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Saturday July 22nd 2017

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What Black Parents Must Do This Summer

Dr. Jawanza Kunjufu

by Dr. Jawanza Kunjufu

There is a 3 year gap between Black and White students. Many people love to believe it’s due to income fatherlessness, educational attainment of the parent and lack of parental involvement. I believe a major reason for the gap is we continue to close schools for the summer as if we are an agrarian economy. Very few Black youth will be farming this summer. If you multiply 3 months by 12 years you will see the 3 year gap. There is nothing wrong with Black youth if their schools remained open during the summer and/or their parents kept them academically engaged.
Middle-income parents who value education enroll their children in some type of academic experience during the summer. They also visit libraries, museums, zoos and colleges. Other parents allow their children to sleep longer, play more video games, watch more television and play basketball until they can’t see the hoop. These students will have to review the same work they had mastered in May in September.
Black parents cannot allow their child to lose 3 months every year. Black parents cannot say they cannot afford the library. It’s free! Most museums have discounted days. A male friend of mine shared his experience with me when he took his family to the museum. He wondered why so many people were staring at him. His wife and children had to tell him he was the only Black man in the building! I am appealing to every father to take his children this summer to the library, museum, and the zoo. I a appealing to every mother if he won’t, you will.
We need every parent to make sure their child reads at least one book per week and to write a book report. I am reminded of the formula Sonya Carson used to develop Ben Carson to become the best pediatric neurosurgeon. This low-income single parent, with a third grade education, had enough sense to tell her sons to turn off the television, read a book and write a report that her sister would grade!
I have a theory that I can go into your house and within 5 minutes tell you the type of student who lives there and predict their future. I believe that engineers, doctors, lawyers, accountants etc. need different items in their house than ballplayers, rappers, and criminals. I am very concerned when I visit a house that has more cds and downloads than books. My company African American Images has designed a special
collection of books for boys. Research shows one of the major reasons boys dislike reading is because of the content. The set is titled Best Books for Boys. We also have one for girls, parents and teachers. Enjoy your summer. Let’s close the gap. I look forward to your child’s teacher asking your child what did you do for the summer? And your child answering we went to the library, museum, zoo, colleges and other great
educational places. Excerpt from There is Nothing Wrong with Black Students.

Did Linguistics and the study of language neglect Black boys? #blackdegreesmatter

By Don Allen, M.A. Ed.

It troubles me that in 2017 in the United States, we still have a challenge with the teaching of language, reading, literacy and critical thinking to boys of Black American heritage; to be very clear, there are some items we need to explore. First, public schools, curriculum and classroom design were never meant to house, teach or guide black boys. Secondly, the people who control identity, are the same who control language, wealth and education. It’s unfortunate we have to live by rules that were never meant nor updated for us (sans the victim mentality).  A 1990 study of more than 105,000 students in Maryland’s Prince George’s County, where African Americans made up about 65 percent of the enrollment, showed that black male pupils performed comparably to boys and girls of all races on first- and second-grade standardized math and reading test. But by fourth grade, African American boys experienced a sharp decline in their scores. More recent national studies have shown similar findings: In 1994, fourth-grade reading scores of African American boys lagged behind those of all other groups at the same grade level, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (Bennett-Alexander, 1997). This becomes problematic because we know that prisons use a grade four model do create an anticipatory set on how many prisons will be needed. We know that our private prison systems are calculating how many new beds (they will need) based on the third grade, number of third graders, and that’s just wrong,” I think waiting until kids are ready for kindergarten to begin to intervene is too late (Ford, 2013).

What the experts are saying:

  • Three of four African-American boys in California classrooms failed to meet reading and writing standards on the most recent round of testing, according to data obtained from the state Department of Education and analyzed by CALmatters (Department of Education, 2016).
  • African American males in primary and secondary schools were suspended more than twice as often as white males in 1992, according to the Office of Civil Rights. (Levin, 2017).
  • The United States has made virtually no improvement in reaching its lowest performing students. Although the percentage of white students in the country has declined dramatically over the past 50 years, while the percentage of black students has changed very little, the achievement levels of black students compared to white students (and other racial/ethnic groups) has barely narrowed (Hanushek, 2006).

