By Any Means Necessary

One of the most useless institutions within our government is the electoral college. Maybe it was good in the beginning, but it long ago outlived whatever usefulness it had. For those of you who don’t know, the electoral college was set up by our founding fathers to elect the president and vice president of the United States. What we, the citizens engaged in back on November 4th was actually an indirect election. In other words we voted for the electors who will ultimately vote for the president and vice president.

The electoral vote will happen on December 15th. You can read about the history of the electoral college here.

The electoral college’s foundation, like the proportionment of representation for the House of Representatives is built on the backs of my ancestors....slaves, in other words. Check out the three fifths compromise, used to determine how many representatives are given each state of the union. And as long as I have been able to understand, I have been in favor of abolishing the electoral college and for changing the formula for apportioning congress.

What all this means is that technically, Barack Obama has still not been elected president, despite the vote on November 4th. As I have written previously, there are people out there who are attempting to keep Obama out of the White House by any means necessary.

GOP lapdog, Alan Keyes has filed suit in California challenging Obama’s birth. Now he is joining a couple of other folks who have mounted a campaign to convince the members of the electoral college to not vote for Obama, alleging he is not qualified to be president.

In fact there is a whole web campaign to “stop Obama.” You can read about it here. If you would like the read Keyes’ writ of mandamus, click here.

One of Keyes’ suits is already in the Supreme Court. It will be heard or I should say Obama must file an answer by December 1st, which is tomorrow. Justice David Souter will preside. I consider Souter one of the good guys on SUPCO, so I’m hoping he dismisses Keyes’ suit.

I don’t for a minute believe that the electoral college will go against the popular vote, but it can happen. The electors are not bound, really. They have promised to follow the will of the people, but it’s not law, which makes me nervous.

If this hurtle is successfully passed, then Americans need to think about taking back control of its vote. The time is now for abolishing the electoral college, before some other fool dreams up another way to steal the election and the White House from the people.


Black women, Black Church and Down-lo Men

Are apparently to blame for the defeat of proposition 8 in California, according to New York Times Op-ed columnist, Charles M. Blow. Prop 8, for those of you who don’t know, is the law passed in California banning gay marriage.

Following the vote on election day, white gays and others erroneously faulted blacks for the vote after exit polls showed that 70% of blacks favored the ban. Subsequent reports however, showed that blacks actually made up a very small part of the coalition of voters who voted to ban gay marriage, for which white gays, who turned violent against black gays, during their demonstrations post election day, indiscriminately tossing around the N-word, have yet to apologize.

In his piece today, Blow did a closer look at the situation and came up with some interesting reasons as to why blacks, overall, don’t favor gay marriage. You can read his article here.

To briefly summarize Mr. Blow, the LGBT community should target black women, if they want to change the community mind set against homosexual marriage. His reasoning is that black women overwhelmingly outnumber black men when it comes to voting and going to church. The black church, Blow reasons, is the cause of conservative thinking among black women. So in Blow's opinion, white gays should target black women.

This conservative mind set is the main cause of homophobia within the community. Blow also states that since black women have trouble finding and keeping a man, they are probably not really happy with men marrying other men. In other words, black women don’t like competition. He also sights black women anger with black men who date and marry white women three times more than black women marry white men. Going outside the race for nooky has long been a thorn in the side of black women, according to Mr. Blow.

Blow also notes that black women’s anger is another reason why men who are on the down-lo, don’t want to discuss it with their female sex partners. This lack of communication is the reason behind the growing number of straight black women who are contracting the HIV/AIDs virus.

Blow concluded that white gays need to make the argument one about health rather than sexuality or civil rights, because basically when it comes to black men, the church and white women, black women don’t want to hear it.


Questions I Need Answered...

1. Why is Bush still in office? In light of these extraordinary circumstances that we're living now, why don’t we just buy out his contract and officially sideline him?

Better yet, why don’t we impeach him? If we can impeach a president for getting his swerve on in the oval office with an intern and lying about it, why are we not pursuing the war crimes allegations against Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Ashcroft? They lied to start their war. They’ve attempted to gut the US Constitution. They’ve literally trashed America economically. There are so many grounds, yet only Dennis Kucinich is working to make it happen.

Nancy Pelosi should be handed her head for refusing to pursue the matter. Now it looks like Bush may be working up to pardoning his cronies in crime. The question lingers...can he also pardon himself? And will he?

2. Will wall street CEOs really forego their bonuses this year as Obama has asked? I doubt it. They have stashed so much cash that they don’t have to live in the real world anymore.

3. Who broke Ann Coulter’s jaw? Reports are flying that her mouth is wired shut because of some undisclosed accident...To quote Sofia from The Color Purple.....

”day is a gawd!”

4. What is Mike Huckabee smoking? He says the LGBT community is not being physically brutalized, or getting it’s head bashed in like blacks, therefore gays have no argument. Hmmmm I wonder if he is willing to say that to the faces of the families of all the young men and women who have been killed this year alone, for no other reason than their classmates’ or neighbors’ perception that they are gay? How many transgenders have to die before Huckabee and his ilk understand that there is a problem in this country....LGBT hate crimes are kind of like black on black crime...invisible and not important to “real world America.”

5. Still with Mike HuckaBuck...What’s he snorting along with the smoke? Hucky also says that California prop 8 did not ban gay marriage. He says it simply strengthens the traditional definition of marriage.

