authorgraph

Friday, November 2, 2018

THE O'JAYS RETIRING? NOOOOOOOOO!

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Pardon my absence. I've been toiling over 4 WIPs and not getting anywhere in them. Though, I must say my 1st effort in horror is moving along.nicely. So here I am to take a break and soak up inspiration. Actually, to inhale gummy bears and blackberry tea. Well enough about my travails.

Noooooooooo! Say it ain't so. One of my hometown R-n-B groups is retiring! I've been listening to their smooth tunes for over 4 decades and now they are gonna rest their pipes.☹ Yes, THE O'JAY's are calling it career and leaving the stage.All the members are in their 70s and have been at it for SIXTY YEARS but they STILL can blow!

They will be going on a farewell tour come May 2019 and will be releasing their final album, THE LAST ALBUM. But to wet out whistles until it drops, they released a single from the album called ABOVE THE LAW. Listen at the link below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JHSK71l7lbk

It has the WHAT'S GOING ON vibes of Marvin Gaye and the same type of message. Oh, man. I'm gonna miss these icons.

I say Happy Retirement! to Walter Williams, Eddie Levert, and Bobby Massey and past member Bill Isles. Fourth member William Powell died in 1977.

I can't say I have a fav song by them. They are ALL so damned good. Damn. They were part of the many-layered soundtrack of my reteen and teen years.

THE O'JAY'S retiring? Damn..I'm getting old.

Okay. okay. Okay. I lied. Here's an oldie but a goodie. The intro, the outfits, the foot work. They are everything.         

BACKSTABBERS

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfznbRucAhE

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PS The group had their lawyers send the then Presidential candidate Donald Trump a cease-and-desist letter to stop using their song FOR THE LOVE OF MONEY during his campaign.

Way to go, men!

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Henrietta Lacks, the hubris of both John Hopkins University and the NIH and the medical community

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/10/11/little-known-black-history-fact-henrietta-lacks/

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This is no surprise. U. S. scientists have always used poor populations on which to test out new drugs or procedures or simply play God. This usually meant BLACK populations but could include those seen as disposable too - The mentally challenged. Any woman back in the day seen as "loose." Any non-White person. Any person who was termed "retarded." The list went on and on  And the atrocities continued into the mid 70s in lots of states.

One instance happened at a hospital where my mom worked as a nurse in the the late 60s to early 70s. To her horror, she noticed that young Black women with two or more children, who came to the hospital to deliver another child, were allowed to remain in the hard labor stage without anything to take the edge off. Hours would go by. She saw these women scream in pain and she would attempt to ease their pain only to be shooed away by the attending.Why was this allowed to happen? Because the state had on record that these women were either unmarried, or of "low I. Q." or were "poor with what was seen as too many kids." Most were on public assistance.  They were seen as unworth and their wants unimportant. So, making them miserable during labor meant a doctor could swoop in, like a White knight, at the last minute with a paper for them to sign to get "pain relief." In actuality, the fine print also stated that while delivering the relief and the patient's child, he could STERILIZE her too!

My mom left that hospital. I'm certain she was threatened not to talk or else. After that, every woman she could reach in our neighborhood she told  not to deliver at Such-An-Such Hospital and to have someone to read over anything anyone hands them at another

Researchers are notorious thieves. There. I said it. They are forever looking to hone in on each others work and steal the limelight, credit and any funds. I know believe me. I worked at a company full of the fragile souls

So, the disrespect shown to Henrietta Lacks when she was alive and after her death and to her family is par for the scientific world. These types love to point fingers, be holier-than-thou because they are doing it for humanity, yadda, yadda, yadda. Please shut up..

It is shameful that the Lacks family is not being paid for their loved one's contributions to society. Literally her contributions, her tissues (The HeLa Cell line) have been sold around the world for cancer research and for AIDS research. Procedures or treatments developed in the last 40 -50 years, were made from her stolen flesh, her amazingly aggressive cancer cells that live to this day in some Petri dish in labs around the globe. These finds have made scientists worldwide hella rich and the Lacks family has received not a coin.

So, if you or your loved one survived cancer in, say, the last half a decade, get down on your knees and thank the Lord and a little Black baltimore housewife named Henrietta Lacks.

