Category Archives: The Post-Racial Life

The First Briton….Was Black

DNA is destroying the artificial construct of race. The oldest known skeleton found in England is of a dark skinned man with blue eyes. Which means lighter skin developed much much more recently than previously believed…By about 30,000 years.

DNA Tests on an Ancient Skeleton Reveal the First Briton Was Black, Not White

‘It really shows up that these imaginary racial categories we have… are not applicable to the past at all,’ said one project worker.

The first person known to have lived in Britain had dark skin, according to cutting-edge scientific analysis from London’s Natural History Museum.

In research that may raise eyebrows among modern-day white nationalists, scientists used DNA analysis from Britain’s oldest nearly complete skeleton to reveal he had dark skin and blue eyes.

The skeleton was discovered in 1903 and is known as Cheddar Man, after the area where he was found, which is also where the cheese originated. He’s believed to have lived more than 10,000 years ago and is the oldest Briton to have ever had their DNA tested—with some surprising results.

The research suggests that light skin developed in ancient Britons much later than previously thought, with experts commenting that it flies in the face of modern perceptions of Britain, Europe, and race.

Tom Booth, a Natural History Museum archaeologist who worked on the project, told The Guardian: “It really shows up that these imaginary racial categories that we have are really very modern constructions, or very recent constructions, that really are not applicable to the past at all.”

Yoan Diekmann, a biologist at University College London and another project worker, added that the connection drawn by some between Britishness and whiteness was “not an immutable truth. It has always changed and will change.”

The discovery is embarrassing for white nationalists such as Richard Spencer, who has previously linked whiteness to Europe, saying previously that he wanted the U.S. to become “a homeland for all white people, all European people.”

According to the scientists who ran the project, it was previously assumed that Europeans developed paler skin thousands of years before Cheddar Man and he was previously believed to have had pale skin and fair hair.

However, they believe the research shows that the lighter pigmentation in Europeans is a “far more recent” phenomenon and that one in 10 modern-day Brits share ancestry with the dark-skinned Cheddar Man.

Scientists obtained the DNA sample by drilling a 2mm hole in the ancient skull, which allowed them to extract some bone powder. Using the “unusually well-preserved” DNA, they then constructed a likeness of his head using a 3D printer and a high-tech scanner.

Prof. Chris Stringer, a research leader at the Natural History Museum, said: “I first studied Cheddar Man more than 40 years ago, but could never have believed that we would one day have his whole genome—the oldest British one to date!”

“To go beyond what the bones tell us and get a scientifically based picture of what he actually looked like is a remarkable (and from the results quite surprising!) achievement.”

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Posted by on February 7, 2018 in Black History, The Post-Racial Life


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Breakfast With Dads a Huge Success as 600 “Dads” Show Up In Dallas


A school sought 50 men to stand in for absent fathers at ‘Breakfast with Dads’ — nearly 600 showed up

Something somewhat extraordinary happened last month at Billy Earl Dade Middle School in Dallas.

The school — with a student population of nearly 900, about 90 percent from low-income families — planned to host its first “Breakfast with Dads,” according to the Dallas Morning News. About 150 male students, ages 11 to 13, signed up. But event organizers were concerned that some would attend without a male figure at their side, so they put out a call for volunteers who could serve as mentors.

“When a young person sees someone other than their teacher take interest in them, it inspires them. That’s what we want to see happen,” the Rev. Donald Parish Jr., pastor of True Lee Missionary Baptist Church and the event organizer, told the Morning News.

A call for volunteers by children’s advocate Kristina Chäadé Dove‏ — who has served on what is called a site-based decision-making team for the middle school — was published on social media in early December

When the day came for the event, nearly 600 men showed up to help and mentor the boys, some of them volunteering for the first time.

