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Joe's Editorial

The Challenge of Freedom for All vs. Freedom for the Rich

If You Don't Vote in November You May Be Giving Back Your Birthright to America as a Christmas Gift to Republicans in December

Black news from Pasadena - Editorial - Freedom for all vs freedom for richOne news commentator said we may all wake up on the morning after the November 2012 election and see it was purchased by seventeen rich old white men. That's similar to my daddy teaching me that there are some white folks who don't sleep at night trying to figure out new ways to keep Black folks down. If the November purchase is successful, it will be the second time America was a great Christmas gift to rich old white men. The indigenous people, or Indians, can tell you about the first time. It was purchased by gunpowder in 1776. This time it will be by purchased ballot boxes.

Ever since our African ancestors arrived on these shores in 1619, the methods have been endless. There was slavery. There was Jim Crow. There was discrimination. There was separate and unequal. There was segregation. There were hangings, lynching, and rapes; Court rulings that said there are no rights that a Black man has that a white man should honor. They took the right to vote, the right to own land, the right to marry, the right to call ourselves Kunte, and any other African name. And now the rich white men are considering electing a white man whose religion, up until 1979, didn't allow us to worship the same God as he worshipped. It's not that we want to become Mormons, but what is next? We have not forgotten that the Southern Baptists were the ones who called on Supreme Courts, Bull Connor, and George Wallace to keep us in our places.



Entrepreneurship . . . A Solution

African American news from Pasadena - Editorial - EntrepreneurshipThe stories of how businesses start should be a class for young people to take in order to understand that they are capable of starting a business and surviving, even in hard times. A local newspaper carried a recent story of how Howards Appliance and Television stores first started as a radio repair shop in the rear of a sporting goods store, called Jeff's, some fifty plus years ago. Howard started out repairing radios as a hobby. Today, Howards owns ten giant stores and the land they sit on.

I love the story of how my mother started her first store. She took the hand me downs and throw-a-way clothing given to her when she worked as what we call today "The Help". She figured that if the goods were good enough to hand down, they were good enough to sell. She rented an empty little storefront, and thus, Hopkins Used Clothing and furniture store was born.



The Walmart Physique

Black news from Pasadena - Editorial - Walmart PhysiqueAn article in the Friday, July 6, 2012 New York Times talks about Haiti and a new economic development plan to develop new industries in Haiti. The plan involves developing an area that is not the area that was destroyed by the January 12, 2010 earthquake where rebuilding is needed but has its motto: "Building Back Better." The plan involves taking valuable farms from poor Haitian farmers and developing the land.

Black news from Pasadena - Editoria - Walmart PhysiqueOne Haitian professor describes it this way. He says the Industrial Park idea is tired, and historically speaking, "Haiti was founded by ex-slaves who overthrew a plantation system and people keep trying to get them to return to some form of plantation." You may modernize the system but, in the end, it is still a plantation where one is in charge and the other is cheap labor. In the case of Haiti, the Haitians get progressively worse.



Republicans Angry at Black Progress

Join the March . . . Send Money to Re-Elect the President

African American news from Pasadena - Editorial - Republicans angry at Black progress...A letter to the editor in a recent Pasadena Star News issue from a man, I believe from La Crescenta, who wrote, among other things, that he was half Black, caught my eye. Around the same time, I watched Congressman Darryl Isa trying to get America's first Black Attorney General, Eric Holder, fired and held in contempt of Congress or force him to resign. I recalled something that the man wrote.

He wrote something to the effect that White folk don't stay awake at night trying to figure out ways to keep Black folks down. I remember that prolific statement because it is the exact opposite of what my Black Daddy taught me. By the way, I am proud to say that my Mama was Black too. I'm not half anything. If that seems to be confusing, I don't know. Daddy taught me that there are some, I emphasize " SOME", White folks who indeed don't sleep at night trying to figure out ways to keep Black folks down.



Once Upon A Time

Black news from Pasadena - Editorial on 50 year wedding anniversaryEarlier this month, my wife came home from her sorority meeting and I noticed that she he had a button with my picture pinned to her shirt. I asked her, "What's with the button?" She said she wore it because it was our fiftieth wedding anniversary month and she was "wearing her man for the world to see."

June 30, 2012 marks the day of our 50th wedding anniversary. Our oldest granddaughter, realizing how long fifty years is, proclaimed to her Grammy, "You guys have been together a half century. Imagine that, one half a century."

As I thought about this, I wondered, what do you do for an encore? Do you do what you have been doing for the last fifty years all over again, without the mistakes you made during the first fifty? Yes, there have been mistakes, but we weathered them together. During fifty years you learn to apologize, when necessary, and remember to act out the Golden Rule on a daily basis, "do unto (the other half of you) as you would have them do unto you."



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