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California and the U.S.

Parkland: If ‘Don’t-mention-his-name’ were Black

February 19, 2018

I cannot imagine that if DMHN, of Parkland, Florida, were Black, that he would not have been captured and controlled by some aspect of law enforcement. The unfortunate and overplayed fear of Black students misbehaving has been very much on display in the media with various police student classroom encounters available for all to see. I cannot imagine any Black or Muslim of any age, under the kind of FBI scrutiny we now know happened with DMHN, who would not have been contained, blamed or framed by security and intelligence forces in this country.

Regarding the 2005 photo of Farrakhan and Obama: A gentle scolding of a dear ally

February 10, 2018

The problems with Alan Dershowitz’s position regarding Obama’s taking a picture with Farrakhan are two-fold. First, by associating Obama with Farrakhan’s views, he is painting with too broad a brush. The second problem with Alan Dershowitz’s complaint is the static nature of his worldview. We can love our allies, and still have a concern that they do not speak against our interest when our interests diverge from theirs. Alan Dershowitz and others of our allies must come to understand this.

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Black History Month – or thanking the slaves for making America great?

February 9, 2018

The month of February signifies the annual celebration of Black History Month, a time to recognize African American achievements and contributions to America. One notable consequence is the hero worship of a handful of prominent figures. This celebration of Black achievement tends to be sanitized, and this selective representation often comes at the expense of erasing a rich legacy of individuals, groups and movements just as important in the legacy of Black struggle.

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Andre Jacobs calls out celebrities: The Bay View is the realest, rawest, richest paper of all; don’t let it go broke!

February 2, 2018

My tears flowed when I heard the world could be losing the San Francisco Bay View newspaper as a source of life, light and power due to lack of funding. This harrowing news reminded me of a hard lesson I’ve learned: Any cause, no matter how noble, can and will be lost without money to fuel it. I’ve spent thousands of dollars and hours buying and reading newspapers. Hands down, the Bay View produces the realest, rawest, richest content of them all. For more information on how to donate or support, call 415-671-0789, visit www.sfbayview.com/support or write to SF Bay View, 4917 Third St., San Francisco, CA 94124. Or donate to the Bay View’s GoFundMe campaign.

Surviving the bomb

January 31, 2018

On Jan. 13, at 8:07 a.m., a ballistic missile alert went out to TV, radio and mobile phones in Hawaii; 38 minutes later, the alert was canceled. Authorities blamed the false alert on a button pushed in error during a shift change. During those 38 minutes, there was widespread panic. Many tried to find some sort of shelter. A few, realizing shelter would most likely not protect them, stayed out in the open. What would you do?

A historical perspective on the contemporary racial divide

January 30, 2018

Aug. 12, 2017, a myriad of white nationalist groups amalgamated in the city of Charlottesville to protest the removal of a Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee statue. This “unite the right” white nationalist rally was the largest gathering in over a decade, according to ABC News. David Duke, the former grand-wizard of the Ku Klux Klan who is also an avid supporter of Donald Trump, was one of the organizers. During this rally they were met with counter-protestors.

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Women’s March on the Pentagon: Confronting the bipartisan war machine

January 29, 2018

Cindy Sheehan: I’m beginning to organize a Women’s March on the Pentagon because since 2007, when Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats regained a majority in the House of Representatives, there has been an incomprehensible absence of protesting the USA’s wars and empire. After Obama took over as president, the antiwar movement all but died. Many of us think that one cannot separate the global emancipation of women or the destruction of our planet from the issue of war.

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Covered California predicts dramatic healthcare premium increases without federal action

January 18, 2018

Covered California issued an analysis Thursday that examined the potential impacts of the current open-enrollment period – which remains open in California, but ended in federally facilitated marketplace states on Dec. 15 – and of recent federal decisions on premiums in individual markets across the nation. The analysis found that premiums could increase dramatically in 2019, with increases from 16 to 30 percent if no steps are taken to mitigate these increases.

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Dr. King: Honor him with a movement, not just monuments

January 15, 2018

We must raise the query, what is the value in a monument when our country has fallen so far backwards in race relations under this president? We need a movement. In Dr. King’s honor, every American must join this movement to establish justice, peace and equality of opportunity for all. Through reasoned compromise, both sides resolve every injustice with a plan of action. Each act of reconciliation is one step closer to King’s “Beloved Community.”

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Power of law and sex

January 10, 2018

A powerful political figure asks several of his female staffers a favor: “Can either of you gals have my baby? Don’t worry – I’m willing to pay y’all …” In an era in which sexual harassments, assaults and attacks on women seem commonplace, this case seems like something out of a bad sci-fi movie. Is this real life? One wonders. The politician who propositioned his staff members, (Rep. Trent Franks, R-8th, Arizona), was a prominent conservative known for his adherence to ‘family values’.