Stephanie Drenka, a Dallas photographer and blogger who works with Dove at Big Thought, a nonprofit organization that works with partners across the city to provide creative learning programs for young people, chronicled the event here in words and photos. She wrote:

Back in December, the team ran into some difficulty when planning their annual “Breakfast with Dads” event. Dade’s community liaison Ellyn Favors mentioned that student participation was low due to young men not having a father/father-figure available to attend the event. Kristina decided to post a call for volunteers on Facebook in the hope of finding 50 male mentors to accompany the middle schoolers…

The unexpected influx of interest led the team to move the event from the cafeteria into the gymnasium so they could house more guests. Kristina engaged the community again in getting volunteers to help with setup and check-in. Team members from Big Thought, the Office of Cultural Affairs, and even Kristina’s personal friends showed up alongside the male mentors to make the event possible…

I will never forget witnessing the young students surrounded by supportive community members. There were so many volunteers, that at times I saw young men huddled in the center of 4-5 mentors. The look of awe- even disbelief- in students’ eyes as they made their way through the crowd of “Dads” was astonishing.

Jamil “The Tie Man” Tucker led the auditorium in a hands-on icebreaker activity. He spoke of learning how to tie a tie as a rite of passage some young men never experience. Mentors handed out ties to the eager students and helped them perfect their half-Windsor knot.

The sight of a necktie may forever bring a tear to my eye.

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Posted by on January 7, 2018 in BlackLivesMatter, General, Men, The Post-Racial Life


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Memphis Plays “Whack a Reb” Around Republican State Racists

Nice move, Memphis!

In a rapidly emerging war between municipalities, the Trump administration and white-wing, neo fascist Republican dominated legislators opposed to local rule…

Another mile marker.

 Memphis takes bold legal action to circumvent Tennessee state rule and remove Confederate statues

The city of Memphis engaged in a “massive operation” on Wednesday to take down two controversial Confederate statues before the morning light, the Commercial Appealreports.

The Memphis City Council first unanimously voted to sell two public parks to a private entity. Within minutes, Memphis Police Department officers had deployed to the sites of statues honoring Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest and Confederate President Jefferson Davis. Within one hour of the vote, Mayor Jim Strickland had signed the ordinance.

The sale of the parks was a legal mechanism to circumvent a decision by the Tennessee Historical Commission intended to prevent local governments from taking down the statues.

“Health Sciences Park and Memphis Park have been sold. Operations on those sites tonight are being conducted by a private entity and are compliant with state law,” Mayor Strickland explained. “We will have further updates later tonight.”


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Democrats Losing The Base

Black folks have been the most reliable voters for the Democrat Party the last 50 years. But the Party has delivered very little in return for that loyalty. That lack of delivery has led to voter apathy, and is the leading culprit in Hillary losing to the Chumph.

We, as a people are now under existential threat from Trump and his white wing followers – but the Party and it’s policies are being driven by the interests of white women.

Black voters just delivered two major victories for the Democrats in Virginia and Alabama. That vote wasn’t as much for Democrat candidates, as against the Chumph white supremacists.

If elected Democrats don’t find a way to head off the Chumph…They are going to lose again in 2018 and 2020.

I’m A Brown Woman Who’s Breaking Up With The Democratic Party

I realize now that the love has been one-sided.

Dear Democratic Party:

You were the love of my life. I fell in love early and hard. I have been the kind of party loyalist ― the kind of sappy, soapbox-y, clichéd devotee ― that makes Fox News moonwalk with glee.

The first vote I ever cast, at 18, was for Bill Clinton. The last vote I cast was for his wife, Hillary. My adoration for Hillary bordered on mania. In college, I named my ficus plant after her. Twenty years later, I canvassed, held fundraisers, dragged my 8-year-old daughter door to door, proudly wore HRC’s face on T-shirts and housed campaign volunteers in my home.

I loved you so much that I cried each time I voted. Thinking about the women who died fighting for my right to vote did it every time. I cried when I voted for Bill. For Barack Obama. I wept when I voted for Hillary. You’ve been that kind of mad love to me.

And now I want to break up.

