Every now and then, I thought about the blogs I written in the past before “Stephen’s Spot” got started way back when. But I’m thinking about bringing in more Retro blogs that I writen when MySpace had Blogs. It’s been a minute, I’m about to go back. Way back when I wrote this:  One of them:  “It’s time for New Thoughts…..Again” from April 10th, 2007.

Hey folks, It’s time for some more new thoughts!!!!
New Thought: This is for the 19, 20+ year old ladies of MySpace:  Stop being fake</FONT>. I am so sick and tired of some chicks on myspace pretending to be near me. No you’re not! Like, Hello! I have not seen you in Milwaukee before! If you going to be real from your location, or where you’re from, &nbsp;put yourself on 1800USSearch or yellowbook. Ok your MySpace location is fine, but please be real!&nbsp; And take yourselves to church right now because some of you need Jesus!
New Thought: If you have more than one profile on MySpace, and you have the same pictures, and messages, “Hey..Just thought I would say whats up..I’m trying to figure out how to add music and video to my page.. I have NO CLUE lol…can u help? u got M-S-N or A-I-M? Add me on those, my info is on my page…I travel a lot and will be in ur area soon so hit me up on M-S-N or A-I-M..I’m just tryin to meet some new people🙂 ur myspace page caught my eye… xoxox ” There is no reason to confuse the viewer about what you have on you, than against you. This goes for some chick or chicks named JuicyBella, HunnyBunzz, Sexxxie, BellaSexy, Jenny, Brandy, LilBrat, and Chickeee. Change your thoughts before the deep crap happens! – Could we say Patriot Act?
New Thought:Why is Nigeria scamming Americans? For years I heard over and over again that the country launders money to Americans to get a cut of “the deal”, and then the money goes nowhere! And why are they in Internet Cafes doing this? Folks, we don’t need Nigerian scams in America. Severe it at all costs! Protect your wallets, and your online profiles! This is also a thought for me to never visit there!

New Thought:  Keep Ald. Mike McGee, Jr in seclusion. I may not be one of the voters who decided to keep the Alderman in office, but I hope he, and his supporters got what he wanted, and not only that, he better be real this time. If he’s not, there are important four words to think about: Victory Offers Truthful Equality.
New Thought: Radio newscasters should stop using racial slurs. Don Imus upseted folks last week about his remarks about a female basketball team at Rutgers University. And said the “H word”. To add a stipulation for his two weeks from his show, have him to do community service, in the black community, in the central city by doing interviews of the poor. Hey, that firefighter in Waukesha, Wisconsin went through the same treatment. How’s he doing?

New Thought: I hate to say this but we need to stop complaing about Interracial Relationships. We are all God’s children. It’s a good thing that blacks and whites can come together in families in order to meet each other. Nothing wrong with that. And there’s nothing wrong accepting biracial children in your families either. If you oppose this “race mixing”, something is wrong with you.

New Thought:All Banks should stop passing out credit cards to college students. If you are a college student, or soon to be one again someday, and if you apply for a visa card, you think”jackpot!” You are also probably thinking, cool I can get some more cash! Free money for me! But, if you’re thinking about getting that “free money”, I got some words for you to share if you’re not working at a job: YOU WILL BE TRICKED!
New Thought:Since the holidays of the Fourth of July, Veterans Day, and Memorial Day will come at a fever pitch more often, really there not just days off. Know what the real meaning is before your pitch out your barbecue grills, days of from work/school, and watching sports on your satellite or cable systems.

New Thought: For the parents, (I’m not one myself) if you are at home, or in the mall, or at Wal-Mart, don’t swear at your children. No one in the store or in your hood does not want to hear you scream expeltives just to “hurry up and go” or “put that **** down! And by the way, this goes for those who think that they can handle the pressure. Here are some solutions: Go back to parenting school, get saved by God, and come back happy folks.
New Thought: Milwaukee must stop complaing about the new transit system. For 16 years, the city has saved up $91.5 Million Dollars for the potential new light rail system, and some residents complain that the buses are better.No there not! You know for the city like Milwaukee is behind other cities of amping transit, it needs to “build it now”. I remember that same quote about Miller Park years ago and what was happening, oh that’s right to save the Brewers from leaving Milwaukee!

And finally new thought: When at a cemetery visiting your deceased family member(s) and you see another person&nbsp;driving over another loved ones grave, tell them it’s disrepectful. There is no fun in this. What did that person lying six feet under did to you? Absolutely Nothing! When you take the dirt nap, it could happen to you, but then again you wont know anyway.


Going back to July 18th, 2007 with this retro Myspace Blog.

New Thought: Stay away from Primerica. I mean it. Stay Away!!!!! The 30 year old company called me last week to see if I was intereted in working by selling insurance to customers, or in this case middle income families. Yes, they would invite you into their office, fill out and application, have the semi-interviews, but in the end you might need to ask the questions of the company yourself. Other than that, Ripoff.com. or those whom have contacted by the company for the same issue. Other than that it is wise to have a company looked up to pay nothing for training than 200.00. I got the picture. Did you?

New Thought: Tell the truth. Last week in my MyFoxMilwaukee blog, I posted my story about how I got my BS degree through Distance Education. And I was commented that I shouldn’t mention it.Well, I know that it shouldn’t matter in all, but the thing is here is reason why: I have to mention it:  at an earlier age, my parents and those around me always told me to speak yourself. That was one thing, but the other just to save myself. I mention DE because I did not want to hide anything. That comes to say if you have filled out an application, and the question comes up: “Have you ever been convicted of a crime, or violation of an traffic law?” If you have, fess up. Speak now, or forever hold your peace. And an additional reason is because I had jobs in Milwaukee, while doing DE with UW-Stout. Happy now? Good. That why I do it! Remember these words: Whatever It Takes

New Thought: Martha, Adina, and any other “chick from Wisconsin” who thought I have a twin, or have been in their neck of the woods. Listen here. You have a MS page, but no pictures, why you want to meet me on your fling site? Are you afraid or are you a fake person that wants to get laid? Tell me something! I ain’t buying!

New Thought: George Lopez has to be the funniest latino on the planet. I checked out his HBO Special last week, and to me, some of the things he said was not only funny, but the truth.

New Thought: More Katt Williams and Chris Rock on DVD please. Need more pimp chronicles and bigger and blackers. Or Never Scared vids. I did like the lines that he said blacks should have some white friends. And vice versa. Life is too short. I still can’t over his comments about Michael Jackson!

New Thought: What’s up with black women with red hair? I know this is America. Land of the free. Home of the Brave. Freedom of Expression. But the thing is, sometimes expression, like keeping it real, goes to far. Black women, I love you like sisters, mothers, and aunts, but TONE DOWN THE RED HAIR!

New Thought: Harley-Davidson should invite black artists next year for the 105th Anniversary. Yes I have seen blacks artists on motorcycles, but hey, invites some r&b, hip hop, rap, soul performers next year also. Maybe the thought of Elton John would just go away from 2003.

New Thought: I am not a supporter of Michael McGee Jr. Never have, and now never will. I heard at one time he was a real nice man in a school. But what happened? Oh, we know what happened! Never mind. No, his father did not say he wants to come out of retirement. I don’t see that happening! ViAnna Jordan warned us, and we didn’t listen.

And finally new thought: Despite of the so called warnings from Al-Queda and Osama bin Laden, I am not going to stop being……me. That’s right. I can’t stop being me. As long as we have well trained military personal stationed left and right and protecting good from evil, I am not going to stop being me. As an American citizen, I can say that. To those who commit acts of Terrorism, you can flash all the warning videos all you want to. But the thing is, were watching and our troops, ready.

 

 


TBT: Here is one of my Myspace blogs from 2010 around Black Music Month.

New Thought: NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!! After many many years, Johnnie Walkers in Downtown Milwaukee has closed. I want all those to take a look at my profile pic and notice the blue suit: That came from Milwaukee’s Johnnie Walkers.

New Thought: I smell blood. True Blood that is. Time to fire up the DVD Recorders and DVR’s for a were/vamp/human connection all summer long.

New Thought: Milwaukee, stop tripping about having different “Festivals”. We have Asian Moon Festival, African World Festival, Irish Fest, Festa Italiana, Mexican Fiesta, Arab Fest, Indian Summer, etc. If you were on Facebook, and commented about this and being Americans, look. If Milwaukee had an “American Fest” would that be happy? You can still be a full-blooded American while recognizing your heritage. What’s wrong with that?! And besides, Milwaukee is known for being “The City of Festivals”. Duh!

New Thought: If any Milwaukeean felt noise prone in the Air, complain to the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels crew. Matter of fact don’t complain, because this is what they do in order to protect the country. I didn’t hate on their practices.

New Thought: Cholesterol!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Always know your cholesterol number. Cause if you don’t, it might kill ya! Wanna go through it? Just take a simple blood test. Then exercise more. I’m telling you this because I had mine done, and well, have to start losing more weight.
New Thought: Enough with BP, BP, BP! I am so SICK of looking at the footage of the oil leak over and over again messing up the Gulf of Mexico. Just plug up the freaking hole already! And plus, if I were President Obama, about the statement of “whose A** to kick?” it would be BP’s. And the TeaBaggers, and the so-called Congressmen who stood behind George W. Bush for 8 years with an unfinished WTC Center, Hurricane Katrina and flew on a Air Craft Carrier with a banner in the background stating “Mission Accomplished”. That’s right I said it!

New Thought: Who the crap is “Amber Smith?!!!!!” And why is this “Amber Smith” want to chat with me on MySpace?

And in conlcusion, New Thought: I’m not a fan of Soccer but Go TEAM USA! I can’t the help the fact that oh, Stephen is a soccer fan? Frankly, I am not a fan of players kicking a ball from one goal to another, and having a announcer screaming GOOOOOALLLLLLLL! Nope not me. And I know that there are countless Americans like me in the country that don’t really care about the sport. Sort of like Hockey.

But for the U.S. Soccer Team, I haven’t really paid attention to them lately. I know this is a dumb question but are there any well-known blacks play for the U.S. Soccer Team? I’m not racist, but just a thought out well rounded question in asking. Just want to know. If there are black soccer players on the U.S. Team, I might take an interest. Just want to know who they are and what city they represent. You feel me?

