Jan 09

Obama’s been Tupac’d

We went to the California African-American museum yesterday for the Martin Luther King Jr. celebrations.  I expected vendors, but nothing prepared me for what I am calling the Tupacification of Barack Obama.

This first photo is a rhinestone shirt. The caption of the photo is what it says on the shirt.

All Eyes on Me

All Eyes on Me

This vendor had a ton of photos of the Obamas, but this one caught my eye for obvious reasons.

Obama transformed to FDR

Obama transformed to FDR

Buttons! My kids were drawn to them and I walked over to check them out.  That one in the middle…Wow.



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Nov 08

Musings on last night’s election

the 44th President of the United States...Bara...

Image by jmtimages via Flickr

am not going to try to write a long intellectual entry on what happened last night. I can only post snapshots on we witnessed.  My feelings are still too raw.  I woke up this morning, like in 2000 and 2004, with a knot in my stomach; expecting a different outcome.  I rushed to grab my morning paper to make sure it was all real.  That today wasn’t Election Day and I just dreamt that Sen. Obama had won over 330 Electoral Votes.

It was real.

It did happen.

Senator Barack Obama is our President-Elect.

My 5 year old, who has been an Obama fan since last Spring, kept asking me this morning, “Did Obama really win?”  Through tears, I said “Yes. Yes he did.”


I spoke to some of my older family members last night.  The constant refrain was, “That young man did it.  He ran a great campaign and didn’t let anyone tear him down.  I never thought I’d live to see this day.” They reminisced on growing up in segregated towns in the South and Midwest.  One 92 year old cousin, in Arkansas wept as he talked about he had to keep his head down, just so he would stay out of trouble, “Today, I hold my head high, like Obama did throughout his campaign.”  I cried.


Sen. McCain’s concession speech, was the most classy concession speech I think I’ve ever witnessed.  Even though from July on he ran the exact same campaign Sen. Clinton did, his concession speech was exactly the one she should have given in June.


The first black President won this election without the Self-Appointed Godfathers of Blackness.  We didn’t have to see Rev. Jesse Jackson or Rev. Al Sharpton pontificating on our TVs last night for the first time in my lifetime. Rev. Jackson was shown, tears streaming down his face, as he stood with thousands in Grant Park.


Scholars will study the Obama campaign forever.  Not just political scholars, but in business classes, PR majors, technological studies.  Every tool out there was used, even abused if my text messages and emails are any indication. The branding was simple and consistent, from slogan to font, to color.  The business acumen of where and how to raise and spend money, would make many major corporations jealous.


Social media came into its own this election cycle. Twitter broke most stories before even blogs had a chance to write up something.  This election cycle belonged to black bloggers.  It seemed that they alone were taking advantage of social media tools, not just to announce new posts, but to organize GOTV and appearnces.  It was a simple way for them to stay in contact with their readers outside the blog and get more on-the-ground reporting from around the country.


I still haven’t received my shirts from the Obama-Biden campaign. I’m sad.


The ground campaign of Obama’s was probably the best of any campaign ever.  Speaking to friends who worked for the campaign and speaking to people who volunteered from the campaign, they all said the same thing, “This is the first election where people from DC who had never stepped foot in my town, didn’t come in to tell us how it is. They gave us ownership and listened.”


A few weeks ago, Republicans started whining about how Democrats shouldn’t have a majority because that would be dangerous for the country.  All of a sudden they despise the idea of one party controll the Administrative and Legislative branches of government.  I’m still trying to find where they were so distraught about this in 2000 and 2004.  It’s a disengenious arguement and insulting to my intelligence.  Republicans need not fear. Democrats do not govern to abuse power.  A Democratic majority will have it’s hands full rolling back and repairing the damage of the last 8 years.


Best quote of the night, after the election was called for Sen. Obama: “Meanwhile, in D.C., two guys named George and Dick have placed the single largest order for industrial strength paper shredders that Office Depot has ever had to fulfill.”


When I had heard that Fox News (!) had called Ohio for Sen. Obama, I thought I was going to faint.  When I saw that he had also won Florida, I had to sit down.  Thank you to both states.


