Wednesday, May 30, 2018

The racism of Roseanne and other Issues.

As for the Roseanne situation, we know the truth. What Roseanne did was wrong, evil, and without justification. Valerie Jarrett and her family deserve tons of respect. Roseanne issuing that Tweet shows that racism is a serious problem in our world. Her token "apology" was made because of her trying to maintain financial power not because of any sincerity. This is not new for her. She has said disrespectful, slanderous comments for years. For her to support Trump is antithetical to progressive, enlightened thinking. No one should be surprised by this since tons of Trump supporters embrace racism, bigotry, and xenophobia. ABC cancelled her show today because of her repugnant remarks. Roseanne is just one out of many Trump supporters who believe in myths instead of facts and who embrace hyperbole plus falsehoods instead of truth. This story makes us further aware that we reject not only racism. We reject colorism too for black African phenotypes are glorious and beautiful. We should solely judge a person based on his or her content of their character never on the color of one's skin. Trump being silent speaks volumes. This proves that Trump is coward, especially on racial issues. He has been sued for housing discrimination, he called for the death penalty of the Central Park Five (when they were innocent), and he gave offensive comments about the Charlottesville tragedy. Many cowards hide behind the phrase of "political correctness" as an excuse for them to promote the evils of racism and bigotry. We will fight to defeat bigotry period. Being honorable means to stand up for what is right and to defend the human dignity of black people. Therefore, we will continue to speak truth to power and defend human rights.

Recently was the Birthday of the late, great Sister Betty Shabbaz. Warrior, inspirational person, and lover of justice all describe her beautiful qualities accurately. She was her own woman and married one of the greatest black leaders in human history, who was Malcolm X. She was raised in Detroit, Michigan. She experienced racism like her parents. Also, she was resilient and fought for her human rights too. While she was in New York City, she worked as a nurse. So, she greatly understood the complexities and the physiological parameters of the human body. After Malcolm X gave a speech, she had dinner with Malcolm X being impressed by his leadership. Then, they became married in 1958. Yes, Black Love is always Beautiful. Both Malcolm X and Betty Shabbaz would be members of the Nation of Islam for a time. They had six daughters. To this very day, her daughters are in the struggle for justice. By 1964, both Betty Shabbaz and Malcolm X would leave the NOI and be Sunni Muslims. After Malcolm X's tragic, evil assassination in 1965, Betty Shabbaz was very heartbroken. She experienced nightmares. Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee helped Betty Shabbaz and her family too. That is why I give great honor to Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee since they were heroic social activists throughout their lives. Subsequently, Betty Shabbaz worked with Black Panthers and other groups for social change. She became a friend to Coretta Scott King and Myrlie Evers-Williams. All three women experienced the lost of their husbands via assassinations by evil people. She worked in education diligently and taught students in a college. She volunteered constantly. Her legacy does revolve around volunteering and advancing the same pristine goal of justice for everyone. She was just as much a warrior as Malcolm X was. We honor her life by doing the work of helping others, standing up for our freedom, and living our lives in the righteous way (in opposing injustice). She was our hero and our total inspiration.
Rest in Power Sister Betty Shabbaz.

