Baseball legend Hank Aaron doesn’t think President Obama’s political rivals are that much different than the racists who threatened Aaron with death as he approached Babe Ruth’s home run milestone.
Aaron told USA Today in an interview published Tuesday that he still has the hateful letters he received as he closed in on Ruth’s career home run record 40 years ago this week. He said he keeps them as a reminder “that we are not that far removed from when I was chasing the record.”
"If you think that, you are fooling yourself," he said. "A lot of things have happened in this country, but we have so far to go. There’s not a whole lot that has changed."
According to Aaron, things are not that much different today — the country’s first black president notwithstanding.
"We can talk about baseball. Talk about politics. Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he’s treated," Aaron said.
He added, "We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go in the country. The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts."
Hank Aaron has hit a home run with those comments.
Here are white men poised to run big marijuana businesses, dreaming of cashing in big—big money, big businesses selling weed—after 40 years of impoverished black kids getting prison time for selling weed, and their families and futures destroyed. Now, white men are planning to get rich doing precisely the same thing? …
After waging a brutal war on poor communities of color, a drug war that has decimated families, spread despair and hopelessness through entire communities, and a war that has fanned the flames of the very violence it was supposedly intended to address and control; after pouring billions of dollars into prisons and allowing schools to fail; we’re gonna simply say, we’re done now? I think we have to be willing, as we’re talking about legalization, to also start talking about reparations for the war on drugs, how to repair the harm caused. …
At the end of apartheid in South Africa there was an understanding that there could be no healing, no progress, no reconciliation without truth. You can’t just destroy a people and then say ‘It’s over, we’re stopping now.’ You have to be willing to deal with the truth, deal with the history openly and honestly.
“Never mind that nine in ten gay students report being bullied because of their sexual orientation. Forget that gay teens are more than three times as likely to commit suicide than their peers. And completely ignore that one-fifth of LBGT employees say they’ve been discriminated against when it comes to hiring, pay, and promotions. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) wants you to know who the real bullies are when it comes to gay rights: the gay community itself.”—Jon Terbush, in Michele Bachmann: The gay community is a big mean bully (via theweekmagazine)
This is the same governor who gladly signed the racial profiling bill into law, thus demonstrating, in a concrete way, the difference between between being a gay white and a person of color of any sexual orientation in this country.
Reblogged for the commentary.
which is why calling this “gay jim crow” is an asshole move
I’m like ‘the Tea Party is racist’ and my friend is like ‘Kamau, you can’t call the Tea Party racist. They’re not all racist.’ And I was like, you know what, I don’t need the Tea Party to be 100% racist for me to feel perfectly fine calling them racist. I don’t need 100% racism in the group. It could be way less than 100%. 10% is plenty for me. If the Tea Party is 10% racist I feel comfortable labeling the whole group racist.
Let me explain how that works. If I offer you a shake, a milkshake. I say ‘would you like a milkshake?’ You go “yeah, sure I’d like a milkshake.” I go, ‘okay, here you go, but just so you know it’s 10% shit.’
Oh, now you suddenly you understand how it works. 10% is kinda a lot ain’t it. You go ‘uh oh, that’s too much shit in my shake.
If I put a gun to someone’s head, say, a 30-year-old healthy male, pull the trigger, and kill him, assuming an average life expectancy of, say, 84, you can argue that possibly 54 years of life [were] stolen from that person in a direct act of violence.
However, if a person is born into poverty in the midst of an abundant society where it is statistically proven that it would hurt no one to facilitate meeting the basic needs of that person and yet they die at the age of 30 due to heart disease, which has been found to statistically relate to those who endure the stress and effects of low socioeconomic status, is that death, the removal of those 54 years once again, an act of violence?
And the answer is ‘Yes, it is.’
You see, our legal system has conditioned us to think that violence is a direct behavioral act. The truth is that violence is a process, not an act, and it can take many forms.
You cannot separate any outcome from the system by which it is oriented.
