Dick Cheney

The big Dick is in the news again today, claiming not to understand why nobody likes him. Well, Dick, lets take a look at this.

Why don’t I love thee? Let me count the ways
I spite thee to the depth and breath and height
my soul can reach, when you pass within my sight.

For the bigotry that thee spew against me and my kind
I curse thee freely, everyday that I draw breath
while striving to right what thee have undone
in this most beautiful of countries, called the US of A.

As the world turns against us, from praise to hate,
I despise thee, purely, your utterances, your countenance
causes me nothing but pain...

Enough of this....and with great apology to Elizabeth Barrett Browning. I was unsuccessfully attempting to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, as the saying goes.

But a pig is a pig, is a pig....Dick Cheney, who espouses discriminatory policy against the LGBT community while raising and continuing to support a gay daughter, a gay daughter in law and a child born to that couple, is the height of hypocrisy. What’s good for you and your family is also good for the rest of us, Dick.

Cheney, the head neocon in the White House, who is probably more responsible for us going to war in Iraq, than puppet boy, himself. Dubya may have pulled the switch, but Cheney pulled the strings. But sending our troops to war without the proper equipment or body armor, is grounds for impeachment. How many families have been torn apart because the soldiers have to keep going back, over and over, because we don’t have enough troops to fight your war, because you and that other fool, Rumsfeld attempted to do more with less...you know, just like what your corporate buddies have done to America’s workforce..

How many deferments did you use to keep your flat ass out of combat? You have no right to vilify or to short change anybody who serves this country.

Question....How many of our CIA operatives died when you and your cabal decided to out Valerie Plame out of spite, in order to get back at her husband?

Question...Do you feel good about destroying the Constitution of the United States of America?

Your penchant for taking care of your oil buddies, writing policy to protect them, while screwing the very people who put you in office...make you feel good, Dick.

How about the big time no bid contracts that have allowed Blackwater and KBR to rape Iraq and steal billions of dollars...What was your cut, Dick.

I could go on and on and on....But the last thing that ticks me off is you, in your interview, daring to compare yourself to Gerald Ford....Yes, he pardoned Richard Nixon....But Ford, really was a good guy, caught up in political circumstances....you, are no Gerald Ford. He was a human being, unlike yourself.

When I think of you, the word “slug” comes to mind....You know that viscous little wormlike creature that crawls around leaving a slime trail? That’s you Dick.

I wish I could hate you, but “hate” is the one word that my family taught me never to use under any circumstances, in relation to another so called human being.. So I will stop here, because I’m awfully tempted to use that word against you, but I won’t...dammit, I won’t.


The Only Catwoman


No disrespect to Julie Newmar, but Eartha Kitt really was the only Catwoman. Ms. Kitt was the very definition of “uppity.” She never minced words, even telling a president of the United States of America that his war, the Vietnam War, was wrong.

Speaking truth to power got her ostracized from America for many, many years.

She never stopped performing, or speaking her mind. When she finally returned to America in the 80's, she embarked on a whirlwind tour. I caught the midnight show in Chicago one night. The woman was truly amazing, one of those magical, one of a kind performers that take your breath away. The kind of performer who always leaves you wanting more.

Who could ever forget her portrayal of a horny, but sexy senior citizen, attempting to get Eddie Murphy into bed in the movie Boomerang...."Mahrcus dahrling!"

Eartha Kitt was one of those people that you hoped would live forever. She will through her art. But she passed today, felled by a cancer that almost no one knew she had.

She will be missed.


Monday Musings and Pre Xmas Wanderings....


The CEO of Merrill Lynch, some guy I’ve never heard of, whose firm was one of those bailed out by us taxpayers, got an 86 million dollar paycheck...

That’s 57-thousand plus in salary.....15 million in signing bonus...and 68 million in stock options.

We, the taxpayers gave Merrill Lynch more than 10 billion dollars back in October...

Am I the only one feeling like an all day sucker....We should change the name from the United States of America to The Lollipop Guild, because we definitely aren’t in Kansas, anymore


Ya’ll Done Lost Ya’ll Minds, Part 538

Who the hell wants a doll, that can take a dump? You heard me...They’re selling a doll this xmas that shits....It comes with its own special food of green beans and bananas to make it totally realistic for the little girl gifted with this creation. There is even a warning label on the box that says this doll may soil your furniture...because...sometimes it can “hold it” til it reaches the potty....but sometimes, it can’t...