Back around 2002, I didn’t know a lick about Vonetta Flowers, you know when she won the gold medal in Bobsledding? Every Black History Month I bring up her name because of not only who she was, but that one moment that has escalated in sports history by becoming the first African-American Woman to get a Gold Medal in the Winter Games. So no excuses about blacks can’t get the sport on frozen elements. The same can be said for Tiger Woods. In 1997, he made history by winning The Masters. And he was dubbed the first black to do this. And the same can be for Venus/Serena Williams that made tennis watchable.

So the irony of it is, it’s not me being like, Oh he’s full of it. NO! I just want to know in asking who are the BLACK soccer players, on the U.S. Team? Are they well known? That’s all.

 


 

It’s time. Oh yes it’s time.

For several weeks it’s been football players like Colin Kaepernick taking knees. There have been black volleyball players taking knees. High school football players taking knees. There have been other NFL players raising black fists in the air. Seattle Seahawks player Jeremy Lane sits as the National Anthem is played. And four members of the Miami Dolphins took knees as well. Plus Denver Broncos Linebacker Brandon Marshall took his knee during the anthem.

But what is this all entail? Some anti-american movement? Was there a part in school that flag etiquette was not taught? Some are asking what is it about African-Americans (per some) having a disdain of hate when it comes to the Nation Anthem and that grand American Flag that many think it’s a symbol of oppression?

Oh it’s time y’all!

Long history of slavery,racism, oppression, tyranny, persecution have plagued this country for 240+ years. Thus is not new to black folks. But if you’re that white dude or female that enjoying being overly patriotic, or assuming that racism or oppression is one and done: then maybe you need to have those seats and listen up.

How many times have I heard and seen black folks in this country feeling oppressed about a location, subject, topic, category, or non-engaged because of the color of their skin? No matter if they didn’t get the job, or promotion, or just being a regular customer, or officer of a well known company that “religiously” doesn’t hire black folks? Lots of times. And I know so because there was a time, I was discriminated of a job offer in Waukesha because of me being black. Remember Dresser Waukesha? That company.

Most of the focus was shifted on the day that most of us had to reflect: September 11th. The same September 11th as we know had the most hellacious smackdown on American Soil. When the planes struck the Twin Towers, and the Pentagon. We know how it felt to go out on a clear nice day 15 years ago, and having that to be ruined by those that wanted this country to feel being sucker punched.

  • Many of us 15 years ago had to put American Flags out to show solidarity or support that many of us really care about the well being of being “American.”
  • Many of us 15 years ago, packed the church! And the rows of pews were filled as if a funeral was taking place.
  • Many of us 15 years ago saw both the Republicans and Democrats were singing God Bless America outside of Capitol Hill.
  • Many of us 15 years ago were questioning about why we were attacked in the first place. Heck were still talking about it!
  • Many of us 15 years ago copied these words: Never Forget. – I got something to say about NEVER FORGET in my next blog.

So I guess in asking, after the booing of President Obama on the 15th Anniversary of 9/11, what is the legality of showing your so-called patriotism, or “Selected Patriotism” about this? He ain’t George W. Bush, I’ll tell you that!

Lot of folks be like, the flag though……. It’s a symbol of oppression. Others say it’s about freedom, but really? Look here, what I’m about to say that might not be suitable for the hyper conscious of black folks, but I’m going to say this. The stars and stripes on display is fine as is. Yeah I said it! You can take the flag and put it on a t-shirt and many ways. Even on a dress. But it’s only “negative” when you use it in a negative action or situation that many normally well know. The key word in this sentence is “NEGATIVE!” There is part of your symbol of oppression, black people!  Remember back in school when your teacher was talking about weapons? Back in my Milwaukee Public Schools days, I had an english teacher at Jackie Robinson Middle School, telling us about weapons and how they can come into play when fights occur. When for example: a stapler is used for one thing to staple papers, but on the other hand it can be used as a weapon against another person in a playground/classroom fight. No joke! That goes for anything like Irons, TV’s or a wooden chair, or even an American Flag!  If you use the American Flag as a weapon in a physical sense, then it becomes a weapon! I’m not just talking a psychological sense. Or that “Symbol of Oppression Sense.” I’m just making it clear as I say this. When I was in college, I took a US History Course and one of the things I remember about loving America, is that there was a time that the American Legion  would lay the physical on you if you didn’t respond that you love America. In this case, you would be smacked senseless. No joke. But that was then.

How many white folks see the RGB Flag, or the Marcus Garvey Flag as a symbol of oppression? Or Segregation? Tell me! And there will be black folks  in your face saying it’s not. The color Red is the blood. The Green is the land, and the Black symbolizes the people of the folks whom were first of Africa: black. And the reason why I asked this question, because some will respond about the American Flag being not totally racist or oppressed out of emotion. Wait a second: that’s been the whole story all this time: Out of emotion!

Let’s be honest, many of us were never EVER educated enough about stuff like this. Like what happened in all? You see other countries getting all with their sense of honor, but us folks here in the good ole USA: half of us do it, and the other half don’t do it and complain. When the Fourth of July was happening, you got many black folks on Instagram and Facebook asking “what are you celebrating?” Well I ask this: what are YOU celebrating? Clap back perhaps? Let’s be real about it! Just asking.

It’s time that this issue needs to be open for dear life! It’s also time that every single destructive act that America produced, copied, destroyed, buried, manipulated, severed, thwarted, oppressed, racially inclined, sexualized badly, religiously hacked, conscious resistance of betrayal and many other horrific things that the country weathered in its 240 year history. From the black slaves to settle in 1619 in bondage, to the lands stolen from the Native Americans. It’s time!

Something that I reminded myself when writing the My Fox Milwaukee blogs about America. If America were to admit the truth of any wrong doing, then it must come to grips of it.

Now if you’re like Kate Upton who is too blind to see that, along with her “depressing” viewpoints of the NFL players taking knees during the National Anthem, then that’s a problem. I don’t see her or some wannabe overly patriotic person telling that in the inner cities, the black communities, or any member of the Mothers of the Movement that has lost Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Dontre Hamilton. Or Mike Brown. I don’t see her doing that. Better start, white chick! So with all this kneeling, it’s another form of expressing Constitutional Rights. Like many of you not going out after church to a bar. Or get drunk at a club on Saturday night. Or giving your money to Walmart or your churches financial goals!

HELLO!

Or even choosing to have your child home schooled or not. Or posing your gun on Facebook or Instagram like a joker just to get noticed. Well it’s your Constitutional right. But you better be responsible for your Constitutional rights as it progresses for your next lifetime! I say that in all things.

Speaking of that: The Star Spangled Banner. The official theme song of America. For many many years, the anthem has been played, sung at events, played in solos and many others. And there were those got criticized of the Anthem being a disgrace to those serve in uniform. But I’ll say that the Anthem is good “on display”. But the author, Francis Scott Key that made the anthem in 1812, was also an owner of slaves! The third stanza in the Anthem, which no one hardly sings by the way, spells out as this:

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore

That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion

A home and a Country should leave us no more?

Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.

No refuge could save the hireling and slave

From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,

And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave

O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Well ladies and gents, let’s breakdown the meat of the third stanza. Now many are already saying that the stantza is racist. The words in the stanza: “No refuge could save the hireling and slave” some say that is so racist that it needs to be erased. But what did Francis Scott Key meant by this? Since he was a slave owner by the way.

  • The word Refuge means in dictionary terms as we know is related to Refugee, as being forced to cross national boundaries and cannot return home safely.
  • Hireling means: A person who works only for pay, especially in a menial or boring job, with little or no concern for the value of work. In a adjective sense: it also means serving for pay only, vernal, and mercenary. See that?

But when you put it all together in that ONE LINE: The Refugees of the slaves, our ancestors were forced in bondage, couldn’t return to Africa that had to be worked for menial jobs, with no concern for the work values of the jobs that was slave related. Henceforth: “No refuge could save the hireling and slave.”

Hmmm….we have those type of jobs today right?

And some are making the arguement that it related to the Black Slaves going to the British side for Freedom. While many is the opposite like being force fed into menial work being in bondage for so long.

So with that being asked: Is the Star-Spangled Banner as a whole is a racist song when it comes to black folks? Just because one line in the song is considered racist doesn’t mean the WHOLE SONG is racist! Let’s be real. But it’s worth examining of asking W. Is “America the Beautiful” racist? Is “God Bless America” racist? Oh, let me ask this: Is “Lift Every Voice and Sing” the same song we sing at MLK events a racist song? Uh-oh! I went there! Now many of you are thinking, “really Stephen? Lift Every Voice and Sing is not a racist song! It’s about unity”. I know, but what about America’s anthems? Shoud they hold the real true meaning of unity as well? Without all the lines of Racism? Think about that while doing you feel is worthy of protest. It’s ok. No one is not going to say anything.

So with all the kneeling, to me it’s not about the flag in Colin Kaepernick’s opinion. Nor it’s all about those following the idea that Colin is doing. It’s all about really addressing the ongoing treatment that Black folks get EVERYDAY that is unfair, not right, and I dare say UN-AMERICAN when innocent lives are being taken everyday without notice. Even not getting the jobs without notice. Not getting healthcare without NOTICE. Not getting to the finish line like the other guys WITHOUT NOTICE! Do you see this?

Maybe I might catch hades for this, but I think many job seekers RIGHT NOW looking for work, that got disrespected either online or in person at interviews,  need to boycott the companies that don’t hire black folks due to their race. That’s right I said it! I CALLED IT. The best way to combat that, in my opinion, is do what everyone is doing the least: Go into your own business. I don’t care if you use drones for retail houses for $200.00, or own your own store that is home grown. Or take pictures as a side gig at Funerals. Get your own business started and you can hire many folks you want. Or run it yourself being your own boss. And I’ll BET that those looking in will be kicking themselves in the crotch or feet wishing like for example:  “why didn’t we get them (him or her) to work for us?” speeches. Mainly because the ignorance of that CEO or HR didn’t allow them to come into get picked or hired. And many of you CEO’s who are just now reading this, might be that CEO or Owner that is facing that truth like a bullet. And the same with HR’s and etc. Admit the guilt!

And yes, some of the sponsors that the players had, are now pulled. All because of the kneeling image. BUT some have come out to be new sponsors. When Brandon Marshall’s Sponsorship from the Academy Federal Credit Union and CenturyLink, of all folks, Russell Simmons the brother of Rev Run of Run DMC, got Rushcard calling for Brandon. Talk about turnabouts fair play.