You owe her.

P. S. John Hopkins University who STOLE her tissues will name a new campus building after Henrietta. Big whoop! Pay her family, thieves!

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Saturday, September 22, 2018

Yeah. It might get old but not for me!

IT'S SEPTEMBER SO THAT MEANS IT"S EARTH, WIND AND FIRE TIME!

What can I say? You missed a once-in-a-lifetime experience if you never saw this group in concert.

The thrill when the house lights went down. The emcee's voice reciting that famous preamble as the that pyramid floated down from the rafters!.The audience screams! Maurice in his jumpsuit. The rest of the costumes. It was a good era.

Oh yes. It's that time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gs069dndIYk

and a bonus track - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=god7hAPv8f0
Earth Wind and Fire Tickets | Earth Wind and Fire

Earth Wind And Fire LET'S GROOVE Best Of 17 Song Collection NEW SEALED CD 5099748651129 | eBay

Frank Yerby, Black novelist whose bestseller was adapted for the big screen in Hollywood

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/09/05/little-known-black-history-fact-frank-yerby/

Author Frank Yerby Pens Seven Novels In Seven Years - Jet ...

Ever read or heard of the book "The Foxes of Harrow?" It was a smash bestseller back in 1946 and was purchased by a Hollywood studio the same year and was given the H'wood treatment in 1947. It was released as "The Little Foxes."

It was a damned good movie about the in-fighting, treachery and greed of a rich, prominent, White Southern family. My mom loved that film because one of her favorite actresses was in it - Bette Davis. Rex Harrison starred too. I saw it years later and have to admit old Bette put the work in and commanded every scene she was in

But more interestingly, the book it was based on was written by Mister Frank Yerby. A Black man who probably would have had to sit in the "peanut gallery" (the upper mezzanine where it was hard to see the total film as the top part of the screen was partially covered by the friggin' curtains above it), that lovely viewing area to which Black folks were relegated in a movie theater at the time.

Yerby, a Georgia native, a graduate of Paine College and Fisk University, took up writing after he dropped out of the University of Chicago's doctoral program in education. Wow. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall during THAT conversation with his parents.

Anyhoo, Yerby beat the odds and wrote 33 books, mostly centered on White Southerners and established a track record of success.  He left America (um, I wonder why) and settled in Spain. He remained there until his death

Works

The Foxes of Harrow
A Woman Called Fancy
Pride's Castle
The Voyage Unplanned
The Girl from Storyville
Fairoaks
The Dahomean ( 1971 release considered to be his best work)
and many more

Frank Yerby

Sunday, September 9, 2018

The "Negro Motorist Green Book" gets the Hollywood treatment

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/09/07/little-known-black-history-fact-the-real-story-behind-the-green-book-movie/

I'd have no problem with the "Green Book" making a return. If you didn't know, The "Green Book" was a guide named for its originator, Victor Hugo Green, for Black folks only, published by Black folks only, that listed safe places to stop for gas or food or lodging on road trips. It listed "Blacks Only" vacartion spots too. My grandfather used it in planning all our trips here in the States, especially on the ones down South. We were not insulted that the "Green Book" was needed. It helped him make safe choices in lodging and gas stations that were Black owned or would serve us. More importantly, it kept us safe from nutcases who thought harming vacationing Black folks would be a lark.

But the "Green Book" died as did Black establishments that catered to Blacks once the Civil Rights Movement licked in. Shame. Some of those resorts were gorgeous but couldn't survive because former patrons flocked in droves to now permitted but previously forbidden  places. Places that wouldn't have pisssed on them if they'd been on fire previously but now had to grant them access.

I don't recall mt grandfather flocking to those places as he always used to say, "Why would I give my money to people who don't want me in their establishment? Makes no sense. And I surely don't want them fixin' my food."

Wise man.

As for this movie. It should be interesting. Hollywood loves dramas with Black people when they are being treated crappy. Otherwise, it's comedies all the way. In any case,  I do like Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen

The Negro Motorist Green Book - Wikipedia

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Aretha Franklin - The G. O. A. T. of all music

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/08/17/little-known-black-history-fact-aretha-franklin/

Aretha Franklin - United Together - YouTube

So much to be said about Miss Franklin. Not enough room to say it in.

