Aug 31, 2012

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Clint Eastwood earned plenty of bad reviews for his latest performance: a bizarre, rambling endorsement of Mitt Romney.

“Clint, my hero, is coming across as sad and pathetic,” tweeted film critic Roger Ebert as Eastwood ad-libbed Thursday night to an audience of millions — and one empty chair — on stage at the Republican National Convention. “He didn’t need to do this to himself. It’s unworthy of him.”

Eastwood carried on a long-winded conversation with an imaginary President Barack Obama, telling him that he failed to deliver on his promise and that it’s time for Romney and running mate Paul Ryan to take over.

“Mr. President, how do you handle promises that you have made when you were running for election, and how do you handle them? I mean, what do you say to people?” he said at one point to the empty chair.
Twitter was instantly ablaze with comments mocking the Oscar-winning director of “Unforgiven” and “Million Dollar Baby.”

“Clint has now eclipsed the total word count of his last three films,” tweeted film critic Richard Roeper during the speech, which was intended to last five minutes but went on for nearly 12.

Howard Kurtz, host of CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” said “Clint’s empty chair act” was the “weirdest convention moment I have ever seen.” Joe Scarborough, the conservative host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” declared that “a great night for Mitt Romney just got sidetracked by Clint Eastwood.”

Minutes after Eastwood began his speech, someone created an (at)InvisibleObama account on Twitter. It has already amassed 30,000 followers and counting.

“I heard that Clint Eastwood was channeling me at the RNC,” tweeted comic actor Bob Newhart, known for his one-sided conversation bits. “My lawyers and I are drafting our lawsuit.”

The 82-year-old actor and director, a fiscal conservative who takes left-leaning stands on social issues, also talked about Oprah Winfrey, Obama’s unfulfilled promise to close the U.S. prison at Guantanamo, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and lawyers.

“When somebody doesn’t do the job, you gotta let ‘em go,” Eastwood said. The tough-guy actor of “Dirty Harry” fame then drew a finger across his throat.

The Obama campaign shot back afterward by tweeting a photo of the back of the president’s chair, with Obama’s head peeking over it, along with the line: “This seat’s taken.”

A top Obama adviser, David Axelrod, told MSNBC that Republicans must be regretting Eastwood’s rambling speech.

Inside the convention, the crowd cheered the actor’s entrance and shouted his famed catchphrase, “Go ahead, make my day.” But backstage, stern-faced Romney aides winced at times as Eastwood’s remarks stretched on.

After his speech, Romney’s camp defended Eastwood.

“He’s an American icon,” Romney spokeswoman Gail Gitcho told CNN’s Piers Morgan. “You can’t look at him at through the same political lens that you would other politicians. He’s Clint Eastwood.”

Romney’s wife, Ann, was peppered with questions on morning news shows about whether Eastwood’s appearance was a distraction. She said Eastwood is “a unique guy and he did a unique thing last night.”

Reports are coming out about the passing of Robin Robert's 88 year old mother, Lucimarian Roberts.

Lucimarian Tolliver Roberts was the first African-American to head Mississippi’s Board of Education.  She was passionate about music and poetry and authored a book this year titled “My Story, My Song,” on which Robin Roberts collaborated.

Her mom's declining health was the reason why Roberts took her medical leave from 'Good Morning America' a day early.  Roberts is scheduled to undergo treatment for a bone marrow disorder called MDS.  She wanted to be by her mother's side during her transition.

Fortunately, she and her sister were able to say their goodbyes before their mother passed.

How hard is it for someone to tell the former Secretary of State that she had lipstick on her teeth?  I mean is that asking too damn much.  She is freaking Condoleezza Rice and you mean to tell me that no one could take out the time and say, "Excuse me Madam Secretary, but you appear to have lipstick on your teeth."

I'm one of those people who hate how the appearances of female politicians are always hammered on while the men get a pass, but even I'm pissed about this.  This woman deserved better than this and someone in her circle failed her.

Here is a very serious woman giving what could potentially be one of the biggest speeches of her life, but people are not paying attention to her because they're distracted by the damn lipstick on her teeth (and let's just say high definition television didn't help this situation).

Now don't get me wrong, it really does speak to the fact that she must not have any friends that were at the RNC because surely someone would have told her about the lipstick.

One of my favorite tweets about Lipstick-gate was the following:

Dear Republicans, when you piss the gays off, things like Condoleeza Rice’s lipstick-covered teeth happen.”–@mattrjk
I may not agree with Dr. Rice politically, but even I would have told her that she had lipstick on her teeth if only in the name of sisterhood.

How much you want to bet people are going to remember the lipstick on her teeth more than her actual speech?

Aug 30, 2012

Dr. Jane Davis
(Tennessean) -- Tensions at Tennessee State University reignited Monday as a vocal faculty member opposing university leadership was taken away in handcuffs from a meeting.

After campus police arrested the chair of the Faculty Senate, Jane Davis, on a charge of disorderly conduct, the Senate voted to remove her from her leadership position — a vote she claims is illegitimate.

Davis, an English professor, has been an outspoken critic of several policies and decisions made by TSU interim President Portia Shields, who has clashed with some faculty since her arrival in early 2011.

In July, Davis publicized allegations that school administrators improperly changed 270 student grades last fall. The university said it was correcting a mistake, but Davis and other critics said the school was passing students who hadn’t completed their classes.

Under a new state funding formula, student success is a factor in the amount of money a university receives.
Last week, sociology professor Oscar Miller officially suggested ousting Davis and the Faculty Senate’s executive council from office, and the university surveyed faculty members on the idea. When the online poll closed, 60 percent wanted Davis removed, and 59 percent wanted the board’s executive council to go with her.

Reports are circulating about the apparent suicide of long time music executive Chris Lighty.

Lighty, an executive who has worked with musical stars such as Mariah Carey, Diddy, and 50 Cent, was found dead in his Bronx apartment.

Sources are saying that Lighty shot himself during an argument with his ex-wife Thursday morning. 

Here's how the NY Daily News is reporting the tragedy:

Lighty, 44 — a longtime manager of 50 Cent, Diddy, Ja Rule and Mariah Carey — put a gun to his head and fired after a spat with his former wife, Veronica, inside the South Riverdale apartment about 11:30 a.m., police sources said.

Law enforcement sources said Lighty — who divorced his wife last year — may have been dealing with financial struggles, including owing about $5 million to the IRS.

Lighty, founder of Violator Management, merged with another talent company to form Primary Violator around the time his divorce.


(WashPost) -- A federal court on Thursday blocked a controversial new voter ID law in Texas, ruling that the state failed to show that the law would not harm the voting rights of minorities.