I am absolutely convinced that this “toy” was created by a man, who never took care of his kids or had to change diapers.....

Every woman knows that the worst thing about babies is that they shit and throw up way too much....c’mon now.....

The weirdest thing about this story in today’s Washington Post...is that Baby Alive is flying off the shelves at 60-bucks a pop....


He Did it for Black People

Your outgoing President tells the Washington Times that he should be right up there next Martin Luther King, in the hearts of Black People, when it comes to civil rights. Dubya told the newspaper, this past weekend, that he only wanted to privatize Social Security because he had Black people’s well being in mind. He also said “no child left behind” was his way of helping Black kids learn more, so they can compete with white kids.

Oh....and you can thank him for paving the way for Barack Obama. According to Dubya, he is the reason America is soon to have its first Black president.

I can buy that. Just wished he hadn’t burned down the neighborhood before he invited the coloreds to move in....


Y2K Redux

The histrionics surrounding the world's switch to digital signal TV are reaching Y2K proportions. Trust me, the world didn't end with the change of the century, it won't end if you don't immediately plug in a converter box, if you need one. Look at it as an opportunity to discover...say....books, walks outside, playing in the snow, bird watching....


Don’t they Know When They’ve been Beaten?

The Huffington Post is reporting that Fred Thompson and Mike Huckabee are getting their own radio programs so they can talk about Obama all day everyday...Guess they didn’t get enough during this past election.


Condi Talk

Condoleeza Rice is talking a lot these days. Today she said that Barack may have no choice except to follow Bush’s lead when it comes to foreign policy....I guess not considering the corner that they’ve him painted into. That's why Hill is taking over. She's good at fighting out of tight spaces.

Folks are still trying to get Condi to admit who she voted for, in this past election....They’re assuming she voted with “her people.”


Cheney Unleashes

Big Dick is talking more in these last two months, than he has for the past eight years. He’s not saying anything special, just continuing to spew bigotry and misdirection type bullcrap...

The Dark Side lives, forever


A Xmas Song Sent to me from a Chicago Friend

To the tune of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"

Get packin', Rod Blagojevich
The state's in disarray
The Tribune wants you unemployed
At least by Christmas Day.
The TV pundits want your head
Could there be pay to play?
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy
Save Illinois!
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy.

Good riddance Rod Blagojevich
Your Elvis looks inane,
The Senate's mad, so's Lisa's dad.
You drive us all insane.
Our transit's broke, the state's a joke, The Tollway's one big pain.
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy
Save Illinois!
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy.

Good luck old Rod Blagojevich
The feds have quite a place.
Fitzgerald's poked his nose around
And if he has a case,
George Ryan's moving stuff around
Creating extra space.
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy


Hey, Straight People, Got a Question for You

Question: How old were you when you decided to become straight?

Don’t laugh or look silly and ask me what I’m talking about. It’s a simple question....I’ll say it again.....How old were you, when you decided to be straight?

Folks keep telling me, and I constantly read it throughout the blogosphere, newspapers, and magazines, that being gay or lesbian is a choice....that we choose our sexuality...that we choose our lifestyle...I will agree that we may choose our lifestyle.....but our sexuality......

That is why I’m asking, when did you, heterosexuals, choose your straightness and your resultant lifestyle?

Was it five? Was it fifteen? Was it 21? Or were you born knowing? Tell me please. Inquiring minds want to know.

Did you try being gay first? Did you kiss your best friend and find out you liked it...or maybe you didn’t like it? Did you experiment before making your decision?

Or was being straight the easy, no hassle choice. Was it a choice? And if sexuality was not a choice for you.. that in your mind, you were born straight.....then why is sexuality a choice for gay and lesbians?

If straights are born that way..... then why aren’t gays?

Been reading about the latest fallen Evangel trying to resurrect himself.....Ted Haggard. He’s getting ready to do a documentary on HBO.....In the documentary he reportedly says that he never said he was straight in the first place. But he’s going to keep living as a straight man with his wife.....What is that......born gay....living straight....got caught being true to himself...still decides to live straight....hmmmmmmmmmm

Sounds like he doesn’t have a choice about his sexuality....but he does choose how he lives...He chooses to live in denial of his true self, which is homosexual.

