We must be motivated to create new ways to address our constant need for energy and convenience. Most importantly, we must hold all politicians responsible for fulfilling their promises.
President Obama and all other winners from last night's election have made a lot of promises, but we can't accept another 40 - 60 percent fulfillment rate. We must hold them all responsible for their failures. How can we do this? While voting is a powerful tool for us to express our feelings, more is needed to hold politicians accountable for their commitments. We can't simply wait another two years to kick some people out of their government offices. We have to address their failures by cutting off the money supply. If political season promises are not kept, don't contribute a dime towards the next campaign. We should stop supporting all companies and organizations that openly support these promises breakers. Money talks in D.C. and it is time for our voices to be heard. This is where the opportunity to improve our government resides and we must use it to our advantage.
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