6. Why is Ken Blackwell returning to relevance? Don’t republicans understand that he is part of the problem?

7. Are there any black republicans left in the party beside Blackwell, and Michael Steele? And does the Goofy Ole Party really think that installing a black chairman will bring blacks rushing back to the party of Lincoln?

8.With everyone celebrating our suddenly post racial society..why is the main stream media still virtually an all white entity at the top and at night? Seems that one black face usually in a back up role...as in “good evening, I’m_____________ and, so and so is off tonight.” is enough.

9. Why aren’t black women comedians considered good enough or versatile enough to work on Saturday Night Live?

10. How can anyone even consider claiming that Prince is homophobic. I mean, girlfriend has more high heels, make up and booty-out pants than I have owned in my entire life, please. Leave him alone!

11. WTF? Gossip site, Media Take Out is reporting that Whitney and Bobbie are getting remarried. I guess the album ain’t comin’ out is it?

12. Why don’t people just chill with the second guessing of our president elect? We trusted enough to vote for him....Please, let him get into office, before we try to cut him off at his knees, or build statutes in his honor. He’s got to go to work first..


Cincinnati Freestore Food Bank

We're just a couple of days away from Thanksgiving and many, many more people need help this year....I posted this last week and got a great response...so please, I'm asking once again for your help........

The Foodbank has been in dire straits, keeping up with increased demand amid this deepening financial whirlpool in which we're all caught. So with Thanksgiving just around the corner, maybe we can all help out by donating to the Free Store.

And if you're reading this, then you're online and donating is just a click away. Welcome to the virtual food drive for the Cincinnati Free Store Foodbank.

So, please, click on the link and help someone out. Donate at least the amount of money it would cost you to buy gas, in order to go to the grocery store to pick up a can good, in order to drive to the food bank, to donate.

Thank You in advance for your help....

Hey Lieberman, Don’t Drop the Soap

Watching Joe Lieberman on Meet the Press today, attempting to justify his actions of the past couple of years, campaigning for John McCain, he looks and sounds as if he’s escaped retribution. While nearly every democrat in this country is screaming for his scalp, President elect Obama has spared him, allowing him to keep his committee chairmanship. Lieberman is sounding like the consummate compromiser, talking bipartisan politics with Tom Brokaw. Lieberman, in answer to a question actually said he was sorry for some of the stuff that came out of his mouth during the campaign.

He stated to Brokaw, and I’m paraphrasing, that Obama is not just a democratic president, he is America’s president, and “we” all need to help him in the days to come, sounding like a man ready to come back into the fold, not contrite, but sounding like he dodged all cosmic payback that should have come his way with the Obama victory.

But Obama sparred him because the democrats need him. The donkey party is seriously working for a filibuster proof Senate and unfortunately, Lieberman is a part of that, if he can be trusted. And that is the problem, he was elected this past time, as an independent. He’s not a democrat and hasn’t been for quite some time. The proof of that was his working to get McCain into the White House. He is beholden to Obama now because Obama didn’t lop off his head and take his chairmanship away from him, effectively turning him into a eunuch, as other Senators wanted to do.

However, the laws of the universe are always in play. Despite Obama’s magnimity, McCain’s action in this past campaign season, do have consequences attached. His Karma debt is huge and he will have to ultimately pay the piper for his treachery toward his one time party.

Lieberman survives today, but there is no telling what’s on tap down the road. And we will be watching.


Like a Dog with a Bone

The FCC and the Justice Department, just won’t let go. The Foolish Communications Commission and the US Department of Jakeleg Justice has taken nipplegate to the United States Supreme Court. The FCC wants SUPCO to drop everything and overturn a lower court decision which threw out the half million dollar fine against CBS network, levied following the superbowl performance of Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake. You can read about it here.

The lower court ruled back in July that the FCC had lost its mind and gone all the way crazy trying to protect folks from the so called morally debasing performance of Ms. Jackson and Mr. Timberlake. Especially since the problem part of the several minute song and dance lasted just 9/16th of one second. Click here to refresh your memory.

I don’t understand the FCC’s rabid pursuit of this one incident, when there are hundreds of other incidents that can be pursued daily. Things that routinely come out of the mouths of broadcasters with names like Cunningham, Limbaugh, Savage, Quinn, Hannity, O”Reilly to name a few, who are hellbent on slandering or destroying anyone or anything that does not fit their definition of America.

Bill Cunningham, in particular galls me because he hails from my neck of the woods and because I one time considered him a friend. But the things coming out of his mouth these days, makes me wonder about my own sanity in remembering that we had at least broken bread as fellow reporters chasing the same stories back in the 70s. I met Cunningham when he worked as a radio reporter for WCKY, before and during the time he went to law school. I worked at the same time for 55-KRC/Q102 AM & FM. We were rivals, yes, but friendly rivals. There was no hint of the vitriol that he spews now. A lady named Nancy Clark was the main street reporter for CKY, but Cunningham hit the streets regularly, too. All reporters know every other reporter in their city. We spent more than enough time together as rivals to know each other’s personality. I’m truly surprised. Click here for more.

The FCC is another one of those government agencies run amok within the Bush Administration these past eight years. Among the many first things that our new president needs to do is to rein in these idiots by taking back the so called morality protection mandate handed them by Dubya and company. As for SUPCO, well, it has better things to do then to contemplate the fleeting glance of a superstar’s pastie covered left breast.


Raising Racists

Like many blacks of my generation, as well as those who are older, I fear for the safety of Barack Obama. It has been our history that whenever one of us rises up and speaks, we get shot down, sometimes literally losing our life. I think of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King and a host of others who were brutalized because they stood up to challenge the powers that be in our time.