So let me end by saying this. I did this when Alton Sterling passed, and I’m saying it here in the Red, White and Blue. Stars and Stripes and a strong message to relate:

SSP The Struggle Continues

 

Now let that take a knee to respond with the black fist up and hands over hearts.


Breaking News out of Milwaukee:

One of our well known voices in the Milwaukee Community has passed. If you haven’t heard the name of Eric Von then maybe the ears weren’t open. He was the voice in Milwaukee’s media for several of years that was on our TV’s and also mostly, Radio. There were times that I listened to him on the radio in which the topics ranged from the news, sports and health were on point. No question that his voice or commentary was indeed legendary just as OC White in his hey day. Either on 1290 WMCS or recently, his segment on WNOV of “The Eric Von Show” that comes on at 7:00am, two hours before “The Forum” appears on air.

I had the opportunity to meet him 2 years ago at my old High School of John Marshall. Now it’s called “Milwaukee Marshall High School” but still it’s John Marshall ANYWAY! The occasion was the Alumni Reception that was featuring the former students and guests that meet up prior to the 2014 Graduation Ceremony. Eric was with his wife, Faithe Colas who was the special guest speaker for the ceremony. Plus also, Faithe (class of 79 Alumni) was the recipient of the John Marshall High School’s Alum of the Year Award. And yes her pic is in the school for all to see.  Plus also I had to play the official photographer for the Alumni to capture pictures like this:

ssp_marshallalumnireception2014

Now just to point out here: Eric is pictured on the far right.

After the ceremony we went to Saz’s on State Street for the followup to our fellowship. Eric was sitting across from me. Faithe was on the same side on an angle. I like everyone else introduced myself, with me being the youngest Alumni Board Member in the house. We conversated just the basic stuff of work and volunteering. But to hear him and be in the prsensence was just that: priceless.

Yes, I’ve meet the man that we know. And black Milwaukee knows as well.

For the lessons this week, yes Eric was cool. No matter what subject or topic he was on, he was on it. Plus he was a US Veteran that served in the Air Force.

One of the things of his work as we know, it’s called Brain, Brawn and Body. His work and awareness about African-American Men and their families to maintain the needs of health. Yes black men, as we know doctors and us don’t mix. But we have to face the music sometimes of getting back with the Medics. Even me. But don’t quote me on that.

Another was with the election connections. He was featured on a show on Channel 12’s “It’s Your Vote” in dealing with the voting issues that the voters in Milwaukee faced at the time. Even Milwaukee Black Voters as usual.

He was also featured on other shows like “Black Nouveau” which comes on our Public Broadcast Station here in Milwaukee of Channel 10. And for that was discussing the concerns and issues in Milwaukee’s Black Community. Black Nouveau is still on point today with issues and news that the community is still informed.

In 2003, he was a Campaign Co-Director in lieu of one of the past Elections that propelled Tom Barrett to his first mayoral bid for the city.

When the day of September 8th came when Eric’s death came up: it was like a shock. I kept reading my Facebook Newsfeeds to see if this was real. When you get those notices of a well known figure around your community that died, usually it’s a hoax via Social Media. BUT……this was no hoax. Eric Von really did die at his home in the Sherman Park Community. The next day, WNOV was really focused on him, his life and work. I was listening to his segment and The Forum and let me tell you: it was sad, but it was a time to celebrate him of what he brought to us over the years. No matter if it was his days at 1290, or WNOV. The callers kept calling the station to offer their condolences and sympathies. Even former 1290 Personalities  that called in to do the same thing. And those that used to rival WNOV were also called in to equal the messages of those offering condonlences.

I will admit, it will be hard to replace him on the radio. But I think that with all of this, the WNOV Family; no, the remaining WNOV family will be fine. It will take time, but still will be fine.

This coming week, there will be a Community Memorial Celebration for Eric at Marquette University’s Alumni Union. And the date will be September 14th. 


It’s a been a minute, but I’m back fresh and new with a Three Way Dance. For this, it’s all about the three things I’ve been reading about lately. As well as everyone else.

First: The saga of the kneeling, siting down during the National Anthem of Colin Kaepernick.

Yes, the same Colin Kaepernick whom was a dominate player when running the Pistol Plays with the 49ers, member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity of the Divine 9, a guy that was beating the Green Bay Packers twice, and oh, here’s something: He was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. And grew up a Packers fan. Yes, Colin was a Packers Fan when Brett Favre was running the show. In the recent Preseason game between the Packers and the 49ers, there was a scene during the national anthem in which usually every stands during the playing of America’s Theme Song. However, there was only one player who did not stand, and that was Colin Kaepernick. Colin was sitting down during the anthem. And when that shot of him sitting down was shown on pics, oh guess what: You so-called Americans had to go in on him just because he didn’t stand up. Wow. Oh, when the Niners were in their next game, he kneeled. Another Niner player kneeled also. Plus one of the Seattle Seahawks, Jeremy Lane sat on the bench while the national anthem played on. Yes, as crazy as it seems, there are those who are using the sitting and kneeling thing to exercise their constitutional right to protest about the injustices about the effects of People of Color that goes on everyday.

Now let’s talk about Colin’s thing. He says and I quote: “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

That was the lighting rod. Of course that many who heard that didn’t sit well with being “OVERLY PATRIOTIC” in a sense that yes it’s about the recoginition of our military who fought, served and died for our freedoms that we dance around like Pokemon Go fans in a park. I’m just kidding on the Pokemon thing!  Hey, if you like Pokemon Go, nothing against that. But what I’m saying is that the flag/anthem protest thing in athletes have been done before. Espeicially Black Athletes! Remember Mamoud Abdul-Rauf: Who was formally known as Chris Jackson before converting to Islam of the Denver Nuggets, yeah that guy. When he was with the team way back in the 90’s, he was standing during the anthem but was not looking at the flag. He was praying with his hands close to his face. And yes, there were folks were mad at him for the disrespect per se for the flag. Tommie Smith and John Carlos were famous for the Black Power Salute in 1968, but also got targeted because of their protest. Keep in mind also, that 1968 was also the year that Martin Luther King was assassinated. And segregation was still running amuck. So stuff like this is nothing new, but with those who are just now new, and being recent, you are getting a first hand education on why stuff like this happens and will appear in your textbooks. And yes, school is back.

When I was listening to the commentary about Colin Kaepernick here in Milwaukee, on the black radio stations via WNOV and other black related outlets, I’ve been hearing the callers pouring in their commentary about “Oh, Colin Kaepernick did it for all the black people in America!” “Colin Kaepernick was born in Milwaukee….” And many others. Folks in Milwaukee: I’ve mentioned this years ago when Colin was on scene with Pistol Plays, and making the Packers miss, and couldn’t win a freaking Super Bowl, what has Colin Kaepernick done for Milwaukee?  What has he done? What has Colin Kaepernick done for Wisconsin? Yes, Colin Kaepernick was born in Milwaukee, but NEVER CLAIMED Milwaukee as his home! Never! His family of course moved when he was young due to high school and college. But never claimed the city as home! The late great Gene Wilder, whom recently passed was born in Milwaukee, and went to one of my rival schools: Washington High School. And  yes there was a movie reference about Milwaukee in one of his films. What does it take to give back to Milwaukee you ask? Try volunteering in an area that you know VERY WELL in Milwaukee.  I don’t care about the schools or community centers you know because of your childhood or where you used to hang out in finding some dude /chick for a date. If you know that Church that you go to for volunteer work, or neighborhood or whatever thing you know well in Milwaukee to go to, THAT IS WHERE YOU START! You start that and build up. Real talk folks! Yes, I see the famous folks whom were Milwaukee born, raised somewhere else, but some of them do come back to give back. Eric Benet was here years ago to make an album in the same neighborbood that he grew up in Milwaukee. He even helped served food at a local McDonalds and that restaurant was jammed pack!  Tank, the R&B singer that you see on the show, Born Again Virgin on TVOne, he came back to a concert here in Milwaukee to perform. He was born here. Now I probably might in the future that I might get those “I’m sorry you were born in Milwaukee”quotes but I’m going to comment that later on in the third part of the story. But seriously folks, what has Colin Kaepernick did, was for himself. HIS constritutional right. Not for all in the black community in the country, per se!

The second dance card: The Truth of ITT Tech.

As many around  the country know, yes, school is back in session. But however, ITT Tech recently has been coming under fire about their educational concerns. The recent closing of ITT Tech around the country shocked many who have gotten started or continued with their majors is disappointing and will take their educational experience elsewhere. But I’m here to tell you that my experience began with ITT Tech, was in late 1994 when I was still a Senior at John Marshall High School. They came to the school in one of my English Classes, in talking about the classes and majors and they wanted to have some insight from the students at the time. Later on, I got a phone call from one of the recruiters from ITT, a black man if you will, to have to meet me at home for a well rounded interview with my parents. The interview went well, and also giving me an overview about ITT to have those connections with Archtietture, the Military, and many others. Later after that, the school picked me of course and I was selected to come to the school for a visit. To see the classrooms and labs. The ITT Tech seemed very interesting. And I got my financial aid thing set up and and I had to take a test to have a fit per se in getting a spot on the campus.I flunked the first test, but passed it on the second try. After I graduated from Marshall in 1995, I had a short summer rest. Real short. When June 12th came, I started the classes right away. Yep! Sure did. I wish I had taken a year off to process my brain like Malia Obama is doing now. But in between the classes, I remember taking the Bus from 41st and Capitol to 63rd and Layton which was an hour ride listing to my CD player in all. The classes I remember were lectures and labs. Success in Learning, was one of the subjects was well known. Other classes of Drafting lectures and labs, were so-so Ok. But the harder stuff was seeing the Educational Serivces Area to see how much progress was made. Most of that, was not that great. There were times I stayed after class to catch up on classwork of the draft drawings to get the extra credits, but usually that wasn’t enough. And plus I got my first MLK Scholarship in January of 1996.

So in the summer of 1996, I withdrew from the school to go to the one Tech college I know: Milwaukee Area Technical College. When I got to the MATC Downtown Campus, I remember taking their asset tests to see where I would stand in getting that extra start. Here is the thing: I took the Basic Skills Courses for ONE Semester and passed them all. Plus also, I took the Accuplaer Test on Campus, passed that to get into the Printing and Electronic Publishing Program in 1997. And that transition of that was alot more simplified than ITT Tech. In 2004, way after I graduated from MATC in the Y2K,  I was already taking distance ed courses with UW-Stout. Plus when I was in one of the Teleconference Rooms before linking up with one of the classes at the time, there was talk about ITT Tech not being a good school. And I lend in my experience about what happened, MAINLY with Basic Entrance Qualifications that ITT didn’t have. One of my male UW-Stout classmates was at ITT one time, that in his experience, was his comment:  “ITT Tech is Full of Sh*t.” So we got one thing common on that. But yes that was my expereince that happened in 1995-1996 in Greenfield, Wisconsin.

