Smitherman vs the LGBT Community

I want to say up front that I am a "johnny-come-lately to this topic, basically because I have problems with both the LGBT community and the Black Community for the very reasons being debated, racism and homophobia.

I also have a problem with Mr. Smitherman...When he talks, I turn off, because I have yet to find him credible on any topic. I am mystified by his election to head the NAACP. I am mystified that so many others apparently find him to be a man worth following.

I found Jill Benavides comments after the meeting at City Hall to be patronizing, and condescendingly PC with regard to Smitherman. It was as if she were talking about a child. In other words..."let him have his temper tantrum, we love him anyway."

Having said all that......Let’s go there...shall we...

Nowhere on either side of this clueless conversation has the Black LGBT community been talked about or included in the conversation. Smitherman talked about his one white gay male NAACP member, as if having one represents all. That is the same way the white LGBT community talks about Blacks...you know..."some of my best friends are....."

The conversation that took place at City Hall obscures the fact that Black gays and lesbians are totally invisible in Cincinnati. And it’s like that across the country. Much of it due to the queer hatred within the Black community, in addition to the racism in the LGBT community

As Black people..we spend most of our lives being beaten up because of the color of our skin. It’s been a very difficult road to electing our first Black president. We have been killed for simply wanting to be treated equally. Laws were passed to make that happen, yet it’s still a problem in 2009, and you have only to look at two recent incidents of men, white men, killing their families and police for fear of a Black man in the White House.

You’ve got white governors talking of secession...that has got to be the ultimate in white flight..think about it...the same thing happens when a black family moves into a previously all white neighborhood...still....that’s not past history...that’s last week....

Now compound skin color with being gay or lesbian and you go from being beaten down on a national level to somebody, maybe your own brother, sister, mother, father, neighborhood, kicking your ass because you’re a sissy or you’re a bulldagger. You get tired of being a target, you get tired of being called names....for Black gays and lesbians...being called a nigger is not much different than being called queer or fag or bulldagger.

Trust me, you’re not going to run out and join the very community organizations that want you dead...

The white LGBT community doesn’t feel it’s racist, but it is no different, really than liberal whites who like using that.."some of my best friends are....." phrase. Blacks are not taken seriously within the LGBT community, usually being dismissed with a patronizing pat on the top of our fuzzy little heads, with a "thank you for coming...but we know better, what’s good for you..."

The prop 8 vote in California exposed the LGBT racism, when it was erroneously reported that Blacks were the reason it passed....Blacks gays and lesbians who took to the streets to protest the vote, were attacked by white gays and lesbians.....called niggers among other things....The white LGBT community has yet to apologize for their assumptions during that time...

Being Black gay and lesbian means you’re caught up between the proverbial rock and a hard place.

Not feeling accepted by anyone can be a very lonely way to grow up and to live.

Smitherman and the NAACP need to realize that there have always been Black gays and lesbians active within his organization and the civil rights movement. What they need to do is to recognize that the NAACP and other Black organizations are also not inclusive organizations working for all Blacks.

There is no mention of the devastation of HIV/AIDS on the Black Community. In fact Smitherman as a straight man is probably more susceptible to getting the virus than any gay black man at this stage, not because he is gay or down-lo, but because Black straight women are the ones being infected at record breaking rates.

Black women are sleeping with down-lo men and taking the germ back to their straight boyfriends...

And why are men down-lo...because they stand to be judged not men, if they come out..being labeled soft is worse than being called a nigger in the Black community. Witness the death a couple of weeks ago of a 12 year old Black youth, who hanged himself, after being repeatedly called a fag at school.

Why was he called a fag, or labeled soft.....he liked school and his mother taught him to comport himself like a gentleman...he was not gay, by the way....just a clean cut little boy...dead...

It is killing our community...yet....I hear nothing from the NAACP about this massive problem. If the women die...who is going to bear your sons? Or will any white or J-Lo looking Latina woman do?