Sexuality, fixed.....lifestyle, mutable....

For everybody, it seems...


Exporting Discrimination

Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, unless...they’re gay

Question.....So, what’s the difference between the United States and the Al Qaeda infected Middle East when it comes to human rights?

Answer.......Not a damn thing!

The United States has found something it thinks it can successfully export.....homophobia. Not content to relegate a large portion of its own population to second class citizenship, the USA wants the discrimination to continue around the world. Thursday the US stood alone among western nations at the UN in refusing to sign the first ever declaration calling for worldwide decriminalization of homosexuality.

America stood shoulder to shoulder with the Islamic nation members and the Vatican, which came out against the measure last month. 66 of the 192 member nations signed the pact. Several countries that didn’t, still mandate execution as punishment for being gay.

While one African nation did sign the mandate, most did not.

Bush Bait and Switch

Administration continues to blatantly discriminate against women

While we were paying attention to the peripheral bull* surrounding the auto industry bailout and the hoopla surrounding Obama’s inaugural invocation choice, Dubya and company tried to slip another one past us.

With no fanfare, the outgoing administration quietly put into place a sweeping new law designed to protect health care workers who refuse to provide services that they say violates their personal beliefs. Click here to read a summary of the rule.

The new regulation cuts off federal funding for any state or local government, hospital, health plan, clinic or other entity that does not accommodate doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other employees who refuse to participate in care they find ethically, morally or religiously objectionable. The measure was championed by conservatives, abortion opponents, and others who want to protect and safeguard workers from discipline or other sanctions, who refuse to do their jobs. Those in favor of the new law say that all it does is to protect the civil rights of health care workers and to stop religious discrimination.

The 127 page “right of conscience rule”, was issued just in time to take effect in the 30 days before regime change in Washington on January 20th. Women’s rights advocates, pro choice groups and many members of congress have condemned the measure by saying it hinders, women’s health services, including infertility treatments, birth control services, end of life services, and halts many areas of scientific research.

The Obama administration is reportedly already looking at all of the “eleventh hour” laws that Bush is putting into place. The new administration says it is working on just how to repeal these measures.

Two senators, one of them Hillary Clinton, have already introduced legislation to repeal this law. It is pending in Congress, now. The proposed repeal law also has many opponents who say they will work to keep Bush’s regulation in place.

The rule, which will cost more than $44 million to put into place, gives more than 584,000 health-care organizations until October, 2009 to provide written certification of their compliance. Those who don’t will have their funding cut off or be required to return funding they have received.

Officials at hospitals and clinics predict the regulation will cause chaos, forcing family planning centers and fertility clinics, as an example, to hire workers, even if those workers oppose abortions or in vitro fertilization procedures that can destroy embryos.

The new rule also goes so far as to prevent or make it difficult for states to enforce laws allowing hospitals to administer the “morning after pill” when a woman has been raped or sexually assaulted, according to officials who have read the regulation.

Bush’s Health and Human Services secretary, Mike Leavitt, who issued the new rule, initially said the regulation was intended primarily to protect workers who object to abortion. But the final rule, has a much, much bigger affect. It also protects workers who do not wish to dispense birth control pills, Plan B emergency contraceptives and other forms of contraception they consider equivalent to abortion. Nor do they have to tell patients where they might go to obtain such care. The rule could also protect workers who object to certain types of end-of-life care or to withdrawing care, or even perhaps providing care to unmarried people or gay men and lesbians.

This new regulation was primarily aimed at doctors and nurses. However, in it’s final form, it offers protection to anyone with a so called "reasonable" connection to objectionable care – In other words, the ultrasound technicians, the nurses aides, the secretaries and even the janitor who might have to clean equipment used in procedures, can refuse to do their job if they feel that their religious and moral rights were violated.


Consorting with the Enemy

The LGBT community and other political activists are hyperventilating about President-elect Obama’s choice of the Reverend Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at the inauguration on January 20th. Warren is aligned with the far right wing of the republican party. Click here to read more.

He is pro birth (my term for pro lifers). He is against allowing gays and lesbians to marry. Those two stances have angered many of Obama’s supporters, who are now questioning Obama’s stance on those two agendas.

This argument points out one of the things that has gone really, really wrong with America. We refuse to listen to people who disagree with our chosen stances. Every debate is not a war. Every argument or disagreement is not the end of a friendship. Differences of opinion don’t mean that you must hate the person who has those different feelings.