Note to myself: I should have gone to MATC in 1995!

In the wake of the closing,  I need to ask: Should ITT Tech payback ALL THE MONEY that many were robbed of years ago? (No question is a dumb question) Especially those who withdrew years back? If anyone from ITT can read this, I WANT MY MONEY BACK! What ever was paid back then, I WANT BACK! Since you guys are closing up shop, give all the former students their free transcripts and a check. Even for those who didn’t graduate. Plus for those whom are in the struggle at ITT and having the closing of the school on you, my heartfelt sympathies. But just to let you know that your experience may have ended, but your Tech Colleges will take up the slack to help you out. For those in Milwaukee, go to MATC and finish your Associates. Or any WTCS 2 year school. If you were taking the classes for Bachelor’s Degree for ITT, I would transfer those credits to a University. Take it to any UW-School. Even UW-Stout! Yes, I said Stout. Take that! If I were you, I would consider either finishing your Education at MATC and/or a University. Manily at the University of Wisconsin whatever! It ain’t over, folks. You can begin again, but your journey is not yet broken!

Third dance on the card: The still ongoing saga of the Milwaukee Unrest.

As many of us in Milwaukee are trying to adjust to our daily lives of work, school and play, we are still dealing with the ongoing unrest that is a constant struggle we know. For all the REAL citizens whom are praying for the city from the outside, I speak as a citizen to say thank you. Keep praying for Milwaukee as well as any other city that is going through an Unrest Session that is against People of Color to go through.

First, I was reading a Op-Ed story from CNN about Milwaukee recently. But the thing was, it was coming from a former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Journalist, Sarah Hoye. Many of us remember Sarah writing for the JS Columns way back, but what we didn’t know the most was her upbrining in the Sherman Park area. It was titled, “The Milwaukee You Don’t Know” and Sarah being the native born was on point. As I was reading her opiniion piece on the site, I was clearly amazed and shocked that she had to go through all that hate growing up. Not getting a date for the Prom or Homecoming. Being called a Nigg*r or Monkey while being hated on, and she also writes that there were those who told her that she couldn’t mount much to anything that she can accomplish and etc. Reminds me of my childhood when folks were telling me that I can’t do certain, or can’t comeback of a certain behavior problem. Isn’t that right Milwaukee Urban League’s Betty Speed and Manpower? After all, isn’t that part of Milwaukee’s problem with all the unrest of crabs in a bucket? Let’s be honest here: we still have that today! You still have black folks hating on black folks even if they were brought up in a household full of educators, and you look at a male member of the family thinking he aint sh*t. I don’t care who is reading this part, you might be that person that is doing it.And you sit behind a desk telling him this! And I’ve seen white folks do the same thing. Oh there will become a time that when your end comes, you may be BEGGING HIM to apologize or to admit of any wrong doing. Trust me, I’ve seen it and I’ve read about it. Just watch it! Later on in the article, Sarah highlights her opinion piece by these words, and I STRONGLY AGREE!

But here’s the thing: I am not sorry for being born and raised in Milwaukee.

Can anyone say “Praise the Lord!” Listen: I’ve heard folks say, I’m from the Chi, folks cheer. I’m from the MIA (or Miami), folks cheer. I’m from New York, the BK, Jersey, Philly in the house! I’m Straight outta LA or Compton, or Atlanta, and other city that folks will cheer for. Why is it that when Milwaukee is in the convo, folks had to bow their heads as being sorry?! What is this?

Am I sorry being from Milwaukee? HELL NO!

Am I sorry being born, raised, educated, worked in Milwaukee? HELL NO!

I am not sorry for being born here for any reason. Yes, Milwaukee may have punk haters who don’t give a two cents about your upbrining, like other cities in all. But there are those in Milwaukee that want to give you a chance! Even if you think you might scoot to the other cities, but there are those who will give you a chance, here! And it REALLY depends on who you know. Now some are probably are going to say, “Who in the hell in Milwaukee can help me?” Who?!

My question is: who in the hell that knows you very well in Milwaukee?

Who know you, your family, your Alumni, your neighbors, your school where your kids play, your community center, your church, your local officer that comes by your neighborhood or church, your insurance person, your store owners, musicians, or others. Even a Funeral Director at a Funeral Home that also does communty work that YOU KNOW VERY WELL! That is what’s up. We got them here!

Even those who that volunteers or spends time tutoring your children after school, but again, it depends on who YOU KNOW! Even those who are finding jobs. Especially for city likes to take in those who have more experience than those who don’t. And those that want the skills to improve. Again it depends on who knows you! That is what it needs to figure out. Link with those who YOU KNOW that KNOWS YOU! Plain and Simple. Then from there, then you can connect with those you don’t know that expand.

Now getting back to the Unrest: I was watching a special on our local station, CBS 58 about the subject, “Milwaukee at a Crossroads”.  Before I get into the commentary, review this video from the September 7th, 2016 showing. No Commercials! It’s part 3 of the special that was aired this week.


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/181647676″>Milwaukee at a Crossroads Part 3</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/user47145479″>CBS 58 News</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

 

The entire 1 hour special that was aired in no commericals, was centered around the subject of those losing their children and teens in gun violence in the past. The mother of the late Marcus Debak was on the special. Marcus was killed on a Milwaukee playground back in the mid 90’s. The mother knows the most, on how that a child like Marcus can be taken out with despair. The many other parents and Great-Aunts were sitting in the room with the pictures of their loved ones that they have lost. Everyone of them has a common story of how they were killed. Many of them believed that Guns weren’t the problem. It was the people behind the barrel that caused the problem. Most of us haven’t heard that in a while. And no, it was not about about having those right to bear arms things. And many of them had asked the same question about, how can something like this be stopped or preventable. I think it’s going to take an ongoing effort to have this to stop. We can create all the programs, the getting the church folks out, the jobs stuff all we want. Event the activisms. But WE NEED to stop running in circles in what we really want and just go get already!

As far as the orange fence around Sherman Park, I’m glad it’s down.  I can understand that Sheriff David Clarke had it up to increase the curfews or law and order. But it has been going on far enough. Personally, I think the County Executive had made the right call by removing it. Of course, it didn’t sit well with all wtih David Clarke, but when the judge made the ruling about the removal, that was it! Nothing more.

Milwaukee is still in progress. In order to complete this progress, the work must be done. It will take a long time, but still it must be done!

 

 

 

 

 


Oh yes. As I write this, the Summer Games of the 31st Olympiad has shut the doors. The Cauldron has been put out. And of course Rio De Janerio has it’s city back and yes, Tokyo Japan will have next in 2020 to host the games. For us Americans, I told you so that this was an “American Summer” in terms of racking up the medals from Gold, to Silver and Bronze. The Bronze medal in the past probably meant that it was a sign of why this, to it’s better than nothing. The sportsmanship between the countries still remain endless. For most, it was a way to break barriers, break stereotypes, break gender like stances of proving points, proving you still belong,  and most of all: getting a chance to stamp your name into Olympic Greatness for a established pointers. And even to have witnessed a thing called Black Girl Magic, with Black Male Brilliance.

What were my moments of the games: Well let me count the ways!

Swimming: SWIMMMM SQUAAAAAAD!  I kept saying that on Twitter and Facebook alot. One of my moments to take away was indeed Michael Phelps. I thought Michael was out of it years ago. But I was surprised he made his way back to win more medals Golds and Silvers to add to his trophy case. He did it his way in terms of proving to himself that even he had some concerns about this character, but still had a chance to compete in the games and doing the thing he does best: Willing medals. For the Women: Simone Manuel. She became the First African American Woman to do the thing in swimming by setting a new world record of 52.70 Seconds in the 100 meter race! Let me say that again: FIRST AFRICAN-AMERICAN WOMAN to do the thing in swimming by setting a new world record of 52.70 Seconds in the 100 meter race. Later on, she also was the anchor of the women’s swim relay to win the gold for the U.S. Also she won two silver medals in the same event. For Simone also, it was a ground breaking victory for many reasons, not because she’s a woman, but also black. Many of us had to read about various times that black people weren’t allowed to use swimming pools. This is a true fact, white folks. And also, when Dorothy Dandridge was still alive, there was a time she dipped her toe in the pool, and when the white folks heard that, they drained the pool all because she was black! There were times that black folks had acid poured on them in the pools out of hatred just because they were black! For all you folks who think this is made up, or just fake, I urge you to go back into those history books again and read about why black folks had that against them and the reasons why it was. This wasn’t a joke. It was brutal and nasty. And I know when Simone Manuel won the Gold for the first time, it wasn’t just for her, it was for those whom were black and were brutalized by the Police. The area she’s from, probably had the scare about the Police stopping a pool party and also the teens were black. Not kidding here!

U.S. Rugby: Now for this, Rugby got  my attention. And the one player caught my eye was Carlin Isles. This dude made a name when he was doing track and field, but when he became this Rugby player, I had to watch this. I’ve seen the clips of him and this dude was running fast like crazy! Dodging folks in all. I’ve began to think like, he could have been a football player in the NFL shaking up the Defense, or taking INT’s. But in rugby, he made a name for himself and with his training, it was just the beginning. Even though that the Rugby team didn’t get a medal, but international folks: The US Rugby Team is just the beginning and they will get their medals. Only a matter of time. Plus also, I think Rugby will make a new impact on America just as Football has been doing for a long time. It’s just my opinion.

Track and Field: Oh the TrackSquad!  I am very impressed with the skills of Allyson Felix. She is now the most decorated female in US Olympic History via the Track. I’ve watched her 4 years ago in the London Games, and she carried her skills with the use of her speed for the track events. There was an article that she almost didn’t walk per se. But I’m glad of what she had to go through to get it done, it was done! In addition, her relay team had to bounce back from that baton mistake due to one of the Brazil runners getting in the way. They got their appeal and it was granted that they wanted to run again,and  after that, let’s just say that the rest is history.  For the Shot Put: Michelle Carter! If you don’t know who she is, you need to recognize. She is like the first black woman I’ve seen since Jackie Joyner-Kersee doing that event in a while. But the way that she did that event, I was like: WHOAAA! Never heard of her, but I’m glad part of the “Black Girl Magic” did infact worked for her as getting that gold medal.