It is no proof of your so called inclusive tendencies if all you can talk about is one gay white boy as a member. Remember, he can always go back to his community in which by birth he is a master of the universe.

Black gays and lesbians must go home to the same hate that they suffer from in the streets.

The entire Smitherman statement left women out the conversation, altogether. That is typical of the misogyny that also permeates the Black Community.

So, to put an end to this ramble.....

NAACP....you need to talk to Black gays and lesbians first.....you need to address the number one killer of Black people in this country and the world....second only to gun violence...which is another problem in and of itself...

Opening the tent to include all Black people will send a bigger message than a useless conversation with white gay and lesbian organizations with issues of their own to deal with..

It doesn’t matter who turns out to support what....until we recognize the problem within our own community, we will be having this worthless conversation in 2010, 2011, 2012.....


About the New Flu...

A couple of days ago...I asked how this new strain, which the experts said was a swine, bird and human variation...

could come about without manipulation....

Well, after a little research, I've come up with this...Interesting reading from the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy..

Check this Out.........


Just Askin’...........

About this new flu strain.....how does the swine, bird and human flu virus combine into a new and powerful strain without some kind of manipulation?

After the Tuskegee experiments....where Black men were used as human guinea pigs..

After AIDS/HIV...where Black people are being infected at unheard of rates...

And after living in the country where unrepentant eugenicist Margaret Sanger founded Planned Parenthood and created birth control clinics because she felt that black people needed to be eliminated because they were inferior to whites...

For that reason she said the Planned Parenthood clinics should be located in urban neighborhoods....and indeed today...in 2009....nearly all of them are still....

Let me say, that I am and remain pro choice.....I just have a problem with the "white washing" if you will of the historic profile of Margaret Sanger....she didn’t have a problem with her racism....in fact she went to her grave in Arizona as president of the Eugenics organization that wanted to wipe out anyone not Aryan in appearance.........

It’s part of the history that never seems to be taught in schools in America...

As is the truth that Hitler got his inspiration for his final solution of the Jews from Margaret Sanger and her friends’ movement....

Eugenics is one of America’s quieter exports...

This history of the pseudo science of Eugenics makes for interesting reading....

Just Askin’..........

Does the accused Craigslist killer look like Jeff Dahmer....or is it just me.....


Why do they have to kill the Pontiac?

My first car was a 1963 Le Mans Convertible...teal blue...white interior....white drop top...loved that car.....


Golden to the End

The Golden Girls were the reason I got my first and so far only speeding ticket....I was down in Mississippi, visiting friends....flying through the Natchez Trace to get back to catch the Golden Girls on Television....this was before the days of TIVO.....I paid the ticket....$55.00..

Bea Arthur was my favorite Golden Girl....

May she Rest in Peace


Happy Negroes, Unhappy Slaves Redux

A continuing conversation on race in America

Back in February of 2008, I wrote about a conversation that I had with a man, whose name I don’t know, about Black people, white people and the political campaign of Barack Obama, who, at that time was merely running for president. You can read about that conversation here.

Even after the conversation, we continued to talk and a year later, we’re still engaging in our favorite weekend past time and still talking. He’s not happy with Barack as president. He voted for him as did I, but he is unable to be patient. He wants change now, as in "Okay, we put the Black guy in.....now what’s the difference..."

Today we went back to race again coming at the question from differing viewpoints. He has progressed from slaves being happy during slavery to Blacks should be grateful they were taken off the slave ships and allowed to live. According to my friend, Blacks don’t show gratitude for what whites did for them way back when, which was to save our lives from the big bad Spaniards who stole them in Africa, forced them onto ships to survive or die.

He told me that Blacks should be glad nobody forced them to get back onto those ships because the Spaniards would have killed or drowned them rather than transport them. So slavery was something of a godsend for Black people. It was a blessing that we, Blacks today, are not properly thankful enough or respectful for.

