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Another Trump Lie Blown Up – NAACP Award

The Chumph campaign in shopping this picture…

(Left to Right) Joe DiMaggio, Victor Borge, Anita Bryant, Muhammad Ali, Rosa Parks, and Donald Trump pose for a photograph after receiving the Ellis Island Medal of Honor October 27, 1986 in New York City.

Not sure how the Chumph got to stand next to such an exceptional group of folks, other than having donated the banquest speck and being caught in mid stride trying to feel up Anita Bryant.(Looks like Ali is intentionally blocking his move).

But this was not, as the Chumph’s campaign has claimed a NAACP event.

No, Donald Trump Did Not Win A Medal From The NAACP

A photograph of Donald Trump, Muhammad Ali and Rosa Parks that the founder of Trump’s “diversity coalition” hailed as evidence the Republican nominee won an “NAACP medal” for “helping America’s inner cities” was actually taken at an awards ceremony organized by a business associate with an ethnic grievance.

William Fugazy, a politically well-connected businessman who later pleaded guilty to perjury, gave the awards to Trump and 79 other people, most of them white, to protest the awarding of “medals of liberty” to a group of 12 recent immigrants that included a Chinese-born architect, a Costa Rica-born astronaut, a leading expert on the psychology of race, and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, but no “Irish, Italian, or Polish” people.

Michael Cohen, Trump’s longtime attorney, adviser and campaign surrogate, posted the photo on Twitter earlier this week of Trump, Parks and Ali, “receiving NAACP medals for helping America’s inner cities. A man for ALL people!”

1989 photo @realDonaldTrump, & all receiving medals for helping America’s inner cities. A man for ALL people!

The NAACP has not awarded any medals to Trump for “helping America’s inner cities,” the group told HuffPost. Nor have any other civil rights groups, according to Trump’s biographers.

Here’s the real story. In 1986, as preparations began for the centennial of the Statue of Liberty, a civic committee selected a group of 12 naturalized citizens to receive “medals of liberty” from President Ronald Reagan. The final list, announced that March, included composer Irving Berlin, who emigrated from Russia; Franklin Chang Diaz, an astronaut from Costa Rica; I.M. Pei, an architect born in China; and entertainment legend Bob Hope, who was born in England.

There was an immediate outcry. Fugazy, then Trump’s real estate broker and head of the Coalition of Italo-American Associations, was angry that there were nonative-born citizens among the 12 liberty medal winners (which was inevitable, since the award was for naturalized citizens) and that the list excluded certain ethnicities, “like the Irish, Italians and Poles.”

Fugazy’s Coalition of Italo-American Associations helped lead the campaign against the selections. “We think it’s an insult to ― on the one hand ― ask for donations to restore the foremost international symbol of freedom for immigrants and ― on the other hand ― to exclude most of them from the Medal of Liberty list,” Joseph Martorana, the group’s executive director, told the Miami Herald, before claiming that “the ethnic groups excluded account for 76 percent of the nation’s population.”

Fugazy had plenty of support. New York Mayor Ed Koch, a Democrat, called the selections “idiotic” and announced plans to hand out his own awards.

“It’s almost like denying some of the building blocks of the nation. It’s an historical betrayal,” New York City Council majority leader Peter Vallone told the Herald.

Six of the 12 recipients of the medals, including Berlin, Kissinger, violinist Itzhak Perlman, polio vaccine inventor Albert Sabin, author Elie Wiesel and University of Chicago president Hanna Holborn Gray, were of Jewish descent….More Here

 
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Posted by on October 24, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter, Chumph Butt Kicking

 

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Writing Science Fiction and the Politic of Race

In my journey out here in the hinterlands, I have begun writing again. To get good enough at it to gain any note, or even sell a few books still is a far off dream. There have been several notable black Science Fiction writers – Octavia ButlerSamuel R. Delany, and Steven Barnes to mention the best known. For many years black writers shied away from presenting black characters, and some even used pseudonyms to publish their work.

So it is great to see that, one, there is a new generation of black speculative fiction writers, and two – that one has won the titular award in the industry – a Hugo. A victory that didn’t come without racist push-back from the alt-right.