One of the problems in public school education is that some poor, economically disadvantaged Black boys are treated as victims.  If you are walking into a classroom and see students as victims, you are seeing them as having an inherent flaw that only you can fix. You [the teacher] are there to help them learn and allow them to do fixing for themselves (Elie, 2016). The cup-filling and entitlements become less-than a strict balance of academic rigor and low expectations from educators make it simple for this lost generation to get passed on and graduate as functional illiterates. In an article by author Maya Elie: Author’s Advice to White Teachers in Urban Schools: Drop the ‘Savior Complex’ and Learn from Students, Elie writes in an interview with Dr. Christopher Emdin, an associate professor at Columbia University’s Teachers College, who is a passionate and unapologetic advocate for the advancement of urban education nationwide who wrote the book, For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood…and the Rest of Y’all Too, says:

“There are teachers who are not being trained appropriately. Not to speak negatively about education schools, but there are people coming out of school with a Masters or Bachelor’s in education, taking one class in multiculturalism, or one class on ethnicity, race and politics. Then these teachers go into spaces where race, politics, ethnicity and class are the biggest factors they have to face. There’s also the idea of the hyper-scripted curriculum that the teachers don’t have the space to ask the students about who they are” (Elie, 2016).

How does Linguistics play a role in this hyper-critical failure for Black Boys?

One of many positions held by linguists and many anthropologists locates the problem not in the children, but in the relations between them and the school system. This position holds that inner-city children do not necessarily have inferior mothers, language, or experience, but that the language, family style, and ways of living of inner-city children are significantly different from the standard culture of the classroom, and that this difference is not always properly understood by teachers and psychologists. Linguists believe that we must begin to adapt our school system to the language and learning styles of the majority in the inner-city schools. They argue that everyone has the right to learn the standard languages and culture in reading and writing (and speaking, if they are so inclined); but this is the end result, not the beginning of the educational process. They do not believe that the standard language is the only medium in which teaching and learning can take place, or that the first step in education is to convert all first-graders to replicas of white middle-class suburban children (Labov, 1972). Even after decades of research on African American English (AAE), there is still no consensus as to exactly how it has developed. Although there are several theories, the two most prominent are featured in Do You Speak American? One theory suggests that when slaves of different language backgrounds were transported from Africa to America, they developed a pidgin—a simplified version of a language used for communication between people or groups who do not have a common language. This language subsequently developed into a full-fledged creole language that children acquired in their homes. (Some creole languages—languages that have developed out of pidgins and have acquired native speakers—have the word creole in their names—for example, Hawaiian Creole—while others do not—for example, Gullah.) It is believed that the Gullah spoken to this day on the sea islands of South Carolina and Georgia closely resembles the language used by slaves on plantations. Because plantation slaves were not taught English and had limited contact with English speakers, some features of this creole were passed from generation to generation. These features have survived post-slavery because as AAE developed, it became more than just a means of communicating between groups: It is a source of solidarity among people who use it. A second theory is that slaves in the South worked alongside indentured servants who spoke non-mainstream varieties of English. African American slaves learned English from these indentured servants (often of Scots-Irish descent). People who believe this explanation for the beginning of AAE say that it explains similarities between AAE and other non-mainstream varieties of English (such as Appalachian English, which shares some linguistic features with AAE), (PBS, n.d.).

The constraints of Urban Education in the “James” Crow Era

The fact is, Black boys in public school settings are not learning language, the use of, or anything else. The major challenge points to teacher training universities (current), and curriculum that has been surreptitiously void of all cultural responsive content-in-context. The challenge of Black boys and their education now becomes a part of a racial-political paradigm that is still controlled by the people who designed the construct in the beginning. If educators look at the model of first-things-first in urban education, they would understand that until all gaps are gone, there can be no success for the Black boy, nor the black in the federation in education.  By recognizing these challenges, we’re also acknowledging the responsibility we share to bridge the race, language and color divides in our country. No doubt our Black Boys are smart enough, spirited enough, and genuine enough to meet the challenge. The question is, are we?

Bibliography

Bennett-Alexander, D. (1997, April ). Are schools failing black boys? Parenting Magazine.

Elie, M. (2016, July 8). Author’s advice to white teachers in urban schools: Drop the ‘savior complex’       and learn from students. NEAToday. Retrieved from neaToday.

Hanushek, E. a. (2006, October). School quality and the black-white achievement gap. National Bureau of Economic Research, Stanford University, University of Texas at Dallas.

Labov, W. (1972, June). Academic ignorance and black intelligence. The Atlantic. (T. Atlantic, Ed.) New York, NY, U.S.