Obama was justifiably given secret service agents long before anyone else because of the racial situation in this country. A racial situation that has not really changed since his election and scheduled ascension to the White House.

The secret service reported that the death threats have increased rather than decreased. You can read it here. Threats were even documented in my own back yard, in the Cincinnati, Ohio suburb of Mt. Washington, at the hardware store on Salem (tried to include the link, but it keeps disappearing, sorry.)

I haven’t written previously in depth about the threats or my feelings because, frankly I’m tired of talking about race and racism. I’m tired, after nearly 60 years on this earth of having to justify my very existence through that prism. I look forward to the day when it is no longer necessary for people like me to have to work twice as hard to prove that we are merely equal.

I’d hoped that Obama’s election would, and ultimately, will change the racial climate in America. But, I’m still not yet convinced that it will. Especially when I see stories like the ones I’ve just mentioned.

I was particularly upset by reports of the 9 year olds on the school bus chanting “kill” Obama, “assassinate” Obama. Public response to this story prompted the mayor to speak out. He wrote a letter to local parents, you can read it here.

I was not surprised by the kids and their chants, because I know that racists are bred not born. Little kids like this are strictly nurtured, not natured. They don’t come out of the womb hating. Kids are like little tape recorders. Families and parents know that you have to be careful about what you say around them.

I remember an incident from my own past, when I was maybe eleven or twelve. I was downtown in Pogues, a high end department store, in a dress, a very pretty dress, dress shoes, hair done, very clean, church going clean, because that was the only way I could go to downtown Cincinnati with my parents or as in this case, with my grandmother. There was a white family standing next to us as a clerk waited on my grandmother. They had a small child who kept staring at me. I had long ago been taught not to stare back. But the kid kept looking and finally turned to her mother, I assume, and asked out loud...

”mommy, is she a nigger?”

I looked up at her mother. She turned crimson in the face and snatched the kid away from our proximity, as if we were the threatening ones. She never apologized, nor answered her daughter’s question, at least within my hearing. The clerk behind the counter turned red, too. But she didn’t say anything either. Nor did my grandmother, but then she had been hearing it longer than I had, and we never talked about it until she got drunk one night at a family party, later that year. Up until that party, I assumed that my grandmother really liked white people. But it was actually liberating for me to find out that she didn’t. She survived by going along and she’d taught me to go along, too, in order to survive. Looking back, I realize that the little girl was trying to figure out her world. She needed to be taught and she was, just not the get along way that we seek today.

Obama’s election is a start on the path to a post racial world. He represents the beginning. He was elected by a coalition of all people, who are making a strong statement that the incidents that I’ve just been talking about, are a thing of the past. I like this path that we are on now. It won’t be without adventure. Race and racism will always be with us in some form or other.

But this election has taught us that what we need to do when it does crop up, is to speak up and to educate our young. They do hear us and they do learn if taught.

And just maybe, like the fear of a black man in the white house, racism will fade away, too, taken to its grave when those of us who lived through it, pass on to our next plane of existence.


Bailout Deja Vu

A couple of days ago, I reluctantly spoke out in favor of bailing out the auto industry, primarily because of the number of workers, both inside and outside of the industry, who will be affected should the big three fail. Yesterday, the CEOs showed up on capital hill asking for the money.

Well, today I have a problem. You want my money, yet you show up by way of a private jet which is part of a fleet of 8 jets for corporate use, that costs approximately 20-thousand dollars per round trip, and you’re crying broke? That’s like my sister asking me for money to buy groceries just after she’s come from the beauty shop spending 100-dollars on her hair and 50-bucks on some fake finger nails. Negro, please. ABC reporter, Brian Ross, busted the CEOs. According to the Ross report, flying coach from Detroit to DC cost 288-dollars. Flying first class cost approximately 800-dollars round trip. Click here.

Okay guys, sell the jet, park the chauffeur driven car, fire your driver, hop a cab to the airport, check your own damn bag, and welcome to the real world, please.

There is obviously some kind of disconnect going on here. Keeping the corporate fleet while laying off workers just does not compute for me. Sounds a lot like the so called Chrysler bailout back in 1978-79.

As part of that bailout, Lee Iacocca and his executives allegedly took pay cuts, forgoing bonuses etc, with Iacocca supposedly reducing his own compensation down to 1-dollar a year. Well, all those salaries and bonuses and perks were deferred and retroactively paid. They didn’t lose a dime or suffer, while some 60-thousand workers were furloughed. You can read more about the Chrysler bailout here.

This current crop of CEOs blame the weakened economy rather than their own short sightedness and ineptness for the problems plaguing them. But the problems started back in the 70's when Toyota began making inroads into the American market. Back then, management refused to adapt to changing times. Click here for more.

These guys need to get a grip. These CEOs need to understand that if you do something stupid like ruin your company, then you lose. The American taxpayer should not have to pay for your silliness. There is a cost to doing business in an unregulated system. The American people told Detroit 40 years ago, what kind of cars it wanted, but Detroit refused to listen, feeding the myth while totally ignoring the reality of the road.

Maybe it is time for the Big Three to deal with the fact that it’s time to pay the piper.


An Ode to Going

November 19th is World Toilet Day. Founded by one Jack Sim, creator of the World Toilet Organization, the national, or I should say, world wide day of advocacy, is to call attention to the fact that billions of people don’t have access to toilets.