Aretha Louise Franklin was born March 25, 1942 and went home August 16, 2018.

She's been admired, studied, praised and copied and she will continue to influence future generations of performers.

She was the 1st woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

She never was contracted by Motown. Atlantic Records and Capitol Records was where the magic happened. An unbelievable catalog which SHE owned! Not some third party with an agenda.

“Do Right Woman, Do Right Man” and “I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)” were born. “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Ain’t No Way,” and “Chain Of Fools” and on and on.

In life, she didn't do things by halves. So in death expect no less.

Her funeral will be in her hometown of Detroit, MI. on August 31st, 2018. I predict it will be several hours long. Whatever the length of the service, please don't invite Madonna to speak.

Rest In Power, Queen.

Aretha Franklin | Music fanart | fanart.tv

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Was the Lone Ranger based on an actual badass named BASS REEVES, the 1st Black Deputy U. S. Marshal west of the Mississippi?


The Life and Times of Deputy U.S. Marshall Bass Reeves ...

BASS REEVES.. Think DENZEL WASHINGTON in THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN! Hold that image.


Was BASS REEVES the inspiration for the dictional LONE RANGER? I used to be glued to my TV on any given afternoon after school watching episodes of the "Adventures of the Lone Ranger.' The masked man atop his steed, Silver who'd he urge to "Hi Ho, Silver! Away! And let's not forget his "faithful Indian" sidekick, Tonto. Hey, I loved the show. What did I know? It was entertainment. Clean and wholesome. But that's how deceptions work. They are attractive and showy and go down smooth like the sweetest medicine. All the while, the truth the deception is based on is never revealed

But folks somewhere, somehow, always have the receipts!

Enter Bass Reeves. Born into slavery in Crawford County, Arkansas, legend said he beat up the son of the man who owned him after a round of cards. That's bold and brave and very badass. he escaped into Indian Territory where he stayed several years learning many nations languages. Father of 11 children with his 1st wife, killer of 14 assailants in self-defense and a record 3,000 arrests under his belt, the man was bigger than life. So, why wouldn't he have been the model for the LONE RANGER? It's a disgrace the TV character could not have been Black. But then again, White audiences would have smashed their TV sets or had the vapors. A little like many did when Barack Hussein Obama was elected President. Twice.

But I digress.

Yeehaw, Mofos!

Anyhoo, read more about Bass Reeves courtesy of Black America Web at the link below

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/08/03/little-known-black-history-fact-bass-reeves-2/


Denzel Washington̢۪s Magnificent 7 will set the racist ...

Monday, July 23, 2018

The girls of the Leesburg Stockade

https://www.npr.org/2016/09/17/494360257/new-african-american-museum-in-d-c-remembers-leesburg-stockade-girls

http://gpbnews.org/post/girls-leesburg-stockade

Undesirables. Teens. Girls. Black teen girls.

Arrested for demonstrating in Americus, Georgia, the teenage girls were held in a stockade near Leesburg. They had no beds and no working sanitary facilities.


Before this ICE mess, before America became a place that had no problem bringing to the fore AGAIN its penchant for cheering on the ugly in its midst, there was slavery. There was Jim Crow (which hasn't gone away. It's just morphed into mass incarceration). There were cross-burnings. There were lynchings on Sunday afternoons after church at picnics. With children and their SMILING parents in the forefront of the photos taken. Photos taken to be used as POSTCARDS to be sent to loved ones who'd missed the festivities.

But I digress..

Coming back to the purpose of this post is a photo in an exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.. It shows a group of young Black girls (about 15 to 30 of them. A few were as young as 12) who'd been held at the Lee County Stockade of Leesburg, Georgia. They'd been part of protests, one held  in front of a police station; the other when some had tried to buy movie tickets at an a Whites Only theater. It happened back in 1963 during the Civil Rights Movement.. some girls were from Americus. Some were from Dawson. At this point NONE of their families knew they'd been taken or where they'd been taken.

Children taken away? Children arrested? Children n prison? Now, why does that sound familiar? because it's America doing what she's always done. Ah.America. You love repeating an oldie but goodie.

And these children and their families were citizens.