Levin, M. (2017, June 6). 75% of black California boys don’t meet state reading standards. (L. A. News, Producer) Retrieved June 6, 2017, from Los Angeles Daily News Literacy : http://www.dailynews.com/social-affairs/20170604/75-of-black-california-boys-dont-meet-state-reading-standards

PBS. (n.d.). Do you speak American?. Carnegie Corporation of New York. Twin Cities Television (TPT). (C. C. York, Ed.) Minneapolis, MN, U.S. .

 

The Weirdness of Facebook and bumping in to a Facebook friend you’ve never met in person

Facebook: No, it’s not real life. Deal with it. (Photo: Fair Use).

…no, I have no conversation for you in Target; that was Facebook, this is real life. (True story)

By Don Allen, Publisher – Our Black News

I love Facebook; it’s as simple as that. The social media giant of connecting nouns (people, places and things) have been a daily stable in my predominantly argumentative concerns about politics, people and process. The “Three P’s” have provided me with enough context-in-content to post interesting topics, concerns and facts that in most cases are undeniably telling about our society and the people –  some self-appointed that don’t really give a damn about resetting communities across the United States in need of a reset. Yes, my friends, this is the state of my people in Black communities used as petri dishes of disparities so that local community poverty pimps can say, “We need this program to help the poor Black people.” The funny thing is, when was the last time you saw a white man or woman stand up in any meeting and say, “We need this program to help poor white people”?

Lately, the social media giant (Facebook, if you lost track of the title), has been buzzing with liberal zealots and right wing activists concerned about the Trump presidency. As I read the misdirection’s, misinformation and the outrageous of Black youth fight-videos, it concerns me that somebody is not keeping anyone accountable for all this excitement…is that the institution of the Book?  Could the utility of Facebook be mainly to distract? Unfortunately, while it all becomes exciting click-bait, there should be some concerns about who you communicate with; what you say, and how you say it. What I found out over a couple of days and nine-years on Facebook, there are some crazy people in this world and many of them hang out on Facebook.

My wife knows I hate shopping; especially after she’s been at Target for three-hours and comes home and says, “…honey, I forgot bread” – the foundation of peanut butter sandwiches for a four and six-year-old. Begrudgingly, I head down to the garage, stopping at my desk to grab my wallet, wedding ring and watch to head out the door. The Target by my house is a massive red and white powerhouse of lights, noise, people and indecision; the mere fact that I must go into the store creates great anxiety in my inner-self. To prepare for this trip, I have an Apple Music file on my iPhone called “Target” –  it’s a variety of music from David Bowie, Prince, AC/DC and Kenny Loggins that keeps me sane during this shopping adventure. As I pull into the parking lot, packed with every human in the area, I stop briefly at the crosswalk to let people cross who are determined to get into the store for a shopping experience of sometimes buying stuff you don’t need…but that’s Target’s hook: Come for milk, leave with bedspreads and curtains.

This time, I was lucky…got a parking space by the door right next to the shopping carts; so far, easy. As I mouthwateringly looked over at the Pizza Hut food stand and pushed my cart toward the produce, a couple of weird things happened. There stood a man and woman, who I have never met, but the way they looked at me was incredibly “friendly.” I proceeded to the isle with the bread and I was being followed. As I turned around to confront these stalkers, the male yelled, “Hey Don Allen, how are you…my name is Tony…the woman said, “I’m Sarah, just a friend who lives near here and I caught a ride with Tone.” This was all great and wonderful, but I asked, “Do I know you?

“Have we met before? If so, I’m sorry, I don’t remember.”

Both Tony and Sarah smiled and chuckled a bit… “We’re your friends on Facebook.”

Oh shit… I said to myself, I hope these two aren’t some liberal idiots wanting to confront me on Global Warming or why Trump should be impeached. I gave a slight smile, nodded my head and said, “What can I do for you?”

Tony was the first one to speak while I looked through the 50 varieties of bread…

“I’ve been following both your pages and did you know you’re in 15 arguments, three women are hitting on you and you spelled a word or two wrong.”

Rather than telling Tony to get screwed, I took this moment as a learning-moment in the study of Linguistics and the use of language and expressions between a small group of people. I asked Tony did he get paid by Facebook to monitor my or any other accounts? The look in his face; scrunched up and unsure of what I was asking could have been considered as a moment of awakening for him; Sarah was rather quiet, probably catching on I was a little disturbed by Tony’s CIA-like spying on my page, and of course my wonderment about why the hell he thought that was important.

