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Category Archives: The Post-Racial Life

Barnes and Noble Founders Donate $1 million to Spellman

A magnanimous gift to Spelman College.

Barnes & Noble founder gives Spelman College $1 million gift

The founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. and his wife have given $1 million to Spelman College in Atlanta.

The college said it planned to use the gift from Leonard and Louise Riggio to fund a scholars program in his name, and to support its planned arts and innovation center.

Leonard Riggio, founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. (center).

Leonard Riggio, founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. (center).

“From the moment I was surrounded by its warm embrace, I was head over heels in love with Spelman College, and especially with the beautiful people who study and teach there,” Riggio said of his visit to the college. “The whole of the place seems to have been lifted from the depths of our spirits, to the full realization of our hopes and dreams for a better America. If Spelman is not the paradigm of a great college, I do not know what is. The gift to the scholarship program and to the arts and innovation center from Louise and me commemorates one of the best days I’ve ever had.”

Half of the Riggios’ gift will be used to underwrite six outstanding Spelman students who have demonstrated stellar academic achievement and who are actively engaged in community service, the university said in a statement. The remaining $500,000 will be designated for the design and construction of an arts and innovation center that will house Spelman’s arts programs and Innovation Lab, which encourage creative collaborations at the intersection of the arts, technology, science and other liberal arts disciplines. Program planning for the facility is underway, according to the December announcement.

“Leonard and Louise Riggio have been longstanding supporters of education and the arts,” said Spelman President Mary Schmidt Campbell. “We welcome them as new donors to Spelman and welcome, too, their enthusiasm and faith in the values and mission of the College. Their generous gift supports the academic success of a group of talented, socially engaged students and, at the same time, helps the College launch the planning of a new facility that will encourage campus wide collaborations and community engagement.”

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2017 in Black History, The Post-Racial Life

 

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KKK Members Renounce Membership After Meeting Black Musician

The amazing story of Darryl Davis, a well known black musician who reached out to KKK Members – and through taking and developing relationships has caused a number of KKK Members to renounce the KKK, and their racist beliefs. Proving you can deprogram bigots from the constant stream of racism from Fox News and Brietbart by showing them the truth.

 

Darryl Davis, a renowned black American blues musician, took the initiative to reach out to members of the Ku Klux Klan, the US white supremacist organisation, which has led to more than 200 leaving the group.

Klan members leave the KKK after befriending black musician

He has travelled across the country, sometimes with ex-KKK members, to give lectures aimed at curbing racism.

Davis has written a book on the KKK called Klandestine Relationships. And an award-winning documentary about his unique efforts to combat racial hatred – Accidental Courtesy – is set to be aired across the United States in February.

Hate acts have been on the rise in the US since president-elect Donald Trump, who made many statements against minority groups during the election campaign, saw a drastic rise in popularity last year.

Davis talked to Al Jazeera about his journey in confronting the KKK, and what Trump’s election means for the country.

Al Jazeera: What inspired you to reach out to the KKK? Davis: My parents worked in the US foreign service so I was an American embassy brat. I spent a lot of my youth in the 1960s living overseas and when I attended schools abroad my classmates were from around the world.

At that time there was not that kind of diversity at home in the US. When I would come back to the US I would be in all black schools or black-and-white newly integrated schools.

When I was overseas I felt like I was living 12 to 15 years ahead of my time, and when I came back home I did not understand why people had a problem with skin tone.It was the norm for me, but not my country.

One time I was attacked because of the colour of my skin. And that made me ask: How can you hate me when you don’t even know me? No one had been able to answer it.

So who better to ask that question than those who hate others that do not look like them? I reached out to Klan members all over the country. Right here in the state of Maryland where I live, I would put out these questions, but was never set out to change anybody and never under the impression they could be.

I wanted to know why they made a judgement on my ability to learn and work … and why they assumed we all sold drugs, raped white women, or were on wellfare.