In fact, an estimated 2.6 billion people defecate in public. They don’t even have a bucket to use, let alone a heated public or private water closet, something that we, here in America, consider one of our god given rights. But apparently going in private, or sitting on the throne, as some of us call it, with our favorite reading material is a privilege that fully half the world does not have.

Environmental advocates tell us that public defecation contaminates food and drinking water causing a major health hazard. Diarrhea, which is for us an uncomfortable but usually minor inconvenience, kills between 2 and 3 million people per year. That’s more than AIDS, TB or malaria.

For want of a toilet, our health system is compromised.

Clean drinking water is on everyone’s radar, but nobody thinks about the need for improving sanitation, or the correlations between the two.

Jack Sim terms the lack of discussion about sanitation “the quiet embarrassment.” He likens it to the silence that initially surrounded the AIDS epidemic. We just don’t talk about the need for public toilets or improved sanitation. But innovations in the toilet industry are happening.

In Japan, toilet maker TOTO markets a toilet that does everything including checking blood pressure. The World Toilet Summit and Expo will showcase an 'uber-toilet,' featuring an in-seat warmer/cooler, male and female water jets, an in-bowl light and a USB port so you can connect your mp3 player for your soothing tune of choice ($1,200).

You read more about the WTO and World Toilet Day in this week’s TIME Magazine.


Doin’ Massa’s Work

Supreme house knee-gro, Alan Keyes has filed suit in California to block the ascension of Barack Obama to the White House. Keyes has asked the Superior Court in Sacramento to order the State to withhold California’s electoral votes, because Obama is not an American citizen. Click here for the story.

Keyes is alleging that Obama was actually born in Kenya instead of in Hawaii. This rumor has been floating for the past several years, despite the fact that the State of Hawaii has verified that Obama is a natural born citizen.

Keyes unsuccessfully ran against Obama in Illinois for that state’s senate seat back in 2004. He got into the race when the other candidate, Jack Ryan, dropped out because of allegations made by Ryan’s then wife, during an ugly divorce. Ryan was married to actor Jeri Ryan. You can read about that here.

Keyes has also run for president and a host of other offices. The GOP tends to trot him out when they want to bolster their contention that they do in fact have the interests of us urban dwellers at heart. You know how it is....any black face will do in a pinch...according to the GOP.

Question: If John McCain had won the presidency, would this knucklehead be going after him on citizenship? I ask this because McCain was not born in the United States. He is a citizen only through an act of law passed by Congress, I believe in 1923. McCain was born in Panama.

But I guess that is a moot point, since he didn’t win. Sorry, didn’t mean to knit pick.

Bang for My Buck

I am losing my patience with our government. I keep telling myself to put down the newspaper, take a step back and breathe, because it’s not as bad as it seems. What’s got me hyperventilating? Our current financial situation for one. It seems we've given out 2-trillion dollars and nobody in government knows who got the money or how they are spending it.

I’m not happy with the bailouts presently going on. Not because I fear we’re sliding into a socialistic kind of government. We’ve had some sort of socialistic tendencies going on for years, like our progressive tax system, for instance. What bothers me is all this money is being given out in taxpayers’ name, and still, nobody is being held accountable. I mean, who is getting this money...what are their plans for this money...do the CEOs and other honchos still get their bonuses and golden parachutes....are other companies, like AIG still funding getaways for their execs on taxpayer money...was any criteria set before they got the money, or did they just say, we’re broke..give it to us...

That doesn’t work for me or anyone I know for that matter. When those of us in the real world go broke for whatever reason, unless we have a benevolent rich relative to bail us out, we have to sign over everything as collateral including our first born, in blood, on parchment made from the skins of our ancestors.

More and more companies are asking for a handout. Whatever happened to the unregulated market place. What happened to survival of the fittest? I’m being forced to live by those rules. Why not big business and Wall Street? Why do they get to change the rules when they don’t work. Seems to me that if you allow your company to fall into financial ruin, and the workers lose their jobs, then you need to lose your job, your parachute and whatever bonus was promised when you signed on. It’s not fair for CEOs and others to walk away with the money while the workers get furloughed and thrown into bankruptcy. Especially if their back up plan is to ask for taxpayer money to get them out of their self constructed ditch.

Now the auto industry is crying for a handout. I’m in favor of giving it to them, because so much of our economy runs through Detroit. The big three are the major employers. They fund other industries, including our defense industry. Losing any one of the big three would be a catastrophe.

But, they need to give us something, too. If the big three want my money, then they need to build the kind of car that I need. I need a fuel efficient, safe car, that is environmentally friendly like the ones that are manufactured for the overseas markets. The big three also need to return some jobs to America. Let’s manufacture these cars over here, for a change and ship them out, rather than ship them in to the country.

Some of that is actually going on. Half the cars on the road, no matter what the name, are made here. I drive a “foreign” car with a Japanese name that actually rolled off the assembly line in Moraine Ohio between GMC Envoys and Chevy trailblazers. The only difference between my “foreign” car and the Envoy, is the name on the side panel and ten thousand dollars in price. My foreign car had the cheaper price, yet was loaded just like the Envoys and the trailblazers. My car is even roomier than the Trailblazer. Why not cut the price to the American market, too. That Moraine, Ohio plant shut down earlier this year in a cutback move, by the way.

I hope that if and when the government decides to bailout the auto makers, it will get some bang for our buck. Better cars, more jobs with a living wage. Then I would feel better about signing off on these bailouts.