I explained to Tony and Sarah that I don’t know all my 4000-plus friends on Facebook and only 10-percent engage with me and I’m sure more than 50-percent don’t agree with what I say, but damn, I’m not expected to know you in-person, on-site in a Target store just because you’re my friend on Facebook…it’s not ever going to happen.

I guess it’s okay to introduce yourself if you run into me in public, but don’t expect me or any of your Facebook friends to want to dialog outside the social-media app; it’s a new day in inner-personal communications and the old-school way of going out and talking to someone face-to-face went away when Facebook created a narcissistic, self-centered posting mechanism of a timeline that all your friends see.

Today, conversations are for Facebook, not real life…and that’s never a good thing.

Bonita “BO” Money and Minneapolis mayoral candidate Jonathan Hornerbrink on the Black Republican, Black Democrat Show…Saturday at 6pm (CST)

Don Allen, Jamar Nelson: Keep it Real Radio.

Join co-hosts Don Allen and Jamar Nelson Saturday at 6pm on Twin Cities News Talk’s Black Republican, Black Democrat Show on AM 1130, FM 103.5 and online at www.TwinCitesNewsTalk.com. In our first segment, we present in a #BRBD exclusive, Bonita “Bo” Money, one of the few women of color in the emerging, billion-dollar cannabis business.

In our second segment, we introduce Minneapolis mayoral candidate Jonathan Hornerbrink as he gives us one of the most real stories about the “evil” within the city of Minneapolis and what he will do as mayor when elected in November. This is a most listen program as #BRBD continues it’s 2017-2018 Candidate series.

About our guests:

Bonita “BO” Money, co-creator of That Glass Jar™

Bonita “BO” Money

A cannapreneur, Bonita “Bo” Money is one of the few women of color in the emerging, billion-dollar cannabis business. She’s the co-creator of That Glass Jar™, a cannabis-infused topical, and founder of Women Abuv Ground, a networking organization, dedicated to introducing the cannabis business to women of color. As a 25-year veteran of the entertainment business, her current projects include producing segments for ESPN’s “30 for 30” sport documentaries as well as a scripted television series, called “The Chronic,” which documents her inner working with mega rappers Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg within the walls of record label Death Row. To hear the panel discussion, visit the Women Abuv Ground YouTube.

 

 

Jonathan Hornerbrink

Minneapolis mayoral candidate Jonathan Hornerbrink

Quote from campaign website: Our City is broken. Failed policy, failing institutions and generation after generation of weak leadership have left us with a broken system and a broken government. But in truth, fixing this City is not about us today. It’s about our children. While we argue over politics, our most vulnerable citizens suffer most. Our children suffer when communities are not safe, when their parents can’t get a decent job, when “affordable housing” costs too much for their families, and when schools fail to educate and prepare them for success in life. And yet, for another year, the other candidates have ignored our most precious asset, our children. That’s why I’m running. That’s who I’ll defend as mayor.

 

Phone lines will be open, we look forward to having you the Black Republican, Black Democrat Show, part of Black Politics in Minnesota and the Black Jedi Radio NetworkTM –  an iHeartRadio program exclusive, all rights reserved.

 

Mpls mayoral candidate Jacob Frey on Black Republican, Black Democrat – Saturday!

Minneapolis mayoral candidate Jacob Frey with Allen and Nelson – Saturday at 6pm – #TCNT.

Minneapolis, Minn. –  Don Allen and Jamar Nelson are pleased to announce their very special guest Minneapolis city councilman and 2017 mayoral candidate Jacob Frey on the return of the Black Jedi Talk Radio Network on the “Black Republican, Black Democrat Show. The political talk show will feature resident conservative Black-American Donald Allen; and supporter of everything Democrat and all around nice liberal Jamar Nelson. The duo co-hosts the Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130, FM 103.5 show Black Republican, Black Democrat Show on Saturday’s at 6pm CST with Roving Reporter Preya Samsudar from Alpha News. Audiences may  listen online using the #iHeart Radio app (search for Twin Cities News Talk).

Saturday at 6pm on AM 1130/FM 103.5 – Twin Cities News Talk.

The Black Republican, Black Democrat Show features in-depth conversations about education, community accountability, current events, election news and of course…politics. #BRBD is now available on iTunes.

Join us as we talk to candidate Frey about the City of Minneapolis and what he will different if elected in November 2017.

 

If you truly knew what the N-word meant to our ancestors, you’d NEVER use it

By 

A few years ago, I read slave narratives to explore the lives of black agricultural workers after the end of the Civil War. The narratives came from the Federal Writers Project of the Works Progress Administration, a program that employed researchers from 1936 to 1938 to interview former enslaved people, producing more than 2,300 narratives that, thankfully, reside online and are fully searchable.

