Category: The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
By helen on Feb 22, 2011 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
DENIAL OF REPARATIONS IS WRONG
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
Why were the survivors of those killed on 911 compensated for their loss? What was the logic or the rationale used to arrive at the conclusion that those survivors deserved compensation?
The workers voluntarily went to work for monetary gain. They went to work in order to earn a salary in order to sustain themselves and their families. Noble, yes, for anyone who works should be compensated because they add value to the company, organization, institution or individual for whom they work.
There is one learned scholar, Henry Louis “Skip” Gates, PhD, who says American descendants of African slaves are not due reparations because some were sold into slavery by other Africans, probably tribal chiefs. Let’s look at how illogical that is.
The archaic point of view that says a woman would not be raped if she were not out alone late at night, especially is she is wearing “provocative” clothing has been debunked and fortunately an enlightened view is now prevalent.
Using the logic of Dr. Gates, it is the fault of the parents of kidnapped, exploited, abused and often murdered children, who are to blame and are guilty for allowing their children or sometimes forcing their children to go to school. The alternative for the parents might be censure and maybe even imprisonment for negligence of contributing to the delinquency of their children if they don’t force their children to go to school. Legally, until age 16, children are mandated to attend school.
Let’s say that at the very least the African chieftains were guilty of negligence for selling their fellow man. Let’s say that they knew the institution of slavery was a brutal one. It’s hard to imagine that they knew the fate that awaited their citizens during the middle passage where human beings were stacked on top of each other with no room to stretch, stand or move freely about. For the duration of their voyage, they were treated as less than humans. If they survived, they lived in unsanitary conditions living in the bodily wastes of each other, unable to scratch an itch, swat a fly or fight off a rodent. Close your eyes, picture this, put yourself in this picture. Unable to bath or take care of your toilet needs, breathing stench day after day, month on end. Why don’t you do as some people have done to walk in someone else’s shoes. There are people who wear fat suits to see how obese people are treated. There have been a few instances where people have cosmetically darkened their skin as an experiment to find out how it feels to be of African descent. There is currently a new television program where millionaires dress down, play down and join the ranks of those in need in order to walk in their shoes. There is also another television program where the owners of companies don the gear of their employees and join them on the job in order to be able to walk in their shoes.
I invite each of you to walk in the shoes of African slaves and or the descendants of those slaves. Close your blinds, your shades or your curtains. Turn off the air conditioning. Fasten off all of the house and lock yourself up in your bathroom, no, the smallest closet for some of your bathrooms are luxurious and larger than the bedrooms of those less fortunate than you. Take off your clothing. Take your position on the floor, no cheating, no pillow, no sheet, no blanket, just you naked and alone on the floor. To make it more realistic, put on a strait jacket so you can’t move your arms or hands. It is doubtless that a fly or rodent would be in there with you, maybe an occasional spider for those little burgers can get in anywhere. Did you remember to close the vents so no little air can seep in? You can arrange for someone to come in to feed you a little slop a couple times a day, other than that no popcorn, potato chips, no beverages except for an occasional quick sip of water. Comfy yet? How do you feel the third week? Are you having fun being denied all the rights, privileges and most of all the freedoms of determining your own fate? Are you beginning to smell yourself, yet? Are you squirming in your own fecal material, yet? Are you beginning to feel dehumanized, yet? Oh, there’s a thunder storm, you hear the wind blowing fiercely, you hear the rain pounding on the roof. You wish you could snuggle under the cover of your cozy bed; but, you can’t. Remember, you can’t move. Remember, you are captive. Remember you are not a human being, you’re just a thing to be used for the convenience of someone else. You are helpless and hopeless. You are frightened and lonely. Got the picture, yet? You have almost approximated what the Africans felt as they crossed the middle passage.
Now, you have your freedom, you are removed from your closet. Are you free, yet? No, because now you are chained to other human beings and led to the slave block. Families, which means women and children, are gawking at you. The women try to pretend not to look at your near naked body so they either lower their hats, put a fan up to their face or otherwise divert their eyes away from your miraculously smooth dark skin and your surprisingly ripped body. The auction begins and you are sold separately away from your wife and children if you are a man. If you are a woman, you are sold away from your husband and often your children. Right now, I’m thinking of that song, “It’s A Wonderful Life.” This is the ideal. This is just what you expected when you were taken from your homeland. Though you cannot communicate with anyone because they are speaking a strange language and you have no one to speak to because members of your tribe were sold to different plantation owners. Though you think in your language or your dialect, you cannot speak it because no one understands you.