Cincinnati Rally Against Prop 8

Today is an absolutely miserable day in the Queen City. It’s an upside down day with the morning being warmer than the evening will be. Temperatures started falling amidst a chill rain almost as soon as daylight broke over the eastern horizon today.

Never the less I went down to City Hall, at the prescribed hour, to see if anyone was going to turn up for the planned prop 8 solidarity rally. I am happy to report that almost 1000 rainbow clad people braved the icey wind driven rain to take part in nationwide protests against the California vote that banned gay marriage in the sunshine state. The temperature at 1:30pm was 39-degrees and dropping.

The demonstration was orderly and pleasant as protests go. Mounted police were on hand to keep the peace, but the trio of 5-0 Mounties hung around for about 10 minutes before resuming their patrols. Nothing for them to police at the rally. There were several speeches and a moment of silence at 2pm in solidarity with protestors across the country. It was a good day. The numbers in attendance would seem to indicate that more people might have shown up if the weather had only cooperated.

I was troubled by the number of blacks who turned out....besides me...I saw just one other person of color. There may have been more, but everyone was covered, protected from the rain, so it was hard to see just who was who.

I also want to know where all these folks were when Ohio passed its ban on gay marriage back in 2004. You can read about it here. Ohio was the 38th state to enact such legislation and it passed here, almost unnoticed. I wrote about it back then because some of Ohio’s courts were interpreting the law to circumvent domestic violence and common law governance to the detriment of women. The Ohio Supreme Court, however, has since answered those questions.

But to date, no one has taken the State of Ohio to task for writing discrimination into the State Constitution. You will recall that Cincinnati tried it several years ago, too. That amendment passed, then was repealed, due in part to the city losing business and money because of its stated discrimination against the LGBT community.

Maybe the group that gathered today can turn its attention to Ohio and the laws making some of us second class citizens, right here in the Buckeye state. Or maybe, even better, we can all turn our attention on the coming administration in Washington....

Nothing like an executive order or congressional law to make all laws uniform on the issue, rather than the current cross pattern of state laws that exist now.

Obama called everyone to action...so be it...let’s get busy!

Par-Tay! Ya Feelin’ Me?

All right all you Hip Hop Republicans.....Hey all you Black GOP members....Yo, to all you minority folks who don’t like our new president...Now is the time for you to step up into the breach!

The Republican party is in danger of extinction. It’s paler members have broken out the AK-47's and are currently involved in a circular firing squad. They’re cannibalizing their savior, Sarah Palin. They really, really don’t like her. Or maybe they’re just jealous about all the attention she is getting. Anyway, now is the time. This is your hour. Go ahead, jump in, take over. America has voted. We like our politics dipped in chocolate. And the GOP does need some spice in the soup its trying to serve to the public.

The real republicans have jumped ship. They support Obama, or at least are willing to support him for awhile. True non bigoted conservatives are also bolting. A bipartisan government is the utopia we have all been waiting for. But that leaves the party to the delusional right wing fringe who want to continue the marriage of church and state, creating a new talibanic regime on the most western of western soils. These people think they lost the election because their ticket didn’t push their so called moral agenda strong enough. In their collective mind, all the GOP has to do is to get more rigid in its views...fight the culture wars like they did back in the 90's when the moral majority was in its hey day. They want Saint Sarah to be their patron saint, their Joan of Arc, to lead them back to the white house and control.

I have a suggestion for you. Maybe while these folks are home cleaning their guns, depressed and sulking about current events, now is the time for all you young hip hop repubs to take over. Join the party. Stir yourself into that vanilla milkshake. Make it more flavorful and appealing to real America. Let's get rid of the virtual, Beaver Cleaver reality that many republicans can’t seem to delete from their minds.

The Republican party has to survive. America is no good if there is just one party. Americans are addicted to good cop-bad cop. The parties need to bounce off each other, rub against each other like a good bonfire. Oh sure there are lesser parties, like the green party, the communist party, the socialist party, the libertarians. We do have all kinds of political parties in America. We just don’t take them seriously unless there is a big “D” or “R” in front of them. “Ism parties” scare us to death and the only places that Americans like to see the color green is on frogs, in beer on St Patrick’s day and on our money, which is currently looking like more of a rainbow these days.

Someone has got to save the GOP. We can’t let it pass the way of the Whigs, can we? I will be honest, I can’t lead this revolution because I can’t stomach myself being a republican. I’ll admit that I have some conservative tendencies as some of my readers like to point out. And I’m a lesbian, too, so I can fit into the gay ole party. But I think the GOP needs some new minority blood. It needs some brown immigrant blood. It needs a shot of sangria, sweet, marvelous sangria.

So how about it, all you Q-dogs..Ya’ll like a good party. Some of you are even upstanding citizens. You know you know how to make money. Spend it too. Take on this new project. Rebuild the Republican party. I’m sure the Alphas and Kappas would be willing to help out. C’mon, make it more like America. Make America more Barackish. I like vanilla, but it’s the 21st century, time for another flavor. Time for some rap with the Ravel. Let’s chase that glenfiddich with a 40. How about some Miles with that Lawrence Welk.

Now is the time to stir this new chili. Variety is the spice of life, isn’t it?


Cincinnati Freestore Food Drive

My friends at Cincinnati Blog reminded me about the annual food drive that goes on at this time of year. Actually the food drive goes on every day, but if you're like me then you know that other things tend to push that knowledge out of your head until you read something or see something that reminds you. The food bank is never far from my mind because I pass it weekly on my drive down Liberty Street to Findlay Market. Often the line of people needing food snakes around the building and that's not just on holidays.