What it is, is a learning experience, a chance to expand your thinking. Talking to someone with different ideas forces you to find ways to strengthen and reinforce your own beliefs, or to question them, and maybe, to see the error of your ways. Either way, you learn something.

One of my closest friends is a member of Right to Life, and has been since it was founded in the 1970s by the Wilkes, here in Cincinnati. In fact, she was the one who first told me about the pro life organization. I have never agreed with anything that Right to Life stands for. Ever. We wrote letter after letter to each other and spent hour after hour, over the phone (she lives in Boston) talking and attempting to convince each other. It sometimes got heated. Sometimes, we took a week or two time out, between communications. But nearly 35 years later, we’re still friends, who still argue. We just agree to disagree.

I have similar arrangements with my sisters, my siblings. There are things we can’t talk about to each other. But my sisters are my family. They can tick me off royally, but hate, not listen, can’t do it.

Another pet peeve is the current fad of shouting down the other person or of not waiting for them to finish their point, before you’re jumping in their face. Nobody wins in the crosstalk. It’s a lost conversation....a lost opportunity to learn something, maybe. You can’t always assume that you know more than the other person to whom you’re talking. It's also extremely rude and disrespectful. There is a reason why teachers made you raise your hand before speaking in class.

And that is what drew me to Obama, one of the main things, actually. He listens, to everyone. Then he makes up his mind.

He does not fear hearing something different than what he may believe, even after he has taken a public stance on the issue. We should not fear difference of opinion, either. Because it is simply that.....a difference of opinion. You can still be friends if you want, or not. But you can and should work to implement your beliefs. In the end, however, everybody goes home a little better for the effort.

Bottom line, you learned something....isn’t that what life is all about anyway?


Tuesday Thoughts

We’re Getting There...

Obama two steps away from Presidency

The Electoral College met yesterday and did what they were supposed to do, and that was to cast their votes for the next president of the United States. Obama tallied 365 electorals, while McCain won 178.

But wait, it’s not a done deal yet. After certifying their ballots, the votes were packed up and shipped off to DC, where the votes are officially counted by the US Senate. After this, the new president will be sworn in on January 20th.

When it finally happens, the swearing in will seem anti climactic, because it feels like Obama has been on the job since November 5th.


Still Black, Get Back..

Why do people think that being multi racial is a compliment........that having white blood in your make up is somehow better than being just plain black? That it somehow elevates your social standing... and justifies your success....makes it more understandable......”he’s half white” like that means something..... That is the most racist thinking going around....a modern day jim crow/one drop/paper bag test played by everybody instead of just bourgeoise black folk.....please!

Every single African American in this country is multi racial....and so is every single white American.....Go read your history.....We are a nation of mutts......let’s get over it!


End of Days....

Must be.....never thought I would agree with anything coming out of Newt Gingrich's mouth. He told the RNC to get a life and stop trying to link Obama to Blagojevich...

Will wonders never cease


Handsome Rod

“I ain’t goin’ nowhere..”

After hearing all the stuff coming to light about Illinois Governor, Rod Blagojevich, is anyone really surprised that he says he’s not resigning? There have been crazy, narcissistic, egotistical people in office before...we survived...we’ll survive this joker, too...

Jay Leno had it best....”What’s his name again?...........Blasonofabitch?


Madoff.......Made off with 50-billion dollars....will he go to jail, or back to his country club?


Caroline Kennedy to replace Hilary? Well, she doesn’t need the money, so she can’t be bought. She’s honest. She’s thoughtful. She’s intelligent. She is well liked.

My question is....is she willing to get dirty...Politics....is not clean or pretty and it does take a toll.


Dick Cheney speaks....

The Puppetmaster Surfaces...

Says Obama will thank him for expanding the powers of the presidency to king-like proportions. The big Dick is assuming that anyone talented enough to win the presidency is as corrupt as he and his puppet...


Who knew the Dubya could move! But what's the matter with his secret service...are they tired from too much travelling? Or are they all Democrats?