N.K. Jemisin and the Politics of Prose

A conversation with the recent Hugo Award-winner about science fiction, race, gender, power, and Trumpism

Last week, the World Science Fiction society named N.K. Jemisin the first black writer to win the Hugo Award for Best Novel, perhaps the highest honor for science-fiction and fantasy novels. Her winning work, The Fifth Season, has also been nominated for the Nebula Award and World Fantasy Award, and it joins Jemisin’s collection of feted novels in the speculative fiction super-genre. Even among the titans of black science-fiction and fantasy writers, including the greats Octavia Butler and Samuel Delany, Jemisin’s achievement is singular in the 60-plus years of the Hugos.

The Fifth Season is a stunning piece of speculative-fiction work, and it accomplishes the one thing that is so difficult in a field dominated by tropes: innovation, in spades. A rich tale of earth-moving superhumans set in a dystopian world of regular disasters, The Fifth Season manages to incorporate the deep internal cosmologies, mythologies, and complex magic systems that genre readers have come to expect, in a framework that also asks thoroughly modern questions about oppression, race, gender, class, and sexuality. Its characters are a slate of people of different colors and motivations who don’t often appear in a field still dominated by white men and their protagonist avatars. The Fifth Season’ssequel, 2016’s The Obelisk Gate, continues its dive into magic, science, and the depths of humanity.

Just a year ago, the idea of a novel as deliberately outside the science-fiction norm as The Fifth Season winning the Hugo Award seemed unlikely. In 2013, a small group of science-fiction writers and commentators launched the “Sad Puppies” and “Rabid Puppies” campaigns to exploit the Hugo nomination system and place dozens of books and stories of their own choosing up for awards. Those campaigns arose as a reaction to perceived “politicization” of the genre—often code for it becoming more diverse and exploring more themes of social justice, race, and gender—and became a space for some science-fiction and fantasy communities to rail against “heavy handed message fic.” Led by people like the “alt-right” commentator Vox Day, the movements reached fever pitch in the 2015 Hugo Award cycle, and Jemisin herself was often caught up in the intense arguments about the future of the genre.

I spoke to Jemisin about her works, politics, the sad puppies controversy, and about race and gender representation in science-fiction and fantasy the day before The Fifth Season won the Hugo Award. Our conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

Vann R. Newkirk II: Tell me more about the creative process that goes into this trilogy. This seems like a huge undertaking.

N.K. Jemisin: It is, and this is the first time that I’ve ever done one continuous story all the way through three books. Trilogies are relatively easy when each story is a self-contained piece, which I’ve done for all of my previous books. I have a lot of new respect for authors who do like giant unending trilogies just because this is hard. It’s a lot harder than I thought it was. But I’m enjoying it so far. It’s a solid challenge. I like solid challenges. I had some moments when I was writing the first book where I was just sort of, “I don’t know if I can do this.” Fortunately I have friends who are like, “What’s wrong with you? Snap out of it!” And I moved on and I got it done and I’m very glad with the reception. I’m shocked by the reception, but I’m glad for it.

Newkirk: You’re shocked by the reception? This seems like something that is tailor-made to be a hit right now.

Jemisin: Ehh. You may have seen some of the stuff that’s been happening in the genre in terms of pushback, reactionary movements and so forth. Basically, the science-fiction microcosmic version of what’s been happening on the large-scale political level and what’s been happening in other fields like with Gamergate in gaming. It’s the same sort of reactionary pushback that is generally by a relatively small number of very loud people. They’re loud enough that they’re able to convince you that the world really isn’t as progressive as you think it is, and that the world really does just want old-school 1950s golden-age-era stalwart white guys in space suits traveling in very phallic-looking spaceships to planets with green women and … they kind of convince you that that’s really all that will sell. Told in the most plain didactic language you can imagine and with no literary tricks whatever because the readership just doesn’t want that.

Newkirk: For you, are those people something that bothers you as you build a profile? Are people louder now that The Fifth Season is getting so much love?

Jemisin: They may be, but I’m not hearing them as much. I seem to have passed some kind of threshold, and maybe it’s something as simple as I now have so many positive messages coming at me that the negatives are sort of drowned out. As a side note, the so-called boogeyman of science-fiction, the white supremacist asshat who started the Rabid Puppies, Vox Day, apparently posted something about me a few days ago and I just didn’t care. There was a whole to-do between me and him a few years back where he ended up getting booted out of SWFA [Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America] because of some stuff he said about me, and I just didn’t care. It was a watershed moment at that point but now it’s just sort of, “Oh, it’s him again. He must be needing to get some new readers or trying to raise his profile again. Or something.” I didn’t look at it. No one bothered to read it and dissect it and send me anything about it. No one cared.

