As usual Michael Phillips has opened the floodgates of his mouth and cast aspersions on President Obama. I am responding to him. He's lucky, because it's 4:00 AM, September 5, Labor Day, and I just got in from the King and Queen contest for the West indian Day parade - so I'm in a good mood; plus, I've got my headset on and I'm listening to israel Houghton and New Breed, my favorite spiritual vocalists - or I'd really be down right pi--ed off! Instead I'm going to take a kinder gentler tone with him:
Take it down a few notches, Mike!!!
I was in the mode of wanting to take your head off at the base of your neck, but decided that I've got waaaaaay too much dust where I'm sitting already. So, I'll just respond by saying there is a vast difference between a winning strategy and a whining strategy. I really don't recall any vicious statement against Rev. Wright in Obama's part. I do remember an article I wrote when Wright proceeded to with his "in yo face" attitude towards the whites upon whom some of Obama's votes counted. I do recall saying the name of the game is TO WIN. You are in a country that is dominated by caucasoid mentalities and attitudes; for him to have not allowed Rev. Wright to continue to rant and rave was not to turn his back on him, as much as it was to maintain the focus on the ultimate goal at the time: to WIN THE ELECTION and become the first Black, and only real president of the United States.
Wright, having come through the Civil Rights, era as I did,was understandably feeling a certain amount of elation at Obama's running for office. To him this was coming full circle for all the horrors Black people have endured for centuries. We all understood that. But the time and place for what he was saying was, of necessity, after the election, once we had won it; not before, when you have to garner support from Blacks and whites alike. He, of all people, should have understood that and taken it down a notch, without having had to have Obama step out of his church. But you couldn't get the Brother to cool it. There is an old saying among war vets (of which my Dad was one), "loose lips, sink ships"! Now, you don't have to have been in a war or a battle to understand that. If you alert people to where you're coming from before you have gotten the foothold you need, you risk having the door of opportunity slammed in your face. An almost won is not a win.
As far as Cornell West is concerned, exactly who was keeping count on how many times West went out and spoke for President Obama during his campaign? Was this free and voluntary or was it paid? If it was free and voluntary, the Cornell of course is to be commended for his enthusiasm and support; if it was paid, he is likewise to be commended for his enthusiasm and support and for a job well done. I am not saying that President Obama should or should not have invited him to the Presidential ball - I have no idea what the pecking order of the day was; nor do I even care. I personally crashed three parties and had a blast; was not only guest list; wrote about and spoke about Obama over one hundred fifty times - from the first time I met him in 2004 in Manhattan, and later his wife Michelle in Harlem in 2007 (when they were still doing an exploratory); i didn't ask or demand that he or she invite me to their ball. (by the way I also crashed Clinton's ball twice - it's just a big party folks, with a lot of elbow rubbing) --- Anywaaaaay! What we have here is a big assed case of sour grapes - aka gripes.
Cornell truly could have buried himself in the realm of bogus academia. i have always enjoyed his turn of phrase when someone makes the mistake of tredding on Black people; however, I also know that his acerbic manner can be offputting. I don't agree with your analogy that Obama went to Republicans before he went to Black people - or else we would not have an Eric Holder, and so many other Brothers and Sisters in key positions. So you need to recant on that load of sh-t you are putting out there my friend.
The problem lies in the inherent jealousy we still allow ourselves to indulge in when either of us manages to make it big time. The old African albatross of "crabs in a barrell" smells pretty high here. You don't really see it because it's you! You cosign crap because you are so immersed in the resentment of the fact that Obama has "paid no dues" in your estimation, and therefore he did not come up "through the ranks" and should not be where he is. You see a Black man who had a white mother and act as if that somehow or other means that his being a Black man accounts for little or nothing. You are the same people who genuflect for Beyonce, Maria Carey, Halle Berry, and few others I can name who have likewise similar origins.
Obama's situation is even more pronounced because he actually is as Black, if not Blacker, than most of us, and has learned how to parlay that into a formula most of you have yet to even fathom. instead of learning to do what he has done, and applying it in so many other instances where Black men (and women) need to refine and finesse their skills, education and methodology, you'd rather spend your time and energy tearing him down. What a f-ck'g waste. Your gray matter must be speckled with the very watermelon seeds you are accusing President Obama of not eating.
Your bogus 'blacker than thou' measure of who is and who ain't black just means that your brainwashing comes from the divide and conquer school of thought. While we're at it, though, would you please point out for me where the Black leadership is that you are alluding to? Who or what is it that is leading us? Surely you are not referring to Tavis Smiley or Cornell West? Because that's just sad. No aspersions on either of those two intelligent brothers, but leaders they are not. If our Black "leaders" are so effective, what the sam hill are we doing sitting here 40 years later after the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, still going through much of the same crap that was happening before we started? Where the heck have they been for the last 40 years? Who have we been following for the last 40 years? What constitutes a leader in your estimation? What the sam hill is your criteria? Show me the leader(s)!!
As a Black woman and a Black journalist/feature writer, I am accustomed to the meanstream media casting aspersions and distorting things President Obama has said, or was alleged to have said. There is no end to their level of distortions. It has been my "responsibility" (mission, really) to make the corrections, and connect the dots. so that those who are less well educated and informed won't walk away believing what they say is true.