At the plantation you are forced to work from sun up to sun down, from can to can’t. You labor in the cotton or tobacco fields with no sun screen, no sun glasses, no sun hat to shield you from the merciless sun beaming down on you. Tired, hungry and lifeless you now go to your shack where you eat the remnants from the masters’ tables.
At the end of the week, when most people are paid for their labor and look forward to their paycheck, it’s just another week for you. There is no compensation and no gratitude. You may be whipped with a horse whip because you did not produce as much this week as you did the last week because you weren’t feeling so well. What does that matter to the slave master? He’s upset because you did not make as much money for him as you did the last week.
I think by now you have the picture. I think by now you may be able to visualize and conceptionalize a little of what it was like to have been a slave. If this slave were adequately rewarded for his labor, he could have accumulated some wealth as his master did; and, he could have left an inheritance or an endowment for his heirs just as the master did.
By now, I’m certain that you know that his descendants deserve reparations to level the playing field, to make up for all that he lost and to relieve your conscience of the guilt that you feel that is evidenced by so much mental illness in this country. Your hatred of the very person who is responsible for your wealth and success is weighing on your subconscious and you are acting out in so many strange and bizarre ways, imbibing too much alcohol, using illegal drugs, manipulating numbers, falsifying records and all sorts of unusual behaviors. Now, your former slaves have adopted some of your ways. In trying to be accepted by you, he is emulating you. Not only that, he is engaging in self loathing because he is constantly exposed to loathing.
Our country can make amends. Our country can relieve herself of the burden of her guilt. Our country can compensate those who were deprived of their birthright. Our country must pay reparations to the descendants of those Africans who were taken from their Mother land, lost their identity, their homes, their language, their culture and cut off from their roots. In cruelty, some racists tell Americans of African descent to go back where they came from. None of them know where they came from. They do not know who their ancestors are. They do not know what part of Africa or family they came from. They have no home other than the one that they built for others in this land of plenty. The White House, which white men covet, was primarily built by slaves with no compensation. Wall Street was also primarily built by slaves with no compensation; and yet, Americans of African descent seldom get the opportunity to work on Wall Street, invest on Wall Street and become a part of the fortunes made by those who skim and scam and cook the books on Wall Street. We, of African descent, deserve reparations. We deserve it now because we, through our ancestors, have earned the back salaries due them for their labor which has made this the richest country on earth.
By helen on Feb 20, 2011 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
ARE WE SMARTER THAN 5TH GRADERS?
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
Some suppositions were posed to me by a friend from St. Lucia in the eastern area of the Caribbean Sea.
Here are the suppositions:
“A nation that rejects Health Care for all,
Rejects plans for sustained development for the future,
Rejects educational advancement for its youth and retraining for its workers,
Rejects sustainable and renewable energy,
Rejects the most balanced President in History,
Fights against its own people;
And, a list too long to continue, can never be as smart as 5th graders.”
Looking at this nonintrospective look from an outsider made me pause to think about the answers to his theory.
It might amaze Americans to know how much people outside the United States are knowledgeable about what goes on in this country and why they form the opinions of us that they do.
I remember from my travels how well versed the children of Europe Asia, Central and South America and the Caribbean Islands were. They knew more about the geography, the history and culture of America than their counterparts here in the United States know. I observed the classrooms in China and saw how focused and well disciplined the children were. At that time in the early ‘70’s China’s television consisted primarily of higher mathematics instruction. There were no commercials. On Saturdays, the children attended Saturday school or as it was called in Beijing, the Children’s Palace.
I always made it my business to talk to young people wherever I travelled because the teacher in me just made me inquisitive about what children were learning in other parts of the world. I found that I could have intelligent discussions with the young people on a variety of topics.
I looked at the images coming out of Cairo, Egypt and saw the discipline of the people in their quiet and yet determined protest. It reminded me of the non-violent protests led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the era of the Civil Rights Movement. Dr. King, inspired by the venerated Indian leader, Mahatma Ghandi, avowed and practiced non-violence. We, Americans, seemed so supportive of the Egyptian people. I, too, admired them for their quiet strength and purpose. The eighteen days that they stayed the course, they won. Their president, Hosni Mubarak abdicated. Their work is not yet complete; they still have a complicated victory that is still unfolding.