Cincinnati LGBT Band Members Tapped for Obama Inaugural Parade

Queen City Rainbow Band members slated to march as part of national contingent

Several members of Cincinnati's lesbian and gay marching band will take part in the historic first march of an LGBT band in the inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue, prior to the swearing in of President Elect Barack Obama. The marching band, itself, will be comprised of band members representing lesbian and gay marching bands from around the country. The marchers are members of bands which make up the Lesbian and Gay Band Association.

Cincinnati resident, Lisa D’Amore, who is the current president of the national organization, tells me that the organization participated in both Clinton inaugurals, back in 1993 and 1997, but the unit was seated and did not march. The band performed “America the Beautiful” during the 1993 Clinton festivities, to which the new president gave them a big “thumbs up.”

2009 will be the first time, she says, that the combined band will get to show off its marching stuff. The national organization was formed 26 years ago, while some of the founding member bands have been in existence for nearly 30 years. The Queen City Rainbow Marching Band and Color Guard was formed in 2002, and consisted of just 5 musicians and two flag twirlers. Today the band has 35 marching members with a 7 member flag corp. The Rainbow Band performs at many functions and events throughout the year in Cincinnati and Kentucky, and can be seen every year leading off the Cincinnati Gay and Lesbian Pride Parade which takes place in June, which for those of you who don’t know, is LGBT pride month.

Ms. D’Amore tells me that there won’t much time for sight seeing or taking in other events. Members, she told me, must pay their own way to DC as well help defray the costs of the trip. She says members have to get to Washington by Saturday, undergo grueling rehearsals on Sunday and Monday, march on Tuesday and return home on Wednesday. Tuesday is the really long day for band members. D’Amore says inauguration day will begin at 3am so that the band can take its place in the lineup on time.

Ohio has two other LGBT marching bands; The Capital Pride Band in Columbus, and The Blazing River Freedom Band in Cleveland. Both of these bands formed in 2003. In addition, Indiana has The Pride Indy Marching Band and Color Guard which formed in 2005. If you’d like to know more about the LGBT bands and organization click here.


Consequence Management Response Force

Special Elite Force Training to handle Terrorists Attacks and Natural Disasters

Freedom of Information requests filed and released by the ACLU have begun shedding some light on just what the military is up to, by stationing active combat troops on American soil.

Over the next three years, the Army plans to activate and train 4700 troops for specialized domestic operations, according to the report. As I reported a couple of months ago, the 3rd Infantry’s 1st Brigade Combat Division has already been assigned to North Command at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs. This unit recently spent most to of its time patrolling Iraq. Two more units will be added over the next two years, one unit at a time.

General Gene Renuart, who in charge of North Command says the unit’s purpose is to help manage large scale catastrophic events. He said the troops are basically medical personnel, chemical decontamination experts, engineering specialists and logistics people. The General said that was not true that the troops would be used in police fashion, crowd control situations against American citizens.

However the American Civil Liberties Union and other citizen groups are not convinced.

“One of our founding touchstones of democracy is that the military is not to be used against the American people. Over a hundred years ago that sentiment was put into law in the Posse Comitatus Act, which prohibited the military from being involved in law enforcement functions. Our hope is to find as much information as we can to challenge whether this is appropriate or not and to create some public awareness about what’s going on”- Mike German, American Civil Liberties Union.
German, who is national security counsel for the ACLU, reiterated that these units were combat troops not civil police and in direct violation of the Posse Comitatus Act which has stood as law since 1878.

During a recently held symposium, under questioning from the audience, General Renuart did admit that North Command routinely assists with law enforcement, mainly intelligence and anti drug efforts, in conjunction with 45 other federal police agencies.


Black Women in WWII, Still Fighting for Recognition

The story of the 6888th Central Postal Directory WAC Battalion

Buffalo Soldiers, Tuskegee Airmen, Black men, bigger than life historical figures. Their stories told over and over. Their exploits dramatized on television and in movies. Rightfully celebrated as warriors and men who helped to create this country we call America. In recognition of their accomplishments, President Elect, Barack Obama, has invited the remaining members of the Tuskegee Airmen to attend his inauguration, in January. That invitation should also be tendered to the members of the Women Army Corp, the Black WACs of World War II.

There is always a distaff side to history. The 6888th Central Postal Directory Women Army Corp Battalion, was the only unit of Black women to serve in the European theater during the great war. As were all units, it was a segregated unit, created specifically to handle a monumental problem overseas. You see, the mail, the packages, the letters and boxes of food, sent to the troops, piled up in a warehouse in Birmingham, England for the first few years of the war. The mail was not making it to the soldiers on the front lines. The workers, both soldiers and civilians assigned to process the mail, were overwhelmed by the volume of their assigned task.