The three-judge panel in the historic case said that evidence also showed that costs of obtaining a voter ID would fall most heavily on poor African Americans and Hispanics in Texas.

Evidence submitted by Texas to prove that its law did not discriminate was “unpersuasive, invalid, or both,” wrote David. S. Tatel, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, in the panel’s 56-page opinion.

The ruling will likely have political implications in the coming elections. Republicans and Democrats have been arguing over whether increasingly tough voter ID laws discriminate against African Americans and Hispanics.

Texas Attorney General Gregg Abbott said that the state will appeal Thursday’s ruling to the Supreme Court, which is the next stop in a voting rights case.

“Today’s decision is wrong on the law and improperly prevents Texas from implementing the same type of ballot integrity safeguards that are employed by Georgia and Indiana — and were upheld by the Supreme Court,” Abbott said in a statement.

Texas is the largest state covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which requires federal approval or “preclearance” of any voting changes in states that have a history of discrimination. Because of Texas’s discrimination history, the voter ID law signed last year by its Republican governor, Rick Perry, had to be cleared by the Justice Department. The department blocked the law in March, saying it would endanger minority voting rights. Texas sued the department, leading to a week-long trial in July.

Click here to read the entire article.

The black CNN camerawoman who was at the epicenter of the incident in which two attendees at the Republican National Convention threw peanuts at her while saying, "This is how we feed the animals," has finally spoken out about the incident.

Under the condition of anonymity, the camerawoman spoke to the Washington Post about the incident.

Here is what was reported:

She and CNN are not talking to media. However, she agreed to talk to her friend and I promised to honor her request that I not name her.

She was assigned to film from the floor of the convention in the recessed camera area. This is right among the thousands of delegates who converge on the forum floor to listen to their Republican leaders, nominate Mitt Romney as their candidate for president and, apparently, throw things at people darker than they are.

“I was just about to put on my headset when someone started throwing peanuts at me,”  she told me. “I didn’t understand what was going on.” She recovered enough to ask one man, “Are you out of your damned mind?” A pair of older white men walked to the railing preventing people from falling down into the camera pit. One hurled more peanuts at her and taunted, “Here! Want some more peanuts?”

Then they actually started hitting her with them. “This is what we feed to the animals at the zoo!” he continued. While his partner laughed, the thrower leaned over the railing as if he WAS at the zoo and snorted, “Here’s some more peanuts.”

My friend continued, “It was like they were heckling me.” It became clear to her these people were enjoying her torment. Two African-American cameramen and a female Caucasian reporter came over to investigate the fracas, but none had clearly heard what the men said. CNN security arrived by coincidence and set off after them.

At this point, I expected my friend to tell me how the RNC apologized profusely, how they genuinely seemed to feel bad and how they themselves became outraged by the whole thing. She didn’t. Rather, she told me that RNC security investigated by asking of the assailants, “Were they black or were they white?”

“Are you kidding me, Jamila?” She asked. “I’m from the Deep South! I know racism when I see it and when it’s being thrown at me. No black person would have done that!”

Former Secretary of State, Dr. Condoleezza Rice, gave the speech of the night last night at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fl.

I didn't find her to be a very engaging speaker, but I had to admit that the content of her speech was the best as far as the other speakers were concerned.

Judging off her specch, I really think Dr. Rice is considering a run for the presidency.  I wouldn't be surprised if she decided to run in the future.

Click here to read the transcript of Rice's speech.
EL PASO, Texas (AP) — The embalmed body of actor Sherman Hemsley, who became famous for his role as television's George Jefferson, will be kept in refrigeration at an El Paso funeral home until a local court rules on the validity of his will.

In the will Hemsley signed six weeks before dying of lung cancer July 24 he named Flora Enchinton, 56, whom he called a "beloved partner," as sole beneficiary of his estate, which is estimated in court documents to be more than $50,000.

The will is being contested by Richard Thornton, of Philadelphia, who claims to be Hemsley's brother and says the will might not have been made by the actor.

Enchinton told The Associated Press on Wednesday that she had been friends with Hemsley and had been his manager for more than 20 years. Over the time she, Hemsley and Hemsley's friend Kenny Johnston, 76, lived together, she said he never mentioned any relatives.

"Some people come out of the woodwork — they think Sherman, they think money," Enchinton said. "But the fact it that I did not know Sherman when he was in the limelight. I met them when they (Hemsley and Johnston) came running from Los Angeles with not one penny, when there was nothing but struggle."

Mark Davis, listed in court documents as Thornton's lawyer in El Paso, did not immediately respond to messages left at his office.

There is no date set for the case to be heard, court officials said. Enchinton said she hopes it will all be cleared in court.

The Philadelphia-born Hemsley played Jefferson in the CBS sitcom "All in the Family," then starred in the spinoff "The Jeffersons" from 1975 to 1985. It was one of TV's longest-running and most successful sitcoms, particularly noteworthy for its predominantly black cast.

Hemsley made George Jefferson — the bigoted, blustering Harlem businessman — one of TV's most memorable characters and a symbol for urban upward mobility.

Aug 29, 2012

The new racism is really the denial of racism. 

Gabby Douglas sat down to talk to Oprah about her experiences when it came to training to become an Olympic athlete.  During the conversation the issue of race happen to come up.  Evidently the fact that something racist happened to a little black girl that is competing in a sport where she is the clear minority seems to be really shocking to people.  So shocking did her former gym find the claims that they felt the need to come out and refute her claims.

Here's what's been reported:

The Olympic gold medalist is under fire after she said in an interview with Oprah Winfrey that she was the victim of racism at the gym where she trained in Virginia Beach.

She told Winfrey about one incident in which a teammate at Excaliber Gymnastics told her to do something because she was their slave.

“I definitely felt isolated,” Douglas said in the interview. “I felt, ‘Why do I deserve this? Is it because I’m black?’ ”

Her former coach and others associated with Excaliber blasted the claim.

“Really, I was shocked and very hurt,” former coach Dena Walker told NewsChannel 3 in Hampton Roads.
Gustavo Moure, CEO of Excalibur, went even further, suggesting that Douglas was lying.

“I wish to defend the children that trained with her and supported her when she attacks them with these allegations,” he told E! News. “Is Gabrielle a credible person just because she is an Olympic champion? She is not giving any names or dates, leading us to believe that the accusation is fake.”

“Gabby’s remarks were hurtful and without merit,” he told “We’ve had more African-Americans in elite and on the national team than any other gym in the country.”

Former teammates also blasted her.