I realize now that the love has been one-sided, unrequited. You’ve never recognized me, as a brown woman. You’ve taken my love, my money, my tokenism, with nary anything in return. You married the white woman and hooked up with me on the side.

Black Lives Matter is a second ― or third ― thought. Where is your outrage over the national epidemic of police brutality against black people? You continue to call angry white men who commit mass murder “lone wolves.” But if someone who looks like me screams “Allah” and fires a gun, it’s “terrorism.” And you wonder why angry white men are gunning down innocent brown men at bars, in their yards, on the street.

For all your talk about Dreamers, there’s been little action. You don’t seem to give a crap about kids of color who will be kicked out of this country, the only country they know. What if all those Dreamers were white? I suspect there’d be a very different outcome.

You spend a lot of time and energy wooing white voters, while giving short shrift to voters of colors and assuming we’ll always show up for you.

To be fair, there’s no reason for you to assume otherwise. We always show up for you. Take, for example, the special election in Alabama on Tuesday. Had black people not shown up, an accused child molester would be our newest senator.

What will Doug Jones do for the black folks who put him in the Senate? If history is any indication, very little.

This past year, I held and attended numerous fundraisers for your candidates. I donated money every time I was asked. I marched: for women, for children, for reproductive rights, for science. I traveled across the country for the March for Women in Washington, D.C. It was there that I got the first hint that you weren’t that into me. The giveaway? The sea of white women in pink hats with brown and black women dotting the waves like debris. I let it slide but I kept my eyes and ears open.

My fellow brown and black sisters started to notice, too — and the chatter began, in whispered hushes at first, then loud and clear. You are a party of white feminists. Of white feminism, the kind of feminism that focuses on the struggles of white women. It was the first time I’d heard the term, most likely because self-awareness is hard and I was a brown woman trapped in a white feminist’s world.

But then I woke up. I saw you with clear eyes for the first time.

For every Kamala Harris and Pramila Jayapal sticking their brown and black necks out for me, there are dozens of white female Democrats who want me to shut my trap.

Your advocacy for reproductive rights zeros in on wealthy white women. Women of color and other marginalized women get sidelined. The gender pay gap is worse for black and Latina women than it is for white women. Women of color make up 64 percent of women in U.S. jails. Why isn’t the Democratic Party talking about this and trying to fix it?

My own “liberal” white congresswoman in Colorado has given me a hint as to why.

At the congresswoman’s town hall in February, Neeti Pawar, the brown female founder of the South Asian Bar Association of Colorado, was one of the only people of color in a room of nearly a thousand. She asked about immigration and DACA protections. The congresswoman scoffed. When Pawar pressed on, she was told to remain silent or she’d be asked to leave. During a follow-up, staffers told Pawar that civil rights weren’t the representative’s “issue.” Brown and black people don’t have the luxury of sidelining civil rights. It’s life and death for us.

And it didn’t stop there.

I was organizing a fundraiser for a U.S. senator earlier this month, and had planned to use the opportunity to highlight women of color by having black women introduce him. The congresswoman’s staff caught wind of the event and asked if she could introduce the senator. I explained my position but invited her to come as a guest. No response. When pressed on her stance on racial inclusion, her staff didn’t respond to me directly but tattled on me to the white women co-hosting the event.

I know there are some good ones among you. But for every Kamala Harris, Maxine Waters and Pramila Jayapal sticking their brown and black necks out for me, there are dozens of white female Democrats who want me to shut my trap, and say please and thank you. I should be grateful for scraps while white women enjoy a proper marriage with you.

I’m done with all that. And if you don’t want to lose more women like me, there are a few basic things you can do.

Pay attention to the reproductive health of women of color and other marginalized women. Do something, anything, to protect Dreamers. Or, if you’re really feeling bold, move forward on some form of reparations for black people.

Finally, mentor young people of color to run for office. Campaign for brown and black folks. Raise money for them. Show up for them. I’d come running back to you with open arms if you did even a few of these things.

