Posts Tagged ‘Martin Luther King’

First, let me offer my condolences to the families and friends in Boston today. As we all know there was an explosion that occurred that left 3 people dead and 100 plus injured. It’s a freaking shame that another safe haven of a marathon has to be added to the list of things that has to be beefed up with additional security for future references.

Also yesterday, most of us in America were just getting our taxes done. Hopefully. But I don’t want to talk about 1040’s or W2’s. I want to know is, what is up with the month of April that has been full of violent angles? We know Columbine, Virginia Tech, The Waco Compound, and also Oklahoma City. All during the week of April 15th. Plus the Titanic sunk this week in 1912.  I want to know, what is up with this? It seems that we’ve dealt with this stuff before, and now with this explosion in Boston just escalated the stakes of just wanting to make those who want to enjoy life, to bring the moral down. They say in church and especially mine that “the devil is always busy”. Well apparently that is a devil we know. In church meeting in which my Wisconsin Conference UMC Bishop, I had to think of a quote that may caught deaf ears of saying “What?” But I’m here to tell and share, that quote is ringing true now: “I rather deal with the devil with I know, than the devil that I don’t know.” That quote has been a constant reminder. Now I know I can hear the folks blowing up about this quote being borrowed off of WWE. BUT, that quote is really a idiom. Folks been using that for years. Probably way before WWE picked it up.

Now what about “this devil” in this story: This story is really centered around the April Violence we know. Many of you older than me were around when Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee in April, 1968. We all read about Abraham Lincoln’s Assassination and death in April 1865. Fast forward yet again to the recent acts of violence in April, we know them to well. That’s the devil we know. But the devil we don’t, is really the unknown. Which is also like having to keep evil at bay. EVERY SINGLE TIME. Another quote I remember in church was that “Life is one big battle”. Which is true.

Now what does that mean here? Matter of fact, here’s a switch up: Where’s the safety net? Remember that?

Churches: No.

Movie Theaters: No.

Schools: No.

Colleges/Universities: No.

The Workplace: No.

A Marathon: No.

Local Malls: No.

Where’s the safety net? I’m just asking!

Now in the future we have to beef up security at Marathons. Shameful. And to top it off, expect to see security screenings, before entering the area, checking in, before warming up, all of that. Most of us know that this act, is a home grown incident. It had to be. The last time there as a homegrown act of bombing, in the month of April: Oklahoma City in 1995. That is what I remember the most, this week. But this was no assault at a Federal Building. This was at a well – known Marathon. Now I know that some might ask why would someone would set off a bomb at a Marathon? Really?! Really?!! We are going to learn TODAY!

President Obama commented that those responsible in his quote: “Those responsible will feel ‘weight of justice’. Well, I’m going to agree.  If this country held Timothy McVeigh, Eric Rudolph and those responsible to American Soil Violence, then this individual or individuals will be dealt with swiftly. We don’t know exactly who did this, but he, she, or they will be caught. SWIFTLY!

Now I want us Americans to lay down all of our so-called politics, those who think Obama sold out, those who think like militant stuff in protest stance: STOP! Just stop! And those who are members of the Westboro Baptist holding those “God Hates F**gs” posters and those “God Sent The Bombs Posters”, I’m calling you out! ENOUGH! Oh, did I mention that one of those who died was a 8 year boy? Yep. Very sad. 

Go and donate some money to Boston and let them know that YOU care. You don’t have to be from Boston to do this. Makes a good tax write off to charity.

Oh, I can hear this now: What happened in Boston was tragic, but what about my neighborhood? What about my son or daughter that got shot in a Black Neighborhood or a School Yard in an urban-like neighborhood, or a suburban school playground? You know what’s funny about that? It sort of reminded me about the Trayvon Martin killing, and those of us in Milwaukee for example had to make an argument about Jasmine Owens, Lauren Donaldson, or finding Alexis Patterson? May I reference But what happened after that Greater Milwaukee Area? A shooting at a Sikh Temple, A shooting at Azana Salon, Jennifer Sebena was murdered by her husband, and in between: Derek Williams died in a back of a Milwaukee Police Department Squad Car in trying to breathe after being arrested, a black woman, Jeanine Tracy was beaten by MPD Officer after being arrested, and some guy on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel commented on the story that the officer “should have punched her harder.” How juvenile. Really? Just like some of the Facebook folks who like to bash folks in a sense of humility. We got our wish after we hear about national concerns over a local concerns. Time to learn TODAY!