Those whom the law defined as property recounted various unique human experiences — their daily horrors and monotonies, how they freed themselves or learned of their emancipation, the surge of exhilaration upon securing freedom, and how they endured life on the edges of a white supremacist society in the decades thereafter.

As I pored over the narratives, I was struck less by their experiences, as heartrending as they were, than by how their experiences sculpted their self-perceptions. The best explanation of what I gleaned, what social scientists called internalized oppression, describes the psychological trauma that ensues when a person from a stigmatized group believes those negative stigmas.

White folk indoctrinated them into accepting their supposed inferiority. These narratives illustrate the success of this campaign of mental terrorism, and no word conveyed the depth of this internalized oppression more than “nigger.” Now, whenever I hear the epithet, a visual and emotional representation of the heinous process by which a people — my people — were induced to think they were less than trespasses into my thoughts. After years of habitual use of “nigger,” I banished it from my speech to honor the humanity that many never saw in themselves.


The internalized oppression revealed itself in various ways. Sometimes the former enslaved people clearly, perhaps subconsciously, considered themselves subhuman, just like how their former owners regarded them. Jim Allen, for example, dubbed himself his master’s “pet nigger boy” and a “stray” and thought himself privileged because he could sleep on the floor beside his master’s bed. That he likened himself to a fortunate mangy mutt or frisky feline crushed me. The word laid bare a worldview that held black folk as a lower order of being, as when Irene Robertson claimed her former master Mr. Sanders was mean, in part, because “he beat his wife like he beat a nigger woman.”

“Nigger” also signaled antipathy toward fellow black folk. After the end of slavery, Mattie Mooreman went north to Wisconsin with a white family for whom she worked. Members of the family wanted her to go to the circus to watch a black boy’s performance. She told her interviewer, “Guess they thought it would be a treat to me to see another niggah. I told ’em, ‘Law, don’t you think I see lots, lots more than I wants, every day when I is at home?’ ” But read how she talks about the family’s baby, whom she constantly watched over, fearing, irrationally, someone would kidnap him: “No matter what time they come home they’d find me there. ‘Why don’t you go in your bedroom and lie down?’ they’d ask me. ‘No,’ I’d tell ’em, ‘somebody might come in, and they would have to get that baby over my dead body.” Her eyes fixated on the white baby, but she saw too many niggers.

A barrage of dispiriting uses of the word bloodied me as I combed through the narratives. “The Ku Klux kept the niggers scared.” “The Ku Klux did a whole lot to keep the niggers away from the polls. …” Slaves owned by “nice” masters are repeatedly called “free niggers.” “Niggers ain’t got no sense. Put ’em in authority and they gits so uppity.” “I’se just a poor old nigger waitin’ for Jesus to come and take me to heaven.” Slave traders are called “nigger traders.” Defiant enslaved people required the service of a “niggerbreaker.” “Nigger dogs” aided the recapture of those who escaped.

Perhaps more depressing, ironically, was that circumstances sometimes led them to opt against calling a black person a nigger. William Porter stated that “some of the Tennessee niggers was called free niggers. There was a colored man in Pulaski, Tennessee, who owned slaves.” A black man who kept others in bondage — he’s a “colored man,” yet those who were owned were “niggers.” I instantly thought of a moment from the O.J.: Made in America documentary when a white woman who saw black people talking to Simpson uttered, “Look at those niggers sitting with O.J.” Simpson delights in hearing this because she “knew I wasn’t black. She saw me as O.J.” Porter’s outlook matched that of both the racist white woman and the unspeakably racially deranged O.J.

Since reading those narratives, I’ve noticed this mindset when perusing the remarks of freed people in other contexts. For example, before the trial of Rufus Martin, a black man who stood accused of the 1903 murder of Charles Swackhammer, a woman whom the Fort Worth Star-Telegram referred to as an “old negress who occupied a front seat in the court room” bellowed:

It’s the white people that is to blame. They know that they got to make niggahs work or they ain’t no good and they know as long as they ‘low niggah men to loaf aroun’ low down saloons they ain’t goin’ to work. This man come from a good niggah fam’ly — one of the best I knows of, but the p’lice ‘lowed him to loaf aroun’ without workin’, and to drink and gamble, till he just got to be no good and thought he didn’t have to work. The p’lice ought to raid them low down niggah saloons every day and every night till they make every blessed one of the niggah toughs go to work or else send ’em all to the county road. Them saloons is what makes bad niggahs and the white folks is to blame for it, ’cause they let ’em run.