In addition to the running: this is about the men folk. The first squad that ran in the preliminaries or the qualifying running, they should have NOT been disqualified. And this same group almost had the match won clean. But the baton passing on one second men’s  track  relay was indeed very clean and very coordinated and still dominated with the survival of getting another gold medal.

Beach Volleyball: Oh yes, Kerri Walsh-Jennings is a favorite of mine. No question she has been so dominate of the Beach VolleyBall game for quite sometime. The Beach Volleyball event has been around for about 20 years. And Kerri was good in most of the games. For this year, the Brazilians won the Gold Medal game in which broke the streak of Kerri’s wins of 26 games. However, she and her teammate were dominate in the Bronze Medal game and still walked off as one of best players in the game.

Gymnastics: I’m going to talk about Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas here. First, the Final Five were indeed one of the best gymnasts around and they brought the faith and fire to the Olympic Event. Of course everyone was betting on the Final Five to win along with Laurie, Madison and Aly. To me the strongest of the bunch was Simone. And this shorty of 4’8″ was no joke. She was just phenomenal and her first time in racking up her first five medal wins.

For Gabby, we know how good she is and very talented as she remains to be. But however, there are those who didn’t allow two things go: Her hair, and her hand over her heart. Now this is the point where I’m going to POP OFF! For you Gabby Hair Haters, you must be tired. Tired of her having her hair so pinned back. Tired, Tired, Tired. Your so-called jokes are just pathetic and stupid and I’ll guess that many of you are black women whom are just lazy and brainless just because one person’s hair hasn’t been so perfect all the time. What make you think that her hair ain’t perfect and yours is? Your hair ain’t all that!  I’ve seen your fake weaves floating around on social media thinking it’s OK. Sorry so-called black queens, your hair: PLEASE! You go in on Gabby’s hair as if you somewhat care. You don’t!  And you supposed to catch these future kings you impressing? For me, no thanks. And now, you think it’s a joke? Let me say this and hear me out clearly: YOU ARE THE JOKE! The eggs are on your face! And all of this with the mixed of social media with your tweets of Facebook posts is just utter nonsense. And many of you want to catch me for a husband? HA! Don’t think so. Your attitude does carry and it’s carrying a jealousy weight of self-hatred and a black people, it is a shame that the bitterness is being passed around constantly and 4 years later and I would remind those whom have kids: you kids are watching your every move! PATHETIC!

Speaking of that: for all you so-called Patriots in America, those who called out #CrabbyGabby: SHUT YOUR MOUTH!  Let me take a while guess: it’s the Gold Medal Ceremony and the national anthem is played, four of the Final Five had their hands over their hearts, and Gabby didn’t. And oh, you so-called jackals who think you know it all, had to go in on Gabby Douglas as being unpatriotic or unappreciative of being not to have her hand over her heart while the National Anthem is played. All of you racist pukes who feel this way, you need to stuff it! And thing is, some of you probably don’t do it yourselves! I’ll bet many of you WILL NOT do this at the Football games this fall or the Basketball Games in the same season. Many of you will not do it, and someone will call your carcass out about you hating on Gabby Douglas. Gabby DID NOT do anything wrong in this matter. If many of you so-called Americans found that OFFENSIVE: Remember, many of you have seen this picture:

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Well, Well, Well: Someone must scream out DOUBLE STANDARD! Look, I know that the shot putters on the left got their medals and did NOT put their hands over their hearts. Can anyone say hypocrites?

 

Or you think this was offensive?  You so-called Americans need to grow up! Even this guy Donald Trump who, many of you think might make a good president on paper, is the same fool that many of you think he’s going to build a wall, or has the answers concerning African-Americans. Just wait I’ll pop off again in my next blog!  When Football season starts, if I see ANYONE who is non black, with no hands over hearts, I’m going to take a picture and I might put it here!

So who are we fooling, Americans?  We are fooling ourselves because many of us don’t even follow the protocol of what to do when to stand when the National Anthem is played. We don’t! I said many of us, not all don’t know this. Admit this, do we stand and put the hand over the hearts back in school? I’ll answer it: YES AND NO. More of the no. Why would I ask this?  Seriously, I ask this because many of us so-called patriots FORGOTTEN the ettiqutte of the response and procedure on how this is supposed to be done. Usually there is a rule that yes when you put your hand over the heart, that is for the pledge of allegiance. Many of us know very well when every monday morning back in school, we had to get up from the desks and look to the flag and recite the pledge. Now this was back in school. Now when the national anthem is played, of course some will put the hands over the hearts. BUT SOME WON’T. Either they stand, or those in uniform will salute. Or some will bow their heads like prayer. Or some will put their hands over the hearts and have their heads bowed. Or some will rise and stand for the duration of the Anthem.

CALLOUT: Um…..is this making any sense here?

If it is, you should know. If those who make a scene that it will do more harm than good and to mix it in with the likes of Gabby Douglas, you don’t know SQUAT! I said this on Facebook and I’ll say it here, Gabby Douglas did not do anything wrong in this so-called matter! She did not! If those of the so-called patriot crowd hashtag of  #CrabbyGabby on Facebook or Twitter because of the hand/heart problem, then maybe it’s YOU having the problem. Maybe it’s not Gabby’s fault that she didn’t disrespect anyone. The fault is on those who want her to fail. And those doing the hate, just remember: Gabby is 20 years old and did more in her 20 years of life than many of us wished we’ve done. Many of us WISHED we went to the Olympics and competed for the games and win medals and having the folks talking about us. Many of us WISHED we had to go to the training facilities and train up to stay sharp for our events and activities. Many of us WISHED we had the glamour! But did we do that? Let me say this, HELL NO!

Instead of jabbing at her about her hair, or the heart/hand issue, let’s just TRY to appreciate the fact that she did the job by her gifts and talents to get that shiny gold medal AGAIN for the United States of America’s Olympic Team. So what’s the fuss? Many of us are just self-centered of the hate along with racism, sexism, self-hatred, or many of us like I said wished to be like Gabby, but it’s too late now!

You may put in this hashtag: #LOVE4GABBYUSA. Should of had this 4 years ago.

Ahhhh: Let’s talk the sports that was so cool to get to see, Basketball.

Both the Men and Women played their hearts out and as we all know from the beginning that both teams maintained their undefeated stats per game and also grinned out to win the Gold Medals for the umpteeneth time. We know it was expected for Team USA’s Basketball squads to win and they did. But in between the game, there were some close shaves for the men’s squad against Serbia and Australia in the Pool Play that the Squad won by 5 points or less. Yes, the world squad is catching up and they get it by playing in the NBA. And yes, Basketball has gone global. It’s all over the place. Yes, there was a time in 2004 that us Americans were shocked by Argentina when the USA lost! Yes that was a bad taste in our mouths. It was nothing to with shoe endorsements. And I think also, that the team should have gotten better players then instead worrying about their shoe contracts. I respect what Carmelo Anthony stepped up to do. He was on that 2004 Team and had to get the bronze. But to come back in 2008, 2012, and 2016 to get the gold medal, that was growth! The Redeem Team of 2008 was like for them to redeem themselves to prove that we can win gold medals, and be dominate once again. In which they did. 2012 as we know, there was this debate about if the 2012 USA Basketball Team could be the originals from 1992. Let me school you young cats AGAIN. The 1992 Originals were like the fresh team of the nWo, it was something that it was never tried before of getting the NBA’s best to compete for the Gold. This team was on a mission at the time of what happened against Russia in 1972. That is when the Russians at the time got the Gold based on the controversial outcome play. At the end of the game, the Russians got the Gold, the other team got the Bronze and the US? Silver. In which they didn’t come out to accept. The Silver Medals weren’t award and they are in a lockbox safe somewhere that is untouched. The 1972 team felt they didn’t deserve to win the Silver. They wanted the Gold! The Originals’ mission to get the Gold in 1992 was done, and also it not only inspired more men to get the gold medals, but also paved way for the Women’s Team to get the Gold as well. Speaking of that, I didn’t watch much of the women squad in their gold run, but as collectively as they were, they was poised and dominate in their right to get the bar high as they can to win. For you young cats STILL think that the 2012 team can beat the Original 1992 team, stop playing! Go back to your rooms and play that Xbox because nobody don’t want to hear that mess. The 1992 team would slaughter and mame the 2012 team based on their experience and knowledge of the game. Would they do the same against the recent 2016 squad, most likely.

Also there was this criticism about the members selected to play for the USA Basketball Men’s Squad. Mainly from someone who knows what the squad is about. Charles Barkley needs to SIT DOWN! Look, yes he was on that Original Squad. If Sir Charles is really serious about the commentary of the current squad, why doesn’t he coach them?  Why doesn’t he go from the Commentators Chair on TNT, and get on the COACHING SQUAD to assist the Big Guns to handle that business! Come on Charles! Try it sometime! That I think is what he supposed to do. Of course he wouldn’t.

Speaking the 2020 USA Basketball Squad: I would like to see: Jabari Parker, LeBron James, Steph Curry, Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Steve Novak, and maybe, just maybe a incoming rookie from the College Game that is on fire. That is my pick for 2020. I know the analysts, have their picks but this is my own option to view.

Other sports: I’m going to go with Fencing. And Ibithaj Muhammad impressed me. Even though that she got a bronze medal with a Hijab on, I’m glad she stood up and tested the waters. On Instagram, way back in Black History Month, I posted this:

Guess what? I called it!

Another was Dylan Farmer who got the silver in the Fencing event. Like Black Girl Magic, Black Male Brilliance was working. Over 30 years ago, an African-American, Peter Westbrook won the bronze medal in the 1984 Summer Games. Since then, he’s been teaching fencing in his native New Jersey, but where he first learned it? In the inner city!

Water Polo: for the females, I have to go with Ashleigh Johnson, who was the black woman out there with the Female Polo Squad winning the gold medal. And just to ask, would African-Americans take an interest in Water Polo Sports?

Boxing: Why wasn’t this name has been mentioned alot like the others? And I’m talking about Claressa Shields out of Flint Michigan. Yeah that one. The one that made history again this year, in the same sport of boxing! She’s not Laila Ali, but she sure did dominate. And won the Gold Medal.