The 6888th CPD, was quickly formed. The unit was comprised of women from all over the country, who had signed up to serve. My own great Aunt, Sargent Bessie L. Robinson, was one of them. If she hadn’t been a member, then I don’t think even I would have known of their existence, or their contributions to history. I had the privilege of delivering the keynote speech at their first reunion, after the war, in June, 1979, in Cincinnati, Ohio. By this time, they were old, but still full of life, sparkling as they recalled the memories of their great adventures.

The women trained at Ft. Olgethorpe, in Georgia. Among other things, they had to complete five mile hikes in full battle gear, which included, pistols belts, gas masks, canteens, packs and helmets. They made these hikes under, what the army calls, active war conditions, meaning, somebody was shooting at them, or blowing up stuff, while they did it. After training, the battalion boarded a special train to New York, and Camp Shanks.

From there, they took a ship to Europe, and on February 12th, 1945, they landed in Scotland and boarded a train for Birmingham, England. Battalion Command was entrusted to Major Charity Adams, who died in 2002.

The unit’s job was to clean up the backlog of mail. They accomplished it in record time, working two eight hours shifts, per day. They processed 65,000 pieces of mail per shift, in order to get the job done. The 6888th CPD also served in Rouen, France as Allied troops liberated that country. They also pulled duty in Paris, France before returning home to the USA. Three members of the unit died while stationed in France.

While overseas, they learned about the death of FDR They shook hands with America’s only Negro general at the time, Brigadier General, Benjamin O. Davis. He greeted them when they arrived in England. When they returned to America, the 6888th was disbanded. The women dispersed. Some stayed in the service. Some retired and went home. The war was over, the country was still segregated, and there was very little said or written about their tour of duty.

The women who are still alive, are well into their 80's, now. The unit totaled 824 women and 31 officers. My aunt, Sgt. Bessie, passed away several years ago. The small part of history that I have presented here was passed down orally. A couple of books have been written, however, the official web sites, detailing the exploits of women in war, glance over, or fail to make any mention what so ever, of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion. Take nothing away from the Tuskegee Airmen. They deserve their acolades. I'm just saying that someone should remember their sisters, too.


Bengals Bashing

Let me say right up front, I’ve never been a Bengals fan. In the beginning, back in 1969, to me, they were the “new hotness, ” as in finally, Cincinnati has a professional football team to go along with the Redlegs and the Royals.

Cincinnatians my age learned football from the Cleveland Browns who fielded players with names like Marion Motley, Lou “the toe” Groza, Leon Kelly, and of course, the great, great Jim Brown. They played smash mouth football against the Giants, or the Baltimore Colts. Anyone remember Johnny Unitas or Sam Huff? I grew up with these guys. They taught me the game because it was the only thing on television, besides preachers trying to convert me and trick my parents into sending them money. There was no cable. We had to watch football, or go play quietly in our room with our broken toys, since it was too cold to play outside. The Bengals came along in 1968 or 69. I was already a half formed adult. My attitude was set. Bengals!? Please.

The Bengals were brought to town by the man who owned the Browns. He brought them with no creativity, nothing to imply that they were anything other than a shadowy reminder of the real team that he left on the banks of Lake Erie. I mean look at it....the Bengals have the same colors as the Browns, only with stripes. The Bengal name may have been historical because there was a Cincinnati Bengal team in the American Football League in the 30's, but the name still echoes back to the Browns. The names begin with a “B” for those of you who can spell. And from the start, there didn’t seem to be the same amount of love, respect and support from the Brown family that went into their original creation, the Cleveland Browns. There never seems to be enough money or trust to bring absolute quality football to the Queen City. Something was always lacking, even when they went to the Superbowl.

There were good guys, good talented guys who suited up for the Bengals. I know several of them, and they’re not going to like what I’m saying. But I think, based on what I’ve heard them utter over the years, they believe things could have been better, too.

I still carry a sweet spot for the Browns, but my allegiance changed with my city of residence. I lived in Chicago with the Bears, the Chicago Bears of 1985-86. The shufflin’ crew. The baddest defense in the whole wide world, period. Superbowl Champions. The only team that pulled me out of the house to go to a victory celebration downtown in subzero weather with 3 million other happy fools.