“This is absolutely ridiculous,” Randy Stageburg, a former National Team member, told “Gabby was never a victim, in fact many would say she was one of the favorites. I am not saying that she never felt bullied because when you are in a sport with a bunch of girls it is bound to happen. However, anything that she may have felt was never about race and I can assure you everyone at some point has felt bullied.

“I watched Dena open her home to Gabby, feeding her, taking her to gym, and allowing her to stay over her house whenever Gabby wanted to,” he said.

See this is the problem I have with this entire thing.  Never once did Gabby say that the gym was racist.  She was speaking on her experience with a teammate (one in which she did not name).  But of course with just the utterance of the word racism, the usual suspects decide to circle the wagon and feign dissappointment in a 16 year old child being truthful about her experience.

I swear the worse form of racism is the denial of racism.  It's always the group that has never had to feel the sting of racism that feels the need to tell other people about their experience with racism. 

The response from the gym is the typical response that comes up when a person speaks on an act of racism that happened to them.  They immediately jumped ttouting all the African Americans that have been trained in the gym instead of just saying how heartbreaking it is that a young child would have to experience such a thing.

That's the problem with a lot of white people in this country.  They really believe that people speak out about racism because they want some damn attention.  Don't nobody want attention that damn bad!!

You just can't make this s#!t up.  What do you expect to happen when you run a campaign based on race baiting and hateful rhetoric?  Of course the angry racists, who wish to take their country back, are going to come out.

An attendee at the Republican National Convention was allegedly thrown out of the convention center on the first night after throwing nuts at a black CNN camerawoman and saying, "this is how we feed the animals."

Current TV host David Shuster, who is attending the convention, was the first to break the news about the incident when he tweeted aboutit on Tuesday:

@DavidShuster GOP attendee ejected for throwing nuts at African American CNN camera woman + saying "This is how we feed animals."
A CNN official did confirm the incident to Talking Points Memo (TPM). 

Here's what they wrote:

"CNN can confirm there was an incident directed at an employee inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum earlier this afternoon," the statement read. "CNN worked with convention officials to address this matter and will have no further comment."
Of course the people over at CNN didn't mention what happened on the air.  You know they don't want to appear biased when it comes to reporting the facts...SMH!

Just in case you decided to miss the first night of the Republican National Convention because a new episode of 'Dance Moms' was on or the fact that you had much more pressing issues on your mind such as the fact that Hurricane Issac was in the process of destroying your home.  Don't worry we have you covered here at 'The Savvy Sista'.

Here you can watch some of the biggest speeches given on the first official night of the Convention.

Here's the list in no particular order:
Ann Romney

I feel Ann Romney had the speech of the night.  She seemed to be the only one that realized that it was her husband, Mitt, that was running for President.  She actually mentioned his name several times unlike the other speakers.

She also tried her best to relate to women voters.  She had a line in her speech in which she talked about how much she loved women.  But it's one thing to love women in words, and a whole 'nother thing to love them through actions.  The platform that the Republicans have adopted has been the complete opposite of love for women.  Sure they can say they love women just as an abusive husband still believes he loves his wife.  His words speak of love but not his actions.

Chris Christie


The award for I'm running in 2016 and there's nothing you can do to stop me goes to Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.  If you had been living under a rock you would have tuned into that speech and thought it was Christie, and not Mitt, who was accepting the nomination.

Christie's speech was all about him and little to nothing about Mitt Romney.  It was very strange, but very interesting at the same time.

Here are some other speeches that you may want to listen to:

 Rick Santorum 

Artur Davis

Lord Bless poor little Artur Davis' heart!  That's all I have to say about that.

Aug 28, 2012

If you haven't heard about the powerful and inspirational story of how three brothas from Newark, NJ made a pact to go to college and become doctors, I would encourage you to check out their story.  They share their story in the best selling book, The Pact.  The three men, Dr. Sampson Davis, Dr. George Jenkins, and Dr. Rameck Hunt, are practicing medicine in their hometown of Newark and their foundation is in the running to win $30,000 in the 2012 Aetna Voices of Health Competition.

We often discuss at nauseam what is wrong in our community.  I think we all can agree that what these men are doing is a great example of what's right and my hope is that we can show our support and cast a vote (each person is actually allowed 10 votes). Here's the link with their story and where to cast your votes:

Aug 27, 2012

(HuffingtonPost) -- Chris Matthews exploded at Reince Priebus on Monday's "Morning Joe," tearing into the Republican National Committee chairman and accusing his party of playing the race card. Priebus spoke out about the confrontation later in the day.

The MSNBC host was livid over Mitt Romney's recent birth certificate joke, and false claims that Obama ended work requirements for welfare.

"That cheap shot ... was awful," Matthews said, referring to the joke. "It is an embarrassment to your party to play that card ... you are playing that ethnic card there." As Priebus apparently laughed and co-host Joe Scarborough tried to get a word in, Matthews continued, "you can sit there and giggle about it, but the fact is your party is playing that card."

"You think Mitt Romney's playing the race card?" Scarborough asked.

"There's no doubt he did," Matthews said. Co-host Mika Brzezinski speculated that Romney may have said what he said because he is an "awkward joker."

Priebus said Matthews was just trying to "push his brand" with his "monologue."

"It just seems funny that the first joke he ever told in his life was about Obama's birth certificate," Matthews said.

Later when Priebus alleged that Obama was looking at European policies for guidance, Matthews lost it again.

"Where do you get this from?" Matthews shouted. "This is insane." He charged that Priebus was "playing that card again."

"Let's just work on tone," Brzezinski said. "Chris, let him answer the question," Scarborough said.

"I'm not going to get into a shouting match with Chris so you guys can move on," Priebus said. "Because you're losing, that's why," Matthews said. "Garbage, garbage," Priebus muttered.

"It's your garbage," Matthews fired back.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Chris Matthews talked to POLITICO about his heated exchange with Priebus.  Here is how the POLITICO reported the conversation:

In an emotional interview with POLITICO tonight, MSNBC host Chris Matthews defended his spirited attack against RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, in which he alleged that the Republican party was guilty of playing the race card against President Barack Obama.

"It is obvious that this is something I care passionately about: race was abused by white politicians in my lifetime, including Reagan. For someone to come on the program and deny that this is part of their process, I couldn't take that," Matthews said. "This is something I really, deeply believe in. We grew up in a country where appeals to race have been awful, terrible. This language -- we are beyond this. It had to be called out."

(AJC) -- Morris Brown College officials have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in a last ditch effort to prevent the 131-year-old school from being foreclosed on and sold at auction, and to give them time to regroup.

Morris Brown, which is more than $30 million in debt, was facing foreclosure next month after investors called $13 million worth of bonds tied to the college. The bonds were issued by the Fulton County Development Authority in 1996. As security for the bonds, Morris Brown pledged several pieces of property, including the school's administration building. An auction of assets had been scheduled for Sept. 4.