The Foodbank has been in dire straits, keeping up with increased demand amid this deepening financial whirlpool in which we're all caught. So with Thanksgiving just around the corner, maybe we can all help out by donating to the Free Store.

And if you're reading this, then you're online and donating is just a click away. Welcome to the virtual food drive for the Cincinnati Free Store Foodbank.

So, please, click on the link and help someone out. Donate at least the amount of money it would cost you to buy gas, in order to go to the grocery store to pick up a can good, in order to drive to the food bank, to donate.

Thanks in advance. It helps us all on our Karma debt


Palin! Please Go Home!

You know, I thought that when Obama won the election, that Sarah Palin would go home and quietly resume her gubernatorial duties up in that great white wasteland called Alaska. I gleefully thought,

“Hey....we won’t have Sarah Palin to kick around anymore...”

Silly me. She went home all right, but quietly? Nah...I should have known...quiet is just not her style.

I guess the national spotlight is addicting. Once you get a taste of it, positive or negative, you crave more and more and more.

Maybe McCain should have let her do more press while she was campaigning in order to get it out of her system. I mean, girlfriend has been on a 24/7 jaunt through the media, granting interviews to anyone who asks, attempting to debunk all the stuff that’s been coming out of her mouth for the past couple of months.

She’s not a diva, according to her, while she invites Greta Van Susteren into her kitchen to watch her cook ala Martha Stewart. She’s sorting through the clothes to determine which ones are hers and which ones belong to the GOP....First off, all she has to do is to look for the Walmart tickets...those are hers...The ones with the fancy names on the tickets...those belong to the GOP. The silk boxers have to go back, too...too cold for snow machine races through the wilderness.

And of course she knows that Africa is a continent, not a country, and she reads the same stuff in Alaska that we read in the lower 48. But banning Harry Potter? C’mon! She loves Harry Potter. She apparently doesn’t like bloggers, though.

Damn! When I write about Sarah, I get out of bed, take off my pajamas and go into my office, and sit at my desk, out of respect. After all, writing is my job. It’s what I do. It’s hard to work in bed, unless you’re a hooker. Okay, maybe some days I sit down at my desk in my pajamas, especially when it’s cold outside, that is what I like about working at home. But there were many days during the campaign that I stood in the crowd to witness Palin power, first hand, way out in the suburbs. Then I jumped into my gas guzzling SUV and drove all the way back to the city and wrote about what I saw and heard with my own ears. I had to make those trips because Sarah and John never came to my neighborhood to talk to me and my neighbors. And from what I saw on the telly, Palin never visited any places like my neighborhood, anywhere in the country. I just figured we were not “real” enough for her.

Oh, and she’s going to let GOD tell her whether or not she should run for office in 2012. I thought the witch doctor and GOD were going to handle it for her this time around in 2008. She and that charlatan James Dobson said God would speak on election day. Well, God did speak and so did the American people. But I guess Sarah wasn’t listening too closely, She got the message about going home, she just doesn’t understand that we and maybe God, want her to stay there, permanently.


Mama Africa

Miriam Makeba has passed. She collapsed, apparently from a heart attack, while on stage last night in Italy. I found her a long time ago, when she married and performed with the legendary Hugh Masekela. She taught me the "Click Song." The real name was Pata pata, but it was called the click song because she sang it in Xhosa, a language that uses not only words but clicking sounds made in the throat. I spent a lot of time as a kid trying to master those sounds.

May she rest in peace


Picketing Obama’s Grandmother’s Funeral

Some call him the crypt keeper.....I just call him a low life son of a bitch. Fred Phelps ( he’s no reverend- a reverend is a man of God), has reared his ugly head again. He and his followers are gathering to picket Obama’s grandmother’s funeral in Hawaii. You can read the flyer here.

Phelps has long been a thorn in the side of the LGBT community. I wrote about him a couple of years ago when he started picketing military funerals.

It’s time that the right wing conservative pseudo-Christians, both white and black, start to understand that this stuff is not acceptable.

Similarly, the Mormon Church and it’s support for Proposition 8 in California is also not acceptable. Marriage is a civil union, not a religious one. Marriage can be blessed or sanctioned in the church, but its binding is governed by law and the courts. Separation of church and state is a constitutional right. And as such, we are all equal under the constitution.

Any church that doesn’t pay taxes yet continues to politic, should be stripped of it’s 501C status, period. And that includes ANY church whose pastor stood in the pulpit and preached against Prop 8 and rallied his/her followers to oppose any type of legislation or socio-legal measure.

I’m not saying to censure churches or pastors...I am saying that if a church chooses to politic, or its pastor chooses to use his pulpit in an attempt to effect social change, then it should be made to relinquish it’s “special rights.”

We’re all equal here...pay taxes...first amendment.....don’t pay taxes...obey the law and shut up.

I would really feel better if someone or two would just take Phelps and his followers behind a tree and beat the holy crap out of them. But imposing the law would work better and get their attention. The best way to hurt a bigot....all bigots, religious or otherwise, is in the pocket book.

Blue Cincinnati

364 people living in my neighborhood, voted for John McCain for president over Barack Obama. That number surprised me when I first saw it, but then again, I do live near two major universities. So maybe some of their out of town students cast votes to make their dads happy, and/or to show solidarity for those black republicans who still stand shoulder to shoulder with Ken Blackwell.