When the Bears weren’t playing, there was Michael, no last name needed. I’ll save basketball for another day because Cincinnati treated its pro basketball team like ugly step children, too.

But back to the Bengals, I’ve been home for several years now and I’m not watching as much football as I used to. When I do, it’s probably not the Bengals. I keep giving them a shot at my heart. I will turn them on, but I usually find something else to do or to look at midway through the first quarter.

I mean, I tried to watch when Carson was anointed quarterback god. He was okay. But after his injury he kept hanging his passes exposing his receivers to the possibility of dangerous hits from d-backs. I cringed and had to turn away when TJ and Ocho went up for the ball. I breathed a sigh of relief when they came down okay.

I’ve seen season ending hits, many times....Paul Warfield, for example. I don’t like guys to be hurt when a return to basic quarterback mechanics could solve the problem.

I was happy when Marvin Lewis was brought to town on a lot of levels. But I don’t know what’s going on there. Seems like his authority is being undermined by the front office. Seems like the same guys who are choosing pitchers for the Reds are selecting the Bengals new talent.

Or maybe it’s in the water. I don’t know. But play like I saw on Sunday means I’m going to be watching someone else for a long time to come.

My alma mater is kicking butt....Orange Bowl? Who’da thunk it? I may even watch on New Years day. And there is always women’s sports.

Cincinnati even has a female professional football team, founded by none other than Icky Woods, himself. The Cincinnati Sizzle plays some for real football. I was skeptical until I went to a game. They play at La Salle High School on Saturdays. I was impressed and finished the season out watching them play. And since I’m a people watcher, it was really cool to watch the young men in the crowd give the women player respect, not just woman respect.

The Sizzle is good football. They don’t play for money, although they deserve it.

But what to do about the Bengals? I don’t know....fire the team and start over? I would keep Marvin, give TJ some real respect, keep Hall, Dahani Jones, Gathers and a few others....and find someone who can teach tackling. With few exceptions they don’t seem to know how. Up front blocking on offense is also a problem. Quarterbacks can’t connect if the pocket keeps collapsing
especially since our QB Carson is not a scrambler. Did I say dropped balls, too?

Maybe they can sit in on Bearcat practice...find out what Kelly is doing...then go try it out on Sundays. At this point, it can’t hurt.


Thank You, Clarence Thomas

The United States Supreme Court takes up the issue of President elect, Barack Obama’s citizenship on Friday, thanks to Justice Clarence Thomas. Thomas has submitted a previously dismissed lawsuit filed in New Jersey for a conference of justices.

Back in November, Leo Donofrio filed suit against New Jersey’s Secretary of State, Nina Wells, seeking to stop the presidential election. A lower court threw out the suit. It was re-filed and Supreme Court Justice David Souter dismissed it. Read here.

Well, not to be out done, Mr. Donofrio took his petition to Justice Clarence Thomas, who apparently figures the suit has some merit, so he has taken it to a conference, where all the justices will sit down and decide whether or not to hear the case. That is what is happening tomorrow.

In addition, supporters of the many lawsuits that have been filed seeking to overturn’s Obama’s election will gather on the steps of the Supreme Court to show support and to demand action.

Most of the lawsuits, as I have written before, are challenging Obama’s birth certificate as well as his birth in Hawaii, despite the fact that the state says he is a citizen, legally born in the United States. Click here to read interview with suit filer Alan Keyes. Suits have also been filed in Hawaii, Illinois, California, Kentucky and Ohio, Pennsylvania as well as the aforementioned New Jersey.

Donofrio vs Wells challenges Obama’s apparent dual citizenship as a violation of the United States Constitution. While Obama’s mother is American, his Kenyan father, reportedly had British citizenship.

I asked a legal expert friend of mine who also happens to be a retired Federal Judge, to explain what could happen tomorrow. I was told that an emergency review of Donofrio was already in progress and that the Justices could order an emergency stay of the electoral college vote slated for December 15th. They could call for oral arguments. Or the justices could simply rule in Donofrio’s favor and order penalties levied for the violations. Could the Justices overturn the election? Yes, they could.

My friend also thinks that the Justices hearing Donofrio vs Wells has about a snowball’s chance in hell. But you never know.