"The trustees are taking several deliberate actions to insure that we not only survive, but thrive," board Chairman Preston W. Williams said Saturday. "Our commitment is to focus on restructuring and making it possible for us to survive another day."

Chapter 11 is part of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, which permits reorganization and gives federal protection to businesses unable to pay their debts.

Renardo Hicks, an attorney for Morris Brown, said the emergency filing automatically delays the foreclosure until a judge decides otherwise.

"Our expectation is that the sheriff's sale will not happen," Hicks said.

Morris Brown President Stanley Pritchett said the filing will give the school breathing room to find a steady stream of capital to keep it afloat.

"We are making a statement that Morris Brown College is not going anywhere," Pritchett said. "We are not going to allow this latest challenge to get in the way of what we are trying to do."

It is being confirmed that Gov. Charlie Crist will be speaking at the Democratic National Convention.  This is definitely setting him up to run as a Democrat to perhaps challenge Rick Scott for governor.

It would appear that the Democrats have there own version of Rep. Artur Davis in the form of former Florida governor Charlie Crist.

The former governor, who famously went from being Republican to Independent, wrote an op-ed piece in which he explained why he was supporting President Barack Obama's re-election bid.

Here's what he wrote:

I’ve studied, admired and gotten to know a lot of leaders in my life. Across Florida, in Washington and around the country, I've watched the failure of those who favor extreme rhetoric over sensible compromise, and I've seen how those who never lose sight of solutions sow the greatest successes.

As America prepares to pick our president for the next four years — and as Florida prepares once again to play a decisive role — I'm confident that President Barack Obama is the right leader for our state and the nation. I applaud and share his vision of a future built by a strong and confident middle class in an economy that gives us the opportunity to reap prosperity through hard work and personal responsibility. It is a vision of the future proven right by our history.

We often remind ourselves to learn the lessons of the past, lest we risk repeating its mistakes. Yet nearly as often, our short-term memory fails us. Many have already forgotten how deep and daunting our shared crisis was in the winter of 2009, as President Obama was inaugurated. It was no ordinary challenge, and the president served as the nation's calm through a historically turbulent storm.

The president's response was swift, smart and farsighted. He kept his compass pointed due north and relentlessly focused on saving jobs, creating more and helping the many who felt trapped beneath the house of cards that had collapsed upon them.
Click here to read the entire article.

Aug 26, 2012

I was taught at a very young age that "if you don't have any thing good to say then say nothing at all."  As a child, I didn't understand the words of wisdom my mother was trying to impart onto me.  But as I grew older, life experiences brought me much needed clarity.  My mother was trying to help me understand the power of words.

Words are one of the deadliest weapons that human beings wield.

It is said that the power of life and death reside within the tongue.  So you can either speak life onto your brothers and sisters or you can speak death.  For a lot of us, we choose the latter.

I was about 16 years old when a close friend of mine came out the closet.  I always had a feeling he was gay, so his confession really didn't come as a surprise.  I placed my hand on his shoulder and told him I already knew and I continued to ask him whether or not he wanted to stay for dinner.  It was only years later that he revealed to me that on the very night he came out the closet he was planning on killing himself, but because I had been so accepting of him the only reason why he didn't do it.

You have to imagine how completely off guard this caught me.  I, at the age of 16, was the buffer between life and death for him and had our conversation played out just a little differently, he may had taken his own life. 

It was through this revelation that I made a conscious decision when it came to the words I choose to use.  I refuse to be an accessory to the destruction of another human being.  I will not allow the words I use to be a transportation of death onto another person.  This is a vow I made to myself.

But for a lot of people, such a vow would not be easy to keep given today's technology.

The internet, with its cloak of anonymity, has served as a haven for psychological warfare.  People will spout off some of the most vile and hateful things because they feel embolden by being an anonymous user.

People feel they can say anything they want to say about a person and feel no consequence because they are hidden behind a computer screen.  Just take for example the nasty things that were said about the physical features of Tia Mowry's beautiful baby boy, or the comments a select number of people made about Gabby Douglas' hair.  A lot of people hate themselves and so they choose to spread their hatred by projecting it onto other people, mainly people they don't know.

Words are like daggers to a person's heart without the skin break or the bleeding.  The wound is invisible, but trust me, it's just as fatal.


Aug 23, 2012

It looks like the financial saga surrounding Morris Brown College is about to come to an end.  The once illustrious Historical Black College and University is facing foreclosure according to a report by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The school has gone from its heyday of about 3000 students to only 50. 

Witnessing the demise of a school that was founded by former slaves in order to educate the children of slaves is very heartbreaking.

May the school should have taken Tom Joyner up on his offer to take over the school a few years ago.  Maybe he could have turned it around and this situation could have been avoided.  We will never know.

Let this serve as a reminder to you.  If you had the privilege of attending an HBCU (like I did), please make sure you send money back to your school.  It may seem like an inconvenience, but trust me, it's worth it.  If you want your institution to stay around for the next generation, you have to do your part.

Aug 22, 2012

This 17 year old young woman won the gold medal in the debut of female boxing at the London summer games a few weeks ago.  Maybe the sport isn't as popular, but her feat is no less impressive and historic.  Seventeen years old...unbelievable!!!  She's from Flint, Michigan which is somewhat near to my heart since I graduated from a small engineering school in Flint.  Here she is introducing Vice President Biden at a campaign rally in Detroit. There is a short delay.  She starts talking about 20 seconds into the video. As Savvy Sista would say:  Claressa, you go girl!!

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An American athlete who took part in a controversial black-power salute at the 1968 Olympics says an Australian parliamentary apology to silver medalist Peter Norman might have come too late.

On Monday night, federal lawmakers in Canberra praised the “heroism and humility” of the late Australian sprinter for standing in solidarity with gold medalist Tommie Smith and bronze medalist John Carlos on the podium following the 200-meter race at Mexico City. Norman was later chastised at home for his stand, and reports suggested that he was shunned from future Olympic selection.

Carlos told Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio Tuesday that the disrespect, “I think, mortally wounded him.”

“I don’t think he was as bitter as he was hurt … and I don’t think he ever recovered,” Carlos said.
Norman, who wore the Olympic Project for Human Rights badge as the Americans gave the black power salute, died of a heart attack in 2006.

It was thought Norman was punished for his involvement by being banned by Olympic officials for the 1972 Munich Games. However, a spokesman for the Australian Olympic Committee saidNorman wasn’t nominated for the Munich Games “due to lack of form,” which Norman had apparently acknowledged at the time.