To be white, or straight, or male, or middle class is to be simultaneously ubiquitious and invisible. You’re everywhere you look, you’re the standard against which everyone else is measured. You’re like water, like air. People will tell you they went to see a “woman doctor” or they will say they went to see “the doctor.” People will tell you they have a “gay colleague” or they’ll tell you about a colleague. A white person will be happy to tell you about a “Black friend,” but when that same person simply mentions a “friend,” everyone will assume the person is white. Any college course that doesn’t have the word “woman” or “gay” or “minority” in its title is a course about men, heterosexuals, and white people. But we call those courses “literature,” “history” or “political science.”
This invisibility is political.
Michael S. Kimmel, in the introduction to the book, “Privilege: A Reader” (via thinkspeakstress)
Syria has started moving chemical weapons materials out of the country in the most crucial phase of an internationally backed disarmament program that has been delayed by war and technical problems.
The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said on Tuesday that “priority chemical materials” were transported to the port of Latakia and onto a Danish vessel which was now sailing towards international waters.
Syria agreed to abandon its chemical weapons by June under a deal proposed by Russia and agreed with the United States after an August 21 sarin gas attack that Western nations blamed on President Bashar al-Assad’s forces. Damascus blames rebels for the attack.
The fact of the matter is, it doesn’t matter whether or not you think homosexuality is a sin. Let me say that again. It does not matter if you think homosexuality is a sin, or if you think it is simply another expression of human love. It doesn’t matter. Why doesn’t it matter? Because people are dying. Kids are literally killing themselves because they are so tired of being rejected and dehumanized that they feel their only option left is to end their life. As a Youth Pastor, this makes me physically ill. And as a human, it should make you feel the same way. So, I’m through with the debate.
When faced with the choice between being theologically correct…as if this is even possible…and being morally responsible, I’ll go with morally responsible every time.
Egypt’s interim president on Sunday banned public gatherings of more than 10 people without prior government approval, imposing hefty fines and prison terms for violators in a bid to stifle the near-constant protests roiling the country. The new law is more restrictive than regulations used under the rule of autocrat Hosni Mubarak, overthrown in Egypt’s 2011 uprising that marked the start of unrest in the country.
Another terrifyingly disappointing move from the country of Egypt. The country is often looked to as an example in the MENA region and now there’s this rather alarming set of news. They’re clearly hurting the right to protest in a detrimental way.
As long as there are police officers like corporal Christopher Carter of the University of the Incarnate Word campus police, there will be cause for alarm that freedom and justice in the United States have seriously eroded.
The San Antonio campus cop was placed on paid administrative leave following the shooting of a clearly unarmed and non-combative student. What was the 23-year-old student’s crime? Robert Cameron Redus was shot dead by officer Carter at 2 a.m. for nothing more than making a sarcastic remark toward the officer who pulled him over for speeding..
According to the police report, local KSAT News explains that witnesses affirmed that the cop literally “emptied his gun” into the student without warning.
“I didn’t hear him say anything like, ‘Get down on your hands and knees,’ you know?” one witness explained, “I didn’t hear him say anything. He just started shooting. He emptied the gun on him… Boom, boom, boom.Six shots — five or six.”
Mohammad Haidarasl also witnessed the murder, saying that Redus’ last words were “Oh, you’re gonna shoot me?”
Redus couldn’t believe officer Carter would actually go that far, but Haidarasl added that the cop kept yelling “Stop resisting, stop resisting,” even though it was clear Redus was offering no physical residence, only sarcastic comments.
I think about all the sarcastic comments I made when I was 23, and I’m appalled that someone who has been entrusted with the responsibility of protecting the public from genuinely dangerous people would fire his gun into someone who posed no physical threat.
According to witnesses, officer Christopher Carter shot five bullets into a 23 year-old student who posed no physical threat. Officer Christopher Carter shot five bullets into a 23 year-old student who made sarcastic comments.