5427 people, including me, cast votes for Barack. 55% of Avondale turned out to vote this past Tuesday. And that was only a 2.3% increase of voters over 2006. That’s not a huge difference in turnout, when you think about it.

The percentage difference is the big number. That 5427 represents 93% of the votes cast going for Obama, while John McCain garnered just 6% of the count. I guess the lost 1% represent the confused.

Evanston went 90% for Obama, while McCain did get 347 votes. McCain got 229 votes in Walnut Hills, which is one of the more diverse neighborhoods in Cincinnati, both ethnically and financially.

95% of Bond Hill went for Obama. 18 people went for McCain in the West End. That was his lowest total inside Cincinnati. It was off set by the 4167 vote that McCain got in Mt. Washington. But he still lost the precinct by 1 percentage point to Obama.

In fact, of the Cincinnati’s 26 wards, only one went for McCain, that was Sedamsville/Saylor Park. And they went big for McCain, 57.8% to 39.5%. The turnout was also down from 2006.

Now outside city limits the vote was reversed, with most suburban areas going for McCain. There were major exceptions, Springfield Township, Lincoln Heights, Forest Park, Woodlawn and Golf Manor.

McCain got 9 votes in Lincoln Heights which is an all black city in Hamilton County. Maybe those votes were die hard black republicans taking a stand. Don’t know.

The total vote for the City of Cincinnati was, 98,864 for Obama, 33,289 for McCain. Percentage wise, that’s 73.5% to 24.9% for Obama. That tally represents a 3.8% increase in voters to the polls.

The burbs went 154,573 for McCain, to 109,938 for Obama. 57.5% to 40.8%...and that represents a 5.5% increase in voters to the polls over 2006.

One thing is for sure, there is still a lot of work to do when it comes to voter turnout. If voters won't turn out for this election, then what will they turn out for?


Still Holding My Breath

I knew it was serious when I saw all the young men and women dressed as if they’d only just gotten out of bed and needed to run out for some milk for the baby or smokes to jump start their day. The hood rats were up and out, but not on the corner. Not on this day, election day. The young men who sometimes make me cringe when I look at them, or hear them curse for no reason were up early. Usually cursing is the norm. It’s just the way they talk to everyone. But not today. The way they choose to dress, allowing their jeans to dangle to their knees in order to show off their designer boxers, makes me uncomfortable.

Pricey baseball caps seated sideways on their heads covering their doo rag, which covers their hair. Walking billboards from head to toe screaming out their favored clothing line. The hood rats were not restless this day. This day they were in line ahead of me at the poll, waiting quietly, talking respectfully to their elders, patiently allowing themselves to be directed by the poll officials, because like everyone else they were there to cast a vote for Barack Obama. They got it. They are not lost souls. They understood the importance of what was happening. America was aligning itself with the universe. Karma at work.

As I looked around, Sly Stone was ringing in my ears...”it’s a family affair..” Mothers showed up with their grown kids. They young ones followed, playing musical chairs and chowing down on chocolate chip cookies while the old ones took care of business. The wait was roughly 40 minutes..no one complained or got ugly, or walked out.

I like election days at my polling place.. it’s the one day of the year that you spend a little time hanging out with your neighbors. The conversations were friendly, meandering, passing time until the voting booth became available.

My precinct is like a village, young and old participate and they bring their kids. The poll workers are the same folks. I know them on sight and they know me. Pleasantries fly up and down the table, catching up since the primaries, which was the last time I’d been there or seen them. I flash ID only because it’s the law, pick up my two page ballot and step into the booth.

Voting was easy. The wait until the polls closed was excruciating. Just couldn’t keep myself busy or my mind off the subject at hand. Barack Obama.

I’ve already written about what I was feeling after his victory was announced. I’ve spent the past couple of days crying, thinking and tearing up. It’s been a very long catharsis. One that I don’t think is over even now.

Too many times, we’ve been to the mountain top, or looked out over the river and not been allowed to cross over. I was too young to vote for Kennedy. I was only 13 when he was killed. I remember the assassination of Malcolm X and the killing of Martin Luther King as if it was yesterday. I remember going to bed thinking Bobby Kennedy had won the California primary and would soon be our president, only to wake up and learn that he, too had been killed. I recall the run of Congresswoman Shirley Chisolm. It made me proud, but no one, not even I, took her seriously. The runs of the Reverend Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton were little more than punch lines for late night TV.

Always, one step forward, two steps back. Never in my lifetime did I think a black man or woman could cross over the summit. Right up until the time the vote was called for him, I had trouble believing. Voter suppression, racism, ballot errors..something was going to screw it up.

And you know what.....I’m still holding my breath until January 20th, 2009. So many things can go wrong in the next 75 days.

But even at this point, I’m grateful....thank you white people for putting away fears of the boogie man. Thank you for turning out and finally, finally, allowing us to feel, for the first time, that we are simply Americans, real Americans.

It’s okay.....you don’t have to like us, but by voting for Barack you have finally conceded that all humanity does not necessarily look, act, or talk like you.


McCain’s Fault

I don’t care how much Sarah Palin actually spent during her trips to Neiman Marcus. I don’t care how many “g’s” she dropped, how many words she mispronounced, or how many sentences she mangled. I don’t even give a righteous damn about whether or not she knows that Africa is a continent instead of a country.

John McCain is solely and completely responsible for the debacle that was Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin, vice president select.