Norman later quit athletics in protest over his treatment.

Carlos, who with Smith was a pallbearer at Norman’s funeral, said there was no one in Australia who should be “honored, recognized, appreciated” more.

He cited his humanitarian concerns, character, strength, and his willingness to be “a sacrificial lamb for justice.”

Norman’s 91-year-old mother, Thelma, and sister Elaine Ambler were in parliament on Monday to hear lawmakers praise him.

“It surprises me how many people know his name, and those that don’t do remember the photo,” Elaine Ambler said.

Lawmaker Andrew Leigh told federal parliament on Monday that Norman was punished for standing in solidarity on the podium with Smith and Carlos.

“It was a moment of heroism and humility that advanced international awareness for racial inequality,” Leigh said in presenting his motion for an apology.

Another parliamentarian, John Alexander, said Norman was ostracized by the Australian media and athletics officials.

“The simple gesture to wear this badge on the dais as Smith and Carlos raised their fist in protest condemned Norman to never represent Australia again,” he said.

Norman set an Australian record that still stands when he finished second in the Mexico City race in 20.06 seconds.

Well, this was definitely a turn of events I wasn't expecteing.  I knew Michael Strahan was in the running for the job of co-host alongside Kelly Ripa on "Live!" with Kelly, but honestly I never expected he would get the gig.  But according to some very reliable sources, it appears that Strahan has in fact secured the coveted position that was originally held by Regis Philbin.

This is definitely a good look for the "sack king" who dominated for years as a linebacker for the New York Giants.  He has definitely made the most of his post-NFL career.

Here's how the development is being reported:

ABC is expected to announce in early September that Michael Strahan will take over as the cohost of Live! alongside Kelly Ripa, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation.

Even when he assumes the new role, Strahan is expected to remain in his role with Fox NFL Sunday, as first reported by Joe Flint in the Los Angeles Times.  The long-running ABC franchise originates weekdays from New York, while Fox's popular NFL studio programming is in Los Angeles.

(AJC) -- Former Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill has reclaimed the office he lost four years ago despite 37 pending felony charges that accuse him of using his government office and his 2008 campaign to enrich himself.

With only one precinct uncounted, Hill was ahead. But the charges he's facing make it uncertain whether he will take office in January because the governor could suspend him until he goes to trial.

"Don't be sorry for me. Be sorry for Clayton County," Kimbrough said. "I'll be fine but there are a whole lot of people's lives that will be affected by this and maybe they have to see this for themselves. It's something I've heard a million times; only in Clayton County. It is what it is."

Hill, in an emailed statement, thanked God and the voters for letting him "serve once again."

"As promised, I want to advise those who prey on others by breaking into homes, robbing businesses and drug trafficking to stop or leave Clayton while you still can. Your presence is not wanted and your lawlessness will not be tolerated," Hill said.

This year's contest was a rerun of the runoff for Clayton County sheriff of four years ago, the buttoned-down Kimbrough vs. the controversial Hill. Only this campaign was extraordinarily nasty even before a field of eight candidates in the July 31 primary was reduced to the two.

Hill insisted that Kimbrough, who holds a law degree from Emory University, was behind the 37-count indictment returned against Hill in January. Hill said Kimbrough assigned deputies to follow him and to go through his trash and then handed over documents to a special prosecutor just to keep Hill from returning to office.

In campaigning, Kimbrough struggled to get across the message to voters that, as sheriff, he had no role pushing for an indictment that came out of the findings of a special grand jury overseen by a special prosecutor, the district attorney for Walton and Newton Counties.

Special prosecutor Layla Zon obtained an indictment of Hill on charges of racketeering, theft by taking, making false statements, influencing a witness and violating his oath of office, all allegedly while he was sheriff. He is charged with taking tens of thousands of dollars from his 2008 re-election campaign and from the county, using his government car and county credit card for vacations with a female employee of the office.

"People have forgiven him for his missteps and he's said, for this second time around, he's become more mature and he's learned from his mistakes, but he still has the indictments against him," said Pat Pullar, chief executive of Atlanta-based political consulting and training firm Talking Points 4 U.

"He'll have to overcome that as well," said Pullar, who is also vice chairman of the Clayton County Board of Elections and Registration.

Since there was no Republican running, this run-off decided the sheriff's race.

In 2008 when Kimbrough and Hill faced each other Kimbrough bested Hill, who was the incumbent.
Hill, a former homicide detective and state legislator, was among those elected in 2004 after Clayton voters dismissed virtually all incumbents.

Hill's four years were controversial and some of his decisions drew national media attention.

On his first day in office, Hill fired 27 deputies and had them escorted from the building with snipers positioned on the roof. A federal judge forced him to rehire them.

Hill used a tank in drug raids. He angered local police agencies as he tried to expand the traditional role of Clayton County's sheriff beyond running the jail, protecting the courthouse and serving warrants to also putting in place specialized task forces to address drugs and burglaries.

As in the 2004 campaign, Hill continued to call himself a "crime fighter," playing off the theme of the Batman television show.

But his biggest problem as he prepares to take office is the criminal case against him.

If he has not gone to trial by the time he is to take office in January, the governor could suspend him and appoint a temporary sheriff until the felony case is resolved. There is no trial date.

Former Clayton Sheriff Victor Hill is facing 37 criminal counts related to his time in office. Assuming his case is not resolved by the time he takes office in January, here's what could happen.

The governor could suspend Hill based on the criminal charges he faces.

The governor would appoint a temporary sheriff.

If Hill is not convicted he could return to office.

If Hill is convicted, he would disqualify himself for the office of sheriff.

If Hill cannot serve, voters would get to choose a new sheriff.

Aug 21, 2012

TALLAHASSEE (AP) — Florida A&M University is lining up recording artists to perform at halftime during football games this fall to replace the school's suspended band.

The university on Monday announced the performer known as "Future" will be the star attraction when the Rattlers open their home schedule by hosting Hampton University on Sept. 15.

The Marching 100 was suspended following the hazing death of drum major Robert Champion last year during a band trip to Orlando.

Future, who was born Navyvadius Cash in Atlanta, also will meet and greet winners of a promotional contest.

The university, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary, has not yet announced other halftime headliners.

The first game also will feature an old school versus new school DJ battle that will include FAMU alum Will 'Power' Packer.

Oprah has definitely been on a roll with her show 'Next Chapter' on OWN.  From scoring the first interview with Bobbi Kristina after the death of her mother, Whitney Houston, there appears to be no one the Queen of All Media can't interview.  Well, it turns out there is one elusive star that is avoiding the Mighty O.  The star is the one and only Lauryn Hill.