Over a course of time, a number of them began shedding their racist ideologies and left the Klan.

I have changed a number of hearts and minds by having these conversations. They started to see me as a human being, as someone who wants the same as them.

If you sit with your worst enemy for five minutes, you will find out you have something in common and if for 10 minutes, you will discover more similarities.

If you build on those commonalties, the things you do not have in common matter less and friendship can be formed. Even if you disagree – and this has to do with all matters, whether its about abortion or whatever – when two enemies are talking they are not fighting.

They may be yelling and fighting to make a point. But without talking the ground may be fertile for violence.

The problem is that in the US media, people talk about each other or at each other but not with each other. People refuse to do that. Many will hide behind social media, but they will not sit and meet with the person.

 Al Jazeera: How many KKK members left the group because of your efforts? Davis: I know that I have directly been the impetus for up to 40 Klan members leaving and indirectly for about 200 others.

I continue to get emails from those who I don’t even know after they hear me speak or read my book.

The leader of the KKK’s Maryland branch and I became friends. After he and his top members quit, their group fell apart here.

There is no more organised racist organisation in Maryland.

Al Jazeera: What type of conversations would you have with them and what did you learn from that? Davis: I would find out why the joined the Klan, what their goals were, and what their educational background was.

And what you find out is this that the common thread is hatred and ignorance. In terms of education and jobs, they are all over the board.

They come from all walks of life: college dropouts, lawyers, and doctors. We even had presidents who were KKK members.

Al Jazeera: What do you think about Donald Trump’s impact on racism in the country?Davis: I think Donald Trump is the best thing that happened to the country. He is not the best choice for the presidency.

But as a residual effect of the election all these racist people are coming out and making themselves known.

America is hypocritical because we deny racism exists. Now they can no longer deny it. Now we are seeing “KKK” spray painted on peoples cars. Talks on racism have been taboo, but now more conversations about it are starting.

You can not solve any problem unless you see it and then you can talk about it. This country did not want to address racism. Well, now they are seeing it and are obligated to address it.

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

 

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Letting You Mouth End Your Career – Kim Burrell

The rather cruel thing here is Gospel singer Kim Burrell was speaking to a congregation of folks who probably believe just as she does.Her is her rant about the KGBT community –

Now, Kim makes her living by singing Gospel music. A living which depends on people who can advance her career, and are willing to buy or sell her music. A lot of those folks are gay. Her tirade here was two days before she was scheduled to appear on the Ellen Degeneres Show, Ellen being one of the most prominent Lesbian performers and activists in the country.

So, Kim your hypocrisy is the excuse of religion in wanting LGBT people to all die, but its OK to try and make some money off that group of people and advance your career…before they do.

What I would call a “Career Limiting” performance. Obviously you missed the assembly station …Where God passed our brain cells.

And to be brutally honest – Kim didn’t do too well at the “Singing” station either.

Gospel singer canceled by Ellen after she was caught in homophobic rant now loses radio show

Kim Burrell’s career took another hit Wednesday after it was announced the gospel singer who was recorded in the midst of a homophobic rant is losing her radio program.

Texas Southern University canceled Burrell’s program, “Bridging the Gap,” which debuted on KTSU in June 2016.

“The Kim Burrell show is no longer airing as part of KTSU Radio programming,” Texas Southern University said in a statement.

A video of Burrell surfaced on New Years Eve featuring the singer—who’s performed with the likes of Pharrell and Frank Ocean—railing against “the perverted homosexual spirit” at the Love & Liberty Fellowship Church in Houston.

“That perverted homosexual spirit, and the spirit of delusion and confusion, it has deceived many men and women,” she said. “You as a man, you open your mouth and take a man’s penis in your face, you are perverted. You are a woman and will shake your face in another woman’s breast, you are perverted.”

Burrell was supposed to appear on Ellen Degeneres’s show Thursday, but the comedian—who was recently awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, in part, for her courage to come out in public almost 20 years ago—told fans the singer would not be attending. She was slated to perform “I See A Victory” with Pharrell.