Finally for the squad: US Shooting. Kim Rhode, Virginia Thrasher. Winning gold with Air Rifles and Clay Shootings. Now I need to ask this question: why aren’t many in the African-American community per se, are not in categories like this one? Whats up? I looked at the roster of the USA Shooting and not one person of African Descent is not on that squad. Got to think about that in 2020 when making that trip to Tokyo.
Now many are probably asking  well you got the Americans. What’s up with the International folks? Usain Bolt of Jamaica, no surprise. Like 4 years ago he dominated the sprints then and closed out in 2016. Mo Farah of Great Britain: no surprise again. Still owned the gold like London. And to add, Oksana Chusovitina the only woman out of Uzbekistan to compete at age 41. She was competing and winning medals long before either Simone Biles or Gabby Douglas were even thought about. When I though about her, I thought about Dara Torres when she competed in the games at age 41!!!! Remember her?

Now since again the Olympics have been closed, yes there have been those moments. But check this, the Summer Games out of the United States has been an American Summer! I told you so. And the final medal count was followed with the Americans: 46 Gold, 37 Silver, and 38 Bronze. And plus more women competed from the US did in fact complete that notion!

And in addition with the Gold Medals: This year’s Team USA racked up 1,000 golds in it’s team history. Yep. It was an “AMERICAN SUMMER!”

 


I was going to wait after the Olympics to blog again. But the reason for this, the Northside of Milwaukee was up in total anger with fires and tension. And to connect with social media for those of where to go and meetup and havoc. How stupid.

I had to break away from watching the Olympics in which was a historical performance, to see the ironic tension of looting, fires, deep tension and many other concerns that plagued this city. 44th and Auer is where the shootings started. A 23 year old was shot and killed in the view of the Milwaukee Police Department. And yes after that, all hell broke loose. And a weapon was stolen with 23 shots rang out. And bricks being thrown.

The hell that broke loose, also continued with bus shelters, and street lights near Sherman and Auer were damaged. The BP Gas Station in the same area where a protest happened a month ago: burned. Right near Sherman Park. Further blocks away, more fires happened at a Jet Beauty Store near 35th and Burleigh. Also a O’Reilly Auto Parts in the same area, engulfed in flames. Nearby, a BMO Harris Bank right near my old Middle School had smoke issues in the building . All of this many feel that the black community has not had no love. And the thing is, it’s a warning sign.

 

Now I know that many had to go in about Milwaukee in which like comparing this riot to a championship win. Or there are those who don’t care about the city and having this shrugging shoulders mixed with pinned up frustrating matters.For all those who think have the answers and are acting foolish, SIT DOWN and Shut up! Clearly those don’t have all the answers. I don’t give a care if you transplanted to Texas or Atlanta or the East Coast, or the West Coast or a well known international region, you’re living there now. But I’ll bet none of you never actually really care about this city known as Milwaukee!

If so, PROVE ME WRONG! Send a long distance donation to your old schools and charitable functions you left behind.

Many of you have this noting about “oh well that’s Milwaukee for you when the violence happens.” Really?! Is that what those think?  Seriously? All you have to do is go on Twitter, Facebook in all and with the negative remarks on the likes of CNN commenters saying “yeah tear down that stuff, you bunch of hoodlums!” If many of you so-called Americans say that, I consider that being unpatriotic! And many folks know it!

Now for those of us here in Milwaukee. Those of us who work, pay our taxes, contribute to our causes, we need to rise more. We need to rise up like a freaking phoenix. We can have the clergy coming out, the community leaders, the fraternity, the sorority, the employed, the unemployed, the underemployed,the neighbor that looks out, the neighborhood leaders, the hardcore activist, the conscious, the not so-conscious, the in between, the Introverted, Extroverted, Ambiverted, the Unsung Heroes, and many other categories: Rise like the Phoenix! It’s time to do it. For the police, firefighters, EMTs, your are in this as well! We pay our taxes, so your salary stays on point.

Just the other day, a day after all the burnings, I took a trip near the corner of Sherman and Burleigh and my reaction to the damage in person of the BP Gas Station was just shocked. The anger. The concern. And began to ask why this. Why would ANYONE like this would destroy a Gas Station?! Why? I went to my Nikon Camera and like everyone else, I snapped about several pictures that was like this:

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And also, if many have not guessed it, a stream of cars on Sherman Boulevard going south and north was nearly jammed packed. The same with vehicles going East on Burleigh Street. Television Trucks of ABC7, WKOW, CNN and many others from the different parts of America came out to cover this tradgey that has sparked my home city’s unrest. Also, there folks preaching the word on Megaphones on both corners. Water was on sale on the corner where Sherman Park is along with individals giving away cupcakes and free hugs.

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As I left the area, I driven North on 44th Street towards Auer Avenue, this was the area that the shooting began. And plus it was nearly jammed packed with cars and also residents and ministers as Salvation Army Chaplians.

The day after, I went further east to take pictures of the 7th District Milwaukee Police Station where it was roped off with Caution tape and boarded up. Also, the BMO Bank was boared up after it was struck by fire. A MetroPCS store was boared up after looting as well as a restaurant of KFC/Taco Bell was broken up with glass. Nearby an O’Reilly AutoParts store was destroyed by fire as well as a Jet Beauty Store not only looted, but also was destroyed by fire as well.

Ladies and Gentlemen of America, this was the experience that Milwaukee endured during that weekend of unrest. And like many others in the past, it was an unrest concern that never should have happened. The Sherman Park Neighborhood is a legendary neighborhood. I know so because my older sister and I used to reside in the area between the years 2000 and 2006. We resided on Grant Boulevard in a church parsonage in which was near Center Street. I used to catch the 22 MCTS bus to go either to work, school, shopping or church. Nearby, there was a barbershop where I used to go to get my haircuts. An organization called ASHA Family Services is in that area along with the Ritz Fish Market near the corner of 38th and Center, and it was and is owned by my family members. My old elementary school, 38th Street School, (now under the Milwaukee College Prep) is in that area. Washington High School, my high school’s rival is in the area. The homes in the area are almost legendary with years going back to about 100 years old. This is what I learned back then and understand now. Plus also, the Sherman Park Neighborhood is an active diverse neighborhood and still is. And plus I’m a northside born resident.

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But I want to go back to this shooting. And I know that many are asking: what compelled this act of shooting that lead to this burning of several buildings, cars, houses, and others that had NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS MATTER?! We know already that Milwaukee is the well known factor of being the most hyper-segregated city in the United States. That is part of the things that goes mostly heard and widely examined in the entire state of Wisconsin. Many have this notion of leaving Milwaukee and go to places like Atlanta just to get away from the violence and racism. And also talking smack about the city in which they failed to help out. Oh trust me, we had a whole lotta folks have felt that way!  But many of us WHO ARE STILL HERE, are upholding our accountabilty of our taxes, our jobs, our way of life, and purpose of being more engaged to solve the problems of our well being. What we have expereinced here most recently, is nothing more what happened 49 years ago before I was born: when Milwaukee had the race riots of 1967 and the black community back then was going up in flames. That area is now called MLK Drive in Bronzeville. And the trauma of being in the predictament of the segregated climate still lingers even today. Not just in Milwaukee. But that same symptom also exist like racism in America’s DNA. I don’t give a crap where you are in America, that racism DNA has not gone away. Even after 240 years.

But in this era, the 23 year old Syville Smith, whom had a CCW Licence, and was armed with a stolen weapon from Waukesha, was shot to death. Nevermind the history of his life, or the crimes he may have done, his killer per se happens to appear as a officer of the Milwaukee Police Department. Many of us in Milwaukee looked at the person’s picture on Facebook. And according to a family member of the victim, it was known that they go way back to High School here in Milwaukee. Try Pulaski High School, and no disrespect to the Pulaski Rams in all. Plus W.E.B. Dubois High School in the Marshall Complex.

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Other points, there are those around Milwaukee should have kept their mouths closed. One of them is Sheriff David Clarke. The reason being he kept hinting about the use of the National Guard to aid the Police Officers during the Unrest incidents. And in his own words having the gaul to blame the single mothers of Milwaukee for the incidents and and of course: Black Lives Matter. REALLY SHERIFF CLARKE?! He must be high on something to say that. And plus, Black Lives Matter or his words “Black Lies Matter” were not the reasons why some buildings in Milwaukee went up in flames. Sheriff Clarke already embarasses himself and Milwaukee County hanging out with the likes of Donald Trump. HOW DEPRESSING OF HIM! Yes he’s still the Sheriff, but in the next two years he and another guy, Scott Walker  MUST BE VOTED OUT! And part of the blame that Sheriff Clarke has his job is because of those in the Black Community voted up for him to have another  4 years. Why? Because he’s black. I think the Black Community needs to rethink their votes for Clarke. Speaking of Walker, dude had to come to a black church in Milwaukee not to far from the BP Gas Station. Let me remind Milwaukee one thing: Walker doesn’t give a da*n about Milwaukee! He doesn’t care about the Black Community, nor the needs. Remember the High Speed Rail Train that was BUILT in the Black Community? Go back to that. That was derailed by HIM due to one word: politics. Now he wants in to be supportive of the Black Community. Really Walker?! Oh please! And additional group of folks outside of the city, who don’t even in live in Milwaukee had the nerve to put the blame on President Barack Obama. Obama is not the blame for this! So stop it non-Milwaukeeans!

But of all of the folks who seemed to be in supportive the most of Milwaukee, is Mayor Tom Barrett. Call me crazy, but he is. Another is the still Wisconsin Senate Rep from the 4th District, Lena Taylor. Ashanti Hamilton, President of the Common Council, Alderman Russell Stamper II, and Alderwoman Chantia Lewis are just a few. The curfew in Milwaukee under 18 is in effect. Sherman Park closes at 6pm and roped off with orange. When it switches to the MPS Curfew starting September 1st that’s every night. And that was activated this past Sunday.

Speaking of Sunday, I was in church and during our “joys and concerns” we highlighted the concerns of the Unrest Issue. One of my millennial church members talked about the incident in which it was witnessed in person. She indicated that her younger brother was about 2 cars behind the shooter’s car going east on Burleigh near the Jet Beauty Store, and indicated that if one of those bullets hit him, he would have been gone. She also comforted an Police Officer near the Beauty Supply Store who was going though that high alertness of concern of another citizen. The last thing she said: God Bless You. And a tear was starting to roll on the Officer. I just had to tell you that because whenever I hear about church folks being all judgmental or acting hypocritical, NOT ALL OF THEM ARE LIKE THIS. And my church member is a single mother in her 20’s.And is a prayer warrior in my church under the United Methodist banner. Is she always like this? Just maybe you need to visit The New St. James Community Church UMC in Milwaukee and find out. And plus the setting of our church is in a County Park Pavilion on Milwaukee’s East Side. And the church is the first African-American United Methodist Church established in the city since 1949.