Now, I'm not going to lie.  That would be the one interview I would love to see.  I can't think of many people that I want Oprah to interview, but Lauryn Hill would definitely be at the top of my list.  I don't think there is any other interviewer that could get Ms. Hill to open up the way Oprah could, but alas that is not to happen.

Oprah took to Twitter after one of her followers asked her to have Hill on the show.  “Tried. She said no,” tweeted Oprah.

Oprah, it would appear, is not the only entity Ms. Hill has said no to.  She apparently has said no to paying taxes in the state of New Jersey.

Not only does she owe the federal government $1.8 million in taxes, but now it's being reported that she owes the state of New Jersey $440K.

(TMZ) -- A civil judgment was entered against Hill on June 14th by a Jersey court — finding the Fugees singer is responsible for $446,386 in unpaid state taxes.
A week before the judgment came down, Hill was charged with failing to file FEDERAL tax returns in 2005, 2006, and 2007 … a federal crime. She pled “guilty” and now faces 3 years in prison.
But lucky for Hill,  the state tax situation hasn’t become a criminal matter … yet.
Hill is scheduled for sentencing in her federal tax case in November.
She should really reconsider talking to Oprah so she can get her side of things out on the table.

******Side Note******

Who are some of the people you would like to see Oprah interview for her 'Next Chapter' show?

Here's my list (in no particular order):

1. Lauryn Hill
2. Deval Patrick
3. Angela Bassett
4. Samuel L. Jackson
5. Maya Angelou (I never can get enough of her)
6. Janet Jackson (I would love to hear her side of the Jackson family craziness)
7. Kamala Harris
8. Trayvon Martin's Parents
9. The Penn State Victims
10. Robin Roberts
11. Al Gore
12. Michael Jordan
13. Chris Brown
14. Chad Johnson
15. Shaunie O'Neal
16. Bethann Hardison
17. Ursula Burns
18. Issa Rae
19. Spike Lee (especially since she's Tyler Perry's best friend)
20. Marian Robinson (Michelle Obama's mother)
What irritates me about media coverage and ultimately society is the incessant focus on a specific phrase or statement while totally ignoring context and the big picture.  The congressman supposedly used a poor choice of words.  I would argue that he used an accurate choice of words to describe the policy and legislation that he is advocating.  His problem was that he spoke too honestly.  He did not misspeak; his error was not adequately disguising his intentions.  Categorizing a horrific trauma such as rape is indeed offensive.  But the fact of the matter is if this man had not spoken honestly, this still would have been his agenda.  It probably still is a part of the GOP agenda.  There are others that are quietly pursuing this agenda. The media has uncovered that Congressman Paul Ryan, the GOP vice presidential nominee, has co-sponsored the legislation with this congressman.  This fact was mentioned, but glossed over. To me, that is a rather big story, an even bigger story.  Now the hot topic is the push for him to drop out of the senate race and him pleading his case for remaining in the race.  And this means what?  I do not know that he can be replaced since he won the primary.  But if he can be replaced, will he just be replaced with someone supporting the same policy, but knows how to talk around it?

Legitimate rape are the two words that everyone is focusing on.  Yeah it is completely foolish to think that our bodies on its own can prevent pregnancy due to trauma.  He apologized for being offensive but he is not changing his position on policy.  He said the rapist should be the one punished not the innocent child.  It doesn't even occur to him that the woman is being punished for having to carry, bear, and raise a child that will be a constant reminder of the trauma she suffered.  Who's to say that the mother will now have unconditional love for that child?  We all know of stories of mothers mistreating and even abandoning unwanted children.  Even if the mother is wonderful, what happens when the child asks about daddy? Finding out that daddy is a rapist and that he or she was conceived through rape can be a serious blow to a child's psyche, esteem, and development. So indeed the innocent child will indeed be punished. 

The Romney campaign released a statement saying that they support abortion in the instances of rape.  Does this mean that he will not pursue any changes to existing laws or will this be a bait and switch if he gets into office because so many other people will pressure him to stray from this position?  The latter would not surprise me.

So let's just say Congressman Akin caves to the pressure of his party and drops out of the senate race.  Will the attention on this particular policy just disappear?  History says yes.  The immediate headline should he drop out would say something along the lines of "Romney and GOP Dodged a Bullet."  I would say that they still took a hit because both women and men can see or at least should see right through their plot.  Getting rid of the congressman is no assurance that this agenda will not be pursued.  My hope is that the electorate will not forget this like the media will.

Aug 20, 2012

(ABC News) -- After decades of controversy, the all-male Augusta National Golf Club has admitted its first female members, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and business executive Darla Moore.
The prestigious Augusta National Golf Club is best known for hosting the Masters Tournament and the exclusivity surrounding the green jacket club.

Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne called the selection of the two new members "a joyous occasion" and a "significant and positive time in our club's history."

"These accomplished women share our passion for the game of golf and both are well known and respected by our membership," Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne said in a statement. "It will be a proud moment when we present Condoleezza and Darla their green jackets when the club opens this fall."

Rice, who served as secretary of state under President George W. Bush, said in a statement released by the club, "I have visited Augusta National on several occasions and look forward to playing golf, renewing friendships and forming new ones through this very special opportunity."

Rice's statement did not mention her ground breaking role or the club's long refusal to admit women members.

"I have long admired the important role Augusta National has played in the traditions and history of golf. I also have an immense respect for the Masters Tournament and its commitment to grow the game of golf, particularly with youth, here in the United States and throughout the world," she said.

Moore is the vice president of private investment company Rainwater, Inc. and founder and chair of nonprofit think tank, the Palmetto Institute.

"I am fortunate to have many friends who are members at Augusta National, so to be asked to join them as a member represents a very happy and important occasion in my life," Moore said in a statement. "Above all, Augusta National and the Masters Tournaments have always stood for excellence, and that is what is so important to me."

Since its inception in 1932, Augusta National has been embroiled in several heated debates for not allowing female club members.

The debate heightened in 2002 when Martha Burk of the National Council of Women's Organizations pressured the club to admit female members. The club's chairman at the time, William "Hootie" Johnson resisted, saying famously that women may one day be admitted to Augusta National, "but not at the point of a bayonet." The statement represented both the resolve of the club not to crumble under pressure.

The issue surfaced again in April when Virginia Rometty was appointed chief executive of IBM, a corporate sponsor of Augusta National. The CEO of IBM was traditionally admitted as a member of the club, but Rometty was not granted membership.

Another of Augusta National's club sponsors, AT&T commented on the historic admission.

"As a sponsor of The Masters, we applaud today's historic announcement by Augusta National and warmly welcome Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore as members of Augusta National," said AT&T's CEO Randall Stephenson.