In the meantime, I’ll be on the sidelines waiting, watching, hoping, praying. You broke my heart.


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Black Votes Matter

Wake up Democrats!


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Facebook Cavalry Against Racist Trolls

The  alt-right has trained up a whole army of racist trolls to invade the Social Websites and Boards.

It can be awfully tough to fight these clowns if you are unprepared or don’t have the tools.

The Cavalry!

Volunteer Amy Melin (left) volunteers with White Nonsense Roundup, founded by Terri Kempton and Layla Tromble

These are your white allies on Facebook

When you’re exhausted from debating race with strangers, they step in

Social media conversations on race typically take one of two routes.

The first, and the one less traveled, leads to a thoughtful, fact-driven exchange of ideas. The second (more popular) route leads to bitter back-and-forth filled with tired stereotypes or racially inflammatory barbs.
But now, when discussion swerves in the second direction, there’s a group of white allies prepared to do the rerouting.
White Nonsense Roundup is a social media watchdog group with about 100 white volunteers. Its goal: to relieve people of color from the emotional labor of engaging with a person’s racist or racially insensitive thoughts.
Say, a person of color makes a post about Black Lives Matter. Then others respond with ignorant or offensive comments. That person can tag White Nonsense RoundUp to snatch some edges — or, better put, to educate people with context and fact-based views.
Think of it like roadside assistance for social media debates you’re tired of having.
“It’s really unfair that we expect people of color to experience racism, but then also explain it to us,” the group’s co-founder Terri Kempton, a book editor and college instructor, told CNN.

How it started

After Philando Castile’s killing in 2016, Kempton saw a need for proactive involvement by white people like herself in conversations about race.
“I think, as white people, we are taught that intentions are all that matters,” Kempton said. “We think that if our hearts are in the right places and we consciously doubt racism, we’re good to go. So that was a light-bulb moment to me, where I didn’t think intentions are enough.”
So, she approached another white friend, Layla Tromble, and together they launched White Nonsense Roundup on Facebook, Twitter and later Instagram.
“I thought, ‘What about if we take on some of that emotional labor or burden?'” Kempton said. “Because white people are responsible for talking to other white people about racism.”
Their idea worked. Since its launch, White Nonsense RoundUp has gained more than 138,000 followers across its different accounts.
One of them is Kevin Tillman, an educator in Oakland, California, who says he uses the service almost every day. Tillman, 40, is a leader in the vegan hip-hop movement and often encounters trolls online.
“It’s inspiring. I really appreciate the work that they’re doing and I steadily promote them,” he said. “And the reality is white folks will sooner listen to them. They’re handling things people of color have been handling all our lives.”
Chenoa Alamu discovered White Nonsense RoundUp when she came across one of their posts that said it’s not the job of black people to educate white people.
“I just couldn’t believe what I was reading. It was such a breath of fresh air,” said Alamu, a violinist in Springfield, Illinois.
“I feel strong enough and have felt strong enough to have conversations about race on my own. But I was getting tired,” she said. “When I saw the (White Nonsense RoundUp) post, that’s when I was like, ‘Phew, finally somebody white who gets it … someone willing to carry the burden of racism.'”…More
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Posted by on December 7, 2017 in BlackLivesMatter, The Post-Racial Life


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Since We are Cleaning House – Uncle Tommie Clarence Needs to Go as Well

The confirmation hearings on Clarence Thomas’ ascension to the Supreme Court featured what was probably the first nationwide coverage of sexual harassment in the workplace.

Uncle Tommie got a walk.

With the number of folks now losing their jobs and positions for acts like those of Thomas…Perhaps the ultimate test of whether the current flurry of sexual harassment punishments is a “fad” or something we will take seriously going forward is whether Thomas receives the same treatment. Whether he is punished or not has some rather serious implications relative to the Supreme Court’s already badly battered credibility.