That Martin sported a reddish mustache, light hair and skin so bright he could pass for white almost certainly colored her perception that Martin came from a “good niggah fam’ly.”

Black folk rescued the word from the smoldering debris of a virulently racist land, reclaimed it and renovated the slur into a celebration of black comradery — defenders of contemporary usage of “nigger” repeat this. When this tale collides with reality, however, it shatters as a misreading of history — the current use of the word is owed less to white folk calling black folk “nigger” and more to black folk who thought they were niggers and said so. Black people have hurled the infamous word for nearly as long as white folk have. It exists within black speech now because it existed within black speech then. The uncomfortable truth must be confronted: Absent the internalized oppression of those who called white men and women their masters, “nigger” would probably not be a part of black folk’s lexicon. We black folk are reclaiming it not from bigoted white folk but from our ancestors, who, sadly, deemed their blackness a badge of inferiority.

I seek not to usher the word to the gallows. I harbor no aims to kill it. I can still bump a Young Thug track or chortle at a Dave Chappelle routine. “Nigger” does not bar my enjoyment of popular culture. My soul, though, winces whenever I hear it. The decision for black people to include it in their vocabulary, nonetheless, remains personal, and I reject the criticism of black folk who continue to wield it.

I write only to summon the words of former enslaved people from beyond the grave to express that “nigger” is haunted by the ghosts of hate and the more spiritually chilling ghosts of self-hate.

Brando Simeo Starkey is an associate editor at The Undefeated and the author of In Defense of Uncle Tom: Why Blacks Must Police Racial Loyalty. He crawled through a river of books and came out brilliant on the other side.

Black Republican, Black Democrat welcomes Fancy Ray McCloney: Minneapolis’ Mayor of good looking!

Join us Saturday at 6pm (CST) on AM 1130, FM 103.5, Twin Cities News Talk – KLTK AM/FM for Black Republican, Black Democrat Show brought to you by the Black Jedi Radio Network©…a better place for #BlackTalkRadio.

Fancy Ray McCloney – the Best Looking Man in Comedy talks politics, history and show biz!

Tune into the runaway hit radio show featuring two of the Twin Cities most prominent Black American talking heads: Don Allen (Our Black News) and Jamar Nelson (Black Politics in Minnesota) come together to form the Black Republican, Black Democrat Show LIVE every Saturday night on Twin Cities News Talk, AM 1130, FM 103.5 at 6pm (CST).

Saturday’s show on #BRBD features Fancy Ray McCloney, the Best looking man in Comedy for an uncensored night of fun and facts.

Minnesota GOP deputy chair cancels radio guest appearance frightened of Black Republican

Don Allen, co-host (with Jamar Nelson) of #TCNT’s Black Republican, Black Democrat Show…he’s big, black and conservative, why is the current deputy chairperson of the Minnesota GOP afraid to talk “issues” with Allen?

Minnesota GOP deputy chairperson shows he’s not fit to lead the MNGOP out of a wet paper bag; its not personal, it reflects the action s of a public person over the last 24-hours.The Minnesota GOP has always been afraid of strong black men, to bad they don’t have many.

By Black Politics in Minnesota

Chris Fields, Minnesota GOP deputy chairperson caught wind that Don Allen (a republican, supporter of Donald Trump and a former candidate for MNGOP chairmanship) was the co-host of Twin Cities News Talk’s “Black Republican, Black Democrat Show,” on Saturday’s at 6pm on AM 1130, FM 103.5 and backed out according to co-host Jamar Nelson.

Fields, a candidate for the 2017 MNGOP chairmanship told Nelson, “Don attacks me personally, he doesn’t want to talk about the issues.”

We contacted Allen to get his response:

“The Minnesota GOP is not being operated at peek-proficiency. The current leadership is not interested in anything but their low-clout in a small circle of people that don’t care about much. I have never attacked Chris personally, and I’ve always stayed on the issues. Chris is using this for an excuse because he nor Keith Downey can answer any of my questions about a long and antiquated process that has failed not only Minnesota Republican, but also many others who look the GOP way. This spineless act by the deputy chairman of the MNGOP only reflects on his ability to lead, which now should be a party-wide question. I’ve always wanted to talk about the issues and the hesitation might be because most of my issues are black issues,” said Allen.