Maybe SUPCO likes affecting elections, now that they've done it once..How about another?

Ya think?



The first time I saw Odetta, she was in concert with Harry Belafonte. Mr. Belafonte was my 11th birthday present from my grandmother. It was a live concert. We had tickets, just me and Mother.

We both loved Mr. Belafonte. I don’t know when my grandmother discovered him, but I found him amid the grooves of a two record set titled “Harry Belafonte Live at Carnegie Hall.” I played it over and over and over.

So when he came to town, of course my Grandmother and I went. It was a surprise for me. She even made me a new dress. My Grandmother made most of my clothing in those days. She was, after all a professional seamstress and I was her first grandchild.

I learned from the program that the late great Miriam Makeba was supposed to share the stage. But a man came on the stage and said that Ms. Makeba was ill and that the folk singer Odetta would fill in for her.

Well, I didn’t know who Odetta was, and I really didn’t care at that point. I was doing a grown up thing, sitting in a concert hall, my grandmother and me, like two specks in a glass of buttermilk, listening to real singers sing and perform for me and my grandmother. No need to pretend as we sat in her living room listening to a record. I was in heaven.

Odetta came to the stage. A big strong black woman with natural hair in a long brightly colored skirt with a guitar, which she held up high on her frame, almost under her chin. She reminded me of my other grandmother in stature only younger. She looked down, not at the audience, resting on her instrument. She was very still, never made eye contact. She didn’t have to. Her voice moved mountains within me. She sang folk songs, some I knew, some I didn’t. I loved them all.

The crowning grace was the song “A Hole in the Bucket” that she performed with Mr. Belafonte. It’s a funny song about a lazy man who didn’t want to do his chores. Odetta played the long suffering wife. That song in her voice, plays in my head to this day, word for word. I can sing it as if it was yesterday and I was eleven, at my first concert, at a music hall. Happy.

Rest Ms. Odetta, may you find peace.


Another Back Hand Swipe at Women

In the waning days of his administration, President Bush is attempting to push through several policies that will hurt women. One of them, the “right of conscience” proposal allows doctors, nurses and other health care officials to refuse to participate in any procedure they consider morally or religiously objectionable. Administration officials say the rule allows Christians to say “no” to procedures like abortion. You can read the press release here.

This is not a new policy. It has been around in some form since the 70's. What is new is that this new wording in the proposed regulation is drawn broad enough to include artificial insemination and birth control procedures. In other words if a pharmacist does not want to fill a prescription for birth control pills for a married woman, he is not required to do so. Similarly, if a doctor has a problem with lesbianism, he can refuse to artificially inseminate a couple if they come in trying to have a child.

This rule also increases the number of health care workers covered, meaning that a person whose only job is to clean the medical instruments used in a procedure can opt not to do his job if that procedure offends him morally or religiously.

The Bush plan, according to reports, is to get the measure on the books by December 20th. It will apply to any facility or hospital receiving federal funds.

The American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association are already on record as opposing the new language of this proposal stating that the rule could compromise and does politicize women’s health.

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology
issued a statement calling for limits on the so called “moral objections “ clause..

“Although respect for conscience is important, conscientious refusals should be limited if they constitute an imposition of religious or moral beliefs on patients [or] negatively affect a patient's health," ACOG's Committee on Ethics said. It also said physicians have a "duty to refer patients in a timely manner to other providers if they do not feel that they can in conscience provide the standard reproductive services that patients request.”

Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt says the issue is solely focused on abortion and he will issue the new order before the December 20th deadline.

Enactment of the proposal by the deadline will tie President elect Obama’s hands and will mean that Congress will have to act to rescind the order.


World AIDS Day

Did you know that if black Americans, all 13% of us, were a separate country, that our country would rank 16th in the world in HIV/AIDS infections? African Americans represent 49% of all new infections worldwide, according to the Center for Disease Control.

Did you know that black women in America between the ages of 25 and 49, are the group at highest risk for contracting AIDS?

Did you know that black women are infected primarily through their heterosexual partners...men who sleep with other men?

Today is World AIDs Day....the world has 33 million cases of infection, more than 70% of it happening in sub Saharan Africa.

Black AIDS Day is February 7th.....Educate yourself...for your own protection...I say this as someone who has lost too many friends and a couple of relatives to this vicious virus..