By contrast, many Americans were critical of the workers in Wisconsin who also engaged in a quiet non-violent protest of their infringement or denial of their rights to petition their government.
In comparing and contrasting events and practices here at home and events outside our borders, I find it is interesting that we, who elected people to represent us, are not being represented by the people we voted for.
Overseas the disruptions are caused by countries that are basically run by despotic dictators and they have had no voice and no choice in who represents them.
I then started thinking about the challenge presented to me by my St. Lucian friend about how smart we are. When one of our country’s leaders dismisses the citizens by saying, “So be it,” I feel he is completely detached from the very people who need him and voted for him. When the leader of a state refers to workers in derogatory terms, I wonder if we are smarter than 5th graders!
In November of 2010 the balance of power in the House of Representative shifted when the minority party became the majority party. Voters embraced them as their hope for making the changes needed to get the country back to work and to balance the budget. Did they get what they voted for? They got a crying leader who plays tough between tears and totally ignores the will of the people for job creation. Instead the new majority members in the House of Representatives are spending all their time trying to overturn the crucial programs that were passed during the lame duck session of Congress that benefit the majority of the citizens. Have they, the new majority in the House of Representatives, presented any programs that would create jobs? No. These same misguided people who voted for this “new” change are the ones who are being laid off, denied unemployment benefits and are being disrespected and neglected while the representative they voted for are busy looking out for corporations and institutions that are a major factor in the financial crisis in the first place. Those voters must have gotten a covenant or a contract with a “guarantee” that they will have excellent health for all the days of their lives, for they are trying to dismantle the health care reform which provides health care for people with pre-existing conditions, assurance that they won’t be kicked out of their health plan should they become ill and will allow their young adult children to stay on their insurance policies until they are twenty six years old. I wonder what a 5th grader would think of that kind of decision making?
To make certain that these voters would be supportive of the dismantling of health care reform, millions of dollars were spent denigrating the health care reform and using as an adjective the name of the President of the United States, thus, instead of calling it health care reform, they refer to it disdainfully as “Obamacare.” Because 24/7 they devote media time disrespecting the President of the United States, anything with his name preceding it has got to be bad. Knowing the limitations of the average American to do due diligence, to read anything other than the sports section, to watch anything on TV other than sports, entertainment and propaganda purveyors, their brains are sufficiently washed clean of any constructive or self preserving thoughts. They are being programmed to do things that are not in their own best interest. Self preservation is the first law of nature and yet these people are programmed to preserve the top 2% or the oligarchy or the ruling class. How does it benefit the average hard working man to agree to give big tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires when they, themselves have no job security, if they have a job at all. I’ve seen 5th graders who knew how to hold their ground and stand up for themselves. I keep thinking back to what my foreign friend had to say.
Americans have access to the best information on the globe. We have publicly supported libraries with volumes of books on all subjects. Most people have computers in their homes or access to computers in libraries and other public facilities. All of the world’s information is easily accessed on any subject. The background, record and position taken by any politician is right there as a matter of public record. Because that is true, why is it that so many people voted for those whose philosophies are not compatible with their own or that don’t look out for the best interest of those who voted for them? Unlike 5th graders, they no longer have teachers and or parents who are telling them to study or to do their homework, so on their own, they do nothing and learn nothing.
As much as I like to debate issues, I cannot quarrel with my friend who is taking an objective look at Americans. I find I must agree. For the most part, we are not smarter than 5th graders.
By helen on Jan 20, 2011 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
RESPECT AND FAIR PLAY DESERVE A SINGLE STANDARD
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
The right-wing is crying foul because President Obama did not “scold” his guest, President Hu Jintao of China for the country not allowing Lui Xiaobo, the Chinese Nobel Laureate, to go to Norway to receive his prize. How quickly they forget the hue and cry and outrage advanced by the right that President Obama did not deserve the Nobel Peace Prize bestowed upon him during the first year of his presidency because “they” did not feel that he had done enough. This is disingenuous. We have no right to castigate or criticize China for anything when we don’t respect the current President of the United States of America.