I can only hope that we never have to hear or see the hatefulness that is Gov. Sarah Palin.


And finally, we’ll never learn what Republican voters liked about Sen. McCain.  It’s a testament to spin, that when asked the most intelligent offering was the tired, “Obama’s a socialist/radical/communist/Muslim”.  That never explained McCain’s appeal.

Nov 08

President Obama

I don’t have words.  I just wanted to type that.  I’m in tears right now.  I’m shocked.  Yes.  I fully expected to be disappointed tonight.  I expected a long night and a lot of shenanigans.  This is a new day for America.  Finally, we are no longer under a horrible Republican leadership.  The tireless work so many people did to get to this point…Wow.

Thank you, America.

Tonight you did well.

Sep 08

Uppity Obamas

The Black Snob shares with us that it’s official, the Obamas are ‘uppity’.

Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, R-Ga., was chewing the fat with reporters in the U.S. Capitol and was asked to compare Sarah Palin and Michelle Obama.

“Just from what little I’ve seen of her and Mr. Obama, Senator Obama, they’re a member of an elitist-class individual that thinks they’re uppity.”

“Asked to clarify that he used the word ‘uppity,’ Westmoreland said, ‘Uppity, yeah,’ ” the newspaper The Hill reported.

-Seattle Post-Intelligencer

They even trying to hide it any more. Shocker? Nope.  Par for the course in the GOP.

Aug 08

The Democratic National Convention is over

What an emotional and historical four days it has been.  There’s a lot to talk about and I’m sure the chuckleheads on cable news are babbling incessantly and stupidly coming up with vapid memes to instigate the Republican party with–that’s their specialty.

You already know how much I cried during Michelle Obama’s speech.  Oddly enough, I did not cry during Sen. Barack Obama’s speech.  I just may be cried out.  It’s amazing to me the range of emotions I feel for this candidate when this time last year I had no plans to vote for him.  I did recognize a year ago that he was going to challenge every state and the American public. That much I gave him.  But I just didn’t think that he could break through the cynicism, apathy and ignorance that is the American voter.  I’m pleased to see that he did.  Even me and you know I’m cynical as hell…I believe.

Watching my friends and family participate in this campaign has been very rewarding.  People who had no idea how our elections worked, are now precinct captains because the took the time to learn and put their best foot forward.  My husband, who was born in a Communist country and looks at our politics as theatre and a vast charade got wrapped up in this election.  Family members who were always active in their local Democratic party, devised ways to help Obama become the frontrunner in the primaries.  These people show what the American public can do when they put their minds and hearts toward a common goal. Tonight, Sen. Obama reminded us as he always does that this election isn’t about him, it’s about the people.  The efforts of these people prove that he was right.

Tonight we watched Sen. Obama become the first black man to accept the nomination for president for a major party.  That’s history and that was moving.  When Sen. Ted Kennedy passed the torch to Obama, that was moving.  And I’m even willing to admit that it was moving when President Bill Clinton, delivering the speech his wife should have given, passed the baton on to Obama.

I hope to never forget this night, this week.

Aug 08


As much as Rev. Bernice King bugs me, I have to say that her speech is bringing tears to my eyes. This is pretty big. I’ve had this aura of nonchalance about Sen. Obama’s advancement through the primaries. Yes, I got the big import that a black man is being taken seriously. As much as Sen. Clinton could (and should) trumpet her candidacy, as I and others have pointed out, it was never hard for the American public to accept her as a viable candidate. In fact, she announced the frontrunner before she even through her hat into the ring. For whatever reason, I never thought that I wouldn’t see a black person or a woman as president of this country. Yes. That’s how much I took that idea for granted.

Wow…this is finally hitting me.