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Just today, the ATF was sprung into action to survey the damages. And it was announced that a reward of $10,000 for anyone who knew what happened and also those responsible for those alleged damages. For all you snitches in Milwaukee: FESS UP! Don’t go into Stop Snitching Mode like cowards back in the day. Whenever the Federal Government comes on the scene, it’s is a huge concern. The sticks got a whole wide larger than before. This is not a game! It’s real lives were and are still at stake!

Milwaukee is 170 years old. And in the 170 years it faced open gaps of unemployment, segregation, violence, arson, race riots, shootings, festivals going in and out (African World Festival) educational values questioned and answered, underemployment of applicants/jobs, and many other concerns and factors. However in the 170 years, Milwaukee remains a underestimated city that has some good in it. We can talk about Summerfest, the Art Museum, The Pabst Theater, Riverside Theater, the newly soon to be Lakefront Gateway Area, the soon to be Northwestern Mutual Tower, the other festivals that do go past Summerfest, Garfield Days, Juneteenth Day Parades, Bronzeville Arts, riding Bublr Bikes, and soon to be construction of the New Bucks Arena and the Streetcar.

Why has Milwaukee been like this?

It’s not Chicago, Atlanta, LA, San Francisco, Seattle, Texas, Florida, and other cities and states that mostly “knows” black folks. Milwaukee as medium-sized as it is, its well known for Harley-Davidson, MillerCoors, our County Parks, and past relations with being the Beer Capital of the World, Bowling Capital of the world at one time, or known in the past for shows like Happy Days and Laverne and Shirley. Oh, did I mention that The Blues Brothers, Public Enemies, and  Transformers were filmed here? Famous Americans like Bud Selig, Eric Benet, Al Jarreau, Gene Wilder, George Tillman Jr, Charlotte Rae, Speech, Tank were all born here. The Core DJ’s a well known DJ organization is known for DJ’s around the world, but it was started in Milwaukee. Wrestling has a history here. From AWA of Da’ Crusher, to the birth of Austin 3:16. And also currently in the WWE, Austin Aries is a born resident.

Milwaukee does have a Urban Scene that is so underground that is hard to get airplay on a V100, a Jammin 98.3, KISS FM, and others. Also Milwaukee does have some support of it’s genre of Hip Hop, but the fans say that the City has haters because the lack of support. However, not all Milwaukeeans don’t listen to rap music! Some listen to Polka or other genres. But every ethnic group has their own thing.Well known here: Ray Nitti, Rusty P’s, Charles Walker Band, Element, and Coo Coo Cal just to name a few.

For radio, we know WTMJ. But I know 1290 when it was the talk of the town. WNOV as many know us the lone wolf of black radio that many folks still listen to. Plus also there are podcasts, and other radio stations like WUWM that is well known for based on UW-Milwaukee.

Milwaukee to me is misunderstood. Very misunderstood. Our education system isn’t that bad. The Milwaukee Public Schools is legendary around here and it’s the same age as the city.I am a product to call myself an MPS Alum because of the schools of 38th Street School, Jackie Robinson Middle School and John Marshall High School.Not only that, I come from a line of educators that taught in MPS in my family!  Some of our famous folks are MPS Alums also. Our Colleges of the Milwaukee Area Technical College, Mount Mary, Marquette University, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee are fully known educational institutions. I’m a product of the Milwaukee Area Technical College which I got an Associates Degree in the year 2000. The program was Printing and Electronic Publishing in which I got my hands dirty in Bindery and Offset Press.

Part of Milwaukee’s history was the tanneries. Pfister and Vogel, Albert & Trostels should ring a bell. And some of our family members used to have those good paying jobs growing up! Now the tanneries are gone, and mostly the Health Care fields are in exchange, with retail, customer service, and some manufacturing are left. Printing was also huge here. It’s still exists under the digital level, but not really enough as it once was.

Milwaukee has some strong programs here that many recognize like the Running Rebels, True Skool, and mostly now known is getting recognition: We Got This. Also part of the strong programs, does have a direct connection with local churches, community counterparts, some well known companies, and neighborhood block watch organizations.

But all in all, like any other city, Milwaukee is not alone with problems. And with the issue of this recent shooting of Syville Smith is not a stranger of gun violence period.

 

 


I needed to repost this blog from 4 years ago. August 2nd, 2012. Back then, it seemed that the hair haters of Gabby Douglas had opened up wounds about a hair. Now, yet again, the same hair haters had to comeback and say some smack about Gabby’s hair. ENOUGH OF THIS! Especially if you’re black. In an upcoming blog after the olympics, I’m going to go hard in which the hair haters must surrender. Right now, I’m on a break. But I’m coming back in a direct mean letter to all this hate of Gabby Douglas. Not just for the Hair Haters, but also for the “Overly Patriotic” and you know who you are!

Gabby’s Cool. Stop worrying about her hair!!

I don’t know if anyone had paid attention to this but…..When Gabby Douglas and her Fierce 5 crew won the Gold Medal in Gymnastics recently at the Olympics, there were some bashing of her in regarding her hair. Oh, really?!!! To those that bashed Gabby on that, you need to get a life! Stop It!

This kid just did something positive for the country and here it is that folks are worried about her hair! I mean when you do sweat, your hair is effected by that. What is up with folks, excuse me; Some black people who do this in a negative fashion? No matter in person or virtually like Twitter?

What that tells me that there are pathetic folks who are just well….here it is again “extremely sensitive” about stuff that they feel is well “offensive”. How is Gabby’s hair is offensive to Blacks in terms of what it supposed to look like? Talk about “GHETTO!”

What a joke. I say this, worry about your hair! Also what do we know about Gabby Douglas in general? Guess what. NONE of us never knew this kid before the name came out, along with her talent. The Olympics are not a fashion show. This is like “serious business” here. No I haven’t competed in a Olympic games but I respect the hard work and dedication to get to that point. It’s just like getting the WWE Championship. Sometimes you have to through folks like or dislike just to get the belt!

Don’t like Gabby’s hair? So what. Move on. Just do the thing of respect that the almighty has sent her do and to express her gifts as an Gymnast. Her hair is not that important right now. And by the way, she is competing in a Women’s category for Gymnastics, but she’s still a kid.

Grow up!


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I know that the DNC and the RNC had their Conventions, but guess what: It’s time to talk about what’s up in Milwaukee: In relation to the first MPS Alumni Summit.

Coming off the heels of the first All-Alumni Reunion, the summit was gathered at Bradley Tech High School on July 22nd, and yes: IDEAS were flowed about how can we the MPS Alumni can combine our forces to be one voice and one experience to give our ears, our EXPERIENCED ALUMNI EARS to give out to the current district of our schools. I know I’m a Marshall guy. But others were King, Hamiltion, Tech, Vincent, Lincoln High School, South Division, West Division (or Milwaukee High School for the Arts), and many others all under the MPS Alumni Umbrella.

This Summit was all about our Alumni Associations. Our Alumni Groups. Us being combined with many talents, ideas, truthful comments, and a host of collaborative ideas to remain ACTIVELY INVOLVED! – You will see this again towards the end.

When we gathered at Bradley Tech’s Entrance way, we were greeted by members of the Milwaukee Public Schools. They directed us to check in which we were given packets with information about volunteering, upcoming events, an overview how the 2015-16 provided the successes of the academic performances, an overview of Universal Drivers Education, a program that was missing from MPS for a while, is now making a comeback into the high schools. Plus an overview of what Milwaukee Public Schools is doing now to improve the outcomes of students: from White House Turnaround Arts, Community Schools, Partnership Schools, Trauma Sensitive Schools, College and Readiness, and M3 – Collaborating with MPS, Milwaukee Area Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

However: that was just the first wave of info. We were later divided into groups and were in discussing about the experiences of our Alma Maters. We talked about various experiences of Alumni Associations being an influence and a liaison. We also talked about why those in the Alumni don’t always contribute or gain interests in joining the Alumni Associations. From the lack of interest, to not revealing so much about the past. Even breaking the ice of the saying “Alumni Associations are for old people” commentary. REALLY?! One of the directors, of the committee is a 1997 HS Graduate of the Milwaukee Public Schools and currently active with Milwaukee Public Schools’ Central Services areas. Plus also many might realize that Alumni Groups are in need of the young folks. Those whom are late 80’s – 00’s that are alive and active. We also learned that there were commentary about not enough knowledge about Alumni Associations in terms of not hearing of one, not being knowledgeable about their purpose. Some of us commented about haven’t got started on joining Alumni Associations due to job starts or raising families. Many of us joined Alumni Associations well after 15 -20 years after graduating from High School. Me for example, I joined the John Marshall High School Alumni Association as a board member in 2011 which was about 16 years after my 1995 graduation. We also talked about collaborating with other high schools in the district. As many know here in Milwaukee, Rufus King and Riverside for example have Alumni Competitions in Flag Football, and year after they compete in raising scholarships and charitable causes. With other schools, Bradley Tech has the Turkey Bowl Alumni Classic on Thanksgiving Weekend and usually other schools of Bay View, King, Hamilton, and Riverside all compete under sportsmanship. Plus also, besides the trophy, it’s also about the value of education to the current students, with scholarships and career opportunities.

Also in the first part, we talked about that ALL Schools should have an All-Alumni Reunions every year. This needs to happen. For example: Rufus King has their annual Alumfest on the school grounds each year during late July. Bradley Tech has an All School Cookout and they have been doing it since early 80’s. There was two points that Marshall had an All-Alumni event in which the school celebrated 50 years in 2011. Plus along with the Soccer Game which was organized by a former Marshall High School Coach, the school also had a mini open house in which brought back some Eagles Alumni to view the merchandise and the soccer game as well. Even though there were some of the interests that was successful, but many should have came out or donated to the school for fundraisers. We also talked about the naming of the schools. In keeping the names of the schools to have that connection on the Alumni level. For example: this portrays about in one school in particular, my Alma Mater, John Marshall High School. Just recently the school got it’s original name back.

But what took to long get it going again?

