UPDATE: (10.9.08) Just found this on Ben Smith's blog over at Politico. Man-on-the-street interviews from a McCain/Palin rally in Strongsville, OH.
Secret Service is looking into the "KILL HIM"
threat yelled during Palin's rally in Clearwater, FL. No thanks to the
I attended two Obama rallies during the primaries. At each one, Obama made a point of praising Sen. Clinton for her many achievements, calling her a worthy opponent. At one of the rallies during this praise, someone in the audience booed. No words, no threats. Just a boo.
Some audience members chuckled. Obama paused, furrowed his brow, shook his head...
And flat out condemned the negativitiy. Like, denounced and rejected it.
So when I see stuff like this from McCain/Palin rallies, it royally pisses me off.
McCain, seriously? Someone calls Obama a terrorist at your rally, you take a pause, let the audience bask in their laughter and excitement, and then go on to condemn the "angry barrage of insults" that come out of the Obama camp? Really?
Oh, and let's not forget about that Palin rally in Fort Myers yesterday, where a supporter shouted a racial epithet at an African American sound man for a network and told him, "Sit down, boy."
But worse yet, the "Kill him!" proposition that came from a supporter at a Palin rally in Clearwater, FL. Seriously?
It's beyond gutter politics. It's criminal.
Related: Obama Dodged Snipper Fire Scenarios
"I've got 50-some guns, and I wasn't crazy about Obama's talk about small towns," said Sam Vetter, 64, a farmer and lifelong Democrat who regrets voting for Bush in 2000. "Besides," he added, "Obama just doesn't sound right for an American president."
“I heard that Obama is a Muslim and his wife’s an atheist,” said Mr Simpson, drawing on a cigarette outside the fire station in Williamson, a coalmining town of 3,400 people surrounded by lush wooded hillsides.
“If he is the nominee, the Democrats have no chance of winning West Virginia,” said Missy Endicott, a 40- year-old school administrator. “He doesn’t understand ordinary Americans.”
Josh Fry, a 24-year-old ambulance driver from Williamson, insisted he was not racist but said he would feel more comfortable with Mr McCain, the 71-year-old Vietnam war hero, in the White House. “I want someone who is a full-blooded American as president,” he said.
"Is he Islamic or is he not?" Pasley says of Obama, who is Christian. "I know he's tried to talk about it but he hasn't looked anybody in Wayne in the eye and told them."
So here's my question: when Hillary Clinton touts her lead among “working, hard-working Americans, white Americans”, is she referring to the kind of people quoted here? Apparently so – Bill is now pushing to run up the WV margins as much as possible.
So let’s see it, Hillary! Flex your muscles. Send the superdelegates a message – because frankly, the fact that you are so good at energizing this voting block really says something about your campaign. Something scary.
(Photo: Jeff Swensen/Getty.)
Pres. Bush was slated to stimulate my checking account today—I’ve been logging in to my bank account all day, over and over, looking for a direct deposit that still hasn’t arrived. But when it does, what will I spend my $600 on? A few options include:
Hmm, but none of these options stimulate the American economy, do they? What a conundrum! Either way, this absurd plan does nothing to address the reasons why our economy is in peril. So I can get all cheery about an extra $600 in my pocket, but I’ll never be fooled into believing that this plan will promote any long-term boost in the economy. Who could be, after 8 years of Bush presidency?
In any case, how do you plan on spending your tax rebate?
I had the pleasure of screening the documentary Beyond Belief last Saturday night at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. Director Beth Murphy followed the lives of two Bostonian women, Susan and Patti, whose husbands were victims of the September 11th attacks. Both widowed women had young children—and babies on the way.
Yet despite the obvious despair of it all, Susan and Patti decided to use their grief for good. They channeled their commonalities—mother, widower, survivor—to create Beyond the 11th, an charitable foundation focused on raising money for other widows. What makes this initiative so fundamentally different, and, in turn, so inspirational? Beyond the 11th supports widows from Afghanistan, the training ground of Susan and Patti’s husbands’ murderers.
I’ve been thinking a lot about shared experiences lately. Now more than ever, it seems that people are sick of defining themselves by their differences. Because really, focusing on differences and pain points without taking time to recognize similarities breeds frustration. And anger. And then there you are, carrying around a big cloud of steam that’s constantly burning through your body and erupting through your words—or your fists, or your trigger finger.