How would they like it if China pointed a finger at the United States when Arizona State University invited President Obama to be the commencement speaker and did not feel that he had done enough to be awarded an honorary degree? Previously that same university awarded honorary degrees to entertainers with checkered pasts and others of lesser standing and accomplishments? How would “they” like it if President Hu Jintao asked them why they demeaned American health care reform by calling it “Obamacare” when it is an attempt to be in step with the rest of the industrialized world by providing affordable, quality health care for all of its citizens? How would they like it if President Hu Jintao asked why a member of Congress rudely called out “You lie” while the President of the United States of America was giving his first State of the Union Address?
During the press briefing with both President Obama and President Hu Jintao, an American reporter had the audacity to ask why Majority Leader Boehner turned down an invitation to attend the State Dinner given in honor of President Hu Jintao. Didn’t they realize that that was not an embarrassment to President Obama or President Hu Jintao, but a very demonstrable image of the ignorance of Speaker Boehner? Lacking in leadership and statesmanship, Boehner proved to be an embarrassment to himself and to the Republican Party. Intelligence and leadership makes one rise above the fray of petty politics. What gripe or grievance could Speaker Boehner have with President Hu Jintao of China to cause him to refuse an invitation to attend a State Dinner given in honor of the president of a country upon which we rely so heavily for financial and other reasons? When Boehner is not crying he is shouting, “Hell no.” He is always disrespectful of the President of the United States. If Boehner were in China, he would be severely punished for showing disrespect for the president and the presidency.
When we don’t give or guarantee equal rights for all our citizens, how can we justify being so inflamed over human rights violations in China? Do we ever step back and take a look at our own culture of crudity, violence, disdain, disrespect and exclusion of our own citizens? Where do we have the right to criticize that which we are guilty of ourselves? Shouldn’t there be one standard for behavior and conduct? Why are there more Blacks in prison than whites? Why is the penalty for using crack cocaine and powdered cocaine different for Blacks and whites? Blacks using crack cocaine are given a longer prison sentence than whites are given for using powdered cocaine. Why is unemployment doubled or tripled in the Black community as opposed to employment in the white community? Why do we deny equal rights to the LGBT community? Why, until President Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Bill for equal pay for women for equal work, did we pay men more for the same work? Why are inner-city schools less well funded and less well equipped than the schools in the white neighborhoods? Chinese students excel in education and outperform ALL American students which is an indication that China is doing something right. Why do we have to borrow so much money from China when we used to be the highest producers of goods and services in the world? China is not responsible for our outsourcing of jobs! China is the beneficiary of the greed and corruption of American millionaire and billionaire owners of companies that have sent their work overseas to exploit the American worker by denying them jobs; and, simultaneously exploiting the Chinese workers by not paying them the union wages that American workers are paid.
In short, all these nut cases who are so hypercritical of China should remedy the inequities right here at home. There should be one universal standard for respect and fair play.
By helen on Jan 8, 2011 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
LOOK WHAT SECOND AMENDMENT REMEDIES AND RELOADING HATH WROUGHT
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
All those candidates and public figures who have advocated resorting to Second Amendment remedies and reloading should be charged and executed for treason, high crimes and misdemeanors.
Never in my lifetime have I heard of legislators and their staff being shot and slaughtered like pigs before the advent of the Tea Party, extreme right wing Republicans, Russ Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Pastor James David Manning, Alan Keyes, Rep. Darrell Issa, Rep. Jim DeMint, Bill O’Reilly, Rep. Allen West, Sarah Palin, Rep. Mitch McConnell and most especially Sharon Angle.
Angle is quoted in an article by ABC’s Z. Byron Wolf
ABC's Z. Byron Wolf reports:
Sharron Angle, the Republican candidate for Senate trying to unseat Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid is an avowed supporter of gun rights, but she sees the 2nd Amendment as going much further than ensuring a right to bear arms.
Angle has said the Bill of Rights also authorizes “remedies” for Americans to defend themselves “when our government becomes tyrannical.”
A victory by Democrat Harry Reid, she suggested, could justify those “2nd Amendment remedies.”
Huffington Post has posted an edited clip of Angle speaking to conservative Nevada talk show host Bill Manders – it is not clear from Huffington Post or from Manders’ website when the interview occurred, where Angle says she hopes that the vote in November will be the cure for Reid and 2nd amendment remedies won’t be necessary.