The bombing at the Boston Marathon was to me a “national concern.” The incidents of Derek Williams and Jeanine Tracy was more of a “local concern”.  The national concern like 9/11, and Voter ID’s are well known. The issue of getting 250,000 private sector jobs in Wisconsin is a “local concern”.  The National Debt when most of the George W. Bush 8 years with the Iraq War was a “National Concern”.  The “Local Concern” try using Milwaukee’s status as a Segregated City, not having an African Community Center due to an absent minded politics like not having a High Speed Rail System,  or having Charlie Sykes saying racist comments about Blacks and EBT’s on WTMJ, or Vicki McKenna or Mark Belling.  A mixture of National/Local Concerns: Black Owned Businesses and the issue of thriving. Speaking of that, we hear about Black Radio Stations like 1290 WMCS fading out, but a black radio station in Chicago that is independent and is thriving for 50 years! It’s time to steal that playbook. Seriously.

And speaking of stealing playbooks, we need to steal the playbooks of these terrorism acts and keep them at Bay!





What a day. This is a day that I think will be added to history, or in the words of Ed Schultz, this is one for the archives. Today, us Americans had a chance to view and witness the second inauguration of the Obama Administration. No question it’s every 4 years that this event does come, but also the second time that a Inauguration Day that falls on the third Monday in January. For you non-Americans, we also celebrate this day in honor of Martin Luther King Jr,  who was one of our best Civil Rights and Ministry Leaders of all time. Many of us gathered in DC, or at home, or in the workplace to hear and see the event that most of us encountered. Plus for those who have helped the President to retain his job, such campaigning for Obama For America, this day was also important as well. Of course there were haters who don’t want to be apart of it, but STILL it’s our day to not only to reflect, but also to keep pressing forward.

Now for those who are still wondering: Why this day? Should us Americans should be out feeding folks or remembering how MLK wanted peace and non-violence? I want to say this as an African-American male, even on MLK Day, and after the day is over, we still have alot of work to do. This goes beyond MLK Day, and also this goes on beyond the second Inauguration Day. No question, this day is and was the day of celebration. No I didn’t go to DC even though the tickets were in high demand, but with me being part of the Obama For America folks who helped, no question that Milwaukee or some in Milwaukee will have some sort of Obama For America related event for the campaign workers who put their time in for the 2012 election.  For those of us who like still lean on the messages of Dr. King, we better lean on the WORK of Dr. King. What I mean is, yes “I have a Dream” was an amazing speech 50 years ago. Still many have labeled it as the best. But what have we done in the spirit of that speech? Have some donated to the MLK memorial in DC? What about a MLK Scholarship event? Or anything that has MLK written all over it in terms of giving back? I’m just saying.

Not trying to hate or boast, but I have donated and contributed to MLK scholarship for college students and high school seniors. And furthermore, I used to be a recipient here in Milwaukee where I got the scholarship six times. Real Truth. I remember on Twitter, in which Roland Martin was debating against a person who questioned “what have you done to maintained King’s dream?” He went in on this person like white on rice. I also question to those who approved Voter ID stuff but here’s the kicker: MLK stood up against Voter Suppression! For those who hated unions: MLK stood up for Unions! Look it up conservative fans. And for those who want to know: MLK was not a republican! His father was the MLK that was the republican voter. King himself was non-partisan, but did supported John F. Kennedy during his election. And plus, was a opponent against the Vietnam War. Notwithstanding that notion, in this day, Dr. King still maintains an influence for folks everywhere. Even me. In order to get to the mountaintop, the climbing still continues. Or in this case, I’m in the struggle like everyone else. Today, we are in the struggle for jobs – in which African-Americans are more unemployed and discriminated for a job offer. I know all that too well. The Gay and Lesbian community are coming out, but there are those who still oppose them of their lifestyle. Education – for the side of black women they are more in college than the males. Morely the black males are in prison. The state of Wisconsin has more blacks in prison than in any other state in the union. This is where the quote “Wisconsin is the worst state for black people” came from. And the issue of guns: We know.