Susan and Patti’s story has made me sit back and question what similarities I might share with people who are defined as my “enemy” (whatever that means…). Here are a few things I know about myself:
Sure, these are just little tidbits, but I wonder if I share them with, say, a woman from Rio? A white man from Georgia? A young professional from Tokyo? Or even a co-worker, from the next cube over?
If Susan and Patti, two women who endured such heavy blows, could flip the conversation into one focused on shared experience and common purpose, I’m confident that we can do the same here in the U.S. Or anywhere. Personally, I’m sick of being boxed in. Of not smiling at someone on the street because I assume they’re judging me. Of hearing about all the things that make Americans vastly different from every other group of people on the globe. People are people are people.
Just a few off-the-cuff notes and observations from the screening:
Be sure to check out the trailer.
And more information from the MFA on showtimes and tickets.
Showings begin Saturday, March 1, at 12pm.
Last night I stood in front of three senators, one governor, one mayor, and one Caroline Kennedy. These are people who all share a common vision for our country—a vision of unity in place of divides, inspiration in place of fear, common purpose in place of alienation.
The vision is infectious. I’ve been to three Barack Obama rallies in Boston, stood on line for hours in the cold among thousands of people to hear him speak. Yeah, my feet felt like ice blocks, but yet this warmth permeated through the crowd. I guess it’s called positive energy. It’s the same warmth I feel when I’m sporting my little Obama button—it actually radiates through me… even when I’m walking to work, Starbucks Chai Tea in hand, on a freezing Boston morning. Wearing that button makes me feel proud to believe in something. And I’ve honest to God never felt genuinely proud to be an American before.
This is our moment to reclaim our American pride. To show our friends abroad that we actually care about our country. To show ourselves that we actually care about the world.
This is our moment.
Now go out and Barack the vote!
P.S. For anyone who hasn’t watched the rally that took place in L.A. on Sunday, do yourself a favor and check it out. Michelle’s speech makes me think of my own grandparents—my grandfather in particular—who worked for the government to provide his family with a little slice of the American Dream. He didn't go past 8th grade in school, but was able to send both his girls to college, to grad school, to opportunity.
Full video (it’s long, but worth it)
Maria Shriver’s surprise endorsement of Barack Obama
And a word from Oprah, on the assumption that by supporting Obama she's “betraying her gender” and only “voting her race.”
Dear Dog Chapman,
You’re a pretty talented guy - looks like you lost all the glory that you and your mullet have worked so hard for all on your own! Oh, and it makes Black people around the globe feel warm inside that you don’t mean “scum n*gger without a soul” when you slip the N word into polite dinner conversation—gosh, why would we even think that?! But we sympathize with you—it’s a cold world out there now that Americans are free to call you names, isn’t it?
So thanks for the heartfelt apology; now your abysmal career can finally end and we can happily file you away with all the other racist cowards of the last 2 years.
Peace and happiness,
PS - I wish you many bright-eyed caramel grandchildren!
National Enquirer: http://www.nationalenquirer.com/dog_bounty_hunter_racial_slur_tape/celebrity/64325
More news from CNN: http://www.cnn.com/2007/SHOWBIZ/TV/11/01/dog.chapman.ap/index.html
Since I write about African-American natural hair all the time, I figured I should post something about the Glamour hair debacle. For those of you who don’t know what’s been going down, (former) Glamour magazine editor Ashley Baker gave a slide show to some NYC lawyers on the “Do’s and Don’t of Corporate Fashion.” Here are some notes from the show (from Jezebel):
First slide up: an African American woman sporting an Afro. A real no-no, announced the 'Glamour' editor to the 40 or so lawyers in the room. As for dreadlocks: How truly dreadful! The style maven said it was 'shocking' that some people st ill think it 'appropriate' to wear those hairstyles at the office. 'No offense,' she sniffed, but those 'political' hairstyles really have to go.
Here's more information on what actually went down: http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNLJ.jsp?id=1188161099761
No but seriously, this is the curly beautiful hair we were born with and we can wear it in however style we please. I say, as long as you take care of your hair (in whatever style you fancy), you’ll look great. And if your company has a problem with that, well maybe you’re just too good for them. In fact, you definitely are, so kick 'em to the curb.