As my previous post noted, Michelle Obama’s speech served in part to show that black families are normal and that black women, in particular, are not the militant angry bitches “white” America perceives us to be. I cried, because no matter what I tell people, they think that I’m an exception. They don’t understand that black women are getting educated at faster rates and achieving higher degrees. That won’t change the mind of entrenched racists and frankly, that’s fine with me. I just know that I live in a country where this is possible. The Obama’s mention that often, “Only in American is Barack’s story possible.” That is very true. As much as the policies and actions of this country annoy or shame me, I can never turn my back on this country for that simple reason. I read reports of how black in Australia, France or England are treated and I know that there’s no hope for them. The idea of having several black leaders to look up to isn’t really going to happen, let alone have one black person become the leader of one of those countries.

Here I stand on the edge history.

I think of my grandfathers and grandmothers and how hard they fought for this country, for their rights as black people. I think in particular of my maternal grandmother, who I was close too. I remember in 2004 in the middle of Barack Obama’s speech on the convention floor, she called me from across the country and held back tears as she said, “That child is gonna be our first black president.” My grandmother passed in early 2005. Throughout this entire process I thought of her. I wondered what she would have said about a lot of things. One thing I don’t have to wonder about her level of activity in the campaign. I know my grandmother would have done what she could to work to get Obama elected.

I’m proud to be able to bear witness to this day.

Jun 08

Sen. Barack Obama: Our Democratic Nominee

AP just went live with this most awesome headline that will only topped in Nov. when Obama wins the presidency:

AP tally: Obama effectively clinches nomination

Fuck yeah!

The tally was based on public declarations from delegates as well as from another 15 who have confirmed their intentions to the AP. It also included 11 delegates Obama was guaranteed as long as he gained 30 percent of the vote in South Dakota and Montana later in the day. It takes 2,118 delegates to clinch the nomination.

I can’t wait for tonight.

Apr 08

Dick of the Day

That title goes to Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. (h/t to Booman)

Short story: Indiana city has always bused their seniors eligble to vote to go vote. It was a civics lesson and one that any teacher, parent or American should be proud of. This is getting students involved in democracy. Mayor McDermott, a Clinton supporter, has decided that this is a bad idea. Oh. The students are black.

“To me it seems like an orchestrated effort on behalf of the Obama campaign to take kids who should be in school learning to read and write, instead giving them a day off and telling them to vote for Obama.

“When you corral kids together and ship them to polling places, it’s completely unethical. I think Sen. Obama should distance himself from this type of behavior,” McDermott said.

I don’t know what kind of leap of logic you take to get from point A to point crazy-assed moron, but he did it superbly.

Washington said Lew Wallace students have been bused to Crown Point to vote for three years now. “The entire board thought this was a great idea. We told (Dr. Mary Steele-Agee) to make sure all the high school seniors are able to go out and vote.

“Whatever the cost of gas, for helping a young person exercising their right to vote, that is a cost I don’t think anybody on this board or the state would have a problem with.”

Mayor McDermott is so not on board with kids exercising their right to vote:

LaSota said they wouldn’t turn away potential voters of any age. Fajman said, “Students don’t have time before school opens on election day to vote and they have extracurricular activities at the school. I think it’s a good idea.”

McDermott, whose city hosted Hillary Clinton’s March 28 visit to the region, disagrees. “These kids come from the worst performing schools in the state of Indiana and we are giving them a day off to go vote for Obama. They can vote on election day like everybody else.”

What this brilliant politician fails to mention is that election day is on Tuesday. That would be a school day.

Apr 08

BET Founder: Still a tool

I really despise Bob Johnson.  It’s bad enough that he inflicted BET on us, but the ongoing problem is that he continues to talk like someone cares.  Jim Morrill did an interview with Johnson in the Charlotte Observer.  Bob Johnson not only repeats the “Obama is lucky his black” meme, but revises history to boot:

“If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position,” she said, just before the resulting firestorm forced her to step down as an adviser to Obama rival Hillary Clinton.

“What I believe Geraldine Ferraro meant (is) if you take a freshman senator from Illinois called ‘Jerry Smith’ and he says I’m going to run for president, would he start off with 90 percent of the black vote? And the answer is, probably not.”

You have to read the rest of Johnson’s quote over at Morrill’s site, but this is the gist.  Bob Johnson, is pretending that all along Sen. Obama was carrying the black vote.  We all know that that’s not true.  I have no idea why Morrill didn’t point out that that wasn’t true.