Back around 2011 as most know, I blogged about the name of Samuel Morse*John Marshall School for the Gifted and Talented. Why was it again? Two things – Low Enrollment and also MPS was viewing the Gifted and Talented Program on the Middle School level in which everyone know that Morse was known for, but there was not one on the High School Level. Henceforth, that’s how Morse was fed into Marshall based on the Gifted and Talented program. And the school was going back to it’s 6-12 Grade roots. Just as a reminder who don’t know, Marshall started out as a 6-12 grade school, or a Middle and High School that was established in 1961. Furthermore, according to the history, the thought of Marshall being a Middle School/High School goes back to 1929, when then MPS Superindent Harold S. Vincent was in charge of the school district. Yes, the same Harold S. Vincent that has a school in his honor of Vincent High School here in Milwaukee. The school was placed on a land once owned by the Archdioces of Milwaukee at the time in which it was vacant space. There was no Dominos, no Citgo, no Wendy’s, not even a Mautz Paint Store that was placed. The School itself was state of the art, and once had over 3,000 students enrolled. Even some of the students had to go to the 65th Street School (now the Milwaukee Envriomental Sciences Academy) just across Capitol Drive.

Marshall has gone through it’s naming transformation over the course of the 55 years. It started out with “John Marshall Junior-Senior High School”.  Then around in the early 1980’s, it became “John Marshall Senior High School”. Around the Mid 80’s to the late 90’s, it was “John Marshall High School”. For the early 2000’s, the name and the school was split in three sections with W.E.B. Dubois High School, The Milwaukee Academy of Aviation and Technology or MAAT. Which the building was named “John Marshall Campus”. Thank former MPS Superintendent William Anderkopolus, a Marshall Grad for that. And most recently between 2010 and 2016, “Samuel Morse*John Marshall School for the Gifted and Talented”. Yes, John Marshall has been on the building for 55 years. The Gifted and Talented thing with Morse really had worked. The enrollment was building, the academic of Project Lead the Way, STEM, and many others really clicked. It was budding.

A point for the Alumni was asked in a sense from the staff, regarding the Alumni Association. I remember one of the former board members getting word in a question that asked “The Alumni Association: All they do is come to graduations thanking the graduates, with speeches and having their pictures on the wall. What have the done for us?!”

Ooooh! We were called out.

The Alumni Association had been called out and woken up by the then Morse*Marshall staff. They wanted to see us. They wanted to talk to us. They called us out. For the record, we visited their open houses, their Homecoming Games, Basketball Games, Marched on parade, visited their art galleries, musicals, and partake in their concerts of Winter and Spring. Even represented at their Graduation Ceremonies. So yes, we were “called out” and responded. And supported the students of their gifts and talents. Around last summer, there a flyer going around in regarding the “Morse” side of “Morse*Marshall”.  Early on,  I was approached by a former Parent Coordinator that MPS might pull the Morse Students out of Marshall sometime in the 2015-16 School Semester. I asked is the school going back to the 9th – 12th Grade, and the answer was yes. Later on in the year, the notice was approached to the Alumni Association in regarding a public meeting at the old Burroughs Middle School. Some representatives from MPS showed up at the meeting and talked about the pros and cons of Morse. There was some positive pointers, but the negative pointers of the stats and data was a concern. A concern that had to be examined based on academics and overall performance. One of the parents in the Public Meeting that her children wanted the “Middle School Experience”, in which she wanted a stand alone Middle School. Just 6th – 8th Grade. The data and notes of the meeting were later passed on to the district board for review. Last October, MPS reviewed the notes of the meeting, and it was approved that the district will move the Middle School of Morse out of Marshall to the Burroughs Middle School Building in the 2016-17 year, while Marshall will grow as once again as a 9th – 12th Grade High School. My Alma Mater will also reopen some classrooms and get new textbooks just to name a few upgrades. Later on, the school got another visit from MPS, this time from the Alumni Student Engagement area. Plus this was with the Alumni Association. One of the highlighted reasons I got from meeting was a new way to help strengthen the Alumni through their schools. And the featured part of the meeting what I got out of was the name of “Morse*Marshall”. Personally there was a disconnect between the name of Morse and Marshall. And partially it was due to the identity of the school. Many of feedback, partially from the Alumni wanted the school’s name to return to John Marshall to have that connection not only of the school’s history, but also with connection with the Alumni. When the school name of “Morse*Marshall” came out, not many in the Alumni was not too pleased with it. NOT MANY!  Majority wanted the old name back to reconnect as in once again a sense of identity that many know.

Furthermore, as of now, a new school year is coming, and the name of “John Marshall High School For the Gifted and Talented” is coming to open another chapter in the school’s history. I shared this link on Facebook on my private page, and later on two Milwaukee Marshall Alumni related group pages, and the results HAVE EXPLODED! And currently the word is spreading. So for you Marshall Alumni that wanted the name back, you got it! But I asked this question: Should we back this up? And make it stick? This portion of the news just came in time before the MPS Alumni Summit.

Other parts from the first meeting came about with some ideas to flow to all MPS Alumni:

  • Discussions about Go Fund Me, a page that could use in assisting in fundraising, etc.
  • Questions that might arise of “How can I help” Mixed also with being proactive.

Highlights of three versions of Small groups – These are the small groups that are very common as we know:

  1. Gung Ho – Those whom are always doing the work. Mostly the grunts.
  2. Actively involved or still involved
  3. Waiting List – those who waiting to assist or work with Alumni Associations.

Suggestive Ideas. And all should know:

Again: Have All School reunions every year. Host them during a week or month. Mostly during the summer months as an example.  (King Alumfest, Tech Annual Cookout every summer)

Help marketing to gain interests.

Have highly motivated people.

Help the system/help the school.

Use parent engagement.

Have 2 schools to collaborate: (i.e. – Marshall/Washington)An example raised about the Alumni Games of King and Riverside.

MPS Mentoring Program – Mentoring students while in school. Keep track on their progress, goals, objectives, etc.

Have businesses/trade colleges fairs and career fairs in the schools. This would be excellent for the Alumni to collaborate.

 

The second part of the meeting was more of what could be about our ideas to reach out as a MPS Alumni Member. One the things I said in the part of the meeting was these two words: “Actively Involved.” That is what EVERY MPS ALUMNI Member must do to be paying attention of what’s going on in our Alma Maters. Mainly some just come for party and glory which is fine, but many of us want to work! That should send signals to those that we want this to happen.

Reach out to businesses – mainly around the schools. Many of the businesses that the schools know, should support. For example, if a small business or well know business knows Marshall High School or Washington High School very well, that business needs to be reached out. This is where sponsors and support needs to happen! The same for those whom are well known Alums that work for a business that the schools really need to reach out.

Adopt a school. Some alumni can get together and form a group to adopt a school in the district. It could be a Elementary, Middle, or High School.

Identify the products of MPS: Add High School and year on business cards. (As in with Colleges and Universities) EVERY ALUMNI NEEDS TO DO THIS! Even though its not wanted, but still everyone in the MPS ALUMNI needs to add the their MPS ALUMNI to help connect and advertise. As an example: Milwaukee Public Schools Alumni: 1995; Milwaukee Area Technical College Alumni: 2000; University of Wisconsin-Stout Alumni: 2006. And matter of fact, that needs to be added on LinkedIn. Just saying.

Put a “good news” newsletter for the MPS Alumni Hub. Over the course of the year, we hear about all the scandals of Milwaukee Public Schools. Fights, suspensions, bringing a gun, racism etc. No matter the scandal, it seems to say “NO MPS FOR MY CHILD!” Or “Oh, it’s a fight at Marshall with all the gangs, or Bradley Tech got some word of N*GGER on the front of a locker”. “Or Riverside High School had some crazy fights on Facebook Live or Periscope. And Vincent joined in with King.”

Stop me if you heard this before. Why is it that when stuff like this happens it’s bad for the district and everyone goes hysterical about one MPS Fight strikes everyone to fear?! We ALUMNI need to talk about the good side of MPS, and what we the ALUMNI need to talk about that is positive, uplifting, inspiring, and a good opening reach to get us going for our kids that are currently in MPS and doing great things.

Speaking of that, I kept scratching my head on this, and it’s for us music folks. I know that MPS has an Alumni Choir, is there space for making an MPS Alumni Band? Think about it, MPS! An Alumni Band with horns, keyboards, drummers, guitar players, a DJ if you mind that can play instrumental music. And the idea can be formed with those who want to play for concerts with the Alumni Choir, have you Alma Mater Colors in full force, and even play at the MPS Music Festival. Or Summerfest. THINK ABOUT IT! Even an MPS Alumni Orchestra needs to be formed. I’m just saying. Who’s in?

And the last point: Strengthen all of our schools. All of our neighborhood, charter, special, and many other schools in Milwaukee Public Schools need to have strength to carry on. Never forget, we have to do this for the kids. We Alums had our day way back when, and yet we need to have that power to support. For many years, it was the parents, tax payers, staff, and neighborhoods that stood up. Now adding the Alumni to the mix is really going to generate new ideas to thrive. Think about this: many tax payers, educators, business owner, worker, parent, veteran, ambassador, or other title might have gone on to better things, but MANY started at Milwaukee Public Schools, and this would be a great time to support this new energy!

The last part of the Summit was more like a summary. In which what was discussed and what was learned. I think part of my summary was described above when I said the words “ACTIVELY INVOLVED”. That is what we need to do as MPS ALUMNI the most. I mean already we got the tools and talents. We need to put them to work.

Also, for anyone is a MPS Alumni Member, a website on the website has been created for us who want to be further engaged. The Milwaukee Public Schools has created the MPS Alumni Hub  for us Alums who want to know about any upcoming events, news, reunions, activities and many other we can keep track. There is a sign up sheet online in which you can register and the info will be delivered to your inbox. And for the record, this new areas of Alumni and Student Engagement been active since last September. And it took off since.

Overall, I’ve gained some insight about this. And I’m glad that I got the chance to get this info. What I have learned that we Alums can be valuable in the district based on what we do. I think also the idea of creating an Alumni Hub or an Alumni Area per se, is not to forget about us. But also realize that there is more we can gain. Of course we got our schools to upkeep, but combined with our stenghts and ideas, we can say that we are so MPS PROUD!

So MPS Alumni, its time to be real, be legit, and be giving. Our ideas must work to gain new ideas and to continue to spread “NEW ENERGY!” in the district that many of us grew out.

Oh, ask the MPS Alumni Office for a MPS Alumni pin to add to your collection!