Instead, Pharrell sat down with Degeneres solo and issues a powerful rebuke of Burrell’s remarks:

“There’s no space, there’s no room for any kind of prejudice in 2017 and moving on … We all have to get used to everyone’s differences and understand that this is a big, gigantic, beautiful, colorful world, and it only works with inclusion and empathy. It only works that way.

Whenever you hear some sort of hate speech and you feel like it doesn’t pertain to you because you may not have anything to do with that, all you got to do is put the word black in that sentence, or put gay in that sentence, or put transgender in that sentence, or put white in that sentence, and all of the sudden it starts to make sense to you.”

“I’m telling you, the world is a beautiful place but it does not work without empathy and inclusion. God is love. This Universe is love and that’s the only way it will function. And I get it that sometimes some of the divisive stuff works. We learned that lesson last year that divisiveness works. But you have to choose what side you’re on. I’m choosing empathy; I’m choosing inclusion; I’m choosing love for everybody just trying to lift everyone. Even when I disagree with someone, I’m wishing them the best and hoping for the best because we can’t win the other way.”

 

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A Weak Case Against Discrimination

Not sure who the Chef here thought he was dealing with – but dealing with uber-rich south westerners is a bit of a different world. They generally aren’t real up-to-date on cultural sensitivities so what they say isn’t filtered through a lens of cultural or racial appropriateness. You need to take them literally, because they don’t always express themselves in filtered or culturally appropriate terms. They tend to regard personal relationships as more important. Develop and earn that relationship and you are a friend for life no matter what you are. Deal with  it. It doesn’t mean they are racist.

Have never met Mr. Pickens, but have worked for a company which competed against his – and he is a tough customer. I would not expect him to back down on principle, or in this case due to a weak case against his ex-wife.

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T. Boone, and Madeline Pickens

I think this Chef was trying to make something…Out of nothing.

Lawsuit claims Nevada dude ranch owner asked chef for “black people food”

Madeleine Pickens wanted the African-American chef she recruited from the country club she owns in Southern California to cook “black people food” — not “white people food” — at her rural Nevada dude ranch and wild horse sanctuary, according to a federal lawsuit accusing her of racial discrimination.

Armand Appling says the wealthy philanthropist and ex-wife of Oklahoma energy tycoon T. Boone Pickens told him fried chicken, BBQ ribs and corn bread would be perfect for the tourists who pay nearly $2,000 a night to stay in plush cottages, ride horses and take Wild West “safaris” on ATVs at her Mustang Monument Wild Horse Eco-Resort.

Appling alleges he was fired 2014 in retaliation for complaining about a hostile work environment. He says Pickens’ stereotypical references were commonplace at the Elko County ranch stretching across 900 square miles on the edge of the Ruby Mountains about 50 miles west of the Utah line.

Among other things, he says Pickens, who is white, instructed him to terminate two other black kitchen staffers — one she referred to as her “bull” or “ox” and another who had “too much personality.” He says she told him they didn’t “look like people we have working at the country club” and didn’t “fit the image” of the staff she wanted at the ranch.

Pickens’ lawyers argue that even if all the allegations are true, none of her comments were racially motivated. At worst, Pickens’ remarks “reflect a non-racial personality conflict and amount to discourtesy, rudeness or lack of sensitivity,” they wrote in recent court filings.

U.S. District Judge Miranda Du said during a hearing in Reno last week that Appling’s lawyers have failed so far to prove the sort of racial hostility needed to win such a civil rights claim. She dismissed the original lawsuit that was filed in February but gave them until Jan. 13 to refile an amended complaint seeking unspecified damages from Pickens’ nonprofit, Save America’s Mustangs.

“It takes a lot to prove these allegations,” Du told California attorney Willie Williams on Thursday.

Du agreed with Pickens’ lawyer, Dora Lane of Reno, that the only comment that specifically referred to race was the reference to “black people food.”