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Anyhoo, this bad look for the land only ended when a photographer involved in the Movement discovered where the girls were. A local activist helped him get into the "prison" by distracting the sentry. He took pictures that later hit the news. The girls were released.

The girls were never brought up on charges but were charged a 2 buck a night boarding fee for their "stay." They'd been held for TWO MONTHS!

So, let the real meaning of "Make America Great Again' sink in. It means "give me the America my White ancestors had" for many. To me it's a myopic cry to recapture a past that was never that great in the first place. Oh, of course for certain folks but never for my ancestors .

Photographer Danny Lyon was working with SNCC in Atlanta when he was sent to Americus to investigate rumors of the jailed girls from the city.


Photos courtesy of Danny Lyon

Sunday, July 8, 2018

My historical romance, DISSENT, as a video, as seen through the eyes of the company of terrific graphic artist, Charles Huggins

This is a little video to showcase that thing I do - WRITE!

This pretty graphic honors my historical romance, DISSENT. Mr. Huggins did a spot on job with the images and even piqued my interest in the story. And I wrote the damned thing!

Enjoy.




Wednesday, July 4, 2018

The unfulfilled promise of the G. I. Bill - It wasn't for EVERY returning soldier

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My maternal grandmother had 12 children. A quarter of them went into various branches of the armed services. So, they thought I would have been interested in "serving." Um, er, nope. Big nope. Even with the benefits. Which I found out were not all that great. Two of my uncles who dodged bullets in battle in WWII were DENIED use of the G.I. Bill. A little thing full of loopholes that benefitted White G.I.s How do you think all those returning soldiers were able to go to school AND buy that split-level in one of those new 'burbs that were cropping up? Not all from hard labor. The burgeoning middle-class was made possible due to the GOV'T PROGRAMS with low interest rates made available to WHITE G.I.s only. A sort of affirmative action shall we say? Black G.I.s were systemically cut out on purpose. You want proof? Go read THE COLOR OF LAW by RICHARD ROTHSTEIN. Great book. He puts it down in print that the discrimination practiced in housing was supported and FUNDED by the U. S. GOV'T.

Why am I not surprised? No one does subterfuge better.

Those brand-spanking new suburbs that popped up just outside big cities were the result of "White Flight" and the G.I. BILL. The sub-divisions were advertised in such a way to assure Whites that no Blacks would be moving in. In fact, any Black person, no matter how well-situated he was to purchase a home in one of these wastelands (yes, I call them that. Any time one needs a car to get to a Dunkin Donuts, it's a wasteland as far as I'm concerned. Why do you think so many suburbanites today fleeing BACK to the city? GENTRIFICATION. But I digress. That's a post for another day.), was not allowed to buy.. Usually through red tape that was so ridiculous that it discouraged the Black buyer from even applying for a loan. And that's if he made it that far..

One of my WWII Vet uncle's who'd married in 1948, had a baby two years later and who'd wanted to take advantage of the G.I. Bill, couldn't due to the aforementioned crap. He had to wait until he and his wife had saved CASH for their split-level in a mostly Black sub-division. The price tag was $17, 500. Not that much in today's dollars but the price in cash was a hill they had rather not had to climb. Their daughter was a PRE-TEEN by the time they'd saved enough to buy their house. Both of them had worked TWO JOBS each for THIRTEEN FRIGGIN' YEARS.

That's not right!

Don't tell me "Well done." Screw "Well done." Why wasn't he afforded the same "in" his White counterparts had been? It would have shaved years off my uncle and aunt's grueling, backbreaking journey to home ownership.

Oh, some did manage to "get in" a house sooner and  and immediately regretted it. The houses were in all-White enclaves. Usually, a White guy who had served with a Black guy in WWII or The Korean Conflict, had become friends . The White guy living in the 'burbs was ready to implement the next stage in his 5 year plan. Meaning? He was set to move into a bigger house because he had sizeable equity and it was time to move on up. He had a ready buyer in his friend. Except due to having signed on the dotted line that he (the White guy) would not sell to anyone non-White, the sale would have to be a "straw" one. Think sale by proxy. No one in the neighborhood would know that good ole Ted was moving (because he and his family would move out under cover of night) until they saw Leroy moving in. Then all hell would break loose.