As I saw the inauguration, I see a more now determined President Barack Obama. Now usually, the Second Term for the presidents usually don’t go well. But I hope that the President (or the Obama Crew) will continue to establish new ideas, continue to upheld the goals of the previous 4 years, and also to confront and complete the needy concerns of the American public. Even converting his Obama For America Campaign into Organizing for Action. If you haven’t heard, the Organizing for Action group has been created to continue to the progress that was set out to start since 2007. Thank Michelle Obama for that. So in the words of DJ’s for Obama, Our work is not done. Dr. King’s work is not done. I didn’t say the speeches were done. I say the work is not done! On a positive note: this Inauguration Day had more references mostly of African-Americans ranging from the Statue of Freedom being placed by Philip Reid, who was a black slave during the Lincoln era until 1862. Lamar Alexander, a republican Senator of all means quoted Alex Haley, who we should know gave Roots a household name, by stating: “Find the Good, and praise it.” Plus, Myrlie Evers-Williams the widow of the late Medgar Evers, presided the Invocation and is the first woman of color to do so. The Inaugural poem in which Richard Blanco and the Benediction of Rev. Luis Leon pitched in which they were the firsts of the Hispanic Culture to come out and contribute to the event. Also the years of 1963, 1863 and also 1813 were also referenced this very day.

So America, in the words of Arsenio Hall: “Let’s get busy.”

Say it loud! I’m black and I’m proud!” – James Brown

Today in America marks the 84th Anniversary of the birth of Martin Luther King, Jr. While stumbling on to the Youtube videos today, I looked up a speech that was a lost footage of Dr. King reciting the words in which that most African-Americans know from a James Brown Lyric. Basically that was real talk coming from a person like King, even though he opposed the Vietnam War and supported the Sanitation Union Workers, Civil Rights prior to his death, he also have to comment about being black and proud. Now for some of you probably reading this, it’s not a powder-keg waiting to go off. King commented those who say that the color black represents the ugly dark shade, while the white color represents the innocent, pure shade. We get it. But in this instance, Dr. King really broke it down in which most today should understand. I know the old school folks, or the old heads get this. They know. But the heads now, who feel “ashamed” of being black, they better get on board. Just saying.

Put this in the moments for Black History Month 2013, and many other archives.

Dear America:

Let me begin by saying this. Happy Black History Month, 2012!

The infamous month of February is back in which this country, and others can begin to recoginze or to continue to keep in mind about the significant events, attachments, objectives, and purpose of my culture. Like most of you, or some of you I am blessed to recognize the sentimental value of the achievements. And it’s also a blessing. Now I begin to question those who somewhat hate this month, all because it’s dedicated to Black History. Just to remember that Black History itself is universal. It’s global. Not just dead centered on America. Those who whined and complained on all sides, those wanted to wish Black History Month dead are sadly mistaken. Others say that it’s full of propaganda, all made up stuff. Lot of those didn’t have the chance to read up on the idea of Black History Month, through the words of Dr. Carter G. Woodson. Now why him you ask? Well he was the one who started Black History Month in the first place!  His vision was to tell our stories. Our as in Blacks to tell our stories, comments, facts, figures and more. According to his story growing up, Dr. Woodson was hearing about the coal workers who working in the mines the south their stories.  Some were also Black Civil War Veterans. But here’s the thing: they never had their stories told. And the reason being that AMERICAN HISTORY NEVER picked it up!  So Dr. Carter Woodson during his college days decided to start talking about US! (Us Black folks) That week of February 12th was the start of Negro History Week, which later years became as we now know as Black History Month. The “Negro History Week” portion was set up by Dr. Woodson in honor of two men who had great significant  influences of African-Americans: Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln.

Word to the haters: I keep hearing about all the “Black History Month thing should be part of American History” speeches. FALSE! Black History Month is part of WORLD HISTORY! For many centuries, those who have been guessing and asking who were the first of Math, Science, Architects? Black People. You heard me. Blacks. My race, my culture has done amazing things. And contrary, still making history.

From contributing to designing Washington DC, to inventing Bicycle Frames.

From Fiber Opitics to Super Soakers.

From becoming first in politics like senators to becoming President of the United States!

From famous Jazz Musicians like Duke Ellington to Rock Musicians like Living Colour.

From The Tuskegee Airmen to the Triple Nickels.