Fields has cancelled his appearance on the Black Republican, Black Democrat Show today (Saturday), because of his deep-seeded fear of another republican. This in itself is telling; does the MN GOP need leadership that avoids the issues?

Hear more about this tonight on the Black Republican, Black Democrat Show with Don Allen and Jamar Nelson at 6pm…you can listen at www.twincitiesnewstalk.com.

White Privilege gives Gay Marriage the whiteness it needs to become a social norm: Can Blackness become a social norm using the Gay strategy?

Rachel Dolezal, the former NAACP leader from Spokane, Wash., who resigned after it came to light that she was falsely presenting herself as black has repeatedly said she identifies comfortably as black. There is an ongoing uproar behind Dolezal’s admission of identity-fondness of the black body, but also an oversight of Bruce Jenner as Katlyn Jenner. An economic attack on Dolezal has continued, much like the structural violence against black Americans. If it’s okay for Katlyn Jenner to identify as a female, they why are society-change makers upset about Ms. Dolezal’s blackness? Is there an underlying strategy black Americans need to use to build equity?  To pick and choose what social justice theoretically looks like on an individual basis will bring us (black America) back to white only drinking fountains.

By Don Allen, Publisher

(Editorial)…Members of the LGBTIQ communities across the United States and their supporters worldwide are now a major part of history since gay marriage is declared legal across the US in historic Supreme Court ruling.  The legal ruling, 5-4 in Obergefell v Hodges, justices determine right to marriage equality is protected under constitution in decision hailed as ‘victory of love.’  If it the process of law could determine the legal victory for gay marriage, then how come with over 99 years of segregation (1865-1965), and 50 years of so-called “freedom,” (1964-2015), Black Americans still find it next to impossible to obtain equity and fair participation in the American Dream?  Why are social, legal and moral bankruptcies still present when talking about the advancement of black Americans in America, and how did gay rights, slip past civil rights in meaning?

First, then, let’s quickly recap that strategy. In a remarkably short period of time, gay marriage advocates have convinced millions of Americans that gay marriage is just the same as straight marriage. Gays thus deserve the right to marry because gay marriage will do nothing to damage or alter that revered institution. Put differently, the definition of marriage can be expanded without any negative consequences for society.

In 20-years, gay marriage will not be a big deal. Gay marriage will become a social norm meaning it has cut into the social culture of the United States and is accepted, but at the same time we must argue what of the Black American and his civil rights? Will there ever come a time when fairness, equity and the belief all men and women are created equal will be applied across cultures and black people?

Black Americans remain less likely than white Americans to support same-sex marriage, as has been the case for several years. But with the recent success and support by those in the black community for gay rights, one might argue the GBLT community might pitch in and support Black Americans in the generational fight or equity…one might think. This is not the case. Rather than positioning civil rights against gay rights or pitting blacks against gays, there must be middle ground where Black Americans can achieve the same level of success using the courts, social movements and the billions of dollars Black Americans control in the United States to make headway into the realm of the American Dream.

Supporters of same-sex marriage love to make analogies to the African American Civil Rights Movement. Analogies are rhetorical devices that require careful scrutiny. While I do not find the attempt to connect bans on gay marriage to miscegenation laws persuasive, nevertheless there is nothing inherently wrong in trying to find parallels between these two social movements. In that spirit, let me offer my own reflections on what we can learn by comparing them.

Leaders in the GBLT movement have been hesitant to publically support anything in the areas of civil rights, but have clung to the claim that civil rights are no different gay rights, and that slavery is some how equivalent to the ungodly shadow cast upon gays by the denial of gay marriage, which some know are separate and unequal. According to Newsmax, the head of an organization of African-American pastors said on Saturday that Christians must oppose the Supreme Court’s gay marriage ruling through civil disobedience because “you do something to get arrested to call attention to the injustice.” Rev. Bill Owens, president of the Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP), said in an interview, “They got it wrong in the Dred Scott case,” referring to the 1857 court ruling that blacks were property and not American citizens. “The Supreme Court doesn’t always get it right. This is one time they really got it wrong,” said Rev. Owens.

The blind spot in Rev. Owens argument that some might see is that religion, especially Christianity gets it wrong to; especially when dealing with the mindsets of the black church…many things go unsaid.

Rather than beginning with a description of the Civil Rights movement and then looking for similarities to gay rights, my arguments goes in the opposite direction. That is, I begin with the extraordinary success of gay marriage advocacy and then ask what the Civil Rights movement would have looked like if it had followed the gay rights strategy.