Angle: I feel that the Second Amendment is the right to keep and bear arms for our citizenry. This not for someone who's in the military. This not for law enforcement. This is for us. And in fact when you read that Constitution and the founding fathers, they intended this to stop tyranny. This is for us when our government becomes tyrannical...
No let’s look at the bulls-eye targets put on 20 Congressional districts by Sarah Palin including the district of Rep. Giffords, this is also a significant part of what happened today in Arizona.
Anyone who tries to downplay, minimize and deny the very direct correlation of this vitriolic and inciteful language that led to this mass attempt to assassinate a crowd of people, which also caught in his web a nine year old child, is either ignorant of what learning and knowledge is all about or they are just plain ignorant. If words did not have consequences then we would not need schools. The reason we teach language in addition to the fact that language is how we communicate, language also shapes our thinking and our thought patterns. Fed constantly with a steady stream of covert and overt signals of violent behavior, then this is the desired outcome. Those of you who say you did not mean for your words to be interpreted are lying or else you would not say them. You know exactly what you are saying and why you are saying it. No amount of backtracking of pretending that you "misspoke" will alter the fact of your intent. When Rep. Issa says the President of the United States, Barack Obama is the most corrupt person in America, then this invites disrespect for the President as well as the office of the presidency. When we denigrate the highest office in the land, then we have become a lawless, insensitive herd of barbarians. We have been led to this just as sheep being led to the slaughter, following blindly as lemmings following the leader to the destruction of decency, dignity and eventually our democracratic republic.
Our greatest fear is not Al-Qaida from without, but from you, the lunatic fringe that is grooming and nurturing terrorists right here in the United States; and some of you doing the grooming are seated in Congress.
The blood is on your hands and there is no denying or escaping that. Just as a teacher teaches the time tables which we memorize and retain for life; just as the teacher teaches the conjugation of verbs so that we can use the right tense; just as we are given spelling lessons and definitions of words which we retain forever; and just as we are taught the Pledge of Allegiance and the Star Spangled Banner long before we know what the words mean, we never forget those things that are introduced, repeated and reinforced. That, all you neo-cons, tea baggers, mama grizzles, birthers and defamers is what learning is all about; and, you know it! You are stupid, but you are not dumb. You have sown the seeds of hatred and violence. Now some 18 or 19 innocent people are reaping what you have sown.
I have named a few, but there are many and you know who you are. Your conscience should let you know exactly what you have wrought!
By helen on Jan 4, 2011 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
December 30, 2010
Haley Barbour, Governor
State of Mississippi
400 High Street
Jackson, Mississippi 39201
You have made a Lincolnesque maneuver. Just as Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves in order to preserve the Union for financial reasons, I see you have released the Scott sisters from prison for State financial reasons. It is noted that you were alleged to state that the medical care was becoming too expensive, so to free the sisters, federal government Medicare would then be responsible for their health care needs.
A clever move, yet lacking in clemency, compassion and humanity. For so many years Americans of African descent were brainwashed to believe they should vote Republican because ole Abe had freed them.
Of course, you have stated that you were not aware of violence in Yazoo City, MS. You must have gone through your childhood years asleep because MS is the State where a 14 year old Chicago lad, Emett Till, was disfigured and brutally lynched. The smoke and mirrors won’t work this time because now we are legally allowed to learn to read; and, you know reading makes one literate and able to think analytically and critically.
Mr. Barbour, I noted that you have talked cessation from the United States, the Union, because you apparently believe there is too much government interference and government control. Your act overreaches and makes government have too much control; and, it is both repugnant and repressive.
Please write to tell me which Founding Document gives you the authority to mandate that a citizen MUST have a transplant as a condition of being released from prison. Is it The Bill of Rights, The Preamble or The Constitution itself that gives you this horrific, dictatorial power? This action caused me to scour and devour the three documents mentioned above and no where do I find that a governor has absolute power and authority to require, force, mandate or otherwise use a leverage of freedom based on invasive surgery.
In addition to this being overtly hypocritical on your part, this act defies all standards of efficacy, decency, ethics and morality. What on earth were you thinking? How on earth did you feel your political ambitions would be enhanced by placating a group of people who hold you not only in contempt, but hold you in total disdain. You have only served to make yourself more despicable and diabolical.