Missouri Congressman Todd Akin, a conservative Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, sparked a furor and earned a rebuke from Mitt Romney’s campaign after saying that women’s bodies can prevent pregnancies in “a legitimate rape” and that conception is rare in such cases.

Akin, a six-term congressman running against incumbent Democrat Sen. Claire McCaskill, was asked in an interview broadcast Sunday on St. Louis television station KTVI if he would support abortions for women who have been raped.

“It seems to me first of all, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Akin said. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” Akin said of a rape victim’s chances of becoming pregnant.

Akin said in an emailed statement later Sunday that he “misspoke” during the interview, though the statement did not specify on which points or comments.

“In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it’s clear that I misspoke in this interview and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year,” Akin’s statement said.

Akin also said in the statement he believes “deeply in the protection of all life and I do not believe that harming another innocent victim is the right course of action.”

Akin’s comments brought a swift rebuke from the campaign of presumptive GOP presidential candidate Romney.

“Gov. Romney and Congressman (Paul) Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin’s statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape,” Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg said.

McCaskill, who is seeking a second term, in an emailed statement Sunday called the comments “offensive.”
“It is beyond comprehension that someone can be so ignorant about the emotional and physical trauma brought on by rape,” McCaskill said. “The ideas that Todd Akin has expressed about the serious crime of rape and the impact on its victims are offensive.”

This month, Akin won the state’s Republican U.S. Senate primary by a comfortable margin. During the primary, Akin enhanced his standing with TV ads in which former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee praised him as “a courageous conservative” and “a Bible-based Christian” who “supports traditional marriage” and “defends the unborn.”

Akin, a former state lawmaker who first won election to the U.S. House in 2000, also has a long-established base among evangelical Christians and was endorsed in the primary by more than 100 pastors.
Terry O’Neill, president of the National Organization for Women, on Sunday called Akin’s remarks “flat-out astonishing.”

“That kind of rhetoric re-traumatizes sexual assault victims. … That kind of talk, I believe, is intended to shame women,” she told AP Radio.

Akin was interviewed on KTVI’s “The Jaco Report,” and also talked about numerous campaign issues, such as voter ID laws, the economy and Medicare. KTVI said the interview was conducted earlier in the week.

Aug 19, 2012

Rep. Todd Akin, the Republican nominee for Senate in Missouri, tried to justify his opposition to rape victims having an abortion by claiming victims of  “legitimate rape” have some sort of super power to stave off a pregnancy.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The good ol' Congressman claims to know doctors that have told him that in instances of 'legitimate rape' (yes, he said legitimate because you know there are cases of illegitimate rape) a female has a way of stopping the sperm from her rapist from connecting with her eggs.

Here's his actually quote:

"From what I understand from doctors, that's really rare," said Akin said of pregnancy caused by rape. "If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let's assume maybe that didn't work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist." 

So to all you women that got pregnant when you were rape, I guess your body defenses weren't working or your rape can't be classified as a 'legitimate rape'.  Now honestly, I don't know the difference between a 'legitimate rape' and an 'illegitimate rape' but evidently your body does and if you become pregnant well I guess you can just classify it as an 'illegitimate rape'.

You can't make this s#it up...SMH!


(CNN) -- Three days before Independence Day, Milton Hall died in a fusillade of police gunfire outside a strip mall.

He had been arguing with officers in a parking lot next to a shuttered Chinese restaurant when he was shot, in full view of passing motorists and while he was holding some sort of knife. Saginaw County Prosecutor Michael Thomas said later that the squad of police confronting him opened fire "because apparently, at this point in time, he was threatening to assault police."

Thomas' office and the Michigan State Police are investigating Hall's death. Saginaw Police Chief Gerald Cliff said Hall was "known to be an assaultive person" with "a long history" of contacts with law enforcement, "not only with police from our department but with the county."

Hall's cousin, Mike Washington, acknowledged Hall had been jailed for minor offenses like vagrancy in the past, but, "He was not violent." And Hall's mother is growing impatient with the probe and questions why police opened fire so furiously on her son, whom she said was mentally ill.

"It appeared to be a firing squad dressed in police uniforms," Jewel Hall told CNN from her hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico. "There was another way. They did not have to kill him. He had not done anything. He was not violent. He was not a murderer. He was not a criminal."

Jewel Hall said her son had once trained as a civil right activist, been an avid reader and played football. He had lived in Saginaw for 35 years and received Social Security disability payments for a mental illness, but, "He knew his rights."

"Everybody knew him. The police knew him well," she said. "So that's another question: they knew him, so why? Why did they kill him?"

The July 1 shooting happened in a parking lot on West Genessee Avenue, a busy commercial strip on the north side of Saginaw. In a video purchased by CNN, shot by a motorist from across the street, the 49-year-old Hall is seen arguing with a half-dozen officers. For more than three minutes, he walks back and forth, and at one time appears to crouch in a "karate stance," according to the man who captured the scene.

Aug 18, 2012

While every election is important, in 80 days we will have an election that will have a profound impact on our short-term and long-term future.  Many states across the country are purging voter rolls and enacting voter identification laws.  If you were like me you might initially think, "what's the big deal about requiring ID at the polls?  Who doesn't have ID?"  I thought this initially because I remember being surprised the first time I voted that I was not asked for my ID.  Not an unreasonable idea.  I also remember thinking, "well I guess there hasn't been a problem."  At the same time, I still thought it should be required.  So I actually agree with the theory of voter ID.  Now since all of these voter suppression efforts have been underway, I am of the opinion if ain't broke, don't fix it.  The fact of the matter is voter fraud is not a problem.  With such clear evidence of virtually no voter fraud, like many others, I'm left to question why the urgency to enact laws and purge voter rolls now so close to a pivotal national election.  Yes I agree with the theory of it.  However, there is something very sinister about trying to actualize this theory at this point in time when elections have the potential to be narrowly decided.  Many of these new laws have been legally contested but ultimately upheld in court.  So they are indeed the law of the land.  The fight to overturn these laws may continue.  However, we need to succeed in making our voices heard loud and clear on November 6th.  And not take a reactive stance after the election has already been decided. Post-election day lawsuits may help subsequent elections, but they will not help this crucial 2012 election cycle.