I sent an article on the issue around to some friends and family, and wanted to post two responses.
My mother’s take (an African-American professor of linguistics):
I was unaware of this issue, but it's come up at various times in the past, since the "black-is-beautiful" era. What I remember about those times is that the "majority" society was pretty freaked out by afros, especially the really really big ones. Then more recently, the braids seemed to freak people out -- they were deemed inappropriate at the workplace. I don't know what people say about dreads these days -- probably the same.
But here's what I think (and not surprisingly):
Are these "inappropriate at the workplace" type comments racist? Of course they are. Such comments reveal an indirect racism. But it's racist nonetheless. The people who say such things are not going to come right out and say something really stupid, so instead they attack peripheral attributes -- note these attributes involve CHOOSING something to enhance a nearly inalienable attribute -- "natural" hair; language.
Reminds me of dialect stuff. People say African-American english is inappropriate in the workplace. No one, as far as I know, castigated Clinton or Carter for their southern dialects, i.e. that it is/was inappropriate for the workplace. They chose to speak the way they speak while in office. Big deal. But let an African American say something like "he be late," and everybody gets bent out of shape assigning all sorts of negativity to the speaker. Remember the whole Oakland school board controversy a few years back?
With hair, I think what's going on is that some people are freaked out when African-Americans choose NOT to adopt "majority" ways. So speaking AA (African-American) English, or wearing dreads, or dashikis appear to them to be political, i.e. threatening.
What an odd locution -- "political." What could it possibly mean? In other words, to say that dreads/breads are "political" seems to me to mask something deeper, something insidious and ugly that the person who says it really doesn't want to expose, at least not publicly.
Also when did "racially insensitive" replace "racist?"
My boyfriend’s take (a white male):
I like afros and dreads when worn with dignity. It’s a black pride thing, in my opinion.
I’m sorry, but I just can’t help it. I mean, this Britney Spears performance is just so horrible that's it's well... captivating. I'm left with all these feelings, some that I've never even felt before!
Why does she skid to a stop every time she clomps across the stage? It’s like she has to catch her balance from walking. That confuses me!
Why does she haphazardly grope the dancers? She's that scary aunt at your 2nd cousin’s wedding who keeps secretly coping a feel on all the distant relatives. That makes me feel, strange!
Why doesn’t she smile? Or at least look alive? That makes me scared!
The best is the audience pans. Diddy looks like he’s about to rip apart the Week 1 Making The Band hopefuls (2:07). Rihanna isn’t even paying attention (0:37). And 50 Cent – that’s 50 Cent there, right? – well he just looks confused and embarrassed, like he’s watching Poison Ivy 3 with his mom (0:50).
But, at least Britney’s getting some press. Maybe her abysmal performance was just a press ploy - because now everyone’s talking, that’s for sure.
Gawker (the comments are classic): http://gawker.com/news/i-cry-watching-the-days/britney-spears-performs-at-mtvs-video-music-awards-298070.php
Found this lifestyle piece on CNN today: 'Could Mr. Right be white?' More black women consider 'dating out'. Of course, being the product of a Black woman-White man relationship, this topic is of poignant interest to me.
The piece discusses Black women’s loyalty to Black men, and how just recently they (we) are beginning to see dating outside the race as a viable option. The article goes into particular detail about the romantic interest conflict between Black men and Black women:
“'I think a lot of black women are realizing or feeling that the pickings are slim,’ [Roslyn Holcomb] said.
They're made even slimmer, grumble many black women, by high rates of successful black men choosing blondes. For some, they argue, white wives are the ultimate status symbol.
…But black men are voicing their own frustrations with women they feel regard them with suspicion. …It's a frustration director Tim Alexander tackles in "Diary of a Tired Black Man," a frank film covering everything from black women's demeanors to their weight. Frustrated by black women, the main character dates a white one.”
But is it really the "datable" Black men, few and far between, dating blondes, and/or frustrated with Black women, that keep us from expanding our options? I think not.
So here’s a little tale I'd like to share:
I’m walking down the street in NYC’s Lower East Side after a night out with my man. We are holding hands and giggling, as we normally do… because being around each other just makes us giddy, I suppose.