Read about how the sub-divisions named "Levittown" around the country exploded into ugly, dangerous showdown towns reminiscent of a cross between KKK rallies and lynchings.

Not America's finest hours.

The Levittown, PA sub-division near me erupted in serious hate crime mode in 1958. It was before my time but it was seared into the memories of my family members as every terrifying thing that happened to the one Black family who'd moved there was in print everyday for all to see.

Fire-bombings. Crowds out front of their house chanting N-this and N-that. Rocks sailing through windows at all hours. Yet, these were the kinds of people the current president would call "very fine." I bet not a one, if they are still drawing a bigoted breath (and I am sure their wrinkled asses are alive), thinks they did anything wrong.

But, hey, I am certain "very fine" people, just like politicians and whores, get respectable with age.

So, no, I was never patriotic enough, or naive enough or able to swallow bs without getting sick, to have joined the armed forces. I was, am , not that girl.  But to non-White citizens who could and can, I commend you.

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Friday, June 22, 2018

Katherine Johnson gets a statue erected to her at her alma mater. I ask, "NASA, where is the space station named for her?"

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/06/04/hidden-figure-no-more-nasa-mathematician-katherine-johnson-gets-statue-at-alma-mater/




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Look, the statue is nice. The doll is fine. But name a freakin' space station after her, NASA. The U. S. of  A. would not have reaches the stars if she, and others like her, had not been "computers supreme!" Any time John Friggin' Glenn said to run HER computations against a computer because he TRUSTED HER RESULTS over the machine's, name a gotdamned space station after her before she passes..She's the only one left from her group and she's 99 years old! She has more than earned it! I'm looking at you NASA. I'm out.



Saturday, June 9, 2018

ODUNDE! Hey, you should really go one year. No really!

What is ODUNDE?

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Well, for me it was a fun time whe I could get to Philly to participate. Oh, Lord. I am getting up there. I went to the very first one in 1975. My youngest, very militant, brilliant uncle, Mr. Black Consciousness himself, took me. Me, I had a great time eating, dancing and soaking up the atmosphere.It only was one city block when I went. It is now comprises about 15 city blocks. And I was always mesmerized by the beauty of the offerings given to the water goddess, Osun, at the festival. It has grown exponentially. It takes place Sunday, June 10th, 2018 in South Philly.

ODUNDE was created in 1975 by Lois Fernandez and Ruth Arthur. The festival attracts UP TO 500,000  people annually and is the largest African American street  festivals held in the country.The festival, whose concept originates from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, West Africa, celebrates the coming of another year for  African Americans and Africanized people around the world.  It is an  occasion highlighted by a colorful procession from  23rd and South Streets to the Schuylkill River where an offering of  fruit and flowers is made to Oshun, the Yoruba goddess of the river. ODUNDE is also known for its authentic African  marketplace featuring vendors from around the  world selling merchandise  from many African nations, the Caribbean and Brazil. 

Each year, the second Sunday  in June, ODUNDE takes place covering 12 city blocks.  ODUNDE will be celebrating its 39TH year in the  traditional south Philadelphia location near 23rd and South streets. The festival started in 1975 with a $100.00 grant and neighbors from Fernandez's south  Philadelphia community.  In just  two years the ODUNDE Festival exploded.  The eclectic mix of vendors, entertainment and music started to draw people from around and beyond the region and  each year continues to be no different.  ODUNDE IS FOR EVERYONE, WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU AND YOUR FAMILY THIS YEAR!!!

Learn more about it!

https://www.odundefestival.org/


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And if you are interested and can't make it like me. LISTEN on wurdradio.com from 12pm to 2pm on Sunday





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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Dr. Ruth Simmons - a tireless academic and administrator, now president of Prairie View A&M University

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/05/29/little-known-black-history-fact-ruth-simmons/

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This stately lady has a impressive resume. The daughter of sharecroppers, from Grapeland, Tx., whipped through Dillard University for undergrad, then took on Harvard University for a master's and a doctorate in Romantic Literature.

Cycling through a slew of academic appointment, she landed the position of provost at Spelman College then president of Smith College. With those accomplishments under hr belt, she went on to become Ivy League's Brown University's president where she made waves.