Celebrate Black History Month by circulating Black dollars in Black communities

January 8, 2018

Once and for all, let’s get this straight. America has gotten out of the Black people business! No help is coming from Washington, D.C. No help is coming from state government. No significant help is coming from city and county municipal governments. No useful help is coming from foundations and corporations. We, Black people, are on our own. And, really, for centuries, we were always on our own.

How prisoners organized to elect a just DA in Philly

January 1, 2018

The recent general election in Philadelphia saw a former civil rights attorney running on an anti-incarceration platform elected district attorney to the country’s fifth largest city. Larry Krasner, who defended Black Lives Matter activists and indicted police officers while in private practice, promised sweeping reforms and Philadelphia voters responded. Prisoners supported Krasner’s candidacy with a robust political action campaign of voter education, voter registration, political forums and get-out-the-vote drives directed towards their families, loved ones, friends and returned citizens.

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Opposition mounts to sexual harassment witch-hunt

December 28, 2017

As the campaign over allegations of sexual misconduct has unfolded, it has become clear that what is involved is of far greater magnitude than the form in which it initially emerged – allegations against one Hollywood producer, Harvey Weinstein. With the initial shock beginning to wane, opposition is emerging from some of those targeted. PBS personality Tavis Smiley, who was summarily suspended based on anonymous and unspecified allegations, issued a blistering statement denouncing PBS for launching a “so-called investigation” without even contacting him.

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#MeToo founder Tarana Burke, Alicia Garza of Black Lives Matter on wave of sexual harassment reports

December 28, 2017

Over the last two months, the political, media and entertainment worlds have been rocked, as thousands of women, and some men, have come forward to share their stories of sexual harassment and abuse. The catalyst was the historic disgracing of Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, who now is being criminally investigated, after dozens of women came forward to accuse him of rape, assault and sexual harassment. In the days after the Harvey Weinstein revelations, we interviewed Tarana Burke, Soraya Chemaly and Alicia Garza.

Musing on survival: Living in the ghetto and the near inevitability of prison

December 26, 2017

I recently read “Blood in the Fields: Ten Years in the Nuestra Familia Gang” and was taken aback by one of the main characters in the book. Mando was a young guy who grew up in a violent household, joined a gang and ended up committing a murder that would net him a sentence of 29 years to life. I became very sad and thought of one of the young men I met while visiting San Quentin State Prison in California for an educational panel, Efrain.

Coates doesn’t get it

December 24, 2017

The answers to the problems are all wrapped together in the beautiful writing of Coates, a man whose politics are still forming, but on such a large scale that these criticisms must come with an urgency, as West delivered them. I respect West magnificently for his actual work in activism, both historically and currently. If Coates is to continue being called the voice of my people, he has to move from being a traditional intellectual who walks the line of academic and objective writer into the space of organic intellectual that he likely sees himself as, who is activistic in nature.

Give Black women credit for #MeToo and the defeat of Roy Moore in Alabama

December 23, 2017

Currently, two historic events are being characterized in a manner that erases the significant contributions of Black women. The #MeToo Movement is being recast in the national narrative to fit into a more comfortable version of U.S. history. A seminal moment within this movement was when white celebrities began to use the hashtag to make people aware of the extent of sexual abuse suffered by women in this country. But this moment came 10 years after the movement was begun by a Black woman, Tarana Burke.

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FCC Chair Ajit Pai, enemy of the people

December 18, 2017

Ajit Pai is a serious enemy to the masses. He heads the FCC. He led the charge to strip the internet of net neutrality protections, and you will soon see drastic changes that will disenfranchise and strip power from millions of people who depend upon on the internet. Net neutrality is what makes the Internet such a powerful platform. It’s a democratizing aspect. We are all one click away for any user wishing to access our material. The million-dollar company and the poor blogger are accessible by all. The excuse to end net neutrality is that we should not have regulations. The long term impact is to keep the ability to communicate to the masses in the hands of a few who are rich, powerful and in position to afford full access.

The height of racial resentment: White cops

December 17, 2017

If white voters are racially resentful and if their resentments remain consequential for their selections at the ballot box, we might wish to understand who among the white population in the U.S. evinces the most racially resentful and racially conservative attitudes and why. Some recent sociological work has examined this question and found at least one primary suspect: white police officers.

Soaring thyroid cancer rates north of NYC may be caused by Indian Point nuke plant emissions

December 16, 2017

The rate of new thyroid cancer cases in the four counties just north of New York City, which was 22 percent below the U.S. rate in the late 1970s, has soared to 53 percent above the U.S. rate. This change may be a result of airborne emissions of radioactive iodine from the two Indian Point nuclear power reactors, at the crossroads of Westchester, Rockland, Orange and Putnam counties, and operating since the mid-1970s. Large increases occurred for both men and women in each county.

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