He put her in that position, placed her untested and unvetted before the eyes of the world. If he had merely checked her out with his smarts instead of allowing himself to be controlled by the head that dangles on that useless appendage between his legs, before he turned her loose to fall flat on her face, he would have known what kind of personality she had. If he’d spent more than a day with her, McCain might have been privy to the alleged “diva” tendencies that members of his staff are now talking and complaining about.

If he had paid more attention to the goings on of his campaign, instead of turning his running mate over to “handlers,” he might have been able to side step some of the embarrassments to his campaign that are now being laid at her feet.

Instead, he chose to treat her like he treats all women. He has been 100% nonsupportive of anything female during his time in Congress. He dumped his first wife for a younger richer woman. He is still with that younger richer woman, but then again, she has all the money. His body language says he doesn’t like her very much, but he’s become accustomed to a certain kind of easy lifestyle that he can’t afford on his own.

Palin was just another woman to use for his purpose of garnering more power and prestige. In his limited reasoning McCain figured that he could simply swap one female for another...Sarah for Hillary. He used her, hid behind her while she weathered the body punches meant for him. And when he lost, he turned his staff loose to savage her, tossing her out of a moving car on his way back to Arizona, like a used up whore after a 20-dollar blow job in the front seat of a 59 chevy.


President Barack Hussein Obama


Lift every voice and sing
Till earth and heaven ring,
Ring with the harmonies of Liberty ;
Let our rejoicing rise
High as the listening skies,
Let it resound loud as the rolling sea.
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that t he present has brought us,
Facing the rising sun of our new day begun
Let us march on till victory is won.

Now that it’s here.....I’m all cried out. I’ve worn my emotions on my sleeve, crying at the drop of a hat at almost every word that has sprung from the mouth of Obama, since his speech on race, back on march 18th....

Tonight...I’m numb. Happy...smiling on the inside....but no tears...not tonight....I’m supposed to be going to a party...but I can’t move...I’ve lost my words....I’ve lost control of my god given abilities to paint word pictures of my surroundings.....

No tears..I look at the pictures coming out of my television...it looks like New Years...People have filled the streets....rejoicing....

WE’VE GOT A BLACK MAN IN THE WHITE HOUSE...I want to shout....I want to hear gunfire as if it is New Years.....I want Rossi fireworks shooting off the bridges over the Ohio river....

And then I glance at my TV and see reporter Steve Osunsami, another american with a funny name, start crying, as he tried to explain what he was feeling...he choked up on camera...and then I lost it....

Do I believe.....yes, yes, yes.....

America.... sometimes it is the worst of times....tonight...it is the best of times...

My home...



“A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history”. -gandhi

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”. -eleanor roosevelt

“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can't ride you unless your back is bent”-martin luther king jr..

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek”-barack obama

Nothing in my lifetime has prepared me for this day, none the less...I'm ready. So I ask you...


My answer is an emphatic.... YES!



Obama Hatin’

The very people who are holding out for a Johnny Mac victory on Tuesday, are the same ones who will tell you that Phil Mickleson is a better golfer than Tiger Woods.

They refuse to see what is right in front of them. Mickleson consistently loses to Woods because he is not talented enough in his entire game, he is not smart enough to out think Woods around the course, nor is his game plan any good on any given day. Mickleson trusts too much of his game to luck. Most importantly, he does not believe in himself. Woods is a showman, yes. But he is methodical, powered by a killer instinct and knowledge of what he has to do to win. Some days he just plays, other days he has to grind..whatever works, to win. And most importantly, Woods knows that no matter how he plays, that he will win, period.

Woods has singlehandedly transformed the sport of golf, right down to the way his competitors treat their own bodies. The day of the out of shape dough boy golfer is over.

Obama is the same. His inner calm shows that he, too, has an incredible belief in himself and his abilities. His speeches are merely the flourish, the icing on the cake, that covers a very solid plan and ground game. He has literally transformed the way campaigns will be run in the future. He has shown the experts just how to raise money to fund a campaign from the ground up. His game plan was brilliantly simple...put the organization of volunteers and paid workers in place during the primary season in every state, not just the blue ones. By the time Obama won the nomination, it was business as usual for his campaign. They just kicked it up a notch, quietly and effectively.

The allegation that Obama has no executive experience is just plain dumb. Look at his campaign organization. Thousands of people, both paid and volunteer, working smoothly and efficiently. Much better than a number of corporations that I could list. He literally steam rolled every other professional politician who was in the game this time around. And they never saw him coming.

The fact that he refused campaign financing was the only way to go. You can’t beat the man playing his game, by his rules, with his equipment, on his court. You have to change the game. The Chicago Bulls couldn't win a championship with Michael Jordan until they learned to play Detroit Piston Basketball. Then it was game over. Obama has learned to play the game by looking at the mistakes of his predecessors, and by improving upon their technique.

Last but not least, Obama is in front. The polls say he is going to win. I hope he is like that other front runner that I have been talking about. Woods never loses holding the lead going into Sunday. The other golfers make it easy by usually throwing in the towel or choking, game over, Woods wins.

The McCain campaign has gone way past dishonorable. Now it’s just bald face lying to the public, about anything and everything, throwing it at Obama in hopes that some of the mud will stick. McCain hasn't thrown in the towel, publicly. But I think he’s choked, badly. And it happened a couple of months ago....enter Lady Sarah.

Let’s hope that Obama’s hide is made of TEFLON and that he is comfortable with his front runner status. I suspect that he is. His calm, tells me that he is okay, and that this marathon is almost over.

Somebody cue the fat lady....