Settled into a hard earned retirement, she was coaxed by her brother to come out of retirement and helm Prairie View A&M University, his alma mater, in a interim presidential position. She liked it. The school liked her. She stayed and is now its current president as of her inauguration on April 20th, 2018. .

Full life, goals accomplished, retired. Then she comes back.

Where dey do dat at?

Black girl magic.

https://www.chron.com/local/education/campus-chronicles/article/Prairie-View-A-M-to-inaugurate-Ruth-Simmons-as-12851070.php

(forgive the crappy cropping of the pic. NOT my doing)



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Saturday, May 19, 2018

That adorbs pajama set from Vicky Secret comes with free matching baggage

https://www.ranker.com/list/companies-in-the-united-states-that-use-prison-labor/genevieve-carlton


In the 5th book in my "FELIG CHRONICLES" series, GAMBIT, I used this ugly issue as the plotline. Felig are a alien race who live off others. They invade Earth and BOOM!Smorgasbord! To make a long story short (Actually, make it long. Go buy the series so far and catch up) the rich, in installment 5, make a deal with the Felig to leave them alone. But at a price. The Felig will be offered Earth's prisoners to consume, and the rich, who have stock in private prisons, will keep them filled to capacity, keep their grip on the public's minds, fill their pockets and feed the Felig at the same time.

Who knew this was playing out in real life to a degree in the U. S. A.? And with "respected" businesses? No. No Felig are involved but prisoners sure are.

Gobble. Gobble. And it ain't even turkey day.

Read how Vicky Secret can afford you cute, satiny thongs for pennies. I dare ya.

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Malcolm and Meghan

I thought I'd post this as Meghan Markle walks down the aisle. She is a bright, young woman; I'd like to think she picked this day on purpose but I doubt if she's that conscious. I wonder what Malcolm would of thought of the event of the day if he were alive?

el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz (Malcolm X) May 19th 1925 - February 21st 1965

Happy Birthday!

"The future belongs to those who prepare for it today."

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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Jackson State University Murders of 1970 and the Kent State University killings of 1970

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/05/14/little-known-black-history-fact-jackson-state-murders/

The Kent State University incident from 1970 (May 4th) got more press, and still gets more press than, the Jackson State killings that happened days later involving Black college students. Kent State involved the National Guard being called in to disrupt student unrest on campus over the Vietnam War, and ended in the killings of 4 unarmed students instead by the Guard.

See the famous photo below.


.Kent State massacre.jpg


The Jackson State killings (May 14th, 1970) sounded a lot like the Kent State shootings on May 4, 1970, but it happened 10 days later at a predominantly black college in the South. Except this time it was the police who fired on the students. And the incident was not about the Vietnam War. City and State police were called in due to reports of Whites who'd strolled through campus had been pelted with rocks. A lot more scenarios erupted which fueled the cops to shoot. They fired for about 30 seconds on a group of students , killing two and wounding 12 others.. 

Rocks versus bullets? Umm. 

To this day this incident is widely ignored.

Hazard a guess as to why?

The reasons for the killings were as thin as tissue paper including authorities saying that a sniper perched on a high building had shot at the police. 

No one was ever brought up on charges though a special commission called the use of force "an unreasonable and unjustified overreaction."

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Phillip GibBs and James Earl Green, the two murdered students


Listen to an NPR segment on this intentionally overlooked massacre;

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=126426361

The more things change, the more they stay the same.


Saturday, April 28, 2018

Little Known Black History Fact: Ohio State University Takeover, April 26, 1968

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/04/26/little-known-black-history-fact-ohio-state-university-takeover/

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I don't recall this event. I was probably obsessing over my Barbies instead. But my dear, militant, youngest uncle, who when his hand wasn't holding an iron to press his jeans was usually clenched in Black Power fist, definitely would have recalled every detail. He was a news-hound extraordinare.

This uproar at Ohio State University was over the lack of a curriculum devoted to Black Studies. This incident led to colleges and universities re-examining why they ONLY taught the dominant culture's legacy and finally implementing a curriculum which told the story of a huge part of the population that had never been considered..