We approach a Black woma n, probably about 25, walking with a White friend of hers. They are laughing and bouncing around like old friends happy to be in each other’s company. She smiles at me and says, “Now you, you are gorgeous.”
Wow! How nice! I smile back and start to say, “Well thank you, and so are you,” when she turns to my man and says, “And you, you are ugly.”
Now let me just say this now. Even someone needing the thickest bifocals can see that my boyfriend is 100% pure Ukrainian stud. He’s – well – he’s beautiful. I say this because I love him to death and because it’s absolutely true.
I’m still smiling, but it’s an awkward remnant of a smile that spilled over from her earlier compliment. I’m surprised, confused, bewildered. I also think she might be joking. So I chuckle and little, and my boyfriend asks her what she means.
“You’re walking with a beautiful Black woman. And you’re ugly. You’re ugly because you’re White,” she says, still smiling as if she’s said nothing but the obvious.
My boyfriend, completely dumbfounded, stumbles back a few steps as if he’s been hit in the jaw. I stare at her incredulously. The best my poor boyfriend could come up with was, “Well… you’re ugly too.” And me… well I was so shocked that I just froze up.
We walked home and I just kept kicking myself for not saying or doing something more. What a chump I was. I kept thinking, “How could that have been real? How could a peer, who is walking with a White friend, say this to me? To the man I love? To a human being?” It seemed too over the top to be real, but unfortunately it was. Three cocktails was all it took for this girl to really show her true colors.
And so my point is this. The whole interracial dating topic is not just Black man versus Black woman conflict. It’s even more internal than that. It’s us—our girlfriends, or workplace diversity group colleagues, our aunts, our cousins.
Sisters need to support one another’s values and choices, whether it’s a question of another sister’s profession, how she wears her hair, or whom she chooses to love. Though a strong woman can succeed in life even under the harshest of criticism, how can we really thrive without the backing of our base?
I know, maybe Flight of the Conchords overload, but I couldn't help myself. Had to follow up Friday's depressing post with something relevantly uplifting.
Over the last couple years, I’ve been hearing comments like these more and more:
“Black people just blow everything way out of proportion”
“Black people think everyone is racist, I wish they’d just stop playing the race card”
If this is true, my dear enlightened friends, how do you explain the abundance of offensive material posted online daily? Ok ok, those posts are really offensive, they’re just funny, right? They’re just all in good fun. Fine, think what you want. But now let’s look at people's comments on these posts.
Here’s just a taste. Just one example.
Original Post: Sparkling Wiggles (aw, how cute!)
Offensive? Not offensive? It doesn’t even matter at this point, because here are some of the comments on CollegeHumor.com:
And here’s a video responses from YouTube :
...And a couple comments posted on this video
Keep 'em laughing, right?
Thanks to the Internet of 2007's wonderful but perhaps counterintuitive blend of huge social networks and available anonymity, cowards can take their skulking selves to a computer and roam free! And wow, there are so many… who knew?! (anyone with some color did, that's who...)
Dang, Marve! This video is giving you positive publicity. Why do you gotta go and mess everything up by pulling the video off YouTube AGAIN?!
People are playing with your product. That means that they like it. Free publicity. Is that concept so hard to grasp? Why not embrace the parody… let at least SOMEONE laugh at that lame line from X3!
People don’t respect large scared-ass companies anymore, so get over yourselves and get with the times.
And while you’re getting your ish together, here’s a link to the clip for everyone else (lots-o-curses, just as an FYI). Be prepared to laugh your ass off and giggle to yourself for days over MARVEL’s prized X-Men characters.
Something smelly was sitting in my inbox this morning...
Tom Szaky is passionate about worm poop. So passionate that he dropped out of Princeton to start Terracycle, a company that sells worm poop. ...Water is mixed with the worm castings to produce a nitrogen rich ‘tea’ prized by gardeners...
Szaky discovered the magic of worm castings when he was at Princeton. He and fellow student Jon Beyer developed a system to mass produce castings using millions of worms and organic waste from the university's student dining halls, which they developed into liquid fertilizer.
Springwise loves how they’re turning garbage into gold, keeping waste out of landfills and producing an organic alternative to chemical fertilizers, while building a healthy business. …Alternatively, get creative and start figuring out what else can be created from waste.
disgusting cool, but the article leaves me with a couple questions.
Do I win?