I think that’s sort of indicative of what’s happening. To some degree, as I move outside of the exclusive genre audience, the exclusive genre issues don’t bother me as much. Maybe that’s just speculation. I’m reaching a point where I’m still hearing some of it, but it’s just not as loud, or maybe it’s just focusing on different points. I don’t know. It’s still there. It’ll be there. I think that the Hugo ceremony at this upcoming WorldCon is going to be another not-as-seminal moment as last year when the Puppies tried a takeover that was somewhat more successful at the nominating stage and where they got smacked down roundly at the actual voting stage with no award after no award. I don’t think that’s going to happen this year, and I don’t think it matters as much. But who knows? I’ll guess we’ll see. If I win I’ll be happy. If I don’t win, I’ll be happy. I’ll continue to write…Read the rest here

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2016 in Giant Negros, Women

 

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Gabrielle Union on “That Crazy Lady”…Stacy Dipwit

Stacy who?

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2016 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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WhOscars

Have to admit that the two programs I never watch or pay attention to are the Oscars, AKA the Academy Awards, and the Golden Globes (followed by the various Music Awards) or seemingly dozens of award shows where folks with little connection to reality get to gather. The whole thing smacks too much of the recipients patting themselves on the back.

While I, as well as what seems the vast majority of people on earth with access to the product – certainly appreciate the cinematography, art, and quality acting which goes into a good show or movie…The selection process seems like bumbling herds of elephants following along after each other at the behest of the major studios. The cowherd Belles of Tara…Indeed.

The Academy Proves That Oscars Are Only For White People, Again

Oh, you thought non-white actors would get Oscar noms? Good one!

The 2016 Academy Award nominations rolled out Thursday morning and highlighted a roster of acting categories made up entirely of white performers.

And that should bother everyone.

The lack of diversity among Oscar nods has, sadly, become tradition and things don’t seem to be getting any better. In fact, they’re getting worse.

Following in last year’s footsteps, not a single actor of color is up for an award this year. The only films featuring a cast with people of color that are nominated this year are “Straight Outta Compton” for Best Screenplay, “What Happened, Miss Simone” for Best Documentary and “Creed” for Best Supporting Actor — but for these films, only their white contributors were recognized. “The Revenant,” whose director, Alejandro González Iñárritu, is Mexican is also nominated. It bypassed actors like Will Smith, for “Concussion,” Idris Elba in “Beasts Of No Nation,” Samuel L. Jackson in “The Hateful Eight,” and Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler for “Creed,” all of whom have been heavily praised for their performances this year.

Widespread fury erupted last year by people everywhere who flooded social media with #OscarsSoWhite to voice their frustration with the Academy for recognizing so few actors of color. That hashtag, which was created by twitter user @ReignOfApril, has now resurfaced, bubbling up similar expressions of disappointment by the dismal state of diversity among this year’s nods.

The discussion around the lack of representation in film has become a big issueparticularly in the last year. President of the Academy Cherryl Boone-Isaacs, a black woman, said she is well-aware of the poor state of diversity in film and that diversifying the field is important.

“The whole discussion about diversity is a great discussion, because now it’s at the top of everybody’s mind, not just the academy’s,” Isaacs said last year during an Academy reception.

And while widespread change is understandably slow to come, there has been no progress in the last year.

However, Isaacs is far from the only person to be held accountable for the lack of representation and recognition of actors of color. Hollywood executives are are mostly white and mostly male and they have failed to prioritize color-conscious casting in their films.

UClA’s 2015 Hollywood Diversity report highlights that the problem starts at the top, which is dominated by white, male gatekeepers who run the industry’s top three talent agencies and major studios. In 2013, 94 percent of CEOs and/or chairs and 92 percent of senior management in the film industry were white, according to the report.

If these executives don’t start making an active effort to recruit and hire people of color, Hollywood will remain saturated with white performers in films. And that’s not only terrible because it robs the opportunity from talented and deserving actors of color, but because it is a poor representation of the diverse audiences who view them.

A more appropriately toned Trophy

 

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2016 in The Definition of Racism

 

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