On April 26, 1968, Black students, and those in solidarity, fed up with the absence of any literary or historical, or for that matter, any accurate mention of Black people in the materials being taught, rebelled and took over the Administration Building at OSU. They did so until they got the attention of campus authorities. This was not the only occurrence. This scene was repeating itself across U. S. campuses rapidly. So, university authorities had to cooperate or have protests and stale-mates on their campuses indefinitely as the black students were not backing down.

Hence, the birth of Black Studies as a viable, crucial course of study in institutions of higher learning in the U. S.

What's that they say about squeaky wheels?

I say squeak on.

https://library.osu.edu/innovation-projects/omeka/exhibits/show/civil-rights/sections/minority-relations-at-the-ohio

Related imageMug shot of John C. Evans. Due to his leadership in the take-over of the Administration Building at OSU, he was the only student charged in 1968.. He eventually had all charges dropped against him and graduated in June 1970. I hope his life was not negatively impacted for standing up.


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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Flora Batson -19th-century African-American opera and popular singer who was comparable to the Swedish songbird Jenny Lind

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/04/16/little-known-black-history-fact-flora-batson/

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Flora Batson (1864 - 1906) was a phenomenon in her day. Her nickname was "Double-Voice Queen of Song" because of her soprano-baritone range. A contemporary of Jenny Lind, she toured like her rival and filled music venues around the globe.

Born in D. C. on April 16, 1864, her career began humbly with church singing. It progressed from there. Discovered by John C. Bergen, the manager of the all-Black Bergen Star Concert Company, they worked together and eventually wed. It was an interracial marriage and the tabloids never let up on that fact, or as it was quaintly called "curiosity."

Her career expanded as she performed around the world, including singing before Queen Victoria and Queen Liliuokalani of the Hawaiian Islands. Widowed and remarried,  as musical tastes changed, Flora turned to giving recitals for philanthropic causes and for churches.

Having come full circle in her life, she passed at the young age of 42 in Philadelphia on December 1, 1906. 
Image result for flora batson



Wednesday, April 4, 2018

On the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDl84vusXos

King's "I've been to the Mountaintop" full speech. As you this is the speech I admire.THIS is the King I honor. THIS is the King who'd had enough. THIS is the King they killed. The King who was demanding what he wanted not asking permission THIS was the MAN who had completely transformed into a prophet.Look at his face in the video. The man KNEW something was going to go dowm. He KNEW he was a marked man. The FBI KNEW too.

James Earl Ray (his "killer") was a patsy.

Oh. Did I say that?

King had been asked to come to Memphis to give support to striking Black sanitation workers who were being treated like crap by the city. Black Trash workers were relegated to collecting only the most filthy, disgusting GARBAGE throughout the city; they also were given the most dilapidated garbage trucks to drive. In fact, one of the reasons King came to Memphis was to demand justice for two Black workers who'd gotten CRUSHED TO DEATH in a malfunctioning trash truck and whose families were not ever going to be compensated by the city for their deaths! White workers did not do such work and were not treated in such a manner. The misery was reserved for Blacks. Fair? I do not think so. These guys simply wanted decent wages and respect. They wanted to be treated like MEN.

Many remembrance ceremonies are being held. Some started this past Sunday and many will continue all this week.


https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/04/04/roland-martin-the-sanitation-workers-that-mlk-fought-for/

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/04/04/little-known-black-history-fact-mlk-50/

Image result for mlk


Image result for mlk

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Little Known Black History Fact: Gloria Davy, lirico-spirito soprano

https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/03/29/little-known-black-history-fact-gloria-davy-3/

Image result for gloria davy

Image result for gloria davy

This mellow voice is no longer with us but her birthday was this past March 29th. She would have been 87. The lirico-spirito soprano shared the same dream my mom had but she achieved hers. At what coasts we'll never know but she did get the chance to live it. If my mom had succeeded in achieving her dream they would have been contemporaries. No. Not rivals. There were not enough roles in opera for Black women for them to fight over. And any one of them getting one was a victory for all of them. Like Gloria, my mom would have had to sail for Europe to sing on a regular basis. And probably accept that not having a family would be a reality. So, definitely, no ME. That was the life of a Black opera singer. Either and Or. Oh, there were a tiny few who married and had a family but that was rare. Those who did marry usually wed a spouse who was probably a non-Black man because, let's face it. What Black guy could afford to, or would put his pride aside,  to travel the world with his opera singing wife?