If the argument of sameness works for gay rights, could it have worked for Civil Rights? Imagine the following “alternative history.” It is the early sixties, and while it should be obvious to everyone that all human beings are the same in every important respect, racism is alive and well. The white political leaders most sympathetic to the plight of African Americans decide to make the case for this moral sameness by arguing that black people are really white. “Look past their skin,” they say, “and you will find that they are just as white as we are.” This argument is so effective that the discourse about race in America changes nearly overnight. Anyone who wants to talk about the distinctiveness of African American culture is accused of racism. Even black leaders who want to draw attention to black history and its unique challenges and achievements are shut down. There is no black pride movement, no discussion of the particularity of black culture, and no effort to find room in public discourse to reflect on the uniqueness of black life in America. Blacks continue to have their own history and culture, but those differences cannot be named, analyzed, and celebrated. For the purposes of social justice, blacks have become white.

Civil rights, of course, were not won in that fashion, and it is a good thing, too. White America had to learn to recognize not just black rights but also black lives, including their views on American history and their contributions to American culture. Blacks did not win civil rights because they are really white, and they did not have to give up their blackness to become full members of the American experience. Moral sameness did not eclipse historical and cultural differences.

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges starts community outreach war with $250K political payoff

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges is wrong. It’s an election year and she just played her hand to show all the Minneapolis voters she’s the queen of political payoffs, backroom deals and an advocate for keeping downtown Minneapolis in chaos. #BandAidBetsy

By Don Allen, Publisher

(Editorial)…Minneapolis’ black community has always been divided when into two specific groups when money hits the table. Group one are the folks and organizations who always seem to “get the money” with little to no successful outcomes. Group two are the group who are the grassroots, hardworking folks that actually have a plan, but are intentionally overlooked by philanthropic-political pundits in favor of keeping things as they are. The Minneapolis mayor, who is currently running for what some say is the toughest re-election bid in Minneapolis mayoral-race history is not a surgery-cure type mayor; she’s a band aid mayor…once again, she uses her power of box-opening to pull out another band aid to make what we allege as another politically-driven outreach grant to make sure downtown Minneapolis is safe. Since the announcement of this particular band aid, there have been several beating, robberies and women shot in the head. It seems that money in the wrong place does what it always has for Minneapolis…nothing.

If I was on the Minneapolis City Council, I would question mayor Hodges funding of Day Patrols on Hennepin Avenue. I know she wants to be re-elected as mayor again but the black folks she’s granting money to don’t hang out in downtown Minneapolis after the sun goes down. Hell, if the mayor was worried about crime on Hennepin Avenue, she’d clean up 5th and Hennepin. If you’ve been there, you know what I’m talking about. This too will be a total fail for Hodges.

Community Activist Kay G. Wilson. (photo: Fair Use-Google Search)

Community activist and safe-streets advocate Kay G. Wilson said, “Many of the people here getting and controlling the funding money over and over again every year don’t feel like they owe society anything because they were never a part of the problem; as for me I was a huge part of the problem so I owe forever! Its not about receiving money or funding for me its about paying back my debt to society. I owe for 14 years now I’ve been paying with my life on the frontline daily in Minneapolis!”

Wilson, who is consistently overlooked for state and local funding has been campaigning for justice in the black community for a long time. He has never been offered or taken any of this “blood money,” but would more than likely do better then the current group of poverty-hacks who don’t live in the community and are more interested in their bottom line of their nonprofit agency and people are very low on the food chain.

Wilson also said, “The kids downtown only respect those they respect. Most of them working downtown is a joke to them. There needs to be brothers and sisters that are serious and about real change present downtown.  I’ve seen the mess down there and the kids are looking for weak, nice, and friendly to victimize and to laugh afterwards! These type of challenges do not need work training, they’re not at that point yet. Its time to bring serious ‘BIG Homies’ downtown for real. I’m ready but they don’t want me to assemble a group of real change makers here, they never call me.”

For people in the black community who actually are fiscal conservatives and what to see change by providing a hand-up for the lower one-third of the black community, funding never reaches them. No matter what the mayor says, she has given blood-money to agencies that don’t deserve the grant in order to maintain her relationship with the petty-bougie Negro leadership that she hopes will get out and vote for her. One thing for sure, Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges continues to make serious mistakes, one is underestimating Raymond Dehn, Jacob Frey, Nekima Levy-Pounds and Al Flowers.

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