So who doesn't have a current government issued picture ID?  Mostly seniors and ethnic minorities.  Many of the elderly have expired driver's licenses and it has not occurred to them that they would need to get a current state ID.  If you do not have a driver's license at all, it may not occur to you to have a state-issued ID because there simply aren't many situations that require individuals to have government issued picture ID.  Off the top of my head, the only time I can think of where it is required is air and international travel.  Even for employment, I believe you can offer other forms of ID such as a birth certificate or social security card.  There may not have been a sense of urgency for having a government issued picture ID before, but there is now.  We have to protect this precious right.  I won't go on and on about the importance of being informed and I don't want to just talk about this injustice, I'd like to offer some proactive suggestions to make sure our voting rights are not denied:

1.  Talk to your older family members.  Check to see if they have a current state issued form of picture ID.  If they do not, make it happen.  Get them to the DMV or Secretary of State office to get that ID.  Do not wait until the last minute.  It is worth it.  As much as I don't want to go through the hassle, I will make the trip to DMV because my driver's license has my old address on it.  I live in a battleground state and I'm not trying to have problems on that day.  

2.  Re-register.  Some states like Florida are trying to purge voter rolls.  If you have the slightest concern that you were wrongfully purged, register again.  Do not think that current elected officials will do right by you and notify you in a timely manner.  Everything about these voter suppression efforts is shady.  Aside from lawsuits after election day, YOU will be the one on the losing end.

3.  Absentee ballot option.  If you know there is a chance you and/or loved one cannot vote on election day or during early voting, file an absentee ballot.  I started a new job in a different state the day before the 2008 election.  There was no way my voice would not be included.  I found out how to get an absentee ballot, got it and filed my absentee ballot on time.  Yeah absentee ballots may not be counted in clearly decided elections, but they will be counted if it is close.  If yours is not included, it can't be counted.  

4.  College students.  Some states are trying to stop college students from registering in their college town.  Get that absentee ballot before you start classes.  If your fall semester has already started, request the absentee ballot now.  If you are eligible to vote in your college town, get registered right away.

5.  Know what is required for your state. is a great resource.

There is a lot of cynicism surrounding politics and rightfully so.  However, staying home on election day and not exercising your right to vote does not help the situation.  Your individual vote can influence the outcome of the election.  The stakes are high.  Everybody knows it, thus the voter suppression.  They are cheating and trying to make it legal.  Like I said, your vote does influence the outcome of the election.  There are millions of Americans that counting on your vote because they feel the way you do.  they are counting on your vote and quite frankly you are counting on your vote and theirs whether you believe it or not.  If you still need to be convinced, I will just end by saying if there was no value in your vote; if your vote did not matter; if your vote did not influence the outcome of an election, the opposition would not go to such extreme measures to stop you from exercising your right to vote. 

BTW:  The lady in the picture is 93 year old woman Vivian Applewhite from PA.  She has been the face of the elderly vote.  She recently protected her long held right to vote by obtaining a current government issued picture ID.

Aug 17, 2012

GREER, S.C. — Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Thursday that he has paid a federal income tax rate of at least 13 percent in each of the past 10 years, bowing to months of political pressure to disclose more information about his vast personal fortune.

“I did go back and look at my taxes, and over the past 10 years I never paid less than 13 percent. I think the most recent year is 13.6 or something like that. So I paid taxes every single year,” he told reporters here Thursday.

President Obama and his allies have been hammering Romney relentlessly, both in television advertisements and on the campaign trail, for refusing to disclose more than two years’ worth of tax returns. They have suggested that Romney, one of the richest Americans ever to win a major party’s presidential nomination, is hiding something about his personal finances.

Romney’s disclosure Thursday came in response to a reporter’s question at a news conference that Romney had hoped would focus on a white-board presentation he gave outlining his latest attack on Obama over Medicare. Romney’s advisers insisted that the former Massachusetts governor had not planned to provide new information about his taxes but that, when asked about his tax rate, he provided an honest answer.
Romney sounded rankled by the very question, though, saying, “the fascination with taxes I’ve paid I find to be very small-minded compared to the broad issues that we face.”

If the candidate hoped his answer would put the issue to rest, he ended up only inviting more questions. Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt quickly challenged Romney to “prove it.”

“He has the ability to answer all of these questions by releasing several years of tax returns. He simply hasn’t done that,” LaBolt told reporters on a conference call. LaBolt noted that Romney’s father, George, released 12 years of income tax returns when he ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 1968.

Aug 16, 2012

A while back either Ebony or Essence in their "black love" issue included Chad Johnson and Evelyn Lozado in their profile of black celebrity couples.  I remember being surprised that they were on the list because I didn't think that anyone really took them seriously as a couple.  I also remember thinking that maybe this couple just might prove people wrong.  Maybe the editors were like alot of people hoping for the best but expecting the worst.  Perhaps not expecting the worst, but not surprised should the worst ever present itself.  Personally, I resigned my opinion to, "Grown folks can do what they want to do."  That's the best I can come up with when I am trying ro remain positive.  I'm not a big fan of gossip and dogging people.  I am definitely not a fan of I told you so.

Well I think I have found a nice contrast to the Evelyn/Chad drama...the Obamas.  The President and First Lady can easily be the face of black love.  Not just black love, but love period.  We probably have all heard by now about their recent experience on kiss cam. But the first 16:30 minutes of their recent campaign stop together in Iowa is something that we just do not see all that often.

We typically see depicted alot of romance, heroic love (being rescued), sacrifice (one person giving up something significant to be with the other) and the perserverance of love (going through the hard times).  We also see the process of being awakened to love.  Lord knows we see many examples of the eroticism of love.  What we rarely see are the kind words, the mutual respect, the admiration, the friendship, the deference and the genuine yet simple affection.  Many times I look at couples and think "yeah they love each other but do they like each other?"  I see that very clearly with the Obamas.  I wholeheartedly believe it exists on a larger scale but we do not have many images depicted of that even across racial and ethnic lines.  I was trying to recall "majority" love stories, chick flicks and popular tv shows but I really cannot think of any story that did not fall into the typical categories that I mentioned.  Granted these are stories for our entertainment so they must be more dramatic to hold our attention.  But perhaps the love  storylines are not as wide ranging as we think they are for everyone. 

So are there cultural differences when it comes to love?  Is there something unique about what the Obamas have?  Is there something unique to black love?  A few months ago I would have answered by saying love is love.  After sitting in on a session with Dr. Katrina Bell McDonald, sociologist, teaching at Johns Hopkins University, I might just answer a little differently now.  She was sharing a summary of her latest research on egalitarianism in relationships.  She interviewed a number of married couples across racial, ethnic, and religious lines.  One notable, incidental observation of the younger African American couples was their verbal affection for one another.  It was just an observation and perhaps an implication for future research; nothing that she had anticipated.  They consistently referred to one another as their boo, my baby, my queen...She didn't notice that with the other couples.  So that made me wonder if there was in fact some uniqueness to black love.  Whether or not researchers find an answer to that question, when it comes to black love,  I just know I like what I see when I see it.