That last thing on respect comes from my reading of him as he was telling me this. He didn’t say it, and I don’t want to put more words into his mouth because he is well capable to choking himself. He doesn’t need my help to do that.

As I listened to his theory, it dawned on me that I was hearing a theory that under lay the thoughts and actions of a lot of white people....that Africa, the slave ships, were bad, but getting to America was the good thing for Black people. It saved us.....I asked him....saved us from what exactly.....the freedom of living in your own country, with your own family, on your own land, surrounded by your own stuff? Being free to make your own decisions and not have to worry about whether you put too much starch in your master’s underwear?

How can being brutally snatched to another country to serve and become the property of another man be considered salvation? He still has no answer for me. He can’t seem to get past the "Africa bad, America good" scenario, or that Blacks blame whites for a situation not of their making. I couldn’t get past the "issues" of choice.....once Blacks were unchained and taken off the ships...no one forced white people to engage in slavery....It was a conscientious choice to do that after attempts to enslave Native Americans failed. It was a dehumanizing situation from which we all, both Black and white, still suffer.

So at this point, after a couple of thrusts about the still ongoing institutionalization of racsim that permeates everything in America, we move on, saving this saga for another day. We turned instead to Herbert Hoover’s presidency as the reason why most Black people are democrats. Seems he saw something recently on television that made this connection.

In my friend’s mind he felt that Blacks should have been republican from jump instead of adopting the politics of their owners who were primarily southern democrats. I explained that many blacks were republicans or believed in the politics of abolition and the party of Lincoln, and that persisted well through the 1960s.

I have already chronicled how much of my family was republican. The switch happened when southern democrats left the party to become republicans rather than allow Fannie Lou Hamer to be seated the Democratic Convention, I believe in 1964. I can remember hearing older family members talk about the death of FDR, and of watching his funeral train. They recalled the tears they shed and shock they felt when this man passed. Yet they still called themselves republicans.

I reminded my friend that what Blacks may have felt politically, was different than expressing it, because getting the right to cast a vote was in and of itself, an adventure. It remains that way today despite the voting rights act of 1965. And unless anyone thinks the fight is over, the Voting Rights Act is not a permanent law-it must be renewed every 25 years.

It is also coming before the United States Supreme Court in the next couple of weeks. A Supreme Court that is led by an activist conservative. What will happen is anybody’s guess.

There are any number of possibilities, including striking it down and declaring it unconstitutional....just like affirmative action in California.....In the aftermath....the colleges and universities have once again become primarily all white institutions.....Will that happen to the right to vote?

Don’t know.....Just asking questions....as always....

My conversation with my friend.....to be continued....................


Tea Party Questions....

Okay....So We had a tea party....

And they were protesting because they don't like the fiscal policies of Barack Obama...

They do have that right....after all....this is America....land of the free, home of the brave and sometimes of the monumentally stupid....

90% of those who protested in Cincinnati yesterday....got a tax cut, not a promise...Are they going to give it back.....,, are they going to refuse to allow Obama to pad their paychecks with the rest of us deadbeats?

They marched on City Hall demanding that the City refuse stimulus money...okay...does that mean that all the senior citizens in the crowd are now going to refuse their social security or their medicare?

Aren't those the socialist programs that they are railing against?

Isn't the patriotic thing to do is to not take any of the government's money? Or is picking and choosing which socialistic activity that you engage in the way to do it..

George Bush/GOP socialism okay.....Barack Obama socialism=equals welfare for black people...not okay....just askin'....I'm trying to understand...

How about all those student loans...did they all come from the private sector...or are there some Pell grants thrown in.....you young'uns refusing that money and allowing your parents to foot the bill for your 8th grade education?

They are protesting policies...policies that were put into place by George Bush...

They were silent while Bush took a government surplus and turned it into two wars costing a billion dollars a month...two wars that we still have to pay for and to deal with....Americans are still dying for lies....

They were silent while Bush gave Obama and us.. a 1.6 billion dollar deficit....