It wasn’t until after Iowa, that Obama’s standing among black voters surged to over 70% in some cases.  Before that, he was polling behind Clinton among black voters.  In October 2007, Sen. Clinton was polling high among black females, while black males were split between the two.   It was black women, who was giving Sen. Clinton her edge among black voters at that time.  The following month, Sen. Obama saw a small surge in black support, though he was still lagging behind Clinton who, at the time, held an 83% favorable rating among black voters.

Then December came…most of you may remember December as the month, the Clinton surrogates rolled out the race-baiting aspect of their campaign, starting with Bob Kerrey on Dec. 8th.  Most people were wrapped up in themselves or Mike Huckabee’s Christmas card, but black people were talking about it all.  Then Iowa happened.  Not only did Clinton come in 3rd, but Obama won a state with a black population of 2.5%.  Then the Clinton’s and their surrogates happened…There’s no need to rehash, but it’s clear that the bigotted antics of Clinton’s “fun part” of the campaign caused her some serious erosion in black support.

For Bob Johnson, to sit up there and pretend that 1) none of the race-baiting happened and 2) that Obama has always has black voters backing him, shows that Johnson is much more out of touch than his soft-porn cable channel proves that he is.

Apr 08



Just wow.

I’ve gone to opening nights before and the act is always good.  Ernie Andrews just blew them all away.  I listen to a lot of blues.  I like the blues.  Jazz…it’s great, when it has a more blues infusion.  Otherwise, that vocal jazz or the smooth jazz crap make me want to slit my wrists.  There are times that I’m listening to blues and in my head thinking, “Gosh, this sounds the same.  Boring.”  Every once in a while, I hear a singer who makes your heart break just listening to them sing the blues.  Ernie Andrews is that man.  Even the funny lines, and there were plenty, made you want to laugh through tears.

The opening night of the Friday Night Jazz series at LACMA is never to be missed.  I’ve been going since ‘ 95 or ’96 and it has always been one of the best ongoing series in Los Angeles.  Back then, it was truly a cross section of the city.  They used to have about 3 or 4 rows of seating in the front.  Then a few tables in the middle.  People would bring picnics to eat there.  I remember these two guys would come with lawn chairs and a cooler and sit there all evening.  That was back in the days when you could show up at 5pm and start getting served a drink and stay until 11pm without the security guards harassing you.  You could smoke on the patio, until 2002 when they banned smoking cigars and then in ’04 when they banned cigarettes too.  Times have seriously changed.

It’s always strange, since I’ve seen the same group of people at LACMA, off and on, almost every Friday night for 7 months of the year for the past 12 years.  I still have never spoken to most of them.  But we smile, nod, wave hello.  When I started going there, I was single.  now I’m married with two kids!  We were joking that next year they’ll probably institute a dress code, the year after that, they’ll ban kids, then by 2012-ish, they’d have a cover charge.  Times definitely change.

Ernie Andrews plays at LACMA

We arrived pretty late, thanks to my lameass husband.  Seriously.  If I tell him, I have to be somewhere at a certain time, guaranteed, he’ll find some reason to linger.  I had planned on leaving the house at 4pm.  I told him that, repeatedly.  We didn’t leave unil 5:30pm.  When we finally got to the museum, it was almost 6:30 and he was like, “Wow!  It’s packed!”.  Ya think?  Needless to say,  we didn’t get a table.  Not that it matter anyway.  The stupid museum only set up like 4 tables.  They used to have between 12 and 15 tables set up.  I counted 4.

Oh, and as for the other bloggers…I got 12 emails from people.  Unfortunately, none of had considered doing the obvious thing of sharing phone numbers.  I didn’t even know what blogs some of them wrote for!  So, I didn’t get to meet any bloggers.  There were a few people that my husband insisted looked like blogger (?), but he was being such a tool, that I thought it better he wasn’t around people.

At any rate, if you were there, I’m sorry I missed you. If you weren’t, I’m sorry you missed a pretty awesome show.