When Jack Kervorkian, M. D. assisted dying people in making their transition, at their request, the intention was humanitarian, though illegal. Compassion to alleviate the suffering of the dying was a remedy though not medically acceptable, was an act of empathy and caring for one’s fellow man. Your behavior puts in the category of committing one of man’s greatest acts of inhumanity to mankind.
I prevail upon you, for your own sake and salvation to grant a full pardon and remove the ugly stigma that surrounds your illegal, immoral, illogical and unscientific act. Remove the maniacal condition that the Scott sisters be mandated to have transplant surgery.
Written with a Heavy Heart to Know There are Political Leaders So Lacking in Values and Morality,
Helen L. Burleson, Doctor Of Public Administration
By helen on Dec 16, 2010 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
DAME MARGARET OF DuSABLE’S COURT
A TRIBUTE TO THE LATE DR. MARGARET TAYLOR GOSS BURROUGHS
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
There she stood in all her splendor
Uniquely garbed, slight and slender.
Intricate head gear, proudly wrapped
Upon her hair with its natural nap.
An Original, a style all her own,
As is deserving, became well known.
She had long –range vision,
Unobtrusively fulfilling her mission.
They gossiped, obstructed, thought it couldn’t be done.
Despite their envy and deterrents, determinedly, she won.
A meager grassroots operation,
Humble beginnings, at its inception.
The faithful, the believers, the Dreamers
Quietly moved the earth, excluding the screamers.
Always a willing servant, exalting the Lord,
Uniting His people, as befits His reward.
Seeing a void in the recordings of man,
Directed a self-perpetuating caravan.
God made us all in His reflected glory,
She corrected the myths in the recounting of His story.
The American of African descent so long enslaved,
Obscurity, benign neglect, denied what he gave.
His blood and sweat have nourished this earth.
Honesty obliges us to acknowledge his worth.
The little old coach house bulged at the seam.
Move forward, reach upward, expand the dream!
Started in 1961 at 3806 South Michigan, in Chicago, steeped with Black pride,
A place where Pullman porters had relaxed and imbibed.
A GREAT PEOPLE have great needs-
A larger showcase to display their deeds!
The Community – though, somewhat reluctant,
Petitioned the City fathers to a certain extent.
Can’t stop a landslide when impetus gathers,
Jump aboard, grab a line, NOW TIME is matters!
Throwing out the life line,
She allowed each to define
The role he’ll play in his contribution to mankind.
Altruistically, relinquishing the platform to one at a time.
Though not seeking the spotlight,
The aura around her ‘twas bright.
She’s done more than her share
To promote love, because she cared
She labored long and birthed a Colossus of a baby
In 1973, in Washington Park, to be inherited by Eternity.
As her child grows and reaches majority,
Compelling us to insure a viable entity.
We must always remember the one who delivered,
Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs, on whose shoulders it centered.
By the POWERS VESTED IN US, we, your people exhort
And elevate you, Dame Margaret of DuSable’s court.
By helen on Nov 30, 2010 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
GIVE YOURSELVES A PAT ON THE BACK
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
For those of you who voted for legislators, who now refuse to extend unemployment benefits, if you are unemployed, give yourselves a pat on the back! How did you enjoy Thanksgiving? Did you have a table laden with scrumptious food? If you had a great Thanksgiving, give yourselves a pat on the back.
For those of you who are concerned about American safety and are tired of our getting involved in wars, did you vote for those legislators who refuse to ratify the START Treaty? Maybe you’re too young to remember the scare of Russia and the Cold War. That would explain your vote. Those were troublesome days when the thought of the red phone ringing in the White House at 3:00 a. m. posed a real danger. Hopefully, those frights will not be visited upon us again. If it does, those who voted for those legislators should be proud of their vote and should give themselves a pat on the back. Now we have John McCain who is advocating “regime change” in North Korea. Didn’t we just have an election without outside interference? With the undisclosed funds contributed to right wing candidates by the Chamber of Commerce, it’s a possibility we did. Another war looming on the horizon is nothing short of saber rattling and cause for all Americans to be outraged.
If you are a member of the LGBT community, did you vote for the party that says your equal rights should be delayed? If you are a member of the armed services or want to be a part of it, then I know you’re overjoyed with your vote. The U. S. Supreme Court has decreed that corporations are “people;”yet, the U. S. Congress cannot decide whether members of the LGBT community are people who deserve equal rights. I find this a strange dichotomy.