Tax laws haven't been changed for 16 years....Obama didn't do that.....

Since these guys are also against education....how could they know that capitalism in its purest form is a consumer driven situation.... a survival of the fittest, darwinian system..the kind of system that is currently killing us and would kill them...

because 90% of the protestors at the tea party are road kill in a pure capitalistic system... and god forbid that we should ever turn to pure capitalism like George Bush tried to do...by privatizing everything including social security...

Hell....how could they know...since they don't like books or learnin'.....that America is a republic...not a democracy....how could they know that democracies lead to tyranny...without fail...

I would say go back and look at the past eight years if you don't believe me.... but would they understand....given their demonstrated level of understanding and comprehension....

How could they know the difference between capitalism, communism, socialism and fascism...they keep tossing those words around with nary a clue as to what they are talking about....c'mon now...the best way to seem smart...when you don't know...is to keep your mouth shut....

For the record....the Boston Tea Party...the last time I checked....was about "no taxation WITHOUT representation" .......well, we have representation in America...trouble is..the protestors don't like their representation.....King George (I love that) wanted to tax the colonies to pay for the French Indian War..And he wanted to do this without giving the colonies representation in the British House of Lords..

Oh yeah...one other bone to pick....the news media said the crowd was diverse....the phrase was....out of the mouth of my old friend at channel 9...who said "diverse...young, old, men, women"....c'mon Tom....you didn't finish it....young, old, men, women, black, white...

Where was the black-white part of that standard diversity phrase straight out of reporting school...

Maybe because the only black people and brown people down there...were the ones protesting the protestors....huh..ya think?


Questions, Questions, Questions and Thoughts

Why are the Spanish in Madrid doing what the US should be doing to the Bush Administration Cabal? Prosecutors in Madrid are going to indict Alberto Gonzales and his top playmates at Justice for condoning torture................

Where is the All inclusive, all powerful black church now that the Obama Administration has joined the fight against AIDS in the Black Community? The government has decided to do something... Why is the Black Church still silent?

Congressional Black Caucus, NAACP, SCLC, Urban League, you need to step up to the plate, too...........

Marilyn Chambers has died at the young age of 56. For those who don’t know the name, she was the baby on ivory soap and then grew up to star in the first porn movie that I ever saw..."Behind the Green Door." Marilyn and Linda Loveless answered some of my questions about sex way back when...

May she rest in peace..

Tour de Force through Europe...check
Visit the Troops.....check
Somali pirates......check
Open relations with Cuba and Iran...check
Black AIDS initiative...check
Don’t Ask...Don’t Tell...working
LGBT marriage....working
Health Care....needs work
Schools....needs work
Iran, Afghanistan.....working
Troops home....not yet
Israel, Palestine.....working
Dummy in North Korea....send in the seals sharpshooters, please!
Prosecution of Bush n Company....?
First One Days in Office....Looking Good

Why is Cheney talking....Did anyone ask for his or Karl Rove’s opinion on anything?

Michael Steele..Yezza Boss!

So Mikey sends out a fund raising letter attacking Obama after the people in his party told him to go after the man directly...In his letter Steele accused Obama of attempting to negotiate with "crackpots." As Steele said everyone knows you can’t negotiate with "crackpots."

Out of his own mouth....because if we can’t negotiate with "crackpots"....then why is anyone talking to the GOP and Michael Steele...........

Speaking of Crackpots...

This tea party movement....uh....saw the video....they really want to burn books? They really think that college brainwashes their kids?

No science.....no books.....no education......and they want to have tea parties.....hmmmmm!

I guess there is no point in me referring to George Orwell, or Brave New World, or Farenheit 451, The Handmaids Tale, or the Wizard of Oz, Animal Farm, The Bible, or the Talmud, or the Apocrypha or the Koran, huh?

Thinking about books and their impact upon me.....

All of em, that I read...but to name a few....