From Little Richard to Run DMC

From The Oprah Winfrey Show to Melissa Harris-Perry’s new show on MSNBC.

From Warren Moon to Michael Vick. – Including: Doug Williams, who became the first black NFL Quarterback to be a Superbowl Champion.

From Angela Davis to Erykah Badu.

From the Civil Rights Movement to the Million Man March.

From the first black Hip-Hop Record Manager of Sylvia Robinson to the Hip-Hop Mogul of Jay-Z.

From The Miseducaton of the Negro to Sister Citizen.

From the British Actors of  Delroy Lindo, and Thandie Newton to Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Idris Elba.

From fighting at the Boston Massacre of Crispus Attucks to sealing the end of the Iraq War of General Lloyd J Austin, III.

From the tennis achievements of Althea Gibson to the now dominate Williams Sisters of Venus and Serena.

From the poetry of Langston Hughes to the spit poetry of Def Jam Poetry.

From the first of sprints of Jesse Owens, to the lighting fast moves of Usain Bolt.

From the first servants, to the first black home owners.

From the championships of Joe Louis, to the championships of Evander Holyfield.

From the color barrier breaking of Jackie Robinson, to true home run king of Hank Aaron.

From the hardwood basketball stories of Nat Clifton, to rim rockers of Dwayne Wade.

From the gridiron days of Charles Follis to the now game players like Randall Cobb and Cam Newton.

From the Mason Fraternities  to the Divine 9 Black Greek Lettered Organizations.

From the first black organizations to the longetity of the black organizations.

From the Black Church founding during the American Revolution, to the Megachurches of the post 20th Century.

From the first channel of BET, to the first black video of Billie Jean on MTV. And to TVOne, OWN and Bounce TV.

From the era of Mahalia Jackson to the era of Willow Smith.

From “I Have A Dream” to “Yes We Can.”

From the first appearance of Whitney Houston to grace to the cover of Seventeen Magazine to Tyra Banks on the cover of SI’s Swimsuit Edition.

From Cissy Houston, to Dionne Warwick, to Whitney Houston to………..Bobbi Kristina Houston Brown.

From the Space Explorations of Guion Bluford, Jr and Dr. Mae Jemison to Dr. Benjamin Harris and Robert Satcher.

From the Soul Train Line of Don Cornelius to the “Dog Pound” of Arsenio Hall.

From the first of hockey appearance with Willie O’ Ree to the first Golf breakthrough of  Tiger Woods.

From the old Negro Spirituals to Kirk Frankin’s Stomp.

From the first black Oscar winner of  Hattie McDaniel to the break through of Oscar winners of Denzel Washington, MoNique, Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Holiday, Jamie Foxx, Forrest Whittaker, and Halle Berry.

From an old school comic like Bill Cosby to the funny little man of Kevin Hart.

From the original African drum to electronic drum.

From the first African American pilot of Captain Dave Harris of American Airlines, to the first all African-American Female Crew of ASA Airlines Flight 5202.

From the first black Fighter Pilots of the Tuskegee Airmen, to the now fighter pilots like Major Shawna Kimbrell.

From the Dance of the Motherland of Africa, to the Dance of the Dougie. (Yeah I said it)

From the first black motorcycle riders of Harley-Davidson to the now story telling of the IronElite.

From Martin Luther King, Sr. to Martin Luther King, III.

From Malcolm X to Attalah Shabazz.

You know I can go on and on. Always this is infinity to the fullest.  What you just saw there was achievements from the things we know, to the things we have to do.  Now to those who want an American History Month. Stop dreaming! The only way I think that I believe that America will get an “American History Month” is if America needs to earn it! You heard that right.  America has to EARN IT!  And I know that there are skeptics who whine and complain about Black History events that are posted on Facebook and Social Media, and those who say “why don’t you post that everyday”. We like to, but there is one problem: Why don’t those who say that, BE THE EXAMPLE of doing it? I’m just saying. I have been using social media for about 6 or 7 plus years now. And those like to post stupid videos on YouTube saying that Black History Month is racist, and mimicking about Morgan Freeman saying that “I don’t want a Black History Month, I want a American History Month.” Um…… first of all AGAIN, I respect Morgan Freeman as an actor and humanitarian efforts, but he needs to realize (and those like him)  that if it haven’t been for those who helped him in his career and life from the start who maybe have been African-American related or whatever, HE wouldn’t be in the position where he’s at today! And that goes for those who look down upon Black History Month, no their Black History traditions, and any other Black History reflections period. That’s right I said it! So you can say that I’ve become an supporter of Black History Month. No, I’ve been a reborn supporter of it. Have been for quite sometime.