The Prague Spring lasted from January 5, 1968 to August 21, 1968. Today, we witness 50 years after that incident. It was one of the most important events of 1968. It revolved around the people of Czechoslovakia seeking independence and true freedom from the Stalinist Warsaw Pact. During that time, there was the viciousness of capitalist imperialism and the viciousness of Stalinism. After World War II, the victorious U.S. and U.S.S.R. divided Europe in that the Eastern Bloc was controlled by the Soviets while Western Europe was controlled heavily by other Western powers. The reformist Alexander Dubček was elected as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia (KSČ) on January 5, 1968. He replaced the hardliner Antonin Novotny. Dubček declared the party's mission was "to build an advanced socialist society on sound economic foundations ... a socialism that corresponds to the historical democratic traditions of Czechoslovakia, in accordance with the experience of other communist parties ..." During the Prague Spring, Dubček established numerous reforms in giving more rights to the people of Czechoslovakia. They included: the partial decentralization of the economy, democratization, ending restrictions on the media, promoting more free speech, and ending travel restrictions. On March 4, 1968, Dubcek abolished censorship. He split the nation into 2 republics being the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic. Other activists used nonviolent resistance to promote democratic freedoms too. Workplace democracy among workers grew. Dubcek made the mistake of denouncing workers’ strikes. The Soviets hated the reforms and fought back. On the night of August 20-21, 1968, Eastern Bloc armies from four Warsaw Pact countries – the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Poland and Hungary—invaded the ČSSR (or Czechoslovakia). That night, 200,000 troops and 2,000 tanks entered the country. They invaded Czechoslovakia in trying to promote the status quo. The people resisted by painting street signs to confuse the Stalinist invaders. Many of them defied curfews. Some like Jan Palach used self-immolation suicides (i.e. burning oneself to death). After the invasion, the Soviets didn’t crush the aspirations of the people completely. People throughout the Warsaw Pact fought for their freedom continuously. Gustáv Husák ended the reforms of Dubeck. Also, it is important to note that the criminal acts of Stalinism are not representative of all socialists. There were revolutionary socialists who opposed the dictatorship of Joseph Stalin. Ultimately, the Prague Spring inspired the future revolutions of the 1980’s that ultimately ended Stalinism in Eastern Europe, East Germany, and the Soviet Union itself.

Today, it is 50 years after one major Poor People's Campaign march in Washington, D.C. The people at the location were black people, Latinx people, Native Americans, white people, etc. The Poor People's Campaign was the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who wanted the poor to have economic justice firmly. Many of these human beings on May 29, 1968 marched on the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., to protest a high court ruling that affirmed limits on Native American fishing rights in several rivers of Washington state. One leader of this movement was Ralph David Abernathy, the principal leader of the Poor People’s Campaign following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.. Another leader of the movement was Reies Tijerina, a leader of the Chicano movement in the state of New Mexico. Many protesters were at the doors of the U.S. Supreme Court building seeking justice. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., before he died, was moving to be more left wing and more revolutionary. He saw that civil and voting rights are great, but you have to address an economic system that harms people of all colors if you desire true liberation. You have to have a massive redistribution of economic and political power in order to cause real change in our society. Dr. King wanted the Poor People's Campaign to be like the Bonus March back in the 1930's when WWI veterans wanted higher wages (while setting up tents in Washington D.C.). Douglas MacArthur used his troops to end the Bonus March brutally. One of the greatest mistakes of Douglas MacArthur was his excessive response to the Bonus March.

Also, it is important to note that Sister Mary Wright Edelman inspired Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to go forward with the Poor People's Campaign. Since Dr. King was gone physically by April 4, 1968, Ralph Abernathy took over the SCLC and the Poor Peoples Campaign. Dr. King wanted the Poor People's Campaign to give the poor a living wage, adequate incomes, true land, allow to give the poor to experience true political and economic power, and the establishment of other policies. This was part of the Economic Bill of Rights. The Poor People's Campaign asked for the federal government to prioritize helping the poor with a $30 billion anti-poverty package that included, among other demands, a commitment to full employment, a guaranteed annual income measure, and more low-income housing. Even during that time (with the peak of the American post-World War II economic boom in the midst of the lowest economic inequality in American history, possibly in world history), the capitalist powers that be refused to follow the Economic Bill of Rights of the Poor People's Campaign (when these proposals from Dr. King and others were reasonable and legitimate). Dr. King once said that if the government can spend billions of dollars to send a man on the moon then it can spend billions of dollars to help the poor right here on Earth. He's right. Today, we have a new Poor People's Campaign desiring economic justice as well. Rev. Barber is one leader of this 2018 movement using rallies, civil disobedience, and other programs to fight for the poor. It has been a sick past-time for not only some of the rich, but some of the bourgeoisie middle class (many of whom are one or two paychecks away from poverty) to mock and degrade the poor viciously, which is evil. Those days are over. The poor deserves respect and honor just like anyone else.

By Timothy

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