“[The] sole motivating factor behind the death penalty is vengeance, not justice, and I firmly believe that a government that forbids killing among its citizens should not be in the business of killing people itself.”—Larry Flynt, who has filed a motion with the help of the ACLU to force the state of Missouri to reveal more information about the execution of the man who shot and paralyzed Flynt several decades ago. Flynt opposes the death penalty for his attacker. (via letterstomycountry)
“In LGBT, everyone talks about marriage. I don’t give a damn about marriage,” he said. “Marriage is selfish, but here I can contribute blood and give to society. Here, you’re telling me I’m a second-class citizen. ‘Your contribution to society is not welcome.’ That hurts more than telling me I can’t get married.”—
Uri Horesh, Arabic Professor at Northwestern University in this article.
I am so fucking happy he’s going to be my professor next quarter.
Dearborn Heights — Police sent a request to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday asking for charges to be filed against a resident accused in the fatal shooting of a 19-year-old Detroit woman Saturday in a case of suspected self-defense gone bad.
Renisha McBride, a 19-year-old Detroit woman, was shot in the head with a shotgun by a resident of a home in the 16000 block of Outer Drive near Warren Avenue early Saturday morning after she is believed to have sought help at the home.
The family of McBride said she went for help after a car accident around 2:30 a.m. Saturday. Her cellphone battery had died, her family said.
McBride’s maternal aunt, Bernita Spinks, said the shooting was not justified even if the resident believed her niece was an intruder looking to break into the home.
“He shot her in the head … for what? For knocking on his door,” said Spinks on Tuesday. “If he felt scared or threatened, he should have called 911.”
Spinks praised the latest police’s decision to seek charges against the resident in the shooting of her niece saying “Thank you Jesus! I’m very happy there is progress (on the case).”
Spinks said the family met with officials from the Prosecutor’s Office on Tuesday. Spinks said she believes her niece was the victim of racial profiling.
“You see a young black lady on your porch and you shoot?” Spinks said. “He killed my niece and he needs to pay for it. He needs to be in jail.
“There was no window broken. My niece didn’t bother anyone. She went looking for help and now she’s dead.”
Preliminary autopsy information from the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office indicates Renisha McBride was shot in the head with a shotgun. Spinks said the young woman was shot in the back of the head as she turned to walk off the porch of the home where she sought assistance.
A vigil for the young woman, who recently started a job for Ford Motor Co., is scheduled today for 4:45 p.m. in front of the home where she was shot to death.
Services for McBride will be 11 a.m. Friday at House of Prayer and Praise, 16520 Wyoming in Detroit.
The U.S. Black-white wealth gap is larger than in South Africa at the height of apartheid. The statistic is all the more remarkable when considering that South Africa virtually mandated gross inequality by law, while in the U.S. the great chasm exists “within a political economy that is at least nominally democratic” and packed with Black elected officials, including “the sitting head of state.”
Jon Jeter, Black in Obama’s America
“The wealth gap narrowed to a ratio of 7 to 1 in 1995 before ballooning to 22 to 1 following a housing market collapse five years ago.
For every dollar in assets owned by whites in the United States, blacks own less than a nickel, a racial divide that is wider than South Africa’s at any point during the apartheid era.
The median net worth for black households is $4,955, or about 4.5 percent of whites’ median household wealth, which was $110, 729 in 2010, according to Census data. Racial inequality in apartheid South Africa reached its zenith in 1970 when black households’ median net worth represented 6.8 percent of whites’, according to an analysis of government data by Sampie Terreblanche, professor emeritus of economics at Stellenbosch University.”
The list of filled with example after example in which the person who desires an ID has to go to his or her local DMV (or whatever it happens to be in the state), bring several forms of identification, fill out a form, and (in most cases) pay a fee.
The fact that this seems like such a low bar to so many middle class white guys — so desperately, painfully simple that there’s no possible way it could make it more difficult for anyone to be able to exercise his or her right to vote — makes my point from the previous post, namely that there’s a sizeable group of middle class white guys who only see things from their own incredibly narrow perspective and thus can’t imagine a scenario where any of the above requirements might prove to be a significant barrier to someone who doesn’t live the same sort of life as those white guys.