Image result for clarence thomas anita hill

Clarence Thomas must resign

Utah Republican Orrin Hatch called “bullcrap” on Ohio Democrat Sherrod Brown last week. The Senate Finance Committee lion tore into Brown for “spewing” that the Republican tax plan to transfer a trillion dollars to the rich was in reality a Republican tax plan to transfer a trillion dollars to the rich.

I got my first dose of Hatch during the wall-to-wall coverage of the confirmation of Clarence Thomas, George H.W. Bush’s Supreme Court nominee. Hatch was the Republicans’ designated questioner of Anita Hill. She was called to testify because she’d told the FBI that Thomas had sexually harassed her 10 years earlier, when he was her boss at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Department of Education.

Sitting behind her were her mother, Erma (“who is going to be celebrating her 80th birthday”); her father, Albert; her sisters, Elreathea, Jo Ann, Coleen and Joyce; and her brother, Ray. No way she was going to lie to the committee, or to us, in front of them.

Hill testified that Thomas had repeatedly asked her out, and that she repeatedly refused. So he demeaned her. He told her someone had once “put a pubic hair” on his Coke can. He said porn star Long Dong Silver had nothing on him in the endowment department.

Hatch called her charges “contrived” and “sick.” He claimed she’d stolen them. The pubic hair, she’d taken from page 70 of “The Exorcist.” Long Dong Silver, she’d lifted from a Kansas sexual harassment case.

Hill agreed to a polygraph test, and passed. Thomas refused. He called the hearings a “high-tech lynching for uppity blacks.”

It was painful to watch Hatch slime Hill. Women who’d also been sexually harassed found in the hearings no reason to be less fearful of telling their stories. Nor, later, could they take comfort in how Bill Clinton’s accusers were reviled. Or Bill O’Reilly’s. Or Roger Ailes’s.

But something changed. The tipping point may have been Donald Trump bragging to Billy Bush about assaulting women. Sixteen of his victims had the courage to say he’d harassed or groped them.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Trump’s escape from accountability for that predation contributed to the decisions by Harvey Weinstein’s victims to talk on the record to Jodi Kantor and her New York Times colleagues and to Ronan Farrow at the New Yorker. Before long, more than 80 women attested to Weinstein’s assaults as far back as 1990.

Then nine women gave the Washington Post detailed accounts of Alabama Republican senatorial candidate Roy Moore’s history of pedophilia and abuse. They knew the blowback would be brutal. They did it anyway.

Still, Moore won’t quit. Why would he? Kay Ivey, Alabama’s Republican governor, says she’ll vote for him even though she believes his accusers. Better to elect a pedophile than a Democrat who’d vote against a Supreme Court nominee who’d overturn Roe v Wade.

Now Senator Al Franken is in the crosshairs. The Minnesota Democrat offered an apology to Leann Tweeden for “completely inappropriate” behavior in 2006, which she accepted, and he asked for an ethics investigation of the incident. Calls for his resignation illustrate the fallacy of false equivalence; they’re the witch-hunt Trump claimed had victimized him.

Hill was a thoroughly credible witness. Thomas has no stronger case for his innocence than do Trump, Moore or Weinstein. Pressed to defend Trump’s sexual improprieties, his press secretary said the American people “spoke very loud and clear when they elected this president.” No to put too fine a point on it, but she’s spewing bullcrap. Elections don’t decide culpability.

In the wake of the Hill/Thomas hearings, a record-breaking 117 women made it onto the federal ticket in the 1992 election. The 24 women elected to the House that year was the largest number in any single House election, and the three elected to the Senate tripled the number of women senators.

That sharp uptick didn’t persist. If you think that today’s 80% male Congress isn’t good enough, check out Project 100, which is working to elect 100 progressive women to Congress by 2020, the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote. Full disclosure: my daughter is a co-founder. As her dad, and as the onetime speechwriter for the first presidential candidate to pick a woman as his running mate, you can imagine how proud of her I am. And how hopeful she and her young teammates make me feel.



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