Moby Dick
A Tale of Two Cities
Peyton Place
James Bond...the original 13
Agatha Christie...all 80
To Kill A Mockingbird
A Handmaid’s Tale
PD James....all of em
Octavia Butler...rip....Black female fantasy writer...all of em..
HP Lovecraft....all of em
Edgar Alan Poe....all of em
The Lord of The Rings....when you had to wait for them to be published in America 1957-1960
Three Musketeers, Man in the Iron Mask...(found out Alexandre Dumas was black)
Sonnets from the Portugese...Elizabeth Browning was called "my little portugeses by her husband because she was "dark complected.") I like Robert, too...


Plot to Assassinate Obama in Turkey

Foreign Media is reporting of attempt to assassinate Obama...

Best Black Movies

My brain is still on vacation from the politics of the past two years, that has actually continued to swirl around our first chocolate covered first family.

So while the Obama’s are touring the world, that fool in North Korea is firing missiles that he says sing songs about him into the air, and everyone else is going crazy killing people while the rest of us pretend there is no gun problem in America...

I choose to think about movies....

I got started on this subject because I’m working on an article about the dumbing down of America, kids, and grown ups via education, television and the mass media....

Which brought to memory movies that I needed to see again, one of which was NETWORK, the Paddy Chayevsky story about an anchor man, played by the late Peter Finch who goes crazy on air. The network allows it to happen strictly for ratings. ..The movie is on point for my article and also a prediction of what we are currently experiencing......if you haven’t seen it...you should dial it up and watch and learn....

There is also this movie channel network called THIS....Don’t know who owns it.... It’s playing movies that I had forgotten existed, like...they played back to back.....IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, followed by THEY CALL ME MR TIBBS, followed by THE ORGANIZATION, followed by PRESSURE POINT....all Sydney Poitier movies, where he was not playing the acquiescent Negro.

THIS tends to play black movies and cowboy movies like....Jane Fonda, James Caan and Jason Robards in COMES A HORSEMAN....This channel even plays the old Bat Masterson series with Gene Barry..On Saturday, it plays THE OUTER LIMITS.....watching that program as a kid was one thing...watching it from the future is amazing....

All this got me thinking about the number of best ever movie lists and how many of them contain movies by and about black people....

I found two lists of best 100 that listed THE COLOR PURPLE....I found one list that included Spike Lee’s DO THE RIGHT THING....after that nothing.....other than lists made up completely of black movies....no comparisons or competitions between "regular" movies and our

Regular movie lists always start with GONE WITH THE WIND or CITIZEN KANE...

So without further ado....I’m giving you my top 20 list of black movies...

1. In the Heat of the Night
2. The Defiant Ones (the original)
3. A Soldier’s Story
4. Shaft-(both of them)
5. Come Back Charleston Blue
6. Sweet Back
7. New Jack City
8. Lady Sings the Blues
9. Set it Off
10. Harlem Nights
11. Inside Man
13. Trading Places
14. Car Wash
15. The Mack
16. Man on Fire
18. Spawn
19. Blazing Saddles
20.Cotton Comes to Harlem

This list differs from my favorite all time list which is has more action...in no certain order

1. Aliens
2. Alien
3. Star Wars
4. Raiders of the Lost Ark
5. The Magnificent Seven
6. Seven Samurai
7. To Kill A Mockingbird
8. Moby Dick (gregory peck version)
9. The Three Musketeers
10. Psycho
11. When Night is Falling
12. Bound
13. Matrix
14. The Usual Suspects
15. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
16.The Tin Drum
17. Batman Begins
18. Chocolate
19. La Femme Nikita
20. Gladiator

Honorable mentions: The Count of Monte Cristo, Rage in Harlem, Glory, The Debaters, The Killing of Sister George, Midnight Cowboy and Victor/Victoria, The Sting, Deserts Hearts

My criteria....I will watch these films anytime they are on, can quote lines, and have memorized segments such as when the emperor demands that the gladiator say his name in the arena and gladiator turns and says..........."my name is......etc"