So with that, America. Land of the free, home of the brave. Isn’t this supposed to be country that one can express? That land of opportunity thing? So that should be counted to tell about my culture’s history and achivements overall? I’m just saying! Others are saying that let the Blacks have it. Hey we’ve been having it. Since 1926. And it will NOT stop! So give it up. It’s not going anywhere. Even everyday of the week.

Black History Month is NOT JUST American History. It’s REALLY part of and still is a staple of World History. As I used to say back in the 90’s: You better recognize!


Stephen’s Spot

Read the history makers of tomorrow:

Iron EliteIron Elite
Check it out at Iron Elite

Before I begin, I want to summarize my last blog. Which I think in fairness was deemed debateable. It was about my viewpoint about the Troy Davis execution, and also my point about President Obama didn’t step in and made a referring call to stop it, and alot of us think that he is the blame. Personally, I think it is NOT his fault. If anyone had read the bylaws of the President of the United States, you should know that one of the rules does partake that the president does not have the authority to weigh in on executions on a State Level. If that were to be on a FEDERAL level, then Obama would be all over that. I hope that one person commented my post needs to reads that. And plus, I studied that years ago about what the president can do, and can’t do. That’s the problem. We don’t read enough to understand things. For things like this, it’s sad. No wonder this nation is falling behind with the backwards politics. And for that, for those who are uneducated, and don’t know jack, it is time to go back to the classrooms, and also back to the books. I hate to say it, but real talk! But, if I am somewhat incorrect, show me the proof. But before you show me, it has to be real. No fake, photoshopped, documents, explicit, Youtube Videos allowed. It needs to be authenic, to the point, beat by beat.  I don’t care if the proof comes from the library of congress. That’s right, I just went educational, WordPress!

Shifting gears now. Bounce TV. If you haven’t heard, there is a new African-American network station that came on this week, that targets well, African-Americans. Bounce TV is a free over the air digital television station that gives entertainment of movies, sports of the HBCU Football Teams, Kids and Teen Shows all aimed at the 25-44 years olds of the African-American audience. Now, I know that there are some who say, it’s another BET. I’ve looked at this all week and I did not see not one comparison between Bounce TV and BET. For those who don’t know, Bounce TV wants to be different from BET. They have a slogan that reads “TV Our Way”. What do they mean by Our Way? I guess that Bounce TV wants to present itself on a different platform. Yes, they showed The Wiz and the original “A Raisin in the Sun”. But yes, they want to be different from BET. That is what the founders, Andrew Young, Martin Luther King, III, Rob Hardy and Will Packer will bring each and every time. I hope that Bounce TV will be a real network. Real networks stand out from the crowd and not trying to be copycats. Yes, BET started at a time when there were no African-Americans shown on cable, then came along TV-One, OWN, and there was another Black Family Channel at one point before it was closed in 2007.

There was question posted on the web: Do African-Americans need another African-American TV Channel? I’ll answer that. YES! You’re probably asking why. Well, I think we African-Americans need to show more of ourselves in all angles. Not just one angle. Now I know there are questions from non-African Americans who will always say like, “when will be a channel for the white folks to watch?” Note to caucasian audience, you have plenty! Ranging from NBC to the Spice Adult Channels. And coming soon, is the WWE Network coming out in 2012? I remember when many years also that Jillian Barberie was mad that she can’t watch Spike TV, which was aimed at the male audience. Really, Jillian? So, I don’t what the deal is when people ask questions like that. Just be happy that you have a channel to watch. Duh! That’s not even a major concern. I’m not saying that the other ethnic groups can’t watch black networks. You can watch them if you want to, but just don’t make a big deal out of it. I’m just saying. It’s just like when you pick up Ebony Magazine. Same thing. Almost.

But in regarding Bounce TV being different from BET and TVOne, that’s a bold statement. It will also regard of being bold to maintain that potential. Again, I’m just saying.