For those without health care insurance, I’m certain you’ll be proud to know that there is a party that wants to dismantle the health care reform bill, that with tweaking, might lead to the ideal single payer, public option or even universal health care for all Americans just as most people in other “first world” countries have provided for them. If you become incapacitated, you might be unable to pat yourselves on the back; but, you can always ask someone to do it for you.
When the contentious gridlock starts now that Congress is back in session, for those who voted to make this possible, you should draw up a seat to watch the puppet theater being played out. The cast of characters will be obvious, they will be the ones shouting, “hell no.” Tear yourselves away from the TV long enough to pat yourselves on the back.
This will be an interesting time in American history as the rich fight for the right to maintain the status quo as their pockets get fatter; and you, the ones who voted for them to have this “right” should rejoice.
During The Great Depression when it looked like things were getting better, Americans were singing, “Happy Days Are Here Again.” Today, it does not look like things will get better with a divisive Congress eroding what small gains have been made, we probably should sing, “Fools Rush In Where Angels Fear to Tread.” Perhaps a better choice for those who voted for gridlock would be, “When The Saints Go Marching In.” The words, “…Lord, I want to be in that number…” come to mind when I think of the numbers of people who marched lock step to the polls to turn the clock back to some of America’s worst days. Don’t feel bad about your choices, just pat yourselves on the back.
By helen on Nov 16, 2010 | In The Black Perspective of Views of America By Helen Burleson
JUSTICE: AMERICAN STYLE
By Helen L. Burleson, Doctor of Public Administration
“I AM OUTRAGED OVER THIS DEVIL GETTING 6 MONTHS FOR KILLING A YOUNG BLACK MAN,VICK GOT 2 OR 3 YEARS FOR KILLING A DOG.NOTHING WILL EVER CHANGE IN THE RACIST USA.”
AOL News Surge Desk – (taken from the web)
“(Nov. 15) -- Justice was delayed, but in the end it was not denied.
Forty-five years after civil rights worker Jimmie Lee Jackson was slain in Alabama, former state trooper James Bonard Fowler, now 77, has pleaded guilty to the crime. His plea means that Fowler will now serve six months in jail.”
This above quote was sent by an outraged citizen after reading the above article which told of the fate of a state trooper who killed a civil rights worker. The writer’s outrage spurred the writing of this article. Given the blemished history of our country, it seems that nothing ever changes. We have a compendium of laws attesting to the fact that America is a country that follows the rule of law, The Bill of Rights, The Constitution and all its Amendments and the Acts that follow; and, yet Americans of African descent still do not get justice in America.
What does it mean to have hate laws or any laws that are not enforced? Justice, is not only not blind in America, it is sighted and slanted against the African American community. White policemen can shoot young Black men in the back while being restrained and it is called self-defense. A Black man can steal a chicken and get years in prison. The cruel and unusual punishment to which Black men are subjected in America is just par for the course in the American justice system.
America, the blood is so thick on your hands that your hands can never be washed clean.
When, oh, when, America are you going to be genuine and sincere in what you believe? As the world watches us, what do you think they are thinking of us? We send our mighty armies in to dethrone, defrock and dispose of “dictators” in foreign countries and wail about all their injustices and how they are abusing their own people. What sense does this make when America does not hold a mirror up to her crimes against her people of color? What sense does it make to go around the world, coercing and enforcing justice for people in other countries when we don’t apply the same standard to our own people.
America, America, my America, shame on you. You have not crowned thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea. You have taken the cream from Africa and made them the wretched and never have set them free. Conversely, those of your choosing are welcomed at Ellis Island by the Statue of Liberty which bears the inscription:
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
When America will the golden door open for those you took from their homeland, stripped them of their inheritance, their ancestry, their history, their names, their tribes, their family structure and unity, their freedoms and their birthright? When, oh when, America, will you finally rid yourself of your guilt that causes you to hate a people that you enslaved? When, oh when, America will you make amends and restitution for your sins of commission? When, oh when, America will you heal yourself of your perpetual racism born out of your guilt for your sins against a people who have been loyal to you; but, for whom you have not returned that which is due them? When, oh when, America will you stop giving lip service to and apply equally what is considered equal justice under the law to the people that you took away from their Motherland and made them labor for you? When, oh when, America will you yearn to be the country that you purport to be.
[“ Oh, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust"
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!”]
When, oh when, my America?