Lane said categorizing foods by ethnicity is commonplace in the restaurant industry. Some restaurants serve Mexican food, others Chinese or Thai food, she said.

“The suggestion that such categorizations are inherently offensive is nonsense,” Lane argued in earlier court documents. “This is especially true here, given that Pickens’ alleged comments actually reflect a preference for ‘black people food’ rather than a racial animas against ‘black people’ or ‘black people food.’”

Williams said Pickens’ comments about the fired employees “not fitting in” reinforces a long history of African-Americans not being allowed into elite, private-club settings. Pickens owns the exclusive Del Mar Country Club north of San Diego where Appling worked before she hired him for a 5-month stint in Nevada.

“In many cases, the people fighting to keep African-Americans out of these private clubs would use code phrases like ‘they do not fit the image,’” Williams said in court documents. He added the use of the words “ox” and “bull” implies ownership of property, given “America’s long history of slavery where they were considered personal property of their owners.”

Lane argued it was a complimentary reference to physical strength and “was not accompanied by any overtly racial slurs.”

“Indeed, Appling does not allege that he ever heard any overtly racial epithets, such as the ‘N-word,’” she wrote in court documents.

But Williams told the judge last week the comments must be viewed in the context of racial stereotypes.

Du agreed that Lane’s arguments focus on the “plain meaning of words” while seemingly ignoring the context of comments made about “African-Americans in history and stereotypes that could give rise to racial animas.”

“If the alleged comments were not directed at him, but others who look like him, it may affect his work environment,” the judge said.

 

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The Breakfast Club Trevor Noah Interview

A couple of things here…

First, that somehow Tomi Lahren is “beautiful”…Nope.

Second, somehow that Noah is a “sell out” for meeting with her after his interview.  NO – that’s Business.

 

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Veterans Apologize For American Actions Against Native Americans

A deeply touching “Forgiveness Ceremony” with he Sioux at Standing Rock.

The problem being that the Chumph gestapo wants to land grab Native American Land because about 20% of the oil and gas remaining in the Continental US is located on those Reservations.

48th “Indian” Wars, anyone?

 
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Posted by on December 7, 2016 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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Voting Race Instead of Sex – The Failure of Feminism

Learned this lesson a long time ago in supporting the promotion of white women in the corporate environment. Racism trumps (literally in this case) both feminism and any partnership with any other oppressed group. That is the reason why Obama beat Hillary in ’08 – that many folks didn’t see any difference in electing a racist white man versus a white woman who would ignore everyone else.

Feminism is a zero sum game for black folks, as well as for black women.

Image result for hillary black women

Fooled…Again

The colorblind sisterhood fantasy: Black women voted for white women — and white women voted for themselves

A Clinton victory would have been most symbolic for white women. Why did so many not vote for her?

From the time she officially announced her candidacy, I had been adamant that I would not vote for Hillary Clinton. Whatever common experiences we shared because of our womanhood were not enough to make me overlook my legitimate concerns over her political positions and history. That admission was usually met with berating hostility, as her supporters assumed that my disdain for Clinton meant I supported the racism, sexism and xenophobia embraced by her strongest competitor. Nothing could have been further from the truth.

I’m a black woman. There was no amount of resentment for Clinton that would have made me vote for Donald Trump. No, I was not with her, but I wasn’t even on the same planet as him.

Still, I was positive that she’d win. White women had been championing Clinton since the start of election season, and after a failed bid eight years ago, I believed they were determined to use their political power to redeem her. So as I sat watching the results of the election, stunned doesn’t begin to describe my reaction.

That Donald Trump, with no prior political experience, was elected to the highest office of the most powerful country on earth was shocking. What exit poll data revealed was utterly astounding. More than half of the white women who voted — 53 percent — had voted for Donald Trump.