I'll wait.

Thought so.

Davy was one of the few who did marry. She did so several times to European men and had one son.



She was the first African-American to sing "Aida' at the Met.

So Miss Davy reached her pinnacle in Europe "cuz we know how the U. S of .A. of any era has a "quota" on how many Black anything-of-excellence can be recognized and tolerated. Leontyne price was coming up. Marian Anderson had her gigs. And then there was Grace Bumbry. Oh, hunty. To this day  "mainstream" heads explode when they have to witness, and acknowledge, Black success too often. Instead of enjoying or welcoming it, they will take the same energy used to praise it and go out of its way to be nasty to Black excellence.

Ask Misty Copeland.

So, today, three days late, I honor the glorious Gloria Davy. A woman who kept it pushing even when others pushed back.


A Youtube link to Gloria Davy singing a duet with Giulietta Simionato in "Anna Bolena"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fKzThUwlYE

Image result for gloria davy

Sunday, March 25, 2018

The Montiers: An American Story./ A married Black couple of 19th century Philadelphia

https://hyperallergic.com/433774/oldest-portrait-african-american-couple-philadelphia/

https://whyy.org/whyy-presents-montiers-american-story-philadelphia-museum-art/


Reading this article has given me more ideas for my next historical. Plus, it's about a bunch of folks from my hometown. Philly! You have been so provincial at times, and still are, but when you've dropped your cretinous tendencies and gone progressive...You take no prisoners.

For the record, I shall repeat. BLACK people from centuries prior, wherever they were in the diaspora, or from the African continent, were NOT all living as SLAVES.

The African presence was routine in the Western world for many centuries before modern day "scholars" had thought. Many Blacks were far more learned than the peoples of the Western world they encountered. Only when Blacks began being threats, intellectually and a growing vocal force, did insecure Westerners find reason to stunt their growth.

Anyone living today, be it lay person or professional historian, who believes SLAVERY was the "beginning" of a Black presence in the world, or was the only "contribution" Black people made to the world, (and God knows that free labor benefited the world! Do not lie to yourself) needs to READ actual history books written by non-White historians instead of badly written, badly researched "plantation romances" peopled with tragic protagonists concocted by mainstream authors for the "thrill factor."

Yeah, I said it.

It is possible to write a book/romance about mixed race people without a dense layer of the sturm und drang. Not saying life was a bed of roses for them. Far from it. Unfortunately in the Western mind because said mind has been so conditioned to see Black skin as a burden, said mind views EVERYTHING Black as sorrowful. NO. NO. NO.

Joy was found the daily life of Blacks of any station despite the Hell going on around them.

Read the article above for another real facet of Black LIFE, not STRIFE in days past.

Or listen to the discussion at the additional link

As you were.

Image result for the montiers of philadelphia

Monday, March 19, 2018

Another disingenuous ( i. e. LYING) report on diversity in romance writing

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/mar/19/romance-so-white-publishers-grapple-with-race-issues?CMP=share_btn_fb


This article sums up what EVERY author of color goes through when trying to get their romance manuscript considered for publication!

My take?

Traditional Publishers! Try be genuine. I know it's hard but lying ALL THE TIME must be taxing.


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Just a thought. Plus, it won't give you wrinkles

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Former slave. Future educator - Fanny Jackson Coppin


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https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/03/07/little-known-black-history-fact-fanny-jackson-coppin/

Driven by the need and desire to teach the formerly enslaved, Fanny Jackson Coppin began her long journey to realize that dream once an aunt, who'd been saving for a looong time, purchased her freedom.

Fanny's curiosity and purpose served as the fire under her bottom that kept her going as she toiled as a servant while studying. Eventually, Oberlin College, the only institution of higher learning at the time that permitted entrance to both blacks and women, became her first step to progress. She became a pupil-teacher there. Building off that feat, she opened a night school for Freedmen. And the rest is Black history.

Famed Coppin State University is named for her

Read more about Fanny Jackson Coppin at the link above


Image result for fanny jackson coppin

Image result for fanny jackson coppin


info courtesy: BlackAmericaweb.com