But when one of our own so-called "black" family members proceeds to go out of his way to distort what Obama has either said or done, I consider it an egregious act of sabotage and treachery. We don't need to be stabbing each other in the back. Don't help the enemy Mike. You keep on, and then you got to figure out who is going to help you when your stuff is going down the proverbial tube. Characterizing Obama's statement about Rev. Wright as a vicious attack shows that you are no better than the mean stream white reporters of the Post and other Rep-ugh-blican oriented publications. Yes he made a disclaimer; but he did not put Rev. Wright down, nor did he sever himself from the church. By the way, Mike, how's your nose doing? Can you read around it with so many lies, I'm sure by now it's a proboscis that rivals de Bergerac's!!
You made a really dumb statement that I totally take exception to, so I wanted make sure that, unlike you, I neither distorted, nor misquoted, so I'm inserting it here: Cornel West is a very distinguished professor at Princeton University. He did not choose to bury himself in academia. Instead he has devoted his skills and talents to becoming an eloquent outstanding advocate for racial justice in America. He has earned our respect and admiration for it. So far, Obama has no such distinction (????!!)
Clearly you made this statement to see if you could get a rise out of me and those like me who are supporters of the President. Or perhaps you were dumb enough to think that someone out there would cosign that madness and say: "duh, uh, yup, by gumb, Obama ain't made no such duhstinkshun. Uh, what's a dustinkshun? The brother served in the Chicago community for over 20 years. He was elected to the US Senate - something New York has yet to accomplish. He did not get there on good looks (though he could have easily done so); he got there because he wasn't just spouting quotes, he was taking action on the ground, making sure that his constituents had what they needed to improve their quality of life. Just floating out $25.00 words does not make you a leader ust a brother who knows several ways not to say the "n" word.
How many homes have either Cornell West or Tavis Smiley; how many communities have they helped survive hard times. Where is the track record that shows that the President did not have a following that equals if not rivals what either of these two men have done. There is great merit and blessing in taking the time in the trenches helping those who are there get out, by the combined strengths and energy of Obama's and their own.
Like I said, Mike, don't get it twisted - Obama has done more for Black people and for this country in his brief first term in his own right, than either of the individuals you mention in your diatribe. And he ain't through!! The thing for you, me, and the rest of his brothers and sisters to do is take a course in Obama 101 and begin applying the principles of Obama in our own lives. if we do that we might actually begin to own some businesses, build some schools, educate some kids, develop some communities, have some familial relationships, and come out as the lead culture in this equation, as opposed to the culture of fools who stubbornly, foolishly, and ignorantly refused to accept this wonderful gift and make it work big time.
At some point we have learn to be the faith, the grace, the blessings we claim we want, and give President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle, and the first daughters the benefit of belief, and start pulling this thing together - we need to make sure we have his back, not talking behind his back, stabbing him in the back; or backing away. Or history will bear out what the old comic strip character Pogo said: "I have seed the enemy and it am us!!" Well, at least you, because I'm not cosigning anything that undermines Obama!
Stay Blessed &
Check out my Blog: firstname.lastname@example.org
(:PS: Just imagine how that would have been had I not been in such a good mood)
MIKE'S PIECE STARTS HERE:
On Sun, Sep 4, 2011 at 3:25 PM, Michael Phillips
Does Obama eat watermelon?
Some have accused Cornell West of sour grapes because Obama did not invite him to his inauguration after West campaigned 65 times for him. They are missing the point. Obama’s omission is not trivial, but very important and I am very grateful for that bit of information.
Cornel West is a very distinguished professor at Princeton University. He did not choose to bury himself in academia. Instead he has devoted his skills and talents to becoming an eloquent outstanding advocate for racial justice in America. He has earned our respect and admiration for it. So far, Obama has no such distinction. So, when Cornel West talks, black people should listen. Many did not listen when trusted established black leaders blew the whistle on Clarence Thomas at his supreme court nomination hearings and we have been paying the price since.
The fact is Cornel West is just one of many black leaders that Obama counted on to deliver black votes on election night. They did, and Obama promptly turned his back on them all. Ironically, he is counting on them to do the same thing next elections.
I must confess that despite my enthusiastic support of Obama during the campaign, I was haunted by his treatment of the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. I made a point to read everything I could about Wright’s speeches and came to the inescapable conclusion that Obama’s vicious attack on his own preacher, that married him and Michelle, was completely undeserved and smacked of political expediency. But, it probably brought in a few extra votes.
It is crystal clear that Obama has no regard for the black leadership. He has distanced himself from them as if he were a Republican president. In forming his cabinet, he approached more Republicans than blacks. Is it that he thinks a good black man is so hard to find? Is he ashamed of blackness? Or is his blackness just a black vote-getting tool? Does President Obama eat watermelon? In secret, does not count.
Finally, I’ll close with what I call my Obama-Tonto joke. Do you remember the old joke about the Lone Ranger and his loyal Indian side-kick Tonto? Well it seems the Lone Ranger and Tonto found themselves completely surrounded by hostile Indians with no hope of escape. So the Lone Ranger turns to Tonto and says, “ Looks like this time we are done for Tonto”. To which Tonto replies. “What you mean ‘we’, white man?” Well, on the presidential election night, Cornel West rushes over to the victorious Barack Obama and exclaims jubilantly. :We won! We won!” Obama turns to him and with a steely glare says, “What you mean ‘we’, black man?”Michael Phillips,
Editor, Hot Calaloo; http://www.hotcalaloo.com