Yes, just over four in 10 (43 percent) of those who were the de facto face of #ImWithHer had championed a female president in the voting booth. Conversely, black female voters, many of whom had declared #GirlIguessImWithHer, stayed true to that unenthusiastic declaration and voted at a nearly exclusive 94 percent for Clinton. How were white women, for whom a Clinton victory would have been most symbolic, Trump’s second-strongest supporting demographic?

That question is best answered by what black women and other women of color have been saying for years: White women can be, and too often are, just as racist as their male counterparts, rendering colorblind sisterhood nothing more than a fantasy.

This elephant didn’t just enter the room. More than 120 years ago, in the last decade of the 19th century, pioneering black journalist Ida B. Wells took on suffragette Frances E. Willard who, in her capacity as a leading activist for women’s rights, freely employed the violent racist rhetoric of the time. Wells declared that after the 15th Amendment giving all men the right to vote was ratified, Willard had “unhesitatingly slandered the entire Negro race in order to gain favor with those who are hanging, shooting and burning Negroes alive.” More plainly, Willard, like many of her colleagues, was content to manipulate the racism at the core of this country’s existence to win rights for white women who were still denied the vote black men were guaranteed on paper, saying in a speech, “It is not fair that a plantation Negro who can neither read or write should be entrusted with the ballot.”

Much of the white feminist struggle since has taken the same strategy with the same goal. For many women of color, white feminism feels less like a unified fight for the liberation of all women, and more like a campaign to ensure white women have the same status, rights and privileges as white men, and thus the corresponding power to oppress black and brown people. This election was a painful reminder, and statistical illustration, of that.

White women had everything to gain, or at least maintain, by electing Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. Beyond the historical significance of electing the first woman — a white woman — president of the United States, Clinton’s policies would have no doubt been more female-friendly than Trump’s, who has said he would appoint pro-life Supreme Court justices in a signal of support for overturning Roe v. Wade, and has even argued that women should suffer punishment for having abortions. Trump has an unabashedly misogynist constituency to appease. That appeasement will most likely come at the cost of women’s rights.

But beyond the low-hanging fruit, white women are still viewed by our culture at large as the embodiment of womanhood. Much of the vile sexism peddled and promoted by Trump was inflicted upon white female bodies. When Trump retweeted a tweet calling Fox News personality Megyn Kelly a “bimbo,” that was not a blow to black women like me. “Bimbo” is an insult reserved almost exclusively for white women. When Trump bragged about grabbing women “by the pussy,” it was safe to assume those women had been white, given his three wives and the descriptions of the woman he admitted he “did try to fuck.” Trump didn’t interrupt a black or Asian woman dozens of times during the debates — he talked over a white woman indisputably more qualified to lead this country than he is.

Yes, his campaign fostered a real climate for racist attacks on women of color. Absolutely, his “birther” campaign aimed at Barack Obama helped further embolden racists to lob misogynoir at Michelle Obama. No question his Islamophobia bred more contempt for Arab Muslim women in hijab, thus placing them at greater danger for violence in this country. But the harm inflicted upon melanated women has been more proxy than direct. Trump himself caused harm directly to white women instead.

People look at Megyn Kelly and see a white woman. They look at Hillary Clinton and see a white woman. They think of Trump groping white women.

But still, white women, across borders of income and education, supported him. It’s Frances Willard for 2016. Racist white women held firm to the fact that they may be women — oppressed, marginalized and preyed upon — but at least they’re still white. Trump, in coded language, promised to preserve that whiteness. He promised them that even fighting for the right to make choices for their own bodies and paid less, they’d still have the power of their whiteness.

And as has been the case for more than a century; the majority decided that their comfort was in the arms of white men rather than in locking arms with black and brown women. Black women did their part. They kept up their end of the bargain, however begrudgingly, voting for a white woman who would benefit them at most marginally with trickle-downs, as white women cut off their own noses to spite their own faces.

 
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Posted by on November 27, 2016 in The Definition of Racism, The Post-Racial Life

 

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